tv ABC World News With Diane Sawyer ABC September 16, 2010 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT
to tonight on "world news," needing help. the number of americans living in poverty soars. what this really means for your struggling neighbors, day by day. meeting the queen. the pope, in a rare encounter with royalty. he has more to say on the church sex scandals than before. facing danger. a gunman opens fire on a doctor in one of america's most famous hospitals. and naming the new sheriff in town. the consumer advocate and janitor's daughter on a mission to speak up to wall street. breathing easy. an amazingly simple. is this the way to reduce your high blood pressure?
good evening. america is the land, the nation of plenty, the richest country in the history of the world. but we have real numbers tonight on the staggering increase in people barely getting by. in a new report today, the government says 44 million americans now live in poverty. 4 million joined the list just last year. and that means 1 out of every 7 people we pass on the street could be struggling for basic needs, like food. david muir has been looking at what these numbers really mean. david? >> reporter: diane, 1 in 7 is really something. these new numbers offer a stunning portrait how many american families have watched as the middle class has slipped from their reach. it is the largest number of americans living in poverty, since they began keeping track 50 years ago. an increase of 4-in one year. >> people that used to be
solidly middle class who are now looking over that cliff into the abyss. >> reporter: the government puts the poverty line at just under $22,000 a year for a family of four. today, we learned with the recession stealing jobs, the number of americans without health insurance has climbed to nearly 51 million. 4.4 million in just a year. and today, the rescue mission in los angeles told us they're seeing it. tents set up for families in the back of their chapel. this is one of those tents. a family of four will sleep here at night. the number has multiplied from a half dozen a year ago to nearly 60 today. more than one-third of those in poverty are children. we could not forget that video -- the high schoolers in california -- the faces behind this new report. >> we're like, four months behind rent. and just -- i have my brothers,
we might be homeless pretty soon. >> reporter: we have followed chris schultz since that video. his father was out of work. his mother, a teacher's assistant, barely making the rent. and their refrigerator -- pretty slim. >> yeah. we usually have butter, but we don't have butter this time, so -- i eat lunch at school. and i guess that that's the only reason why i like going to school because, you know, i get food at school and stuff. so what can you do, right? >> reporter: keeps you going? >> yeah, keeps me going. >> reporter: there's nothing in the freezer. >> nothing in the freezer. no, nothing. >> reporter: today, we learned his father is still out of work. chris is now in the army learning electronic and mechanical skills to bring home. and waiting? his life brother. big brother? >> yeah. >> reporter: you love him? >> yep! >> after a storm, the sun comes out, you know? >> reporter: the sun comes out? >> yeah, the sun always coming out, no matter what.
>> reporter: such an inspiration to us as we followed him. and diane, the experts said today, had unemployment benefits not been extended last year, we'd have to tack on another 3 million americans to this number. >> and the food banks are putting out pleas for help, as well. david, we want to bring in melody hobson, abc news financial contributor. because, melody, as you look at the report, what is the number most telling for you? >> what is most shocking to me is that for an individual to be considered to be living in poverty, they make $10,830 or less in the course of a year. so many people out there are making minimum wage, $7.25 an hour, working a full week, 2,000 hours a year, barely scraping by, on the $14,500 that comes from that work every year. which means that people are worse off than even we may think. >> that's right. so many people who are not officially in that number. 9.6% unemployment, as david said. and we are looking at the optimum of 4.6%. how many jobs does that represent? >> with 15 million people
unemployed, we need to add 5 million jobs to get to 6% unemployment. >> are you seeing anything out there that seems alive that gives you hope? >> i think the story is innovation. it's not any one industry. let's look at an obvious place -- technology. apple has added 24,000 jobs in the past year. along the way, they invented the ipad, the iphone, the app store. lots of innovation created lots of jobs. >> all right, mellody, thank you. and, again, food banks are all asking for help. a lot we can do for each other in these times. and, now, it was a rare sight. two of the most iconic figures on the planet standing side by side today. the pope visiting the queen. the first papal visit to britain in a generation. and while he was there, the pope made his strongest statement yet about the sex abuse crisis among priests. nick watt reports from london. >> reporter: the pope was
welcomed with waking bag pipes and a brand new papal tartan, which he wore for warmth. this is the first papal visit to britain for nearly 30 years. >> very proud to be scottish right now. >> reporter: there was a royal handshake. she gave him art. he gave her a gospel and an intimate audience with the queen. >> the car that you arrived in was very small, wasn't it? >> reporter: it didn't take long for the pope to ruffle feathers. the pope, who is german, suggested atheism had shaped nazi ideology. >> we can recall how britain and her leaders stood against a nazi tyranny that wished to eradicate god from society. >> reporter: before he even touched down, he pope had addressed the issue hanging over this visit -- the church's handling of the global sex abuse scandal. he went further than ever before in admitting church failures. "these revelations were a shock for me," he said. "it is also sad that authorities did not take care of this
properly and were not quick enough or strong enough in taking the proper measure." but the pope did not say he will force bishops to report guilty priests to police. protesters want action, not just words. >> i had been raped for almost a year by the time this photo was taken. more needs to be done. a lot more needs to be done because kids are still at risk today. the man who raped me is walking free. >> reporter: this evening, benedict xvi was back amongst the faithful for an open-air mass in glasgow. second on the bill -- susan boyle. the pope just arrived here in london, at the end of an extraordinary day. tomorrow, he meets with catholic school kids, politicians and leaders from other faiths. and diane, more protests are expected. >> nick watt, thank you for your reporting tonight. and back here at home, in this country, one of the best
hospitals in america was a crime scene today. a distraught man walked into johns hopkins in baltimore and pulled out a gun on a doctor. abc's jim sciutto is at the scene to tell us how the violence unfolded. jim? >> reporter: diane, since the virginia tech shooting, johns hopkins had an emergency plan in place for a shooting like this. today, we saw it kick into action. s.w.a.t. teams and a hospital on lockdown. for more than two hours, johns hopkins was under siege. >> none of us could be by any windows. >> reporter: you were scared? >> yeah, scary. >> reporter: the standoff began just after 11:00 a.m. outside room 873 of the spinal surgery wing. as dr. david cohen updated 49-year-old warren pardis on his mour jean's operation. >> he became emotionally distraught and reacted. >> reporter: he then drew a
semiautomatic handguned a shot the doctor once in the abdomen, at close range. >> mr. days havis was last seen running into the room, brandishing the handgun in the direction of his mother, who was confined to the bed. >> reporter: at 1:30 p.m., police sent in a camera-equipped robot that found the man and his mother dead, shot in the head. we don't know what the doctor said to him to make him so angry. what we do know tonight is that dr. cohen will make a full recovery. >> what a frightening day at johns hopkins. thank you, jim sciutto. and we have a new snapshot of drug abuse in america. showing the highest illegal drug use in almost ten years. today, the government said it rose 9% last year, the biggest spikes in the use of marijuana, ecstasc and especially methamphetamine. and as of tomorrow in washington, there will be a new sheriff in town.
tomorrow, president obama will name wall street critic elizabeth warren to do a new job. form the brand new consumer protection bureau, authorized by kopg. and jake tapper is here to tell us what she's going to do and why her fans think wall street has met its match. jake? >> reporter: that's right, diane. in addition to getting the brand new federal agency staffed and organized, elizabeth warren will begin the process of setting new lending policies as to avoid hidden fees or predatory practices for credit card agreement s or mortgages. elizabeth warren has become the nemesis of financial ceos. want to say to these guys, what part of "we bailed you out" do you not get? >> reporter: the former sunday school teacher has been unsparing in her criticism of the financial sector. >> they are focused on killing any kind of serious reform, and particularly, any kind of serious reform that would
directly impact the pocketbooks of americans. this is -- this is unbelievable. >> reporter: at stake? billions in profits. ceos and their al lis worry that warren will focus on her view of social justice more than on a strong economy. >> the issue is more, what will she do with these powers? if this is taking away choices from consumers and restricting correct in the marketplace, count us out. >> we don't have banks that are viable, strong, where are we going to be then? she doesn't take this into consideration. >> reporter: the daughter of a janitor from oklahoma, warren has seen first hand the devastation from foreclosure and debt. >> america's middle class is living one pink slip, one bad diagnosis, away from financial collapse. >> reporter: liberal groups have signed petitions, and even taken to rap videos to urge the president to appoint her to head the new consumer financial protection bureau. ♪ make a new sheriff
♪ elizabeth warren >> reporter: she is revered by progressives for her view of the wall street bailout. >> they didn't ask the banks what they were going to do with the money. and not having asked them, the banks are not required to tell. >> i know your husband is backstage. i still want to make out with you. >> elizabeth warren is a real american heroine, who is driving this reform. >> reporter: but diane, some liberals criticized the president today for the way he will appoint elizabeth warren tomorrow, to her new job, bipassing the senate confirmation process, the checks and balances and appointing her as a special assistant to him a for what is a very powerful position. diane? >> jake, thank you. and still ahead on "world news," we have the list. that white house stimulus, the top success stories. an exclusive report. and, health news. can you lower your blood
pressure in minutes? can something simple change your life? and, an internet sensation, coming up. a dance for healing and hope. how new is the new edge with myford touch? well you could never do this before. or this. or this. you definitely couldn't do this. play kate's mix. or this. temperature, 72 degrees. say hello to the new edge with myford touch.™ quite possibly the world's smartest crossover. so i couldn't always do what i wanted to do. but five minutes ago, i took symbicort, and symbicort is already helping significantly improve my lung function. so, today, i've noticed a significant difference in my breathing.
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create or save millions of jobs. republicans say it's been largely unsuccessful. but tonight, the white house is firing back, and our jon karl has a look at the top of the list, the ones that have worked the best. jon? >> reporter: this is in direct response to all the republican attacks the white house will detail the top 100 stimulus programs in the cup try. we have an exclusive list at what they considered the greatest hits of the stimulus program. the report highlights programs like this one in new jersey, where a toxic area contaminated is being transformed into a new industrial park, thanks to $30 million from the stimulus. >> we're getting folks in there, cleaning up that environment and this will be a new industrial park creating hundreds of thousands of new jobs. >> reporter: the project has already created 68 jobs and is designed to be an economic boone to the south plainfield area once it is completed next year. the white house is touting the
$175 million in stimulus funds being spent here at new york's staten island ferry terminal, replacing nine bridges like this one that are in a dangerous state of disrepair. >> we're thrilled to have stimulus money available to repair the vital links that will keep new york city strong. >> reporter: there are now 120 workers on the job here, rebuilding a transportation hub that services 65,000 commuters every day. the white house report is a direct response to senators john mccain and tom coburn, who have issued three separate reports on what they call the top 100 wasteful stimulus projects. those reports highlights things like the $3.4 million spent on the so-called turtle tunnel, allowing animals to go from one side of florida's route 27 to the other. here's what mccain told us about his last report. >> i think all of them are a waste. i think none of them, really, have any meaningful impact on creating jobs. >> republicans have criticized
the recovery act, without recognizing projects specifically like the ones in this report. >> reporter: projects like $51 million for a new facility for injured veterans in texas. 230 jobs create. $25 million in tax credits for ge, to build a new plant for energy efficient appliances in louisville, kentucky. ge is investing $600 million of its own money, bringing production now done in china back to the u.s. the white house lists the total cost and the number of jobs created for each of the top projects. doing a little math, it comes to $250,000 per job, but the white house says the actual cost per job is much lower, because each of the projects will have ripple effects, creating many more jobs in the future. >> so, they say these are facts, too, and these are the facts show it's been working. okay, thank you, jon karl. and still ahead, what could fix your high blood pressure -- could it be how you think? one doctor has a secret. we'll tell you.
of the shrimpers and fishermen, hotel or restaurant workers who lost their jobs to the spill. i'm iris cross. bp has taken full responsibility for the clean up in the gulf and that includes keeping you informed. our job is to listen and find ways to help. that means working with communities. restoring the jobs, tourist beaches, and businesses impacted by the spill. we've paid over $400 million in claims and set up a $20 billion independently-run claims fund to cover lost income until people impacted can get back to work. and our efforts aren't coming at tax-payer expense. i know people are wondering-- now that the well is capped, is bp gonna meet its commitments? i was born in new orleans. my family still lives here. i'm gonna be here until we make this right.
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and here in new york, some fierce storms this evening, flooding rains, damaging winds and spectacular lightning. tornado warnings were posted, which rarely happens in the city. all of it, of course, caused chaos for commuters heading home. and, high blood pressure. so many americans will face the problem. 1 in 3 adults. the health care cost, $76 billion a year. and there are the lives lost to heart attack and stroke. but what if a simple idea could dramatically lower your blood pressure? one doctor says he has an idea, and the numbers. here's david wright. >> reporter: whether it's the stress of the morning commute, or of a high powered job. >> to me, stress is something that needs to be countered, it needs to be conquered. >> reporter: being a mom can be hugely stressful, too, especially if you're out of work. the mom being a breadwinner.
>> pretty much. and the bread is scare these days. >> reporter: different people, different stresses. but mike and sandra deal with their stress the same way. >> imagine a beautiful hiking path. >> reporter: with a technique prescribed by their cardiologist. >> we all know about diet and exercise, but very few of us emphasize stress reduction. and stress is, i think, the key to all of it. >> reporter: dr. john kennedy developed a heart cure. a set of breathing techniques you can do anywhere, any time. no drugs, no surgery. reducing your blood pressure with brain power alone. his patients tend to show measurable improvement in as little as two weeks. >> my blood pressure is stable. it used to hover around 170 over 90. it's now pretty stable at 120 over 80. >> reporter: stress, boosting your blood pressure, is a major contributor to heart attacks. it triggers the body's fight or flight response. the brain releases adrenaline, the blood thickens the heart
pumps faster. and boom. >> boom. you're dead. >> reporter: dr. kennedy says his regimen of focused breathing is the same technique professional athletes and others use. >> like, how the plane was landed on the hudson river. how kobe bryant hits the shot with no time left. >> reporter: used with every day stresses, he claims, can save your life. >> this is actually ancient wisdom being proven by modern science. >> reporter: haefling the heart by finding the quiet in the middle of life's storm. david wright, abc news, los angeles. and if you want to learn more about this method, and test it out for yourself, head to abcnews.com/worldnews. and, still ahead, a brand new song of hope. [ male announcer ] the financial headlines
by protecting clients and turning uncertainty into confidence. what if that story were true? it is. ♪ but with advair, i'm breathing better. so now, i can join the fun and games with my grandchildren. great news! for people with copd, including chronic bronchitis, emphysema, or both, advair helps significantly improve lung function. while nothing can reverse copd, advair is different from most other copd medications because it contains both an anti-inflammatory and a long-acting bronchodilator, working together to help you breathe better. advair won't replace fast-acting inhalers for sudden symptoms and should not be used more than twice a day. people with copd taking advair may have a higher chance of pneumonia. advair may increase your risk of osteoporosis and some eye problems. tell your doctor if you have a heart condition or high blood pressure before taking advair.
i had fun today, grandpa. you and me both. if copd is still making it hard to breathe, ask your doctor if including advair will help improve your lung function for better breathing. get your first full prescription free and save on refills. and we leave you tonight with a brand new video about the bond between breast cancer patients and the caregivers who work so hard to give them back health and joy. you may remember last year, some doctors and nurses made a video with pink gloves. well, tonight, the maker of the gloves has taken it all national. and we'll say good night now, with their anthem of hope.
♪ everybody wants to be apart of something ♪ ♪ but without each other ♪ we're a whole lot of nothing ♪ come with me ♪ i have a promise to keep ♪ you won't dance alone ♪ wait stop ♪ i think i'm having a moment ♪ look around ♪ do you see what i see ♪ take my hand ♪ let's make a stance ♪ and you won't dance alone ♪ you won't dance alone ♪ you won't dance alone hey, ove, i'm gonna need a bank. any ideas?