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Glenn Beck

What are Obama`s Views on Second Amendment?; Senator Discusses Whether Universities Should Get Endowments; Author Ted Bell Discusses New Book

Aired May 13, 2008 - 19:00   ET


GLENN BECK, HOST (voice-over): Tonight, Obama and guns. As he marches towards the nomination, we`ll examine his record on the Second Amendment. If you`re a gun owner, is this the guy you want in the White House?

Plus, I`ll introduce you to a man who says all future wars will be fought for oil. Face it: oil is a foundation for everything in our society. A point of view I don`t think you`ve ever heard before.

And William Shatner boldly goes where few men have gone before: my show for a full hour. A sneak peek at the sometimes heated interview with the author and actor.

All this and more tonight.


BECK: Hello, America.

It`s primary day in West Virginia. Want to know the results, check the bottom of the screen. They`re there. I don`t think this is much of a story, because everybody said Hillary Clinton`s going to win, including Barack Obama. The real story here is why won`t the good people of West Virginia pull the lever for Obama? I say a big part of that reason is guns. And all this week, I`m taking a look at how your Second Amendment gun rights are under fire.

So, here`s "The Point" tonight. Barack Obama says he doesn`t want to take away your guns, no, no, no, no. But his actions tell a very different story, and here`s how I got there.

Sometimes the only way we, the people, can know what a politician`s going to do in the future is look what they`ve done in the past. I know, crazy concept. Back in 1996, when Obama was running for state senate in Illinois, he filled out a questionnaire that said he favored a ban on the, quote, "manufacture, sale, and possession of handguns."

Now he claims that was a misrepresentation of his views. But Barack can`t deny that his handwriting is right there on the questionnaire. And when it comes to his stance on guns, handwriting really is on the wall, as well.

Back in his Chicago days, Obama sat on a board called the Joyce Foundation. This is an organization that handed out nearly $3 million to anti-gun groups. They actually paid to support a book called "Every Handgun is Aimed at You: The Case for Banning Handguns." Wow.

Based just on those two undeniable facts, Barack Obama is obviously anti-gun. And you know what? That`s fine. That`s cool. If that`s who you are, that`s fine. Not everybody likes guns. And if that`s how Obama feels, you know what, Obama? Grow a set. You`re entitled to your opinion. This is America.

Here`s the thing. When you`re running for president, you`ve got to own your past. Standing behind your decisions is what being a man and president of the United States is all about. Whether it`s your 20-year history with Reverend Jeremiah Wright or your position as an anti-gun advocate, Barack, it is your record. It`s clear. Stand up and tell us the truth.

I mean, your record was clear. At least it was until you started running for president. Back in February, Obama told Idaho primary voters what he thought they wanted to hear.


SEN. BARACK OBAMA (D-IL), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: There are people who say, "Well, he doesn`t believe in the Second Amendment, even though I come from a state, we`ve got a lot of hunters down-state Illinois, and I have no intention of taking away folks` guns."


BECK: He`s got a lot of hunters. He comes from that state. Then when he was in Philadelphia -- they don`t like guns too much -- this is what he told ABC News anchor Charlie Gibson.


OBAMA: As I said, I have never favored an all-out ban on handguns. What I think we can provide is commonsense approaches to the issue of illegal guns that are ending up on the streets.


BECK: Hmm. OK. Is he saying the same thing? Is this a radical change of heart? You decide. I think I know.

All I can tell you is this is what you need to know tonight, America. It`s, to me, plain as day. Barack Obama is not a virtuous knight in shining armor. He`s not what we all thought he was. He`s a politician, a politician that will say anything at any time just to get elected.

I think the most telling statement Barack has ever made about our Second Amendment was when he let his guard down. He was standing there. The cameras weren`t on. He was in San Francisco -- I mean, you know how they feel about guns -- and he spoke from his heart.

He said, quote, "Small-town folks deal with hardship, and it`s not surprising. They get bitter. They cling to their guns, their religions or antipathy to people who aren`t like them."

Barack, you know what? I feel safe in saying that I speak for a whole lot of Americans when I tell you I don`t need to be bitter to cling to my gun. The Constitution guarantees my right to cling to my gun during good times and bad.

And you know what? It ain`t about hunting or the tradition of gun ownership. It`s about my fundamental right as an American to protect myself from anybody that wants to do me or my family harm. And you know what? Sometimes those people are in our own government.

You don`t believe me? Read the words of the Founding Fathers.

Chris Cox is the chief lobbyist for the National Rifle Association, an organization which I am proudly a life member of and giving the keynote speech this Saturday at their convention.

And Jonathan Allen is a reporter with the "Congressional Quarterly."

Jonathan, let me get some of the facts out of the way with you right up front. Tell me about this -- this Barack Obama handwriting on this questionnaire. True or false?

JONATHAN ALLEN, "CONGRESSIONAL QUARTERLY": Well, his campaign isn`t denying that it`s his handwriting. What they say is it had nothing to do with the content of the questionnaire. They had been listing some supporters of his on the front page of the questionnaire, and hadn`t really reviewed the rest of questionnaire, in which his campaign staffer of the campaign says -- this is back in 1996 -- it indicated he would favor a ban on the manufacture, sale, and possession of handguns.

BECK: Oh, all right. And somehow or another they got that wildly wrong?

ALLEN: Well, apparently -- this is what the campaign says, that Barack Obama does not now, nor has he ever, used that language favoring the ban on handguns.

BECK: It`s kind of the same thing, you know, where they`re saying now that, "Oh, that Che flag that is hanging in the campaign headquarters -- where is it, Houston -- he has nothing to do with that at all; he doesn`t know anything about it. Yet the people in his office are flying a Che flag. So is that what we`re supposed to believe?

ALLEN: Well, I think there are a lot of different data points on the gun issue. Senator Obama says that he thinks there should be a balance between the constitutional right to own guns and the need to regulate them in some places.

But for the most part his voting record has shown a willingness to put certain restrictions on gun rights, as is the case with most Democrats and in most legislatures, including the Congress, the big questions tend to be the most divisive ones, the ones that divide the parties on gun issues.

BECK: OK. Chris, you give, as the National Rifle Association, Barack Obama an "F." I mean, he`s -- is he worse than Ted Kennedy or he`s right next to Ted Kennedy?

CHRIS COX, NATIONAL RIFLE ASSOCIATION: Well, Barack got his "F" rating from the NRA the old-fashioned way: he earned it. Now, every two years, every four years, gun owners see politicians like John Kerry in a goose pit 16 days before the election. So it`s not surprising that Barack Obama is in Idaho talking about supporting the Second Amendment and in Philadelphia tranquil (ph) on the Second Amendment.

Look, his position is very clear, both in the Illinois legislature and in the U.S. Congress: he doesn`t believe that there`s a fundamental right to have a handgun, that there`s a fundamental right to self-defense in your own home. He would rather leave you defenseless.

The National Rifle Association believes that honest, law-abiding people have the right to defend themselves from criminal attack, and that`s a position that Barack Obama has taken against.

And so again, Glenn, this is very clear. Election-year rhetoric. People have said that the biggest lies come before a wedding, after a hunt or during an election.

BECK: Right.

COX: And this is definitely Barack Obama lying during an election.

BECK: Do you know anything about this gun -- "Every Gun in America is Pointed at You: The Case for Banning Handguns"?

COX: He sat on the Joyce foundation doling out millions of dollars to radical gun control groups but wants the American gun owner to forget about it.

He voted to keep a guy in jail who defended his family with a handgun in Willamette, Illinois, but wants American gun owners to forget about it.

He refused to sign the amicus brief before the Supreme Court saying clearly that the Second Amendment is an individual right, but he wants American gun owners to forget about it.

Well, he`s going to find out that some American gun owners are bitter, and he`s going to see bitter on election day.

BECK: Everybody -- I want to show this. This is a video from New Orleans. This is -- everybody says, "Oh, they`re not coming for your guns. Nobody`s going to do that. They`re never going to come door to door and take your gun away." That`s exactly what happened. This is -- there you see this old lady. Chris, can you tell me how old she is?

COX: Her name is Patty Cohen and she was in her 70s. It`s a sad, tragic story, but you`re right. It happened for the first time in American history. They kicked people`s doors in, pointed guns at them and took their guns away when they needed them the most.

BECK: And here comes -- here comes the police. They`re coming into her kitchen now. They -- they pin her down to the floor. They take her out. Now, the story is -- I mean, she`s -- I mean, look at her. She`s 70 years old. She did not want to relinquish her gun to the police after Hurricane Katrina, because she said, "I have a right to protect myself. You guys, I can`t get phone calls out. I can`t call 911. The place is breaking down all around me. They took her gun by force."

What I can`t believe is that this has happened already, and yet people still are living in this dream world that, "Oh, well, you don`t have to worry, nobody`s going to come and take your guns." They`ve already done it in this country. And people are still having a hard time getting their gun back in New Orleans. True or false, Chris?

COX: That`s exactly right, Glenn.

BECK: OK. Real quick, 40 percent of people in Texas -- this is -- do you have any other evidence that people are going out and buying guns like crazy right now, because they know what`s coming?

COX: Well, gun owners all over the country are paying attention not only to that Supreme Court case that we`re expecting a decision next month, but also for Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. They know where these two candidates stand. They know that they stand against our freedoms, and they`re watching very closely. And they`re worried.

BECK: Both of you, thank you, gentlemen. I appreciate it.

Up next, we`re going to go on back to the university endowment story that I told you about last night. Today, the hypocrisy in the way some of the schools use their multibillion-dollar stockpiles, and yet they`re begging you for tax dollars.

And the final frontier with William Shatner. I`ll bring a sneak peek to the hour-long interview that I had with Shatner. It was heartfelt and at times a little heated.

And a reminder that tonight`s show is brought to you by the Sleep Number Bed. Select Comfort makes the Sleep Number Bed. It`s the bed that counts.


BECK: Coming up in just a few minutes, a dark version of the future. I mean, it`s really -- I mean, it`s dark for even this program. Oil is the foundation for everything in our world, right? The economy, our society. I`m going to introduce you to quite possibly the spookiest man to walk in shoes. He`s going to explain when -- what happens when oil just goes away. You won`t sleep for days. Coming up in just a second.

But first, I told you yesterday about how some Massachusetts politicians are proposing that colleges and universities with endowments over a billion dollars should not be taxed. Not surprisingly, Harvard, which has the largest endowment in the country, has reacted with the, you know, the same hypocritical, sanctimonious outrage that you`d expect from a liberal institution that believes that all wealth is evil. Except mine, of course.

As a conservative, I don`t believe in taxing people just because they have a lot of money. I don`t think that we should go after easy targets. I believe that taxing success discourages success. That`s not what America does. Abraham Lincoln said it`s wrong to do it.

What I stand for, however, is consistency and accountability, and I hate it because I`m siding with Harvard here. And Harvard fails miserably on consistency and accountability. Their endowment currently stands at $36 billion. I`m fine with that.

Last year, they made a 23 percent return on their money. That`s fantastic. That`s nearly $7 billion in interest alone. I`m still OK. It`s all tax free. Still fine.

What`s not fine is when you find out that Harvard spent a laughable $302 million of that fund, or .8 percent, on tuition and scholarships for their students last year, all while saying, "Oh, the government`s got to step to the plate and help these poor students that can`t afford an education. There are millions of kids that just need subsidized education." Are you kidding me, Harvard?

You know what? I will defend your success. I`ll defend your mission. I`ll defend your crazy professors that are teaching garbage. But, please don`t ask me to defend your hypocrisy.

Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley now joins me.

Senator, these -- these universities are businesses, plain and simple. They last year spent two times the amount on their -- on their endowment managers than they did on actual tuition assistance.

SEN. CHUCK GRASSLEY (R), IOWA: Yes. That`s ridiculous. Such a low amount. I agree with you that they shouldn`t be taxed. I`m glad that they`re successful with their investment.

But remember, the purpose for the giving and the purpose of the university is to educate, and I think we ought to expect more out of them to help people to go to college so that they don`t have to raise tuition by the high percentages they have.

Do you know that if colleges -- or if milk had gone up as much over the last 20 years as college tuition has gone up above inflation, you`d be paying $15 for a gallon of milk?

BECK: Yes. It is amazing to me, Senator, that -- you know, an education at Harvard or Princeton is like $50,000 a year, but you can`t get any assistance from the school unless you make under $120,000 a year. What person that makes $120,000 a year can afford $50,000-a-year tuition?

And yet they have all of this money to help keep the cost of tuition down. Honestly, Harvard, if they only used a billion of their $7 billion in profit, could send everyone for free.

GRASSLEY: Now, you understand that we raised this issue last September in the finance committee. And I`ve been given credit by the president of Yale that they are increasing their payout to help students because of legislation that I might put in that I haven`t put in yet.

And so, we have seen Harvard and Yale and Brown and Cornell and MIT and Stanford -- I don`t know how many others -- that have promised to increase their payout, I think, in the neighborhood of 5 percent, which gets it close to what foundations have to pay out under law every year.

BECK: But you know, here`s what I don`t understand, Senator. Why the heck are we in the financial mess that this country is in? Everybody wants to go and take these profits from the oil companies, which I`m also not for, but yet we`re not talking -- we`re talking about an oil company.

We`re talking about an institution that is trying to teach and educate our kids, many times teaching things that I don`t agree with, and yet they`re doing it with government subsidies. Why are we doing it when they have the money to subsidize themselves?

GRASSLEY: OK. Well, the point is that I`ve got to look at this from the standpoint of a tax exemption of charitable giving, and then the nonprofit status of organizations. I want to maintain the credibility of the tax deductibility of charitable giving. So, Glenn, if you want to give to Harvard, you get to deduct it.

The other point is that universities ought to use their money for the purpose that it is given. And you assume that people give money to improve educational opportunity. And, so I want to make sure that they use their money to help the kids, particularly the lower-income families.

BECK: You know what, Senator? I agree with everything you said, but I don`t think you`re going far enough. Again, why are we sending tax dollars to Harvard, who has a $35 billion endowment?

And we`re out of time, but I hope to pick this up with you again, Senator.

GRASSLEY: OK. Thank you.

BECK: Coming up, soaring oil prices are clearly bad for America`s bottom line, but what happens if oil dry -- dries up and becomes more expensive than gold? We have a look at the future without oil, coming up.

And best-selling author Ted Bell is going to be here. I`m telling you, if you have a son, you have not read a book like "Nick of Time." This is an interview you do not want to miss. Coming up next.


BECK: I have three daughters, and I have a son, and I have to tell you, it`s easy to find books for girls. It is very hard to find books -- you know, there used to be -- there used to be manuals for growing up and being a good, strong, honest man, right?

Today, try to find one that`s aimed at young male readers. They are emasculating. They`re no longer about value or virtue or the spirit of adventure, sticking up for your little sister and yourself.

But not all of them. There is a brand-new book out there that mixes a sense of honor with a story your son will not be able to put down. I know this is for teenagers. I read it cover to cover, and it is fantastic. I can`t wait till my son is old enough to read it. "Nick of Time" is the name of it by Ted Bell, a friend of mine, and best-selling "New York Times" best-selling author.

How are you?

TED BELL, AUTHOR, "NICK OF TIME": Glenn, great to be with you.

BECK: I have to tell you, I mean, let`s just be -- let`s play all the politically incorrect cards here on the table. There is no political correctness in this. The boy is the boy, and he does the right things, and the values in this book are unashamed.

BELL: Absolutely. And I think that`s what`s sorely missing in all these books you`re talking about for boys. And this book is about a kid who wants to be a hero. He feels he has a hero inside of him, but he`s not sure he`s going to be able to be strong enough to find that self-reliance and patriotism and courage and bravery and...

BECK: You know, I knew -- I knew that...

BELL: All that good stuff.

BECK: I knew that books had changed, but until I read this -- I mean, I wrote you after I finished it. I said I -- it`s -- I don`t know. It`s like an old-fashioned book, but it`s not old-fashioned reading. It just reminds me of what we used to have.

BELL: It`s so old-fashioned it`s brand new.

BECK: Yes.

BELL: Because this is the way we -- when you and I were growing up, we had "Treasure Island" and we had, you know, Captain Blood and you had all those wonderful adventures. We don`t have them anymore. So I said I`m going to write one.

BECK: I was just amazed where the sister -- because it`s about Nazis. In fact, let me show you some of the artwork for this. This is great. This is everything a boy likes in a book.

BELL: Artist named Russ Kramer, by the way, and he`s just great.

BECK: And then pirates. It`s time travel, Nazis, spies, I mean -- it`s everything. But at one point, the little girl, his sister, says to a Nazi, you know -- and a weird, sick Nazi doctor. And she`s like, "Back off, because my brother will come and get you."

BELL: Right.

BECK: And I thought -- I realized then, when was the last time the heroine did not save the brother but the brother stuck -- you know, stood up for his little -- and saved the girl?

BELL: Exactly.

BECK: It doesn`t happen anymore.

BELL: No, no.

BECK: So, what is the -- the story is about the Nazis and the time travel. Why did the time travel come in?

BELL: Time travel came in -- well, I have a hero here named Nick McIver, and the book begins with him wondering if he`s got the stuff to be a hero.

BECK: Yes.

BELL: And he also lives on a little island with nothing but cows, and he says, "How am I ever going to get a chance to prove anything?"

And his two heroes are Winston Churchill and Admiral Nelson. And so I had to bring time travel in because I wanted them to meet both of his great heroes in his life and prove to himself and to them that he`s a hero, that he has the stuff to be a hero.

BECK: Yes. You know what? It is -- it is -- thank you for writing something where boys can be boys, where you can have that experience. It`s clean. It is really a tremendous book. And also, it teaches a little bit of history. So...

BELL: Yes.

BECK: Which is lost. There are no great storytellers or stories anymore, and you`ve created one.

BELL: Thank you. A lot of the mail is about kids loving the history part as well as the Nazis and the spies and the pirates. They`re going for the whole thing.

BECK: Fantastic. Ted Bell. "Nick of Time" in bookstores right now. Grab a copy.

Coming up next, "The Real Story" on the one thing that will likely be the trigger for all future wars. Not politics or religion. Oil. Next.


BECK: Coming up, a sneak peek at my in-depth interview with legendary actor William Shatner. I did it yesterday. It didn`t go well. I didn`t ask, you know, questions like, "Hey, how come the guy in the red shirt always bought it on `Star Trek`?" You know, I didn`t get that question in.

In fact, I didn`t get a lot of questions in, because he came with an agenda, and, oh, from acting to politics, he said it all. Highlights in just a bit.

But first, welcome to "The Real Story." Later this week, President Bush, who happens to be the world`s leader of the world`s top oil consumer, will be visiting Saudi Arabia. Coincidentally, this is a strange -- they`re the world`s top oil producer. Yes. I guess it`s time once again for our president to go and say, "Please, king, I`d like more."

But "The Real Story" is this trip just isn`t about gas prices. A 42- gallon barrel of oil actually only yields about 19 gallons of gasoline. The rest of it is used to make everyday products.

You know that meat you go into the supermarket and you buy? It`s sitting on Styrofoam made with oil. Plastic, asphalt, tires, deodorant, crayons, dishwasher detergent, food packaging, you name it. It has probably been made with oil and shipped by oil.

Albert Einstein said once that he doesn`t know what weapons were going to be used in World War III, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.

He might be right, but what he didn`t say is what those sticks and stones would be used to fight over. And that most likely will be oil.

No blood for oil? Might be a cute little bumper sticker slogan now, but my next guest says that may be our future. James Howard Kunstler, author of "The Long Emergency: Surviving the End of Oil" and the new book, "World Made by Hand," the author joins me now.

James, I have to tell you, I`m reading -- I`m in the middle of "World Made by Hand." Please tell me there`s a happy ending. It is -- it`s absolutely fantastic. And I wanted to have you on and we`re clearing out a lot of space here for you, because when people talk about high gas prices, they`re missing the point. You say that in 37 years, there will be no oil left.

JAMES HOWARD KUNSTLER, AUTHOR, "WORLD MADE BY HAND": Well, actually, Glenn, it`s not about running out of oil, and I didn`t really say that. It`s about what happens when we go right over the slippery slope of the all-time production peak. And what happens is...

BECK: You`re saying that we`re already past that peak.

KUNSTLER: Yes. I think we have plenty of reasons to -- and I`m not the only one.

BECK: Oh, I know that.

KUNSTLER: I think we have plenty of reason to believe that we are past the all-time global production peak.

BECK: OK. China is not even online yet, I mean, really online. They`ve doubled their consumption in the last five years, but again, I mean, I believe I read this in "The Long Emergency," that in ten years they will be consuming 100 percent of the world`s current production.

KUNTSLER: Well, they`re going to be -- theoretically they would be consuming a lot, but, you know, I think what`s going to happen is that as we go over that slippery slope of peak, that the complex systems we depend on for daily life are going to get in trouble.

And by complex systems, I mean the way we produce our food, the way we do commerce and trade, the way we do transportation, and so on. All these things are going to mutually affect each other and ramify the problems that are being created. You know, trouble in transportation will be trouble in agriculture and trouble running our cities and trouble in school and all kinds of things.

BECK: But you`re not -- but "The World Made by Hand," do you believe that this is the future of -- what it`s really going to look like, "World Made by Hand"?

KUNTSLER: Well, "World Made by Hand" was a novel, and I wrote that because I wanted to depict very vividly one of the possible outcomes of our oil predicament. It`s not the only valid, imagined scenario.

BECK: Yes, but it`s...

KUNTSLER: What I did imagine...

BECK: It`s pretty bleak. I mean, you`re talking -- it`s post-machine America. There are no real cars or machines going.


BECK: It`s like living on "Little House in the Prairie."

KUNTSLER: Well, it`s more -- it`s more like agriculture has come back to the center of life, people are living very locally, and they`re not really getting a whole lot of news of the outside world.

BECK: OK. Do you believe that`s a realistic scenario? And if so, how long would we have before we would start having to dramatically -- I`m not talking about not taking airplanes places. I mean where the world is a dramatically different place.

KUNTSLER: I think that we`re in for severe changes and probably beginning within five years we`re going to be in a lot of trouble. And I think what -- what people also fail to appreciate is that the trouble is accelerating, and the acceleration itself will continue. And these problems are going to ramify each other even more severely.

We`re going to have -- we`re already having trouble with food production worldwide as a result of our attempts to cover our fuel problems, our motor fuel problems, by creating ethanol. And, you know, we didn`t expect this to happen right away. It happened within almost a year and a half of ramping up the ethanol programs.

So, these things are really happening very quickly. Nobody expected the price of oil to quadruple since 2001 or double just in the last year alone.

BECK: You know, I have to tell you, James, that I mean, I`ve been concerned because, you know, we`re living in troubled times, and you never know what could happen.

And my grandparents -- I think our grandparents would be ashamed of us. If they lived through the Great Depression, they taught us these things for a reason, to be able to be self-reliant in times that were really, really tough.

And we`re so arrogant now that we think that we could -- that`ll never happen to us. We can never go through those kinds of tough times, which I think is a total lie that we tell ourselves.

But we`re not even teaching how to farm. Most people don`t have any idea how to grow their own food. They have no idea how the soil works or anything like it.

KUNTSLER: Well, we are pretty poorly prepared for this, and there`s an awful lot of fantasy and wishful thinking out there. And understandably so, because the enormous system that we`ve cranked up for daily life, you know, represents just a fantastic amount of investment. And that alone prevents us from thinking clearly about letting go of it or changing it or undergoing any real severe reform of it.

BECK: You said that you wrote "A World Made by Hand" to get the message out. I mean, I`ve read "The Long Emergency," and I`m halfway through "World Made by Hand," and both of them are stark. "World Made by Hand" really kind of feels almost like -- oh, what was that show on -- "Jericho" in a way, where it kind of resets -- except it`s better than "Jericho" was.

But in it religion plays a big role. Do you think religion is going to be renewed or revived in some sort of almost spooky way?

KUNTSLER: Well, I`m not a particularly pious person myself. I`m not really very religious, but it seemed to me that a lot of the structures of everyday life, especially the corporate milieu and, you know, the school milieu and all of the structures that -- that we hang our social roles and lives on will be absent and that people would need another focus for -- for their daily life, for organizing their daily life and structuring it.

So, it seemed to me that we would probably see people gravitating more back into some kind of organized religion. Now, in "World Made by Hand"...

BECK: James, I`ve got...

KUNTSLER: The townspeople are not particularly pious, although they - - their lives do revolve around a congregation.

BECK: It kind of goes awry there. James, I`ve got to run. I`m sorry. We`re up against a hard break. That`s our "Real Story" tonight.

Coming up next, a sneak peek at my hour-long exclusive interview with Hollywood legend William Shatner, covering everything from acting, oil, alcoholism. It`s a fiery interview you do not want to miss, coming up.


BECK: Well, throughout his career, William Shatner has battled Klingons. He had trouble with the tribbles, suffered "The Wrath of Khan," et cetera, et cetera, but it wasn`t really until this week that Shatner had met his match. Yes, me.

You`re going to see on Friday a full-hour interview with William Shatner, but I thought tonight I`d give you just a little taste of a show you do not want to miss.

Honestly, I thought it was going to be like the little happy chat surrounding his new autobiography, "Up Until Now," you know, talk "Star Trek" or possible -- nope. Nope.

He came after me, and his phaser was definitely not set on stun.


BECK: You know, you`re known for -- in "Star Trek," you`re known for overacting.

WILLIAM SHATNER, ACTOR: What does that mean?

BECK: I don`t know, but...

SHATNER: No, no, no. See, what do you mean you don`t know? You`re Glenn Beck. You know everything.

BECK: Oh, sure, I know. You watch the show.

SHATNER: Right. Or have pretended -- what do you mean by that? What does that mean to you?

BECK: When you`re fighting a giant laberath (ph)...

SHATNER: The lizard.

BECK: That says "er, er."

SHATNER: Yes. So, what are you going to do? "Well, there`s a lizard." No, "there`s a lizard for God`s sakes."

BECK: No, no. I know. I know.

SHATNER: I mean, you`ve got to -- so, what does that mean?

BECK: I mean, OK. I mean, if you want to go here...

SHATNER: Don`t back down now.

BECK: No, no. If you want to go here, I`m a "Star Trek" fan.


BECK: But it`s hokey. You know it and I know it. It`s a lizard man.

SHATNER: It was a lizard.

BECK: Got it.

SHATNER: But everything`s hokey. Your show is hokey. You get mad about this --it`s true. Right?

BECK: Right.

SHATNER: The chairmen are laughing. Laughing out of knowledge. What happened? It`s a lizard. There`s a rock coming my way.

BECK: It`s not a rock. It`s not a rock.

SHATNER: It`s called suspension of disbelief.

BECK: I`ve got a problem with his show, and he apparently has a problem with my show. We were talking about the break.

SHATNER: It`s not a problem.


SHATNER: It`s life changing, actually. It`s life altering.

BECK: Yes.

SHATNER: Well, you know, I watch you fairly consistently.

BECK: Yes.

SHATNER: Sort of like watching a fireplace, I suppose, or an 8.7 trembler of a building. You think, "Wow, look at that."

BECK: You never know.


BECK: Yes.

SHATNER: But I suppose you`re known for the sky is falling, the sky is falling.

BECK: You`re saying Chicken Little.

SHATNER: Yes. Chicken Little. But I thought KFC might have a problem with that.

BECK: Sure. Bucket of chicken would be good.

SHATNER: Right. I`m somewhat -- I`m somewhat buying into this -- not buying into this. I`m very much aware. I read Rachel Carlson 40 years ago.

BECK: Sure.

SHATNER: And subscribed to Rachel Carlson`s "The Silent Spring." It was happening then. People became aware of the disintegration of the world a decade ago. Like everybody smoking and then one day smoking is bad for you. Suddenly nobody was smoking.

But it was a decade, as well, ago, before everybody started to realize that even second-hand smoke -- now outdoor second-hand smoke and everything is falling part on the smoke thing.

BECK: Yes.

SHATNER: I buy that the world is falling apart.

BECK: Mm-hmm.

SHATNER: In every -- in every way. The main cause of it is overpopulation. Not the main. The cause of the world`s destruction is there are too many people.

BECK: I think there are too many stupid people.

SHATNER: No. There are too many stupid and intelligent people. They`re so close together you can`t tell them apart.

BECK: Right.

SHATNER: All right? They`re pressed together, defecating into the ocean, and it`s all -- it`s just too much. The planet can`t take it.

BECK: I`ve never -- defecate -- I don`t know anybody that`s defecated in the ocean.

SHATNER: The book is the story of -- somebody said it the other day and I loved it, saying yes to life rather than the nots and finally getting beaten down by -- by experiences and life. Life takes the life out of you sooner or later. The people who can journey to the end still with the volatility that they had as a kid, I think, have the best life.

BECK: I don`t think you learn that in this book. I think you learn that it`s not the volatility that you had as a kid or the vitality that you had as a kid. I think you`re growing in speed. Don`t you think?

SHATNER: I hope so. I hope so.


BECK: It`s a very interesting interview. You don`t want to miss it. A small slice of the fun. You`ll see it on Friday. Full hour with William Shatner. He has opinions. He has a lot of opinions. It`s a lot more than "Star Trek," trust me. It ain`t boring. Friday.

Now, time for tonight`s "Real America" brought to you by CNX. On average, an infant needs up to ten diapers a day, costs about 100 bucks a month just to diaper a child. See, overpopulation. You remember.

For families struggling to make ends meet, affording diapers can be an impossibility. Joanne Goldblum, she saw in her own community the problem in here, and she decided not to go to the government but instead that she could make a difference, one diaper at a time.


BECK (voice-over): Just a few years ago, Joanne Goldblum was a social worker for family support services in Connecticut. Her days, spent assessing the needs of New Haven`s poorest families, at night, venting to her husband about the struggles she saw every day, people at the poverty level unable to attend to their family`s basic needs, the greatest of which was not being able to afford diapers.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Diapers and babies were something that people can understand and think about what it would be like not to be able to adequately diaper your baby. What life is like for a poor child. Poverty is much bigger than we sometimes think about it as.

BECK: With no diaper subsidies available in her community, Goldblum took matters into her own hands, literally. Starting out with a minivan and a lot of trips to B.J.`s, bulk purchases of diapers, her living room became a distribution headquarters for local agencies to pick up all the diapers she purchased.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I got some friends together and some other people who were interested in, you know, making a difference. And once a month, we would distribute them.

BECK: Four years later, the Diaper Bank, no longer a living room operation, it`s now a not-for-profit that provides 100,000 diapers a month to more than 45 agencies in New Haven, Hartford, and Bridgeport, Connecticut. With help from the Department of Health and Family Services, Goldblum has enough funding to ditch the minivan.

The Diaper Bank now buys diapers by the truckload and operates out of this warehouse in New Haven.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is wonderful to know that parents have one less choice, really difficult choice, that they need to make about how to take care of their families.

BECK: What all started out as an idea to help fill a need in her community has now turned into a full-time operation for Goldblum, and that`s quite an impressive bottom line.


BECK: I have to tell you, I firmly believe the government`s not going to solve any of our problems. We`re going to solve them on our hone. There`s another example.

For more information or to donate, go to If you`d like to see more stories about people making a difference, click on and look for the "Real America" section. Tonight`s "Real America" brought to you by CSX: how tomorrow moves.


BECK: I`m going to tell you the story of Irena Sendler. It`s a name that I didn`t even know until last year, but once I heard the name, it`s connected to a story that I have never forgotten.

This woman was born in 1910. She was outside of Warsaw. By 1940, she had become an administrator in Warsaw`s Welfare Department as Hitler occupied Poland. Well, the Nazis, if you remember right, took half a million Jews and they shoved them in the ghetto. And then they cut off all the basic health services, even food.

Now, Irena was responsible for controlling tuberculosis in the area, so she could go wherever she wanted without any restriction. And she used that freedom to convince Jewish parents to let her hide their children. Imagine the scene: "Please, let me take your children."

This woman worked so hard to rescue the children of the ghetto. Sometimes she carried them in a burlap sack or she would put them in a casket to elude the Nazi guards. She`d put them in an ambulance right next to her in the back seat, and her dog she trained to constantly bark when she was questioned so the Nazis couldn`t hear the cries of the children in the sack or the coffin. They`d just hear the dog.

Sendler then gave the children all new names and documents, and she placed them with Christian families. But she didn`t want their original identities to die, so she wrote down their real names and buried them underground in a jar in her back yard by an apple tree.

Eventually, she was caught by the Gestapo. She was brutally tortured. They broke her feet and her legs with wooden clubs, just beat her and beat her. She was then scheduled to be executed, but she escaped by bribing a guard, and she lived in secret until the war was finally over.

Once she was free, the first thing she did was dig up that jar next to that apple tree. She attempted to put the lives of the rescued children back together. Unfortunately, most of the parents were killed, but she placed many with relatives.

Irena Sendler, she wound up -- wound up rescuing 2,500 Jewish children from certain death at the hands of the Nazis. She lived the past few years, an amazing woman, at a nursing home. She was actually cared for by a woman that she had smuggled out of the ghetto when she was only 6 months old. Irena had carried her in a toolbox with a dog barking at her feet.

I told you that I`d only heard this story last year. When I heard it, it was because she was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. She lost. To Al Gore and his movie about a slide show.

Yesterday she died, and it is despicable that she did so without winning the peace prize, but I`m sure if you asked Irena, she would have been worried about other things. And right now today she`s reaping her real rewards, and they are far more substantial.

From New York, good night, Irena.