tv The News With Shepard Smith CNBC November 16, 2021 4:00am-5:00am EST
that's all for this edition of "dateline." i'm craig melvin. thank you for watching. [music playing] see yotomorrow "the news with shepard smith" starts now kyle rittenhous prosecutors call kyle rittenhouse a wannabe soldier. the defense says he was attacked by a mob soon, a jury will decide i'm shepard smith. this is the news on cnbc closing arguments in the trial of kyle rittenhouse. the teen accused of murdering two protestors in kenosha. the defendant's future, now almost in the hands of the jury. a tragic development in the disaster at astroworld a 9-year-old child dies from his injuries, as the search for answers intensifies. finally, getting this done. >> president biden makes it official
signing his trillion-dollar infrastructure bill into law but where is all that cash headed and when will americans start to see results? dr. fauci joins us, live his thoughts on spiking cases, and new covid guidelines for the holidays a government crackdown in cuba steve bannon turns himself in to the fbi. and cryptocurrency on college campusescolleg live from cnbc, the facts, the truth, the news with shepard smith. >> good evening, it's come down to this. did kyle rittenhouse act in self-defense or did he instigate the bloodshed? that decision is now with the jury kyle rittenhouse was 17 last year, when he brought an ar-15 to a riot in kenosha, wisconsin. protests had broken out after police shot a black man named jacob blake. rittenhouse said he was there to
protect the community. that night, he killed two people and maimed one other today, in closing arguments, the defense said kyle rittenhouse had no choice but to shoot, as a mob closed in on him and attacked >> kyle rittenhouse is running away from anthony huber. every person who was shot was attacking kyle one, with a skateboard one, with his hands. one, with his feet one with a gun. >> but the prosecution argued kyle rittenhouse created the crime scene, which takes away his ability to claim self-defense. >> when you consider what's reasonable in this case, consider whether or not it's reasonable for a criminal to be able to shoot himself out of a crime scene. when a bank robber robs a bank and runs away, and the crowd comes after him, can he just shoot anybody and claim self-defense if someone comes up to that
person, and tries to stop them, tries to disarm them, like anthony huber did, do they forfeit their life >> let's get right to nbc's jay gray, who is live outside the courthouse in kenosha. jay, i understand the lawyers just finished? >> reporter: yes, they have completed the rebuttal here by the prosecution. and now, this will go to the jury in the morning. they will come back and get to the deliberations here look during the closes today, shep, prosecutors called kyle rittenhouse a wannabe soldier who showed no remorse when he shot those three men while, the defense team painted him as a teenager, chased down, cornered, and attacked fighting for his life that night. >> i think it's no surprise. >> reporter: referring to the shootings as murder, reviewing testimony and replaying videos from that night, prosecutors take their last turn with the jury >> there is no valid self-defense claim >> reporter: they say kyle rittenhouse provoked the violence by raising his weapon and pointing it at protestors at
the night he shot and killed two men and wounded a third. >> when the defendant provokes the incident, he loses the right to self-defense. >> reporter: the defense relying heavily on video, as well, says that rittenhouse was chased down, ambushed, and had no choice but to use his weapon. >> he was there. he was causing trouble he was a rioter. and my client had to deal with him that night, alone. >> reporter: so, after two weeks that included -- rittenhouse apparently breaking down on the witness stand. >> that is absolutely untrue no, no, no >> reporter: verbal sparring between the judge and prosecutors, and dozens of hours of testimony it's now the jury's turn to talk with the small town and the nation anxiously waiting to hear what they have to say. and you can see, live, now a handful of protestors that have gathered outside of the courthouse here. we have seen the crowd grow throughout the evening and, shep, it's likely to continue to
grow as we get closer to a verdict here and it could, ultimately, include about 500 national guard troops that are on standby just outside the city right now. >> jay gray, live, at the courthouse thank you. let's get legal analysis now from david henderson, civil rights attorney, cnbc contributor. david, closing arguments today man, it was unconventional what stood out for you >> shep, that is an understatement what stood out to me, at first, was i found myself thinking these prosecutors that are arguing this case -- where have they been throughout this entire trial? if they had argued this case -- the jury -- not argued but presented the evidence to the jury, the same way they officially argued it, i woul feel much better about the jury's deliberations right now but the longer they talk, the less i felt that way it became kind of a jumbled mess towards the end. >> on both sides >> i would say, on both sides. except, that i think the prosecution started off well, shep and then, they lost some momentum i thought the defense was lost, from the beginning they really didn't make any good
arguments today, aside from dog whistling to potential jurors who just don't like black lives matter protests. and are inclined to see everybody who was out there as a rioter or a looter. >> the judge, today, admitted that the charges are confusion -- are confusing he said that, while they are correct in what they say, they are not clear. that's a quote i -- i -- it was -- it was part -- it was, at times, as one who's covered trials for a better part of 30 years, it was confusing. >> i think that's an understatement, shep i have seen hundreds of these charges. if this is not the most confusing one i've ever seen, it's up there. and initially, the judge seemed like he was saying the law was confusing. but then, i listened to him and i thought to what he was saying and i think he was legitimately confused about the difference between first-degree intentional homicide and second-degree intentional homicide in terms of what the jury has to decide. but you hit the nail on the head
with what the big takeaway is, if the judge is confused, what does that say about the jurors who have to deliberate over this casegive us some sense of what they are trying to clarify as >> well, they begin that in th morning, what will you be watching for >> you know, shep, what i am going to be watching for more than anything else are questions the jury sends back into the courtroom that will give us some sense of what it is they are trying to clarify as they begin those deliberations. and also, there is just no way of determining how long this one's going to take. normally, if you get a lightning-fast reaction from the jury, that's in favor of the prosecution. but based on the way this charge was drafted, i expect these deliberations to last for a while. >> david henderson, watching it all for us thank you, david, as always. race at the forefront of the trial of three white men charged with killing ahmaud arbery and today the defense attorney doubled down on his objection to black pastors in the courtroom father and son greg and travis mcmichael and their neighbor william bryan were charged with killing that man, ahmaud arbery, in february of last year he had been out jogging near brunswick, georgia
they say they thought arbery had stolen something from a nearby construction site. the defense lawyer, today, claimed just as he did last week that the presence of pastors, including the reverend jesse jackson, would influence the jury. >> we are concerned abou whether it's conscious or unconscious, the impact of their presence with respect to the jury and with respect to the proceedings in this case and i guess, the next question is which pastor is next? is rafael warnock going to make -- be the next person appearing this afternoon we don't know. >> well, the judge dismissed the motion and called the lawyer's comments reprehensible >> what we have now, with individual members or individuals coming into the courtroom, i will say, that is directly in response, mr. goffe, to statements you made which i find reprehensible. >> reverend jackson also criticized the makeup of the jury, which includes 11 white people and one black man
he called arbery the emmett till of our daye emit still of referencing the 14-year-old boy who was lynched in mississippi in 1955. 9-year-old boy has died now of injuries he sustained at the astroworld music festival in houston ten days ago lawyers from young ezra blunt's family released a statement last night announcing he was the tenth and youngest person to die in the tragedy police say hundreds of others were hurt. ezra went to that astroworld festival with his father, according to a gofundme page for the family ezra's dad says he was carrying him on his shoulders during travis scott's performance, and then he says when that crowd surge began, he just passed out. unable to breathe. and ezra fell from his shoulders. when he woke up, he says his son was in a hospital. the family filed a lawsuit against travis scott and the event organizer before young ezra died. in the lawsuit, they say concertgoers kicked, trampled, and stepped on ezra during the surge.
they say he suffered severe brain, kidney, and liver damage. police in houston, the city's fire department, and the fbi, all investigating how that concert turned deadly. boosters for everybody guidelines in the covid lane, come holidays. all coming, as states report a rise in covid cases in america so, are indoor gatherings a good idea for turkey day? is there a magic number that means no more masks? we will hear from dr. fauci when he joins us, live, next. ghislaine maxwell. she is accused of grooming underaged girls to have sex with jeffrey epstein. now, her own trial is set to begin. but legal experts say the first step will not be an easy one. and airlines staffing up for holiday travel the incentives being offered and why one pilot's union is saying no thank you
one... two... whatcha got for me, whatcha got? watch those eyes... healthier is doing what you have to do while doing what you want to do. you're going to do just fine, you will. ♪ this is what healthier looks like. ♪ at vanguard, you're more than just an investor, you're an owner with access to financial advice, tools and a personalized plan that helps you build a future for those you love. vanguard. become an owner.
covid watch. health experts have warned for months now about the possibility of a winter-covid spike. now, new data shows it may already be upon us all 30 states you see here in red are reporting increases in average-daily cases. that's according to johns hopkins. nationwide, new infections are climbing, once again they have increased by nearly 12% over the past week, alone. and it's straining hospitals in some states, including maine and minnesota. the highly-infectious delta variant is still spreading through some communities, even as more kids get vaccinated and more vulnerable americans get booster shots. some states are going further than federal guidelines in an effort to get more adult boosters today, health officials in new york gave all adults the green light to get an extra dose california, colorado, and new mexico have, also, expanded eligibility.
as covid cases rise, just ahead of thanksgiving holidays and beyond, dr. anthony fauci says families should still feel comfortable getting together, as long as they're vaccinated >> if you get vaccinated and your family's vaccinated, you can feel good about enjoying a typical thanksgiving/christmas with your family and close friends. when you are with your family at home, goodness, enjoy it with your parents, your children, your grandparents. there's no reason not to do that. >> looking forward to all of that dr. fauci, it's good to have you. thank you. he is the director of the national institute of allergy and infectious diseases and the chief medical adviser to the president. doctor, again, thanksgiving week you -- you said today, if everybody's vaccinated, celebrating together is all good of course, it's not that cut and dry. you know, many kids 5 to 11 just getting their first doses, and then the little ones with nothing. what's your advice to families with kids in those positions >> well, the best way you can protect children who have not,
yet, gotten vaccinated, who are still too young even below the five-year cutoff we now have authorization and recommendation to vaccinate children 5 to 11 with the pfizer vaccine. the best way to protect children is to surround them with adults who are vaccinated, so that you can feel comfortable and safe in the home with your children and with the rest of your family and that's, again, another reason why it's so important to get vaccinated not only to protect yourself but to protect your family. and importantly, which we sometimes forget, is your societal responsibility to keep the level of infection in the community down so that you, yourself, are not just in a vacuum but you're part of the community effort to not let that surge, which you showed on that chart, shepard, a moment ago. you know, it's plateaued at
around 70 to 75,000 and now it's creeping up into the 80,000 per day. that's something that's entirely predictable when you have these many people -- about 60 million people -- who are eligible to be vaccinated who have not gotten vaccinated and in addition, as important, in some respects, i mean, it's still always the primary thing is to get the unvaccinated, vaccinated but for those who are eligible to be boosted, by all means, go and get boosted because we know from the israeli data, that dramatically diminishes the likelihood not only of infection but also of getting a severe outcome in people who are fully vaccinated. >> you know, dr. fauci, yesterday, the former-fda commissioner, dr. scott gottlieb, criticized messaging around the boosters as confusing. listen. >> i think the confusing message around the boosters may end up being one of the biggest missed opportunities in this pandemic we have now seen very clear evidence of declining vaccine effectiveness over time. there is different reasons why that may be the case
but the trend is unmistakable and this has been apparent since the end of the summer. now, it's very clear. >> do you concur do you see a level of confusion that shouldn't exist two years into the pandemic? >> right well, in -- in some respects and in many respects, i agree with some of the things that dr. gottlieb says. let me explain right now, you have the recommendation and the authorization to give boosts, namely the third shot to people who have an mrna vaccine and the second shot for those with j&j but as for people 65 years of age or older, those with underlying conditions, and those who work in or live in an area with a high risk what dr. gottlieb is saying is that people, when they see that, they get confused as do i or do i not fall into that group for the elderly, it's easy you know you fall into that group. and those are the ones we clearly want to get -- get the booster right away but what he is referring to -- and i quite agree with him --
that as long as you get a safety signal that you don't have any red flags of safety, i have always been, right from the beginning, always yielding to safety to make sure. been one who feels that you should get no ambiguity, get the confusion out of the way anybody 18 or older should get the booster shot now, to their credit, the fda is looking at that even as you and i are speaking, shepard, to see if we can get that data together to be able to say, now, everybody get vaccinated so there's no confusion. if someone says should i get a booster? it isn't, do i fall into this category or that category? it's, as long as i was vaccinated in the first place, i should go get a booster. that's the clarity that we need. >> doctor, we've been watching europe throughout the pandemic, and it seems like as europe goes, we kind of go next and now, i am looking at certain spots around the country that our data team has identified as having real surges, even with
problems in hospitals again. are we -- are we at the beginning of a wave? >> you know, we could be, shepard, and that's the point that is so frustrating we need to take all of this ideological, political nonsense out of the picture and realizing that the writing is on the wall. take a look at what's going on in europe. they have pushback they get away from the mitigation pulling back on masking. having people go into places that are congregate settings, indoor this is what you -- happen when you get to a winter season when the weather gets cold and the people go indoor it's not rocket science. it's highly predictable and that's the reason why we got to get people vaccinated who are not vaccinated boost the people who are already vaccinated and when you're in indoor-congregate setting, as much as nobody likes to wear a mask, including me, when you are in an indoor-congregate setting, and you don't know what the
status of the vaccination of people are, wear a mask. that's not encroaching on anybody's individuality. that's just being safe and protecting yourself and your community. >> i just wonder if, in these areas where vaccination levels are low and the delta variant spread has not yet occurred, if hospitals there aren't about to be in trouble and if we, as a nation, are prepared to help them out and -- and bail them out if necessary >> well, the easiest way to help them out is to continue to suppress the level of infection in the community obviously, you are going to need the mechanical issues -- the beds, the personnel, the dedicated physicians, nurses, and healthcare providers we want to make sure they don't get overwhelmed because they've been through -- they're really heroes and heroines. they have been through a very harrowing year and a half, 20 months or so we don't want to see that happen, again. >> you have said it. before we go, you have said masks aren't forever but now is not the time
can you look ahead and say, well, maybe it's then? like, maybe it's spring? maybe, it's summer or is there no way to know >> shepard, you have to be honest there's no way to know that. it's up to us. if we want to make it sooner, rather than later, then let's get vaccinated let's get boosted. let's wear masks, now. they won't be forever. the sooner we get the level way down, then we can look at masks in the rear-view mirror, and not think we are going to have to wear them all the time. >> dr. fauci, thank you so much. it's nice to see you, again. the cuban government crushing planned protests surrounding the homes of activists, sending police out into the streets we are live, tonight, in havana where a newly-opened border could further complicate things. the chip shortage claims another victim what popular features gm now says you will not be able to get in some of next year's models. do you have a life insurance
policy you no longer need? now you can sell your policy - even a term policy - for an immediate cash payment. call coventry direct to learn more. we thought we had planned carefully for our retirement. but we quickly realized we needed a way to supplement our income. our friend sold their policy to help pay their medical bills, and that got me thinking. maybe selling our policy could help with our retirement. i'm skeptical, so i did some research and called coventry direct. they explained life insurance is a valuable asset that can be sold. we learned we could sell all of our policy, or keep part of it with no future payments. who knew? we sold our policy. now we can relax and enjoy our retirement as we had planned. if you have $100,000 or more of life insurance, you may qualify to sell your policy. don't cancel or let your policy lapse without finding out what it's worth. visit coventrydirect.com to find out if your policy qualifies. or call the number on your screen. coventry direct, redefining insurance.
the streets of havana largely quiet tonight after the cuban government cracked down on planned protests over the weekend, state security and government supporters surrounded the home of junior garcia he is an artist who's emerged as one of the country's leading activists. this video shows him hanging a sign that reads, in spanish, my home is blocked. human rights groups report police have blocked off the homes of other activists cuban officials are trying to avoid a repeat of scenes like these. this is from last summer thousands of demonstrators flooded the streets of the island they are demanding an end to decades-long dictatorship and protesting the lack of food and covid vaccines nbc's ed augustin is live in havana for us tonight. ed, government crackdown on dissent. what are demonstrators telling you? >> reporter: well, we haven't seen in cuba today
demonstrations anywhere near the scale of the amazing scenes, frankly, that we saw four months ago on the 11th of july. we have seen smatterings of protest, a few people coming out, dressed in white, the color of this pro-democracy movement, who have been arrested by state security people and police just to give you an idea of the scale, i spoke to a 22-year-old law student earlier today who wanted to -- who didn't want t reveal her name through -- because of threat of retaliation. um, and she said she spent over an hour walking through downtown havana trying to find a protest to latch on and failed it didn't materialize on the scale that the protestors had hoped for. it, rather, fizzled out. archipelago, the group that organized and called for the protest said that at least three of the protest organizers are in prison and have been arrested today. many more have been under house arrest through the day, and that's really a main mechanism that the cuban state has been using to smother the protests.
>> cuba opened its borders today to foreign tourists, post-covid. or i guess, in covid break how will that impact things? >> reporter: it strengthens the hand of the government so, the trump administration ran a policy of regime change. trying to dislodge, overthrow the cuban government and the center of that policy was sanctions. they slapped over 200 sanctions on the island. each one of those, aiming to cut foreign -- foreign currency influence. now, that, coupled with covid, created the amazing situation. where over the last two years, cuban's foreign reserves -- sorry, cuba's foreign currency inflow has been cut in half and that's devastated the cuban economy and it's devastated cuban society. just yesterday, we were out before dawn at 5:00 in the morning. hundreds of people queueing up for chicken and of course that creates a powder keg huge amounts of discontent
so the cuban government is going to be hoping not only have they won the battle as they see it today. but they are going to be hoping these tourists coming in with dollars, euros, and yen, are going to be shoring up here, and it's going to be softening the situation here >> ed augustin, live in havana tonight, thank you. digital currency, block chains, and the future of financial services not a segment of tech check but a course at nyu. why colleges, really, across the country are scrambling to add crypto classes president biden signs one of his biggest victories into law a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill where is that money going, exactly? plus, the highly-anticipated meeting scheduled to begin in 15 minutes as we approach the bottom of the hour and the top of the news on cnbc. this is called momentum. and there's no off-season. just work that builds on itself over and over
and over again... becuase the only way is through. staying up half the night searching for savings on your prescriptions? just ask your cvs pharmacist. we search for savings for you, from coupons to lower-cost options. plus, earn up to 50 dollars extrabucks rewards each year just for filling. at cvs pharmacy.
labor unions sue over vaccine mandates and that's what's topping cnbc "on the money. some of the nation's largest labor unions, including the afl-cio taking on the biden administration they are suing to expand president biden's vaccine and testing requirements they want a wider swath of businesses included under the rules, not only those with 100 or more employees. they also want to make sure employee -- employees don't have to cover their own costs of testing and masks. general motors removing heated seat and steering-wheel
options in some of its 2022 vehicles the reason semiconductor chip shortages a gm spokesman says the measure is temporary until the chip supplies improve heated seats are the most-wanted feature among car buyers with 60% saying they are must-have. that's according to a recent survey by auto pacific. and reese's changing the thanksgiving pie game for a few. the company releasing a limited number of massive peanut buttercups they are 9 inches in diameter, and weigh almost 3.5 pounds. reese's thanksgiving pie, they call it. price, about 45 bucks. but you can't have one the big reese's sold out in just a few hours. so, they are selling a one-pound bag of peanut buttercups, which is, obviously, not at all a good substitute on wall street, the dow down 13 the s&p, flat. the nasdaq, down 7
i'm shepard smith on cnbc. it's the bottom of the hour. time for the top of the news more than two years since jeffrey epstein's death, his former girlfriend prepares to stand trial. and tomorrow, a federal judge begins to build a jury steve bannon turns himself in the january-6th committee considers possible contempt charges for another ally of the former president but first, the infrastructure bill is signed into law it happened after months of negotiations that fractured, both, a bipartisan agreement and democratic infighting. now, president biden today signed the law -- the $1.2 trillion package. >> today, we're finally getting this done. so, my message to the american people is this america's moving again and your life is going to change for the better.
>> the bipartisan law includes money for roads, bridges, the power grid, broadband, safe water, cybersecurity, rail transit, and much more but it's a smaller package than president biden, originally, pushed for in his american jobs plan the money comes at a time when experts say the nation's infrastructure is crumbling. the american society of civil engineers releases a report on our nation every-four years. 2021 happens to be one of those years. and the grade? a c minus. the group found 43% of america's public roadways are in poor or mediocre condition it's a number, they say, has been stagnant over the past several years. cnbc senior white house correspondent, kayla tausche now with more on what's in this bill hi, kayla. >> reporter: hi, shep, good evening. about half of the $1.2 trillion package is new federal spending beyond what's authorized each year to pay for normal maintenance of highways and waterways. that includes $284 billion for
roads, bridges, freight, and passenger rail, and public transit. and 266 billion for what's called core infrastructure that's power, water, and new broadband across the country leftover covid-relief money and tax enforcement on crypto gains are offsetting the cost but the nonpartisan congressional budget office says it will add $256 billion to the federal deficit over ten years to get the money to the right levels, the white house appointed former-new orleans mayor, mitch landrieu, as senior adviser and infrastructure coordinator. he shepherded and fast-tracked projects during the city's rebuilding after hurricane katrina. celebrating on the south lawn today, more than 800 attendees the president and his cabinet flanked by lawmakers, labor unions, businesses, donors, checking off part one of mr. biden's economic agenda and hoping it provides momentum on a second 1.7$5 trillion social and climate package.
the law is a critical win for president biden, who campaigned on his ability to build consensus and broker deals across the aisle but it also underscores the biden foreign policy doctrine competing from a position of strength at home here is press secretary jen psaki. >> this infrastructure bill is -- is essential and important for many reasons but one of which, is for the first time in 20 years, we will be investing more in infrastructure than china. and that is going to strengthen our competition at home, in addition to putting millions of people to work >> reporter: the timing of the bill signing, followed by tonight's bilateral summit with china's president xi, no coincidence, shep. >> yeah, i'm sure. and, kayla, what are the takeaways we're expecting from this upcoming meeting? >> well, shep, the white house says don't expect much there are no, quote/unquote, deliverables that are expected from this meeting. but a senior-administration official said that president biden initiated this conversation, this dialogue with china as a way to avoid
confrontation as the u.s. tries to seek cooperation on issues, like trade and climate but also, calls out china on the world stage for some of its behavior and actions related to taiwan, technology, and human rights as for what beijing plans to raise, today the white house said wait and see. shep >> kayla tausche, thank you. steve bannon surrendered today. the longtime ally of former-president trump appeared in court on criminal-contempt charges. last month, bannon defied a subpoena from lawmakers on the committee investigating the january-6th insurrection on the capitol. that committee demanded bannon face a deposition and give up documents in connection with the insurrection lawmakers point to comments that he made on his podcast the day before the rioting warning that there would be a revolution like nobody expected. now, he's facing two charges of contempt of congress the judge released bannon without bail today he did force him to give up his passport and agree to weekly
check-ins with the court bannon defiant outside the court, saying he is going on offense. he is set to appear in court again on thursday. jury selection begins tomorrow in the trial of ghislaine maxwell. and by proxy, jeffrey epstein. epstein was maxwell's former boyfriend and longtime associate. he allegedly killed himself in august of 2019 in his manhattan jail cell. the money manager was awaiting trial, accused of sexually abusing dozens of underaged girls, some as young as 14 he was indicted in 2007, but just -- got just 13 months in a county jail. then, in july of 2018, he was arrested, again, but his accusers say his alleged suicide robbed them of a chance at justice. prosecutors say maxwell was the one recruiting those underaged girls. they say she enticed them, groomed them, and ultimately sexually abused them, herself.
maxwell faces six felonies tied to sex trafficking, conspiracy, enticing minors, as well as two felony perjury charges that will be tried separately. she's denied all of them nbc news legal analyst, danny cevallos is with us. what are you watching for during jury selection, danny? >> reporter: we are in federal court for ghislaine maxwell's jury selection and in federal courts, it's the court -- the judge who normally handles most of the jury selection. it's not like new york state where the attorneys are heavily involved we will see the -- the court looking for people, not necessarily who have just heard about jeffrey epstein or ghislaine maxwell's charges. but they'll also be looking for people, specifically who have heard about it but can still render a fair and just verdict that's really the standard because it's impossible to find someone who hasn't heard about jeffrey epstein or ghislaine maxwell for that reason. >> yeah. with jeffrey epstein, though, certainly, a much bigger name. is that going to make seating a jury something that's going to be long and arduous process and fraught with peril
>> yes look for the court to go through about 50 jurors, a day and you are going to see a lot of people that are going to be dismissed for cause, for example, they simply cannot hear this case because they've already formed opinion about jeffrey epstein and what he did. and if this is a trial by proxy, that opinion about jeffrey epstein will probably spill over into ghislaine maxwell, which is why her attorneys will be making a lot of requests to dismiss jurors for cause. >> danny cevallos, thank you the journalist danny fenster detained in myanmar for the past six months, facing years more after a trial. but today, suddenly, freedom what he told reporters on his long-awaited trip home and beef maybe, it's not what's for dinner prices are soaring at a rate we haven't seen in decades. why cattle ranchers say they're not seeing a penny of that windfall
small businesses like yours make gift-giving possible. now, comcast business has an exclusive gift for you. introducing the gift of savings sale. for a limited time, ask how to get a great deal for your business. and get up to a $500 prepaid card with select bundles when you switch to the network that can deliver gig speeds to the most businesses. or get started with internet and voice for $64.99 per month with a 2-year price guarantee. give your business the gift of savings today. comcast business. powering possibilities.
major crypto news tonight. the price of anchor jumped nearly 20% today after the distributed network's polka dot para chain integration and binance listing. i can't speak that because i have no idea what any of it means, but a new crop of professors certainly does. colleges across the country are now teaching blockchain. some students see the course as a prerequisite for high-paying jobs in silicone valley. here's cnbc's kate rooney. >> i think as long as we put it together -- >> reporter: learning about blockchain is about a lot more that finding the next big cryptocurrency, at least for some students. >> when you get into crypto more, you kind of realize that a lot of what you learn in school is kind of useless >> reporter: he says it's the key to unlocking his dream job in tech. the college junior co-runs the blockchain club at cal berkeley. he and some of his classmates describe it as the next wave of the internet, which some talk about as web 3.0, especially as facebook changes its name to
meta and hypes up blockchain as part of that future. >> a lot of new companies like facebook just used meta so if the biggest companies in the world are transitioning over to blockchain, it kind of feels you are being left behind unless you move with that >> reporter: berkeley is one of a handful of top universities now offering courses on blockchain competing with harvard, stanford, m.i.t., cornell, university of pennsylvania will even let you pay tuition in bitcoin. the head of innovation at berkeley says not having a blockchain curriculum is no longer an option >> the students are demanding courses and curriculum to teach them about blockchain and cryptocurrencies there's no question about it and i -- i think you'd be -- i can't imagine any university worth its salt in the u.s. or elsewhere is not already teaching a course or two >> reporter: skeptics say you don't need to fork over $200,000 in tuition to learn about blockchain most of what you need is there, for free, online but for the universities that do
offer it, blockchain is becoming a powerful recruiting tool. >> we have literally seen students within their application to blockchain to berkeley say they chose this school specifically because they saw what blockchain was doing in the industry >> reporter: the berkeley students say interest and head count in the block chain club ebbs and flows with bitcoin prices this semester's course happens to be in the middle of a bitcoin bull market but for cryptocurrencies, not always boom times the asset class is known for intense downturns in what are known as crypto winters. berkeley's students say they are okay with another crypto winter. it'll separate those who were only in it for the financial gains from those who truly believe in the technology. shep. >> kate, thanks. roughly 32,000 workers at kaiser permanente called off a strike today their unions reached a tentative deal with the healthcare giant over the weekend the strike would have affected hundreds of medical centers across california, oregon, washington state, and hawaii
the executive director of the union group says the new contract protects patients, provides better staffing, and guarantees fair wages and benefits in a statement, a top-kaiser permanente official wrote, these were challenging negotiations, but this tentative agreement demonstrates the strength of our labor management partnership, and the unique success it can achieve when we work together. kaiser, also, avoided a separate strike by about 1,200 pharmacists in northern california kaiser and the pharmacist's union reached a deal early-this morning. higher prices. they're almost everywhere you look, right? especially, if you are in the supermarket meat aisle according to recent data from the bureau of labor statistics, the price of pork is up more than 14% over the past year. both, poultry and fish, also, jumped more than 7%. it's the same story with beef. but as prices rise, some ranchers and restaurant owners say we're not making any more. from la grange, california, here's nbc's jo ling kent.
>> reporter: the beef that lands on your table often begins its journey in places like mariposa county, california where ranchers and cattle are riding out a two-year drought. tony toso has been farming cattle here for 30 years. >> these are our gold bricks right here is this is my ft. knox. >> he says he is spending a fortune on hay to keep his cows fed, as the price of beef soared more than 20% in october compare compared to last year, the biggest surge in 31 years. with beef prices going up, do you feel the windfall? do you benefit from that >> i haven't seen it my prices are -- that i have received for calves are -- have been fairly consistent >> reporter: who is collecting the windfall if you're not >> i am going to have to say that that's at the packer level or at the retail level and i'm not there. >> reporter: cows go from the ranch to be sold at auction yards like this one.owner, the owner tells us sale prices
of cattle are lower than they're supposed to be. >> we want to do everything we can to get every dollar we can for them because in many cases, it's their paycheck quite possibly for the year. >> reporter: the biden administration has pointed fingers at meat-packing plants, too. claiming they are taking home record profits at the expense of consumers, farmers, and ranchers it's a market dominated by the big four, tyson, jbs, cargill, and national beef which slaughters 85% of cattle according to the usda. but those same meatpackers have been plagued by pandemic shutdowns and a labor shortage back in july, tyson president testified before the senate judiciary committee. >> multiple unprecedented market shocks led to an unexpected and drastic drop in processors' abilities to operate at capacity this led to an oversupply of live cattle, and an undersupply of beef. all, while demand for beef products is at an all-time high. >> they say, forcing them to raise prices to offset slowed production all of them declined to comment to nbc news. so it's the consumer who often
ends up forking over more for steak like this but a lot of restaurants are also taking a hit. it's a double whammy for an industry that's already in dire straits. >> cut steakhouse owner jerry powell says despite pushing his prices up, he makes no money on his steaks. >> how much have you had to raise your steak prices? >> approximately, 15%. on a fillet, $68. >> is going to hurt, right >> oh, yeah, it hurts. it hurts try and make it up with our sides or cocktails that's what gets us over the hump >> reporter: back at the ranch, tony toso is determined to make it through. >> it's all worth it. >> why >> because i love it it's all worth it. >> reporter: of course, the big question on consumers' minds are when prices are going to come down the suppliers and the auction yards that we have talked to are all hoping that these big obstacles -- a drought, a pandemic, a supply-chain crisis -- will soon abate. but no one really has a crystal ball as to when that will happen they are trying to stay positive to get through this.
shep. >> jo, thank you airports across the country are bracing for a busy-holiday travel season. aaa predicts more than 4 million of us americans will fly for thanksgiving that's just shy of the pre-pandemic levels, so how are the major airlines, with all their troubles, preparing? here is nbc's tom costello at reagan national outside d.c. >> reporter: at airports nationwide, last month, chaos as southwest and american airlines cancelled more than 4,000 combined flights citing bad weather and staffing shortages. >> the whole thing is just a big mess it's really, really frustrating. >> reporter: both airlines struggled to handle the unexpected surge in passenger traffic after the vaccine rollout. airlines that lost staff during the pandemic found themselves shorthanded. unable to adjust when complications arose. now, the carriers are aggressively staffing up to avoid a potential nightmare-repeat scenario, as the holidays approach. >> airplanes are going to be full
the demand for the holidays is really robust and strong >> reporter: for its part, southwest airlines is offering its staff frequent-flyer miles worth up to $1,400 and as much as triple pay to entice them to work over the holidays the airline says it is also on track to hire 5,000 additional employees through the winter american airlines says it, too, is moving aggressively hoping to add nearly 3,200 flight attendants by december. offering a minimum of time and a half pay for staff working on peak-travel days and $1,000 bonuses to employees with perfect attendance from november 15th to january 2nd but the american airlines' pilot union has turned down the money. saying the airline has mismanaged its flight operations and extra pay won't fix delays >> the issue is the infrastructure and operations after a weather event. the employees are available. the pilots are available but if we can't get connected to the airplane, the infrastructure is failing.
and you won't get the job done, no matter how much money you pump into it >> reporter: by the way, shep, we are watching very closely tsa staffing levels going into thanksgiving because a week from today, they must be fully vaccinated tsa insists they believe most of their officers will be vaccinated but if they have a shortage, you can imagine how that might impact travel, come thanksgiving shep. >> tom costello, thank you three days ago, an american journalist was sentenced to 11 years behind bars in myanmar today, he's a free man danny fenster says he's healthy and happy to be heading home today. he talked about the challenges he's faced spending the last six months in prison there. >> go a little stir crazy. the longer it drags on, the more worried you are that it's just never going to end so that was -- that was the biggest concern. was staying sane through that. >> danny fenster is returning home with former u.s. ambassador to the u.n., bill richardson richardson says he negotiated with myanmar's commander in
chief, who took over the country in a coup back in february fenster is the managing editor of an online magazine called "frontier myanmar. on friday, a court convicted him of three charges prosecutors said he was still working for a news outlet called myanmar now. leaders banned that outlet after the military takeover. but the documents show fenster hadn't worked there in more than a year danny fenster is the first-foreign journalist to be convicted of a serious crime in myanmar since that coup happened. the supreme court ruled college athletes can now be paid for their likeness and some other things now, the ncaa figuring out how to make it all happen. next, a current-nfl player with some advice to college players on how to navigate their financial futures. a new puppet moving into one of the most popular streets in the world. tonight, the fictional character designed to combat a very real problem.
xfinity mobile benefits. exclusive experiences, like the chance to win tickets to see watch what happens live. andy cohen: hey! it's me! and tasty recipes from bravo's top chef cheftestants that'll have you cooking like a pro. the longer you've been with us... the more rewards you can get. join for free on the xfinity app. our thanks. your rewards.
officials with the ncaa met today as they worked to rewrite the group's constitution one of the main objectives is to iron out exactly how athletes can get paid some are already cashing in on their fame they have been doing so for months through sponsorships and autographs and endorsements and the like but this new policy has many athletes still working on their playbooks for managing their money. here is cnbc's senior finance correspondent, sharon epperson >> i can't believe this is happening. >> i would definitely say it is life changing. >> it's a way for us to just show off our brand and what we're all about. >> reporter: college athletes, like university of south carolina basketball forward aaliyah boston, are now able to profit from their name, image, and likeness
sponsorships or n.i.l. deals are a new way for these students to earn income. >> we put in a lot of work helping the school so i think it's just really great that we can make something off of it now. >> reporter: one of the top women's college basketball players in the country, boston says she started receiving messages this summer from companies asking her to represent their products >> someone actually reached out to me, and asked me about doing a promotion for the new chicken sandwich that came out >> reporter: she hired an agent to negotiate her n.i.l. deals, including one with fast-food chain bojangles. >> made a video, posted it on instagram and my instagram story. >> reporter: several of her teammates have also signed sponsorship says hall of famer, dawn staley. >> we have 16 players. it's probably more than half some of them have some lucrative deals. and some of them have just being an influencers >> reporter: as more deals come into play, nfl linebacker,
brandon copeland, a professor at wharton business school, says it's time for college athletes to create a financial business plan >> i need all those college athletes who are about to make those checks and about to make that money to understand how your money works and put a budget in place so that you don't get caught without the right amount of money to be able to pay that tax bill >> reporter: in negotiating deals, penn state offensive lineman caiden wallace turns to family. >> my parents, especially my dad, been doing a really good job of just helping me manage all the deals i am getting. >> reporter: his sponsors include a car dealer and athletic apparel and his earnings will go to his long-term goals. >> i see myself, you know, in the next few years, starting to invest a lot >> reporter: university of georgia track and field star turned tiktok influencer, matthew bowling, has tens of millions of views on social media. with over a million followers, he grabbed the attention of a major brand -- taco bell. >> cool to see that they are embracing the whole, um, n.i.l landscape for college athletes
and it is just fun to be a part of it and be able to eat some tacos. >> he won't disclose the amount was paid but says his first deal has been a game changer. >> this is the first couple months i have been able to make money in my whole life. >> reporter: bowling says he's working with a financial adviser and his dad to help manage this newfound wealth. >> do you feel like you are already ceo of your business >> i have been really careful about my brand i do feel like the ceo >> reporter: colleges and universities may also have their own rules about student sponsorship deals. some schools and coaches recommend college athletes take money-management courses and some athletic departments have partnered with outside firms to offer financial-education sessions to help students and families create their own financial playbooks. shep. >> now, for the ncaa to get it together sharon, thank you. there is a new resident moving in on "sesame street," and she is making history. meet ji-young, the first asian-american muppet to join the iconic children's show she loves playing guitar,
skateboarding, and cooking korean food. ji-young caught up with our friends at the "today" show this morning to chat about her new home >> you know what's really cool about sesame street is that no matter what you look like or how you play or where you come from, you belong. >> well, the puppets here, kathleen kim voices ji-young she says it is important to her that ji-young embraces her korean-american identity. >> it's not about me and it's not even about ji-young. it's about this message and it's about bringing representation, inclusivity, and teaching tolerance and -- and friendship and -- and understanding. >> and ji-young will perform an original song at a "sesame street" special called see us coming together. it airs thanksgiving day on your local pbs station and will stream on hbo max. 60 seconds left on a race to the finish tomorrow morning, the jury begins deliberations in the trial of kyle rittenhouse. he is charged with shooting three men, killing two of them during racial-justice
demonstrations in last summer in kenosha, wisconsin. >> jury selection begins tomorrow in the trial of ghislaine maxwell. she denies allegations that she recruited and groomed under aged girls to be abused by the d disgraced financier jeffrey epstein. and after months of negotiations, president biden, today, signed the $1.2 trillion infrastructure package into law. he says the bipartisan law will make life better for all americans. and now, you know the news of this monday, november the 15th, 2021 i'm shepard smith. follow us on instagram and twitter @the news on cnbc. and listen to the news podcast on apple, spotify, or your favorite-podcast platform.
it is 5:00 a.m. at cnbc global headquarters and here is your top five at 5:00. biden and xi meet one on one in a virtual summit in the face of rising tensions over trade, covid, taiwan and human rights. crypto is crashing this morning as one ceo says his company is just weeks away from accepting certain coins as payment for services fed watch 2021, may be over as senior administration officials reportedly say, a nomination for the new fed head is imminent.