Guest: Carlos De Icaza, Brad Blakeman, Max Kellerman, Rob Adonis
TUCKER CARLSON, HOST: Thanks to you at home for tuning in tonight.
We always appreciate it.
Tonight, a live SITUATION exclusive. I'll go one on one with the Mexican ambassador to this country about the controversial border law that is being proposed to stop illegal immigration. Is the government of Mexico trying to undermine American law?
Also, assisted suicide crusader Jack Kevorkian is back in the news.
This time, the death in question, his own.
Plus, despite objections from religious groups, the 67-year-old Quaker now preparing to open America's first Christian nudist camp. I'll speak live with the founder of this village in just a few minutes.
We begin tonight with the growing conflict between United States and Mexico over the proposed border wall that would restrict illegal immigration and prevent terrorists from entering our country.
Mexican President Vicente Fox recently called the fence idea “shameful,” quote. Mexico's foreign relations secretary said his country would not allow a stupid thing like this wall. Mexico's ambassador to the United States, Carlos De Icaza, stated that many Americans are actually opposed to a fence on the U.S.-Mexico border.
Here now to discuss this controversial issue, in a SITUATION exclusive interview tonight, Ambassador Carlos De Icaza. The ambassador joins us live from Washington.
Mr. Ambassador joining us live from Washington. Thanks for coming on.
CARLOS DE ICAZA, MEXICAN AMBASSADOR TO U.S.: Thank you. Good evening.
CARLSON: Good evening. Not long ago, the government of Mexico printed a pamphlet, this pamphlet right here I'm holding up, that gave explicit instructions for how Mexican citizens could sneak into the United States illegally thereby violating U.S. law.
There are pictures here you can see on the screen of how to cross the Rio Grande River, other advice on how to sneak through the desert. Add to this the recent efforts of your government to influence the debate in our Congress over the border wall. Add to that instance after instance where the Mexican government has paid for legal defense of Mexican citizens, caught breaking our laws.
Here's my question, Mr. Ambassador. How can Mexico consider itself an ally, or this country consider Mexico an ally, if the Mexican government is aiding and abetting people who want to break our laws?
DE ICAZA: Well, first of all, Feliz Navidad.
CARLSON: To you as well, thank you.
DE ICAZA: We are your neighbors to the south. There is something we have to understand. If we're going to face the challenges of the 21st Century, we have to work together. We have to take advantage of our complementarities.
Now, first of all, Mexico is a law law-abiding country, just like the U.S. And Mexico in today your second partner in the world. We have the biggest trade in North America, then all over the world. We buy more goods in this country than the European Union combined.
DE ICAZA: So we are partners in trade. We share democratic values. You have millions of Americans living peacefully in Mexico. Why can't we be partners in other challenges that we face in this century, like immigration, which is shared responsibility, which needs international cooperation.
By the way, you guide you just saw and you were just showing, is not a guide about how to enter the country. It's a guide that was designed precisely to discourage people to come across the country.
CARLSON: Mr. Ambassador, that's simply not true. I am looking at it
now, “If you cross the desert”—this is a verbatim quote—“try to
travel when the heat is not so intense. If you encounter any problems with
immigration authorities, remember that Mexico has 45 consulates at its
disposal in that country whose contact information you can find,” et cetera
It's detailed instructions on how to sneak in. But address my second point, then. And it is this. Why is the government...
DE ICAZA: No, no, no. Let me answer the first one. Let me get to the first point.
DE ICAZA: This kind of guide wasn't conceived for a journalist. It was conceived for people trying precisely to cross. This guide is about telling people about the dangers they can face if they cross the border.
CARLSON: OK. Then answer this, if you would, Mr. Ambassador.
DE ICAZA: Yes.
CARLSON: Why is the government of Mexico, why has it on numerous occasions, including one recently in the state of New Hampshire, paying for legal defense of Mexican citizens arrested here for being illegally?
If I get arrested for drunk driving in Tijuana, my government does not pay for my legal defense. It understands I've broken Mexican law. Mexico citizens have broken American law. Why is the government of Mexico paying for their defense?
DE ICAZA: Two very simple answers. First of all, your economy requires every year half a million low-scale laborers. And this is not something that I am saying. This is something that Frank Share (ph) of the National Immigration Forum is stating.
And at the same time, you are giving out 5,000 visas of this category for 500,000 people trying to come here. So there is a double standard.
DE ICAZA: On the one hand—on the one hand, you offer employment to people, and on the other hand, you don't want them to cross. We need international cooperation to tackle the immigration situation.
CARLSON: Mr. Ambassador, shouldn't—isn't it a bit much for you to be telling the American government what its laws should be? The United States doesn't presume to tell Mexico which laws it should have and which laws it should enforce. And your point is, our laws should be different. That's not really your business, is it?
DE ICAZA: It is my business, because we have here five million people that are hard working, that are helping your economy, our economy, that are totally unprotected. If you would have in Mexico five million people that live in the shadows in a state of fear, that have no rights, that contribute to the economy, and that are frequent subject of abuse.
CARLSON: Actually we do have those. I am glad you brought that up.
DE ICAZA: Certainly when there are cases of abuse, you would try to give orientation to your people.
DE ICAZA: We tell our people to abide by the law, to be good citizens. And when there are cases of abuse, we work together with the American government in helping people...
CARLSON: Mr. Ambassador, I just can't—I can't resist calling your attention to a piece that ran in the “Washington Post” just this week. The headline, “Mexico Admits Poor Treatment of Migrants.”
There are hundreds, literally hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants into Mexico, who are now languishing in detention centers without adequate food or water or space or ability to contact their relatives. As you know, the Mexican government has admitted this.
It's a simple question. You are asking the United States to lower barriers to entry into this country. Why don't you do the same into Mexico? Why don't you allow Guatemalan immigrants to come in the same way you want Mexican immigrants to come here?
DE ICAZA: By the way, we just signed an agreement with Guatemala, having a guest worker program, allowing them to come six months to our country, and precisely because they had the Stan hurricane, and come and work the fields in Mexico.
And by the way, we had deported last year 250,000 people from Central America to Guatemala, so you see migration challenge today is an international phenomenon. And it needs international cooperation.
CARLSON: It may be.
DE ICAZA: We have to work out this together.
CARLSON: But before you lecture us, don't you think...
DE ICAZA: I'm not lecturing you.
CARLSON: But you just said...
DE ICAZA: We are partners.
CARLSON: We are absolutely partners. But don't you think before your president gets on television and implies there's something morally wrong with the United States, as he has repeatedly the last month, don't you think it would be important to abide by your own standards? Why are hundreds of thousands of Guatemalan immigrants...
DE ICAZA: We have not said that United States is morally wrong. The only thing the president is saying is that walls and fences are not the best idea between neighbors. We have to cooperate in this world. You know something. We are good neighbors. We are your friends. We are your allies. So we have to work together.
CARLSON: I think...
DE ICAZA: Immigration is a shared responsibility. We also want to have a legal, humane, and dignified migration into this country, but we have to work together.
DE ICAZA: You won't have a one-sided solution.
CARLSON: I think—I think you are good people. I grew up next to Mexico. I don't think at this point you're being a good neighbor, if you're encouraging...
DE ICAZA: We are good neighbors; you are also good neighbors. We have—we have great opportunities for the future together, and we are a willing partner.
DE ICAZA: This is a great opportunity that shouldn't be missed.
Nobody is lecturing you.
DE ICAZA: What is happening here is that we have an international phenomenon. We can work together.
CARLSON: I hope we can. Ambassador Carlos De Icaza, thank you very much.
DE ICAZA: Thank you.
CARLSON: We appreciate it.
President Bush's domestic eavesdropping bombshell continues to dominate headlines. Earlier tonight, the administration defended its spying practices in a letter to the Congress, saying U.S. security outweighs privacy concerns.
That letter also maintained that the NSA Program is, quote, “consistent with the Constitution of the United States.” Specifically with the fourth amendment that prohibits, of course, unreasonable search and seizures.
Joining me now to discuss the growing controversy over this, Brad Blakeman, the former deputy assistant to President Bush. He joins us live tonight from Phoenix, Arizona.
Brad, thanks for coming on.
BRAD BLAKEMAN, SECRET SERVICES: Pleasure, Tucker.
I am glad the White House sent this letter to the Congress, explaining why we need to trade off some of our perceived civil liberties, anyway, for the security that comes from this eavesdropping.
My question—my question to you is, why didn't the president make this case publicly four years ago? Why didn't he say, “Look, we're going to have to change the rules here a little bit after 9/11. We're going to have to maybe intercept some phone calls originating in this country. It's a trade off I think you'll agree is worth it'?
He didn't do that. Instead he did it secretly. Why?
BLAKEMAN: Well, because it had to be kept secret, Tucker, in order to not give the enemy our methods of operation in order to stop what was happening to us.
The president's inherent power under the Constitution is to keep us safe as commander-in-chief, against all enemies, and that's what he needed to do. Other presidents have done it. This president is doing it, but this president has gone further, Tucker, in that he has—he has had 12 conversations with Congress about it. He's talked to the FISA court about it. His attorney general has looked into it. So these are all legal principles that the president has been operating under that other presidents have done, as well.
CARLSON: Just to clarify one thing you've seen—and I don't mean to say I have mixed feelings about this. And if it comes to light that this did prevent terror attacks, I'm not against it. I just have real concerns about the way the president went about doing it.
But you've often heard the White House in the last three days say, well, the Carter and Clinton administrations did the same things. And while they did a lot of things I don't agree with, this isn't one of them. In fact, both of their executive orders said explicitly this does not apply to American citizens, whereas in the case of what this administration is doing, it does.
Why then—why—the FISA court allows warrants to be gotten after the fact, retroactively. You've done your spying. Then you go to the court and say, “Can I have a warrant for the spying I already did?” It's a legal nicety but it would have allowed the administration to abide by that law, the 1978 law. Why didn't they do that?
BLAKEMAN: They didn't have to do it. The president has, again, the inherent power, as president of the United States, to do these searches. In addition, he has statutory authority. In 2001 after we were attacked, what did Congress do? They authorized the president to use force against our enemies, so he had statutory authority, by the Constitution.
CARLSON: OK. But that's awfully—that's awfully broad. I mean, come on, that don't really hold up. Look...
BLAKEMAN: Sure it does. The president has broad authority under the Constitution.
CARLSON: He absolutely does, and if some imminent problem arises and the president has to protect our country, he does what he needs to do. And everyone knows that's constitutional and that's consistent with our tradition in this country.
However, if you've got a law that specifically says don't do this, and the president spends four years not abiding by the letter of the law and not by the spirit either, don't you think he should just go to the public and say we need to change this. Make the case in public. Why not?
BLAKEMAN: The president didn't go around the law. The president did
what the president had the authority to do. He had the authority as the
president under the Constitution. He had the authority as the president by
· by Congress's resolution after the 2001 attack. So he had the power.
And he's only doing that which he has the power to do.
CARLSON: Wait a second.
BLAKEMAN: But the proof is in the pudding. Let me say this. The proof is in the pudding. No. 1 is, we don't have car bombs in America. We don't have homicide bombs in America, and we haven't been attacked. The president has got to be doing something right.
CARLSON: Nobody—least of all me. I think you're absolutely right. We'll never know the degree to which this administration is responsible for no terrorist attacks in the last four years, but I'm willing to give them all the credit in the world. I'm the first one to say that.
However, there's a principle here, and that is that a government and a president ruled by consent of the governed. And if you want to broaden your powers, you need our consent, pal. You need to tell us about it and convince us why your powers should be broadened. And I don't care what you say, you know as well as I, they were broadened after 9/11.
BLAKEMAN: No. The powers of the president were not broadened. The exercise of those powers by the president, his authority was broadened by him after a new enemy and a new—a new challenge to our country was borne by the terrorist attacks after 9/11.
BLAKEMAN: That's all that happened. You may not like it, but the president also has to be re-elected, and elected the first time, based on the trust of the American people, on those broad powers they're giving him.
CARLSON: Right. Part of what you're saying is absolutely right, and actually I don't even mind it, necessarily. I'm just—I just think this is a broad expansion of executive power that a lot of us are going to be very uncomfortable with in the future.
And I would be a lot more comfortable if it was the subject of public debate the last four years. Because telling the public as much as you can is a good thing. And this administration doesn't believe that.
BLAKEMAN: Not in keeping our country safe. There are certain things that have to be kept secret. Look at the trouble we're having with the Patriot Act, for God's sake. Four years ago, it was almost unanimously passed. It hasn't been abused. They can't show one abuse to the Patriot Act.
CARLSON: I agree.
BLAKEMAN: And they can't show one abuse that the president has used in his broad authority as president to keep America safe.
CARLSON: But that's because the administration hasn't bothered to make a public case that people can understand and get behind. People still don't know what the Patriot Act is.
BLAKEMAN: All the—all the American people know right now is that the president, this president, George Bush, is doing everything in his power 24-7 to keep us safe, and again, we haven't been attacked. The proof is in the pudding. He's doing good work. And it's a—it's a catch-22.
CARLSON: All right.
BLAKEMAN: The 9/11 Commission says we haven't done enough. We didn't connect the dots. The president learned from 9/11. His administration was revamped.
CARLSON: No, it's a tough situation...
BLAKEMAN: And now he's doing too much.
CARLSON: It's a tough place to be. I'm not pretending it's a simple question. I just think the implications over the long term could be scary when President Rodham takes power.
BLAKEMAN: I agree.
CARLSON: Brad Blakeman, in Phoenix tonight. Thank you.
BLAKEMAN: Thank you, sir.
CARLSON: Still to come, assisted suicide enthusiast Jack Kevorkian back in the news. This time, it's his life that is being debated. No matter how you feel about Dr. K, you won't want to miss this story.
Plus, a Christian themed nudist camp out to be revealed in the state of Florida. We'll bring you the naked truth about this groundbreaking—pretty weird, let's be honest—community when we speak live with its founder, next.
CARLSON: Still ahead, has President Bush turned this country into a version of Apartheid-era South Africa? That's what “Newsweek” magazine claims. We'll bring you details.
Plus, you'll meet the founder of the first ever Christian nudist camp.
Is nakedness next to godliness? Find out. We'll be right back.
CARLSON: Welcome back.
2005 probably a year President Bush would rather forget. His top aides were investigated, he was criticized for the government's response to hurricane Katrina on the Gulf Coast, and now his spying program, the domestic phone spying program, compared to Apartheid. Here to talk about the latest attack, this one from “Newsweek” magazine, our old pal, Rachel Maddow, of Air America Radio—Rachel.
RACHEL MADDOW, AIR AMERICA RADIO: Tucker, good to see you.
CARLSON: Nice to see you.
This piece—I think this isn't too micro, but I think it represents something bigger. That's why I wanted to talk about it. It's from “Newsweek.” Arlene Getz, apparently an employee of “Newsweek” magazine, wrote a completely over the top and hysterical, almost lunatic, in my view, piece about President Bush and his regime and comparing it to the final days of Apartheid in South Africa and saying that essentially this is no longer a free country under President Bush. She quotes Desmond Tutu, who has always hated America, incidentally, as saying, “I thought you had free speech,” et cetera. You can imagine the rant this was.
Here's my point. You can't overstate the violations to civil liberty and to freedom of speech under President Bush to such a degree, that it is, first, insult to authoritarian countries, real authoritarian countries, and second, it actually doesn't take seriously the serious questions we need to talk about.
MADDOW: I think this is argument by analogy, though. I think what Arlene Getz is saying in this piece is, you know, South Africa, then, Apartheid South Africa, and Bush now are both justifying civil liberties violations and worse by saying we're under attack.
South Africa was saying we're under attack. They were. That's why we don't have an Apartheid government any more.
Bush is saying, we're potentially under attack, and we don't want there to be another 9/11, and they're using that to justify all sorts of unjustifiable stuff. You don't have to think that Bush is white supremacist to agree with this. I happen to agree with it. And using 9/11 to justify it.
CARLSON: That's the other part. I mean, why South Africa? Why not Zimbabwe or Cuba or North Korea, or the endless authoritarian and totalitarian regimes in our world?
I guess the other point that bothers me is the idea that free speech is under attack. It's not.
CARLSON: That's a very quick, convenient way for people who hate Bush, or hate the right, hate something, hate their parents, probably, to make themselves feel like freedom fighters. “I'm fighting.”
You know, you can say whatever you want in this country. I make a living doing it, and so do you.
MADDOW: But—yes, but there's also something that's, I think, skeevy to a lot of people in America, to find out that police departments are infiltrating peaceful protest activities, that the FBI is monitoring people who are expressing their views about the government, that there's all this stuff going on that feels very much like the stuff we thought we got rid of after the Vietnam era. And it's all coming back. It's becoming big, secretive intrusive government that's spying a lot on Americans. And that feels skeevy and...
CARLSON: I don't like it at all, but the lesson of Vietnam really is the media are more powerful than the Pentagon, more powerful than the federal government. Also the lesson of Watergate. In the end, freedom of speech is the altar which we worship here, and nothing gets in the way of it. Like, there's nothing they can do to you.
CARLSON: Let's just be honest about that.
MADDOW: The president, summoning the editor of “New York Times” to the Oval Office and saying, “Do not run this piece.” Even if you don't think that free speech was violated in that case, you have to realize, it's worth fighting for. And we need to fight for it.
CARLSON: And what happened? Bill Keller, editor of that paper, gave the president the finger. And he didn't go to jail. He ran the piece anyway. Nothing happened. He's a hero, and the president's poll numbers went down.
MADDOW: If he had given the president the finger, he would have run that piece when he first had it, which was before reelection time. He sat on it for a year, and he still didn't...
CARLSON: In fairness, sometimes pieces take a long time to report.
A person who was in that paper, very much, haven't heard from much recently, Jack Kevorkian, languishing.
MADDOW: Not a favorite.
CARLSON: Not a favorite of mine. Languish—really, a creep who derives sexual pleasure from people killing, in my view. I don't think there's any doubt about it, that he was motivated...
MADDOW: How can you tell that? How can you tell that?
CARLSON: Because interview—the history of Jack Kevorkian. Spend an afternoon reading about Jack Kevorkian's life and his incredibly just creepy, and overweening attraction to death and his paintings. Come on, it was all this bizarre psychosexual trip for him. But look, the bottom line is...
CARLSON: He killed all these people. It's true.
CARLSON: Now his lawyers are arguing that he should be let of prison because he's dying.
CARLSON: What kind of insane argument is that?
MADDOW: What do you mean? He should—Jack Kevorkian would argue that he should have the right to kill himself if he wanted to, and he should, but it doesn't mean he has to kill himself. It doesn't mean that he's required to.
And it also means the people of Michigan shouldn't necessarily be required to provide handcuffed end of life care to a 77-year-old diabetic arthritic guy with cataracts. I mean, it doesn't have anything to do with why he's in prison.
CARLSON: No, but I thought, because Jack Kevorkian was always much more—was about much more than he was in prison. He was denied parole, by the way, by the state of Michigan.
CARLSON: But it was more than helping to kill someone. It was about this whole philosophy, that death ought to be something you control as an individual. You're in charge of your own death.
CARLSON: And that death is not such a big deal, actually. So if he's spending a lifetime arguing that death is not a big deal, all of a sudden, when it comes to his death, “Oh, my gosh, I can't die in prison.” Come on.
MADDOW: He didn't argue that death isn't a big deal. He argued that death is something that is personal and that you ought to be able to make a decision. I believe that there should be right to assisted suicide. If you want to kill yourself, you should have that right. If you need assistance to do it, you should be able to get it.
CARLSON: But it's always more complicated than that. It's always people who are—often people who are terminally ill...
CARLSON: ... mentally unstable in some cases, surrounded by people who they love, who are caring for them. That increases the guilt they feel. I mean, there is—families are complicated, and people put pressure on the sick person sometimes to get out of the picture. I'm sure you know what I'm talking about. It happens.
MADDOW: It is complicated, but the other side of it is complicated, too. And what happens now is that people without the right to kill themselves, without the right to assisted suicide, people are kept alive in all sorts of extreme situations, in cases they might not—they've expressly said they would not want to be kept alive in, while everybody else fights over it, because they don't have that right to exercise over their own death.
CARLSON: How hard is it to kill yourself? I mean, come on.
MADDOW: Ask Terri Schiavo.
CARLSON: I don't think she would want that.
But anyway, Rachel Maddow, on that note.
MADDOW: Nothing says holidays like assisted suicide talk.
CARLSON: Merry Christmas.
MADDOW: Merry Christmas, Tucker.
CARLSON: Still to come, we brought you the soft core porn star who started a Christian ministry. Now it's time to meet a wrestler saving fans, one body slam at a time. THE SITUATION has ringside seats, next.
CARLSON: Welcome back. If you've ever wondered what it's like to bare your soul to God, my next guest might be able to tell you.
Bill Martin is planning to open a 200-acre nudist camp for Christians in the state of Florida. Mr. Martin, who is clothed tonight, joins us like in Tampa to talk about his plan.
Mr. Martin, thanks for coming on.
BILL MARTIN, OPENING CHRISTIAN NUDIST CAMP: Thank you very much, Tucker.
CARLSON: What is the connection between nudity and the gospel?
MARTIN: Well, let's go back to the very beginning, when Christ was on Earth. I guess the first instance that you can read in the scriptures is when he watches his disciples' feet in John. I think it's John 13. Christ removed his garments, plural, at least in the traditional versions of the Bible, put a towel around him, and washed his disciples' feet.
Peter was fishing nude. If you go back to the early Christian at the time, it was nothing for everyone to work in the hot fields completely nude. They couldn't afford clothing.
CARLSON: But we can, and I just wonder. Let me read you a quote from you.
MARTIN: Sure. It may or may not be a quote. Some of the things have not been my quotes.
CARLSON: Tell me if you said this. “We are not a group that wants a sexual atmosphere. There is absolutely no relationship,” you say, “between nudity and sex.”
And that just strikes me as untrue. People when they're naked think about sex.
MARTIN: That's absolutely not true.
MARTIN: And if you—I'm a member of a club in central Florida. I would suggest that just the opposite is true, that the clothing that we wear and the clothing that is manufactured today in itself to a large degree generates lust. When you are around people that are totally naked, and you've been around 20 or 300, here in this country, and I've probably been abroad more, where it's very, very popular, you don't have that.
I want to read one thing: hiding a body part doesn't stop others from lust. It generates lust. Nobody gets excited at the sight of ankles any more. And remember, it wasn't long ago that ankles had to be covered up. If we saw breasts or other parts of the human body at any time, it would normalize them. It would eliminate lust.
Three or four years ago, the triple A had in their tour book in France, and I cannot find it anymore, but we were in France, it said that nudity is so common in France that they can't sell a copy of “Playboy.” When my wife and I were in France I guess 18 months ago, we were there for a week, and I went into every magazine rack I could find, and I could not find a copy of “Playboy” or a copy of anything similar.
MARTIN: I'm sure you can.
CARLSON: The French are just naked all the time?
MARTIN: Well, no, not naked all the time any more than I'm naked all the time. I'm sitting here with clothes on, as I am most of the time now. It's too darn cold down here in Florida.
CARLSON: Are you naked in church?
MARTIN: No. I'm not naked in church. I've been to one service which I've been nude, but most of the time, I'm more comfortable in clothes in church. There's times when—my point is, there's nothing wrong with nudity, and that nudity is actually a better way of life and it reduces some of the sexual crimes that we think about, and most Americans, including myself all want to eliminate.
We have that in common. We want to eliminate the sexual offenders. We want to eliminate the sexual offenses. We want to eliminate pornography, and so forth.
And I would suggest that nudity per se is an antidote to pornography. I've had so many testimonies—they're on my web site—from people that, once they found it, www.naturist-christians.org, and have been on it for awhile, they've come back and written testimonies, how they've able to do away completely with their need for pornography.
CARLSON: Bill Martin, a nudist, also a Christian.
MARTIN: I don't call myself a nudist. I call myself a naturist.
CARLSON: All right.
MARTIN: Which is a little broader.
CARLSON: All right. A naturist, Bill Martin, joining us from Florida tonight, a man who is often naked and not ashamed. Thanks a lot for joining us.
MARTIN: Thank you.
CARLSON: Coming up, police looking for rowdy protesters stumble upon a private love fest instead. Should they turn the cameras off? We'll debate that with “The Outsider,” next.
CARLSON: Welcome back. Aristotle said, “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.” Joining me live in our studio, a man who's nothing if not entertaining, “The Outsider,” ESPN Radio and HBO boxing host Max Kellerman.
MAX KELLERMAN, ESPN RADIO: Aristotle, as we've discussed in the past, that's the big one. I mean, between Socrates and Plato and Aristotle it's all about Aristotle. Can we agree on that?
CARLSON: Actually, I do agree with that. Plus, you can refer to something as Aristotelian.
KELLERMAN: Aristotelian. Aristotelian.
CARLSON: I like that.
KELLERMAN: Aristotelian thought has dominated western culture to the point where I'm watching Bugs Bunny cartoons, as a kid, and the coyote gets an anvil, and he falls faster. And I accept that. Of course, the anvil makes you fall faster. That's Aristotle thought.
CARLSON: Very nice. I missed that. Not enough cartoons, I guess.
First up, Big Brother is watching drivers in the United Kingdom, Britain about to be the first country in the world to record the movements of every single vehicle on its roads. Using a network of cameras, they can automatically read every passing license plate.
The plan is to build a huge database of all vehicle movement so that the police and security services can look up any journey a driver has made over the past couple of years.
To which I say, I'm glad I don't live on that island, at all. I mean, I think every person is willing to make certain sacrifices for the sake of not being killed by terrorists, but there is a limit, and this is it right here. You ought to be able to go do something secret if you want once in awhile without government knowing with it. This is scary.
KELLERMAN: The funny thing to me is, and we're talking about England, but we can talk about the United States, too. Everyone is always talking about Big Brother. It's Orwellian. It's a slippery slope. And you don't want everyone knowing about you.
And you know who turns out as actually Big Brother? We are. We're Big Brother. Google Earth and the kind of technology that individuals have, and who's actually looking into your file, who knows everything about you. Other people can find out all about you on the Internet, can use technology, techmology (ph) as Ali G would say, to figure out everything. I mean, we're Big Brother. Big Brother—the government, who has time to look up every single thing? They don't.
CARLSON: But that is exactly the point. I mean, at some point, you wind up becoming East Germany, where every third person is informing on every second person, right?
CARLSON: Who's informing on every first person, and nobody has time to read the files, basically. In other words, information is useless because there's too much.
KELLERMAN: In other words, I think that's a better argument. I actually think that the better argument is you're inundated with information, to the point where it doesn't mean anything anymore because you don't know how to, as Malcolm Gladwell wrote in the last book he did, thin slice.
KELLERMAN: You know, you don't look actually at what's important. You're just—you're just overwhelmed with information. But I think that's a better argument than the Big Brother argument.
CARLSON: However, the difference between—you may be right that the average person, because of computers, is empowered to have information you never would have had a generation ago.
The difference is the average person never put anyone into a prison camp. Only governments do that. Only governments round up populations and kill them. And there's a long history, at least over the last 100 years, of governments doing that with technology.
And I don't think we should pretend that they're not going to do that again in the future. They are going to do that. I'm not saying the British government or our government, but governments will continue to do that. And we ought to resist giving them the power to do it.
KELLERMAN: You win, you lose.
CARLSON: OK. Thank you, Max. That was easy.
KELLERMAN: You're right, you're right.
CARLSON: And if you think you're safe from prying eyes in this country, say in an intimate moment on your terrace, think again.
A couple spending some quality naked time on a Manhattan penthouse terrace one August night secretly videotaped by a police helicopter using special thermal imaging equipment. That's according to the “New York Times,” which reports the cops were supposed to be watching protest rally in the streets below, but they also caught Jeffrey Rosner and a female friend on tape for nearly four minutes.
Mr. Rosner said, quote, “When you watch the tape, it makes you feel kind of ill. I had no idea they were filming me.” Whoever would have had an idea like that?
KELLERMAN: If I would have known, I would have performed better. I had no idea. It makes me sick.
CARLSON: Mr. Rosner, we should point out, is actually not against surveillance cameras. He sounds like a reasonable guy. He just said this is wrong.
Here's the point. If government is going to make this deal with us, we'll protect you, but we have to look at you a little more than we have in the past, OK, they have to hold themselves to higher standards than this. I understand it's more fun to watch, you know, people playing couch ball than it is to watch a political protest. It is, honestly.
CARLSON: But you shouldn't do it anyway.
KELLERMAN: No, they shouldn't do it. I think the devil's advocate position, another Orwellian debate, right, the devil's advocate position here is they weren't indoors. You know, he doesn't live in the middle of nowhere, you know, in Iowa somewhere, where he can have the expectation that if you're out on a terrace, no one can see you.
You're in the middle of Manhattan. Every kid whose parents has a pair of binoculars is looking at you. I mean, if you're going to—if you're going to be intimate with someone, out of doors, whether or not it's your own private property.
Look, there was a bloody Santa display that a guy ripped down, and we talked about this and you had him on the show here. And your argument is, hey, look, it is your private property, but if you put it in public, it's a kind of pornography. People can see it.
CARLSON: I agree with that. However, what makes this case different is this couple was in the dark. They were actually beyond the view of anybody...
KELLERMAN: Apparently not.
CARLSON: ... who didn't have $8,000 thermal imaging binoculars, right? And really only law enforcement and the military have those binoculars.
And once they see things like this, I understand they ought to exercise a little bit of self-control, because if they don't, they will make people very, very cynical about public surveillance, and the public will reject it, maybe putting itself in peril.
KELLERMAN: Agreed, however, again, were they inside their apartment?
That's one thing. They were out of doors. They were on their terrace. And that's the—kind of why go out on the terrace? Because it's kind of exciting, right? Someone can see you.
Guess what, someone saw you. In fact, they put it on videotape. All right. Well, you had your fun. I mean, that's why it's exciting.
CARLSON: So basically accusing the victims of being exhibitionists.
KELLERMAN: I suppose I am. I don't know if I mean it, but I'm making an argument.
CARLSON: You are a hard man, Max Kellerman. Thank you.
KELLERMAN: Thank you, Tucker.
CARLSON: See you tomorrow.
CARLSON: Still ahead on THE SITUATION, what exactly is the point of having a chaplain who's not allowed to use the word “Jesus” in a Christian prayer? You'll have to ask the U.S. Navy that question. The debate rages as THE SITUATION comes right back.
VANESSA MCDONALD, PRODUCER, THE SITUATION: Coming up, if you're a fan of both professional wrestling and Christianity, you're going to love the Ultimate Christian Wrestling circuit.
CARLSON: You'll meet the man who head-butts in the name of the lord when we come back in 60 seconds.
CARLSON: Welcome back. They say the lord works in mysterious ways.
This is definitely one of the most mysterious of all.
It's called Ultimate Christian Wrestling. It's the place where church meets choke hold, where faith meets full nelson. UCW wrestlers barnstorm around churches in the southeast United States, body slamming in the name of Jesus.
Here to tell us more about Ultimate Christian Wrestling, UCW wrestler Rob Adonis. He joins us live from Atlanta, Georgia tonight.
Rob Adonis, thanks for joining us.
ROB ADONIS, UCW WRESTLER: Yes, sir. Thank you for having me.
CARLSON: So God is calling you to wear Lycra and do body slams? How does that work?
ADONIS: Something like that. Yes. Spandex is typically what I wear, but—and my body slam is not that good. I'm more of the Suplex preference.
But that's what we do. We go in. We perform our professional wrestling show. We tie our ministry into it, and sometimes do dramatics and dramas at the end of the performances. And do the best we can to continue the ministry of Christ and to lead people to the cross.
CARLSON: How about, you know, handing out pamphlets or preaching?
How did professional wrestling come to you?
ADONIS: We do all that too. We have literature that goes out we give away bibles. I get up and deliver a brief sermon at the end of most of the shows, unless I get injured or something. Then someone else will have to step in, but typically I'll get up and speak at the end of the shows and deliver a sermon.
And I think it all evolved, actually, on my—I believe it was my 27th birthday, on June the 3rd of 2003. I literally woke up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat, and had just had a dream, a vision. I feel I had been called to do this.
And I'd been wrestling on the independent scene in Georgia for about four years at that time, and just really was very, very disgusted with the way things were going, a sport that I loved so much, and I had put so much of my heart and soul in, and to see how it was just destroying people's lives.
And I truly accepted this call from God and said, you know, I can go out, and I think I can help make this a better place for the wrestlers as well as continuing this as a ministry, and leading people to Christ.
CARLSON: What about the whole turn the other cheek idea, Christianity is so famous for?
ADONIS: Well, that question has been posed to me more times than you could imagine.
CARLSON: I bet.
ADONIS: And I think had we—if we were out there, we were actually trying to really maim each other. I mean, we are athletes, and we are entertainers, and we go out there and put on a fantastic show.
The fact that there are some dramatics involved, and there is some theater involved, we are not truly going out there and really trying to hurt each other. We definitely do get hurt. Injuries are there, and you have got a guy—my size, 290 pounds and almost 6 foot 5, you get me moving at 4, 5 miles per hour in the ring, when I run into something, it's going to hurt and it's going to fall down.
CARLSON: One big Christian, no doubt about that.
ADONIS: That's to say the least, absolutely so.
CARLSON: Huh, so—but you don't see any contradiction between the violence of the sport and the message of peace of the gospel?
ADONIS: Absolutely not, because we're not going out, and we're not, you know, provoking people to go start barroom brawls with people or, you know, throw Bibles at them violently until they believe the way you do.
We go out and simply take the talents that we've been given and the ability we've been given to take ourselves—I mean, my day job, I'm a middle school Special Ed teacher. And you know, I have absolutely no drawing power as a middle school Special Ed teacher.
But when I put on the character and I go out there in the spandex and with the championship belts, I go out there, and I have an ability to draw people and we have an ability to take, typically, people who would not come to church or who would not come to a church service and bring them into, whether it be a church gym or civic auditorium, or whatever arena that we're in, and we're able to minister to them.
So we're doing as Paul tells in the Bible; we're going unto the world and preaching the gospel.
CARLSON: Do your kids at school know what you do in your spare time?
ADONIS: Yes, sir, they do. There's—there's usually quite a bit of hoopla. I mean, I have some newspaper clippings of when I've been in the paper, or been on television or anything.
And they see that, and several of them have seen me on television wrestling, and several of them have been to the actual shows. Their parents have brought them to the—to some of the churches we've been to.
And I've been teaching seven years now, so I've had several hundred of my students who have been to shows, and seen me both in the secular wrestling world as well as ultimate as in Christian wrestling. So...
CARLSON: Ultimate Christian Wrestling, giving new meaning to the term muscular Christianity. Rob Adonis, joining us tonight from Atlanta, Georgia.
CARLSON: Thanks a lot Rob, or Adonis.
ADONIS: Thank you for having me. Merry Christmas.
CARLSON: Merry Christmas.
Coming up on THE SITUATION, what happens when a Canadian apologist gets liquored up and drunk-dials a news show? Entertainment happens. Hear for yourself.
CARLSON: Ho, ho, ho. Welcome back. Time for our voicemail segment where Canadians and others call and tell us what they think.
Next up. First...
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hi, Tucker. This is Shane from Easton, Maryland. I may hate Canadians. Don't (expletive deleted) lie about it. I'm a drunk guy. I'm going to tell you about it. Don't try to act like you don't. Canadians are good people. And Montreal is nice. And the sports (ph) are nice, casinos are nice. Especially if you're 18 years old.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
CARLSON: If you're making my point for me, Shane. Canada is a good place to visit to pillage but you wouldn't want to live there. Thanks for calling.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm a Navy lieutenant, and I'm not going to leave my name. When the chaplain gives the evening prayer on the public address system, the sailors onboard are a captive audience. That's when it's a general no particular religion player but even more annoying with a chaplain is shilling for Jesus.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
CARLSON: Well, a chaplain's supposed to shill for Jesus. That's why he's a chaplain. Right? I mean, that's why he's not a gunnery sergeant or, for that matter, a plumber and an electrician. He's a chaplain. It's his job, is to shill for his religion.
I mean, you can argue that the U.S. government shouldn't be employing sectarian religious figures. But that's a valid argument. I'd hear that out. But now that we're employing rabbis and imams and priests and Protestant ministers, you can't expect them not to represent their religion.
Shilling for Jesus. That's the whole point.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is Will from the Bronx. Hey, Tucker, how can I get one of those mugs there that says THE SITUATION on it? I'd like to get one of those. And I like your show. I think you're cool.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
CARLSON: Well, thanks, Will. You have sharp eyes. Yes, we did get mugs. You're not a real show unless you have mugs and now we have them. How can you get one? I'm not sure yet. We're going to figure out some way. We'll either sell them or have a contest or put them on the web site. But not to brag. They are pretty stylish.
Let me know what you're thinking. You can call 1-877-TCARLSON. That's 877-822-7576. I should point out, incidentally, the producer does not come with the mugs, by the way, all of you who think she might.
You can also e-mail Tucker@MSNBC.com. You can also, moreover, read out blog, Tucker.MSNBC.com.
Still ahead on THE SITUATION, this could either be an insane straight person barking at the moon or a man setting a “Guinness Book of World Records” record. Either way, there's something wrong with him. We'll diagnosis his affliction when we visit “The Cutting Room Floor.”
CARLSON: Welcome back. A man who proves nudism isn't just for Quakers anymore, Willie Geist joins us for “The Cutting Room Floor.”
WILLIE GEIST, PRODUCER: That was supposed to be between you and me, Tucker.
CARLSON: Yes, I'm sure.
GEIST: We have to point out to our viewers, if you haven't got enough of Tucker tonight, he's on Conan O'Brien in about—well, shortly.
GEIST: The guest list, Tucker Carlson, Johnny Knoxville from “Jackass” and Tony Bennett.
CARLSON: Tony Bennett.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wow.
GEIST: Sounds like a bizarre reality show.
CARLSON: I like Tony Bennett. He had a green suit on tonight. Very stylish.
GEIST: No way!
GEIST: I have to watch now.
CARLSON: I was impressed.
Well, this story begs the question, at what price safety? You're looking at the pathetic Christmas tree that decorates the Rhode Island statehouse in providence.
In order to meet state fire laws, the tree had to be sprayed with fire retardant. The problem is fire retardant kills trees. The governor says the state will seek an exemption for the Christmas tree next year.
GEIST: That thing is just sad.
CARLSON: That's pathetic.
GEIST: You know what, though, Tucker? This sounds like another attack in the war on Christmas to me. Yes, you can have a Christmas tree in your state house, but first, you must kill it with poisonous chemicals.
CARLSON: It's so classic. I'm sorry. I'm going to get back to my libertarian horse, but I'm going to dismount before I lecture, but I mean, it's unbelievable. Safety first to this crazy extent? I'd rather be imperiled than have a dead Christmas tree.
GEIST: I agree.
CARLSON: Here's another cheery holiday story. School children in Moravia, New York, were horrified to see Santa's reindeer dead and hanging outside a local hardware store the other day.
The store's owner was displaying the carcasses of 10 caribou he shot on a hunting trip. Word spread around the nearby elementary school that Donner, Dasher, Rudolph and company were all dead. The store owner promptly took the caribou down.
GEIST: All right, Tucker, forget about the kids and the Christmastime and all that. How about just don't hang bloody animal carcasses in front of your hardware store? You know what I mean? Whatever time of year it is, don't do what you're looking at right there. It's just—and by the way, probably bad for business to have dead animals in front of your store.
CARLSON: Call me a PETA activist but I'm kind of in agreement with you.
CARLSON: Yes, I am. Believe it or not.
It's the official position of THE SITUATION that there are too many Guinness records.
CARLSON: Here's more proof. You're looking at the man who holds the Guinness record for holding the most Guinness records. Wrap your brain around that one.
Fifty-one-year-old Ashrita Furman added to his resume today by setting the record for speed grape catching. He caught 68 grapes in one minute. That's his 30th Guinness record.
GEIST: Tucker, you know I am very, very tough on Guinness.
CARLSON: You're a terror.
GEIST: I am a terror. But let me just read—he holds the most Guinness records. Let me read you a couple of them. Most games of hopscotch in 24 hours. That's not a joke. And fastest time pushing an orange with your nose for a mile.
These should not be in recorded history. What will future generations think of us?
CARLSON: He can't have a real job. This is a full-time job.
GEIST: He doesn't have time. Pushing oranges with his nose.
CARLSON: Well, they've finally done it. Scientists have successfully developed a robot that can play the trumpet. The geniuses at Toyota—that's in Japan—are responsible for this latest technological leap forward. They have constructed an entire jazz band of robots.
Artificial lips and lungs allow the droids to play their sweet music.
They're currently available to play bar mitzvahs and sweet 16's.
GEIST: Excellent. Tucker is to Canada as Willie is to robots.
CARLSON: I know.
GEIST: I know we have to crawl before we can walk. But this is not even close to the robots we were promised in movies. This is not good enough.
CARLSON: I think you're afraid. I think you understand that they'll be running—they'll be producing this show before long.
GEIST: They might be. I'm tough on the robots because I love them.
CARLSON: They'll be wearing the headset.
This probably isn't the way most of us envisioned the second coming of Christ. But here it is, nonetheless. Jesus has returned in a plate of nachos at a Jacksonville, Florida, restaurant. A cook at the Stadium Club says he went to wash a serving pan that held nachos when he saw the face of Christ staring back at him. The restaurant will preserve the image in the pan.
GEIST: Tucker, I don't want to cast doubt on these nice folks, but I have to believe when Jesus reveals himself to us, he'll choose a bigger stage than the nacho pan at a sports bar in Jacksonville. I'm thinking St. Peter's Square, maybe the super Bowl, like something really big. You know?
CARLSON: Can I be honest with you? Call me a crackpot. That did look like the Shroud of Turin.
GEIST: It did.
CARLSON: It did.
GEIST: I'll buy it.
CARLSON: The truth is out there, Willie.
CARLSON: Willie Geist.
That's THE SITUATION for tonight. Thank you for watching. Up next, “COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN.” Have a great night.
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