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Facebook, Zuckerberg, And Underwriters Being Sued; Edwards Waits For Jury's Decision; Man Sentenced For Helping Find Bin Laden; First Time Ever Picking A President In Egypt; Beware Of The Electronic Jihad; Senior NCO Fighting To Fix Image; Romney's Huge Campaign Promise Massive Job Cuts at Hewlett-Packard; Office Break Rooms Germier Than Previously Thought; Americans Eat Meat Glue Without Knowing It; Egyptians Comment on Voting Today
Aired May 23, 2012 - 13:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Suzanne Malveaux. I want to get you right up to it here.
Less than a week after Facebook stock went public, shareholders, they're suing the social network and its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg. A lawsuit was filed this morning in a federal court in New York. It claims that Facebook concealed crucial information about its stock in the days leading up to the initial public offering, or IPO. Now, Facebook's underwriters, including Morgan Stanley, they're also being sued. Regulators are looking into whether major clients were given negative information about Facebook before the stock offering.
It is a nerve-racking waiting game for former presidential candidate John Edwards. Jurors in the campaign corruption trial, they're half way through their fourth day of deliberation. Still no verdict. Edwards is accused of using almost $1 million in campaign donations to keep his pregnant mistress hidden and his presidential big alive.
In Pakistan, the man who helped track down Osama Bin Laden was sentenced to more than 30 years in prison today. He is the doctor charged with treason and spying for the United States. He had been on trial for the past two months and under tribal law, he was not able to defend himself. A lawyer in Pakistan tells CNN that he can appeal the sentence.
So, it doesn't get any bigger than this when it comes to Democracy. Millions of voters in the world's most populous Arab country are picking a president for the first time ever. We are talking about Egypt. In 5,000 years, this is the first time they are able to cast a vote for their leader in a Democratic election. It is underway right now. We've got some video just a short time ago. Former President Jimmy Carter, his wife, Rosalynn, at one of the Polling stations in Cairo. You can see here, the Carters are actually among dozens of monitors from around the world taking part in an effort to make sure that this voting is fair.
Ian Lee, he is joining us on the phone from Cairo. And Ian, I know you have been at some of those polling stations, you've seen some of these election monitors. Are they picking up any problems? Do they believe that this is above board, that this is OK?
IAN LEE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well Suzanne, so far it seems to be going well. We went out with a group that was monitoring the election. They have 30,000 volunteers, quite an army for monitoring this election. And just -- with that they have found a few minor infractions in certain small isolated incidents that have been some sort of influence by the campaigns to try to get voters to vote for their candidate. By and large, so far, it's been fairly clean.
There has been fear, though, that the military might try to do something, might try to come in and try to hijack the election or try to push for their appointed candidate. The army has denied this adamantly saying that they're not going to get involved in this, that this is the will of the people. And so far, it seems to be like that. All of the -- all of the monitors have said it's been fairly clean and they are optimistic that this will be pulled off successfully.
MALVEAUX: So, you -- there's one more hour until the polls close and the voting continues tomorrow. How has the turnout been and has there been any fear of violence occurring around these polling stations?
LEE: Well, the turnout hasn't been as high as probably people expected. Definitely didn't -- we didn't see the lines today that we saw at the parliamentary election. But there is definitely -- there's another day, so we have another day for people to come out and vote. And we are expecting more people to come out tomorrow. But in terms of violence, there has been reports of clashes, minor small clashes between (INAUDIBLE) that supporters, mainly between one of the candidates who is a member of the former regime and two Islamist candidates, they are supporters.
So, the Islamic candidate supporters were clashing with one of the members of the former regime, his supporters. These are isolated incidents, not really -- we didn't see any out there. We saw people voting for all sorts of people all in the same line, all in a joyous atmosphere, carnival atmosphere, people excited to go out and vote. But there is some tension because one of the candidates, (INAUDIBLE) with the former regime and a lot of people are very upset about that.
MALVEAUX: And finally here, I mean this is a very important day. Who are you seeing who are actually showing up at the polls? Are there women, men, young people, old?
LEE: Really is a diverse group. We have definitely young, old, we have liberals, we have conservatives. It is a diverse group. But what we are hearing is that the mother -- the Muslim brotherhood is doing better than probably a lot of people expected. But definitely there is a diverse group. You go to these Polling stations. The Polling stations are segregated so you'll have a women's section and a men's section. Could be in the same building, could be in different buildings. But definitely the lines are long. And they are -- they are very excited to show the purple ink on their finger after they voted.
MALVEAUX: All right. We're seeing pictures of that purple ink and people dipping their fingers into that little jar. Ian Lee, thank you very much, appreciate it.
Secret service director says the prostitution scandal involving agents in Columbia was an aberration, not part of the agency's culture. But some senators today at the hearing are saying that the scandal, that they find that rather hard to believe.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. LIEBERMAN (I), CONNECTICUT: It is hard for many people including me, I will admit, to believe that on one night in April, 2012 in Cartagena, Columbia, 12 secret service agents, there to protect the president, suddenly and spontaneously did something they or other agents had never done before.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: Kate Bolduan, she is covering the hearing on Capitol Hill. And Kate, a lot of people watching this, wondering is this really a part of the culture? Was this an aberration? I mean, seeing the secret service for years, I mean, it really does seem like these are men and women who do behave responsibly, for the most part. But is the director, Mark Sullivan, is he able to make the case to the senators? Is he convincing them that that was not part of the culture and that was a rogue incident?
KATE BOLDUAN, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I'll tell you, throughout the hearing, he tried very hard and repeatedly tried to reassure the senators that this was not representative of the some 7,000 employees of the secret service, that this was an aberration, as he said in his remarks, that this was a one -time incident. And he himself, when he had heard about this scandal as it was just starting to break, that he himself was dumbfounded of how this would happen or why these people would be involved in this.
But I'll tell you while he repeatedly said that this is not a cultural issue, this is not a systemic issue within the secret service, it appears that he did not successfully convince at least some of the senators who repeatedly questioned him about how can you say this is a one off -- a one off deal, this was a one-time deal? Susan Collins, for one, Suzanne, she is -- she did not seem convinced at the end of the hearing that this was just a one-time deal. She said simply with all the facts that we're -- that we have now it just doesn't seem like this could be a one-time incident.
MALVEAUX: And Kate, are you learning anything new -- new details about the scandal itself and how it unfolded?
BOLDUAN: A couple of new things actually came out in the hearing. One, that two of the agents who, following kind of the whole scandal breaking who had agreed to resign, that they are now challenging their dismissals. That was a new tidbit that we heard in the hearing. And also, learning new detail about kind of how this went down in Cartagena, that both chairman Lieberman and the ranking member senator Collin, they both said that these secret service agents, they went out in small groups to four strip clubs or night clubs in small groups in Cartagena, and they said rather than in some large group, if you will, and they said that in addition to the fact that the men when they brought these prostitutes back to the hotel they registered them in their own names rather than trying to kind of conceal it really made the case to the senators. They said it was just hard to believe that this behavior wasn't condoned, wasn't somehow wink, wink, nod, nod allowed if they really didn't seem to be afraid that they would be caught at all. One other thing that I found really interesting just real quick --
BOLDUAN: -- is that director Sullivan also said that they have now interviewed nine or 10 of these women and he says that they are very confident that none of these women were involved with any terrorist or criminal element. And I think senator Collins rightly went back to him saying that it was pretty ironic that we can all take relief that these women were just prostitutes. Interesting moment in the hearing.
MALVEAUX: Certainly, yes, quote, "quite ironic when you think about it," if it's come to that.
MALVEAUX: Kate Bolduan, thank you very much, appreciate it.
Here's what we're working on now for this hour.
(voice-over): An Al Qaeda video calls for electronic jihad, cyber attacks against power grids and banking accounts. Is this the new terror strategy against the U.S. and what is the government doing to protect us?
And mass layoffs at one of the world's largest computer makers. Hewlett-Packard plans to announce some 25,000 jobs cuts today.
Think your restroom at work is filthy? A new report says drop your sandwich and wash your hands. Your office break room is far dirtier. We'll show you just how bad it is.
MALVEAUX: So, Al Qaeda's new battlefield is actually not one you can see. It is the Internet. It's our electronic lives. It's the computer systems that run our power grids and our financial networks. Now, some senators say they have evidence that Al Qaeda wants to attack where we are weak in cyber space. I want to get to Suzanne Kelly, she's here in Washington. And Suzanne, tell us first of all, how do you describe -- how do we make sense of what they are now calling an electronic jihad.
SUZANNE KELLY, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL SECURITY PRODUCER: Yes. Well, Al Qaeda put out this tape, as you mentioned, and they're calling for cyber jihad. Now, what that means is they're calling out to all of their sympathizers and people who support the Al Qaeda ideology around the world to put those computer skills to good use and to target big companies and to target government agencies. And the problem is intelligence officials are very worried because it's very difficult to guard against this and still, right now, the U.S. doesn't have really effective legislation that's gone through that sort of says how the government is going to take a coordinative approach to sort of stopping this attack and how they're going to try to protect a lot of these facilities, actually, public facilities that are very vulnerable to something like this.
MALVEAUX: So, is there anything that we can do to help protect ourselves again cyber terrorism? What can we do?
KELLY: Well, there actually is something you can do. And a lot of us don't realize every day, you know, you need to think about where you work and what kind of e-mails you get. One of the main things they tell people to do is never, ever click to open attachments. And it's something that's actually kind of simple. And it's a phishing technique that people can use to get into your systems. All they do is they do a little research on you. Like Suzanne, if I went on Facebook right now, I could probably find out quite a few facts about you pretty quickly. And then to craft an e-mail that looks like it was targeted just for you, so that you would think, wow ,this is coming from someone I know. I'm going to go ahead and click and open this. And then this virus or worm has gotten into the system. And that's one of the ways that they can target.
MALVEAUX: So, it sounds kind of inane when you think of it that way. What is the worst case scenario when you talk about a cyber attack?
KELLY: Well, here is what has senators so worried and intelligence officials so worried. These people, especially when you're talking about people like Al Qaeda, can target things like your air traffic control systems. Think about the electric grid going down in the middle of the summer or the middle of the winter, and there's no heating or no cooling. Think about your water filtration facilities. Think about your nuclear plants. You know, those are targets that they are very worried about because if anything happens there, real people could die. So, videos like this do cause a lot of concern. Now, this one the FBI actually obtained last year, probably just pulled it off the Internet because that is where Al Qaeda will post these calls for jihad. It is very disturbing.
MALVEAUX: But it's one thing for them to say that they can do this or they want to do this. Are they actually -- do we know if they're sophisticated enough, al Qaeda's sophisticated enough to do this kind of thing?
KELLY: Well, here's the scary thing. A 17-year-old kid is sophisticated enough. And we've seen intrusions happen like that. And the Department of Homeland Security has gotten like 50,000 -- more than 50,000 reports of intrusions in the last year. Now, you are talking about facilities that do have a heightened level of security around their computer systems already. But it's still not good enough. So when you take that into consideration, it's very alarming.
MALVEAUX: All right, Suzanne Kelly, thank you so much. Very informative. Really appreciate it. KELLY: A pleasure.
MALVEAUX: One of the highest ranking enlisted women in the United States Army says her fight is not over. The fight to fix her reputation. Command Sergeant Major Teresa King was the first ever female commandant of the Army's elite drill sergeant school. She was replaced in that position last week at a time when she complain to the Army about equality and fairness. CNN's Jason Carroll has the story.
JASON CARROLL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): We first met Command Sergeant Major Teresa King three years ago at Fort Jackson, Columbia, South Carolina.
CARROLL (on camera): What are you looking for? I mean, because it all pretty much looks like everyone's exercising to me.
COMMAND SGT. MAJ. TERESA KING, U.S. ARMY: I'm looking for attention to detail.
CARROLL (voice-over): The first woman to lead the Army's elite drill sergeant school, a symbol of physical and emotional strength. That was then.
KING: When I'm going through this devastating situation, it's important for me to set the example. And that's where I'm at.
CARROLL: Now, King faces the toughest battle of her 32-year military career. She filed a former complaint against the Army charging her superiors mistreated her because she's a woman.
KING: I'm not in a position where I can say what should happen to my superiors. But I will say they need to be held accountable.
CARROLL: King was suspended following complaints of micro managing and toxic leadership. Factors, she says, would not have been questioned if she were a man. Some rank and file questioning her lack of combat experience. But as a woman, King can't go to the front lines. King, who had earned top scores for physical fitness, says she was punished for rejecting unfit candidates.
KING: I think drill sergeants should be some of the highest standard barriers in the Army. And that's the only way we can make soldiers.
CARROLL: King submitted a 19-page rebuttal describing her accusers of disgruntled because they face disciplinary actions. Two of her superiors, Command Sergeant Major John Calpena and Major General Richard Longo oversaw a six-month investigation. During that period, King was not allowed to have any contact with students or staff, cutoff, she says, from her military family.
KING: I think I lost touch of consciousness because it was so painful. CARROLL: King sought help from attorney and state legislator James Smith, also one of her former soldiers. Smith says he believed in her then and now.
JAMES SMITH, TERESA KING'S ATTORNEY: Her suspension is and was unwarranted. Now the point is, and what we're asking, is for a review of how and why all this took place.
CARROLL: Earlier this month, the Army found King's suspension was "not warranted," informing her, "your suspension is lifted." Smith says, not good enough. An Army spokeswoman saying neither Calpena nor Longo could comment. King's reinstatement came just in time for the change of responsibility ceremony, a commandant's final act, the official transfer of power.
KING: There were some days I didn't feel like I wanted to live, but I believe in hope against all hope.
CARROLL: Supporters surrounded King, who say, despite everything, she'd serve the Army again.
KING: I want to make sure that this does not happen to another person.
CARROLL: And, Suzanne, King is now just a few months away from her mandatory retirement. She is asked to delay that retirement to make up for the time she lost during that Army investigation. She is also asking for a congressional investigation into the matter. Once again, she wants to make sure that those superiors are held accountable. And as you heard there in the piece, Suzanne, she also wants to make sure that this does not happen to someone else.
MALVEAUX: So, where does her issues stand now with the Army?
CARROLL: Well, it's going to be a lengthy process now as the Army takes a look at what she is saying in her rebuttal and comes back with something in terms of some sort of a decision about when she will be able to make her exit back into civilian life. But, once again, when you've lost those last sort of several months of your Army career and you've been in the Army all of your life and you now have to go back into civilian life, that's a big adjustment.
CARROLL: And so now she says she needs that extra bit of time. And as I said before, Suzanne, she also wants to make sure that those who are responsible for her suspension are, in some ways, held accountable for that.
MALVEAUX: Yes, a tough situation. All right, Jason, thank you so much. Excellent reporting, as always.
In a new interview with "Time" magazine, Mitt Romney is promising to get the unemployment rate down to 6 percent if he's elected president.
MALVEAUX: Want to bring in Jim Acosta, who's covering Mitt Romney.
And, Jim, you and I are both looking at these excerpts now from the interview, a rather extensive interview, that he's given with "Time" magazine. It lasted about 36 minutes or so. And one of the things that stands out here in this interview is a promise that he is making if he becomes president in his first term. I want to play this little bit of sound for our viewers and then we'll talk about it on the back end.
JIM ACOSTA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Sure.
Suzanne, was -- we're missing something there, I guess.
MALVEAUX: All right. You know what, I'm not actually -- Jim, can you hear me?
ACOSTA: Hi, Suzanne. Yes, I can.
MALVEAUX: OK. We're not actually hearing the sound, but --
ACOSTA: Are we on the air?
MALVEAUX: We -- Jim, we are on the air. Can you hear me?
ACOSTA: I can hear you, yes.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: As well as what we're seeing here in the United States.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: Let me actually put that quote on. We didn't actually hear the audio. But this is what he said about unemployment in his first term. And here's the quote. He says, "I can tell you that over a period of four years, by virtue of the policies that we put in place, we get the unemployment rate down to 6 percent and perhaps a little lower."
Jim, that's what stood out in our mind in this interview.
MALVEAUX: A pretty extraordinary promise to make straight away.
MALVEAUX: Do you think that he's feeling a little bit of pressure here to prove, to show, look, I'm the guy who can handle the economy? ACOSTA: Well, you know, and, Suzanne, keep in mind, we just talked about this interview a little while ago and we expected the big news to come out of this to be about his time at Bain Capital. And he does spend a lot of time talking about that.
But you're right, this is probably the most striking excerpt from this interview. Mitt Romney predicting that he will lower the nation's unemployment rate to 6 percent from where it is right now, about 8.1 percent. Suzanne, that would be a very impressive feat when you consider the fact that the unemployment rate really soared in those initial months when President Obama came into office. You'll recall every month there was about 700,000 people being thrown off -- out of their jobs and the unemployment rate just kept going up, up, up and up. So for the unemployment rate to go down that dramatically would be something else.
And keep in mind, I mean it is sort of setting a benchmark for an eventual Romney administration that he may come to regret. You know, one of the things he -- he likes to talk about out on the campaign trail, Suzanne, is President Obama's economic team. And that at one point when they were pushing the stimulus plan, they were saying, hey, if we pass the stimulus, we think we can get this unemployment rate under 8 percent. Well, this is one of Mitt Romney's favorite talking points right now. He likes to go out there and say, hey, wait a minute, we spent all this money on the stimulus and it didn't get the unemployment rate under 8 percent like the Obama White House says it would.
ACOSTA: So it is kind of interesting to see Mitt Romney go here and make this kind of prediction.
MALVEAUX: Yes, and we know that the Obama administration getting a little confident, a little overconfident, came back to burn them a bit later here.
ACOSTA: That's right.
MALVEAUX: But they say that they are heading in the right track and clearly that they are creating jobs. At least they're out of the recession and making some headway there.
I want to also talk about Bain Capital because, as we had mentioned --
MALVEAUX: He did defend his record. I'm going to read a quote here. This is on President Obama's attacks on his record at Bain. Romney says, quote, "having been in the private sector for 25 years gives me a perspective on how jobs are created. That someone who's never spent a day in the private sector, like President Obama, simply doesn't understand."
Jim, this is something the Obama campaign has complained about. That, you know, he condescends and says, you know, Obama just simply doesn't -- the president simply just doesn't get it when it comes to dealing with fiscal matters. But he's been in charge of the economy for the last three and a half plus years. Why do you suppose they think this line of reasoning is going to work?
ACOSTA: Well, I think they have to spin Mitt Romney's business experience as a positive. I mean that is what they have been banking their entire campaign on, you know, ever since he got into this race. His campaign bus -- you know, along the side of his campaign bus it says "conservative businessman." It doesn't say former governor of Massachusetts. So, you know, -- and I think the Romney campaign succeeded with a lot of Republicans in convincing them that he is the guy. Because of this business experience, because he's had this background creating companies. Yes, some companies worked out OK, some businesses did not. But this has been their calling card throughout this campaign, that he has been in the private sector, that he knows what it takes to create businesses, and so this is just a continuation of that line from the Romney campaign, from the candidate himself.
It was interesting to note, Suzanne, in this interview, Mitt Romney did get very aggressive in going after the president. He talks about how his experience better prepares him for the presidency versus Barack Obama's experience, referring back to the fact that President Obama once served as a quote/unquote community organizer. Mitt Romney bringing that up as well during this interview.
And one thing that he does talk about during this interview that I think is very interesting, he goes back to that Reagan line, are you better off now than you were four years ago? That is a line I think we're going to be hearing time and again from the Romney campaign as the months go forward. They really believe that in time people are going to start to forget about Bain Capital as an issue, they're going to get sick of hearing about this as an issue, but the economy will stay there and it will be there until November as a big issue.
MALVEAUX: And one last thing that came out of this interview that was interesting here, and I think it goes to the heart of the matter here, which they say that people want to try someone new because they believe that this president, while he may be a nice guy, he says, is simply not up to the task of helping guide an economy. It is all going to be about the economy here. Who actually is up to the task and who has moved forward and is able to usher this economy in a different direction.
So, Jim, thank you very much. We're going to continue this conversation a bit later.
ACOSTA: You bet.
MALVEAUX: Really appreciate it.
Hewlett-Packard announcing mass layoffs today. We're going to take a look at how many American workers could actually lose their jobs, and why now. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
MALVEAUX: Massive job cuts are in the works for printing giant Hewlett-Packard. They're expected to make the announcement this afternoon.
Alison Kosik at the New York Stock Exchange to talk about this. How many layoffs are we talking about, Alison?
KOSIK: Suzanne, about 25,000 people. Most in the Hewlett- Packards printing business will be layed off, about 7 percent of Hewlett-Packards workforce. The official announcement is expected to come out after the closing bell today when Hewlett-Packard will be reporting its earnings.
What's happening is the new CEO, Meg Whitman, is trying to turn things around. H.P. is having a tough time but so is the entire P.C. industry. Hewlett-Packard is a standout of having troubled times now. Its P.C. sales fell in double digits during the holiday season. And that was a crucial time for Hewlett-Packard.
MALVEAUX: Alison, there are huge cuts we are talking about. Do they think this is going to solve H.P.'s problems?
KOSIK: They are looking to take the money saved in layoffs to put the finances in order. Hewlett-Packard's problems are bigger than this. They need a recipe for growth. The big problem with Hewlett- Packard is that it kind of missed the boat here on its Tablets and Smartphones. It didn't catch on. It is really a company that is trying to stay relevant right now.
Another old tech company, Dell Computer, seems to be in the same boat. Its shares are plunging 17 percent on weak earnings. Shares of Hewlett-Packard are down about 5 percent -- Suzanne?
MALVEAUX: Alison, we are seeing a selloff here in the markets. Tell us what's going on.
KOSIK: What we're seeing in U.S. markets, with the Dow down 137 points, following what we saw in European and Asian markets that tumbled. At this hour, European leaders are meeting to try to figure out how to create growth in European economies. The backdrop is there's reports coming out from the former prime minister of Greece saying Greece is at a real risk of leaving the Eurozone. But there isn't much faith in anything substantial coming out of these meetings happening now. You are seeing fears really play out in the markets right now. As I said, the Dow tumbling 138 points. Oil prices down a bit below $90 a barrel. Showing there's pessimism about global economic growth -- Suzanne?
MALVEAUX: All right, Alison, thank you. Appreciate it.
Do you bring your lunch to work? Be careful what you touch when you stick it in the fridge or on the countertop. We'll explain.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) MALVEAUX: Brace yourselves. This is pretty gross but you are going to hear this. Turns out that the break room in your office, nastier than you probably ever imagined.
Alina Cho explains just how germ infested it is and how to protect yourself.
ALINA CHO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We are here in the CNN break room. Remember, this is the play where you take your lunch out of the fridge and put it in the microwave. Well, listen to this. According to a new report, you got to beware. the break room is crawling with contaminates. And how about this. It is safer to eat our lunch off of a toilet seat than your desk.
Here in the break room, there is lots of traffic, a lot of people touching the same small spaces over and over again. So the company Kimberly-Clark, which makes Kleenex and other household cleaning products, took 5,000 samples from company break rooms an here is what they found. High levels of contaminates in 75 percent of sink faucet handles. And the sink is not so clean either. 48 percent of microwave door handles, right here, and 26 percent of refrigerator doors.
Everyone uses the fridge when you come to work. Germs that can make you sick -- we are talking about colds, the flu, norvo virus, which can result in stomach pain and vomiting, or MRSA, which causes skin infections.
It is important to note that CNN talked to independent experts who backed up this study. So how do you protect yourself from getting sick? The best advice is to wash your hands with soap and warm water. That may seem obvious. But this may not. After you take your food from the refrigerator or microwave, wash your hands before you take it back to your desk. If you don't have access to soap and water then the CDC says use hand sanitizer. It is good advice to buy one. Finally, if you come in contact with one of these spaces, try not to touch your eyes, nose or mouth right away. That is the easiest way for germs to get into your body and make you sick.
Alina Cho, CNN, New York.
MALVEAUX: If that didn't make you sick, they call this meat glue. It is a product used to keep meat stuck together. It has been added to meat for decades without most of us knowing it. Should we be concerned? We'll find out.
MALVEAUX: You might remember the uproar over the filler in some ground pink, the stuff known as pink slime. Now the news is about meat glue.
It sounds gross but food experts say you might have a beef with it once you know what it is and how it is used.
UNIDENTIFIED CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A common use of transtotamanase is to make filet mignon pieces appear as one uniform cut. Here's how it works. This flank stead was cut into small pieces by Chef Matt Lynn at the Culinary Institute Linotra. He then added meat glue.
MATT LYNN, CULINARY INSTITUTE LINOTRA: This is going to bind everything together. It doesn't take much. You got to get a light coating over all the meat.
UNIDENTIFIED CNN CORRESPONDENT: Chef Lynn then rolls the chunks into a mold and places it in the cooler overnight. The next day, the chunks of steak appear to be one piece.
The FDA says meat glue is safe to consume. But the potential problem comes from the exposure the meat has had to bacteria. Usually on the surface is killed of during the cooking process.
MALVEAUX: Eatocracy managing editor, Kat Kinsman joins us live.
Kat, first of all, it does sound kind of weird and gross but what is it? Can you tell us?
KAT KINSMAN, EATOCRACY MANAGING EDITOR: There are so many problems in the food system and transtotamanase is hardly the one to worry about. I think it has a branding problem. Meat glue sounds horrific. Really there's a fantastic entry on cookingissues.com by the chefs at the French Culinary Institute and they explain it is a naturally derived enzyme that is sprinkled on meat and makes protein bond to protein. That's pretty much it.
MALVEAUX: It is an enzyme that comes from where? What is it made of?
KINSMAN: It used to be taken -- and this part is gross. They don't do this so much any more -- from guinea pig blood. But it is taken from plant material. There is not much to worry about here. It is making the most of cuts of meat that they can't sell because they are not cosmetically attractive. These bits can be combined to make a tasty piece of meat that the average consumer is not going to know it wasn't one original muscle cut. And chefs use it to play around and combine a lot of flavors together.
MALVEAUX: Why are people concerned about this? Why are they grossed out? KINSMAN: Well, the name is pretty bad. The main concern is that if you think of the center of the piece of steak, it hasn't been exposed to bacteria in the same way that outside parts of the steak have. The more surface area, the more chance for bacteria to get all over it. So basically, chefs have to be aware and cook it to a certain temperature so the danger is taken care of.
The other thing that people are upset about is they're thinking, I spent all this money on a 16-ounce steak and I got cheated because basically I got eight two-ounce steaks. But again, they are not trying to pass off bad, inedible cuts to you. They are just smaller cuts. It's the end scrapes. So a lot of chefs would argue that they are being economical and waste free.
MALVEAUX: They want to stick it all together -- and use the glue to stick it together. Would this actually help those who argue, look, maybe we should have more food labeling requirements to make sure that we know exactly what it is that we are eating, if it is the pieces or the whole steak?
KINSMAN: So this is -- I believe, when it is shipped to something like a banquet hall, labeled as reformed meat. Now a consumer is never going to know to go ask, is this made with formed or reformed meat. I am a huge advocate of labeling in all situations, whether genetic modification or all natural, which absolutely means very little, that particular term. The more clarity there is about everything that we're putting into our bodies, really the better have everybody. A lot of advocates in various states like California are advocating for this to be mandatory. In 40 countries, I believe, across the world, genetically modified food is required to have that indicated on the packaging, and here it is not.
MALVEAUX: Kat, some people would rather not know.
They like, let me just enjoy this. Information is a good thing, too.
Thank you very much. Appreciate it.
KINSMAN: Thanks so much.
MALVEAUX: A Japanese punk rock band left homeless by last year's earthquake and tsunami is blasting the slow cleanup near the Fukushima Dai-ichi. They say they are among thousands forgotten by the government and the world.
MALVEAUX: A sailor becomes the first ever to sail around the world on a solar-powered boat. We'll tell you about the amazing, record-breaking trip.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) MALVEAUX: A rough day for firefighters battling flames in Nevada. High winds are expected to fuel the flames already moving dangerously fast. Seven homes have been destroyed. More than 100 are threatened. Firefighters are attacking the flames from the ground as well as the air. You can see those dramatic pictures. Rain and cooler temperatures could bring them at least some relief on Friday.
So for the past year and a half, while we're high and dry on land, a handful of world records were being smashed at sea. This is the weirdest-looking boat you'll probably ever see on the water, but it took the crew around the world literally the long way. And there's not a drop of fuel onboard. It's all solar powered.
Chad Myers is here to explain this amazing boat --
CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: It's awesome.
MALVEAUX: -- and how they did this and whether or not it's going to become the future.
MYERS: Every time --
MALVEAUX: Tell us what we know about this. Pretty cool stuff.
MYERS: Every time this boat came into port, people were flocking to it. What could that possibly be?
It certainly doesn't look like a boat.
MALVEAUX: Looks like something out of a sci-fi movie.
MYERS: It's Star Trek. It's the Enterprise.
It's no question, something like. It's a catamaran. The two pods on the sides keeping the boat up. But it has solar panels the size of two tennis courts on top. It only goes five miles per hour -- five knots, six miles per hour. It was a slow boat to China.
MYERS: It was over 500 days, but he said when he was sitting on his dad lap, going around the world in 80 days, he knew some day he had to go around the world. That was his life-long dream. 40-year- old guy builds this boat. $16 million to build this boat. Goes around the world all the way. Leaves Monaco, goes out through Gibraltar, across the Atlantic, through the Panama Canal, across the pacific. Has to wait four days in Australia because it never was sunny for almost an entire week.
MALVEAUX: Does it matter if the sun is shining?
MYERS: It has enough power in the batteries to go five days without sun. But they had more than five days. The boat was literally dead in the water.
CHAD: They were just sitting there. Thank goodness it wasn't getting pounded by 100 miles an hour winds up against a reef. But they got it going, made it through the Suez Canal and back to Monaco where they landed.
MALVEAUX: Is this the future?
MYERS: We're never going to move oil -- an oil cargo taker. It's just too heavy. You're not going to get that kind of energy. If you only get this very -- this is $16 million, the lightest boat they could possibly build. It can only go 6 miles an hour. You can't move a lot. You can't jet ski or water ski behind it.
MALVEAUX: So what's the advantage, besides proving that we can do this with solar power? Would it actually become practical in any way with the --
MYERS: You know, the mega rich can do that they want.
You know, I'm a sailor. I love wind power. And the jokes on our CNN.com blog are, so what's next, a wind-powers boat? Yes, we've had those for centuries.
They're sail boats. He just wanted to prove, and the whole crew wanted to prove it could be done. Why did you climb Mount Everest? Because it was there. Why did we go around the world in a solar- powered boat? Because we could.
MALVEAUX: Pretty cool.
MALVEAUX: And we might think -- get back to that guy who is climbing Mount Everest tomorrow.
MYERS: Good climb.
MALVEAUX: Thanks, Chad.
MYERS: You're welcome.
MALVEAUX: Egyptians sounding off on our "Open Mic" about voting in their first presidential election ever. That's next.
MALVEAUX: Polls are about to close in Egypt. Voters have been casting ballots in the country's first democratic presidential elections in its 5,000-year history. That's right. They begin voting today. They will finish up tomorrow. It's the moment they fought for in Tahrir Square last year.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: It was the Arab Spring uprising that to toppled Hosni Mubarak. The military has ruled Egypt since then. There are some uncertainties about what's going to happen after the elections.
Here's what some Egyptians are saying on our "Open Mic" in Cairo.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED EGYPTIAN MALE (through translation): I am worried. I am scared the seculars will file and say the elections are a fraud. I'm afraid that the Islamists at the same time that they might say it's fraud. I hope when a president is elected they will accept him.
UNIDENTIFIED EGYPTIAN FEMALE (through translation): I would like to say, we would like every person elected with honesty and we do not want fraud like in the elections past. And we want everyone to go out, whether rich or poor.
UNIDENTIFIED EGYPTIAN FEMALE (through translation): I will tell him Egypt is a very strong country and a very profound country and we will not be played with again. We will not allow with anyone to destroy us or cause us to lose our dignity.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: From the Egyptians themselves.
CNN NEWSROOM continues with Brooke Baldwin.