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U.S. Soldier Capture: Taliban Claims Responsibility; DEA Joins Jackson Investigation; Investigating Governor Sanford; Michael Jackson's Insomnia; Crash Survivor Arrives in Paris; North Korea Fires Two Short-Range Missiles
Aired July 2, 2009 - 08:01 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JOHN ROBERTS, CNN ANCHOR: That brings us now to about almost two minutes after the hour. It's Thursday. It's the 2nd of July.
Good morning to you. Thanks for being with us. I'm John Roberts.
KIRAN CHETRY, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm Kiran Chetry. Here's a look at the stories we're following for you this morning. A U.S. soldier captured by militants in Afghanistan. The Taliban is now claiming responsibility. And the U.S. military says that the forces, U.S. forces are exhausting all resources to find this soldier who has been missing since Tuesday.
ROBERTS: The only survivor of this week's plane crash in the Indian Ocean has arrived in Paris this morning. The teenage girl who could barely swim held on to a piece of debris for 13 hours. 153 people were on that plane.
We're going to go live to our David McKenzie for the latest on this incredible story.
CHETRY: And new details in the Michael Jackson investigation. The nation's top drug cops now on the case. DEA investigators will try to figure out if the doctors were registered to prescribe drugs to Jackson. They're also looking to see where there was -- or whether or not there was drug trafficking going on.
ROBERTS: And more calls for South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford to resign after he revealed that he had crossed the line with women other than his mistress in Argentina.
We'll talk with the state's attorney general who has called for an investigation into the governor's finances.
CHETRY: Following breaking news this morning, a U.S. soldier captured by insurgents in Afghanistan. The Taliban is claiming responsibility for that abduction.
Our Barbara Starr is working her sources at the Pentagon this morning.
What have you learned this morning, Barbara, about what the U.S. military is trying to do to get this soldier back? BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know, Kiran, when these circumstances occur, the military is very tight- lipped. All they are publicly saying is that they are exhausting all resources to try and get this soldier back. We can tell you operations are underway in eastern Afghanistan, where this man was taken. They are doing everything they can to find him.
The family of this soldier has been notified, but the name of the soldier has not yet been made public. We do not know his name. We do not know what unit he belonged to. The working theory at this point, military sources tell us is that this was not a combat situation.
Somehow mysteriously, unexplained, this soldier was outside the fence line, outside the wire of his base on his own, it is believed at this point. That's the working theory that they have right now. A lot of concern, obviously. Eastern Afghanistan very close to the Pakistan border, and they want to do everything they can to find him before there could be any possibility, obviously, of him being taken across the border into Pakistan.
I can also tell you the military believes there may be a video out there somewhere that the militants have made showing this American soldier and they want to avoid having that play on TV before they get him back.
CHETRY: All right. A race against time really for them right now.
Meantime, the Taliban is under attack from U.S. Marines. And you just had a chance to speak with him.
What are they saying about the operations?
STARR: Right. Now, the missing soldier is in eastern Afghanistan down in southern Afghanistan in the home and province, which is a Taliban stronghold, a big puppy-growing area.
There are hundreds and hundreds of U.S. Marines, British forces, and Afghan forces at this hour in major combat. What we have learned is that in the last several hours, and we see some of the emerging pictures just now, about 1,000 U.S. Marines conducted ground and air insert assault operations into several towns and villages across the Helmand River valley.
They are moving into these areas, their goal, their strategy is to push the Taliban out. But what we are told by the Marines we've just spoken to is not surprisingly, the Marines are encountering very light resistance at this hour. Sporadic small arms fire, the belief is that the Taliban are doing what they always do, they are running away when they encounter U.S. forces, hiding out, trying to wait it all out, but the Marines say they are there to stay and they won't let the Taliban come back. We'll see how all of this sorts out in the coming hours and days.
CHETRY: All right. Barbara Starr for us.
Thanks this morning.
ROBERTS: We're following more breaking news now. North Korea test fired what appeared to be two short-range missiles off of its east coast overnight. That's according to South Korea's news agency. The U.S. military says the launch was expected. The North Korean government had issued a warning for boats in the area to avoid being there.
And reports out of Japan say Pyongyang also threatening to launch a new longer-range missile that could reach Hawaii. That launched could happen sometime this weekend.
New developments this morning into Michael Jackson's death, and the nation's top drug cops are now joining the investigation. CNN confirming late last night that the Drug Enforcement Administration is now working alongside Los Angeles police.
CNN's Kara Finnstrom is live outside of Jackson's Neverland Ranch.
Give us details, Kara. What role is the DEA playing here?
KARA FINNSTROM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, John, bringing in the DEA means some more resources for this investigation. Sources tell us that DEA agents will be looking at several doctors that have been linked to Jackson, their practices and their supplies of medicine.
Since day one, this has been a big issue. Folks wondering whether prescription drug use or other medication use could have played a role in Jackson's death. It's already played into the LAPD's investigation. They impounded the car of one of his physicians, saying that they were looking for possible prescription drugs in that car. And a number of Jackson's associates and friends have also raised the issue, John, of whether prescription drugs may have played a role.
ROBERTS: Kara Finnstrom for us with the latest from outside of the Neverland Ranch.
Kara, thanks so much.
CHETRY: So where and when will Michael Jackson be remembered? Here's what we know now.
Jackson's family says that a viewing at the Neverland Ranch will not happen. There's no official memorial announcement made yet, but some places being considered include the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. That can hold nearly 100,000 people. The Staples Center where the Los Angeles Lakers play their home games also said to be a possibility. That one only holds, though, around 20,000 people. There will not be a memorial at Neverland, but fans and the media continue to head there. Hotel rooms in the surrounding area are full. Well, speaking of members of the media heading there, Larry King has been granted special access inside of Neverland Ranch. He'll be broadcasting there live tonight, 9:00 p.m. Eastern.
And also, you don't want to miss a special CNN presents, "MICHAEL JACKSON: MAN IN THE MIRROR."
Don Lemon will be taking an in-depth look at the singer's life and legacy. That's going to be airing Saturday and Sunday night at 8:00 p.m.
ROBERTS: Remember when -- remember when Patterson took over as governor of New York, and we thought there was a case of TMI going on with disclosures about his personal life.
CHETRY: Yes. We sure remember that one.
ROBERTS: Nothing compared to South Carolina governor Mark Sanford.
Is it too much, though? Well, we'll find out. We're going to be talking with the attorney general of South Carolina who has actually launched an investigation into what Sanford was up to, and whether any public funds were involved.
CHETRY: All right. Well, stay tuned for that one. It's 8-1/2 minutes now past the hour.
ROBERTS: Eleven minutes after the hour now. South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford's political life is on the line. Many members of his own party turning on him after he admitted to crossing lines with other women besides his mistress in Argentina.
Henry McMaster is the Republican attorney general in South Carolina. He has asked for an investigation into the governor's travel records. He's also planning to run for governor himself next year.
Mr. Attorney General, thanks for being with us this morning.
What is this investigation specifically looking at?
HENRY MCMASTER, ATTORNEY GENERAL, SOUTH CAROLINA: Well, I've asked the state law enforcement division when the governor brought up questions about his trips to New York and possibly other places, I asked him to go through and investigate all the travel records and determine if any public money was spent on private purposes. And they've been doing that and we are expecting a report, it could be today, it could be next week. We don't know.
ROBERTS: Do you have any reasonable suspicion that public money actually was used in any of these liaisons?
MCMASTER: Well, that's why we called for the investigation. Of course, this thing has been swirling around here for some time now. And questions have been raised all over the place. So we thought the best thing to do, given the information that had come forward and unanswered questions, I asked the state law enforcement division to look into it. This is the kind of thing they do all the time. They are the state investigators.
ROBERTS: Is it because some people are raising questions about whether there is any evidence here, or whether there are just questions. And one of those is the head of the South Carolina state law enforcement division Reggie Lloyd who said, quote, "I can only assume that the new standard with political figures is that without necessarily any facts, somebody just says go investigate, and make sure that no wrong doing occurred. And if that's the standard, we'll certainly carry it out with the governor or anyone else."
He doesn't sound on the surface to be too happy about the investigation.
MCMASTER: Well, these are very unusual circumstances. And, of course, questions have been raised, facts have been presented. And I think they did raise legitimate questions to be answered.
ROBERTS: You know, one of those potentially could have been the fact that Governor Sanford did reimburse the state, two checks for $3,300 for that trip that he made to Buenos Aires last year.
Does that give you an idea, Mr. Attorney General, that in fact state money may have been used.
MCMASTER: Well, that shows that he, I suppose, I've not talk to him about that. He was attempting just to resolve any question about it. But that doesn't answer all the questions. These are questions that need to be answered simply by looking at the records, and we are expecting a full report from the state law enforcement division. I hope it answers all of the questions.
ROBERTS: So the fact that he has come out not only with the disclosure of this woman in Buenos Aires, but other liaisons that he said were inappropriate, though they did not rise to the same level of his relationship with the women in Argentina.
Has that given you cause to think that maybe there are other areas where this investigation needs to go, as well?
MCMASTER: Well, we just don't know. The question we're focusing on is spending state money, taxpayer money on private purposes. You're not supposed to do that. There are a bunch of statutes.
Some common, the common law says so as well as a variety of criminal statutes and some ethical statutes. And all we're trying to do is to get to the bottom of it. Get to pay for work. Compare to -- see when trips were taken and were not taken and see if public money were spent on private purposes. If so, then we'll just let the chips fall where they may, but we have to have answers to these questions.
ROBERTS: And speaking of chips falling where they may, there is a growing chorus of his Republican colleagues there in South Carolina for him to resign. You're a Republican yourself. You've stated that you're going to run for governor in 2010. We haven't heard from you.
Where do you come down on that? Should he resign? Is he becoming a drag on the party?
MCMASTER: Well, I don't know. I'm in a different category from everybody else. And that is, as the chief state prosecutor, and we're involved in inquiring right then review the records, under the rules, it would be inappropriate for me to comment on those kinds of things because we do have this inquiry going on with the state law enforcement division.
ROBERTS: Right. At the same time, though, you are an elected official, you are a Republican, you're a member of the party, and you are going to run for governor, which is why I asked.
MCMASTER: Yes, but -- at this moment, I am the attorney general and we will be for, for at least some time. And it is important that investigations and questions like this be raised without letting politics getting involved in it. So I'm going to do it by the book. I know the right to law is doing it by the book. We'll get the answers to the questions, and then make whatever decision is appropriate at the time. I'm trying to stay out of the political area with this.
ROBERTS: All right.
Well, this is a question not about the investigation, but about Governor Sanford's political future.
Do you think that everything that he's talked about in the last couple of years has torpedoed his chances for higher office in 2012?
MCMASTER: With all due respect, we have this inquiry going on, and I really don't want to get into political questions because this is, it's important that matters like this involving potential prosecution of anyone be carried out without reference to politics. And I shouldn't under the rules that are incumbent on me as a prosecutor, I shouldn't be talking about anything other than what I've already said about the investigation.
ROBERTS: Fair enough. Attorney General Henry McMaster, thanks for being with us this morning.
It's good to see you, sir. Appreciate your time.
MCMASTER: Thank you.
ROBERTS: All right.
MCMASTER: Thank you, sir.
CHETRY: All right. When we come back, we're going to have more on Michael Jackson's will.
We're also going to be talking about the insomnia issue. Michael Jackson telling people around him reportedly that he could not sleep and was really trying to seek eight hours of sleep.
We're going to talk more about what insomnia is, and why it's so difficult to treat with our Sanjay Gupta as well.
It's sixteen minutes past the hour.
CHETRY: Welcome back to the Most News in the Morning.
Michael Jackson's will is continuing to create a lot of buzz, especially in the section about who he wanted to care for his children.
In a 2002 document that was filed in court yesterday, Jackson named his mother, Katherine, as his choice for guardian and his second choice long-time friend and famed entertainer Diana Ross. Also in the will, Jackson quote intentionally omits Debbie Rowe, his ex-wife and mother of his two oldest children, and he also makes no mention of his father, Joe.
Well, until the autopsy results are complete, we won't know what drugs, if any, Michael Jackson had in his system when he died. But a powerful fast-acting sedative used in operating rooms has now become the focus in the investigation.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta explains what makes this drug so dangerous.
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Insomnia, Michael Jackson allegedly complained about it all the time.
CHERILYN LEE, REGISTERED NURSE: Because he was so adamant about, "I will pay any amount of money for someone to help me to sleep."
GUPTA: And, with that, he joined the nearly one in three Americans who complain of insomnia sometimes, pretty common, but the way he may have treated his sleeplessness, stunning.
(on camera): Have you ever heard of such a thing?
DR. ZEEV KAIN, DEPARTMENT OF ANESTHESIOLOGY CHAIRMAN, UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, IRVINE: I have heard about abuse of Propofol within the health care settings. I have never heard about Propofol being used, or Diprivan being used, to -- as a sleep aid medication.
GUPTA: If you had to sort of put this together, how could something like this happen?
KAIN: A very interesting question. One of the possibilities is a mix up within the public about what is sleep and what is general anesthesia. So, when you go to the operating room for surgery, you undergo general anesthesia, which is a -- obviously, a physician-induced coma. When you sleep at night in your bed, that is going to sleep.
GUPTA (voice-over): And to understand how it's different, you need to look inside the brain. With an over-the-counter sleep med, the medication typically floods histamine receptors. With a prescription sleeping pill, Ambien, Restoril, Lunesta, they work by hitting even more areas of the brain, the hypothalamus, the brain stem, the cortex.
(on camera): So what is Propofol exactly?
KAIN: Propofol is a -- is a central nervous system depressant. It works on your brain. It basically puts the entire brain to sleep. It depends on the dose that you use, now. If you use a touch of Propofol, then you can actually get a high from it. The more Propofol you use, the more you get into general anesthesia.
GUPTA: Take a look at it. This is what it looks like. It almost looks like kind of milk. In fact, in hospitals, they refer it to as milk of amnesia.
(voice-over): Think of it as a turbocharged sleeping agent. It works by essentially putting the whole brain to rest. It is a medically-induced coma.
(on camera): How dangerous is this?
KAIN: As dangerous as it comes. You will die if you will give yourself or if will somebody gives you Propofol, and you are not in the proper medical hands.
GUPTA: Can you write me a prescription for some Propofol, and I can go get some?
KAIN: I don't think so.
GUPTA: Not possible?
KAIN: Not possible. Propofol is injected intravenously. It is not taken orally. So, I don't think that the pharmacy will give you intravenous Propofol. You have to go to a hospital.
GUPTA: So, I really wanted to find out for myself, how easy is to get this particular medication? So, we came to this pharmacy in North Hollywood to find out.
If I came in with a prescription for Propofol, is that -- I mean, could I get a prescription for Propofol filled here?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. GUPTA: Absolutely not?
(voice-over): Absolutely not, because this drug is not a sleeping medicine. It is a powerful sedative that should never be used outside of a medical setting. And, if used improperly, it can kill.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN, Los Angeles.
ROBERTS: But, of course, there's no evidence that there was Diprivan or Propofol that was at his house. But we do know that some medications have been taken away at this point. Nobody saying anything about what it was.
CHETRY: Right. And so those results still could take weeks. As we said that it took for the toxicology to come back and for them to issue a final report on what exactly contributed to his death.
But as we said, the DEA also looking into the situation now and investigating whether or not there was any --
ROBERTS: Yes. And Sanjay was telling us yesterday that Propofol is not the typical sort of thing that they look for in a toxicology test, but maybe as a result of the publicity over all of this. They might start to look for that.
Don't know any of that, though, at this point.
It's coming up on 23 minutes after the hour.
An incredible story just north of the Comoros Islands, that aircraft that went down the Yemenia flight. Only one survivor.
Our David McKenzie is in Kenya this morning. He's got the story of that young woman now back in France this morning. Stay with us.
ROBERTS: Welcome back to the Most News in the Morning.
No one thinks that she should be here today to tell her story. We're finding out more about how a teenager was able to survive a plane crash in the Indian Ocean that killed more than 150 other people.
She arrived back home in Paris just hours ago. It was dark, she couldn't see a thing, and clung to the wreckage of the aircraft for 13 hours.
Our David McKenzie is standing by live in Nairobi.
He's got the very latest on this young woman.
It's just incredible to think about it. 153 people on board that aircraft, and only one of them survives -- this lucky young woman, David?
DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right, John, certainly extraordinary.
Just imagine it, 153 people, as you mentioned, both crew and passengers traveling towards the remote Comoros Island off east Africa, and they plunged into the ocean in the dead of night, and only one survivor managed to get out of that deadly crash. Her name is Bahia Bakari. She is now as we say back in Paris in a bittersweet reunion with her father. But her story of survival has already been called a miracle.
MCKENZIE (voice-over): This is where a 13-year-old girl described as timid and barely able to swim found herself. Tossed into the Indian Ocean in the dead of night from a plane that plunged into rough seas. Bahia Bakari clung to whatever she could find. After hours in the dark, a rescue team plucked her from the sea. Only survivor of this deadly crash.
On the phone to her grateful father in France, he described her ordeal.
KASSIM BAKARI, FATHER OF SURVIVOR (through translator): She told me, papa, we saw the plane going down in the water. I was in the water. I could hear people talking, but I couldn't see anyone. I was in the dark. I couldn't see a thing. On top of that, daddy, I can't swim well, and I held on to something, but I don't really know what.
MCKENZIE: A father's joy for his daughter was tempered by grief for his wife. She was on the plane, as well. At a hospital in Moroni, French and Comorian officials marveled at her bravery.
ALAIN JOYANDET, FRENCH MINISTER FOR INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION (through translator): I've seen the child. It's truly a miracle. She has shown an incredible amount of courage.
MCKENZIE: Relatives of the missing passengers are grief stricken and angry. They slammed the state of Yemenia Airways and said that an accident was inevitable.
French authorities say that they red flagged the aircraft in 2007 citing problems with maintenance of the plane. But Yemenia Airways claims that there was nothing wrong with the plane and blamed the crash on high winds.
MCKENZIE: Well, John, you know, there's a lot of mud slinging now between the French officials and Yemenia Airways officials. They're saying that there was nothing wrong with that plane. But it will take time to figure out those data recorders, the black boxes are somewhere deep in the Indian Ocean. But what everyone is marveling at right now is this young girl, this teenager who is now recovering in the hospital in Paris. ROBERTS: David, do you know anything about -- more about reports we had yesterday that those flight data recorders had in fact been discovered or at least located if not brought up?
MCKENZIE: Well, that's right, John.
Earlier yesterday, French officials on the island of the Comoros had said they located the signal of the black boxes. In fact, later on in the day, the French government retracted that statement saying they'd in fact found this signal of the emergency beacons of the aircraft and not of the black boxes themselves.
I've been to the Comoros. It's a small island, this particular island that is a volcanic island, that is a steep drop off into the Indian Ocean. They estimate that this plane, the wreckage of it is in around 500 meters of water. And it would be very difficult, in fact, to find those boxes. So it's unclear yet what caused this crash and we won't know I think any time soon.
ROBERTS: All right.
And, of course, we all remember that Ethiopian plane that went off just right off the beaches of Comoros Islands, as well.
David McKenzie for us in Kenya this morning. David, thanks so much for that.
CHETRY: Twenty-nine minutes past the hour now. We check our top stories.
In North Korea, test fired what appeared to be two short-range missiles off of the East Coast overnight. Off of its East Coast overnight. It's according to South Korea's news agency. The U.S. military says that the launch was expected. The North Korean government issued warnings for boats to avoid that area.
ROBERTS: A U.S. soldier has been captured by militants in Afghanistan and the Taliban has claimed responsibility. The military says U.S. forces are exhausting all resources to find the soldier who has been missing since Tuesday. Three Afghan soldiers were also captured in that incident.
CHETRY: And an openly gay Iraq veteran is not giving up without a fight. The National Guard Panel saying that Lieutenant Daniel Choi should be discharged for admitting he's gay because he violated "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." Nothing is final yet.
And earlier here in AMERICAN MORNING, Choi said that he will keep fighting that decision and the policy.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LT. DANIEL CHOI, NATIONAL GUARD PANEL: I plan on appealing to everybody, including the secretary of the Army, the secretary of Defense, the Supreme Court. And my message to all of my soldiers, even if you get set back, even if you get slapped in the face, or if you get knocked on the ground, it is not your job to give up. You do not have that right. You do not have the privilege of just quitting.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHETRY: Lieutenant Choi, a West Point grad and an Arab language linguist, specialist, served in Iraq for 15 months back in 2006 and 2007.
Well now a report that you're only going to see on CNN. We have new evidence this morning that the Federal Aviation Administration, the agency that's supposed to keep you safe while you fly has ignored more than two dozen safety concerns and those problems all being raised by whistle blowers inside of the FAA.
Allan Chernoff joins us live with the exclusive report this morning. So these whistle blowers when they said hey, these are concerns we have, that was not well received according to your reporting.
ALLAN CHERNOFF, CNN CORRESPONDENT: No. They've been retaliated against, major problem because we're talking about the public safety here. And we are discussing issues such as aircraft maintenance, runway, and air traffic safety concerns. Some FAA inspectors like Christopher Monteleon, who we told you about a few weeks ago say they've gotten nowhere on flagging safety violations.
Now the Office of Special Council tells us, many of the inspectors are pointing to legitimate problems.
CHERNOFF (voice-over): FAA inspector Christopher Monteleon warned of safety problems at Colgan Air for several years before a Colgan plane crashed near Buffalo in February killing 50 people.
CHRISTOPHER MONTELEON, SUSPENDED FAA SAFETY INSPECTOR: My supervisor called me into his office and said stop your investigation. He said that this violation, these violations never occurred.
CHERNOFF: But Monteleon continued raising safety concerns about the airline. Eventually he was demoted, then put on leave of absence.
MONTELEON: I've had my aviation safety inspector credentials taken from me, it's just been humiliating.
CHERNOFF: Monteleon filed a complaint with the Federal office of Special Counsel which investigates allegations of reprisal against whistle blowers. CNN learned that the OSC has found merit in Monteleon's case against the FAA and he's not alone. The Office of Special Council tells CNN it has made a positive determination that the FAA improperly responded to 27 current cases of FAA employee whistle blowers warning of safety violations.
TOM DEVINE, GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABILITY PROJECT: That means that FAA is a very sick agency. There's never been an agency that's had that large of a surge of whistle blowers whose concerns were vindicated.
CHERNOFF: The Department of Transportation told CNN, "we acknowledge it's a large number of cases, we take all of them seriously." But the Office of Special Council finds the FAA repeatedly retaliates against employees who flag safety problems. Often deferring to the airlines they regulate. The former inspector general of the Transportation Department in the 1990s now an attorney for families of accident victims says the problems she saw seem to have gotten worse.
MARY SCHIAVO, FMR. DEPT. F TRANSPORTATION INSPECTOR: That's shocking and it's really unconscionable for government agency that's supposed to be about safety not about witch hunts for those who find safety lacking.
CHERNOFF: What's going on at the FAA? Critics say it's the culture. Former FAA administrator Marion Blakey in 2003 established a customer service initiative, that defined airlines as customers, not the flying public. The current transportation department inspector general found "FAA's definition of its customer has had a pervasively negative impact on its oversight program."
While there's no evidence of illegal dealing, the FAA has had an active revolving door. Agency managers regularly going on to work in the aviation industry while industry executives take top spots at FAA. Former FAA administrator Blakey is now president and CEO of the Aerospace Industry Association. Former chief operating officer Russell Chu moved on to become president of Jetblue Airways, FAA's chief operating officer of air traffic, Hank Wikowsky is a former United Airlines vice president. Linda Daschle, wife of the former Senate democratic leader was FAA's acting administrator and then became that lobbyist representing the airline industry.
SCHIAVO: There is a very cozy relationship between the lobbyist for the industry and the department of transportation and the FAA.
CHERNOFF: In spite of past problems, the new transportation secretary and FAA chief say the agency will change. Whistle blowers will now get an open ear.
RAY LAHOOD, TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY: We will pay attention to any kind of complaint or accusation or any kind of concern expressed by an employee of the FAA. It's a new day at the FAA and it's a new day at D.O.T.
CHERNOFF: The Office of Special Council has referred all 27 cases to the transportation secretary who is investigating and must tell the special council exactly what steps will be taken to fix the safety problems.
CHETRY: So there is a step forward. And also what about Congress, they technically oversee the FAA, are they taking any action?
CHERNOFF: Congress actually has to reauthorize the FAA, the House has a bill it has passed, and that bill they would require the FAA to establish an independent office to investigate these whistle blowers complaints. The FAA does investigate them, but not in an independent office. Congress also, at least the House does. The House wants the FAA to change that customer service initiative, to get rid of the mention of airlines as customers. The Senate will be writing up its bill after July 4th.
CHETRY: All right. Great report, Allan. And by the way, if you'd like to read more about it, go to our blog cnn.com/amfix. You can read more and weigh in.
ROBERTS: You know there are some bright spots in the economy last month, or so we thought, maybe the curtain's beginning to raise on an economic recovery. But unfortunately somebody's got around and kicked out all the foot lights and the economy's going dark again. Christine Romans coming up with the latest jobs report here in the most news in the morning. Stay with us.
ROBERTS: Just in to CNN, the new jobs report came out moments ago and Christine Romans here now to break down the numbers. What do you got?
CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: This is for June. The last couple of months you saw job losses slow, not so in June. Job losses ramped up again, 467,000 jobs were cut from the payrolls in June. That's 100,000, about 100,000 more than economists had been expecting and a big jump from last month when 322,000 were cut.
The unemployment rate now stands at 9.5 percent. That's the highest since August 1983. And here's a number that's pretty historic, as well. The average work week right now is 33 hours in this country. 33 hours. That means people who have a job, your employer can be cutting back your hours because demand is down and business is weak. So 33 hours, that's the lowest, the shortest work week on record since we began keeping these records back in 1964.
14.7 million people are now unemployed, three out of 10 of those have been unemployed for six months or longer.
ROMANS: And a third 3 of the jobs in the auto industry have now been lost since this recession began. Let me say that again, a third of the jobs in the auto industry have vanished since the recession began.
ROBERTS: And not likely to come back either.
ROMANS: And not likely to come back.
CHETRY: But let me ask you this, I mean, Chrysler announced they were opening right, seven more plants? Was it Chrysler out of their 11, back up on line? I mean, were we going to see -- some of them have done better in selling at least some models.
ROMANS: The number of people who are working in the auto industry today compared to 18 months ago is dramatically less and the people who are going back to work, all of them, for every one of those, there's someone else who is not going to be going back to work.
ROBERTS: If you have 11 plants closed and only seven reopens -
ROMANS: That's right.
ROBERTS: That would leave four where there are people working, right?
ROMANS: So I think you're seeing autos represented in this number. I think you're also seeing layoffs from a lot of different fields, manufacturing, financial services, information services, even the government and states were cutting jobs, health care though added 21,000 jobs. We've seen that consistently. There are some jobs in healthcare.
ROBERTS: That' the one area of growth, isn't? Yes.
ROMANS: Again and again, we've seen it over and over again. 21,000 jobs added in healthcare.
CHETRY: All right. So the other part of that really is scary, 9.5 percent unemployment, I mean, months back the administration and others were thinking that maybe it would top out at eight percent, right? And some of the budget analyses and things were made on that eight percent number.
ROMANS: That's right. Early administration and congressional estimates were aware how high we would and we're wrong and we keep moving higher and many people now think we will go above 10 percent. I mean, it's a lagging indicator, even if the economy recovers, folks, you're still going to see businesses cutting workers. So that's the real challenge for the recovery even if it happens and begins, you won't feel it for some time because the jobs market will lag.
ROBERTS: Even the so-called primabears(ph) were saying maybe 9.5 percent, 9.6 percent at the end of the year and we're not even halfway through the year.
ROMANS: You're absolutely right.
ROBERTS: Well, we are halfway through the year. Yes, of course. All right. Thanks, Christine.
CHETRY: Well, many small businesses are struggling these days as we've been talking about but it doesn't have to be that way. In this week's "Money & Main Street," CNN's Stephanie Elam takes a look at one booming book business and how you can learn from it. It's all right there in black and white.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wow, all these books out there, the bookstores are saying no, I don't want it. But there's totally value in those books. You just got to get them and efficiently get them up on the internet and then someone will buy them.
STEPHANIE ELAM, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Building and maintaining a successful small business in this environment is a challenge. One that Xavier Helgesen and his partner Kreece Fuchs and Jeff Kurtzman know all too well. When they were in school, the bookstore wouldn't buy back their used textbooks, so they tried selling them on half.com, it worked and the idea took on a whole new chapter.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's some great stuff in there. That I promise you.
ELAM: With more than two million books at any given time in this Mishawaka, Indiana warehouse, the owners of Better World Books think they have a book for everyone and a small business plan others can follow.
XAVIER HELGESEN, CO-FOUNDER, BETTER WORLD BOOKS: We bring a lot of stuff in even in full truck loads, about 50,000 pounds of books at once, drop it off in the bay and then put it up on the shelves.
ELAM (on camera): After funding the business themselves for the first five years, the founders got a small business administration backed credit line in 2004, followed by a $2.4 million venture capital investment in 2008. All to build up the website and the Better World Books brand. As other small businesses have struggled, Helgesen and partners have seen the revenues grow, from $4 million a year in 2005 to a projected $31 million in 2009 and all the time helping others buy books at a cheap price.
HELGESEN: The cheapest they find would be $3.48 with free shipping.
ELAM (voice-over): The books are donated by libraries, bookstores, and college campuses from across the country. Every day, Better World brings in 40,000 to 50,000 books sending just as many out.
HELGESEN: We've sold orders up to 5,000 books at once and we sell a lot of single book orders. So the average order there is three or four books.
ELAM: The Better World founders built the company on the foundation of the broke college student. So textbook deals remain at the heart of the business.
HELGESEN: What's cool about us is we price them at market level. So you may be getting a $100 book for $10. And that happens everyday here. ELAM: And Better World Books believes in giving back. It donates five to 10 percent of its revenue back into the hands of libraries and literacy programs around the world. Stephanie Elam, CNN, New York.
CHETRY: And for more ideas on how to thrive in a tough economy, you should watch our series "Money & Main Street," that premieres tonight 8:00 p.m. Eastern right here on CNN.
CHETRY: Well, some people have quietly questioned the actions of Michael Jackson's father, Joe, during the grieving process. My next guest, though, is questioning his behavior quite loudly. On the red carpet at the B.E.T. Awards which turned out to really be a tribute to Michael Jackson just three days after his death. Joe Jackson was talking up his record label with reporters.
Journalist and blogger Jimmy Izrael didn't hold back writing on the root.com in a blog entitled Shameless Joe Jackson, "I have friends who lost parakeets, dogs, guinea pigs and wino uncles, and they spent more time in mourning than Michael Jackson's father. He struck me as someone with a hurried agenda in a hurry to cash a check more than a man who lost his son." Jimmy Izrael joins me now live to talk more about this. Some pretty harsh words about Joe Jackson. Why do you feel he did not necessarily look like the father in mourning after the death of Michael.
JIMMY IZRAEL, CONTRIBUTOR, THEROOT.COM: Well, look, you know, when somebody dies, like when Nancy(ph) Russell(ph) died for instance. You know, I was looking to his family, you know, as I was mourning, you know, to get some idea what the tone was. You know, and the way it goes when people die, you look to the family members, you know, to get some idea of how to react. And you know, you want them - the sisters were all broken up, the mom's in pieces and the dad's off in the corner trying to sell bootleg t-shirts and CDs. I got to say it's a bad look. You know, Joe Jackson just hit the wrong note.
CHETRY: And you were especially critical of that red carpet appearance as we said. And here's a portion so people can see of what he said to our own Don Lemon. Let's listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE JACKSON, MICHAEL JACKSON'S FATHER: I want to make this statement. This is a real good statement here. Marshall and I, we owned a record company called - tell him -
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Marantz(ph) Records.
JACKSON: It's truly about blue ray technology and that's the next step. (END VIDEO CLIP)
CHETRY: So you point out that he was pitching this music label, talking about blue ray.
CHETRY: He was with his entourage. And how did other people react to that when you spoke to them?
IZRAEL: Well, about 25 percent of the people that - well, on theroot.com, the piece has gotten about, actually as of now, like 813 comments. And about a quarter of those, you know, people didn't agree with me. You know and accused me of being just another white man, you know shilling for the white man who couldn't understand the pain that obviously that black people go through. I got to tell you, you know, it's hard out here for a white man.
CHETRY: Well, there were some other people who commented. You're right this piece got a lot of comments, more than 800 as you said. And one of them wrote "what a person does in public and in private can be two different things plus it depends on how the person handles grief. Joe Jackson strikes me as a person who would not let the public see him in an emotional state."
Is that a fair point? Perhaps he is doing some grieving, it's not his nature to show it.
IZRAEL: Look, you know what? If he had went to the B.E.T. Awards dressed up like his son, you know, with the hat on and the glove and kind of an homage, you know that would have made a lot of sense. But you know, I don't think people grieve by, you know, selling CDs out of the trunk or anything like that. That doesn't strike me as a grief thing, that strikes me as an opportunism thing. You know, that's what I think it is.
CHETRY: Well, and you know, the thing is Michael and Joe certainly have had their arguments through the years.
CHETRY: Michael Jackson in a brutally honest interview he gave back in 1994 to Oprah said about Joe, "he was very strict, very hard, just one look would scare you. There would be times when he'd come to me and I would get sick." He went on to say that he beat him and at times even as an adult he would start to regurgitate when Joe came around -
CHETRY: And even in that interview he said he's never heard me say this I'm sorry, please don't be mad at me. But it strikes me as a complicated relationship, especially when you look at Joe Jackson not being in Michael Jackson's will.
IZRAEL: You know, it's not complicated at all. You know, Joe Jackson is a monster and he must be stopped. It's like Godzilla, you know, he's not the guy you want raising Michael Jackson's kids. (inaudible), they're not available, you know, no, Joe Jackson, no, we've got to cut that short.
CHETRY: And how ugly do you think this is going to get within the family as all of the legal issues start to ramp up who gets control, you know, who executes the will, who ultimately gets guardianship of the children?
IZRAEL: You know, the circus has started when Al Sharpton comes, right? And you know how it's going down. The circus has just begun. So we're like maybe a third of the way through the first act of this. We haven't seen anything yet. I mean, it's going to get even messier, you wait until Debbie Rowe steps into the arena and then you know, maybe Al Sharpton will do a little rendition of "Thriller." I'm telling you, we haven't seen anything yet. So stay tuned.
CHETRY: All right. And if people want to check it out and weigh in for themselves about your controversial blog, go to theroot.com. Jimmy Izrael, a contributor for the website. Thanks for being with us this morning.
IZRAEL: Stay classy, baby.
CHETRY: Okay, I'll try. 52 minutes past the hour.
ROBERTS: Some of the top videos right now on cnn.com. This woman being interviewed by detectives is a character witness for a murder suspect. Obviously has something to hide. There it is. A small woodland mammal. A tiny squirrel kept peeking out of her shirt.
CHETRY: You can barely see it with all of that cleavage.
ROBERTS: That's something you can say and get away with, but I can't.
CHETRY: She wore the shirt, clearly she's not trying to hide it.
ROBERTS: Each time the rodent pop its head out, she gently stuffed him back in.
A message in the bottle tossed out to see in the middle of the Atlantic found 10 years later. Nan McConnaughey and her friend decided to throw the bottle from a cruise ship in 1999, it was found in April of this year on the rocky shores of Galway, Ireland.
Also, you've heard of bobbing for apples, but what about bobbing for hot dogs in an open flame? Do not try this at home, do not try this anywhere for that matter.
CHETRY: Oh goodness.
ROBERTS: You can find this and other videos on your cnn.com daily distraction.
CHETRY: Back to the squirrel, the poor thing just trying to come up for some air. He needed to breathe. Who knows what else is down there. Maybe acorns, I mean, he had to breathe. Poor guy.
ROBERTS: A small elephant.
CHETRY: Rob Marciano following that story for us. What do you think?
ROB MARCIANO, CNN, METEOROLOGIST: Yes, closely.
I never knew that squirrels nested, but clearly there's a place for everything.
CHETRY: A place for every mammal.
ROBERTS: You knew they nested. You see those leaf nests up in trees, you've just never seen a leaf nest in somebody's cleavage before.
MARCIANO: No and there you said it, you thought you couldn't say it, but you said it, and it's a scientific term.
ROBERTS: You can say cleavage, it's just the way she said it.
MARCIANO: And the way it looked, maybe a little too early in the morning.
ROBERTS: It's like that Monty python, enormous tracks of land.
CHETRY: Gosh, what you don't see -
MARCIANO: Up to the weather. There you go, guys. I'll get you out of it quickly.
ROBERTS: Thanks. Do that, Rob.
MARCIANO: Up towards Boston, we're looking at some rainfall. Check out some of the rainfall at parts of Rhode Island yesterday, this is nasty. And they saw another cell go through this morning. So flooding rain there. This is fit for neither man or fish, nor whale.
Speaking of, check out this very rare white humpback whale, the only one documented, actually in the world. And it's migrating up the coast in the Queensland state just up the coast there of Australia. So a rare sight there in Queensland.
As was the rare sight of the squirrel come bust out of someone's cleavage. So there you go, all the news you need to know with the most news in the morning. You're on CNN.
CHETRY: I loved that humpback whale, gorgeous. Unbelievable they got that shot.
MARCIANO: See you tomorrow guys. CHETRY: Bye, Rob.
ROBERTS: 57 minutes after the hour.
ROBERTS: Continue the conversation on today's stories, maybe you've got something to say about the squirrel in the shirt thing. Go to our blog at cnn.com/amfix.
CHETRY: Or maybe the albino whale
ROBERTS: There you go.
CHETRY: Or anything you want --
ROBERTS: Or maybe the squirrel in the shirt.
CHETRY: Anything you want to sound off, we'd love to hear from you guys. And meanwhile, we'll see you back here tomorrow.
Right now CNN "NEWSROOM" with Heidi Collins.