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tv   [untitled]    June 27, 2012 10:00pm-10:30pm EDT

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[000:00:00;00] so so. welcome to the alona show where you'll get the real headlines with none of the mersey we are coming live out of washington d.c. i'm christine for south things we're tuning in we've got a packed show for you tonight the golden state has been drying up for years but now a california city will be the largest in the country to file for bankruptcy protection we'll take a look at the state of the economy and also ask if living wills drawn up by this country's biggest banks will in fact improve and get rid of the too big to fail system plus we're going to have mike elk on the show to talk about the latest way
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large corporations are trying to limit workers rights it turns out many of this country's veterans have been forced to attend meetings in which they're told unions are bad oftentimes held on army bases well have all that for you tonight including a dose of happy hour but first we'll take a look at what the mainstream media has decided to miss. our will certainly still several months away from the presidential election but still the mainstream media was abuzz today with the latest numbers highlighting over and over where the candidates stand as of today. be seen as wall street journal poll new n.b.c. wall street journal poll new n.b.c. news wall street journal poll our new n.b.c. news wall street journal poll in this latest wall street journal n.b.c. news head to head match up president obama holds a narrow lead over governor romney it's a dead heat i want to throw up some more poll twenty eight percent of you romney's
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bain experience negatively look at the battleground states which we've polled a dozen of them here's the bad news for governor romney he trails in these swing states fifty percent of people living in those eleven battleground states for president obama a four point margin white voters men and suburban women midwesterners high interest voters and voters who are college educated forty seven percent to forty four a statistical tie within the margin of error if you look at women president obama's leading fifty. two percent to thirty nine percent of voters high interest voters and the all important swing state voters fifty two percent to thirty five percent for mitt romney today use it fifty forty two is that romney's support so suburban women white women and white independent president obama is upside down in his approval rating his favor ability is forty eight percent unfavorable thirty eight percent forty percent to thirty six percent is negative rating is back to its all time high of thirty nine percent. are if they want to talk about the election that's four and
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a half months away fine but stop it with the same old polls and pundits and their talking points let's talk about the real issues and how those real issues are being communicated to millions of voters and while we're at it let's look at who's pulling the strings that's precisely what new york attorney general eric schneiderman is trying to do in one of the most significant investigations in decades were guarding tax exempt groups funneling money into politics you probably didn't hear about it but yesterday his office sent subpoenas to several high ranking officials at the national chamber foundation a nonprofit foundation linked to the u.s. chamber of commerce schneiderman wants access to their e-mail and bank records and has some serious questions about an eighteen million dollar loan given to the chamber and i won't i mean a large pile of money not paid back for years with no interest charge that money apparently went to pay for democrats marrying political campaigns as well as lobbying for legislation in congress the chamber as you may know is one of the
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largest outside groups with his hands in the political influencing game like crossroads g.p.s. americans for prosperity and others it's a nonprofit that doesn't have to disclose their donors this year the mass the vast majority of t.v. advertising for the election has come from such not prompt nonprofit ads. we don't have examples of that. ok so there's a shift going on that a very few people are talking about what we're seeing here is not just an unraveling of limits on campaign spending but a full all out war on transparency because people are spending the money to manipulate the message they're saying now we want voters to know where the money is coming from and by the way there's not a large group of people during two thousand and eight according to a report in the new york times close to half of the chambers one hundred forty million dollars in contributions came from just forty five donors so if this case in new york the law is simple if you're
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a tax exempt group that raises money from donors in new york you need to file auditors reports and federal tax returns with the attorney general's office quite a few places it seems are not following these rules another group the star foundation which is based in new york and is also involved in one of this point can only be described as shady dealings it also is linked to the chamber of commerce. now campaign financing is no longer about show me the money now it's more about trying to find out who the sugar daddy is that's what the new york a.g.'s office is trying to get to the bottom of and well what the mainstream media is not it's just another thing they've decided to miss. all right let's talk now about the economy first it's official stockton california an agriculture center city home to about two hundred ninety thousand people will
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become the largest city in the country to file for federal bankruptcy protection and it turns out big banks have been forced to protect themselves and taxpayers as well five of the biggest banks in this country are finalizing their living wills they've been required to provide is several thousand page documents have been mandated by the government and basically make more simply the complexities of the banks just in case they fail again speaking of big banks in the shady way they do business p. and c. bank has just reached a ninety million dollars settlement for charging excessive overdraft fees to their customers other banks like j.p. morgan chase t.d. bank and make america have reached similar agreements i'll discuss where they even get off doing here to discuss all this with me is gary jones working at a center senior scholar and b.b. and t. professor for the study of capitalism and also weighing in remotely william black associate professor of law and economics at the university of missouri kansas city he's also the author of the best way to rob a bank is to own one. thanks guys so much for being here today let's start with
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california yes and you know this is a state that has it's my home state it's a state that has had as well yeah financial problems for years how significant is this news about stockton a filing for bankruptcy well i think it's actually really significant news because for the opposite reason most people think because we've gone through this financial crisis for years now you know meredith whitney the famous wall street analysts printed years ago that there would be mass bankruptcies by municipalities across the u.s. and we've got all this time what if we had in california now we've got stockton that's actually pretty small potatoes in the grand scheme of things well it's not potatoes but it's a whole lot of people who are worried about no health care for retirees that they're worried about losing their entire pensions. i don't know it seems like a little scary really when you think. it is scary but it's scary mostly in terms of what could come next stockton's one of the epicenters of the housing scandal so
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it's understandable it's far more than agriculture it's the residential bubble blowing up but i agree this is still very small compared to what we could see and it is still to war to the orange county bankruptcy of many years ago when financial derivatives took them well i mean as you said william this is one of the places where depending on where you lucky the second or the fifth highest foreclosure rate in the nation is in stockton let me just ask you take a little further though what are some worst case scenarios here. well the fundamental thing is this was completely unnecessary well one of the really good ideas that actually president obama had was a republican idea and that was revenue sharing and nixonian idea and he proposed it because everybody knew there was going to be financial holocaust at the state and local level and that at the worst possible time you were going to have
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a tremendous loss of employment in the government sector in states and localities around the nation and stockton is simply after delay how california by the way also that for twenty years near their. primary victims that have fallen right now but none of them had to go down but revenue sharing was killed by a coalition of blue dog democrats conservative democrats and republicans and frankly president obama didn't make much of a fight for it so no one even remembers now that we could have had a better stimulus and boy did those kinds of losses at the late and stockton certainly an interesting scenario and we'll have to keep our eye on what happens i want to switch gears though and garrett ask you about these living well and i know this is something that i hadn't really heard of until pretty recently i know earlier this month j.p. morgan c.e.o. jamie dimon testifying on the hill about sort of the big scandal that happened
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there i want to just play really quick what he said you know the breakdown of living wills is. this resolution authority which stores to put the structure in place in the living will is to me what it means is doing giving information to regular they know how to do it they need to know what happens to this legal entity would have that legal entity what do you do with this thing happens and we've actually filed recently a analysis and report how do you go about dismantling a j.p. morgan the didn't cost the taxpayer. all right so garrett i mean it seems to me that especially when we talk about some of these huge corporations these biggest banks in this country that it seems like a good thing to have sort of an outline of the inner workings of it what do you think about all that well on paper it sounds great right but the question is will any of these living wills be used the next time a crisis comes around it's worth remembering the biggest bank in spain one of the biggest banks in the world santander they filled out their living will two years ago and you know what's happening right now is spent spain's banks are failing
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they're not using that at all they're just bailing them out so these things i think will mostly just gather dust on shelves and when a crisis hits we'll go back to bail out so you think that something sort of that the regulators did to appease the public just to say hey we're cracking down on these big banks well at least some of the regulators are really serious about ending too big to fail and using these of these living wills so thomas hoenig who is the vice chairman of the f.d.a. i see he was preaching for years that we needed to end too big to fail and we need to have real living wills and so he's the guy in charge but even he himself has said he doesn't think these living wills are up to the task well and let me ask you i mean do you think that you know doing this taking steps like this will and too big to fail not at all this is completely window dressing it was devised but the big banks as a cover story that we supposedly had done something about too big to fail the systemically dangerous institutions remain vastly more systemically dangerous than
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before this crisis started and they will be bailed out more precisely what it means is their general creditors will be paid in full and as long as that happens they will have an enormous implicit federal subsidy and as the authors of guaranteed to fail very conservative economists wrote recently if they are quibbling bringing a gun to a knife fight so they destroy competition they destroy markets and they're grossly inefficient. they need to be shrunk to the point where they no longer pose a systemic risk and i see you nodding your head here i mean is there something that wouldn't be window dressing that would actually work to. have these banks sort of take part in you know give them one last chance but for to prove to the public hey you know we're serious about not failing again well we need to make sure that there's no bank in the u.s. or no bank in any of the other rich countries too big to fail and the way you do
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that is by breaking them up you make them into smaller little bit so during our financial crisis the biggest bank that was allowed to fail in a normal way was watching a mutual it's a good sized bank up and down a lot of parts of the country but tiny tiny compared to about how much like citibank let's switch gears now we just heard this week about this settlement ninety million dollars sounds like a lot of money for me for p. and c. bank they have settled because they were kind of working the system here is to say you have just a little bit of money left in your account and you withdraw thirty dollars but then later in the day you withdraw sixty dollars they were kind of moving it around to the higher withdraw was made first and charging people fees william what do you think about this settlement i mean does this mean that you know the banks are going to have to stop these shady practices. well there are regulatory changes that are designed to stop these things going forward but what's of course distressing is you know all that advertising about you had
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a friend to chase while your friend to chase and was trying to make sure and keeping it surreptitious that you would pay the absolute maximum see if there was ever an insufficient funds by the way this settlement is war by a much bigger settlement today announced today by barclays bank that is far more fundamental where what barclays did with the other largest banks in the world is rig the libel war system which i know sounds really want but that is the benchmark for actually most adjustable rate loans in the world so they settled for hundreds of millions there but the luck of the knock on liability to people that got shafted in their loans could be in the tens of billions of dollars in that case garrett i mean you. about capitalism not about the benefits and the positive of capitalism is this is simply
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a flaw in the system the banks have been doing this for so long well of banks are preying on their weakest customers the customers who can't follow the rules who can't keep track of how exactly they're overdraft fees get scored by i can bet that today's news means that this bank is going to lose a lot of customers over the next couple of weeks the hit to their stock is probably bigger than the ninety million dollars fee you think so why is it i guess because customers that you know just imagine what's happening around dinner tables as people see this news story right now people are thinking maybe i should switch banks to a bank that doesn't have sneaky fees and i think in the future these guys are going to be a little more terrified interesting i just want to wrap it up with you going back to bankruptcy i mean do you think that we're going to see more cities like stockton more cities around the country start to use this as sort of their final you know door that they open that they go to to try to save themselves. there are some analysts that believe it's going to become very common because they're going to
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attack pension liabilities in particular through this action and we have to see it whether stockton goes aggressively after those pensions if it does so when it's successful then yes it will be. blazing a trail that a number of cities well certainly lots of interesting news about the economy this week and things that a lot of us just aren't used to seeing so it is interesting to talk about appreciate having you both on this panel garrett jones and william black very interesting discussion thanks so much and thank you. and time for a break but coming up you said it i read it for our edition and while why were veterans forced to attend union meetings i'll find out next. there hasn't been anything yet on t.v.
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. it is to get the maximum political impact. the full source material is what helps keep journalism we. we want to present. something real. you know sometimes you see a story and it seems so you think you understand it and then you glimpse something else you hear or see some other part of it and realized everything you thought you knew you don't know i'm tom harpur welcome to the big show.
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wealthy british style. markets why not come to. find out what's really happening to the global economy with max conjure for a no holds barred look at the global financial headlines tune into kinds a report on our.
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i. think it's time for you said it i read it where i say it's on to respond to my brilliance engaging viewer comments from facebook twitter and you tube because when you've got something to say i listen first i want to thank kevin gusto largesse from last night about the bradley manning hearings for pointing out that my introduction to this segment was a little bit confusing there are documents that the press requested and those are only court filings the damage reports are evidence that the prosecution and defense may or may not use in the trial so i just wanted to make that clear now on the comments from the other side of the screen judy austin responded to our interview about the supreme court does decision on arizona's as be ten seventy immigration law she said so immigration is supposed to be handled by the fed if they do nothing what do they expect states to do to express themselves protect themselves and judy
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on one hand you're right the president promised comprehensive immigration reform and has not delivered of course he has tried to deliver on a number of other things in congress and has been stopped time and time again by lawmakers trying to prevent him having any successes because as they've said themselves their number one goal is to prevent him from being reelected now as far as the state's bronzes they do come up with laws that don't make people living here illegally feel that just because they have brown skin they'll be arrested unfairly or asked to show proof you know that they are who they say they are well that it's a good idea a state should be able to keep their people safe just you know they should do so in a way that doesn't violate the constitution next snowman is zero one four seven responded to our on you tube to our segment from last night's show about a radio host saying none to oppose a paul ryan's budget should be pistol whipped they said quote these nuns hit the nail right on the head these so-called christian republicans are not very christian at all and we should take care of one another so when you hit the nail right on the
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head too i'm not. bible scholar but i'm pretty sure that of the ten commandments listed in the bible will love your neighbor as yourself is the most important and pistol whipping your neighbor because you disagree with her well that's not i would imagine what jesus would do and finally only real x. x. x. said this on you tube is this alone as sister and where is alona well i am not alone a sister that we are good friends alone is on a well deserved vacation sings a pretty cool parts of the world and knowing alone and meeting some interesting people and having some fun as well she will be back here on monday thanks for your comments as always again a little will be back with more next week. well later this week more than one hundred employees who work for general dynamics the plant in washington state will vote on whether or not to join a union in this case local two eight six of the international union of operating engineers about half of them are u.s. military veterans and as you might imagine general dynamics isn't happy about this
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and they're using some pretty unbelievable methods to try to persuade them not to and they're doing it on taxpayer funded property it's a subject of a new article published in the news magazine in these times the title of the article is veterans forced to attend union meetings on army base joining me is the author of that article mike elk labor journalist and staff writer for in these times hey there mike it's good to be on the show good to see you. were talking about is in fort lewis in washington state i know you spoke with a few of these veterans what did you find out where essentially for the last six months these guys have been trying to organize this military contractor mechanic group where they work on straker attack vehicles and you know the making about eighteen bucks an hour the benefits are awful the working hours are awful they get sent over to afghanistan all the time so they're trying to organize a union now for about the last six months the company has been making these workers attend anti-union meetings these are forced captive audience meetings where the that are legal in the u.s.
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where they're being told that you have to sit down and you have to watch this propaganda film and we might ask you some questions and you might have to get up and say how you feel about unions in front of a group of your friends for the last month because the election's going to be the end of this week they've been making them attend these meetings almost daily and a lot of these guys are right veterans and for them i mean this real quick version now you just said mike that what they're doing here what general dynamics is doing is actually legal but i know you know there are some loopholes here i know that you know contractors are taking advantage of this. they're getting people involved in union busting but talk a little bit about i mean i thought president obama sort of. something forth that you mention in your article to make sure this doesn't yes obama at the beginning of his term in two thousand and nine passed this executive order that said that. you know government contract funds they can get reimbursed any more for hiring entire union consultants who are holding these kind of meetings however it only applies if the company really applies for reimbursement for them so
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a company like general dynamics which got nineteen billion in defense contracting last year i can just claim oh well the money came from somewhere else we didn't reimburse you for it you know so they can automatically say whenever they go to you know bid for a contract you know jack up the price in case they go to do some union busting so the law is pretty weak but what i find most incredible is that these workers aren't being forced to like attend these captive audience anti-union meetings on you know general dynamics property to be on the u.s. army base force lou taxpayers fund that we're taxpayers for that's so interesting and the union is asked if they could come in and have equal time on the army base in they've said no well i know general dynamics said they just want their employees to have all the facts here they want them to see all sides here but they're not having people come in. and actually what this is we take care of our employees as with the we take care of them so we make them go to these propaganda sessions just to make sure that. michael let's break this down what's at the heart of the matter
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here you know general dynamics is a pretty successful company they made a measly thirty three billion dollars in revenue last year what does this actually about it's about power at the end of the day is that these guys are going to make that much more money but the general dynamics of the corporate mindset is that they don't want somebody else telling them that they can't treat workers poorly or they can't do this or they can't do that it's about power and it's about profits but more of the profits it's about power and that's what these guys are all about and every day in this country this happens to workers over the country ninety percent of workers during you need a larger force the time captive audience meetings was so incredible about this is that it's veterans on the u.s. army bitch. unfortunately this kind of these veterans are people who go to iraq they go to afghanistan to fight for our freedom and they're not enjoying some of the basic freedoms that they're allegedly fighting for i mean they've got to be did you get the impression that a lot of these guys were upset oh yeah i mean one you know a lot of one of them said it was b.s. you know
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a lot of stuff like that very upset about this so they've been trying to unionize for a while almost six months now and the company you know what the company's been doing to support of you know action about a month but the company for six months now has been found all kinds of lawsuits to try to define the bargaining unit and who isn't and they've been slowing it down in the companies even said even if the union wins the election they're going to hold them up in court forever so this is a real miscarriage of justice that it's going to take these guys a year year and a half to get through all these lou proceedings maybe even get a union even get to bargain over you not even get a contract but this is this is the typical norm in american labor relations i mean break this down what happens if you know if the workers the employees actually do join this union how does this you know impact general dynamics they have to pay their workers a little more general to emerge as a lot of military contractors are already union members so they might have to pay them a little bit more there might be more stringent rules about what the company can and cannot do with people you know they can't force me to work twelve hours and
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will come in on the weekend when you told me i couldn't come in the very basic things like that and so that's all these guys are really asking for this from what i gather is not an isolated incident this is not something that's only happening in one place in fort lewis. do you think that this is going on and it's going to continue to go on around the country oh yeah i received several reports of you know military contractors using funds for this kind of thing and i'm investigating and we're going to be coming out with more stuff on it i think this kind of thing happens a lot you see it a lot with different government contractors in a lot of different bases and the big question is why isn't president obama stepping in and saying this kind of thing isn't all right the. guys are veterans they should have a voice on the job if you have ability to do that free of intimidation they're getting terminated and this happens all across the u.s. and the president says nothing about it you know it's really telling you know the president has just a kid hold speeches to gay rights and immigrant rights but not going to leverage. well he doesn't want to raise i just wonder you know i mean i think it's tough because like for example i just got back from wisconsin
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a few weeks ago with the election the recall election for scott walker and it's one of those things that the president probably doesn't want to pick the losing side but why do you think this is a losing side why do you think as you say this is you know the state of labor relations in our country today i don't think it's a losing side i mean this is where unions are winning good contrast places where they're going to really beat up but it was a constant i don't want to question that that naive the president would be on the losing side presence on the team trying to beat down the workers in my opinion you know he's done a lot of anti worker stuff you know that i've covered he's just signed an f.a.a. bill that makes it tougher for you to organize and now that bill is being used to block an election for ten thousand american airline workers there's been a you know he's he's refused to do number of things that could really help organize labor and i think he's on their side he's not pushing their side but he's not pushing back against it too much not a lot of voices speaking out for these guys labor journalist and staff writer for
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in these times the interesting discovery that you've made thanks for sharing with us. are we going to take another break but on the other side we're looking to the private prison project to house sex offenders who have already done their time and what do fetuses and the flood insurance have to do with each other across stories making carbons here and i will try to figure out. news today violence is once again flared up. these are the images the world has


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