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tv   Alex Wagner Tonight  MSNBC  December 2, 2022 9:00pm-10:00pm PST

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oh my! plus, for a limited time, get 500 dollars off an eligible 5g phone. even you in 22c. flight attendants, prepare for big savings. drop everything and get to the xfinity black friday sale. our come with me for a little click, call or visit a store today. trip back in time tonight, to 1976. jerod ford was the president of the united states but he hadn't actually been elected. he first got the job as vice president when republican vice president speier agnew resume in scandal. my colleague rachel maddow has an excellent book on to podcast on that if you haven't heard it, you can read it you'll want to because you learn more about it. then president richard nixon also resigned in the wake of the watergate scandal. gerald ford got another promotion, this time to be the actual president of the united states having not run for vice president or president. so in 1970, six that democrats thought they had a good chance
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of winning that presidential election because they were running against an incumbent president who had never actually run on a nationwide ticket which is why a bunch of democratic candidates jumped into that primary race but ultimately, only one prevailed. a former peanut farmer turned georgia, governor jimmy carter. carter was nowhere close to being the favorite at the beginning of the race but his luck changed when he secured the most votes in the crucial first in the nation contest in iowa. which would then voted him to a win in new hampshire. >> wherein his usual broad smile, a part of said he's tremendously encouraged by the iowa results. >> this is the first in the. 50 >> one part i visited iowa one year ago, few people had even heard of him. much less thought about supporting him for president. but he quickly recruited people who were active in the democratic party and put together an organization mostly of volunteers at no their candidate was able to match. the fact that partners from the
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south was in the minds of many iowans, ahead he kept that had to be overcome. but his small town and farm background was a big help in this largely agricultural state. carter made his victory statement in a hotel ballroom shortly before midnight. >> jimmy carter won a very big victory and nbc election analysts said part are dominated the blue color vote, the liberal. vote he ran very well in almost every voter category, conservatives,, catholics people who think that the next president should not come from washington. >> the iowa caucus at the election primaries is what propelled jimmy carter to victory. but back, then i will hadn't always been a thing. in fact, it was only the second time that i will pass given the distinction of being the very first contest. but that court on the calendar, that special order in which the states held their nominating
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contests for presidential candidates would go on to become a tradition in american politics for almost half a century. in every contest since then, iowa has been the first caucus new hampshire has been the first primary. but the primacy of those two states has not gone unchallenged. in fact, back in 2008 when barack obama and hillary clinton computed for the democratic nomination, michigan and florida attempted something of a primary calendar coup. legislatures in those two states did not think that iowa new hampshire should always get the first bite of the apple so they moved their presidential contests all the way up to january so that they could be the first. but that move by those two states set off a whole chain reaction. the national democratic party tried to punish florida and michigan stripping them of the delegates who would represent them at the democratic national convention. in a show of solidarity with the national democratic party several of the democratic candidates including then illinois senator barack obama
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actually had their names removed from the ballot in michigan. in the end, florida and michigan still didn't get to go first because iowa new hampshire ended up moving their nominating contests up even earlier so they could still claim that first in the nation mantle that they so prized. that was how iowa and new hampshire state at the front of the pack for so long and why, as chris and i were talking about, you have to be there in early winter. someone set the calendar that way and neglected to change, and there was a concerted effort by party officials, by presidential candidates, and state legislatures to keep the primary caliber the way it wasn't to punish anyone who dared try and change it. which is why it's a big deal that the president of the united states, the leader of the democratic party, has officially come out and said that it's time to change the way democrats choose presidential candidates. specifically, joe biden says it's time to strip iowa and new hampshire of their first in the nation status and begin the nominating process instead in south carolina.
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now the decision to make that switch did not come out of nowhere. for the past few elections, democrats and activists inside the party have been arguing that the calendar needed a change in order to reflect changes in the party and the country itself. both iowa new hampshire have overwhelmingly white populations that don't reflect the rest of the country, let alone the democratic party. and in the case of the iowa caucuses, there's also been a lot of frustration with the fact that i was just kind of terrible at holding caucuses. >> you might remember back in 2016 when the race between hillary clinton and bernie sanders was so close that i was complicated delegates system was so opaque and confusing that the election officials ended up rewarding delegates to the candidates based on coin tosses. or in 2021 a new system for tabulating the results caused major delays and the winner of that first in the nation contest was not determined until weeks after other states had already held their primaries. members of the democratic party
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have been understandably frustrated by the way these two unrepresented of states have been able to set the tone for the entire party's presidential contest. but now joe biden is saying that needs to change in the party actually agrees with him. the president proposed this new primary plan last night's adding that the order should be reevaluated every four years but already the democratic national committee has taken the first key step toward endorsing the plan. today the democratic party's rules and bylaws committee voted to recommend the presidents proposed changes for the 2024 election over the objections of leaders and iowa and new hampshire. under president biden's proposal states like south carolina, georgia, and michigan, all of which have large african american populations, would move up the calendar to reflect the influence that those constituencies have within the democratic party. that kind of push for more representation has been at the heart of joe biden's agenda since he took office. keep in mind this is the
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president who is nominated the most diverse slate of federal judges that this country has ever seen. he's the president who's appointed the first ever african american woman to the supreme court. just this, week the democratic party chose an african american congressman to lead the party in the house for the first time in u.s. history. these sorts of changes on their impact on how decisions get made and by whom those decisions get made is huge. michael sharer is a no political reporter for the washington post who covers campaigns, congress, and the white house. he's also one of the reporters who broke the story yesterday on president biden's shocking, many people of his own party calling for this completely making up the early nominating calendars. michael, it's good to see you. congratulations on breaking the story. i guess my first question, journalist journalist is, why was this a breaking story? why was this something that was done unexpectedly and as a surprise? this is something people have thought about as we've been talking about for years. >> not just thought about by
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just this year there have been three public hearings. there were 20 states if you include puerto rico, so 19 states with puerto rico who applied and gave presentations about why they should go first and substantive discussion. and if you went to the betting lines talking to members of the rules and bylaws committee before yesterday, nobody would've had what ended up happening on their bingo card. it ultimately came down to the president of the united states. everybody on that committee is there because the president put them there they are loyal to him. and like you said, only two dissented from his wishes here. and it turned out that president biden wanted to send a message like this. and i think it's a big message. right now, he doesn't really have a primary challenge, he says he is running. if that's true, practically this doesn't happen much the cycle because a he won't have contested primaries and any of the states at least as far as we can see right now. but he has broken the seal on tradition and he's made clear
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the democratic party that he wants to leave behind and he wants it to be identify -- he wants to identify with his presidency. he's also made clear that he has a message for people in several of these key swing states that will decide who the next president is. he's going to the people of georgia and saying the republicans change the state or not, i want you to be important, and i want you to vote early in this process. and again, i think that's a messaging play by the president of the united states as he prepares for reelection. >> you make an interesting point that he doesn't currently have a name challenge or someone who will challenge him for the next election but if he did, with this be more relevant because south carolina was the state in which joe biden's quest for the presidency was cemented in fact, south carolina officials went out of their way tonight to say that we were not part of this decision, we didn't before this. unquestionably, this makes it harder to challenge joe biden. in, fact and never democrat comes forward in the next few months and says he's not the guy for the job next time, i'm
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going to mount a serious campaign. the biggest weakness is he had been, in 2020 when he was running, it iowa new hampshire, and it looks like those two states right now will probably not be able to award any delegates and will be difficult for other candidates to campaign there because new hampshire says it's not gonna follow those rules and iowa is out of the early states list. and like i said, i -- he is starting with the state that made him a nominee in the 2020 state of south carolina. it's an insurance policy against a serious primary challenge as well. >> you just said new hampshire said they're not gonna follow this. what does that mean, new hampshire is gonna have his own primary when it feels like it? >> yes. what so the history of this is the states that struck a truce with parties and the truce is broken at this on the democratic side. and new hampshire's threat has always been we will always go first as the first primary in the nation. they gave this --
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to iowa in the caucus. it's in the state law. they have two democratic senators, all three of those right now are saying there is no way or following what the democratic party is going to do. there is no one really saying that that's going to change. so almost certainly what is going to happen is new hampshire is going to be the first major primary that is run in the united states. republicans will compete there and democrats, if they do compete, there will face serious sanction from the democratic party because another thing that's happened here is the democratic party's past polls will make it much more painful than it was in 2008 when michigan and florida tried to step out of line. not only does it take away delegates from the nominated convention in the states that disobey the party rules, they will also sanction the candidates who campaign in the states directly. that means even if they put their name on the ballot, if i want to challenge joe biden for
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example, i put my name on the ballot in new hampshire, the democratic party can keep me from going on the debate stage, as they can take away my data, and guarantee that none of the delegates that would new hampshire will count towards anything at the nominating convention. so they definitely toughen the rules from last time. so i think it's also very likely, we don't know this yet because the democrats haven't said, but iowa also states first, again republicans are gonna go first and iowa as is tradition, democrats can simply tie themselves to the republicans, they will have what amounts to a stronghold if you don't want to work delegates that will probably get some coverage if a certain candidate wins. and you'll have the first two contests, democrats won't be playing in and then they will go to south carolina where delegates will be -- vandetanib, added them to georgia, than in michigan. >> which means as chris and i were discussing earlier, we
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journalist may end up in iowa new hampshire early january of 20 2024. thanks michael, you ruined my two years of planning. >> if you're covering on republicans, are gonna be there that's for sure. >> i was not planning on having this conversation with you tonight. so it was an interesting story an interesting scoop, and an interesting set of developments. thanks for. putting a washington post national political department, michael shear, thank you for your time tonight. >> thank you. >> coming up in five weeks since elon musk took over twitter, thousands of accounts previously bad have been restored. and with them a barrage of hate speech and misinformation. i'll talk to nbc's brandy zadrozny who covers online extremism and disinformation about that later in the hour, but first, brand-new developments today in two sprawling department of justice probes into donald trump. our indictments and then your future? former u.s. attorney barbara mcquade standing by, she joins me next to discuss.
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trump in the justice department 's two sprawling investigations into him, there is really no such thing as a quiet day. today, eli and and d. c. news reporter spotted the former white house counselor pat cipollone and his former deputy pat philbin entering a federal courthouse in d. c. where the justice department's grand jury that is investigating the january 6th attack and trump's efforts to overturn the
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election is seated. reporters also spotted doj prosecutors who are assigned to that investigation entering the same courthouse this morning. nbc reporters even saw those men take the elevator to the floor where the grand jury meets. so probably safe to say they weren't there for a coffee break. but it's worth noting here that cipollone especially is a huge get for the governments investigation because he was repeatedly in the room where it happened. today's reported granary testimony comes a day after a very eventful day regarding the governments other criminal trial into donald trump. that investigation meaning of course the investigation of trump's handling of thousands of government records that just so happen to end up in his mar-a-lago beach club. the new york times reported yesterday that the former trump social media manager dan scavino and two other trump white house aides testify to the mar-a-lago documents cranberry. that apparent testimony came on the same day that the 11th circuit court of appeals throughout the special master
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who was overseeing the roughly 13,000 records that were retrieved from trump's home. there are lingering questions regarding the potential for remaining government documents at trump's other homes. not only has the government raised the prospect that they are concerns the white house documents remain missing, we've got several reports that the doj report documents could be at trump's bedminster, new jersey estate in the trump tower in new york city. so the question is, what is next? what is the department justice do next? joining us now is former, quite former united states attorney for the eastern district of michigan. barbara, good to see. you we have not seen an appeal from donald trump to the 11th circuit court ruling about the special master. tell us what that means tonight. >> i think he will. the fact that he hasn't yet i think means he's assessing his actions. stallings is, game solving any of these things is to his advantage.
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i imagine he will first to the full 11 circuit court of appeals and if they refused to take that upper change -- change the opinion, then to the supreme court. so i imagine that's coming even if we haven't seen it yet. >> if you're jack smith, what does this mean to you? doesn't mean anything? >> well, i think the 11th circuit decision was very important. i think it's very likely that that will stand and he will get those classified -- those non-classified documents. while, back at the 11th circuit rule just regard to the smaller subset of the classified documents at the justice department could get them. now this is everything. no special master necessary, the justice department gets a look at all these. and i think it's a really important step to being able to move forward because you need to look at the documents to determine whether any of these defenses donald trump has put up have any validity whatsoever which documents you might want to use for any criminal case. so someone will have to review all those 13,000 documents. but now they can get to it,
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they can get on that when it was important step in advancing this case. so i think it's a really important victory for moving the case for it. >> so they can get on those documents that they have but the justice department keeps raising the prospect and court filings that they think there are other documents. if that's true, i'm curious about telegraphing the fact that they know that's true, that there may be documents at trump tower in new york or in bedminster, new jersey because, when somebody moved them in that case? what do you think happens to the fact that there may be other documents? >> there are two goals in this case, ali. one is certainly a criminal prosecution for any violations of the law. but the other is they want these documents back. it's really bad for an our national security to have secret documents floating around out there. top secret documents are defined as documents, the disclosure of which would cause exceptionally grave damage to the national security of the united states.
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so the fact that they're in the basement at mar-a-lago or some room at been minister, or some boxes at trump tower is really dangerous. but they can't go in on their own and look, they have to be able to develop probable cause to convince a judge that they can go in and get a warrant to do that. so do you develop? that you do it by talking to people. one of these days you mentioned who was in the grand jury yesterday handled donald trump's travel. so that strikes me as someone who could be very interesting. there are new reports that donald trump loves to travel with boxes of documents. he would call them up and spend time on his flight paging through what was in there. and so if these documents were brought either from the white house to bedminster or trump tower, or from mar-a-lago to those locations, then perhaps this person has information about that if you can gather that kind of information and put in an affidavit, you will probably be able to amass probable cause to get the search warrant and then be able to send an agency to see if their documents. there >> i've question for you, we interview you smart lawyers all the time to the extent that we think we understand the legal system, but you said something that reminded me that
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this is why guys like me who aren't lawyers shouldn't guess. when she has a prosecutor, if you found these documents you believed to be at mar-a-lago after donald trump had said many times that he didn't have them, is that not probable cause to search other homes? >> it really isn't, all. you have to have probable cause to have, number, when evidence will be found at a particular location. this goes back to language in the fourth amendment that talks about describing property to be ceased with particularity. so no doubt it's a hunch. it feels like a pretty good guess, pretty strong speculation, but you need a little bit more than that not much more but you would need a witness to say either i saw the documents at this location or i helped them transport the documents to this location. it doesn't have to be much but enough to believe that reasonable grounds to believe the documents were located there not just speculation. >> this is why we leave the lawyering to experts like you. barbara, good to see you as, always she is at the unit former attorney for the eastern
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district of michigan. we're gonna look at how a -- emboldening his speech on the platform, but it's also hurting important social and political movements. but, first a fascinating look at the bravery and resiliency in ukraine. as ordinary citizens cope with darkness and freezing temperatures, a result of russia's ruthless airstrikes on that country's power grid. stick around.
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ukraine's key post this afternoon, quote, this is what happens when your child's having surgery during a missile attack in kyiv. this young man in the orange is david, he's 14 years old, he was undergoing a complicated six-hour long heart operation when russian missiles rained down on ukraine's capital city last week. when i first started reading the story i seem to would be about the moral dilemma of the doctors deciding whether to get to a bomb shelter or stay above ground and operate. you can't pause heart surgery so that decision would be deciding whether doctors would risk their own lives or that or if the patient. but the story isn't about that. that kind of bravery is so assumed in ukraine right now the kyiv post doesn't even mention it the doctors concern was not moral, it was entirely logistical.
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here's a video posted by the head of the hospital moments after the missile attack last week, suddenly all surgeries had to be performed by flashlight, at that moment, the hospital was treating 190 patients no running water, no heat, and the only power they had was the exhilarates power to get their equipment working. incredibly, the hospital staff may do with what they had. they kept working. fortunately, david survived. unfortunately, his case isn't unique. russian airstrikes have been systematically cut targeting ukraine's energy infrastructure since early october. you careening officials have been working around the clock to get heating, power back on the clock. but like a game of whack-a-mole, russia keeps blowing it up. at some point last week, 10 million ukrainians were without power. that's nearly a quarter of the country's prewar population. as of last night, 6 million ukrainians are without power. huge swaths of the country are consistently without running water and without heat.
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the weather is already below freezing in ukraine right now. 26 degrees fahrenheit in kyiv today. it's likely to get colder, and colder for months. ukraine's officials are under no illusion that they're going to be able to overcome russia's constant stunt barrage and restore heat and water and power before winters and. yesterday, the mayor of kyiv went so far as to suggest that his residents should consider a temporary evacuation of the capital city. russia is trying to destroy the willpower of the ukrainian people in the more than nine months of this war, russia has not been able to destroy the willpower of the ukrainian people. but now they're using energy and water and heat as weapons against civilians. and i don't use the word weapon lightly given the normalcy of pregnancy, surgery, dialysis, given how hard it is to live through our ukrainian winter without heat, these attacks on civilian energy infrastructure have the power to kill. attacks like these on energy infrastructure that is nowhere near the front line of the war. these are not acts of war.
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nicorette knows, quitting smoking is freaking hard. you get advice like: just stop. go for a run. go for 10 runs! run a marathon. instead, start small. with nicorette. which can lead to something big. >> almost two years ago he start stopping with nicorette. decided to post this on twitter, quote, statistically impossible to have lost the 2020 election, big protest in d. c. on january 6th. be there, will be wild. and quote. here's what happened after that tweet from at real donald trump on december 19th, kelly o'brien wrote on facebook, quote,
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calling all patriots, be in washington, d. c. january six this wasn't organized by any group, dj t, donald j trump, has invited us and it's going to be wild. also on facebook, december 22nd, 2020. florida oath keepers leader kelly meggs wrote this, quote, trump said it's going to be wild! it's going to be wild! lots of exclamation marks. he wants us to make it wild, that's what he. saying he'd call assaulted the capital, he wants us to make it wild! sir, yes, sir. gentlemen, brett heading to d. c.. pack your stuff! lots of -- by the way, he didn't write stuff. january 6th, 2020. one we now know what happened. a mob of people arrived at the capitol, some of them armed in an effort to keep donald trump in power. o'brien is one of more than 100 people to be charged for breaching the capitol on january 6th. she pleaded guilty in april of this year. the oath keepers kelly meggs we should note was convicted of seditious conspiracy this week for his role in the attack.
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one of the most serious things you can be charged with an america. that's what was organist on social media platforms like facebook and twitter. sedition was partly organized online. on january 2021, after that organized attempt to block the peaceful transfer of power, facebook and twitter remove tens of thousands of accounts associated with the proud boys and qanon conspiracy theories from their platforms following their policies on coordinated harmful activity and civic integrity. unable to access twitter, many of those accounts moved to parlor, gab, and other far-right alternative social media platforms and ultimately true social founded by the twice impeached insurrectionist former president himself. since elon musk took over twitter, many of those accounts are back. including trump's though he's not posting anything new. he's will be wild tweet instigating january 6th is back on platform for all the. see the return to twitter also briefly included kanye west who's been suspended for antisemitic remarks before musk
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warmly welcomed him back to the twin platform twice for two weeks. he -- vile hateful and dangerous contents around. but it got so bad last night that musk himself suspended ye 's account again indefinitely. in fact, since must has taken the reins, he's randomly an arbitrarily re-platform the range of accounts formally suspended for hate speech and misinformation even making policy by twitter poll. in late november, musk announced, quote, general administer, the whatever that, means four previously suspended accounts for as long as they have not broken the law. because 70% of the people who have not yet evacuated the platform and have happened to see that tweet voted yes. so that's now the company's policy. the people have spoken, musk actually said. nbc's andrews abruptly said the amnesty's policy has restored hundreds of far-right activists and qanon followers. one software developer who tracks twitter suspensions logged an estimated 12,000 reversals of passed bans.
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including people like petra casey, a white nationalist, and andrew anglin, a neo-nazi, they both had their accounts restored. and this all coincides with a sharp spike in hate speech and harassment that's driving scores of users off of twitter daily. the new york times tracked a market uptick in slurs against black people and game in. as 61 person increase up on time symmetric post within the first two weeks of elon musk's takeover. the return of these far-right forces to must twitter two point oh comes at a cost. not a financial cost but a potentially steep human cost. traded for all its faults has been used to build and sustain social movements to expend rights, to shine a light on injustice round the globe from iran, to the arab spring, to china, to re-cities right here in this country. that platform has allowed ordinary people to share information, to build community, to collaborate for progress. what happens now that they're
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leaving the platform? what happens if far-right activists are able to use twitter to organize once again. what is happening to the platform right now is not a twitter example of twitter breaking, it might be something worse. joining me now, in person, my old friend brandy zadrozny, senior reporter for msnbc news who covers the internet and social media platforms. we've not seen each other in person for a long time but we talk all too regularly about this particular issue. what's happening with twitter? is it falling apart, isn't getting bigger, is getting more popular, less popular, what's happening? >> all of the above for different reasons. twitter isn't a state of change. elon calls a twitter to point. no that's what we're seeing. twitter is fine in terms of the lights are on, the tweets work, the privacy is still on, all the things that make twitter twitter are fine. however, what is happened is instead of say large teams that used to talk about how to moderate content and respectfully and thoughtfully
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think about who they want on the platform and who they don't one putt on the platform and how to bridge healthy conversations what used to be their sort of goal, now it is run by edict, by a man who is driven by winds and his fancy and twitter polls. one researcher talk to me and called him a chaos agent. he likes that chaos, he used that as progress. not necessarily progressive making things better, but progress and going to the next stage. that's what he's interested in. and if he loses advertisers and users that contributed to those healthy conversations along the way he doesn't seem to care. with this new amnesty undoubtedly there is no arguing about it twitter is a more racist, misogynists, an safe place for all kinds of marginalized folks and people in general. >> how do you square this everything you talked about the loss of that human content moderation.
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elon musk sort of referred to a censorship. and some have said it was a violation of the first amendment which it's not because twitter is not a government. but there are a lot of people who think that twitter is better for not having people do all those things you said that twitter should be doing. a lot of activists and experts say content moderation is the one thing that makes social media valuable. >> if you say you don't want content moderation is just not an honest argument. there is no way that you have a platform that's led by human, that's built by humans, that doesn't have some sort of point of view. there is always going to be a person that's making these decisions. the point now is instead of a large group different people, with different political views, like we just saw in this big twitter files document whatever today, there is this big story about this was inside the hundred biden laptops game, what it shows is there are a large portion of people who had
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different views who worked hard to come at a consensus of where they wanted twitter to be. and unfortunately again, we have one person making those decisions and if that's what you'd like, that's -- fine >> it's not anybody. it's not all of a sudden the crowd is determining, elon musk is the content moderator. >> it's elon musk. not only that, he's loving it. he's loving being a content moderator. when he suspended yay, formerly kanye west last night, there was a dm that was leaked on gays true social and when he made those -- elon musk sent a screenshot of the suspension to him he said, i'm jesus name. he's refer to himself has gotten other posts including the post that was on trump server. there is still a human causing these -- making these decisions is just elon musk and if you like that, then you like that. but that's not going to be a place that there's going to be a large swath of people who are gonna want to be there.
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>> i've lost a lot of twitter followers, probably about 15,000 in the last two weeks. and i've seen all sorts of people who've gained a lot of twitter followers but the people who've gained the largest number tend to be far-right politicians. what's going on with that? where did my followers go and where are they getting orders from? >> that's all data. and you're not making up -- there is data that shows that the far-right republicans have gained more followers and democrats have lost followers. and again, this is anecdotal but i can tell you that the people i talked to for my article, the people who are either non political at all, this very famous researcher back researcher jim wong who was twitter celebrity, twitter asked her to work there because she's always doing these great stories about hidden features, even she who is not political she said just this week, i have to go. it's awful now. so who's coming on?
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neo-nazis, qanon adherence, far-right mean warriors, trolls. these are people who are coming on to twitter and the people who are leaving twitter who are the more reasonable folks, left-leaning, folks who don't think that this is for them anymore. this might explain the sort of loss. >> there's so much more to talk about. we're gonna talk more on sunday morning so i'm going -- to there's a lot more that i and my viewers need to understand about this. good to see you, my friend. brandy zadrozny is a senior reporter for msnbc who deals on the underbelly of the internet. she covers social media platforms, it's a tough job. we have one more story to get to tonight, some good news about the state of the u.s. economy. like actually really good news. stick around. reaking hard. you get advice like: just stop. go for a run. go for 10 runs! run a marathon. instead, start small. with nicorette. which can lead to something big. start stopping with nicorette. ♪ i like to vöost it vöost it ♪ ♪ my vitamins can boost it ♪ ♪ i like to vöost it vöost it ♪
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biden signed legislation enforcing a contract between labor unions at the freight whale industry. the law brings an end to
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several lots of difficult negotiations that nearly triggered a nation wide rail strike that could've crippled the economy. an economy that in the past week has given us positive indicators that things are looking up despite months of republican hand wringing. and while the fed chair powell says that we have a long way to bring down inflation to acceptable levels, he says it's -- bright -- by the fed. the smaller interest rate hikes could start this month. we also learned this week that despite inflation and those higher interest rates, the economy grew at a faster rate between july and september than economists expected. that growth was driven primarily by gains in exports and american consumer spending. and that spending continued in october as households got ready for the holiday season showing the strongest gain since june. and consumers saw spending records on -- throughout the holiday weekend. this is not the behavior you typically see from people who are concerned about a looming
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recession. we also learned today that more u.s. jobs were created last month than expected. while the unemployment rate remained unchanged for 3. 7%. we have to remember that for decades economists had considered 5% unemployment to be something called full employment. there was always sort of 5% employment influx. we have been below that. the average hourly wage has grown 5. 1% year over year. that's not as much as inflation, but it's pretty good. republicans spent months framing inflation is unique to and caused by biden and beat democratic party. it's a fact that was laid ways that dozens of countries have inflation rates higher than that of the republic united states, and no republican has to fort worth a better solution other than the parties ubiquitous tax and spending approach. but there are a lot of tailwinds playing in the u.s. economy. there are things in this administration that it has done and continues to do to address hydration. like the translation production
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act that fights the fight against climate change and cause caught -- a chips bill that -- for the u.s. semiconductor industry. these investments and other policy measures from democrats are looking like net positive for the economy but don't take it for me, take it from a real economist. running us now is betsy stevenson, professor of economics at the university of michigan she was the chief economist for the united states of department of labor under president barack obama from 2010 to 2011. but, good to see you, again thank you for being with. does that start with the thing that you are an expert at and that's librarian on. mix that for all of the things that are out there that are problematic that we can or cannot solve, labor, jobs, good wages, have been the intractable problem of our time. and right now i think that there is 1. 7 open positions for everyone looking for a job in america, wages continue to be higher and unemployment continues to be up. >> we have a strong labor market right now. we are seeing job growth that is month after month outpacing what we saw in the 21st century
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prior to the pandemic. so really strong job growth. what we're starting to see right now is the job growth is concentrated in the areas where we are still recovering from the pandemic. and that's really primarily hospitality and leisure and education and health services. these are two sectors where they haven't fully recovered from the pandemic, they've been slow to recover. receding really strong job growth. but across the board in most sectors, we saw jobs being added. >> let's talk about recessions because we never protect them well and the idea that the economy is doing much better than what people thought doesn't we're not gonna have a recession. we could actually have a recession. many people predict there may be one next year. i guess the one silver lining is that for all this horrible
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-ness of interest rate hikes, the fed will have interest rates to take down if we have a recession. >> maybe. what the fed's got to do is bring the rate of inflation down. and what they have said is they have to prioritize bring in the back of inflation because we don't want to become entrenched, we don't want to -- will make it harder to fight inflation. and i think what that means is we'd really like to see them be able to do that without there being a significant recession. they have said, look, if it looks that they've gone too far, if the radar inflation is clearly coming down and we see job growth is shrinking, it's negative, or in a recession, we can reverse course quickly. but i think the right thing to expect is the fed is going to raise rates and hold them high for some time to bring inflation down. the best path we still hasn't been coming down slowly over the next two or three years to get to the 2% target.
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i wouldn't anticipate rates coming down anytime soon. >> i guess this is my question that they have to solve this problem of inflation before any kind of recession sets and because you can't have that problem. you can't have high inflation rising interest rates, and a recession at the same time. that's possibly the worst formula. >> we what's really been helping us out here is we go back to the government spending that happened during the pandemic that some people have blamed for the inflation the first place. that government spending helped people eat and keep a roof over their head, during the pandemic. and what it's doing right now is helping people continue to spend even and pace of rising prices. now the fed wants people to spell stop spending, but the good news is, it's not -- people have not strong enough bank accounts then people are able to spend to buy food even though the price of food is up.
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to pay their rent, even though the price of housing is. up so we're minimizing some of the hard ship of inflation because people are able to dip into savings. and that is also meaning that even though the raising rates in the economy is clearly starting to slow, i still think it's more likely than not that we don't have a recession in the next six months. >> betsy stevenson, good to see. you thank you for joining us this. evening betsy stevenson is a professor at economics at the university of michigan. that does it for us tonight, i'll see you tomorrow on velshi at 8 am. tomorrow have a special return guest for the velshi banned book club, the author of the handmaidens tail, margaret atwood, joins me to discuss her book, hacks eat which is a modern adaptation of the tempest. jonathan capehart in for lawrence. good evening, my friend. good to see. you >> great to see you too, ali. thanks. allot >> have a good. show >> have a good show -- well, thank. you see this tweet? it's the tweet that will live in


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