updated 8/2/2005 11:26:14 AM ET 2005-08-02T15:26:14

Guest: Max Kellerman, Mort Zuckerman, Rachel Maddow

TUCKER CARLSON, HOST:  Tonight, we‘re discussing baseball‘s latest steroid controversy, plus, why lean times are in store for many of our viewers on the Atkins diet.  And we assume there are some. 

But, first, let‘s welcome the publisher of “U.S. News & World Report,” as well as “The New York Daily News,” Mort Zuckerman.  And soon to be publishing her own memoirs, Rachel Maddow. 

Thank you both.

RACHEL MADDOW, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST:  Thanks, Tucker.  They‘ll all be about...

(CROSSTALK)

(LAUGHTER)

CARLSON:  Yes.  Can‘t wait to read them.

The first situation, a stern response to the recent terror bombings in London.  Thousands of police marched and were stationed on streets and rooftops again today, as British authorities braced the country for another attack on the nation‘s capital‘s mass transit systems. 

As aggressive as the British have been, though, political correctness still rules the day in the U.K.  An internal memo from the Bedfordshire Police Department lists dos and don‘ts for officers making terror arrests.  Among them, police are instructed to take off their shoes before raiding the homes of Islamic militants. 

And I hope, at the end of the show, we get 100 e-mails saying this is an Internet hoax; it‘s not real. 

But here‘s what the memo apparently said.  Not only did officers have to take off their shoes.  It says, raids into Muslim houses are discouraged for a number of religious dignity reasons.  Officers aren‘t allowed to bring in police dogs.  They shouldn‘t enter occupied bedrooms or bathrooms, shouldn‘t use camcorders or cameras.  If people are praying at home, officers should stand aside and not disrupt the prayer. 

You have got to be kidding.  These rules do not, it goes without saying, apply to Episcopalians, right? 

(LAUGHTER)

CARLSON:  Just Muslims.  It‘s an out—I mean, what do you think of this? 

MORT ZUCKERMAN, EDITOR IN CHIEF, “U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORT”:  Well, I actually don‘t think that‘s the policy of Blair. 

I mean, Blair has been very explicit about dismissing any of the other explanations or excuses for the terrorism, really blaming it on the—that part of the Muslim religion which has really become extremist.  And they‘re taking a very tough line. 

They didn‘t, for example, really hold off on the police after they killed the wrong person.  I mean, they actually shot him five times. 

CARLSON:  Yes. 

ZUCKERMAN:  They‘re going very, very strongly now favor of pursuing these—now, this may be a local reaction, but I don‘t think it‘s Blair‘s reaction. 

And the support for Blair jumped dramatically, not only in terms of his personal popularity—it‘s the first time he‘s had a majority supporting him—but in terms of all that he‘s doing to oppose terrorism.  And, indeed, there‘s—for the first time, there‘s a majority of support in England for the war in Iraq. 

CARLSON:  Presumably, even though you take off your shoes, you can still shoot the guy five times in the head. 

MADDOW:  Right.  Sure.  Exactly, even before you realize he‘s just a Brazilian electrician on the way to work. 

I mean, listen, since the July 21 attacks, the British police have made two dozen arrests in two countries.  They have got all four suspected bombers.  They‘ve got the bomb-making factory.  We‘re going to talk about later on the show that they may be the ones who are shutting down al Qaeda online.  They‘ve done a lot.  And if we want to blame them for how they‘re doing it, I feel like we kind of need to consider where we‘re coming from on this. 

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  Well, I don‘t know.  We haven‘t been attacked since September 11.  I think that‘s the measure that matters.  I think we‘re doing a pretty good job by that one measure. 

MADDOW:  I think the—I think the British police are doing a pretty good measure.  And I don‘t think you should assume it‘s political correctness.  This may be operational.

They need relationships with Muslims in Britain in order for Muslims who are moderates to report on extremists in their midst.  They need to—they need to develop relationships with Muslims.  And they know how they‘re doing it. 

CARLSON:  Yes, of course.  And you shouldn‘t offend or unduly single out or be mean to law-abiding Muslims.  And most Muslims in Great Britain are law-abiding, decent people.  However, take off your shoes before you raid the houses of suspected Islamic militants?  Come on.

MADDOW:  You want to tell British police how to do their job?  I don‘t think so.

ZUCKERMAN:  And the other thing that is a little bit disturbing about the Muslim community there, in the poll that they had, some 6 percent basically said that they would participate in terrorist attacks and certainly supported it; 25 percent said they supported it and 50 odd percent say they supported the general aims of the terrorists. 

So, you have a Muslim community there that, by and large, is widely disaffected from being in a country which has basically nurtured them, welcomed them, given them welfare and education.  And, yet, it‘s the second- and third-generation Muslims who have now..

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  It tells you something.  We‘re going to be dealing with that in this country, no question.

ZUCKERMAN:  Absolutely, and all over Europe. 

CARLSON:  Well, our next situation, religion in schools. 

This morning‘s “New York Times” reports on a controversy that has broken out in Odessa, Texas.  The school board there unanimously approved an elective religion course that is designed to teach the Bible as a historical document.  Not everyone thinks the course passes constitutional muster, though.

At a news conference today, a liberal advocacy group attacked the curriculum as inaccurate and, more damningly, sectarian.  The point is that they believe that this curriculum pushes a Protestant view of the world.

Two things that struck me about this.  One, “The New York Times”—people are always asking, you know, what are examples “The New York Times” is liberal in its news coverage?  They described the Texas Freedom Network, which is an avowedly, openly liberal left advocacy group, as—quote—

“an advocacy group for religious freedom.”  Totally neutral, not...

MADDOW:  But they‘re a religious group.  They‘re an ecumenical religious group. 

CARLSON:  They are a...

MADDOW:  Yes. 

CARLSON:  ... a liberal interest group.  They may have...

(CROSSTALK)

MADDOW:  A liberal religious interest group. 

CARLSON:  That‘s right.  And that is not in any way a pejorative term.  But they‘re a liberal group.  And I think they ought to be identified this way in the paper. 

Look, the point is that schools don‘t teach the Bible most—for the most part, public schools in this country.  And they—they of course shouldn‘t to teach it with a religious agenda.  But they ought to teach it.  I mean, Western civilization is in part founded on it.  You ought to know what is in it.  And very few do. 

ZUCKERMAN:  Of course, there was a Supreme Court case which basically outlawed the use of the Bible in academic programs back about 40 years ago.  So, you do have a bit of a legal problem there.

And the—the general danger is that, whatever is asserted—and I frankly think that this is true in that particular community—this is not just an idea of just teaching the Bible.  You have to believe that it goes beyond that simple agenda.  And that‘s where the danger lies in all of this. 

CARLSON:  Well, I think, in this case, it probably did go beyond that simple agenda. 

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  I think a lot of things in this curriculum are hard to defend.

ZUCKERMAN:  Right. 

CARLSON:  And I wouldn‘t defend them.  But I would defend the idea that people ought to know, students ought to know what is in the Bible, because so much is predicated on it. 

MADDOW:  Sure.  You have—you have to be able to be taught the Bible.  You have to be able to teach religion.  Those things exist in—in academic freedom, as they always have.

But religious freedom means that you get to worship the way that your faith dictates you ought to.  And government funds don‘t tell you that there‘s one way to look at the world, one way to look at faith, one way to look at God.  That‘s religious freedom.  That‘s why we had pilgrims.  That‘s why we‘re all here, right? 

CARLSON:  Right. 

MADDOW:  So, you can‘t say, as this curriculum does, NASA has proven that the—that the Earth stopped in the Book of Joshua, so that—proven, as if the biblical view of creation has been proven by science and this needs to be our way of understanding what the Bible means in culture. 

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  But, I guess, I would submit, that‘s not the big problem in contemporary America.  I agree with you.  You shouldn‘t do that.  And they shouldn‘t be doing that, if they are indeed doing it.  However, the problem isn‘t pushing a sectarian agenda on students.  It‘s not telling them that religious—religion exists at all, which is sort of the default position of most schools.

MADDOW:  But the group that you‘re saying is the liberal group, Texas Freedom Network, they‘re actually promoting a different way of teaching the Bible, a way that‘s not sectarian.  They‘re not saying, don‘t ever talk about the Bible.

CARLSON:  Well, I don‘t think they‘re doing a lot to promote teaching the Bible in schools.  I spent about an hour on their Web site.  If they are, they‘re keeping it pretty well hidden, at least on their Web site.

MADDOW:  I don‘t think anybody is against talking about the Bible, just not teaching it as devotion in public schools. 

CARLSON:  All right, an extraordinarily weird situation in Utah, where Salt Lake City officials have now dropped sexual misconduct charges against an 8-year-old boy.  The boy apparently was involved in a game of truth or dare with his 14-year-old baby-sitter that involved mildly lewd conduct. 

Upon investigation, prosecutors charged the boy with lewd acts with a minor, even though, of course, he was a minor.  Though the charges against the boy have been dropped, his mother, Michelle Grosbeck, remains furious. 

The point is, if you‘re going to take sex crimes seriously—and we should—and if you‘re going to set them aside, apart from all other crimes and say, these are the ones we really won‘t tolerate—and you should—then you have to define very narrowly what a sex crime is.  Otherwise, it defeats the whole purpose.

ZUCKERMAN:  Right. 

CARLSON:  And it makes it hard to have tough laws, right? 

ZUCKERMAN:  It‘s preposterous, I have to say, that an 8-year-old kid who is involved at—almost at the behest of a 14-year-old baby-sitter that he, in some way or another, virtually gets indicted by the local police, I mean, that just is preposterous. 

She‘s much older, understood clearly much more that—what was involved than he was.  I mean, there was no—if any—any—a crime has to involve an intention of doing something.  And you cannot attribute an intention to an 8-year-old... 

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  She said, I dare you to touch my breast. 

Now, I wouldn‘t care for it if our baby-sitter did that.  On the other hand, I wouldn‘t call the cops. 

MADDOW:  Right. 

CARLSON:  Why are the police involved in this in the first place?

MADDOW:  That‘s the weird thing, is that—the weird thing is that, A, she called the police, and the police‘s response, which was, OK, we‘re going to indict your 8-year-old.  That‘s—I mean, both sides of it are strange, I think.

ZUCKERMAN:  I think I probably would change baby-sitters immediately. 

MADDOW:  Yes. 

CARLSON:  I would...

(CROSSTALK)

ZUCKERMAN:  ... put it that way.

CARLSON:  I would, too.

And you might change diets, too, after hearing this, the situation with the Atkins diet, the company pushing the no-bread, carb-cutting way of eating apparently ought of dough.  Pardon.  It‘s a pun-filled evening. 

(LAUGHTER)

CARLSON:  Atkins Nutritionals has filed for bankruptcy.  The company‘s high-protein, low-carb diet was hotter than a deep fat fryer for more than a year.  But, like most diets, Americans didn‘t stick with it, gained the weight back.  The company now says it will try to trim the fat by focusing on nutrition bars and shakes. 

Now, Mort, you know much more about investment than I do.  But I‘ve—

I‘ve tasted an Atkins nutrition bar.  And I don‘t think they‘re going to go far selling them. 

(LAUGHTER)

ZUCKERMAN:  I think they‘re going to have a limited market. 

(LAUGHTER)

ZUCKERMAN:  I don‘t think the...

(CROSSTALK)

(LAUGHTER)

ZUCKERMAN:  I think the Atkins family never got over the fact that, when he died, he had gained something like hundreds of pounds, or he weighed, I don‘t know... 

MADDOW:  Is that true? 

ZUCKERMAN:  Oh, yes. 

MADDOW:  Wow. 

ZUCKERMAN:  He just had ballooned.

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  He was like circus-freak big at that point?

ZUCKERMAN:  Yes.  Well, he was 250, 300 pounds.  He was in that range. 

And this was the man who was the father of the Atkins diet. 

They tried to suppress that story, if you‘ll remember.  Certainly, his family did, because, obviously, they had a big business which was dependent upon the credibility of the diet.  And he was the living example of how that diet didn‘t work. 

So, I think they have problems.  And, boy, I‘ll tell you, that stock is plummeting.  I wouldn‘t—I wouldn‘t be a big investor. 

(LAUGHTER)

ZUCKERMAN:  I‘ll just put it that way. 

MADDOW:  The thing about—that is interesting about the Atkins diet is that it did spawn the whole low-carb craze.

ZUCKERMAN:  Yes. 

MADDOW:  Which has stuck with us.  And I think—I actually think Americans have kind of absorbed this idea that we shouldn‘t eat as much sugar and carbs as we want. 

But you can‘t corner the market on that and turn that into a big business.  It just means that people are going to eat less sugar. 

CARLSON:  I—I—I always felt that Atkins was undone by a stealth campaign by the grain industry, by Archer Daniels Midland.  I mean, truly, the bread people were upset.  I mean, the croissant makers were going crazy.

ZUCKERMAN:  Do you know that Archer Midland now makes bread out of ethanol?  I mean, that is the real...

(CROSSTALK)

(LAUGHTER)

CARLSON:  Right. 

CARLSON:  Federally subsidized just for you. 

All right, Rachel, Mort, please stick around.

Still much more to come.  Here‘s some of it.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

RAFAEL PALMEIRO, MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL PLAYER:  I‘ve never used steroids, period. 

CARLSON (voice-over):  Palmeiro says it ain‘t so.  But is this really a strike against baseball? 

Why is Eminem getting a bad rap from Ford? 

Plus, a corny story with a kernel of truth to it. 

And they‘re off.  We‘ll take you to the cutting edge of track and field competition. 

It‘s all ahead on THE SITUATION. 

PALMEIRO:  I do not know how to say it any more clearly than that.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Baseball star Rafael Palmeiro tests positive for steroids.  Did he lie before Congress and what does his situation do to his Hall of Fame chances?  Answers ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Welcome back. 

Time for “Op Ed Op Ed.”  We spent the day perusing almost every editorial page in this country, from which we‘ve taken the three most interesting.  We‘ll respond to them in turn. 

First up, in today‘s “L.A. Times,” Niall Ferguson argues that secularism has particularly—left British particularly vulnerable to Islamic extremism.  Interesting thesis. He writes: “Britons have heard a great deal from Tony Blair and others about the threat posed to their way of life by Muslim extremists.  But how far has their own loss of religious faith turned Britain into a soft target for the fanaticism of others?”

It‘s a fascinating piece.  And he makes the point—correct, I think

·        that Christianity has essentially evaporated in Europe and certainly in Great Britain.  People just aren‘t observant at all.  And a lot of people say that they don‘t believe in anything at all.  And I think the point is, the connection here is that, when you don‘t believe in anything, it‘s very hard to call what other people do wrong.  It‘s hard to take a stand against the pernicious ideas of others when you don‘t have your own countervailing ideas. 

ZUCKERMAN:  Well, America, frankly, is a country in which there‘s a huge commitment to religion and to the practice of religious fate, and yet we suffered 9/11. 

I don‘t think—I do agree with him that, in fact, there‘s been a

virtual disappearance of the practice of Christianity in Europe and, indeed

in England.  I just don‘t think that‘s what makes them vulnerable.  It is -

·        it is—it is a commitment to a kind of multiculturalism and political correctness in which they have said to a lot of the worst imams and—from all over the Middle East, welcome to—to England. 

And these are the ones who preach religious hatred.  And these are the ones who turn on a lost generation of Muslims, who‘ve lost contact with their original country, both in language and custom, and aren‘t that well accepted in England.  I—I just don‘t think it‘s because of the fact that they have reduced their commitment to the practice of Christianity that they‘re vulnerable. 

CARLSON:  Interesting.

MADDOW:  I don‘t—I don‘t think that religion makes a person a good person or bad person.  And I don‘t think religion makes a country good or bad or weak or strong. 

I mean, in terms of individual people, look at the Catholic sex abuse scandal.  In terms of religion and countries, look at Afghanistan.  It doesn‘t necessarily translate into anything for you politically.   And it doesn‘t save you from attack one way or the other.  Look at 9/11.  Look at what‘s happened in Britain. 

I think that you need to believe in something.  And I don‘t think that God has to be it.  I think there are a lot of good people in the world who are atheists or agnostics.

CARLSON:  Of course.

MADDOW:  Or who are a different religion than you are.  It just doesn‘t work out that way.  But you need to believe in something...

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  But if you don‘t value your own culture, if you don‘t think your own culture is worth preserving, fighting for, then you‘re ripe for takeover.  And, historic...

MADDOW:  But there isn‘t a correlation between atheism and believing in your...

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  No, no, there‘s not.

However, in Great Britain, anyway, historical, I mean, look, the state is the head of the church.  I mean, it‘s impossible to disentangle Christianity, again, a state function there, technically, from British culture. 

Anyway...

ZUCKERMAN:  That may be a part of the problem of the royal family. 

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  Well, it may have been. 

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  ... the gene pool.

MADDOW:  Did you see the headline in “The Onion” that said that the British people believe that the strong leadership of her majesty the queen will lead us out of this problem? 

CARLSON:  Oh, that‘s sad.

MADDOW:  I mean, it‘s—it‘s become a joke. 

CARLSON:  Well, in the “Atlanta Journal-Constitution,” Scott Alderman writes that many school districts start school in early August, and it‘s just wrong, he says: “July is barely over.  The heat index is 110.  Schools are starting back.  Starting school this early is wrong and it needs to change.”

It‘s not just wrong.  It‘s sick.  Kids spend too much time in school anyway, in my view.  They need to be out there playing with their friends and their siblings and playing baseball and fishing and reading and enjoying themselves and leading normal lives.  and, instead, we‘re all sort of seizing with this idea that the more time that they spend in school, the more successful they‘re going to be.  That‘s a total crock.  And we ought to say so. 

ZUCKERMAN:  Well, unfortunately, I don‘t think the facts bear out that opinion, although I really am happy to hear it. 

(LAUGHTER)

ZUCKERMAN:  If you—if you look at a city like New York, where they had summer school programs to make up the deficiency in education at grade three and grade five, they have had a great deal to do with the improvement of the test scores of those kids.  So, there are a lot of kids in this country for whom what you say is accurate.

But there are also a huge amount of kids in this country, particularly those who live in urban areas, who really need the extra schooling.  By a wide margin, they just have a—a long, long way to go before they can keep up to the kind of levels of education that we need.  Just think.  Maybe 10 percent or 12 percent of the people who graduate from New York City schools can pass a regents exam, which is what you need to go to a university.  That‘s a disaster. 

MADDOW:  Yes. 

ZUCKERMAN:  These people need a tremendous amount of additional schooling. 

MADDOW:  Well, it may be that the—the additional schooling they

need may not correlate to days in schools.  Maybe the problem may be that -

·        what we have to focus on in schools now.

I‘m very much opposed to standardized testing.  I think, a lot of the time that is being spent in schools right now is teaching to standardized tests.  And that‘s part of the problem.  But it is interesting, too, that, as summer vacations have gotten shorter, there are these other vacations in the years that have gotten longer.

CARLSON:  Right. 

(CROSSTALK)

MADDOW:  Spring break has gotten longer.  There are these long weekends and stuff.

CARLSON:  Arbor Day, right.

(CROSSTALK)

MADDOW:  And, actually, I think that‘s more of a pain for parents. 

CARLSON:  Yes, but, look..

MADDOW:  To schedule around those weird little breaks.

CARLSON:  If you can‘t teach it in nine months, I don‘t know.  It‘s time to revaluate your ability to teach. 

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  Well, “The Boston Globe” weighs in on a controversy that rages across Massachusetts and all of New England, corn, how best to eat it. 

“The corn is in,” they write, “and few people are neutral on the subject.  Buttered or plain?  Spread with a knife or plop the corn right down on a butter stick and twirl vigorously?  Chew straight across in a typewriter pattern or go around in circles?”

I mean, “The Globe” acts like they‘re the same thing, the typewriter pattern or chew around in circles.  They try to establish a kind of moral equivalence between the conventional typewriter...

ZUCKERMAN:  Yes. 

CARLSON:  ... and the twirling approach, when, in fact, one, the typewriter approach, is the standard that civilized nations adhere to. 

(LAUGHTER)

MADDOW:  That‘s right. 

CARLSON:  OK?  And the twirling approach is just deviant.  It‘s sick.

MADDOW:  That‘s true.

CARLSON:  It‘s wrong, OK?

MADDOW:  Totally agree .

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  But they act like they‘re...

(LAUGHTER)

CARLSON:  They act like, oh, you know, to each his own.  Pick whatever one you want.  They‘re both the same.

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  And that‘s a lie.

ZUCKERMAN:  You know, it really—it‘s inspiring to me that you do have a sense of right and wrong. 

CARLSON:  I care.  I care, Mort.  Yes, I do. 

ZUCKERMAN:  On this kind of an issue.

And just to test it out, I did some research on it.  I took some corn. 

(LAUGHTER)

ZUCKERMAN:  I had the smallest possible—they don‘t call them—what do they call them? 

(CROSSTALK)

MADDOW:  ... kernels? 

ZUCKERMAN:  Kernels.  Kernels.  I knew...

(CROSSTALK)

(LAUGHTER)

ZUCKERMAN:  And—and the smaller the kernel, actually, the easier it is to eat either in the typewriter effect or in the circular thing. 

CARLSON:  Yes. 

ZUCKERMAN:  But I do agree with you.  I think, by and large, the—going across is the way to do it.  And I felt morally pure after I had done that.

CARLSON:  Totally.

MADDOW:  Yes. 

(CROSSTALK)

ZUCKERMAN:  Changed...

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  And it‘s not just Western bias.  I mean, that is—it‘s an absolute standard.

ZUCKERMAN:  Yes, absolutely.

CARLSON:  To which we can hold the world.

ZUCKERMAN:  Absolutely.

MADDOW:  I‘m totally with you.  And I‘m glad that Massachusetts is leading the way here in defining this. 

(CROSSTALK)

ZUCKERMAN:  And the other—the other thing, though, that I did have to think is, do I have the corn from what, when I do a typewriter, right to left or left to right?  That‘s an issue which is—you‘ve not addressed yet.  And I think you ought to think about it before giving...

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  Well, in Asia, it‘s—it‘s acceptable left—right to left. 

(LAUGHTER)

ZUCKERMAN:  Yes. 

CARLSON:  But, here, of course, it‘s left to right. 

ZUCKERMAN:  Yes.  Yes.  No, I appreciate that. 

MADDOW:  I agree. 

CARLSON:  Call me a...

MADDOW:  And I think that nipping this in the bud has saved your marriage. 

CARLSON:  Yes, call me...

(CROSSTALK)

(LAUGHTER)

CARLSON:  Call me a jingoist.  I‘m proud to be an American.  And I‘m proud to eat corn typewriter fashion. 

(LAUGHTER)

CARLSON:  Up next, baseball star Rafael Palmeiro tests positive for steroids five months after telling Congress he did no such thing ever.  Is this another black eye for America‘s pastime?  We‘ll discuss it next. 

Plus, was President Bush sidestepping the Senate in appointing John Bolton to the U.N.?  Was it a devious maneuver?  Fighting words from some angry Democrats when we come back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PALMEIRO:  I have never used steroids, period.  I do not know how to say it any more clearly than that.  Never.  The reference to me in Mr.  Conseco‘s book is absolutely false. 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  That was Baltimore Orioles star Rafael Palmeiro emphatically denying steroid use before Congress last march.  Today, he was suspended for 10 days for violating Major League Baseball‘s steroid policy.  Palmeiro calls his positive drug test an embarrassing situation, which it was. 

Joining me now, a man who is so excited by the topic, he refused to wait for his Outsider segment, so here he is live from Las Vegas, Max Kellerman.

MAX KELLERMAN, ESPN RADIO TALK SHOW HOST:  How you doing, Tucker?

CARLSON:  Thanks.

We searched far and wide for someone knowledgeable on this topic.  Then we realized, wait, Max Kellerman knows more than anybody.  So, thanks for joining us early.

KELLERMAN:  You couldn‘t—you couldn‘t find the guy.  So, they said, you know what?  We got Max on later in the show anyway.  Let‘s bring Max on.

CARLSON:  Actually, we thought you were the best.  And I think you are.

KELLERMAN:  Well, thank you very much.

CARLSON:  Maybe you can answer this question.  Call me naive—and doubtless you will—but isn‘t there a chance that he‘s telling the truth?  I mean, why would he take steroids knowing he‘s going to be tested, just a few months after giving a highly publicized testimony up on Capitol Hill?  Why would he do this?  He‘s not stupid. 

KELLERMAN:  Well, let me make a political analogy. 

Why would Gary Hart dare the press to dig up an affair when he‘s having an affair?  It‘s sort of the same thing.  I think that‘s one of the reasons so many people right now in the sports world are taken aback.  Palmeiro had a—had a kind of clean image.  He just collected his 3,000th hit, Tucker.  And he joined a very exclusive group, one of only four players in history to have 500 home runs and 3,000 hits.  By the way, two of the other three, Hank Aaron and Willie Mays.  Everybody has heard of those guys.  I mean, it‘s really exclusive company. 

So, it was—it is a big deal, especially when he‘s wagging his finger...

CARLSON:  Wait.  OK.

KELLERMAN:  ... testifying, I did not take steroids, when it turns out he did. 

CARLSON:  OK.  So, what‘s the headlines?  Baseball player lies? 

Sporting figure doesn‘t tell the truth?  I mean, how is that a big deal? 

He‘s still a great baseball player. 

KELLERMAN:  Well, first of all, let‘s put it this way.  In terms of cheating, the first guy—and I bring this up every time steroids comes up.  The first guy ever found corking his bat was Babe Ruth. 

Gaylord Perry, a pitcher, is in the Hall of Fame throwing an illegal

spitball.  Everyone knows that.  He wrote a book about it.  So, this is not

·        Palmeiro is not the first guy to cheat.  Steroids and human growth hormone are not the first way in which baseball players have cheated. 

But baseball has taken such a bad hit recently, with the BALCO scandal and everything and steroids and human growth hormone, that, for a guy with a clean-cut image, like Palmeiro, a guy who seemed to a lot of people to be a natural player who just—just achieved this incredible thing, 3,000 hits, 500 home runs—he‘s going to go into the Hall of Fame—for him to be found out, especially when he‘s standing there saying, make—let me make myself very clear...

CARLSON:  Well, wait.  Wait a second.

KELLERMAN:  ... that‘s the problem. 

CARLSON:  But why is taking steroids cheating?  Let‘s just back up a little bit. 

KELLERMAN:  OK.

CARLSON:  I mean, these guys, professional athletes of all kinds, have access to medical care, for instance, that ordinary people don‘t.  They‘re on diets that we can‘t even understand.  They take all kinds of nutritional supplements.  They have trainers. 

In other words, they have every artificial advantage a person can have.  So, why is taking steroids really any different?  It‘s not. 

KELLERMAN:  Well, I think the idea is that steroids can be—and human growth hormone can increase the risk of cancer, etcetera, and other bad health situation.  So the idea is that...

CARLSON:  OK.  Well, playing football is physically dangerous, so that‘s not...

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  I mean, come on.

KELLERMAN:  Tucker, no doubt about it. 

I think the question—when you say cheating, who are the players who are on the stuff really cheating?  They‘re not cheating the fans.  Fans love the offensive explosion since the steroid era.  You can look at the gate receipts.  They‘re not cheating baseball.  They‘re not cheating themselves, because they‘re making more money for their families.  They‘re cheating the clean players.  That‘s the only people they‘re really cheating. 

And I‘ve heard you make the argument about—about speeding laws, how you said, look, it‘s a quality of life vs. length of life issue, right, where, you know, just increase the speed limit.  Everyone wants to go faster and there are going to be some more fatalities, but you know what?  We don‘t have to all wait around so much. 

CARLSON:  Well, yes, you get home for dinner earlier.  But hold—hold on.

KELLERMAN:  Exactly.  This is the same sort of thing. 

(CROSSTALK)

KELLERMAN:  Palmeiro—you know, Palmeiro may live a shorter life and it may be a happier life because he juiced. 

CARLSON:  Well, OK, you say that he‘s cheating the players who don‘t use steroids.

Finally, Jose Canseco, I think, in his book, made the claim that the majority of professional baseball players use steroids. 

KELLERMAN:  Yes.  

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  A, do you think that‘s true?  And, B, if it is, then he‘s cheating a minority of people.  So...

KELLERMAN:  I‘m wondering—not even of people, of Major League Baseball players. 

I do think that‘s—I think it‘s probably 50 percent, from what I can gather.  I‘d say this.  It‘s less of a problem in baseball than in football, where there are high-impact collisions, as you mentioned earlier, in the heavyweight division in boxing, where, clearly, there are high-impact collisions.  And these guys, I‘d say 75 percent of them are juicing. 

CARLSON:  So, so, does this mean—finally, does this mean he‘s not getting into the Hall of Fame?  I mean, give me the bottom line.  Is it over for him in the eyes of history?

KELLERMAN:  I think that—I think, ultimately, he will get in. 

The thing about Palmeiro is, until he got his 3,000th hit and joined that elite company, 3,000th hit, 500 home runs, one of only four players in history, he was a borderline guy.  And I think he finally did that.  And a lot of people, like me, for instance, were saying, all right, you know what?  Throw up your hands.  He‘s a Hall of Famer. 

And now he goes back to being a borderline guy.  But I would say one last thing.  As you mentioned, who are they really cheating?  There‘s an ethos in baseball.  If you go to baseball clubhouses, the saying is, if you ain‘t cheating, you ain‘t trying.  Palmeiro‘s real crime is that got caught. 

CARLSON:  Oh, cynical, cynical. 

Max Kellerman, only three hands of blackjack, then come back to the studio.  You‘ll be joining us in just a moment. 

KELLERMAN:  You got it.

CARLSON:  Thank you. 

CARLSON:  Coming up, it‘s called the Motor City.  KISS called it Detroit Rock City.  But the Motors and the Rocks can‘t seem to get along.  Why did Ford Motor Company dump rapper Eminem from the assembly line?  Slim and Shady answers ahead on THE SITUATION.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Welcome back to THE SITUATION.  Sitting in tonight for Bob Crane, I‘m Tucker Carlson.

We‘ve still got the “Outsider” and our “Cutting Room Floor” to get to, so let‘s jump right back in Mort Zuckerman and Rachel Maddow.

So he unintentionally used steroids?  I don‘t think that he would have come out and said that unless he had some legal out.  I mean, I know I sound like an O.J. defender here, but I‘ve got to believe that. 

ZUCKERMAN:  I think, if you believe that, Tucker, you and I should have a private conversation afterwards, because you lack all the cynicism you need to be in journalism. 

(LAUGHTER)

I mean, that is about as lame a way to describe what he did as you could possibly come up with, and I don‘t agree that he is the only person being cheated or whatever.  The fans are being cheated. 

Because they look—there‘s a huge following in this country on the statistics of everybody in baseball.  And this really puts a kind of falsity to what he has accomplished, not that he isn‘t a great ballplayer and would have been a great ballplayer.

But there‘s now a very real difference between how you would look at his records and others. 

MADDOW:  Like the history of baseball, the statistics will start to have asterisks after a certain point in the ‘90s.

ZUCKERMAN:  No, absolutely.  Absolutely.

MADDOW:  But you sounded like you were all OK with steroids.  You said, “Well, they get all sorts other”...

CARLSON:  I don‘t see how they differ so much from a lot of other advantages athletes have.  I mean, you know...

ZUCKERMAN:  There is a difference between taking, you know, a multivitamin and taking heroin.  I mean, there are... 

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  I‘m not saying it‘s all the same.  I‘m merely saying, look, if an athlete, you know, injures his knee, he gets shot up with all sorts of drugs to help him play on an injured knee.  That‘s an advantage the other person doesn‘t have, and it doesn‘t seem so different from steroids.

MADDOW:  But steroids do really gross things here.

CARLSON:  Yes, they do.

MADDOW:  For one thing, you don‘t want to give people PCP, because it makes them strong, and have them go throw the javelin. 

CARLSON:  Well, and also, steroids shrink your genitals and give you acne on your back.  So that‘s kind of a...

(CROSSTALK)

MADDOW:  There is the genital consequence.  It always must be considered. 

CARLSON:  So that‘s the deal-killer right there.

(LAUGHTER)

Next situation, undiplomatic diplomat.  John Bolton took over as ambassador to the United Nations today.  President Bush gave him the job, ending a five-month battle with Senate Democrats, who accuse Bolton of being a boss from hell. 

The new ambassador, who has been highly critical of the U.N. in the past, wasted no time starting his new gig.  But the reception was less than warm. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(BOOING) 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  This is all—this is frustration Democrats—this is my pop psychologizing, but I know that I‘m right—this is Democrats angry at themselves for not standing up and putting a stop to the Iraq war, the Democrats.

(LAUGHTER) 

I‘m serious.  You voted for the Iraq war out of cowardice in the beginning.  And they‘re angry.  They want to take their anger out on someone.  John Bolton is just the wrong guy. 

He‘s not a neocon, for one thing.  He‘s not.  No, he‘s not.  He‘s an old-line conservative.  He‘s a traditional conservative.  He‘s not a neoconservative.  I don‘t think he would have gone to war in Iraq. 

But more to the point, for Democrats to say they‘re offended because he‘s too mean about North Korea, really is very telling.  You know, “He‘s not prepared to be at the U.N. because he said all these, you know, over-the-top things on North Korea.”  You can‘t be too over-the-top about North Korea.

ZUCKERMAN:  I agree with that.  I think the Democrat position here is virtually ridiculous.  I mean, here is somebody, frankly, who is a very experienced, very competent, and very talented, very smart guy.  And they‘re arguing about the way he manages people? 

Has anyone ever looked at the way Dick Holbrooke managed people?  He may have been an effective U.N. ambassador.  But he was just as difficult to deal with as John Bolton and then some.  What difference does that make? 

He is a very, very effective diplomat who enjoys the confidence of the administration.  He will be very effective at the U.N.  I think he should be. 

CARLSON:  Well, how about Jeane Kirkpatrick or Daniel Patrick Moynihan, two U.N. ambassadors who were very hard to deal with. 

(CROSSTALK)

MADDOW:  What‘s your evidence for his competence and effectiveness in his current job?  What‘s his current job?  Deputy undersecretary of state for arms control.

(CROSSTALK) 

CARLSON:  That was his job.

MADDOW:  That was his job.  So he‘s getting a big promotion now.  What was he in charge of there?  He was in charge of our relationship with North Korea on their issue about nuclear weapons, our relationship with Iran on their issue of nuclear weapons. 

CARLSON:  Actually, the president is in charge of that, but that was his area. 

MADDOW:  No, but he is the point man in the administration.  He is in charge of the nuclear nonproliferation treaty and the U.S.‘s relationship to all that, all of which have been disasters.

The Libyan arms deal, which is the—the Libyan weapons deal, which is the only thing that‘s gone well during the Bush administration, in terms of other countries, only succeeded because they were able to...

CARLSON:  No, I think Afghanistan has gone fairly well.  I mean...

MADDOW:  Invading Afghanistan, fair enough.  In terms of the things that John Bolton worked on, they had to kick him out of Libyan negotiations so that they would succeed.  Everything he‘s worked on has turned to the opposite of gold.  It‘s fundamentally incompetent.

CARLSON:  I do think it‘s—you know, first of all, that‘s such a gross overstatement and generalization to say he‘s fundamentally incompetent.  I think it‘s really an unfair thing to say.

MADDOW:  Everything that I know he‘s worked on...

CARLSON:  Hold on.  Moreover...

MADDOW:  ... is a disaster.

CARLSON:  ... to blame him for the North Korean debacle—and I think it is a debacle, I‘ll grant you that—I think is completely unfair.  I mean, that is something—and I‘m not—you know, I don‘t want to be accused of blaming Clinton for everything.  I‘m not a Clinton blamer. 

This is one instance where I think you can really raise questions about the way the Clinton administration trusted North Korea to abide by the terms of the deal.  And it didn‘t. 

(CROSSTALK)

ZUCKERMAN:  And Jimmy Carter, if you remember. 

CARLSON:  Yes, I do.

ZUCKERMAN:  He went unsolicited to North Korea to try and work out this fabulous deal where we pay them billions of dollars and they cheated on it.  You know, you cannot blame this on John Bolton. 

I do think that the American approach, actually, in North Korea is the right one, and we‘re finally making progress. 

MADDOW:  One other issue, just one example:  The issue of nuclear material in Russia.  We have a deal with Russia to lock that stuff up so that it doesn‘t fall into the wrong hands.  We locked up more before 9/11 than after. 

If you ask the Bush administration and his colleagues in the State Department why that is, it‘s because John Bolton‘s pigheadedness on the issue of liability held that up.  He‘s at the root of everything that keeps me up at night.  John Bolton has been a disaster.

CARLSON:  I think that‘s—I mean, you know, I‘m at a disadvantage because we don‘t have time to refute everything you said.  And I don‘t think I would refute all of it. 

But I will say, to blame John Bolton for loose nukes in the former Soviet Union...

MADDOW:  Isn‘t he the nukes...

CARLSON:  ... it‘s not a credible statement at all. 

MADDOW:  He‘s the loose nukes guy in the administration.  He‘s got to answer for something before he gets this promotion.

CARLSON:  Well, here‘s some good news, Rachel.  Maybe this will make you feel a little bit better. 

A mysterious situation in cyberspace.  Israeli intelligence officers say web sites linked to Al Qaeda have been disappearing from the Internet.  They believe someone has deliberately shut down those sites, effectively cutting off communication between terrorist leaders and their foot soldiers and would-be foot soldiers.  No one‘s taking credit, but the Israelis believe the British are behind it. 

Now, these are not just chat rooms where people disaffected with American foreign policy, right?  These are sites that have instructions on them how to strike a European city with full technical details.  I say amen to the unseen hands that have yanked this garbage off the Internet. 

Good.  I hope it is the British.  I hope it‘s us.  If I had more time

and expertise, I would do it

ZUCKERMAN:  There is an old saying, you know, “Talk British, think Yiddish.”  This is “Talk Yiddish, think British.” 

(LAUGHTER)

So I think it‘s wonderful after all these years to be able to average it out.

CARLSON:  It‘s a great combination.

MADDOW:  The amazing detail to me, though, in this story is that they say, when you actually look for specific instructions on how to make a bomb, the types of instructions that would allow somebody who doesn‘t know anything about it to make a bomb that would explode, the best source for information on the Internet is the right-wing American militia sites, still, which are still up there. 

The British in this case said, “Listen, these are operational sites that are training people.  We‘re going to take them down.”  But it does make you realize there‘s a lot of stuff out there that ought not be there. 

ZUCKERMAN:  Absolutely.

CARLSON:  Right.  Well, it‘s impossible to get rid of all of it.  But you can say, if there‘s a place where you know jihadists are congregating and recruiting, I don‘t know, shut it down, and illegally if necessary. 

MADDOW:  The British government got very mad at our Justice Department for posting an Al Qaeda training manual that was found in Birmingham. 

CARLSON:  Right, I remember this.

MADDOW:  And we‘ve still got it up there. 

CARLSON:  Next situation, Detroit backs out of a deal with one of hip-hop‘s biggest stars, and it‘s all because of some shady lyrics, at least what the Ford Motor Company says.

According to published reports, Eminem wanted to use a new Ford Sedan in the video for his latest tune.  But the company says the deal fell apart when they heard the lyrics.  Not surprisingly, they were vulgar.  Eminem‘s representative says they weren‘t aware of any dealings with Ford. 

Really, they were surprised they was vulgar?  Remember the tune about raping his mother or killing his wife?  And my favorite, from the song, “Superman,” “Put anthrax on a Tampax, and I‘ll slap you until you can‘t stand.”  Now, if there was ever a slogan you were going to use to woo soccer moms into buying a minivan, anthrax on a Tampax, that‘s just a winner. 

(CROSSTALK) 

ZUCKERMAN:  Shady lyrics is not exactly the way I would have described it, any more that I would compare sumo wrestling to finger exercise.  I mean, this guy writes some music that is not exactly the wholesome American image that Ford recommends. 

I think they do a lot better by advertising in “U.S. News.”  Now we‘re talking. 

CARLSON:  And the “New York Daily News,” for that matter. 

ZUCKERMAN:  Absolutely. 

MADDOW:  The brilliant thing here, though, is that this story is so perfect for Ford.  Because they get to say, on the one hand, “We are objecting to his very dirty lyrics.  And we think he‘s very offensive.”  And on the other hand, “Hey, Eminem called us for a car to put in his video.  We‘re Ford.  We‘re that cool.” 

They get to cash in on his cache and at the same time condemning him. 

CARLSON:  I think you‘re giving him—no company with over 100 employees could ever be that clever or agile. 

MADDOW:  You think so? 

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  I don‘t think so.  Unfortunately...

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  ... Rachel Maddow and Mort Zuckerman, thank you both very much. 

MADDOW:  Thanks, Tucker. 

CARLSON:  Coming up, should American school kids be paid to show up for class?  One of the most accomplished truants in the history of New York City stops by to hash it out. 

Plus, O.J. Simpson finds another place where he‘s not welcome, and it has something of a doozy.  Will we ever leave the poor, not guilty guy alone?  Should we?  I bet you Max Kellerman‘s wrong about it, and he is next to defend it.  Stick around. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Welcome back.  Time again to welcome the “Outsider.”  We talked about his world, the sports world, a few moments ago.  And now ESPN Radio and HBO Boxing host Max Kellerman bravely, if foolishly, joins us once again from Las Vegas to play devil‘s advocate in the news world. 

Max, welcome. 

KELLERMAN:  Thank you very much.

CARLSON:  See if you can defend this.

In an effort to curb binge drinking among the young, British regulators have introduced new rules barring depictions linking sex and drinking alcohol in advertisements.  From now on, no more attractive models in beer ads, because the advertising standards, authorities say, alcohol cannot be linked to sexual success.

Models who are unattractive are still acceptable.  Specifically, unattractive, overweight, middle-aged, balding, et cetera. 

Max, they are still welcome.  The point is, you can‘t claim that drinking leads to romantic success.  The problem is, it does.  And that‘s why young people do it. 

You know that.  I know that.  Everybody under the age of 30 knows that.  Of course, the down side is, after a while, it leads to impotence, and weight gain, and social humiliation.  But while you‘re young, it absolutely facilitates romantic success.  Without it, it would be a chased world. 

KELLERMAN:  Overweight, unattractive, middle-aged, our executive producer, Bill Wolfe (ph), on a positive note could have a job in modeling now. 

CARLSON:  That‘s true. 

KELLERMAN:  Look, Tucker, you‘re absolutely right.  It does work.  In

fact, Lambrini is one of these—I think they call—what do they call it

·        a semi-sparkling beverage which is advertised to young women.  The advertisements—or it‘s British, so we should say “advertisements” are working.  Of course, they are. 

But here‘s my argument.  And it‘s disgusting the way they‘re trying to impose taste, who‘s good-looking, who‘s not good-looking.  Yes, we, the taste Nazis, can tell you, yes, this person‘s good-looking, this person isn‘t. 

But here‘s my argument why it‘s OK.  The attractive people don‘t need the alcohol.  Who needs the alcohol to get sex more than a middle-aged, balding, unattractive man?  He‘s the guy who needs it, Tucker.

CARLSON:  No, but see, that‘s where it falls down, you see?  Because young people—it‘s not about appearance, it‘s about social awkwardness.  Young people need alcohol to drop their defenses, otherwise no coupling would ever occur. 

Now, whether coupling ought to occur in the first place is a whole separate debate.  But the point is, alcohol is the lubricant that allows that machinery to work, right?

KELLERMAN:  Well, perhaps, perhaps...

CARLSON:  Because when old people drink, they‘re just pathetic.  They shouldn‘t drink. 

KELLERMAN:  Perhaps for the girls, yes.  I can tell, when I was a young boy, I didn‘t need any alcohol to...

(LAUGHTER)

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  OK.  We‘re going stop this there before you give us more details. 

KELLERMAN:  Yes.

CARLSON:  Next, speaking of childhood, should kids be paid to attend school?  A Chelsea high school in Massachusetts, a student who doesn‘t miss a single day per quarter will receive a $25 credit, redeemable upon graduation.

That school joins a number of districts across the country which are turning to incentives to boost test scores, GPAs, and student turnout.  Some schools will give gift certificates, coupons, and checks if students get good grades. 

Now, the problem with this is—I mean, there‘s so many problems, but very quickly -- $25 is not enough to spur anybody to do anything.  If you‘re going to pay, you really ought to pay. 

Second, you shouldn‘t pay kids to do something they should be doing any way.  They should want to go school to hang out with their friends, if for no other reason. 

But the real problem with this is, it sets a standard too low.  Paying for attendance.  Basically, the point you‘re making is, if you just show up, if you remain breathing, if you‘re just a warm body on site at the appropriate time, we‘ll send you a check. 

This is training kids for career working at the DMV, OK?  That‘s what it is saying.  This is training them to be welfare recipients.

(CROSSTALK) 

KELLERMAN:  Well, I don‘t know about welfare.  I wouldn‘t say working at the DMV is the same as being a welfare recipient.

CARLSON:  No, it‘s not.

KELLERMAN:  Someone has to work at the DMV.  I mean, that‘s just a fact. 

But I know what you mean.  However, let‘s—first of all, showing up is like 50 percent of the battle right there.  You show up for your job, you show up for work, you show up to an appointment to meet your friend for dinner.  Showing up is half the battle.  A lot of kids aren‘t showing up. 

But in a larger sense, school is a kid‘s job.  It‘s his job or her job.  And they‘re not getting paid for it.

I remember when I was a kid going to school.  I used to think, you know, if I was getting paid to do this, I would go much more eagerly.  I used to schedule work in a restaurant my senior year of high school—I was waiting tables a couple blocks from school.  I used to schedule it during school hours because I wasn‘t getting paid to go to school, Tucker. 

CARLSON:  Exactly.  Because when you‘re a child, you should suffer, because adults are unreasonable.  They make unreasonable demands for which you are not remunerated.  That‘s what childhood is.  And you get older, and you get paid, and you realize how crummy childhood was. 

KELLERMAN:  But you admit that it shouldn‘t be that way.  So here‘s an effort to move it away from that. 

CARLSON:  Oh, no, no, no.  No, no, no.  It absolutely should be. 

There should be a Dickensian to everybody‘s childhood, truly.

(LAUGHTER)

Well, would you want O.J. Simpson at your convention?  If you said “no,” you are not alone.  Simpson was shown the door after a surprise appearance this weekend at a college—rather, at a sports collector‘s convention in Illinois. 

He‘d signed autographs with 125 other celebrity athletes who, aside from O.J., had permission to be there.  Organizers conceded they probably wouldn‘t have given O.J. permission even if he‘d asked. 

But they also conceded, they didn‘t kick him out for killing his wife and Rod Goldman.  They kicked him out just for a formality.  He hadn‘t signed up. 

Look, kicking O.J. out, shunning O.J. on the golf course, at Applebee‘s, at the gas station, wherever you run into O.J. in his quest to find the real killers, shunning him is part of our verdict as Americans.  We were on the jury. 

But we‘re on the broader jury of public opinion.  You ought to shun O.J. because he deserves it.  They did the right thing. 

KELLERMAN:  Let‘s just—this is my only defense.  I know you‘re going to say it‘s private organizers have the right to do what they want. 

Let‘s just do a though experiment, quickly, Tucker.  Imagine if—just imagine if—O.J. actually didn‘t do it.  I‘m not saying he didn‘t, but just imagine if he didn‘t.  This is the greatest miscarriage of justice ever. 

If O.J. didn‘t do it, and everyone on television is urging Americans to use social pressure to punish him for a punishment he never got by the courts, it‘s one of the greatest injustices you can imagine. 

CARLSON:  And the day the Loch Ness Monster shows up in Central Park Zoo...

KELLERMAN:  Is it impossible that he didn‘t do it?

CARLSON:  ... I will absolutely believe that that‘s a possibility. 

KELLERMAN:  If it weren‘t for the suicide note, we wouldn‘t necessarily think he did it.  And it was inadmissible, by the way. 

CARLSON:  Oh, you are willing to fight the unpopular fight.  Max Kellerman, good luck in Vegas.  I hope your luck is better than your argument.  See you tomorrow. 

KELLERMAN:  Oh! 

(LAUGHTER)

CARLSON:  Coming up, if you‘ve always wondered why they don‘t race lawn mowers—and we bet you have—wonder no more.  They fire them up, get mulching, and race across the “Cutting Room Floor,” next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Welcome back.  It‘s that time, “The Cutting Room Floor,” where we sweep up all the odds and ends of news and bring them to you fresh.  Willie Geist does that—Willie?

WILLIE GEIST, PRODUCER:  Tucker, I want to apologize first for missing Friday‘s show.  I heard the show was moving to 11:00.  I showed up here at 11:55. 

I was actually good.  There was nobody here.  But I was good that night.  So a little red in the face.  Go ahead. 

CARLSON:  Don‘t do it again, Willie. 

Last week in this very segment, we previewed an evening of nude art appreciation at the Leopold Museum in Vienna, Austria.  Well, the event took place Friday night.  And as you can see from these pictures, it was a rather large success. 

(LAUGHTER)

Hundreds of art enthusiasts showed up in the buff to take in the Naked Truth exhibit, which featured exotic art from the early 1900s.  Admission was free to anyone who showed up without clothes. 

GEIST:  All right, Tucker, I do not trust the fellows walking around there.  I think a lot of people just discovered their love for art.  They heard there was a nude thing happening at the museum and they showed up, clearly.

CARLSON:  Well, there‘s a major difference between male and female nudity.  One‘s acceptable, the other‘s horrifying. 

GEIST:  Which is which? 

CARLSON:  I think you know.

Summer camp is a place for kids to learn all kinds of wonderful things, sailing, camping, archery, and demolition.  Some Missouri teens are spending part of their summer at explosives camp where they learn how to work with things like dynamite and military-grade C-4.  The camp is for teenagers who want to explore careers in mining, demolition, and fireworks. 

GEIST:  And you know what, Tucker?  I predict that this is a wild success.  What do teenagers like better, identifying leaves or blowing things up with dynamite?  I think the latter. 

CARLSON:  Yes, M-80s.  I still rue the day they became outlawed. 

GEIST:  This is the new camp. 

CARLSON:  I agree. 

Well, Burt Reynolds loved working with Willie Nelson in the new “Dukes of Hazzard” movie.  No, he really loved it.  Reynolds says Nelson was, quote, “the sweetest, nicest man he‘d ever met.”  Indeed, Reynolds said, if he were gay, Willie would be the guy. 

GEIST:  Wow.

CARLSON:  The ultra-hetero Reynolds said marrying Nelson would have saved him millions because they‘d still be happily married. 

GEIST:  All right, these are two of the most hetero people on the face of the Earth, so I don‘t think it‘s going to work out between them.  And also, let‘s not forget Loni Anderson, whatever that cost Burt Reynolds in the divorce, was worth it.  Loni Anderson in her prime, people forget.

CARLSON:  But Loni Anderson turned him gay.  Well, or at least, thinking about it, apparently. 

Well, what do you do with your fancy riding mower when you‘re not cutting the grass?  How about racing in circles for 12 consecutive hours? 

Well, that‘s what they do every year in Pulborough, England, for the lawn mower Le Mans, a test of lawn mower riding endurance.  that‘s considered the Indy 500 of mower racing.  This year‘s winning team took the checkered flag after negotiating 272 miles of sloppy track. 

GEIST:  All right, that‘s—riding a lawn mower for 12 hours is pretty impressive.  But if you really want to impress me, try pushing my Toro push mower around for 12 hours, tough guy.

(LAUGHTER) 

CARLSON:  Actually, those are pretty cool. 

Well, we‘ve all misplaced the remote control, or the car keys, and found them in a strange place.  But how many of us can sympathize with someone who loses his dentures inside his own body? 

That happened to a Taiwanese man who lost his dentures three years ago and never did figure out where they went.  Surgeons have now found the missing teeth were in the man‘s throat.  The 45-year-old went to the doctor recently because he was having shortness of breath.  An x-ray quickly revealed why.  There was a full set of dentures lodged in his bronchial tubes. 

GEIST:  The other day, Tucker—true story—I left my sunglasses on my head, and I couldn‘t find them for an hour.  Let me just say, I feel so much better having read this. 

CARLSON:  Were they in your digestive tract? 

GEIST:  Yes, I swallowed it.  A remarkable story. 

CARLSON:  Willie Geist, thank you. 

That‘s THE SITUATION for tonight.  Thanks for watching.  Remember, THE SITUATION goes live at 11:00 p.m. Eastern starting Monday, August 8th.  You‘re going to love it. 

“SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY” up next, Joe Scarborough—Joe? 

JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST, “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY”:  Looking forward to it, Tucker.  Great story at the end once again.  We can relate, the Redneck Riviera, and my community of friends in my neighborhood of double-wide trailers, 45 people, 14 teeth.  Appreciate it.

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

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