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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Standing up to Pat-Downs; Royal Engagement; Teaching Students to Use Creativity
Aired November 16, 2010 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Thanks Larry. Thanks for watching.
Tonight: public anger against pat-downs and other intrusive security procedures including those full body scanners. We'll speak to a flyers' rights advocate who alleges the reason the scanners are in place has more to do with money, lobbyists and their Washington connections than how well the machines actually work. We're "Keeping Them Honest".
And in their own words, tonight: a royal engagement in England, Prince William and Kate Middleton share how they got engaged, why the ring is so special and what Kate thinks of Princess Diana.
Also adding another name to our "RidicuList" tonight. What a -- what a TV network did to Tina Fey on the night the comedian won the top award for American humor.
But we begin tonight as always "Keeping Them Honest". Tonight the full body scanners being deployed at our nation's airports and the growing outrage about them. The companies making the machines have some powerful friends in Washington. The question tonight, has that helped them get government contracts even though the government has raised questions about the machine's effectiveness.
By now you've probably heard about the man who refused to go through one of the machines at San Diego Airport over the weekend and then recorded the pat-down he was to receive on his cell phone camera.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to be doing a standard pat-down on you today using my hands going like this --
JOHN TYNER, AIR TRAVELER: All right.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- on your body. Also we're going to be doing a groin check. That means I'm going to place my hands on your hip, the other hand on your inner thigh and slowly go up and slide down.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm going to do that two times in the front and two times in the back. TYNER: All right.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And if you'd like the screening we can make that available for you also.
TYNER: We could do that out here but if you touch my junk, I'm going to have you arrested. Ok?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, that was John Tyner. He ended up also refusing the pat-down. Tonight, he's facing a possible $11,000 fine. Mr. Tyner didn't want to use one of the new body scanner machines. There are now about 385 of them at nearly 70 airports nationwide. They were put in place after the accused underwear bomber tried to blow up a plane in Detroit last Christmas.
Now, since that attempted bombing, former Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff has been publicly touting the need for the federal government to use the full body scanners. Here's what he told "The New York Times" about the machines just days after the attempted underwear bombing, he said, quote, "If they'd been deployed this would pick up this kind of device".
As former Homeland Security Secretary, Mr. Chertoff's opinion obviously carries a lot of weight. But what may not -- what may not be clear to many Americans, however, is that Michael Chertoff is in business with one of the big companies that makes these machines. He runs a consulting firm and the company RapiScan is one of his clients.
Mr. Chertoff's claim that these machines would have picked up the underwear bomber's device contradicts a GAO report that said, and I quote, "While officials said advanced imaging technology performed as well as physical pat-downs and operational tests it remains unclear whether the advanced imaging technology would have detected the weapon used in the December 2009 incident based on the preliminary information GAO has received."
Now, to be fair, Mr. Chertoff has been a proponent of these machines for years, back -- even when he was head of homeland security and he had no financial incentive to support them. Here he is back in 2008.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHAEL CHERTOFF, FORMER HOMELAND SECURITY SECRETARY: Another thing the check point uses is whole body imaging known as (INAUDIBLE) which includes millimeter -- millimeter wave technology. This technology allows us to detect any item concealed on a person's body, including molded plastic hidden under clothing and the technical (ph) is minimal intrusion. To protect privacy our officers review the images from a remote location and the facial features will be blurred and the images deleted from the system once they have been reviewed.
Passengers will also be offered the opportunity to opt out of this screening and go through a traditional pat-down if they want. But our experience shows that a majority, a vast majority of people actually want the new technology.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, last December when he was working with RapiScan, Mr. Chertoff also promoted the use of the machines on CNN.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CAMPBELL BROWN, FORMER CNN ANCHOR: When we talk about screenings at the airports and other protective mechanisms along the way, what should we be doing that clearly we're not?
CHERTOFF: Well, Campbell, the strategy recognizes that there's always going to be human error in any system. You can't count on perfection. And that's why we built a strategy at the Department of Homeland Security of what we call layered security, a number of different layers. So that even if one fails another gets picked up.
It's complicated here, of course, because the actual screening took place overseas where the U.S. ability to control what goes on is obviously not the same as it is here.
But there are a few things we could do to make things better. First we could deploy this scanning, the scanning machines that we currently are beginning to deploy in the U.S. that would give us the ability to see what someone has concealed underneath their clothing. That has been vigorously opposed by the ACLU and privacy advocates. The House of Representatives voted to prevent us from using it, but I think now there's been a very vivid lesson in the value of that machinery.
BROWN: Ok, can I stop you there for a second?
BROWN: I know you've been an advocate of this technology for a long time --
BROWN: But just in the interest of full disclosure I also want to point out in your current role as a security consultant you are representing some of the companies who manufacture that technology, correct?
CHERTOFF: Absolutely correct, yes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: And it's not just Mr. Chertoff, who has ties to a scanner company, a lot of lobbyists do as well. Among them former Senator Al D'Amato; the retired New York Republican now works for a lobbying firm that does work for a company that makes scanners. We should point out all this lobbying is perfectly legal.
Joining me now is Kate Hanni, founder of the airline watch dog group Flyersrights.org. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Kate, there's a number of former government people, Michael Chertoff, Senator Alfonse D'Amato, legislative aides to folks in Congress who are now working with or for some of these companies that sell these scanners. Do you think there's a conflict here?
KATE HANNI, FOUNDER, FLYERSRIGHT.ORG: Absolutely there's a conflict. In fact, Michael Chertoff basically gave birth to the scanner brand when he was Department of Homeland Security Secretary, and then went to work directly as a consultant for RapiScan when he left office.
COOPER: But what's wrong with that? I mean, he -- he says and he admits publicly he was pushing for these full-body scanners from back in 2005 when he was still head of the homeland security as you said. TSA awarded contracts to RapiScan while he was at homeland security. What's wrong with him now working as a consultant for the company if he believes in the devices?
HANNI: Several things. Government officials are supposed to have a grace period before they go to work for companies that they've given contracts to. The promises were made to buy these RapiScan scanner units in 2006 when he was still in office and then he went to work directly for them --
COOPER: Technically, though, he's -- he's not a registered lobbyist for that company, he has a consulting firm so there's no law preventing him from working with the clients in the security field.
HANNI: You may be right but it's still morally wrong and he's using his trust -- the public has in him as a public servant to sell a product that he clearly has a stake in profiting from and we think that's incorrect. I truly believe that Michael Chertoff had a plan, the plan has been executed perfectly.
He was the one that I saw on the airwaves in January espousing the attributes of these scanners and stating that these scanners would solve the types of problems that Abdul Mutallab presented by having the underpants bomb, even though other experts were saying that it's unlikely that the scanners would have detected a bomb like that and certainly would not detect an anal cavity bomb which the TSA was already aware and Department of Homeland Security was already aware had happened to the Saudi Prince six months earlier. And they knew that terrorists were going to try to achieve internal bombs that they could detonate with cell phones which -- which won't be detected by these scanner units.
But Michael Chertoff was all over CNN and many other networks talking about the attributes of these scanners as if they were the solution to everything.
COOPER: There is -- there is this GAO report that says that these types of full body scanners as you say would not have necessarily stopped the -- that Christmas Day bomber, the would-be bomber. I -- earlier today I spoke to the head of TSA. I pressed him on that, and he basically said, look, we're using the best technology we have. Nothing is 100 percent.
You know, he seemed like a decent guy, he seemed like he's just trying to do his best to come up with as many things as possible to prevent something horrible from happening.
HANNI: Well, it's my understanding from the experts that we've been working with the best detectives for explosives are K-9s. And they are the most sensitive, they are the most likely to detect explosives on anyone and they can do it not necessarily by even pressing up against a person. They can do it by sniffing along the edge of a line of folks.
So there are many other methods of detection that could have been employed --
COOPER: But -- but I mean, the sheer volume of travelers we have in this country, I mean, frankly I don't think there's enough K-9 dogs -- with K-9s use -- I mean, this is all off the top of my head, but they have a -- a -- they can only work for a certain amount of time, you have to change them repeatedly. I'm just not sure -- I mean is that really a feasible alternative?
HANNI: Well, it's less intrusive.
You know the issue we have right now with these scanners and with the pat-downs is that people feel molested. They feel that they're -- they are being violated in one way or another and -- or their children are or their wives are, and -- and I can tell you having been through the pat-down and the scanner, it -- it is violating.
And I think the issue here is, was this the best method of detection of explosives that also would work for 100 percent of the American people. Because right now 100 percent of the American people are -- are -- are being treated as if they're terrorists.
COOPER: Kate Hanni, I appreciate your time. Kate, thank you.
HANNI: Thank you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, we reached out to Michael Chertoff for a response, his spokeswoman tells us quote, "Due to confidentiality the Chertoff group does not disclose specific clients." In addition, "The Chertoff group does not engage in any lobbying efforts. Former Secretary Michael Chertoff has consistently advocated for effective technologies that can better secure our aviation system and the traveling public. He did so while serving in federal government to ensure we eliminate vulnerabilities as illustrated last year during the terrorist attempt on Christmas Day. He continues to do so today."
Up next we'll hear from the head of the TSA respond to the criticism his department is facing.
Also tonight the royal engagement.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRINCE WILLIAM, UNITED KINGDOM: We'd been talking about marriage for a while so it wasn't a massively big surprise but I took her up somewhere nice in Kenya and I proposed.
KATE MIDDLETON, PRINCE WILLIAM'S FIANCEE: Very romantic.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Prince William and his Princess bride-to-be in their own words when 360 continues.
COOPER: More of the outrage over the airport security before the break you heard from the founder of an airline watch dog group who alleges the reason the controversial full body scanners are in place at nearly 70 airports nationwide has more to do with money, lobbyists and their Washington connections than how well the machines actually work.
We want to you hear from the TSA now. It's important to get their perspective. Earlier I talked with the head of the TSA John Pistole.
COOPER: Mr. Pistole, CNN received some comments from a senior department of homeland security official who said that, quote, "The mood at DHS and the TSA is anger over the way the media is playing the story. What do you think the media is getting wrong here?
JOHN PISTOL, TSA ADMINISTRATOR: Anderson, I think it's an issue about partnership and security and how best we can meld those two significant issues in a way that provides the best possible security for the traveling public.
I wouldn't describe it as anger per se, I think it's just a matter of trying to do the best possible job we can to inform the traveling public that what the men and women of TSA are doing are proper security screening to ensure the best possible safety for every person, every member of the traveling public.
COOPER: The -- the -- the senior homeland security official also told us regarding the TSA screener in San Diego, quote, "He was accosted and verbally abused by a member of the traveling public. The fact that some in the media would hail the traveler as kind of folk hero is shameful." Do you think he's being held as a folk hero, that guy?
PISTOLE: Well, I don't know about that, Anderson. I just know that the men and women of TSA are trained to be and are professionals in terms of how they carry out their -- their business to, again, to get back to that issue of how can they best partner with the traveling public to provide the best possible security. So I think it's more a matter of the traveling public working with the security officers to say, ok, I know I want to be safe on that plane. I want everybody else to be properly screened, so how can we get through this in the best possible way, especially as we look -- head toward next week with Thanksgiving travel.
COOPER: Let's talk about the safety of these machines. Because that's a huge concern I hear from a lot of people who today say they just don't buy it that these things are not giving off a lot of radiation, particularly if you're a frequent traveler and you have the pilot union saying they don't want their pilots going through it because they're frequent travelers.
PISTOLE: So the studies I have seen Anderson, deal with that issue head on and those are issues -- those are studies done by, for example, the FDA, the National Institution of Science and Technology in Johns Hopkins where they each looked at the advanced imaging technology machines that we have been deploying now for over a year and assess that the radiation coming from those machines are equivalent to about three minutes' worth of air travel by anybody say at 30,000 feet.
So there's obviously naturally occurring radiation and that's well within the -- the established safety standards. So I would just encourage people who have questions or issues to refer to that literature. We have some of that posted on the TSA.gov Web site and to assuage those concerns by doing their own research.
COOPER: Do we even know though if these things work? I mean, a GAO report that I say from March of this year said -- said, that while the advanced image technology performed as well as physical pat-downs in operational tests, they said, quote, "It remains unclear whether they would have detected the weapon used in the December 2009 incident."
PISTOLE: Anderson, I think there's a couple of issues there --
COOPER: Which is the underwear bomber.
PISTOLE: Yes, you're right. Right, I think there's a couple of issues there, Anderson. And -- and one is what, for example, GAO and the inspector general and our own TSA inspection has done in terms of covert testing. And what they have found over the years is we need to be more thorough in our security screening, whether that's with better technology before AIT was out or with a more thorough pat-down.
So that's what we are trying to address to ensure that those aspects of security where they perhaps were not as robust should address that.
As it relates to the Christmas Day bomber, it's this type of screening both for non-metallic explosives such as Abdul Mutallab used, coupled with the pat-down somebody opts out of the AIT is designed exactly to identify, locate and neutralize that type of threat.
COOPER: But I mean, without getting too graphic, couldn't just somebody insert something inside themselves and -- and then have a -- a pat-down and you're not going to be able to find that?
PISTOLE: Well, that's one of the challenges. Anderson, this is not, you know, an internal scanner or screener in any way. The challenge would be, without getting too technical, you'd have to have some type of initiator, some type of device that would actually create the explosive initiation.
So thus far we have not seen that type of technique but we are always mindful that there may be something there and the bottom line is that we are using what we believe to be the best technology coupled with the best techniques and tactics and training to ensure the best possible safety for the traveling public.
COOPER: A lot of this stuff was recommended years ago by Homeland Security Secretary -- former Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. I think a lot of people didn't realize he has a client who manufactures some of those scanners. Should that raise red flags for people?
PISTOLE: Well, clearly if there's any conflict of interest that that would need to be addressed. I know it's something that there was obviously competitive bidding and assessment and we actually use two different manufacturers for the advanced imaging technology. I don't have the details on -- on what you're referring to, but obviously there is that process that we go through with all acquisition.
COOPER: Captain "Sully" Sullenberger was -- was quoted as being concerned about -- about radiation. For -- for those people, particularly who fly a lot -- and I'm certainly one of them and pilots and I know you guys have been talking to pilots and you may reach some sort of different screening procedure for pilots -- why shouldn't somebody who flies a lot be concerned about repeated exposure through this body scanner? I know you say there are studies which tested this, but -- but has it tested for, you know, repeated exposures for frequent flyers?
PISTOLE: Yes, that's part of the scientific studies Anderson, and again I would refer people to that. I talked to Sully today based on some of his concerns and I -- I and I think we do have a good way forward with the pilots who not only have the frequency but from a risk-based intelligence-driven process that I've implemented since I started July 1, looking at the issue of, should there be alternative screening available for pilots since they're in charge of the aircraft, and I think we'll have something on that in the very near future.
COOPER: Right, the idea being that you're screening a pilot but they have the -- they've got a weapon of mass destruction basically in their hands --
COOPER: -- they have a plane so if they wanted to do something, they could use the plane so why go through the bother of screening them. PISTOLE: Right. Right.
COOPER: As we've been looking into this over the last couple of days, it seemed like the TSA Web site and guidelines for which airport passengers can expect to find these machines weren't up to date and only were updated frankly after reporters started inquiring about that. Are you aware of that?
PISTOLE: I'm not aware of the specifics of it, but I know the public messaging is one of the key challenges that -- that I face as administrator.
COOPER: Because Mr. Tyner specifically said, you know, he'd checked the Web site of the San Diego airport, that -- and it said that they didn't use those machines. He then gets there, they're using those machines. Yesterday we checked the Web site; it still said the -- that airport doesn't use those machines. Then later in the day as this story built, lo and behold, suddenly it was changed and -- and that airport was added as well as many others.
PISTOLE: Yes. You're probably aware Anderson, that we are deploying new advanced imaging technology every week as post 12/25. Of course, we've been doing it before 12/25 but we've accelerated that in an attempt to use the best technology so those Web sites are -- are literally out of date on a daily basis, if we have not updated so I appreciate that insight and then, we'll make sure we're doing that.
COOPER: Administrator John Pistole, I appreciate your time, sir. Thanks.
PISTOLE: Thank you, Anderson.
COOPER: Well, just ahead, chaos descending; in a city in northern Haiti residents are furious about the spreading cholera epidemic. They're blaming the U.N. We'll tell you why.
Plus this --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRINCE WILLIAM: It's a family ring, yes. It's my mother's engagement ring. So I thought it was quite nice because obviously she's not around to share in the fun and excitement so this is my way of keeping her close to it all.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Prince William announcing his engagement to his long-time girlfriend Kate Middleton. What are they like as a couple? We'll you'll hear for yourself, we'll play you a long chunk of the interview and we'll talk to some folks who interviewed them and know them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: We're following a number of stories tonight; Brooke Anderson has the latest in the "360 News and Business Bulletin" -- Brooke.
BROOKE ANDERSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, Haiti's northern city of Cap-Haitien is under siege by mobs angry about the deadly cholera epidemic. And a CNN reporter on the ground says the government appears to have lost control. Rumors have spread that United Nations peace keepers from Nepal brought the disease to the city. U.N. officials deny that claim. Cap-Haitien has been hit hard by the epidemic. Cholera has killed more than 1,000 people across Haiti.
President Obama presented the Medal of Honor to Army Staff Sergeant Salvatore Giunta for heroism in Afghanistan. Giunta saved members of his unit during a fierce attack by the Taliban. He's the first living recipient of the medal for bravery during an ongoing conflict in more than 30 years.
Beverly Hills police are investigating the killing of noted Hollywood publicist Ronni Chasen. They say multiple shots were fired into her car early this morning as she drove home after a movie premiere. Police also say they have no suspects or motive at this time.
And as of today, the Beatles catalog is available on iTunes. In a news release from Apple, surviving band member Paul McCartney called the move fantastic. For a long time the Beatles resisted going to iTunes because they questioned the quality of digital music.
And Anderson, you know that's really no surprise. While these -- while these are re-mastered albums, these guys are really classicist they fiercely protect and preserve their music as much as possible. So this is huge. This is epic.
COOPER: It would have been interesting to be in on the negotiations for that one. Brooke, we'll check in with you in a -- in a little bit.
Prince William finally popped the question to his girlfriend, Kate Middleton. What took him so long? Well, we're talking to Tom Bradby from the Britain's iTV News, he's the man who conducted the royal couple's first interview. We're going to play you about five minutes of that interview. And talk to Tom.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRINCE WILLIAM: Her and her family, I really want to make sure they -- they have the best guidance and chance to see what life's been like or what life is like in the family and that's kind of almost why I had been waiting this long. I wanted to give her a chance to see them -- to back out if she needed to before it all got too much.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, Britain's Prince William has finally popped the question to long-time love Kate Middleton. In case you're wondering, the daughter of self-made millionaires said yes. The ring is the same one his father, Prince Charles, gave to Lady Diana Spencer 29 years ago.
Just to show you how things have changed, Will and Kate already share a home together. Middleton is a familiar face to royal watchers but she's rarely been heard in public. Today the royal couple gave their first interview to Britain's ITV News.
TOM BRADBY, POLITICAL EDITOR, ITV NEWS: William, where did you propose, when, how, and Kate, what did you say?
PRINCE WILLIAM, UNITED KINGDOM: It was about three weeks ago on holiday in Kenya. We had a little private time away together with some friends and I just decided that it was the right time, really. We'd been talking about marriage for a while. So it wasn't a massively big surprise, but I took her up somewhere nice in Kenya and proposed.
KATE MIDDLETON, PRINCE WILLIAM'S FIANCE: It was very romantic. Will's a true romantic.
BRADBY: And you said yes, obviously.
MIDDLETON: Of course, yes.
BRADBY: And you knew you were going to do this day one of the whole or you waited until the end?
PRINCE WILLIAM: I'd been planning it for a while, but as every guy out there will know it takes a certain amount of motivation to get yourself going. So I was planning it and then it just felt really right out in Africa. And it was beautiful at the time, and I just I had a little bit of planning to show her my romantic side.
BRADBY: Kate, you'd been on holiday a while so did you see this coming? Was he getting nervous and jumpy?
MIDDLETON: No. Not at all. We were out there with friends and things so I really didn't expect it at all. I thought he might have sort of maybe thought about it, but, no. It was a total shock when it came and very excited.
BRADBY: And he produced the ring there and then?
PRINCE WILLIAM: I did. I'd been carrying it around me in my rucksack for about three weeks before that and I literally would not let it go where I went. I was keeping hold of it because I knew if this thing, if it disappeared I'd be in a lot of trouble. And because I planned it sort of -- it went fine as, you know, you hear a lot horror stories about proposing and things go horribly wrong but it went really, really well and I was very pleased she said yes.
BRADBY: And it's a family ring.
PRINCE WILLIAM: It is a family ring, yes. It's my mother's engagement ring. So I thought it was quite nice because obviously she's not really around to share in the fun and excitement of all this. This is my way of keeping her sort of close to it all. BRADBY: I guess we'd better have a look at it. What kind of ring is it? Are you an expert?
PRINCE WILLIAM: I'm not an expert on it at all. I've been reliably informed it's a sapphire with some diamonds. But I'm sure everyone recognizes it from previous times.
MIDDLETON: It's very beautiful.
BRADBY: And Kate you're going to be the envy of many.
MIDDLETON: I just hope I look after it but it's very, very special.
BRADBY: you're obviously going to enter this family, the most famous royal family in the world. William's mother was this massive iconic figure, the most famous figure of our age. Is that worrying? Is that intimidating? Does that -- do you think about that a lot both of you? You particularly Kate, obviously.
MIDDLETON: Well, obviously, I would loved to have met her, and she's obviously -- she's an inspirational woman to look up to. Obviously to this day and, you know, going forward and things. It's a wonderful family, they have achieved a lot, and very inspirational. So yes, I do.
PRINCE WILLIAM: There's no pressure because like Kate said, it's about carving your own future. No one's going to try and -- no one's trying to fill my mother's shoes and what she did is fantastic. It's about making your own future and your own destiny and Kate will do a very good job at that.
BRADBY: This is a life in the public domain to a degree that you can't escape. You both know that. You're obviously very -- you know it better than Kate does.
PRINCE WILLIAM: Yes.
BRADBY: You're obviously very protective of her.
PRINCE WILLIAM: Massively so, of course. Her and her family, I really want to make sure they have the best sort of guidance and chance to see what life's been like or what life is like in the family. And that's kind of almost why I have been waiting this long is I wanted to give her a chance to see and back out if she needed to before it all got too much because I'm trying to learn from lessons in the past. And I just wanted to give her the best chance to settle in and see what happens on the other side.
MIDDLETON: I'm also glad I've had the time to sort of to grow and understand myself more as well to hopefully do a good job.
BRADBY: It's a massive thing you're going into now. I mean obviously marriage is a big thing for everyone but it's in such a public way. Excited? A little bit terrified?
PRINCE WILLIAM: Massively excited. Quite happy when the interview is over. But we're hugely excited and it's -- we're looking forward to spending the rest of the time, the rest of our lives together and seeing what the future holds.
COOPER: They seem like a very nice couple.
Up next, we're going to have more on the royal love story and the young woman who one day may be queen. We're going to talk to CNN's Richard Quest and the author of "William and Harry: behind the palace walls" Katie Nicholl.
Also ahead, who gets named on tonight's "RidicuList"? Well, here's a hint. It's a TV network that claims it didn't censor Tina Fey.
COOPER: Big news out of Buckingham Palace, Prince William and Kate Middleton are engaged. The proposal was certainly a long time coming; so long that some British tabloids even nicknamed Middleton Waity Katie for waiting so long for Prince Charming to pop the question.
Tom Foreman tonight takes a closer look at their modern-day fairy tale.
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The wedding of Prince Charles and Princess Diana drew one of the biggest global TV audiences ever. And now their first son's engagement appears to be setting the stage for much the same. William is just behind his father to become king of England and his engagement to a woman who grew up in the middle class is a sensation.
MIDDLETON: Well, it's quite a daunting prospect, but I hope I'll take it in my stride. William's a great teacher so hopefully he'll be able to help me along the way. I really look forward to spending my time with William.
FOREMAN: He met Kate Middleton whose parents are self-made millionaires from selling children's party supplies while both William and Kate were university students in Scotland. She was studying art history and he was too. But she is widely credited with convincing him to change to geography when he seemed ready to drop out altogether.
They first appeared as a couple on a skiing trip in Switzerland, first appeared to be finished three years ago when they broke up.
PRINCE WILLIAM: You know, we were both very young. It was at university and we were sort of both finding ourselves as such and being different characters and stuff.
FOREMAN: It was a summer of on again off again dating.
MIDDLETON: I at the time wasn't very happy about it but actually it made me a stronger person. You find out things about yourself that maybe you hadn't realized or I think you can get quite consumed by a relationship when you're younger and I really valued that time for me as well although I didn't think it at the time.
FOREMAN: Now they live with one another. Both are 28 years old, both still speak of life goals like any 20-somethings. He has his military career and several charities, she's shown past interest in opening a photography gallery.
So why the long wait for the engagement? The gulf between his royal life and her regular upbringing is at least part of it.
PRINCE WILLIAM: I wanted to give her a chance to see and to back out if she needed to before it all got too much because I'm trying to learn from lessons done in the past and I just wanted to give her the best chance to settle in and see what happens at the other side.
FOREMAN: As for children in their plans?
PRINCE WILLIAM: I think we'll take it one step at a time. We'll sort of get over the marriage thing first and then maybe look at the kids.
FOREMAN: But for now the next big step is down the aisle.
Tom Foreman, CNN.
COOPER: Richard Quest joins me now, so does Katie Nicholl. She's the author of "William and Harry: behind the palace walls" and has been writing about the royal family for more than a decade now.
So Richard, Kate said that she was surprised but hasn't this been in the making for a long time?
RICHARD QUEST, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Yes, indeed, it has. They've been going together for eight or nine years, seven or eight certainly as a couple even with the short break. And they admitted in the interview that they've actually talked about marriage and what would happen.
But even so, she wasn't called Waity Katie for nothing, having waited so long for this betrothal. She did admit it came as a surprise. She had no idea that William had been carrying this sapphire and diamond engagement ring in the back of a rucksack for several weeks while they were going around Kenya. A surprise, indeed.
COOPER: Katie, what is she like? Is she well liked in England?
KATIE NICHOLL, AUTHOR, "WILLIAM AND HARRY": She is. But the thing is we don't know an awful lot about her. She's been kept very, very below the radar. We do know that there's a lot more to her. She loves sports. They've got the same interests. They're very happy together.
And having watched them at the press conference today and met them, there is such a chemistry between the two of them, they both looked so happy and I think very relieved because this has been a long courtship. It's been nearly nine years.
I don't quite believe that she didn't know it was coming because they made a pact back in 2007 that their relationship would end in a marriage and sure enough it will do.
COOPER: That's quite a pact.
Richard, I don't know how this stuff works, but didn't it used to be that she would have had to come from some sort of royal family or an upper class family? Apparently she's from like an upper middle class family. Does that sort of thing matter in the royal etiquette anymore?
QUEST: No, it doesn't. Traditionally, yes, the heir to the throne and other members of the royalty, they married within a circle. Diana, for instance, comes from a family of great aristocracy, the highest in the land, almost, so to that extent.
So those, the days have gone. It is not, as you know, Kate's family is upper middle class. They are in commercial business, if you want to put it crudely. She is a woman who's been around and therefore, in that sense, it is the royal family saying we now recognize this is a new time, a new generation.
COOPER: Richard, what does this mean -- does this mean anything for the order of who gets to be king next? It's a dumb question and I'm not wording it correctly.
QUEST: No, don't worry, I know where you're going with that one, Anderson. You're basically -- let's not mince words. You're basically suggesting, now William's got a wife. Are they going to skip over Charles and just jump to the younger, more handsome one and the answer is no.
That's not the way it works. No matter how unpopular or how dowdy and curmudgeony Charles may be perceived. In his favor, he has brought these boys up to respect their own freedoms, to recognize they have their own lives, and not to make the mistakes of the past. And from that point of view, full credit to the Prince of Wales.
But to your question, no, the line of succession will go from Queen Elizabeth, long may she live, on to Charles, and from Charles on to William.
COOPER: And Katie, I was reading earlier that Kate once had a schoolgirl crush on William as a teen. That's kind of interesting.
NICHOLL: She did, and it was something that they were asked in the interview because there's long been a rumor that she used to have pictures of Prince William on her bedroom wall but she set the record straight for the first time today. Of course, we've never heard her speak before, and it was a Levi's model and not Prince William in his Levi's -- I'd just like to add. So perhaps that was a myth too far.
COOPER: Wait. Did you say we'd never heard her speak before?
NICHOLL: No. This is the first time that we've really heard Kate Middleton speak. She's been -- when I say she's been kept behind the palace walls --
COOPER: Really? That's amazing.
NICHOLL: -- she really has. There's a tiny clip of her on YouTube but it's just the tiniest sentence but this is the first time we've really seen her in the spotlight.
That's why it's been so fascinating. That's why it's been such an enormous day over here, because we've seen her sit down and give her first-ever interview.
COOPER: Richard Quest, Katie Nicholl, thanks very much.
NICHOLL: Thank you.
COOPER: So we started a new segment on the program this week. A nightly effort to point out hypocrisy, double talk, stuff that is just downright ridiculous; we call it the "RidicuList".
So who's on the list tonight? Well, it's the TV network PBS for their claims about why they edited Tina Fey. Now, Tina Fey received the prestigious Mark Twain Prize for American humor at the Kennedy Center last week.
In her acceptance speech, she thanked many people including Sarah Palin, who Fey obviously imitated a lot during the 2008 presidential campaign. But what viewers of PBS saw on TV was very different from what people at the award ceremony actually saw. So here's what Tina Fey had to say about Palin and conservative women during the award ceremony.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TINA FEY, WRITER, COMEDIAN: I would be a liar and an idiot if I didn't thank Sarah Palin for helping get me here tonight. My partial resemblance and her crazy voice are the two luckiest things that have ever happened to me.
And you know, politics aside, the success of Sarah Palin and women like her is good for all women, except of course those who will end up paying for their own rape kit and stuff. But for everybody else, it's a win-win unless you're a gay woman who wants to marry your partner of 20 years, whatever. But for most women, the success of conservative women is good for all of us, unless you believe in evolution. You know what? Actually, I take it back. The whole thing's a disaster.
All kidding aside, I'm so proud to represent American humor.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: All right. On Sunday night PBS viewers watching the pre- taped event didn't hear any of that. This is what viewers heard instead.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
FEY: I would be a liar and an idiot if I didn't thank Sarah Palin for helping get me here tonight. My partial resemblance and her crazy voice are the two luckiest things that ever happened to me. All kidding aside, I'm so proud to represent American humor.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: All right. Producers cut out approximately 33 seconds of Fey's jokes about Palin and conservative women. They insist however, politics or fear of criticism had nothing to do with it. One of the producers of the program told the "Washington Post" that they trimmed parts of Fey's acceptance speech not because of content but due to time.
The ceremony ran 19 minutes too long and hey said a lot of it was trimmed. That may be so but it's hard to believe they would choose to trim from one of the main winner's speeches, especially considering they just happen to cut the controversial stuff out.
Fine if they want to avoid controversy, I understand that. But they should just admit it. Pretending it had nothing to do with politics, that just sounds ridiculous and that earns them a spot on tonight's "RidicuList".
Just ahead on 360, "Perry's Principles". Education contributor Steve Perry takes us to a middle school in Ohio where hands-on creativity and not just memorization is a tool that teachers use to educate kids.
COOPER: There's a lot of debate among educators, parents of school kids about the heavy reliance on test scores to measure not only the progress of students but also the quality of school. Some educators believe that students spend too much time memorizing facts in order to pass tests at the expense of creativity.
In tonight's "Perry's Principles", CNN education contributor, Steve Perry, visits an Ohio middle school where creativity really drives learning.
STEVE PERRY, CNN EDUCATION CONTRIBUTOR (voice-over): This is not your typical classroom. Here in Akron, Ohio, lessons come to life. Seventh graders from the National Inventors' Hall of Fame School are helping park rangers get rid of the autumn olive plants.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right. Pick it straight up over your head now. Go. A little on your shoulder. (on camera): Why do you want to remove all them olives?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Because they're an invasive species.
PERRY: Now, what is an invasive species? These are big words, man.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's something that's not wanted there.
PERRY: And so the autumn olives are taking over the park? What are you going to do to remove this plant.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, we found out if you cut them then they'll just grow back three times its size.
PERRY: Wow. That's like gremlins. You put water on them and they just keep growing. So what do you do?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, we thought that if we pull them out by the roots they will take it completely out so that they won't exist anymore.
PERRY: Your learning is different here. The teachers aren't giving you the answers and then you have study them. They're asking you questions? So that's what the problem-based learning is about?
TRACI BUCKNER, PRINCIPAL, NATIONAL INVENTORS HALL OF FAME SCHOOL: It makes them realize that they have a job to do and the good thing about it is a lot of the problems that we pose to our children are problems that are going to affect them or the people around them or their community. And that's what makes the experience real to them and that's really what makes the connections.
I found that in more traditional teaching experiences is that when you're reading from a book and you're not really able to make those real world connections there's that disconnect. It's important that children understand that there's always an opportunity for there to be more than one solution. And with more than one solution, that there's possibilities.
PERRY: There's something about the creativity part of learning because that's not so typical, especially in these times where people are talking about teaching to the test.
PERRY: So what was it about this that made you think this could work?
BUCKNER: At our school we call our teachers "learning coaches". They really make all of the difference for the kids. The experience that the kids have is different every day because the learning coaches are coming to work and they're ready to try new things and they're ready to allow the children to open their minds to new things.
We're really preparing the kids today for the skills that they're going to need, the 21st century skills that they'll need beyond college and then once they enter the workforce. (END VIDEOTAPE)
COOPER: The idea seems to be teaching creativity but, I mean how do you actually teach creativity?
PERRY: This school has an interesting approach to it. They call it problem-based learning. If you think about it, many Asian countries, as opposed to just giving the child a math problem and then give them the answer, what they let them do is struggle through it. Well, what these schools are doing and this school in particular is doing, is they're taking the time to let the children struggle through, work through the problem, look at it through many angles and then come up with solutions that they think will work and then explain why versus what we've seen on the other side which is a straight didactic approach to teaching.
It's really very interesting and the kids like it because they get excited about coming to school. They talk about how excited they are because they get tactile learning. They get out in the field. And now a field trip isn't just a field trip. You're out there trying to solve a problem.
COOPER: Interesting stuff. Steve thanks.
That's it for 360. Thanks for watching.
"LARRY KING" starts now.
I'll see you tomorrow night.