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Early Start with John Berman and Zoraida Sambolin

Court Hearing In Prince Harry, Elton John Lawsuit Resumes; Vatican: Pope Being Treated For Respiratory Infection In Hospital; MLB's New Rules: Fans Wanting A Faster Pace Game Are Going To Get It. Aired 5:30-6a ET

Aired March 30, 2023 - 05:30   ET



BIANCO NOBILO, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT: Prince Harry is saying that he feels that it's his duty to expose what he alleges are the criminal practices of the journalists at the Associated Newspapers, which he says include phone hacking, obtaining itemized phone bills, obtaining private information about his then-girlfriend's flights, Chelsy Davy. He says that this precipitated a period of paranoia for himself between the early 2000s and 2010s.

As far as the Associated Newspapers are concerned they say that all of these claims are being brought too late. That they amount to preposterous smears and that they simply don't agree with any of them.

And this also underscores the bifurcating paths of the royal family with Prince Charles -- sorry, King Charles on his trip to Germany and Prince Harry still alleging that the royal family withheld information from him about phone hacking as this case continues today, Christine.


All right, Bianca. Thank you so much for that. We'll keep a watch.

All right, quick hits around the globe right now.

The Vatican says Pope Francis will be in the hospital for several days. He is being treated for a respiratory infection. The pope is 86 years old.

Britain's King Charles is in Germany giving a speech to the Bundestag, Germany's Parliament. It's his first overseas state visit as monarch. A trip to France was canceled due to the pension protests.

A top Russian diplomat has said Moscow has stopped sharing information on nuclear forces and missile tests with Washington. President Putin suspended a nuclear treaty last month. The U.S. isn't sharing now either.

All right, Apple becoming the latest company to launch a buy now, pay later program. And the Sacramento Kings' record-breaking playoff drought is finally over. How they finally punched their ticket to their first NBA post-season in almost 17 years. That's coming up in the Bleacher Report.



ROMANS: Here is today's fast-forward lookahead.

Later this morning the Army will hold a news conference on the two Black Hawk helicopters that crashed in Kentucky. They were flying a routine training mission at the time. Fatalities are expected.

Former President Jair Bolsonaro will return to Brazil within the hour for the first time since leaving office. Bolsonaro was under investigation there for allegedly inciting Brazil's January 8 riots among other accusations.

Turkey's Parliament will vote on Finland's membership in NATO today. Turkey's President Erdogan now backs a yes vote after blocking it for months. The debate starts in about 90 minutes.

All right. After 16 long years the Kings finally end the longest playoff drought in NBA history.

Andy Scholes has this morning's Bleacher Report from Houston ahead of baseball's opening day. Hey, Andy.


You've got to be happy for Sacramento fans. I mean, they've been waiting for this day since 2006. They're back in the playoffs. The last time they were in the post-season their star De'Aaron Fox -- he was just eight years old.

But the Kings officially punching that ticket to the playoffs last night with just a dominant victory over the Portland Trailblazers, winning that game 120-80. The Kings right now -- they looked poised to be the 3-seed in the west and they want more than just a playoff appearance. Malik Monk saying after this one we know what our goal is. It's not just to make the playoffs, it's to make some noise there.

By the way, in case you're wondering, the New York Jets now own the longest playoff drought in North American sports at 12 years.

Kevin Durant, meanwhile, making his long-awaited, much-anticipated home debut with the Phoenix Suns. The 13-time All-Star looking a bit rusty against the Timberwolves last night. He scored 16 points in this one. Phoenix would get the win 107-100.

And after the game K.D. admitted he was a little nervous.


KEVIN DURANT, PHOENIX SUNS FORWARD: It was hard for me to get sleep today. It was hard for me to stop thinking about the game. And sometimes you can want it too bad and you come out there and play like -- you start rushing and start taking -- being uncharacteristic. So I'm glad I'm back. I'm glad I'm into the (audio gap) the guys and being one of the guys again. So I'll just keep doing it (audio gap).


SCHOLES: And we are out here in Houston for Major League Baseball opening day -- always one of the best days on the sports calendar every single year.

And this year baseball is going to look so much different. For the first time ever they now have a pitch clock. Pitchers have 15 seconds with no runners on to start their wind-up; 20 seconds with runners on. If they don't start in time the batter gets a ball. Hitters, meanwhile, have to be in the box looking at the pitcher with eight seconds on the clock or they get a strike.

Major League Baseball says the clock has dropped games already by an average of about 25 minutes.

And I talked to some of the players in spring training about that clock and they told me well, it's definitely changing the game.


DOMINIC SMITH, FIRST BASEMAN, WASHINGTON NATIONALS: There will be some freaky scenarios where games will be won and lost because of it, and it will upset some people.

ALEX BREGMAN, THIRD BASEMAN, HOUSTON ASTROS: I've kind of changed my whole routine. I used to step out of the box and, like, look for a sign or something like that, but now I'm in the box the whole time.

SCHOLES: And so Scherzer can't quick-pitch. You're on your own, right?

BREGMAN: I was up with eight seconds to go.


SCHOLES: All right, so what else is new? The bases are also three inches bigger. You can't employ the shift anymore, so you can't have your shortstop playing in right field against left-handed batters and pitchers. They can only try to pick off runners twice now. A third failed attempt and it's a balk.

And you know, Christine, baseball -- I talked to a lot of their fans and what did people complain about the most? Games ended up being too long --


SCHOLES: -- a lot of the times. There just wasn't a lot of action on the field. Sometimes it was boring.

These new rules -- they look like they're a home run in baseball. It's going to be way better this season.

ROMANS: Maybe I'm going to be a convert. I don't know. I've always said that baseball games are way too long. OK, so I'll try and see if I notice a difference.

Nice to see you, Andy Scholes. Thank you.

SCHOLES: All right.

ROMANS: OK, to weather now. Potentially intense and widespread severe storms are pushing east. Tornadoes, damaging winds, and large hail will all be dangerous threats. Some of the same locations in the south that were impacted by the deadly tornado outbreak less than a week ago -- they are at risk again -- the very same spots.


CNN meteorologist Derek Van Dam has the forecast. How long is this outbreak, Derek, expected to last?

DEREK VAN DAM, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Well, we've got two days of severe weather potential ahead of us. I do want to mark that today we have a marginal risk -- so a very low-end risk across the Southern Plains. But it's really tomorrow afternoon -- Friday afternoon when things are going to ramp up and change across the Deep South and into the Midwest as well.

This is the culprit. That is a deep trough that's currently impacting the west coast. And all that energy is going to be transferred from California east of the Rockies and what's going to happen is we're going to see a deepening cyclone or a deepening low-pressure system and an associated cold front. So that's going to help provide the lift necessary for the thunderstorms to develop and some of which could be severe. The National Weather Service using wording like intense.

Long tracks, and strong tornadoes possible, especially in the southern portions where you see this greatest risk. Memphis, Little Rock -- that is a moderate risk. That's a level four of five. And we also have the potential for tornadoes across the central portions of Iowa into northwestern Illinois as well.

Here is the timeframe. You think maybe late evening on Friday and into the overnight hours. So the potential for nocturnal tornadoes exists. And the greatest probability of these discreet thunderstorm cells that could produce these long-track tornadoes will be across some of those hardest-hit areas from last week -- Christine.

ROMANS: All right, thank you so much, Derek -- thanks.


ROMANS: Be careful out there, folks.

VAN DAM: Yes, definitely.

ROMANS: All right. Apple is joining the buy now, pay later trend allowing the customers to pay for purchases in installments through its services. The company is now rolling out this to select users and plans to offer it to all eligible customers over the next few months. Buy now, pay later with Apple Pay. Joining me is CNN Business reporter Nathaniel Meyersohn with the

details. All things retail is your beat. Tell us how Apple's new program is going to work.

NATHANIEL MEYERSOHN, CNN BUSINESS REPORTER: Right. So, Apple is the latest company to jump into this buy now, pay later trend.

The way the program works is that you can buy just about anything and pay in four installments instead of all at once over the course of six weeks. The loans that you can take out range from $50.00 to $1,000. And this is the key here. There is no interest on these loans and there are no late fees.

ROMANS: Yes. I think it's really important to tell people buy now, pay later doesn't mean it's free. It means there's no interest unless you don't pay it back. It is a loan.

We've seen this growing. What is it -- what are people using it for?

MEYERSOHN: So more retailers have rolled it out. You can buy clothing, electronics, furniture. Increasingly, people are using it to pay for groceries. There's been a 40 percent jump in buy now, pay later for groceries during the first two months of 2023 compared to a year ago, and that's really a sign of financial distress. People looking to spread out the cost of their grocery purchases.

The typical buy now, pay later user has a low credit score and makes less than $50,000 a year.

ROMANS: Look, it can be an important convenience for some shoppers, it can be an important bridge for others, but financial distress I think is a really important way to look at it. If you -- if you can't pay this back what happens? It's late fees and interest.

MEYERSOHN: Right. So just because Apple doesn't charge late fees other of the buy now, pay later services do, and you get hit with a late fee if you don't make one of the installments. And we see late fees growing. They've jumped as buy now, pay later increases.

And also, the services -- about 25 percent of users don't have any retirement savings or emergency funds, so folks are really concerned that it's going to encourage overspending among people who don't have the means --


MEYERSOHN: -- to pay it back. And you're going to -- that will show up on your -- on your debit card --


MEYERSOHN: -- and it's going to impact your finances.

ROMANS: Look, overspending in a high interest rate environment is so dangerous. Store cards are 30 percent APR now. Credit card is a record high 20 percent. Just be careful about borrowing money out there, guys, however you do it.

Nathaniel Meyersohn, nice to see you. Thank you so much.

All right. Coming up on "CNN THIS MORNING" more on our breaking news. An American journalist has been detained in Russia. We are live in Moscow.

And next right there, Starbucks former CEO grilled on Capitol Hill and getting a bit defensive.


HOWARD SCHULTZ, FOUNDER AND FORMER CEO, STARBUCKS: Sir, Starbucks Coffee Company unequivocally -- and let me set the tone for this very early on -- has not broken the law.





SCHULTZ: But Howard Schultz, the leadership team of Starbucks, the board of directors -- some of whom are here today -- would never take benefits away of any kind of someone who was involved in trying to join a union.


ROMANS: Your Romans' Numeral this morning, 293. At least 293 of Starbucks' 9,000 company-owned U.S. stores have voted to unionize since 2021, but the union has not reached a contract agreement with Starbucks at any of those stores.

The former boss grilled on Capitol Hill Wednesday over allegations that Starbucks has been breaking labor laws.


SCHULTZ: We respect the right of every partner who wears a green apron, whether they choose to join the union or not.

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT): Are you aware that NLRB judges have ruled that Starbucks violated federal labor law over 100 times during the past 18 months -- far more than any other corporation in America?

SCHULTZ: Sir, Starbucks Coffee Company unequivocally -- and let me set the tone for this very early on -- has not broken the law.


ROMANS: Starbucks has 450,000 employees worldwide; 258,000 in the U.S. The company's minimum wage is $15.00 an hour. Schultz noted the average starting wage is $17.50. Starbucks workers also testified.


MAGGIE CARTER, HER STORE IN KNOXVILLE FIRST IN SOUTH TO UNIONIZE: You cannot be pro-partner and anti-union. It's well past time for the company to bargain in good faith. Help us hold them accountable. Thank you for allowing partners to have a seat at this table alongside former CEO Howard Schultz because that is significantly more than he was willing to offer.



ROMANS: All right, let's look at markets around the world this Thursday morning. Asian markets closed mixed. European markets have opened higher as optimism in the banking sector improves here. On Wall Street, stock index futures also moving up this morning here.

Markets ended higher, propelled by a surge in big tech stocks and growth stocks. And The Wall Street Journal this morning is reporting the White House will recommend tougher rules for mid-sized banks as soon as this week.

Pending home sales rose for the third consecutive month as buyers adjust to those higher mortgage rates.

On inflation watch, gas prices up three cents overnight to $3.49 a gallon.

A critical day on the economic calendar. Jobless claims, a revision to GDP, and mortgage rate numbers all out later today.

All right, the COVID pandemic left many of wondering what's next in our lives, what's next in our careers, searching for the new normal.

My next guest can help guide you to reinvent your life and make some career pivots. Let's bring in my friend Joanne Lipman. She is the author of the book "Next! The Power of Reinvention in Life and Work." It's a terrific read with so much research and reporting in here, Joanne. You outline these stages of reinvention. Walk me through those stages here.


So what "Next!" is it's a deeply reported guide to navigating change in how we live, how we work, how we lead, backed by hundreds of personal interviews but also interviews with all of the experts who studied a process of change.

And what I found is all kinds of transitions. People end up going through the same set of stages that I call the reinvention roadmap. It goes search, struggle, stop, solution. And what's so interesting about these stages is we tend when we tell

stories about reinvention, about people -- you know, Mark Zuckerberg -- it's like instant college kid to tech billionaire, right?

But what I found is the real work is in those middle stages in the struggle and the stop. There is -- we kind of ignore this because --


LIPMAN: -- it doesn't feel good, you know? But that's where the -- where the real work gets done.

ROMANS: Well, I feel like the pandemic really got a lot of people thinking about what they're getting out of work and what they're doing with their time. I mean, do you feel like this is a moment for those four stages, and which is the hardest one to get through, I guess? If it's the middle, what's your advice?

LIPMAN: Yes. So, yes, 100 percent. This is all about this moment in time. I wrote the book for this moment in time because so many of us are searching for that new normal after these past few years. We're looking for more meaning in our lives and in our careers. We're reprioritizing. We're actually rethinking our relationship to our jobs. But there is no guide to kind of tell you how do you do that.

Yes, and what I found is actually, most of the people I interviewed -- this is really interesting because all of the business books will tell you you have to have a plan and you've got to know where you're going, and then you have every step of the way to get where you're going. But what I found is so many of the people I interviewed weren't exactly sure where they were going to end up. It was this -- it was this process -- this roadmap that took them there.

And I interviewed everybody from James Patterson, the novelist who is a mega-successful guy. I first met him more than 30 years ago when he -- I covered him at The Wall Street Journal. He was an advertising executive and a struggling writer. And he walked me through the process.

And it was the same process for him as it was for a guy named Chris Donovan who was a telephone repairman who ultimately became a shoe designer. And the same for a mom who I interviewed who left the paid workforce but was able to emerge 12 years later after raising her kids as a nonprofit CEO and a mayor.

And it was fascinating as people walked me through this process. The issue is we have this sort of Cinderella myth in our society where we think these kinds of transitions are supposed to happen overnight but they really are very iterative and they happen over time. And there is this kind of messy struggle in the middle --


LIPMAN: -- that we don't talk about. But because we believe this Cinderella myth -- like Cinderella, Spiderman, Superman, American idol because we believe this myth, when we're struggling in the middle of it, we think there's something wrong with us, but there's not. It's actually an incredibly important part of the process.

It feels like you're getting nowhere. It feels like you're standing still. But you're actually making progress all along the way. You're moving forward even though you may not think so.

ROMANS: You talk about these transformations. Stacey Abrams, you write, was a romance and mystery novelist. I mean, Stacey Abrams the political activist and politician. Vera Wang was an Olympic -- an Olympic competitive figure skater and then became a journalist, and then at age 40 started being a fashion designer. You have a lot of really great examples in the book of people who've taken this arc and changed at different times of their -- of their lives.

Joanne Lipman, it's a really great read. We'll talk again soon. Thank you so much. That new book "Next! The Power of Reinvention in Life and Work" in most bookstores right now.


All right, ahead on "CNN THIS MORNING" why some of the biggest names in tech are calling for a pause on the artificial intelligence development race. And the latest on Pope Francis' condition. CNN is live right outside the hospital where he's being treated.


ROMANS: All right, our top of the morning, the top major U.S. (audio gap). Miami is number one. The Case-Shiller index (audio gap) shows 13.8 percent year-over-year in January. Number two, also in Florida, Tampa, where prices are up 10 1/2 percent over the past year. Number three, Atlanta, 8.4 percent year-over-year. Three southeastern cities top that list.


The bottom three are all out West: San Diego, Seattle, San Francisco last. Home prices there are down almost 8 percent over the past year.

All right, thanks for joining us. I'm Christine Romans. CNN THIS MORNING starts right now.