updated 8/31/2006 10:36:02 AM ET 2006-08-31T14:36:02

Guests: Bill Fallon, Anne Bremner, Bob Kohn

TUCKER CARLSON, GUEST HOST:  Right now in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY: He‘s a creepy criminal who ought to be off the streets, but is this polygamist really such a threat he deserves to be on the FBI‘s 10 Most Wanted list?  You don‘t want to miss my showdown with the attorney general leading his prosecution.

Then: From Iraq to what he watches on television, more of Brian Williams‘s exclusive talk with President Bush.

And the incredible shrinking anchorwoman, the picture putting CBS and Katie Couric on the defensive tonight.

Welcome to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.  I‘m Tucker Carlson, in for Joe Scarborough.

We‘ll have all those stories tonight, but first: The country can sleep

a little easier this evening because of one of the FBI‘s top 10 Most Wanted

he‘s in custody.  Is it Osama bin Laden?  No, it‘s not.  How about escaped murderer Glen Stewart Godwin?  Not a chance!  Maybe they finally got accused cop killer Donald Eugene Webb?  Afraid not.

No, instead, the FBI is breathing a sigh of relief because polygamist Warren Steed Jeffs was arrested on Monday during a routine traffic stop in Las Vegas.  Jeffs was found with an assortment of wigs and 50 grand in cash.  He‘s the leader of a fringe offshoot of the Mormon church.  He‘s a well known polygamist.  He‘s charged with allegedly sexually assaulting a minor and being an accomplice rape because he facilitated the marriage of older men to underage girls.

It sounds disgusting.  It is disgusting.  But is this guy really one of the 10 most dangerous people in this nation?  On my own show a couple of hours ago, I asked that question of Utah attorney general Mark Shurtleff.  Here‘s how he responded.  Watch.


CARLSON:  I‘d much rather you spend your time capturing, you know, rapists and armed robbers and murderers...


MARK SHURTLEFF, UTAH ATTORNEY GENERAL: Guess what?  Guess what, Tucker?


SHURTLEFF:  Guess what, Tucker?  You haven‘t been victimized by this guy.  I didn‘t do this for you.  You have no idea the thousands of women and children who‘ve been victimized by this guy, who we‘ve charged with first degree felony rape.



SHURTLEFF:  You asked me the question.  Let me...


SHURTLEFF:  That‘s right.  Let me—do you want to learn, or do you want to just...

CARLSON:  I do.  Absolutely.

SHURTLEFF:  Let me teach you.  Let me teach you why we‘re protecting people.


SHURTLEFF:  Thousands of women and children for years have been victimized by him.  This is a man who treats women as chattel.  They‘re property that he can reassign to any man any time he wants.  He takes children out of homes and gives them to somebody else.  He kicked the little boys out of town, leaves them in the desert to fend for themselves.  He has—he has been charged civilly with child rape.

CARLSON:  Well, wait, wait, wait a second!

SHURTLEFF:  We have charged him with rape...

CARLSON:  I‘m sorry.  No, no.  OK, wait.  You‘ve charged him with rape?

SHURTLEFF:  Yes, we have.

CARLSON:  You charged him with raping, actually having sexual intercourse with a woman or being an accessory to someone else doing so?

SHURTLEFF:  Are you a lawyer?

CARLSON:  I don‘t know.  I don‘t know what the charges are.  We‘ve been trying all day to get answers, and we just have been...


CARLSON:  We can‘t exactly find out what they are.

SHURTLEFF:  Oh, please.  Oh, please.  You know, if you want to do the research, you want to look into it, it‘s all there.

CARLSON:  I‘m asking you a question.  You didn‘t answer.

SHURTLEFF:  First degree felony rape.  It is no difference if you hold the girl down or if you commit the rape.  He is charged with rape.  He will be convicted of first degree felony rape, we believe.  Here‘s a man who had a whole army supporting him, who thumbed his nose at the law for years, who ran from us, who had people surrounding him with guns, threatening to go down with him.  This is a guy who pulled kids out of school.  This is a guy who taught them to kill animals with their bare hands, slit their throats and...

CARLSON:  Hey, look...


CARLSON:  Hey, look, I‘m sorry to interrupt your self-righteous lecture here, but that‘s not illegal, by the way.  A lot of these things are not illegal.  It‘s not illegal to teach children to kill animals with their bare hands.  I‘m sorry you disapprove of it.  But actually, I don‘t think it‘s your place to judge things that aren‘t crimes, and that‘s not a crime, for instance.  It‘s not—it‘s also not a crime to convince consenting adults to do things you disapprove of.  So if he convinces...


SHURTLEFF:  It‘s not your place—it‘s not your place on TV to sit there without any information...

CARLSON:  I‘m not the one who‘s got the guns, you are!

SHURTLEFF:  Sir, have you talked to the people, the victims of this crime?  Have you talked to how victimized they‘ve been?  Have you ever...

CARLSON:  I‘m not defending the guy!  I‘m merely...

SHURTLEFF:  Yes, you are!


CARLSON:  Of course I‘m not!

SHURTLEFF:  You‘re defending him!  No, you‘re second-guessing the FBI, the entire...



CARLSON:  I‘m allowed to do that as an American citizen, pal~!  I‘m sorry...


CARLSON:  But my question is...

SHURTLEFF:  Absolutely, sir, you can.  And you can spout all off you want, but you need to know the facts!


SHURTLEFF:  ... and now he‘s not on the list anymore.  So it worked, didn‘t it.  It brought—we‘re going to—we‘ve brought him to justice.

CARLSON:  I think you‘re fully capable of arresting people on the list.  I‘m not defending the guy.  I‘m sure he‘s a criminal.  He sounds like a bad guy.  My only question is this.  There are 10 spaces on the list.  This guy is accused of doing things that are titillating.  That‘s why we‘re talking about him now.  That‘s why you‘re invested in this case, because it brings you publicity.

SHURTLEFF:  Oh, please.

CARLSON:  I‘m sure it‘s one of the reasons—I‘m serious!

SHURTLEFF:  You know what?  You‘re so full of yourself...

CARLSON:  But is this guy—is this guy one of the 10 most threatening people to America?


CARLSON:  You‘re looking at me right in the face and telling me he is.

SHURTLEFF:  That‘s not the purpose of the list.  He doesn‘t have to be threatening to America, he has to be a threat to society and individuals to the point that you need the list to be able bring him into—bring him under arrest and have him stand trial for those charges.  And it worked for this man.  Absolutely, he needs to be...


CARLSON:  So he‘s more—he‘s more threatening than, say, Islamic radicals huddling in a basement right now, you know, figuring out ways to blow up airliners or the people who are working to overthrow the government.  I mean, that‘s...


SHURTLEFF:  We‘ve got Osama on there.  Look at the rest of the people on your list.  There are people on that list, and there have been from time immemorial, since the list began, who are child abusers, who do hurt children and women, who are sex offenders.


SHURTLEFF:  It has never been about religion.  It‘s been about a man who has committed crimes, who‘s charged with committed crimes, serious, first degree felony crimes, Tucker...

CARLSON:  Right.

SHURTLEFF:  ... who has victimized people.  That‘s what it‘s about.


SHURTLEFF:  And you know what?  For 50 years, Tucker...

CARLSON:  You‘re ducking my question.

SHURTLEFF:  No, I‘m not!  For 50 years, this man and his predecessors victimized people, and law enforcement turned the other way.

CARLSON:  I appreciate it, Mr. Shurtleff.  Thanks for coming on.  All right.


CARLSON:  The attorney general, Mark Shurtleff, a man who resents having to answer the questions, would rather lecture.  Notice he didn‘t answer the question about what exactly Mr. Jeffs is charged with specifically, precisely.

Warren Jeffs sounds like a creep to me.  I‘m not defending Warren Jeffs.  I‘ll never defend him, or polygamy, which I think is repugnant.  But the point is, the prosecutor, the state, the government has thrown its full weight behind the prosecution of this character, and we have a right to know exactly why.

To find out why, here‘s former sex crimes prosecutor Bill Fallon, who joins us live.  Bill, again, I‘m not defending this guy, his private life, his practices, his behavior with women.  It sounds repulsive to me.  I just want to know what this guy was doing on the FBI‘s top 10 list.  That‘s ludicrous~!

BILL FALLON, FORMER SEX CRIMES PROSECUTOR:  Tucker, I don‘t think it‘s quite as ludicrous as you do, but I have the same concern you have.  What specifically is he charged with?

Let me tell you, Tucker, the reason I think he‘s on the list—and I know you had a big brouhaha with the AG there.  But I think there is a risk that people take when you have charismatic religious leaders.  You brought up Osama bin Laden a little earlier.  This is someone who I think is perverting something religious.  That‘s how he gets these cult people.

Having dealt a little with cults—I‘m not saying this group—I think the difficulty is he‘s not here because he is a polygamist, in my mind—at least, I wouldn‘t have put him there—but I might have made the choice to put him there because I do think that children are being abused.  As I understand it, he gets people to marry underage kids.  He‘s got some sexual assaults...

CARLSON:  But wait, wait.  Wait a second.  Bill, a couple of very quick points.


CARLSON:  First, you‘re an attorney, so you know that the 1st Amendment, the first—you know, the very beginning of the Bill of Rights, guarantees religious wackos their right to go about their religious wacko-ness, if they want.  That‘s the whole point of America!

FALLON:  Tucker, we have the Christian Science thing...


CARLSON:  Not to abuse children...


CARLSON:  ... hold on—the fact that he‘s a charismatic cult leader. 

And clearly, the state of Utah hates that.  They hate that.

FALLON:  Absolutely.

CARLSON:  They hate the fact that he‘s calling himself a Mormon.  That really drives them crazy.  And Shurtleff has all but said that.  He said, You know, I hope this breaks up his leadership of this group.  And my point is, I don‘t ascribe to the beliefs of this group.  I disapprove of this group.  But it‘s not the government‘s place to take down religious leader they disagree with.  I‘m sorry.  Period!

FALLON:  Tucker, it‘s not—well, first of all, polygamy is illegal, so it is, in fact, the government‘s place.  But I don‘t think (INAUDIBLE) just because of polygamy.  I think he‘s there because it involves exploitation of children and child abuse.  We all know from the JonBenet thing.  We do think—and we saw that creep who was marrying the 13-year-old, even if he didn‘t do anything to JonBenet.  I think for too long, children have gone unreported, undetected and abused, and that‘s what this is about.  I don‘t care about...

CARLSON:  Well, wait.  Is it—but is it about that?


CARLSON:  What do we know?  The producers on this show, SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY, the producers on my show earlier today, a lot of people trying to get the exact, very specific nature of the allegations against this guy.  And here‘s what we got.  Apparently, he somehow convinced a 16-year-old girl, or forced in some way, to marry a man in his mid-20s, I believe 27, OK?  Now, I think that‘s wrong.  I‘m not defending it!  But I‘m merely ask the question, Is pushing a 16-year-old girl -- 16-year-olds are allowed to get married, by the way, in this country—to marry a 27-year-old...

FALLON:  Not in all states, they‘re not, and I think that that‘s one of the issues...

CARLSON:  Well, I don‘t think—actually, I—I don‘t think that that‘s right.  I think in all states, 16-year-olds with parental consent can get married.  I may be wrong.  I would be surprised if I am.  And I know in Utah they can.

FALLON:  Well, I think one of the issues here is, at least as I see these charges, he‘s charged with actually a sexual assault on a minor, and he is charged with a rape issue.  I had that very same question.  I‘m presuming there‘s a warrant here for rape.

I guess the question is—and I‘m presuming that the federal government, and certainly the state of Utah, felt he was abusing children.  We‘ll have to see how this plays out.  I‘m certainly hoping it‘s not just going after him only because he is a polygamist...


FALLON:  ... because although I think that‘s criminal, I don‘t think that puts him on the top 10.  When it involves children, it gets on the top 10.

CARLSON:  Well, we‘ll see.  I mean, I hope this guy is guilty as hell. 

Thanks a lot, Bill.


CARLSON:  Here now criminal defense attorney Anne Bremner.  Anne, here‘s my question to you.  Thanks for joining us, by the way.


CARLSON:  The state is going after Jeffs—and again, for the 11th time, I‘m not defending Warren Jeffs.  I‘m glad he‘s in jail.

BREMNER:  Me, too.

CARLSON:  I mean, he‘s a bad person, OK?

BREMNER:  Right.

CARLSON:  But wait a second.  If the crime is convincing underage girls or forcing underage girls to marry older men, why the hell aren‘t we seeing a prosecution of the men marrying these girls?  Or how about the parents of the girls who are allowing it to take place?  Why is it Jeffs?  That‘s the part that baffles me.

BREMNER:  Well, the reason—and I hope we see that down the line, Tucker, and I‘m glad he‘s in jail, and a lot of people should be in jail on this.  But let‘s go by the numbers.  First of all, terrorists, they have their own list.  There‘s an FBI 10 Most Wanted terrorist list.  On top of it is Osama bin Laden.  So put those guys aside when we‘re looking at this.  There are sex offenders on this list, including one that was in Thailand with child pornography.  Sounds like John Mark Karr, doesn‘t it.  In fact, he was not on that list, and he was not extradited, he was deported as somebody they didn‘t want to have, and now we have him.

But let‘s get to this case.  Let‘s go by the numbers -- 10,000 followers of this man.  He has 250 kids and he has 80 wives.  Most people just want one.  He has 80.  And what he does is, as the prophet—we‘re prosecuting a prophet—only he can marry people within that group of 10,000.  And a lot of the girls are underage.

CARLSON:  OK.  I‘m sure that‘s—I mean, well, first of all...

BREMNER:  They‘re underage.

CARLSON:  Then actually, we don‘t know.  So far as I know, the thing -

the document that tell us more about this organization than any other is the book by John Krakauer, “Under the Banner of Heaven.”

BREMNER:  “Under the Banner of Heaven.”

CARLSON:  Right.  Which is a fascinating book and a great book it, and I recommend it to all...

BREMNER:  I read it.

CARLSON:  And it makes you dislike Warren Jeffs and his father, Rulon (ph).   But it concedes that you don‘t—we don‘t actually know a lot about this group.  But the point is, OK, that‘s all wrong and sick and all that.

BREMNER:  Right.

CARLSON:  Does it affect the rest of America?  Does it...


CARLSON:  ... make you afraid to go to the liquor store at night? 

Does it make...


CARLSON:  ... I‘m serious—your elderly mother scared to go outside? 


BREMNER:  Well, no, not my older mother because she‘s too old.  And my mom‘s not elderly, but she‘s too old, in any event.

Here‘s the deal.  Under the banner of heaven, these victims are living

in hell.  This is widespread organized crime, a pedophilia sex ring.  And

we‘ve invaded a country to try and prevent—to protect the rights of

women and children and others.  And in our own country we have a man, in an

organized way, selling girls into marriage.  This—and the age of 16 is -

with parental content, you can get married.  But guess what?  They don‘t have it, and it‘s 18 in Utah without.  And a lot of states have different ages and also vary it in terms of whether it‘s a boy or a girl.

And he‘s gone with impunity in this way, and he‘s acting as—on behalf of this whole group of 10,000.  He has property worth $100 million, Tucker.  He is dangerous.  He‘s dangerous to our children and to this country.

BREMNER:  Well, he‘s not dangerous to our children, but he‘s dangerous to the children and the people in this cult and...


CARLSON:  ... I hope—not my children.  I hope they‘re (INAUDIBLE)

Anne Bremner, thanks a lot.

BREMNER:  Thanks, Tucker.

CARLSON:  Still ahead on SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY, an NBC News exclusive.  We‘ve got part two of Brian Williams‘s candid conversation with the president, why he still refuses to listen to his critics on the war in Iraq.

Plus, Katie-gate.  CBS puts Katie Couric on a computer-aided crash diet.  Another black eye for CBS News?

And later: Break out your leisure suits, we‘re going “Dancing With the Stars,”  our interview with Jerry Springer (ph).  Look at that.  That‘s a little embarrassing.  But there‘s more where that came from.  We‘ll be right back.


CARLSON:  Welcome back.  “NBC News Nightly News” anchor Brian Williams scored an exclusive interview with President Bush yesterday in New Orleans.  Last night, we showed you part I of that interview, where Brian and President Bush discussed Katrina and the war in Iraq.  Tonight, we want to show you the rest, including a revealing glimpse inside the mind of George W. Bush, what he‘s reading, what he thinks critics have wrong about him and how he thinks history will judge him and his administration.  Take a look.


BRIAN WILLIAMS, ANCHOR, “NBC NIGHTLY NEWS”:  Is there a palpable tension when you get together with the former president who happens to be your father?  A lot of the guys who worked for him are not happy with your...


GEORGE WALKER BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  No, listen, my relationship is adoring son.

CARLSON:  Do you talk shop?

BUSH:  Sometimes, yes, of course we do.  But it‘s a really interesting question.  I mean, it‘s kind of conspiracy theory at its most rampant.  My dad means the world to me, as a loving dad.  He gave me the greatest gift a father can give a child, which is unconditional love.  And yes, we go out and float around there, trying to catch some fish and chat and talk, but he understands what it means to be president.  He understands I have oftentimes information that he doesn‘t have.  And he also understands how difficult the world is today.  And I explain my strategy to him.  I explain exactly what I just explained to you down there about how I view the current tensions.  And he takes it on board, and he leaves me with this, I love you, Son.

WILLIAMS:  And where do you think—do you think your father is satisfied with where this beloved nation that he fought for in World War II is in the world right now, our status in the world?

BUSH:  I think—listen, America is—America is respected.  People still want to come to America.  You ask anybody in the world who wants to have a better life, Where would like to go, most would say America.  But people don‘t like my policies, necessarily.  They didn‘t like the fact I didn‘t join the international criminal court.  They didn‘t like the fact that I wouldn‘t sign the Kyoto protocol, both of which I thought were not good for the country.  Many people didn‘t like the fact that we went after Saddam Hussein after resolution after resolution.  I understand that.

But what my dad also understands is you‘ve got to make decisions based upon what you think is right, that you can‘t try to be popular.  And so I would tell you America is respected.  And I would also say—I readily concede our policies may not be beloved.  But I‘ll tell you the policies that are.  We feed the hungry.  When the tsunamis hit, it was the United States of America who took the lead.  On HIV-AIDS, we‘re spending $15 billion of taxpayers‘ money to help people suffering.

And you know, so this country is a country that is doing a lot of good, and my job is to remind the people of the world the good we‘re doing.  And I think when it‘s all said and done, they‘ll look back and say, Thank goodness America took the lead in fighting this war on terror, too.  Thank God they‘re helping lay the foundation for peace.

WILLIAMS:  If your administration ended today, would you be satisfied with the record thus far?  Again, the view out there—I think if you ask 9 out of 10 presidential historians, high point, bullhorn in the rubble of the buildings that came down.  Low point, we‘re standing on it.  Is that fair?

BUSH:  You know, first of all, there‘s no such thing as short-term history, as far as I‘m concerned.  I think that you can‘t judge a presidency based upon a moment‘s notice.  I believe you have to take—eventually, my standing in history will be judged by people 30 or 40 years from now who will be able to take an objective look at whether the decisions I made led to peace and prosperity.

You know, this is a job where there—you just—you make decisions.  And you think—do what you think is right, and you let people—but recognizing that people are going to say what‘s on their mind at the moment.  But I read three histories of George Washington last year.  The first president of the United States is still being analyzed by historians, which ought to say to this president and future presidents, Do what you think is right, and eventually, historians will figure out whether it makes sense or not.

WILLIAMS:  We always talk about what you‘re reading.  As you know, there was report that you have just read the works of a French philosopher.  Can you...

BUSH:  “The Stranger.”

WILLIAMS:  ... tell us the back story of Camus?

BUSH:  The back story of the book?

WILLIAMS:  Well, what led you—what led you...


BUSH:  I was in Crawford, and I said—I was looking for a book to read, and Laura said, You ought to try Camus.  I also read three Shakespeares.

WILLIAMS:  This is a change.  You...


CARLSON:  ... ago were reading the life story of Joe DiMaggio by Richard Ben Cramer (ph), if memory serves.


CARLSON:  You‘ve been on a Teddy Roosevelt reading kick.


WILLIAMS:  ... you and I discussed the last time we were here.

BUSH:  ... battle of New Orleans right now.  I‘ve got an eclectic reading list.

WILLIAMS:  And now Camus.

BUSH:  Well, that was a couple of books ago.  Let me—let me—

Look, the key for me is to keep expectations low.

WILLIAMS:  Is that what everyone doesn‘t get?

BUSH:  I don‘t know, Brian, what they get or don‘t get.  You know...


BUSH:  Here‘s the thing.  (INAUDIBLE)  Here‘s the thing.  The great

thing about the presidency is you‘re totally exposed.  And people spend a

lot—you‘re going to be making decisions, and hard decisions.  People

spend a lot of time not only analyzing decisions, they analyze the decision

maker.  And I understand that.  But a president must never let him get off

let—let that get him off track.

WILLIAMS:  Even if you‘re frustrated that we‘re getting something wrong?

BUSH:  You have to do what you think—if we‘re getting something wrong, we change it.

WILLIAMS:  How have you been read wrong?

BUSH:  Oh, I don‘t know about (INAUDIBLE) wrong.  I mean, I frankly don‘t pay that much attention to it.  I don‘t want to hurt people‘s feelings about (INAUDIBLE)

WILLIAMS:  Still not watching television, huh?

BUSH:  I watched a baseball game.


CARLSON:  Coming up: The incredible shrinking news anchor, photographs of Katie Couric air-brushed to make her look thinner.  Here‘s a question.  Would CBS News have done the same thing to Dan Rather?  Would it have helped?

Plus, get ready for the world champion cell phone thrower.  If it‘s crazy European competitions, it must be “S.C. TV.”  That‘s up next.


CARLSON:  Time for tonight‘s “Must See S.C.,”  some video you got to see.  First up, it‘s that time of year again, the time when Spaniards flock to the streets to pelt each other with tomatoes.  About 40,000 Spaniards showed up.  They call it the Tomatina Festival.  They came simply for the chance to chuck a tomato at a complete stranger.  And because we know you‘re curious, you are supposed to squish your tomato first before throwing it to avoid any serious injuries.  But this being Spain, not everyone follows the rules.

We stay overseas for our next clip.  And who hasn‘t wanted to do this every once in a while, maybe once a day?  There‘s actually a competition in Finland to see who can throw their cell phone the farthest.  It‘s called the Mobile Phone Throwing World Championship.  This year‘s winner managed to toss his cell phone almost 300 feet.  That‘s the length of a football field.  Pretty impressive.

And finally, talk about a mess.  This was the scene in North Carolina yesterday.  A machine that makes anti-fire foam retardant malfunctioned.  Boy, did it!  It spread hundreds of gallons of the white stuff into this airplane hangar.  Officials don‘t know why it happened, but the mess was cleaned up simply by adding a little water.  Snow in August.

Well, coming up, an amazing rescue.  A woman trapped in an SUV refused to get out until it‘s almost too late.  The incredible story and the video of how she finally escaped.  This is worth watching.

Plus, if the camera adds 10 pounds, why does Katie Couric suddenly look about 20 pounds lighter?  Who‘s to blame for her extreme photo makeover?  We point fingers, we name names when we come back.



CARLSON:  Still ahead, boogie fever invades SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.  Not one, but two contestants from “Dancing with the Stars” face off.  Jerry Springer joins me in just a moment. 

Plus, it‘s Oprah versus Angelina.  The reported rift between two of the most powerful women in Hollywood and why innocent children may be caught in the crossfire.  Come along on our trip to “Hollyweird.”

Welcome back to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.  I‘m Tucker Carlson in for Joe tonight.  Those stories in just minutes.

But first, on Tuesday, Katie Couric is said to be the first female solo anchor in network news history.  But somebody at the Tiffany network thinks she needs to go on a diet first, apparently.  Here‘s a picture of Katie taken at a CBS event in May.  Now, here‘s that same picture—sort of the same picture in the September issue of “Watch” magazine.  That‘s owned by CBS, and it‘s distributed by American Airlines. 

If you notice anything different, Katie hasn‘t even started and already she has been downsized pretty dramatically.  Media analyst Steve Adubato is author of “Make the Connection.”  Sarah Bernard is a reporter for “New York” magazine.  And Bob Kohn is the author of “Journalistic Fraud.”  And they join me now to make sense of this. 

Bob, is this as out of bounds as it seems?  A news network, literally an organization that exists to tell you the truth about things, lying about the fundamental nature of one of their anchors, is this a big deal?

BOB KOHN, AUTHOR, “JOURNALISTIC FRAUD”:  That‘s right.  That‘s right. 

I think this goes to the very heart of why Katie Couric was hired to begin

with, and that‘s to regain the credibility of CBS News.  Starting off with

a doctored photograph of the very person they‘re trying to promote as being

someone the public should trust for their news, I think, is just a really -

just a step in the wrong direction. 

CARLSON:  Well, Steve, I guess what bothers me about this is that it implies a bunch of things, one is that Katie Couric is fat, which she‘s not. 


CARLSON:  Actually, she‘s a handsome woman.  She‘s going to be 50 years old in January, and she‘s in great shape.  And she looks it.  You know, whatever you think of Katie Couric, she‘s a very handsome woman.  This is pretty insulting.  I mean, do you think she‘s insulted by it?

ADUBATO:  Well, Tucker, I‘m not sure the “handsome woman” thing is going to work for her, but I know what you mean.  I think she‘s a very attractive woman.

CARLSON:  She‘s a good-looking woman.  What do you want? 

ADUBATO:  I agree with you.  And here‘s the thing that bothers me:  By the way, doctored photos, altered photos, particularly in the digital world that we live in, is not new.  War photos—you remember just a few weeks ago we were talking about the Reuters photo, right, that doctored the situation in war, distorts it.

This, I have to tell you, is not as serious, but I‘ll say this.  Post-Dan Rather?  CBS has a situation where their credibility is on the line again, just to take out—and let me tell you this, Tucker.  Ten pounds I could live with.   Twenty pounds, you‘ve got to be kidding me.  I mean, we use makeup and lighting and even a little nip tuck—as long as you admit it, it‘s OK—but this is not the way Katie wants to be kicking things off as she has this conversation with the public.  It doesn‘t help the network at all.

CARLSON:  Well, does the public care?  I mean, that‘s my question.  They‘re doing this for a reason.  They do nothing by accident.  They‘re spending many millions of dollars promoting Katie Couric.  They have a lot riding on her success.  They must believe that the public wants her to be thinner.  Or is this just random?

ADUBATO:  Look, it‘s a visual medium.  Being attractive matters.  But the fact is, at a certain point, when you go beyond what we basically do to look good on television, it‘s ridiculous.  And plus, she‘s sending a terrible message to all the women out there and others who are concerned about body image by saying, “Don‘t worry about it.  You can have your photo doctored.”  Well, no, Katie, everyone can‘t do that.

And finally, she said she didn‘t know this was happening.  There is going to be a question as to what Katie knew and when she knew it.  About 20 pounds in a photo?  It‘s totally avoidable.  They blew it.  They didn‘t need this P.R. problem.

CARLSON:  Well, it‘s a little late for the body image thing.  I mean, every woman I know thinks she doesn‘t look good.  I mean, I don‘t think we can hold CBS responsible for the problems have with the way they think they look.

ADUBATO:  But they didn‘t help. 

CARLSON:  They didn‘t help.

But, Sarah, how common is this?  You work at a very well-known magazine, a place I used to work.  It seems to me that this is increasingly common, is it? 

SARAH BERNARD, “NEW YORK” MAGAZINE:  Well, actually, no, I don‘t think this is increasingly common, but I think there—I mean, there are certain times where it‘s a little more appropriate.  If you have a fashion spread, for example, you might airbrush off a blemish.  But that is entirely different than something like this. 

I mean, there was a pretty famous uproar a couple years ago when “GQ” magazine had Kate Winslet on the cover.  And you‘ll remember, they actually did something very similar.  They downsized her probably more than 20 pounds, and she actually came out saying, “You know what?  That‘s not my body, and I‘m really insulted.” 

And I was thinking, I don‘t think Katie knew that this sort of very small, internal CBS publication was doing this.  Possibly even, you know, the news people didn‘t really know...

ADUBATO:  But she had a...

BERNARD:  But it might have been smart, actually, if she‘d done something like that, if she said sort of what Kate Winslet did, say, “You know what?  That‘s not me.  And I just want you to know, I kind of like myself the way I am.” 

CARLSON:  But you got to wonder, though—I mean, so Kate Winslet called “GQ” on it.  She said she didn‘t care for it.  Katie Couric was only busted because they were dumb enough to use the same photograph they‘d used up at the upfronts, which is an event that gets a huge amount of attention within our business, a picture that was just taken the other day, basically, in May.  So they were certain to get caught.

You got to wonder, though, how often does it happen?  I mean, Ann Coulter, remember, had her essentially—or complained, anyway, that she had her image altered when she was on the cover of “Time” magazine. 

BERNARD:  Well, it‘s very different, though, because when you get into the news people versus the celebrity people, a lot of celebrities, you know, they don‘t always mind having their imaging improved, right? 

ADUBATO:  Right, but, Sarah...

BERNARD:  I mean, that‘s a different thing. 

ADUBATO:  Sarah, sorry for jumping in, but let me just say this.  If Katie is serious, you want to get this behind you as a newsperson, as a real journalist.  The way to get it behind you, Katie, is to do this.  Say, “Go back to the heavier picture.  Stop using the one where I‘m 20 pounds lighter because you did it digitally.”  And the bottom line is, Katie, say, “This is me, and don‘t mess with my photo.”  And it sends a message to everyone else. 

KOHN:  I think you got to go back to the beginning of this, because she‘s going to start next week.  She‘s already started as the editor-in-chief of CBS News several weeks ago. 

I mean, it was her job to set the tone within the organization to make sure that their objective is to tell the truth and maybe sure everyone down, even in the press department, to tell the truth.  And perhaps this wouldn‘t have happened if she had taken that kind of control. 

I‘m sure she wasn‘t responsible for this; she didn‘t want this to happen.  You can‘t blame her specifically for it.  On the other hand, you know, she‘s at the top.  You can‘t call her a victim any more than you can call George Bush a victim of FEMA.  She‘s in charge. 

CARLSON:  I mean, but, Sarah, do you see any irony in this?  I mean, here Katie Couric‘s aim or one of her aims has got to be to be taken seriously.  She‘s the first female solo anchor, as we said a minute ago, in history, and yet here we are talking about her appearance... 

ADUBATO:  It‘s a great point. 

CARLSON:  ... just a couple of days before she starts.

ADUBATO:  Tucker, it‘s a great point.

BERNARD:  I think so.

ADUBATO:  And I have tell you, I don‘t remember a guy—listen, a blemish, as you said before, Sarah, is right.  I don‘t remember a guy having—Al Roker, whomever—taking 20, 30 pounds off.  You work to take the weight off.  You do what you do. 

The bottom line is, for a woman to be in this position—and we all wish Katie the best as the first woman there.  We want her to do a great job.  But I‘ll tell you something:  It sets the wrong tone.  And I‘ll tell you what:  I don‘t think it would have happened with a guy. 

KOHN:  But actually this is a good thing that it happened because the bloggers are the ones who found this to begin with.  The bloggers are the ones who basically took Dan Rather down, and I think this is a real shot across the bow to Katie Couric:  You got to watch what you do in your organization.  Stick to the truth, because we‘re going to be watching. 


CARLSON:  Do you think it hurts CBS?  I mean...


CARLSON:  Let‘s go through.  Bob, you do.  Sarah, what do you think? 

KOHN:  I certainly think it hurts CBS, absolutely.  This goes to the heart of their credibility, and this goes right to the kinds of things that they were doing wrong to begin with. 

ADUBATO:  Tucker, after what happened with Dan Rather, for them to do this is just inexcusable, dopey. 

BERNARD:  I think, in the end, it‘s not going to hurt them too much.  She actually did say very sweet things.  She said, you know, there‘s more of me to love.  I liked the first picture.  And I think, you know, we are all talking about her right now.  And she does start next week, so I think it will probably blow over. 

KOHN:  She handled it well. 

CARLSON:  Thanks a lot.  Steve, Sarah, Bob, thanks. 


CARLSON:  Now to a woman in the news who has not been Photoshopped. 

When Charlene DeHerrera in Pueblo, Colorado, tried to drive through flooded waters after torrential rains and flash floods on Saturday, her vehicle promptly sank in 10 feet of water.  There was almost no hope of escape, except for some brave strangers and a strange mystery.  You‘ve got to see this.  NBC‘s John Larson reports.


JOHN LARSON, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over):  What no one knew about 35-year-old Charlene DeHerrera, as her SUV was slowly swept towards deeper water, was that Charlene, just coming home from work, still in her Wendy‘s uniform, trapped inside, couldn‘t swim, which explained why she called her brother on her cell phone instead of just saving herself like almost everyone here, horror-struck and watching, was hoping she‘d do. 

In sickeningly slow motion, with all four car windows shut tighter than a drum, Charlene and her car slipped into water about 10 feet deep and sank.  The first to reach here was a doctor.  But try as he did, that stick he had was no match for the safety glass. 

DR. ROCKY KHOSLA, RESCUED WOMAN FROM SINKING SUV:  I was pounding away, and she had her hands against the glass, and she was terrified. 

LARSON:  And then Charlene was gone.  Almost a full minute went by, but unbeknown to everyone was that Howard Absetz, a 43-year-old unemployed store manager, the man in the middle, had somehow reached through Charlene‘s front window. 

HOWARD ABSETZ, RESCUED WOMAN FROM SINKING SUV:  For me to actually feel her grasp my arm was a real shock.  And then the second time that she grasped my arm, I knew right then that I could get her out. 

LARSON:  And then, up she came.  Of course, no one knew Charlene couldn‘t swim.  And there was a moment coming up here where she almost drowned the good doctor.  But everyone eventually dragged Charlene to safety. 

But here is the odd part.  When Charlene‘s car was towed from the water, all four windows were still closed.  How they opened just enough to let her out and then closed again, no one knows. 

ABSETZ:  There was something there.  I can‘t explain it, but something happened for her to be able to be alive today, for me able to pull her out.  Something happened for that to happen. 

LARSON:  Something Charlene and Howard and everyone here is still wondering about. 

John Larson, NBC News, Los Angeles.


CARLSON:  I don‘t what happened, but I know a miraculous rescue when I see one.  That woman should be dead.  That is really shocking video. 

Coming up, Paris Hilton has been accused of being a space cadet, but now it may actually be true.  Why she‘s booking a trip to outer space, possibly one way.  Don‘t get your hopes up. 

And next, Jerry Springer, politician, talk show host, and now my main rival on “Dancing with the Stars.”  Plus, we may bring out Joe‘s audition tape.  Wait until you see that.  We‘ll be right back.


CARLSON:  I‘ll be moonlighting the next few weeks in “Dancing with the Stars.”  My colleagues here at MSNBC have been pretty supportive, including Joe Scarborough.  Take a look. 


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Are you ready? 

SCARBOROUGH:  I look like a (bleep) idiot.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  No, no, no, no.  This is going to be great.  You got to show the Joe.  This is going to be great.  This is going to push us over the top. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  I think it‘s brilliant. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Tucker, kiss my (bleep).


CARLSON:  It‘s just too great.  Sorry, Joe, but in 13 days it will be me pitting my fancy footwork against Vivica Fox, Mario Lopez, and talk show host Jerry Springer, to name but a few.  It‘s anyone‘s guess who will win.  Sportsbook.com, though, is guessing anyway.  Jerry Springer and I at the bottom of the group.  Odds are 18-1 on me, 30-1 on him.  That‘s day.  They‘ll improve. 

Jerry Springer joined me today on my show earlier, and I asked if he was ready for the big dance-off.  Here‘s what he said. 


JERRY SPRINGER, TALK SHOW HOST:  Tucker, yes, first of all, I give up. 

You win, OK?  This is...

CARLSON:  No, no, I was giving up.  You win. 

SPRINGER:  No, no, I—it‘s pathetic.  I am horrible.  Here is what I want to know.  I know that, at the end of, you know, the first night, dancing, then the next day people get to vote the first people off.  Have they ever, like, stopped a dance in the middle?  You know how you stop a fight?  That‘s what I‘m concerned about, that someone is going to throw in the towel in the middle of my dance and say, “That‘s it.  Get him out of here.” 

CARLSON:  A technical knockout in the dance.  How much are you practicing? 

SPRINGER:  I think...

CARLSON:  I mean, are you practicing every day?

SPRINGER:  Oh, no, no, no.  You know, when I met my dancing partner, and she‘s very nice, and she‘s a professional dancer, she‘s excellent and all that.  And she says, “What do you want to work on?”  And I said, “The only thing you need to know is CPR because it‘s hopeless.” 

I do a couple of hours a day, and then I do three days a week—I would say about six hours a week, you know, is what I practice. 

CARLSON:  So are you...

SPRINGER:  It‘s not going to do any good.

CARLSON:  Are you good at it?  What dance are you learning? 

SPRINGER:  I‘m horrible.  I‘m horrible.  But this is—first of all, and this really isn‘t fair—I don‘t mean to be whining, Tucker—but everyone, including you, is at least 25 to 30 years younger than me. 

CARLSON:  That‘s true.

SPRINGER:  And unless there‘s a senior division, you know, it‘s just -

this is ridiculous.  I‘ll be out. 

CARLSON:  I think I‘m the next oldest to you.

SPRINGER:  I‘m voting for you.  I‘m voting for you.

CARLSON:  I‘m voting for you, Jerry.  But so what dance are you doing? 

And can you give us an above-the-waist demonstration of yourself? 

SPRINGER:  Above the waist?  Yes.  No, it‘s—no, that‘s not it.  I think—the cha-cha.  Are we allowed to say? 

CARLSON:  I think we‘re allowed to say.


CARLSON:  I‘m doing the cha-cha.

SPRINGER:  Yes.  We‘re doing the same dance, right?  We do this—everyone, all the guys, do the same dance the first night, isn‘t that true? 

CARLSON:  There is no way I will be as stylish as you are.  Jerry Springer, I‘m actually really excited to see you in Los Angeles 13 days from today. 

SPRINGER:  Yes, it will be fun.  It will be fun.

CARLSON:  It‘s going to be excellent.

SPRINGER:  It will be a smackdown, Tucker Springer, next!

CARLSON:  Excellent.  Sell it on Pay-Per-View.  Jerry Springer, thank you, Jerry. 

SPRINGER:  Yes.  There you go.  Thank you, Tucker.


CARLSON:  Not to brag, here‘s a glimpse at my dancing prowess.  As you can see, I don‘t plan to go down without a fight.  It could be ugly, fashion-wise, anyway. 

And speaking of dancing, if you happen to live in the Philadelphia area, the highlight of your week just might be something FOX-29 has dubbed “mascot Monday.”  Watch this. 


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Let me introduce Boog the Bear (ph), Elliot the Elk, and Caitlin the Intern.  Let‘s rock it.  Come on, let‘s get some music going in here. 



CARLSON:  Now, you know what the problem with a segment like that is? 

When you actually want to get back to real news, this is what happens. 


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  We‘ve got a big show coming up tomorrow, a lot of stuff.  One of the things we‘re hoping to get is the STAR trial, a study of Tamoxifen and Raloxifene and its impact on breast cancer.  They‘re releasing the results today.  We‘re going to have some results tomorrow.


CARLSON:  It happens a lot at MSNBC.  Men in chicken costumes come bounding through. 

Well, a nightly trip to “Hollyweird.”  One pop tart‘s private affair accidentally turns extremely public.  We‘ll tell you all about it, next.


CARLSON:  Roll out the red carpet.  It‘s time to take a tour of “Hollyweird.”

First up, it seems Kevin Federline isn‘t just the deadbeat husband of Britney Spears.  Now he plays one on television.  Kevin‘s friends say he is guest starring on the HBO show “Entourage,” only the best show on TV.  He‘ll be playing—you‘ve got it—the do-nothing husband of a young starlet.  There‘s a stretch. 

Here now with all the Hollywood buzz, from “Star” magazine, Jill Dobson and “OK” magazine‘s Rob Chilton.

Jill, is this a good move for Kevin Federline? 

JILL DOBSON, “STAR” MAGAZINE:  It‘s probably a great move for Kevin, you know?  He‘s going to be going on “CSI,” as well, and so now with this he‘s going to be doing a couple of different acting jobs.  He also has, you know, got his rapping career going.  And he all started as a backup dancer, so he should be pretty happy with where his career is going. 

CARLSON:  That‘s amazing, a paying job.  I suppose any paying job is good if you‘re Kevin Federline, maybe.  Now, wait, doesn‘t—doesn‘t it kind of wreck the mystique?  The whole point of being Kevin Federline is you don‘t work.

DOBSON:  That‘s true, that‘s true.  But Kevin wants to be known as his own man, so he‘s getting out there.  And he‘s pretty lucky to be getting all these opportunities.  He‘s obviously had no formal training in way, shape or form, but he‘s still getting the opportunities that, you know, Julliard-trained actors and musicians don‘t get, which is kind of...


CARLSON:  He‘s living the dream, K-Fed.

Well, next up, Brad Pitt‘s leading lady Angelina Jolie snubs Oprah. 

Jill, “Star” is reporting it.  What is the story here? 

DOBSON:  Well, sources have told “Star” that Oprah asked Angelina if she would get involved with Oprah‘s school for girls in Africa and that Angelina said no, and that the reason for saying no is that Angelina is angry that Oprah seemed to very blatantly take Jennifer Aniston‘s side in the Jen and Brad breakup.  So that‘s what the reports are.  On the other hand, I‘m not going to blast Angelina too much, because she‘s done so much for people in Africa and in different parts of the world in her role as a U.N. goodwill ambassador.

CARLSON:  She‘s gotten a lot of publicity for it, too.  I also took the former wife‘s side, and that‘s why I feel snubbed every time I run into Angelina, say, in, you know, Zimbabwe or Kinshasa.

Next, poor Paris Hilton, her new album isn‘t selling very well.  So what‘s an heiress to do?  Well, it turns out, go look for fans on another planet.  Paris Hilton reportedly has bought a ticket to go into space. 

Rob, what was she thinking, assuming she was thinking?

ROB CHILTON, “OK” MAGAZINE:  Well, I was thinking about this, and I thought, if you‘re Paris Hilton, you‘ve stayed at every five-star resort in the world, you know, you‘ve been to every spa, you‘ve had every kind of treatment, you‘ve had every luxury known to man, so where do you go next for your vacation?  And the answer is space.  So I think it‘s a pretty logical move for Paris, I think. 

CARLSON:  Now, who sold her, who was the genius who sold Paris Hilton a ticket to outer space?  I mean, that‘s pretty clever. 

CHILTON:  It‘s Richard Branson, who is a very, very clever guy, a very rich guy, so that‘s why he‘s rich, because he‘s very clever.  And Paris reportedly has bought or is interested in buying a ticket, $195,000 to go into space.  And, you know, pocket change for Paris Hilton.  She spends that on dog toys, I would imagine, in a month.  So I don‘t think it‘s going to be a stretch for her.  And I think, you know, why not?  If it happens, it‘ll be a fantastic experience.  And why not go for it?

CARLSON:  Rob, when you write the definitive investigative piece on where Paris Hilton gets her money, call me, would you?  Because I want to hear it.

Next, Jessica Simpson is keeping quiet about her new man and everything else.  The pop tart has laryngitis.  Rob, what is she keeping quiet about? 

CHILTON:  Well, it has emerged that Jessica may be dating the rock singer John Mayer.  He was previously linked to Jennifer Love Hewitt.  He‘s known as—you know, he‘s supporting Sheryl Crow at the moment.  He kind of writes what he calls “sissy rock,” that‘s how he dubs his own music.

You know, he‘s a touchy-feely, kind of hugging, so he‘s an emotional kind of guy.  So, I don‘t know, will that be a good match for Jessica?  We‘ll have to wait and see.  But it‘s early days.  You know, “OK” interviewed Jessica late July, and she said that she was not ready to start dating yet.  So, you know, it‘s only the end of August, so I think, if she is dating him, she‘ll be taking it very, very slowly. 

CARLSON:  Good for John Mayer.  I know somebody who knows him. 

Apparently he‘s a pretty good guy. 


CARLSON:  Finally, Elton John says he wants to make a hip-hop album. 

Jill, do you think it‘s going to work, people are going to buy this album?

DOBSON:  I think it‘s genius.  You know, Elton John paired up with Eminem at an awards show, and it got a lot of attention.  And it was a great performance.  And I think he‘s following in the footsteps of his rival, Madonna, learning from her a little bit.  She‘s always reinventing herself, and she also makes these friendships with younger artists, like Britney, and helps get her popular with this whole younger generation and so that she‘s always selling albums.  I think Elton John is doing the same thing. 

CARLSON:  Can I just make an obvious point?  That guy has an incredible hairpiece.  Even though we know it‘s a rug, it looks real.  It‘s amazing.  Everybody who wears a hairpiece should take a clue from this man.  It‘s amazing.

CHILTON:  I‘m sorry, Tucker.  I have to disagree with Jill there.  Sorry, Jill, but I think this, if Elton John makes a rap record and tries to become a hip-hop star, I think it‘ll be one of the most disastrous things ever to happen to music. 

CARLSON:  Yes, it‘s going to be terrible...

CHILTON:  And so...

CARLSON:  ... but the rug is great.  Thank you both, Jill Dobson, Rob Chilton, appreciate it. 

That‘s all the time we have tonight.  I‘m Tucker Carlson.  Joe comes back tomorrow to rescue his show.  “LOCK UP: RETURN TO VALLEY STATE” starts right now.



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