tv Morning Joe MSNBC May 23, 2012 6:00am-9:00am EDT
tattooed temporarily of course across my expanding belly. "morning joe" starts right now. making money for your investors, which romney did very well, is not the president's job. the president has a different job. your job as president is to promote the common good. that doesn't mean the private equity guys are bad guys. they're not. but that no more qualifies you to be president than being a plumber. it doesn't -- and by the way, there's a lot of awful smart plumbers. all kidding aside, it's not the same job requirement. so it's totally legitimate for the president to point this out. we will not go back to the '50s in social policy, to the cold war in our foreign policy, and to the policies of the last
administration on our economic policy. we will not do it their way again. we intend to move forward. we intend to rebuild the middle class. good morning, everyone. look at that beautiful shot of morning in new york city. >> there's nothing beautiful about that shot. >> it's wednesday, may 23. >> joe biden was beautiful. >> it is beautiful if you think positive. with us onset, we have msnbc contributor mike barnicle. yeah. and msnbc political analyst and visiting professor at nyu and former democratic congressman harriford jr. >> and the star of a political ad. and political analyst ed rendell. >> look at this. murderers row. a couple of democrats to stand with cory.
>> don't start this way. >> no. >> i've got other things to tell you about this morning like polls and facebook. >> we were watching chris matthews last night. man, chris was like tearing into you, ed. >> well, chris is in philadelphia, and he can tear into me. it's ok. we do that down here. >> i know. but i loved that at one point he said, do you stand with the president or not? you're like, yeah, it's not a yes or no answer. of course you stand with the president. but come on, ed. listen -- >> you know what's going on here. >> this is the reality. cory booker and -- and we said this. cory booker would not have said what he said on "meet the press" if he wasn't hearing it at every event he went to, at every fundraiser he went to, at every -- every time he talked to a business owner that wanted to move into newark, if he didn't hear about it, because cory understands like you understand, because you were a mayor and a governor, the jobs are connected to venture capital.
now, this has nothing to do with mitt romney. because mitt romney was about profits, not jobs. but what does philadelphia want? what does newark want? what does gary, indiana, want? what does south central l.a. want? they want investment. they want new businesses. they want jobs. and what fuels that, mr. mayor? mr. governor, mr. chairman? >> obviously, capital. there's no question about it, joe. and that's right. but remember, mitt romney was saying that he created jobs from his leadership at bain. that's the central thrust of why he should be president. he doesn't talk about what he did in massachusetts because massachusetts was 47th in job creation. >> i got you there, governor. >> all right. >> we understand that, and i agree with what you say. if he wants to make bain an issue in creating jobs, fine, he's opened that door, as we used to say in law class, and now his opponent can walk through it. but do you think it's helpful
when you've got people saying that venture capitalists are, quote, vultures? >> no. and i said that the vampire quote from the fella, that stuff has no place in campaigns. but an examination of bain does. and let me give you one example, joe. amped. $100 million in profit, lots of people lost jobs. but they also lost a good portion of their pension and health care did. it ever occur to anybody, governor romney or anybody else that, maybe we take $80 million in profit and leave $20 million so these folks can have their pensions and health care? i think that's a value judgment. >> that is a value judgment. >> that's a value judgment. and i think it's legitimate. >> and i think it's very legitimate for opponents, mike barnicle, to say for what mitt romney was doing, that wasn't his job. his job was the bottom line. his job was creating profits. it wasn't about creating jobs. it was about getting the biggest return on investment for the people that put money in bain
capital. that is the reality. he needs to be careful when he starts talking about jobs. but you know what? i sort of slipped. >> yeah. >> because i used another v word. instead of what -- vampire, i said vulture. now, where did that come from? it came from rick perry. >> rick perry, right. >> which points to the fact that this shameful demagoguery, we have been listening to it from democrats and republicans for a year. >> the rhetoric of the past weeks, and especially the past three or four days, has proven one thing, though, at least to me, that the obama campaign has been very successful at making mitt romney's record as governor and head of bain capital an issue, rather than president obama's record. there are people with issues of their own with regard to the president's leadership. that's one thing. the other thing is what mayor booker said, the one thing he
did say, the truth of it, the validity of it, will resonate from now through election day, the campaign thus far with the spots, the back and forth, the vampire stuff, is nauseating. people are going to be so turned off by the negative ads, the volume of negative ads that will be run in this campaign, that i don't know what's going to happen. >> maybe this will be a turning point in terms of the dialogue and maybe that is a good thing. >> you think so? >> no, because people are going down because of the dialogue. >> one number to put this entire conversation in context that comes from our nbc "wall street journal" poll, 9% of americans have negative feelings about bain capital. excuse me. 19% negative, 9% positive. so there are a lot of people with no feelings about bain capital. >> it may be that they haven't looked at it yet. but the thing is the campaigning
carries over. he wins, but people have listened to him be trashed for a year. that's why people don't have confidence in the government, don't want government spending, don't want a lot of things. it really is indemic in our political system right now, and it's terrible. >> you have a slash and burn campaign. we have seen it time and time again on state and sometimes national levels. you win by one, two, three points and then you can't govern because you come into office with negative ratings. we talked about rick scott in florida. it's happening in a lot more places. so i think this has been a bad week for president obama. and i think, though, it's not going to impact him in the long run. but, harold, i was reflecting back on my father, 1972, out of work. he got paid $40 a week by the mississippi unemployment office. he always said it would pay for a bag of groceries and a tank of
gas. and '72 was the year that george mcgovern was promising, quoting a citizens income where all citizens got a certain wage guaranteed by the federal government. and of course talked about rich republicans and this. my dad, unemployed, getting $40 a week unemployment benefits. my mom was a church organist. she made $4,000 a year. kept us in our house because they spent their money wisely through the years. but my dad didn't -- i never heard my dad once, once resent the rich guys. he didn't go and say, well, george mcgovern is saying those rich guys. h he voted for nixon and would vote for nixon today against george mcgovern. i'm talking about just based on their views. of the economy, and how you create wealth. because my dad always believed like the bidens believed, like
the clintons believed, like the fords believed, like the barnicles believe, like the geists believed, that you and your grandchildren would see better days ahead. and i don't believe -- i don't believe in 2012 any more than 40 years ago in 1972, that a populist campaign based on class envy is going to work with swing voters. i just don't believe that. i think the obama campaign needs to get off of this and have a more hopeful message. am i wrong? >> successful national campaigns consistent with your point are predicated on looking forward, are predicated on saying here's what we've done to make us better, but here's where we're going to go. by nature, by definition, that's who we are as a nation and as a
people regardless of where we end up on the income level. i think it's appropriate as governor rendell said to question and examine the bain record while governor romney was head of the organization. in fairness to mayor booker, who i think has been unfairly criticized and vilified by some, including my friend chris matthews last night for being muteinist, he was making the point that many private equity funds attract most of their capital from public and private pension funds. so some of the beneficiaries, when we talk about the investor class, we try to categorize them as wall street types. many people that are buying equities across the board are people who work in companies, everyday plumbers and middle class americans. but putting that aside, the real issue that cory was making the other day is the campaign should be how do we make mrs. scarborough, mr. barnicle, how do we make it better for them and their kids?
i think president obama has a much better chance to litigate that. and the reason i made my point the other day on your show is that i stand with cory in saying let the campaign get back to the big issues. when they get back to the big issues, president obama has an advantage there and the country will understand it. and more importantly, people you talk about, the families you talk about when you compared your own, are the people -- the things that people are concerned about are the things your father were concerned about. how do we grow again. i think the real issue is how do we grow again. we have to get back to that conversation. >> how do i get back to work? >> well, that's the question your father might be asking. and i wonder if, and i understand exactly what you're saying because he spent time unemployed. but long-term unemployment is at an all-time high in decades. and people are really struggling. and don't you think -- i agree about resentment. i don't think that ever works. jealousy never works. but what about fairness? and don't you think that's a message that could be tapped into and that this president has
got the credibility to do so? >> i think fairness -- >> and wouldn't your father like that in times like these? >> listen, my dad -- and i'm sure, mike, your family, believe -- i'm sure the bidens believe, and the clintons believe -- >> and i'm sure the obamas too. >> i'm sure that middle class americans believe that grew up struggling believe that, yeah, i want the rich guy to live by the same rules as me. but i'm not going to go into the voting booth trying to stick it to the rich guy. i want a job. i want to keep my job. i want to pay my mortgage. >> you want a fair system. >> i want to be able to buy two cars, send my kids to college. that's my dream. >> given -- i agree with that, and i know where you're coming from when you speak of your dad and the $40 a week and the bag of groceries and a tank of gas. i buy all of that. i have lived through, you know, people at the top of the hill in the big houses.
i don't resent the top of the hill and the big houses. i want to get to the top of the hill. that's what the country is all about. but given the level of sophistication with which campaigns are run these days, i am also led to believe that there must be something in the focus groups, in the language, in what the obama campaign is hearing and what the romney campaign is hearing, that there is gold to be mined in resentment, given the fact that the banks collapsed, that the 401(k)s collapsed, that people lost their jobs, that businesses moved overseas. >> they still can't find one. >> that people are casting about, looking around for someone to blame. there's got to be something in there. >> you know what this is? this is william jennings bryant, who said famously, i think it was bryant who said it, if not, the name sounds important enough so i'm going to go with it. [ laughter ] >> if you have the law on your side, argue the law. if you've got the facts on your side, argue the facts. if you've got neither, argue.
so you think about it. if you're the obama campaign, you don't want anybody talking about the economy because the economy's bad, and cbo this morning says it's getting worse. are you going to attack mitt romney because he's a terrible husband? >> no. go after bain. >> attack him because of his record in massachusetts? kind of hard when his biggest achievement was creating obama care a few years ahead of president obama. >> no. you can definitely use that to your benefit, though. >> so what do you do? they've got one card to play, and it's that he's this greedy rich guy. he is the 1%. i think that's all they've got with this guy. he's sufficiently bland enough that you don't have a lot of -- >> that's not all they've got. come on. >> ed rendell? >> well, i think, joe, you're right in the sense that other than -- and i think there is a real value question in the way that bain was operated when
romney was there. but i think what they've got, mika, is a real plan to create jobs. romney doesn't. romney's plan is a plan that has failed and failed when president bush tried to do it. it doesn't work. they can question romney. he says let's get rid of regulations that are restricting government. ok. >> how about his record as governor creating jobs? >> absolutely. but regulations that affect business, name them. and i think the president has a much better plan on jobs. but i think the best way for the president to get re-elected is for him to lead. he should stand up, talk to the congress, and say it's time to do simpson bowles. we're going to get rid of this deficit. >> i would agree 100%. >> balance the budget, and the economy is going to take off when we do that. >> man, you know what, governor, if he does that, it's -- >> game over. >> we've said it. if he had the courage to do that, it would be game over. because every time mitt romney turned to him and said, oh, you're a big government democrat. you're a big spending liberal.
look at the deficits. he goes, i've supported simpson bo bowls. where are you, governor romney? i don't think romney can follow him. >> can you imagine that president obama and his team urging congress to come back and vote on the buffett rule, if they applied the same formula and strategy to simpson bowles and says we're demanding that congress come back, every congressional district and every state he asked voters to come back and give me an up or down, you would see a shift in these numbers so dramatically. this morning in "the journal," in kansas, tea party republicans, centrist republicans fighting over tax cut taxes. centrist republicans saying it was the wrong thing to do. the country is ready for serious conversation. the president led -- i agree with governor rendell 100% and you as well. >> so the question is, why hasn't he done it? >> because he doesn't have the courage to do it. if he had the courage to do it, willie, he would cause a civil
war within the republican party. now, maybe everybody on capitol hill would all uniformly go against it. but i don't think so. i think tom coburn, i think chambliss, i think a lot of responsible republicans would say, you know what? we've got to pay down this debt or we're going to collapse. and then obama could just sit back and watch mitt romney debate himself. >> i think simpson bowles would be good for the country. but when it went up for the vote, it was defeated 382-38. i think that's part of president obama's argument. i walk out there, and it will get shut down. >> but if it the president is not behind it, that's going to happen. if the president goes and leads, we're talking about leadership of the president. >> governor rendell, jump in. >> willie, that point is -- the point that joe made, the president not being behind it, is so right. the legislature would never vote for something that they knew i wasn't supporting, because they didn't want to risk the vote,
take a courageous stand, if they knew that i would be against it and they would be left hanging with the courageous stand. if the president said he was for simpson bowles, i believe you'd get enough democrats and republicans to pass it. >> so you think that democrats would suddenly vote for big cuts to medicare and medicate, and the republicans for big tax increases? >> not all of them, but enough to pass it, absolutely. >> and if the president was really lucky, he would have an equal number of democrats and republicans opposing it. he could triangulate and stand up and go -- >> i'm the adult here. >> mika's right. >> we've got problems from conservatives that are too far right who won't raise revenues. we've got problems from liberals who don't understand the entitlement system is going corrupt. and with it, america. we need more leaders. governor romney, will you join me? it would change it completely.
>> huge moment of opportunity here. >> we have to ask carol this question. i'm sorry to have to ask you this question, man, but -- >> i'm curious. >> well, first of all, do you have the facebook stock certificates inside your pocket there? >> how are they doing in there? >> what's happening? yesterday, there's news that facebook debuts. raises questions on the ipo process. i don't know if you can legally speak. you work for morgan stanley. >> are you allowed to talk about this, harold? >> or can we just talk about how bad of a stock facebook is? >> i'll share with you on the show, i stand by it. this company stands by it. there will be other people who come on and talk about this. i'm probably not the right person to do it. but i think a couple of months from now you'll look back and say that this was a good investment. this was a smart company. i trust this management team. >> good investment for what? >> i like it so much, i'm wallpapering my office with facebook stock certificates. but willie and i have our own
firm, brokerage firm, at 1-800-willie. call it up, and we'll give you advice. >> 1-800-willie. >> i don't think it's a brokerage firm. >> i predicted last week that it would settle at $28. everybody laugheda the me. >> it's at $31. it's getting there. >> they lost another $100 million yesterday. >> harold, you're not at all concerned? come on now. >> you're on the titanic, my man. >> at the end of the day, nothing has changed with the company. it still has 1 billion users. the question is if they continue to innovate. if you have confidence in mark zuckerberg and his team, i think you stand back and say let this happen. >> i have confidence in his marriage lawyer, right? >> stop it. that's not nice. >> here his poor wife lost another $100 million yesterday. >> stop it. >> that's love. >> that is love.
>> you're a cynic. >> it may be love, but it's also great timing. ed rendell, this guy, he gets married the day -- look at this happy picture. and he's just sitting there thinking, ok, well, my attorney -- family attorney is pretty smart. he marries her when his net value is, well, about $3 billion higher than it is today. three days later. his wife is never going to see a cent. >> hard to believe. >> wow. >> would you trade places with him today, joe? >> no. why would i -- no, not at all. >> if you could take susan, of course. >> he's goin to be upside down by the end. you know, by the end, he's going to be sweeping the streets of palo alto. he's going to go and be asking if he can be the equipment manager for the stanford jv team. >> you need to let go. >> let go what? >> you need to let go. >> listen -- >> you need to stop. just stop it. deep breath. >> they got 15 advertisers. $15 billion.
mika, seriously, it's just like china. we have been talking about china for a couple of years. they're poor as dirt, ok? they're not going to take us over in the next five years. and anybody who says they are is smoking crack before they read the columns. it's the same thing with facebook. if you're valuing it at $100 billion? $100 billion? >> stop. can you stop now? >> the first person to click on an ad clicks it. it's never happened yet. >> it's going to, though. >> yeah. at some point. >> i almost clicked on that jon huntsman for president ad i saw for a year. i wonder what that ad would have said if i clicked on it. i guess we'll never know now, because nobody clicks on facebook ads, do they, willie? >> i don't know. i'm not on facebook. i'm a little behind the times. >> i'm not on facebook. >> we got a poll, i think. nbc/"wall street journal" poll.
>> are you all set now to get it out of your system? >> have you got it out of your system to ask me if i got it out of my system? >> yeah. >> i'm just trying to help the people of america not make unwise investments. but if you want them to go broke, go ahead. >> it was a very good conversation, otherwise. coming up, secretary of state colin powell joins us. >> i bet he didn't invest in facebook. >> bill richardson. al sharpton. along with msnbc chief foreign affairs correspondent andrea mitchell. and up next, a look at politico's top stories of the morning. does president obama have a political problem? we'll look at the results out of arkansas and kentucky last night. >> another inmate beating? >> what? >> did another inmate beat him? >> let's go to bill karins. sometimes i feel like an inmate. good morning, everyone. here's what you. >> need to know before you leave
the house this morning. 10 inches of rain at the miami airport in one day alone. so still some flooding problems. a flash flood watch is in effect. not a beach day, not even close in south florida. also watching some rain on the outer banks. heavy rainfall in eastern north carolina this morning. and then as we go throughout the afternoon, some of the wet weather will move northwards. definitely virginia to washington, d.c., to baltimore, it will rain. just scattered hit and miss storms. new york, philly, hartford, and boston, it's not going to rain all day. should get a climps of sunshine too. the other story, rainfall in minnesota this morning. watch out in minneapolis. and in texas, watch in dallas, 94 today. tomorrow in dallas, we go up to 99 degrees. summer is going to begin in texas, and it doesn't look like it will let up. that hot weather will spread across the country. even d.c. could hit 90 degrees over memorial day weekend. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. ♪
time to take a look at the morning papers. we'll start with the "wall street journal." moody's has lifted ford motor company's debt rating to investment grade. >> how great is that? >> that means ford can now reclaim sole ownership of its iconic blue logo, one of the many assets it used as collateral to secure loans to help weather the recession, avoid bankruptcy, and avoid a government bailout. congratulations to ford. automakers are pushing factories and workers to their limit trying to meet a growing demand. plants are hiring employees to work third shifts and paying them overtime to work six days a week to keep up with their input. and if you look, willie, at the nbc news "wall street journal"
poll, they credit the president in a few areas. this is one of those areas, helping turn around the auto industry. >> yeah. almost unanimously. i don't have the number in front of me. but it's a big number. only 13% say he hasn't done a good job on the autos. so he gets credit for a few things. 47% give him credit for the war in iraq and afghanistan as well. >> i'm sure he'll invite steve rattner to the white house this weekend and hug it out. >> absolutely. >> let's go down to politico. patrick gavin has been with us all week. not sure why, but we're glad he's back. >> he has the whitest teeth in the business. look at. this at least in the politico building. >> handsome son of a gun. >> if we're making fun of my teeth, does that mean we can get rid of the cat jokes or just combine them together? >> no, no. >> just for today. >> we will combine them together and ask you why you are now bleaching your cat's teeth. >> see how we do that?
[ laughter ] >> boom, just like that. you ask for it, you got it. patrick, some primaries last night. kentucky and arkansas. mitt romney took the republican primaries easily. how did the president do, number one, and number two, why does it matter? >> first one first. he did not do very well. 57% in kentucky and 59% in arkansas, which for an incumbent is not that good at all. there was no keith judd moment, which was the inmate who polled very well against him in west virginia. but in arkansas, there was a lawyer who got 41% and his primary platform was the repeal of obama care. that's not good to have in your own party. to your second question, does it matter? no. the turnout was pretty low, only 14%. >> let's talk sports. >> and the obama administration of course knows they're not going to win these states anyway. >> isn't that the large ert point? he lost kentucky by 17 points in
2008, arkansas by 20 points to john mccain in 2008. these were not in play to begin with. >> correct. >> willie is doing his homework. >> what's interesting, is that the president did even more poorly than john kerry did in 2004. what it does show is really how far the democratic party has drifted in these states, in that region. it's been since the '90s since they got those states. based on how the president is doing, it seems that will be even longer still until they have any chance of winning in that region going forward. >> again, to recap your headline, none of this matters. as you pointed out to us. >> he's good. >> can we get a t-shirt with that? >> nothing really matters. >> patrick gavin, we love you. thank you. >> he is great. coming up, the l.a. kings the last team to make it into the playoffs advances to the stanley cup finals. in dramatic style. nhl now dreaming of an l.a.-new york stanley cup. plus, we'll talk to governor rendell about his phillies
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los angeles kings. they scraped their way into the playoffs, and now they are on their way to the stanley cup finals. last night against the coyotes, in phoenix, looking to get to the cup finals for the first time since the gretzky era. first period, coyotes get a shot off. but look at the stop by jonathan quick. gets a piece of it with his leg. spectacular save keeps the game scoreless. second period, coyotes down a goal until keith yandle gets the feed and puts it into the net. the puck bounces off his shin and goes in. ties at game at 3-3. we go to overtime. just 2:18 left in overtime. off the rebound, dustin penner puts it in. that was the game-winner. 4-3 kings. they win on the road again, and they are headed back to the finals for the first time since 1993. the kings now await the winner of the rangers-devils series that picks up with game five tonight at the garden, tied at 2-2. the nba playoffs, heat taking on the pacers in miami
looking to go up 3-2 in their series, and they did easily. dwyane wade fighting through the defense here. just throws up a prayer and it goes and the foul. the route was on from there. later in the third, on the break, lebron james following out of bounds. finds his man, dwyane wade, for the dunk. couple of minutes later, wade returns the favor. feeds lebron with the long look. wide open for the dunk. lebron 30 points, just two assists shy of the triple-double. heat crushed the pacers. miami can close out the series with a win tomorrow night in indy. boston, meanwhile, can punch its ticket tonight to the eastern conference finals with a win in philly. >> they'll get that done. speaking of philly, baseball, roy halladay and the phils hosting the nationals. bryce harper, the kid, ropes one off halladay into right center field. two runners score. harper pulls into third with a
triple. nats up 2-1. phillies down 4-1. getting frustrated. carlos ruiz questions the strike zone. he gets himself run. charlie emanuel comes out for a chat as well. rick ankiel, bomb to dead center field. nationals win 5-2. six straight wins over the phillies. how about the washington nationals now alone in first place in the nl east? >> that's great. >> hey, governor, phillies are old. phillies are old. >> not as old as the yankees. >> no. >> i'll make a prediction. the phillies will be in the playoffs and the nationals won't. and let me tell you, great thing about baseball is it's a long season, guys. the mets in 1973 were 48-60. won the division. the mets were seven games ahead of the phillies in 2007, with only 70 to play. phillies won the division. phillies will be there, no question about it. >> wow. i like the confidence. >> all right.
>> same confidence we had last year for the phillies. >> absolutely. they made the playoffs. >> and that's great. let that be the standard for the best baseball team. you know, they made the playoffs. and the big news of course out of the al east, the yankees have pulled themselves out of the cellar. the scrappy win over the kansas city royals. >> it was close. >> they now lead the red sox by one game. >> the race to the bottom. we'll be following that all year on "morning joe." three days ago, you had wade and the coach fighting each other on tv last night. and now it looks like they are winning. coming up, mika's must read opinion pages. keep it on "morning joe." today, we stand against the tyranny
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i always loved watching the kids play basketball. i still do. even though things have changed. it's funny, they can't find jobs to get their career started, and i can't afford to retire. and now we're all living together again. i supported president obama because he spoke so beautifully. he promised change. but things changed for the worse. >> that was a huge ad by cross roads gps. >> i can't believe that lady aged like that. >> thanks, karl rove. >> that's a sad, sad story. and it's happening so often these days. >> the lying illusions they put in there like student loans and -- it's a good one. >> did you just say lying? >> they seem to be false, yeah.
>> what seems to be false? >> you tell me. >> about what? >> well, in the last graph of the ad, you know, they insinuate that the president has been bad on dealing with young people and student loans. >> it was misleading. >> misleading? ok. i call that lying. >> liberty on truth. >> this is what you're going to get, a lot of lies. "new york times," tall tales about private equity. aware of private equity's reputation -- oh this is by rattner, by the way. mr. romney still trots around the country erroneously calling himself a venture capitalist. in a further turnover deflect attention from the bain capital debate, mr. romney last week argued that president obama was responsible for the loss of 100,000 jobs in the auto industry over the past three years. that's both ridiculously false and a remarkable comment from a man who said that the companies should have been allowed to go
bankrupt and that the industry would have been better off without the president's involvement. adding jobs was never mitt romney's private sector agenda, and it's -- >> what -- >> jobs were loss, and he made a decision in one instant where jobs were lost. and given the opportunity for the government to act as an investor, he said no. and look at the impact that would have had. >> the news of the day draws that link. we just had a news story about ford motor company and about elements of the automobile industry putting on an extra shift, the third shift, working six days a week because of the demand for automobiles. that industry would have been savaged, would have been nearly gone had governor romney -- >> and although ford didn't take a dollar of public money, they survived because the suppliers and so forth were able to continue to flourish because of the big investment. that's the link that needs to be drawn from the president. >> well handled situation.
well, what? what's so funny? >> i'm looking at joe. >> a situation very well handled. what's the "washington post" say about this? >> really -- >> what? when do the streamers come down and they start playing "don't stop thinking about tomorrow"? what does that happen? >> that was in '92. >> no, but mika is reviving it, i'm sure. >> do you think that this is not true? do you think that what we're discussing is not true? do you think we're making up stuff? really. let's just be realistic. >> who cares about what "the washington post" says about this? >> the president accepted a $3.5 million in campaign donations from private equity executives in 2008. >> tj, i'm sorry. my earpiece cut out. can you turn my -- ok. turn the volume back up. read that first sentence again. i'm sorry. the president accepted $3.5 million in campaign donations from private equity -- >> let me write that down. hold on a second.
>> and you also go after his accepting donations from wall street like it was a crime when he actually has made wall street's life miserable and been honest about the problems there. >> hold on. $3.5 -- >> unlike other pandering candidates. >> i'm trying to get this down, ok? >> go ahead, write. >> look. you're making harold nervous. >> i'm just reading. >> can i finish writing this? you're telling me the president got $3.5 million in campaign contributions from whom? >> private equity. >> private equity. ok. i'm sorry. go ahead. i got that down now. all right. i was a little confused, given the strategy. >> you're very slow. >> i am. >> did a big rock fall on your head when you were a kid? >> "the washington post" wrote that? we have to call fred. seriously, that's surprising that they'd write that. i don't think it really flows with the first sentence that the president got $3.5 million from private equity.
>> did a big rock fall on your head. >> i think a big rock fell on your head. and the additional dollars this time around. it would have been awkward for him not to concede that private equity does good work. what we are left with is a president who seems content to present an even handed view of private equity at his news conferences while propounding a much more -- >> well, what does tendentious mean? >> we are 0 for five at the table. >> ed, maybe he'll say something smart. >> the height of hypocrisy, the president gets $3.5 million from private equity last time. he is -- >> does that make him able to not talk about it? >> you talk. go ahead. >> it must mean something negative, just using word
association. >> it's biassed. >> what was your question? go ahead. >> leading one way or the other. >> come on, the governor is waiting. >> what is tendentious? >> to take one position perhaps unfairly. >> that fits snugly. go ahead, mika. what question do you have? >> ed, join the conversation. >> well, i think, mika, your point is right. when you're out campaigning, you're going to accept contributions from anybody who does things in a legal and lawful manner. and it was positive. but the real test for a politician is after taking those contributions, does that mean he always toes the line of the people who gave him the money? and you can make a case that president obama has acted fairly appropriately. he has taken a lot of waurnl money. private equity money. and yet when they are at fault, he has had the guts to go after them. and that's what you want from a politician. you don't want somebody who takes money and covers up for things they do wrong.
>> he is calling them vampires. >> i agree. >> he took $3.5 million from people that he calls vampires. and suggests are destroying the united states economy, and suggests that they don't give a damn about people's jobs. how do you take $3.5 million -- you wouldn't take $3.5 million from people that you considered to be vampires who are destroying america, would you? >> and i think number one, joe, i said vampires was wrong. the tone of the ad was wrong. the thrust of it was right. i don't think he is calling the industry vampires. i think he is calling what was done in some of those instances something that displays a value system that's not exactly right. again, they made $100 million, and they basically ended pensions and health care for people. couldn't they have made $80 million and given the other money to secure pensions? that's a good question. >> all right.
governor ed rendell, thank you so much. >> it's a good question. >> go phillies. >> yeah. we'll be right back. we'll >> i doubt it. still ahead, former secretary of state colin powell will join us on state. and we'll be right back with willie's "news you can't use." [ male announcer ] if you have yet to master the quiet sneeze...
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oh, i hope it's time. >> it is. >> are you sure? >> yes. time for a quick version of "news you can't use." prince charles, maybe the stiffest human being ever, was getting down yesterday in toronto at a youth center. look at this guy. >> scratching records, got the head phones on, the whole deal. >> he has no idea what's happening. he toughs them and moves to the other one. he got the head phones on. looked pretty good in the double breasted suit. not the first time he's gotten in touch with hip-hop culture. 1985, let's take you back -- >> oh, why do we have that? >> break dancing prince charles. there he is. >> look at that. >> who could forget this? another youth conference, this one in london. kind of popping and locking a little bit there. >> seriously, he is, man. >> could be worse, right? >> maybe not. >> just last month, he did the weather for the bbc. it's been an exciting time for prince charles in the queen's diamond jubilee.
>> clearly, he has a lot to do. >> flying around on the taxpayers dime. that's it. >> did you see the story, by the way? michael mckeon, the great "spinal tap" actor, terrible car wreck. upper west side. a car flew up on the sidewalk. they took him to the hospital in critical condition, but he's been stabilized and say he's going to be ok, thank god. >> oh, my lord. >> the car ran up on the sidewalk, i guess, and clipped him. but it looks like he's going to be ok. we certainly hope so. still ahead, chuck todd takes us inside the nbc/"wall street journal" polls showing us where this election stands about six months out. also, there he is, the reverend al sharpton will join us next. keep it on "morning joe."
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he's such a great speaker, president obama. i did not find this speech that inspiring for students. take a look. >> as you begin the next stage in your journey, wherever you're going, whatever you're doing, it's safe to say you will encounter greed and selfishness and ignorance and cruelty and sometimes just bad luck. i guarantee you, you will face setbacks and you will face disappointments. life involves struggles. looking after others is only for suckers. congratulations.
>> that's not reaganesque. >> look at what a beautiful morning in washington. sun over the white house. welcome back to "morning joe." >> you'd think he would be in a better mood. look how pretty, thouse he live in. joining us this morning, the reverend al sharpton. what's happening with cory booker right now in new jersey? >> i mean, there's a lot of tension. i think that -- clearly, i don't agree with what cory said. but i have worked with cory, and -- >> great guy. >> good guy. but i think you can't -- one, i think the problem with what he said was he was speaking as a surrogate. and you can't go on as a surrogate and then equate with who you are surrogate for as doing something that's noisy. second, i think that clearly if i'm mayor of newark i don't want to look like i'm there supporting big business and private equity. and i think to equate that with
what the republicans is doing is wrong. but then to reverse it i think is the problem. >> that's what hurt him, right? don't flip. stick with it. >> i think he'll have some tension there in his base there in newark. >> and chuck todd, the problem there, cooking the books and flip flopping. >> not just anybody. i think you changed the -- what we bet on. because i didn't take the bet. >> shouldn't play with the numbers. the nbc news/"wall street journal" poll came out this morning. what's the biggest findings for you, chuck? what number jumped out at you? >> well, you know, i go with the economic cloud that just simply is hanging over the country. the anxiety. and the best number that i think grabs that is this idea of, do you think your kids' generation will be better off than you are? this number hasn't been good for a few years now. but it just sits there, like -- and i just wonder, you want to
understand the anxiety people feel about the economy, that this isn't simply about did the stimulus work, where are we on the deficit. it's this whole feeling of things are just not going well, and i don't know when it's going to get better. you know, it's that sort of darkness that you feel of sort of where are we headed as a country. the country is split. is this a moment in time, are we at the start of a larger decline. more people said start of a larger decline. so it's this idea. that to me is the larger finding. that's the context of this large argument that we're supposed to be having about the election. we're really not having that, you know, in many ways. but that -- see, to me, you look at it and you're like, wow. there is a lot of economic anxiety. and it's back. the optimism that we thought we were feeling for about three or four straight months, that's eroding. >> let's look at this if the election were held today.
the president is ahead 47% to 43%. key voting groups where obama is doing well is up 34% among hispanics. 15% among women. 10% advantage among people living out west. up 22% with young voters. and 8% with independents. key voting groups where romney is beating obama, nine-point advantage among men. five-point in the midwest. up six among suburban voters. also married women prefer mitt romney by two points. interesting. as for the direction of the country, we were talking about this, 33% believe the country is headed in the right direction. 58% say we are headed in the wrong direction. the poll notes that this is about the same as it was in 1996, and 2004 when president clinton and president bush both won their re-election campaigns. >> and by the way, that's pretty good news for the white house. >> right, chuck. it's re-electable numbers, ok? all of these numbers here, they
are re-electable for him. for instance, in 1992, the right direction, wrong track was something like 1771, ok? you saw the incumbent in deep, deep trouble, but -- you know, so in many ways mitt romney is trying to emulate the '92 clinton campaign. that's what their surrogates say to me all the time, the strategists. say you guys are focusing too much on this. this is all stuff bush 41 tried to do to bill clinton, say he was a flawed alternative, and the economy trumped him. well, they are right except the economy, folks' perception of where the country is, is better than where folks thought the country was in 1992. that's where you go to this. these are re-electable numbers for obama. now he has to continue to make romney unacceptable. romney has opportunities to -- there is certainly enough economic anxiety for romney to make the argument, pick somebody new, and that's why you see the
president working so hard to disqualify romney as an alternative. >> when asked if the economy will get better in the next year 3, 3% say yes, down five points from last month. president obama's job on the economy, 43% approval with 52% disapproving. this is the president's lowest rating on the economy since december. and those polls say president obama has made things worse on issues like health care, the economic downturn, political partisanship, and the budget deficit. >> reverend, there have to be a lot of people in the white house who fought the health care battle for a year and a half that look at that number, the top number, and see it's where he actually rates the worst is on health care. >> yeah. well, i think the politics of health care may make him poll badly. but i think that the voters may have a different view. and i think that when we come down to the election, and he can say that i passed the first health care bill, that i'm able
to deal with people that have pre-existing conditions, it's going to be something he can use. and i think the republicans are going to have to have a real good argument to people that have benefited from it on why they should go and vote. >> why are the numbers so low right now? >> i think a lot of it is messaging, joe. i think a lot of it is that they haven't really used it and sold it right in the campaign yet. and i think that once we get down into the thick of the campaign and he gets his sea legs on, this is my record and this is what it has done, you see commercials where people with pre-existing conditions that were not cared for, those numbers are changing. >> harold ford, though, i think the president's health care argument is actually stronger if the supreme court overturns the individual mandate. you think the white house would much rather run against the supreme court than run for their health care bill? >> i vacillate on that issue. i do think the strongest hand for the president is to show
people who have been most affected and benefited the most from this bill, and no doubt prior to the health care debate, when you and i were in congress, i can think of the hundreds of letters i received from the district with people complaining about insurance companies denying them benefits or had their premiums go up because they got sick. those are issues he has to continue to hammer away at. and i'm of the opinion now that whatever the court does is not necessarily going to matter. i think the mandate, as much as i'm concerned about that, i'm equally concerned about the discussion whether states are compelled to absorb the 15 million to 17 million people that are eligible for medicare. >> parts of the health care legislation that are taking place right now, i don't think anyone would have an argument about that. >> but to the reverend's point, they never sold it right or explained it sufficiently. romney's background is
viewed as an advantage on issues like improving the economy, reducing the deficit, making corporations pay their fair share of taxes, dealing with foreign trade, and protecting workers rights. >> chuck todd, good news for the romney campaign? >> peter hart calls this the businessman halo effect. meaning when you -- you ask any pollster, and you have a biography -- an initial biography of a candidate running for office and you say businessman, immediately that is a net positive for most voters. and that's what you see in these numbers. now, it's a generic business background. well, now look at the bain capital fave unfavoriting already sitting at a-10. there's a bunch of people that don't know enough to have an opinion. but of the people that do it starts at the -10. why is obama trying so hard to
discount his business background? because voters believe the best in the businessman when it comes to certain things on economic issues, which is why they are trying to redefine his background on their terms. and that's why i think the next 60 days, defining romney's background at bain and business and who wins this mini skirmish, if you will, preconvention and before the fall, will tell us whether romney will have the personal connection, be able to sell his background as enough to go into the oval office. >> you know, mike, there is a halo effect for a lot of business people that are running for office on certain issues. but ceos usually don't make good candidates, and a lot of times don't make good governors or presidents. do you think? >> you know, you can see in the numbers that chuck was just talking about, you can take the decline number. you can tie it to the republican congress. you can tie that to governor romney. you can tie governor romney to bain, big business, ceo,
corporate profits, job loss here on the streets. that's a map to re-election. you can call it class warfare. it is a map to re-election. >> well, if you look at the fact that -- see, one of the things that i think that the romney campaign is making, they are saying an attack on them is an attack on business. and that gives you the opportunity to go in and show the difference between him and business. and if you are such a great businessman, if your ceo background makes you qualified to do all of this in government, then why do you do it as governor of massachusetts when you were number 47 in job creation out of 50 states? so i think that, you know, it's going to come down to a -- since he put this out there, i'm a business mahbanoozad businessman, i can do this, show us where you did it. why didn't you create jobs in massachusetts? he has had a one-way narrative. now that everybody is firing back, it ain't fun. rabbit hunting ain't no fun when everybody has the gun.
>> rabbit hunting ain't no fun when the rabbit got the gun. what does that have to with blueberry pie? >> is that how they get the blueberry pie? >> you guys know this. your name has been on a ballot. you have had to go out and knock on doors and ask people who they will support. you know that perception is sometimes far more important than reality. so the perception in the campaign, if you're running the president's re-election campaign, you've got what happened in the winter of 2008/2009. you've got the mortgage mess, which still exists today. >> right. >> you've got the perpetual unemployment for a lot of people over the age of 50. you've got what happened with jp morgan just recently. i'm not saying it's bad. and you've got what happened today in the papers. did morgan stanley cook the books, you know, and tell insiders about facebook? all of that is out there as perception. people are sitting and saying, you know, i don't want a big business guy. i don't want a big business guy.
they're different. >> maybe you can do it. and i think most americans are -- even conservatives myself are skeptical about the pureness of big business as we are of big government. but i think a much cleaner argument for the obama team to make is the number 47. bain capital and getting in the mud and fighting about job creation, was there profits or not. because the bottom line is, americans for the most part, they look at people who are successful, who have built something, and they look up to it and applaud. >> right. >> and most americans are exclude enou shrewd enough to know, it was tough. if somebody is going to win a football game, sometimes they block a little harder. if they win in war, they will be a little rougher sometimes than they would be in business. maybe they take short cuts. but you want a clean argument, it's this.
governor romney is good at creating jobs? really? 47 out of 50. i don't know. where i come from, my parents wouldn't even think i was doing well in class if i was 47th out of 50th. >> they probably would have thought you were. >> they would have said you were fantastic. >> well, my parents cheered if i even got in the top half. but reverend sharpton brought up 47 out of 50. mika brings it up every three sentences. >> no, i'm not. >> that is actually the attack that obama's people should make. it's simple. and you can apply being a governor to being a president more than you can compare being a ceo to being a president. they are mixing apples and oranges as somebody said repeatedly on this set about a year ago. but guess what? he had a chance to apply his bain capital experience, and what happened in massachusetts? where did he range? >> 47. he said no to the auto industry. but it turned out to be a great
investment. i would link the two because i think it's a more compelling argument. i'm not a big class warfare guy. but you take that and tie it to two big decisions. when an opportunity presented itself to apply that being governor, he was dead lost, or near, and the chance to invest in the most important industry in this country in the last 50 if not 100 years, he chose not to. that to me is a big statement. >> chuck todd, my opinion is that we are seeing in this campaign the effects of not having business people in the president's inner circle. he'sever had business people in his inner circle. and i think he's had lawyers. he's had government people. but not business people. so i think -- i don't understand why they don't focus more on mitt romney's record as governor and job creation. >> well, you know, here's sort of the catch 22 of that.
when you emphasize that mitt romney is from massachusetts, it also then sends another subtle message that he's not a conservative. they are a little concerned on that front. i think there has been a push and pull. look, you do hear it from the campaign. they think that the obama campaign will sit there and say, hey, he's not running on his record. president obama said himself he's not running on his record as governor. they like saying it and using it. i do think they are concerned because the romney folks sit there and tell me, hey, every time he's called a massachusetts republican, that's code to a lot of people in suburban america that he is not a conservative. he is not as conservative as the democrats are trying to make you think he is. so there's a little bit of that about swing voters in suburban america. >> to chuck's point, one of the things that president obama's campaign would make a mistake with if they choose to go this route, in trying to demonize mitt romney, they are not going to make him -- be able to make
him out to be a bad guy through bain. they just can't do it. it's not his -- he does not come off as a bad guy. >> no. but they can make the argument that he could not transfer this so-called ceo competence when he was running massachusetts. and you can do it by saying, look what he did to massachusetts. they were 47. we can have different opinions. we can't have different facts. it didn't work. so if it didn't work in one state, how are you going to trust him with 50 states? >> except if you go to massachusetts, and look at the situation when he came in, he can come back and say, look, i was dealing with the democratic legislature. 90% democratic. they wouldn't go along with anything that i did. >> so we're going to talk about gridlock with this congress and this president? i would love for him to bring that up. >> no. talking about i got along better with them than the president of the united states gets along with speaker boehner. >> and the results are 47 out of 50. just stay right at 47. 47. >> i don't think that sells. >> and then there's health care.
>> you know, george hw bush, remember, against bill clinton, always tried to say arkansas ranks 49th in this and 48th in this. they tried to recreate frankly what bush 41 did to dukakis in the massachusetts miracle. they tried to do it against clinton and it didn't work. i'm skeptical whether going after the massachusetts record would work as well. it's an interesting little conversation we're having. i don't know. it didn't work when republicans tried this to bill clinton in '92. just throwing that out there. >> didn't happen in '92. i remember the commercials of the grim landscape. i have to say, mika, this conversation reminds me of something my grandma told me when i was a young kid, 4 or 5, and she would say, joey, hunting rabbit ain't so fun when the rabbit got the gun. >> you had a wise grandmother. >> i said you're right, grandma. >> she also tell you vote democratic, joe. >> yes, she was an fdr democrat.
>> should i go to it, alex? do you have the shot up yet? there it is. the president is arriving at andrews air force base right now headed to colorado springs today where he'll be delivering the commencement address at the u.s. air force academy. so we're watching that. would you like me to -- what, what? have the streamers falling down? you're still mad. >> no, i'm not. chuck todd, we'll see you on "the daily rundown" right after "morning joe." we have former secretary of state colin powell here with us on the set. we'll be talking about foreign policy and his advice for the next generation of leaders. and his great new book. also andrea mitchell and former governor bill richardson straight ahead. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. with the spark miles card from capital one,
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for colorado springs as we mentioned earlier. he is headed to deliver the commencement address at the air force academy and then to denver for a campaign event. so we'll be watching that throughout the day. welcome back to "morning joe." with us now, nbc chief foreign affairs correspondent and host of "andrea mitchell reports" andrea mitchell. >> good morning. also former u.s. ambassador to the united states and former governor of new mexico. >> and you were saying off camera that the president should thank cory booker. why? >> because there was less attention focused by the assembled news media on just how many things went wrong in the nato summit. first of all, they planned it in chicago. it was obviously a victory. intended to be a victory lap because they have never had a nato meeting -- there have only been three nato meetings in the united states since it was created in 1949, and this was the first planned outside of
washington. it was his hometown, it was to be a victory lap. the demonstrations upset local people. i think the local police handled it very well. but people had to stay home. and work from home. but pakistan was just a real issue. here they had invited president sadari there because they fully expected an agreement on the supply routes into afghanistan to be signed, sealed and delivered at that summit, and no sale. and then the awkwardness of no photo opportunity, no meeting with the president. and pakistan remains unresolved, and that's the source of the pakistan-taliban terror threats over the border. >> why did they invite him over before they knew they had a deal? >> how they have mishandled pakistan is really hard to explain, because this whole five, six-month argument over whether to apologize for the u.s. operation that killed 24 troops, which was partly the fault of the pakistanis, and the decision not to apologize,
should we apologize, it just seems as though -- pakistan is difficult. >> it is. i mean, that is an understatement. >> this is hard stuff. >> governor, former ambassador to the united nations, pakistan has been a problem for a long time. but it is center stage now, isn't it? >> it is. but i -- a little different take from andrea. i thought the president looked good. he had the meeting with the g8 in camp david. i was just in europe, and i think there was great reassurance from that meeting. but you're right. pakistan is a very difficult issue. and it's an issue that is going to continue dogging every administration. i don't know if sadari has control in his own country. i think the intelligence people still run the country. but i don't think the president should apologize on that issue. of that tragedy. i think he regretted it. it was a military operation. but i thought the president looked presidential.
50 leaders at nato. in chicago, in the midwest. i was pleased with the result. >> and everybody has the same answer when you ask what the trouble spot is, what the issue is. pakistan, pakistan. and yet we're still so heavily invested of course in afghanistan, which is an issue as well. and we've been looking at these nbc news/"wall street journal" polls on issue of afghanistan. 43% of more confident that the war there will come to a successful conclusion while 51% are less confident. this is a slight improvement from a year ago, when just 38% were confident the war would be a success. there is, though, an exhaustion for the investment, for the losses that we are making in afghanistan. >> and as for the president's plan to stay involved in afghanistan, after 2014, 42% approve of the president's plan to stay involved. 53% disapprove. and there's always seemed to be a disconnect between washington and america on this war in afghanistan.
>> but i think again the nato summit symbolized one that we are transferring the training and the power to the afghans. secondly, that al qaeda's presence has been dramatically reduced. and i think every time we think of afghanistan and pakistan, you think of the president's successful effort with bin laden. you know, so i think it shows america leading. >> reverend, let me ask really quickly. you have more exposure to more americans week in and week out than most politicians. you just do. we always talk about -- mika and i probably have been to 400 events over the past couple of years. just can't find anybody, any audience, republican, democrat, liberal, conservative, that want us to stay in afghanistan. >> including me. i mean, this is one -- >> including us. >> this is one issue i want to see us out. i agree with governor richardson that he looked presidential, and
i don't know how much we can blame pakistan on the fact that maybe he doesn't have control in pakistan there. but afghanistan, i think you're right. i think that's the issue most americans just are like let's get out of there. i would agree that the quicker we can get out of there, the better. that's the one thing i have always disagreed with. >> andrea, we don't do occupations well. we have been there for 11 years. >> the path out of afghanistan is one thing i think they organized and engineered very successfully at nato, because they have accelerated by one year the turning over to afghan leaders. now the problem there is that right now, we are still in charge in the south and the east, which are the most highly contested and highly fought over areas. so until we get ourselves out of those provinces, we're going to still keep sustaining serious losses. but you're absolutely right about not only the polling but where the president's head is. it's really interesting. look at all of the reporting in
the last couple of days leading up to the nato summit. he really reached the conclusion even before the surge, he felt sort of trapped by the military into the decision on the surge. he reached that conclusion himself, that this is -- and he redefined it at that news conference at nato. and i think redefined it very smartly, which is that we are not there for nation building. that at some point they have to take it over themselves. >> andrea, of course, in the middle east, big news coming out of there. we've got an election in egypt. and actually, the top issue is not israel. it's not whether they stay connected with the united states. it's crime. >> it's crime. and the economy. i mean, those are the essential drivers of what's going on in egypt. and the question going forward, is it going to be the old order restored? the islamists? and if it is the islamists, how radical are they going to be? are they going to look at their continuing billions of dollars
coming in u.s. aid? if they were to cut the treat we isra y -- treaty with israel, that would be the end of the economy in egypt, which is near collapse. >> i know one of the candidates, and i hope he wins, but i don't see the numbers going his way. the muslim brotherhood candidate will probably be stronger. but egypt is key to us not just in the treaty with israel, but in moderating the rest of the continent. i'm frankly worried about i -- i think the arab spring has been terrific. but when you see the strong military presence there, and it not moderating, not moving towards democracy, a key ally there is faltering. my hope is that amir moussa, who was very western oriented, wins, but it could be very close. probably the other way. >> and the other thing we should mention is iran. in baghdad today, incredibly,
they are having these negotiations with iran. the european powers and the united states finally having the second important round with iran. and iran signalling to the u.n. inspectors that they are willing to let inspections in. the fear and concern and skepticism all around is that iran is just stalling for time. certainly that's the concern in israel. one of the problems that the president has here politically is that mitt romney and the republicans have prebutted whatever comes out. clearly, iran will want something out of this negotiation. and the question is, can we get something that really prevents them from going to the weapons stage. what romney has said already is that almost any agreement that is made here, any concession, willhow a weak america. so the president has a political problem of doing something that might be smart, eventually possibly if it's a good deal you say yes to it. >> but the reality is that i think sanctions have worked on iran.
>> absolutely. >> we are squeezing them. oil sanks, banking sanctions. but i think they are stalling. they have been stalling for four years. i don't think they are serious. they say they are going to turn over some military and nuclear data. i think they are just playing games so that they are not -- >> what would you do, bomb them? >> no, i wouldn't bomb them. i would continue the sanctions. continue the very strong sanctions, yeah. >> bill richardson, very good to see you. >> great to see you again. >> thank you. andrea, stick around if you could. still ahead, economic takeoff. james fallows will be here to explain which industry china is now lacking at to gain economic influence. keep it right here on "morning joe." and there goes the president off to colorado. we'll be right back. [ horn honks ]
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40 past the hour. welcome back to "morning joe." joining us now, academy award-winning director charles ferguson, the author of a new book, "criminal nation." in the book, he writes in part this. there has still not been a single criminal prosecution of a senior financial executive related to the financial crisis, nor has there been any serious attempt by the federal government to use civil suits, asset seizures, or restraining orders to exact fines or restitution from the people responsible for plunging the world economy into recession. real punishment for large-scale financial criminality is a vital element of the financial re-regulation that is in turn essential to america and the
world's economic health and stability. regulation is nice, but the threat of prison focuses the mind. there's a point there. >> you know, earlier this week, we were commenting on the new jersey judge that only gave the rutgers student 30 days. now, you know what, it was a horrible, vicious prank. and i didn't want that kid to rot in prison because i wanted that kid to rot in prison. but i would have liked him to stay there long enough so other parents could say, you do that, they are going to send you to jail for a year. we could say the same thing about wall street four years later. not a single prosecution. what kind of message does that send to wall street executives? >> >> that it's ok to do it again, unfortunately. >> why not a single prosecution? >> i think unfortunately it's a reflection of where we're at, that the amount of money that comes from wall street and goes into the political system is now
so large and so important that it is very, very politically difficult to prosecute somebody. >> you know, i don't know how many millionaires have ever been executed, have gone to the electric chair. i would guess none. i don't know. maybe they have. but do you think it's also prosecutors who are skittish with limited resources that are saying, i don't want to take on the head of this big bank and his 50 lawyers that are going to reduce me to rubble. you know what i mean? do you think that's part of it as well? >> well, skittishness is probably part of it. ambition is probably also part of it. the typical trajectory these days is that a u.s. attorney or an assistant attorney general or something. and five years later, you go into private practice and quintuple your sal searaary wor for the other side. so if that's what you want to end up doing, then you probably don't want to put senior investment bankers in jail. >> actually, reverend al, i think that's closer to the truth
because, you know, we used to have an kpegz when people would come to us -- when i was a congressman people would come to us and want to be a judge. and you always knew the guy that wanted to be the county judge would come back in a couple of years and want to be the circuit judge can and then the d.a. and then the federal judge. and there's is the case. if you're a prosecutor, what do you want to be? a judge or the state attorney general so then you can be the governor. and destroying your donor base, not a good way to do that. >> or if you want to go into the private sector as a lawyer representing some of the big corporations or some of the big guys. i think he's absolutely right about personal ambition. but i think he's even more right that they're not going take de-regulation system or re-regulation seriously. there's no jail time. it's like the guy that you wanted to do more than 30 days, he is doing 30 more days than anybody that caused the financial collapse in this country. that's insane.
>> the loss of billions and bottoms billions of dollars. >> do the losses at jp morgan chase play into your calculations here? >> well, it's a continuation of the same kind of activity. and jamie dimon was seen as being the most rational and reliable of these guys. >> what would you think of the consumer protection bureau created under this administration? >> negligible. at the margin, it will probably help people with credit card charges and stuff like that. >> trying to protect consumers. >> well, trying to protect consumers with regard to their individual transactions. >> but you say the big picture has not changed. the big picture that threatens our economy. >> unfortunately, that's correct. >> so andrea, are you surprised that somebody like, say, dick fold who was there when the fire began, not sure if he kicked over the lantern that started the great chicago fire but he
was in the barn. are you surprised that nobody ever went after that guy? >> surprised, yes. but i'm not sure that the laws on the books are that applicable. >> forgive me, but they are. in fact, in my book, i quote from an extraordinary memo sent by a man by the name of matthew lee, who was a lehman brothers vice president. and about five months before lehman collapsed. he hand delivered a memo to four very senior lehman executives, including the cfo of the company, saying, you know, this place is really out of control and we are fudging our books and we've got to stop this. >> so you think it's fraud? >> yes. >> and that basic fraud should be prosecuted? >> yes. and it was directly against the
law. there was no way they could adequately certify they had financial controls after they saw that memo. >> did you ask any prosecutors or anybody why they didn't go after people? >> none of the senior federal prosecutors or senior officials in the justice department who i have asked to speak with about this have agreed to speak with me. >> are the cases closed? >> many of them are. it's been announced already that the government has ceased its investigations of people like joseph kasano of aig and a number of others. so many investigations have been closed and announced they are closed. others are supposedly still ongoing, but this is 2012. this happened, you know, in -- >> what's fascinating here is i -- i keep looking at this line. forget the criminal part, right? there have been no serious attempts by the federal government to even use civil suits.
and i think there's a simple reason why. because if they throw the wide net of discovery out there, they seize all the emails, they get them into their office, and they start sifting through there, they know. they know and i know. i don't know how many of you around the table know this too. they know they will find emails that will show there was criminal intent leading up to the 2000 collapse. so it's almost like a see no evil, hear no evil, do no evil mindset. >> that is correct. >> would you agree with that's why they even stay away from civil suits? >> yes. that's one reason they stay away. the other reason you stay away is that there are in fact laws, both civil and criminal, the rico statute, for example, that allows the federal government to seize people's assets even before they are convicted. and these laws are routinely used in drug cases. and in organized crime cases. in fact, the federal government
seizes a couple billion dollars worth of stuff every year. it has not been used a single time. >> the book is "predator nation." you can read an excerpt on our blog. charles ferguson, thank you so much. andrea, thank you as well. we'll see you at 1:00. and reverend al, 6:00 eastern on "politics nation." >> thank you. still ahead, former secretary of state colin powell joins us onset. but up next, jim koch will explain how he is helping to put american businesses back to work. you're watching "morning joe." sweet! [ male announcer ] the solid thunk of the door on the jetta. thanks, mister! [ meow ] [ male announcer ] another example of volkswagen quality.
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welcome back to "morning joe." joining us now on the set, jim koch, founder of boston beer company and brewer of sam adams beer, and he brought a man purse. >> jim, i hope -- let's look at this thing. i hope there are no encyclopedia britannicas in there. >> i hope, too. oh, look! good. >> glasses. >> willie's never had a glass. >> you know, willie, we are redefining on this show brewing together. >> yes, we are. >> yes. >> anything that's brewed is good. >> what is this that you're pouring us? >> good for you.
>> what are you pouring for us here? >> this my original beer. samuel adams boston lager what i started brewing in my kitchen 28 years ago. >> can i just say if you're not going to drink it, pass it around. >> well, i hate drinking by myself. >> okay. >> so it's nice to have company. would you like a beer? >> i would. do wep need need to get a lawy see if we can do this? >> no. >> there's no law. >> broadcasting under the influence. >> i never really had a beer, ever, maybe a sip of one. but i'll try. >> whoa! >> that's exciting. i think that's good luck. >> that was -- >> don't worry about it. >> do you believe this? >> exciting. >> seriously. he's getting out of control. >> willie, you were going to ask a question. >> i was. >> let's talk about 28 years ago.
jim, as you nav gate the broken glass around you. >> it's a little embarrassing, my original plan, eight people. supposed to take five years. i had no idea sam adams would create this beer explosion. >> absolutely married well. >> he's obsessed with this. >> he really likes brewed beer and people really get into it. the tasting parties and stuff. >> craft beer like sam adams have kind of become the new wine. the same way our generation adopted wine. to me, as a brewer, that's very cool. to me, beer has all the dignity and nobility that's often been given to wine. it's just that, you know, the
culture hasn't treatmented beer -- >> dignity and mobility, i think of the frat houses at dartmouth, but that's okay. that's just what the smell does for me. >> the biggest tribute is that, the huge, scary monolithic beermakers are now trying to pretend they have craft beer and don't call themselves bud wiser or coors, there's some other. >> blue moon, good beer. it's good beer for all. i think sam adams would have loved that. >> so now -- we actually are here to talk about your initiative to help small businesses. tell us about that? >> it's calmed the sam adams brewing america program. it came out of my experience starting sam adams in my kitchen, and there are a couple of things i really would have liked to have but just weren't available to a small businessman back then. >> like what? >> well, like access to loans. every bank turned me down.
they practically laughed at me, and, also, action to just good, sound, nuts and bolts business advice, and i've got a harvard mba. supposed to know about business, when i started sam adams i didn't really know about all the nuts and bolts. how do you design a label? how do you set up a payroll system jp how do you make a sales call? what do you do when you get there? how do you negotiate real estate? all those kinds of things i didn't know, and they are real issues for small businesses and they have nowhere to turn. so sam adams brewing the american dream program is really structured on would components. microlending to food beverage and hospitalities businesses that we know and then coaching, mentoring to not only get a loan, when they get the loan, to succeed and pay the loan back. >> tell us your favorite success story from this. >> there's a woman named lucy.
we started in boston. she was very passionate about coffee. loved making really great coffee. brewing. i could identify with that. and so she got a $3,000 loan to buy one of those fancy express o machines. she would make awesome coffee and finally she got a $10,000 loan to help start a coffee shop, and now she got voted best coffee in boston. >> that's so neat. >> and she has 20 employees. >> what's the name of the coffee? >> voltage coffee. >> that will do it. >> love it. >> thank you for coming. >> jim koch, boston beer company. >> cheers. >> we'll be right back. today i'm talking with melonie who loves to garden
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wonderful to have you back on the show. great to see you recently at the council of awards. we had fun backstage. >> i don't know if you call it fun. >> loved jack -- we had a great time. great talking to you. >> so you start the book by talking about when you left the white house after ronald reagan left. >> yes. >> and you talk about how you would just put slips of paper under your desks and they would be your rules. sort of an informal thing but you're doing a "parade" article and notice you have these slips of paper shoved under the glass on your desk. >> the guy who wrote the article, he asked my secretary, is there anything about the general that we can use to close this piece? and she said, well, he's got all of those slips of paper under his desk. so he asked me, what about these slips of paper? >> they're little ofafermisms.
so i read off some of them, the clean one, and they made this article and 238 ye years we've giving out these rules. nobody's ever asked me where i got them from. first part, how they occur and how i've used them over the years. >> there are fascinating ones. the first one, it ain't as bad as it seems. basically wait until the morning. you say, even if it is as bad as it seem, leaving office with that optimistic outlook will change the way you work, the way you live. >> it's the message you give to the people who are your followers. you always have to display a sense of confidence and optimism. we're going to get on top of this. the first sentence after that opening title is, this isn't a prediction. it's an attitude. it's an attitude you carry around. may not be better in the morning. you may not know, but consider it will be. all the rules, the first one and
the last one, where the last one is optimism. it's a force multiplier. it all deals with creating an image of confidence within an organization. >> right. >> and we could do anything. we're great. if you don't believe it, let's make it happen. >> that's one of the things, when i hear people talking about how america is in certain collapse. anytime you go to europe -- and i love europe. i'm not going to talk about the chocolatemakers, but when you go to europe, especially great britain. a country i absolutely love, you don't get the sense of optimism that you get when you land back here in america, and i thought about you talking about the force multiplier. >> yes. >> you multiply that 300 million times over what a powerful force that is. >> spent a lot of time out in the countryside talking to all kinds of lawyers. trade associations, financial organizations, and we're all worried about the economy. all worried about the unemployment rate, but they
haven't lost confidence or faith. they are hustling. they're trying to make a living. trying to find jobs for their people and make a living for their families and don't count this place out. it ain't out. it's never going to be out. >> your second rule runs counter to the reality in washington right now, and that is, get mad, then get over it. you talk about how politics and diplomacy is not a zero sum game. your friend 90% of the time is not your enemy 10% of the time. >> i tell a story as a disagreement high with the french foreign minister back in 2003 over the iraq war. france was against us going to war and we against france being against us, and it got very, very ugly at the u.n. y may recall people were saying, we went eat french fries anymore. no more french wine. that only l.a..ed about a week, bays way.
oh sigh was mad. he put me in an angry position and i was very honked off about him. we exchanged views. he was an adversary. i said in the book, i couldn't let him become an enemy because i needed him later. what you do with an adversary, turn him into a friend at some point. that's what i did and that's what he did with me. i don't like to accumulate enemies. i'd rather have people i disagree with. see if we can work it out. if you're an adversary, i'm going to make you my friend. >> you also talk later on an anger. that you're prone to anger as are a lot of great leaders, yet you learn how to control it, and talk about why you say in the book, that is so important for somebody that's running an office, or returning an army or returning a nation? >> i think that all of us have sort of a zone of feelings. sometimes you're a little annoyed. sometimes you're really, really happy. and within that zone, if your staff, your followers,
understand that zone everything is fine. but every now and then you really blow up. you get mad. you have to be very, very careful about that, and you can't get mad and stay mad all the time, because clearly, you create a totally negative attitude throughout the organization. nobody wants to bring you bad news because you're going to bite their head off. everybody is afraid of you. i never want to work in an environment of fear or anxiety. i want my people to like me. it doesn't mean they're my buddies. they're my subordinate, but i want likeness within the organization and i want mutual respect. i respect you, you respect me, we're great team we're going to get things done. it isn't brain surgery. >> i want to read two sentences that seem to be loaded to me. i learned a second lesson from the beer and barracks episode. surround yourself with sergeants. that is, people with ground toop experience whose thinking is not contaminated with grand theories. before we invaded iraq, we should have listened to more
people with ground troop experience in the region. these people were out there, and fewer idea-heavy, big egos in washington. >> a number of people in the administration and outside, and the think tank world that now surrounds every administration, who thought all you had to do was take out saddam hussein and take baghdad and all would be well. but we had others who thought differently. i recommended, or suggested to tommy franks, look at a larger force. when jensen sekky, the creef of staff of the army, the combat expert, went before congress and was asked by a congressman a senator, how many troops do you think it will take to stabilize the place? he said a couple hundred thousand. he was shot down that dap by the secretary of defense and almost disgraced the next day by the deputy of defense. how could we possibly need more people to secure a place after you take it? he was right. and then he was pretty much cut off at the knees. so there were others like that. senior officers who knew better,
but their voices didn't carry the day. and so when baghdad fell, everybody was cheering, and it was good. but there was no doubt that our troops could do that, but, as i say in the book, that wasn't the end of the conflict. it was the beginning. >> was a tommy franks place to sap we need more troops? >> i don't know what they did. trying to see if we could do it with a minimum number of troops, a light footprint. they could. baghdad fell quickly. the iraqi army was not what it was many years ago before "desert storm" but once it fell didn't mean the conflict was over. >> willie? >> general, you speak, you write kand ipdly in the book. you say february 5, 2003, the day you testified before the u.n. security council is the day seared in your memory as much as your own birthday is for all the wrong reasons. you say the initial case for wmd was a disaster.
in coherent, coming from the vice president's office, instead of kind of a lawyers brief rather than an intelligence briefing. what changed between that initial incoherent disastrous case and february 5, 2003, where you felt comfortable to go before the u.n. and say, yes -- >> the case was there. in the national intelligence estimate that went to the congress four months earlier, but the presentation of the case that was done both in the white house by scooter, was not coherent. i couldn't connect things, and the cia wouldn't stand behind it. so i had to start all over. i wasn't troubled, because we had the national -- it was almost categorical with respect to what they had, and congress based on that national intelligence estimate and the intelligence briefings that they had been receiving voted overwhelmingly to support going to war, if war became necessary. and they took that vote four months before i ever gave my speech. but my speech was the most
vivid, dramatic presentation of the case, and, therefore, it's remembered, and i get asked about it every day. >> and you said that the nfc actually never met to discuss and debate the iraq war? people read that and say how could that be? the group that makes national security and foreign policy never met to discuss iraq? >> we met lots of time to discuss iraq. it was discussed constantly. the point it, reported to us elsewhere, there never was a single meeting where we all got in the room with the president and went around and said, should we, or shouldn't we, do this? the president came to that decision based on all the briefings he had, based on his knowledge of the situation, and it was what he felt we should do, but there was no single meeting. i think don rumsfeld says the same thing as did all the others. no single final decision meeting. the president decided it and then communicated his decision. >> let's focus on today and under experience, your life, a very young man, a very young
soldier and your first tour in vietnam in a country where we had committed hundreds of thousands of troops. a country administered by a very shaky political administration. i think general chu. today in afghanistan, we have many thousands of troops, and what appears to be a very unreliable ally in president karzai. where are you on afghanistan? >> i think the president and the nato leaders came up with a, a good statement with the problem and plan to get through this over the weekend in chicago, and that is, let's end our active combat role in 2013 and then in 2014, bring out rest of our troops. you know, when we first suffered 9/11, the first reaction was, it's al qaeda we're after. let's make sure we don't lose your focus, and we gave the taliban three days to turn over al qaeda. or we'll go after them too. they didn't turn him over.
we took out the taliban. we flushed al qaeda out, although it's still around, and so we didn't have any problem whip the taliban before 9/11. tolerated it. i think the afghans have the capacity to keep from being subjugated again by the taliban but we're reaching a point where they have to do it. they have to take responsibility for their country, for their people, and at some point the foreign presence is not that helpful. so i think the plan is good, and you know, we just can't stay there forever, and if the government's going to be corrupt, if they're not going to take care of the people, they will pay a price for it over time. >> in the "times" today, three killed in action, three casualty lifted in the "times." at this won't what do you tell a parent who loses a son or daughter? why? >> trying to develop a government representative of the people and live in peace with its neighbors. but, you know, it's not always that simple or easy.
even if it was in the most noble circumstances that a g.i. lost their life, it's still hard to talk to a parent. the most difficult a soldier killed by an afghan soldier. that's tough, and i would have a tough time explaining that to a parent. a parent might start to say, enough. i think the country has, majority of the country now feel, let's phase this out and get on with other things. we have other challenges, other problems. >> hmm. to add to that point, even governor rendell talks about having to go to the homes of family members who have lost someone. says he just doesn't know what to say. usually there's a cause, and there is a sense of pride in the mission. >> yeah. >> he's come forward on the show to say, he is at loss of words. >> i think it's getting more difficult, but i can go back in history and tell you, it wasn't easy in vietnam.
in those final years either when then knew we were coming out and still losing hundreds of soldiers. >> that's telling. >> that's tough. it's tough. but that's what -- that's what war is about. that's what soldiering is ab's we should be so grateful we do have these young men and women who volunteer to serve their country and we need to do everything we can to serve them. >> speaking of soldiers, you tell a couple of great stories to prove your point. one of my favorites in the book is about grant. choking off robert e. lee's army, and he's sleeping. and he's got somebody that rushes to him, wakes him up in the middle of night and says, general, general -- general lee is attacking our flank. rub his eyes. smacks, looks around and goes -- that's not possible. and goes back to bed. >> exactly. >> and you talk about ike. preparing for failure on d-day, but having in his gut -- don't let adverse facts stand in the way of a good decision.
i want to ask you, as you talk about it here, you look at leadership. what is more important to a great leader? having that gut and instinct? or having all the facts? behind you? >> my approach to this, and then the theme of that particular chapter is, the great leaders do, i think, they assemble all the information you can in the time that you have available. and when you're close to about all the information you're liable to get, make a decision. and that decision ultimately will be an instinctive one. you put all that information inside of you, but then you use your experience. you know, your past experience. all of your experiences. you consider other factors that are not part of the information plan, and then you bring it all to bear, and you make a distinctive decision, but it's informed, instinctive decision. >> but the bigger question in, in your time in the government, in your time in the army, are some great leaders just born?
they've got that instinct? and others, no matter how hard they are work and how much information they have, will never have what it takes? to run an army, to run a country? >> i'm sure that is the case, but leadershipy, i thi, i think with traits. you like people. you want people to follow you. something born into it and something of an extrovert. from that point on i think you can be trained and shaped. the army sent me to school for six years. to can stantly expand my horizon and knowledge of what my job was all about. so i think i'm fairly good at getting information, and there's a rule in the book on this. about 40% of all of can get, start thinking about deciding, when you reach 70% do it. eisenhower could have been the
biggest failure if normandy didn't work or if grant was wrong and lee was around the flank. sometimes it's just a matter of, you have to have your instinct and your luck together. >> you know what i found out here, mike's wife -- >> pretty straightforward. he love his wife. they don't call him at work too much. you need stop calming ann and bank of america, mike. now, this is fascinating, though. you really do. there is a wall between your work and your home life, and you stead took several years before your wife even figured out all the ranks. >> yeah. it's the way our family came together. alma was not experienced in the military. she came in. she was a fabulous army wife. she ran all kinds of programs for other spouses and family members in the army. everywhere she went.
revered. but at the same time, there was -- i would not come home and start kelling her about it. by the way, i'm packing and going to panama in the morning. >> and she wouldn't call you in the middle of a meeting, guys -- >> she seldom called the office. the reason, we'll talk about what we have to talk about at night and kept that central to the family. among the children, too. she raised the children. i was sort of drifting in and out, going to vietnam, going to korea, going here, going there. working 14-hour days. so the family was very, very tight. and the kids didn't take much interest in my success or lack thereof. i was just daddy, or poppy, depending which kid was speaking. one of the funny stories i tell there, in my new battle dress uniform, a new uniform we came up with. i walked into the house all camouflaged up for the first time, and the 12-year-old anna marie at the time looked over her shoulder and says, mommy, the g.i. joe doll's home.
it was that kind of family, and we still are that way. >> that will bring you back down to earth. >> it will. well, they never let me leave earth. constantly. you'll see that throughout the book. >> general, the iraq war is over. afghanistan is winding down now. as you look back from where you sit, and the history begins to be written an these two wars what lessons do you think future generals like yourself will take from this era of american foreign policy? >> i think what the generals are looking at now, what are we liable to be facing in the future? and the answer always is, we don't know. so i hope the generals who will be studying this will try to restructure a force that has capabilities across every possibility. don't think there's only going to be special forces or only going to be tanks or droernnes. it's usually all of the above. i think we'll once again learn the classical lessons. if you're going to get into something, make sure you know what it's for and have some sense of how you're going to do a successful completion.
you just can't pray for good luck or hope things are going to turn out. hope doesn't make that, make supper. you have to think it through, and in the case of iraq, it was easy to knock out the iraqi army. probably could have done it whip fewer troop, but you needed a lot more troops to take charge of the country. it was now our responsibility, and if the iraqis had seen us take charge of the country and show them how to run a country, i think there would have been a difference. i think we should have had a lot larger force and also kind of removed all the senior command elements right after the fall of baghdad. core commander went home with his staff. field commander went home with his staff. we gave the job to a junior officer. fine officer, wasn't raced for that kind of job and didn't have the staff for it. >> following up on the question, what we've learned over the past 10, 11, years, are you concerned with the foreign policy advisers mitt romney surrounded himself with? there aren't enough sergeants
and not enough people with experience on the ground and we seem to have another republicanen candidate who's sort of top heavy when it comes to the -- >> i noticed that. i don't know who all of his advisers are. i've seen some of the names and some are quite far to the right and sometimes they, i think, might be in a position to make judgments or recommendations to the candidate that should get a second thought. for example, when governor romney not too long ago said the russian federation isn't our number one strategic threat. k well, cull oome on. that isn't the case. i don't know whether mitt really feels that -- i don't know. you ask him. i mean, it's been catching a lot of heck from these -- the more regular gop foreign affairs community. we've kind of taken aback by it.
look at the world. there's no pure competitor to the united states of america. you know, all of the problems we talk about, afghanistan, iraq, iran, you name them all, 700 million, 800 million, 7 billion. what are the rest of them doing? increasing economies, building wealth, educating their kids, building an infrastructure. that's what we need to be doing. >> you know, general, as we wind down here this morning with you, if you could, just take a couple of moments to talk to the country about this coming weekend. this memorial day weekend. it's not just the start of summer. given what you've dealt with all your life. given who we have overseas today, given the fact less than 1% of americans are serving in uniform. talk about memorial day. >> memorial day is a very important weekend and day for us to stop and pause and think about all who have served our country in the past. this country has been so blessed to have the greatest generation
in every generation of americans. not just the world war ii generation. and when we think about how they suffered, and i always have a spot in my heart to the african-american soldiers who fought for this country for 300 years before they were recognized by the country, and now with a new generation of youngsters to fought in iraq and afghanistan and have suffered terrible wounds, suffering from traumatic brain injury or ptsd, this is the time for all of us to reach out to these folks and not just say, hi, on memorial day. look in your community. is there a family, a g.i. family who is in need of a job. who is in need of some counseling, who's in need of help. just drop by and see what you can do. help the veterans organizations that are out there. the dav, the american leagues, so many others, and a lot more organizations have sprung up. never forget that we enjoy our security, we enjoy our freedom, because there were those of our fellow citizens who will willing
to go out and lose their lives and frequently lost their lives in defense of who we are, what we are. i once gopt into an argument with the archbishop of canada. americans always want to go to war. why don't you believe in soft power. i asked, i love soft power. but it wasn't soft power that kept hitler from taking the united kingdom. it wasn't soft power that got him out of france and the rest of europe. and it wasn't soft power that defeated the japanese imperial army. but what did we do amp we used hard power? we rebuilt these nations on the basis of democracy and freedom and so you've got to have both, and you want to use soft power. you have to use hard power, as you well know from my experience, use it decisively, get it over with and then help them rebuild. america came home from these wars, never asked for any land.
never asked for sovereignty over any other country. the only thing we asked for was enough land to bury our dead, and that's what we have done and we should be very proud of our record, our history as a nation of doing that to so many countries in the world. >> the book is "it worked for me in life and leadership" read an excerpt on our blog, firstname.lastname@example.org. grapt to you hato-of--of- -- gru have on the show. up next the global aviation capital of the world. that's next on "morning joe." un) most life insurance companies look at you and just see a policy.
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welcome back to "morning joe" at 30 past the hour. joining us now, national correspondent for the atlantic, james fallows, author of the new book "china airborne." james, good to see you. >> fascinating story that you chronicle here, and i get asked why you decided to write a book about china's air -- >> i mean -- >> you love it. a real love of yours. >> yes. >> i enjoy doing that but i also thought after being in china most of the last six years this was a way to tell the big story of china. essentially, are they going to make the next step from being a
low-wage ecostructure to being a really rich country? one of the industries they're pushing on like crazy and whether the going to work or not. >> what are you learning whether it will? >> i think it's much more a dicey proposition than most americans think. the last ten years the idea has been what china wants, china achieves by snapping its fingers. it's a lot easier thing to build a giant stadium, even pull off the olympics than have a complex industry like building boeing aircraft or having pharmaceuticals, another one they're pushing, and also the role of the military is actually the most important impediment of what they're trying to do. the military controls all the air space. that's a battle between the economic people in china and the military. >> and the talk about china is always that sit's going to pass us. a look at china. talking to the secretary. having landing in an airport in
china. better than nany of ours. there's a bit of an argument we're in a bait of a race? >> certainly. anything bought with cash money they have better are and more of than we do now. the number of new airports, one or two in construction now. there are 100 new airports being built in china. if you go there, you can't believe it. the way people must have felt when laguardia was first opened or l.a.x. in my hometown was first opened. it's all new, because they've been so backwards. the planes -- go on chinese airlines. planes are all new and flight crews all young and hired for being young. it's like an earlier era. >> back to the role of the military, which i think some find increasingly fascinating. there's a burgeoning scandal going on in china that involves an aspect of the military. >> bolshalie. >> he at some point goes to the
town, or the city where his father was posted and the public bureau, the chinese leadership gets very upset in addition to the scandal because of his ties to the military. what does that bode for the future of china as a government? >> interesting to contrast this with secretary powell who was here a minute ago. he epitomizes the thorough connectedness of the military with the rest of the civilian government and the president is commander in chief but the pentagon is swim civilians run the military and military professionals like colin powell be trained back and forth about how civilian government works. there is nothing like that with the people's liberation army. structurally, the only place it touches the civilian government is in the person of the president of china. who's also the chairman of military commission. there's no interweaving controls as we have here. so an ongoing real question for the country is, how much is the military a creature of the
government, and how much is it its own thing? that's one of the tensions they're trying to kind of domesticate and make sure the military doesn't go off on its own adventures. >> i'm sorry. >> you say this airline is not a sure thing. >> right. >> what will decide and when will it be decided whether or not it's a success? a. short term and longer term thing. short term is, almost all of the air space in china is run by the people's liberation army. if you want to fly, say, from beijing to shanghai, which is like -- like boston to d.c., the equivalent, you're routed out through st. louis because the military doesn't want you in airspace. it's inefficient, a big drag how things work. plane flight, low altitude because of this. short term the military needs to loosen up. longer term, the question is, all the sophistication that it takes to put together a boeing dreamliner or something like that. it requires a kind of social looseness that the chinese model
has not really been accustomed to yet. like having universities independent to do their own things. international relations that go more normally than the ones from china have. so they're aspiration, if they can do this in aerospace, it's a sign they can do any of these other high-end industries and not just assembles apples, assembling things for other companies. >> how long did you live in china? >> a little more than three years for the first. went back much of last year, too. >> you said china is a subject, a topic where the more you know, the less you understand, and you talk about the frustration that -- what's true in one region is false in another. it is -- it is a gigantic nation, and it is -- as churchill would say, what? it's a mystery, enigma wrapped in a riddle. >> right. i came to view this not so much as frustration as being just like life. life is full of contradictions. you never know what's going to happen. general powell was saying the question about the future is you
don't know. so as applies to china, the message i tried to get across is, this is really an interesting place. it's full of all of these oddball characters i describe who are trying to be the wright brothers and p.t. barnums and everything else of china, and it is so different that every place you go there's a surprise. so mainly americans shouldn't think, well, red china does x, because some guy in beijing might say, red china is going to do x and some gip 1,000 miles away said, to hell with you. i have my own scheme. i'm going to build an air park. i saw a guy build a palace of versailles to live in, for scale, just because he wanted to. >> oh, my gosh. >> so it's a big life-like place that is worth taking an interest in. >> the book is "china airborne" james fallows, thank you so much. come back soon. >> my pleasure, thanks. still ahead, speaking of air travel, will new airline fees mean families looking to fly together won't be able to sit together? more "morning joe"'s in just a moment.
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with a 2-year-old? >> nbc's tom costello has a story how the airlines might have fixed that for you. take a look. >> reporter: if you haven't bought your summer airline tickets yet, sitting together as a family may cost you even more with many airlines charging for more the aisle and window seats. in some cases, $25 each way. >> really, it's very difficult for a family of four or five to actually sit together anymore, because of this new fee concept. >> reporter: just one example. we looked at a major carrier's flight on june 25th from atlanta to l.a.x. in economy all of the available aisle and window seats were reserved for elite passengers or those willing to pay until row 48. only at row 50 were four or more seats together. in chicago, the hodge family was starting a flight to thailand. >> younger, they need to be by
you. feels better to be by mom and dad. >> reporter: in denver, frontier airline says every day it moves passengers to keep families together. >> nothing more powerful than the face of a mom and dad and little child that need to sit together, and the appeal onboard the aircraft is a last resort, but that one always works. >> reporter: the airlines insist all the extra fees are necessary, because the revenue from airfare alone sdp not cover air line operating costs. so what should you do? experts recommend booking early and reserving a seat, if you can. or try selecting seats five days before departure. that's what elite fliers start getting upgraded. try again 24 hours before a flight when seats for the disabled are freed up. finally, the day you're fliering, appeal to the gate agent for help. >> or you don't sit with them, willie. >> like george w., sit in the back. >> the worst on a plane. you guys know this. go to the person in the seat next to you.
do you really want to sit next to this 2-year-old? i don't think you want to sit next to us. and they will switch with you. >> that was great. >> he's yours. >> you need to chain them half way through the flight. >> all right. coming up next, we'll talk to cnbc many brian sullivan about the facebook stock plunge now a part of a government investigation, but first -- we're going to go to bill karins. >> oh, good. >> yeah. for a check on the forecast. bill? >> got something a little different. the wedding photo to top all wedding photos taken this past weekend in texas. outdoor ceremony. couple gets engaged and look in the background. they happen to pose right in front of a tornado, about five miles back in the distance. yeah. almost looks like spielberg produced this for dreamworks or something. congratulations to them, and the wedding photo top all wedding photos. >> was that foreshadowing? no. >> an ominous sign. >> could be a little turbulent. huh? >> exactly.
>> beautiful, though. good morning. as far as weatherwise, in miami, not as bad as yesterday but not pretty either. ten inches of rain yesterday in miami. already showers around this morning. also going to see showers and storms around washington, d.c. today. in the middle of the country, watch this warm-up that's going to happen. it's going to get hot in a hurry. dallas today is 94. 80s soaring up into the chicago area and indianapolis 500. big sporting event up for memorial day weekend on sunday, supposed to be 94 degrees there. that will be warmest ever indy 500, if that forecast holds true. that heat's going to continue fomp the middle of the nation and entering the east coast going through the tail end of the holiday weekend. so just be prepared. it's going to get very summery. >> so, bill, are we going to have a clear holiday weekend here? in the northeast? >> yeah. all this mess will move out. could be 90 in d.c. by sunday. >> wow. >> get ready for summer. >> there you go. >> thank you, bill. we'll be right back.
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pretty shot of the plaza. >> beautiful shot. a most beautiful shot. it is. it's beautiful. hey, so we got brian sullivan here. brian, cnbc's brian sullivan. so facebook has lost what? a couple hundred million dollars in a couple of days. we got criminal investigations possibly starting up. who knows. this whole thing, nasdaq -- botched the deal. i mean everything that could go wrong with facebook has gone wrong short of locusts descending upon the wedding of mark zuckerberg. i mean, this has been a bad couple of days for facebook. hasn't it? >> it's indicated a little higher this morning, but i think
your point is well taken. i mean, listen, facebook has not gone off nearly the way anybody hoped it would, and it's not just a bad thing for facebook. i think it's a bad thing for the stock market, because so many people got back in, renewed interest in overall stocks because of this, after feeling burned the last ten years. now they may have gotten burned again, once bitten, twice shy. you're right. the massachusetts a.g. issues a s subpoena, wants to know what they told them ahead of the ipo. came out yesterday they may have cut their own estimates being a leader in the ipo. a lot of questions this morning still around facebook, the ipo and exactly what happened and a lot of people who are ticked off. >> brian, you're a young, young kid. i'm sure you don't remember -- >> a baby. >> i'm sure you don't remember 10, 11, 12 years ago, but i think this is what henry brochit it at, i think it was merrill,
stocks he calmed poss. i don't have to explain what that means that he would go out so they would get the ipo business. sounds like wall street hasn't learned anything. this may have happened again. >> i was actually at the nasdaq reporting in 1999. i'm not that young. i was there when every stock in the world was $1 billion. but your point is well taken. listen, morgan stanley says it did nothing wrong. it's allowed to tell people that facebook cut its own forecasts in a revised issuance before the actual ipo, but who's going to read the 100-some page s1, the government filing, right? morgan stanley says we did nothing wrong. nasdaq said they did nothing wrong. from facebook, where in the world is mark zuckerberg? you know what? i'm going back to the abacus, calculator, start farming local stuff. you know what i mean? the amish have it right, guys. >> brian sullivan -- >> that's why i love you, brian.
>> yeah. >> awesome. i love him. >> brian, thank you so much. we'll be right back. it's time to live wider awake. only the beautyrest recharge sleep system combines the comfort of aircool memory foam layered on top of beautyrest pocketed coils to promote proper sleeping posture all night long. the revolutionary recharge sleep system... from beautyrest. it's you, fully charged. every communications provider is different but centurylink is committed to being a different kind of communications company. ♪ we link people and fortune 500 companies nationwide and around the world. and we will continue to free you to do more and focus on what matters.
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that's not happy. mika? >> the comparisons between afghanistan and vietnam as well. what the president has to say at the commencement at the air force academy. what have you learned today? >> going to the fund-raiser in colorado, how much future capitalists are there. interesting. i guess -- boy. mika, just -- mean. >> really? no. i just -- >> saved 155 souls. >> in, like -- the typical morning. if we didn't point out it was, i was a little tired. seriously. okay? >> what's -- >> what's wrong with her? stop it. just stop it. the junkie power hour is coming up. the new nbc/"wall street journal" poll is coming up. if it's about the economy, president obama comes up short. if it's about connecting with voters and empathy, romney has prob