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tv   All In With Chris Hayes  MSNBC  October 5, 2021 5:00pm-6:00pm PDT

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more? ted, rafael, no one is looking at you for political decency. no one with any sense buys your chitchat about christian family values while you're fleeing to mexico while screaming about people fleeing from mexico. so civilized. which is why tonight you, rafael ted cruz, are the absolute worst. that's tonight's "reid out." "all in" with chris hayes stars now. tonight on "all in" -- >> you ought to think about getting it because if you're my age -- [ boos ]. >> the anti-vaxx crowd roars in south carolina as a destructive deadly disinformation campaign continues. >> we're at each other's throats. these divisive mandates are going to destroy our health care system. then the facebook whistleblower faces congress. >> facebook's products harm children, stoke division and weaken our democracy. plus what we know about why the fbi raided the offices of a
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new york city police union and the home of that union's president. and as the department of justice steps in, how one republican senator is pretending school board harassment and intimidation aren't off the charts. >> does waiting to express one's view at a school board meeting harassment and intimidation? >> the death threat was you're going to get knifed, you [ bleep ]. you're going to get a [ bleep ] dead. >> when "all in" starts right now. good evening from new york. i'm chris hayes. the very loud minority of anti-covid vaccine extremists have been making their presence known across the country. they've been showing up at protests and school board meetings and unfortunately also in hospitals. even the blue states have their own contingents. here in new york city for example there have been these anti-covid vax protests. mostly not that well attended
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but folks are really and truly riled up. in fact, yesterday a group of those anti-vaxxers marched from brooklyn to manhattan, protesting the covid vaccine requirements for school employees. vaccine requirements have been quite effective in getting folks vaccinated we should note. and when they reached union square a few of the marchers just attacked a mobile covid testing site. you can see them here flipping over the tables and chairs. and then the tent. and the crowd boos and chants. now, at one level this is just people acting poorly. i'm not sure how much thought went into these actions. but i've watched this a lot. and when i saw it yesterday it struck me that this moment actually does capture something much, much, much deeper than just the actions of these yahoos. even if you bend over backward, right? to try to concede the most empathetic reasonable version of vaccine skepticism, and there is some, what on earth does that have to do with testing for the virus? right? testing for covid's well
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established. it's safe and effective. it's just a swab in your nose. it's not a shot in your arm. it's not some new thing that someone's making you get. in fact, if you test often enough, you can even keep people relatively safe without the vaccine. that's why the biden administration has given employees a kind of either/or choice. so why knock over the testing display? the answer is the rage you see on display here is omnidirectional. that rage, the emotional core of that has fed this fire from the beginning. it's been directed at all sorts of targets. right now it just happens to be vaccines or the vaccine mandates. but when you're knocking over the covid testing tents what you are saying is stop talking about covid, stop reminding us this thing is real and dangerous and we have to do something about it, don't want to hear it, shut up, shut up, shut up. and that's been the through line for so much of the messaging and disinformation coming particularly from the right wing. remember, this was donald trump's original sin on covid.
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it's going to go away. like that. a miracle. he told people to not worry about it. don't let it dominate your life. and so this, the metaphorical knocking over the covid testing tent, has been the response to every new measure to fight the virus, whatever it is. right? whether it's masking or social distancing or vaccines or shutting down bars and nightclubs. shut up. stop telling us what to do. stop making us deal with the reality of this once in a century pandemic that has now killed more people than all american wars combined other than the civil war. the views of the folks showing up at these protests are not that different from the people in positions of power, the folks feeding them all this who are spewing and spreading the rage in the first place. here's one example. republican senator ron johnson of wisconsin, who's really i've got to say carved out you aniche for himself as the most vaccine-resistant u.s. senator. so congrats on that. senator johnson has been
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thumping on about supposed miracle cures first with the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine. remember that one. he's now become the parasite drug ivermectin guy. again, i'm i'm open to the data and things could change i suppose. but the data we have now shows that neither of those drugs are effective in treating covid. that's just what the data says. but this desire for those to be miracle cues. right? and the experts to be wrong all emanates from this deep emotional well of rage against the experts, against the people trying to tell us what to do. last night in an interview with vaccine public enemy number one tucker carlson senator ron johnson went so far as to spread a lie about the approval status of one of the vaccines. >> these mandates are driven by the bait and switch of the fda that we now have an approved vaccine. we do not have an approved vaccine in america. they did it for the comonati, i guess it's available in europe, but the pfizer vaccine available in the u.s. is not fda approved. it's got emergency use
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authorization. >> absolutely not true. like you're probably watching that at home thinking no, i don't think that's true. i'm pretty sure i heard about the actual authorization. 100% wrong. the pfizer vaccine received full fda approval back in august of this year. it was a big deal. it was on the front page of newspapers. they covered it all over the news. right? it's approved for individuals 16 years of age and over. it is now being marketed under the name comernadi, which is not the name i would have chosen but that's not my job to choose those names. so i honestly -- i don't know for sure if ron johnson is just like confused and addled and can't quite get there with the new name of the drug or he's just lying. but tucker carlson, who works in news, doesn't seem to cake one way or the other. do not underestimate how many lies are being pumped into people watching these shows. media matters ran the numbers.
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he they showed a new study we published tonight this that shows fox news pushed a claim undermining vaccines during 99% of the days in the past six months. 99% of the days in the past six months. so this is what it looks like when someone like another senator, republican senator lindsey graham of south carolina, who to his credit is vaccinated, has publicly supported vaccines, tries to gently suggest that people think about getting the shot. >> if you haven't had the vaccine, you ought to think about getting it because if you're my age -- >> no! >> i didn't say get it. you ought to think about it. well, 92% of the people in hospitals in south carolina are unvaccinated. >> not true. >> not true. no. they said to senator graham as he just quoted statistics about hospitalizations in his own state. where do you think they got the idea it's a lie, right? that the vast majority of people in the hospital are unvaccinated
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and the hospitals are strained. well, came straight from the source. >> of course we now know that when they say the hospitals are being overwhelmed it's almost always a lie. with the exception of a few big city hospitals in the u.s. our hospital system was stretched for sure but it was never overwhelmed. and with the delta variant any hospitals that were stretched usually found themselves in that situation due to staffing shortages created by the stupid vaccine mandates. >> that's not true. i mean, i guess if you interpret like what the difference between stretched and overwhelmed is you could bend over backwards to try to make sense of it. but that's from exactly a week ago. of course what makes all this so deeply cynical, aggressively cynical, is that while rupert murdoch's fox news is the source of so much of this, they have been running one of the most destructive disinformation campaigns i've ever seen, rupert murdoch himself was among the first in line to get a vaccine back in the uk back in december
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of last year, strongly encouraged people around the world to get it. not only that, fox news also has a vaccine mandate stronger than the one proposed by president joe biden. they're requiring any unvaccinated employees to be tested every day. and of course while many of their on-air hosts were rambling against covid restrictions they were broadcasting their shows from the safety of their own homes. in fact, here's an amazing look behind the curtain. fox news recently aired this footage showing off their newly renovated washington, d.c. bureau. looking pretty good there, i've got to say. what on earth, though, is on their faces? what is going on? oh, right, yes. they're wearing masks. and they are also all vaccinated or getting tested daily because that's the corporate requirement. so inside fox news everyone takes this seriously. they're in on the joke, i guess? they understand the science is quite solid. they understand the methods preventing infection, severe
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illness, hospitalization and death, the methods for maintaining a safe workplace are all pretty clear. when they go on air, they undermine that exact message. tucker carlson's even launched a little personal campaign against the horrible tyrannical employers out there who require their employees to get vaccinated. he has been giving sympathetic interviews to people who have taken the to my mind rather extreme step of quitting their job rather than getting vaccinated. >> cassandra ratlich is one of the victims of this latest surge. she's an icu nurse who left her job at i ahospital in indiana because of vaccine mandates. she joins us tonight. thanks so much for coming on. >> thank you. >> it's our honor to have you. tell us why you left your job. >> i left my job when policies were being rolled out at our hospital that would ultimately initiate the segregation of its staff on who was vaccinated versus who was unvaccinated.
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>> tucker, buddy, i've got news for you. the call is coming from inside the house. your own bosses are doing this. and i've got to ask, why don't you have the courage of your convictions? the very lowest level of that courage, which of course you've failed to show, would be to actually use your platform to actually criticize your own bosses who are making this requirement. you could go on air and say hey, my bosses are doing this and i don't agree with it. but that would require the tiniest little sliver of moral integrity. you'd have to take some little slight risk to your bottom line and your paycheck and your stature. you're probably not going to do that. you certainly wouldn't do the thing that you've celebrated in others, which is to just quit and walk away rather than be subject to this tyranny, although i am sure there would be lots of youtubers who would be happy to host you for your exit interview if you found the courage to choose to do so. michael steele is a former chairman of the republican national committee.
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angela curacon is the president of media matters for america. they both join me now. angelo, let me start with you because you guys have been tracking this and i think people underappreciate how insidious this campaign has been and how relentless it has been because it's been particularly focused in primetime and it's been day in, day out in this very cutesy way of well, we're not telling you not to get the vaccine. describe to me, characterize what the coverage has been like. >> so i would say there's three things. one, consistency. so over the last 183 days, six months, only two of those days there was not a consistent effort across the channel that day to undermine or encourage people not to get vaccinated. so that's the first part. the second part then is dire warnings. you're going to be forced to take psychotropic drugs if you take the vaccine, that's going to be the next thing. or the vaccine say secret plot by joe biden liblgz and the media to purge christians. so these really wild and fantastic sort of slippery slope
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arguments. and then the third aspect is alternatives. so if you're still kind of thinking about the vaccine because maybe you're scared of covid because you think it's real or you know someone that's died at this point from covid they give you all kinds of alternatives that can cure you. vaping. tamiflu, antibiotics. i'm not joking. these are all things that fox news, while they're downplaying the vaccine, is proposing as alternatives as to why you shouldn't be scared about covid at all. >> michael, there have been these raft of stories, there have been several conservative talk radio hosts who have railed against the vaccine, they have not been vaccinated, some of them have gotten very sick. a few of them have passed away. they're very upsetting stories and they're very sad stories. what they show is that these individuals believed what they were saying, right? i mean, they were on air saying i don't believe in the vaccine, i don't think you should either, and they didn't get themselves vaccinated and ultimately they
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paid a horrible price for that. that's not what's happening at fox. they know -- this is not -- that is not the story over at fox news. >> no, because i want to get that paycheck next month. i've got bills to pay. i've got to get vaccinated. look, first off, let me just say, you should just bottle the opening of this show and just pin it, folks, because you have laid out an indictment that is so direct and so compelling as to why we are where we are and why we continue to be where we are. and the reality of it is when you start the lie, going back to february, march of 2020, that this is okay, it's no big deal, and you get everybody to buy into that ish, right? what do you do a year and a half later? after 700,000 dead. and you've got to keep the perpetuation of the lie. that's ron johnson. he ain't got anything else to
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say. carve out the niche, baby, because that's the only hole you can be in. you cannot come out from that because then you suffer the wrath. they would rather suffer the wrath of people like you and me and others who are using common sense and science to apply to the situation than to be on the wrong side, as we saw lindsey was in that clip, of the frankenstein monster that they created on covid. and that's the new reality now. not just inside the gop but across the country in so many other forums at this point, which is what the facebook discussion is about right now. so there's a lot here. >> you're right, though, that michael, that key point, that the original sin is the original denial. and never getting out from under that except for about a two-two-week period, right? where trump got a little spooked and he came out and said he looked at those charts and we have to do something. but the original sin and the only thing that kind of keeps grinding this along as an
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intellectual project if you can call it that, angelo, is it's just not that big a deal, they're lying to you about what a big deal it is, and everything needs to get reverse-engineered around that. even to the point, you know, what i'm so struck by by your study at fox, they could just not talk about it. right? >> that's right. >> they could just leave it be. they don't have to go and undermine it if they don't want to be out there saying look, it's -- but they don't do that. and i think it's because, a, it rates. right? and b, because they have to keep this mythos going. >> is that right. and i think that's the part, that's the key piece here, is it demonstrates the intentionality, the deliberateness of this, and why it goes all the way to the top. this is beyond just a couple of segments now. this can only continue at the scale that it is if the highest levels of fox news, which would be lachlan murdoch, rupert murdoch, at minimum are giving tacit consent if not more than that. that i think is the first part. and the more broad thing is it does tie into the broader
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right-wing narrative of control, right? why should you fight against the aca? why should you fight against any leng slaigs? it's always some gsh you have to step back because democrats or the other is trying to control you. this gets tied into a broader right-wing narrative and then pump it with all sorts of misinformation and a lot of it is about getting power. >> final point here, michael, and i like talking about this because you and i have both had our moral formation in the catholic church and i think it stuck with both of us even though i'm no longer attending church. but to me it's just like it's straight up evil to do this. i don't have other words for it. it just is. it's wrong and sinful. like you know what you're doing and you're doing it for indefensible reasons at the cost of people's lives. and that's just the plain moral truth of what's happening every day. and i continue to be scandalized by the sheer evil of it every day. >> when you turn the gospel and
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the teachings of christ on its head, when he says care for the least of these, care for the vulnerable, care for those who are in need of help, and instead you provide them with the very information that leads to their deaths, then you have a moral problem. >> yeah. >> and that's the other part of this so disturbing for someone like myself. when you look someone in the eye and say look, at the end of the day you may not want it for yourself but think of all the other people around you including your parents, your grandparents, your children who can become sick and die from this. and to reject that because you think it's just some vast conspiracy to keep your kids from catching what, a virus that will kill them? do you have a problem with that? that's the underlying moral story for me that is probably more disturbing than anything else, because if this is the
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beginning, the tip of the spear of that, chris, what's next? the next big thing that hits us, that impales us the way this has, what do we do? >> michael steele and angelo carusone, thank you both. really appreciate it. today we heard firsthand just how far facebook is willing to go to make a profit off of you or your loved ones as a whistleblower testified on capitol hill the company poses a threat to children, our safety, our very democracy. and in a rare moment of bipartisanship congress is prepared to take some action but what exactly? what does that mean? how to solve a problem like facebook after this. i'm gonna earn 3% on dining including takeout with chase freedom unlimited. that's a lot of cash back. are you gonna stop me? uh-oh... i'm almost there... too late! boom! earn big time with chase freedom unlimited with no annual fee.
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during my time at facebook i came to realize a devastating truth. almost no one outside of facebook knows what happens inside of facebook. the company intentionally hides vital information from the public, from the u.s. government, and from governments around the world. the documents i have provided to congress prove that facebook has repeatedly misled the public about what its own research reveals about the safety of children, the efficacy of its artificial intelligence systems, and its role in spreading divisive and extreme messages. i came forward because i believe that every human being deserves the dignity of the truth. >> today lawmakers and the american public heard from the facebook whistleblower, frances haugen, in a hearing before the senate commerce subcommittee on communications. and it was an unusually bipartisan display today as
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haugen described to senators the urgent threat she feels facebook poses to healthy democracy, to human rights, to children growing up in an instagram filter world. she made special note of just why the company's obsession with growth hinders any meaningful change in the platform. >> facebook understands that if they want to continue to grow they have to find new users, they have to make sure that the next generation is just as engaged with instagram as the current one. and the way they'll do that is by making sure that children establish habits before they have good self-regulation. >> by hooking kids. >> by hooking kids. >> haugen grows a small but growing chorus of people speaking out against this energy. in 2011 tristan harris joined google after his own startup was acquired by him. first worked as a g mail product manager then as a design eth cyst and product philosopher. and his job was to study the way screen applications impact those using their product, how the
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interaction affects behavior pattern, overall attitude or health. in 2013 he internally published and circulated this 144-page presentation on the ethical role and responsibility of tech companies like google to their users. well, that presentation definitely started a dialogue. it definitely wasn't enough. in 2016 he decided to leave google to push for change in how we interact with technology, eventually co-founding the center for humane technology. last year he appeared in the netflix documentary "the social dilemma" to discuss what he experienced and how dangerous unchecked tech and social media can be. >> it's not enough that you use the product consciously. i want to dig down deeper into the brainstem and plant inside of you an unconscious habit so that you are being programmed at a deeper level. you don't even realize it. >> and tristan harris joins me now. great to have you here. i know this is something you've been thinking about basically full-time for a very long time. how significant do you think haugen's revelations and testimony were today? >> being honest with you, i was
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so moved almost emotionally, i've been working on this topic for eight years, and what she said at the beginning of her hearing, which is that this is something that everyone needs to know and you know, when she was looking at this inside information system and civic integrity at facebook she's seeing genocide, she's seeing misinformation, she's seeing body dysmorphia issues and she's saying i shouldn't be be the only one who knows this. and facebook has this research. and it's bad. and they're not making choices -- they know that when they optimize for engagement, they optimize for what makes us more certain in an uncertain world, what more out groups the other tribe, what makes us more angry, and they know it makes political parties more divisive but they chose to continue to optimize for profit and engagement over safety. and i just so relate to what she said about this is something the whole world needs to know. this is what all of us, so many of us in the tech community, accountable tech, some of us, center for humane technology have been doing is trying to raise public awareness. but the unique thing today is you saw i think it was senator jerry moran and blumenthal, both
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sides say we don't have differences on this anymore, we're going to do something about it, we're going to work together. that's what makes this honestly a transformative moment. i have not seen something like this happen in the eight years i've worked on this topic. >> there's a few things here. whenever i see this there's always some part of me trying to sort through what's new and what's not. if you read about the rwandan genocide, radio rwanda, it was used quite explicitly as the tool to promote that genocide. when i was growing up we looked at women's and girls' teenage girls' fashion magazines. horribly distorted images driving body dysmorphia pape lot of these critiques i've heard before in other contexts. there's something different happening with facebook and social media. she sort of focused on the al grith sxm why that's different from other forms of media that can do really egregious and gnarly stuff. >> correct. it's really important. a lot of people think there's a moral panic, we've always had these problems. obviously this society was polarized before social media
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even came to us, in partisan television and the rest of it. what's different is when you have a supercomputer -- facebook is a trillion-dollar company. they have wuj of the largest super computers in the world. when you scroll facebook if & see what your friends are, do every time you scroll imagine you activate supercomputer point it at your brain that has seen 2 billion interact with it today and knows if you are someone who clicked on an article saying the vaccine is unsafe it says oh, well, you're just like this other bucket of users and this video over here that made fun of many errors in the vaccine data or whatever, that worked well for them. so we're microtarget the thing that will make people most cynical and most hateful of their fellow country men and women, we've got a full-time super computer that every time people scroll it puts their attention on the next fault line in society. it's like precision guided weapons to find the next faultline in society. it's not just it makes us polarized it's just it drives us to more extreme positions.
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what he this found in their research is political parties in europe said no facebook you change the algorithm. they say no, we know you changed it because we're a political party we used to able to post about agriculture policy and we'd get traffic. >> people would engage. >> and then they changed the algorithm and they say we only get traffic now when we make enemies, when we say negative things about our poents and we know that's bad, we don't want to do that, but you've changed it. so facebook, we think we have this political marketplace with an invisible hand, adam smith. we don't have an invisible hand. we have zuckerberg's digital hand to when he changes the algorithm it changes the market to things that make us hate each other which makes democracy not work which makes us feel less and less enchanted with democracy which means wep can't regulate tech. his business model is diflding us at a fractal level. >> her point today about the get away the from speech and moderation content questions which are -- >> it's a false choice. >> it's a false choice. and also facebook wants wants to drive people to that.
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i should say this. i should read the facebook statement. today a senate subcommittee felt a meeting with a former product manager at facebook who worked for the company for less than two years, had no direct reports, never attended a decision point meeting with c-level executives and testified more than six times to not working on the subject matter in question we deernt agree with her characterization of the many issues she testified about." think want to push into this speech question. let's talk about the algorithm. that's what i hear from you and the people i feel are most compelling in this space. there is this very, very sophisticated computer doing something very sophisticated to our brains and i guess my next question is is it really that good, though? because a lot of times the algorithm feels very dumb to me. like i buy a thing and then it advertises the same thing to me for like three weeks. i'm like i bought it, dude. like is it really as good as you're saying? >> i think when people hear this they might think i'm saying it can persuade you of anything. it's really easy to take something you're already leaning towards and give you increasing certainty. it pushes you in more extreme
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directions. if it pushes everybody in opposite more extreme directions, again, political parties then have to cater to a more extreme base. and then when a more extreme set of politicians show up they can't agree and democracy doesn't work and -- that's why facebook's business model is incomensurable with democracy, full stop. one last thing, in the documents they showed it would be more effective for facebook to turn off the virality, the reshare button after two hops than the billions of dollars he this spent on fact checking. this isn't about content moderation. it's not freedom of speech but freedom of reach. reach is not the thing -- even conservatives believe rights go with attendant responsibilities. >> right. >> we have a right to speech, yes. but a responsibility when you gain a megaphone to reach 2 billion people that might roh targets the most polarizing thing you say to the person most against it. >> one of the smoking gun things she says was that they basically turned down this viralty in the
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algorithm in the run-up to the election and then they just turned it back up because it was -- because the virality makes things go and cause growth. >> it's more profitable. growth works better the more things go viral because in a way you can see each of these companies competing on virality. it's like facebook and twitter and youtube they're all competing on attention casino, who's going to make your thing go as viral as possible. to make things safe they had to tune it down but then of course they want to make more money and more growth, they have to turn it back up again. and the point is that virality is not safe. it also doesn't create a society or a democracy that works. >> so if it's incommensurabl, what are we headed for? there's political consensus, bipartisan consensus. there's a whole bunch of industrys, alcohol is one, automobiles. they used to put cocaine in coca-cola. probably made it more addictive but you can't do that. what's the version of that here? is it at the algorithmic level? >> i think we're in need of a more transformative approach. i do think that short term much
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like tylenol and johnson & johnson in the 1980s you remember there was poison in the tablets and they said oh, shoot, we have to solve this problem. they could have said there's poison in the tablets but we want to keep making money while we figure it out so we'll leave them on the store shelves. they didn't do that. they took it off the shelf until they could build a tamper-proof top. right? and i think we're in a position now that we know from facebook's own research they knew this instant virality's unsafe. they could take that off the shelf, limit virality to two hops for the short term and make it better. that still keeps freedom of speech. we're just talking about dangerous levels of unregulated research with a.i. that makes the craziest things go viral and we all live in crazy town for the rest of our lives. >> does everyone inside there know what's going on? you obviously have a specific perspective on this, on some of the other whistle-blowers. you get more and more of these folks coming out and saying there's something messed up here. how broadly shared is that do you think of the people working inside? >> oftentimes you hear from people who leave the company and they say i feel like i was working at a cult.
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they didn't realize that they were kind of inside of a belief system. because the rhetoric is so strong. like yeah, facebook is really good for free expression. by want to be clear, it's not just about one company or facebook. it's about the business model that treats, as we were talking earl yerp, the commodification of human attention, which means it's that race to the bottom of the brainstem for our paleolithic responses and you're sorting fossett reactivity of society. and tiktok does that, instagram does that, facebook does that, they do it in different ways but that's the thing that systematically we have to transform. that's what i'm hoping we can do with congress. >> tristan harris, that was great. come back again. i'd love to keep talking about this. this is really important stuff. >> thank you. tonight the fbi is stepping in after an unprecedented rise in threats and intimidation at local school board meetings. senator josh hawley is siding with the mob again. that's next. gain that's next. ah, but we need to . (man 1) higher. (man 2) definitely higher. (man 1) we're like yodeling high.
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last week as we covered on the show the national school board association wrote a letter
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to president joe biden asking for federal assistance to combat the "growing threat of violence and intimidation directed at local school boards across the country." yesterday the justice department responded with a one-page memo. it simply directs federal law enforcement to work with local leaders to curb the threats of violence. and today during a senate judiciary committee hearing featuring deputy a.g. lisa monaco republican senator josh hawley of missouri, best known i think for raising his fist in support of the january 6th insurrectionists before they stormed the capitol, objected to the one-page memo. he thinks innocent parents are being silenced by the d.o.j. for politely disagreeing with their local government. he was indignant, as he asked the deputy attorney general about the existence of school board threats and intimidation, which is frankly kind of astounding when the reality of what's happening on the ground is undeniable. >> does waiting to express one's view at a school board meeting harassment and intimidation? >> we know who you are! >> we know who you are!
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>> you can leave freely but we will find you and we know who you are. >> you will never be allowed in public again! >> harassment and intimidation, what do those terms mean in the context of a local school board meeting? >> the death threat was you're going to get knifed, you [ bleep ]. you're going to get a [ bleep ] you're dead. >> tell me where the line is with parents expressing their concerns, waiting for hours in these school board meetings. we've all seen the videos. this happened in my state. >> people were actually throwing fists and hitting each other outside the auditorium this evening after the board unanimously voted to approve requiring masks. >> if this isn't a deliberate attempt to chill parents from showing up at school board meetings for their elected school boards, i don't know what is. >> one of the board members called for her and her children to choke and die. another one said that the board member was about to get ruined. another one suggested another board member die by suicide, calling also for harassment and
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bullying of board members. >> you are attempting to intimidate them. you are attempting to silence them. >> it has an effect on you that you can't really put into words. when someone describe the way they want to come into your home and end your life. >> i cannot believe that an attorney general of the united states is engaging in this kind of conduct. and frankly, i can't believe that you are sitting here today defending it. >> josh hawley's very upset. we're going to send him that montage just to read him into a little bit of what's been going on at the local level. but i suspect he knows. it's not just school boards. city council members and election officials, even teachers are facing threats, physical assaults from the right-wing mob. >> a parent took it upon himself to verbally assault a principal. that led to a serious physical altercation between him and a teacher as the teacher intended to protect the principal. superintendent tori gibson said the attack happened yesterday when the parent's daughter
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walked out of a school building wearing a mask. >> it was physical. the teacher was bleeding, had some lacerations to his face, had some bruising on his face, pretty good size knot on the back of his head. >> she says the male parent was frustrated with the school's indoor mask requirement for everyone while students are on campus. >> that was the first day of school in the amador county school district back in august. since then that kind of behavior in schools has not stopped. according to the "los angeles times" in michigan a father was ejected from a school board meeting because he gave the nazi salute and yelled "heil hitler" after another parent spoke in favor of masks. at another school a father of a boy that was ordered to quarantine came to the child's arizona elementary school and two other men carrying zip ties and threatened the principal with citizen's arrest. and at a school board meeting in florida where governor ron desantis has banned mask mandates in public schools a protester doused a tray of masks with lighter fluid and set it on
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fire. we're seeing more and more of these threats and viems against teachers and school board members across the country, which is why today the department of justice is taking action to investigate. joining me now, dr. torie gibson. she is the superintendent for the amador county unified school district in california where one of her teachers was violently attacked by a parent on the first day of school. dr. gibson, thank you very much. first of all, i feel like i should start by asking, that teacher is okay, right? >> yes, he is doing well. >> what have you seen on the ground level there in your county in terms of harassment, threats, violence directed at either school administrators or teachers? >> early on when the school year started back in august it was daily. it was all day, every day. didn't matter the day of the week. it was very, very consistent. i think since then we've been able to really work with our community. we've done a lot of pr work just
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trying to educate our community on these are our mandates. we're just the ones required to enforce them. and really working with the system and around the system when we can honestly with always our number one thing is to keep everyone safe. both physically and emotionally. but it's been difficult. meetings have been interesting and we've had some interesting parent engagements. but we're doing the best we can at this point. >> what do you mean by interesting? >> you know, we've had parents send kids to school, i think it was in the l.a. times article that they ran, where a parent just -- i mean, just asked the student to go to school, refuse to wear your mask, refuse to leave the classroom when they ask you to leave, have them call the police on you. i just -- i don't condone that kind of behavior, when parents are putting kids in the middle of just a really tough time
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politically, emotionally, socially in our society. >> senator hawley today at that -- in that hearing was sort of saying that he doesn't understand the line. and i imagine you're a local school administrator and every school administrator i've ever dealt with knows public meetings. that's part of the job. and in fact, getting yelled at is also part of the job. i mean, yes, i've been in some pretty spirited local school board meetings. do you have a sense of what the line is when you see him say like where's the line? what is the line? do you have a sense of what's someone being upset at a school board meeting and someone doing something over the line? >> absolutely. i was watching that clip as i was waiting to come on, and i was really kind of scratching my head a little bit. i would love to invite him to come and sit with us for a week or two and see exactly what it's like. i think it's very easy for people to sit from the outside versus sitting in our seats. but i think there is a line. you know, just like the parent who had their student
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deliberately go in and cause a huge disruption on a school campus, i invited that parent to come to the school board meeting, voice your concerns. but as long as it's civil. and i made that very clear. and i have no problem with parents coming. they have three minutes each. we have 20 minutes per our robert's rules of orders and we follow that for a reason. it's not a problem when people have a voice. and i always want to have that platform for our families. i think when the line is drawn is when on a saturday as my husband, you know, stated in the article, he's always having to look over my shoulder for me. that's the first time i've actually heard him say that. so i was a little taken aback when i read that article and that was his response to the reporter, was that he's fearful of my safety when we're out together just on a simple saturday afternoon. that's where the line gets drawn. this is my job. i'm very passionate about it. i'm very dedicated. but i think as educators we also
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deserve the respect for what we do every day. >> you know, dr. gibson, it strikes me that the job you do and particularly people that are serving on these school boards, which in most cases in my reporting life are not paid positions, sometimes they are a de minimis amount. i don't think you guys are like getting rich over there. this is not being done for like a lot of glory. you're not getting like endorsement deals out of this i assume. everyone on the other side of the yelling tends to be someone who's basically trying to do well by kids. not to say you don't make mistakes. but that's generally the thrust. would you say that's a fair characterization? >> i think that's a perfect characterization. i think on the flip side i don't think as educators we've ever had more conversations about how many years before we can all retire. which is sad but true at this point. we're just really tired. and we do do these jobs, no matter what job we do, whether
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you work at a classified position, you're a teacher or you're in management, we all do it for the right reasons, and it's for kids. and i think that people forget that. we definitely don't have endorsement deals. i wish. i would walk away anytime. >> dr. torie gibson, thank you for joining he m tonight. >> thank you for having me. still to come, police unions, extremely powerful institutions you don't take on lightly. so when i tell you the fbi raided the headquarters of an nypd union and the home of the guy in charge, no small thing. but we know including some big breaking news on this story, next. s on this story, next
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fbi. the sba is one of new york city's main police unions. it represents about 13,000 active and retired nypd sergeants. two people knowledgeable of that, as part of the investigation by the fbi and the public corruption unit in the u.s. attorney's office in manhattan, investigators also executed a search warrant at the long island home of the union's president, edward dean mullins. ed mullins, seen there, had been the president since 2002. and under his tenure, the union endorsed donald trump for re-election and mullins visited him at the white house just after trump's first impeachment. he's been a fairly regular guest on fox news defending police conduct and arguing that officers should be allowed to use things like chokeholds in arrests. >> the head lock is the very same law that city council speaker cory johnson and mayor
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de blasio are trying to implement where if the police officer did that, he would be arrested. they are tying the hands of the police officers. they do not want us to be out there making these arrests. >> you might have seen directly behind mullins in that interview -- maybe you didn't notice but the internet certainly did -- a mug with the qanon logo on it, the conspiracy that the world is run by child abusing elites, mostly democrats. mullins says it wasn't his office, even though he's done multiple other interview from the location. mullins was under internal investigation by the nypd after he tweeted in 2021 mayor de blasio, the amembers of the netflixed with are declaring war on you. mullins tweeted out the arrest report for mayor de blasio's daughter. he's facing internal nypd trial over that, it is basically a no no. other internal charges for profane tweets about city officials. he called the quote health
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official a quote, bitch with blood on her hands. last fall mullins tweeted that then new york city councilman was a, quote, first class whore. now a congressman representing the fifth congressional district and he joins me now. it's good to have you on, congressman. i have never encountered anyone in public life that talks the way that the head of the police unions do, like literally nowhere outside of -- i don't know, like, wrestling maybe. why did he say that about you? what was the context of that? >> so, i was actually holding a press conference with then-borough president eric adams about the response times. and as a public official my job is to ask questions. so, he felt the need to go on twitter and refer to me as a first class whore. ed mullins is the donald trump of new york city politics.
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he is the single greatest embarrassment. he has a long standing pattern of embracing conspiracy theories and trafficking in racism and sexism and homophobia. he threatened violence against the mayor himself. he's hurled homophobic and ho moj nistic ep that thes. he portrays people of color as section 8 scam artists. there's been a repeat pattern of trafficking and the worst forms of misconduct. but he's done it with impunity. the case of this man tells the larger story about the achilles heel of american policing. if people like ed mullins are never held accountable, there's never going to be incentive for him to follow the rules. >> it blew my mind that he's been there since 2002. i think your point about democratic accountability is a
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key one. i have to say as a reporter and politician, this is more true for you than it is for me. i spent time talking to cops. they run the gamut. some of them i agree with, some of them i don't agree with. all kinds of people with all kinds of views. the voice and tone of the police union is just so -- it's so crazily aggressive and bigoted and destructive. and it just makes you feel like they are constantly saying no one can stop us, you certainly can't stop us. we're declaring war on the mayor and nothing's going to happen to us. and how are people who are policed by those folks not to feel like targeted? >> look, the culture of impunity is a deep rot at the very core of policing. and ed mullins, you know, was outlandish and outrageous because he knew he would get away with it. not only was he collecting a six-figure salary from the union. he was receiving a six-figure salary from the nypd. so, we the taxpayers were
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subsidizing his misconduct and bigotry. and he was found to have engaged in misconduct and there was never accountability. it took an fbi raid to finally force his resignation, which was long overdue. >> do you -- how do you make sense of the fact he has been there for 19 years and the fact that again i've got to say the other police unions -- it's not just in new york. this is across the board. go to the twitter feeds of police unions. they come off as utterly unhinged. they really do. i'm not saying they speak for all cops, but look at police union statements and they -- what does that say that that is the tone in which these professional organizations communicate when they are punitively there to protect people, to care for them, to show respect and courtesy and professionalism? >> well, it comes off not only as unhinged but trumpian. there's nothing benevolent about the sergeant benevolent
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association, which is essentially a hate group mascarading as a police union. and i represent the south bronx communities of color, and we have no confidence that people like ed mullins and the sergeant benevolence association are going to police us properly and responsibly. and to listen to them speak, you get the impression that the purpose of these police unions is not to raise the wages and benefits of their members but to defend police misconduct no matter how egregious. >> where are we one year after -- more than a year after the protests, after the wild acts of misconduct by many members of the nypd that were captured on tape after a difficult period in the city, as someone who represents my own borough, the bronx, where do you see things being? >> we're no closer to reforming policing or fundamentally changing the reality within the ranks of the police department. we know that there are -- there are elements of right wing
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extremism within the ranks of local law enforcement. you know, i worry about the doctrine of qualified immunity which to me is a license to brutalize black and brown lives with impunity and with the lack of progress around the joy flur justice and policing act, we are sadly no closer to reforming policing in america. >> great to have you on. thank you very much. that is "all in" on this tuesday night. "the rachel maddow show" starts now with ali velshi in for rachel. >> that is a fascinating conversation. we are strongly in favor of unions and collective bargaining and increasing the wages and working conditions of people. police unions in this country are unhinged. you said it well. it is -- it goes against everything that i believe a union needs to do. they're nuts. >> the tone that emanates -- we just had the chicago police union comparing vaccine mandates to the nazis. there's just


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