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The Ed Show for Monday, March 17th, 2014

Read the transcript to the Monday show

March 17, 2014

Guests: Tom Bunn, Scott Hamilton, Mike Rogers, Leo Gerard

ED SCHULTZ, MSNBC HOST: Good evening Americans and welcome to the Ed Show
live from New York.

Let`s get to work.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We need to get the answer. So we need get them soon.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This has yet unfathomed mystery.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Malaysian parties have refocused their
investigation into the crew and passengers onboard.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The nature of the search has changed.

REP. MICHEAL MCCAUL, (R) TEXAS: This was not an accident. It was an
intentional deliberate act to bring down this airplane.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Consistent with deliberate action by someone on the

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You`re going to have to do a thorough investigation on
everyone on the airplane.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Despite media reports that the plane was hijacked, I
wish to be very clear, we are still investigating four possibilities.


SCHULTZ: Good to have you with us tonight folks. Thanks for watching.

Well, everybody has done this story except the Ed Show. So, I`m going to
jump in tonight. It`s been 10 days since the Malaysia Airlines Flight
Number 370 dropped off the face of the map off of radar in the Gulf of
Thailand. It`s a pretty remote place, we all know that.

And I`ve been a pilot since 1988 and I`ve listened to all these theories
and I`ve listened to everything that`s going on. So, since everything is
on the table tonight, everything`s on the table with the Ed Show. I have a
theory about this and I`m going to tell you what I think happen to the
Boeing 777.

First, here`s NBC news`s Tom Costello with the latest.


TOM COSTELLO, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: More than 10 days since Flight 370
disappeared. And the mystery still dominates the world headlines.

The last satellite signal received from the plane somewhere along these two
arcs running to the north and south, up to seven hours from the plane`s
last known radar hit off Malaysia`s west coast. But half of dozen
countries in central Asia have already said the plane never appeared on
their radars further south of the Indian Ocean, 28 million square miles of

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And what we are going to hear ladies and gentlemen is
being monitored across the world and it may change aviation history. I
think there are lessons to be learned for everybody.

COSTELLO: Over the weekend, Malaysian police searched the homes of Captain
Zaharie Shah and first officer Fariq Hamid, confiscating the sophisticated
flight simulator in Captain Shah`s home looking for any evidence he might
have practiced flying unusual routes. Also this morning, the pilot was
known to be a supporter of Malaysia`s political opposition, seen here
wearing a t-shirt that reads "Democracy is Dead".

Meanwhile, NASA tells NBC News it`s checking images from satellites and the
space station for any signs of the plane. But many aviation experts
believe it`s highly unlikely the 777 where the wing span two-thirds the
size of a football field could have been stolen and flown undetected to
another country.

JOHN COX, NBC NEWS AVIATION ANALYST: So we`re talking about a very, very
large airplane. If it goes overland where there are people, people are
going to see it, there`s going to be comment about it.

COSTELLO: So with so little to go on, the Indian Navy has now suspended
its search and other countries maybe forced to do the same.

GREF FEITH, FORMER NTSB INVESTIGATOR: How much more can they afford to put
into this search before they have to give it up because they just won`t
have the resources to be able to pay for it?

SCHULTZ: Well I believe that there was foul play involved with this event.
I don`t think that there was any malfunction or any electrical fire.

Now, we know the plane made a sharp left turn and flew into the Straits of
Malacca. We know that this has taken place. That`s the last detected by
military radar. We know that the plane continued to fly for over seven

The jet made contact at 8:11 a.m., local time with a commercial satellite
operated by a British company. The latest information shows that the plane
could have traveled these two passes our report had just a moment ago.
That`s a possibility. It`s also a possibility the plane would have landed.
Now, this is a massive search area, it spans over 11 different countries
and remote stretches of ocean, millions of miles, OK.

The transponder in the plane was deliberately switched off. Here`s what a
transponder is. This is the cockpit of my grand caravan. This is what I
fly. This is the navigation system right here, the Garmin 530. And this
is the transponder, if I may show you this. The transponder is squawking
1,200 right now. That means I`m flying VFR, anybody who flies Visual
Flight Rules, if you want to use a transponder you squawk 1,200.

Now, if Squawk code is going to be put in there, you`re going to be told by
the controller, "Go to 0466." And that`s for radar identification and
location, OK? Who the plane is and where the plane is as far as altitude
is concerned.

Now, above 18,000 feet and that`s where this commercial flight was flying.
You have to have two of these. It`s regulation. You`re going to tell me
that both of them malfunctioned? You`re going to tell me that just both of
them happened to be turned off? Somebody turned these off and that leads
us to believe that the plane was clearly manipulated whether it be by the
pilots or somebody else who may have commandeered the cockpit.

Bottom line here is, is that -- let me give you the example on the squawk.
If I`m going into Minneapolis and I say this is Caribbean 20810, go Romeo.
I`m at 5,500 inbound with the (inaudible). The controllers are going to
come back me and he`s going to give me a squawk code, 810 go Romeo, squawk
0466 or whatever the number might be. As soon as I put 0466 in there,
they`re going to know who I am, where I am, how high I am and that`s the
way it is. You go above 18,000 feet, everybody sets their altimeter at
2992 and you`re given a squawk code.

No pilot has ever been instructed to turn off their transponder above
18,000 feet. And if you do have some type of malfunction, if the
transponder is giving false information, if it`s broken or not, reading
correctly, the controllers going to come back and tell you, "You got to get
bellow 18,000 feet."

Well, none of that happened. All of a sudden, these are turned off.
Somebody was told to turn them off or the pilot did it himself. So that`s
how a transponder operates.

Now, I think the plane -- I believe it landed somewhere. If there`s a
hijack situation that`s going to take place, why would they fly all over
the place? Why would you hijack a plane unless it`s a suicide mission
which I don`t think it is.

If the hijacker was going to crash the plane, why in the world would he fly
for seven hours? And let me tell you something folks, it`s not hard to
build a landing strip out in the middle of nowhere. The military did it
all the time during the Vietnam War.

Now, this is a landing strip at my fishing lodge up in Canada. Let`s do a
little Google Earth here. This is a 3,300 foot gravel strip in the middle
of nowhere. The closest thing to that is some 70 miles. The fact of the
matter is you know what you got to have to build one of these hummers? You
need a couple of bulldozers and you need a rock crusher. If you`ve got a
well funded operation that is planned to hijack, that want to put this
aircraft down in a remote location, it can be done. There`s no question it
can be done. The Boeing 777 needs a runway length of about 5,000 feet to
land. It may need a hell of a lot more than that to take off but to put
that baby down on a hard surface, on a gravel surface, yes, it can be done.
And this aircraft can also fly below radar detection.

So the hijacker very clearly could have taken over the aircraft, put it
down on the deck, flown it underneath any kind of radar and put it down on
a planned place on the face of the earth that might be a remote location
that was pre-planned.

Now, there`s 634 runways within the range that the flight of this 370 could
have landed. Wow. That`s a lot of targets. Anybody covered this story
about just how many remote landing strips there are in Thailand, we had
quite a few of them in the Vietnam War. They`re probably still around
unless somebody cut the grass.

Now, there was also plenty of places. A 5,000 foot runway could have been
build along this search path. It could have even landed at a remote
stretch or in a desert somewhere. Yes.

For example, back in 1970, four jets were hijacked by the popular front for
the liberation of Palestine. They were flown and landed in a remote desert
aero strip in Jordan. It`s very possible Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 is
sitting on the ground in some remote part of the world and nobody can find
it. Very possible. I don`t care how big this aircraft is.

And by the way, no one`s really talked about a water landing. If it`s a
hijack situation and I believe that it was and this guy just wanted to pull
a Southwest airlines, you want to get away? There`s not doubt he could
have put it down on any of these remote islands. I believe that we did see
an airplane land in the Hudson River successfully some years ago. Sully
was a hero for putting it down. Of course this aircraft could have landed
in water near an island. Everybody swim for your self.

There`s all kinds of that could have gone wrong here. After all, we`re
saying everything`s on the table. Bottom line here is I believe that that
aircraft was manipulated. I don`t believe that that aircraft had any kind
of malfunction whatsoever. I don`t think it was a suicide mission. I
think this is a well funded high-tech hijack operation and it`s sitting
somewhere in the jungle.

And yes, I think they`ve curved out a strip for it. And yes the pilot
could have been with all that experience able enough to fly VFR below 3,000
feet below detection and put that baby right down where he wants to put it
down. He`s got a flight simulator in his house and he wouldn`t know how to
fly VFR on a big jet like that? Come on anything`s on the table right?

Get your cellphones out. I want to know what you think. Tonight`s
question, "Do you think this plane will ever be found?" Text A for Yes,
text B for No to 67622, you can always got to our blog
We`ll bring you the results later on in the Show.

Let me bring in retired airline Captain Tom Bunn who used to fly the Boeing
767s and also with us tonight is Aviation Consultant Scott Hamilton.
Gentlemen, good to have with us tonight.

Tom, I want to focus with you first if I may. Why would anyone turn off a

TOM BUNN, FMR. BOEING 767 CAPTAIN: There`s no reason to turn off a
transponder, you would only switch to the other one. You`re not going to
turn it off unless you`re forced to for some reason. No pilot is going to
do it.

SCHULTZ: Switch to the other transponder, there has to be redundancy in
the system .

BUNN: Yes.

SCHULTZ: . there has to two .

BUNN: Yes.

SCHULTZ: . above 18,000 feet.

BUNN: That`s right.

SCHULTZ: So it really doesn`t lend itself with a rigorous maintenance
schedule which of course the airlines have .

BUNN: Yes.

SCHULTZ: . that two transponders would malfunction at once.

BUNN: Well no, they wouldn`t know that they`re operating before they take
off and air traffic control was watching along (ph) the one. And if they
lost one air traffic control could have told them, they could have switched
to the other one and check that one out. Something else happened.

SCHULTZ: OK. Why would a plane fly so long and -- on a suicide mission?

BUNN: It doesn`t make any sense.

SCHULTZ: I mean, if it`s a suicide mission they`re going to do it right
now, aren`t they?

BUNN: And first of all what I was told was these pilots were put together
on this flight by the airline. They didn`t have any collusion about this.
So, let say you got two pilots in the cockpit and one say`s "Hey, by the
way, I`d like to kill myself today." Are you going to go along with that?
Even if you had a gun, you can`t fly the airplane with a gun to one guy`s
head while you operate the plane with the other hand. It`s not going to

SCHULTZ: Now, the attitude of the aircraft, the changing of the altitude,
automatic pilot wouldn`t do that unless it was pre-programmed?

BUNN: No, that`s right.

SCHULTZ: OK. So that -- even the radars lends us to believe, the radar
tracking of it, the different altitudes that it had tells us that the
aircraft was manipulated.

BUNN: Well, there was one thing that was interesting to me, the idea that
it went to 45,000 feet. And that`s very unusual. And whether that is
accurate or not with the military radar, I don`t know but if that was the
case that brings something up an interesting possibility.

SCHULTZ: Could easily been a struggle in the cockpit and pull back the
yoke? You never know

BUNN: Well, the other possibility is, I had this fantasy when I was flying
was if I had a hijacking maybe I`d climb to 40,000 feet -- 45,000 feet. At
that point, when you de-pressurize the airplane, anyone not only oxygen but
pressurized oxygen that`s forced into your body has 15 seconds maximum
before they become incapacitated.


BUNN: So that`s what you can do to hijack.

SCHULTZ: So why would the Captain do that to the crew?

BUNN: If he had the hijacker where he knew where he was and even in the
cockpit, if he climbed to 45,000 feet, de-pressurize the plane, the
hijacker could be incapacitated in 15 seconds, unless he could get a mask

SCHULTZ: OK. So who ever manipulated a cockpit was smart enough to turn
off the transponder, but wouldn`t that person be smart enough to realize
that you`re climbing to 45,000 feet? So that .

BUNN: Yeah.

SCHULTZ: . would kill that theory from my perspective.

BUNN: Yeah, except that we do have that record that supposedly that they
went to 45,000 feet.


BUNN: . don`t know why.


BUNN: I don`t know if that`s correct either.

SCHULTZ: Scott, I want to ask you and good to have you with us tonight.
Do you see this is a possible hijacking?

SCOTT HAMILTON, AVIATION CONSULTANT: Well, I thought from day two that
this is actually a criminal act.

As Tom pointed out, the transponder was turned off -- two transponders were
turned off, the ACARS was turned off and that sat system that monitors the
health of the airplane and sends it back to the airline. The 777 has five
radios, 3 VHF radios, 2 HF radios, the two transponders, the ACARS of -- a
777 instructor tells me is tied to the number two VHF radio, you turn that
off, you turn off ACARS.

This was not an accident. This was not a mistake. This was not an
electrical failure to blow out all five of those radios and the
transponders. So I think this was a criminal act.

SCHULTZ: And also a lot -- I don`t know this pilots did this or not. But
many pilots who do overseas flights over a lot of water carry a satellite
phone with them. In case everything fails they pull out a remote satellite
phone and they can get to somebody to say what`s going on here. If they
were trying to save the aircraft and if it lost all electrical and had been
incapacitated, I`m surprise that a satellite phone wouldn`t come in to
play. Your thoughts.

HAMILTON: Well I have no idea about that. And let`s remember that the
distance between Kuala Lumpur and then land fall of Vietnam really isn`t
all that long over water. But the one thing that Tom did not mention is
the prospect that if this wasn`t indeed an event propagated by one of the
two pilots, you just wait until the other pilot steps out of the cockpit to
go to the bathroom and then you lock him out. That happened with the
SilkAir pilot suicide that happened with the EgyptAir pilot suicide.

So we don`t know whether this was a cockpit intrusion that forced the
pilots to do something. We don`t know whether this was the one pilot or
the other instigating this event and we may never know.

SCHULTZ: I want your thoughts on the length of flight. I mean, we know
that that aircraft took off with so many pounds of fuel. It burns so many
pounds per hour. It should be an easy calculation from the last point of
its known position, how far it could fly. And if it goes down to a low
altitude it`s going to burn more fuel but it`s still has a hell of a long
way to go to reach a destination and get below radar. What do you think?

HAMILTON: Yeah. The idea of what I usually term this "joy ride" is the
most perplexing part of this when we talk about the prospect of a hijacking
or a pilot suicide.


HAMILTON: The only thing that I could think of if this were a pilot
suicide type of a event would be that he wanted to burn off or dump all the
fuel but it doesn`t appear that he was dumping that to eliminate any
prospect of a fire ball if and when the airplane crashed.


HAMILTON: If it were a hijacking, I`ve got a little fiction theory here
that this could be Al-Qaeda or some other group that we know has wanted to
test security procedures to be able to get back into an airplane illegally
and take one over. But if this was a test run then they don`t want to tell
anybody about that and they want the airplane in a location where it just
adds to the mystery.

SCHULTZ: Absolutely. And I do believe that this is a hijacking. I think
it`s organized and I think it`s on the ground. Tom I`d like -- Captain,
I`d like your thoughts on the length of flight after its last location.

BUNN: I`m not sure what you`re looking for there but we know that it flew
for about seven hours. It`s got a lot of places it could have gone. And
then yes, after it`s gone to a certain point, in order to get by the radar
you can go down you still got a fuel to do that.

SCHULTZ: So they could did -- and this is something that I think needs to
be pointed out finally. This aircraft has all the capability for long
distance at low altitude to avoid radar.

BUNN: Well, you could go. You could save the fuel by going where --
outside the radar contact.


BUNN: And then when you`re -- if you plan this thing and you know where
the radar is then you go down first and you go underneath it. This is the
kind of thing we did in New York when I was in the Air Force. We were
trained to fly down below the radar and .


BUNN: . in order to deal with our missions.

SCHULTZ: All right. An experienced pilot could do that. Tom Bunn, Scott
Hamilton great to have both of you with us tonight. I appreciate your

Remember to answer tonight`s question there at the bottom of the screen.
Share your thoughts on Twitter at EdShow and on Facebook, we want to know
what you think.

Coming up, we continue our series "Fighting Chance: American Steel."
Tonight I`m talking to President of the United Steelworkers International,
Leo Gerard. He`ll tell us why bad trade deals are crushing America`s steel
industry and the challenges ahead.

But first, beer politics in the St. Patrick`s Day parade. Trenders is up

Stay with us.


SCHULTZ: Time now for the Trenders social media. This is where you can
find us and that is, and also On the radio, I`m on Sirius XM Channel 127, Monday through
Friday, noon to 3 p.m. And also you get my radio podcast on my radio
website at wegoted.

The Ed Show social media nation has decided. We`re reporting and here are
today`s top Trenders voted on by you.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s madness I tell you.

SCHULTZ: The number three Trender, having a ball.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There are 68 teams and it`s hard to wrap your head
around them all.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The overall number one seed is Florida.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The number one.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Florida has had a great year. They won the SCC out

SCHULTZ: The NCAA top teams go mad on selection Sunday.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A fourth overall number one seed.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Number one seed which is top A (ph).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s a shocker. This is no surprise at all. UMASS,
new legend.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They`re all excited why not. Go ahead and celebrate

SCHULTZ: The number two Trender, Rove reviews.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let`s talk about November. They need a net pick up of
six seats to take over the Senate.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What are my chances?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And we`ve ask our resident and expert Karl Rove.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have no idea what you`re talking about.

SCHULTZ: Bush`s brain makes his latest election prediction.

KARL ROVE, FORMER BUSH WHITE HOUSE ADVISOR: Republicans and all of these
races are competitive.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So you`re telling me there`s a chance.

ROVE: There was 14 seats in play on the Democratic side. And I think it`s
highly unlikely that the Republicans pick up a majority.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yeah, well, you know, that`s just like your opinion,

SCHULTZ: And today`s top Trender, Dublin down.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How about good morning to you, Lenny (ph).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Controversy among the rebel rate.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where did they -- everyone is a little bit Irish,
except of course for the gays and the Italians.

SCHULTZ: Mayors stand with the LGBT community and boycott St. Patrick`s
Day parades.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: More than 150,000 men and women will march up at Fifth
Avenue to honor the patron Saint of Ireland.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Bill de Blasio boycotted this parade because its
organizers banned gay groups from marching under their own banner.

MAYOR BILL De BLASIO, (D) NEW YORK: I`m not planning on marching. I
simply disagree with the organizers.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In South Boston, thousands have lined the streets in
what is seen as one of the city`s most cherished Irish event. The son of
Irish immigrant Mayor Martin Walsh decided not to march after talk spill to
include a gay veterans group in the parade.

MAYOR MARTIN WALSH, (D) BOSTON: It comes down to being able to identify
yourself in the parade. That`s what it`s all about.


SCHULTZ: Joining me tonight Mike Rogers of, a gay activist
and journalist, great to have you with us, Mike.

What do you make of this? This for the first time this is a controversy
that has never played out before in New York or Boston when it comes to the
St. Patrick`s Day parade, your thoughts.

MIKE ROGERS, RAWSTORY.COM: Well, what I think we`re seeing Ed, more and
more around the country is that politicians have to decide, do they want to
come down on the side of equality or do they want to come down on the side
of continuing discrimination?

I think that when you hear a mayor who is the children of Irish Immigrants
say, "Enough for the exclusion, enough withdrawing these lines." That it
really sends a message to the American people and in fact, you know, this
is really -- there`s a few people left who are really fighting this stuff
and it`s time to get beyond this as a country.

SCHULTZ: So is this going to happen in every march or every celebration
that this will be an issue?

ROGERS: Well, this has been something that I know in New York has been
going on for a few decades actually from back when I lived up there.

So, it`s something that will continue and I think now that you see the
Mayor of Boston which of course has a huge Irish population, the Mayor of
New York City, the largest City in the country saying, "You know, this
isn`t really what I want to be a part of, if there`s a gay veterans group
that wants to march and their a gay Irish veterans group." They should be
allowed in the parade just like everyone else. No special kind of
designation but we`re a group, we`re here to march and that`s what we`re

SCHULTZ: What do say to some politicians such as Michele Bachmann, who was
quoted as saying that the gay community for a lack of well for -- let me
paraphrase here. She`s making the claim that the gay community is bullying
America with such situation as this.

ROGERS: Well, you know, when someone like Michele Bachmann speaks you can
pretty much flip it into a compete mirror image and that`s what the really

So we leave in a country where unfortunately young people particularly for
people that are bullied constantly everyday in schools and in workplaces
across America. And they`re bullied because of people like Michele
Bachmann and her husband who run a program purport to be able to de-gay gay

So we really know where her interest is, it`s in keeping people in the
closet and making sure that, you know, her based that has this kind of
vitriol against gay and lesbian equality and the LGBT community continue to
continue to spew.


ROGERS: And I think as we know folks like her coming to the end of being
able to do that.

SCHULTZ: Well, the boycotts are one thing, the activism something else,
but now in the business climate this is a Guinness beer. They were going
to be a big sponsor of this. In fact it`s after 5 o`clock, I think I`ll
have a couple of cool ones. I got one on the set here for you if you
wanted one. If you`d have been in New York you could`ve have one with me.
What`s it say that Guinness pulled out of sponsoring the St. Patrick`s Day
parade here in New York City?

What is this telling to the corporate America or any other sponsor? They
want everybody to drink their beer I would imagine including Big Eddie.

ROGERS: Including Ed. And Ed, cheers to you on St. Patrick`s Day. I even
have my green tie on specifically for the show.

So I think it`s great that we celebrate it. But we also know its big
business. I`m here in Washington with a snow storm, the bars are affected
and in New York we`re going to see, you know, a lot of people say, "Well,
will people stop drinking Guinness? No.

I`ve already heard from lots of friends of mine folks, you know, in this up
and coming areas I heard today that throughout Williamsburg in Brooklyn, a
real hip area, the Guinness is flowing as a result of this, because these
companies know that .


ROGERS: . in this day and age it`s just -- it`s not acceptable anymore to
say, "We`ll be a part of something that`s not fully inclusive."

SCHULTZ: Since you`re not here, Mike, I guess I`m just going to have the
proverbial couple of cool ones during the job here today. Good to have
with us, thank you so much.

ROGERS: Thank you, Ed.

SCHULTZ: Mike Rogers, Rawstory here on the Ed Show.

Coming up, the American Steel industry is the best the world, the best.
But bad trade deals representing steelworkers with serious challenges.
More from our series "Fighting Chance: American Steel".

And later, Reince Priebus takes aim at Obamacare. Congressman Chris Van
Hollen weighs in on the latest Republican attacks on healthcare.

But next, I`m taking your questions Ask Ed Live just ahead here on the Ed
Show. I should have a cool everyday during the show.


SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show. Love the questions coming from our
viewers in our Ask Ed segment tonight.

We have question coming from Nicole (ph), who wants to know, "Why do
Republicans call President Obama names like "communist" and "socialist",
then turn around and call Putin a "great leader?"

Well, you got a couple of different issues there. Communist, socialist,
that`s very negative in America. So, anything that`s negative, they`re
going to try to pin on the president, anything negative works. And as far
Putin being a great leader, they just want to say that there`s somebody out
there who`s better than President Obama because they can`t stand him.

Our next question is coming from Joan. She wants to know, "Are you part
Irish, Ed?" Question mark. "Just asking because of your beautiful red

Easy on the beautiful thing, but thank you very much. Yes, I am part
Irish. I have -- I guess you could say the heart of a German, and the
emotion of an Irish man. So yeah, I`m mostly German, but I do have some
Irish in me. I`m sure that`s where the red hair came from. And a little
personal information, I have never colored my hair. I`m very proud at 60,
I still have red hair.

More from our -- it`s the beer I just had, settle down. We`re coming back
with more. Our series, American Steel, next.

Market Wrap.

Stocks finished in the green, the St. Patrick`s Day, very appropriate.

The Dow jumps a 181 points. The S and P up 17. The NASDAQ gains 34.

Some positive economic news today, industrial output rose more than
expected in February logging the biggest increase in six months.

Home with a little (ph) confidence inched up this month as well, but it
remains firmly in negative territory.

And GM finished higher after it said it would take a $300 million charge
related to recalls.

That`s it from CNBC. We`re first in business worldwide.


SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show. Tonight, we kickoff a week-long
series focusing on the steel industry in America. Trade agreements and
manufacturing might not be for the sexiest headlines in the country, but
there are issues that directly affect middle class wage earners in this
country and in the heart of America.

The recent push to fast track the TPP puts us on the verge of entering
another deal which would got American industries even further.

To learn more, I talked to the folks from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to
Lorain, Ohio. This is "Fighting Chance: American Steel."


SCHULTZ: The saying goes, "The hotter the fire, the stronger the steel."
By that logic, after everything the U.S. Steel Industry has been through,
it should be stronger than ever. But a series of bad trade deals has put
one of the most important sectors of the U.S. economy in a top spot.

I sat down with Leo Gerard, president of the United Steelworkers
International to get an idea of where we stand.

Let`s talk about the overall stability and state of the steel industry in
America right now.

LEO GERARD, UNITED STEELWORKERS: Let me start by that the steel industry
in America, in fact, the steel industry in North America, it`s now North
American Industry, is the most productive steel industry in the world. We
can make steel now at anywhere from 1.75 to two and a half man hours per
ton which is huge from where it used to be. It`s also the most
environmentally sound steel industry in the world. But it`s been under
continuous attack.

move under our dumping walls and we had to move to try to keep our steel
industry which it took down 60 percent of its employment.

GERARD: In fact, when President Clinton left office a long time ago now,
he`d left a report on this, said that the steel industry has been under
attack for the last 30 years, that`s when President Clinton left office.
So -- but, the steel industry has been playing a survival game against
unfair trade now for close to 45 years because of unfair trade, because of
subsidy courtesy and manipulation, no environmental enforcement, no labor
laws, no decent wages. So the steel industry is productive when it`s
having to fight for its life everyday.

SCHULTZ: So, do you think we`ll ever have a level playing field or is this
just a way it`s going to be and we`re going have to swim in this

GERARD: Look, and I think we have to fight for a level playing field. You
can`t have a manufacturing industry if you don`t have a steel industry. If
you watch any country that wants to move from being an underdeveloped
country to a developed country, the thing it wants first is a steel
industry. Once it has a steel industry then it can start to manufacture
goods. So, one of things that we continuously have to fight for is a level
playing field.

One of the huge disappointments to us is that as we keep winning, we keep
losing. And what I mean by that is we`ll get a surge of unfair trade
imports. We`ll fight those and we`ll win them. But by the time we win
them, we`ve lost anywhere from two, three, four, five, six, seven thousand
jobs. And that`s not the way to build an economy. We need to demand that
we have a balance trade agenda with whoever is in government.

SCHULTZ: The trade deal on every steelworkers find these days is the US-
Korea free-trade agreement.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It has the full model of the North American free-
trade agreement.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What this agreement will give them is a more level
playing field in South Korea`s.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The critics would say that it was steel crafted and the
net effect is going to be very lopsided in favor of South Korea, you`re

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I couldn`t disagree more.

SCHULTZ: The South Korean trade deal has had a big impact on the steel
industry. The tube industry, especially, what has unfolded since that deal
has come down?

GERARD: Well, let me just say that Oil Country Tubular Goods, as they
known as the -- say in the industry, OTCG. The Oil Country Tubular Goods
are the most high value added segment of the steel industry. They`re used
for drill pipe. You can reel down three quarters a mile, turn the pipe,
and go another half mile to where the other gas is. It`s the most high-
valued part of the steel industry.

We we`re getting flooded by cheating from Chinese steel, from Chinese Oil
Country Tubular Goods. So we filed a case, as they say, a trade case. It
takes several years to go through the system. We won the trade case. So
China`s cheating had to come down.

But while those years are going by and Korea sees that -- South Korea sees
that we`re going to win, they build a new steel industry, brand new for Oil
Country Tubular Goods. They don`t sell one pound, not one pound of Oil
Country Tubular Goods in South Korea. That is meant to target the U.S.

So now we filed a case against South Korea and Oil Country Tubular Goods.
By the time that sees its way through the system, that`s another one or two
years. So you take a five-year block where our markets have been flooded
with the high value steel that we need for Oil Country Tubular Goods. And
during that time, we lose jobs. So, we`ll win the cases, but we`ll lose
the jobs. That shows you what`s wrong with our trade laws.

SCHULTZ: What has it done to the price of the market, this attempt by the
South Korean steel industry to infringe on the American market? What`s it

GERARD: In the case of South Korea and the Oil Country Tubular Goods
market, the overwhelming majority of their exports are targeted at our
market. And remember what I said, they don`t sell one pound, not a pound.
They don`t drill an inch in their country. That stuff is meant to target
our market and it`s meant to depress our prices to steal our jobs.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So, we`re very confident that this is going to be net
job creator for the United States.

SCHULTZ: It`s been two years since the new agreements under the US-Korea
FTA went into effect. Proponents claim, the pact would expand U.S. exports
and create U.S. jobs.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We think it will grow jobs that will increase trade and
we think it also will send a very important message in terms of foreign

SCHULTZ: Instead, we`ve seen the opposite. And it hasn`t just hurt the
steel industry. According to a report by the Public Citizen`s Global Trade
Watch, it`s estimated the United States has lost an average of $385 million
each month in exports to Korea. That works out to accumulative loss of
more than $9.2 billion in U.S. exports under the FTA`s first two years.

But what`s the future, navigating through all that?

GERARD: Well, I think the future is we have to keep fighting and I think
we`re slowly making progress. We`ve now got a lot of the members of the
House and the Senate and both parties are seeing that these trades aren`t
working, that these trade deals aren`t working, they`re seeing that --
they`re coming to understanding, if you want to rebuild the infrastructure
of America, you need a steel industry to do it. We haven`t had a trade
deal, Ed. We have not had a trade deal since NAFTA that has generated an
export surplus for America.

What they`ll do often is they`ll say, "Well, our exports have risen (ph)
twice as much." That maybe true, but our imports have quadrupled. The
Trans-Pacific Partnership, the TPP, we fundamentally believed it`s going to
be another nail in our economic coffin. And we`ve come to the conclusion
that a lot of these trade deals are both about trying to get our Asian
allies closer to us and giving them our jobs for that exchange.

So, we`re going to be fighting the fast track. We`re going to be fighting
the TPP. We`ve tried to engage the administration and the discussion of
both a new trade deal, one that would lead us to a balance trade. We
haven`t been successful. We haven`t seen that deal come to pass yet.


SCHULTZ: So, when a politician says they stand with workers, react to that
story. Stand with the steel industry and a stronger America.

Tomorrow, in "Fighting Chance: American Steel," we focus on Lorain, Ohio, a
city built on U.S. steel.

Still ahead, Obamacare numbers keep climbing and Reince Priebus, well, he
is unhappy. Congressman Chris Van Hollen joins me for the punch out. Stay
with us.


SCHULTZ: And in Pretenders tonight, Mister Sunshine, John McCain, the
senator from Arizona is pouncing on President Obama`s decision to freeze
you as assets of seven Russian officials today. And of course McCain is
dusting off the old week card.


SEN. JOHN MACCAIN, (R) ARIZONA: This president`s response, I don`t know
how it could have been weaker besides doing nothing.


SCHULTZ: Well, the loser of the 2008 election also bashed the president
and his staff for being naive.


MACCAIN: I don`t know when the president and his advisers going to wake up
to what Putin is really all about. We`ve got to start with a fundamental
reassessment of our relationship with him.


SCHULTZ: Well, Senator McCain I think has a very short memory when it
comes to placing foreign policy experts around you. McCain I think takes
the cake.


CHARLIE GIBSON, ABC NEWS: What insight into Russian actions, particularly
in the last couple of weeks, does the proximity of the state give you?

neighbors and you can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska.


SCHULTZ: The good old days. If John McCain thinks he can criticize the
president of the United States for being weak and naive without us cranking
out the old vice presidential selection he made, he can keep on pretending.


SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show. This is the story for the folks who
take a shower after work. You know the old saying, "You can lead a horse
to water, but you can`t make him drink." Republican`s don`t want to drink
the water. They want to poison it, as I see it.

Reince Priebus was led to this water. He has been seen the -- he has seen
the climbing enrollment numbers of Obamacare. They don`t know what to do
with it. As of today, 5 million people are enrolled Affordable Care

Those millions will visit doctors, get treatment, and won`t be turned away
for preexisting conditions, all good stuff. The numbers are only going up.
But Reince Priebus is still trashing the life-saving law.


complete poison out there in the field. And so, the lesson is going to be,
number one, you have to hit your main target which is Obamacare.


SCHULTZ: Poison in the field. Saving people`s lives is poisonous.
Obamacare will surge in popularity as more people are covered. Instead of
embracing and working with the law, Republicans are steadfast in the
strategy to malign and dismantle.

Exactly one year ago, Reince Priebus rolled out the Republican autopsy of
Mitt Romney`s failed presidential run. Priebus said that GOP needed a
change from their old -- stuffy old man image.

Wow. Republicans leaders haven`t change their old stubborn ways, have

They haven`t even changed their rhetoric. The strategy remains the same.
Set up the American people for failure. That`s what`s it`s all about.

For more, let me bring in Congressman Chris Van Hollen of Maryland.
Congressman, good to have you with us tonight.

REP. CHRIS VAN HOLLEN, (D) MARYLAND: Ed, always good to be here.

SCHULTZ: The numbers hit 5 million, it`s a solid number. As I see this,
you`ve got April, May, June, July, four more months before everybody goes
home in August to get on the stuff, to communicate Town Hall meetings,
where do you think will be in four months and what will the Democratic
narrative be?

VAN HOLLEN: Well, as you said, we hit the 5 million mark today and it`s
going to be climbing. I think Democrats are going to be increasingly on
the offense on the Affordable Care Act even as we talk about other critical
issues. The number one issue, of course, on the minds of American people,
jobs in the economy, but the Affordable Care Act will get people more
economics certainty.

And I agree with you. I think Republicans are going to make a big mistake
by doubling down on their Anti-Affordable Care message. People are tired
of it. They want to improve it as we go along, not shutdown the government
to get rid of it, not vote for the 53rd time to get rid of it --
especially, one, as you know, and the American people know, the Republicans
have not put any alternative on the table. They want to go back to the
days when the insurance companies called all the shuts.

SCHULTZ: You know, on the heels of that win by David Jolly in that
Republican congressional district last week in Florida down in Tampa and
along with the Gulf Coast, it seems like the Republicans can`t get enough
for that. It`s almost like they are now totally convinced that healthcare
is the way to go for the midterm. Your thoughts on that.

VAN HOLLEN: Well, that`s a misreading of the Florida-13 election because
if you look at the swing voters, the persuadable voters, the voters that
would, you know, you might think would be, you know, that Republicans
appeal to it -- of Anti-Affordable Care Act message. They actually voted
for the Democrat.

What happened in Florida-13 was simply a bigger turnout by Republicans. It
is a Republican leaning district, then they got more Republicans out. But,
in terms of the message on the Affordable Care Act, the Republican message
did not work there just like it did not work in the Virginia governor`s
race where Terry McAuliffe said, he would support the Affordable Care Act,
he want to improve it where it was broken, but move forward on it.

So, I think Republicans are making a (inaudible) calculation. Let them
talk all about the Affordable Care Act and how they want to get rid of it.
We`re going to talk about how it helps people, but also, where our voters
are focused which is of course jobs, economy, minimum wage, and it`s part
of the package of economic security and moving the country forward. So,
Republicans have only a negative message, people know that, they want a
positive message that`s going to move the country forward.

SCHULTZ: So, congressman, is that the caucus conversation amongst the
Democrats? Go home and run on Obamacare. Don`t run away from something
that has been positively done for the American people.

VAN HOLLEN: Well, I think it`s that Ed. I mean, don`t run away from the
Affordable Care Act. Talk about the benefits of the Affordable Care Act
which the American people are increasingly seen. So, be strong about
Obamacare, but also, again, focus on those other fundamental questions,
right, economic security issues, minimum wage, trying to make sure that
more people have benefit from a growing economy, getting the economy kicked
in the higher gear, all that is part and parcel of say message.

The Affordable Care Act is an important piece of it. And again,
Republicans only have that negative message, right, they`ve been saying for
years. They`re going to come up with an alternative but they just can`t do
it. And in fact, they`ve got nothing to run on except the negativity and
that`s not a message for the American people at this point in time. So .

SCHULTZ: They cannot go home and say "We`ve helped out on jobs." They
can`t do it. And they have offered nothing on healthcare, and seven months
out for them to stake their claim on trying to win on Obamacare, I think
that they`re ready to serve up the House. I think it`s a poor strategy.
We`ll see. Congressman .

VAN HOLLEN: As you know, they`re blocking the vote on the minimum wage in
the House. They`re .


VAN HOLLEN: . blocking the vote on the extension of U.I. They`re blocking
the vote on immigration reform .

SCHULTZ: Got to run. Thank you congressman.

VAN HOLLEN: Thank you.

SCHULTZ: Great to have you with us.

That`s the Ed Show. I`m Ed Schultz. Politics Nation with Reverend Al
Sharpton starts right now.

Good evening, Rev.


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