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Obama Chooses Biden as V.P.; Dems Promise Greenest Convention Ever; Michelle Obama, Nancy Pelosi to Kick off Convention
Aired August 25, 2008 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
GLENN BECK, HOST (voice-over): Tonight, a night of stars at the Democratic convention. But isn`t this just more baggage? How much more baggage can Obama carry when he`s got this guy as a running mate?
Plus, disenfranchisement in America reaches new depths. I`ll introduce you to a group of people so fed up with our government that they have decided to start out on their own, at sea.
And did anybody notice Syria`s president and his quick shopping spree in Russia? He was buying all sorts of high-tech weapons, perfect for Middle East peace! The evil empire is back and back in business.
All this and more tonight.
BECK: Well, hello, America. I`ll have you know, anybody who`s anybody tonight is broadcasting from Denver, Colorado, and the convention.
Joe Biden is the name that we all waited for. He`s the guy who wooed the voters in Iowa so incredibly well that he snagged 0.9 percent of the delegates. Remember, that was the better memory of his two runs for president, the one where he wasn`t caught borrowing speeches from other politicians.
This pick of Biden is an overt acknowledgement that Barack Obama finally realizes what we`ve been talking about on this program for months, that he has no credibility with Americans, especially on foreign policy. But here`s "The Point" tonight.
Obama needed experience on the ticket, but Barack, not all experience is equal and here`s how I got there. I was watching some of Joe Biden`s greatest gaffes, including these today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOE BIDEN (D-DE), VICE-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You cannot go to a 7/11 or a Dunkin` Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent.
I think I probably have a much higher IQ than you do, I suspect.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECK: Wow. That`s always important, to look a little deeper, you know. What`s our complaint about Barack Obama? He`s constantly avoiding substance to talk about change. Changing Washington, changing hearts, changing people`s attitudes, you know. What`s your plan? Well, with that in mind, here`s Joe Biden in 1988.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: We have never, as a party, moved this nation by 14-point position papers and nine-point programs. It seems to me that we got involved in the civil rights movement, Frank, nobody asked Martin Luther King what his legislative agenda was. He marched to change attitudes. I promise you you`ll see my 15-point plans and 19-point position papers. But ultimately, Frank, this country needs a leader and leaders change attitudes about people.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECK: Hey, that`s not real condescending there. No matter -- no wonder why he picked Biden. He`s already written Obama`s whole campaign script about 20 years ago.
Remember, Barack, if you`ve stolen from Joe Biden, you`ve stolen twice. But the Obama campaign doesn`t need more hoping for change. It actually needs credibility on the foreign stage.
Analysts say Biden has it, but look at his record. He opposed Reagan`s policies against the Soviet Union. He`s been all over the board on Iraq. He supported unconditional dialogue with Iran. And he`s the third most liberal senator in -- senator in the Senate.
Tonight, America, here`s what you need to know. What does Barack need Biden for? I mean, I think he`s very well-qualified to do all of that stuff on his own. I mean, Barack, do you really want a guy who just four years ago at the world economic forum said, quote, "Look, America, we don`t have much of a democracy ourselves. Remember our own presidential election, remember Florida." Really? Questioning our democracy on foreign soil? Hey, nice going, Joe.
B, Barack, you could do that.
Joe Hicks is a conservative commentator and host on KFI radio in Los Angeles. John Fund is an editorial writer for the "Wall Street Journal" and author of "Stealing Elections: How Voter Fraud Threatened Our Democracy."
Let me start with you, Joe. I mean, why didn`t he just get Jimmy Carter? He has 30 years in the Senate. He is the third most liberal guy in the Senate, and he`s from Delaware. I don`t really see the good points here.
JOE HICKS, KFI RADIO HOST: What I don`t understand was all the drama, you know, the taking out over days. You know, is it going to be today, tomorrow, you know, is it going to happen today? And then you get a 3 a.m. text message. Why all the drama? And then it`s, what, Joe Biden? Come on. The guy -- the guy`s been in the Senate longer than John McCain, for God`s sakes.
BECK: Do we have -- do we have the audio of Joe Biden when he was talking about -- he`s being a working man here, and he`s talk about his hot wife on Saturday. I don`t know if anybody saw this. Can we play the -- can we play the video?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: Ladies and gentlemen, my wife, Jill, who you`ll meet soon, is drop-dead gorgeous. My wife, Jill, who you`ll meet soon, she also has her doctorate degree, which is a problem. But all kidding aside, my Jill -- my wife Jill and I are honored to join Barack and Michelle on this journey, because that`s what it is. It`s a journey.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECK: I don`t even know what -- I don`t even know what the hot wife who has a doctorate and that`s a problem, I don`t even know what that even means. This guy has a habit of saying things that really are not necessarily good. Right or wrong? John?
JOHN FUND, AUTHOR, "STEALING ELECTIONS": I think Joe Biden is usually effective. He`s a very articulate attack dog, partisan Democrat, but he has these mouth lapses where he just goes off into a complete tangent, whether it`s talking about Indian Americans and 7/11s or Barack Obama being bright and clean and articulate or a range of other strange things.
And I think Biden will be a good vice-presidential candidate for Barack Obama, but he`d better watch that debate, because the difference between a good vice-presidential candidate and a bad one is one slip-up in that all-important debate, which is probably the only time Americans are going to focus on the vice-presidential candidate.
BECK: John, do you think that -- do you think that he can roll up his sleeves and pretend he`s a working man? I mean, that`s clearly what they were trying to do here. Look it, we`ve got the flags...
FUND: He mentioned Scranton, Pennsylvania, yesterday. Joe Biden may be from Delaware, but because he first -- spent the first ten years of his life in Scranton, he`s going to be the candidate from Scranton, Pennsylvania. They`re trying to use him to win Pennsylvania, not Delaware.
BECK: You know, Joe, I just saw, there`s a couple of things. The "Chicago Tribune" is breaking a story now that Joe Biden is good friends with, I believe, it`s Tony Rezko`s attorney that is also in trouble, because he took kickbacks of $800,000. So they`ve got Rezko -- Tony Rezko in common.
The mayor of Chicago also said about Barack Obama that -- OK, so what? Barack Obama`s friends with William Ayers. This guy, you can talk about all the other problems, but really the guy`s judgment when it comes to friends and counselors, it really shows how far off he is, don`t you think?
HICKS: Well, what Joe Biden does is brings an adult to the ticket. I mean, you know, there`s a lot suspicions about this guy, Barack Obama. And the more we look at them -- the whole Bill Ayers things has yet to be completely aired, no pun intended. So I think there`s going to be a lot of things that we`re going to be talking about once we get beyond the conventions here. And despite Joe Biden being on the ticket, nobody votes for the vice presidential nominee.
Yes, he brings international experience. Yes, he brings his long- standing Senate background. Yes, he seems to be a decent kind of guy, but he will have to play the attack dog role here. But I think this guy Barack Obama presents a lot of problems, and I think we may see the disaffected Hillary voters either walk or sit on their hands.
BECK: Now, you think we are -- you know, there`s these people that are out there recreate `68. Do you think we`re going to see anything -- anything dramatic that hasn`t been planned coming up in this convention, either one of you?
HICKS: No, I don`t think so. I know what John thinks. I don`t think there`s going to be -- it`s so tightly controlled. But I think there may be some interesting things that emerge.
BECK: Go ahead, John.
FUND: I`ve watched the protesters. There are not as many as advertised. They do look a little scary, though. They parade around in these black T-shirts with black face masks. And I think they`re mostly here for street theater rather than street protests.
BECK: What is it with the puppets and the street theater? It`s just like you`re reading about it, "And then at 2:30, we`re going to do a puppet show." I`m like what, you...
HICKS: The fringe lunatics, of course, on the left always come out. We saw them here in 2000 here in L.A. in full form. I think they`re holding off, though, for the major drama to be played at the Republican convention. I mean, let`s face it. I mean, they largely agree with much of what Barack Obama`s all about. But they`ll go through the symbolic thing with all the stupid puppeteering and goings-on that`s going to be on the streets of Denver. And it`s all street theater.
BECK: Have either one of you seen a ticket that is this left before? You`ve got Barack Obama and Joe Biden, extraordinarily left. And they`re out of step with the American people when it comes to energy. You`ve got the -- you`ve got the no drilling. They`re both against the war. I think they`re both against bailouts. Biden hasn`t said anything, that we could find, on bailouts yet, but last thing you`d want to be is on record with that one.
Have you guys seen a ticket this left before?
FUND: Glenn, the real difference here is perception versus reality. The media is giving the perception that this is a moderate, you know, well- qualified ticket. And in some respects, it is. But on ideology, one fact, we`ve all heard that Barack Obama, according to the "National Journal," the most respected nonpartisan magazine in America, was the most liberal senator in 2007. Guess who No. 3 was?
FUND: No. 3 was Joe Biden. Barack Obama voted left 95 percent of the time. Joe Biden voted left 94 percent of the time. You are absolutely right, but is the media reporting that? I don`t think so. I think they`re literally covering it up.
BECK: All right, guys. Got to run, thank you very much.
Coming up, the Democrats say they are holding the greenest convention ever. Really? Did all the super delegates ride their Schwinns to Denver. Oh, the hypocrisy, coming up.
Plus, grab your pitchforks and your paddles. The growing disenfranchisement in America with our leaders in Washington is forcing some voters out to sea, literally. Where is John Galt? I`ll explain in tonight`s...
BECK: Coming up, oh, how much we all love big government programs. You know, especially the ones like Medicare that waste billions of dollars of taxpayer money, like, you know, I don`t know, mail through fraud. Universal health care, on the other hand, that`s going to be totally deferent. More on that in just a bit.
But first, Denver`s mayor challenged the Democratic Party to make this year`s convention the greenest convention in the history of the planet. I don`t know what that even means. But for starters, there`s no fried food. Sorry, Bubba, going to have to bring your own -- B-Y-O-F-F, I guess. All meals are also going to include three vibrant colors and locally grown ingredients.
Also, volunteers are going to be provided with one of 15,000 organic cotton fanny packs. There`s going to be a biodegradable balloon drop that`s having some trouble. I`ll tell you in a minute. And the media pavilions are being powered in part by solar energy.
Oh, and let`s not forget the recyclable signs and soy-based paint sealant used to turn Denver`s Pepsi Center blue. Even sponsors have horned in on this act, cutting back on their paper that they usually, you know, make into flyers and jam into goody bags.
Who says the Democrats don`t have an energy plan?
Joining me now is author, illusionist, libertarian, a guy who looks suspiciously like Satan, if there was Satan, Penn Jillette.
How are you, Penn?
PENN JILLETTE, ILLUSIONIST: Well put. Well put, Glenn. Very well, thank you. Very well.
BECK: OK. I mean, I`ve been reading the stories today. First of all, should we start at the wooden keys?
JILLETTE: Well, no, where you start is the fact that they`re saying that this is the most green convention ever. Were there no conventions in the 18th century? Were there none there? I mean, what about -- what about Lincoln`s log cabin? They`re not counting pre- -- you know, pre-the modern technology. I don`t know.
BECK: Penn, did you see -- did you see the thing on the balloons? It`s biodegradable balloons. They can`t get them to degrade. And there is still somebody on a compost heap right now pouring extra liquid on them -- damn these balloons. They`re supposed to biodegrade.
JILLETTE: What scares me about that story was that they didn`t say pouring liquid on it. They said liquid.
BECK: Liquid, yes.
JILLETTE: That scares me a lot. Because when I mean water, I often say water. That`s a word most people know.
BECK: I`ve never, ever -- I`ve never said, "You know what? Gosh, I could go for a big glass of liquid."
JILLETTE: Exactly. So I`m worried that what they`re pouring on those balloons might be something we don`t want to know about.
BECK: Right. Like acid.
JILLETTE: Who knows what? There`s some unpleasant substance the Democrats have.
BECK: They`ve also had some problems with the organic caps that everybody`s going to wear, because they can`t get made-in-America organic caps that have been finished by a union.
BECK: And so they don`t know what to do. They don`t know what to do.
JILLETTE: And the option of skipping the caps, I guess, never even occurs to anybody, right?
BECK: No, no.
JILLETTE: You`ve got to have caps. I mean, I just live for a time when they`ll be able to have a convention without a cap.
BECK: Yes. What -- what the hell do you think is wrong with these people?
JILLETTE: Well, I don`t know. You have to -- before you get too -- too mean, and maybe it`s too late for you.
BECK: No, no, you look like Satan. Come on.
JILLETTE: But you do want to say, I man, what a convention is, is symbolic, and if what they want to do is symbolize their commitment to environmentalism, then maybe that`s the way you have to do it. I mean...
BECK: Don`t you think, Penn, that people are sick of symbolism? They want action. They don`t want a bunch of symbolists.
JILLETTE: It sure seems that way. And also the issue of global warming, what`s most disturbing about that is that they put everything together. Is it happening, is it man-made, is it bad, can we stop it, can we stop it with conservation, and should conservation be government mandated? Those are six different issues on global warming.
JILLETTE: And they all get thrown right together. And if you say, "I`m not sure about Al Gore`s position on global warming," all of a sudden they go, you`re anti-science, you don`t believe in anything. And it`s separating those things out.
And one of the things that is so bothersome is if global warming is happening and if it`s bad and if we caused it, that doesn`t mean that biodegradable balloons helps.
BECK: Right. Here`s an idea. Have they thought about using the World Wide Web, that information super highway? That`s really the way to be green, don`t you think?
JILLETTE: What I couldn`t find on the Web, and I looked for this, is the company that they`re buying the indulgences from. I guess they don`t call them indulgences, they call them carbon...
BECK: No, no. That`s an out term. Actually, we`re selling --- you know, they`ve got the offsets. We on my program at GlennBeck.com, we`re doing onsets. They`re -- they have bought their offsets for 70 million pounds of carbon, so I`m trying to raise the 70 million pounds. I`m asking people just to leave your blender on when you leave for work.
JILLETTE: Well, you know, we did a thing on our "B.S." show...
JILLETTE: ... where we sent someone out to a shopping center and looked through their grocery bags and said, "If you give us 16 cents for the Cheetos you bought, you`re carbon neutral." And people did it.
So if you allow people to get rid of their guilt -- but what I couldn`t find on there was the Native Energy. Which is the company that they`re buying the carbon offsets from, which is Native-American-run. But I couldn`t find out if Al Gore owns part of those. Because the nutty thing about a lot of the carbon neutral stuff is that Al Gore owns the company that you buy the carbon neutral credits from.
BECK: Right. Yes.
JILLETTE: That`s where it really becomes very much like the indulgence...
BECK: You`re confusing -- no, no. You`re confusing things with big oil. That`s only the -- the bad one there is only bad oil.
Do you think that -- I saw a story that said that they`re predicting - - Lehman Brothers is predicting $150 barrel of oil by the end of the year. They`re saying it`s going to go back up. Do you believe when we hit $150, $170, $200 a barrel of oil, do you think that people will chase these greenies into the woods and maybe even use Al Gore as a shovel?
JILLETTE: Well, you know, it seems like people are willing to do lip service, and maybe a -- maybe a wooden -- a wooden key to a hotel room door doesn`t work a little bit.
JILLETTE: But it seems like when you come down to gasoline being five bucks a gallon...
JILLETTE: ... there`s this kind of consensus intelligence that draws the line there. But the thing I`ll say that`s -- maybe, and this is from somebody who looks like Satan, maybe the least popular thing I`ll ever say, is if you do all the corrections for inflation and so on, I believe gasoline is not up that high from 1960.
BECK: No, it`s not. But I`ll still tell you that we`d be burying the environmentalists and using Al Gore as a shovel. Mark my words.
JILLETTE: I think you`re probably right on that.
BECK: All right. We`ll talk to you again.
Coming up, two of the Democratic Party`s most outspoken women will be kicking things off tonight, Michelle Obama and Nancy Pelosi. Woo. While you get ready to fire up the YouTube, I`ll give you a preview.
And while Russian troops were busy crushing Georgia the Democratic and sovereign state of Georgia last week, back in Moscow officials were ushering the president of Syria through their weapons showroom. Not super news for Israel or us. And I`ll explain.
BECK: Well, as if organic fanny packs and mandatory three-colored meals weren`t enough to keep me away from Denver, and it was hard, listen to the lineup of speakers for tonight at the convention.
First we have Michelle "$600 Earrings" Obama delivering her first prime time speech, where she`s going to make the case for why Obama should be president, probably because it will make her proud of her country for the second time in her life.
After Michelle, we have Nancy "Zero Approval Rating" Pelosi, who, lucky for her, may actually sell some of her books as a result of her appearance. Her book bombed on Amazon.com, badly.
And last but not least, my personal favorite, Jimmy Carter. What star power?
Joining me now with a preview from the conservative viewpoint is Michael Graham, radio host for TKK in Boston.
Michael, Jimmy Carter, Nancy Pelosi, Michelle Obama. Could they not fit another failure or Marxist onto the roster?
MICHAEL GRAHAM, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Remember the movie "Animal House" where they had to kept directing the guys over to the room with jug (ph) -- Nancy Pelosi was in that room. Jimmy Carter was that room. What a collection of disasters.
I`ve been trying to think to myself. Let`s see, Jimmy Carter, whose presidency ranks up there with Herbert Hoover and James Buchanan as great American political successes. And the Nancy Pelosi`s -- the approval rating in Congress right now is somewhere around Charles Manson and that guy at the Olympics who kicked the judge. And this is what you`re putting out for America?
"Hey, America, we`re like you. We`re wildly unpopular. No one likes us either." I do not get what they`re thinking.
BECK: I don`t -- you know, really, I don`t get that -- well, let me take it from this. If they lose, do you think they`ll get the message -- I mean, I can`t -- it should say something to them that they`re -- they`re being currently beaten by John McCain. This is not what America is looking for.
GRAHAM: Can I -- can I wrap this all together? Why Joe Biden is the pick? You know, where is the Democratic Party now? Where is their weakness? Tomorrow night they`re focusing, quote, "real people," close quote. That`s what they`re calling them. "We`re inviting real people to the convention," as of course -- as opposed, of course, to the robot automatons from another planet that make up the Democratic Party normally.
Their problem is normal people look at Democrats and say, "That`s not me." Michelle Obama`s No. 1 challenge is not politics, liberalism, conservatism. People don`t know neighbors and friends who say, "I`ve never been proud of America until my husband got a political promotion" or this is a nation of bitter, you know, ungenerous people. Who is this?
Her job tonight is to turn her and her husband into the Bradys. Turn them into the Huxtables. Wearing Claire Huxtables sweaters by the time this is all over.
BECK: I think that they -- I think that they will be able to do it tonight because it`s going to be carefully crafted. But she`s also somebody who said that this little 5-year-old girl that she talked to felt that the veil of impossibility is suffocating her.
I mean, she -- they see America wildly different. They`re worried about the price of arugula. They might be able to do it tonight in a production setting, but I think this is why Obama hasn`t caught fire, because people`s gut just says, "These people don`t get it. They`re not like me at all."
GRAHAM: Have you noticed, Glenn -- Glenn, have you noticed that Mr. Foreign Policy, Mr. Thirty-Six-Years-in-the-Senate, Joe Biden, is not being sold as a Dick-Cheney-style -- you know, he knows how to run the machine. Here`s the adult chaperone.
BECK: I know.
GRAHAM: He`s being sold as scrappy Joe Biden from Scranton, PA, which I think actually was a hit song in the 1930s, if I believe.
GRAHAM: Yes. Scrappy Joe Biden. Basically, what they`re saying is, "Hi, we know you don`t -- you think we`re weirdos. Please, some of us are like you, just with more hair plugs. Vote Democrat."
BECK: All right. Michael, thanks a lot.
Up next, sick and tired of government leaders looking for a change? How about going into the ocean? I`ll explain in tonight`s "Real Story." It`s next.
BECK: Coming up, will a new weapons deal between Russia and Syria push Israel to the brink? That`s one of the questions facing our administration, or at least the next one as the "Evil Empire" continues to provoke the West. We`ll have a closer look in just a bit.
But first, welcome to "THE REAL STORY." The Democratic convention is kicking off. The Republican convention starts next week. Don`t you just love the smell of smarmy politicians in the morning?
If you look at our options and I think we`ve got a couple -- the Republican and the Democrat, pretty bleak, aren`t they? But, hey, at least we`re only in the middle of two wars. Our economy is dying a slow, painful death and we`re all slaves to foreign oil and illegal immigrants are flooding in by the millions. But other than that, this is sweet.
Back in the old days, if you didn`t like the government, you know, you just move out over west. I mean, who`s going to climb those mountains to follow you. You know what I mean? Just grab some land and call it your own and say, get off my land and everything was pretty sweet.
Now your options are pretty much limited to becoming a citizen of a different country. I thought about the Bahamas and then I thought, they`re just going to be a "citizen of the world" soon too.
So the only other option is to start a revolution. But that`s so much work. I mean Ron Paul`s didn`t work out well. Maybe he needed a few of these pitchforks. I`m not sure.
There may be a third option now. "THE REAL STORY" is the ocean. Yes, people now are believe it or not so disenfranchised with our own government that they`re taking to the seas. It`s called "seasteading."
And the basic idea is to set up -- there it is -- a floating outpost in international waters and try out different kinds of political and social systems. It`s like a floating city state, which I think I saw in "Water World," and I didn`t like the ending of that movie.
If you don`t like your current platform policies, just sail or swim over to a different one. Previous attempts at similar ocean utopias, surprisingly, have failed. But this one, led by The SeaSteading Institute, has the financial backing of Paypal founder and Google engineer and a hedge fund principle.
It costs only a mere few hundred million dollars to build a seastead for a few thousand people. But house prices are falling.
The institute expects a prototype -- who would have guessed it -- off of San Francisco Bay within two years. Joe Lonsdale is the chairman of The Seasteading Institute and principle at Clarion Capital Management.
Okay, John, who are these people? Because I have to tell you, part of me says you`re out of your mind, nuts. The other part says, John Galt, I`m looking for a place where I can just be a capitalist and I can be left alone by the government.
Who are these people that are doing this?
JOE LONSDA, CHAIRMAN, THE SEASTEADING INSTITUTE: Well, it`s a combination of people, Glenn. It`s a few of us are -- we`re the guys who create institutions that are changing the world and we`ve change a lot of industries so far here in Silicon Valley, but we haven`t been able to change the government. That`s a hard one.
And we have Patrick Friedman, our co-founder. His grandfather was Milton Friedman, one of the greatest economists of the 20th century. And he wrote a book about this, he had some great ideas, and he wanted to put them into practice and so he came and met us. We`re the guys who make things happen.
BECK: It would have so much credibility if it was like Kansas behind you, but it`s San Francisco. What kind of crazy, you know, community --
LONSDA: Come on.
BECK: Is it going to be bigger government?
LONSDA: It`s like you said, it`s a frontier. And I think California is a frontier of the nation, if you`re going to have one. But we ran out of room, so we have to keep going here.
BECK: But this is a smaller government kind of idea, right?
LONSDA: Well, you know, a lot of us are libertarians, but the idea is much bigger than any one political system. It`s really the idea about how government should function.
BECK: Help me out. Before I get in my boat and sail out to sea, give me some idea what kind of government are we talking about?
LONSDA: Well, I mean, there`s going to be a lot of them that people start. We`ll probably start ones that are a lot more libertarian at first. The real thing we`re going for here, the founders of America created a bunch of checks on power, and the most important check I think was the federalist system where if you don`t like something you leave. And you go try it out.
And the central government is supposed to be really small and you have all sorts of options. And that way you see what works and see what doesn`t work. That`s gone right now.
BECK: A little uncomfortable saying this with San Francisco right behind you, but I`m in love with what you`re saying, I`m in love with you. I really am.
Let me ask you this. I just love the libertarian idea. Who`s protecting these? You don`t fly an American flag over there; the Navy`s not going to help you. If something happens, we`re having a problem now in the Gulf with pirates.
LONSDA: That`s a good question. I mean, the thing is, you already do have millions of people living on the high seas on cruise ships and they tend to do pretty well. So there already are some examples of why it`s safe. So I think it`s pretty unlikely these will get attacked as opposed to other things.
We probably don`t want to start off the coast of Africa.
BECK: Would the ROTC be allowed to recruit at your schools if you had any?
LONSDA: We did have a big fight about that, unfortunately, we lost.
BECK: Joe, thanks a lot man, I appreciate it.
Let`s go back to land, landlubbers. Let`s go here.
Let`s say you have a friend with a gambling addiction, okay? He`s behind on all of his bills, he can barely afford groceries, he doesn`t have a job and you`re like, I have a loser friend.
So you say, you know what, you`re still my friend, I`m going to help you out. You give him some money -- don`t do it. And then you watch as he takes that money and spends it on gambling.
And then he comes to you like, oh, man, I`m out of money, can you help me out. Next time you think, if I give him more money he`ll use to it buy food and he`ll pay his electric bill. And then you give him more money and he spends it on gambling, you dope.
"THE REAL STORY" is the federal government is our friend with the gambling addiction. The Democrats want to keep feeding this addiction with more and more money instead of going after the real problem. And I think the story of government waste is best illustrated with Medicare.
Since the Democrats say that this is the perfect model for government- run health care, let`s look in. Shall we?
There`s a draft report from Health and Human Services that shows Medicare paid $2.8 billion in fraudulent claims for medical equipment alone in 2006. That is a fraud rate of 31.5 percent. You`ve got to be kidding me.
If that were a private company, you think they`d still be in business or do you think maybe all of them would be in jail?
Democrats tout Medicare because it spends less on overhead than the private sector. Yes, but the fraud rate is -- you know, the little discount that we`re all getting is because there`s virtually no screening for fraudulent claims. Medicare pays over 95 percent of the bills it receives; no questions asked.
Which is exactly why a high school dropout recently outwitted Medicare to the tune of $105 million; it only took 140,000 bogus claims from this guy before any of the government went, wait a minute, what? This is our model for health care?
Just remember that when you`re watching the DNC convention this week. This is the model.
This year taxpayers will pay $56 billion in health care costs for the uninsured. And who do you think gets penalized for Medicare waste? Not the people running it, no, no. Not the Democrats in Congress trying to expand it. No, no.
It`s you, the taxpayer. You`re going to foot the multibillion dollar bills. Of course, you`d never hear this from the politicians.
Washington, let me tell you something. How dare you ask the American people for another dime when billions of dollars are wasted and lost in fraud.
Michael Tanner is the director of Health and Welfare studies at the Cato Institute. What exactly am I missing here on health care -- on Medicare in particular -- that the politicians are just not going to tell you?
MICHAEL TANNER, CATO INSTITUTE: Well, you`ve got it exactly right. All Medicare does is shovel money out the door and I guess it`s administratively efficient to just throw money at things.
They always beat up on the insurance companies and they talk about the terrible overhead costs that insurance companies have. Well, some of that administrative cost does good things like stopping fraud.
And if you don`t want to screen for fraud, if you just want to approve every claim, you too can have very low administrative overhead. But in the long run, it`s going to cost you a heck of a lot more in all the fraud cases.
BECK: Why aren`t we hearing anything about this?
TANNER: Because they really think that Medicare is the national model. We hear about Medicare for all. Can you just imagine what it would be like if the entire health care system approved every claim that was put into it from anybody who submitted a claim and no one cared how much money it was going to cost.
BECK: You`ve got to blink, Michael, you`re freaking me out. Just blink once.
Let me ask you this. Medicaid, I know this is Medicare, but Medicaid enrollment in New York, 55 percent increase. New York City residents account for 66 percent state`s Medicaid program. They have intentionally, here in New York, done everything they can to make it impossible for business not to use Medicaid and Medicare. We`re getting -- this is being jammed down our throat whether we like it or not.
TANNER: Yew, we like to think of ourselves as having a free market health care system. But the fact is half of all health care in this country is now paid for by the government. And they take another 35 cents and your employer pays for it.
So very little is actually paid for by individuals. We`re really losing control of our health care dollars, and when you lose control of the money, you lose control of your health care freedom.
BECK: The problem is, Michael, I`ve been to a hospital a couple times here in the last year. And it`s a pain in the neck. I mean, it is -- our health care system, there is no questions asked. Our health care system is in critical condition. It`s just, it`s not good when it comes to emergency care.
What is the one thing -- because they`re going to all talk about all the uninsured in America. What is the thing that Americans need to know, that they haven`t heard?
TANNER: Look, there is no free lunch. I think that`s the number one thing America should remember about anything the government promises. Someone`s going to have to pay for it.
There`s a new study out now that just shows that covering the uninsured in this country would cost about $120 billion every year in new health care spending. That`s $120 billion that American taxpayers are going to have to pay for. It`s not going to come for free.
BECK: It`s really only $85 billion if you cut out the waste in Medicare. Thanks very much, Michael.
That`s "THE REAL STORY TONIGHT."
Issues like universal health care certainly going to come up again before we get to November, so make sure you`re prepared.
Sign up right now for my free e-mail newsletter. Get "Arguments Against the Idiots," it`s got everything you need to set your idiot friend straight on all of the issues this election season, but you can only get it now by signing up at glennbeck.com. It is free.
Coming up, does the recent weapon shopping spree by Syria in Russia bring us one step closer to fulfilling prophecy? Author Joel Rosenberg says uh-huh and he`ll explain, next.
BECK: Well, while the Democratic National Committee was trying to figure out how to buy organic fanny packs for the convention, not kidding, the President of Syria was busy in Moscow doing a little shopping of his own. The next generation surface-to-air missiles, one size fits all.
Russia has provided weapons to Syria in the past, but until now they`ve been holding back all the good stuff. The Syrian President at least thought, the whole Russia/Georgia/Moscow/Washington tension things might be a good time to exploit the previous arms sales restraint. And they did.
So what does it mean for the U.S. and our allies, a.k.a. Israel? Well, according to the "New York Times," it`s no big deal, just possibly the end of counter-terrorism and nuclear non-proliferation cooperation, manipulation of oil and natural gas supplies, pressure against in United States military bases in Central Asia and the collapse of Cold War arms era treaties.
Other than that, don`t worry about it.
Joel Rosenberg is the author of "Epicenter 2.0." Joel, I`ve been called crazy, because I was the mayor of Crazytown because I`ve been saying, look out, the economy, coming storm. Then Bear Stearns collapsed, now everybody was on it.
You`ve been the mayor of Crazytown, this seems to look a lot like scripture stuff. You told me, Syria, Russia, look out years ago. Here it is. What`s it mean?
JOEL ROSENBERG, AUTHOR, "EPICENTER 2.0": Well, that`s right. As I laid out in my non-fiction book "Epicenter 2.0," Russia is a serious problem as it`s being led by Vladimir Putin.
When the original edition of this "Epicenter" book came out two years ago, you and I were saying, very few people were talking about Putin being a real threat to the world. But as you point out, as I point out in the book, he is arming Iran. Russia is arming Syria. Russia is arming Sudan. Russia is arming Islamic countries that are our enemies.
Now Russia under Putin has taken direct aggressive military action in Georgia, invading Georgia, attacking and killing Georgians, innocent civilians; the first time that Russia has used military force outside of its borders since 1979 when the Soviets invaded Afghanistan.
BECK: All right. I want to put up a map here. You tell me what this map means. Put this map up, it`s a straight line from Moscow to Jerusalem.
ROSENBERG: Well, what`s interesting about this is that in a Bible prophecy, in the book of Ezekiel Chapter 38 and 39, what is know by Bible scholars as the War of Gog and Magog, the Ezekiel prophet wrote that Moscow, Russia would eventually form an alliance with Iran, Sudan, Syria, these other countries and come down from the north and attack Israel after Israel had been reborn as a country in the last days of history.
What`s interesting about this --
BECK: You`re a drag. Seriously.
ROSENBERG: If a straight line, as this map shows, from Russia through Israel, you have to go through Georgia. I`ve told you before on radio, on television, I`m not saying for sure that this prophecy is coming true in our lifetime. It`s too early to say that, but in 2,500 years since Ezekiel wrote the prophecy, we haven`t seen the convergence of events as we have in just the last few years and I would say even in the last few weeks.
BECK: Joel, let me ask you a question. Do you ever think to yourself, I mean, Jesus, just get it over with, come on, what are you waiting for, just do it?
ROSENBERG: No, just the opposite. I really want the Gospel to get spread in Russia, in Iran, in Syria, and elsewhere.
BECK: It`s a lot of work, Joel.
ROSENBERG: I pray for peace.
BECK: A lot of work.
ROSENBERG: We`ve got to pray for peace but prepare for war. We have to understand that Vladimir Putin is an enemy. He`s not a friend, he`s not a partner for peace, he is an enemy. I`ve been saying this for more than two years. Now I think it`s very clear to the world that he is building -- he has joined the axis of evil.
BECK: It is really, it is -- and I think we said it on this program two years ago as well that the axis of evil, the allies and axis power are forming. And now I think Russia has finally stepped out into the open and said, oh, yes, by the way, we`re the head of it.
Because they really are, because of their massive size, because their resources, their natural resources, because of the resources of nuclear weapons, et cetera, et cetera. I see them coming in and playing a role of protector, really, of Iran. If Israel goes in and they`ve got a closing window, if Israel goes in and attacks Iran, I think Russia`s going to stand in between and say, hey, America, back off, or it`s war on us.
ROSENBERG: I think that Putin is probably sending messages right now that Israel shouldn`t do this and is in fact, of course, arming Iran rapidly with billions of dollars worth of high-tech weaponry.
And you`re right; this window is closing for Israel. The United States doesn`t seem to have any interest in neutralizing the Iranian nuclear threat before the Bush administration is over and we don`t know who the next president will be. We`re in a dead heat right now.
BECK: Hang on, hang on, hang on. I have to take a quick break. Let me come back and I want to pick it up there on is there a difference between these politicians and why the pick of Joe Biden. Coming up in just a sec.
Back in a minute.
BECK: Back with the author of "Epicenter 2.0," Joel Rosenberg.
Joel we were talking about Russia and Putin and Iran and Israel. I think the window is between Election Day -- I don`t think Israel will move before Election Day -- between Election Day and, what is it, January 20 something, for inauguration day, that they would go in and move, do you --
ROSENBERG: Correct, sir. That is increasingly likely, I think. That`s what`s so worrisome.
Look, Israel has a very narrow window because it wants President Bush still be in power because Bush has been the most pro-Israel president in history. But also, the Russians have sold a billion dollars worth of anti- aircraft missiles to Iran. They haven`t delivered them yet. So there`s another six to eight months before those systems get in place.
BECK: Biden, I think, was picked because -- I mean Obama, he just looked horrible on the Georgia thing. And I think Biden was picked because it was like, okay, we need somebody who can recognize a map of the world and who the good guys and bad guys are, but Biden can`t even recognize the bad guys. He doesn`t know who the bad guys are with Russia.
He was for detente, he was with Jimmy Carter thinking that the fall of the Shah would be a good thing for the people of Iran. I mean, this guy has got it wrong as much as Jimmy Carter has had it wrong.
ROSENBERG: Well, sadly, that`s true. Joe Biden is a nice guy and he was right on Georgia -- he was, not Obama, in wanting to expand NATO to include Georgia, but Senator Biden opposes regime change in Iran. He wants direction negotiations with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. He said that if Bush were to bomb Iran to neutralize the nuclear threat, he would impeach him.
This is a very serious set of misjudgments that has just been added to the Democratic ticket.
BECK: How are you against regime change in Iran? I can`t even --
ROSENBERG: Senator Biden has said, I posted these quotes directly on my Web log, but he said he wants conduct change, not regime change.
I`m sorry, that`s fundamentally misunderstanding who`s in the regime. The Ayatollah Khamenei and the President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, these men believe fundamentally that they`ve been chosen by God to bring about the Islamic Messiah by destroying the United States --
BECK: You`re harshing my mellow, Joel.
ROSENBERG: Well, this is what`s dangerous. If you -- men like this who might lead our country, if they don`t understand who the enemy is, they`re going to make wrong choices.
BECK: See what I mean? Joel, thank you very much.
That`s what I`m saying, America, I don`t know about anybody else, but come on, Jesus, I`m sleepy, bring it on.
From New York, we`ll see you tomorrow. Good night, America.