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Troop Withdrawal From Afghanistan; Anthony Trial Testimony Resumes; Cigarette Warnings Get Graphic; Afghanistan's Other War; Avoiding July 4 Ticket Spikes; Man Robs Bank for Health Care; Captain Mark Kelly Retiring From Navy
Aired June 21, 2011 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN ANCHOR: Live from Studio 7, I'm Suzanne Malveaux.
Want to get you up to speed for Tuesday, June 21st.
President Obama is getting ready to tell the nation how many and how fast U.S. troops will come home from Afghanistan. He'll announce his timetable for an Afghan drawdown tomorrow evening.
An administration official tells CNN the president has decided to pull out all 30,000 surge troops he sent to Afghanistan last year. That would leave around 70,000 American forces in Afghanistan at the end of the 2012. The administration is concerned that Afghanistan's flourishing opium trade will give the Taliban new momentum once the Americans start leaving.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Stopping this harvest is particularly important because the price of opium has risen dramatically, threatening to flood a record amount of cash into Afghanistan, and also into the insurgency.
MUHAMMAD, FARMER (Through Translator): We grow poppy because of poverty. Without it, we'd go hungry. We didn't grow it for four years here, but the government gave us no help, so we started again.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: With the Statue of Liberty watching from New York Harbor, former Utah governor Jon Huntsman joined the mad scramble for the Republican presidential nomination today. Huntsman served as U.S. ambassador to China under President Obama until he stepped down in January.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JON HUNTSMAN (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We're not just choosing new leaders, we're choosing whether we're to be yesterday's story or tomorrow's. Everything is at stake. This is the hour when we choose our future.
I'm Jon Huntsman, and I'm running for president of the United States.
Thank you all.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: The FDA unveiled nine new graphic warning labels for cigarettes today, some of them gruesome color photographs showing smoking's toll on the body. The pictures come with blunt written messages such as "Smoking can kill you." The warnings are required for all cigarette packaging starting in the fall of 2012.
Forecasters count 40 possible tornadoes in the storm surge across the great plains. Now, this tornado in central Nebraska wiped out a couple of farms, and dangerous weather is possible again today from Dallas to St. Louis to Chicago.
Investigators are trying to figure out what went wrong with one of the engines on a Delta jet. The Boeing 757 had just taken off from Atlanta, headed for Los Angeles, when the plane lost power. The pilot turned around and landed safely.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ERIC PSALMOND, DELTA PASSENGER: One of the passengers on the left side of the plane heard a loud noise and saw flames coming from the side of the engine, alerted a flight crew, and the flight crew notified the captain immediately.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: In Orlando today, now looking at live pictures of the Casey Anthony trial. The murder trial got back on track with testimony from a plant expert. The forensic botanist says the remains of Anthony's daughter had been in a wooded area for a minimum of two weeks. That conflicts with the prosecution's timeline.
Jurors heard no testimony yesterday. The judge cancelled proceedings after the lawyers fought over how witnesses were being notified.
Rescuers say three Kentucky coal miners are doing just fine today. The men were trapped for 14 hours after heavy rain overwhelmed a ditch and flooded that mine. The workers were able to reach the highest point inside that pit.
Ash from a volcano in Chile grounded flights across Australia today. Qantas and Virgin halted all service to or from Sydney and Melbourne. Now, this is the ash cloud's second trip around the globe. Last week, the plume messed up travel for 100,000 Aussie flyers.
Back to our lead story, the commander-in-chief's exit strategy for the war in Afghanistan. We're going to get some details tomorrow from President Obama on his plan for bringing thousands of American troops home from this country's longest running war.
Our Nick Paton Walsh, he's in Kabul. And we've got our Pentagon correspondent, Chris Lawrence, who's standing by at the Pentagon.
First, let's go to you, Chris.
We know 100,000 U.S. troops are in Afghanistan. What do we expect to hear from President Obama in terms of how many are going to come home and how quickly?
CHRIS LAWRENCE, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Well, our sources are telling us, Suzanne, that we're pretty sure that the president is going to announce that all of those 30,000 surge troops that he ordered into Afghanistan a couple years ago, those will all be home by the end of next year. Now, the big question is, what happens between now and then and how fast they come home?
A source on Capitol Hill suggests that the White House has decided on bringing home about 10,000 troops this year. But, again, a lot of this information is really only as good as the last briefing or meeting that you sat in on. Ultimately, it's going to be the president's call, his gut, whose advice he trusts among his inner circle.
There was feeling among some military officials that they would have liked to have seen a smaller drawdown, maybe 5,000 troops, coming home by the end of the year. With a lot of the other troops that are now operating in places like Kandahar and Helmand, down in the south, those will be diverted to the east, where the Taliban is still very robust, and that area has been really understaffed for a number of years.
On the other side, you have got some Democrats on Capitol Hill such as Senator Carl Levin, even some of President Obama's Republican challengers for the 2012 presidency, the presidential race, even some of them have been calling for a faster drawdown. Senator Carl Levin put out the number of 15,000 troops out by the end of the year. A lot of that has to do with the sheer cost of the war, estimated to be between $2 billion and $3 billion a week -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: Chris, thank you.
Nick, what's the reaction in Afghanistan of the news President Obama expected now to announce some 30,000 of those American troops are going to be withdrawn by the end of the next year?
WALSH: Well, Afghan officials aren't talking about this until really it comes out of President Obama's mouth himself, until it's official. But really, the feeling on the ground, I think, for many Afghans -- and that was reflected in a speech by Afghan President Karzai recently in which he suggested that some of the NATO troops there risk being seen as occupiers.
A 10-year presence here of NATO. Frankly, many of the cards now played, and a feeling among Afghans that they are not quite sure what else NATO can really attempt here to try and assist them.
In terms of what Chris was saying, I mean, the debate seems to be this year between 5,000 or 10,000. Now, 5,000 troops is the margin really of discussion here. And out of a force of 150,000, that's not going to make a vast difference on the ground here in Afghanistan, but it is going to send a very symbolic message to the Afghan people.
President Karzai, really caught between two things here -- domestic Afghan opinion, tired of what they see as an occupation, I think tired of what the U.S. is trying to do here, but not necessarily delivered upon. But also, the president, I think, very aware that he needs American support, American finance in particular, to hold together his fragile support base here -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: All right. Chris, Nick, thank you very much.
Nick, you have been investigating the other war that is raging in Afghanistan, and that is the war on drugs. I want you to join us at the bottom of the hour to focus on that as well.
Thanks again, Chris and Nick.
Here's your chance to "Talk Back" on one of the big stories of the day -- 47 million Americans smoke, and the FDA wants to see that number become zero. But are new cigarette warning labels going too far?
Carol Costello, she joins us from New York with more.
And yes, Carol, this is an amazing story. Some of the pictures, some of the gruesome pictures that folks are going to start seeing on those cigarette packages are pretty amazing.
CAROL COSTELLO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. I'll show viewers in a second.
President Obama's goal though is simple -- to protect the American people from the dangers of tobacco use. The FDA is requiring cigarette makers to place graphic images on cigarette packs, and we mean graphic -- rotted yellow teeth, or this blackened lung. There is even a dead guy with his chest stitched up. The slogan on that one, "Smoking can kill you."
You think that's bad? There's a TV ad campaign in New York that shows amputations.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I've gotten this disease from smoking, and I have had about -- I'd say between 17 and 20 amputations. I used to paint my own house. I cannot hang up pictures. A light in my kitchen blew out and I can't change it because I have no fingertips.
Everything I do now, I have to stop and think, because just me banging my hand or something could cause me to lose my finger.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSTELLO: Effective? New York says, you bet'cha. In the past decade, smoking-related deaths have declined 17 percent in the city. The tobacco companies aren't buying it though. They say the ads violate the First and Fifth Amendments.
This, from Philip Morris -- and I'm quoting here -- "Any government requirement that compels a private entity to carry a message not of its own choosing raises constitutional concerns."
Smokers aren't thrilled about anti-smoking laws in general. It's a free country, they say. Smoking is legal, and it doesn't kill everyone, let's face it.
And as one pro-smoking advocate puts it, "The health Nazis don't get this point. They want to control everything we do from smoking to eating your veggies." McDonald's fries? Don't even go there.
So the "Talk Back" question today: Do anti-smoking campaigns work or do they go too far?
Facebook.com/CarolCNN. I'll read your comments at the end of the hour.
MALVEAUX: Carol, that's an excellent question. I can hardly wait to hear what folks have to say. We're going to talk to an expert, an addiction expert, to see if in fact these ads make any difference at all. But it will be fascinating to see what folks have to say.
MALVEAUX: All right. Thank you, Carol.
Here's a rundown on some of the stories that we have ahead.
First, the Casey Anthony murder trial. It resumes this morning.
Then, the new graphic labels on cigarettes.
Plus, Afghanistan's dangerous harvest -- opium.
Also, planning a trip for the Fourth of July? Well, you better book now.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The note said, "This is a bank robbery. Please only give me one dollar."
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: -- one man's desperate plan to get health care.
MALVEAUX: Testimony is under way right now in the Casey Anthony murder trial. This is a day after the judge abruptly adjourned the proceedings.
Anthony is charged with killing her 2-year-old daughter Caylee. And among the defense witnesses today, a plant expert testifying about the area where Caylee's remains were found.
Our CNN's David Mattingly, he joins us live from Orlando with the latest.
And David, tell us, what is the significance now, the testimony from this forensic botanist?
DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, this forensic botanist was brought in as an expert to give an idea about when the body was actually brought to this scene where it was discovered. And she sort of surprised the court when she gave a timeline based on the plant evidence that she saw at the crime scene.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: After having read the reports and the photographs that you mentioned, and having visited the scene, the area, some seven weeks and one day later, can you tell me whether or not you have formed an opinion as to the shortest period of time that the remains of Caylee Marie Anthony could have been at the scene in which they were found?
JANE BOCK, FORENSIC BOTANIST: Yes. Two weeks, approximately. Two weeks.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And can you tell us when the remains were placed there?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And what is the basis for your opinion that it is possible that they were placed there approximately two weeks prior to their discovery?
BOCK: Because of the pattern of the leaf litter.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTINGLY: Well, it's that kind of testimony we have been listening to today. But under cross-examination, that same witness conceded that the body could have been there much longer than two weeks, so not a good witness, actually, a good definitive witness for the defense.
Again, in all, a very bad morning for the defense. Right now the judge is actually questioning one of the defense expert witnesses to determine if sanctions need to be placed against the defense team.
The judge, concerned that they violated his order to make sure the prosecution knew what the experts were going to be testifying to before they got on the stand. He made it clear he did not want this to be a trial by ambush, and he's very seriously questioning this witness to find out if that happened -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: And David, it was just yesterday he said he had enough with both sides, these attorneys. What is the judge's position, his demeanor today? Is he essentially fed up, or is he, like, OK, I'm going to give these guys another chance to present their case?
MATTINGLY: Yesterday, he was putting out the warning, enough is enough. Today, he is making good on that.
He's following through, actually questioning the defense witness to find out what he was told to do by the defense, and when -- to find out if this defense team did not comply with his order. So, again, a very serious moment for the defense if sanctions are imposed on them.
This is all going on with the jury out of the room. We're waiting to see what the judge decides to do here.
MALVEAUX: OK, David. Thank you. We'll be waiting as well. Thank you, David.
Well, you have seen the warning labels on cigarette packs for years, right? But you probably have never seen a diseased lung or a corpse on the label. Well, you will soon.
We have got a question for you. What year did the U.S. begin require warning labels on cigarettes? This is the actual label when it was first printed. It said, "Caution: Cigarette smoking may be hazardous to your health."
Was it 1958, 1972, 1965, or 1981? That answer in just a couple of minutes.
MALVEAUX: So the question was: What year did the U.S. begin requiring the warning label on cigarettes: "Caution: Cigarette smoking may be hazardous to your health"?
Did you get it right? The answer, C, 1965.
Well, now fast forward 46 years. Now cigarette warnings are about to get a lot more graphic.
The FDA is unveiling a new warning system today, some labels, and the hope is, is that pictures of a diseased lung or a dead body will make people think twice before lighting up.
Our senior medical correspondent, Elizabeth Cohen, she has got some details. Elizabeth, you know, these pictures very graphic, some of them very shocking. Can you give us a sense of what these new warning labels are all about?
ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SR. MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Let's take a look.
But first, let's look at the old label just to show you, well, how boring it is. Black and white text, and the government itself calls this invisible, people just aren't paying attention. So, instead, they're going to do a dead body with a caption that says, "Warning: Smoking can kill you."
And it is going to take up half of the pack. All right?
We also have disgusting teeth here saying, "Cigarettes cause cancer." We also have "Cigarettes are addictive," with a guy blowing smoke out of his neck. And here we have a baby, "Tobacco smoke can harm your children."
And why are they doing all this, Suzanne? Well, as I said, those other warnings were quite dull.
We still have too high of a rate of smoking in this country. One out of five American adults smoke cigarettes. That's 443,000 tobacco- related deaths per year -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: So, Elizabeth, I guess the question is, is there any information showing that these warnings are effective? I spoke with someone earlier this morning who said, you know, just buy a nice little case, put it on top of that cigarette pack, you don't have to see all this disturbing stuff.
COHEN: Oh, I think that's an insightful comment, because they have actually had these kinds of labels on cigarettes in Canada and other countries, and you know what? There's not a lot of hard evidence that says they do any good. They show that maybe there are modest decreases in smoking, but no data there that says, yes, people really quit smoking in big numbers when you put that on there.
MALVEAUX: So what other kinds of things should people consider when it comes to reducing smoking? What actually works?
COHEN: You know, in many ways, New York City has taken the lead on this, and it has to be more than just this. It has to be other kinds of initiatives as well.
So let's take a look at what New York City did.
In 2001, this was their smoking rate, 21.5 percent. They did then tax increases, they made smoke-free work places, they had free patch programs, they had anti-smoking ads, and then they had more tax increases.
2009, a 15.8 percent smoking rate. So, from 21.5 to 15.8, by doing all of these things plus advertising. So that's the really important point here, is that all of these things need to happen, and the tax increases are really crucial.
MALVEAUX: And about those tax increases, if we taxed a dollar on every pack of cigarettes sold in the country, would there be an impact on people's health? Would we actually see something substantial?
COHEN: Yes. And I will tell you that anti-smoking advocates say that this is the way to go, that it is a proven winner. So let's take a look at this. The American Cancer Society estimates that if you tax cigarettes just a dollar per pack, 1.4 million adults would quit smoking, 1.7 million kids wouldn't ever start, and 1.3 million lives would be saved.
So, are these new labels great? Yes, many experts will tell you that they are. But the taxes really seem to be what does the trick.
MALVEAUX: OK. Thank you, Elizabeth. Appreciate it.
MALVEAUX: Well, now it's time for you to "Choose the News." Here are your choices.
"1": Sharks of Summer. California beachgoers are ordered out of the water after a great white sighting north of San Francisco. But not everyone heeded to the warning.
"2": Wimbledon Lifestyle. It is the second day of this celebrated tennis championship, but it's not just tennis. It's a lifestyle that brings folks to this quaint London district.
And "3": Apple Danceoff. Not so shy. A young man breaks out his best dance moves and becomes an Internet sensation. Watch as Apple's danceoff promotion inspires customers to work it out.
You can vote for your favorite story by texting "22360." Text "1" for Sharks of Summer, "2" for Wimbledon Lifestyle; or "3" for Apple Danceoff.
The winning story is going to air in the next hour.
Well, sounding the alarm about a possible new war in Afghanistan.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WALSH (voice-over): The war here in Badakshan is not against the Taliban, but against a business so profitable, growing so fast, many worry it's Afghanistan's only option when the West pulls its troops and money out.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: That is CNN's Nick Paton Walsh with a rare look inside the Afghan poppy fields. He's going to join us live from Afghanistan.
MALVEAUX: Here's a rundown of some of the stories that we are working on.
Next, Afghanistan's dangerous harvest, why opium is now the crop of choice.
Then, are you running out of time to get reasonable rates for your Fourth of July vacation?
And later, banking on getting caught, why a robber waited calmly until the police arrived.
President Obama is preparing to announce his end game for the war in Afghanistan. His speech is set for tomorrow; however, as the war draws down, the drug war is heating up over there. Opium, it rules for many Afghan farmers, as well as fighters.
Nick Paton Walsh takes us inside those poppy fields.
WALSH (voice-over): We're heading north into the remote hills for a glimpse of Afghanistan's future. The war here in Badakshan is not against the Taliban, but against a business so profitable, growing so fast, many worry it's Afghanistan's only option when the West pulls its troops and money out -- opium.
We're with an Afghan taskforce racing through the valleys to disrupt (ph) this year's harvest. For a while, NATO let opium grow, focusing on the surge of the Taliban. But here it's expanding faster than anywhere in the country and risks getting out of control.
(on camera): Stopping this harvest is particularly important because the price of opium has risen dramatically, threatening to flood a record amount of cash into Afghanistan, and also into the insurgency.
(voice-over): In one year, the price has tripled. That's because uncertainty about Afghanistan's future means traders are hoarding the drug. This could generate record profits, the United Nations drug control chief here revealed to CNN.
JEAN-LUC LEMAHIEU, U.N. OFFICE OF DRUG CONTROL: We can definitely see a record profit of this harvest meaning that those who benefit most, the traders, which are not necessarily always the insurgents, will have a big incentive to continue the conflict to make sure that the opium business as well can continue to provide the huge profits we witnessed today.
WALSH: Eradication is the simplest way of breaking the chain that puts heroin on city streets, but here it wipes out the livelihoods of people who have nothing. Creating enemies where the full life was simple.
The villages huddle on a roof mourning their lost crop. It's not safe to approach, the police say. We've come prepared in case the overlords behind this $1.5 billion business take issue.
Muhammad (ph) who lost his leg in a blast in Kabul and his $1,000 opium crop to these police still has six children to feed.
MUHAMMAD, FARMER (Through Translator): We grow poppy because of poverty. Without it we'd go hungry. We didn't grow it for four years here, but the government gave us no help, so we started again.
WALSH: Muhammad won't discuss who he would have sold his crop to, but those cartels are the big worry here. The war funds about two-thirds of their economy, and when NATO's money dries up it will have to be replaced with something.
Opium is the easy answer. And along with it comes warlords and fears of a narco state. Here far away from the war, growing opium is a simple economic argument. The easiest and often the only money to be made.
SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN ANCHOR: CNN's Nick Paton Walsh, he joins us live from Kabul.
And Nick, obviously there seems to be a plan to try to wean these Afghan farmers off of growing very lucrative poppies. But we've seen this before, we've seen it from the Bush administration, now the Obama administration, offering incentives to these farmers.
But this seems to be the most profitable way they can make a living. How does that change?
WALSH: It doesn't, frankly. To be honest, they've tried many different things. They've tried eradication that you're seeing, they tried paying people not to grow, they've tried getting people to grow wheat or saffron, alternative crops, but frankly don't make as much money, and they tried taking out the traffickers and their alleged backers in the government.
That doesn't simply work. They try a combination of all those four different tactics at the moment, but at the end of the day, as we just saw, it's a simple economic argument. $1,000 for a field, you can store the opium and definitely wait for the price to go up, and then sell it somewhere else.
And these are people, frankly, who are not motivated by propagating heroin across Western streets, they simply are looking after their families and opium is often the simplest way of doing that.
And also bear in mind, there are Taliban or more likely the drug trade, the drug mafia, so to speak, in that area telling them they'll face reprisal if they don't grow opium. So really the argument for poor farmers, pretty simple -- Suzanne?
MALVEAUX: And so, Nick, is this a losing war here, a losing battle? Are these farmers and fighters just going to wait out for troops to leave so they can go ahead and grow poppy as usual?
WALSH: I think -- I asked that question actually of one official here and he said if that's -- if you believe it's a losing battle yes, we stop everything we're doing in Afghanistan at the moment. This really is symbolic of the greater challenges.
Yes, many of the challenges look unwinnable. Many of the things like the economic argument why you should grow opium seems to be pretty convincing, but the West feels it has to keep trying, it has to keep trying to find a solution. Perhaps hoping that somehow the level of life here, the amount of money people make will grow enough that opium will become just too complicated an industry for simple farmers to get involved in.
But right now the argument is pretty simple, it's the easiest way to make sure money -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: Nick, excellent reporting. Thank you, Nick.
Well, don't forget to vote for a "Choose the News" story you'd like to see. You can vote for your favorite by texting 22360. Text 1 for "Sharks of Summer." Swimmers in northern California are warned after a great white is spotted swimming offshore on a busy summer day.
Text 2 for the "Wimbledon Lifestyle." It is not just tennis that draws people from around the world to this 125-year-old tradition.
And text 3 for "Apple Danceoff." A teen hits five million YouTube viewers after busting some moves during an Apple Computer promotion.
Winning story we'll hear in the next hour.
Well, you only have two days left to get some good deals in July Fourth vacations. And details coming from the New York Stock Exchange. That up next.
MALVEAUX: Checking on CNNMoney.com's lead story. Investors betting on Greece. Stocks rise amid optimism that the prime minister is going to win a vote of confidence.
Also taking a look at the stock market, the Dow Jones now up by 106 points or so. We are watching that very closely.
We are also looking forward to a little vacation, little Fourth of July vacation. If you're planning a vacation somewhere over that weekend, well, you better book now.
Alison Kosik at the New York Stock Exchange. You say we've only got, what, a couple of days before the ticket prices go up? Is that right?
ALISON KOSIK, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, not much time. Tick-tock. Those prices expected to go up by 10 percent by Thursday. Travelocity went ahead and looked at what these July Fourth airfares have done over the past four years. You know what they found? They found that these fares hold steady right until one week before that holiday weekend and then bam, they go up. And guess what? That one-week mark is Thursday, June 23rd. Now this of course assumes that you're going to be traveling the Friday before the holiday.
The average airfare right now is sitting at about $388. That's up 7 percent from last year because of the higher oil prices. A 10 percent increase would make it $426. Now of course the airlines have the upper hand here because more people flying give those airlines room to raise those prices -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: Alison, when you figure the taxes, the luggage, the baggage fees, I imagine it's kind of depressing really if you haven't booked your flight already. Is there any good news? I mean are people going to see any kind of bargains or deals this go around?
KOSIK: Yes, you know what? With airlines you're not going to see any flexibility. But you know what? With hotels, they've got some wiggle room. You know they start with -- I'll start with the bad news, though.
The average hotel price is $144 a night. It's up 9 percent from last year. But you know what? The hotels are throwing in a lot of freebies. They're giving you a free night, a room upgrade, spa treatments, breakfast, maybe a round of golf, maybe they think that, you know what, if you're going to break the bank you may as well have fun doing it.
Some of the deals out there include the Westin Resort in Cancun. It's giving you a free fourth night or a $200 food credit and room upgrade. The Venetian in Las Vegas, it's giving you 20 percent off of breakfast, free admission to its nightclubs.
So all these perks are ways that these hotels are trying to lure you in because they know that there are more hotels out there than airlines. There's more competition so they've got to grab you in one way, shape or form -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: Alison, what are you doing for the July Fourth weekend? You going anywhere?
KOSIK: I'm working.
MALVEAUX: I am going to the Essence Music Festival.
KOSIK: You had to ask?
MALVEAUX: I'm going to the Essence Music Festival in New Orleans, but I'm working on July Fourth, too.
KOSIK: That's great.
MALVEAUX: So we'll be together in July Fourth.
KOSIK: OK. But I want to hear about your trip.
MALVEAUX: Yes. And thank God it's already been booked.
MALVEAUX: So I don't have to worry about all those other expenses. All right.
MALVEAUX: Thanks, Alison.
Well, the employers market is turning United States really into a nation of disgruntled workers. Many employees, they're burning out as bosses are trying to get more work out of them for less money.
Well, there was a report that was released Monday from a consulting firm Mercer and it says that almost a third of American workers are seriously considering quitting their jobs. That is sup from 23 percent back in 2005. Twenty-one percent have workers say that they've got a negative view of their employer and have already kind of checked out mentally. The report also says that younger workers are most anxious to leave.
MALVEAUX: There is still time for you to vote to "choose the news story you'd like to see. Vote for your favorite by texting 22360.
Text 1 for "Sharks of Summer. A great white forces beachgoers to get out of the water. That's north of San Francisco.
Text 2 for "Wimbledon Lifestyle." Hundred, 25 years after the tennis championship started, Wimbledon lovers say it's not just the game that keeps them coming year after year. And text 3 for the "Apple Danceoff." A young men busts his moves, becomes an Internet sensation during a contest at Apple stores.
Winning story is going to air in the next hour.
Well, what would drive somebody with no record, all of a sudden to rob a bank and then be arrested -- and wait to be arrested. Well, reporter Rand Berky with our North Carolina affiliate WCNC has more on one man's act of desperation.
JAMES VERONE, ROBBERY SUSPECT: First time I have ever been in trouble with the law. So it's not -- you know, it was -- you know, I am sort of a logical person, and that was my logic. That's what I came up with.
RAD BERKY, WCNC REPORTER (voice-over): That is how James Verone says he came to the decision to rob the RBC Bank on New Hope Road on Thursday of last week. He had no gun but handed teller a rather unusual note.
VERONE: The note said, this is a bank robbery, please only -- please only give me one dollar.
BERKY: Then did the strangest thing of all.
VERONE: I started to walk away from the teller, and I walked back and I say, I'll be sitting right over here on the chair waiting for the police.
BERKY: And that's what he did.
So why did he do everything that he could to get arrested?
VERONE: Because I wanted to make it known to whoever would know that, you know, it wasn't done for monetary value, it was done for medical reasons.
BERKY: That's right, James Verone says he has no medical insurance. He says he has a growth of some sort on his chest, two ruptures disks and a problem with his left food. He's 59 years old and with no job and a depleted bank account, he thought jail was the best place he could go for medical care and a roof over his head.
He said he was getting good medical treatment now, but the jail doctor accuses him of manipulating the system.
VERONE: If it's called manipulation, then out of necessity, because I need medical care, then I guess I am manipulating the courts to get medical care.
MALVEAUX: Verone says he is hoping to get a three-year-sentence, that way he will be old enough to collect Social Security when he gets out. But because he only took a dollar, police charged him with larceny instead of bank robbery, and that carries less of a sentence. It's a tragic situation.
But today's "Talk Back" question, do the FDA's new anti-smoking labels, do they go too far?
Jim says, "Every smoker already knows that cigarettes are bad for them. They don't need the government to tell them or illustrate it for them."
More of your responses up ahead.
MALVEAUX: We're just getting this news in. This is NASA Captain Mark Kelly whose saying he is now retiring. He is the husband of Congressman Gabrielle Giffords who was shot in the head and is recovering from that injury. He released a statement and he says that he's humbled to announce after 25 years of service to our country that he is retiring from the United States Navy and leaving NASA effective October 1st.
He says, "(his words) cannot convey my deep gratitude for the opportunities I've been given to serve our great nation." He says, "From the day that I entered the United States Merchant Marine Academy in the summer of 1982 to the moment I landed the Space Shuttle Endeavour three weeks ago, it has been my privilege to advance the ideals that define the United States of America."
He goes on and adds a personal note saying that, "As life takes unexpected turns, we frequently come to a crossroads. I am at this point today. Gabrielle is working hard every day on her mission of recovery. I want to be by her side. Stepping aside from my work in the Navy and at NASA will allow me to be with her and my two daughters. I love them all very much and there is no doubt that we will move together forward. After some time off, I will look at new opportunities and I'm hopeful that one day I will again serve our country."
That announcement coming from, once again, Mark Kelly.
Well, it's two years this week since Michael Jackson died, and his sister Latoya believes that her brother was murdered, and that remains unshakeable. Take a listen to what she told Piers Morgan in a primetime exclusive.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PIERS MORGAN, HOST, "PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT": How do you think he died? You have been quoted as saying you believe it may have been murder. Do you still think that?
LATOYA JACKSON, MICHAEL JACKSON'S SISTER: Absolutely.
MORGAN: Why are you so sure?
JACKSON: I will never, ever think differently. Because, first of all, Michael told me that they were going to murder him. He was afraid.
MORGAN: Who was going to murder him?
JACKSON: The people involved in his life. The people that were controlling him.
This book ,"Starting Over," is about my life and it's about Michael's life. It's the parallel between the two of our lives. We shared the same life, where people come into your life, wiggle their way in, control you, manipulate, control your funds, your finances, everything that you have, and you must do what they tell you to do, and that's what Michael was going through. And he knew that everything that was happening to him was not kosher, it wasn't right, and it disturbed him greatly.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: You can catch the rest of Latoya Jackson's explosive conversation with our Piers Morgan at 9:00 p.m. Eastern tonight right here on CNN.
You've been sounding off on our "Talk Back" question. Carol Costello is here with your responses.
You know, those dramatic pictures on the cigarette labels, quite incredible when you see them.
COSTELLO: I know. Especially the one of the dead guy. I mean, the guy is dead and his chest is stitched up and it has a graphic message, cigarettes kill you.
So the "Talk Back" question today: Are new cigarette warning labels going too far?
This from Maureen says, "No, they don't work. The pictures will be ignored just like the other warnings. If all the price hikes and restrictions haven't made someone quit smoking, a picture certainly won't."
From Calico Jack, "There comes a point when you have to ask if these laws are there to help people or to stop people from making choices for themselves. I choose to smoke. It is my choice. They shouldn't need to tell me when and where I can and can't."
This from Janice, "As an ex-smoker of 40 years, I don't believe you can go too far. Smoking is far too glamorized for the young. They need to see the reality. And right on the pack, that's a darned good place to start."
And this from Ken, "Listen, I'm not a smoker but the government is going too far. People will continue to smoke, eat fatty foods if they want, and I'm going to rage on my mountain bike all over the countryside, whatever I want, so back off."
Keep the conversation -- I love that one -- Facebook.com/CNN. Please, keep the conversation going.
MALVEAUX: Back off.
COSTELLO: You loved that one, too, didn't you?
I want you to see another story, cause these grads at Plymouth North High School might be thinking, you know, back off. This is in Massachusetts and it's kind of an unbelievable story. When they get together at reunion, who knows, 2031. A school hands out 263 diplomas at graduation, right? So each one had not one, but two misspelled words on the diploma, Carol. Two words were misspelled. They misspelled "for" and "and," those were the two words that were misspelled.
COSTELLO: They misspelled "for" and "and"?
MALVEAUX: Right? Right? Tough words. Tough, tough stuff here.
School officials, they signed each diploma, not a single person noticed. So it was the printing company that took the blame. They took the fall for this one. And it's reprinting the diplomas hopefully without any mistakes there.
COSTELLO: Honestly, though, I mean --
MALVEAUX: These poor kids.
COSTELLO: -- when was the last time you looked at your diploma, really? When was the last time --
MALVEAUX: But you hope they get it right on the diploma, that it means something. You worked so darn hard, right? You should have it right on the diploma, don't you think?
COSTELLO: It was sad.
MALVEAUX: What's that?
COSTELLO: Absolutely, they should. I'm just saying, I haven't even -- I don't even know where my diploma is.
But it is bad they misspelled those words.
MALVEAUX: You don't have it like, you know, framed on your wall anywhere, carol? The wall of shame or something?
MALVEAUX: Dig it up out of that box you got somewhere and see if it's spelled correctly, OK?
COSTELLO: I'm really curious.
MALVEAUX: It's your job.
COSTELLO: I will call my husband right now.
MALVEAUX: We got to go. They're telling us we got to go. We'll talk to you later.
Well, he's not officially in the race for the Republican presidential nomination, but Rick Perry's schedule looks like he could be a candidate. The Texas governor's latest moves in our Political Update.
MALVEAUX: President Obama rallies his supporters by talking about some of the same issues his Republican opponents are focusing on. Mark Preston, he's part of "The Best Political Team on Television," live from the Political Desk in Washington.
Mark, give us the fill here.
MARK PRESTON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL EDITOR: Yes, well, you know, Suzanne, we have been spending a lot of time talking about the Republican presidential candidates but what has President Obama been up to? Well, he's been raising money.
In fact, he held two fundraisers last night here in Washington, D.C. One of the fundraisers was with these deep-pocketed mid-Atlantic donors, folks who live in the states right around here in Washington, D.C. He also held a fundraiser are folks who are big supporters of a strong U.S./Israeli relationship. You know, to get into the fundraisers, the lowest a person could give was $10,000, the highest was $35,800.
Now, President Obama has two more fundraisers on tap at the end of this week in New York City. We expect them to report now, President Obama report having raised $60 million just in this quarter. So Democrats, President Obama trying to scare the Republican field by showing that he'll have a deep war chest in 2012, Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: Money will do that. Obviously, very expensive campaigns for all around.
Tell us about Texas Governor Rick Perry. It looks like he might be making some moves to get towards in the race, presidential run?
PRESTON: Yes, sure. Certainly. He gave really a very strong speech this past weekend down in New Orleans to a big confab of Republican activists. And he's going to be delivering another speech in August, this one is going to be at a gathering that's sponsored by Red State, which is a very important political blog. In fact, the blog is run by Eric Erickson, who is one of our political contributors here at CNN.
But Rick Perry, which a lot of people are wondering if in fact he is going to run, he is being urged by a lot of people to run. Now what's interesting about the date that he's going to give this speech, it's going to be on the same day that the Iowa Republican Party will hold their straw poll out in Ames, Iowa. So the big question is if Rick Perry does decide to run for president, will he be able to give this speech in Charleston and appear out in Iowa for the straw poll. So a lot on Rick Perry's plate there, Suanne.
MALVEAUX: OK. Thanks, Mark. Good to see you.
For the latest political news, you know where to go, CNNPolitics.com.