tv NBC Nightly News NBC August 16, 2011 7:00pm-7:30pm EDT
>> the dog is tall. >> they're back together. >> i don't think they would have shared that video if he knocked him over. >> no. >> it looks like the dog is capable of it. >> thank you for watching. on the broadcast tonight, fighting words. rick perry comes out swinging and talking and the white house tells him to watch what he says. meanwhile, the president has his own tea party moment. sticker shock at the grocery store, why it's suddenly costing so much to feed your family and what it will take to bring prices back down. act of kindness. a police officer's final good deedor a young man captured on camera, and how a simple gesture may have changed a young life. front line, ann curry tonight from what might be the most dangerous place in the world. and do nice guys really finish last? and what about women? a new study that could explain a lot about what goes on at the office. lot about what goes on at the office. nightly news begins now.
captions paid for by nbc-universal television good evening. it's the summer of 2011, but right about now, it sure seems like the summer of 2012. we don't vote for president again for a good long while, and yet all the candidates are out on the road. the president, the entire gop field, and right about now, the rest of the country is learning what texans already know about their governor, what he says, what he does, how he does business, and it's given the rest of us something to talk about and watch closely right here in the middle of august. and as proof that the campaign is already on, today's debate had to do with money, name calling and whether or not the president of the united states loves his country. we begin here tonight with nbc's andrea mitchell. >> reporter: campaigning today in iowa at the world's largest truck stop, rick perry was not backing down about the storm he
created by taking aim at fed chairman, ben bernanke. >> if this guy prints more money between now and the election, i don't know what y'all would do to him in iowa, but we'd -- we would treat him pretty ugly down in texas. i mean, printing more money to play politics at this particular time in american history is almost treacherous -- or treasonness, in my opinion. >> reporter: perry's comments also crossed the line for some republicans. fellow texan karl rove said it's not presidential. >> it was a very unfortunate comment. you don't accuse the chairman of the federal reserve of being a traitor to his country, of being guilty of treason, and suggesting that we treat him pretty ugly in texas. >> reporter: in a rough and tumble few days, perry, a former air force pilot, has also repeatedly questioned president obama's patriotism. >> the president had the opportunity to serve his
country, i'm sure at some time, and he made a decision that that wasn't what he wanted to do. >> reporter: is he saying the president doesn't love america? >> you need to ask him. >> reporter: late today, the president responded to wolf blitzer on cnn. >> you've got to be a little more careful about what you say. but i will cut him some slack. he has only been at it for a few days now. >> reporter: perry's texas swagger is his calling card, bred of a hardscrabble boyhood on the family farm and aggie roots at texas a&m. perry's chief claim to challenging president obama is the texas jobs record. perry says his state produced 40% of all the jobs created across america in the last two years. with an unemployment rate at 8.2%, well below the national average, partly because of the oil and gas boom, partly because of growing trade with mexico and federal defense spending in texas. critics point out that texas has the highest percentage of residents with no health insurance and ties mississippi for the rcentage of low-wage jobs. still, those who know perry say
don't underestimate him. >> anybody who sells him short and thinks that he's a lightweight is making a big mistake. >> reporter: perry had repeated opportunities all day today to back off his comments about the president and the fed chairman and he did not, clearly showing how he plans to separate himself from the other candidates, like fellow tea party-supported candidate michele bachmann and clearly, mitt romney. brian? >> all right. andrea mitchell starting us off in d.c. tonight. andrea, thanks. and in iowa today, president obama on that bus tour he is calling a listening tour and not a campaign tour. our chief white house correspondent chuck todd is traveling with the president. and chuck, it looks like the president got his chance to do some listening. >> reporter: yeah, that's for sure, brian. look, this swing through the midwest comes not only at a time when the president's at a popularity low, but he is finding out that iowans have no problem expressing their displeasure to him directly. on day two of his midwest bus tour, president obama mingled with small business owners to plead his case.
and later at his rural summit, he tried to convince eastern iowans he shares their frustrations. >> we will get through this moment of challenge. the only question is if, as a nation, we are going to do what it takes to grow this economy and put people back to work right now. and can we get our politics to match up with the decency of our people? >> reporter: not every exchange with iowans has been friendly. at a town hall monday night the president got into it with the head of iowa's tea party. how is your vice president -- >> look, look -- >> i would like to understand that. >> okay. i will explain it. he did not -- >> said we were acting like terrorists. >> reporter: and this morning, the area's largest newspaper, the dubuque "telegraph herald"
welcomed the president with this front page editorial. it challenged the need for today's rural economic forum in peosta, iowa, and asked, "wouldn't it be cheaper to fly your hand-picked participants to washington?" while the white house continues to deny this trip is about the 2012 campaign, this bus tour comes amid signs that he lacks strong support in the heartland. according to nbc/"wall street journal" polling data over the course of this year, only 37% of rural midwesterners approve of the president's job. well, brian, in an interview with cnn conducted earlier today, the president put himself in the shoes of a voter who might decide to vote him out of office. he said this, he is the president, we may think he has good intentions, but we are impatient and we want to see things move a little bit faster. >> nobody said it wasn't going to be tough out there. chuck todd in iowa. chuck, thanks. then there is this note from the campaign trail, and perhaps confirmation that campaigning is exhausting for the candidate and
the advance staff. today happens to be the 34th anniversary of the death of elvis presley. michele bachmann is a big fan. she was in south carolina today and chose to mark the wrong elvis milestone. >> get started, let's all say happy birthday to elvis presley today. happy birthday. we played you a little bit of "promise land" when we pulled up. you can't do better than elvis presley. and we thought we would celebrate his birthday as we get started celebrating take our country back tour. >> michele bachmann later corrected herself and added, "as far as we're concerned, he's still alive in our hearts." now, we turn from politics to food prices, specifically a noticeable rise in prices. they are way up, in some cases, and the experts who watch these things say they will keep going up over the coming months, as
farmers struggle with bad weather and lousy harvests as a result. but is there any relief in sight? our report from nbc's tom costello. >> reporter: these days, it could be any grocery store in america. walk down the aisles and you come face to face with sticker shock. >> i thought it was closer to $3.50. i didn't know it would be over $4. >> reporter: in margate, florida, farrah crow says her grocery bills for family of four seem to grow each passing week. >> a horrible time with school shopping that we need to do and, you know, i'm hoping that most of his things still fit him from last year. >> reporter: it is no illusion prices have jumped over the past year, in some cases, dramatically. as of the end of june, government data showed a dozen grade a eggs costs 19 cents morse than a year earlier, $1.68 a carton.
chicken costs 7 cents more, 1.30 a pound. ground beef was up 33 cents to 3.62 a pound. a gallon of milk, up 33 cents in a year to 3.62 a gallon. coffee up 1.54 to 5.24 a pound. and prices are expected to keep climbing, perhaps 3 to 4% this year alone. the weather gets much of the blame. heat, drought and flooding have sent wheat prices soaring and corn prices hit record highs in june. what you may not know is that food prices are tied very closely to fuel prices, and not just because of the cost of shipping, but because corn and soybeans are used in ethenol. the good news is right now, fuel prices are going down. >> that means that basic food ingredient prices are going to fall and you're going to see that in your grocery store, you know, three to six months down the road. >> reporter: but dorothy parks says prices only seem to go in one direction. >> once they go up, they usually stay up, no matter what happens. and it's very hard, hard for me with what i'm getting.
i get social -- my husband's social security. >> reporter: her strategy, lots of coupons, fewer dinners out and a hope for better harvests ahead. tom costello, nbc news, washington. now to the news from overseas, escalating tension tonight in libya. once again, there are reports that moammar gadhafi fired a scud missile at rebel forces for the first time in this ongoing civil war. we haven't heard that hardware mentioned since the start of the iraq war. it missed the target, landing in the desert instead. tonight, the rebels claim to be preparing an assault on the capital city, tripoli. now to the crisis in africa, where millions of fighting for their lives in the face of famine, violence and drought. ann curry has an extraordinary look tonight at the capital of somalia tonight, mogadishu, the danger, the high stakes and how it got this way. >> reporter: mogadishu, somalia, is the capital of chaos, torn to ruins by decades of war and anarchy. it is filled with weapons and suffocated by fear.
this is where "black hawk down" happened, where somali pirates operate. it's considered by many the most dangerous place in the world, even by the battle-hardened. >> i think no one nation anywhere, no one place in the world anywhere, like somalia. >> reporter: lieutenant colonel paddy unkunda takes us through the front line of just the latest fighting. our armored personnel carrier at the ready for any sign of attack. we keep moving. ieds and suicide bombs an ever-present threat. at one stop, seconds after an ak-47 sounds off, we move quickly out of the area. peacekeepers at the moment are winning the battle for territory against al qaeda-supported islamists called al shaba. you are saying this is the training ground for al qaeda? the spread of islamic terrorism has turned a drought into a famine that didn't have to happen. the violence making it hard for
international aid agencies to reach people in need. all these children are hungry. they have their hands out, they are shaking my hand, and yet, they are still smiling. and with the need so great, especially with the lives of millions of children in the balance, one frustrated aid worker asked me, where is the humanity? ann curry, nbc news, mogadishu. up next here tonight as our broadcast continues on a tuesday evening, remembered tonight as a hero, why one man's final act of kindness may never be forgotten. also ahead tonight, faking it on a cell phone. if you've done it, you are not alone, it turns out. and the devil wears prada, but does she take home a bigger paycheck than most workers? tonight, why being nice at work doesn't always pay. tonight, why being nice at work doesn't always pay. -dad, why are you getting that? -that's my cereal.
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we are back with a story about a simple act of kindness, one that might have gone unnoticed had it not been for what happened immediately afterwards. it involves a san diego police officer, a marine combat veteran who had done several tours of duty overseas. as it turned out, it was far more dangerous to be back at home. but nobody knew that when the officer met a young man at local
mcdonald's. that's where our own lee cowan picks up this story. >> reporter: rarely do surveillance cameras capture the good in people. but on this day, at this san diego mcdonald's, for that police officer, they caught a life's final decent act. >> there is an officer shot. there's an officer shot. >> reporter: just after leaving that mcdonald's, officer jeremy henwood was gunned down just sitting in his patrol car, a crime made even more incomprehensible by the fact he just returned from afghanistan and served two tours in iraq as a u.s. marine. >> i think it goes without saying that jeremy was a great man and a hero to our country. >> reporter: thousands turned out for his memorial service, where there were tales of his bravery and chivalry, but it was the last thing he ever did that summed up the way he lived. >> three minutes before he was killed, he was buying lunch for some little kid he didn't even know. >> reporter: that little kid was
13-year-old damian tinsley, standing behind officer henwood in line at that mcdonald's. short by comparison, and also a little short on change. >> i asked him for ten cents, and he said what is the ten cents for? and he said three cookies. and he said, well, i can buy the three cookies for you. >> reporter: he opened his wallet and his heart to a kid he'd never met. >> he said, what do you want to be when you grow up? i said an nba star. he said, well, you got to work hard for that and i said thank you. er had.e last conversation he r that brief encounter has changed the way damian now looks at life. >> somebody that i met was alive and two seconds later, he dies. it's just crazy. >> reporter: without knowing it, officer henwood had taught a sobering lesson to a boy and the rest of us. kindness can go a long way, but life isn't always fair. lee cowan, nbc news, los angeles.
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i can't imagine who would do this, but it turns out a number of you are fakers. our friends at pew research have found 13% of cell phone owners pretend to use their phone to avoid interacting with people. when you see them, they may be talking, but there's nobody there. while we want to assure you right now you're in no danger, in fact, you're doing a good thing right now and will be richer for the experience, watching a lot of television shortens your lifespan, at least that's the conclusion of a big new study out of australia that says for each hour of tv you watch over the age of 25, it takes 22 minutes off your life at the end of life. put another way, one researcher
said this puts tv in the same category as smoking and obesity. it can speed up a premature death by five years if you're a dedicated tv viewer, which must be why i never make plans for the weekend. big jim thome hit number 600 last night. he joins the club now of a-rod, bonds, mays, griffey, sosa, ruth and aaron. he is just the eighth man in history to hit 600 home runs. his family was there with him for the big moment. here's the best part, jim thome's 40 years old. george duval has died. an invention he came up with years ago changed the world forever. he invented the first robot arm in 1954. and years later, it revolutionized factories and automobile assembly lines. his prototype is in the smithsonian. it's considered one of the great inventions of all time. george duval was 99 years old. this seems like the space equivalent of jay-z and kanye.
a nasa camera on board the hubble space telescope has actually recorded two galaxies colliding. that's vv 340 north on top and that would be vv 340 south on the bottom of your screen. we've really caught them, it turns out, at a good time. they will eventually merge into a milky wayesque mess, but don't wait up for it. it will take millions of years to come together. up next here tonight, if you're one of those people who gets along with everybody at work, it may be costing you at work. g you at work. [ male announcer ] do you have questions about medicare? with over 30 years of medicare experience, unitedhealthcare medicare solutions can help. just give us a call. the annual enrollment period to switch your medicare coverage is earlier this year, from october 15th to december 7th, so now is a great time to review your situation. call now or visit us online to get this free answer guide from unitedhealthcare medicare solutions. call right now.
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finally tonight, you y finally tonight, you've heard that expression, nice guys finish last. leo derocher always got the credit for that one. well, it turns out there is a new study from the university of notre dame that seems to back that up, where both men and women are concerned. it seems that being one of those people who gets along with your co-workers gets you a smaller paycheck in the end than the other people who are not as agreeable. our report tonight from nbc's chris jansing. >> there you are, emily. how many times do i have to
scream your name? >> reporter: they are the movie bosses we love to hate. >> greed, for lack of a better word, is good. >> reporter: now, it turns out in real life, being bad is good, for your bottom line. >> a tendency to be a little bit more harsh, a little bit more arrogant, a little bit less likely to care so much about what other people's feelings are, and that tends to lead to more income for men. >> reporter: researchers found that disagreeable men earn nearly $10,000 a year more than nice guys, and difficult women earned more, too, but only $1,800 more on average. >> there's a jerk factor now? >> reporter: leslie seymour was a self-proclaimed nice girl at "vogue" magazine who had to toughen up before becoming editor-in-chief at "more." >> it took me a couple of years realize, like, wait a minute, all these people who aren't so
nice, they are moving ahead, i'm sitting back here. >> reporter: but why does mean translate to greed? the study suggested something pretty simple that people who became managers were just more willing to step on others as they climbed up the ladder. ound. goes around comes than >> reporter: ah, karma. software ceo lars dellguard admits he's a recovering workplace jerk, so he banned bad behavior for all of his employees. >> we have a policy people have to sign, a contract, an emotional contract, where they reporter: ceo of johnson not publishing, desiree rogers, prefers this interpretation. maybe it's just that in getting things done, people don't always have a great day. reporter: or that nice guys and girls have to finish last. chris jansing, nbc news, new york. that's our broadcast for this tuesday night. thank you for being here with us. i'm brian williams. and as always, we hope to see you right back here tomorrow evening. you right back here tomorrow evening. good night. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com