Guests: Steve McMahon, James Yee, Don Debar, Penn Gillette, Max Kellerman, Harry Zamora, Leslie Zamora
JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST, “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY”: Hey, it was really great being with you tonight. I appreciate you joining “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY” again. Right now, stay tuned, because THE SITUATION with Tucker Carlson starts right now.
Hey, Tucker, what‘s THE SITUATION tonight, buddy?
TUCKER CARLSON, HOST: A lot going on tonight, Joe. It‘s been a busy couple of news weeks, and we‘re grateful for that. Thanks.
Thanks to you at home for joining us. And we appreciate that, too.
Secret CIA prison, sex education in grade school, and the Senate race between anti-war protester Cindy Sheehan and Mrs. Hillary Clinton. This is just some of the news we have in store for you tonight.
We begin with the continuing political crisis in Washington, D.C. One day after Democrats unilaterally shut down the Senate floor to protest the administration‘s Iraq policy, the two chief Democratic leaders, Senator Harry Reid and Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi sent the president an open letter asking him to can his top political advisor, Karl Rove.
“Newsweek‘s” Jonathan Alter writes tonight that Rove may actually lose his security clearance.
And the criticism isn‘t just coming from the left. Just yesterday, Republican Senator Trent Lott of Mississippi appeared on HARDBALL on MSNBC and questioned whether Rove should remain in the White House.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. TRENT LOTT ®, MISSISSIPPI: He has been very successful, very effective in the political arena. The question is, should he be the deputy chief of staff for policy under the current circumstances?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CARLSON: So the White House is in pretty deep trouble politically. Midterm elections are one year from this week. What can Democrats do to capitalize on the misfortunes of their opponents?
Here to answer that question, among many others, noted Democratic strategist, Steve McMahon, joining us tonight from Washington—Steve.
STEVE MCMAHON, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Tucker, how are you?
CARLSON: I‘m doing great. Thanks for coming on.
Tell me—explain the strategy behind what we saw happen in the U.S. Senate yesterday. Democrats close it down so they can force this investigation on the run-up to the war in Iraq.
It seems to me this is a kind of a tough argument for Democrats to make politically, since every—almost every leading Democrat—was out there in the months before the Iraq invasion saying, “Yes, Saddam does have a nuclear weapons program and does have biological weapons and does have a chemical program.” They‘re so implicated in it, how do they benefit from it?
MCMAHON: Well, Tucker, they were lied to. They were lied to repeatedly, and I think what they‘re trying to find out is who was telling the lies and who was designing the strategy behind the tall tales that were coming out of the White House.
I mean, this administration basically built a case for the war in Iraq either on false or on faulty intelligence, and then they selectively shared that intelligence or didn‘t share that intelligence with the United States Congress prior to the vote.
And I think what you saw yesterday is a Democratic caucus that finally has said, “Enough is enough. We want some answers, and we want them now.” The American people deserve answers, and I think they want answers, as well.
CARLSON: Well, I want answers, too, for that matter. I want to know why we so thoroughly misjudged Saddam‘s weapons capability.
However, there are a couple of problems with the argument you just made, which I‘ve heard a lot lately. The first is, none of this intelligence came from the White House. The White House doesn‘t gather intelligence. Separate federal agencies do.
The National Intelligence Council, for instance, which puts together the National Intelligence Estimate, the famous document that touted Saddam‘s nuclear program, that‘s not run by the White House. It‘s not controlled by the White House. They can‘t exactly exert political pressure on that agency, so it‘s kind of hard to argue that they spun that intel. They didn‘t.
MCMAHON: Well, Tucker, I don‘t know where you‘re getting your information but it‘s been pretty well established that the vice president‘s office was ordering up intelligence from the CIA based on its whim and its need to make a certain case.
Colin Powell‘s case before the United Nations wasn‘t a case that was built by independent security and intelligence agencies around the government. It was built by the White House and what is referred to by Colin Powell‘s former top aide as the cabal, the Rumsfeld-Cheney cabal.
So listen, you know, it may be that the story that the White House was
telling is true, and that this was all independent intelligence collected
by independent agencies.
MCMAHON: But the White House doesn‘t have exactly a very strong history of telling the truth.
CARLSON: Well, there‘s no...
MCMAHON: So I think Democrats are no longer willing to just say, you know, we‘ll accept it at face value. They‘ve done that. They got burned by it. Two thousand people have died as a result of it. And we‘re not going to do it any more, Tucker.
CARLSON: But that‘s not—but that‘s not quite true. I mean, look, I don‘t think there‘s any question the White House hyped the intelligence that it had, but I haven‘t seen any evidence, and I watch this pretty closely, of the White House actually making stuff up. I don‘t think we‘ve seen any instance of that.
CARLSON: Second. Hold on. Second, I have been in Washington long enough, and I know you have, too, to remember the previous administration, the Clinton administration, in which you had the president, you had the vice president, you had the secretary of state, Madeleine Albright. You had Clinton, Gore, and Albright all saying out loud in the late ‘90s Iraq has a nuclear weapons program and has stockpiles of biological and chemical weapons. That was the official position of that administration. Were they lying too?
MCMAHON: Listen, Tucker, there‘s no evidence of that. And first of all, that administration didn‘t take us to war, so apparently there wasn‘t sufficient proof. They sent weapons inspectors in.
CARLSON: I don‘t know. They bombed the country. Didn‘t they?
MCMAHON: They did, but they didn‘t send troops in.
MCMAHON: Two thousand Americans didn‘t die as a result of the lies they told, and they didn‘t—they didn‘t start a war. They said weapons inspectors in to try to find out if there were weapons of mass destruction. Those weapons inspectors never found anything before or since, and there was never any allegation that the Clinton administration selectively used or withheld intelligence.
There was just a story in the National Journal this week that indicates that the vice president‘s office was withholding intelligence from these independent agencies, that the United States Senate Intelligence Committee had asked for. Now, there‘s no reason for an administration to do that, except to selectively use or withhold information to suit its purposes.
CARLSON: It may turn out that...
MCMAHON: All the Democrats did yesterday, Tucker, was said, “Enough is enough. It‘s time for some answers, and we‘re going to have an investigation, and if the Republicans want to stonewall it then we‘re going to...”
CARLSON: But I...
MCMAHON: “... use every procedural tactic at our disposal to make sure it happens.”
CARLSON: Necessarily attack them for it. I always want more information.
MCMAHON: It doesn‘t sound like you‘re applauding them for it, Tucker.
CARLSON: No, it just—disingenuousness is a little much. They‘re acting like, “We were children; we were lied to.” But here‘s my political vision for you, my final one.
You‘ve this election three years from right about right now. And it looks to me like the leading candidate, at this point anyway, is Senator Clinton, Hillary Rodham Clinton, who has been probably at the far right end of the your party on the question of Iraq.
She supported this war. She went to Iraq earlier this year. Talked about how great things were going there. How suicide bombings were example of our success in Iraq.
At what point is she going to move left on this, and does she have to?
Are ordinary Democrats going to force her to do that? I think they will.
MCMAHON: You know, she‘s going to make her own judgment based on what‘s best for the country and for her campaign. I think the Democrat activists are starting to say enough is enough, and I think Americans all across the country are starting to say, what‘s the plan for getting out of Iraq?
Condoleezza Rice just the other day was saying we‘re probably going to be there another 10 years. I don‘t think Democrats, and I don‘t think most Republicans, frankly, are going to tolerate that, and I think you‘re going to see a ratcheting up of pressure to get our troops home.
CARLSON: I think—I think—I agree with you, I think Mrs. Clinton will be forced left by MoveOn.org. Can‘t wait to watch it. Steve McMahon from Washington tonight, thank you.
MCMAHON: Good to see you.
CARLSON: Today the “Washington Post” revealed the CIA Has set up covert prisons in Eastern Europe to hold its most important al Qaeda captives after 9/11. Bush administration officials are quick to say torture at these compounds, assuming they actually exist, would not be tolerated.
According to the “Post,” these so-called black sites located in eight different countries, including former compounds in Eastern Europe and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Joining me now from Seattle, someone who is quite familiar with America‘s off-shore prisons for suspected terrorist. Former Army Captain James Yee, a Muslim convert, was accused of spying for al Qaeda and charged with adultery will serving as a chaplain at the U.S. base at Guantanamo bay. He was eventually cleared of those charges, and he now chronicles his experience in the new book, “For God and Country: Faith and Patriotism Under Fire.”
Mr. Yee, thanks a lot for joining me.
CAPT. JAMES YEE, AUTHOR, “FOR GOD AND COUNTRY”: Thanks for having me tonight.
CARLSON: Now, were you aware, I have to ask you, because it‘s the news today, were you aware of any CIA-run detention centers on Guantanamo Bay while you were there?
YEE: Well, I am not sure exactly if they were CIA, but we had this term called OGA, other government agencies, and people used to say that referred to CIA.
CARLSON: That sounds like it refers to the CIA without question. What did the OGA, or whatever it was, what did the CIA run, do you think, there? Were you aware of the compound? Was it near where you were? What was it? What did it look like?
YEE: In terms of what they were doing, I had no idea, but there were parts of the compound that I didn‘t have access to, and there were prisoners being held in there.
CARLSON: Interesting. Now, to your case, you were accused of espionage, treason, essentially, and then you were cleared of the charges. You were also accused of adultery and downloading porn on your computer.
You weren‘t, I don‘t think, convicted of either one of those either.
Have you been apologized to in any way by the U.S. military or the U.S. government?
YEE: No, I haven‘t received apology, but I‘m still fighting for one, and I look at myself—I consider myself an eternal optimist, that one day I‘ll get one.
CARLSON: Have you had any explanation for why, after being accused of something this serious in public, nobody has come forward to say, “You didn‘t do it, and gee, we‘re sorry, we said you did.”
YEE: None whatsoever, but the Department of Defense inspector general is inspecting—is investigating in the case, and myself, as well as my supporters, my family, and many congressmen are actually looking forward to those results.
CARLSON: Now, it sounds like what happened to you is a pretty significant injustice, and not surprise—sounds like the kind of thing government does, bureaucracies do.
But as you say in your book, you were considered far too sympathetic to the prisoners at Guantanamo Bay. And I have to say, as much as I sympathize with you, and what you‘ve been accused of doing falsely, I have to kind of agree with that. After reading through your book, you do sound awfully sympathetic to a lot of the detainees, and you don‘t get a sense reading your book that these guys were at one time at war with the United States.
Do you hold them responsible for the actions they took against the
YEE: Well, from my personal interactions with the prisoners, I found it hard to believe that these 660 or so prisoners who were down there when I was there were the ones who carried out and planned 9/11.
If they were in some way taking up arms against the U.S., and if that‘s a crime, then we should bring them to court, bring them to justice, and then punish them. Bring on the charges, and uphold the rule of law.
CARLSON: What about fighting on behalf of the Taliban? Isn‘t that itself a moral crime, if nothing else?
YEE: If that‘s a crime, then we should bring them to justice.
CARLSON: You think it‘s a moral crime to fight on behalf of the Taliban. Are you offended by the idea someone would take up arms on behalf of the Taliban?
YEE: I think that if that is a crime, that we should uphold the rule of law and bring them to justice.
CARLSON: But what do you think? I‘m sorry to interrupt you, but I want to know what you think. You know these people. You spent, I think, eight months in their presence. Do you think it‘s morally wrong to fight on behalf of the Taliban, you personally?
YEE: Personally, I found that many of these were probably not—some of them, as it was said, some of them did get swept up, and many of them were innocent. Over 200 of them have already been released and sent back home. They‘re back with their families. And I think that says a lot. There‘s continuing talks that hundreds more are going to be released also.
CARLSON: Did you meet, since, unlike most Americans, you actually know some of these detainees, many of these detainees, tell us, did you find any of them who you thought had committed any crime at all or whose behavior troubled you?
YEE: It wasn‘t my job or my role to determine guilt or innocence. But with that said, I think that many of them are there innocently, specifically the Dewegers (ph) from western China, have been deemed not enemy combatants by the very review boards that the military has set up, yet we haven‘t released them.
CARLSON: So I mean, I can—again, you‘re sort of proving the point I made a minute ago. You seem awfully sympathetic to these guys. You imply in their book they were kind of pulled out at random, because they were Muslims. There are a billion Muslims in this country. Why did this 600 or so guys get pulled out of Afghanistan?
YEE: That‘s a good question. I didn‘t have any direct access to any intelligence on how they got captured. You know, my role was to be a chaplain.
CARLSON: All right. And you were. James Yee, the book, “For God and Country: Faith and Patriotism Under Fire.” Thanks a lot for joining us tonight.
YEE: Thanks again.
CARLSON: Still to come, peace mom, versus former first lady. Could Cindy Sheehan take on Hillary Clinton for a New York Senate seat in 2000, or to put it another way, why shouldn‘t she?
Plus, Prince Charles and his new bride have come to the White House bearing gifts, English bone China, and advice to how to run the war on terror. Penn Gillette stops by to break it all down when THE SITUATION returns.
CARLSON: Still to come, Halloween is over, but we‘ll talk to one family that‘s asking police to help them get rid of ghosts in their haunted house. Plus, a judge in Utah breaks the law on polygamy. Surprise, surprise. Should he be allowed to keep his job? A legal conundrum. We‘ll debate it next.
CARLSON: Welcome back. The Democrats are looking to spice things up in 2006 and 2008, and why not? My next guest has a suggestion: why not pit Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton against anti-war protester, Cindy Sheehan?
Sheehan recently urged supporters to thwart Clinton‘s political aspirations, unless the senator from New York comes out against the war in Iraq. Here to talk about what could be a truly interesting race, former Green Party candidate and Sheehan booster Don Debar. He joins us from New York where he lives. Mr. Debar, thanks a lot for coming on.
DON DEBAR: Thank you for having me.
CARLSON: You‘ve got a pin, “Cindy Sheehan Speaks Truth to Power.”
DEBAR: And it‘s true, too.
CARLSON: Why are supporting her over Hillary Clinton?
DEBAR: Hillary Clinton basically is out of touch with her—with the constituency she‘s supposed to—she‘s been elected to represent. The issue of the war particularly, the majority position in the United States, Democrats, Republicans, red states, blue states, oppose the war. And Hillary Clinton supports it.
Every vote, every action, she hasn‘t tried to distance herself from it, even at this late date. That‘s really a contradiction in the political system, and needs to be corrected all by itself, no matter how you feel about the war.
CARLSON: I couldn‘t agree more. And not only does she support it, she supports it aggressively, more aggressively than some, say, New England Republicans. Why do you think so many Democrats and so many Democratic money people, the people who actually get you elected, people in Los Angeles, are getting behind Hillary Clinton so early?
DEBAR: One, people like to line up behind what‘s perceived as the front runner. There‘s that certain aspect to it.
And No. 2, there really hasn‘t been any opposition voice of prominence within the Democratic Party that, you know, has looked to the White House and, you know, even national office like the Senate. I mean, an anti-war senator would be a lone voice in the Senate at this moment.
CARLSON: Yes. And I think is much-needed, so I agree with you on that. I think Mrs. Clinton doesn‘t represent her constituents well, and I think Democrats need anti-war candidates.
Here‘s where I disagree. Cindy Sheehan strikes me as a bit of a loose canon, said a number of things that struck me as hostile to the United States. For instance, she said, the U.S. is, quote, “Not worth dying for.”
She seems to have attacked the U.S. military pretty aggressively. Can you get elected after saying things like that?
DEBAR: Well, first of all, the thing that she‘s saying that‘s of the highest order is if the war is a mistake and the killings should not go on anymore, and that is the majority position of the country.
We‘re talking about a political process where the majority opinion is supposed to find expression. It‘s not maximum expression. At least some expression in the process.
She is someone who embodies the sentiments of the anti-war movement on that particularly large issue, the one we‘re throwing hundreds of billions of dollars at, the one that we are basically decimating our National Guard, injuring our military for.
And so I think that, if she makes a few mistakes because she‘s not a professional politician, she should be forgiven that, and looked to as someone that can articulate this anti-war position on a national stage effectively. And I think all by itself, that‘s an effective weapon for the anti-war movement, the majority, the anti-war majority in this country.
CARLSON: But being anti-war in politics is tricky. You can be against a specific war, but if you are seen as being anti-war in general, that doesn‘t fly. If you‘re seen as hostile to your country in any way, that doesn‘t work at all. And if you criticize the military even a tiny bit, you‘re out, no chance, no dice. Don‘t you need a candidate who‘s almost jingoistic in favor of America, but happens to be against this specific war?
DEBAR: No, I don‘t agree with that. And I‘ll say this much. For people that are criticizing her for being un-American. She gave her son for this country.
DEBAR: So let‘s start with that. She has actual bone fides in there that no one in this...
CARLSON: She didn‘t—hold on, look, I‘m not—but she didn‘t give her son. You don‘t force your kids to join up. He joined up of his own free will. I mean, she didn‘t send him to war. He went in by himself.
DEBAR: Well, I—you know, knowing what I knew back then, which Democrats now say they were fooled by the Bush administration, it was obvious to millions of Americans that this war was based on a lie, back then, and I would not have allowed my son to go. I would have tied him up if I had to, to keep him from going. So she allowed her son to go, and she lost him.
CARLSON: Quickly, do you think by doing this, you‘re going to be able to move Mrs. Clinton off her position?
DEBAR: Well, in one of two ways. Either move her off her position of support for the war, or move her off her position as a senator from New York state that doesn‘t represent her constituents, yes.
CARLSON: Talking about speaking truth to power, Don Debar, you are doing just that. Appreciate you coming on tonight.
DEBAR: Thank you very much.
CARLSON: Up next, school officials get personal in a survey about sex. What do they ask students that have parents outraged? We‘ll tell you when THE SITUATION returns.
CARLSON: Welcome back.
Joining me tonight on the set to discuss two of the hottest topics in the news, the host of the upcoming NBC special, “Penn and Teller: Off the Deep End,” that airs November 13. He‘s also the author of the new book, “How to Cheat Your Friends at Poker: The Wisdom of Dickie Richard.” It‘s our old pal from “The Aristocrats,” Penn Gillette.
How are you doing? Thanks for coming.
PENN GILLETTE, MAGICIAN: Thanks for having me.
CARLSON: Did you see that? I‘m interested to know what you think, the interview with Captain Yee.
GILLETTE: I think that you are cowardly if you won‘t ask the same question five times.
CARLSON: You‘ve got to ask him five times.
GILLETTE: You asked him four times, and he would have crumbled on five. If you said just once more, “But do you think working with the Taliban is morally wrong,” if you‘d asked him the fifth time, he would have cracked.
CARLSON: When I was a print reporter, I had a tape recorder in hand. I asked the same question 20 times. I didn‘t care. I‘m a very boorish guy to sit next to at dinner. I can promise you that.
What do you think—what do you think about that, though? I understand you‘re one of the purest libertarians I know. So it‘s always interesting to get the fully libertarian perspective on this.
GILLETTE: You know, I—I really don‘t like to say things that I don‘t know enough about, but I do think that America always serves itself well when it takes the high road.
I mean, whenever we can be a little better than any country that has ever existed on the planet, I think we feel better about ourselves. And that means when anyone else would torture, maybe we shouldn‘t. When anyone else would not give a trial, maybe we should. I just think that the more we can do everything right, the more it‘s worth fighting for the country.
CARLSON: Why? For our sake?
GILLETTE: For our sake.
GILLETTE: To have the greatest country that ever happened, which we‘ve got, solid. And we‘ve got it covered. Let‘s keep going. Let‘s try to be even better.
CARLSON: So not even so we can convince the rest of the world that we‘re great, because that‘s probably a losing battle?
CARLSON: So we can be convinced of our own greatness?
GILLETTE: Also, I think that when—when people attack our freedom,
the answer being more freedom is a good idea. I just think you just keep -
every time people do terrible things to you, I think you just take the slightly higher road.
But, you know, as far as how you actually get people to stop killing us, I don‘t know anything about that.
CARLSON: Well, neither does Prince Charles, but that doesn‘t stop him from giving his opinion on it. He‘s in town.
GILLETTE: Who cares about him?
CARLSON: I couldn‘t agree more. I‘ll tell you who cares about him. I‘ll tell you who cares: the president of the United States. A dinner with Prince Charles and his wife Camilla tonight at the White House, Merv Griffin invited. You not invited.
GILLETTE: I was not was invited.
CARLSON: Also Kelsey Grammar invited, and the keyboardist from the Rolling Stones.
GILLETTE: He was—those three people?
CARLSON: True fact.
GILLETTE: Those people? I just think that—we played a lot in England. And when I was over there, I was just surprised they still have royalty. I mean, give it up. You know, you don‘t need it. I think the idea of having a prince is just silly. Unless you‘re in a Disney cartoon, you shouldn‘t have princes and princesses.
CARLSON: But wait a second, you‘re someone who lives in Las Vegas, who is a booster of the city of Las Vegas. You understand instinctively the power of fantasy and the need for it.
GILLETTE: Absolutely, but I just think that bestowing on people anything because of their birth is deeply un-American. And I think if you want to say un-American is the royalty of England, you have history on your side.
CARLSON: That‘s a good point.
GILLETTE: I just think that the whole Princess Di thing, and the whole Lady Di—that whole thing going on, I just didn‘t ever care. I mean, of course we have to deal with them politically, and of course, culturally, we‘re very similar, and they gave us the Beatles, you know? They gave us the Sex Pistols.
GILLETTE: Great country, wonderful, but the idea of royalty is just stupid and outdated.
CARLSON: I‘m going to—I‘m going to stop you before you criticize Princess Di and get more hate mail than you know what to do with. Trust me. That‘s what happens when you—talk about your book.
GILLETTE: Well, she‘s a fine person. Elton John never wrote a song about me.
GILLETTE: Just the idea of royalty.
CARLSON: I made the mistake of doing it once. And my e-mail box had to be discontinued.
GILLETTE: What did you say?
CARLSON: I‘m not going to repeat it now.
GILLETTE: Five times, what did you say about her? What did you say about her?
CARLSON: You will not elicit an answer, I promise.
“How to Cheat Your Friends at Poker,” why would you want to do that?
And does this book tell you how?
GILLETTE: It tells you exactly how, but you may not like answer.
When I was 18, and I hitchhiked around the country, because I thought Bob Dylan did it—later out we found he didn‘t—but I did hitchhike around for a couple years. I met a guy who was a real cheat. And I was already pretty good at cards. And I thought that might be a sexy, cool thing to do. And I met this guy who was—really learned to exploit friendship and a few simple card tricks to steal huge amounts of money.
And he kept in touch with me over the years. Every three years, he would show up at a Penn and Teller show with different name, and more bling, and talk to me a bit.
And then two years ago, he had left the country. He had retired. And gave me this stack of manuscripts for a book that he said, “I really want to tell people how to really cheat, what I really learned in doing this.”
And I felt morally bad about the idea of helping people, but actually morally very good about saying, you know, it isn‘t sexy. It isn‘t cool. You will really sell the idea of friendship. You will never have a real friend, and you‘ll get a lot of money.
So this is the real stuff. It has bottom deals in it and how to mark decks and all that stuff.
GILLETTE: But it also has weird skills that he has, like how to make friends with people who play poker, get into their inner circle, so that you can really steal money.
CARLSON: So you have to subvert friendships, though, to do it.
GILLETTE: You have to—you don‘t—you cannot have any friendships. All your friendships must be false, and you always have to think about getting into a game with people who trust you.
CARLSON: Boy, that‘s...
GILLETTE: If you‘re willing to do that, you can make more money.
CARLSON: That sounds like a pretty deep read. “How to Cheat Your Friends at Poker: The Wisdom of Dickie Richardson” by Penn Gillette.
GILLETTE: Which is not his real name.
CARLSON: A cool guy. This is doubtless a cool book. Can I have this?
GILLETTE: Sure. What did you say about Lady Di?
CARLSON: I‘m not going to repeat it, trust me. It was the lowest moment of my professional life.
Penn Gillette, thank you.
GILLETTE: Thanks a lot.
CARLSON: Appreciate it.
Stay tuned. Still plenty more ahead on THE SITUATION.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (singing): I want to get away.
CARLSON (voice-over): The extreme get-away. Why thrill-seeking tourists may soon be saying, if it‘s Tuesday, this must be Baghdad.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (singing): Our house...
CARLSON: In the market for a housemate? Wait until you see what this single white female is offering prospective home buyers. Women need not apply.
MC HAMMER, SINGER (singing): Can‘t touch this.
CARLSON: Plus, why MC Hammer is now telling hip-hop fans you can touch this, if the price is right.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (singing): You must have been a beautiful baby.
CARLSON: From the nation‘s capitol, home video of baby‘s first steps.
It‘s all ahead on THE SITUATION.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CARLSON: Welcome back. Well-known politician once said, “I wish I could give you a lot of advice based on my experience of winning political debates, but I don‘t have that experience. My only experience is losing them.” Joining me now, a man who is always locked and loaded for the debate, any debate: he‘s “The Outsider,” ESPN Radio and HBO boxing host, Max Kellerman, joining us live from Vegas. Max, any idea who that quote is from?
MAX KELLERMAN, ESPN RADIO: No, Tucker. And I got to tell you, it‘s not quite up to snuff with the quotes I have been hearing recently.
CARLSON: Maybe that‘s because it‘s from Richard Nixon.
KELLERMAN: Well, that would explain it.
CARLSON: Yes, it would. Not a quote meister. The quotable Richard Nixon, it was never a best seller.
KELLERMAN: Unfortunately for him, he had 5:00 shadow at 1:00 in the afternoon. You can‘t beat Kennedy in a debate looking like that.
CARLSON: Not the one to talk about facial hair. But first up, on the docket, the case of the judge with three wives. Utah judge Walter Steed (ph). He‘s been on the bench for 25 years, could be kicked off for breaking state‘s law against bigamy. It‘s a third degree felony in Utah. It‘s punishable by up to five years behind bars. Steed (ph) who has 32 children, faced a hearing before the state Supreme Court today.
He married his first wife in 1965, the second and third in religious ceremonies, 1975 and 1985. Incidentally his three wives are sisters.
Now, there‘s something kind of tillating about this. And I have mixed feelings about polygamy, not entirely against it, Max. But the fact is, it‘s illegal. And he is flamboyantly violating the law. It‘s not like he is secretly a polygamist. He has got 32 kids. And it‘s not like he is secretly, I don‘t know, smoking pot once in awhile in the privacy of his own home. There‘s nothing private about this behavior. It‘s very public behavior. And it‘s just untenable. You can‘t do that if you are a judge, you just can‘t.
KELLERMAN: First of all, I think laws against polygamy are bad. Look, as libertarians, Tucker, I think people should be able to agree, consenting adults can do what they want to each other, including marry eachother, even if it‘s more than one of them.
Whatever, it‘s a bad law. If we can agree, it doesn‘t matter. He didn‘t really break it.
First of all, flamboyantly! It‘s not like he came out and announced it. They found out that he had two other wives, but they are not recognized as civil unions really. They were religious ceremonies. So he calls them wives. Or they consider themselves married, but if the state doesn‘t consider them married until it becomes a public issue, why should they be considered married?
CARLSON: The law has anticipated just such a question. That‘s why there‘s common law marriage. Whether you go before a judge, justice of the peace, priest, rabbi, whatever, if you are living together under the same roof for a certain period of time, engaged in conjugal relations, have children together, file taxes together, you are married, you just are.
KELLERMAN: I don‘t know he filed taxes.
CARLSON: I don‘t know either. But if he met the first criteria, he is married.
KELLERMAN: So you mean to tell me, if move in with your girlfriend, and you have some kids, and you get another girlfriend, and the three of you are living together, very nicely, no one is getting married, never go before—you never file for marriage certificate, nothing like that, and you wind up with a couple of kids and a couple of women living in the house, for five or 10 years, you have broken the law?
CARLSON: Well, you are living in your own private hell anyway. So at that point—breaking the law is immaterial, I guess.
KELLERMAN: It should be time served, is what this guy should get.
CARLSON: That‘s pretty good.
Next up, parents in Palmdale, California are outraged at elementary school officials surveyed their kids about sex. Remember, this is elementary school. In a questionnaire given to first, third and fifth graders, students were asked, among other things, how often they thought about sex.
Now, federal appeals court says the school did nothing wrong. The court says parents don‘t have the exclusive right to talk to their children about sex. The district dropped the survey in 2002. But parents are still seeking unspecified damages.
And I hope they get unspecified damages. If this were my child, I would have committed unspecified damages upon the physical bodies of the people who asked my kids how often they think about sex. That‘s a creepy to ask. Nobody but parents ought to be talking to kids about sex, especially little kids. That‘s the kind go thing child molesters do. I think they ought to be under psychiatrist care, if not in jail.
KELLERMAN: I agree with the basic sentiment, Tucker. I think it‘s inappropriate. Here‘s the argument for why it‘s OK. We keep elevating sex beyond just a physical act. Really, sex is just—it‘s physical behavior, really. That‘s all it is. And the reason prostitution is illegal, and it shouldn‘t be, is because the state has now sanctified sex to the point where you can barter whatever you want, but not your own body. And this is just more along those lines.
CARLSON: Really believe that? You do live on planet Earth. You have had sex, and you have still saying that this is merely a physical act like eating a Big Mac, that it has no emotional ramifications, it doesn‘t...
KELLERMAN: Have you ever eaten a Big Mac, Tucker? That can have emotional—anything you can invest emotionally in. Why...
CARLSON: Let me put it this way. Do you remember vividly the first big mac you ever ate?
KELLERMAN: No, that‘s a very good point.
CARLSON: There you go.
KELLERMAN: However, the first time I ate at like Peter Lugar‘s, I remember that, Tucker.
CARLSON: That‘s on a different level.
KELLERMAN: I have a good friend who has five kids, and he‘s very protective of especially two youngest daughters. And very protective, especially with issues relating to sex. He wants to protect them from those kind of things. One of the daughters came in from the back yard, she just watched the dog play with a neighbor‘s dog, and said, daddy, X, Y, and Z.
In other words, you can‘t protect your kids. The kid is going to learn in the back yard than he‘ll ever learn from a survey conducted in school.
CARLSON: Let‘s agree on this. If your third grader learns about sex from a cocker spaniel, that‘s OK. The school administrator starts talking to a third grader about sex....
CARLSON: You have the right to beat him up.
KELLERMAN: We agree.
CARLSON: Max kellerman, live from Vegas tonight. Good luck tonight, Max.
KELLERMAN: Thank you, Tucker.
CARLSON: Still ahead, do you believe in ghosts? In a minute, we will introduce you to a Houston police officer who says he lives in a haunted house. He has video evidence to prove it. This is amazing. He‘ll show us indisputable proof when we come back. Stay tuned.
CARLSON: Welcome back. Lieutenant Harry Zamora is a 25-year veteran of the Houston Police Department, but he recently joined another force, the phenomena force—the phenomena police. Zamora believes his home is haunted, so he has joined other Houston police officers to form a squad that investigates paranormal activity. Lieutenant Zamore and his wife Leslie join me live from their home in Cyrpus, Texas tonight with video evidence of the supernatural. Mr. and Mrs. Zamora, thanks a lot for coming on.
HARRY ZAMORA, HOUSTON PD: Thank you.
CARLSON: Leslie, can you tell me about your first encounter with the supernatural in your house? I think it took place in your bedroom, I was reading.
LESLIE ZAMORA, WIFE: Correct. I was laying in bed trying to fall asleep, and I felt my hair being caressed. It felt like my husband was, you know, rubbing my head. I thought he couldn‘t sleep, so I rolled over to, you know, kind of give him a hug, and he had his back to me, and he was sound asleep, and there was nobody in the room. So I immediately woke him up.
CARLSON: What did you think, Harry, when you heard some unseen force had ben stroking your wife‘s hair?
H. ZAMORA: I didn‘t know what to think. That was just another one of the things that had been happening to us from lights coming on to appliances. And it was just a whole series of events. And that was just another one. So at that point, when that happened, we were actually already pretty scared in the house. So it was just something else that was happening to us.
CARLSON: So at that point, you decided to put your years of police work to good use and find out exactly—or attempt to find out what was going on in your house. What did you turn up?
H. ZAMORA: Well, what happened was we actually had seen a newspaper article where this lady had actually investigated a haunted fire station, and we were kind of interested in that because they actually had the same occurrences happening there, so she came out with her people and actually documented, I guess, what she termed an interactive haunting in the bathroom. And that was the first time we had ever seen anything like that and that‘s also on the Web site.
CARLSON: We are showing, I think we‘re showing video of it right here. It looks like a series of white circles, almost like a full moon showing up on the film. Does that happen every time you take a photograph indoors sometimes, and what are those?
H. ZAMORA: You know, we don‘t know. It just depend on who you speak with. Being policemen, and actually being trained to get evidence and get answers, trying to investigate, we started asking experts, you know, theologians and scientists and enginers and photographers and trying to find out what those things were. Everybody had their own answer.
CARLSON: What did the photographers say? They almost look like water marks on pictures, when you spill beer on a photograph.
H. ZAMORA: Right.
CARLSON: What do the photographers say?
H. ZAMORA: Well, see, a lot of them say it could be dust particles. It could be lens flare. It could be moisture in the air, but in taking a series of photographs, I think there‘s a couple that we sent that actually show outside one orb anomaly that is in one photo, the next photo it is actually darting off. That one is on the Web site too. That can‘t be moisture or a dust particle or a lens flare because it moves. It‘s in one picture. The next photo it‘s darting off.
CARLSON: And these are taken...
H. ZAMORA: We don‘t know.
CARLSON: Do different cameras show the same results?
H. ZAMORA: Exactly. Film, 35 millimeter film cameras various types of professional digital cameras, as well as consumer cameras, all the same.
CARLSON: That is just too creepy. But not as creepy, Leslie, as the fact that at one point, all of the battery powered toys—I should point out, you have three children at home, I think. All of the batterie powered toys in your house came on at once of their own accord.
At that point, I would have been out of there. I mean, I would have been at the nearest Motel 6 never to return. What keeps you there?
L. ZAMORA: I think right now, my faith. I honestly believe that I was brought here for a reason. I don‘t know what that reason is. But I stay because of my faith. I am not going to be ran out of my home. I want answers.
CARLSON: Don‘t you think—I mean, it seems like maybe the obvious answer is whatever is in your house is trying to send you a message?
L. ZAMORA: Possibly so. Maybe we are just not getting it.
CARLSON: Harry, since you are a police officer, you are in a position of public trust. What do people think now that you have come public with the fact you believe your house is haunted?
H. ZAMORA: You know, I was actually surprised that so many people come out with their own stories. And I guess when you first approach them and you tell them what‘s happening to you, everyone has their own stories. I think there‘s so many people out there that have similar stories, so it‘s not surprising to me.
In fact, that‘s how this whole phenomena police team started. I actually started calling my sergeant, Sergeant Rasby (ph) from work, to come over to the house, and check me, to make sure we are not going crazy because that was what we thought. It‘s just hard to explain as a policeman, you are used to tangible, not speculation or conjecture, things you can‘t put your hands on. And we didn‘t know what to think. I had no answers. We are used to getting answers, and we had none.
CARLSON: You don‘t sound crazy to me. You don‘t. Though I must say, I do question your decision to stay. It‘s all pretty creepy, but interesting as ever. And you sound both very sober, I really appreciate you coming on. Harry and Leslie Zamora, thanks for coming on tonight.
H. ZAMORA: Great. Thank you.
Coming up, before you turn down the offer to vacation in Iraq, check out where we have got you booked. We will tell you about spa treatments and umbrella drinks at the Hotel Saddam in Tikrit when THE SITUATION continues.
CARLSON: Welcome back. Every night in a fit of recklessness we divulge our top secret V.I.P. unlisted phone number and every day you call in droves. Let‘s hear what you said today.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
CALLER: Tucker, hey, it‘s Steve from Merit Island, Florida. Listen, why should anyone apologize for a vote they made when they were making a vote and getting the information they were misled people in the White House are lying about it. So let‘s get to the truth. Let‘s find out.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
CARLSON: Give me a break. First of all, the White House as we pointed out earlier does not gather intelligence. They merely collate it. I think they exaggerated the threat from Iraq, no doubt. But the senators who voted in favor of this invasion of Iraq had a lot of independent information at their disposal. Everybody was wrong. And I think everybody who voted for this war on the basis of Saddam‘s supposed WMDs stockpiles ought to apologize. It‘s the decent thing to do.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
CALLER: Hi, Tucker, this is Amy from Washington, D.C. If those guys are looking to impress women, they are off the mark. Us woman lie when we say we are impressed with a man making an omlet or dusting. Frankly, we can do it better and faster. What impresses us when someone is successful enough to pay for someone to clean and cook for us.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
CARLSON: Exactly. You want a housekeeper, not a sensitive husband!
Of course. Good for you Eve Friedman. You‘ll go far.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
CALLER: Yes, Tucker, Jason D. again. One other thing, I want to be cool about this but after that last reenactment, Vanessa and the witch and sachaying and all just ask her to think about it. No pressure. She should think about marrying me. That‘s all. Just no rush. Think about it.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
CARLSON: You‘re going to have to get in line, Jason. You think you‘re the first person to think about that? This is a pretty—to walk a gauntlets of lascivious cameramen every night just to get out on the set. Now way. Calling in to the voice-mail line? I think you‘ve blown it.
First impressions, you‘ve made a bad one. Try an e-mail next time, Jason.
Keep working on that. Don‘t give up.
Let me know what you‘re thinking, you can call 1-877-TCARLSON. That‘s 1-877-833-7576. You can also send me your questions via our Web site. E-mail me at Tucker@MSNBC.com. I‘ll respond every day to anything you come up with no matter how crackpot. Log onto Tucker.MSNBC.com.
Still ahead on THE SITUATION, you‘re the president of the United States and it feels like the walls are closing in around you. It‘s good it know that 50 Cent has your back. 50 and George Bush get chummy next.
CARLSON: Welcome back. Time for “The Cutting Room Floor.” You know what that means, Willie Geist. Here he is.
WILLIE GEIST, MSNBC PRODUCER: Hello, Tucker. Just so Vanessa doesn‘t get too excited, she‘s not the only one that is getting marriage proposals. Here‘s one now. This comes to us from Mongo at Raway State Prison in New Jersey. Willie, marry me or else. And there‘s more where that came from.
CARLSON: You don‘t even seem tempted.
GEIST: No, I‘m not.
CARLSON: You‘re a wise man.
Well, if your future travel plans call for the greater Tikrit area, and if they don‘t, you ought to. May we suggest you stay at the 136 building compound that once belonged to Saddam Hussein. Iraqi officials plan to turn Saddam Hussein‘s spread into a tourist destination now that the military—the U.S. military has moved out. The compound is made up of 18 palaces all with views of the Tigress River.
GEIST: This is clearly psychological warfare. Not only did we depose you, we‘re going to send our tourists in their white socks and sandals to lounge around your pool. It‘s just a slap in the face to Saddam.
CARLSON: If that doesn‘t work, we‘ll send the German tourists.
GEIST: Oh, no. That‘s a war crime.
CARLSON: Yes, I know.
Hip hop star Kanye West famously said, quote, “George Bush doesn‘t care about black people,” during a Hurricane Katrina event last month. Well, another rap heavyweight is not telling Kanye to lay off the president. 50 Cent, who as you may know is a loyal fan of this show, threw his support behind President Bush when he told the music Web site he doesn‘t understand where Kanye was coming from.
50, of Fity, said the New Orleans disaster was an act of God. People responded to it the best way they can.
GEIST: Sounds like there‘s a 50/Kanye feud abrewing. I know this is like Sophie‘s Choice for you, but which way are you leaning? No?
CARLSON: It‘s a tough one for me, Willie. Let me put it this way, I suspect of the two, only 50 is in line to get the presidential Medal of Freedom.
GEIST: Absolutely. He deserves it. He‘s a hero.
CARLSON: Well, speaking of music stars, M.C. Hammer once sold more than 30 million records during his career thanks mostly to the 1990 megahit “You Can‘t Touch This.” The only thing more incredible than his popularity was his demise. And it was steep. He blew $20 million and filed for bankruptcy just six years later. At a hammer out his reported $14 million music hull, his music catalog is up for auction. The highest bidder gets 50 percent of rights to “You Can‘t Touch This, “ and 90 percent of his hit “Two Legit to Quit.”
GEIST: Tucker, this brings to mind the famous episode of “Behind the Music” when he explained how he blew his $30 million. He said, you buy yourself a house, that‘s $11 million right there. You don‘t have to buy a $11 million house.
CARLSON: You can blow that in room service.
GEIST: You don‘t need a gold plated microwave. Think.
CARLSON: Now for a shameless appeal to the mothers in our audience. Tai Shan, the baby panda has taken his first steps tonight. Tai Shan was born in July at the National Zoo in Washington. And yesterday he walked around on his own for the cameras. Tai Shan will be accepting visitors when he goes public on display next month.
GEIST: Tucker, I just want to congratulate you. You just reached Ron Burgundy sell-parody status. Doing the panda report.
CARLSON: When I saw this in the script, I said that to one of the producers.
GEIST: You‘re an anchorman, congratulations.
CARLSON: Thank you, Willie.
Well, buying a home and getting married with are two of the biggest moments in a man‘s life. Now, you can kill both of those birds with one stone. How do you like that metaphor. A Denver woman seen here has put her house on the market for $600,000. The prince includes three bedrooms, three baths, hot tub and her. If you agree to buy the house, you‘re also agreeing to marry her. 48-year-old Deborah Hail says she‘s looking for a man between the ages of 40 and 60 to move in to be her soul mate.
GEIST: I never thought about living in Denver. But I might have to reconsider based what I‘m seing here.
You know what, she looks...
CARLSON: It‘s an all inclusive packa package.
GEIST: She looks goos. One concern I have, she has a tanning bed in her home that‘s usually an indication of greater problems.
CARLSON: Or skin cancer to come. Either one.
GEIST: Yeah. I think there might be something...
CARLSON: Putting yourself on eBay is also a mild indicator too.
GEIST: I agree.
CARLSON: Willie Geist.
GEIST: All right. See you tomorrow.
CARLSON: That‘s THE SITUATION for tonight. Thanks for watching.
Up next, COUNTDOWN with “Keith Olbermann.” Be back here tomorrow night.
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