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Glenn Beck

American Headed for Economic Apocalypse?; Is Obama Over-Hyped?

Aired June 17, 2008 - 19:00   ET


GLENN BECK, HOST (voice-over): Tonight, millions of acres of farmland under water in the Midwest. Is this the latest sign of the perfect economic storm? We`ll tell you how the floods will hurt the economy and your wallet.

Plus, John McCain delivers a major speech on energy policy. He`ll talk about the need for more offshore drilling. Hey, Senator, welcome to the club.

And Al Gore gives Obama the green light.

AL GORE, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Ladies and gentlemen, the next president of the United States of America, Barack Obama.

BECK: But wait until I show you what Barack Obama said on "Jimmy Kimmel." Do as I say, not as I do.

All this and more tonight.


BECK: Well, hello, America. How was your day? I`m going to try to make it better. I don`t think with this story, but we`ll try to get through it together.

Do you remember that movie with George Clooney, the fishing boat stranded miles from shore, surrounded by wind and rain and high seas on all sides and George Clooney still looks good? It`s called "The Perfect Storm". Remember that?

We have the same situation brewing right here at home. And I`ve been telling you about it for almost two years. And buckle up, gang, because here we go. Tonight I want to tell you about the economic side of that storm.

Congressional roadblocks are driving up the price of gas. Flooding, biofuels, destroying the supply and driving up the price of food. And for good measure, utility companies are jacking up the price of electricity. Unbelievable levels. Natural gas is up almost 50 percent. So here`s "The Point" tonight.

Brace yourself, because I think we`re on the brink of an economic tsunami. And, unfortunately for you, this is as close as you get to George Clooney. Here`s how I got there.

Midwest is experiencing the worst flooding in over a decade. Fourteen inches of rain have fallen in the last two weeks, leaving four million acres under water. Let me give you some idea of how much land we`re talking about. Four million acres is roughly the size of three million football fields or New York, Washington, D.C., Rhode Island and Connecticut combined. That`s a big farm.

Things are especially tragic in Iowa. Set aside the human tragedy, which is unbelievable right now, but the biggest corn and soybean producer in the U.S. is Iowa. According to some experts, corn production could be cut by half a billion bushels. The corn that is available is trading at prices 72 percent higher than earlier this year. Remember, we`re not just talking about corn on the cob for your summer Fourth of July picnic. This is the corn that goes to feed livestock that turns into steaks, hamburger and milk.

When you add this flooding disaster to the corn that is already being wasted on ethanol production -- what a stupid idea -- America and the world`s food supply is in serious trouble. If you`re a regular watcher of this program you probably saw back in January I warned you about this. I said, stockpile food staples. Just buy them. You can`t buy enough cornflakes, just in case. It will be good economic sense. I said that a natural disaster would only make things much, much worse. Do I sound crazy to you now?

Like I told you yesterday, gas is up 35 percent. Electricity is up 30 percent. Natural gas, which most Americans use to heat their home, will hit a record high next month, up 43 percent from last year. Oh, boy. What happens when we hit November and December?

Even with all of that, domestic drilling is stalled by Congress. It`s like these people don`t even -- they don`t even live on the same planet. And this is really too bad, since drilling in ANWR alone would yield 100 million barrels a day.

To give you perspective on that, that`s as much as Texas drills every day, the entire state, and the same amount we import from the country of Nigeria. We`ve got plenty of natural gas, as well, on the outer continental shelf. There is a patch loaded with 420 trillion, with a "T," cubic feet.

And to cap it all off, the front page of today`s "New York Sun" has this story. I love this story. It`s about countries that are fighting to be able to get the oil off the coast of Florida. Unfortunately, listed here is not the country of America. There`s Vietnam, China, Malaysia and Norway. Funny, last time I checked, I thought Florida was part of our United States.

Tonight America, here is what you need to know. I`m sorry, gang, really, this is as close as you`re getting to George Clooney. This ain`t a Hollywood movie, and there`s no bittersweet ending after our perfect storm. This is real life.

You`re getting deluged from all sides. There is less gas for your car. There`s less heat for your house, food for your table, electricity for everything else. What you can buy is getting more and more expensive every day. The perfect storm seems to be approaching, and I ain`t crazy about our choices for the new captain of the ship.

Steven Moore writes economic editorials for "The Wall Street Journal," and Bob O`Brien is the stocks editor at Barron`s Online.

Bob, let me start with you. Is this storm and flooding, taking out all these farms, is this big enough to actually affect the real stability of our economy?

BOB O`BRIEN, STOCKS EDITOR, BARRON`S ONLINE: Oh, absolutely, yes. Glenn, you`re looking at something -- I mean, you mentioned the bulge that we`ve seen in the prices of corn. And if you figure the way corn moves through the entirety of the food chain out there. It`s used basically as a raw ingredient in just about everything that you eat to some extent.

When we heard from the -- when we heard from Smithfield Farms, one of the biggest protein producers in America, about two weeks ago, when it reported some disastrous quarterly results, their CEO said that if we don`t address this problem with the shortage of some of these raw materials like corn, we are facing a global disaster.

He didn`t mince words. This guy`s on the front line of exactly what this problem represents. And I think he`s speaking the truth on this issue.

BECK: OK. Steven, there`s talk now about a bailout, but we`re not talking about just a farm bailout. We`re talking about a housing bailout with Christopher Dodd. We`re talking about a bank bailout. Everybody`s getting bailed out.

Front page "Wall Street Journal" today was "Obama Plans Spending Boost." I mean, how much more can we take? Of bailouts and government spending?

STEVEN MOORE, "WALL STREET JOURNAL": Well, these bailouts are out of control. And you know, your heart bleeds, Glenn, for the people who lost their homes in places like Cedar Rapids, Iowa. We cannot bail out everyone who has misfortune fall upon them.

Now when you look at these prices -- and you were talking about corn just a minute ago, Glenn, don`t forget, corn prices had already tripled before the floods happened. So we were already seen a gigantic increase in these prices of corn.

Thank you for educating the American people about the importance of drilling more homegrown oil, because we have as much oil as Saudi Arabia does. But there`s one other culprit that you haven`t mentioned here, Glenn, and it`s important, and that is the Federal Reserve, the people who print the money in Washington. They are printing too many dollars.

Remember Economics 101. Inflation is too many dollars facing too few goods. We have got to have the Federal Reserve stop churning out dollars. It`s deflating Americans income, and it`s causing inflation.

BECK: Bob, this is bigger than Katrina. Isn`t it? I mean, we`re talking about a situation where they`re talking now about rationing corn, that some parts in this country where you are not going to be able to get anything with a corn product in it. They say that this is -- the price of corn that has happened just because of this storm is -- is the same as oil going from $80 a barrel to $320 a barrel.

O`BRIEN: Yes. Given the relatively low base, we`ve got corn trading at just under $7 a bushel, so if you saw it move up to something in the order of $18 to $20, then you`ve got an enormous bulge in that pricing. Unlike Katrina, horrible tragedy, obviously, significant human toll there.

However, the only infrastructure that was damaged, really, in Katrina, other than the city of New Orleans itself and all those communities, was some of the oil refining and drilling operations.

BECK: Not for long.

O`BRIEN: And not for long. And we could afford to move some of those operations to other places.

BECK: Right.

O`BRIEN: You can`t replace Iowa as a producer of corn.

BECK: Yes.

O`BRIEN: And this is -- I mean, once these fields -- one of the problems with the calendar right now, and I`m no expert on the farm economy. I grew up in West Philadelphia. But even I know that we`re getting to the point where, even if these fields dry out, it`s too late to replant the corn. So we`re not going to be able to replace those lost opportunities.

MOORE: There`s another -- there`s another problem here, Glenn, related to what Bob is talking about. And you mentioned this. Ethanol, we have moved...

BECK: Stop, stop.

MOORE: Glenn, we have moved 5 million acres out of production of corn for food to fuel. It`s not an...

BECK: It`s got to be stopped.

MOORE: It`s driving up the cost not just of corn, but wheat, rice. I mean, you mentioned cornflakes. Go and buy some Rice Krispies. Those prices are up, too.

BECK: So Steven, two things. I said in January, go store food fight now. It`s only going to get worse, because these prices are really not going to be felt for a while. Go buy food now. It`s a great investment.

You told me, I don`t know, eight months ago, "Glenn, I`m not worried. I just don`t think" -- are you worried yet?

MOORE: I am. Because the Federal Reserve continues to churn out money. We`ve had these natural disasters, so it`s like we`ve done something to annoy God. On top of the politicians hurting our economy, now it`s the natural disasters.

Yes, I think we`re going to face a real tough summer and fall with rising prices of electricity, of oil, of food, and Congress is doing nothing about it. They`re not going after any of our homegrown resources. It`s almost criminal neglect.

BECK: It is criminal. Guys, thanks a lot. We`ll have you back again.

Coming up, Barack Obama gets a very convenient endorsement from Vice President Al Gore. But will it be enough to open up his surprisingly small lead over John McCain? The year of the donkey, right? What happened?

Plus, John McCain calls to cut the federal ban on offshore drilling in an effort to make this country energy independent. Well, welcome to the party, Senator. About time. We`ll have the latest details.

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


BECK: Well, John McCain has pulled a classic political flip-flop on offshore drilling. Now that he`s got it kind of half right, will he have the vision and the political will to lead America to energy independence? I love the fact that he wants state`s rights, except for Alaska.

Tonight the answer in "The Real Story." But first, if there is one cliche about the media that is absolutely true, it is never let the facts get in the way of a good story. Their favorite story in the last year and a half has been the phenomenon, the savior arriving on the political scene, Barack Obama.

If you believe everything you read about this guy, you`d think that he, you know, can leap a building in a single bound, is faster than a speeding bullet, but Superman, he ain`t. The truth is his Kryptonite.

For starters, national polls show him virtually neck and neck among likely voters with Republican John McCain. Considering Republican President George Bush has the lowest approval rating. I think people like eggplant more than they like George W. Bush. Why isn`t a Democrat, any Democrat, way ahead? Shouldn`t this be a slam dunk?

There is also the new Obama-cans, that`s what the media has dubbed it, people that, you know, are just under his hypnotic spell. It`s so powerful that even black conservatives can`t resist him. Well, as usual, it`s blown out of proportion. People switch sides and candidates in every election. Conservatives are allowed to be wrong. Yes, J.C. Watts, you`re wrong, just like Democrats.

It just goes to show you that you can`t believe everything that you read, especially when the mainstream press and their daily love letters for their new favorite socialist is around.

One writer you can trust has plenty to say about these issues and so much more, John Goldberg is here. He is the editor-at-large of the National Review online and author of "The New York Times" best-seller, "Liberal Fascism."

You know, Jonah, what kills me is -- everybody said -- I read "The New York Times." I think it was this Sunday. And there was an editorial in there that there`s no way, there`s no way that Barack Obama can lose, if you look at all of the numbers. But if you look at likely -- likely voters, he`s neck and neck. And that shouldn`t be.

JONAH GOLDBERG, AUTHOR, "LIBERAL FASCISM": That`s right. You would think about now that we would just dispense with the election entirely and proceed with the inauguration or even the coronation of Barack Obama.

BECK: Yes.

GOLDBERG: It actually contradicts what Barack`s campaign is saying. Obama`s campaign hinted this week that they may lose Pennsylvania, Florida and Ohio. And they`ll still win. But I mean, they should -- no Democrat should be poised to write off those three swing states.

BECK: Yes. Let me ask you about J.C. Watts, because J.C. Watts is saying that, you know, he may have to think about what`s his name. Armstrong Williams is also talking about it, that he may have to vote for Barack Obama.

It brings me back to the Martin Luther King speech, judging a man by the character and not the color of his skin. This is exactly what Martin Luther King said he was against.

GOLDBERG: Yes. I mean, I think there`s a real problem there, particularly for black conservatives who have been talking for so long about how the left has mangled Martin Luther King`s vision, that they`re the ones who really understand about treating people as individuals rather than representatives of identity politics groups.

At least what really bothers me about the touting of these black conservatives -- and it`s just a handful of them -- who are sympathetic to Obama. Look, we`re all sympathetic to the idea of a black president. I think it would be a great accomplishment in this country to have a black president. I`m just willing not to sacrifice all of my political principles and ideals to have one.

BECK: You know, here`s the thing, Jonah. I just don`t think it matters. I mean, it really doesn`t. It is a great accomplishment, but it is a bigger accomplishment that it doesn`t matter. You know, I -- it doesn`t matter. If he`s the right candidate, I`ll vote for him no matter what color he is. I don`t really care.

GOLDBERG: Well, if that`s your standard, then you have to wait for a Republican black president...

BECK: Not Republican.

GOLDBERG: Because then the media will say he`s not really black, and it really won`t matter. But I think, you know, what`s annoying is people are saying how this is a sign about all these conservatives moving towards Obama when in reality these guys admit up front that`s the only reason they`re thinking about Obama, is because he`s black. If he were white they would say, "Oh, no, he`s too liberal." It has nothing to do with the fact that he has somehow -- whether he`s a conservative or anything like that.

BECK: I want -- I want to show you something that happened on "The Jimmy Kimmel Show," and the silence is deafening. Because I want to you think of me saying this about a basketball team in Hawaii and getting away with it. Watch this from "Jimmy Kimmel."


SEN. BARACK OBAMA (D-IL), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You know, there`s pretty good basketball in Hawaii, but the only thing is, since -- obviously, there are a lot of folks from Asian ancestry in Hawaii, generally, the teams aren`t as tall.


OBAMA: So you know, so I -- so I was going down, posting up quite a bit.


BECK: Can you imagine, Jonah, if I would have said, "Oh, you can`t get good basketball in Hawaii, because of the Asian descent. Everybody is so tall." I`d never be able to say that on TV. And I should be able to say it, just like he did. There`s no malice there.

But what is amazing to me is the double standard. This man can say or do anything and get a pass from the media.

GOLDBERG: One of the best examples along those lines would be Barack Obama condemning, in the strongest possible words, Don Imus. I have no problem condemning Don Imus. I`m not a big fan. But at the same time, saying that the things that Jeremiah Wright said, which were far worse than what Don Imus said, and Don Imus was joking around. You know, Jeremiah Wright was as serious as cancer.

And yet, Obama got a free pass for -- not a free pass, but had no problem for 20 years listening to Wright and listening to Don Imus once and said, "Off with his head." I agree there`s a huge double standard out there.

BECK: Well, here`s the other double standard. On the same thing on Jimmy Kimmel, he was talking about his friends coming to play basketball with him, flying in to play basketball with him. He was just endorsed by Mr. Reduce Your Carbon Footprint, Al Gore, and he`s got friends coming in to play basketball from all over the country. I mean, the hypocrisy is incredible.

GOLDBERG: Well, look, I mean, this is one of the reasons why you can be on five nights a week, is because there`s a lot of hypocrisy out there.

And I kind of -- I`m kind of with you on this point. I would rather - - you know, I like that Obama is talking this way. I think he -- I don`t think he understands or his left-wing followers understand how much violence he is doing, how much he`s doing to tear down the sort of politically correct atmosphere that they helped -- they`ve worked so hard to establish.

BECK: Jonah, it is only a one-way street. It is good for him. But I guarantee you, if I said the same thing, I wouldn`t get away with it.

Now, coming up next, an American novelist gets caught in the dark world of an Italian serial killer and lives to write about it. It is an amazing story from author Preston -- Douglas Preston. He`ll be here in just a second.

Plus, picketers take to the streets in Virginia on a story we told you about last night to protest a private Islamic school and the textbooks which come right out of Saudi Arabia that teach it`s OK to kill. This is a story you can`t miss.


BECK: Imagine being so transfixed about an unsolved murder that you begin writing about it, conduct your own investigation, and then the police show up at your door and press charges against you, because they think you`re involved in the murder. That is just one twist in just an amazing true crime tale called "The Monster of Florence. Co-author is Douglas Preston.

Hey, Doug, how are you?


BECK: Good. Tell me a little bit how you stumbled upon the Monster of Florence. This is the guy that Hannibal Lecter was -- was modeled after.

PRESTON: That`s right. Well, my wife and I and our two children moved to Italy. We always had a dream of living in Italy, and we rented a beautiful 14th century stone farmhouse surrounded by vineyards and olive gloves.

And then I learned that the olive grove right in front of our house had been the scene of one of the most horrific murders in Italian history. And because I`m a writer of thrillers I was kind of more intrigued than dismayed. And that`s how I heard about the Monster of Florence.

BECK: OK. And this guy was just -- I mean, again, he`s the inspiration for Hannibal Lecter. You believed before your arrest that you actually met the killer.

PRESTON: That`s right. I teamed up with an Italian journalist, and he had some very interesting information. He had covered the killings from the beginning.

The monster killed lovers in parked cars in the hills of Florence between 1974 and 1985. And we believe we identified a likely suspect. And we went to his house at quarter to 10 at night, unannounced. We knocked on his door and interviewed him, and we asked him, are you the Monster of Florence?

BECK: Now, was he kind of like Hannibal Lecter? Was he creepy? Spooky? Smart like that?

PRESTON: Yes, he -- in a way. He had -- he was actually like a cross between Hannibal Lecter and Robert De Niro. He was very handsome, very athletic, incredibly charming with kind of a rough working-class charm, smiling all the time. And he toyed with us. He dropped facts about the case that only the murderer could have known.

BECK: OK. So...

PRESTON: It was like...

BECK: Go ahead.

PRESTON: I was going to say, it was like he knew that we knew and he knew, but we weren`t going to be able to prove anything.

BECK: So -- so you then get arrested by Italian police. NBC comes by with "Dateline," and Stone Phillips does a -- does a report. You don`t think you`re getting out of -- your wife is like, you know, what have we done here? You don`t think you`re getting out of jail. What happens then?

PRESTON: Well, it was surreal. You know, I was walking down the street. My phone rang. And a voice said, "This is the police. Where are you? We are coming to you." And that`s how they got me. I mean, that was kind of a strange way to arrest somebody.

And they interrogated me and charged me with perjury, obstruction of justice and being an accessory to murder. And they told me to get out of Italy within 12 hours.

BECK: And you did?

PRESTON: You bet I did.

BECK: OK, good. Doug, thanks a lot. It is an amazing book.

And by the way, Doug has also written a great chapter for our fiction thriller, "Seven Days," which we publish every month in my magazine, "Fusion." You can subscribe to it right now at

If you do you`ll also get our new voters` guide edition. It comes out next month. It`s our July edition. It will show you how much John McCain and Barack Obama, how much they say has actual roots with our Founding Fathers and how much of it comes from Karl Marx. You will be amazed, horrified. You`ll sob for a while. "Fusion" magazine, subscribe tonight, right now at


BECK: Well, welcome to "The Real Story."

You know, I sense a problem in America that people are getting overwhelmed with our problems and they don`t know what they can do to help. Well, here`s a good story for you.

It`s human nature just to find a problem, then do nothing but talk about how hard it is to solve. You know, I call that admiring the problem. I think most companies do. It basically means that you have meeting after meeting building up this problem, so eventually it feels insurmountable and then pretty soon it is because everybody has given up hope.

Well, you can probably relate to this in your own life. Your know, things like your car starts making a weird noise one day and you`re like, "What the heck is that?"

Instead of bringing it to the garage, you just talk about it. "Gee, Honey, I think that noise over there is getting louder. I wonder how much it will cost to fix it? Maybe it will just go away on its own."

And then the sound gets louder and louder and louder until it`s a real problem. Sound familiar?

Well, "The Real Story" is that admiring the problem is exactly what our politicians have been doing with our energy crisis. And yes, I`d like to officially dub it that.

For decades now they have talked and talked and -- shut the pie hole! You know what, they keep talking about how bad the problem is and they`re doing nothing to fix it. In fact, in many ways they`re obstructing it.

Imagine, if we had just sat back and admired the problem with the Nazis or the Soviets for so long. "Oh my, look at that Hitler. Ooh, that`s quite an army he`s putting together there, huh?"

John McCain continued the admiration today with an energy speech he gave in, of all places, Houston, Texas. The highlight, if you can call it that, was that he said he should eliminate the federal ban on offshore drilling.

Well, there`s an idea that`s so logical the politicians have trouble even understanding it. Estimates say that over 86 billion barrels of oil and 420 trillion cubic feet of natural gas are currently just sitting untouched just off our shore. Enough energy to buy us at least a decade of time while we figure out what to do.

But, well, countries around the world, even environmental friendly ones like Canada -- they love the polar bear and so does Norway -- well, they`re drilling away right of our own shores, we`re still admiring the problem. Oh, look at that. I wonder what we should do?

There`s an amendment now that would have lifted the ban drilling from 50 to 200 miles offshore. It was voted down in Congress last week. And surprise, surprise, the politicians voted right along party lines.

But the amendment is going to get a second chance tomorrow. And that is where the good news and where you come in.

Pennsylvania Congressman John Peterson is the sponsor of the amendment.

Tell me, Congressman, what exactly -- what exactly do you want people to do?

REP. JOHN PETERSON (R), PENNSYLVANIA: We want everybody to specific target all the Appropriations Committee members tonight and tomorrow and urge them to support my amendment. It will repeal the ban from 50 miles out to 200.

That gives a lot of shore protection. You can only see 11 miles. No one will ever know there`s production out there.

It`s the safest place to produce. Every country in the world produces out there. There`s tremendous reserves out there. We know there`s a lot. We don`t really know how much because we`ve never allowed them to do modern seismographic or test wells.

BECK: OK. The natural gas problem you and I have been talking about -- and you wrote something for my free newsletter today that talks a little bit about this -- the natural gas problem, natural gas is up 460 percent since 2000.

PETERSON: That`s correct.

BECK: What`s happening to us by November? You say this is going to just cripple us.

PETERSON: Well, it could double our home heating costs. But what it`s doing, it`s making all the companies that use a tremendous amount of natural gas in the manufacturing and processing processes to be non- profitable in this country.

Half the fertilizer business left recently. Three hundred thousand jobs have left polymers and plastics. Hundreds of thousands of chemical jobs.

They cannot afford to be here because it`s not a world price. See, when we pay $130 or $140 for oil, the whole world does. But when we`re paying -- right now, gas is $13 coming out of the ground. That`s before it`s processed, stored and shipped to us. That`s very expensive gas.

Just a few years ago it was 2 bucks. We cannot afford that.

BECK: John McCain spoke today and he was saying, we`ve got to drill offshore. But he`s for state rights, and yet he won`t go into ANWR, even though Alaska`s been saying, please let us go into ANWR.

Do we have a candidate out there that`s going to make a difference?

PETERSON: We`re going to work as closely as we can with him. We`re hoping to meet with some of his people this week.

We think this is a big step. I`m shocked that he`s willing to go offshore. I think the whole world is beginning to realize now.

We`re also pushing the president. The president could lift the presidential moratorium. That would be some real leadership from the White House, because then the presidential moratorium would be lifted and he could urge Congress to do the same. And we`re hoping before this administration finishes that this administration may do that.

BECK: OK. This comes up tomorrow, right?


BECK: OK. America, before you pick up a pitchfork or a torch, pick up the phone one last time and give them a whirl in Washington.

Congressman, thanks. We`ll be watching you.

PETERSON: Well, you keep doing the good work. Thank God for people like you that are getting the message out there.

BECK: Thank you, sir.

Now, I told you that one of the things that happens when you admire a problem for so long is it begins to seems insurmountable. No matter what the solution you propose for the energy crisis, people say, oh, it will never work. Oh, it`s going to take -- it will take 10 years.

Well, guess what? In 1995, we had the chance to drill in ANWR and President Clinton vetoed it. It`s going to take too long.

Well, that was 13 years ago. I`d like the oil now, how about you?

Instead, the caribou and the fuzzy polar bear, they were more important than, say, getting to work, feeding your family. Well, we can`t afford to continue to make this mistake again and again and again.

"The Real Story" is alternatives won`t take 10 years. Some of them could take 12 to 18 months, but we have got to clear the garbage out. And by the way, when I say garbage, I mean government and special interest groups.

It`s kind of ironic, but it may actually take an act of Congress to finally get Congress the hell out of the way. And now another congressman is proposing legislation to do just that.

This bill allows the president to quickly approve shale oil extraction, which some experts say could be the equivalent to Saudi Arabia`s reserves. But this kind of legislation shouldn`t stop with shale oil, in my little opinion.

You want clean power? Great. Clear the way for nuclear energy, clear the way for wind, hydroelectric. You try to build a dam with these nut jobs that love trees. You try to build a dam.

Clear the way for everything. Cut the paperwork, the red tape and taxes. And believe me, good things will happen because we the people can fix it much faster than Congress.

Now, our guest on this is Utah Congressman Chris Cannon. He`s the guy who introduced the bill.

Congressman, what exactly do you want in this bill? What is it actually going to do?

REP. CHRIS CANNON (R), UTAH: What it will do is give the president the authority to take a seven-year process and take it down to seven weeks or maybe seven days, and that will allow us to develop oil out of shale in a way that`s environmentally responsible, but which will bring down the cost of gas from $4 or more to something reasonable in the $1, $2 range.

BECK: OK. Now, Congressman, you were on my program on Monday and you and I talked about this. And you said that the technology is already there.

I`ve talked to other experts who say the shale technology is just not stable enough. Now, they`re still talking about possibly heating the Earth and melting the shale and trying to pump it out after that. I mean, what`s "The Real Story?"

CANNON: Well, "The Real Story" is there are five or six different companies that have different technologies. They`re built on what we did back in the `70s.

And so we have the first commercial test in 30 years that`s ongoing right now that should produce about 30,000 barrels a day when they get up and get going. And the biggest hurdle to doing that is the air quality permits.

This is on (INAUDIBLE), so they don`t have the other kinds of BLM, Bureau of Land Management, problems, but they have air permit problems and it`s going to takes them two years to get those permits. And that`s unacceptable.

BECK: OK. What is the air permit problem? I mean...

CANNON: It`s not a problem. It just is a process that takes two years to go through.

These people are not going to have a problem meeting the requirements, although, again, now we`re starting to regulate carbon dioxide. And so nobody actually knows what we`re going to do with that yet. So there`s some uncertainty. It`s the uncertainty that kills investment in energy development.

BECK: OK. Well, I know that to be true. This is exactly the same kind of thing that happened during the Great Depression.


BECK: The business was there, the depression didn`t last this long on the rest of the world. It lasted here because our government got in the way and tried experiments and tried to do different things.

Why is the -- why would the president be qualified to just sign off and say, oh, yes, there`s not going be any damage here? Why shouldn`t we at least have some of the work done to make sure that the air quality -- that we`re not doing damage?

CANNON: That`s what we need to do. And so the president -- there are no questions or ideas that we don`t understand here. The president takes his people that understand the process, and they sit down with each of the companies that wants to do this, and they talk about the technology they`re going to use and what they`re going to do.


CANNON: And then they say, if we understand this, here are the limits. And if it`s something new that we don`t understand, then we say, let`s experiment for a little while and see how it works, and then we`ll establish...

BECK: Real quick, how much shale do we have?


BECK: If we could change this into oil, what would that mean to us?

CANNON: It is -- it makes America the giant of the whole world for energy and it shrinks Saudi Arabia and Iran and Venezuela and Russia down to a very small portion of the energy world.

BECK: For more information, do you have a Web site? You gave it to me the other day. What was it again?



Thanks, Congressman. Appreciate it.

CANNON: A pleasure.

BECK: And that`s "The Real Story" tonight.

Coming up, things are heating up in Virginia. Yesterday I told you about an Islamic school that was funded by the Saudis, and they`re using textbooks which suggest it`s OK to kill. I`ve been on this story for a year. Well, protesters flocked to the campus today. God forbid we see a television camera there.

We`ll have an update when we come back.


BECK: Well, I told you yesterday and about a year ago about the Islamic Saudi Academy. It`s a private school that teaches about 900 students in grades K through 12 in Virginia.

The school receives much of its funding from the Saudi government. That`s fantastic! And investigators claim it`s using textbooks that say you get an A-plus if you kill somebody.

When a school is using textbooks that say it`s permissible for Muslims to kill adulterers and converts from Islam, that the Jews conspired against Islam, that Muslims are permitted to take the lives and property of those deemed polytheist, which -- then it might be time to draw a line in the sand, what do you say? Especially when it`s our damn sand.

Fortunately, protests against the school are raging now. Worst of all, the school`s director was arrested today for failing to report child abuse. Oh, and a past valedictorian is sitting in prison after being convicted of plotting to assassinate the president.

I don`t know why there`s a problem with this school. Just another day at class, kids.

Dwight Bashir is a senior policy analyst for the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.

Dwight, first of all, this is -- you are appointed by Congress, right?

DWIGHT BASHIR, U.S. COMMISSION FOR RELIGIOUS FREEDOM: That`s correct. We`re appointed by Congress.

BECK: OK. All right. And you`re not out on a witch hunt and you don`t have a problem with Islam. Let`s get all this bull crap out of the way.

BASHIR: Absolutely not.


BASHIR: Our mandate is to monitor violations of freedom of religion and belief and to make recommendations for U.S. policy.


I brought this school up, I don`t know, a year ago, maybe two years ago, and said, what is in the textbooks? You guys have been doing the same thing.

I`m a clown on television. You guys are the Congress. You have the power of the Congress behind you.

You couldn`t get the textbooks until recently. It says all kinds of horrible things. This school tried to avoid the Congress by going to the State Department.

Is that right?

BASHIR: Well, actually, we`re a federally funded entity, but what happened here is that we actually went to Saudi Arabia about a year ago and met with the Saudi officials who told us that they had add revised their textbooks. We have been following this for years. And we asked for the textbooks, including those at the Islamic Saudi Academy, and inevitably, we never actually got copies of the books.

When we released the report last year that you`re referring to that said there were reports that there was intolerance and hatred and violence in the books based on previous reports, we went ahead and asked for the books again. And they never did send -- give anything to us. But later, they gave them to the State Department and to Fairfax County, a local county that leases the property to the embassy of Saudi Arabia.

BECK: OK. This textbook is Wahabiism. This is the most extremist kind of nonsense out there. The State Department, everybody could make this thing go away, but nobody wants to, right?

BASHIR: Well, the thing here is that the embassy has the ability to do anything it wants with the textbooks here because the chair of the board is the Saudi ambassador. And the State Department has jurisdiction over this school because the Saudi government funds it, the property it`s on is leased by the embassy. And so the problem here is that the State Department has received the books that we had said we`re not able to get copies of for now eight months, and they haven`t made a review of those books public.

We`re calling for a review of the books, because what we were able to do is to get some copies from independent sources and from a congressional office. And what we found in a small fraction of these books was this kind of language that you refer to, the incitement to violence and the intolerance towards other religious groups and so on that`s still in there.

So they`ve taken some things out, but a lot of this bad stuff is still there. And we just want the State Department to make it clear what`s in there.

BECK: Dwight, thanks. We`ll follow up on this story hopefully again tomorrow and tell you more about the protests.

I`ve got to tell you, sometimes I sit here and I watch the news and I think, I`m watching the destruction of my own country by people who are supposed to be protecting us.

All right. Let`s go to the "Real America." Some good news brought to you by CSX.

When you talk about disabilities, a lot of people just focus on what you can`t do. Not this time. Not on this program. For one incredible group of competitors it`s all about proving what they can do, proving where this there is a will and a sale, there`s a way.


BECK (voice over): I have to tell you that sometimes the life of a sailor sounds pretty great. You chart a course, you hit the open waters, and you let the wind do the rest. But for one weekend a year, the waters off Rye, New York, sailing is much more than a relaxing escape. For a unique group of competitors, sailing is an equalizer and a regatta defines freedom.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They`re out there competing with everybody else. So disability isn`t visible. You leave it all on the docks, and you`re out there and you`re experiencing the winds and the currents and the waves, and the competition is on equal par.

BECK: The U.S. Disabled Sailing Championships are held annually and feature competitors from all over the world. The boats are modified so all sailors, no matter what their handicaps are, can leave the disabilities on the dock.

Sara Everheart Steals (ph) has been competing for almost a decade.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And so four and six are the only ones that are different.

BECK: She turned to the sport after an accident left her paralyzed. She was always an athlete, but became unable to play sports she used to excel at, so Sara (ph) turned to sailing. It was her chance to walk on water.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You have to be in the moment and you have to react constantly to changing conditions, what other boats are doing. So you have to be, you know, on your toes at all times. And I love that feeling. I love having to change, adjust, constant, constant, constant. It`s never the same.

BECK: Ironically, the strategies Sara (ph) uses on the water have become the same skill set that enable her to cope with the challenges she faces in everyday life.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I might go to this restaurant. Can I get in it? I don`t know.

If I can, am I going to the kitchen? Am I going to have to find somebody to get me up these stairs? How is it going to be? How bad do I want to get there?

But sailing, how bad do you want to win? How bad do you want it? How -- you know, with these boats, we want to sail them, and they want us to sail them.

So we want it bad enough that we`re adapting them. And that`s what it`s all about is adapting.

BECK: Sara`s (ph) team didn`t end up winning the race. She came in second. But her optimism hasn`t faded.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You can`t always change the wind, but you can always adjust your sails. That`s life.

BECK: A lesson for all of us, I guess, and one I believe puts Sara (ph) and all these competitors at the top of their game.


BECK: And I have to tell you, I wanted to show you that story tonight because that`s why I have hope in America, that we the people can conquer anything.

If you would like to see more stories like this one, click on and look for the "Real America" section. It will really give you hope.

Tonight`s "Real America" sponsored by the good people at CSX. It`s how tomorrow moves.


BECK: As you may know, I`m no stranger to butt-related injuries. I spent the beginning of the year bottoms up, sipping from a sobering cocktail of pain and humiliation. But there are even limits to my butt compassion.

A man in -- went to a Home Depot -- is suing, claiming that he got stuck to a toilet seat coated with adhesive when he used the men`s room at a store in St. Louis. The victim alleges he suffered cuts, bruises and tearing on his buttocks and thighs when he stood up.

Ladies, just a note here. The disturbance and the force you just felt was a collective clenching of every man`s butt cheeks while watching the show.

This dope`s lawyer says that Home Depot was negligent and should have known that, "Persons using this particular toilet above were likely to sit, become adhered thereto, and subsequently sustain injuries upon standing, especially since Home Depot sells a wide variety of adhesive products."

Oh, I hate attorneys.

It seems Home Depot has been the target of this prank before, but is there any commonsense here? I mean, first of all, who ascends to the throne at a Home Depot? I mean, once you drop your pants in a place where you can buy super glue in a five-pound gallon bucket, I mean, you`re sitting at your own risk, don`t you think?

Secondly, are you making intimate contact with a public toilet seat? Am I the only germ freak that uses the paper protectors? You know? Or how about a layer of TP?

I mean, it`s not exactly the presidential suite at the Ritz. Public rest rooms, they`re a fun factory for disease and bacteria. So only a nut would ride the porcelain pony bear-back, but maybe that`s just me.

Lastly, if I suddenly found myself glued to a toilet seat, I think that`s what I would call a secret. You know, you`d have to be Jack Bauer with a set of nipple clamps and a car battery to get that little tidbit out of me. I would rather suffer through the cuts and the bruises and the tearing, you know, in silence than tell another living soul, especially the press, that I was dumb enough to get my butt glued to a Home Depot toilet in Missouri.

Granted, that particular variety of scarring might be a little difficult to explain to my wife, but I`d at least try.

Bottom line, common sense is dead. Dignity has been flushed away. And when Home Depot came up with the slogan, "You can do it, we can help," I don`t really think they were talking about, you know, getting up from the john.

If you want to know what`s on tomorrow`s program, or if you`re sick of paying through the nose for gas and want to find out how to get the weasels in Washington actually listen to you, sign up for my free e-mail newsletter today, right now, at

From New York, good night, America.