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CNN NEWSROOM

Obama Announces New FDA Leader; Hire Power: Building a Better Resume; Bitter Note: Forced to Sell Heirlooms; Americans Stretch Their Dollars; Out in the Cold; NAACP: Blacks Biased Against Blacks; Interview With Charles Barkley

Aired March 14, 2009 - 10:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


T.J. HOLMES, CNN ANCHOR: The president today still thinking about the economy, always on his mind, of course, but also but also talking about the FDA, thinking about the food you're eating this morning. Just announced the newest FDA commissioner. We'll take a closer look at the task that's ahead for her.

Also, we've got something you're not going to want to miss.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CHARLES BARKLEY, FMR. BASKETBALL PLAYER: ... taking you away from reality. That's why I love sports. Think about it, if it wasn't for sports, you've got the war in Iraq, you've got the war in Afghanistan, we've got the recession. That's what we would watch.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HOLMES: This is his first interview since serving his time in jail for that DUI. Sir Charles sitting down with me, talking about the NBA, as you're seeing clips of here, but also, of course, talking about his time in jail, his DUI, talking about A-Rod, talking about the economy. You don't want to miss it. You know he's always got something to say and he's always going to give it to you straight.

SUSAN ROESGEN, CNN ANCHOR: That's true.

HOLMES: Always.

ROESGEN: He's always talking.

HOLMES: Always.

ROESGEN: Also, we have help for you've you're looking for a job. We have a Career Builder expert on hand this morning, so send your resume to weekends@cnn.com. We'll take a look, and we might even give you a call on the air to see how we can help you.

HOLMES: All right. And from the CNN Center here in Atlanta, Georgia, welcome, everybody, on this Saturday, March 14th.

I'm T.J. Holmes.

ROESGEN: And I'm Susan Roesgen, filling in for Betty Nguyen today. 10:00 a.m. here in Atlanta, 9:00 a.m. in Chicago, and 7:00 a.m. if you're just waking up on the West Coast.

HOLMES: Well, good morning to you all.

Now, let's start with President Obama.

Margaret Hamburg is her name, and she is pick to head up the Food and Drug Administration, a $2 billion agency that has been embroiled in all kinds of scandal. And people questioning, can it do the job to keep us safe? Hamburg has held a number of public health positions in the past. The president says she is the person to tighten up control of that agency, and to reassure Americans that the food that they're eating is safe.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK H. OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: In recent years, we have seen a number of problems with the food making its way to our kitchen tables. In 2006, it was contaminated spinach. In 2008, it was salmonella in peppers, and possibly tomatoes. And just this year, bad peanut products led to hundreds of illnesses and cost nine people their lives. A painful reminder of how tragic the consequences can be when food producers act irresponsibly and government is unable to do its job.

Worse, these incidents reflect a troubling trend that has seen the average number of outbreaks from contaminated produce and other foods grow to 350 a year, up from 100 a year in the early 1990s. That's a hazard to public health, it's unacceptable, and it will change under the leadership of Dr. Margaret Hamburg, who I'm appointing today as commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HOLMES: Let's turn to Elaine Quijano at the White House.

Elaine, we hear him talking about the FDA there, but certainly the economy not too far from his mind, talking Wall Street saw an up week, I think the first one we have seen since President Obama took office. So what is the message going to be now? Are they going to latch on to some of this momentum?

ELAINE QUIJANO, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, certainly, they are looking to drive the momentum. And as part of that, we should tell you that the president's treasury secretary, Tim Geithner, is actually in the U.K.

He is meeting with finance ministers from the G-20. Now, that's a group of the world's biggest economies. And this really is meant to pave the way for next month's G-8 summit in London.

Now, one of the big questions for leaders is going to be, should there be some kind of global stimulus package put into place to try and get the world out of this global recession? How would that even work? Some weighty questions, but Treasury Secretary Geithner is there meeting again with the finance ministers. He's actually scheduled to be back in Washington tonight, and then President Obama has a meeting with members his economic team here at the White House tomorrow afternoon -- T.J.

HOLMES: All right.

And also kind of busy today, as well, and this weekend. But he has a meeting today in just a little while, I think next hour, with the president of Brazil. Now, a couple of things are going to be on their agenda. Certainly one of those items maybe you wouldn't think would be there, but certainly one that a lot of people are keeping their eyes on.

QUIJANO: Well, that's exactly right. You're talking about a custody battle.

First, we should tell you, of course, President Obama is meeting with President Lula da Silva of Brazil. That meeting is scheduled to take place in the next hour or so -- next hour. And they'll be talking about things like energy, the environment, also, of course, the economy, but also this custody battle that's really gotten a lot of attention.

David Goldman is an American father who is trying to get custody of his 8-year-old son, Sean Goldman. His Brazilian relatives, the boy's relatives, have been really fighting this. And President Obama is certainly aware of this issue.

But we're not sure if it's actually going to come up publicly today. Why is that? Well, because Secretary of State Hillary Clinton already raised this issue with the foreign minister of Brazil recently.

Also, we know that there's really not any daylight between the two governments, between Brazil and between the United States, on this issue. Right now, what we have is a situation where this case is stuck in the Brazilian courts. So we'll wait to see, T.J., whether or not President Obama says something publicly -- T.J.

HOLMES: All right. Elaine Quijano for us from the White House.

Elaine, we appreciate you this morning.

QUIJANO: Sure.

HOLMES: And the president, next week, at least, could get another cabinet position filled. It's one he has had kind of a tough time getting filled.

Confirmation hearings for commerce secretary nominee Gary Locke set for Wednesday now. Locke's a Democrat, former governor of Washington States.

Also, on Tuesday, the president hosts officials from Ireland at the White House, part of St. Patrick's Day events. Also, the president is going to head over to Nancy Pelosi's place for lunch up on Capitol Hill. That's part of a St. Patrick's Day luncheon. Then on Wednesday, the president will fly to southern California, a town hall meeting he's having there in Santa Ana.

ROESGEN: And wow, what a relief at last. As we just mentioned, the week ended with four straight days of gains on Wall Street. And the president was sounding optimistic on the economy today. But Republicans are still concerned about taxes and government spending.

Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley talks about those concerns in the GOP's weekly address today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. CHUCK GRASSLEY (R), IOWA: The president and his allies in Congress want to spend too much, tax too much, and borrow too much. Somebody has to pay. If not the middle class now, eventually the middle class gets hit.

Meanwhile, if taxes get too high, people drop out of the workforce and pay less taxes. So higher taxes don't bring in more money.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROESGEN: Senator Grassley says Americans don't believe more spending is the answer. He says they don't believe that because the country has a big deficit.

In California, the money troubles are far from over. A state official says the recession has created another $8 billion hole in that budget. And you know it's just a few weeks since there was that big fight to close the $42 billion budget that's supposed to get them through June of next year. A budget analyst there in California, Mack Taylor (ph), says the state's 10.1 percent unemployment and lower tax collections have created that new deficit projection.

HOLMES: We want to pass along word we are just getting here of a possible new tape from Osama bin Laden, possible audiotape from the al Qaeda leader. In it, he calls for Israel's recent actions -- he calls those actions, Israel, their actions in Gaza, a "holocaust." And the tape first aired on Al-Jazeera.

That network is not saying right now how they obtained the audiotape. Officials are looking at it, trying to check out its authenticity.

We are combing through this tape as well. Our international desk here, some of our producers there, going through this tape.

This would be, if it turns out to be him, the first audiotape message we have seen from bin Laden since January. We are following this breaking story this morning. As soon as we have more word on that tape, more of what's on it, also confirm that tape's authenticity, we will pass that information along to you.

ROESGEN: And now back to the economy, our issue #1, as always, 10.1 unemployment rate in California, we just mentioned. I was in Elkhart, Indiana, last week, where they have a 20 percent unemployment in Elkhart Count, and in the city.

HOLMES: Yes.

ROESGEN: So, you know, double-digit jobless numbers for a lot of people. And if you're out of work, you're not just a number.

HOLMES: Yes. We're talking about millions of folks out there. The numbers are so massive, but there are individuals behind those numbers.

So how do you make your resume stand out with so much competition? We're talking this morning with Jason Lovelace. He's been with us for the past several hours here.

We appreciate you.

He's the area vice president in Chicago with CareerBuilder.com.

We have been hooking you up, here live on the air, with people who need some help with their resume.

Now we have Jennell Floyd on with us.

Jennell Floyd, thank you for being here. You go right ahead. He has looked at your resume. You go right ahead and ask him here live what your question is about your resume.

JENNELL FLOYD, JOB SEEKER: Good morning. And thank you.

JASON LOVELACE, AREA V.P., CAREERBUILDER.COM: Good morning.

FLOYD: My question is, is that I think I have done a pretty good job of selling my skills, outlining my experience. And I need to know what's missing on my resume.

LOVELACE: OK. And that's a great question, Jennell.

First of all, I did review your resume, and congratulations on your upcoming degree. It looks like you're graduating in June of this year. So that's a big feat in itself.

But you know, I took a look at your resume, and the good news about your resume is that you do have a lot of important key words and information that should be at the top for recruiters to see. The unfortunate piece about your resume is you're not doing a great job of marketing yourself. And what I mean is, I'll just give a couple of cosmetic information.

First of all, at the top of your resume, you have your contact information, and it really takes up the first five to 10 percent of that first page. It's basically wasted space. You want to try to condense that and make it a little bit more appealing.

The other thing is there's really no attention grabber. Why you? Why would a company select you?

The other thing that you do is you highlight some of your awards and recognition, but you could probably do a better job of really showcasing those, letting companies know who you are, the accolades that you have had throughout your career, and really, again, highlighting those different points.

And then the final thing from a cosmetic standpoint is you're all paragraphs in your resume. And to a recruiter, time is money. And when they're sifting through resumes, you've got to grab their attention. You should put bullet points with the different things that you have accomplished, but don't expect them to read through paragraph after paragraph about each individual job.

I think a couple of those things will help you, and it should rise your resume to the top.

ROESGEN: OK. Some good advice from Jason Lovelace there in Chicago.

And Jennell, good luck to you.

FLOYD: Thank you.

ROESGEN: We hope you get the job that you want. Thanks for calling in.

HOLMES: All right.

And Jason, we're going to see you again here shortly. We'll hook you up with one more person this morning at least. So thank you.

We'll turn back to Bernie Madoff, been in jail a day and trying to get out. Yes, lawyers for the disgraced financier Bernie Madoff want his bond reinstated so he can return to his Manhattan penthouse.

Madoff was thrown behind bars this week after he admitted to running that huge Ponzi scam. You know, that $65 billion scam.

His sentencing is actually set for June. That's when he's going to have that hearing. But his lawyers want him free on bail until then.

They've disclosed his assets in an effort to get him out. And listen to this -- according to the court documents, Madoff and his wife have a net worth of $823 million. That includes some $17 million in cold, hard cash.

He's got four properties and a $7 million yacht. Well, Madoff is accustomed, as you would imagine with that kind of budget at his disposal -- he's used to eating some good stuff. That's changed a built. While his appeal is pending, we're going to just give you a sample menu of what he's eating for breakfast -- a banana, oatmeal, bread, margarine, milk, coffee. You know...

ROESGEN: That sounds like my breakfast today. That's OK. HOLMES: ... standard stuff.

ROESGEN: Not bad.

HOLMES: But the jail he's in right now released this menu, so we're just bringing it to you. For lunch: baked chicken, sweet potatoes, collard greens. That sounds kind of good.

ROESGEN: All right. Gets another menu there.

HOLMES: Bread, with margarine. Also, fruit. And dinner: spaghetti, meat sauce, spinach, bread, margarine, again.

So that's what he's got going on in jail right now. And maybe he doesn't like the food, because, like we said, he's trying to get out already.

ROESGEN: OK. Here's what I don't get. I mean, a lot of people said, no, don't get out on bond, this is ridiculous. You did the crime, pay the time.

HOLMES: Yes.

ROESGEN: But why didn't they send him to like a soup kitchen? This guy is in his late 70s, he's not going to last 150 years. Why not make him work with the poor? Work in soup kitchens, do other things, community service.

HOLMES: There's an idea, but of course a lot of people would love to see him just rot in jail.

ROESGEN: That's right.

HOLMES: And that's the exact quote -- we're going to bring you in here, Reynolds -- but the exact quote we have seen from some of those folks is they hope he rots in jail.

ROESGEN: Yes. But with $823 million, maybe he can just build his own prison wing. Maybe they'll let him do that.

HOLMES: Don't think they're going to let him do that.

(WEATHER REPORT)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ROESGEN: You know, in this country, little kids always want to grow up to be firefighters. They do a lot of training, they cover all kinds of emergencies these days. But in third world countries like Guatemala, we found out that they don't always have the proper training and the equipment.

HOLMES: So this week, our CNN Hero is a former emergency medical technician from the U.S. is working to change that.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) ANNOUNCER: This is CNN Heroes.

PAUL EMBLETON, COMMUNITY CRUSADER: In Guatemala, the firefighters are usually the first ones on the site of the emergency. They didn't have ambulances. They only had pickup trucks.

It was difficult for me to watch these patients being transported with no medical care. I witnessed several people die. It inspired me to do something.

I'm Paul Embleton, founder of the BRAVE Foundation. We provide equipment and training to the volunteer firefighters in Guatemala to help make their jobs easier.

I first came to Guatemala in 1996. I was working as a paramedic in the United States, and I rode with a firefighter. They asked me if I could provide training and assist in developing this free hospital care program. And I said, of course.

We took the U.S. EMT curriculum and we had it translated into Spanish. Now we have 14 training programs throughout the country of Guatemala.

DAVID ALVAREZ, FIRE CHIEF: Paul wants to make everything happen. These make a big difference for our people in Guatemala.

EMBLETON: I'm really proud of what the firemen have accomplished here. These firefighters are the true heroes.

ANNOUNCER: Tell us about your hero at CNN.com/heroes.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HOLMES: And you can learn more about Paul's work on our CNN Heroes Web site.

ROESGEN: Yes. A cool group that always makes you feel like you're not doing nearly enough in your own life.

HOLMES: Absolutely.

ROESGEN: Don't forget, all of our CNN Heroes are chosen from viewer nominations. You let us know who's out there. If you know someone who's doing something extraordinary, tell us about that person at CNN.com/heroes.

HOLMES: Well, if this economy doesn't turn around soon, the music may die for one musician in particular. He is actually having to sell his instruments one by one to make ends meet.

ROESGEN: He still has this one left. You'll hear his music and his story when we come back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ROESGEN: We have an economic survivor today whose first love is the violin, but the love of his life, completely, even more than the violin, is his family.

This is John Krix. He's joining us today.

A music teacher from Toledo, but you're there at our studio in Detroit.

John, things are so bad, that you're doing something you never thought you would do. You're actually selling your family's violins?

JOHN KRIX, MUSIC TEACHER: That's right, Susan. It's just been really traumatic.

A lot of people are selling things all over the world right now. This economic calamity is just awful. I have seen so many stories posted about people selling their heirlooms. It's been hard, and I sold my father's violins, I sold my own violins, but I'm in the business now of selling violins to try to keep things afloat.

ROESGEN: Well, you know, John, I thought a musician, especially a violinist, you would sell your left arm before you would actually sell a violin.

KRIX: Yes. You would be surprised what you would sell. And, you know, my father passed away about three years ago, and I know he would be deeply saddened by it, but I think he would understand.

ROESGEN: Well, you know, we know that music teaching, violins lessons, that's a luxury that maybe a lot of people are saying I can't afford it, I'll give up the violin lessons.

KRIX: Yes. Sure.

ROESGEN: But what is it about your particular situation? Can you not play the violin at weddings? Could you not go to the Sofitel in Toledo and play for weddings and things?

KRIX: Right. You know, I kind of chose a different route. And after I graduated, you know, I didn't pursue a music career.

I'm a teacher in Toledo, actually. I teach at a grade school, Trinity Lutheran School in Toledo. And I have a great church, a great family, very supportive. I feel very blessed. But like everybody else, I just needed to do something to help my kids out, to help the family out.

ROESGEN: Well, you know, we just heard you play a little. So you may not have been trained as a performer, but isn't there some way you can make ends meet by performing somewhere?

KRIX: Yes. Performing is actually -- you know, is one venue that you can take. I'm pretty busy with my own situation right now, so like I say, I actually trained in performance, I majored in music performance, but I took a different route.

The violins have really been such a party of my life, though, because I wouldn't even be here if it wasn't for it. My father, after World War II, spent three and a half years in a Siberian prison camp, and one of the reasons that he survived was because he was a violinist. He trained -- he actually taught lessons to the camp commander's daughter. And so I owe a lot to the instrument in my life.

ROESGEN: Yes. Well, John, what you have been doing then is you've been selling part of your family's soul on eBay, right?

KRIX: That's right. It's been -- I've sold several instruments that belonged to myself, some that belonged to my father. And the memories are still here. You know, it's difficult to part with those memories, but I always have them in the back of my mind. They're always there.

ROESGEN: John, we understand you only have one violin, right, the one that you've got in your hand? What are you going to...

KRIX: Actually, I'm reselling violins. This one is actually in on eBay right now. It ends -- in fact, it ends tonight. It's a wonderful sounding violin, very nice projecting violin.

I'm hoping that, you know, I can help other people out, because on eBay you can get great deals on musical instruments.

ROESGEN: So then, John, when that's gone, you'll have to do something else to make it.

KRIX: Yes. I continue to buy violins, I continue to sell them. I continue to set them up.

Usually what I will do is, I have contacts with some Chinese makers, and also I look for them at garage sales. Do the necessary setup on them, and then resell them. That way it can help somebody and I get some help too.

ROESGEN: OK. Before this one in your hands goes away, play something for us...

KRIX: Absolutely.

ROESGEN: ... reflecting your life.

KRIX: This is one of my dad's favorite pieces, and I'll just play a little bit of the beginning of it. It's Corelli, "La Folia."

(MUSIC)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ROESGEN: And keeping on top of our top stories right now, President Obama says he's going to overhaul the food safety system in this country, and he's starting by nominating Margaret Hamburg to be the new commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration. Hamburg is the former New York health commissioner.

HOLMES: Also, to your town now, Susan, Chicago. They're turning the river green. Don't know if it's there just yet, but part of the St. Patrick's Day festivities.

They do this every year, have a huge parade. It's scheduled for noon today.

Sorry you're going to miss it, Susan, but thank you for being here with us.

ROESGEN: Yes.

HOLMES: It will be a good day for a parade, I believe Reynolds said. It's going to be in the 50s and nice today.

ROESGEN: And maybe we'll get some of the marchers later, or something like that.

Anyway, you know we're talking about the economy so often, and one thing we have really found is that fewer people are eating out these days.

HOLMES: Yes.

ROESGEN: They're eating in as trying to find a way to stretch a dollar.

HOLMES: Yes. You know, high-end restaurants certainly taking a hit right now, but grocery stores getting a bit of a boost as customers, consumers cut costs and want to stay at home.

Our Candy Crowley now looking at some other economic winners and losers as Americans change up their lifestyles.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'd can help someone over here.

CANDY CROWLEY, CNN SR. POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): There are new faces at this Shoppers Food Warehouse in Virginia, and the regulars buy differently.

ELIZABETH "BETTY" RILEY, ALEXANDRIA RESIDENT: Before, I browsed, shopped and bought way too much of stuff that I didn't really need. So now I'm more specific. I make a list and I follow the list.

CROWLEY: It's the return of penny saved, penny earned, shoppers armed with lists and coupons and budgets.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One of our lockdowns for the month of March is iceberg lettuce.

CROWLEY: People are buying a lot more chicken, flocking to store brand merchandise, and picking up loads of frozen dinners.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I suppose that's because of the restaurants, you know, losing that business. And customers can come here at a cheaper price and buy those things. CROWLEY: It's not just five-star restaurants hurting. Domino's Pizza took a hit in the fourth quarter -- domestic sales off 3 percent.

As Americans cocoon against a harsh economy, Netflix delivering DVDs to your door, TV set or computer, is blowing off the roof. Ten million subscribers, including a net pickup of 600,000 since January.

TED SARANDOS, NETFLIX CHIEF CONTENT OFC.: Kind of defying gravity. And in this down economy, I think people are cherishing the value a little bit more than they had in the past. The net result is very fast growth.

CROWLEY: The sale of DVDs, by the way, was down 32 percent in the fourth quarter of '08.

DIANE KRESH, DIRECTOR, ARLINGTON COUNTY, VIRGINIA LIBRARY: It's free. Everything is free.

CROWLEY: For DVDs, books, children and adult programs, Internet access, computer training and job search resources, it's hard to beat free. These are boom times for public libraries.

KRESH: We're really about helping people manage their lives.

CROWLEY: In the past couple of months, Diane Kresh at the Arlington County Virginia Library has seen a 7 percent increase in foot traffic -- and traffic jams at the computers.

KRESH: When we open in the morning, people make a beeline. And these terminals are generally full.

CROWLEY: Borders books posted an 11.7 percent sales decline over the holiday period.

Postings on Craigslist also tell the tale of changing lifestyles. Nationwide, garage sale ads are up 100 percent. Ads for roommates, up 65 percent. For sale postings, up 75 percent. And a doubling of barter offers, like this musician wanting to swap a four-hour gig for dental care.

In this economy, you do what you've got to do.

Candy Crowley, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HOLMES: You do what you've got to do. Well, no question the economic crisis hit homeowners all over the country, hit them hard in particular areas. And some cities it got so bad, people literally nowhere to live. Setting up tents for shelter.

You may have seen this video. The story's been in the news a lot lately.

Sacramento has been trying to deal with this problem of homelessness and a particular tent city that is set up there. I talked with a former NBA star who is now the mayor of Sacramento, Kevin Johnson.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HOLMES: I will ask you to update the numbers. There's a lot of stuff out there about this tent city, how many are there, how many are still coming. So you tell us, how many are there now, and are people still being added to this tent city?

MAYOR KEVIN JOHNSON, SACRAMENTO: We have about 150 to 200 people that are living along the river in basically a de facto tent city. It's not sanctioned.

HOLMES: Yes.

JOHNSON: So there's campsites along the river. You unfortunately have people living in third world conditions, not acceptable, no running water, no sanitation. We, as a city, for far too long have ignored it and have decided to sweep it under the rug. It's come to light now, and we, as a city, are going to address it head on.

HOLMES: And you called it de facto there. I want to ask, are they there legally right now?

JOHNSON: You know, it's private property, so in theory, they're not there legally. But in the city of Sacramento, you cannot arrest somebody just for being homeless, if they don't have a place to go. So what we need to do is provide shelter and housing options for these people immediately, because we need to have tough love in Sacramento. We need to be compassionate on one hand, but we need to have a zero policy along the river, because it really is a public safety hazard and a health issue.

HOLMES: Now, who are the people that are there? I mean, it seems like in some of the reports are there, you know, in down economic times, people are just assuming that people are losing their homes and showing up here. But I want to ask you, who are the people that are there? One city official actually quoted as saying that these are chronically homeless folks who are in this place.

JOHNSON: The majority of people living there are chronically homeless. However, there's a new homeless population in our city, not so much all living in tent city. Because of unemployment, because of foreclosures, you're having people that once owned their homes who are now on the streets because there's not enough shelters.

We have seen an increase of fourfold in our community. In terms of general assistance, 30 percent increase; food stamp applications, 20 percent increase; 2.2 percent of the children in our greater Sacramento region are actually homeless as well. So we have a significant problem.

(END VIDEOTAPE) HOLMES: And Mayor Kevin Johnson there has been mayor about 100 days now. He did set up a taskforce, they just met yesterday trying to address the problem. They want to come up with solutions before they go out and there and present them to people. But still, an ongoing problem there in Sacramento.

We'll turn to the NAACP now, suing Wells Fargo, HSBC, and about a dozen other lenders over alleged mortgage discrimination. The NAACP says the lenders steered blacks into expensive subprime mortgages, while many whites with the same credit scores, the same qualifications, got better deals, they got better interest rates.

Here now, the president of the NAACP.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HOLMES: How widespread, do you think -- like you said, this is going to be up to a dozen now banks that you have this suit against. So, I guess, how widespread -- you only have 12 banks here, but do you think this is a system-wide problem?

BENJAMIN TODD JEALOUS, PRESIDENT, NAACP: This is certainly a very common problem. And you've got to remember that the banking industry has been very consolidated.

So when you're talking about going from 12 banks to 14 banks, that's actually -- and you're talking about big banks like Wells Fargo, that's a big chunk of the industry. And what we're seeing is, time and time again, black people with assets. You know, so they already owned their home, they had good credit, they had a job, they had the same qualifications as a white counterpart. And yet, when they walked out of the bank, they were being charged more.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HOLMES: Now, HSBC has responded. They issued this statement, but essentially saying they're not going to say much.

The said, "We do not comment on litigation. HSBC stands by its fair lending and consumer protection practices, and we are confident that we are treating our customers fairly and with integrity."

Wells Fargo responding as well, but in stronger terms, saying that the lawsuits are unfounded and reckless. Their statement says, "We have never tolerated and will never tolerate discrimination in any way, shape or form."

ROESGEN: OK.

Now we are talking about jobs again, getting jobs, people who need one. We've got this guy who sounds so qualified.

HOLMES: Impressive.

ROESGEN: Aeronautics and astronautical engineering degrees. The guy's name is Robert Paczula. And he wants a good job. HOLMES: Yes. But he doesn't have one right now.

We'll see if we can help him out here.

We are talking this morning with Mr. Lovelace. There he is. He's been with us this morning, the area vice president in Chicago with Career Builder.

And Robert is on the line as well.

Robert, you go right ahead and explain your situation a little bit, if you can, because you sound quite impressive. But please, ask your question directly to Mr. Lovelace here.

ROBERT PACZULA, JOB SEEKER: Well, thank you.

Hi, Jason. First, I want to say thank you. I really appreciate you taking the time to help.

LOVELACE: Good morning. My pleasure.

PACZULA: Well, I have been using a lot of things in my job hunt. I have been networking, using job boards, LinkedIn, Twitter. And I have several URLs that point to my Web site, like BobTheProjectManager.com or RobertTheProjectManager.com.

And I know that the resume is the primary marketing piece. So I was wondering, my work saves time, cuts costs and increases revenue. So how can I improve my resume to better reflect that?

LOVELACE: Well, I think that is a great point, and you do have a very impressive background. And I'm very interested to hear all those things that you did. That's pretty impressive.

PACZULA: Thank you.

LOVELACE: But the one thing that are lacking in your resume is highlighting those things that you just mentioned to me. You want to make sure that there is an introduction.

Your resume goes directly into the skills, which is good from a search technology standpoint. But really, once that recruiter has that resume, how do you separate yourself from the pack? And there is no introduction about who you are or what you do.

Now, put yourself in a recruiter's standpoint and think, who are you, and how are you going to impact that business? Those are things they want to hear, and those are things that's going to grab their attention.

The other thing I noticed about your resume is you have one position on the entire first page. So that could become a little lengthy. You should probably detail it.

Instead of putting all of the duties, let's discuss the accomplishments that you've had. Really, what was the impact of those businesses? And if you can quantify that, which I'm certain you can, you should definitely highlight that.

The other thing I thought was very impressive on your resume is it looks like you have a lot of leadership experience. However, you just list it within the general duties, instead of really pointing it out, showcasing it and saying I was a leader, here are some of the things that I did with team building and otherwise.

And then finally, I'm certain you probably have some great transferable skills, and there should be a separate area to talk about that, because if you're willing to be flexible with many employers, they want to know about that flexibility.

PACZULA: Beautiful. It sounds like great advice. Thank you.

ROESGEN: All right, Robert. Good luck to you.

LOVELACE: Great.

ROESGEN: And Jason Lovelace, some great advice for all of us. Thank you.

LOVELACE: Thank you.

HOLMES: And we will continue to do this -- Jason, we appreciate you -- continue to do this every Saturday morning.

Continue to send us your resumes. We have literally gotten thousands so far. We expected a response, didn't quite expect it to be this great. But just a sign of the times, really.

But weekends@cnn.com. Second those to us. We'll try to help you get some work out there, and we'll be hooking you up with a Career Builder expert just like Jason, putting people together live on the air. Specific to those folks, but also, a lot of people can get advice from what they're hearing.

ROESGEN: Sure. I mean, even if you have a job right now, you may not have it tomorrow. So once again, CNN.com -- weekends@cnn.com. Send us your resumes. And all of us will probably learn from the questions that you have.

HOLMES: Absolutely.

Now, some folks -- speaking of jobs...

ROESGEN: Yes, speaking of jobs, "L" is for "layoff." That's the latest word on "Sesame Street." Don't know if you heard it this week, but actually 67 layoffs. Twenty percent of the show team, the people that put on "Sesame Street," have lost their jobs.

HOLMES: Yes, times are tough over there on "Sesame Street" as well. This show has been around since 1969, I believe. And a lot of people -- you know, it calls for all kinds of parodies and whatnot. Certainly not a laughing situation, but a lot of people have put out -- one that has gotten some attention is that someone put up on the Internet -- actually had Kermit the Frog doing a press conference. And you know, it wasn't really making a joke.

ROESGEN: No.

HOLMES: It was being a serious press conference.

(CROSSTALK)

ROESGEN: It tells kids what's going on.

HOLMES: Exactly.

ROESGEN: You know, you've got to learn some time. If mom or dad is losing a job, everybody's losing a job.

And a couple other parodies about this. They've got Cookie Monster, who becomes a diabetic and he's forced to cut off his foot because he can't afford health care. I mean, it gets a little more adult than innocent. But again, it's a lesson for them, and things like the unemployment numbers hit everywhere.

HOLMES: A sign of the times. All right.

ROESGEN: Well, a new report from Johns Hopkins University finds that the graduation rate in this country was flat between 2002 and 2006. But it also shows improving numbers in a dozen states.

Tennessee had the biggest gain. The graduation rate went from 61 percent to 72 percent. Some other states with big improvements and graduation rates include Delaware, Kentucky, South Dakota, Arkansas, Alabama, North Carolina, New York, Nebraska and New Hampshire.

HOLMES: And that is great news we can bring you -- graduation rates going up. That is wonderful, wonderful to hear. We need to highlight more of those positive stories here as much as we can.

ROESGEN: And then try to get a job.

HOLMES: And then there's that.

All right. Well, former NBA All-Star -- Sir Charles is the name. Charles Barkley is adamant. He says he will never drink and drive again.

ROESGEN: He has just finished a short jail sentence for a New Year's DUI, and he sat down and talked to you about it.

HOLMES: Oh yes. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARKLEY: But the truth of the matter is, I don't think I have a drinking problem. But it's something that I need to give serious consideration to, and that's where these classes really have helped me. Because just because you don't drink by yourself, just because you don't drink in the morning, just because you don't drink every day, that doesn't mean you don't have a drinking problem. (END VIDEO CLIP)

HOLMES: Charles Barkley, very candid, as always. We're talking about his situation. This is his first TV interview since being released from jail.

You can hear what he has to say about the economy, about President Obama, about his situation and why this really changed his life. It might be one of the best things that ever happened to him.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HOLMES: A lot of people would love to take a vacation right now. Worried how far your dollar might go? Well, don't worry.

ROESGEN: Yes, don't worry about it, because Melissa Long found out how you can take a five-star trip on a three-star budget.

Here's "On the Go."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MELISSA LONG, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A luxury vacation doesn't have to come with a hefty price tag.

SARAH KANTROWITZ, "TRAVEL & LEISURE": Follow the strong dollar and keep track of exchange rates. Many destinations such as South Africa, Mexico, Brazil are really great deals right now. Even Europe is more affordable now that the euro has fallen against the dollar.

LONG: Fly first class to your destination at a fraction of the cost.

KANTROWITZ: Get a discounted seat on an airline by booking a Y- Up fare. If you're looking for a Y-Up fare on an international fare, these can always be called Q-Up or Z-Up fares. Until recently, these fares were very difficult to find, but now they can be found on FareCompare.com.

LONG: And you don't have to break the bank for lodging if you plan ahead.

KANTROWITZ: A great tip is to prepay for your hotel stay or your villa rental. This means that you're locked in an exchange rate and there are no surprises at checkout. Go to LuxuryLink.Com for luxury travel auctions at hotels around the globe.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HOLMES: Charles Barkley. Need I say more?

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HOLMES: Go through everything that happened the night of the arrest. What I want you to do now...

BARKLEY: Well, let me just say this about...

HOLMES: Well, you want to say something. All right. Go ahead.

BARKLEY: Yes, I want to say this. The arrest was 100 percent my fault. It's unacceptable for me to get a DUI, and I can't ever do that again. That's the bottom line on that.

HOLMES: You actually said to me that that might have been one of the best things that ever happened to you, was to get a DUI.

BARKLEY: It was.

HOLMES: Why?

BARKLEY: Well, OK, you think about this, I have been in the NBA since 1984. And everybody wants to make a big deal out of me going to jail and everything. That was the best thing that ever happened to me, because I got lucky, I just got a weekend in jail.

I could be a hypocrite and tell people not to drink and drive. But most people when they go out, they drink and drive. But I want them to really think hard about it.

Now, clearly, it attracts a lot of attention if it's me. But I really do think I'm lucky. I mean, I could have killed somebody or myself.

HOLMES: You will never do it again?

BARKLEY: Never do it again. Never. I'm going to get a taxi or a car. Never going to do that again.

And think about it. You know, everybody said, oh, Charles Barkley is going to jail. I'm like, first of all, when you go to jail, that's serious stuff. But, you know, when you're in jail, you sit there and you're like, wow, this is the penance I've got to pay.

HOLMES: You are finishing up, I know you have got to go to a few classes as far as -- I mean, you've done the jail sentence, and you've got to go through a few classes.

BARKLEY: The classes have been great.

HOLMES: The classes have been great. And you had to go through these. Would you say at any point, have you had, do you have now a drinking problem?

BARKLEY: You know, T.J., that's a great question. I'm trying to figure out the answer. Because you ask yourself -- I drink a lot, I probably drink too much. But then you're like, well, I don't drink every day. That's why the classes have been helpful for me.

HOLMES: When you got pulled over that night, a bunch of things could have gone through your mind -- your daughter, your family, TNT, T-Mobile, your future career, all kinds of things. What was actually the first thing? When you knew it was getting real and you were in trouble...

BARKLEY: Yes?

HOLMES: ... what was the first thing, would you say, that went through your mind, honestly?

BARKLEY: This is going to embarrass a lot of people, because I understand now we live in -- if you're famous now, you do anything wrong, it's going to explode. I mean, it's going to. That's just the thing we live in now.

I just felt bad for my family and friends. I never feel bad for myself, to be honest with you.

HOLMES: What was the conversation like with your daughter?

BARKLEY: She understands that anything dad does is going to be local, national. And I said, hey -- she said, "Dad, you made a mistake. You really screwed up." And I said, "You're right."

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HOLMES: We have been airing much of that interview with Charles Barkley, his first since he got out of jail, his first TV interview. Been airing it all morning, going to air some more of it next hour. But if you would like to see the entire interview, it's on our front page of CNN.com. It's one of our stop stories.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ROESGEN: And this just in.

HOLMES: Yes, what you got there?

ROESGEN: Some new numbers, new polls on twittering. Yes, twittering. The top 10 cities for twittering -- what are the top three? Can you give me the top three?

HOLMES: You're not feeling this Twitter thing, are you?

ROESGEN: No, I'm not feeling this Twitter things.

HOLMES: You're not.

All right. Let's go ahead. Let's start with number three...

ROESGEN: You have London...

HOLMES: ... Chicago, your town.

ROESGEN: Yes, Chicago's number three. You know why? Because in this new result, it says that the guy in Chicago who twitters the most, like 12,000 people...

HOLMES: Oh, yes.

ROESGEN: ... he writes about things like what the back of the cab smelled like when he took -- this is why it's insane.

HOLMES: Those are little things.

ROESGEN: OK.

HOLMES: But you're just getting tidbits of information, you're giving people updates about you.

ROESGEN: Yes, well -- OK, Rick Sanchez.

HOLMES: Hey, Rick has a heck of a following with that twittering. Don't insult his viewers.

ROESGEN: Oh, OK. I'm not. Hey, no. I'm just -- anyway.

HOLMES: All right. But San Francisco, it's up in the top five as well. Seattle, Toronto, Atlanta, where we are, and Boston and Austin, Texas, round out the top 10.

ROESGEN: Yes.

HOLMES: We are going to get you on the Twitter thing, Susan...

ROESGEN: We'll see. We'll see.

HOLMES: ... maybe next hour of the CNN NEWSROOM, which starts right now.