By Senior producer
msnbc.com
updated 5/5/2005 10:55:29 AM ET 2005-05-05T14:55:29

5 p.m. ET
Today a judge threw out Pfc. Lynndie England's guilty plea on one count because testimony from Pvt. Graner conflicted with her story on the conspiracy charge.  Basically, the whole plea agreement that got her thirty months of incarceration has been bagged.  Maybe she'll get more jail time now, and maybe less.

Should she go to jail at all?  In the 5 p.m. hour we'll take a look at the Abu Ghraib scandal and ask whether or not the right people have been charged.  Just how high up did those orders come from?

We'll also take a look at the controversy surrounding American Idol as America waits for another elimination round tonight followed by an expose of the hit show on ABC.

Join us, and keep your e-mails coming

12 p.m. ET
I've been following the American Idol controversy, and I have to say it seems a tad overblown.  While I am curious to see what bombshells might be lurking in the Primetime Live story tonight, I have a feeling that we've heard it all already.  Paula might have slept with a contestant, there have been some voting snafus, and the judges have shady pasts.  So what?  That's kind of why we watch, isn't it?

We'll see, but let me say this--If the biggest revelation is that Paula coached a contestant in her downtime, I have no problem with that.  Those contestants spend the entire week in between shows practicing, training, and getting advice from the producers.  Paula does not vote for the winner, the viewers do.

The real scandal would be finding out that the voting is rigged in some way.  I believe that is the only thing that could turn off the audience.  The thrill of the show for viewers is that they can determine the outcome, like a twist-a-plot novel.  Take that thrill away and it becomes Star Search.

Oh, and there happens to be real news in the world, as well.

We're leading off today with a look at the insurgency in Iraq.  If you look at the death toll recently you would think that they are bigger and badder than ever, but now a letter from Zarqawi has surfaced which reveals a morale problem among the terrorists.  Is it possible that the fighting we are seeing is all just part of the formation of a new government, the natural progression of an emerging democracy from violence and strife to stability?  We'll discuss.

And later, a Kansas school board is debating the inclusion of creationism in science classes.  There seems to be a growing assault on evolution, or at least the teaching of evolution.  Why do people insist on arguing with science?  Should we include all viewpoints on creation in our classrooms?

E-mail us and we'll keep you Connected.

Send us your thoughts. Maciulis@MSNBC.com and Connected@MSNBC.com.

© 2013 msnbc.com Reprints

Discuss:

Discussion comments

,