tv Reliable Sources CNN July 14, 2019 8:00am-9:00am PDT
♪ bloom, there it is! ♪ bloom, there it is! this bloom-ified menu starts at $13.99. and try our everyday lunch combos, starting at $7.99. hey, i'm brian stelter. this is a special edition of reliable sources, all about information warfare. i'm going to show you what i mean. an example right here, tucker carlson attacking ilhan omar, and omar calling him a racist fool. what does rupert murdoch think about all of this? >> plus, the triumph of journalism. the latest example of investigative journalism linked to hasty exits from trump world. we'll get into that. and later a story about working together to cover the climate crisis. one of the biggest stories in
the world. a lot coming up. but first we have to reckon with something. really troubling that's going on in the media world. and here it is. the information wars are raging. and real reliable information is getting lost in a blizzard of b.s. b.s. that's designed to deceive you. and most of the misinformation is not coming from russian trolls, medalers or other foreign governments. yeah, that's a problem. but most of this stuff is coming from right in our own backyards. in america, it is fellow americans peddling smears and racism. in india, well, here's a quote from facebook's former security chief saying the disinformation is being proven by the indian political parties. all around the world this is a growing problem. the difference now is the speed and the reach and the allure of the internet. information is being weaponized. the tension is being hijacked.
and all of us are really just starting to adapt. it was a lot easier in these days than it is today. the world is very murky. but there is a dividing line. i want us to keep it in mind. i think it's between the people trying to be constructive and careful, carrying about truth, accountable to a boss or someone. versus people who are unaccountable. destructive. caring only about winning the information world. constructive versus dedestructivdeinstrucstructive. trump creates a flurry of information. the truth melts away like an ice cube on a summer day. i could show you a hundred examples. but here's one this week. out of nowhere trump retweeted a loyal trump super fan posted this the day after the charlottesville riot. she wrote these protests are not spontaneous, they are premanufactured by ofa. she means obama.
then linked to a lou dobbs segment. this is lunacy. a twitter shares memes picks up a fox segment, uses it to claim white supremacist violence was obama's fault to deep the heat off trump. and no one bat an eyelash because trump says so much. the web is chaotic and it's all so crazy it is just background noise in this battle. that's what i mean when i say there is an information war going on. none of this is journalism, the memes, the smears. journalists have to grapple with this misinformation muck. what we used to call fake news. actually fake stories designed to deceive you. otherwise, the result is uninformed, ill info-informed readers. did you hear about this a few days ago? a clear stunt by the president.
ridiculing reporters while bringing in far right tv personalities and radio hosts to the white house, in some ways a campaign rally for 2020. it was tempting to say we should just ignore it and call it a stunt and move on. but something important was happening. trump was legitimizing provocateurs and extremists. it felt to me he was preparing his 2020 meme corpse. they make visual images that go on facebook and go viral. the summit suggests that 2016's meme army was just proof afcon september for an information war in 2020. warzel said whatever is coming, we're not prepared. i think what he means by we is "newsroom"s, media companies. the people that try to make sense of the world for you. it felt the summit was a campaign 2020 strategy. hand-picked press corps. but the attendees don't work for news rooms.
they don't have editors who have been trained in journalistic standards. what they do is promote the president, his brand, they promote his agenda. sometimes through conspiracy theories and misinformation. now, i'm not trying to lump everyone in together. that is often what we see on the pro-trump web. at the same time misinformation knows no political party. democrats are getting away with all sorts of smears as well. but we see it constantly on the right. the founder of the gateway pun it did, one of. examples of a website that specializes in this kind of misinformation that kwaousz people. putting up lies right here saying recently obama was responsible for removing the citizenship question on the census. it's not true. it's false. there are examples of smears and false information that's been spread. gateway pundit is just one example of this. i have to be honest, i want to
take a minute and talk you through this before i bring in the panel. these smears, these lies, this misinformation that comes mostly on the right from pro-trump websites, facebook pages, twitter accounts, supported by television hosts, radio hosts. they are softening the ground for straight-up racism out of the president's twitter account. that's what we are seeing today. one of the president's most recent tweets straight-up racist talking about progressive congresswomen. he says so interesting to see progressive democratic congresswomen who originally came from countries whose countries are a catastrophe. here's the key part. why don't they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came. now, he's probably talking about ilhan omar, who was born in somalia, fled to kenya and came to the united states when she was 12 years old. other democratic congresswomen
who she is associated with, friendly with all of whom were born in the united states. but the president is talking about democratic congresswomen who need to go go back back to they're from. it's 2019. we're two and a half years into the trump presidency and his racism is becoming more obvious, more frightening. there are millions of americans who knows what he means when he says go back to where you came from. they have heard those words in the school yard, behind their backs at work. that kind of racism that americans have been fighting against for decades is coming from the president's twitter feed. there's no bigger story in the country right now. and i want to relate this to the media by pointing out the ground has been softened by the
president by this collection of pro-trump bloggers, radio hosts, television stars who somehow think it's acceptable to attack fellow americans like this. let's talk about these information wars and a lot more. again, a special edition of the program. i have a special panel to start us off. former senior adviser to national security under obama and cnn national security analyst san. bobbi at reason magazine and author of panic attack. and senior politics jane coats ton. the president's tweets i view as part of this information war that's raging. and obviously he posts so much so off that's part of his strategy. are today's tweets different at all? >> i think pwewe can all rememb in 2016 that this is not new.
who is adequate liviu is different from my own. but i think that it's reflective of this understanding that to criticize this country means you are no longer able to be a representative of this country, which is a strange thing for someone who in 2015 described america as a hell hole to do. it's interesting, though, this hasn't changed. this is the same language you used of the judge in indiana. the same language he has used again and again and again. >> you don't think racism is getting more explicit in some cases? >> i think you have been paying attention,ing this is just the basic way in which he talks about people with whom -- who don't follow him. i think there is an understanding of trump. and i think one of the challenges we have, you're going to start seeing a lot of people attempt to defend these tweets by arguing, no, no, no he just meant this one representative, he just meant this. maybe he did mean go back to cincinnati. but you're going to start to see
that back and forth, back and forth. but what is at the root of this understanding, if you criticize how this country works, you are no longer acceptable to the president and you're no longer available to continue the work that you're doing. >> as american as the rest. robby, how do you view it? >> i think it is shameful that this faction of the pro-trump right has embraced identity politics, something the right has long criticized has been bad for this country. but they have embraced it now if you look different or you're from somewhere else, that defines you and thus we're going to criticize you on that grounds. again, that's a thing that the right used to be really against or at least claim to be against. now it's driving and defining so much of their criticism of other people. and, again, trump rain on -- was like i'm going to be anti-identity politics, all that kind of stuff. >> right. >> but of course, like so many criticisms of that, he is what
he purports to criticize. >> so let's go big picture now, sam. this broader information about information wars that are raging. do you think that it is fair to say that, you know, these pro-trump twitter accounts, facebook accounts, they soften the ground for what trump says. >> the first thing is he uses information warfare against american people rather than foreign enemies. they were used to promote psychological operations against foreign enemies. president trump uses information warfare against perceived enemies here at home. and the issue is that all of these memes, all of these tweets are being weaponized. the tweets will be weaponized by russian trolls and trump surrogates to try to spread information who, to your point,
is or isn't american. brian, we have seen an uptick in hate crimes in this country. president trump knows the tweets about the other, about immigrants, have actual security implications and he just seemingly doesn't care because it ticks a political box for him. >> how powerful are they then? the social media summit, how powerful are the provocateurs? >> there have been studies that very little fake news is being seen or shared on places like facebook and twitter. i think the twitter study was 80% of fake news was being seen by just 1% of twitter users. >> how much of that is donald trump's twitter account, though. that has misinformation. >> some of it is hyper partisan content. it can be accurate but if it is obsessed with immigration, you come away with a misundersta misunderstanding about the world. >> it is a new way to deliver information to people.
>> we are all still learning how to interact. >> we shouldn't panic across the board about it. new is always different and scary. but, you know, there are traditional media outlets serving up what people would call fake or misleading information. is this so different? changing votes or warping the country. it's bad and poisonous to tweet mean things about people. but i don't know this is responsible for trump being our president. >> it is sending us more into our own corners. president for years told his fans not to believe his mainstream media. they are likely to believe the folks invited to the summit. the left information pool and the right's information pool are becoming so separate from each other. it feels like it has long-term consequences for democracy. >> and i agree. there is an understanding we're not even arguing about the same basic facts any more. and understanding how this country works or what this country is supposed to do. when we're not starting from,
okay, we disagree about this one thing, we're not even sure what we're discussing any more. and i think an important point, though, about talking about the social media summit, several people were banned from social media platforms, not invited to the summit. >> right. >> and someone who was invited but then disinvited. everyone likes moderating content of some kind, especially when it is an anti-semitic cartoonist. >> increasing calls on the right for facebook, twitter because of so-called climbs of bias. how new is this? where is this coming from? >> this was a dramatic shift. you would think the right would get economic conservatives against government, regulation or expert intervention into private business. they feel social media companies, youtube, facebook, twitter are biased against their content and taking action against them. they say the solution is for the
government to step in. as a libertarian would be disastrous. if you are telling private companies what kind afcon tent they have to allow on their platform it's a problem. >> fact versus fiction on that debate. that's coming up next. please stay with me. quick break here. then out to san francisco to talk about fact versus fiction when it comes to these claims of bias. ♪ in just 1 use elvive revives damaged hair. hdo you like stranger things? tsure you do. in just 1 use that's why netflix is on us. and here's another reason to join. bring in your discount, and we'll match it. that's right. t-mobile will match your discount.
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hey, we're talking about reliable sources when part answer and prop began difficulti difficulties. president trump is creating a new villain in big tech like google, facebook, twitter, et cetera. he held this social media summit at the white house but didn't invite any of the tech companies. how far, he said he would have them in soon for a meeting. we will see if that's true or not. renee is a research manager at the stanford information observatory. in 2018, she testified at a hearing on foreign influence involving social media. and here with me in new york, oliver darcy. renee, break down the idea afcon serve active bias, the idea that the technology companies are biased against conservatives. how much of that is fact and how much of that is fiction? . >>. >> yeah. so, this is all anecdotal. >> all anecdotal? >> a couple months ago he started off by saying all we
have are anecdotes right now. there are a couple reasons for that. two things that are universally true about moderation. that is that it is nearly impossible to do well at scale and everyone is always unhappy with it. so when you have the tech platforms, they have tens of millions of posts her day. and facebook probably more than that with 10 billion users. you see massive content coming out. the latest stat said 11 million accounts were reported in the last six months of last year. and the most recent from facebook said that tens of millions of posts are reported per week. and 2.6 million were actioned, which means taken down or something had to change about them in the last three months. when you have that volume of posts that are being actioned, that number of accounts, anybody can cherry pick certain anecdotal moments and tell a story about them. what we don't have is any kind of real understanding about whether at scale there's a bias problem.
whether there is an institutional or algorithmic foundational problem. there is nothing that suggests that's true. >> so we don't know, no reason to believe it's true. but a very effective political narrative for the president of the united states to say he and his supporters are aggrieved. is that what the summit was about when he gathered fans on thursday? >> outside of being reprehensible about some of the people he invited, i think incident was a fairly smart strategy. >> politically. >> yeah. you see brands. they can sway the way the brand is looked at in public. >> instagram, you can follow a lot of addresses. same idea. >> the president understands these are his influencers, they influence media coverage and influence his supporters.
and so he is inviting them to the white house, giving them all the content that they need and really validating them saying these are my guys. go forth and meme. . >> by the way, not all memes are politic political. >> right. >> some are funny. there is just so much confusion and hate being spraeead through the viral performs. >> a lot of people he invited are conspiracy theorists. he was basically giving them the okay. >> keep it going. get better for 2020. >> go out and do the stuff for me on my behalf. that's what's disturbing and worrisome. >> renee, what is the compact of that long term? >> well, i think even the idea we are dig phiing this as a social media summit. >> i know. it was not a summit. incident was not a summit. he called it there. >> nobody was there to discuss
anything. this was a pseudo event. it was a gathering to generate media coverage around a manufactured controversy to keep it in the news, to keep people talking bit. this is a david and goliath story for him. he is going to be the defender of people against these big evil tech companies. and the problem is it distracts from the fact that there is actually a whole lot wrong with big tech as it is today. having these waste of time moments that are indicative of nothing distracts us from having conversations about the real problem. it makes people believe they are being sensored. i would ask why do you think that is? you hear responses like my friends don't see all of my content. there is a fundamental misunderstanding of basic things like al going rhythmic curation online. there is such a high volume that
they are constantly curating it to show people what they want to see. and the other point about not all memes are bad, the ones that go viral are the ones emotionally resonant, drive a lot of engagement. . so you have a situation where the most sensationalist is the most privileged. >> you look online with millions of followers. they are talking about immigrants killing americans, immigrants destroying america. there is so much volume of it. it hurts public understanding. it's not that every individual video is false. it is eventually it hurts people's understanding. and companies like facebook and twitter don't have a solution to that, right, renee? there's no easy solution for that? >> no, there is no easy solution about it. . >> it is about psychology. >> yeah. well, it's propaganda. nothing is illegal about propaganda. there is some grain of truth in
there. that is why it is so resonant and convincing. the platforms don't want to be in moderating around truth. so they are left with this weird challenge of how can they moderate. some of that is to look at how the information is spreading. is it spreading authentic kaallr are there bot farms? there is no easy answer for a lot of this stuff. it is not going to come down under the terms of service that the platforms have because it is a political point of view. . >> renee, thank you. oliver, please stick around. we go to media literacy later this hour. >> up next, the view from the white house press corps. how news outlets are functioning as trump's human resources department 6789. yo, jer! we gotta get to the show. ♪ i was looking for a sign. get on the bus.
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hey, welcome back to "reliable sources." i'm brian settler. i was going to begin with alex acosta. just the latest example of a trump administration official in the wake of real investigative reporting. but i would like to begin instead with the president's most recent tweet storm with a clear ample of racism. the president saying congresswomen should go back to where they came from, fix their countries, and then come back to the u.s. katie, what happens on a morning like this? all you were going to do is come on "reliable sources" and then
you have to write about the president's tweets. >> to be sure, we always wake up on sunday or saturday mornings with the expectation that we will be writing something about what the president has tweeted. this particular attack against these four congresswomen came sandwiched between tons of tweets from his supporters. it's a noisy day in general. and he threw this in. so trying to write a story that context wallizes what he says and putting together with what his administration is doing today is the trick. >> actions are more important than words. the democrats are calling this a racist trope. have you heard from my republicans responding to this? >> not yet. it's still early. but mostly it's democrats coming out en masse in support of these women. i think speaker pelosi said something about this proves that
make america great again has been about making america white again. a forceful attack on the president's words and privately democrats are saying that this is sort of the galvanizing point that democrats need right now. the so-called squad has been in a generational and existential battle. trump may have just given them a gift. >> let's talk about what it was like at the white house this week. all week long there were questions about what was going to happen. the plea deal by acosta under renewed scrutiny all thanks to the extraordinary reporting of the "miami herald" and julie k. brown. by friday, acosta is out. it was not enough to save his job. the other trump officials also left their jobs in the wake of really important investigative reporting. what did you make of this pattern, katie, six examples on screen. this is not a complete list of
trump departures linked to reporting. >> well, i think acosta's was interesting because he was senate confirmed. the plea deal came up in his loin of questioning. he was still confirmed anyway. what was different is julie brown's "miami herald", her excellent work exposing the existence of this plea deal with epstein that was secret, kept from the victims. she was actually one of the things i saw her do after the press conference thursday is she immediately delivered sort of a point-by-point, well, here's what i know about my reporting. here's what acosta said. one of the examples is she thought his explanation of having a breakfast meeting with epstein's defense lawyer right after the plea deal was still unclear. it is unclear what they talked about. she knew the subject so well that she immediately was able to fact-check that in realtime and it became sort of evident that acosta was not going to be able to sur mount that coverage even though he tried. >> now acosta is out.
i hope there can be more focus on the victims of this story. that is the focus. it should be the focus, what these women went through. katie rogers, thank you so much. how should the news media be covering the i.c.e. raids reportedly starting across the country today? that's next. award winning design. award winning engine. the volvo xc90. the most awarded luxury suv of the century. the volvo xc90. [music playing] across the country, we walk. carrying flowers that signify why we want to end alzheimer's disease. but what if, one day, there was a white flower for alzheimer's first survivor? what if there were millions of them?
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apparently today. he said this is going to happen. we don't have any confirmation yet about this happening. but is reportedly under way this weekend. the idea is that i.c.e. is targeting about 2,000 people who are felons, who are supposed to be deported. this is something that of course goes on all the time in the united states. but president trump has been hyping it up talking about it, promoting it like it's a big event. while people's lives are at stake. there is a conversation we need to have about how to cover these sorts of, well, are they stunts? kyle pope of the columbia journalism thinks so. he said journalism's job must be to frame the immigration crackdown as a campaign event not a policy response that claims lives as collateral damage. let's talk more about this with our group here. sam, the idea that the president is talking up these deportations, deportations that have been happening for decades.
what do you think his strategy is? >> to paint immigrants as criminals much the same way he has done this about mexico, rapists coming across our borders when he talks about external security and what's coming across the southern border. he is trying to stereotype people that are here illegally by putting them in the same bucket. when it comes to human rights that is happening under his watch. more family separations are going to happen as a result of these raids. >> but he wants these pictures, right? he wants us to show it all week long. >> i don't think he wants the family separations. vice president pence was allowed into one facility which had horrific conditions. and vice president pence slammed cnn for dishonest coverage of his visit to this facility because vice president pence said that cnn didn't show pictures of children smiling.
we all have to be equitable. . >> we had to blur out their faces because of privacy reasons by the deposit. >> we have to be equitable. there are immigrants that have violated u.s. law. we should cover that. and there are also children in inhumane conditions in facilities at the same time. we should be equitable even if president trump is not. . >> let's talk about what the president said about free speech this week. here is his comment about what free speech is and is not. >> so to me free speech is not when you see something good and you purposely write bad. to me that is very dangerous speech. and you become angry at it. but that's not free speech. . >> is that free speech? >> yes, that's free speech. ironically this was at the social media summit where the audience was a pro free speech crowd concerned about sensorship and people who are very upset and i'm upset as well about this, about the left kind of
turning against free speech and saying hate speech isn't free speech. this is the exact equivalent of this. saying dangerous speech is not free speech. being speech that is remotely critical of me in some way. it shows you he is a hypocrite on free speech, as so many people are. >> some of the same folks invited to the social media event made the point on twitter of, well, this person isn't banned but i got banned. when the argument should be no one should be getting banned for -- on speech reasons. and so i thought it was interested he is making this point, no, no, no free speech isn't what i like. it is when you don't like it. and you have the speech to be able to respond to the thing that you don't like. that's how this work. that's how the construct of speech in this country is supposed to work. . >> it is. one more note. robby, you inspired me to bring this up about the little mermaid. you said the backlash over the little mermaid casting a black
ariel is fake news. what is the fake controversy here? >> yeah. so it was trending on twitter that people were outraged that a black actress was cast when she was white in a cartoon. it is ridiculous, absurd and racist. it was trending because most people were depolaring the racism saying we are happy to have a black ariel. there were like six people who said the racist thing. and hundreds of thousands saying we condemn this. it is trending and looks like news. it is trending because people were good and this is a humanity is good moment. >> it's not getting any better. stories are trending but they are not trends. >> they are not trends. they were fake. you steal an image from some instagram influencer and make that your user. you write something bananas racist. and you have one tweet. and that just goes around a lot. everybody responds to that
tweet. you think your job is done when you're just doing whatever this fake twitter user wanted you to do. >> and this goes back to our other conversation, sam. all the concern about russian meddling, americans are doing this to each other. at least a lot of it. >> they are. some of this is free speech. and americans using social media as they want to. but i'm going to bring this back to president trump, brian. it is harder to get accurate information and to set an example when the twitter feed represents russian trolls and spreads misinformation and false facts and conspiracy theories. americans as private citizens can use twitter and social media as they want, as long as they don't violate the terms of service. and criticizing people, putting up fake memes is not violating social media's terms of service. but we all have to do is check the user and check the source. and be cognizant of the fact that president trump and members of his administration are p
weaponing it much in the same way foreign actors have done against americans in the past. >> let me pause for the panel. thank you all for being here. we have breaking news. stand by for that. i mentioned a fewer minutes ago i.c.e. raids expected but no confirmation thief they are started. now we have the confirmation. jim acosta said deportation raids now are under way in at least some of the cities i mentioned. the officials declined to give any details on where the raids are taking place. however, cnn has learned that the immigration authorities were planning raids on nine cities for atlanta, baltimore, chicago, denver, houston, los angeles, miami, new york, and san francisco. that's according to a senior immigration official. a raid that was planned for new orleans was postponed due to tropical storm barry. so that's the word from cnn's jim acosta. these i.c.e. raids have started in at least some of those cities that president trump has been talking about. he has been promoting this. he wants press coverage of this in order to stoke fear and
controversy. we will see how the press covers this in the days and weeks to come. quick break here on "reliable sources." a new low for fox's tucker carlson? take something for the most important part of you... your brain. with an ingredient originally discovered in jellyfish, prevagen has been shown in clinical trials to improve short-term memory. prevagen. healthier brain. better life.
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ryan, the devoted republican and former speaker of the house, is getting trashed by president trump for speaking truth on author tim alberta in the upcoming back "american carnage" which is out tuesday. we have gone numbed by it all. not in government, but where we live in our lives, we have a responsibility to try and rebuild. don't call a woman a horse face. don't cheat on your wife. don't cheat on anything. be a good person. set a good example. yes, yes. paul ripe, you can help rebuild by giving up your board to murdoch. it was called out on twitter. since you're on the board. and that brings us to tucker carlson tonight. tucker on tuesday gave a speech
claiming omar is dangerous, undermining america. >> after everything america has done for omar and her family, she hates this country more than ever. she is undisguised contempt for the united states and for its people. she is a living fire alarm, a washing to the rest of us that we better change our immigration system immediately. >> the thing is carlson has been talking that way almost as proudly about omar for many months. watch. >> maybe our immigration system should prioritize those people who are grateful to be here. >> ilhan omar herself a symbol of america's failed immigration system. >> former speaker ryan, what do you think? is carlson setting a good example? cnn's oliver darcy is back with me here. oliver, let me ask you a different question. do you see a question against the attack against omar saying she's a danger and president
trump's racist tweets today? >> i think there is a clear connection here between the two. carls carlson's rhetoric where he is saying the same thing the president said that people who are coming to this country came from. there's an undoubted connection between these two things. it's not surprising either. >> we know he's watching. we know he's talking with carlson. >> he gets advice from carlson. during the iran incident, he was advising the president. i'm sure he's probably talking about the other issues. immigration is a hot issue for the president. it's not surprising. it is disturbing we're having this kind of rhetoric. it's one thing for tucker and the president to criticizes where ilhan omar might stand on policy. >> of course, bring it on. >> it's another to effectively say go back where you came from. >> you don't belong here. you're not as american as me. that's what he's saying, you're not as american as me. >> as pointed out in the
segment, anyone not white hair -- blonde hair and white knows how it feels to hear those words, go back to where you came from. not a good feeling. >> the information we've been talking about this hour. this rages online every day. what advice for folks who want to know what's real and what's true. what is the media literacy lesson. >> it's difficult. that's what the president wants. he wants it to be confusing. he wants people to not know what's real and true and take his word for it and be confused in general. i would recommend watch the network, read reputable outfits like journal, "time," post. most people don't read the front page of the newspaper every morning. they go on facebook and see what their friends are showing. a lot of times it's misinformation, hyper partisan websites. i'm not really sure how we get out of this. i think we're going to be in this for a while. the platforms are trying to do
stuff about this. when they are weeding out a lot of this misinformation, now they are accused of bias because the right is flooding the whole area with misinformation. it's a crazy place where we are right now. >> that's where we are. balanced diet is the best advice i can give about a wide variety of news sources. >> easier said than done. >> thank you. quick break here. more "reliable sources" in just a moment. discover elvive protein recharge leave-in conditioner. our heat protecting formula, leaves hair 15-times stronger. ♪ in just 1 use elvive revives damaged hair.
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we're out of time but check out on online feature about the florida climate reporting network. i into about what they are doing to combine resources. listen on "reliable sources" podcast about what it means to be collaborating with six newsrooms in the state of florida. we'll be back this time next week on "reliable sources." stay tuned for the movie. this the second episode of cnn's new original episode of "the movies." 9:00 p.m. eastern time. we'll see you right back here on "reliable sources" this time next week. where did you learn that? the internet... yeah?
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