The Ed Show for Monday, November 22nd, 2010

Guests: Sherrod Brown, Katrina vanden Heuvel, Mike Papantonio, Jerrold

Nadler, Laura Flanders, Scott Hennen, Stephen A. Smith, Joan Walsh

ED SCHULTZ, MSNBC ANCHOR:  Good evening, Americans, and welcome to THE ED SHOW tonight from New York.

These stories are hitting “My Hot Buttons” and on the table at this hour.

Nearly half of Congress is made up of millionaires.  What do they know?  I want you to remember that the next time you hear McConnell and Boehner just whining over these tax cuts.  It‘s selfish and unpatriotic, in my opinion, to just close in and help the top two percent. 

My commentary and reaction from Senator Sherrod Brown in just a moment. 

The righties are freaking out over airport security all of a sudden.  They didn‘t have a problem with pat-downs when Bush was in office.  Now they‘re hell-bent on protecting Americans‘ privacy?  I want to know if they‘re ready to scrap the Patriot Act and start all over. 

Congressman Jerry Nadler sounds off at the bottom of the hour on that story. 

And Barbara Bush has a beef with Sarah Palin.  And Palin brought the hammer down on her reality show. 

It‘s all coming up.  We‘ll show you the tape here on THE ED SHOW tonight. 

This is a story that has me fired up tonight. 

Now, as the country gets ready to celebrate Thanksgiving, let‘s keep in mind that over 15 million out-of-work Americans and 44 million Americans who are on food stamps really, when you think about it, have very little to be thankful for, for 2010.  Those people, you know, they wish their only problem was getting felt up in the airport by a TSA agent.  How about a job? 

The millionaires in Congress are completely out of touch with the priorities of the American people.  Here‘s multi-Republican-millionaire, Mitch McConnell. 


SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL ®, MINORITY LEADER:  As Americans across the country prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving this coming week, we‘re reminded of the many blessings we enjoy as a nation.  And we‘re also conscious this Thanksgiving of the many Americans who are struggling with serious hardships, including the many millions of Americans who are struggling to find work.

It‘s time Congress got its priorities straight.  It‘s time Congress focused on job creation, and that means preventing tax hikes. 

Time is running out, but it‘s not too late for both parties to work together and prevent this massive tax hike from going into effect.  It‘s not too late to focus on the priorities of the American people. 


SCHULTZ:  We should have only played about 20 seconds of that sound bite.  What a fraud. 

Two things here. 

Number one, this is the biggest fallacy in this entire conversation, that if we extend the current legislation, it‘s just going to create jobs, this tax policy.  They‘re just going to be falling from the—opportunity‘s going to be falling from the sky. 

On the other hand, McConnell sits there acting so sincere, like he really cares about these Americans, when last week, the Republicans stood in the way of extending the unemployment benefits.  Why?  Because they‘re so concerned about the budget.  To hell with that. 

These are Americans who are suffering. 

Now, McConnell wants to block unemployed Americans from getting, think about it now, $300 a week.  Can‘t allow that, but he thinks that giving millionaires $700 billion in tax breaks is going to be the answer to everybody‘s problems over the next 10 years. 

Where are the jobs?  Billionaire Warren Buffett, he doesn‘t see it that way.  This is what he said yesterday --  


WARREN BUFFETT, BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY:  The rich are always going to say that, you know, just give us more money and we‘ll go out and spend more, and that will all trickle down to the rest of you, but that has not worked the last 10 years, and I hope the American public is catching on. 


SCHULTZ:  Buffett is spot on.  Some people are catching on.

A group of wealthy Americans—they call themselves Patriotic Millionaires for Fiscal Strength—they are calling for an end to the Bush tax cuts for the rich.  They put out a statement. 

The Patriotic Millionaires say, “We are writing to urge you, Mr.  President, to stand firm against those who would put politics ahead of their country.  For fiscal health and our nation and the well-being of our fellow citizens, we ask that you allow tax cuts on incomes over $1 million to expire at the end of this year, as scheduled.”

“We have done very well over the last several years.  Now, during our nation‘s moment of need, we are eager to do our fair share.  We don‘t need more tax cuts.”

So who‘s the patriot here, folks?  Is it Mitch McConnell, “Dr.  Greedy,” or is it these group of millionaires who drink the good wine, live the good life?  They have the courage to step up.  They know this isn‘t going to hurt them. 

The group also points out that only 375,000 Americans have incomes over $1 million a year.  That‘s .12 percent of the entire population of the United States. 

They also go on to point out that 44 percent of the members of Congress are millionaires.  The very people who make all the decisions when it comes to unemployment and decisions on food stamps have absolutely no idea what it‘s like to sit at a table at Thanksgiving when somebody doesn‘t have a job. 

Now, the millionaires are spot on.  Over the last 30 years, look at the number.  The richest one percent have seen their income go up 281 percent, although McConnell and Boehner, they haven‘t put one thing on the table to help out the middle class or the working poor since the election.  But they‘re talking a good game for the top two percent. 

Instead, they‘re playing politics with this tax cut issue.  The president needs to tell Mitch and “The Tan Man” the free ride‘s got to be over for the super-rich in this country.  When they get back to work next week, just lay it on the line. 

The tax rates need to go back to where they were when Bill Clinton was president, when they added 22 million jobs.  And if the tax cuts for the top two percent expire, the millionaires in Congress, gosh, you know how it‘s going to hit them?  They‘re going to have to shell out another four percent.  That‘s it. 

And when you compare it to the sacrifice of past generations, back in 1976, not long ago, the top marginal rate was 70 percent.  Today, they pay half of that much, at 35 percent.

So we can‘t move it to 39?  The question comes up again, when does the greed stop? 

Get your cell phones out.  I want to know what you think. 

Tonight‘s text survey question is: Do you think millionaires in Congress are completely out of touch with America?  Text “A” for yes, text “B” for no to 622639.  We‘ll bring you the results later on in the show. 

Joining me now is Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown. 

Senator, good to have you with us tonight.

SEN. SHERROD BROWN (D), OHIO:  Good, Ed.  Just decidedly not one of those millionaires in the Senate.  Just so—full disclosure to your audience. 

SCHULTZ:  OK.  I appreciate that very much.  I never thought you were out of touch, so you don‘t apply to the text question for sure. 

BROWN:  All right.

SCHULTZ:  All right.

Protecting the middle class and making sure that the wealthy pays more, this is a real political tightrope for the Democrats.  What‘s the strategy?  How are you going to make it happen. 

BROWN:  Yes, it‘s not an issue, tightrope at all.  It‘s clear that Warren Buffett‘s right and that economists are right that when George Bush did his big tax cuts that went overwhelmingly to the wealthiest people in our society, to the millionaires and billionaires, twice, in 2001 and 2003, the net increase of jobs during those eight years in the Bush White House were—was one million new private sector jobs created.  With Bill Clinton, who balanced the budget, did some cutting and spending and raising of the income tax, mostly for the wealthy, 22 million jobs created. 


BROWN:  So we know trickle-down doesn‘t work. 

The political issue here is harder because the Republicans don‘t want to play.  They only want to hold out. 

They are willing to hold the middle class tax cut hostage in order to help their millionaire and billionaire friends.  So we have to peel a couple of them off, or a few of them off, to do just the middle class tax cut and let the tax cuts expire for the wealthiest people in our society.

SCHULTZ:  OK.  So the bullet point that the righties keep throwing out there, just as Mr. McConnell just did over the weekend in the radio address in response to the president‘s radio address, it‘s all for one million jobs.  We should extend these tax cuts and keep this legislation in place because we might add another million jobs over the next eight years. 

I mean, if that‘s not serving up the big turkey for the Democrats, I don‘t know what is.  But how are you going to get the 60 votes? 

BROWN:  Well—

SCHULTZ:  Can the Democrats get the 60 votes to do this? 

BROWN:  Well, we‘ve got show the guts to stick with it and vote time after time for only the middle class tax cut, and let the other tax cut expire.  And when they bring up the tax cut for the wealthy, we‘ve got to all vote no. 

I mean, we‘ve got stick with it and show the country, whose side you are on here?  Something we didn‘t do in the election very well, shoe the country whose side you‘re on. 

I mean, listen, Ed, on this, basically what we‘re doing is Mitch McConnell saying, let‘s borrow $70 billion from China, give it on the richest one percent—

SCHULTZ:  True. 

BROWN:  -- and then charge it to our grandchildren to pay it off.  I mean, what‘s good about that public policy? 

SCHULTZ:  But, you know, Senator, I totally agree with you, but you still have to get those 60 votes. 

BROWN:  Yes. 

SCHULTZ:  Do you think there will be a few Republicans that will come over and not turn their back on the middle class?  This is—in a sense, it‘s a real gamble for the Democrats.  You‘ve either got the power or you‘ve got the votes or you don‘t. 

BROWN:  Well, we wouldn‘t have it—I mean, you know how hard it was


SCHULTZ:  Sure. 

BROWN:  -- to maintain unemployment benefits, that it took vote after vote after vote until the Republicans broke, and then we got some of their votes.  Well, this is the same thing. 

If the vote were tomorrow, if the vote were early next week, which it will be, likely, we wouldn‘t win.  But we‘ve got keep doing it until it‘s very clear in the public eye. 

SCHULTZ:  So, if the vote were handled right now, you wouldn‘t have the votes, you don‘t think? 

BROWN:  We wouldn‘t get any.  I don‘t think we‘d get any Republican votes right now, but I think if the vote‘s over and over, if we do some all-night sessions, some bring the cots out and sleep in the chamber, off the chamber, often the Senate floor, whatever we have to do to bring more attention to this, then we can start winning votes, because then some number of Republicans—most of them won‘t, but some of them will be embarrassed that all they‘re about is more tax cuts for the wealthy.  I mean, the Republican answer to every question, Ed, as you know -- 

SCHULTZ:  Tax cuts. 

BROWN:  -- the public policy answer is give more tax cuts to millionaires and billionaires.  And clearly, it doesn‘t work for our country. 

SCHULTZ:  It hasn‘t. 

Senator, great to have you with us tonight. 

BROWN:  My pleasure.  Thank you.

SCHULTZ:  Sherrod Brown from Ohio.

You bet.

BROWN:  Thanks.

SCHULTZ:  For more on this, let‘s go to Katrina vanden Heuvel, editor of “The Nation.”

Katrina, this is a big political play for the Democrats.


SCHULTZ:  Defining.  I mean, they have to do this or more basers are going to fade away from President Obama.  He has got to draw the line, don‘t you think?

VANDEN HEUVEL:  He‘s got to remind people of what he said when he ran for president, when he was a tough champion for working people and middle class people in this country.  And as Senator Brown said, “Which side are you on?”  Bring in those cots, do the all-nighters, expose the Republicans for what they are—hypocrites who are ready to give handouts to the connected but won‘t give a hand up to those in economic pain in this country.

SCHULTZ:  How big a political play is it going to be for the president?  Here he is trying—going to go back and talk to the Chamber of Commerce.  Here he is, wants to have dinner with the people that, basically, their number one thing is to take him down.  The last thing I think they‘re going to do is cave in on these tax cuts.  They‘d rather write it themselves after the first of the year. 

VANDEN HEUVEL:  Absolutely.  I mean, and you mentioned the Chamber of Commerce.  One thing that‘s going on here is, you know, they have invested in the Republican Party.  I mean, you have millions of covert dollars streaming into the Republican Party to buy off those people who are putting politics ahead of their country. 

You mentioned earlier, Ed, this new group, Patriotic Millionaires for Fiscal Strength.  The president can bring together enlightened businesspeople, Warren Buffett, others—a member of this group, Bernie Rapoport in Waco, Texas. 

Have those people stand by your side to show that there are those who understand that investing in this country is what brings security in the long run.  And it‘s not just hedge funds and putting your money in offshore accounts.  And by the way, the nonpartisan CBO and a McCain adviser, Mark Zandi, says the least productive thing you can do to boost the economy is to give tax cuts to the richest. 

SCHULTZ:  It amazes me.  I mean, here‘s Sherrod Brown just saying if they held the vote tonight, the middle class would lose. 

VANDEN HEUVEL:  The middle class has lost for the last 30, 40 years in this country, Ed.  The income -- 66 percent of the income has gone to the top one percent in the last 10 years.

This is a moment for the Democrats to define who they are.  They can do it if they stand tall, have spine, and understand that you‘ve got a Republican Party which is in hock to the richest and which is determined to destroy this presidency.

So, I think a definitional moment, as I said at the beginning, and one that I think that millions of people in the polls are there.  Millions of people showed that they want to preserve middle class tax cuts, but they understand the very richest don‘t need it. 

We need a fair share economy, not a tinkle-down economy, as my good friend Jim Hightower out in Texas says, because it has pissed on the working and middle class people in this country for the last decades. 

SCHULTZ:  Amen to that. 

Katrina, great to have you with us tonight.

VANDEN HEUVEL:  Thank you.

SCHULTZ:  Thanks so much.

Coming up, bat-crazy Bachmann out of Minnesota won‘t back down saying President Obama is anti-American.  Somebody needs to get her out of her trance.  We‘ll get “Rapid Fire Response” on that.

And “The Newtster” thinks he‘s a tough guy, but I think he‘s nothing but a coward.  Wait until you hear what he said about some of my colleagues here at MSNBC. 

Plus, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi thinks John Boehner is a cry baby.  Sarah Palin hammers a fish.  And what the heck happened to the Vikes yesterday?  Huh? 

Well, we fired the coach today.  I think Favre should take over.  What do you think?  Don‘t throw anything at the screen. 

You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC.  Stay with us.


SCHULTZ:  Welcome back to THE ED SHOW and thanks for watching tonight. 

This one burns me.  President Obama gearing up to get a truce together with the Chamber of Commerce.  I say, what for? 

The president plans to speak to the Chamber in the coming weeks.  It‘s being described as an opportunity for him to repair his anti-business image.  Stop it right there. 

This president does not have an image problem when it comes to business.  If you check the record, this administration has put more on the table for small business in this country than the last three administrations put together.  There‘s no question about that. 

Now, Mr. President with all due respect, this one has a lot of people on the left, including me, somewhat puzzled.  You didn‘t bring down the economy.  The greedy Republicans did on Wall Street. 

The Chamber represents them.  Remember?  They were funneling anti-American money bombs from foreign countries to destroy your agenda, to take the power away from you.  You had the guts to call them out.  Now is not the time for any kind of an olive branch for these folks. 

Joining me now is Mike Papantonio, host of the nationally syndicated radio show “Ring of Fire.” 

Am I right or wrong on this, Pap?  I mean, you have millions of dollars coming in to destroy an agenda of a president who couldn‘t do more for small businesses. 

MIKE PAPANTONIO, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST:  Ed, somebody needs—somebody needs to tell Obama they don‘t like him, they despise him, he‘s never going to be their friend, they‘re never going to let Obama into their club.  Get over it.  Stop—move out of that fetal position and stop acting so needy. 

These are not your friends, Mr. President. 

It was only a few months ago we heard Obama give a series of speeches about how destructive the Chamber of Commerce was to democracy.  And you know what?  He was right then.  But apparently he‘s forgotten that.  He‘s forgiven them.  Obama has a new pitch now. 

Remember what they did, Ed.  It was—the Chamber of Commerce who went begging all over this country, places like Mumbai, Singapore, Dubai, Bahrain, asking for money so they could buy part of our democracy.  The U.S. Chamber of Commerce did that.  And then they took 99 percent of that money and they gave it to everybody who hates Obama.

SCHULTZ:  So Mike, where‘s the truce?  What‘s this truce?  Truce for what? 

Since when—I mean, a truce is when somebody helps you out.  The Chamber‘s not going to help out this president. 

PAPANTONIO:  Ed, there will never be a truce, and he can‘t get it in his head what FDR figured out.  FDR said, look, they hate me.  I know they hate me.  I have nothing in common with them, and that‘s OK. 

I‘m going to be a president.  I‘m going to show leadership anyway. 

Listen, just a short list of what these people have done in the last few years is outrageous -- $87 million, secret and anonymous money to destroy his only—his major program on health care.  Eighty million dollars went towards GOP candidates who want tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires. 

They want to hand over Social Security to Wall Street.  They want to transfer more wealth from America‘s middle class to America‘s millionaires.  They want to end regulation so those same cats on Wall Street. 

SCHULTZ:  So, Mike --  

PAPANTONIO:  -- can do it again. 

SCHULTZ:  -- what would be the upside of having the president having somewhat of a not good relationship with the Chamber?  I mean, if they‘re working against him, you know, why doesn‘t he just say, the hell with them and move on? 

PAPANTONIO:  Ed, when he came into office, remember what he said did.  We saw Geithner, we saw Summers, we saw Eric Holder.  We saw all of the folks who have been tied to the Chamber of Commerce forever. 

And what he‘s forgotten is, these—when he makes nice with the Chamber of Commerce, you know what he‘s really doing?  He‘s making nice with a bunch of inheritance babies, the billionaires who want politics in America to be run according to the American Crossroads Agenda or the insane Heritage Foundation agenda. 

It‘s the Koch family, the Richard Mellon Scaife Group, the inheritance babies who could care less about democracy.  All they care about, can we squeeze another dime out of the American public?

SCHULTZ:  It is about the power.  It‘s the outsourcing—

PAPANTONIO:  And has—have no kinship. 

SCHULTZ:  It‘s the outsourcing agency of America. 

Mike Papantonio, always a pleasure.  Great to have you with us.

PAPANTONIO:  Thank you.

SCHULTZ:  Coming up, Newt “The Coward” Gingrich is afraid to take questions from Olbermann and Chris Matthews? 

Well, we‘ve got an answer for him in “The Zone” coming up.  Stay with us.


SCHULTZ:  And in “Psycho Talk ‘tonight, Newt Gingrich, still trying to figure out whether he‘s going to run for president or not.  But he‘s already ruled out any debates hosted by some of my colleagues here at MSNBC. 


NEWT GINGRICH, FMR. HOUSE SPEAKER:  There‘s no possibility that I would ever go to a debate and have, you know, Olbermann or Chris Matthews asking questions.  I watched the debate a couple of years ago, and it was an embarrassment because they were so reluctantly hostile and they were so left wing, that every question that they asked of the Republicans was designed to embarrass and divide the Republicans, and every question they asked to the Democrats was designed to make them look good. 


SCHULTZ:  Well, gosh, Newt, wouldn‘t you be smart enough to figure that out if that‘s the way it really was? 

It sounds like “The Newtser” is afraid of answering the tough questions.

Now, we‘ve seen this over and over again with Fox candidates like Sarah Palin, Christine O‘Donnell, Rand Paul, Sharron Angle.  They all refuse to talk to anyone who is not completely in their corner.  And if you want to see relentlessly hostile, take a look at Gingrich‘s Fox News colleague Brett Baier‘s interview with President Obama earlier this year. 


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  I don‘t think that we should pretend otherwise. 

BRETT BAIER, FOX NEWS:  But, Mr. President, this Monday—

OBAMA:  Brett, let me finish.  About 25, 40, 60 percent.  And are we going to do something about it?

BAIER:  Mr. President, let me insert this. 

OBAMA:  I could read the same exact e-mails. 

BAIER:  But these are people.  It‘s not just Washington punditry. 

OBAMA:  No.  Listen, enormous challenges that were faced because of that. 

BAIER:  I understand that, but do you know which ones are still in?

OBAMA:  Hold on a second, Brett.  It was ugly when Republicans were in charge, it was ugly when Democrats were in charge. 

BAIER:  This is one-sixth of the U.S. economy. 

OBAMA:  But you‘ve got to let me finish my answers. 

BAIER:  But, sir, I know that you don‘t like the filibuster. 

OBAMA:  Well, I‘m trying to answer your questions and you keep on interrupting. 

That‘s the reason I make these decisions.  Look—

BAIER:  Mr. President, I‘m getting wrapped up, and I don‘t want to interrupt you.  I apologize for interrupting you, sir. 

OBAMA:  And that‘s OK.  That‘s your job. 

BAIER:  I try to get the most for our buck here. 



SCHULTZ:  Lots of respect there, huh?  Brett Baier interrupted the president 16 times during that interview, but then we see Hannity riding around in a pickup truck driving during his interview with Bush, giggling like a schoolgirl. 


GEORGE W. BUSH, FMR. PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  Sometimes I didn‘t get my words right.  And I never—I tell these audiences I speak to, you know, you didn‘t elect me because I was Shakespeare. 



SCHULTZ:  Now, Brett, that‘s the way you do it. 

And Gingrich thinks it‘s our guys who are biased?  For Newt to refuse to participate in a debate where he might actually get asked tough questions is cowardly “Psycho Talk.”  

Coming up, Republicans are going nuts over these airport pat-downs.  All of a sudden, they‘re freaking out over people‘s rights?  Well, where was all of this talk when it was waterboarding and phone lines being tapped and the Patriot Act? 

Congressman Jerry Nadler puts the righty hypocrites in their place, coming up.

Speaker Pelosi gave “The Tan Man” something to cry about.  She‘s showing no mercy when it comes to his emotional breakdowns.  We‘ll have “Rapid Fire Response” on that. 

Plus, Hillary Clinton won‘t run; it‘s hammer time for “Caribou Barbie”; and “Saturday Night Live” nails the TSA skit.

You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC.

Stay with us.


SCHULTZ,:  Welcome back to THE ED SHOW.  The “Battleground” story tonight, well the rights wants to give our airport security, I guess you could say, the Halliburton treatment.  All of the conservative outrage over the TSA‘s screenings is about, my friends, one thing and one thing only and that is privatizing the TSA.  Another big fat government contract for the Republicans to hand out to their corporate cronies.  Now the righties, they scream about terrorism but when the Federal government takes action, they just simply go nuts and make it a political issue. 

They have no problem with the patriot act or warrantless wiretapping.  The conservative campaign is also an opportunity for the new Tea Party gang in Washington to keep hate-baiting against Muslims.  Congressman-elect Allen West, who made despicable comments about Muslims during the campaign says, we should start profiling, but call it something else. 


REP-ELECT ALLEN WEST ®, FLORIDA:  We need to focus our efforts and focus our national security efforts and not come up with a lot of these somewhat seemingly knee-jerk reactions that we‘re seeing with this pat-down procedure, and once again I think that we need to understand—define who the enemy is, first and foremost.  And then make sure that we have the security apparatus and procedures in place.  

UNIDENTIFIED MAN:  Do you think that profiling is appropriate?

WEST:  I don‘t call it profiling. 

UNIDENTIFIED MAN:  What do you call it?  

WEST:  I call it trend analysis because having been a commander in the battlefield which you look for our trends and you focus your resources on those trends, you know, profiling has become this negative connotative phrase. 


SCHULTZ:  Joining me now is New York Congressman Jerrold Nadler, whose district includes ground zero.  Congressman, good to have you with us tonight. 

REP. JERROLD NADLER (D), NEW YORK:  Good to be here.  

SCHULTZ:  What is your response to that answer right there on “Meet the Press” from yesterday.  

NADLER:  Well, I obviously don‘t like profiling and I certainly don‘t like the patriot act and I certainly don‘t like the torture that‘s still been unpunished.  I must say, I also don‘t like the automatic application of these scanning machines.  When you have real reason to suspect a person of something, then maybe you can use them then.  But they‘re too intrusive.  And I also worry about the radiation risk, frankly specially for frequent fliers, I don‘t want to think it‘s right to expose people to constant radiation.  

SCHULTZ:  OK, do you want to stop the pat-downs or is this where we are in America right now in a deterrent? 

NADLER:  Well, I‘d like to find some alternatives to the pat-downs.  Those pat-downs are extremely invasive of privacy, and extremely not irritating, it‘s not enough of a word, to people especially people who are sensitive.  They touch all the private parts of a person.  They‘re very invasive. 

SCHULTZ:  Do you want them to back off?  Do you want the TSA to back off?  

NADLER:  No, I‘d like to see them use alternative technologies, for instance, trace portal detectors which are being used in some—in some areas and I also know that these machines were rejected after a four-year try out at the Heathrow Airport in Britain.  I think you have to have a balance between security and privacy.  


NADLER:  And I think that this is a little off of the balance.

SCHULTZ:  But congressman, is the media hype in this, two percent of the people get patted down.  Two percent.  Only 44 percent of Americans fly. 

NADLER:  Well, I don‘t know if the media‘s hyping it, but fact is anyone who apparently, the procedure of some of airports now is that anyone who refuses the body scanner will get patted down.  And I think we ought to find—before we go whole hog in this technology we‘ve got to find some. 

SCHULTZ:  Do you know exactly how much radiation is—people are being exposed to exactly how much radiation and shouldn‘t the government be able to make a determine whether it‘s harmful or not? 

NADLER:  Well, I‘ve always taken the position that any radiation is harmful, the only question is—and that there are no safe bottom limits that, it‘s all a question of statistics. 

SCHULTZ:  Yes.  

NADLER:  If you expose 20 million people to minimal safe radiation, somebody will develop cancer, maybe only one or two.  

SCHULTZ:  But congressman, what about the outrage from the public?  The way their, I mean, the comments are here on talk radio, there‘s a big conversation in America that it‘s too intrusive, that it‘s humiliating.  Did the White House do and did the TSA and the counterterrorism people, and this is exactly where this is all coming from, they say they need to do to it to thwart attacks but did they not—did they not care about the public reaction and just go ahead and do it? 

NADLER:  I think. 

SCHULTZ:  Didn‘t they have the foresight to see that there would going to be some people pushing back on this?  

NADLER:  Obviously, they didn‘t have the foresight to anticipate the level of the response.  And you see this in bureaucracies all the time.  It‘s not surprising. 

SCHULTZ:  Well. 

NADLER:  And I don‘t think that it was in the White House.  Because I think that it was in the bureaucracy of the TSA.  

SCHULTZ:  Isn‘t it a bigger issue that the cargo gets on passenger planes and screened.  

NADLER:  Yes.  

SCHULTZ:  I mean, isn‘t that really what we should really be concerned about?  

NADLER:  Ed Markey and I sponsored legislation to say that 100 percent of the cargo that goes on airplanes should be screened.  

SCHULTZ:  And where is that legislation?

NADLER:  Well, it‘s beginning to be implemented.  I sponsored legislation which passed, which said that you shouldn‘t be able to put any container on a ship bound to the United States without it being screened. 

SCHULTZ:  And it would seem to me that the conservatives, the country, would be concerned about unscreened containers on passenger planes.  What‘s wrong with government?

NADLER:  Well, that was interesting because that was a partisan vote and never understood why but in 2006, it was defeated on the party line vote with all of the Republicans voting against, in 2007 it passed on the party line vote.  And the Bush administration never wanted to implement it, and this administration‘s being slow to implement it.  

SCHULTZ:  That is the under-covered story in this whole mix it when it comes to safety.  Congressman, good to have you with us tonight.  Thank you.  

NADLER:  You‘re welcome.  Thank you.  

SCHULTZ:  Now let‘s get some rapid fire response from our panel on these stories.  Hey, tan man, there‘s no crying in the speaker‘s office.  Nancy Pelosi slams John Boehner for his tearful theatrics on the house floor.  

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says, she has no plans to run for president, again.  

And psycho talker Michele Bachmann won‘t back down on her claim that President Obama is, quote, “anti-American.” 

Joining us tonight, Laura Flanders, host of Grit TV and editor of the book “At the Tea Party.”  And Scott Hennen, conservative talk show host and conservative activist with us tonight.  Great to have you with us.  Let‘s talk about Michel Bachmann.  Here is the sound cut.  She did an interview with the BBC.  Here‘s what she said.  


EMILY MAITLIS, BBC ANCHOR:  You suggested that President Obama is anti-American.  Do you really believe that?

REP. MICHELE BACHMANN ®, MINNESOTA:  Well, you know, I‘ve been very concerned about the policies that have come out the White House and I think I share that agreement with people who voted at the ballot box in the first Tuesday of November.  They‘re rejecting the federal government foray into buying and owning an equity share.  

MAITLIS:  But that‘s a different thing, do you think he‘s anti-American, do you think that the president of America is anti-American?

BACHMANN:  Well, the policies that are anti-free enterprise are ones that are not familiar to the people of the United States. 


SCHULTZ:  Laura Flanders, she won‘t back down.  What do you make of it?  

LAURA FLANDERS, “AT THE TEA PARTY” EDITOR:  Well good for the BBC reporter there.  You know, two things.  One, was anti-American is what Katrina Vanden Heuvel has talked about at the top 60 percent of all of the income in this country going to the top one percent in the last decade.  But you know, what is really going on here is the party of no is the party of no ideas.  This should have stopped on Election Day.  But, no, it‘s distract, divide, there is nothing constructive coming out of the Bachmanns of the world, just this same old stuff.  Are they going to keep it up for the next two years? 

SCHULTZ:  Scott Hennen?

FLANDERS:  What they think is the outcome?

SCOTT HENNEN, CONSERVATIVE ACTIVIST:  First of all, Ed and Laura, I believe that it‘s Barack Obama zero, Michele Bachmann one, if you look at the results of the recent election and more Americans agree with Michele Bachmann than agree with Barack Obama.  


SCHULTZ:  No, no.  Wait a second, anti-American, does the president—is the president of the United States anti-American?  And when she was asked that direct question she would not back off of it.  When does the rhetoric stop?  I mean, you know, Michele Bachmann, I‘ll let you answer.  I mean, what‘s happening here?  

HENNEN:  Well, she answered very clearly.  She believes his policies are anti-American.  I don‘t believe that she‘s saying anything that the American people don‘t agree within overwhelming numbers, that the policies of this administration are non-working.  Double-digit inflation, generational theft.  You know, debating whether or not the high taxes come January.  Obviously, the message was not heard by this administration and she clearly said twice, Ed, his policies, we‘re talking about his policies.  You talked about the U.S. Chamber of Commerce being anti-American earlier in this broadcast.  So, I mean, again, that‘s your position, you‘re debating that issue?  I think it‘s very American to get out there and say, hey, I disagree and she‘s talking about his policies.  

FLANDERS:  The echoes here are loud and clear and my colleague knows exactly what he‘s jumping around here.  This is old-fashioned baiting once again, and this is, again, going back to the only thing the right are able to serve up right now is hate and distraction and division.  And this is dangerous in a country that‘s on the edge, that‘s in trouble, that needs help, not hate.  And Bachmann‘s not offering anything constructive.  

SCHULTZ:  What is President Obama doing that is anti-American?  Yes, in my opinion, there‘s a huge difference between the Chamber of Commerce and the president of the United States.  An organization versus the leader of the free world.  Anti-American.  And it‘s just because it‘s the policies?

HENNEN:  Well, again, double-digit inflation, is that American, is that great?  His policies have more people out of work.  I don‘t think that‘s very American.  And, again, it‘s not Barack Obama personally, the individual, it‘s his policies.  And, obviously, what policies he‘s put forward for the last two years have been repudiated by the American public.  So, more people agree with Michele Bachmann about his policies.  

FLANDERS:  Let‘s hear it, I want to hear some policies that are good for the American people coming out of Michele Bachmann.  I think that we need to listen more carefully with what Donna Edwards said on the floor of Congress this week.  What‘s un-American is Americans wondering whether they‘re going to be able to have a turkey on the table this Thanksgiving because of the kind of policies that Michele Bachmann is pushing, and maybe it‘s obscure to many people in the public, thanks to our pay to play media and the propaganda that was anonymously pushed during the campaign in this last race and you‘ve talked about that here.  But I really think it‘s time for us to talk about how the American people are hurting. 


FLANDERS:  And what‘s going to be done to help, not spread this hate.  

SCHULTZ:  All right.  Here is Secretary Clinton saying that she‘s not going to be running for president.  Here it is. 


HILLARY CLINTON, SECRETARY OF STATE:  I have said it over and over again, and I‘m happy to say it on your show as well, I am committed to doing what I can to advance the security, the interest, and the values of the United States of America.  I believe that what I‘m doing right now is in furtherance of that and I‘m very proud and grateful to be doing it.  

CHRIS WALLACE, FOX NEWS ANCHOR:  So you‘re done with elective office?

CLINTON:  I am.  I am very happy doing what I‘m doing and I‘m not in any way interested in or pursuing anything in elective office.  


SCHULTZ:  Scott Hennen, do you believe her?

HENNEN:  Well, did you hear that sigh of relief from Barack Obama?  I think that the big news there really is 2012.  Who knows if that will hold true, but I think the most formidable challenge here to him in a primary would be her purchase but I think that the other bigger news there was 2016 when she‘s wearing off elective office period in the future.  That‘s to me is pretty newsworthy.  

SCHULTZ:  Do you believe her?

HENNEN:  No, you know, I don‘t know.  Never, never say, never, right?  I mean it‘s hard to believe, she sounded pretty forceful.  I mean you never know whether to believe these politicians on this question of, will you ever run at anytime in the future but 50/50.

SCHULTZ:  Laura Flanders, your thoughts?

HENNEN:  Well, she can‘t say anything that this point and nor should she.  I think that we in the media need to pay more attention not to what she might do in the future but what she is doing right now.  You know, that‘s boosting up these pilotless drone attacks in Pakistan and Afghanistan is sabotaging even the administrations owned state of policy.  You‘ve got Israel in defiance of everything leading to peace. 

SCHULTZ:  But it sounded there like she closed the door.  It sounded there like she closed the door forever and there‘s a lot of people that are thinking 2016.  I mean, there‘s a lot of Hillary backers that won‘t give it up and for her to say absolutely not, I mean, I think that‘s.

FLANDERS:  There‘s always wiggle room and you know it, Ed.  

SCHULTZ:  OK.  Always wiggle room.  Laura Flanders, Scott Hennen, good to you have with us tonight.  

HENNEN:  Thanks, Ed.

SCHULTZ:  Coming up, Brett Favre and the Vikings.  Well, they look like a bunch of turkeys out there yesterday.  I‘m fed up with the entire thing.  So, I fired the coach today, by the way.  I think Favre should be the head coach.  Sports radio host, Stephen A. Smith, he‘s going to come here in just a minute and say, Ed, I told you so.  That‘s coming up in the “Playbook.”  You see that?  Stay with us.


SCHULTZ:  And it‘s not too late to let us know what you think.  Tonight‘s text survey question is, do you think millionaires and Congress are completely out of touch with America?  Text A for yes.  Text B for no to 622-639.  We‘ve got the results coming up.  Stay with us.    


SCHULTZ:  And in my “Playbook” tonight, Brett Favre and the Vikings, it hurts to say this, but yesterday, it was disgraceful.  Head Coach Brad Childress was fired today, rightfully so, a day after getting embarrassed by the Packers, 31-3 in the blowout.  Favre completed just 17 passes with no touchdowns, one big interception.  I was hoping for a Super Bowl run this year, but maybe it‘s just too good to be true.

And nobody is happier about this than my buddy, Stephen A. Smith, nationally syndicated radio talk show host, and Brett Favre disliker. 


STEPHEN A. SMITH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST:  I told you.  You don‘t even know what I mean.  Listen, you don‘t listen.  I understand that you know that you‘re an expert in the field of politics and political punditcy (ph).  I get all of that, Ed Schultz.  You‘re absolutely fantastic but when it comes to sport, you have no objectivity, whatsoever, so you have no credibility.  You were rooting for Brett Favre from day one when he walked in there.  I told you last season with an aberration.  He‘s thrown 17 interceptions already this year. 

He‘s looked like absolute garbage.  He basically got the coach fired because he‘s played like garbage.  There was some injuries, Sidney Rice got injured, Randy Moss came in there, had no business being there.  You know, you had other guys who got injured as well, but the reality is that he‘s old, a bit decrepit.  Somebody that should have retired, literally ran away from the game last year, somewhat on top.  He didn‘t do that because he was listening to the Ed Schultz of the world and you see where that got him. 


Very simple.  

SCHULTZ:  Who‘s going to coach the Vikings now?  

SMITH:  Well, it‘s going to be Leslie Frazier.  

SCHULTZ:  Forever? 

SMITH:  He‘s an interim coach.  No, no not forever.  But it depends on how his team does.  If they rally around him the way that Dallas cowboys seem to be rallying around Jason Garrett and then things could change.  You‘ve got to remember that Leslie Frazier was somebody that was interviewed on seven different occasions.  This is an African-American with that Rooney Rule in place in the national football league.  He was interviewed on several occasions, seven to be exact, because you are required to interview a minority candidate. 

SCHULTZ:  Players like him though.

SMITH:  Players seem to like him but their defense is not playing well.  Who gives a—who cares whether they like him or not, their defensive line has done nothing.  They were sitting back watching, letting quarterbacks‘ takes pictures.  Calling mama for lunch and everything else.  


SCHULTZ:  You think that the Vikings can still make the playoffs, right? 

SMITH:  You stop and see. 

SCHULTZ:  They could still, I mean, this guy, this new coach could come in there and get them on the run to be done.


SMITH:  You need to stop.  Once again you‘re trying to hedge—you‘re trying to cover yourself.  This isn‘t politics, this is sports, they‘re done, period.  

SCHULTZ:  What about the cowboys, are they done or what?

SMITH:  They‘re done too, over.  

SCHULTZ:  OK.  Our director is a cowboy.

SMITH:  No.  Don‘t waste your time.  They‘ve done too.  

SCHULTZ:  Stephen A., always a pleasure.  Good to have you with us, buddy. 

SMITH:  All right, man.  Thank you.

SCHULTZ:  One final page in “Playbook” tonight, “Saturday Night Live” had some fun with some late-night pat-downs this weekend.  Take a look at this one. 


UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN:  Feeling lonely this holiday season?

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN:  Looking for a little human interaction?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN:  Then why not go through security at an airport?



UNIDENTIFIED MAN:  TSA agents are ready and standing by to give you a little something extra to feel painful about this holiday season.  

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN:  Spending time with a TSA agent couldn‘t be easier.  Simply book a flight departing from any American airport.  When selected for a full body scanner, say no.  You‘ll be pulled aside by a TSA agent and that‘s when the fun begins. 


SCHULTZ:  Aren‘t you looking forward to traveling this holiday season?

Coming up, W.‘s mom thinks Caribou Barbie is so at home in Alaska hammering those fish that she wants her to, well, stay there.  Joan Walsh brings the hammer down on Sarah Palin next.  Could she really win the nomination?  That‘s next on THE ED SHOW.  Stay with us.


SCHULTZ:  And finally tonight, W.‘s mom, former First Lady Barbara Bush is weighing in on the idea of Sarah Palin running for president.  She doesn‘t think Washington, D.C. is the place for Caribou Barbie.  


LARRY KING, CNN ANCHOR:  What‘s your read about Sarah Palin?     

BARBARA BUSH, FORMER FIRST LADY:  If I sat next to her once, I thought, she was beautiful and I think that she‘s very happy in Alaska.  And I hope she‘ll stay there.  


SCHULTZ:  Well, we get to see firsthand just how happy Sarah Palin is in Alaska.  Last night, another episode of her reality show aired. 


SARAH PALIN, FORMER ALASKA GOVERNOR:  Couple of my girlfriends threw me my baby shower right here in this shooting range.  My first baby shower and I love to share that story because it gives the liberals all wee-weed up.  

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN:  I can‘t tell where it‘s going. 

PALIN:  Yes, I know.  

Don‘t retreat, just reload.  They could do some damage here.  We need to calm these boys down real quick. 

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN:  Oh, gees.  That hurts like crap. 


SCHULTZ:  Well, that person thinks that she could beat President Obama.  She‘s heading to Iowa this weekend to plug her book and her aides are reportedly checking out office space in Des Moines, Iowa. 

Joining me now is Joan Walsh, editor-at-large,  Lots of messaging going on here.  Being a guy who likes to hunt and fish from the Midwest, I think that crowd would kind of get this and be enamored with it.  Is there messaging here that is definite?  What do you think, Joan?

JOAN WALSH, EDITOR-AT-LARGE, SALON.COM:  I don‘t think it‘s definite, Ed.  I don‘t think she‘s going after your vote but I could be wrong and I know that you‘re keeping an open mind.  You know, I think that the Barbara Bush maneuver is fascinating.  It‘s not the first time she went after a female vice presidential candidate.  You remember she said, Geraldine Ferraro is something that rhymed with witch but anyway, you know, there is going to be a circular firing squad in the Republican Party around a lot of issues, but particularly around Sarah Palin.  She is, right now, presenting a paradox for the party.  She is leading the Quinnipiac  poll that just came out shows her leading the pact for the nomination because it shows her losing to President Obama while Mitt Romney actually, I don‘t believe this. 

SCHULTZ:  I think that a lot of people are looking at this and saying, is that really her?  Is this show and tell?  How much real is in this reality show?  And the Sarah Palin media machine continues on, as you say, that she is leading in this Quinnipiac poll for the 2012 GOP nomination and at 19 percent, the Mittster and the huckster, and then Gingrich and then Tim Pawlenty.  Pawlenty actually making the biggest move at six percent.  She‘s a media machine right now. 

WALSH:  She‘s a media machine.  She has a built-in advantage over those other guys.  It could conceivably erode but right now I think she‘s playing it very well.  She‘s keeping everyone guessing, she‘s keeping us talking about her.  She‘s got the show that‘s directly reaching out to her core audience, which is not you, and she‘s having a ball and she‘s raking in the money which we both know is a big, big part of why she does what she does.

SCHULTZ:  And she has vilifying the media.  Here‘s what she told Hannity on his show, coming up. 


SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS ANCHOR:  Would you even do another interview with Katie Couric?  

PALIN:  You know, I would look forward to being even more open than I already am.  As for doing an interview, though, with a reporter who already has such a bias, against whatever it is that I would come out and say, why waste my time.  No, I will speak to reporters who still understand that corner stone of our democracy, that expectation that the public has for truth to be reported and then we get to decide. 


SCHULTZ:  And the numbers today if she were to be the candidate for the Republicans, this is how it breaks down.  President Obama at 48 percent.  Sarah Palin at 40 percent.  Where do we stand right now?  Do you think this is accurate?

WALSH:  It‘s way too early.  It shouldn‘t be that close.  I don‘t think it would even be that close once the American people continue to get to know her.  Independents are frightened by her.  Democrats loathe her but Republicans love her.  So, you know, we‘re going to see all this shake out.  We‘re going to see some of the men start to, you know, get on their game and challenge her.  Right now, she kind of has the field to herself because she‘s doing so much media with her FOX platform as well as her reality TV platform and then you‘ve got  Bristol on “Dancing with the Stars,” you know, it‘s all Palin all the time.  It‘s an advantage for now.  We‘re going to see how it shakes out. 

SCHULTZ:  Do you think that Bristol dancing has helped her?  

WALSH:  You know, I honestly think that could hurt her because people are so up in arms about—I‘m not watching, Ed.  I don‘t have time.  I‘m not a snob.  I just don‘t have time but people are saying, you know, she‘s really beating people who are better dancers.  So, maybe the fundamental unfairness of this judging could be—could create a backlash against the Palins, they could be the real Palin gate.  Who knows?  I don‘t know if it‘s helping her or anything but there‘s more controversy than I expected which is kind of hilarious.  

SCHULTZ:  Joan Walsh, it‘s great to have you with us tonight.  I‘ll be on the “Today” show tomorrow morning talking about this story in the 7:00 hour.  I hope that you can join us.  

Tonight, in our text survey, I asked, do you think millionaires and Congress are completely out of touch with America?  And 96 percent of you said, yes.  Four percent of you said, no. 

That‘s THE ED SHOW.  I‘m Ed Schultz.  For more information on THE ED SHOW, go to or check out my radio Web site at  You could blog there with all of our stories and the radio shows on XM 167, Monday through Friday from noon to 3:00 p.m. 

“HARDBALL” with Chris Matthews starts right now.  Great to have you back here, Chris, here on MSNBC, the place for politics.  



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