Guest: Jerry Dyer, Rachel Maddow, Max Kellerman
TUCKER CARLSON, HOST: Keep your knees loose. This is the show for that. And we've got much more on the nomination of John Roberts to the Supreme Court. Plus, we'll interview a chief of police whose force arrested a girl for felony assault. She's 11 years old.
THE SITUATION starts right now.
CARLSON (voice-over): The unsolved mystery. What fuels the search for Natalee?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't know how long we'll have to ride this out.
CARLSON: Backhanded by the court. Now this tennis star's racket is about to be exposed.
Plus, a new way to ensure online dating doesn't get ugly.
Why your fingernails could soon be going platinum.
And O'Connor passes judgment. Should the president have courted a woman?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I worry about our rights. I worry about our freedoms.
CARLSON: Welcome to our Wednesday night SITUATION. I'm Tucker Carlson.
Our stack of stories is now officially ready to be unveiled. Buckle your seat belt. It includes news on Hurricane Emily, how to prevent sex offenders from striking again. Plus, we'll go one on one from the Fresno chief of police who charged a rock-throwing 11-year-old girl with felony assault.
Joining me tonight, the newest member of MSNBC's prime-time lineup, Rita Cosby, and, from Air America, the already world-renowned and becoming more so Rachel Maddow.
Thank you, both.
RACHEL MADDOW, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Thanks, Tucker.
RITA COSBY, MSNBC: Thanks.
CARLSON: First situation, we're 24 hours removed from President Bush's nomination of Judge John G. Roberts Jr. to the Supreme Court of the United States. Today, Republicans voiced their expected support. Democrats tried to work up an effective opposition, but, meanwhile, retiring Justice Sandra Day O'Connor weighed in, characteristically, on both sides, supporting Roberts' credentials, but also expressing disappointment that he's not a woman.
And he's not.
COSBY: And that was the one thing that everybody agreed on.
COSBY: What I found fascinating is her answer, too, that she said, look, he's first-rate. Of course, I do wish he was a woman.
And, look, as a woman, you know, as a journalist, as a senior correspondent virtually of a network before this, I would love to see a woman in that position. But come on. You want the best person for the job. And that is clearly who President Bush feels he put in.
CARLSON: Well, I thought the most interesting remark of the whole day came not from a woman, but from a man, Fred Thompson, the former senator and now the actor shepherding this nomination through, who said of John Roberts and his comments about Roe v. Wade, look, he was just arguing a position. He was an advocate.
So, here you have the Republicans essentially apologizing for his presumed pro-life stand. Meanwhile, the Democrats are saying, point blank, we won't accept him unless he's for upholding Roe v. Wade. So, you have one side kind of embarrassed of what it thinks, the other side steadfast in what it thinks. Unfair fight.
MADDOW: I don't think that that's—this is unplanned. I mean, I think this is the grounds on which it's going to come down.
I do think it's a big deal that John Roberts isn't a woman. And we have all checked. He's not a woman, definitely.
MADDOW: And I think that it—the fact that President Bush wants it to be eight men deciding cases on abortion and marriage and all these other things I think is a disappointment.
But, on the abortion issue, they picked Roberts because he's only been a judge for two years, in part. I mean, he has a great—you know, he has a great track record. And they want him for a lot of reasons. But him only being a judge for two years matters to them. They want to be able to say, he was only an advocate when he took these controversial positions.
CARLSON: But isn't—in a way, this is asymmetrical warfare, because you have the Democrats for years, going back to Clinton, laying down the law on this, saying, this is a litmus test. We're not appointing anybody who is not for Roe v. Wade. Meanwhile, on the other side, the Republicans, most of whom are against Roe v. Wade, don't come out and say that. And they sort of these weasel words. Rather than just...
CARLSON: ... meeting with an equal and opposite force and saying, we're against Roe v. Wade, they pretend they're not really against...
COSBY: It is. It is a dichotomy.
And the other thing that's interesting, of course—and, of course, President Bush is going to say this, but today Andrew Card earlier on this network said that President Bush did not ask Roberts his position on that, didn't ask him his interpretation on that. Whether we believe him or not is a whole other issue.
COSBY: But it is—I agree with you on the point that there is not a lot of track record here.
COSBY: That's why it's always—with senators—it's always tough for senators to become president. They have this whole track record.
COSBY: On the other hand, we're just seeing the usual suspects now.
I'm stunned. And I'm curious to hear your take on this. I'm stunned that there aren't a lot of Democrats shouting. We're just seeing Schumer. We're seeing Kennedy. That's basically it.
MADDOW: But I think that's for a reason.
I mean, I think the fact is that he does have a long track record as an attorney. And he has taken controversial stands as an attorney. And the Democrats are saying, listen, we want you to answer questions about your long track record as an attorney. I mean, you can't just say, I was an advocate. You actually need to explain your position on...
COSBY: And it will be explained.
CARLSON: But there is...
MADDOW: It will be explained.
CARLSON: There's a 50-50 chance, at least 50-50, I believe, that, in the next 10 years, Roberts will wind up on the pro-choice side of the Supreme Court. There is.
MADDOW: I think—well, I think that there's...
MADDOW: ... nothing in his record that suggests that.
CARLSON: But we don't know, is the point.
MADDOW: He ought to do some explaining...
MADDOW: ... to the Senate about his views on...
CARLSON: I think Bush ought to have appointed someone who is straightforward about his views. It would be more reassuring to the rest of us.
MADDOW: It would be nice to get straightforward answers...
CARLSON: All right.
MADDOW: ... from him in the Senate.
CARLSON: Yes, unashamed.
COSBY: And we'll see.
CARLSON: Nothing to be ashamed of.
CARLSON: Well, next situation, since the July 7 terrorist bombings in London, the British government has been criticized for being soft on Muslim radicals.
In response, Tony Blair has announced he'll dispatch special spy units across the country to monitor Muslim neighborhoods for extremism. And it's about time. By the way, the British government saying these are not spy units. They're merely liaisons to the—to the Islamic community.
But this has been a long time coming. I mean, for a number—many years, we have known that the main threat of terrorism comes from the Islamic community.
CARLSON: And yet, we pretend that, you know, anybody can be a terrorist. That's just not true.
COSBY: As—and look, look at London. I mean, this is not—I mean, you don't have to be a psychic to figure it out. Richard Reid, all these people disseminated from London.
Right after the 9/11 attacks, I did a lot of terrorism coverage. You know, so many of them trace their roots to these London mosques. Obviously, in the United States, we've got a similar issue. I cannot believe that, all of a sudden, this unit is now just coming out now. Why didn't you do it sooner?
And, on the flip side, what I think is also admirable on their behalf, they're also going these extra steps training the Muslim community to look out for folks who are going—doing the wrong thing, targeting Muslims for the wrong reason.
Look, we have to be smart. We've got to protect ourselves. And then, on the other hand, you can go overboard and also discriminate.
MADDOW: I think it matters in this case that the Muslim communities in Britain aren't coming out against this. They are saying, listen, we've basically been isolated from the police. The police don't have the language skills to communicate with our communities. We've been isolated from them. We feel like we haven't been able to go to the police when we're victims of crime. And we don't have the contacts with police to report when there's extremism, when there is stuff.
So, this is an effort to expand community policing...
CARLSON: Well, wait a second. What kind of...
MADDOW: In a community that was isolated from the public.
MADDOW: That matters.
CARLSON: But—to some extent, I'm sure what you're saying is true.
CARLSON: ... how much do you have to have a relationship with the police in order to report extremism? There are thousands—literally, it is believed there are thousands of British citizens who have trained in al Qaeda training camps abroad in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
COSBY: What, you don't know how to dial 911?
CARLSON: None of them had been reported, so far as I know, by members of their own community.
MADDOW: But if you're talking about situations like, well, listen, in our mosque, we have a new imam, and he's preaching stuff that I think is actually over the line, and nobody else seems uncomfortable about it, I think this might support extremism, that's the kind of conversation you have with a police officer you trust. You don't just call Tony Blair and tell him.
CARLSON: No, no.
COSBY: I do agree, but you have a responsibility.
MADDOW: Of course.
COSBY: And, what, you don't have a TV set? You didn't see 9/11?
MADDOW: But, listen, we're not talking about, I saw somebody with a bomb.
CARLSON: No, but—but you know as well...
MADDOW: We're talking about...
MADDOW: ... in our community, there's things we need to be paying attention to.
CARLSON: Hold on. Rachel, Rachel, you know as well as I do, this is a community that's too tolerant of extremism within its own ranks. That's sort of the bottom line here.
MADDOW: Well, and getting the police involved in more community policing and getting them, so that these communities are less isolated...
CARLSON: OK. Right.
MADDOW: ... helps all the ...
MADDOW: ... things we're talking about.
CARLSON: But it would be nice if—if people were expelled from the community for advocating, say, suicide bombing. That would be nice.
MADDOW: Sure. You want to tell them how to run their communities, do it.
CARLSON: Yes, I do. I do. I actually do want to say suicide bombing, unacceptable.
CARLSON: I'm willing to take that radical stand.
CARLSON: Yes, I am.
MADDOW: And nobody is in favor of suicide bombing...
CARLSON: That's not true. We were in London two weeks ago. We interviewed a number people who were in favor of it who are leaders of the Muslim community.
CARLSON: They are absolutely in favor of it.
COSBY: And next time they hold the shoe bomb in their hand, let's talk about it.
MADDOW: OK, you want to blame the British Muslims as a whole for the fact that bombers...
CARLSON: I'm not.
MADDOW: ... emerged from their community.
CARLSON: I'm absolutely not.
MADDOW: That's fine.
COSBY: I agree with you. There needs to be a middle ground.
MADDOW: Having policing in their communities is a good thing here.
MADDOW: We're not disagreeing.
COSBY: Absolutely. Absolutely.
But I do agree with Tucker on the hand that we need to also have a sense of responsibility from this community.
COSBY: They need to do their part. It needs to be equal.
MADDOW: And in order to get there, you need to support moderate influences...
CARLSON: All right.
MADDOW: ... within the Muslim community.
CARLSON: We searched long and hard for them. They're always welcome on this show. Haven't met them yet. But I hope they'll come on.
MADDOW: Well, as long as we keep talking about nuking Mecca, it will be harder to find...
CARLSON: Right. So it's our fault.
CARLSON: Right. Of course.
MADDOW: Come on.
CARLSON: Next situation, bad taste and good ideas not mutually exclusive.
With Hurricane Emily making life miserable in parts of Mexico and South Texas, three University of Miami professors have developed an electronic futures market that will allow regular, untrained people, like me and Rachel, for instance, to bet which areas of coastline approaching hurricanes will hit. If they're right, the betters win cash.
The idea is that hurricanes, as in horse racing, the favorite usually wins. The wagering will be helpful in predicting landfall.
Boy, this is in bad taste. This is just in awful...
CARLSON: This is like predicting where the next terrorist attack is going to occur.
CARLSON: But you have—it's not—you're right. It's not that bad.
MADDOW: There's an important difference.
CARLSON: But it is—it is sort of in bad taste.
On the other hand, I was struck by how the meteorologist hate the idea...
CARLSON: ... because it kind of points up that a lot of meteorology, not to be mean, is guesswork.
CARLSON: So, that...
MADDOW: I mean, it may be in bad taste, but what's the harm? I mean, if it works out scientifically somehow that you do get good predictions, then fine. Let people bet on it.
The difference with the terrorism betting, which is what Poindexter's big idea was for how we should prevent terrorism, by having these futures, is that there's a little problem, in that you can't control where a hurricane goes. You can control where a bomb goes. And so, you don't necessarily want people being able to profit from that if they themselves can go bomb.
COSBY: Yes. And, look, I agree with you. I think that this is sort of a fun thing. You can't take it too seriously.
COSBY: On the other hand, as you point out, a lot of these meteorologists—I have a lot of meteorologist friends.
CARLSON: Yes. So do I.
COSBY: They are wrong quite a bit.
COSBY: And these hurricanes, of course—and to their credit, they twist and they turn and they do all these wacky things. I've covered so many hurricanes where we've ended up, oh, gosh, the eye is over here. Wait a minute. We've got to rush over there.
COSBY: On—but the folks do need to know. And maybe if they get a sense of OK, it's from here to here, and maybe there's another larger swathe to cover, if it encourages someone to evacuate, to gear up, God bless them.
MADDOW: I think they should go head to head with the meteorologists.
COSBY: Yes, we'll duke them out.
CARLSON: It would be kind of funny if the online guessers, guys sitting in their undershorts drinking beer, did better than the weather guy.
COSBY: And I bet they might.
CARLSON: I would. I believe it.
CARLSON: Our next situation may take some of the mystery out of online dating.
If you have ever responded the a personal describing a Swedish yoga instructor, college student/beauty queen, only to wind up at dinner with Janet Reno, a new Web site called TrueDater.com...
CARLSON: ... may be for you.
It posts reviews from those who have dated the anonymous paramours and gives an honest assessment of their physical appeal and personality.
This reminds me of that “New Yorker”—my favorite “New Yorker” cartoon ever, those two golden retrievers sitting at terminals. And one says, you know, on the Internet, no one knows you're a dog.
CARLSON: And this—this—there is this mystery is the appeal. I went to the site, actually, this afternoon. And it turns out that men claim to be younger, taller and hairier than they really are. The complaints on this site are sort of poignant and sad.
COSBY: And I have experience on this, not because I have answered an ad.
COSBY: I actually did a story years ago. And we had to go on an undercover assignment. I just started in a market.
And you would be surprised. The guys that said, yes, I'm tall, dark and handsome, bald, you know, under five feet.
MADDOW: Totally different thing, and all charming, nonetheless, but still.
I think—as a woman, I think this is a good thing. And, as a guy, it gives you a sense of, is this the real deal?
MADDOW: I wonder if there's a trend to the—to how women lie, too, in terms of what women lie about.
CARLSON: Well, it was so...
COSBY: I bet it goes all the way around, don't you think?
CARLSON: No, it doesn't. That was the interesting thing.
CARLSON: On the site—I spent probably, you know, far too much time on this site this afternoon, I'm embarrassed to say.
COSBY: How long were you on it?
CARLSON: But it turns out the men were kind of sweetly forgiving in their responses. Well, you know, she's a good cook and she's not everything she said she was. The women were harsh.
CARLSON: Oh, he's short. He's bald. He's ugly. He—look at this:
“He lies about his age. He's actually 44. He's more self-absorbed. It's clear he obsesses more than most women about his appearance. His collection of skin care products truly amazing,” etcetera.
COSBY: That wouldn't be me, because I only like them for their brains. That's the only thing.
CARLSON: I knew I liked you, Rita.
CARLSON: Very sweet woman.
MADDOW: I think that this is the power of the Internet.
MADDOW: This is where we've gone to. It's like predicting hurricanes and, like, promoting global understanding and outing people who wear toupees.
MADDOW: It's come full circle.
CARLSON: I'm against that.
MADDOW: It's beautiful.
CARLSON: All right.
The search continues in Aruba for Natalee Holloway, with DNA evidence now at the center of attention. Is the case any closer to being solved? We'll tell you.
Plus, why do we keep hearing about sex offenders on the loose committing horrible crimes? Should we lock these guys up and throw away the key? One writer thinks we should. He's got the solution. “Op Ed Op Ed” next.
CARLSON: Well, you've met them, those neurotic parents who schedule their kids to within an inch of their lives. But could that extra piano lesson wind up hurting the children?
We'll debate it next.
CARLSON: Welcome back.
Time for “Op Ed Op Ed.” We spent a long, but fruitful day reading almost every op-ed page in the country. We picked three of the best op-eds, to which the three of us will offer our brief responses.
First up, in the “L.A. Times,” Rosa Brooks, a beloved former guest on this show, writes, it's a mistake to believe that the Supreme Court runs everything. Actually, she says, it's a pretty democratic institution—quote—“Supreme Court decisions are more of a mirror than a catalyst, reflecting public opinion far more than they shift it. With or without John Roberts, don't expect the court to deviate dramatically from what most Americans want.”
It's a great—it's a great point. It's a smart op-ed that she writes. And the point is that this is a reflection of the political process. The president appoints the justices. The president is elected. We have a hand in what the Supreme Court's makeup is. Don't ever forget that.
COSBY: I'm always surprised when I see the American public go, oh, my gosh, I'm surprised to see a John Roberts. I'm, quite frankly, surprised that it's not a more stronger conservative. You look at who this president is. People voted and this is what they get.
MADDOW: That said, the reason that—I think what Brooks' editorial says is that the courts have a fundamentally different role in our constitutional system than elected officials. And Supreme Court justices aren't elected. They're appointed for life. And that is—so, they do get isolated a little bit from the political whims, whatever the hot political topic is of the minute.
CARLSON: Yes, and ought to be.
MADDOW: They keep our laws and our policies tethered to the mission statement of the country, which is the Constitution. And they need to be insulated from political pressure that way.
CARLSON: Yes. But they're not that—she goes on to say they're not that radical.
She gives an example. We don't have time much to talk about it. But Brown vs. Board she said was actually on the tail end of a shift in attitudes in the South.
CARLSON: It was already moving in that direction. Very smart, I thought.
Well, next, “The Philadelphia Inquirer.” Jack Levin writes that
almost all legislation related to tracking, researching or sentencing
rapists and child molesters is bound to fail because it's not tough enough
· quote—“There really is only one way for the criminal justice system to protect our children from sexual predators, life sentences for dangerous repeat offenders. Two strikes and you're out. You're never out again.”
I mean, you know, this is so obvious, it's hard to believe it's not already in law.
COSBY: And maybe there are other solutions. I'll give you a different perspective.
I covered all the Jessica Lunsford stuff. Oh, my—what a gut-wrenching case. John Evander Couey, we even played his audio, where it said, please help me. please help me. This was years before he went after Jessica Lunsford.
The bottom line is, maybe some other solution. Hey, look, you have to work with these people in some regard. Maybe there's a community where they can be monitored. You can't necessarily throw the book at them, but there needs to be some steady monitoring on these people. They—clearly, enormous recidivism.
MADDOW: I think that this is one of those nightmare scenarios that just is absolutely a horror show.
And you don't need to change the Constitution in order to respond to this. You don't need to shred the legal system that we have. You have to recognize that the likelihood of reoffending is what a prosecutor considers when they're making the case on sentencing and what a parole board considers when they're letting people out.
CARLSON: That's right.
MADDOW: You don't need to change the legal system. You do need to keep an eye on cases like this in order to pay attention...
CARLSON: Well, that's right.
COSBY: Well, the problem is, they're not keeping an eye on these cases, as we're seeing. That's the problem.
MADDOW: Well, but there are always these horror stories. In every country, these horror stories get told. But we're not a country that chops off thieves' hands. We're not a country that beheads people in the public square. We have got a system for dealing with it.
CARLSON: However, it doesn't seem to be working that well on these crimes.
MADDOW: There are always horror stories. And they're awful. But you've got to figure out, is the cure worse than the ailment...
COSBY: Well, that's why I come up with this middle ground. There needs to be some monitoring, but maybe not overboard.
CARLSON: All right.
Margaret Krome in “The Capital Times” writes how overscheduling children takes a terrible toll on families. Boy, does it—quote—
“Without time for quiet, undisturbed time together, small problems get big and the joy that families can cultivate gets lost. Many experts describe the overscheduling phenomenon as fallout from parents wanting to create super kids.”
Well, if you live in an affluent neighborhood, you've seen this before, sort of, you know, just the yuppie ethos is, first to Chinese class, you know, then to Spanish, then to piano, then to saxophone, then marching band. And it kills a child's creativity, in addition to putting a huge strain on the family.
I think it's important to send your kids in the backyard with a rock and a stick, say, amuse yourself, and make some more interesting people.
COSBY: I think that is good, too. But you also have to have kids with goals.
You have to be able to say, look, you need to plan out your day. You need to at least look ahead. Maybe overscheduling is going overboard. But you need to have a sense there needs to be more in life. You need to accomplish things. You need to have a view. Do you want fat kids just sitting there playing video games all day long? And then look what happens to them 20 or 30 years later.
CARLSON: No, but to space out with a book for a couple hours is a good thing.
COSBY: Maybe a combination. I don't think you want totally lazy kids.
MADDOW: I think the interesting thing here is, though, that parents are overscheduled, too. I mean, every single people that any of us know all says they are too busy.
COSBY: Life is overscheduled, yes.
MADDOW: And we all say that we're too scheduled.
And that's one thing if you think of us as a great overachieving culture that's getting so much done. But the fact is, as a country, we're falling behind in research. We're falling behind in education standards. We're falling behind in basic stuff like infant mortality. But we're all very busy and working very hard.
MADDOW: It just makes me question whether we're working on the right things.
CARLSON: Well, I was about to say, a lot of time is spent talking about how much work is being done.
CARLSON: I mean, sort of—it's a status symbol to complain about how busy you are.
MADDOW: But whether or not you're actually accomplishing something as a family, as a person, or as a country, that's a different standard.
CARLSON: But the ultimate status symbol is to be not no busy. It's like not carrying a briefcase.
COSBY: And still having family...
COSBY: ... interaction.
CARLSON: I hope to achieve that some day.
CARLSON: All right.
MADDOW: I don't even know what you're talking about.
CARLSON: Coming up, research develop—researchers develop ways to turn your fingernails into credit cards. Does that mean nail-biters have lower limits? It sounds disgusting and invasive, but the Outsider disagrees. Don't miss it.
Also, an update on the 11-year-old Fresno girl who was arrested, handcuffed, charges with felony assault for throwing a rock at a bullying boy. The Fresno police chief joins us next to explain why they did it.
CARLSON: Tonight, Fresno Police are defending the arrest of an 11-year-old girl who was reportedly tackled, carried away to juvenile hall and charged with assault with a deadly weapon, which is a felony. What did she do? Police says Maribel Cuevas threw a rock at a 9-year-old boy who had thrown a water balloon at her. The rock hit the boy in the head and gave him a cut. But he's OK. Fresno Police say arresting the girl sends a message to kids not to commit crimes.
Joining me now, Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer.
Chief Dyer, thanks a lot for joining us.
CARLSON: So, I think to a lot of people...
JERRY DYER, FRESNO POLICE CHIEF: Tucker, thanks for having me on the show.
CARLSON: Well, of course.
A lot of people are listening—this 11-year-old girl tosses a rock at a boy, hits him in the face. He starts bleeding. Your police department winds up sending three cars, one after the other. They arrest this girl, put her in handcuffs. It seems like a pretty dramatic overreaction.
DYER: Well, unfortunately, Tucker, there's been a lot of information out there that has been one-sided.
And the truth is, only one officer, one patrol car with two officers, was sent to the initial call. When we got there, we found a young boy, a Southeast Asian boy, that had a severe cut to his eye. And what he—what we had found was that he had been hit, been struck in the face with this two-pound rock, river rock, with a jagged edge and with enough force to cause a serious injury to that young boy.
One—one vehicle was dispatched initially, but, according to your press release, once one of your—one of your officers was—quote—
“injured” by the 11-year-old girl in question, a supervisor sent out another car, then a third car, for a total of three cars.
You also include photographs of the injury to your officer. And from the pictures, it looks like just a tiny little scratch. I mean, I've gotten worse from my cat.
CARLSON: That—that brought another car?
What happened was—and we have witness statements that say that the girl was flailing her arms. She was clawing at the officers. They were making every effort to take her into custody and subdue her. The reason for an additional officer that came to the scene, one of them was, it's not necessarily for the girl. But there was a lot of family members, some neighbors there, and making sure that we didn't allow this thing to get out of control.
What was not reported was the fact that she was resisting, that she had kicked at officers repeatedly, that she tried to kick out the windows of the patrol car, or at least kick towards them.
CARLSON: But, Chief Dyer, she's 11 years old. And, according to her parents, she weighs 90 pounds. She's a little, tiny girl. What—did she really need to be handcuffed? Are your officers not able to take her under control without handcuffs?
DYER: Well, initial attempts were made to escort her to the car.
That's when she began to struggle, to resist, to do a number of things.
She threw herself on the ground, started kicking at the officers.
The officers did try to—to use a minimum amount of force to take her. She's not 90 pounds. See, she's a large girl for her age. She was very resistant. And the officers tried to do what they could to not further escalate this incident.
Well, I—I know it's easy to second-guess. And I don't mean to. I wasn't there. On the other hand, wouldn't it just be easier to say, yes, we overreacted a little bit? Instead, you've compared this incident, an 11-year-old girl beaming a 9-year-old with a rock, to Columbine. In an interview with your local newspaper, you compared this to Columbine. Isn't that kind of—a little hyperbolic?
DYER: That's not accurate either.
What was said in that instance was, when the question was asked about kids 15 years ago vs. today, well, things are a lot different today than they were 15 years ago. We have kids that are being involved in violent activities at a much younger age, and I think much of it to do with the fact that perhaps we've not held kids accountable.
And this is a prime example where a young girl strikes a boy in the face with a two-pound river rock that causes substantial damage, and people are coming to her defense. That sends a terrible message across our nation that what she did was appropriate. And we have a young boy that is seriously injured. And all he did was throw a water balloon, which is not right, but he threw a water balloon at her. She was not trying to necessarily protect herself.
However, it was retaliating by throwing a river rock at him.
CARLSON: Right. And I don't think...
DYER: And that's not acceptable behavior.
CARLSON: I don't think—and I don't think anyone is suggesting that it is.
As far as I understand it, the boy's parents aren't interested in pressing charges. And I wondered, just to those of—people watching who have 11-year-old daughters at home, as I do, don't you think it's hard to imagine an 11-year-old girl intentionally committing felonious assault with a deadly weapon? Don't you—that's not—that seems overstated to you?
DYER: Well, the officers asked the question of her, if she knew what would happen if the rock struck the boy. And she said, yes, it would make him bleed. That forms what we call criminal intent. And that's what the officers used to determine whether or not she knew that her actions were wrongful.
CARLSON: All right. Chief Dyer from Fresno Police Department, I appreciate your joining us. Thanks.
DYER: OK, Tucker. Thank you.
CARLSON: Still ahead, the naked truth. Did topless tennis champ Anastasia Myskina commit an unforced error in the courtroom? And why is her name so hard to pronounce? We will serve and volley among the panelists when we come back.
CARLSON: Welcome back to THE SITUATION. Sitting in tonight for Lou Ferrigno, I'm Tucker Carlson.
A lot more on the docket tonight. Let's dive right back in with Rachel Maddow and Rita Cosby.
You know, I don't want to second-guess the police, but, in this case, they clearly overreacted in a really appalling and embarrassing way. She's 11! They should just admit it and apologize. But government, from the police to the post office, never wants to apologize. I wish someone would make them apologize.
COSBY: And in this case, I think they also should have better training. Look, I'm a big fan of the police, too. There's some great officers out there.
But if this is the way they handle an 11-year-old girl, imagine what they're going to do to a hostage situation. Oh my gosh! I mean, this is extreme.
They clearly need to look and say, “What did we do right? What did we do wrong?” I agree, you've got to hold kids accountable. You've got to show that they need to be responsible for their actions, but this is going overboard.
MADDOW: But his language about holding kids accountable and bringing up Columbine, which you pointed out and all of these things, it interesting politically, too, because there's been all of this stuff about juvenile super-predators, and teenage gang warfare, and all of this stuff that freaks us out about kids and crime.
And yes, those are scary situations. But what you end up with is a system where 11-year-old girls have ankle bracelets on and they're charged with felony assault. And then you get these scary cases driving the whole system.
COSBY: But then, on the flip side, what if something had gotten out of control? What if one of them pulled out a knife, pulled out a gun? Maybe we'd be saying something different today.
MADDOW: If they had been there for crowd control, rather than having all the officers...
CARLSON: And I do think that is one of the—I mean, the one point I agreed with that he made was, you know, “We were worried about the situation in the neighborhood.” And that is absolutely a fair point.
However, she's 11, not a super-predator!
MADDOW: And this is the problem with the creeping reach of the criminal justice system.
COSBY: I mean, where were the neighbors? Where were the teachers before it even got to this point? He said there were neighbors supervising. Where were they?
CARLSON: I'm on the little girl's side. She got beamed with a water balloon. You know what I mean? From a bully, so good for her.
CARLSON: Maybe she overreacted. Peace through superior firepower, as they used to say during the Cold War.
Next situation, a storm of controversy over the London bombings. Some critics are blaming western foreign policy for the attacks. One of the loudest of those critics is an unlikely one. He's the mayor of London himself, Ken Livingston, whose left-wing views got him nicknamed “Red Ken,” said, quote, “The Americans recruited and trained Osama bin Laden, sent him off to kill the Russians to drive them out of Afghanistan. They didn't give any thought to the fact that once you'd done that, he might turn to his creators.”
You know, Red Ken, you know...
CARLSON: I can't even actually can't even respond. That's so—not only is it completely and demonstrably true, that we trained Osama bin Laden?
MADDOW: We didn't fund him though?
CARLSON: That's a total—there is not one shred of evidence we funded Osama bin Laden. That's a full-blown lie.
COSBY: Actually, we did give some funding...
MADDOW: We did fund the Mujahideen.
CARLSON: We funded Osama bin Laden?
COSBY: We created some of the caves. We absolutely did. All those caves that we were looking to find in Afghanistan where he was where he was, we built those.
CARLSON: There's absolutely no question we sent tens, hundreds of millions of dollars to the Mujahideen during the 1980s.
MADDOW: That's right.
CARLSON: ... and Soviet occupation in Afghanistan. Osama bin Laden, there's not been a single—not one piece of evidence that shows any of our money made it to him.
COSBY: ... but in those caves. Osama bin Laden's in those caves.
CARLSON: Yes, but the claim, “We trained him,” is actually damaging to the United States abroad. When you have somebody who has credibility, such as Ken Livingston, I suppose, getting up on the BBC and saying, “We're responsible for Osama bin Laden,” that hurts us.
It's a big deal to say this. And it's not true.
MADDOW: It is a big deal to say this. And I think the fact—the idea that we funded the Mujahideen, Osama bin Laden emerged to prominence through the Mujahideen, but there's no connection between us and Osama? He's actually making a pretty good point.
CARLSON: Even that is not entirely true. Osama bin Laden—it's not shown that he was part of the Mujahideen at all. He was, unlike the Mujahideen, an Arab. They were Afghan, right? It's a distinction that matters in Afghanistan. Arabs such as Osama bin Laden, who was a Saudi, who had a lot of money—he did a lot of road building during the war—were distinct and apart from the Mujahideen, who were, actually, fighting the war.
COSBY: We did give some funding, in terms of building some the facilities, some of these shelters that we're building.
But I agree with Tucker in the sense that it is a separate issue. That's like saying we owe—we deserved 9/11. Our policies—and then the other issue that good old Red Ken brings up, he talks about Guantanamo. He says “the double standards.”
I've been down to Guantanamo. And I think anybody—look, even Democrats recently went down there. And they came back and said it was a lot better than they thought.
MADDOW: But the criticism of “Red Ken”...
MADDOW: No, it's not. And it's understanding why somebody hates and wants to attack you is not the same as saying they're justified in doing so.
CARLSON: And I make that point day after day on this show. I think it's important to understand—
COSBY: Don't you agree, in this climate, it fuels it?
MADDOW: No, you have to understand.
CARLSON: But hold on. Your point is a valid one. You do need to understand it.
But he is making a very specific claim that is untrue. If we had trained Osama bin Laden, don't you think Osama might have mentioned that in his many dispatches? And he hasn't.
MADDOW: He's not going to admit to taking money and weapons from the United States.
CARLSON: I'm just saying, there's no evidence. This has been much looked into, and it's not true. And that's just a statement of fact.
MADDOW: I disagree.
CARLSON: Well, I'd love to see the evidence for your disagreement, because there isn't any.
COSBY: And I would say they did provide some funding, but that is totally separate from saying, “We created this monster.”
CARLSON: All right.
The situation in Aruba, DNA tests, a teenager behind bars, but still no sign of Natalee Holloway. Authorities took saliva samples from a jailed Dutch youth and two of his friends yesterday. The samples will be tested, along with several hairs stuck to a duct tape that was found along Aruba's coast.
But it could take weeks for the findings to be made public. I'm getting the impression, Rita—and I think you know a lot about this—that this case might not be solved. It might be a Chandra Levy-type case where we follow it intensely but to no avail.
COSBY: And I'm afraid to agree with you on that. I think so, too. I think, look, if it happened in America, this case—I'm sad to say this, I think it probably would have been solved.
I am shocked that Joran Van Der Sloot—if, indeed, he did it—of course, we have to give a presumption of innocence—but if he did do it, that he hasn't cracked yet.
I mean, a lot of people tend to think that he has. There's been inconsistent statements between he and the two other guys. And here's a guy—he didn't have a lot of time to get rid of the body, again, if he did it. It doesn't seem—seems sort of sloppy. These are not expert criminals.
COSBY: I'm shocked with the pressures and the way that this system works that they haven't been able to get this guy, but maybe then he's innocent. And then they're back at square one at that point.
MADDOW: It does seem like—and I'm not an expert on this case. We can talk about Karl Rove for the whole rest of the night, and I could hold my own.
CARLSON: We're not going to, by the way.
MADDOW: We're not talking about Karl Rove ever again now. Well done, George.
But listen, but the Natalee Holloway case, it seems good that the physical evidence is now the basis on which they're moving forward. The FBI is testing those hairs. They've got saliva samples that are being compared against the DNA samples that we don't know about for other—I mean, the fact that they're moving into physical evidence seems key.
COSBY: And the duct tape, I think, is key. The other thing, too, is you've got these guys—you've got the inconsistent statements. If I were them—and I'm sure they're doing this—they're trying to find other ways to get these other guys to crack.
And if they can get something on these other guys, put pressure. Right now, they have nothing as leverage. But if they can put them and say, “Look, we're going to lock you up for x. We're going to show that you made a lie.”
Right now, they're not clear. But if they can hold something over their heads...
COSBY: ... then they can put pressure on them...
CARLSON: The good news is that very, very, very soon—I'm not going to be more specific than that—that Rita Cosby on our air, on MSNBC, will be bringing us the answers.
COSBY: Yes. And I hope, for their sake, it's solved before that.
But we'll see.
MADDOW: You need Karl Rove...
CARLSON: Next situation, another celebrity, another semi-naked picture. This time it's Russian tennis star Anastasia Myskina in topless photos. The former French Open champ says she didn't understand enough English to know what she was agreeing to when she signed the contract allowing for a photographer to sell the shots.
She's sued for $8 million, but a judge threw out the case. He basically laughed at her.
I'm on her side. I think she got duped because she's a foreigner. This guy's taking pictures of her for a legitimate photo shoot, where she's got kind of a Lady Godiva pose. And then apparently he keeps clicking away while she's shifting posed, catching her topless, and selling those pictures to a Russian magazine.
This poor woman. What kind of welcome is this for a foreigner in our country?
COSBY: ... but first of all, she needs a better manager, because the manager should have been looking over the paperwork, if she couldn't understand it.
CARLSON: Oh, who reads contracts? Come on.
COSBY: Yes, but that's why you get a good manager and lawyer. Come on. What is she paying these people for? Obviously, she's has enough money to get those for the other thing.
And I hate to take this (INAUDIBLE) involvement in photo shoots.
They're different things.
You know, if you're changing, you say, “Go leave the room, please. What are you doing taking pictures of me?” Wait a minute. I mean, you know, it's a little naive to think the guy's clicking while she's naked and he's not going to do anything with the pictures in this day and age? Come on.
MADDOW: I think this is an important for all Americans: Don't sign anything...
MADDOW: ... if you have your shirt off when someone is taking a picture of you if you don't have a lawyer, and you're Russian, and you don't speak English.
COSBY: And keep your clothes on 24 hours a day.
CARLSON: I still think the photographer should be nicer about it. I do, this poor girl.
COSBY: Well, I do, too...
MADDOW: He's going for the money. He's going for the money.
COSBY: It's just a horrible story of someone taking advantage of a foreigner.
CARLSON: Well, welcome to America. Rita Cosby, thanks for joining us.
COSBY: Thank you. It was wonderful.
CARLSON: Rachel Maddow, thank you, as always.
CARLSON: Coming up, is it a crime not to want an 85-year-old doctor slicing you open? Before you answer that obvious question, find out what a judge just ruled.
Plus, you can't use your hands in soccer, which may be why elephants are so darn good at it. Pachyderms at play kicking it around, on the “Cutting Room Floor” as THE SITUATION rolls on.
CARLSON: Welcome back. Time once again to welcome the “Outsider,” a man from outside the world of news willing to face his own mortality as he plays devil's advocate on a series of news stories.
The daring young man in question, taking to the air on his flying trapeze of sophistry and inventive reasoning, ESPN Radio and HBO boxing host Max Kellerman. How's that for a metaphor?
MAX KELLERMAN, ESPN RADIO HOST: Not bad at all, Tucker. Very impressive.
CARLSON: Flying trapeze of sophistry. I smiled as I wrote that.
Max Kellerman, OK, get ready.
First up, an L.A. jury has awarded a $20 million award to an 85-year-old man who said in 2001 he was forced to retire as chief physician and surgeon at a California state prison because of his age. Most of the money awarded to Dr. Robert Johnson was for emotional distress.
Jurors found the doctor's supervisors had subjected him to age discrimination, retaliation, and harassment. The state Department of Corrections plans to appeal the case, of course.
An 85-year-old man wants to be a surgeon on prisoners, people have no recourse, who have to go to him. He gets fired, as he ought to be, and then somehow he gets $20 million? I'm not even going to make my case. I want to hear yours.
KELLERMAN: Well, I think my case is actually—for once, I actually believe what I'm saying here.
You can be fired for incompetence. But age is really just a number.
And I'm going to use a sports analogy here.
Roger Clemens is 40 something years old. He's still getting everyone out. So just because he's 40-something and he should be retired, he's still getting the job done, you know? He should still keep his job.
If these guy—they made up lies about this doctor, it was found in court, about him having a bad memory. It just wasn't not true. He was still competent, and they just wanted him...
CARLSON: I don't know. First of all, I'm not even sure that it's clear it was a lie. I mean, I think, probably his memory—he's 85. I mean, his memory is not going to be the same as a 35-year-old.
But I'll even grant you that. Here's my question. Age is not just a number. Would you be comfortable with an 85-year-old commercial airline pilot if he was flying your plane?
KELLERMAN: If the 85-year-old was shown to be—I'd rather have a competent airline pilot. That's all I care about. If he's 85 and competent, that's fine. Better than a 35-year-old who's incompetent. Competence is really the...
CARLSON: In other words, you think that his so-called right to a specific job is more important than the health and safety of his patients who, again, have no recourse. They have to go him.
KELLERMAN: No, I think it's one in the same. I think until it's demonstrated that he can't do the job, just like an 85-year-old typically can't, he may be—and apparently—an atypical 85-year-old.
CARLSON: I get it. So until he cuts the wrong arm off, or kills someone by accident, it's fine.
KELLERMAN: Well, I mean, that goes for any doctor.
Well, for those of you who've misplaced your credit cards, researchers in Japan have found the solution in a fingernail. They've managed to carve tiny numbers and pictures into fingernail in the form of microscopic dots burnt into the nail by a laser.
It only managed to feed on nail clippings so far, but the process could one day be used to carry information on live fingertips. Every six months, as your nails grow out, of course, you need to have your credit card information re-carved, sort of a natural expiration date.
You know, there are a lot of reasons to be against this. One is on hygiene grounds. It's just kind of nasty. Fingernails are unattractive.
KELLERMAN: Wait a minute. This is from the guy who wants dogs in cafes? And you're talking about hygiene now?
CARLSON: My dogs are much less dirty than your fingernails. I bet you anything. But that's not even my point.
CARLSON: I have a deeper point. This is turning your body itself into an instrument of commerce. This is saying, when you go to bed at night, you're going to bring a little part of the mall with you. There's something wrong about this.
KELLERMAN: Well, as someone who actually supports the idea of prostitution being legalized, I don't actually see that as a problem.
Technology is always scary, because it changes the world we live in. And this is just technology changing the world. And so, to us, it seems scary. I agree. There's something creepy about it.
KELLERMAN: But you know what? You already sort of can't—it's already basically illegal to leave your house without identification. It's illegal in the sense that, if a cop stops you, and you don't have ID, he can take you downtown.
KELLERMAN: So how much different is this really than what's going on right now?
CARLSON: The problem is, it's more efficient. It shouldn't be illegal to leave your house without ID. You should be allowed to be anonymous in this country if you want to be. You shouldn't have to be tracked every step of the way, as far as I'm concerned.
This is too efficient. This will allow forces, either of commerce or of government, to keep track of you, to know exactly where you are. I'm not being a paranoid, Idaho-bound, weapons-stockpiling nutcase when I say this...
CARLSON: I'm not saying that all. I'm not pulling a Ross Perot here.
But I do think it's troublesome.
KELLERMAN: Well, maybe, if the conclusion is that it will inevitably lead to us all being tacked by the government—the government knowing where we all are at all times. But that's not what this is about so far.
So far, this is about the possibility of having your credit card on your fingernail. I mean, that's just convenient for some people.
CARLSON: Yes. And bad for heavy drinkers. I think this is taking the whole Asian nail salon thing far too far.
KELLERMAN: I'm a nail-biter, so...
CARLSON: All right.
Well, across the world now to Uganda, where a member of parliament has pledged to reward girls for their chastity by paying their university fees if they're virgins when they leave secondary school.
Sulaiman Madada says any girl in his district who wants to take part will be given a gynecological examination to confirm she's a virgin.
Now, you know, I'm not going to defend the gynecological examination. That's quite creepy. But the point is that Uganda has a terrible AIDS problem. And that 80 percent of the families in this province in Uganda have lost a family member to AIDS, that hundreds of thousands of people in Uganda have AIDS. It's the leading cause of death. Life expectancy's 47 years old.
This helps slow the spread of AIDS. It's not bad.
KELLERMAN: No, in that way, it's good. However, it's for girls only. I mean, partly, I guess, that's because how do you prove a guy is a virgin when he leaves high school, unless maybe he wears a bow tie?
Short of that, how do you prove it? But the idea—this is what I don't like. It's the imposition of morality on -- (INAUDIBLE)
CARLSON: Until the cameramen stop cackling at me, right?
KELLERMAN: It's the imposition of morality on sexuality that I don't like. Because he keeps talking about promoting morals...
CARLSON: What are you talking about? Sexuality is inseparable from morality.
KELLERMAN: I think they're completely separate.
CARLSON: Every step of the way, we cast moral judgments on sexuality. This kind of sexual expression is allowed. This kind is verboten. This kind is criminal. Sexuality, you can't disentangle it.
KELLERMAN: Cholesterol is bad for you, right?
KELLERMAN: Should you stop eating so you'll never get any cholesterol?
KELLERMAN: No. OK, so sex could have bad consequences, but does that mean you necessarily should abstain from sex? It's immoral to—no.
You need food. You're forced to eat food because evolutionarily, your body is adapted. It will hurt not to eat. Well, sex is not for the survival of the individual, it's for the species.
But we've evolved in a way where, in order to incentivize people to have sex, evolution has a way—it's so good that it's something you really want and need.
CARLSON: It's so good. However, we don't let children do it, because we know they're not ready for it.
KELLERMAN: What's your definition of children?
CARLSON: Well, look, high school students in Uganda—I mean, obviously, the easier way would just be to make all these girls major in computer science and that would just sort of solve itself. But until then, I think this is a good idea.
KELLERMAN: Well, anything that slows up the spread of AIDS is a good idea.
CARLSON: Yes. I agree with that.
Max Kellerman, thanks again. You did well on the trapeze.
Coming up, crooning pop star Clay Aiken is hiding a deep, dark secret. No, not that. Details on a not-so-charitable charity can only be found on the “Cutting Room Floor,” next.
CARLSON: It's that time again, time for the “Cutting Room Floor.” We sweep up all the odds and ends of news we couldn't use and bring them to you.
Willie Geist is here with that.
WILLIE GEIST, PRODUCER: Hello, Tucker. We've got two space-related items for you. NASA has rescheduled the launch for this coming Tuesday, the one that was scratched last week.
CARLSON: Can't wait.
GEIST: And also from “Star Trek,” James Doohan, who played Scottie, died today at the age of 85. Fittingly, his ashes will be launched into space.
GEIST: True story.
CARLSON: That's pretty cool. Thanks.
Well, elephants have never been known for their grace or dazzling footwork, but that has not stopped this group of big fellows from forming a soccer team in Germany. As you can see, the six elephant team plays a powerful game and works like an infrequently oiled machine. But the elephants have yet to play a competitive game, probably because elephant soccer teams, fairly hard to come by.
GEIST: That's a lethargic effort out of that goalie. Did you see that?
GEIST: If you're not going to play hard, we'll find an elephant who will. And you can come sit on the bench and think about whether or not you want to be a part of this elephant soccer team. Unacceptable.
CARLSON: As if there weren't already enough questions about Clay Aiken, it now appears his charitable foundation might not be shooting straight. IRS documents show that the $1 million Aiken's charity released last year, less than a third actually went to charity. More than $150,000 went travel expenses, $173,000 went to, quote, “professional services.”
Aiken's spokesperson says critics are misrepresenting the situation.
GEIST: I think he's got a good voice. I'm comfortable enough to admit it. But you do have to wonder about the...
CARLSON: You have to be pretty comfortable to admit that.
GEIST: Totally comfortable. But you have to worry about the 173 grand worth of professional services.
GEIST: Are cabana boys considered professional?
CARLSON: I'm not even weighing in on that.
GEIST: I don't know if they're pros or not. I'll have to look it up.
CARLSON: That's a lot of professional services, though. I can say that comfortably.
All right. This 1966 convertible looks cool on the road, but wait until you see how she handles the water. The German-manufactured Amphicar goes from land to lake without even slowing down. They have propellers underneath. The rear bumper and the front wheels act as rudders when the car hits the water. The Amphicar car was made from 1961 to 1968. There are only about a thousand of them left in the world.
GEIST: Wait a minute, so these have been around for 40 years? Why don't we all have these?
CARLSON: Why are they just now making appearance on our show is the real question?
GEIST: Well, right. But we weren't on 40 years ago.
GEIST: These and hovercrafts should be mass-marketed. We need this -
· if they're available, we should have them.
CARLSON: I know someone personally who has sunk one.
GEIST: One of these cars?
CARLSON: Yes, an Amphicar.
GEIST: You somebody...
CARLSON: I certainly do.
GEIST: Wow, I didn't dig deep enough. You know someone who has one.
CARLSON: Right to the bottom.
CARLSON: Well, you figure a 76-year-old woman named Minnie who lives in Florida will be a sweet old grandma. Well, Minnie Collins might be all of those things. Police say she's also a crack dealer.
Collins was arrested in Jacksonville, Florida, for alleged selling the rock cocaine by lowering it to customers from the second-story window of her building. Police say she had a rope tied near her bed so she could easily send her crack-loaded purse to the waiting buyers below.
GEIST: You know, Tucker, this does not speak well of the Jacksonville drug scene, when good old Minnie Collins, is running the block from her death bed. You know what I mean?
CARLSON: Yes, I do. It's not Miami, you know what I mean?
GEIST: We need some up-and-comers to kick her out.
CARLSON: Yes, no, we really do. Yes, you can't imagine that happening in south beach. It's a lot hipper.
All right. In the 1960s, the Blank Panther Party sought to spark an American racial revolution through a militant anti-white agenda. Today, they're making condiments.
Some former members of the party announced they'll be selling a hot sauce called “Burn, Baby, Burn.” That's a reference, of course, to the group's rallying cry during 1965 Watts riots in L.A. in which 34 died. The hot sauce is said to be a taste of the revolutionary '60s. The former Panthers also have plans to produce a signature salsa.
GEIST: I don't want to say that they've become irrelevant, Tucker, but...
CARLSON: You don't?
GEIST: I think Huey Newton's message has been diluted a little bit..
CARLSON: I think so.
GEIST: ... from complete social revolution, turning the country on its head, to, “We have salsa and some t-shirts.”
CARLSON: You know, if Paul Newman can do it, I say, next step, salad dressing.
GEIST: Absolutely. Huey Newton salad dressing.
CARLSON: I wouldn't buy it.
Willie Geist, thank you.
That's THE SITUATION for tonight. Thanks for watching. “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY” is next. Here's Joe Scarborough.
JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST: Hey, thanks a lot.
You know, I don't know, Tucker, about Black Panther hot sauce.
CARLSON: You wouldn't eat it, huh?
SCARBOROUGH: I don't know how well that'll sell in the Redneck Riviera. But, Tucker, thanks a lot for being with us. And certainly appreciate you being on MSNBC. Congratulations.
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