Up | April 28, 2012
HAYES: now know that total student debt in this country has passed the $1 trillion mark. And we know it is growing at a rate twice the rate of which mortgage debt grew during the housing bubble. We also know that the student debt crisis is a symptom of our social crisis, not its cause. And that creating the society in which social mobility is real and not an illusion will require a radical rethinking of the role and purpose of not just higher education , but the entire public sphere more broadly. In the wake of Tuesday's Pennsylvania primary results, we know now, two blue dogs who will no longer be in Congress , Tim Holden and Jason Altmire , Democratic incumbents with 13 terms between them were both unseated by Democratic primary opponents who both attacked them from the left over both men support for the 2011 Republican balance budget amendment. We know that few things concentrate the mind like primary challenges and the effects on the caucus ripple out far from the individual races themselves. We now know it's not just corporations fleeing the American Legislative Exchange Council or ALEC . In the wake of revelations of the role it played in pushing through the Florida 's controversial stand your ground law, Democratic state legislatures are as well. A number of progressives have targeted the 76 Democrats nationwide who are members of ALEC . And so far, 21 Dems have dropped their members, with three state senators in Nebraska being the most recent to drop it. We now know that, yes, you can use laws and constitutional due process to prosecute members of al Qaeda . Right now, the Department of Justice is prosecuting a man accused of plotting to blow up targets in New York subway system . And the case has somewhat remarkably almost entirely escaped the attention of the national press, even though it's not taking place in Guantanamo Bay , but in Brooklyn , New York . We know two of the other suspects have already guilty and we know that the mundane application of courtroom rules of evidence may be insufficiently dramatic, and testosterone producing for the chest-thumping reactionaries who demagogue the Khalid Sheikh Mohammed trail. We also know the sheer routine nature of the trial is a victory for those who contend that our justice system can handle accused terrorists.
And, finally, via viewer and tweeter Tina Winset , we know that the University of Florida will not be dumping its computer science department so as to save $1.7 million from the budget after a preliminary announcement prompted, and justifiable uproar on campus. We know the proposed cuts were largely a result of a $300 million statewide budget cut across all of Florida 's universities. But never fear, Gator , we know the university 's athletic budget at $97.9 million increase by about $2 million this year, with the same amount as the computer science department cost. I want to find out what my guests know now that they didn't know when the week began. Let's start with you, Goldie Taylor . What do you know?
TAYLOR: Well, first, Tina Winset is one of my absolute Twitter follower.
TAYLOR: We are in constant conversation about food and children and everything else. But what I know is that education is disruptive to poverty. And so, while we're having this conversation about student loans and the Pell Grants and other things, we are missing an entire conversation on quality basic education for children who never ever get to see the light of day for a college campus , let alone get themselves out of high school. And so when we look at, you know, where the conversation is not, it is not on breaking the cycle of poverty in inner city communities which by the way also breaks the cycle of violence in other things, including absentee parentism, and all those other issues that surround this. I think this country is more invested in containing poverty, pacifying those who are interested and, you know, placating those who are trapped in demonizing it.
HAYES: A huge part of the some college group that we talked about, people who enter college but don't complete, a lot of that has to do with what kind of education they're getting, K through 12. And if you just don't improve K through 12 education --
TAYLOR: That's right .
HAYES: -- you funnel people into college and they are not prepared, what you'll get are a lot of people --
TAYLOR: Get out of it, what you bring to it. And if we can't educate our children, we'll lose.
HAYES: Michael Hastings , what do you know now?
HASTINGS: Well, this past week, I did a story for BuzzFeed , everyone's new favorite Web site on the women in the Obama campaign . I don't know if your viewers are familiar with this -- there's been the reputation around the Obama campaign being a boy's club. But, in fact, the three deputy campaign managers at the campaign headquarters in Chicago are three powerful women, and veteran campaign operatives, Stephanie Cutter , Julianna Smoot , and Jennifer O'Malley Dillon . I also know when the Obama campaign finds out you're doing the story, and they think it might be about the boys' club, you'll receive a very angry phone call from a certain campaign official in Chicago . I'm not going to say who -- you know who I'm talking about, and will try to get you to not do a boys club story.
But it was really interesting to see how those women also have been crucial, in Debbie Wassermann Schultz as well and she called it , how crucial they have been in pushing the war on women and women's issue.
HAYES: Pam Brown , what do you now know?
BROWN: Well, next week is going to be May Day , May 1st which is a holiday celebrated around the world. But that we have not celebrated here in the United States . What I didn't know that I learned this week is that it actually in 1896 about eight activists were killed in Chicago when protesting to get our right to enact our work day , and that was actually triggered this holiday. But here in the United States , we celebrated it in September. So this will be the first time that we are actually commemorating that day here.
HAYES: On May 1st , we're going to do a whole bunch on the labor movement and Occupy May 1st on tomorrow show, which I'm really excited about.
BROWN: Oh, great.
HAYES: The history of May Day is truly fascinating Luke Burbank , what do you now know?
BURBANK: If you are in Florida and you go into McDonald's and you ask them for a cup of water and go up to the self-serve soda machine , do not put soda puff in that water cup, because you will be charged to a third degree felony. It happened to a guy in Florida this week. He is facing five years, $5,000 fine, for doing the thing that we've all considered in our mind which is are they going to notice if I don't put the water in here, but if I get -- and here is my point with this, Chris , when they moved --
HAYES: Thirty seconds.
BURBANK: When they moved the soda out into the population, they let the inmates run the asylum.
HAYES: There was an exquisite recognition from the corporate overlords at McDonalds that this going to be a little bit of a loss leader, right?
BURBANK: Don't put the cotton candy machine in the center of the day care and say, kids, don't eat this stuff.
HAYES: All right. My thanks to Goldie Taylor of the Goldie Taylor Project , Michael Hastings , author of "The Operators: The Wild and Terrifying Inside Story of America 's War in Afghanistan ", Pam Brown from Occupy Student Debt , and Luke Burbank from the wonderful podcast "Too Beautiful to Live " -- thank you so much for getting up. Thank you for joining us for UP and join us tomorrow morning , Sunday morning at 8:00 when we'll have Congressman Jerry Nadler and American Federation of Teachers president Randi Weingarten . You can get more info about tomorrow show on Twitter by following Up with Chris , and live tweet the show by using #uppers. Coming up next is Melissa Harris Perry . Melissa , what have you got today?
MELISSA HARRIS-PERRY, MSNBC HOST: No one from BuzzFeed , but,