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CNN SATURDAY MORNING NEWS

More Politicians Criticize Bush Iraq Policy

Aired November 19, 2005 - 11:30   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


BETTY NGUYEN, CNN ANCHOR: Look at this. The gift giving season is about to heat up. So we are going to go high tech, my favorite stuff, electronics. We've got some great gifts for the gadget gurus on your list so Rob, take notes, as you're make your little list out for what you are going to get me, right.
ROB MARCIANO, CNN ANCHOR: Got it.

NGUYEN: It is Saturday, November 19, 2005. Good morning everybody. From the CNN Center in Atlanta, I'm Betty Nguyen.

MARCIANO: And I'm Rob Marciano in for Tony Harris, who right now is out shopping.

NGUYEN: For me. I wish. All right, now in the news, a developing story. A strong earthquake measuring a 6.5 in magnitude struck off the coast of western Indonesia about two hours ago. The area hit is near Ache province where an earthquake as you recall last December triggered a massive tsunami killing over 170,000 people. U.S. Geological Survey officials tell CNN they have no plans to issue any tsunami warnings. There are no reports of injuries or damage.

Iraqi police say at least 25 people were killed and 30 others wounded when a car bomb went off at a funeral today near Baquba, which is north of Baghdad. Another 12 people were killed and 30 others wounded in two separate car bombings. Both occurred in separate areas of the Iraqi capital.

President Bush says there will be no early U.S. troop withdraw from Iraq. At Osan Air Base in South Korea, Mr. Bush told U.S. forces that the sober judgment of military commanders on the ground must prevail over calls to end the U.S. military mission in Iraq. Mr. Bush is now in China.

And Tropical Storm Gamma, the 24th named storm of the busy Atlantic hurricane season is churning toward Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Gamma has top sustained winds near 45 miles an hour and higher gusts. Forecasters say the storm is not expected to become a hurricane, but it is expected to turn and eventually skirt just south of Florida possibly by Monday afternoon.

MARCIANO: You don't want to hear that. More now on President Bush's travels in Asia. The president arrived in China today for a two-day state visit. On the table, some sticky trade issues including the United States massive trade deficit with China. Mr. Bush's overseas trip comes during a politically tough time for him back home with his approval rating now at an all-time low. Here's CNN's senior political analyst William Schneider.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, CNN SR. POLITICAL ANALYST (voice-over): Why should President Bush care if his poll numbers are down? He can't run for re-election. Because the president's public support is his main source of power. Without it he loses clout. It happened to President Clinton after the Republicans took over Congress. Clinton ad to make a startling plea.

BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The president is relevant.

SCHNEIDER: American politicians are all in business for themselves. If a president is unpopular, there is no profit in supporting him. Members of Congress feel they can defy him with impunity.

REP. JOHN MURTHA (D) PENNSYLVANIA: The war in Iraq is not going as advertised. It's a flawed policy wrapped in illusion.

SCHNEIDER: Members of the president's own party go their own way as Republicans are doing now on Iraq and tax cuts and immigration and torture.

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We do not torture.

SCHNEIDER: Nevertheless, Senator McCain is leading the effort to pass a law against it.

SEN. JOHN McCAIN (R) ARIZONA: We've got to make sure that we don't torture people.

SCHNEIDER: Isn't the president's word enough? Apparently not because President Bush has also lost credibility. Most Americans no longer believe he's honest and trustworthy. They no longer give the president the benefit of the doubt. The White House has gone back into campaign mode, attacking critics.

BUSH: When Democrats say that I deliberately misled the Congress and the people, that's irresponsible.

SCHNEIDER: In the campaign, you can drive your numbers up by driving your opponent's numbers down but there's no campaign now. The president is in a race to get his own numbers up. He's running against himself.

(on-camera): Politics abhors a vacuum. If the president is weakened, someone else is likely to step forward and try to grab the spotlight, like Newt Gingrich did when President Clinton was weakened. Then Clinton had an opponent and what happened, the president's support started to go up. Bill Schneider, CNN, Los Angeles.

(END VIDEOTAPE) MARCIANO: That time of year, the deadline's approaching Betty.

NGUYEN: Very fast.

MARCIANO: For shopping.

NGUYEN: Shopping.

MARCIANO: I should know that. We've got some new gadgets, the hot list of new things you need buy. You don't want to miss that.

NGUYEN: Yes, look at those gadgets. We're going to go through each and every one of them. They are really cool, so guys stick around for that. '

And we do want to say good morning, Miami or Miami as some of you like to call it. We'll have your complete weather forecast plus the national outlook in about seven minutes. Rob, what's the name of this song?

MARCIANO: "French Poodle."

NGUYEN: "French Poodle," one of your favorites, right.

MARCIANO: That's an all-time favorite.

NGUYEN: Stay tuned. There's more to come.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

NGUYEN: That music again.

MARCIANO: I have nightmares of that music. Alpha, Beta, Gamma. This is starting to sound like a sorority or fraternity.

NGUYEN: Yes, it is.

BONNIE SCHNEIDER, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Can we just stop it at Gamma?

MARCIANO: This one's not going to be so bad, right?

SCHNEIDER: No, I don't think so, not as bad as Wilma for example pretty recently that Florida had to deal with. But because of Wilma, there's a concern because a lot of the structures that have been disrupted due to Wilma. All right, let's take a look at where Gamma is right now on our satellite perspective and we definitely have some clouds and some rain getting closer and closer to Belize, closer and closer to the Yucatan and some of the cloud cover just working its way further to the north as well and we can see it come stretching all of the way up to yep, Miami, Florida, getting some clouds already associated with Gamma.

Let's show you a live picture of Miami, Florida, this morning and we can show you sure enough it is overcast. We've got some low clouds over there. This is courtesy of our affiliate WPLG in Miami, Florida. And unfortunately, the weather isn't going to be getting much better as we work our way into the next few days.

Here's the latest track for tropical storm Gamma and as you can see, the storm doesn't quite hit the Yucatan, doesn't slam into Belize which is good news. It makes a turn before it does that and works its way south of Florida getting close enough to bring tropical storm force winds into the Florida peninsula and that means winds that exceed 39 miles per hour.

We're also looking at a good amount of rain too as the storm works its way to the south or possibly crossing over the Florida Keys. We're still a couple of days away so it is difficult to pinpoint the exact track. As we have been telling you all along in this busy tropical season, we have our cone of uncertainty that certainly stretches well into Florida, so we'll be watching really for the entire southern half of the state to be affected in some way by Gamma.

Elsewhere across the country, it sure is cold in a lot of places this morning in the southeast waking up to some very chilly conditions here in Atlanta and then further to the north, we had a blustery day in Detroit.

Back out to the West we go, mild conditions in Denver today, but then look what's happening in Southern California, more warm, dry Santa Ana winds. Not as bad as yesterday but still bad enough that we have wind advisories posted for much of the region today. We'll be watching for that. Some strong wind gusts are expected due to that warm weather. So another day of dry conditions in Southern California.

One positive note it is getting a little more comfortable in the northeast for the time being. We could be looking at some more wintry weather and some rainy conditions for the Thanksgiving week and that's so important with travel. It's going to be a really busy week in weather. We'll tell you about it coming up.

NGUYEN: All right, we'll be looking forward to that. Thank you Bonnie.

Shopping for the perfect holiday gift, maybe a camcorder or a digital camera sounds good. Don't miss some of these affordable, key word affordable, electronics and more. That's straight ahead. CNN does rock. Thanks for that little plug.

MARCIANO: We rock!

NGUYEN: Well, "French Poodle" music for you once again.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MARCIANO: Hollywood celebs are causing quite a stir this morning on cnn.com. Veronica de la Cruz joins us to tell us what video the web users are using. It is free now.

VERONICA DE LA CRUZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is free. It is free. Let's talk about the most popular people are clicking on and it is no doubt star studded, Rob. Remember that Tom Cruise story that we talked about in the 9:00 hour. MARCIANO: The cartoon where he's alluded to be in a closet.

DE LA CRUZ: Yeah, yeah, don't give away the details. I need to tell these people about that. That one by the way has gone straight to the top. But let me tell you about a couple of others, a couple of other stories that users are clicking on. Was it the case of forbidden love?

Allan Chernoff reports on the secret lives of David Ludwig, the 18-year-old accused killer of the parents of 14-year old Kara Beth Borden. According to friends, the two met at their Christian church, Rob, and were involved in a secret intimate relationship of a sexual nature. Kara Beth Borden's parents supposedly did not approve.

All right, check this out. Is this the newest match in the latest action adventure flick? Right here, Jackie and Schwarzenegger. That would be good, right?

MARCIANO: It doesn't look right.

DE LA CRUZ: Come on, no. They are not making movies this time around unfortunately. They are actually teaming up to stop movie piracy. The two participated in a public service announcement that will run on Chinese television and was directed by the same guy who did "Terminator 3." I say they do a "Terminator 4" together.

MARCIANO: That would be cool. That would be very cool.

DE LA CRUZ: I think they'd be very funny. All right, our number one story on the web right now Rob, this story receiving a huge amount of traffic. Unbelievable, it seems that everyone wants to know why "South Park" has been getting a lot of laughs lately. It is because Tom Cruise is the latest target of the brutal potshots the show's creators seem to take at celebrities.

In this episode, Tom Cruise visits Stan's house and ends up stuck in the closet. So Stan turns to his father and says Daddy, why won't Tom Cruise come out of the closet? And this goes on and on until a bunch of celebrities and the "South Park" police show up on Stan's door demanding that Cruise come out of the closet and then Nicole Kidman and she even makes a brief appearance begging Tom to come out of the closet. Poor, Tom. And no, Nicole's not wearing a beard in case you were wondering.

MARCIANO: Thank you. Sometimes it is good though to be parodied. They say you haven't made it until you are parodied on "Saturday Night Live" or on "South Park." I think Tom Cruise was relatively -- he was unknown until this. This is good for him.

DE LA CRUZ: Right, relatively unknown. You can find it all online at cnn.com/video. Just click on most watched and maybe you are next. Rob Marciano on "South Park."

MARCIANO: Struggling to get out of the closet, is that what you mean?

DE LA CRUZ: No, no, I didn't mean that at all. Let's send it to Betty.

MARCIANO: Betty.

NGUYEN: Yeah, you want me to help you out now, don't you, right? That is a whole other conversation but we're going to move on shall we. All right, it is time to really start thinking about the gifts that you may be giving this holiday season.

Electronic gadgets are always a hit. So consumer electronics analyst Robin List (ph) is the founder and president of four, not one, not two, but four websites that feature some of the hottest items and she joins us now with a look at -- look at these gadgets.

ROBIN LIST: You know, Betty, we've got some great holiday gift gadgets for everyone in the family.

NGUYEN: And they are affordable.

LIST: They're affordable. We have a whole range here. This is the Sony HD1 high definition camcorder. Now because it is high definition, that means you get four times the resolution which means four times the detail of Aunt Betty making a full of herself.

NGUYEN: Aunt Betty of course, in her muumuu no less.

LIST: Now we tested this product and it performs beautifully, great video, but it's a steep price, $1,600.

NGUYEN: Now, does it take pictures?

LIST: It does. It takes Two mega pixel still photos as well, so you can get (INAUDIBLE) It's all in one, great camcorder.

NGUYEN: Very nice and what is this thing?

LIST: So this is a product for the official couch potato in your family.

NGUYEN: That would be me.

LIST: I know it looks like a kind of plastic candy bar, but this is sling box media transmitter. You hook this up to your home theater and it transfers the video, your DVDs, your Tivo, across anywhere in the world. Now the one downside to this product ...

NGUYEN: What do you mean by that?

LIST: Well, it transmits it over a broadband connection, so you can dial in from say Starbucks and get your, you can get your CNN at any time of the day.

NGUYEN: I like that.

LIST: Right, now the one downside is quality is not great. But it is definitely a good product. So we like it a lot.

NGUYEN: And the price of it?

LIST: It's $250.

NGUYEN: That's not too bad. I like the look of this.

LIST: Remember the old walkmans, those tape players from 20 years ago? Well, Sony's brought them into the 21st century with the walkman music phone. Right, so this holds 256 megabytes of songs, which is a little small, but it doesn't limit you in the headphones you can use, so it's a really great product. The sound quality on this phone is absolutely superb.

NGUYEN: Now what makes this better than say an iPod phone?

LIST: Well, the iPod phone limits you to 100 songs and it doesn't let you use any kind of remote. So you can use high end -- I mean headphone. You can use high end headphones with this product. Though Sprint just announced a new phone where you can download songs wirelessly onto the cell phone, but they are $2.50, so they're a little expensive.

NGUYEN: That can add up. Now everybody wants a digital camera. Canon (INAUDIBLE) out there.

LIST: This is a great camera for the budding photographer in your family. It's a great low end product, under $200. The Canon power shot a510. It has a four times optical zoom if we turn it on here. We've tested this camera and compared it to competitors, much better picture quality.

NGUYEN: Let me take a look. I got to look at it.

LIST: The one downside to this one --

NGUYEN: (INAUDIBLE) I'm not a very good photographer.

LIST: The movie mode is not so good on this, but you know, it's fine. You're going to get great pictures, 3.2 megapixels.

NGUYEN: That's not bad and one more time, the price on this one.

LIST: This one is under $160 to $190 depending...

NGUYEN: I like that a lot. All right, this is the coolest item I think in my opinion. Check this out.

LIST: This is for the college student in your life. This is the Gateway tablet PC. You fold this over and it becomes a tablet PC so you can take notes.

NGUYEN: Sort of like an Etch-a-Sketch but you (INAUDIBLE).

LIST: If you take this to class, if the professor is a little boring, you can play video games. Of course we don't support that.

NGUYEN: Never. LIST: Never.

NGUYEN: I liked how the monitor can turn around like that.

LIST: Yeah, and it is really affordable. It's $1,150. The one thing I don't like about this is, it is kind of heavy.

NGUYEN: It is a little heavy.

LIST: It's about 4.8 pounds and for something that's supposed to be portable like this, I wish it was lighter weight.

NGUYEN: I got you there and the price?

LIST: $1,150.

NGUYEN: That's not too bad, I mean compared to the ones that are out there.

LIST: Definitely, a good price bargain (INAUDIBLE).

NGUYEN: Quickly, we got one more item we need to get to.

LIST: So have you ever had someone flush a cell phone down a toilet?

NGUYEN: Yes.

LIST: So this is the solution for you. This is called the cell stick. It's a backup device for your cell phone. So you plug it into the phone and you transfer the address book off the phone into this little guy. Then you can plug it in your laptop, edit your contacts, transfer them back.

NGUYEN: Great gift ideas, quickly, that was the cheapest right,

LIST: Yeah, that's $40, but make sure that your phone is compatible. Check out their website.

NGUYEN: That's very key. We appreciate it, Robin List. Thank you so much for all these great ideas. Rob, I want at least one of them, OK, just one. You can do the $40 one. That's not bad, right.

MARCIANO: I've got that covered.

NGUYEN: All right, well, for those folks at home, great gift ideas. We appreciate you watching this morning but there's much more to come.

MARCIANO: Yes, there is as a matter of fact. Fredricka Whitfield is up next. She's right here.

FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I wish I would have made my purchase of my little digital home camera thing after seeing that segment because there are a lot of good gee whiz stuff.

MARCIANO: You're never ahead of the curve. You just have to buy and forget about it.

WHITFIELD: That's a scary thing. As soon as you make a purchase, then it becomes obsolete and new stuff comes out.

MARCIANO: Don't lose sleep over it.

WHITFIELD: I'm not, I'm not going to. I will, you too.

MARCIANO: See you tomorrow.

WHITIFIELD: All right, take care.

Lots straight ahead -- breaking big. A company with a philosophy for success.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DAVID RAMSAY STEELE, EDITORIAL DIRECTOR, OPEN COURT PUBLISHING: Open Court is a small publishing company that' has been in existence for well over 100 years and it specializes in philosophy books. We had a proposal from a philosophy professor to do a book on "Seinfeld" from a philosophical point of view and w took chance on it. We did that book in the year 2000 and it was quite successful and we followed it up a year later with "The Simpson's" and philosophy. It sold far more copies than any other book in the history of Open Court.

Before we had this series, our sales never broke a million dollars. Now they are over $2 million. We are now doing six or seven a year on different aspects of popular culture. We'll continue to explore ways of popularizing philosophy. There's a general movement in the culture towards finding the profound meanings in everyday things.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com

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