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In the Crossfire

Will plan to arm pilots fly?

(CNN) -- "Crossfire" hosts Tucker Carlson and James Carville take sides on the issues of the day, from arming pilots to reaching a settlement in the divorce case of former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani.

CARVILLE: The House of Representatives [on Wednesday] voted to put something other than joysticks or swizzle sticks in the hands of airline pilots -- guns? The 310-113 vote would allow more than 70,000 commercial airline pilots to start packing heat in order to deter terrorists. It may deter passengers, too.

The Senate and the White House aren't sure pistol-packing pilots make the right poster boys for the friendly skies. So the bill may die in committee instead of on the shooting range. What do you think of that, Tucker?

CARLSON: The majority of airline pilots are veterans and know how to handle guns. They say they need the guns. The union says it needs the guns. I don't actually even understand the argument against the guns, except that ...

CARVILLE: Let's try. There are some places -- I got guns out at my farm. But there are some places, the airlines might be one of them. You've got 70,000 pilots. Suppose maybe just three of them are nuts. Do you want to give three nuts a gun?

CARLSON: They're in control of commercial airlines. Presumably they've filtered out the nut cases before they give them the keys to the plane.

CARVILLE: America West, do you think those people who get on there drunk weren't crazy? It's a lot of filters with 70,000 people.

CARLSON: There's a difference, we hope.

The czars are gone, and so is Stalin. But the streak of humorlessness characteristic of Russian leaders apparently remains. Just ask the two Russian college students who recently decided it would be a good idea to name their bar after Vladimir Putin, the Russian president.

Putin, as the tavern was known, sold beer, drinks and cookies dedicated to the president. After less than three weeks, authorities arrived and strongly suggested the owners remove Putin's name. They did.

On the other hand, former President Boris Yeltsin, emerging from the vodka-inspired haze of retirement, immediately volunteered his name to any bar that would accept it, in return for free drinks for life.

CARVILLE: I thought Putin is pretty ...

CARLSON: Remember when he jumped off the bridge into a river? I knew I liked him after that.

CARVILLE: Rudy Giuliani and Donna Hanover haven't agreed on much anything lately. But they agreed on something [Wednesday]: a divorce settlement. Giuliani, who's reportedly expected to make $8 million in speaking fees this year, agreed to pay his ex-wife more than $6.8 million in legal fees.

As he left the courthouse, Rudy said he wants everything to work out for the best for Hanover and for their two children. Hanover didn't speak to reporters, but her attorney came out and declared that the settlement is -- "a spectacular win."

The Giulianis had been married for 18 years. The judge called the case a remarkable challenge because of the strong personalities involved. And, said the judge, "I hope I never see another one of you in my courtroom again."

All I say is I hope they have a happy life, and I hope their children do well in spite of their parents' differences.

CARLSON: And I hope I never hear another word about Rudy Giuliani's personal life. It detracts from the great things he's done, and it ...

CARVILLE: That's one thing you Republicans hate is to talk about people's personal lives.

CARLSON: I do, and I hate having ...

CARLSON: I hate having them imposed on me as a television viewer.

The Enron collapse has blossomed into more than a corporate scandal. Now it's a college course. This fall the University of California at Irvine will offer a class in business ethics, centered on the rise and fall of Enron. Whistle-blower Sharon Watkins will be a featured speaker.

The bulk of the course, however, will consist of role-playing. Half the students will assume the role of the Clinton administration -- relaxing, playing golf and taking credit for a dangerously overheating economy as it inflates into a massive, unsustainable bubble.

The other half, known as the Bush team, will be charged with cleaning up the mess after the inevitable crash. Meanwhile, the first half will sneak out the back door and spend the rest of the semester collecting $100,000 speaking fees from multinational corporations.

CARVILLE: I want to say right now, Mr. President Clinton, that you and Ken Lay -- Ken Lay should not have supported Al Gore like that. Enron should not have given all that money to Al Gore and you. And you're right ...

CARLSON: Enron did!

CARVILLE: Of course, George Bush didn't know Ken Lay. They wrote 350 letters to each other. I haven't written 350 letters in my life, man! What are you talking about?

CARLSON: James, the first time I ever saw Ken Lay was at a Gore event at the White House. True fact.

CARVILLE: True fact. Yeah, right.

CARLSON: It was a true fact.

CARVILLE: One thing about you Republicans is you can't take responsibility of anything. It isn't just -- the attorney didn't file the thing on time with the SEC. It was Clinton that did it.




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