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tv   The Cycle  MSNBC  November 21, 2013 12:00pm-1:01pm PST

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washington could have kept this under wraps all that time? neither party has been blameless for these tactics. they've developed over years and it seems as if they have continually escalated. but today's pattern of obstruction, it just isn't normal. >> president obama speaking just months ago about a huge day in the divided u.s. senate. >> under the precedent set by the senate, today, november 21, 2013, the threshold for cloture on nominations not including those to the supreme court of the united states is now a majority. that is the ruling of the chair. >> democrats, the majority party, have officially altered
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the way the chamber has operated for more than two centuries. they changed filibuster rules to end the 60-vote threshold on judicial nominees except those to the u.s. supreme court. it stems from the republicans repeatedly filibustering the nominees. ahead of today's actions fireworks on the senate floor. >> the american people believe the senate is broken. and i believe the american people are right. and the united states has wasted an unprecedented amount of time on procedural hurdles and partisan obstruction. as a result, the work of this country goes undone. this is not about democrats versus republicans. this is about making washington work regardless of who's in the white house or who controls the senate. >> this business of filibustering the circuit court judges was entirely an invention of the guys over here on the
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other side. and now they want to blow up the rules because republicans are following a precedent they themselves set? obviously, you can break the rules to change the rules to achieve that. but some of us have been around here long enough to know that the shoe is sometimes on the other foot. if you want to play games, set yet another precedent that you'll no doubt come to regret, say to my friends on the other side of the aisle you'll regret this and maybe sooner than you thi think. >> howard knows a thing or two about the inner workings. the most fundamental shift in the way that the senate functions in more than a generation. we have been close to this a number of times over the years. how did we finally get here? >> i think we got here because both sides and especially in an amplified degree, republicans in the last few years, have filibustered federal judicial
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nominations. the democrats did it some. the republicans have done it a little less before that. but now that the republicans are in the minority and they are dead set against changes in the judiciary that's taken them a generation to build and the conservative direction, they're standing in the way all the time. they tempted fate here. and the result is a big change not only in the way that judicial nominees are voted on. now just a simple majority and not 60 for shutting off the filibuster. but just as significant is the way they did this. they changed the rules with the majority vote in theory you can do that. that itself was never done so this is a double precedent for further changes in the rules down the road. and just shows a further erosion of what the senate used to be into what the senate is now, which is just a sort of slower moving version of the house. >> yeah, we want to get to where this all leads because it might go well beyond nominations, but
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first an understanding how we got here. for most of american history, filibusters and cloture votes where you need a super majority, 60 votes to break that delay on the floor was a rarity. a decade ago when i went into the senate as a staffer, i remember being trained and told, on really controversial stuff you need 60 votes. a lot of other stuff happens with 51 and unanimous consent agreements. that's completely broken down, right, howard? you will see in "the new york times" to nbc news, the shorthand will be, well, you need 60 votes for most everything. i don't know if that's what they're telling new senate staffers nowadays but it's broken down. so depending on the historical arc you look at, howard, it seems to change the nature of the democracy because it was relatively majority on most thing, then a super majority and now the big news on nominations for this president which were at
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an all time high of obstruction were back to majority rule. >> i think that's right, ari. things have gotten to the point, still on many other things if not most things, that it takes 60 votes to do anything in the senate. which is a perversion of the senate rules in and of itself, you're absolutely right. and it's just a fact that the republicans were insisting on this for every practically if not all federal judicial nominations by president obama, that it triggered the anger of the democrats enough to take what for them was a very major step. and the fact that senator pat leahy was in the chair doing it was significant because leahy is the longest serving democratic senator, he's known as a proponent of tradition in the senate. the fact he was there meant that the democrats were serious about this. they meant business about it. but you're right. it's the fact that virtually -- nothing moves in the senate without either unanimous consent or that 60 votes.
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you're right. that's a big part of what led to this today. >> this is filibuster form in a relatively small area. we have been talking about the need for filibuster reform in a larger context for a long time. that's been debated for many, many decades. sometimes we get close, but it never actually goes all the way. i want to bring you out in terms of a -- draw you out in terms of the devil's advocate role on why that's perhaps not the best idea. larger, more broader filibuster reform. because probably it lessens the power of each individual senator which is not what they want to do. it makes the senate more like the lower chamber which is something they don't want to do. it removes a crucial check that the minority has over the majority, which is something that the framers wanted and generally, senators have longer memories because they tend if they're any good to stick around a lot longer than a president can. so they have to be aware, they have to remember that a majority can easily become a minority and then have this power used on
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them. mitch mcconnell said you're going to live to regret this, i imagine he is probably right. >> yeah, i think that the senate is -- this is happening to the senate because the senate has become not only, you know, i think it was described by the founders as the -- i think george washington said it was the -- it was going to be the saucer that cooled the hot coffee. >> cool saucer. >> now it's too often the place where thing goes, you know, legislation goes to die. and it's a big part of the reason why gridlock is such a serious problem in washington right now. this matters to people. filibuster sounds so arcane. it sounds so much an inside, inside baseball thing. but it matters greatly because it's one of the reasons why washington can't do anything. and it's too bad that the
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situation has been abused to the extent that it has. >> but howard, what's going to happen -- one day the republicans will take over that chamber once again and they can say you started it, and then where were we going to be? >> and they will do that. >> i think they will do that, but i think we have started down this road here. if i -- if i were in the senate, if i had been advising people i -- given the amount of time i have been around and watched things change from one party to the other party to the other party, and know about the history of the senate, i would have said, don't do it. it's frustrating. it's unfair, but don't do it. because as mitch mcconnell says it's not going to stay this way forever. but i wonder if the senate as the founders envisioned it can survive in our sort of modern plebiscite by the minute society. the founders set it up to slow things down, but everything else
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has moved at such a pace that i frankly don't know if the senate as was originally laid out is going to survive all this. i kind of think it won't. don't forget that senators now campaign permanently. >> right. >> they become functionally a lot like house members anyway. they could pretend to be statesman for two or three years, but now they can't. they're constantly campaigning and raising money. i don't see too much difference between the two anymore. >> senator fineman, you said this was a further erosion of the senate. i see it more of an acknowledgment of the reality of the senate, but you know, you also alluded to the fact that republicans have essentially forced the hand of democrats into doing this and the proximate cause was the three judicial nominees that the
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republicans said they'd block. let's take a listen to dick durbin. >> one of the last standards was established was no filibusters unless there are extraordinary circumstances. that was the phrase. extraordinary circumstances. it turns out the extraordinary circumstance in the eyes of many republican senators was the re-election of barack obama. >> you know, howard, why do you think that the republicans decided to push democrats to this point where they felt like they had to change the rules? >> well, i think this is the product of federalist society thinking. the federalist society began in the days of ronald reagan to remake the federal judiciary and secondarily the state judiciary. but the federal judiciary in particular in the conservative, small government mode. i think the conservatives in the republican party which is pretty much the republican party feel like they have accomplished that
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objective and they don't what to let go of it. they don't want to let the normal point/counterpoint work in that way. they want the judiciary to stay conservative. pretty much at all costs. and they don't acknowledge this sort of version of checks and balances and that's why they have pushed it as hard as they would. this is the second most important federal court in the united states, it's the one that reviews regulations and laws and so forth. it's like a supreme court for the federal government and the republicans don't want to let go of control of it. it's that simple. >> that's exactly right, howard fineman. always great having you. up next "time" magazine looks at the obama care rollout and what it means for the president. before we go to break a little music from chicago and toure, take a listen to the lyrics. ♪ does anybody what time it is ♪ ♪
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you know, for a second this morning it sounded like the rnc discovered bipartisanship. they invited the democrats to discuss obama care. >> oh. >> but it was not a policy meeting on neutral turf. it was a stunt at rnc headquarters and to no one's surprise the podium was empty when it was time for the quote/unquote democratic guests to speak. you know who did show up? rnc chairman reince priebus. >> despite what nancy pelosi says, it looks like any democrat in a serious re-election fight is neither eager nor proud to run on obama care. and we all know that, right?
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>> right. according to recent polls the gop has succeeded on one point. blurring the lines between the policy and the politics here. time's cover story looks at what obama care means for the obama presidency and the so-called race for the cure. the times deputy managing editor is here. >> thank you for having me. >> i want to read one big item from the piece that's important. it says democrats admit they're in a hole. yet, the most ambitious parts of the law, the expansion of medicaid benefits, the end to discrimination against people with pre-existing conditions, the coverage of adult children, have little to do with this individual insurance market at the center of the current storm. when you look at this piece and this big time cover that a lot of people are digesting in the coming days, it reflects a lot of the concern that what's bad for obama care might be bad for the democrats in the midterms. and reading that i kind of thought, who cares? i'm more concerned about the
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people in america who are struggling in the health insurance marketplace. do you feel the article was sort of reflecting the politics of washington in that regard or falling into it? tell us about that. >> it's very much about the current storm and it's true. as nancy gibbs our editor writes in the piece. you know, there's a lot of good already coming out of the affordable care act and that will continue to be the case. but unfortunately right now dominating the headlines are the bits of negative news about the botched rollout, about people whose plans are changing, who thought that they wouldn't need to change their insurance under obama care and whether those are a minority of the people as they are. they're still headline-grabbing anecdotes and the truth is unless the website is fixed which is still an open question, unless it becomes much easier for people whose health care is changing unexpectedly to find better or different plans under
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obama care that will remain a problem for the president for months to come as various deadlines are hit in the law. >> you're right, but this media narrative that obama care is failing misses bay long shot. the actual nuanced situation that we have, the myth of obama care is quote/unquote failure is a product of the republican noise machine that's working to undermine this reform since day one. people are signing up in and the states that are participating they are meeting or exceeding their expect acecaticatioexpect. like california, and kentucky is exceeding expectations. it seems like we're moving once again toward two americas. one america with states that are participating in this thing. and it's working. we're expanding medicaid and getting people into the program. and one america where the governors are working actively to obstruct this thing and people are not getting the health care they could be getting. >> i think it's true as nancy
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writes that it's too soon to tell in terms of how this will play and obama's legacy. there's a lot that can happen that can go right in terms of the challenging that he's facing and his team are facing right now. but it's certainly true that the law is affecting people in different ways and it's good news for some people. i mean, a lot of people whose plans are changing, but guess what, they weren't good in the first place. they were underinsured and had they encountered a kind of health crisis they would have found that out the hard way. even some of the quote/unquote bad news isn't necessarily bad. but it is very difficult for the president on the heels of the very flawed launch of the website to speak from a position of strength on this issue. that's really the problem right now. >> well, on that note of some of the bad news not necessarily being bad, the article digs into some changes in the incentives in the employer health insurance market which may lead to further disintegration of that market in terms of employers not providing
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insurance for their employees. to me though, one of the major selling points of this law was the fact that people would be freed from having that situation where they stay in a job that they don't want to be in simply because they must have the health insurance. so individuals will be able to strike out on their own and start businesses more easily or go from job to job without that same fear. to me, that piece of improving labor market efficiency has been somewhat undersold in this law. >> right. i think that's certainly the hope. and, you know, health benefits tied to your employer are a legacy of world war ii initiative to have employers offer fringe benefits to workers. but the cost to employers haven't kept pace with inflation. there's a lot that's flawed about that system. employer-based health care isn't necessarily the way forward. but for a lot of people it's the only way they know. and i think you're right. you know, there may well be better options for people whose
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employer-based health care is changing under obama care. but if there are people who are having trouble shopping the plans, if -- you know, if they're not able to access or view their alternatives as smoothly as they'd like, then that's a hitch. and that's where the cycle is right now. >> the article also took us back to the 2008 primaries where obama often talked about his disdain for the game of politics, the idea that he was a breath of fresh air that he was going to be a washington outsider very much a contrast to the clinton machine. here's what he said in 2008. my job is to set a vision of here's where the bureaucracy needs to go, to which hillary clinton responded i think it's important that we have a president who understands that you have to run the government. so he's never shied away from not, you know, being a manager. but the bigger problem seems to be he hasn't surrounded himself over the years with folks that actually are good at managing government. >> it's a curious -- it's a curious thing for people who have watched how effectively he's campaigned and particularly
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how effectively the president is able to harness technology in his campaigns, why that transition into leading and government hasn't happened as smoothly as one might like. i think, yes, a lot of the polling that shows obama's approval rating going down has to do with this idea that he hasn't managed the situation as well as people would like. and, you know, the truth is, this is his -- this is his signature legislation from his first term. he wants it to go smoothly more than any of us, i'm sure. i think not having that happen at the outset of the website rollout has been a stumbling block for him. >> yeah. that's frustrating, but anyone who's worked in federal government knows there's a lot of rules, like you can't just hand out no bid contracts. remember that looked like under halliburton. they couldn't have handed this to google if they wanted to. i know a lot of us wish it was that easy.
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but we'll keep an eye on it. thank you for telling us your story story this week. have a holly jolly corporate christmas or hanukkah. if you haven't seen mcdonald's new holiday tips for employees, they're a gift that keeps on giving. we'll touch on that next. final for the entrepreneurs of the week. they own stores on main street in nyack, new york, they're gearing up for small business saturday with gift card discounts a wish list program and an art walk. for more on getting customers to shop small, watch "your business" on msnbc. ♪ ♪ you get your coffee here. you get your hair cut here. you find that certain thing you were looking for here, but actually you get so much more.
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time to get you caught up in the news cycle. alabama's parole board has given pardons to the scottsborrow boys. all served jail time, but the charges were dropped against five of them. a sixth boy was eventually pardoned. it led to two supreme court rulings one regarding the racial makeup of jury pools. in stanford, connecticut, a judge released kennedy cousin
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michael skakel on bail. skakel argued he lacked proper represent saiption. he's already served more than a decade in prison. and they're promising a new trial. this story involves a big plane and one big mistake and a big surprise at a tiny airport. the dreamliner landed in the wrong place last night. it was supposed to land 12 miles away from where it landed. it touched down at a regional airport nearby. an airport that normally accommodates only small jets. the faa is still trying to figure out why the pilots made the mistake but at least they got out this afternoon. the white house is set on janet yellin for the next fed chair. the banking committee said it was sold. it will move on for a full vote and because of today's news she
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can't be filibustered. she is expected to make it through by the time ben bernanke ends his term. now to the spin. walmart is among the big box stores under fire for deciding to open on thanksgiving. and this week the public outcry is even louder when this happened. >> one store in ohio is collecting food for employees. the store set up some storage bins with a sign that read please donate food items here so that associates in need can enjoy thanksgiving dinner. >> some critics out there are saying walmart isn't doing enough. but they're wrong because walmart isn't doing anything. these bins are for walmart employees to donate to other employees. and where can walmart's low wage workers find food to donate? walmart. anyone can afford food there except people who work at walmart. and why stop at food?
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walmart can stop offering health insurance if you set up a please vaccinate my child bin. they might want to change from how may i help you to just help. >> others are learns one lesson from the holiday p.r. nightmare. stores like nordstrom's and others will be closing on thanksgiving. some customers argue that turkey day is about families and of course football. and now the home of the big mac is getting some big publicity. i guarantee you they are not lovin' it. mcdonald's is under fire for apparently encouraging employees to return some of their christmas gifts for cash. so then they can pay off the get. that's according to a group fighting for higher wages which recently produced this video about fast food chain's, offering helpful tips like this. stop complaining because it can
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lead to the rise in stress hormones. let's mcspin. >> i know this is serious, but on the top, can you mcnot do that? mcwords -- >> can you mcnot do that, please? >> can you mctell my joke? >> so -- mcresources, including the mcdonald's p.r. department which is run by mitt romney or someone similar to him. >> mitt romney? >> stop. >> let mel lay out these things. i mentioned they're urging employees to return gifts so they can pay off their debt and urging them to take vacation, unpaid vacations, for, you know for two weeks. encouraging them to stop complaining because it results in the rise in stress hormones. and to eat smaller bites because -- >> break up your food. >> it will make you feel full
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faster. i think this reconfirms the idea that p.r. departments, a number of large companies, that are very much out of touch. i think this speaks to the much bigger problem beyond being out of touch, they don't care about you. i think this comes out at the worst time as the holidays are approaching. so it just seems like a domino effect. krystal, i know you care about this deeply. >> the thing is they're willfully out of touch. we talked about walmart earlier in the week. now this story with mcdonald's and they're sort of funny, but they're also sad and incredibly callous. last year on black friday, walmart workers organized strikes and protests outside of the store. a lot of those workers were fired, they were bullied. they were intimidate and they were harassed. fortunately, this week the national labor relations board which thanks to the last filibuster deal actually has a full membership now, they just found that walmart did exactly that. that they fired people, they intimidated them. they retaliated against them. so this is about so much more
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than just raising the minimum wage which is critical. this is about the fact that workers have no power in our democracy. and they have no voice with their own employers. and it is a willful silencing of those workers. >> i'm so glad you're going to that piece, because what we do with people who are working hard all day, all week. can't afford vacations so they're being told to take time off. where did that come from? i was looking at the university of california study that found that half of fast food workers are actually on public assistance. so they work full-time, but they're below the poverty level. we put $7 billion as public taxpayers into how these people who are fully employeed and mcdonald's just mcdonald's gets over $1 billion a year under that public assistance which is a fifth of their profits. when you think of this at the level of the economy we want, mcdonald's is being subsidized by us so they can underpay their workers and the answer is very simple.
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we have to raise the minimum wage to make sure that people can take care of their families. >> absolutely. mcdonald's workers are making $7 or $8 an hour. do you know what the mcdonald's ceo made? $13.8 million in 2012. their previous ceo, that same year, made $27.7 million. in 1980, the differential between ceo and average worker was 42 times. in 2011 it was 380 times. are they doing that much of a better job? no. they're not. and this is a big reason this crushing of the unionization and the rise in ceo pay is a big reason why we have a death of intergenerational class mobility in this country. the class that you're born in is the class you'll grow up in and this is a big reason why. >> you have to wonder what mcresources was thinking. what they were trying to get out of the p.r. stunt. moving on, up next, inside one of the most talked about conspiracy theories surrounding the death of jfk. was it a mafia hit? [ female announcer ] we give you relief from your cold symptoms.
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because when people come together, good things happen. 'tis the season of turkey, pumpkin pie and conspiracy theories. this year they're particularly loud as tomorrow marks 50 years to the day that kennedy died. most americans do not buy the conclusion that lee harvey oswald acted alone or even the one that fired the kill shot. investigative journalist say that the mafia organized the hit. it's inside lamar's latest book. the most definitive account of the controversial crime. it includes the confession of
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mafia godfather marcelo allegedly made to jack van lamming ham, as well as the role of those in the dealey plaza. lamar, thanks so much for joining us. >> great to be with you. >> so let's start with the theory here. what is your most convincing piece of evidence that the mafia was behind killing jfk? >> well, there's a lot of evidence. not the least of which is that the most powerful godfather in america in 1963 confessed his role when he was in prison in 1985 and that was carlos marcelo. who basically ruled organized crime in louisiana. most of texas and part of mississippi. he was america's most powerful godfather and he ruled an empire that was the size of general motors. so he actually confessed. but backing him up is most people think there was one
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official government investigation and the conclusion, the lone nut bullet. but in reality there are six investigations of the jfk murder. in the last one they concluded that jfk was killed by the conspiracy. this was the house select committee on assassinations and they did a 2 1/2 year investigation, access to far more information than the warren commission. they concluded not only was jfk likely -- in the conspiracy, but they pointed the finger at marcelo. now, that was widely reported in '79. it's largely forgotten today. which is why i'm so glad john kerry has come out in his interview with nbc news saying he believes in a conspiracy. so there was one last government investigation in the 1990s. the jfk assassinations record review board.
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created by the 1992 jfk act. that was passed unanimously by congress in the wake of the oliver stone film. and they were responsible for releasing all of the jfk assassination records. >> i'm sorry, i just -- i appreciate the evidence you have got, but i don't yet see the motivation that you're saying that the mafia would have to kill the president and where does lee harvey oswald enter this picture? >> two good points there. john and robert kennedy waged the largest war on organized crime. that's how jfk came to prominence as a senator is going after the organized crime and dragging these mob bosses that liked to stay in the shadows like carlos marcelo into the light in front of the cameras where his brother, bobby, the counsel could grill them. once jfk became president, he kept his word. they mounted a huge war against
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organized crime and its ally, jimmy hoff what and he made his brother, bobby kennedy, attorney general. they weren't just prosecuting mobsters at the rate of two or three times what had gone on under the eisenhower or nixon administration, but 10, 20 times. it was a massive war on organized crime. the mob no longer had cuba to flee to, so their backs were against the wall. the kennedyss were getting ready to run the mob out of las vegas. you might wonder why not kill robert kennedy? someone asked -- an earlier fbi informant asked marcelo that and he said, if you kill robert kennedy, jfk would simply send the army or the national guard in to get you. >> well, lamar, what about we look at the evidence as you mentioned, as you know, when you're looking in court, generally if you have a jailhouse confession, right, that's considered one of the least credible types of confessions. what do you say to that?
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>> this is not your typical jailhouse confession. what happened in 1985, the fbi mounted a huge undercover sting operation against marcelo. they approached this individual in prison, jack van lamming ham, who was not a criminal except for one night he robbed a bank. he was friendly with marcelo because he didn't know who he was. the fbi arranged for jack van lamming ham to become marcelo's cell mate. marcelo -- and this was a long almost two-year operation. and they got a court order for a bug transition radio to be taken into the jail cell so a lot of the remarks were recorded. he made the first outburst about killing jfk in the prison yard. but he warned van lamming ham not to talk about it.
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marcelo then talked about meeting with lee harvey oswald. not only meeting with jack ruby, but controlling ruby's nightclub. ruby worked for marcelo, because he owned plenty of night clubs in dallas. ruby was caught stealing from marcelo's nightclub so he had to become part of this plot. and then marcelo also told van landing ham about importing two men from europe, to do the shooting and where they hid out. the law says we should have those tapes. i have talked to van lamming ham, i have a hundred pages of the file from this plan. many are in the book, the hidden history of the jfk assassination, but the fbi has not released those tapes and they should be required to. >> lots to dig into. lamar, thank you and good luck with the book. nearly 50 years ago, president kennedy declared ask
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not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do to do for your country. dallas area residents are volunteering in an ask not day of service working at food banks and revitalizing parks. how do you honor those words of our 35th president? log on to facebook and let us know. tomorrow on, as it happens special live streaming of the nbc news special report from november 22, 1963, from the exact moment we learned jfk had been shot. be sure to check that out and keep it here with us. we are coming right back. ya know, with new fedex one rate you can fill that box and pay one flat rate. i didn't know the coal thing was real. it's very real... david rivera. rivera, david. [ male announcer ] fedex one rate. simple, flat rate shipping with the reliability of fedex.
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one pill each morning. 24 hours. zero heartburn. you brought me into this company for my marketing expertise, correct? >> yes. >> you know i was the brains behind the an bell armaments. 30% growth in three fiscal quarters. >> i'm aware. >> i'm not making that up. >> i'm aware of your success. it's why we hired you. >> okay. you're making it impossible for me to market this car. i can't do it! nobody is going to buy a car named howard. like naming a restaurant hepatitis. >> it's a name. >> call it a dewey. a duncan. call it duncan. >> there's a glimpse of how hard it can be to build and market a car outsuide of the box, or do t on the height of the recession.
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no one met the scrappy teams vying for the automotive prize but our next guest did. he followed four teams through the contest to promise a $10 million prize to anyone who could build a car that would run on anything but gas. he writes about it in the fascinating new book. and tell me about the car-building people. >> yeah, so for about the past 50 years the car has been exactly the same. >> right. >> basic plan of it. it's essentially a heavy metal box you smash through the air through the force of cheap gasoline. this contest was trying to blow that up. they were putting out a call to inventors, entrepreneurs, student, hackers, they said anybody who can make a car that gets 100 miles per gallon, goes 200 miles of range on a charge will win the prize. it doesn't matter what you have done before f you solve the problem you win the money. people from all over the world
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tried to win the contest. i write about them in the book. >> one of them was the very light car. >> it was so light you could push it across the floor with your thumb. it was passionate german man named oliver kuttner. his childhood dream was basically to be a race car driver. he wanted to professionally drive race cars but eventually got too fat to fit into the race car so he became obsessed with this. the most beautiful things in the world are those from which all excess weight has been eliminated, a henry ford quote, and oliver believed this with total devotion so he reconstituted the car from the ground up down to the lug nuts and even the ones that hold the wheel onto the car very light like three to ten times lighter than a normal lug nut. he was completely insane. he reconstituted the entire car. >> brilliantly insane it sounds like. yeah. >> i love the story of the westerly high school team that
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competed. >> yes. >> and you have these kids pushed to innovate and work on a project. >> the kids go to an automotive academy, a public school. a lot of the kids are not high achieving in terms of standardized tests but if you give them a transmission manual and a saturday they will take apart a transmission in no time flat and their idea for how to win the x prize was build a couple hybrid cars that were practical and inexpensive kind of cars they could see their parents driving and they did incredibly well and made it to the semifinals and beat m.i.t. and the team from cornell. >> wow. >> do we see out of this contest the future of american car making being different? >> i think so. we have to broaden our idea of what the inventor is in our culture. like, you know, if you're a billionaire in this culture and you have a crazy idea you're a genius but a normal person with a crazy idea you're just crazy. >> right.
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that's crazy. we're not tapping the broad potential of our culture. you know, inventors, mark twain said we were the nation of inventors we are. walt whitman wrote poetry about engineers and mechanics and what excited these guys about invention was the democracy. the idea that we all have these innate powers and we can harness them to create and design a country to unleash them and we kind of have gotten away from that idea in the sense that when you think of an adventure in our culture today you think of maybe a coder in silicon valley or te teslan motors, but we need ten and what i tried to do in the book was highlight some of the less well known people but also who have really important ideas. >> thanks for your research and your book. best of luck with that. up next, time-out on washington. watch out. she's vying for your sports correspondence title. >> uh-oh. for all those who sleep too hot or too cool,
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it's been a long couple months for pretty much everyone in washington. both parties now find themselves politically wounded and desperately trying to figure out how to position themselves with voters for the mid-term election. forget health care. we all know politics is really just about winning the next election. thankfully we in journalism have the luxury of time, reflection and no requirements to play politics at least not here on "the cycle." with my respects to the cycle's main sports reporter i'm calling a much needed time-out. if there is anything my good friend the late former utah utes
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basketball coach taught me through his years of coaching it was to utilize every second of a time-out, to motivate, reenergize, and refocus your mission. for the next three minutes i'll use all the sports metaphors i can think of to help us get back in the game with health care. hit the clock. we are not a nation best governed from the extremes. the government shutdown driven by the republicans desire to beef up obama care is extreme. there aren't enough votes to defund the law. if there were the president is never going to sign a bill that ex-terminates his own law and one of the cornerstones of his presidency. on the other side of the field we've had a president of the united states misrepresent key aspects of his own signature reform program on top of what has been an unbelievably bungled rollout. so let's refocus, guys. republicans, who are now the chicago cubs of politics, please, please, please stop trying to defund obama care. it's never going to work and you
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will continue to look like the party of no. get back to the drawing board and find some real alternatives or fixes to the current law and put them out there. with all the public discontent around the law now is the time to get people rallied around reforms you actually believe in. the cubs have not won a world series since the early 1900s and also next time you shut down the government let's be honest there could very well be a next time. at least get something out of it other than a political black eye. democrats, first and foremost, remember that politics and life are all about setting expectations. it probably was not the best idea to assure the american people that rolling out an exchange for literally millions to use on the first day would be do-able. the if. f-35 fight proer gram is an example of the government's ability to deliver on time and on budget did you expect this one to work out? the past is the past. here is how we can pull off a win. we should learn from the red sox. we need to be more inclusive and bipartisan. forget the beer and chicken. let's encourage more collaboration between state governors. they are great examples of health care reform working well
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at the state level. we can continue to redefine the current law with their input. on bipartisanship we have to get the conversation going across the aisle. no one thinks a lot as is perfect so what can folks agree on and what can we debate? remember those days when open dialogue got us to a better answer? i don't remember those days but i guess tory does. >> thanks. >> we have the right fundamentals but we have to get out there and play as a team. disagree over principles but if you are unwilling to share the ball the american people always lose in the end. all right. time is over. no you to our 4:00 p.m. head coach martin basheer it is all yours. >> thank you so much. thursday, november 21st, and the president has had enough. >> democrats are poised to deploy the controversial nuclear option. >> the need for change is so very obvious. >> over what? >> unprecedented pattern of obstruction. >> a change we composed today.
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>> that would eliminate the 60-vote threshold for all executive appointments with the exception of the supreme court. >> and may forever change the way business is done in congress. >> yes, no. >> public service is not a game. this isn't obstruction on substance. >> can anyone say the senate is working? >> change the subject. >> that's -- the next nominee has to be a governor. do you agree? >> no. everybody wants to do a story about 26. >> we'll give the president a little advice. >> we'll make 2014 about obama care. >> you don't have to like the laws of the land but you do have to respect those laws. >> republicans have been very, very fair to this president. >> a deliberate effort to refight the election is not normal. >> a good thursday afternoon to you. we begin with republican obstruction finally