updated 2/2/2006 10:21:38 AM ET 2006-02-02T15:21:38

Guests: Wendell Odom, Joe Dwinell, Joanne Scholten, Rachel Maddow, Max Kellerman, Madeline Nelson

JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST, “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY”:  Hey, that‘s all the time we have for tonight.  “THE SITUATION WITH TUCKER CARLSON” starts right now.  Hey, Tucker, what‘s the situation tonight?

TUCKER CARLSON, HOST:  Thank you, Joe.  Good to see you. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Thank you. 

CARLSON:  Thanks.  And thanks to you at home for tuning in.  We appreciate it, as always. 

Tonight, anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan is quickly becoming the new face of the Democratic Party, its impromptu spokeswoman.  Charges were dropped after her arrest in Washington last night.  Were some on the left secretly wishing she‘d stay behind bars? 

Also, we‘ll talk to an eyewitness to this police shooting in California.  Why did a sheriff‘s deputy fire multiple rounds at an unarmed Iraq war veteran?

Plus, “Brokeback Mountain” and Steven Spielberg‘s “Munich” are both best picture nominees.  Why are the Academy Awards pushing Hollywood‘s political agenda on middle America?  Do you resent it?  I bet you do.  That debate in just a few minutes. 

We begin tonight with the case of Andrea Yates, the former Houston housewife who murdered her five children in a bathtub back in 2001.  Earlier this afternoon a judge set a $200,000 bond for Yates, allowing her to leave jail for a state mental hospital as she awaits a new murder trial.  Prosecutors had asked the bail be set at $1 million, but her attorney, Wendell Odom, successfully argued otherwise.

Mr. Odom joins us tonight live from Houston to explain her case.  Mr.

Odom, thanks for coming on. 


CARLSON:  Why should Andrea Yates be out on bail?

ODOM:  Well, the purpose of getting her out on bond was in order to get her into a hospital.  That was the real function of requesting the bond and that was the purpose of it. 

CARLSON:  Yes, but we know that she did it because she admitted that she killed her five kids.  Why would she be out of prison even for a second?

ODOM:  Well, when the new trial was granted, then you start all over again.  The state jail here, the county jail, the mental facility acknowledged that they would have a difficult time giving her the treatment that‘s necessary, so we asked for a bond.  The judge agreed to the bond on the condition that she be able to go to a hospital where she can continue to receive the kind of treatment that she needs. 

CARLSON:  Your argument, as I understand it, is she‘s not a threat to her children because she‘s already killed them.  Do you see the perversity in that?

ODOM:  Well, the state was arguing for a higher bond, and what I was doing was quoting their own expert.  Their expert is the one that stated, well, she‘s no longer a real danger, because the mental illness that she had was that she wanted to save her children, send them to heaven and that that situation no longer existed.  So what we were really doing was pointing out what their expert said and using it against them. 

CARLSON:  But I know you‘re an attorney, and I know you‘re just representing a client and you don‘t necessarily identify with this case emotionally.  I don‘t know where you stand on it personally, but this is your client. 

But stand back just a little bit.  For people looking on, this woman admitted to killing five children.  Why should we want to see her get any kind of treatment at all?  I mean, she killed five kids.  Why shouldn‘t she be in prison just forever?  I don‘t really—I don‘t understand the argument. 

ODOM:  I am her attorney, and I‘m also very, very sympathetic to Andrea Yates.  The truth of the matter is if you believe in the insanity defense, this is the most mentally ill person you‘ll probably ever meet.  And if ever there was a justification for it, it‘s in this case. 

If, on the other hand, you don‘t believe that there should be such a thing as not guilty by reason of insanity, then I suppose your argument is right and you should put them away. 

CARLSON:  Well, the insanity defense that she‘s offering up strikes me as a crock.  I mean, she‘s offering up this postpartum depression defense, as I understand it. 

ODOM:  No.

CARLSON:  If she were a man, she would have not your sympathy nor anyone else in the world‘s sympathy.  She would be declared a murderer.  She wouldn‘t have gotten a new trial.  Nobody would be sending her money to spring her from prison.  We would just write her off and she‘d be in the black hole, in the deepest—you know, the worst prison in the United States, wouldn‘t she?

ODOM:  If she was a man she couldn‘t have had postpartum depression. 


CARLSON:  Exactly. 

ODOM:  But she had more than postpartum depression.  She was a schizophrenic, and there were—every psychiatrist, including the state psychiatrist that interviewed her, said that this woman was incredibly sick. 

She‘s not like some person that commits a crime and then tries to fake it and says, “Oh, I did this.  I‘m mentally ill; therefore I want to get off.”  There‘s no question that this woman was one of the sickest people that these psychiatrists had ever seen in their entire careers. 

CARLSON:  So you don‘t believe—you don‘t believe there was any volition in this?  You don‘t believe that Andrea Yates is evil or acted in an evil way?

ODOM:  Andrea Yates was as evil as someone who gets a heart attack.  This woman was sick.  And she continues to be mentally ill.  And for us to ignore that is basically going past a couple hundred years. 

CARLSON:  A heart attack—with all due respect, a heart attack is something that happens to you.

ODOM:  Yes.

CARLSON:  Murdering five children is something you do. 

ODOM:  Well, being—becoming mentally ill to the degree that she was, grossly psychotic, is something that happened to her.


ODOM:  And it‘s not something that she caused.  It‘s not something that she brought on, and it‘s not something she‘s faking. 

CARLSON:  Tell me, finally, who paid this $20,000 so she could get out of jail?

ODOM:  An anonymous donor. 

CARLSON:  Why is the donor anonymous?

ODOM:  Because they chose that to be.  That was the condition that they set the money. 

CARLSON:  That‘s a shame.  It seems to me if you‘re going to do something like that, stand up and be counted. 

ODOM:  Yes.

CARLSON:  But I appreciate your standing for that and coming on tonight.  Mr. Odom, thanks.

ODOM:  You bet. 

CARLSON:  The funeral was held today in Massachusetts for 27-year-old Rachel Entwistle and her 9-month-old baby daughter, Lillian.  The two were found shot to death in their home on January 22, the night before Rachel‘s husband, Neil, now a person of interest in the case, was reportedly on a plane headed to England, where he‘s now holed up at his parents‘ house. 

Neil Entwistle has reportedly declined to talk with Massachusetts investigators who flew all the way to England to talk to him. 

For more on this developing story, we welcome Joe Dwinell, the managing editor of “The Boston Herald.”  That is New England‘s best newspaper, for those of you who haven‘t read it. 

Thanks a lot for joining us. 


CARLSON:  So are we positive that this guy did it?

DWINELL:  No, we‘re not positive at all.  I mean, there‘s still so many scenarios out there, and the police are looking at them all.  But they do say that they‘re keeping an eye on him anywhere he goes in Britain. 

CARLSON:  Is it possible—I mean, do we have the time lines established with enough certainty to declare he could have done it?  That is, do we know that he was in the United States when the murders likely occurred?

DWINELL:  Roughly.  We—the D.A. has put out a time line saying that he left sometime late—late Friday night, early Saturday morning.  The bodies were not discovered until Sunday night.  But they believe the bodies may have been in the house all weekend, so there is a time line and they are looking at it step by step. 

CARLSON:  OK.  So here‘s a guy who‘s still in England.  His wife and infant daughter are murdered.  He does not come home to identify the bodies.  He does not come home for the funeral.  I‘m not a cop.  That seems suspicious to me.  Why can‘t we just arrest him?

DWINELL:  Well, the extradition in England is akin to a legal—legal proceeding.  You have to almost try the case, according to what we‘re being told.  Also, Tucker, we‘re going to have in tomorrow‘s “Boston Herald” that he‘s still wearing his wedding ring. 

CARLSON:  What does he do for a living?

DWINELL:  He‘s a graduate from York University in England.  He‘s an electrical engineer.  He was involved in many kind of get-rich schemes on the Internet.  We reported that, and that‘s where some of the investigation is going, according to the D.A.

CARLSON:  I had read that he was involved in the Internet porn in some way. 

DWINELL:  Right.  One of his deals was he could teach you how to set up your own Internet pornography site, you know, dip into this lucrative, multibillion dollar market, make a million yourself, and here‘s how you can do it.  That‘s what he was offering. 

I opened up one of the sites last week.  It‘s since been shut down, and it had a few examples on it.  It was just, you know, the typical stuff you could see on a porn site. 

CARLSON:  Not that I would know what that is.  Do we have any other sense of what the motive might be, apart from his very odd behavior since the murders?  Were there tensions in the marriage do we know of?  Did he have financial problems?  Is there a reason he might have done this?

DWINELL:  No.  All good questions.  We went to the police records.  We looked back in both Hopkinton and Carver, where he was living with the in-laws until they moved to their beautiful rented home in Hopkinton.  No 911 reports, no domestic abuse reports.  We have searched, and we did not come up with any police—official police records. 

CARLSON:  Is the town, for viewers who aren‘t familiar with the Boston metropolitan area, the hub, is the town where they live, is it a dangerous town, a lot of murders take place in that town?

DWINELL:  No, no.  Hopkinton is the start of the Boston marathon.  It‘s idyllic; it‘s suburban; it‘s beautiful.  It‘s—they haven‘t had a murder there in 11 years. 

CARLSON:  Are there alternative theories to what might have happened?  Are the cops saying, “Well, maybe someone broke in.  Maybe, you know, there are people spotted in the neighborhood, prowlers”?

DWINELL:  No.  The D.A. is saying just the opposite, that this wasn‘t, you know, random.  You don‘t have to go out and be afraid to live in this town at night. 

But that‘s all they‘re saying.  They‘re not—they‘re not saying that a stranger did it.  They‘re not saying anything.  We‘re all waiting for that next piece of this puzzle.  And that‘s what the D.A. keeps on saying.  This is a puzzle.  They need to piece it together. 

CARLSON:  So what happens—OK, so let‘s say this guy stays in his parents‘ house and pulls a kind of James Frey and just, you know, draws close to his mom in times of crisis and decides not to come back.  Is there anything the U.S. government can do, the Massachusetts police can do about it?

DWINELL:  I don‘t think so.  I think they have to charge him.  That‘s what has to happen.  They have to make an official charge.  They have to go over there.  And as you know, they did send investigators over to England to try to question him.  And they—it appears they were stymied, and they came home empty-handed. 

CARLSON:  Does he—and finally, does he have any representation?  Does he have a spokesman?  Has he said anything since this happened?  Do we know what he thinks?

DWINELL:  We hasn‘t said a word.  I mean, he has left his house.  His father is stoic.  He is stoic.  He‘s not saying a word.  But what speaks volumes to me is the web site that honors both his wife and his daughter is still up.  That‘s where you‘re seeing all these photos in all the magazines and all the TV shows.  He runs that web site.  That web site remains up at this very minute. 

CARLSON:  Boy, you know, everyone thinks he did it.  I hope, for justice sake he did do it.  Because if he didn‘t do it, it‘s just a terrible injustice that everyone thinks he does.  Thanks a lot, Joe.  I appreciate it. 

DWINELL:  You‘re welcome. 

Still to come, 9/11 hero and former New York mayor, Rudy Giuliani, is amazingly enough, sweeping Southerners off their feet.  Is he really the GOP frontrunner in 2008?  We‘ll tell you. 

And the gay love movie “Brokeback Mountain” leads the Oscar charge with eight nominations.  Another example of Hollywood shoving its political agenda down America‘s throat?  We‘ll tell you when THE SITUATION comes back. 


CARLSON:  Still ahead, I‘ll speak to an eyewitness to the shooting of an unarmed Iraq veteran in California.  Plus, author James Frey was torn into a million little pieces by Oprah.  Now he‘s in even more trouble.  All the details when we come back.



CHRIS MATTHEWS, HOST, “HARDBALL”:  You‘re looking like, dare I say it, a candidate for president.  Under the radar, but definitely a candidate. 

RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER MAYOR OF NEW YORK CITY:  It‘s a lot easier—it‘s a lot easier—it‘s a lot easier to draw crowds and be popular when you‘re not in office, because you don‘t have to make decisions. 

MATTHEWS:  I understand that people that can‘t even spell Giuliani know the name Rudy, and they like you.  And you really have a shot at being the next president of the United States. 


CARLSON:  That was former New York City mayor, Rudy Giuliani, talking to “HARDBALL‘s” Chris Matthews last night after the State of the Union address.  Giuliani has been drawing huge crowds, in the thousands, in of all places, the South. 

Here to give us his thoughts on Giuliani‘s chances in 2008, as well as last night‘s State of the Union address, former presidential candidate, columnist, MSNBC political analyst, all around smart guy, Pat Buchanan. 

Pat, thanks for coming on.


CARLSON:  Does he have a chance, Rudy Giuliani, to get the Republican nomination?

BUCHANAN:  He‘s got a chance.  He‘s an enormously popular figure, even among moderates and Democrats.  He gives a great speech.  He‘s a celebrity, a star.  He has got that great story out of New York.  Sure he‘s got a chance, but I think it‘s a long shot. 

CARLSON:  He is really liberal on the social issues. 


CARLSON:  I‘m not attacking him.  I‘m merely observing what is obvious.  He‘s not a moderate; he‘s a liberal.  He‘s a New York City liberal.  How can—I mean, are Southern evangelicals going to vote for this guy?

BUCHANAN:  Well, he‘d have more problems here, Tucker, because the early primaries, the caucuses in Iowa.  New Hampshire is sort of libertarian, but South Carolina is very, very conservative on the social issues. 

And Rudy Giuliani has got problems not only on right to life but on the gay rights issue, on the sanctuary of cities policies, on affirmative action.  Any number of these social issues he‘s much more in line with the New York - New York Republicans and even the New York Democratic Party than with the grassroots Republicans.  So he would have to overcome that. 

I know McCain back in 2000 skipped Iowa and ran first in New Hampshire.  And if Rudy were going to run that might be a good strategy. 

CARLSON:  Yes, it might be.  And McCain, who‘s not that liberal on the social issues, he‘s always been, at least officially, opposed to abortion, still got creamed in South Carolina, partly because they thought he was a liberal.

Then why, given that Rudy holds these positions, did Pat Robertson, of all people, come out and say he would make a good president?  Why are these evangelical groups inviting him to speak to them down in the South?  What‘s the idea there?

BUCHANAN:  I don‘t know why Pat Robertson would be saying that.  He‘s not having him in to speak on social and cultural issues, I‘ll tell you.  It‘s to speak on New York is my guess, or to speak on the war on terror. 

See, that‘s what I would do, I think, if I were Rudy.  I would really emphasize those law and order credentials: tough on Wall Street crooks, you know, the man who was there when the towers came down, and try to go that way and try to stay sort of above the small Q&A that you will constantly get in these states. 

But he will have opponents, I think, Tucker, who will go after him on those issues.  And secondly, you‘ve got to realize, McCain has real strength among Democrats and moderates and moderate Republicans, and Romney might, as well.  So he doesn‘t have an open field even on that wing, if you will, of the party. 

CARLSON:  Right.  That‘s a smart point. 

What do you think Republicans are going to run on in 2006?  You‘re feeling there‘s some real concern in Republican circles about holding the House in the midterm elections, not panic yet but it could get to panic.  If you were a Republican member of Congress, a Republican member of Congress, what would you run on?

BUCHANAN:  Well, you‘d have to tell me what district I was in.

CARLSON:  Right.

BUCHANAN:  And what the poll numbers for the president of the United States would be. 

But right now I think what I would do, is you‘re really going to have to war game your opposition candidate.  If you get a liberal Democrat, you‘re going to have to go with him on cut and run and weak on national security and national defense. 

And if the economy is going well, we‘re for tax cuts.  And yes, some of my colleagues up in Washington have lost the way and are spending too much, but I‘m for this.  And I would run really as a traditional social, cultural issue Republican. 

And I would also say, you know, the president is doing a great job. 

Alito and Roberts, we need one more. 

But it‘s going to be—if the economy starts to go in the Dumpster and this war gets very, very serious, I think the president has got about six months to sort of, in effect, show that this thing is a winning proposition.  It could be a very, very tough fall for Republicans. 

The best thing they‘ve got going for them, Tucker, is they‘ve got a divided party, Democratic Party, which the American people believe stands for nothing.  And so I would really go after my opponent. 

CARLSON:  Yes.  I mean, Bush is—I mean, it‘s almost like the last election.  I think you could have beaten Bush running as a Democrat last time.  It‘s just—it‘s a measure of how disorganized...

BUCHANAN:  That‘s a—that‘s a bit of a reach, Tucker. 

CARLSON:  You never know, Pat. 

What do you think Bush did last night, and who was he talking to?

BUCHANAN:  You know, it‘s a strange speech.  I thought it was—it was, you know, tough and decisive, but it was also defensive.  I can‘t understand it. 

I saw him today, too.  He‘s attacking isolationism and protectionism, which as you know, from 2000 -- or excuse me, ‘92, what his father attacked me on. 

I think what they‘ve done is they‘ve war gamed the politics of it and the polling of it, and they found out that the way to go after Democrats, the Cindy Sheehan types, the Murtha types, the liberal Democrats is to put them all in that box that they‘re simply—they cannot lead the great country.  They are isolationists.  They‘re protectionists, and we‘ve got to lead in the world. 

And it‘s probably a winning theme, and they‘re probably going to try to put all the Democrats into that box.  It‘s the only thing I can figure. 

But you notice on Iran, Tucker, reread what he said on Iran.  Three times he said the world will not put up with this.  The world will not do this.


BUCHANAN:  There was nothing about the military options on the table, none of that axis of evil stuff and they will not be allowed to get weapons of mass destruction.

And so I think there were a lot of themes in there, and there were a lot of things in there that seem contradictory. 

CARLSON:  Multilateralist by necessity... 

BUCHANAN:  Exactly.

CARLSON:  ... I think is how you describe it. 

Pat Buchanan joining us tonight from Washington.  Thanks a lot, Pat.

BUCHANAN:  Delighted. 

CARLSON:  Still to come, why did a sheriff‘s deputy ask an unarmed man to stand up only to fire multiple shots at him?  I‘ll talk to an eyewitness of that shooting when THE SITUATION comes back. 


CARLSON:  Welcome back. 

An Iraq war veteran is recovering tonight from multiple gunshot wounds he sustained in Southern California at the hands of a sheriff‘s deputy, not insurgents. 

NBC‘s George Lewis reveals this disturbing incident, which was caught on tape. 


GEORGE LEWIS, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over):  The shooting followed a high-speed chase involving this Corvette sports car.  The passenger, 21-year-old Elio Carrion, is a U.S. Air Force security officer just back from duty in Iraq.  On the amateur videotape Carrion is on the ground.  He appears trying to calm down a deputy yelling at him. 

ELIO CARRION, SHOT BY POLICE:  I‘m here on your side, all right?

LEWIS:  He also tries to explain he works in military law enforcement. 

CARRION:  I served more time than you in the (expletive deleted) police and the (expletive deleted) military.  OK?

LEWIS:  Much of the audio is unclear, but it sounds like one of the deputies tells Carrion to get off the ground. 


LEWIS:  As Carrion cries out in pain, the deputy orders him to be quiet and stay on the ground. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Shut the (expletive deleted) up.  Shut the (expletive deleted) up.  You don‘t (expletive deleted) get up you mother (expletive deleted). 

LEWIS:  Police confirmed Carrion and the driver of the car were not armed.  The driver, Luis Escobedo, was arrested, later released on bail.  He was not shot. 

Carrion is recovering at this hospital. 

(on camera) The deputy who shot him has been placed on administrative leave with pay while the FBI investigates.  Local authorities are also investigating. 

(voice-over) Carrion‘s wife says the deputy ought to be fired. 

MARIELA CARRION, WIFE OF ELIO CARRION:  Since my husband was surrendering, they shot him.  They shot him on the shoulder, on the chest and one on his leg. 

LEWIS:  And the big unanswered question, if Carrion was indeed obeying the deputy, why the shooting in the first place?

George Lewis, NBC News, Chino Hills, California. 


CARLSON:  Joanne Scholten was in her house with her husband when she heard a car come screeching down the road.  She joins us live from Chino, California, tonight to tell us what she saw and heard during the shooting incident. 

Mrs. Scholten, thanks for coming on. 


CARLSON:  Tell us what you saw and heard. 

SCHOLTEN:  We heard a police car siren, and then we heard a screeching of brakes and then a huge bang.  And my husband and I ran outside to the driveway.  And what we saw was the Corvette slammed against the fence across the street from us, and the sheriff‘s deputy car was parked kind of diagonally, and that‘s what we saw.  That was our first vision of what happened. 

CARLSON:  Were there policemen outside standing up on the street?

SCHOLTEN:  There was one policeman who was driving the car and the next thing that we saw was the policeman had his gun drawn.  And we heard a continual yelling, “Get out of the blankety-blank car.  Get out of the blankety-blank car.”  That was repeated any number of times. 

CARLSON:  So the deputy was swearing at the people in the car?

SCHOLTEN:  Well, let‘s just say it was language that my children would never be allowed to use. 

CARLSON:  Yes.  And had—had the men in the car gotten out and had shots been fired yet?

SCHOLTEN:  Now—we were in a vision pattern where the actual people in the Corvette were blinded to our vision.  First of all, it was very, very dark.  This is an agricultural area, and there are no streetlights. 

Secondly, the police car was parked diagonally, so therefore until the shots were fired and Elio was actually pulled from the car or was laying on the street, we did not see him. 

CARLSON:  After the shots were fired, what did the deputies say?

SCHOLTEN:  The best we could hear was, you know, “Stay down” or whatever.  We did not hear a whole lot, because right after the shots were fired, we were in the line of fire.  We were concerned, because if the two men in the car had had guns, we would have gotten shot.


SCHOLTEN:   Because we were directly in the line of fire, so we ran in the house, because we saw that the deputy was alone.  And we were concerned.  So we called 911.  And said, “Get some more police cars here as fast as you can.”  And that response was very quick. 

CARLSON:  The police cars showed up quickly.  How long did the ambulance take to come?

SCHOLTEN:  It seemed like a very long time.  I looked at this person lying in the street, you know.  And he was bleeding.  And they kept dabbing, you know, the blood and so forth.  And we had heard the three shots, so we did not know, you know, if all three shots had entered this young man or not at the time. 

CARLSON:  Did—Mrs. Scholten, did you see anyone filming this?  Did you see the person who took this videotape?

SCHOLTEN:  Did not.  They live next door but didn‘t know until almost right afterwards that our neighbors had filmed it. 

CARLSON:  All right.  Joanne Scholten from Chino, California, tonight. 

Thanks a lot, Mrs. Scholten.  An amazing story. 

SCHOLTEN:  You‘re very welcome.

CARLSON:  Still to come, should peace activist Cindy Sheehan have been booted out of the State of the Union address last night for wearing a controversial T-shirt?  Now that she is the de facto spokeswoman of the Democratic Party, is that good or bad?

Plus, more confessions from disgraced “Million Little Pieces” author James Frey.  We‘ll tell you what else he‘s admitted to fabricating, next.


CARLSON:  Welcome back to our show.  The State of the Union is about the most scripted event you‘ll ever see, but Cindy Sheehan managed to add a little improvised drama last night.  The anti-war protester was arrested in the Capitol building for wearing a t-shirt that read “2,245 dead, how many more?”  She was charged with unlawful conduct.  Those charges were dropped today after Capitol Police said arresting her was a mistake. 

Here to discuss Sheehan, who apparently is the proud voice of Democratic Party, our pal Rachel Maddow of Air America Radio—Rachel.

RACHEL MADDOW, AIR AMERICA:  What am I going to have to do to be the proud new voice of the Democratic Party? 

CARLSON:  I don‘t know, let me just say...

MADDOW:  I have to get arrested, and then you‘ll call me the spokesperson, right?

CARLSON:  I don‘t want to talk about (INAUDIBLE) -- I can‘t control myself.  Watching that video of that sheriff‘s deputy swearing at a man he has already shot, calling him these obscene words, after he‘s already shot the guy, is—makes me insane with anger.  That is so rude in addition to everything else.  It‘s not enough that you shoot the guy; you have to call him obscene things.  I hate that.

MADDOW:  It would be better if he shot him but was polite about it?

CARLSON:  Yes.  Yes. 

MADDOW:  Really?



MADDOW:  The deputy lost his mind.  That‘s why he shot the guy and that‘s why he is screaming at him after he shot him. 

CARLSON:  It adds insult to injury.  It pushes it over the line for me.

Anyway, sorry, that‘s enough of that. 

Cindy Sheehan.  So the Democrats last night, it‘s not just Bush‘s chance to get his message out, it‘s their chance.  So they get this, the poor governor, new governor of Virginia, comes out and really does—I mean, let‘s be honest, kind of a pathetic job. 

MADDOW:  You know, we set his speech to dance music and played part of it on my show this morning on Air America, and it was really good set to dance music. 

CARLSON:  I bet it was.

MADDOW:  He was very slow, but when you like put a little up-tempo to him...

CARLSON:  He looked like a speaker at a Verizon middle manager‘s retreat.  You know what I mean?  It was just—it was pathetic. 

MADDOW:  But you know what, whoever gives the response always looks lame.  Because the State of the Union is constitutionally required. 

CARLSON:  That‘s true.

MADDOW:  It‘s this huge fanfare, you‘re in the Capitol.  I mean, it‘s this big deal...

CARLSON:  Even by those standards...

MADDOW:  ... and then you give the response.  And even if you‘re a movie star, you look lame. 

CARLSON:  But into this vacuum arrives Cindy Sheehan!

MADDOW:  The headline of the night. 

CARLSON:  Exactly.  My question to you, very simple, is this good for the Democrats or is it bad for the Democrats?  I‘m delighted by this, incidentally. 

MADDOW:  I don‘t know what it means for the Democrats.  I think that Cindy Sheehan is an anti-war protester.  Cindy Sheehan represents herself.  Her son died in the war.  And she is there acting on the basis of her conscience, protesting against the war that she thinks is unjustified.  I think that the Democrats...

CARLSON:  Not true.  Not true.  She was there at the invitation of a Democratic member of Congress, Lynn Woolsey of California.

MADDOW:  Yes.  But that doesn‘t make Cindy Sheehan the presidential candidate for the Democrats in ‘08.  I mean, she represents the anti-war movement, if anyone, or the mothers of fallen soldiers, or people from Pataluma (ph). 

CARLSON:  It makes her the California Senate candidate of ‘06.  But it also raises the question that I‘ve tormented with you before, which is I still think a valid question, who is the voice of the Democratic Party if not Cindy Sheehan or Michael Moore?  They seem to be this sort of tag team now.  And maybe that‘s legitimate.  I‘m not even casting dispersions on them, I am merely noticing it, but I‘m wondering if not them, who? 

MADDOW:  I‘m not casting aspersions.  This is such a political game for you.  Who can I find that I can make into a total cretin who I can attack night after night after night. 

CARLSON:  I‘m not the one...


MADDOW:  ... and then say they‘re your spokesperson.

CARLSON:  I‘m not the one who denounced the United States with Hugo Chavez by my side.  She...

MADDOW:  Anything else you want to say against her before you call her my spokesperson?

CARLSON:  I am merely saying if you had—when David Duke ran for governor of Louisiana in 1991, this guy is like a neo-Nazi, a Klan—a grand dragon in the Klan, a full-blown nut case, and he had a lot of support in Louisiana.  Let‘s be honest, white people, a lot of them supported him. 

Republicans almost to a man said this is bad, stop this guy.  He doesn‘t represent us.  When are the Democrats going to do that with Cindy Sheehan? 

MADDOW:  You‘re saying that Cindy Sheehan is equal to a Ku Klux Klan leader? 

CARLSON:  I‘m saying she‘s equal to David Duke.  That‘s exactly what I‘m saying.


CARLSON:  I‘m saying when you denounce this country with Hugo Chavez by your side, you are equal to David Duke, absolutely.  You‘re worse than David Duke, because people take you more seriously than David Duke. 

MADDOW:  I think that you‘re way out on a limb.  I think that Cindy Sheehan represents herself.  I think Cindy Sheehan is the mother of a soldier killed in Iraq who is campaigning against the war.  You can try to make her into a demon and demonize the left that way.  But think about it in real political terms and get away for your hate for Cindy Sheehan for just a moment. 

CARLSON:  It‘s not hate, it‘s loathing. 

MADDOW:  OK, so you loath her, and you bring her up constantly, and you book me to talk about her all the time. 

CARLSON:  Yes, yes.

MADDOW:  It‘s the anti-Cindy Sheehan MSNBC news hour, right?  But think about it, when Clinton was in power, when Clinton was the president, who was the spokesperson for the right?  Was it Grover Norquist or Randall Terry from Operation Rescue or Jerry Falwell?  It was Gingrich?

CARLSON:  It was Newt Gingrich. 


MADDOW:  Represented the right? 

CARLSON:  He was the speaker of the House in the Republican Party.  Their fortunes rose and fell with his.  When he became less popular, they became less popular and lost at the ballot booth as a result.  But you have to have someone who is recognized as speaking for you. 

And I just think, if Cindy Sheehan doesn‘t speak for the Democrats, they ought to boot her out of the movement.

MADDOW:  Tucker, you are totally—I think you‘re being politically disingenuous.  Because I think...


MADDOW:  If I were playing the same game at that time, I would have said, it would be the equivalent of you telling me right now that Harry Reid or Nancy Pelosi is the spokesperson for the Democrats.  I would be making the case that Randall Terry was your spokesperson, the militant anti-abortionist.  

CARLSON:  You have to recognize extremists in your midst.  And if you don‘t, you‘re an extremist.  That‘s my point.  It‘s a simple point.

MADDOW:  Cindy Sheehan is a person for whom I have enormous sympathy, and I reject the attempts to make her into a demon even from you. 

CARLSON:  Well, you are brave.  You‘re brave, defending Cindy Sheehan. 

I wish (INAUDIBLE)...

MADDOW:  I think you‘re brave to attack the mother of a soldier killed in Iraq. 

CARLSON:  Who reenlisted.  She doesn‘t speak for him.  She doesn‘t speak for me, and I think she speaks against this country and I resent it. 


CARLSON:  I‘m sorry that her son died, but I resent her attacks on America.  Period, I just can‘t stand it.

MADDOW:  I think you‘re out on a limb big time. 

CARLSON:  I‘m glad to be there.  Stay tuned.  Thank you, Rachel.

There‘s still plenty more ahead on THE SITUATION tonight.


CARLSON (voice-over):  In the political spotlight...

DAVID STRATHAIRN, ACTOR:  I would like to say rather precisely what I mean. 

CARLSON:  Do Hollywood and politics make unusual bedfellows? 

Then, reality bites author James Frey again.  Will the fallout from his web from lies ever end? 

JAMES FREY, AUTHOR:  I honestly have no idea. 

CARLSON:  Plus, food for thought.  Unique after-hour dining tips for the budget-minded tourist. 

And from Peru, a bizarre display of athletic endurance that‘s guaranteed to whip you into shape.  It‘s all ahead on THE SITUATION. 

STRATHAIRN:  Rumor, gossip, slander or hard, ascertainable fact?



CARLSON:  Welcome back.  As the great and very much missed Jerry Garcia once said, “constantly choosing the lesser of two evils is still choosing evil.”  We‘ll try not to do that tonight, but with our devil‘s advocate on hand, it could be a close call.  Joining me now, the Outsider, ESPN radio and HBO boxing host, Max Kellerman. 

MAX KELLERMAN, ESPN RADIO:  I was transfixed by that lower third graphic, that podcast graphic.  Very cool.

CARLSON:  The podcasts are quite popular of the show. 

KELLERMAN:  Very cool.

CARLSON:  First up, are Oscar voters out of touch with America?  As if we need to ask.  The five movies nominated for best picture, “Brokeback Mountain,” “Capote,” “Crash,” “Good Night and Good Luck” and “Munich” brought in $186 million combined.  That‘s less than this summer‘s comedy “Wedding Crashers.”  And all five of the nominated films were much more popular in the Northeast and on the West Coast than anyplace else.  Another thing they have in common, they are all to some extent political and liberal. 

This breakdown tells you everything.  Of those top five, do you know what percentage came from the—you know, the blue states?  Almost all of them.  In the Upper Midwest, 8 percent of the receipts produced there were for “Brokeback Mountain.”  In the Rockies, 3 percent.  People who are watching these movies are on the coast.  They are basically from the same social class as the people who wrote, directed, produced and promoted them. 

KELLERMAN:  Well, they‘re not—first of all, there‘s a higher concentration of people on the coasts.  If you‘re going to do a kind of, you know, per-state basis, you know, California and New York, more people there go to see movies.  There are more people there.  But if you‘re going to (INAUDIBLE)...

CARLSON:  No, the fastest growing states are in the Southeast and south central, Arizona, Texas.  And those were ...

KELLERMAN:  Clearly the argument that people put up on the left against this is incorrect.  Well, there is no social agenda.  But who cares about what the social agenda is?  These are the kind of films Hollywood has always rewarded, these kind of art kind of—art films that some of them aren‘t particularly good.  I‘m reminded of like “Mystic River” that Clint Eastwood made.  Stunk.  And I remember Clint Eastwood coming out and saying this is a film for adults.  And I‘m thinking, yes, dumb adults, it‘s not a good movie.  It‘s heavy-handed and syrupy and not good, and yet that gets rewarded. 

So yes, you‘re going to make—it‘s like when Dustin Hoffman played “Rainman,” and then there became this whole wave of movies where if you play someone who is mentally disabled somehow, it‘s an Academy Award.  well, you know, you make a movie about two gay cowboys, you‘re going to get (INAUDIBLE) Academy. 

CARLSON:  I‘m not attacking movies that don‘t have a big audience.  I‘m not attacking art movies.  I love Woody Allen movies, for instance, which are both, you know, liberal pretty much, and play to tiny audiences.  I‘m not saying you have to be “Titanic” to be good.  I am merely saying Hollywood has a political agenda, and I resent it, that it has forced it on us in this kind of clever, not straightforward way, through movies.  It bugs me. 

KELLERMAN:  You think it‘s not straightforward? 

CARLSON:  I think the average person doesn‘t get the fact that this is propaganda. 

KELLERMAN:  George Bush is president, so how well is it working, really?  How many Democrats have been elected?  It‘s (INAUDIBLE) working.

CARLSON:  Now, that is an argument.  That is...

KELLERMAN:  By the way, what was the last good movie you‘ve seen in the movie theater?  Preparing this topic, I can‘t think of any. 

CARLSON:  Honestly?  The only good movies, HBO, HBO original movies. 


KELLERMAN:  “Shawn of the Dead,” which I only saw on cable, was tremendous. 


KELLERMAN:  Tremendous.

CARLSON:  They say crime doesn‘t pay, but apparently cheating does pay.  At least it worked out pretty well for one Rhode Island police officer.  Lewis Perotti Jr. (ph) was suspended for the Provide police force for cheating on his promotion exam, but this week he cut a deal and was allowed to return to the force after being demoted from sergeant to patrolman.  Deputy Police Chief Paul Kennedy called it, quote, “a fair settlement.” 

This is a city where the former mayor beat a guy in the face with a fireplace log and burned him with a cigarette, was convicted and then reelected mayor, the late great Buddy Cianci.  I‘m not surprised it happened in Providence, but I dare you to defend this. 

KELLERMAN:  Well, OK.  How are police officers paid?  Relative to the work they do?  Poorly.  This guy‘s a cop.  He‘s not going, you know, he is not trying for the Nobel Prize.  They have to take written tests to advance in police work, which does not involve so much—it involves some paperwork, but really what this guy is doing, the line of work he‘s in, how much of the written exam is really necessary for your job? 

CARLSON:  Well, wait a second. 

KELLERMAN:  You‘re objecting on principle.  But let‘s the pragmatic approach. 

CARLSON:  That argument is contradictory.  You‘re saying he has this unpleasant, crummy, low-paying job, therefore he ought to be allowed to keep it? 

KELLERMAN:  No, well, actually he was demoted.  He is making considerably less as a percentage, like 25 percent less or 20 percent less than he was making.  There was a punishment.  The argument that he should be kicked off, right, a very—I mean, Providence—but kicked off the police—kicked out of his job because he cheated, I don‘t know.  Plenty of people cheat in plenty of walks of life.  They‘re not kind of expunged permanently. 

CARLSON:  Yes, but they‘re not cops, and cops are supposed to be honest.  You know the bottom line?  Police union.  The police union doesn‘t care about honesty.  It cares about protecting its members. 

KELLERMAN:  I‘m a little surprised on your stance here.  Here‘s a guy who wants to be a cop, who would like to get paid a little better for what he‘s doing.  He‘s making about $40,000 and change a year for risking his life, and he‘s trying to continue to risk his life but kind of at a better pay scale, and so he kind of—he bends the rules.  He‘s caught and he‘s demoted. 


CARLSON:  If he cheated on the test, he‘s shaking down motorists.  And that just bugs me.  That‘s what Mexico does.  We‘re not supposed to do that here.  Even if it happens in Rhode Island, I am still against it. 

Max Kellerman, thank you.

KELLERMAN:  Thank you.

CARLSON:  It‘s a great state, Rhode Island, by the way, so please don‘t write attacking it. 

Coming up on THE SITUATION, these people don‘t eat out of dumpsters because they‘re poor and desperate.  They do it to prove a political point.  We‘ll tell you what cause is important enough to make people eat garbage when THE SITUATION rolls on. 


CARLSON:  Welcome back.  You wouldn‘t expect someone to choose a lifestyle that involved eating out of dumpsters.  Kind of seems like something you do as a desperate last resort.  But there‘s an entire society of people who willingly get their meals out of the garbage.  They‘re called freegans, and they say they have a reason for doing it. 

Madeline Nelson is a freegan.  She joins me tonight in the studio. 

Ms. Nelson, thank you very much for joining us.  Why do you eat out of trash cans? 

MADELINE NELSON, FREEGAN:  Well, Tucker, it‘s—I would say it‘s a political choice as much as anything else.  There‘s so much waste in America.  I think America is just an example of what‘s going on.  We‘re at a point in our society where we‘re throwing out tremendous amounts of perfectly usable food, clothing, electronics, et cetera, that a group of us think that it‘s a perfectly rational choice to save that, to salvage that. 

CARLSON:  Well, I‘m with you on the clothing and electronics.  There‘s a lot of waste in this country, and it bothers me.  The food is in its own category.  The reason we throw away food is not because food producers don‘t want to make money—they do—but because they are afraid of being sued by people who get sick from food that is over its expiration date. 

NELSON:  Well, I can understand how most Americans would think that.  So—in fact, though, the law was changed in the U.S. in 1981.  There‘s a good Samaritan law, and basically food that isn‘t considered prime sellable food because it‘s maybe a little bit wilted on the lettuce, a day old on the bread, that sort of thing, if you give that and you give it in good faith, you can‘t be sued. 

CARLSON:  To a homeless shelter or...

NELSON:  To anyone.  You can give it to anyone and you couldn‘t be sued. 

CARLSON:  OK.  I mean, I‘m following you so far.  Why don‘t you pick at Whole Foods?  Why do you have to eat out of the garbage?  That seems like kind of going a little far for a political belief.  No?

NELSON:  To pick at Whole Foods?

CARLSON:  To pick at Whole Foods, to write your congressman, to write an op-ed for the newspaper.  I mean, there are a lot of ways to be politically active.  Eating out of the dumpster doesn‘t seem like one of them. 

NELSON:  I agree with you.  There is a lot of ways.  And this is one of them, of course.  It‘s one way to do it in a very physical way. 

I think you‘d be surprised, really.  I‘d certainly understand people react.  They have a reaction like, yuck. 

CARLSON:  It is kind of nasty.  I mean, dumpsters are nasty. 

NELSON:  I think if you actually saw it, though, you would realize that a lot of it is not nasty.  And we find half cases of perfectly good—for instance, a half a case of arugula that‘s never made it out onto the shelves of the store, all wrapped up.  Portabello mushrooms is another example. 

Let‘s see what else.  You find cans that are ever so slightly dented.  You find bread in abundance.  You find all sorts of things, especially at the major supermarkets, where the managers don‘t control the ordering.  So they get in lots of food, then they have to get rid of that lots of food, even if that food has absolutely nothing wrong with it. 

CARLSON:  But don‘t you—right.  It may have absolutely nothing wrong with it.  It may have something absolutely wrong with it, though.  Aren‘t you concerned about putting it in your mouth? 

NELSON:  I certainly understand that concern.  The simple answer to that is the same rules that apply when you open your own refrigerator at home apply to what you see there.  If the tomato looks good, if the tomato smells good, if the tomato has nothing wrong with it in the same way in your own fridge, you would look at that and you would smell it and you would feel it.  Your senses are a very, very good guide of what‘s going on there. 

CARLSON:  Yes, sometimes they are, but then sometimes you get botulism and die.  You have dinner parties?

NELSON:  Yes, I do. 

CARLSON:  With food that you take out of the trash.  Do you tell—announce to people when they show up, by the way, I just pulled this arugula out of the garbage? 

NELSON:  Well, absolutely.  Absolutely.  I wouldn‘t want to fool anybody.  Absolutely not.  Some of these dinner parties are among people who do this dumpster diving also.  So they‘re perfectly well aware.  But friends...

CARLSON:  I just can‘t get over how normal you seem.  I don‘t mean to patronize you at all, Madeline, but you just don‘t seem like the kind of person—if I saw you rooting around in a dumpster, I don‘t know what—I would stop and stare. 

NELSON:  Would you?  And that‘s actually good, because that‘s part of the theater of it.  You know, that‘s part of the theater of it.

CARLSON:  But not in a good way I wouldn‘t stop and stare.  I would stop and stare like, that woman must be deranged, she looks so nice, why is she in the dumpster? 

NELSON:  And Tucker, do you know what I would do at that point?  I would look at you and I‘d say, would you like some of this—we‘ve got prepackaged lox here and there are some bagels...

CARLSON:  Do you know what I would do at that point?  I would run away. 

But I appreciate you coming on anyway.  Madeline Nelson, thank you.  A freegan.  We appreciate it. 

NELSON:  You‘re welcome. 

CARLSON:  Still ahead on THE SITUATION, I didn‘t think James Frey could get anymore pathetic than he was on “Oprah” last week, but he may have pulled it off.  Our favorite disgraced author visits “The Cutting Room Floor,” next. 


CARLSON:  Welcome back.  Time for “The Cutting Room Floor.”  Willie Geist is back from his junket to Washington.  Willie, how was the president?

WILLIE GEIST, THE SITUATION PRODUCER:  The president was excellent.  I dined with him last night at the Palm.  (INAUDIBLE).  Let me just say something about Tucker, by the way, that you wouldn‘t say about yourself.  Spending time in D.C. with Tucker is kind of like being in New York with P-Diddy.  He‘s not technically the mayor, but everybody knows who runs the city.  Come on.

CARLSON:  Tough to run a city when you spend your entire time in restaurants.

GEIST:  Well, that‘s true.  You do.

CARLSON:  I didn‘t get a lot done.

Just when you thought Oprah had beaten James Frey into a pulpy obscurity, the literary fraud weasels his way back into the news.  Frey and his publisher released the author‘s note today that will appear in future printings of his best-selling memoir, “A Million Little Pieces.”  In the note, Frey lamely confesses, quote, “my mistake is writing about the person I created in my mind to help me cope, and not the person who went through the experience,” end quote.

GEIST:  Doesn‘t that undercut the book a little bit, Tucker, if you say, here is this is this incredible true story of my renegade lifestyle, which is completely false.  Enjoy. 

CARLSON:  Right. 

GEIST:  (INAUDIBLE) point anymore.

CARLSON:  I think he undercut it sometime before, when he brought his mom on “Larry King” with him. 

GEIST:  That was the lamest, weakest thing I‘ve seen in a long time.

CARLSON:  It‘s hard to be James Dean if you bring mom on. 

GEIST:  Exactly right.  He also got dropped by his agent today. 

Things are not going well for Jimmy. 

CARLSON:  There is justice in this world. 

Well, the road to the Minnesota governor‘s mansion was going to be an uphill one for Jonathan “The Impaler” Sharkey.  He didn‘t really need this.  The self-proclaimed blood-sucking Satanist, vampire and gubernatorial candidate was arrested on Tuesday on outstanding warrants for escape and stalking.  Sharkey outlined his campaign platform on this show last night.  The centerpiece would be the public impaling of violent criminals.

GEIST:  That‘s something we can all get behind.  Let me just say something, the Impaler is a vampire.  Vampires stalk.  Stop imposing your non-vampire values on him.  You know what I mean?  I mean, it‘s crazy.  Let‘s not snuff out a pretty bright political career before we have all the facts. 

CARLSON:  We are so judgmental in this country. 

GEIST:  I know.  I‘m not.

CARLSON:  I‘m not either.

There are certainly less painful ways to atone for your sins, but hey, tradition is tradition.  These Peruvian men are doing exactly what it appears they‘re doing, beating each other with whips.  But it‘s the friendly kind of beating each other with whips.  It‘s part of an annual atonement festival held in a small village in Peru. 

GEIST:  OK.  An atonement festival?  Most festivals I‘ve been to have ferris wheels and cotton candy; they don‘t involve that.  That‘s the least fun festival.  Even a Renaissance Fair has friendly jousting.  Not beating each other senseless.

CARLSON:  Though can I be honest and say that most people who attend Renaissance fairs do this kind of thing in private once they get home.  You know what I mean?

GEIST:  Flogging with ball gags?

CARLSON:  Yes, this is just—it‘s just another kind of love.  It‘s just another lifestyle. 


CARLSON:  I grew up in California.  You know, this does not shock me.

GEIST:  You speak from experience.

CARLSON:  Thank you, Willie.

GEIST:  Tucker.

CARLSON:  That‘s SITUATION for tonight.  Thank you for watching.  Happy Wednesday, by the way.  Up next, Keith.  Have a great night.  See you tomorrow.


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