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CNN IN THE MONEY
Interview with Pat Buchanan; A Look At How Hurricanes Affect Economies
Aired September 18, 2004 - 13:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JACK CAFFERTY, HOST: Welcome to the program. I'm Jack Cafferty. Coming up on today's edition of IN THE MONEY, the sledge hammer or the sand paper? U.S. commanders facing insurgents in Iraq can try to smash them or wear them down a little at a time. We'll look at which move could wind up getting the job done.
Plus winds of change. It's not your imagination. There really are more hurricanes this year. Find out how killer storms can put an economy through the wringer.
And right and righter. Old school conservative Pat Buchanan will join us. He thinks the Republican Party has lost touch with its values. Joining me today as always, a couple of IN THE MONEY veterans, CNN correspondent Susan Lisovicz, "Fortune" magazine editor at large Andy Serwer. You know, there's an old expression, it's better to be lucky than good.
And this week, George Bush got lucky. CBS did this big report on allegations that he got special treatment in the National Guard. However, instead of the spotlight being on whether President Bush served honorably in the Guard, the spotlight all week was on whether the documents used to support the story were legitimate documents. So instead of talking about the president's service, we're talking about Dan Rather and CBS News.
ANDY SERWER, "FORTUNE" MAGAZINE: And this story has legs. I mean they're going to keep pushing it and keep trying to figure out where the documents came from, who the sources were. You take a step back, Jack and Susan, and you look at this. I mean when the Swift boat thing happened, it was about Kerry's service. When the Guard thing happened, it's about the documents. How do the Republicans do that?
SUSAN LISOVICZ, CNN ANCHOR, IN THE MONEY: And it puts CBS in such a bad place, right, because CBS is loath to give up its source, right, but on the other hand, how do you prove in fact that you did the right thing, that you did a thorough investigation before you put it on the air, so CBS is really, really being pummeled.
CAFFERTY: And the only spin that they tried to put on it is such bogus. They say, well, the documents might be phony, but the story's good. Well, you can't - how do you present a story based on phony documents and then ask people to believe the story? You can't...
SERWER: ... how this stuff comes up in a second election and where was it the first time around when he was running for president? CAFFERTY: Somebody wrote in to "AMERICAN MORNING" this week and said, where was Al Gore? He could have used all this stuff back when he was running against Bush.
LISOVICZ: In fact it also shows the power of the blog, right, all these bloggers and it just created this sort of snowball effect that has put CBS in the hot seat.
CAFFERTY: And as Andy suggested, the story's got legs. It probably isn't going to go away. We'll keep an eye on it for you.
Meantime, the violence in Iraq just continues to grow. This week, car bombs, insurgent attacks, claimed the lives of dozens of people in that country including members of the U.S. military. Diana Muriel joins us now from Baghdad with a look at the mood in country.
DIANA MURIEL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, there is as many different moods as there as many different people it seems. Depending on which part of the country you're looking at specifically, there are some hot spots and there are some spots which have been very calm in the last couple of weeks. What we have seen though is that there has been an escalation of violence in the difficult areas, particularly in Sadr City and northeastern Baghdad, particularly in the town of Fallujah, which lies to the west of Baghdad which has long been a trouble spot for the American Marines who withdrew from the city in April after laying siege to it.
What seems to be happening is that insurgents of different types - there's no suggestion that they are operating in concert, but insurgents of different types are launching these individual attacks, these sporadic attacks on U.S. forces, on Iraqi police with car bombs, with mortar attacks which go on nightly here in Baghdad. And it seems according to some political strategists that will only be trying to do is to derail the democratic process which is due to take place here in Iraq, either at the end of this year or the very beginning of next.
It's an attempt destabilize the situation to such an extent that it will be impossible to hold elections.
CAFFERTY: What do the allied coalition members plan to do in terms of changing their strategy? As you suggest, you can't hold elections in a country where the insurgents control a number of cities in that country. What are they going to do to take control of these places and defeat the insurgents before these January elections?
MURIEL: There are two schools of thought as to what the soldiers on the ground should do. In the case of Fallujah for example, the U.S. Marines withdrew from that city back in April. They allowed the Iraqi forces to try and hold and take control of that. That doesn't seem to have worked. The Fallujah brigade, as it is called, the organization of Iraqi forces, have now disbanded and there's some question mark as to what will happen in that particular city.
Elsewhere, for example, in Sadr City, I was out on patrol with the First Cavalry and they are actively and aggressively patrolling that part of the city. They are not going to allow the insurgents that operate in that area to take control of it in the same way that they were able to take control of sections of Najaf and they were able to take control of cities like Samarra and Fallujah.
CAFFERTY: All right. Diana Muriel reporting from Baghdad and that sound you're hearing in the background is one of the many daily calls to prayer for the Muslims in that part of the world. Thanks Diana, very much. I appreciate it.
Coalition commanders in Iraq have a decision to make about taking on the insurgents there. It comes down to this: hard and fast versus slow and steady. For a look at which strategy might work better for the United States, we're joined now by retired Army Lt. Colonel Robert McGuinness. He joins us from Washington. Colonel, nice to have you with us.
LT. COL. ROBERT MAGINNIS, U.S. ARMY (RET): Thank you Jack.
CAFFERTY: Senator Hagel in Nebraska, something about we are in deep trouble in Iraq. Classified intelligence assessment done for the president in July, suggesting the outcome by the end of 2005 could raise from at best a tenuous hold on security and some sort of independent government to at worst a full-blown civil war. It doesn't sound like the present strategy is getting the job done, particularly with the deadline of elections looming just three months away.
MAGINNIS: You're right Jack. It's hard to say whether or not the elections are going to take place in January, especially when you have places like Fallujah, Samarra, Ramadi and other towns, maybe dozens, that we don't control, we being the Alawari (ph) government and the multinational task force. So now this is a significant challenge. Now I will tell you that Negroponte, the investor over there, Allawi, they all have on paper strategy that's intended to make the country safe, but it's questionable whether General Patrias, who is doing all the training for the Iraqi forces, is going to have an Army and security forces sufficiently ready to take back these cities in time to secure the country for the elections.
Now that election may drift as I expect it will. However, the question is whether or not we're going to have civil war and that's the question that I'm not even sure the Bush administration or anyone else can quite frankly answer at this point.
LISOVICZ: OK. Colonel, you've raised a lot of questions. You were talking about the Iraqi elections, certainly a pivotal time in that country, but what about the U.S. election? There's a lot of folks who are saying, well, the U.S. has to go in, hit hard now that the cycle of violence has increased but that the president may not want to see the type of violence and bloodshed that will undoubtedly occur.
MAGINNIS: Well, last month we had over 1,000 American soldiers that were wounded. Clearly it was a bloody month in Najaf. And no, the president or the Bush administration does not want to see the bloodshed on the media before the 2 November election. So that's understandable. But it's the smart way to go and that's where you're getting people like General Conway who just changed command over in the Fallujah area, the first Marine expeditionary force and he said look, if for political reasons I was held back once I started the assault on Fallujah and of course all we did is radicalize the people there, making it much more difficult for us to take back that city. And of course on the other hand in Najaf, we did some smart things but I think our bacon was saved by Sistani, the ayatollah over there, who really saw that he had to recover some stature from the renegade cleric Muqtada al-Sadr.
SERWER: Colonel, right about Iraq, David Brooks recently said the lessons of Vietnam are you can't win the war via military means. Funny, I thought the lessons of Vietnam were, was that you can't win the war by any means. What's your take on that?
MAGINNIS: Vietnam of course is always brought up. Unfortunately, there are not that many parallels. This type of insurgency is not promoted by an outside government. It's promoted by at least five or six insurgent groups internally. Some are nationalist. Some are old Fedeyeen Baathists.
SERWER: But there are some parallels if you let me jump in. I mean there are a lot of parallels. We're in a country where they don't want us, true?
MAGINNIS: Well, yes, it depends upon the polling. Of course there are a lot of people that don't want us, but and we're antagonizing more every day, the more we kill on the streets of Baghdad, et cetera. But there are some people that want it, but their patience is wearing thin because we're not creating the jobs and we're not doing a lot of things that they had intended for us to do. So I would say the longer we're there, the longer this misery continues that the support in the general population is going to precipitously go down.
CAFFERTY: Let me see if I understand this. To my way of thinking this is fairly ludicrous that a bunch of third world insurgents armed with whatever it is they're armed with could be a match for the United States military. They control entire cities over there. That's just absurd. Who's allowing this happen? I mean somebody said why don't you let the generals fight the war and the politicians ought to go do whatever it is the politicians do. I'm not sure I'm real clear on that either. But I mean to suggest that somehow the insurgents are defeating us militarily, there has to be a reason that we're not getting it done there and I somehow I just can't believe it has to do with the fact that our Marines and soldiers aren't up to the task.
MAGINNIS: Well, Jack, the Marines and soldiers are up to the task if given the proper resources and the numbers to go into the cities and do the job. However, you have 150,000 Iraqis with various levels of training. They're not ready to confront some of these outside Jihadists that are incredibly sophisticated in what they're doing. They're coordinating their attack, even with the Mehdi Army and with the Fedeyeen and others that are remnants.
We're seeing coordination and sophistication and complexity of operations now that they've learned from the last 16 months of engagements. For instance, an IED goes off, improvised explosive device, and all of a sudden, we pop up and try to defend and then we have RPGs coming at us. So they have taken it from a level of fairly low insurgency and elevated that significantly in their complexity of engagement of us. So yes, we have better weapons. We perhaps don't have enough people which is key and of course the argument is that we're going to train all these 100,000 more people and they're going to be able to secure their country and will go off into netherland in the future and things will be happy. I'm not sure that's going to happen.
CAFFERTY: Give me a 20 second answer. They want to hold elections in January. What has to happen for that to be even a realistic idea?
MAGINNIS: Well, you have to have Fallujah, Samarra, Ramadi, Samar (ph) and other countries, cities in control. We're not going to have that I don't think at this point unless something radically changes.
CAFFERTY: All right. Colonel Robert Maginnis, U.S. Army retired, thank you Colonel. Good to have you with us.
MAGINNIS: Thank you Jack.
CAFFERTY: Time for us to make a couple of dollars for the folks there at Time Warner to pay for that big fancy building here in New York City. Coming up right after the ads, trouble on a first name basis. Ivan rolling out Jeanne moving in. Find out why we're seeing more hurricanes this year.
Plus hard right, conservative icon Pat Buchanan challenging the Republican Party on money and foreign policy. Find out why he thinks the White House has taken a wrong turn.
And (INAUDIBLE) we're going to tell you what really works when it's time to ask for a raise and I think it's time to ask for a raise, so I'm looking forward to that segment, because I want to find out what I have to do to get more money for doing this here TV program. Back after this.
CAFFERTY: Well in case you've been in a coma, here's a little news flash. We're in the middle of the roughest hurricane season we've seen in quite some time. Six storms have become hurricanes already. Four have hit land, ripping through the Caribbean and slamming into the southeastern United States and we've still got 2 1/2 months to go in the 2004 season. So is the worst over or can we expect more of this for the remainder of this year and perhaps next? Here with some answers is Hugh Willoughby. He's a research professor and senior scientist with the international hurricane research center at Florida International University. Mr. Willoughby, it's a pleasure to have you with us.
HUGH WILLOUGHBY, FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL UNIV: It's good to be here.
` CAFFERTY: We got you guys working overtime this year, but doing some reading, I discovered that this is more the norm than the exception to the rule, that in fact the last 10 or 20 years we haven't had much activity but we usually do get a few more serious storms than we've had. Is that true?
WILLOUGHBY: Actually since 1995, so the last 10 hurricane seasons including this one, there have been more hurricanes than in the previous 25 or so years, but they've all been fairly well mannered and either stayed out to see or hit the Carolinas or New England as weakening storms. What's different about this season is they're all hitting land and they all seem to like Florida.
CAFFERTY: Well, Professor Willoughby, I think the real story of course was Chuckie, the alligator in Alabama getting lose. That was quite a story when Ivan hit. But in all seriousness, isn't the real problem here what's been going on in Florida and also on the coast of the southern part of the United States, which is to say they've been built up so much, I mean 20, 30, 40 years ago, you just didn't have that many people living there, correct?
WILLOUGHBY: Right. In the 1940s, Florida got hit a lot of times by hurricanes. I think there were in the part of Florida where I live, the southern part, there were eight landfalls in 10 years. People were really used to it and there also weren't very many people. Since 1970 however, there were I think three landfalls up until the turn of the 20th century Andrew and two other very forgettable ones. So what's happened is the population's doubled and the experience with hurricanes hasn't kept pace with the population growth.
LISOVICZ: So Professor, can you just quash right here and now any sort of theories that these terrible hurricanes are at least partly a result of global warming?
WILLOUGHBY: You can't rule global warming out completely, but the most thing is there's a natural cycle of say 30 years of a lot of hurricanes and 30 years of few hurricanes. Starting in 1995, we went into the active part of the cycle. Everybody was just asking how long is it going to be before the hurricanes started hitting the shore.
CAFFERTY: So we got about 20 more years to go is the way I'm doing the math on this serious hurricane cycle. The economic implications if you're right are huge. What happens to real estate prices and the economies. A lot of these tourist dependent areas of the southeastern United States.
WILLOUGHBY: But the thing that I see among my neighbors is people are getting really tough minded about hurricanes. They leave some of the shutters up. They have all their water and cans of ravioli and baked beans and they're ready for it. And I think what's going to happen is we're going to develop our ways of doing things so we'll take hurricanes more in stride. The one real concern is wind storm insurance. There they're going to have to be changes in the way we manage the insurance and they're also going to have to be changes in building codes so that the houses we live in protect us and don't get damaged so badly.
LISOVICZ: So Professor, we were in a long quiet period and that's when say, states like Florida's population really exploded, so now if we're in an active period, do you think it's wise for people to and businesses, people and businesses to build that close to the water?
WILLOUGHBY: Oh, if we had it all to do over again, we'd have nice beachfront parks everywhere to protect the first line of hotels from the sea, but that's not really an option given all the coastal development that's already gone on. We probably can do things to protect the buildings and then there's the concept of vertical evacuation where you sort of expect the bottom floor or two to wash out but the building still stands and functions and supports the people who stay in it.
SERWER: All right. Well, best of luck to you down there. That's Professor Hugh Willoughby, research professor and senior scientist, international hurricane research center at Florida International University. Thanks very much.
WILLOUGHBY: Thank you.
SERWER: Let's see if Madison Avenue can keep you glued to your seat for a couple more minutes. Coming up after the break, soda with a little less pop. Find out what Coke is telling it's shareholders as we bring you our stock of the week.
And later on, check the label. Pat Buchanan says the Bush administration may be called conservative but isn't acting that way. We'll ask him to prove it. And another kind of roaming charge. See why some people wind up paying extra for switching cell phone companies. Stay tuned.
LISOVICZ: Now let's take a look at the week's top stories in our money minute. Martha Stewart wants to get it all over with. Stewart has asked a Federal judge to send her to prison right away instead of letting her stay free while she appeals her case. Stewart was convicted earlier this year of lying to investigators looking into a sale of ImClone in 2001. Stewart faces a five month sentence and she wants to serve that time close to home at a prison in Danbury, Connecticut.
U.S. Airways is bankrupt again. The airline filed for bankruptcy after it was unable to get another $800 million in cost cuts from its union. U.S. Airways says the filing shouldn't inconvenience travelers for now. This is U.S. Airways second bankruptcy filing in two years.
And maybe we're not so overworked after all. A new Labor Department study shows that American adults have about five hours of leisure time a day and the study also says most of us spend about half of that free time watching TV, hopefully includes IN THE MONEY.
SERWER: Another big story this week was a warning from Coca-Cola that its 2004 results would be far below expectations. The company is blaming weaker sales in North America and Europe. Coke shares are trading at year lows right now, but they're only about 30 percent off their year highs. That means it's had what we call a tight trading range in Wall Street parlance making Coca-Cola our stock of the week. As far as this disappointment goes though you guys, (UNINTELLIGIBLE) famed CEO of Coke passed away years ago. You do Doug Ivester, he flopped, Doug Daft, he flopped and now you've got Neville Isdell, an Irishman who comes in with all sorts of promise.
LISOVICZ: He's been in the company a long time.
SERWER: Yes, but now he's the CEO and all sorts of promise here and he's fallen flat. What's wrong with this company?
LISOVICZ: Well, one of the problems for the company is that they're pricing the soda too high and people don't want to pay for it. And so they pretty much acknowledged it in their parlance to use your words saying that they're going to reevaluate the pricing strategy. Bring the prices down. Another thing is that they have this low carb drink, C2 and it's a bomb.
CAFFERTY: That's part of the problem too. When Ford came out with the Model T, they sold a lot of Fords because that was all there was to drive and if you wanted to drive a car you bought a Model T Ford. For a long time, people drank Coca-Cola because that had all the shelf space in the stores and it was the predominant brand. But there's a plethora, there's a word for you, of other products out there now. Gatorade and things that are owned by companies like Pepsi-Cola that are just pardon the expression, kicking Coke's butt.
LISOVICZ: And also there's concerns about health, with 25 percent of Americans who are obese and so that -- Coke has said that's been a problem and finally, Pepsi, the number two rival here, has a snacks division and guess what, that can offset the weakness in soda sales.
SERWER: You know what's really interesting, Warren Buffett, who's the big shareholder of this company, he said something to the effect that people will always drinking Coke and I think that's true, but the point of a company is you got to get more and more people to drink Coke. In other words, you got to grow the company. You're so right Jack. All those iced teas, all those alternative drinks.
CAFFERTY: Snapple, all that stuff out there.
SERWER: They're just taking a lot of the fizz and pop and bubble away and I'll stop right now. OK, this is IN THE MONEY where business news gets to put its feet up once in a while.
Just ahead con versus neo-con, that's interesting. Find out why senior conservative Pat Buchanan is so worried about the Bush administration, the way it's running America. And later on, do your homework, asking for a raise takes a lot more than just popping the question. We'll tell you how to do it right.
And vote with your fists. We'll show you a harmless way to vent that pre-election aggression. Stick around for our fun site of the week.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) COLLINS SPENCER: I'm Collins Spencer at the CNN center. IN THE MONEY resumes in just a moment. First, stories now in the news. Two Americans and a Briton kidnapped in Iraq have shown up on a video. The Arab network al Jazeera first aired this video of the three hostages blindfolded and seated. The kidnappers are threatening to behead them unless female Iraqi prisoners are released from two Iraqi prison.
Victims of hurricane Ivan are dealing with the aftermath of this storm, at least 25 people in five southeastern states were killed. In North Carolina, search teams are scoring damaged areas for stranded residents. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of people from Florida up to North Carolina are without electricity.
British Prime Minister Tony Blair and his Irish counterpart have ended three days of talks aimed at a power sharing government in Northern Ireland. Those negotiations between rival Roman Catholic and Protestant parties ended without an agreement. However, Blair says progress was made on key issues.
The U.N. Security Council is scheduled to vote later today on a resolution aimed at ending the violence in Sudan. The resolution threatens sanctions against the government if it does not stop rebels ravaging the (INAUDIBLE). It also calls for a international commission to probe alleged human rights violations.
I'll have all the day's news at the top of the hour. Now back to IN THE MONEY on CNN.
CAFFERTY: For generations the Republican Party was known as the party as the party of fiscal and foreign policy conservatives. But our next guest says things have changed and not for the better either he adds. These days the GOP gets the blame for sieve like borders, monster budget deficits and a catastrophic war of intervention in Iraq. Patrick Buchanan is the author of "Where the Right Went Wrong, How the Neoconservatives Subverted the Reagan Revolution and Hijacked the Bush Presidency." Pat Buchanan's also a former president candidate and joins us now to visit with us on IN THE MONEY.
So Mr. Buchanan, where did this party go haywire? How did they let themselves get hijacked for want of a better word, by the neocons?
PATRICK BUCHANAN, FMR PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think they sold out their principles for power in the 1980s. After the revolution of 1994 when Republicans were proposing more spending than Bill Clinton was and I think when Mr. Bush came into power and after 9/11, they simply signed on because Bush was so popular, signed onto huge increases for the Department of Education, $400 billion deficits, not a single veto, open borders, amnesty for illegal aliens and going to war against a country that did not attack us, did not threaten us, did not want war with us and did not have weapons of mass destruction or any role in 9/11. That's not Reaganism. That's not Goldwaterism. That's not conservatism.
LISOVICZ: All right. Then you must have found the "Wall Street Journal" op/ed piece this week by John Kerry, his economic policy, most interesting where he was talking about bring down the deficit as Democrats, bringing down the deficit, saying that you should spend as you go, that if you propose a new program, you have to pay for it and proposing spending caps on everything except education and security. So do you like Kerry?
BUCHANAN: Well, because I read Kerry's speech at the convention and I saw the tax cuts, tax credits, tax deductions and all the spending proposals, including virtually national health insurance and it adds up. The president says $2 trillion and you got a $400 billion deficit already. You've got two parties in Washington, neither of which is conservative. One is tax and spend, the Democrats and the other is a party of guns and butter and tax cuts too.
SERWER: Pat, let me see if I can get this straight. You say going to war in Iraq was wrong and not consistent with a conservative agenda. Yet the president insists that he's a conservative. So what's the disconnect? Why did he go to war in Iraq then?
BUCHANAN: I think he went to war in Iraq because the neoconservatives have had this project, this agenda, for war in Iraq and war against the Arab and Islamic states that defy America and Israel in the works for about 10 years. Pearl and others have been colluding with the Israelis on this project. They pushed it during the Clinton era. Come 9/11, they tried to get the president to sign on immediately. He did not. He went to Afghanistan, but the neoconservatives sold Cheney and Rumsfeld and eventually the president bought in. He bought into the idea that we can have a cake walk through Iraq. It's going to be a rose garden when we get there. Democracy will break out in the Middle East. The Israelis and Palestinians will sit down and make peace and some of us warned him that this was a giant West Bank we would inherit and we were right.
Now let's take a conservative, Ronald Reagan. When the Marines were killed in those barracks in Beirut, Reagan looked at it and he could have gone in and captured Beirut with a couple of divisions. He said I may have made a mistake. There's no vital interest there. There's no threat to our national security there. I'm pulling the Marines out. That is conservatism, the ability to admit a mistake and turn it around. I think the president was sold a bill of goods and my guess is he recognizes it by now.
CAFFERTY: What about the fact that places like Iraq have turned into hotbeds of foreign insurgents who are now killing American service people and the theory in Washington, which makes a little bit of sense to a country boy like myself, that at some point you're going to have to take on some of these groups. He might just as well do it over there as allow them to come in and knock down another World Trade Center and kill a few thousand more people here in the United States, that what we're doing there is at least stonewalling and stopping the armed conflict from coming back into this country.
BUCHANAN: You're making the same point that I was making. There was no huge haven for terrorists or a base camp of terrorists out of which attacks were made against the United States, while Saddam Hussein was in power. He was a thug and a criminal, but Iraq represented - there wasn't a single attack traceable to Iraq on the United States in all the time since the Gulf war. There is now. Foreign fighters are pouring in now. General Abizaid says the number of insurgents have gone to 5 - from 5,000 to 20,000 in one year when we've killed thousands. The insurgency now take on an organic form. It is growing. It is increasing in numbers. People are coming in. We ignited the mess in Iraq. We have radicalized the entire Arab and Islamic world far beyond what it was. There's one person in the world who is happier than any other that the Americans invaded Iraq and that is Osama bin Laden. We've created a giant spawning pool and a recruiting pool for him.
LISOVICZ: OK, Pat, so, the president's wrong on the deficit. He's wrong on Iraq. He's also wrong on trade in your opinion. Can you just quickly address that?
BUCHANAN: Sure. How can you defend a merchandise trade deficit of $700 billion? One in every six manufacturing jobs has been lost in America since Mr. Bush took the oath. He is for NAFTA, GAFF, the WTO, NFN (ph) for China, all of these things. China is basically leaching out of this country. Our technology, our factories, our plants, our best jobs for our best workers, bringing them to China by a policy of economic nationalism holding its currency down and selling us all these cheap goods as we send all of our basic productive resources to China. That's not conservatism.
But the problem is, Kerry agrees with him. Kerry agrees with him on amnesty for illegals. Kerry agrees with him on Iraq. Kerry agrees with him on big spending, big government. So we don't have a choice for conservative today. I will say this about the president, good on taxes, good on judges, good on sovereignty, good on values.
LISOVICZ: So who are you voting for?
BUCHANAN: I'm in a red state. It doesn't make any difference who I vote for.
LISOVICZ: All right. Pat Buchanan, who has served under three American presidents, also been a presidential candidate. We thank you so much for your time. Pat Buchanan is also a prolific author. His latest book is "Where the Right Went Wrong." Thanks for joining us.
BUCHANAN: Thank you.
LISOVICZ: Now think of what's next as the TV version of a lemonade stand, going to run some ads and make some money. After the break, the question that could change your financial life. We'll find out how to ask for a raise and get yes for an answer.
And the beatings will continue until morale improves. Take a swing at the candidate who's getting your goat. Our fun site of the week just might make you feel better.
SERWER: Congratulations. You made it through the recession without losing your job. You survived rounds of layoffs, cutbacks and buyouts and in return for all that hard work and dedication you were lucky if you got a 3 percent raise. But according to this month's "Smart Money" magazine, the job market is looking up and so are your chances of getting a big raise from the boss. "Smart Money" senior writer Beverly Goodman is here to help us all get a bigger paycheck. Welcome Beverly.
BEVERLY GOODMAN, "SMART MONEY" MAGAZINE: Hi.
SERWER: So is it really true that the economy is in good enough shape to really be going out and trying to get a raise at this point?
GOODMAN: Well, we're definitely in the very early stages of the job recovery. But there's a fair amount of evidence there. Corporate profits are at a record high. Capital spending is up and all of that usually means that wage pressure will come into play pretty soon.
LISOVICZ: OK, so the timing is right. Is the first rule of thumb to suck up to management, please say no.
GOODMAN: No. But the first step is really just to take a good hard look at what it is you're doing every day. Chances are you've exceeded your job description and have taken on new projects or filled in for other people and you really need to sort of lay out exactly what it is you're doing and if that's worth more money than what you were hired at.
CAFFERTY: So if you were going to walk in and represent me in some negotiations about getting some more money for hosting...
SERWER: Forget about it Beverly.
CAFFERTY: You want a tough job, I'll give you one. For hosting this very fine television program, what would you tell my boss. In other words, what's the pitch that you make if you're after a bigger paycheck which of course we all are.
GOODMAN: Well, the two main things that everyone needs to know, in addition to figuring out exactly what it is you do at your current job and how that's maybe gone beyond your previous responsibilities is what people do elsewhere at other companies and you can check out what they get paid on sites like salary.com and vault.com, also posts various sort of insider tips as to how people are compensated and you need to take all that information and bring it to your supervisor and make your case as to why you should get a little more money.
SERWER: All right. Beverly, so there's a Web site where I can find out how much money Jack makes?
CAFFERTY: It's called notenough.com.
SERWER: Should you always go for the maximum amount because I hear people saying you know, three years ago I asked for the moon. I got it and then now they're telling me I'm overpaid and I'm going to get laid off.
GOODMAN: Well, it's true and that's a good point. You definitely need to be reasonable and your expectations can't really be quite as high as they were during the boon years. But if you made it this far and your company values you, chances are you are worth something to them and if you're underpaid according to other profession -- I'm sorry, other companies or even if your own department, then you should ask for what you think (INAUDIBLE)
LISOVICZ: All right. So you documented your performance. You've checked out what other people are making and your boss still says no. You say, don't take no for an answer. So what do you do then? You hit him with your hook shot?
GOODMAN: I'm not sure I would advise that but you definitely have to go to them and ask why and if possible that you are tapped out at your salary or at your job description. Very often companies have a separate budget for increases like assigned (ph) to promotion so perhaps you are in line for a promotion and that should be the tack that you're taking, rather than just a raise. And you unfortunately may just find a surprising assessment of your job and it may be time to look elsewhere.
CAFFERTY: Some people suggest that timing is everything and I would guess that when you go in to ask for a raise, timing is probably at least a part of the equation. How do you determine if your timing is right?
GOODMAN: Well, generally they say that Mondays and Fridays are bad. Mondays people are kind of foggy and playing catch up and Friday's they're checked out, but it really just depends on your job and the cycle that you're in. And chances are, you have a sense or have access to somebody that has a sense of your bosses schedule and you should pretty much go along with that. You don't want to go in and ask for raise after he's just had an unpleasant budget meeting.
LISOVICZ: And we should mention that your article also details how you can trade up going to another company. It all can be read in "Smart Money" magazine, by Beverly Goodman who is the senior staff writer. Thanks so much for joining us.
GOODMAN: Thank you.
LISOVICZ: Next the drama of commerce in your very own home as our advertisers try to turn you into a customer. And after the break, it's your nickel, no make that a quarter. Find out why some cell phone users are paying more for moving around. And put your own two cents in. Our e-mail address is email@example.com.
Firs though, this week's edition of money and family.
LISOVICZ: Are you doing all you can to keep your home safe from disasters? If not, here's some tips on insuring your home. First you need to know what disasters your homeowner's insurance does and doesn't cover. Make sure you review your policy and speak with your agent to go over the fine print. Some policies may cover fire, but not flooding or earthquakes and remember the location of your home will determine what extra coverage you need. It's also a good idea to set up an insurance emergency fund with a bit of cash you set aside each month. That way you'll have some money in the bank to pay for repairs your insurance company doesn't cover and if you live in a government designated disaster area and your home has been damaged, the Federal Emergency Management Agency provides grants for repairs and temporary housing. The Small Business Administration will also offer low-interest loans for rebuilding. I'm Susan Lisovicz for money and family.
CAFFERTY: I have to recuse myself from this segment, because I don't have one. Another week, another good reason not to have a cell phone. Webmaster Allen Wastler joins us with news of some hidden fees that the cell phone companies may be slamming you with you might not even know it and he also has the fun site of the week. Talk among yourselves.
ALLEN WASTLER, MONEY.COM: If you did have the cell phone, you would be outraged, outraged. We got this new rule, neat new rule that if has change cell phone providers, you get to pop to whichever one you want to and keep your cell phone number. You don't have to be changing it. That's good, right?
WASTLER: Any ideas, you just take it around and you (INAUDIBLE) and you can just take your cheapest carrier. Well, it looks like a number of carriers have changed the rules. What they've done is that oh, you cancelled. Well, we're not going to prorate that last month anymore. We're charging for the full month of service.
LISOVICZ: So is it just one month or is it ongoing?
WASTLER: It depends on your billing cycle and where they do it. Sometimes, some carriers say oh we charge always a month in advance. So we're getting you for the change on this month plus another month.
SERWER: We charge six months in advance. I mean how can they get away with that?
WASTLER: Well, the trick is you know, you'd say, well, it's not like that with regular phone service right, not like that with my utility, not like that with my cable bill, but those are all utilities that are sort of regulated by the government and everything and even though cell phone carriers are regulated, different sort of animal.
LISOVICZ: Gray area?
WASTLER: So gray area, making sort of hitchy (ph) with the charge. So now a lot of people are like they say, I'm going to take advantage of the new rule. I'm going to change carriers and then they get this bill, what, $30, $40, 50 bucks depending on the type of service. They're getting mail. CAFFERTY: If you're like me...
WASTLER: You don't have that problem.
CAFFERTY: ... problem you have to be concerned with.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He doesn't have that problem.
LISOVICZ: Do you even have a phone Jack?
CAFFERTY: Just the kind that comes out, the wire goes in the wall at home.
WASTLER: Do you have the wire plugged?
CAFFERTY: Yes. I got indoor plumbing and everything. What's the fun site of the week?
WASTLER: Fun site, we're talking a lot about politics, right, getting a little upset and getting tired of them. I found a site where you can be either Bush or you can be either Kerry and pound the other guy, OK.
Let's start with you being George Bush and why don't - or actually let's be Kerry (INAUDIBLE) come on Bush, come on Bush, come on Bush, come on, you want some of this? Watch his upper cut. Watch his upper cut.
LISOVICZ: You ought to protect your head.
WASTLER: Kerry got you, look at that. Kerry's the winner on that.
CAFFERTY: Now you can flip it around.
WASTLER: We're a bipartisan show, exactly, so let's flip it around and let's go the other way, OK. So this you get to - come on, upper cut, watch the upper cut.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's just what he did in the National Guard.
WASTLER: Oh, Bush is the winner.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What about Nader? Does he have one?
WASTLER: No, they don't have Nadar. He's like crawling in the grass somewhere. Anyway you can go there, just get out your frustrations.
CAFFERTY: All right. Good to see you. Allen Wastler. Coming up next on IN THE MONEY, time to hear from you as we read some of your e- mails from the past week and ask you a new e-mail question for this week.
In fact, you can send us an e-mail right now. We're at firstname.lastname@example.org.
CAFFERTY: Time now to read your answers to our e-mail question of the week about whether you think the votes will be properly counted in this year's election? Some of you were downright cynical. Susan in Westport, Washington wrote no, because no man made systems 100 percent foolproof and there are so many people who are too incompetent to even cast a ballot correctly. That means a lot of ballots won't be counted correctly or should they if they're casting them correctly.
David in Prescott, Arkansas wrote, I think the problems this year will be with military votes from overseas. With so many troops serving in Iraq, I have doubts all the absentee ballots will be counted, but I am sure that every electoral vote will be counted and you can go to the bank with that.
And Mark writes, sure, all the votes will be counted. That includes all the votes from the dead people in Chicago, 150 percent of the eligible voters in St. Louis will vote and several thousand non citizens in Florida and California will also get their votes counted.
Now for next week's e-mail question of the week, it is as follows. Is it worth it to live in areas prone to national disasters like hurricanes and wildfires? Send your answers to email@example.com. And while you're at it, you should visit our show page with money.com/inthemoney which is where you'll find the address for our fun site of the week where Bush and Kerry can pound the stuffing out of each other.
With that we will thank you for joining us for this edition of IN THE MONEY, thanks to CNN correspondent Susan Lisovicz, far and away the best looking member of this entire group, "Fortune" magazine editor at large Andy Serwer, ranks somewhere down the list and money.com managing editor Allen Wastler. Join us tomorrow at 3:00 Eastern time. We'll look at what John Kerry and his team need to do to try to take the wind out of the Bush campaign sails. That's tomorrow at 3:00. Hope to see you then. Thank you for watching.
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