tv PBS News Hour PBS March 1, 2010 7:00pm-8:00pm EST
captioning sponsored by macneil/lehrer productions >> ifill: good evening. i'm gwen ifill. the death toll topped 700 after one of the world's most powerful earthquakes hit chile on saturday. >> woodruff: and i'm judy woodruff. on the newshour tonight, aftershocks continue to rock the country. we get the latest from santiago and look at how this quake differs from the one that struck haiti in january. >> ifill: then, jeffrey brown examines the deal by insurance giant a.i.g. to sell its asia unit to a british company and repay some of what it owes the
u.s. government. >> woodruff: tom bearden reports on colorado's budget troubles and the state's homeless. >> if we see more and more people in the shelters and on the streets, more people who are denied access to the health and the mental health services that they need, there's no escaping the fact that there will be more people dying on the streets of our country. >> ifill: an appeal heard and another dismissed at the supreme court today. margaret warner gets the story from marcia coyle of the "national law journal." >> woodruff: and canada celebrates its gold at the olympics. >> ifill: that's all ahead on tonight's pbs newshour. major funding for the pbs newshour is provided by: >> what the world needs now is energy. the energy to get the economy humming again. the energy to tackle challenges like climate change. what if that energy came from an energy company?
and by the alfred p. sloan foundation. supporting science, technology, and improved economic performance and financial literacy in the 21st century. and with the ongoing support of these institutions and foundations. and... this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> ifill: rescuers discovered signs of life in the wreckage of a 15-story building monday, as the world offered aid to victims of a disaster that has left more than 700 confirmed dead, a toll likely to rise. >> dozens of aftershocks rattled chile for a third day following saturday's massive quake. and the scope of the catastrophe became more
clear. two million people homeless or displaced. half a million homes damaged or destroyed. major routes remained impassible, twisted and snapped by the force of the 8.8 magnitude quake. the stricten nation sought international assistance to deal with what chilean president michelle bachelet called an emergency without parallel. pledges immediately began pouring in. while traveling in your day on a long planned south american tour, secretary of state hillary clinton said the u.s. stands ready to work in solidarity with the chilean leaders. she stopped in santiago tomorrow. today the u.s. ambassador there paul simon said locating around 18,000 americans now in chile was a high priority. simons briefed reporters in washington by videoconference. >> we have reached out. we have a lot of american citizens here in chile. a number of them are tourists. some are student groups.
and we've reached out. we've had meetings with them at the hotels. we've reached out to the universities. one of the goals of our team that's going down to co con-- concepcion is to meet with the students at the university of concepcion to see how they are doing and how they would like to move forward. >> reporter: on the ground the chilean military prepared a staging ground for supplies. >> this place which we just took control of will be the place where all food aid will be gathered. >> reporter: in santiago some older structures collapsed. walls around this doorway came down. but the airport reopened today and the subway was running again partially. power was restored in ports of the city. to the south nearer the epicentre of the quake rescuers drilled through concrete in the devastated city of concepcion. struggling to reach those still trapped in apartment buildings. >> we have so far 48 people missing, 63 survivors and 8 dead.
that's the number up to today. >> reporter: 200,000 people lived in con section-- concepcion, just over 300 miles south of the capitol. it is chile's second largest city. coastal towns were all but obliterated first by the earthquake, then by tsunami waves. >> it was horrible. we lost everything. cars, our car, our son's car, the house, everything. >> reporter: whole houses were lifted by the waves and carried inland. others reduced to sticks where they stood. many survivors in the hardest hit areas struggled to find food and clean water. to combat a sense of looting and violence, police fired water canons and tear gas to disperse crowds and ordered a dusk to dawn curfew. this morning a mob of desperate people emptied this store throwing bunches of toilet paper to people waiting below. that scene was repeated across the country.
>> i need food. i can't be eating bread this is what is going to help me. each person thinks what they think and we have to do what we have to do. >> reporter: meanwhile homeowners in some neighborhoods erected barricades to keep the looters out. >> they told to us do whatever necessary. that if we needed to be armed in the street, that's fine. we were told to try to avoid confrontation, but that if it is necessary we must do anything to defend our houses. >> reporter: dozens were arrested overnight. fearing additional aftershocks, thousands chose to sleep outside for a second night. dragging their possessions, waiting for news. >> it's safer to be outside than inside. because the house can collapse at any time. >> reporter: many hospitals were damaged in the quake. doctors and nurses set up makeshift wards in hallways of undamaged buildings. makeshift clinics were set up outside. video shot during the quake itself showed life inside
this pizzeria as ceiling tiles falling to the ground as customers scrambled. president bashelette leaves office in just over a week. the successor he is was onpinera also addressed the nation. >> as we analyzed and investigate we find far more damage than estimated this is why we are working on a reconstruction plan with the concept of raising chile. it will have several phases but of course we will take on board this new responsibility which nature and adversity has put on our shoulders. >> reporter: the strongest earthquake on record hit the same area 50 years ago. more than 1600 people died. for the latest >> ifill: for the latest on the ground in chile, i spoke early this evening with pascale bonnefoy of the international web site global post. she is in santiago.- ascale welcome, i see you standing on a busy street there in santiago. give us a sense of what it's like in the nation's capitol tonight. >> the capital is pretty calm. you see it's busy because it's rush hour and also because since the church
behind me was destroyed, there is a lot of detours here. there's been occasional looting in santiago. police force is guarding some supermarket and shops. there is already police officers in front of shops. people still sleeping on the streets outdoors for fear of their apartment buildings collapsing or their houses going down. but in general, it's pretty calm in santiago. the transportation has been restored. the metro as well. the real chaos is further south. >> ifill: that's what i want to talk to you about. we've heard 700 plus casualties. most of them to the south. what do we know about what's happen until in concepcion and along the coast south of the capitol. >> the official total now is 723 dead and 19 disappeared but basically because they haven't-- the rest of the disappeared haven't been reported. it is going to be about several hundred more it seems because the coastal
towns and cities were completely wiped out, the small ones were wiped out by tidal waves right after the earthquake. a lot of people didn't make it up the hill, especially people who weren't from the region. because this was last summer vacation weekend and a lot of people came from other places. people living in the south and on the coast know that if there is an earthquake or tremor they immediately go up the hills. but tourists don't know that. and there wasn't much time between the earthquake and the tidal waves. and at the same time the navy immediately said there was no risk of tidal-- of tsunamis. so that was a mistake. they are now just recognizing and acknowledging. but what's happening in con section and most cities in the south and both regions is severe looting and vandalism. at first it was looting out of need for food because there is some food shortages. but now it's gotten out of hand. there is hordes of people attack not only supermarkets and pharmacies but also just department stores, breaking
into people's homes and to abandoned apartment buildings, setting them on fewer. this afternoon they set on fire a supermarket and a retail store. and 7,000 troops, military troops are set to go to the regions as of today. they are gradually traveling between today and tomorrow there is going to be about 7,000. >> ifill: have we seen signs of international aid yet? >> argentina just sent generators, some field hospitals and water purifyers, and some doctors as well. that's the most recent concrete aid we've seen. >> ifill: pascale, this must have been something to live through. where were you when the earthquake struck. >> i was at home in a two storey house sleeping. and when the house started shaking and then rocking, i didn't even make it downstairs, we just kind of held on to the walls and door frames and lived it out on the second floor. everything was rocking. the house was going from one side to another.
things were crashing down t was very violent, very violent, very noisy. we didn't know what was going on. i didn't know if i was going end up in the first floor or the house was going to crash down. it was extremely terrifying but luckily we were fine. the house was actually fine. in spite of the things that were broken. but we are still without electricity, three days into the quake. >> ifill: there are so many questions about many newer buildings which did not survive or were destabilized in the quake. have there been questions raised about kux construction standards leading up to this? >> it's going to be a big issue, because for example my house was built in the 196 0s, the whole neighborhood was it withstood the quake very well. but new buildings that were opened as recently as october last year or a year ago have been evacuated, some of the ground floors were sinking. some were near collapse. and there are a lot of angry new owners of these apartments, not homes but apartments.
and what's been happening is that over the past couple of decades there's been a lot more-- regulations have been more lax. municipalities or essential government no longer regulate if these construction codes are really being abided by. now is in the hands of arc tokts and the companies themselves. so there is a lot-- there is a big construction boom all over the place. so it seems that they are not really complying with the strict standards that we've always had in this country which is a country used to many, many earthquakes. so it's going to be a big issue. there is already talk about taking some firms to court. investigating them but of course that's going to be after the immediate crisis subsides. >> ifill: a lot of cleanup, pascale bonnefoy of globalpost in santiago, thank you so much for joining us. >> okay. >> the chile >> woodruff: the chile quake comes just weeks after the devastating earthquake in haiti, which killed an estimated quarter of a million people. here to discuss the two
disasters are nan buzzard, the senior director for international response and programs at the american red cross. she is coordinating that group's response to both the haiti and chile earthquakes. she returned from haiti on friday. and david applegate, senior science advisor of earthquake and geologic hazards at the u.s. geological survey. thank you both for being here. david applegate to you first, help us understand the difference between these two earthquakes. what happened differently under the earth and what did that cause on the surface? >> well, the similarity between them is that they are both played boundary-- plate boundaries where the earth's at the time tonic plates are grinding side to side, similar to the san andreas fault, strike slip fault and it's on land so the fault is directly adjacent to in this case the urban area of port-au-prince. in the case of chile it is a at the time tonic plate boundary but they are going against each other, the
ocean boundary is diving underneath the continent of south america, that is what generates a great deal of activity, volcanos, large earthquakes it means the earthquake itself was offshore so that the population is somewhat further away from the most intense shaking. but it happened over a giant zone, 500 times more energy released than in haiti. >> so much more powerful -- powerful than a 8.8 earthquake, much more powerful than the quake in haiti and yet the devastation was so much worse, why? >> absolutely. well, we can compare the amount, the number of people exposed to severe shaking in the two cases. and if you look at that, if are you in haiti, are you about 400 times more likely to die than you were in chile, exposed to the same amount of shaking. and what that says is the in -- >> closer to the surface. >> well, actually even taking that into account, what it says is the vulnerability. so in other words, even if they are exposed to the same kind of shaking, are you that much more likely to have per shalled in haiti simply because it's such a
vulnerable city. >> than buzzard what about from a humanitarian and rescue standpoint for the red cross what is the difference in dealing with these. >> it would david really put his finger on it when he talked about vulnerable. in haiti we had a very underdeveloped country in the first place with a very poor infrastructure, not particularly robust civil defense systems. not very strong media or communications. so when that quake struck in haiti, all of the infrastructure that would you normally see in responding to a large disaster was almost absent. the u.n. was taken down, the government was taken down, physically. media collapsed. haiti, the earthquake happened right in the port it was the heart of all the logistics for the entire country. in chile are you seeing that santiago is slightly affected but it's still functioning. it's a much more developed country and it's infrastructure and systems are all in place. >> and in terms of the help that chile is going to need from the outside, how do you compare? >> it's actually too early
to tell, the assessments are just happening now. i think that the country itself has said that they are seeing it is much greater than they anticipated. and i think that's interesting. the red cross has constructed a fly over today. we've already seen that there is going to be need for some kind of water and sanitation because the water supply has been disrupted over a long period of land. we see that there is a lot of people who are going to need some kind of sheltering options but it's too early to tell what exactly is going to be required from the international community. on like haiti you see that there has been almost a 48, 72 hour delay from the country, to say we want international assistance. and even now they haven't exactly said what they want, how they want it. and when they want it. >> and again over 200,000 deaths in haiti versus so far 700. that number will go up. but a vast difference in terms of casualties. >> it's shocking. and i think that anyone who doesn't understand the importance of building codes and accountability to informing and making sure that those building codes are followed is critical.
but it's also just the entire disaster response and preparedness capacity of a country. >> david applegate, help us understand sort of what we can't see everything in chile. we can only get pictures from different places. what, if we were able to see what's on the ground, help us understand from an infrastructure standpoint what a quake of that force would do to a country like chile? >> well, infrastructure is the key term there. one of the things in a giant seduction zone earthquake such as what we saw, a lot of the energy is in these very long period waves, they are almost big rolling waves. those are ones that, for example, small houses can often ride out fairly well. but it is big structures like bridges, like tall buildings, industrial facilitiess that that and water treatment facilities as was mentioned. they often will take a much harder hit in it. think about the difference between a violin vibe rates
at a very high frequency, a cello or bass at a lower frequency, the same thing is true with large structures. >> and we were hearing in gwen's interview that some of these newer buildings were not apparently built according to the codes as strictly, perhaps, as some of the buildings built several decades ago. what do you expect to see or learn in that vein. >> well, that is very troubling. one of the strengths for chile has been the fact that with their history of earthquakes there is a lot of awareness. they have some of the best building codes outside of the u.s. or japan. and it all comes down to enforcement. and that is an issue anywhere to contend with. >> you also telling us that there are some real lessons for the-- for north america in all of this because of the kind of quake that happened and what could happen in our continent. >> well, that's right. we have zones, the same areas where plates are
colliding against plates off you our pacific northwest starting in northern california all the way up to british columbia and also into alaska and our territorys in the caribbean as well. so there are several areas where we have very similar potential for earthquakes. back in 1700 the pas civic northwest had a magnitude 9 earthquake, a very similar sort of zone quake off alaska in 1964, the great alaska quake that was the second biggest quake since the 1900. we just spernlsed the fifth biggest one. >> than buzzard in terms of help that the red cross and other organizations can give to chile, on top of haiti now , does it become a competition for resources or how do you -- >> i wouldn't call it a competition. i do think that whenever you have back-to-back large natural disasters or any kind of disasters you do see a stretching of the fabric of the humanitarian response system worldwide. just at a physical level, the government of haiti has-- i mean the government of chile has requested tents. there may be issues of
whether tents are the right thing or not but there are only so many tents on the global market. a lot of them have been purchased for haiti. so it will be interesting to see what we can actually identify and find as nonfood items. i'm more concerned about the human resources that are required just because all of the large aid agencies are stretched. we have some of our best people serving around the world and a lot in haiti. and to then bring additional resources into chile is going to be a stretch for some. i think we are going to see in this disaster in chile is a lot of regional response. i think you're going to see a lot of the countries around chile, in south america for a whole host of political and social and language and economic reasons, come to the aid of chile perhaps more than a huge international response. >> we already heard about argentina. >> exactly. >> and very quickly david applegate what lessons are you looking to learn as a geologist about what happened? >> well, the great-- any time you have a disaster
like this you do have this responsibility to learn everything you can. given the fact that we have very similar kinds of shaking, we can anticipate off our own coast, we need to understand how that infrastructure responded to this so that whether it's in the u.s., in japan, elsewhere, we can really know what are the codes that are needed. and how can they be carried out. >> all right, david applegate, nan buzzard, we thank you both for being with us. >> thank you very much. >> thank you. >> good night. >> and still to come on the newshour >> ifill: and still to come on the newshour, a.i.g. sells some of its assets; the budget shortfall in colorado; an enron appeal at the supreme court; and canadian glory and gold at the olympics. but first, with the other news of the day, here's kwame holman in our newsroom. >> holman: six nato service members were killed in separate attacks across afghanistan today. in one attack in the southern city of kandahar, a suicide car bomber targeted a nato convoy as it crossed a bridge on the outskirts of town. hours later, another car packed with explosives detonated
outside kandahar's main police station. ten afghan civilians also were killed in four bombings in the south. former bosnian serb leader radovan karadzic took the stand today, as his war crimes trial resumed at the hague. he insisted the deaths of 100,000 people during the bosnian war were a defense against a muslim plot to take over bosnia. we have a report from robert moore of independent television news. >> they were outside demanding justice from the international court. the grieving mothers braced to hear the arguments of the man they told directly responsible for the loss they suffered. radovan karadzic stand as caused of genocide and of authorizing the worst massacre in europe since 1945. and yet we have never heard his full defense. until now. for so long karadzic escaped justice. heavily disguised and living in the serb capital belgrade.
but he was finally tracked down and captured and now he must try and defend his conduct in a war that shocked and shamed europe. feuding ethnic tensions again today karadzic claimed bosnian serb attacks have been a defensive response to muslim provocations. >> i will defend that nation of ours and their cause is a just and holy. and in that way i shall be able to defend myself too. and my nation. >> reporter: in serb anyia and elsewhere in bosnia this performance by karadzic was watched with contempt. and with intense frustration at the slow pace of international justice. >> karadzic is pushing for another four-month recess to continue preparing >> holman: karadzic is pushing for another four-month recess to continue preparing his case. he faces life in prison if convicted. at least 62 people were killed in a powerful storm that ripped across western europe this weekend.
heavy rains and hurricane-force winds pummeled france the hardest, where 51 people died, but the storms also battered parts of belgium, germany, portugal, and spain. today french president nicolas sarkozy flew over the widespread flooding of france's devastated atlantic coast. high tides pounded sea walls there, causing them to burst open and flood nearby port communities. the president of toyota went to china today and apologized for a slew of safety problems with his company's vehicles. akio toyoda made the stop after last week's visit to the u.s. where he faced a grilling from lawmakers in washington. the number of vehicles recalled in china is a small portion of the eight and a half million pulled worldwide since october. at an hour-long news conference in beijing, toyoda apologized four times. >> the chinese market is very important. the reason why i came directly to beijing from the u.s. after the hearing is
that i would like to express directly to chinese consumers our apology through my own remarks. and at the same time to explain to chinese customers what has happened recently to give chinese customers some relief. >> china' auto market is the largest in the world, last year overall sales jumped by >> holman: china's auto market is the largest in the world. last year, overall sales jumped by 45%. for the record, toyota is a newshour underwriter. on wall street today, the dow jones industrial average gained 78 points to close above 10,403. the nasdaq rose 35 points to close at 2273. those are some of the day's main stories. i'll be back at the end of the program with a preview of what you'll find tonight on the newshour's web site. for now, back to judy. >> woodruff: now, the future of insurance giant, a.i.g., and the government's massive investment in the company. jeffrey brown has the story. >> brown: at the height of the financial crisis in late 2008, a.i.g. was the single largest recipient of taxpayer funds--
some $180 billion to prevent it from collapsing and possibly taking much of wall street with it. since then, the company has struggled to right itself and its image, and to pay back some of what it owes. today it took a major step in that effort, announcing a deal to sell its asian life insurance business to prudential, a british company, for $35 billion. it's part of a bigger strategy, and andrew ross sorkin of the "new york times" joins us to explain. he's also the author of the book, "too big to fail." tell us about this deal first. why would aig sell off a big part of itself like this it. >> this is part of both sort of larger aig -- narrative which is they have a new ceo that they have installed and strarjically they are trying to pear down. aig was this enormous global company. some argued that it was so global, and so big t was too big to manage. and in this case one of the step s that he said he wants
to address is that issue, selling this piece and another piece there is another business up for sale too. another insurance business that they hope to sell in the next couple of weeks. and between those two businesses they are hoping to actually get 50 billion dollars in total, 25 billion of which should go back to the federal reserve. >> now does changing the business and the kind of businesses it is in include getting out of the derivatives business, all the tough that got it in trouble in the first place? >> well, that's almost a separate issue. a group called fp or financial products, they are still unwinding those businesses. some would argue that they are doing it too slowly. some would argue they are doing it too fast. originally the plan was to unwind a lot of these derivatives as quickly as humanly possible. when the new ceo came in, he actually slowed that process down in part because he felt that they were being unwound at five sale prices. and it wasn't going benefit aig and therefore the taxpayers. so that process is taking much longer. but they're really trying to
right the ship and get into the property & casualty business in the united states, the property casualty business internationally, the life insurance business in the u.s. and that is it. so all of these other businesses they are considering ancillary, they are trying to sell, and hoping to take that money and give it back to the taxpayer as quickly as possible. >> and how much of the money has come back as we've said, some of these proceeds from this deal will go to u.s. treasury. >> 25 billion in this case will go back out of this deal. i did some number crunches before. i don't believe-- i think is the first time money has come back. i don't think this has happened before. so this is a step in the right direction. having said that, some would argue that by selling these businesses, some would say these are the crown jewels of aig, actually, the asia business and some of the other businesses that they are selling that it is going to be very hard to actually pay back the full 180 billion dollars that has been lent out thus far. >> now the company is doing better this last year. but they did just friday i think it was --
>> yes. >> they announced an $11 billion loss for the year. >> they did. >> now that's a lot better than the losses from the year before but that's still a loss. >> right, absolutely. you know, a year ago the loss was $61 billion with a "b" so that was a huge loss. this year it is 11 billion. a large part of that, by the way, came from the fact that they were having to put up reserves against what they thought might-- that they might have to pay out in future quarters. and that is what represented the largest part of that. so it's possible that they-- it's arguable that they are on the right course but the numbers don't show that at the moment. >> now you mentioned the new boss there robert ben moshay. he's been more aggressive. he has been aggressive even on things like, controversial issues on things like pay there tell us more about him and what he is trying to do. >> well, he is a much more combative almost bigger than life personality. and in fact, he has pushed back on a lot of these issues, derivatives being
one in terms of unwinding these contracts. he said slow down, we're going to take our time. on the compensation issue he said i need to manage a business on a day-to-day basis. you can't, you know, keep one hand behind my back. he has been out there and very outspoken. so outspoken that they infrequently put him in front of regulators in washington. they have a fellow, the chairman of the company, who is basically full-time now in washington on behalf of aig. but in some ways this larger-than-life personality has helped the company in that internally he has really rallied the troops and gotten a lot of people behind him. >> you know, and remind us, because it's worth trying to look back at all this, how much of a role does the government still have in the company at this point? >> you know, a huge role. and i think part of paying back the shareholders-- or the taxpayers in this case which are the shareholders as quickly as possible is this idea that they are hoping to be able to get the government out from over them as much as they are. ken feinberg
has curbs on pay so i think $500,000 is the most amount of money that anybody is supposed to be getting there, but even lower, of course they did get bonuses this area. they were contractually supposedly entitled to those bonuses. but going forward you are not going to see any of that. but in terms of day-to-day decision, they're still input from treasury and others and they are running a lot of the stuff by washington folks. >> and in the meantime this deal that they've announced today with prudential, that still has to go through regulatory hurdles, right. >> that has an entire othering regulatory hurdle which is not just in the united states but actually in asia, in china. the hong kong regulators and chinese regulators. nd that could create its own issue. i don't think are you going to see that deal get approved so quickly. by the way, there may be other bidders that may emerge. china life, other insurance companies and sovereign wealth fund so this story may not be over just yet. >> andrew ross sorkin of the "new york times", thanks again. >> thank you . >> ifill: next, tough choices for states facing record budget shortfalls. newshour correspondent tom
bearden reports from colorado. >> . >> reporter: a truck rolls up to a denver soup kitchen. not to deliver food but medical care for the homeless. >> so are you here about -- . >> loud. >> look behind your ears, okay, it's real important that we do that. >> inside people are treated for diabetes, high blood pressure, mental health problems. about 2200 patients a year. >> hey, roger, how are you doing? >> the colorado coalition for the homeless has been operating the mobile clinic for eight years. and they believe it saved countless lives. >> all right, i will look into your ears and see what else i have got to offer. >> sherry is homeless. the truck is her primary health care resource. she is scared because this is the mobile clinic's last run. >> like now, you are homeless that a lot, you are trying to find a safe place
and warm place to sleep and trying to make some money so you can do what you have to do. and it's hard and sometimes it's impossible. so people will end up going without health care. >> the other day i was in the clinic-- . >> reporter: the clinic is one of the victims of a $2 billion short fall in the colorado state budget. 43 states have cut services to their residents due to budget deficits. tax revenues have plunged during the recession. and the state has been forced to reduce funding for groups like the coalition. as well as many other government services. >> well, the worst recession since the great depressio depression-- depression. anybody that finds themselves in a position where they are trying to reconcile the shortfalls, i think are dealing with really the worst budget decision we've seen since the 1930s. >> governor bill ritter says he went through the 18 billion dollar state budget literally line by line. looking for cuts that would have the least impact on people. >> this is a very difficult
time because there's a lot of different places where you can look at this budget and know that there's an impact on human beings and on real people. because cuts have a different impact than growing the budget does, because they have a negative impact that could really hurt quality of life in some respects, it's important to do it line by line. >> with the meeting with the neighborhood now for a little bit over a year. >> but john who runs the coalition for the homeless says the 3.4 million dollar hit his organization took is going to cost lives. >> if we see more and more people in the shell ters and on the streets, more people who are denied access to the health and mental health services that they need, there's no escaping the fact that there will be more people dying on the streets of our country. >> the governor is sympathetic but says something had to give. >> we've done everything we can, everything we can in the circumstance we find ourselves in to protect the
safety net. and we've done that with input from john and other people -- >> par vanski says the state funds totaled about 25% of his entire health care budget. that deciding how to allocate the remaining money was a challenge. >> when they come in our door they're very needy. so we structured our programs very efficiently to be able to respond to the needs. we've always done it on a shoe string as much as we can, very light in the administrative side. so there's not much to cut when you face a budget cut of that magnitude. >> hi, alexander, how are you today. >> parvanski froze all salaries and then closed this women's mental health facility. he says the hardest decision was to close the mobile clinic, which cost about 250,000 dollars a year to operate. >> your mouth open. >> reporter: dr. amy worked on the van for more than three years. >> sometimes we'll get that
person who just wants some ibuprofen so they will come on board and as we sit and talk to them and hear their story we find that there are a whole bunch of other thing goesing on whether it is socially or mentally or medically. and so i feel like we are a first front of the line kind of van or organization that can help connect people to further services that they may need. >> reporter: ritter says he understands the problem but has no choice. >> 3.4 million dollars is pocket change in the state budget. are you down to making decisions about amounts of money like that that are so small. >> well, yes. and this has been the surgical exercise. and the reason is because those small amounts ultimately can build to a big amount. >> reporter: the cuts come just as the need for these services is increasing. more people are showing up at soup kitchens because the department of housing and urban development estimates the number of homeless families has gone up almost 10% in just the last two years.
>> any emergency or anything of that nature nature, you just go to the emergency room. you can't rely on the van any longer. >> reporter: melinda patterson is the direct of-- director of father wood oui's soup kitchen. >> so this time a couple years ago, even last year, we probably had a hundred people and now we are saying about 400 a day. >> reporter: parvanski says the dilemma facing groups like his is how to help more people with less money. >> i've been doing this work now for almost 25 years. and this is the first time that we've been faced with an increase in the need of the population at a time when the funding is decreasing so rapidly. it's very discouraging and it's very heart-wrenching. every day i walk through the lobby and see more and more people, families with kids, adults, who are waiting for help. >> reporter: its last run complete, the homeless coalition's mobile clinic was put into storage. parvanski is trying to find private grant money to put it back on the street.
in the meantime, governor ritter and the state legislature face another 1.5 billion dollar budget shortfall in the next fiscal year. meaning they'll have to go back through the state budget once again looking for more ways to save money. >> woodruff: now, two appeals at the supreme court today. one was dismissed, and arguments were heard in the other. margaret warner gets the details. >> the appeal heard this afternoon came in a case brought by former enron ceo jeffrey skilling. he's challenging his 2008 conviction and prison sentence on fraud charges stemming from the energy giant's collapse. marcia coyle of the national law journal was at the court
today and she joins us now. marcia, welcome back. >> thank you. >> let's start with the case that was dispatched with pretty quickly. this long-awaited case they expected to hear it this month. suddenly they send it back to the lower court. why and what is the significance of this? >> the weegers, the court said in an unsigned opinion, a very brief opinion, their situation had changed since they first took their case to the supreme court. the court pointed out that all of them had been offered resettlement options, some were taken, some were not. but the facts had changed enough that the court felt that the lower court ought to take a fresh look at it. >> and i misspoke because it is 7 detainee, not 17. and these had all been captured in afghanistan or pakistan. >> and found not to be enemy combatants or a threat to the united states. >> now what does this, today's ruling, though, or decision mean for all the other guantanamo detainees, some of whom have been clared for release but haven't been? >> it really leaves them in
something of legal limbo. what the court did today that was very significant was it vacated, voided the lower court's decision in the weegers case that said that federal judges didn't have the authority to order the release of gitmo detainees into the united states. by voiding that decision, we really don't know what the answer is to what federal judges can do if a detainee shows that he's being held unlawfully. so the case, the issue might welcome back to the supreme court at a later date. >> but all this stems from the fact that in 2008 the supreme court ruled that gitmo detainee does have the right to challenge their detention in federal court. >> that's right. and there have been dozens who have filed competitions with the federal court in washington d.c. so the issue remains they have this right but what is the remedy. >> now the skilling case, those were the arguments this afternoon. from what i understand, and he had several grounds in
which he's challenging his conviction, but he, most of the argument today, i gather, centered on his argument that he couldn't get a fair trial in his hometown, enron's hometown of houston. >> that's correct, margaret. that was the first issue, second issue, had to do with the law under which he was convicted. most of the argument focused, skilling's lawyer told the court that many, many individuals, count its individuals in houston were affected by the enron collapse. and passions in the community were intense. such that the trial court could not find a fair and impartial jury. >> warner: and there was great focus, though, was there not, on how the judge in the case went about letting the jury panel be stricted. >> mr. skilling's attorney argued that even if the case had not been transferred out of houston, more-- .
>> warner: which was what he wanted. >> yes, exactly, change of venue as we call it. more was needed to be done in selecting a fair and impartial jury. he said here the judge erred in two ways, the time spent selecting the jury. jury selection took five hours. and also the scope of how to choose the questioning of potential jurors. he said the judge accepted assurances that a potential juror would be fair even when there were overt statements of bias by potential jurors. this triggered, you know, some skepticism by the justices. justice ginsburg, for example, she said she didn't know that there was any mandatory rule that you had to change the jury-- the trial location when money was involved. that was the charge, and not life or limb was the charge. and the attorney said that people in houston viewed this almost as akin to terrorist attacks.
it was that serious. >> warner: now what did the attorneys for the government argue? >> the government was represented by deputy solicitor general michael dreebin. and he said this trial judge, he had 15 years experience in selecting jurors, that he understood and did not ignore the impact of the collapse in houston. and that he devised a very thorough questionnaire. and then he made credibility determinations, eyeball to eyeball when potential jurors answered questions as to whether they could be fair. justice brier, for example, he said he was worried here because there were examples of potential jurors who voiced bias and the judge didn't seem to think they should be immediately challenged or excused. and there dreebin said look, people come to court with opinions. and it's up to the judge to first tell them about the presumption of innocence and then to take credibility determinations.
that's the judge, that's the job of the judge. and the judge did it here. >> and then finally skill asking have another argument, didn't he, that the law under which he was convicted was unconstitutionally vague? >> yes. this is a law that makes it a crime to deprive your employer of the right to your honest services. and it's become a very important tool of the government in prosecutions of public corruption and in this case, financial fraud. and here mr. skilling's attorney was saying this is the kind of law where any kind of lie in the workplace could become the focus of a criminal prosecution. the government on the other hand is saying this isn't any kind of a lie. a ceo of a company owes a duty of loyalty to the shareholders. and mr. skilling violated that duty. >> in part because he lied or is accused of having lied about the opinion of the
company lansd making profitable stock sales. >> exactly. >> woodruff: . >> warner: and the court has heard two other cases right on this particular law. >> it has. and i think that the court has taken three cases this term, the challenge aspects of this law, i think it shows and the argument showed today that there are a number of justices who are skeptical of how broadly the government has used this prosecution tool. >> warner: even if they didn't talk about it a lot today. >> that's true. >> warner: marcia coyle, thank you. national law journal. >> my pleasure, margaret. >> ifill: and finally tonight, oh, canada! the maple leaf has its moment on the world stage. the vancouver olympics which began with the tragic death of a georgian athlete ended last night in jubilation for its host nation. an enthusiastic crowd of 60,000, most of them clad in patriotic canadian gear packed bc place stadium for
the game's extravagant closing ceremony. just hours earlier the canadian men's hockey team had capped a week of competitive build-up by defeating the upstart u.s. team in sudden death overtime. the 3-2 win gave the canadians bragging rights on home turf in its most popular sport. and also set a new winter olympics record of 14 gold medals won. among the gold medal firsts for canada, alexander billideau in men's moguls and tessa and scott in ice dancing. canada finished third in the overall medal count behind the u.s. and germany. but last night's celebration which began inside the stadium continued on the streets outside. now for more now, for more about the for more about how the olympics resonated in canada, we turn to ian hanomansing, a national reporter for the cbc, canada's public broadcaster and co-anchor of the cbc's "vancouver evening news."-
bout ian, just a short time ago we heard that there was some ambivalence in vancouver before the games started it sounds like that all went away. >> yeah there is no question that had we done this interview three weeks ago i would have told you that there were a lot of people in vancouver, maybe even a majority, who wondered whether the games should be here at all. were they too expensive, was there any point to hosting them. but that all washed away. we had these huge crowds gathering downtown, hundreds, more than 100,000 people a night. and it became pretty clear people were voting with their feet. they embraced the games in a big way. >> woodruff: what changed? when did the shift happen? >> nobody knows for sure, you know. the first weekend of the games it was as gloomy, the mood i think, as the weather was. we had, of course, the death of the georgian lujer that happened in whistler, about a two and a half hour drive away from here but very much part of the olympics. we had some protests, including some demonstrators smashing one of the department store windows downtown. and still that ambivalence that i talked about carrying
over. but i guess it was probably the gold medal you mentioned by alex, the first unbelievably, canadian to win in an olympics on home soil. we had gone through the montreal and calgary olympics with no canadian winning a gold medal. alex billideau broke that drought. there were a few other notable medals and then i think people just enjoyed being an olympic city. sport as side, corporate sponsorship aside, debate about costs aside, people just wanted to come down and find out what they could see. and there were pavilions that they could visit. there were attractions like a zip line strung across a couple city blocks. we learned one thing about vancouver, people don't mind lining up here at all. they were lining up 7, 8 hours, for example, for the zip line and not complaining at all. >> woodruff: we have heard a lot about how hockey mad canada is and how canadians are. so foing that, how big a deal was yesterday's win, especially beating the u.s.? >> well, i don't know that there is a supporteding
event in the united states, even with the super bowl, even if you were to have a game 7 in the world series, even with michael phelps's incredible performance in beijing, i doubt there is a single sporting event in the united states that matches whating hockey generally is like in canada. and then you have the best players in the world playing in the olympics, canada in the gold medal game, especially against an archrival like russia or in this case the united states, and you have virtually everybody in the country watching their television sets or at least part of that game. canadian pride very much on the line. and i think if you asked canadians at the beginning of the game how would you measure success, they would have said a gold in the men's hockey game. however, an interesting thing happened on the road to that hockey game. canada started winning gold medals in a way that this country doesn't usually. and we heard in that setup piece the fact that this is the first time canada has actually lead all countries in gold medals at a games, in this case a winter games, setting the all-time record. and wouldn't you know, when sydney crosby the superstar hockey player scored the winning goal yesterday in
that game against the united states that didn't just mean gold for the men's hockey team t also set the record, the 14th gold for canada. so i think in a way, it drew a line from that performance to a bunch of other gold medal performances that by themselves might not have been as impressive for everybody, but certainly was over the last two weeks. >> woodruff: last night in the close egg-- closing ceremony we saw a lot of famous canadians like katherine o'hara, the actress saying canada was previously known as a lot of frozen tundra with polite people. has thating chad. were people concerned about that image? >> well, people were definitely concerned about that image. as you probably know we measure ourselves very often by how you and the united states judge us or perhaps more importantly how we think you and the united states judge us. here we had other countries watching as well. the british press savaged canada in the first few days of these games. and people here were quite hurt by that. and quite angry. so yeah, there was a strong feeling right from the beginning from 2003 when vancouver got the bid that there is this perception out
there, throughout the world of canada as being wintery and kind and gentle. and not necessarily inaccurate and not necessarily bad things. but i know a lot of people here wanted to expand that a little bit beyond the stereotype. but the closing ceremony said, you know what, that's the stereotype. let's have fun with it. we can't fight it all the time. nd on this day, a day of triumph for canada, yesterday in this country t was a good day to show that we can make and take a joke. >> woodruff: briefly, do you know whether you can make and take money off of this these olympics. is anybody talking about that yet? >> oh, well, they are talking about it a lot earlier. not so much during the games. i was thinking it's kind of like not wanting to discuss how much the wedding costs while you are still at the reception. and much less the honeymoonment and we're at that point now. but we have a provincial budget being announced tomorrow here in british columbia, a federal budget on thursday. i think both of those will be cold water for us after what has been 15, 16 days of
celebration. so yes, money will be very much part of the future debate here. >> woodruff: as it always is, ian hanomansing of the cbc, thanks a lot for helping us out. >> you are very welcome. >> woodruff: again, the major developments of the day. the death toll topped 700 after one of the world's most powerful earthquakes hit chile on saturday. six nato service members were killed in separate attacks across afghanistan. and insurance giant a.i.g. agreed to sell its asia unit to the british insurance company prudential for more than $35 billion. the newshour is always online. kwame holman, in our newsroom, previews what's there. kwame? >> holman: our earthquake coverage continues, with more from global posts' pascale bonnefoy, and a roundup of youtube videos from the disaster scene. we take a closer look at a new pew research study on the changing demands of today's news consumers. hari sreenivasan talked to one of the survey's authors on the rundown.
and on newshour extra, we have a lesson plan for teachers about the intersection of politics and the olympic games. all that and more is on our web site, newshour.pbs.org. gwen? >> ifill: and that's the newshour for tonight. i'm gwen ifill. >> woodruff: and i'm judy woodruff. we'll see you online, and again here tomorrow evening. thank you, and good night. major funding for the pbs newshour is provided by:
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