Skip to main content

tv   The Rachel Maddow Show  MSNBC  May 4, 2010 11:00pm-12:00am EDT

11:00 pm
officials stopped the plane, reopened the cabin door, boarded the flight and took mr. shahzad off the plane with them. >> by my calculation, from the time phasele shahzad drove into and across broadway and parked that vehicle to when he was apprehended last evening at the jfk airport, it was 53 hours and 20 minutes. we know jack bauer can do it in 24 minutes. but in the real world, 53 is a pretty good number. >> self-congratulations aside, shortly after police arrested mr. shahzad last night, he did reportedly admit to driving the jury rigged dysfunctional car bomb into times square. >> it is clear that this was a terrorist plot aimed at murdering americans in one of the busiest places in our country.
11:01 pm
we believe that this suspected terrorist fashioned a bomb from rudimentary ingredients, placed it in a rusty suv and drove it into times square with the intent to kill as many innocent tourists and theater goers as possible. >> if mr. shahzad hadn't readily admitted to that, investigators were prepared to present a trove of physical evidence linking him to the crime scene. for example, a keyring left in the ignition of that suv containing a key to mr. shahzad's house in connecticut, as well as to another car that he owned. whatever the level of mr. shahzad's intentions or affiliations, his terrorist trade craft seems to have been strictly low grade. that said, with his would-be bomb neutralized and towed away and shahzad in custody and talking to his interrogators, the livest wire of this investigation remains his links, his links to broader terrorist
11:02 pm
organizations and causes. within hours of the failed bombing attempt in times square on saturday night the taliban in pakistan, was already claiming credit for the attack. they posted this audio on youtube hailing the recent attack in the usa. this attack, they claimed was meant to a very long the killing of al qaeda's two top leaders in iraq last month and predator drone strikes in pakistan. the claim for responsibility was widely dismissed when it first came out, but now it has taken on a whole new significance. the charge sheet says "after the arrest shahzad admitted he recently received bomb-making training in waziristan, pakistan. faisal shahzad's connections to pakistan are fairly extensive, although he is a u.s. citizen mr. shahzad was born in a village outside peshawar, pakistan, a villain called pabi. after becoming a u.s. citizen
11:03 pm
mr. shahzad traveled to karachi for more than a month. in february of this year, mr. shahzad returned to the united states from a five-month trip to pakistan. court documents say he received four telephone calls from a pakistani phone number on the day he purchased the suv that was ultimately left filled with explosives in times square. none of those instances of travel to pakistan or phone calls to or from pakistan, of course, are themselves evidence of any kind of wrongdoing, but arrests in this case are reportedly being made in pakistan and the race is on to try to find and trace any real connections that may exist between faisal shahzad and the pakistani taliban. if he did receive bomb-making training in pakistan or anywhere else it appears that training was, thankfully, tremendously inadequate. >> it does not appear, from our opinion, to be the most sophisticated device. there are a number of opportunities for the device to fail. >> the justice department
11:04 pm
released a diagram today, this diagram, of the contents of mr. shahzad's suv, several white bags of fertilizer, two five gallon gasoline canisters, 152 commercially available m-80 fireworks, three propane gas canisters and two alarm clocks connected to wires. apparently it was the fireworks that were supposed to serve as a detonating device in this case. the problem is the propane tanks serving as the bomb's supposed main charge, the propane tanks are designed to be fire resistant. one u.s. official telling "newsweek" from what is known of the bomb's construction, it may have been assembled based on a cursory reading of newspaper stories about past bombings. it is unclear whether this attempted bombing was directed by the pakistani taliban or any other terrorist group, if it was between the amateurish design of the bomb and the fact that the alleged bomber left the keys to his house in the ignition, this incident will be taken as a warning of this
11:05 pm
terrorist group's aspirations, not of their ability to execute. joining us from islamabad, nbc's chief foreign correspondent richard engel. richard, thank you for getting up so early to talk to us. i appreciate your time. >> it is my pleasure. i have spoken to people who said that although this was very amateurish, it should be considered a warning sign. there are links definitely back to this country, back in pakistan. over the last 24 hours pakistani officials say they have arrested a dozen suspects in connection to this case. >> richard, what can you tell us about mr. shahzad's background? what you've been able to find about his links in pakistan and anything else we can find out about where he has come from and what his influence may have been? >> if you look at the chronology of his life, or at least the last several years, it paints a very
11:06 pm
interesting picture. faisal shahzad was from a privileged background. his father was a very senior commander in the pakistani air force. he actually established the pakistani version of the blue angels, that acrobatic flight group. he was at one stage head of the civil aviation authority here. so he came from a very prominent military family. then faisal, the son, travels to the united states, graduates with a b.a. in computer science from bridgeport, in connecticut in 2000, buys a house in connecticut in 2004. somewhat living the american dream. he gets a mortgage for about $214,000. it is a three-bedroom house with a pool in the backs. he is doing quite well. gets his mba in bridgeport. again, information technology in 2005. has the first of his two children in 2006. things start to fall apart for him later in his life.
11:07 pm
2008 he starts to have trouble making payments on the mortgage. by 2009 he's already in foreclosure. he's becoming more and more estranged from his wife. at one stage the wife leaves. why she leaves is exactly unclear. then in 2009 when he's losing his house, he is having trouble with his marriage, he quits his job. he is working at this stage as a junior financial analyst and comes here to pakistan. he arrives in june of 2009 and he leaves in february 2010. it's this window, these eight months that law enforcement officials are focusing on right now. what was he doing in pakistan while he was here? faisal shahzad has admitted he did receive some training in making bombs and that training took place in waziristan. how much training and who was organizing it is a matter of investigation.
11:08 pm
>> richard, in terms of us trying to piece together the clues of how connected he may have been to militant groups, as you mentioned he has described -- he has said he received bomb-making training in waziristan. an official said he may have received military training in a town called cohat, and we are hearing reports he may have links to a military group named jaish-e-mohammed. do any of those things sound important in understanding what we are dealing with and how connected he was? >> he was from a very prominent family as i just discussed. he was from an area where there was a lot of militant groups operating. his family has a mom in peshawar. he went to karachi, which has a lot of militant activity. went peshawar, and then down to waziristan.
11:09 pm
the reason there have been suspected links to jaish emohammed, a kashmiri group, he is an ethnic kashmiri, and, two, the person who is now under arrest he met up with at karachi was arrested at a mosque that has links to that militant group. the question is, did he have associations with people involved in militant groups? it seems he certainly did. did they actively recruit him or did he come on his own? now, if this was a person living in the states who had quite a good life, a successful life and then was disaffected and decided to quit his job and come back here, it is very possible he came back on his own and started to seek out some of these groups, use his family connections, use the fact he had a u.s. citizenship, a u.s. passport to receive military training or bomb-making training. certainly he did not receive the top bomb-making training because of the amateurish nature of his attack.
11:10 pm
one former law enforcement official said if he received bomb-making training, the person who gave it to him should be given an "f." >> nbc news chief foreign correspondent richard engel, live from islamabad after a very long night of reporting and travel. richard, as always, thank you for your time tonight. really appreciate it. >> >> pleasure. >> okay. so there is this thing that happens when you get arrested in america. no matter who you are, you get read your miranda rights. not just in cop shows. in real life, too. everybody freak out. today i spoke with an analytical chemist who is advising the coast guard just what is in that oil gusher spreading across the gulf of mexico. that is ahead. we are live from new orleans. please do stay with us. really, brian? what?
11:11 pm
you know that dunking is for oreo cookies only. if dunking oreo cakesters were acceptable, there would be a song about it. there is. ♪ ice cold milk and an oreo cakester ♪ no. no, that is not -- no, that is wrong. [ male announcer ] dunk or don't dunk. choose your side. that's my choice. because with national, i roll past the counter... and choose any car in the aisle. oh, buck chooses the blue one! [ male announcer ] go national. go like a pro. choosing your own car? now, that's a good call.
11:12 pm
so it is a little hard to keep track of the domestic politics in the u.s.
11:13 pm
how we treat terrorism suspects. the shoe bomber guy was jamaican and british. no uproar over him being read his rights. the underpants bomber on the other hand was nigerian. huge uproar of him being read his rights. najibullah zazi, u.s. permanent resident of afghan origin. no uproar over him being read his rights. now faisal shahzad, in his case huge uproar on the right of him being read his rights. don't get me starting on the hue tarri militia. the selective random outrage over terrorism suspects' rights may be totally incoherent, but that doesn't mean it is not heartfelt. that ridiculous story, next. at a moment's notice. and when it does, men with erectile dysfunction can be more confident in their ability to be ready with cialis for daily use.
11:14 pm
cialis for daily use is a clinically proven, low-dose tablet you take every day, so you can be ready anytime the moment's right for you and your partner. tell your doctor about your medical condition and all medications and ask if you're healthy enough for sexual activity. don't take cialis if you take nitrates for chest pain, as this may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure. don't drink alcohol in excess with cialis. side effects may include headache, upset stomach, delayed back ache or muscle ache. to avoid long-term injury, seek immediate medical help for an erection lasting more than 4 hours. if you have any sudden decrease or loss in hearing or vision, stop taking cialis and call your doctor right away. ask your doctor if cialis for daily use is right for you. for a 30-tablet free trial offer, go to
11:15 pm
>> joint terrorist task force agents and law enforcement from nypd interviewed shahzad under the public safety to the miranda rule. he was cooperative and provided valuable intelligence and evidence. he was eventually transported to another location, mirandized and continued talking. >> faisal shahzad was arrested and questioned immediately and he talked. he talkealked. and he talked and he talked and talked and talked. reportedly confessing to receiving bomb-making training
11:16 pm
in waziristan in pakistan and to trying to blow up an suv in times square and having a gun in his car. information that can be used to try to convict him of terrorism charges. what is wrong with this picture? it's too legal. >> don't give this guy his miranda rights before we find out what it is about. >> what if they have already given him his miranda rights? >> obviously, that would be a serious mistake. until we -- at least until we find out how much information we have, and there are ways, legal ways of delaying that. >> what exactly makes reading someone their miranda rights such a mistake? what is the disadvantage to american counterterrorism and law enforcement officials using legal american tactics to arrest and question a terrorism suspect? no one can quite put their finger on what the exact problem is. it apparently doesn't feel right. that was made quite clear when congressman peter king of new
11:17 pm
york heard about the arrest and sprinted toward the nearest reporter. he blurted out this gem of pure unconstitutional feeling "i hope that attorney general eric holder did discuss this with the intelligence community. if they believe they got enough from him, how much more should they get? did they mirandize him? i know he's an american citizen, but still." he actually said that, but still. that's in the quote. i know there is a whole constitution, we're america thing, but still, i just hate it. senator joe lieberman took that free-floating, strategically incoherent anti-constitution feeling further today, announcing plans to amend american law to strip you of your citizenship, not if you are convicted or suspected of anything, purely on the basis of the government deciding you have bad affiliations. >> there is an existing law which hasn't been much used.
11:18 pm
it says if an american citizen is shown to be fighting in a military force that is an enemy of the united states, then that person is -- loses their citizenship and they no longer have the rights of citizenship. it is an old law that was adopted in a very different time of conflict. i think it is time for us to look at whether we want to amend that law to apply it to american citizens who choose to become affiliated with foreign terrorist organizations, whether they should not also be deprived automatically of their citizenship and, therefore, be deprived of rights that come with that citizenship when they are apprehended and charged with a terrorist act. >> automatically deprived. it should be noted that senator lieberman is a little unclear on his facts here. if you are arrested in the united states of america, the reason you get due process rights, the reason, for example, you get read your miranda rights is not because you are a
11:19 pm
citizen. even foreigners arrested here get due process and read their rights. the reason you get due process if you are arrested in america, is, because this is america. remember? we called senator lieberman's office today for clarification on his call to strip americans of their citizenship without trial or due process. as usual, no one in his office would call us back, which makes me worry that he's decided to declare me not american anymore and he didn't want to make an international call. joining us is chris hayes. editor of "the nation" magazine. hi mr. hayes. >> ms. maddow, how are you? >> i'm good. i'm on the banks of the mississippi and so far only half the bugs in town know i'm here. i think i'm ahead of the game. >> it is nice to have some co-hosts. >> that is exactly right. carry a little of the burden here. faisal shahzad apparently is talking quite readily to his
11:20 pm
questioners right now, and he was given his miranda rights yet we are having a lot of outrage on the right he has been mirandized. do you understand the anti-miranda argument? is there some substance to it? >> no. i mean, there are two strains of t one is essentially just bad faith attempts to continue to use this terrorism cudgle on the president, to wound the president, to create this narrative we are weak on terrorism. so there's a bad-faith, knee-jerk way to attack the president. then there's an old ideological grudge against miranda. when miranda was brought down by the court, conservatives hated it then. they've hated it for decades. they probably don't want you or i or citizens to have miranda so there is an ideological vendetta prosecuted against miranda at the core of some of this.
11:21 pm
>> i wonder also if we are at a point with this where there is a, i guess, maybe a fork between paleo conservatives and on an issue like this, and libertarian conservatives in that we are seeing people that i think most notably glenn beck, today, a host on fox news channel saying it is important that these suspects are read their miranda rights. we can't shred the constitution just because it is inconvenient. to see a split between somebody like john mccain and somebody that's sort of the new right, the new libertarian right in the form of glenn beck, does that split map with that old grudge against miranda rights in the conservative movement? >> yeah, i think so. this is interestingly knotted ideological space. i do think one of the things you have seen is the influence of this kind of libertarian streak,
11:22 pm
particularly the campaign of ron paul and his views, have sort of fused the tea party movement and the right but only the parts of the argument that have to do with the states' use of economic power. all the critiques he makes of american imperialism abroad and other issues at home have been jettisoned because the neo conservatives control the foreign policy apparatus. the question is whether that can be pried apart. i do think there have been increasing concerns in conservatives i follow and read about encroachments of the states in these kind of civil liberty situations. i do think there is a potential for a fissure there. i don't think it is developed. yet. >> chris, this new legislation that senator lieberman is proposing, to strip citizenship from americans on the basis of affiliations with bad people. is this the sort of thing that joe lieberman might sort of run
11:23 pm
with with relish, not because he wants to pass it, but enjoys making liberals mad? >> well, if he does, it speaking truly poorly of his character. i hope joe lieberman wakes up tomorrow and regrets what he said. what he's proposing is an odious piece of legislation. the adjective "affiliated" is doing a tremendous amount of work that is a loose criterion of stripping someone of their their citizenship. citizenship doesn't come to play in mirandizing. this zombie argument that miranda only applies to citizens rephis to die, and now we're seeing that they didn't even take that seriously to begin with. now that comes up here they want to get rid of the citizenship. >> washington editor of "the nation" identifying the zombie argument that won't die. for which we are very grateful. thanks, chris, thanks for your time. >> thank you, rachel.
11:24 pm
there are still thousands of barrels of oil spewing in the gulf of mexico from the deep highsen's well tonight. one critical question, what kind of oil is doing the spewing? of course, it is all bad when you are talking about a spill. i visited the man in charge of figuring out what is polluting the gulf and threatening the shore. together he and i look at actual oil from the spill. it was a pretty amazing thing to see and awesome illustration of applied geekiness in an actual chem lab. we're live with new orleans. that story and interview ahead. police do stay with us. (announcer) roundup extended control
11:25 pm
11:26 pm
does two jobs... at once. one: kills weeds to the root. two: forms a barrier, preventing new ones for up to four months. roundup extended control.
11:27 pm
11:28 pm
this is our second day here in louisiana covering the ongoing oil disaster in the gulf. today we drove to baton rouge. we are at lsu. one of the analytical labs. dr. edward overton, emeritus professor of environmental sciences here at lsu, has a ton of experience in advising on oil spills and the response to oil spills. he has been sent samples of what has actually spilled into the gulf, to assess what that is. oil is not just oil is not just oil. it matters exact type of oil of the overall impact, what techniques are available to clean it up, and really how devastating this is going to be. we are in dr. overton's lab to learn more about what is continuing to flow into the gulf at the rate of tens of thousands of gallons a day. dr. overton, i appreciate your time.
11:29 pm
>> thank you. >> i don't want to take too much time away from what you are doing because it is so important for the response. when did you get your first examples of what was spilling into the gulf? >> about a week ago this monday. we had a loose sample from the gulf, and then we got some wellhead oil a couple, >> i understand when you got that first sample you were very concerned about what was in that sample, what that said about what type of oil that was. can you show us that sample and tell us what concerned you? >> this is a subset, it has the consistency of roof tar. crude coming out of that production zone should be much more fluid and as is typical south louisiana crude. >> do you have an example of what would be typical south louisiana crude? >> this is a normal oil from the production zones in this area. south louisiana crude. low sulfur, low aromatic type
11:30 pm
crude, again a high-quality crude. the first samples i saw were something like this which really started to alarm us that there may be something unique about what is going on out there. >> you received subsequent examples that aren't quite that thick. >> not quite as thick as this. these are some of the samples that came off of skimmers that were cleaning up the oil spill. notice it is kind of a reddish-brown color. crude oil is typically black. this south louisiana crude.cfr so you can see the difference in the tint. and this is an oil and water emulsion called a mousse, chocolate mousse, if you will. it is what is in most of the oil in the gulf right now, is in this form. this is floating around and undergoing environmental change. weathering. >> is it possible what is coming out of the seabed is a few different types of material?
11:31 pm
we have some of this and some of this, different types of oil, and some of the spill may be this hard-to-deal-with oil? >> i doubt it. there is some speculation that is occurring. this is all coming out of one pipe. way down in the ground it is mixed together. i doubt it but i don't have a good explanation for that first sample. we are still trying to understand. we are dealing early on into a long-term event. we are in the first two weeks of probably a nine-month affair to clean up and affect -- understand the effects of this spill. >> you say nine months. is that because you think it is going to take nine months to stop the well from leak ing? >> i think it is going to take three to six unless these cement barriers they are trying work. we hope and pray they will, but to drill a relief well is very difficult to do. you have to drill down and intersect the damaged pipeline and cut it in half, and stop it like that. you can imagine the difficulty of doing something like that.
11:32 pm
so worst case is they won't be able to use cement structures and we will have a spill of some magnitude until the well is capped and shut off below the surface. and that is not a very pretty picture in terms of the amount of oil. right now we are so early we don't know the ultimate fate but that's why we're getting samples, to try to understand what happens. ultimately, some of this stuff will evaporate and microbes will eat off chemical structures, and you are left with something tarry like this. we don't want most of it to be tarry like this. >> you are part of a scientific team for noaa. they send you the samples of what is spilling in the gulf. you are analyzing it. what happens to your findings? how is your research used in the containment cleanup effort? >> we do these tests and write up a summary of our
11:33 pm
understanding of what is going on and we pass it along to the group in noaa providing scientific advice to the coast guard. >> again, this is just your advice that you're giving. you can't give me the comprehensive answer the coast guard is receiving from everyone, what you are seeing is the bottom line is you have to keep it off the coast, and you you think this can be dispersed? >> mother nature is dispersing it. it is floating around. some of it is going get on shore. there's almost no doubt about that, depending on the wind and wave conditions. how much of an impact remains to be seen. the worst case is pretty bad. >> the threat of the worst case, is the likelihood of that affected by the quantity of how much oil is spilled? >> right. the more you put in there, the better the chances are that some of it in the circulation patterns of this zone are going to impact the coastline. the sooner we can stop the flow, of course, the better. much better. the next best thing is keeping it offshore to the extent we can.
11:34 pm
the last chain of attack is seeing what you can do to keep it away as it gets near shore. deflection booms. things like this. those are not particularly effective in the wave action, so the best thing is to keep it offshore to the extent possible. >> the first thing we have to do is cap the well. >> absolutely. cap the well. >> in terms of the overall timeline under which this is unfolding, you said that you think -- you reasonably can expect months to drill a relief well. that may be the only way to cap the well. that, of course, is horrifying. one of the scary things is it's may right now, hurricane season starts in june. what is the combination of a big storm and a big spill mean? are you worried? is there reason to worry about hurricane season on the horizon here? >> you always worry about a hurricane season. period. everybody down here. in terms of the spill, of course, you'll have to cease offshore operations.
11:35 pm
everything will have to come ashore if a storm is looming. hurricane is mother nature's dispersants. it is so much energy in such a short period of time that for a while after the spill, oil will be -- will look like it's gone. it hasn't gone. it is just spread out. it is an incredible amount of energy in a short period of time that disperses the oil. again, concentrated oil is bad. dispersed oil is not good, but better than concentrated oil. so hurricanes have their good and their bad. it would be nice to have a nice mild hurricane to disperse a lot of oil but not cause much coastal damage. >> you described this of having the qualities of having a category 5 hurricane. do you think this spill can do as much damage as a storm that big? >> it certainly could. will it? i mean, we are into possibilities versus probabilities. right now it is hard to predict how bad it is going be. it could be extremely devastating, but it may not be.
11:36 pm
a lot depends on factors we simply can't control, weather, the natural dispersal. again, it is just starting now. we have only been doing this for two weeks. we don't know how quick that oil is being removed from the environment, what is happening to it. all of those are issues that we are just starting to try to figure out. >> plus capping that well. >> capping the well is the first thing. there is nothing we can do about that. that is bp and the engineers. >> dr. edward overton, this has been really, really helpful. thank you for your time. now get back to your work. we need you. >> i hate to go look at my answering machine. >> thank you, sir. one reasonable reaction is to a horrifying out of control disaster, is to consider the possibility that the way we've been dealing with oil as a nation has problems that should be reconsidered. another possible reaction is to call for more drilling right now. it takes all kinds and we have both kinds coming up on the show next. plug in a febreze notice,
11:37 pm
it's all that people notice. i didn't even think that was possible. [ woman ] i know, but there it is. [ sniffing ] febreze you plug in to the wall. [ male announcer ] when you plug in a febreze noticeables, it's all that people notice. [ man ] wow. that is amazing. i know. imagine. [ sniffing ] febreze you plug in to the wall. [ chuckles ] [ male announcer ] from febreze comes noticeables. freshness you'll notice or your money back. it was in my sister's neighborhood. i told you it was perfect for you guys. literally across the street from her sister. [ banker ] but someone else bought it before they could get their offer together. we really missed a great opportunity -- dodged a bullet there. [ banker ] so we talked to them about the wells fargo priority buyer preapproval. it lets people know that you are a serious buyer because you've been credit-approved. we got everything in order so that we can move on the next place we found. which was clear on the other side of town. [ male announcer ] wells fargo. with you when you're ready to move.
11:38 pm
and you have a heart attack. that's what happened to me. i'm on an aspirin regimen now. my doctor told me it's the easiest preventative thing you can do. [ male announcer ] be sure to talk to your doctor before you begin an aspirin regimen. see your doctor. simple. okay, we're going to get going right away. [ announcer ] he's never met an appendix he couldn't fix! the abdomen-ator dr. bob bergowitz! yeah, woo! [ announcer ] she's the queen of clean! the 2009 surgeon of the year, dr. nancy mendelsohn! [ male announcer ] doctors and nurses are true heroes. at ge, we're working to give them the innovation, fresh thinking, and advanced technology they need to keep bringing better health to more people. are you ready, mr. randall? let's do this! [ crowd cheering ] ♪
11:39 pm
welcome back to new orleans where you can see the lights of the crescent city bridge.
11:40 pm
in nashville, tennessee, today this is what it looked like downtown after floodwaters from the cumberland river starts to recede. 29 people died when torrential rains swelled the cumberland river to more than 12 feet above flood stage. rescue officials say they will fear they will find more bodies. this is not going to be an easy recovery for nashville. 50 of the city schools were damaged. this is the field where the tennessee titans play. that is water you are seeing there. the grand old opry, country music hall of fame, national symphony center took on water. the $2.5 million pipe organ was severely damaged as is the city's only remaining water treatment plant, remained intact due to prisoners who piled up sandbags. that is the only one they've
11:41 pm
got. nashville has the one saved water treatment plant causing officials to ask people of the city to conserve water. as keith noted on "countdown" last night, you can donate $10 to the red cross to help in the rescue and recovery by texting. text the word redcross to 90999. again, it's to donate $10. you just text "redcross" to 90999. we'll be right back.
11:42 pm
♪ [ male announcer ] winning more awards for quality and customer service than any other luxury manufacturer the last 10 years says something. yet the award we value most is the fact that lexus has had more repeat loyal drivers in more of the last 10 years than any other luxury automotive brand. to express our thanks, we are featuring our best values of the year. giving you unprecedented access to lexus at your lexus dealer. that's my choice. because with national,
11:43 pm
i roll past the counter... and choose any car in the aisle. oh, buck chooses the blue one! [ male announcer ] go national. go like a pro. choosing your own car? now, that's a good call. from crystal light. the first fitness drink with no artificial sweeteners, flavors, or preservatives. new purefitness... from crystal light. a pure way to water your body. we're live from the banks of the mississippi in new orleans, louisiana, tonight. we will be back in new york tomorrow but only long enough for me to hit up my boss and ask him if we can all move here. we'll be right back. louisiana's democratic u.s. yea. [loud music playing and yelling] with chase sapphire you always get an expert advisor immediately. man: chase sapphire, this is brian. hi, brian. we're on vacation and would love to change hotels.
11:44 pm
you call. we answer. [faint music playing] problem solved. is the music too loud? ♪ ♪ go to
11:45 pm
louisiana's democratic u.s. senator the one you don't associate with the hooker scandal, responded to the huge bp oil spill off the coast here in new orleans with a call for the country to recommit, to double down and hold steady to oil drilling. >> our country needs this oil. i mean, there is no question about that. we have to produce this oil at home unless we want to be completely reliant. we've got investigate, fine, clean up and then do the research necessary so this will never happen again. and we must continue to go forward. >> we have to continue to go forward. just as we've always done, for
11:46 pm
decades over and over and over again with each successive oil spill, explosion and fire. prices paid in lives and land and in economies. yet at the same time every president in the modern era has paid some amount of lip service to our country's dependency on oil and other fossil fuels. on january 29, 1969, before i was born, six miles off the california coast there was a blowout at a union oil drilling platform. oil and natural gas gushed into the ocean for 11 1/2 days. 200 thousand gallons of crude killed thousands of seabirds. 35 miles of california coast were caked in tar. the next day earth day was born. out of the stomach-churns imaging. never again would we take our environment for granted or abuse it or put it at such risk. right? >> we can no longer afford to consider air and water common
11:47 pm
property. free to be abused by anyone. without regard to the consequences. instead, we should begin now to treat them as scarce resources, which we are no more free to contaminate than we are free to throw garbage into our neighbor's yard. >> being an oil-based nation wasn't just a problem for what it was doing for our land and seas, it was a huge national security liability. >> a massive program must be initiated to increase energy supply, to cut demand and provide new standby emergency programs to achieve the independence we want by 1985 increasing energy supplies is not enough. we must take additional steps to cut long-term consumption. >> that was in 1975. then december 15, 1976 came,
11:48 pm
near buzzard's bay, massachusetts. the "arguo merchant" broke apart.7.7 million gallons of fuel oil, bad timing during the country's worst energy crisis. >> the energy crisis has not yet overwhelmed us, but it will if we do not act quickly. we must balance our demand for energy with our rapid and shrinking resources. >> our resources were not limitless, we could no longer afford to treat them as such. >> we would ensure that our people and our economy are never again held hostage by the whim of any country or cartel. >> at this point i have to wait for the giant riverboat to go by. they want to be on tv. okay, i won't move to new
11:49 pm
orleans. one more? no, that's it. president after president insisted that we would not be held hostage, we would be energy independent. on march 24th, 1989 the king of all oil disasters, at least so far. the exxon valdez colliding with an underwater reef. fish, birds, otters, seals, all devastated. 1300 miles of coastline covered in oil. it was a national man-made disaster and a national embarrassment, prompting george h.w. bush to say, we know now that protecting the environment is a global issue. the nations of the world must make common cause in defense of our environment. i promise you this, this nation, the united states of america will take the lead internationally. june 8th, 1990 an explosion and fire on the mega board released over 5 million gallons of oil
11:50 pm
off texas. november 28th, 2000, an oil tanker loses power and runs aground near louisiana, which we drove through yesterday. half a million gallons of oil pouring into the mississippi. then march 23rd, 2005, one of the deadliest oil disasters in history, a massive earthshaking, window shattering explosion at a bp oil refinery in tem as city kills 15 people. bp was so egregiously neglect it levied the largest fine ever against that company. four years later that record was broken when officials fined bp another $87 million for failing to correct hundreds of safety violations at the very same texas city refinery, four years after they killed 15 of their own workers at that same plant. clearly it was time for bold political action, right? time to trot out that same tired
11:51 pm
line they always trot out before nothing changes. >> keeping america competitive requires affordable energy. and here we have a serious problem. america is addicted to oil. >> the deep water horizon drilling rig was feeding that addiction until an explosion two weeks ago killed 11 workers. as we speak, oil continues to flow unabated into the gulf of mexico with no end in sight. this time we'll get it right, right? we'll learn the lessons from four decades of explosions, spills and fires. >> as president of the united states, i'm going to spare no effort to respond to this crisis for as long as it continues. and we will spare no resource to clean up whatever damage is caused. while there will be time to fully investigate what happened on that rig, our focus now is on a fully coordinated response effort to prevent more damage to
11:52 pm
the gulf. >> we'll clean it up and everything will go back to normal. normal being the completely eliable effect of drilling and spilling. house minority leader john boehner said this tragedy should remind us that america needs a real comprehensive energy plan like the republicans all of the above strategy. the republican strategy is a relic of the summer of 2008 when gas prices were so high, filling up your tank could make you woozy. the plan boils down to drill, ba baby, drill. here in louisiana, for all the criticism of a slow government response, rescue crews were able to reach the disaster site almost immediately, this is the gulf. accidents and disasters happen, human beings mess up. they mess up a lot. technology messes up. if you mess up in the arctic, where are your cruise, booms,
11:53 pm
scientists. think about it, would you rather have a heart attack? near new york city or on the moon? you obviously don't want to have a heart attack anywhere, but the republican energy plan is a heart attack on the moon plan. it ignores decades of oil disasters, but we have to continue to go forward, right? [ male announcer ] how do the editors of consumers digest
11:54 pm
determine if a car is a best buy? first they drive it in the real world. and put it through its paces. they rate its fit and finish. and the amenities inside. they factor in purchase price and operating costs, fuel economy and resale value. in short, they do what you do to test its quality. the consumers digest best buys from chevy.
11:55 pm
put them to your own test. and may the best car win. i thought i was invincible. i'm on an aspiriregimen now because i never want to feel that helplessness again. [ male announcer ] be sure to talk to your doctor before you begin an aspirin regimen. ta to your doctor, and take care of what you have to take care of. an everyday moment can turn romantic at a moment's notice. and when it does, men with erectile dysfunction can be more confident in their ability to be ready with cialis. with two clinically proven dosing options, you can choose the moment that's right for you and your partner. 36-hour cialis and cialis for daily use. cialis for daily use is a low-dose tablet you take every day, so you can be ready anytime the moment's right. day or night. >> tell your doctor about your medical condition and all medications and ask if you're healthy enough for sexual activity. >> don't take cialis if you take nitrates for chest pain, as this may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure. >> don't drink alcohol in excess with cialis.
11:56 pm
side effects may include headache, upset stomach, delayed backache, or muscle ache. to avoid long-term injury, seek immediate medical help for an erection lasting more than 4 hours. >> if you have any sudden decrease or loss in hearing or vision, stop taking cialis and call your doctor right away. >> 36-hour cialis or cialis for daily use. ask your doctor if cialis is right for you. you can be ready for your moment with cialis. so yes the oil is gushing unabated into the gulf of mexico. according to a conservation group, the sky is not falling. today's new york times front paging the gulf of mexico's position on the big spill. the sky is not falling. that should calm the nerves of
11:57 pm
all those chicken littles out there. it's the gulf of mexico we're talking about, and this is the gulf of mexico foundation, and they say it's fine. who is the gulf of mexico foundation again? the investigative folks at propublica report at least half the members have direct ties to the offshore drilling companies. seven other board members are currently employed at oil companies or companies that provide products and services primarily to the offshore oil and gas industry. those companies include shell, conocophillips and oceaneering international. fear not, according to members of the petroleum business, this catastrophe isn't actually so catastrophic after all. and don't forget, before
11:58 pm
astroturf meant fake grassroots ginned up by lobbyists, it meant flooring, flooring made of plastics. did you know that plastics are a petroleum product. that does it for us here in new orleans. we'll see you tomorrow night back in new york city. "hardball" is next. stop the plane. let's play "hardball." good evening, i'm chris matthews up in new york leading off tonight. we got him. faisal shahzad was minutes away from taking off for dubai when federal authorities pulled him off the plane at jfk. shahzad is a naturalized american citizen. he was born in pakistan and was charged today with five counts in the times square incident. including trying to explode a weapon of mass destruction.
11:59 pm
at the top of the show, tonight who is this man? who is he working with? and how close was he to getting away with it? and what we know is there was a pakistan connection, shahzad traveled there last year and trained at a terror camp. and today, pakistani police arrested as many as eight people suspected of helping him. what has u.s. officials worried, the fact that a lone wolf, an american may have somehow joined up with international terrorists bent on killing other americans. one thing you can be sure of, the right-wingers, the rush limbaughs, the ditto-head tea party crowd won't praise the government for catching faisal shahzad. that blame obama first gang will try to find some way to hold responsible the president for the fact that an act of terror was attempted. we'll talk to howard dean about that one. and remember this guy? >> i want to thank all -- and brownie, you're doing a heck of a job. >> brownie is now doing a heck of a job criticizing president obama about delaying action as he put it on the gulf oil spill in order to stir up what he says is opposition to offshore