Skip to main content

tv   The Rachel Maddow Show  MSNBC  August 3, 2011 6:00pm-7:00pm PDT

6:00 pm
rempbld barry lynn, thank you for joining us tonight. have the last word on our blog and follow my tweets @lawrence. "the rachel maddow show" is up next. rachel, you look fabulous after spending the night on an airplane. >> i have learned i can tie my limbs into knots i didn't know i could fly into. did you fly back on the red eye too? >> of course, no. i had the pleasure of a 6:00 a.m. -- not sure how i kept my eyes open. >> it's better to have a single 48-hour work day than flying at 6:00 a.m. i believe t. thanks to you at home for staying with us for the next hour which ought to be fun and punchy because of the lack of sleep. we do begin tonight with terrific news for some very specific people. even in this terrible, horrible, no good, very bad economy, there are some people in this great
6:01 pm
country of ours who are doing splendidly, terrifically, american corporations are setting new profit records right now. seriously, it's raining money for the microsofts and apples and good years and caterpillars and 3ms for the world. they all set a record for revenue in the last three months. second quarter reports are coming in and so far it's rivers and lakes and oceans of money for the s&p 500. after months of report profits already they are doing better than before, even better than expected. in the case of oil companies, they are doing a lot better. that's what happens when you can sell your product for a captive audience for high prices, you get richer than before and you started off rich. the news is really, really good for people who own corporations. the news for everybody else, of course, is not so good. we learned today u.s. companies are planning layoffs in a pace
6:02 pm
not seen since spring of last year. planned layoffs are up 2/3 from the months before and the level a year ago, and while we have been watching government austerity shrink the public job sector now we're seeing layoffs at drug companies and retailers and even when government had been cutting jobs, these had been the sectors providing some of the very few new jobs this lousy economy had been adding and now they are cutting too. so so much for the silver lining, i guess. so much for the theory that what is good for the so-called job creators is necessarily good for the job doers. there's a clear and painful disconnect right now between what's happening for the wealth of corporations and what's happening for the rest of the economy. corporations making lots of profit does not equal jobs it turns out. it just equals lots of corporate prof, the already rich get much rich and the not rich get
6:03 pm
butt kiss. at the end of the week we get a new report on jobs numbers, the unemployment rate for the country and how many jobs got atted or lost in july. for what it's worth, the new one on friday is expected to show we gained more jobs than we did in june but don't get your hopes up it's going to be good news. this kind of reporting is where small numbers come with big consequences. like this small number, for instance, from the commerce department telling us personal spending in this country dropped in june for the first time since september 2009. that doesn't look like much, right? how about now? this is wall street reacting to the news of that tiny little number. this is wall street reacting to that news about ordinary americans cutting back on their spending. investors and companies and economists all now legitimately freaking out and running for cover because of news like that. this slow motion, seemingly
6:04 pm
dless economic crisis we have been sloging through for a few years now isot a beltway spat, not an election, it is not a fight. it is a really big american problem, and i'm sorry to say that it is starting to get worse again, so break out the campaign bus. that is the response from the obama administration today, sending the president on a listening tour in a campaign bus so we can hear about the pain in the heartland and try to reconnect with american voters on this issue for three days. that's the democratic respoe today. on the republican side, their plan is, of course, criticize the president's bus tour, that will make a difference and speaker john boehner broke from his august recess to tweet a blueprint for jos. let me click on that for you. look, it's the same report from a few months ago, the one with enough type and clip art so it takes up ten pages and looks semicredible even ifhis page
6:05 pm
is entirely clip art and this page is, of course, just the party. the republican big plan for creating jobs comes down to making things even better than they already are for corporations, for the only folks in this economy who are already doing great, better than ever, having record-setting ofits, but the gop plan is they must haveore, gop proposing to lower corporate tax rates so corporations get more profit, they want to get rid of regulations that might interfere with making more profit and just like that by increasing corporate profit even more, even more than they are at with their record levels right now, somehow this time that will make jobs. the republican plan to turn this economy of our nightmares into the economy of our i dreams is to keep everything great for corporations and the waters of prosperity will find everybody else somehow. while corporate profits are growing in double digits, even while they are planning record
6:06 pm
layoffs, the republican mindset is to cut spending on everything else, no matter the cost to economy or jobs but to give corporations more and more and more and that's what is winning in washington. that's the way our policy course has been set. republicans in congress just held the debt ceiling ransom for a deal that stands to grievously wound the economy if the predictions are correct. it's more than $2 trillion in cuts. the deal's expected to whack another 323,000 jobs right out of the economy, enough to slow economic growth by 0.3%. factor in the stimulus plans the democrats said they wanted in the deal but end up giving up in negotiating, ends up costing 1.8 million jobs and 1.5% of gdp and economic growth. oil companies get to keep their subsidies and anybody lucky enough to fly in a corporate jet keeps getting tax payer subsidies for that too.
6:07 pm
deal on the debt ceiling, keep subsidies for oil companies and private jets but end, say, federal help for grad students' college loans. you know, those grad students, i hate how they caused the recession. as if there's enough skin we can take out of grad students' hides to get us out of this recession. this very hard time we are living through is sometimes called the great recession, a name meant to distinguish it from but relate it to a harder time in our history, the great depression of the 19 30z, franklin delano roosevelt was elected to -- president roosevelt responded with a plan designed to put americans back to work building america. quite literally fdr's stimulus program built america, they built roads, bridges, cities,
6:08 pm
state parks. next time you're in a state park look for a plaque inside that state park saying when that lovely welcome center got built, there's a good chance it got built during the great depression. but in 1937, eight years into the great depression, fdr turned his attention to cutting the nation's deficit. president roosevelt had been convinced that the nation could no longer afford his recovery efforts, that instead of continuing to attack unemployment, they decided they need to attack the deficit. boy did they, great success there and great time this week, bruce bartlett points out they cut the deficit by 17% in two years, so yes, they attacked the deficit, but in so doing they also attacked the economy. growth had been strong in 1934, 1935, 1936 while the government was spending. in 1937, that growth collapsed,
6:09 pm
the next year the economy began to shrink again. the great depression had its own recession. misery wrapped in misery. they did slay the deficit in 1937, they also slayed the economy. it's worth remembering herbert hoover drove the u.s. economy from a downturn into the u.s. depression in the first place. he was the early 20th century version of oh, my god we have to stop spending, we have to stop spending now. it's why they named the shan'ty towns hoovervilles. thanks, hooub ert look what you've done. this hard time that's got our name on it, we had one in 2009, that's over now. the money barack obama managed to get through congress is credited with creating or saving three million jobs, really people making the economy grow, but that stimulus is over now and there's no talk of another one in washington today. now republicans are telling us
6:10 pm
we have to make like herbert hoover again or fdr, what we need to do now is crank down on the economy, show some disciplines. if the deficit is the nation's pressing problem right now, not 14 million people out of work, what this out of control bomb fire of jobs needs is a bucket full of kerosene, how big an economic mistake are we making right now and do we have any hope of going any other way of doing anything else? joining us now is jerad bernstein, former member of president obama's economic team and economic advisor for joe biden. jerad bernstein, nice to see you, thanks for being here. >> my pleasure, rachel. >> you are the economist here, not me, so tell me if it is not apt to think about '37, to think about the risks of cranking down spending, risks of getting thrown back into a second recession. >> i can't think of any more apt
6:11 pm
cautionary tale than the one you just told and very thoroughly, by the way. the deficit reduction deal that was just passed, it doesn't do the kind of harm that the 1937 problem did, at least in 2012. you mention the bruce bartlett statistic that 17% contraction. that is definitely 1937-style self-inflicted wound. now, we've been quite masterful at our own self-inflicted wounds, but at least in 2012 it's a scratch, $20 billion out of the economy, but the important point, rachel is that it goes exactly the wrong way. not only did we just spend a number of months focusing on the wrong problem, the budget deficit as opposed to the immediate jobs deficit, but in 2013 those cuts really kick up. if you think this economy is going to be out of the woods by then, it won't be.
6:12 pm
the unemployment rate will still be way too high. by 2013 we could be looking at cuts more in the neighborhood of $100 billion, so it's a very important caveat that you're raising. >> do you think that -- you not only understand this from an economic perspective, you have been there in the fights over this in washington and during this administration. do you think that it is possible to do things in the right direction right now, to do anything that could stimulate the economy, is anything politically possible right now? >> i think a few things are politically possible, i have yet to give up hope. for one, you mention in there about job losses that if we fail to renew the payroll tax holiday and unemployment insurance extension. now, with such high and long-term unemployment in the system, it's important to realize that both of those programs, the president has spoken to this, are in the economy right now, they are in the 2011 economy. if we take them out and they do
6:13 pm
expire at the end of the year, that will be a big economic air pocket and will cost us a lot of jobs. we need the government to continue to pick up some of the slack from a private sector that's as down on the mat practically as it was during the recession itself. you cited the consumer spending numbers the other day. those are an economy in stall, first thing, do no harm. i'd like us to try to do something on the infrastructure front, i think that's a good way to get folks back to work and if you do it right you can make that happen relatively quickly. that's definitely a bigger political lift, though. >> the consumer spending numbers that you just mentioned, again, you're the economist here, i'm not, and what i saw there is consumer spending is down, that doesn't seem like a good thing but i didn't know how to interpret the ashen fashed slack-jawed freak out in congress. can you explain why that was so upsetting to people? >> i can explain that, i think. i think wall street woke up
6:14 pm
after this self-induced nightmare of the debt ceiling, looked around and recognized this economy isn't going anywhere. basically folks had been in this sleep telling themselves the worst that could happen to the economy, we fail to raise the debt ceiling and we default. now, there's a lot to that. i actually think it's very good for the economy not to have the default staring us in the face just like it wouldn't be good for me to hit myself in the head with a heavy object. wall street saw two things, consumer spending was just about a zero, at least in june, and there's not -- and the game in town right now is really fiscal policy. monetary policy, the kind of thing the fed does to help lower interest rates, it's probably not going to be all that helpful now, borrowing costs are already low, firms are sitting on a lot of cash they could invest if
6:15 pm
they wanted to. one of the things the street is responding to is this realization that the government in terms of fiscal policy, in terms of helping the economy with jobs with the kind of programs you and i were just talking about is out of the picture and that's exactly the wrong economics for this moment just as it was in '37. >> and the politics -- i mean, if you're driven by the economic need here those politics have to be changed. >> the economy is telling us a very clear message, rachel, which is it needs some kind of fiscal help. the politics are completely upsidedown telling us the opposite. >> jerad bernstein, senior fell low, msnbc contributor, hitting the nail on the head with the last comment there, thank you very much. still ahead, the shutdown of a major government agency for fun and profit. what the heck is still going on with this thing with the faa? we've got details ahead. but i d. they said i couldn't fight above my weight class. but i did.
6:16 pm
they said i couldn't get elected to congress. but i did. now i'm trying to make it in music. ♪ sometimes when we touch ha ha! millions of hits! [ male announcer ] the new hp touchpad. get it now for $100 off, starting at $399.99. ♪
6:17 pm
6:18 pm
what if we designed an electric motorcycle? what if we turned trash into surfboards? whatever your what if is, the new sprint biz 360
6:19 pm
has custom solutions to make it happen, including mobile payment processing, instant hot spots, and 4g devices like the motorola photon. so let's all keep asking the big what ifs. sprint business specialists can help you find the answers. sprint. america's favorite 4g network. trouble hearing on the phone? visit sunday, february 6, of this year was one of the most consequential days in the modern history of the great date of wisconsin, on sunday, february 6, the beloved, the adored, the one, the only, the green bay packers became super bowl champions. the packers defeating the pittsburgh steelers by a score of 31-25, the entire state of wisconsin temperatured to an utter state of pro-packer pandemoni pandemonium.
6:20 pm
[ cheers and applause ] >> packers, packers, packers. then the very next day on february 7th, wisconsin's new republican governor scott walker who was at the super bowl the night before returned to his home state fired up about the game, gave them a pep talk to inspire them about their work ahead and what was the obvious example before him of greatness that he had used to inspire his staff? the packer's big dramatic super bowl victory the night before? no, he actually chose to fire them up with a story of ronald reagan firing the air traffic controllers. >> i stood up and i pulled out a picture of ronald reagan, and i said this may seem a little melodramatic, but 30 years ago ronald reagan had one of the most defining moments of his
6:21 pm
career, not just his presidency, when he fired the air traffic controllers, i said this may not have as broad implications, but in wisconsin's history, i said this is our moment. this is our time to change the course of history, and this is why it's so important that they were all there. >> this is the day after the packers won the freaking super bowl, and that was the pep talk scott walker says he gave to his cabinet. packers, smackers. let's go break some unions, you guys. sure enough a few days later scott walker launches an assault on union rights in wisconsin, that ronald reagan moment of inspiration for scott walker took place 30 years ago today, august 3, 1981 members of the air traffic controllers union went on strike, instead of sitting down and negotiating with them, ronald reagan walked to the rose garden of the white house and threatened them on national tv. >> i must tell those who fail to
6:22 pm
report to duty this morning, they are in violation of the law and if they do not report to work within 48 hours, they have forfeited their jobs and will be terminated. >> 48 hours later, mr. reagan fired more than 11,000 air traffic controllers across the country. now, 30 years later to the day, president obama, today, is dealing with his own airline union crisis, a crisis marked, again, by republicans trying to break the backs of american unions the federal aviation administration right now is shut down. congressional republicans refusing to reauthorize the faa unless democrats concede to their demand to strip union rights for people who work for airlines or railroads. crush the unions or the faa gets it. the faa has been reauthorized 27 separate times in the last four years. even when they can't agree on the big thing, at least they can agree to keep it going, but this
6:23 pm
year since democrats have not given in to the republicans, this year at the republican's hands, the faa got it. the faa shutdown is having real live consequences in an economy already reeling from horrible unemployment, this shutdown means that 4,000 faa employees have been put out of work immediately, another 70,000 construction workers are out of work as well. every week the shut down continues, the government loses $200 million in lost revenue in airline ticket fees, a total that will reach $1 billion if congress does not come back before the end of their recess to try to fix this thing. today president obama implored the republicans to stop playing games as did transportation secretary ray lahood. >> i'm focusing my laser beams on congress, end your vacation for a couple of days, get off
6:24 pm
the beach, get out of your mobile homes or whatever you're traveling, come back, pass a bill. >> this is a fight about union rights. republicans insisting that democrats must cave on union rights or they will not release the faa from this death grip. democrats appear to be standing firm so far. the democrats house campaign committee now reportedly targeting 50 house republicans in their home district on this issue. debby shultz now accusing the extreme house gop for playing partisan politics with the faa and the white house has said president obama will veto any bill if it includes the union-stripping provision. when scott walker, who was so moved by ronald reagan firing all those people, when scott walker enacted his own union-stripping agenda in wisconsin, he did not campaign on it, he just did it apparently thinking people would rally to
6:25 pm
his cause. people did rally, of course, but not for him, not with him, but rather against him. tens of thousands people in the streets of the state capitol and the wisconsin state democrats have reaped the political war for what scott walker did. remember the way they were greeted when they returned to wisconsin after they fled to illinois to stop walker from moving ahead with this thing? the thank you parade. the thank you parade. a parade in the streets for standing up to scott walker's union-stripping agenda. when's the last time you saw a parade in the streets for thanking democrats for taking a stand on something? that was the reward awaiting for democrats standing up for people's rights working in wisconsin. nationwide the amount of people who took the democrat's side was
6:26 pm
77%. questions remain in this latest fight, do we, as a country, get our faa back? do those people get to go back to work? will democrats keep refusing to cave on this? but third and most broadly, will the democrats take this as an opportunity to go on offense? will democrats, if they do not cave on this, actually choose to thump their chests a bit, to speak up about what they are doing? will national democrats take a lesson from wisconsin democrats and tell everybody the reason they are standing up to republicans on this is because this is a right for union rights and union rights are important and worth fighting for. joining us now is peter defazio of oregon, he's a long-time member of the house transportation meeting. congressman defazio, thanks so much for your time tonight, it's nice to have you here. >> thanks, rachel. >> president obama said today his expectation is this faa issue will be resolved by the end of the week. do you see that as possible?
6:27 pm
>> it could be resolved very quickly, just agree to a clean extension of the bill as has been done historically, move forward and put the 80-90,000 private sector workers back to work and continue these critical safety and security projects. the republicans are sacrificing not only private sector jobs, small business jobs, things that they supposedly worship, but also the safety and security of the american traveling public on the alter of extremist anti-labor legislation. you know, it's pretty funny. we checked out what would have happened, the rule they want to apply is in an organizing election if you don't vote it counts as a new york city that's what the republicans want. if we use that same rule in the house of representatives, if you had to have a majority of all eligible voters voting and voting for you, there would not
6:28 pm
be one single elected member of the house of representatives even from the most partisan districts. and they want to say this is somehow fair for working people when they, themselves wouldn't be in congress? we might be better off if we had that rule for congress. >> i understand why federal officials, so far, have been stressing that safety and security are still assured in our air travel industry despite the fact the faa's shut down, i understand they don't want to spook people and scare people, but do you think there are safety and security implications of this shut down? >> well, there certainly are 40 airport inspectors have lost their jobs and their federal travel privileges. they are being asked to use their credit cards to fly around the country and inspect violations or potential violations and problems at airports and pay for their own lodging and everything else. how long can they keep that up? a month would be pretty tough on the type of salary these men and
6:29 pm
women collect. and there are critical security projects, critical safety projects that probably won't get done this year. i've got an instrument-lighting landing system in my district, it's likely if we're delayed for a month it won't be put in before winter, which means minimally inconvenience, max mally, bad things could happen. it's like that all across the country. this is not a casual thing the republicans are doing there. >> congressman defazio, one of the reasons i've invited you to be a guest on the show so many times, i feel you're a very blunt-speaking, candid member of congress, and in those terms, what do you think about the assertion i made in this introduction that there is political capital to be gained here for making this a fight about union rights. they've been talking about inconvenience and the jobs lost here. they've not been saying we're fighting to save these union rights, do you think they ought
6:30 pm
to? . >> yes, absolutely. i think the american people would think it's pretty unfair that if you have an election and people don't vote they all count as no votes. basically this would preclude unions from representing airlines in the future if this sort of rule was adopted, so i'm absolutelyomfortable making that, and i especially like to make that point by saying, you know, if we applied the same rules to congress, nobody would be elected, it kind of gets people's attention. >> peter defazio of oregon, thanks for your time tonight, really appreciate it. >> thank you, rachel, doing a great job. melissa harris-perry, who i know you love, fresh off her triumphant guest hosting gig last week, melissa joins us in a moment. i'm not having a heart attack. it's my back. no, this is new bayer advanced aspirin... clinically proven to relieve tough pain twice as fast as before. what, did you invent this or something? well, my team did. i'm dr. eric first, from bayer.
6:31 pm
wow. look. it has microparticles. it enters the bloodstream faster and rushes relief right to the site of pain. better? great! thanks. [ male announcer ] new bayer advanced aspirin. extra strength pain relief. twice as fast. test our fast relief. love it, or get your money back.
6:32 pm
6:33 pm
6:34 pm
now in terms of the disruption to the neighborhood, you're trying to do this under living, breathing new york. obviously, this launch box that we're in, which is going to be the 96th street station is a huge cavern, it goes all the way up to street level here, just above our heads here, the ceiling here is street level and this is a huge underground room. this had to have been painful for the neighborhood. >> last year our answer on this show to "shark week" was "geek week" which had no chance at all with competing to the american juggernaut that is "shark week,"
6:35 pm
but still it was fun and i got to see the tunnel boring machine on the east side of manhattan. since then, that massive construction project has not gotten any quieter, but now one construction worker working on that project is doing his best to make it up to the people who that construction sound has been annoying, and the adorable way he's doing it is the best new thing in the world today. coming up at the end of the show. e the best toffee in the world. it's delicious. so now we've turned her toffee into a business. my goal was to take an idea and make it happen. i'm janet long and i formed my toffee company through legalzoom.
6:36 pm
i never really thought i would make money doing what i love. [ shapiro ] we created legalzoom to help people start their business and launch their dreams. go to today and make your business dream a reality. at we put the law on your side.
6:37 pm
6:38 pm
back when the great big union rights fight had just begun in wisconsin, when republican scott walker was trying to get his bill through the legislature and a big chunk of wisconsin was taking to the streets in protest, way back then, the national republican party was on team scott walker. the national republicans were all over this union-busting thing. back in february going to the national republican party's website would flip you over to something called help stop obama and his union bosses. when you clicked on that it would take you to a page titled "a fight we must win,"
6:39 pm
nationalizing the fight against unions, trying to turn the whole thing into donations for the republican party. now that democrats have a shot at turning the senate back into democratic control by recalling republican senators in elections next week, the republican party's national chairman, who is from wisconsin, was asked about the national connection of the story. he was asked hey, you made a big deal about those wisconsin -- the wisconsin political fights over unions back when they were happening in the spring, what do you make of the wisconsin political recalls now that they are happening this summer. national republican party chairman responded by saying scott who? talking quotes memo saying today "i don't think it's a test run." "the localized nature of it doesn't allow it to be analogous to the 2012 election."
6:40 pm
if an issue is going your way it means the whole world, but if it's going your opponent's way, it's a local issue, why are you focusing on that? as we steam towards the wisconsin elections on tuesday given polling numbers, the democrats at least seem to be in good shape to maybe take back the senate in that state. as republicans at the national level run as far away as they can get from this, just in case, there is a real question here about how democrats at the national level are dealing with it, how democrats are looking at wisconsin as a lesson for their party too. as i talked about with peter de f fazio, the way the wisconsin democrats did. but more broadly there's the issue of whether or not democrats value the democratic base, whether or not democrats are going to try to court
6:41 pm
democratic voters. the recall of the republican majority in the state senate? wisconsin is not a republican phenomenon. this is a democratic phenomenon. republicans did stuff in office that outraged people in wisconsin, the democrats in office in wisconsin stood up and fought against them tooth and nail unanimously and the democratic l democratic elect rat raised huge amounts of money and may take back the senate next week. the wisconsin democrats, the base awaits, so what are d.c. democrats trying to do to enthuse their base around the country? pointing at the republicans and going ewe, you don't like them, do you? that doesn't count. where are democrats taking a stand, where are they refusing to back down? where are they saying they are going to fight tooth and nail? they were last spotted debating on how we should let the republicans destroy the economy, the crowning achievement of that fight?
6:42 pm
>> you have been quoted coming out of your caucus as calling this agreement a sugar-coated satan sandwich. was that, indeed, your quote? >> it's a very accurate quote. if you lift the bun, what you see is anti-what the world teaches, take care of the poor, take care of the aged. >> the narrative got defined for the president, he bought into it, and then you could see the trajectory of these whole negotiations. we were going to end wup a deal that was not going to have any revenue generation in it, we were going to end up with a deal based on spending cuts to discretionary programs, and that deal was going to be hard to swallow. >> so you voted against this bill today. what was the deciding factor for you? >> all of the cuts come from people who have already sacrificed so much, middle class people, our senior citizens, poor people, all the people that
6:43 pm
we should be protecting and not a hair from the head of a millionaire or billionaire. >> there are a lot of disappointed progressives out there, a lot of liberals, disappointed in the way the president handled this. do you think anyone is going to emerge and challenge him for the democratic nomination? >> i have no idea, but i do believe the president should be held accountable. when you say something in a campaign and you don't do what you said you would do, i think it's fair to raise those issues. >> even elected democrats, to say nothing of the base, say they are disgusted and disappointed by the deal the president just signed after being pushed into it by the republicans. the question is the democrats message to the base here, sorry, guys, swallow it and get over it or are democrats going to have to make it up to their base somehow? joining us now, melissa harris-perry, msnbc contributor and an amazing guest host last week while i was away. thank you so much for doing such
6:44 pm
a great job. >> much rather be sitting here right now. >> well, you're welcome back any time you want, vacation for me, everything would be wonderful. we saw representatives there from the progressive caucus, black caucus, bernie sanders, jan schakowsky, the liberals among democrats in congress saying that debt deal was a satan sandwich and worse. is there a democratic base problem for democratic elected politicians and the president right now? >> no, and i know it would be nice if it were and we'd like to say okay, because of this they'll be held accountable, but a couple of things have happened here, the president, in cutting this deal, allowed the few progressives that exist in the democratic party, in the u.s. house of representatives, to vote against the satan sandwich.
6:45 pm
when they go up for reelection, lord veldemort, i was standing against him. that's what the president is supposed to do, provide the cover necessary -- let me be clear, it's a lousy deal, there needed to be no debt ceiling deal, there needed to be a clean vote to raise the debt ceiling, then we needed to have this budget discussion, but with it done these folks can stand against it, rail against it, that gets them reelected in their districts. the moderates, blue dogs, they can now sort of take cover underneath it, look, we went along with what the republicans did. it's a complex coalition to keep together and as ugly as this sauszage is, it may get them reelected in 2012. >> is there something that the democrats need to be thinking about and the white house needs to be thinking about in terms of energizing the base? we saw in 2010 was not a lot of democratic voters going out and
6:46 pm
doing identifiable thing, we saw in 2010 a large number of republican voters rushing to the polls and electing republican candidates and democrats sitting on their hands. how does the white house keep democrats from sitting on your hands? >> when you're running you want a good enemy and somebody you can get behind. that's what 2008 was. what i liked best about 2008 was it assumed that american voters would respond to argument, they were adults, you could make a case to them, and that even if the so-called median voter didn't agree with you today, if you could make the right kind of case you'd be able to win the median voter. they have not governed that way, they campaigned that way in '08, they have not governed that way, so i think they are going to have to decide whether or not they think americans are adults who can hear an argument. i think that's what wisconsin shows. look, wisconsin got the government they elected. those people didn't get put in
6:47 pm
by some sort of coo, they were elected to those positions, but when they saw what it was, as you point out, lit up the base. >> lit up the base not just in a way that made them angry about what the republicans were doing, which has succeeded the national level in terms of a democratic agenda, but made them start cheering for their democrats and wanting more of them. >> it's tough and they are going to have to do that with more than rhetoric. i remember during the campaign senator clinton said you campaign in poetry but you govern in pros, the question we regain the poetry along with the difficulty of the pros. >> melissa harris-perry, professor at tulane, msnbc contributor, thank you for coming back so soon. you did a great jobs. fans of "the ed show," get excited, want to know who their guest is? want to know who it is? bill maher, it's true.
6:48 pm
dictators, say what you will about politics. yes! ha ha! [ clicking ] dad, what happened? power went out, want a hot dog? [ female announcer ] oscar mayer selects are made with 100% pure beef and have no artificial preservatives. they're a great way to re-connect with your family. dad, how come the nelsons' lights are on? ♪ it doesn't get better than this ♪ ♪ ooh baby, (what) can i do for you today? ♪ [ female announcer ] need help keeping your digestive balance? align can help. only align has bifantis,
6:49 pm
a patented probiotic that naturally helps maintain your digestive balance. try align to help retain a balanced digestive system. try the #1 gastroenterologist recommended probiotic. align.
6:50 pm
best new thing in the world today now with extra singing and hard hats and singing in hard hats. yes, stick around. hats and singing in hard hats. stick around. [ man ] i got this new citi thankyou card and started earning loads of points. you got a weather balloon with points? yes i did. [ man ] points i could use for just about anything. ♪ ♪ there it is. [ man ] so i used mine to get a whole new perspective.
6:51 pm
♪ [ male announcer ] the new citi thankyou premier card gives you more ways to earn points. what's your story? citi can help you write it. in north korea the annual festival celebrating the birth of kim jong-il's dad.
6:52 pm
it's the largest gymnastics display in the world. can you believe that at your own risk. as with all dictator spectacles, children are a terrible part of this display. so too are flip carts that spell out all sorts of kim jong-il statements. already on the verge of starvation, north korea has been hit by bad flooding. floods that killed at least dozens of people and destroyed dozens of homes and farmland. south korea was hit badly too, south korea's red cross offered the north millions of dollars worth of medical supplies to deal with the flooding crisis. so far no response from the leader. clearly he's been busy forging ahead with his festival. vying with north korea today four the most unbelievable deck tator related spectacle in the news is what happened in egypt.
6:53 pm
people got to see hosni mubarak for the first time, he was in court charged with corruption and complicity of the deaths of more than 800 people in the months long egyptian people. he arrived in cairo on a hospital gurney, placed in a cage for his trial along with his sons. the dictatorship in syria picked today for an all out military assault on a rebellious city of its own because of the expectations that syrians like the rest of the arab world would be transfixed by those images of mubarak in that bed, in that cage, in that courtroom. facing trial before the people over whom he previously asserted absolute power. activists in syria say more than 100 people have been killed by the syrian military just since sunday, including 45 people killed today. but no news organization including msnbc can confirm
6:54 pm
that, because no news organization has been allowed into syria. according to the united nations, the regime in syria has killed more than 1,500 people in five months of protests there. the u.n. security council including china and russia, condemned the violence today in syria. china and russia are not real big condemning regimes using violence against their own people so that was a big deal. even though autocratic dictators are known for showing big showy partyies they are sometimes called out on what they do to their people. what happens next is anyone's guess. [ male announcer ] before you take it on your road trip... we take it on ours. this summer put your family in an exceptionally engineered mercedes-benz now for an exceptional price during the summer event. but hurry, this offer ends august 31st.
6:55 pm
excuse me? my grandfather was born in this village. [ automated voice speaks foreign language ] [ male announcer ] in here, everyone speaks the same language. ♪ in here, forklifts drive themselves. no, he doesn't have it. yeah, we'll look on that. [ male announcer ] in here, friends leave you messages written in the air. that's it right there. [ male announcer ] it's the at&t network. and what's possible in here is almost impossible to say. before i started taking abilify, i was taking an antidepressant alone. most days i could put on a brave face and muddle through. but other days i still struggled with my depression. i was managing, but it always had a way of creeping up on me. i felt stuck. i just couldn't shake my depression. so i talked to my doctor. he said adding abilify to my antidepressant could help with my depression, and that some people had symptom improvement as early as 1 to 2 weeks. he also told me about a free trial offer from abilify!
6:56 pm
now i feel more in control of my depression. [ male announcer ] abilify is not for everyone. call your doctor if your depression worsens or if you have unusual changes in behavior, or thoughts of suicide. antidepressants can increase these in children, teens and young adults. elderly dementia patients taking abilify have an increased risk of death or stroke. call your doctor if you have high fever, stiff muscles and confusion to address a possible life-threatening condition. or if you have uncontrollable muscle movements, as these could become permanent. high blood sugar has been reported with abilify and medicines like it. in some cases, extreme high blood sugar can lead to coma or death. other risks include decreases in white blood cells, which can be serious, dizziness upon standing, seizures, trouble swallowing, and impaired judgment or motor skills. depression used to define me, then my doctor added abilify to my antidepressant. now, i feel better. [ male announcer ] if you're still struggling with depression talk to your doctor to see if the option of adding abilify is right for you. and be sure to ask about the free trial offer.
6:57 pm
with other top companies. with an esurance quote, you know you're getting a great deal. you can thank our tech team for that. sure, i'll let them know. bye-bye. aha! anything you want to share? with the tech team? oh, i'm dating that girl in accounting. seriously? yeah, we're pretty serious. [ female announcer ] know if you're getting a great deal. see for yourself at esurance. technology when you want it. people when you don't. and so too is the summer event. now get an incredible offer on the powerful c300 sport sedan. but hurry before this opportunity...disappears. the mercedes-benz summer event ends august 31st. best new thing in the world today is not a metaphor for why we need a jobs program, why building big building projects to fix roads, schools, bridges
6:58 pm
and tunnels and sewer lines are not a good idea right now. this is just pure apolitical awesome in that context. last year you might remember we filmed a giant construction project that will one day be a new subway line in manhattan. the shaded area in the middle of central park. see how there's three different subway lines on the west side, but only one lonely green one on the right? having another subway line will be nice one day. if you live or work along second avenue, the construction is a pain. [ horns blaring ] >> to increase the peace in the neighborhood one construction worker, a local 40 iron worker is giving up his lunch break every day to serenade the neighborhood. over the last few weeks, people in the neighborhood have been stopping to listen and posting videos of him on youtube.
6:59 pm
♪ ♪ >> and that sign behind him says forget all the noise, traffic and impact of the second avenue subway, enjoy the music. local 40 iron worker gary russo and the sweet, sweet sound of infrastructure in the making, that is undoubtedly the best new thing in the world today. thank you very much for being with us tonight. that does it for us tonight. one reminder again, the guest on the ed show tonight is bill maher, which means you should definitely stick around. have a good one. good night. good evening, americans. welcome to the ed show, i'm