CAROL OFF: Hello, I'm Carol Off.
JEFF DOUGLAS: Good evening, I'm Jeff Douglas. This is As It Happens.
CO: The path of some resistance. Nebraska regulators give the thumbs up to the Keystone XL pipeline, but Trans-Canada seems to think they're all thumbs because the company wanted one route and he approved another.
JD: Shock waves. Days after an Argentinean Navy submarine vanished, bad weather is interfering with the search for the vessel and the dozens of crew members on board.
CO: Killer instinct. As a 24-year-old reporter Linda Deutsch covered one of the most notorious murder trials of the 20th century. Tonight she remembers the assignment and the figure at the centre of it —the late Charles Manson.
JD: A Hopeful compromise after he is hopelessly compromised. She was working on a sexual assault bill with the backing of a Democratic senator, but after the allegations against Al Franken our guest asked him to remove his name.
CO: By now he it’s water under the bridge. But last Friday when his truck went off that bridge and into that frigid water, Ken McGinnis had a slightly different perspective on the seriousness of the situation.
JD: And…At the time he was just saving face, but now Bob Unger's former face protection has achieved the immortality that eluded to the man who wore it. His decades-old goalie mask is headed to the Hockey Hall of Fame. As It Happens, The Monday edition. Radio that plays you the unmasking tape.
[Music: Theme]Back To Top »
Part 1: Keystone XL: Nebraska, Charles Manson Obit, Goalie Mask
Keystone XL: Nebraska
Guest: Crystal Rhoades
JD: Today in Nebraska state regulators narrowly approved TransCanada’s application for Keystone XL. And you would have assumed that that would have prompted a celebration on the part of Trans-Canada. Instead it issued a terse statement saying it would conduct quote “a careful review of the ruling.” The company had expected Nebraska regulators to approve its preferred route, instead the Nebraska Public Service Commission voted three to two to support trans Canada's alternative route. And one of those ‘no’ votes came from Crystal Rhoades, the lone Democratic member of the commission. We reached Ms. Rhoades in Omaha.
CO: Commissioner Rhodes, can you describe the reaction in the hearing room when this announcement was made?
COMMISSIONER CRYSTAL RHOADES: We had many landowners there. They were obviously very emotional. There was a lot of surprise and quite a few tears. There were actually an number of proponents and opponents to this issue. Obviously the proponents were pleased that there was an approval and the landowners who had been in opposition were obviously very disappointed.
CO: Now of course the chief proponent should be a TransCanada pipelines itself, but it seems from how they reacted that, well it wasn't exactly glowing was it. Then they have actually put out a release saying they have to look at this, so this was didn't seem to be the outcome that they were hoping for.
CR: No. And in fact their application focused almost entirely on their preferred route. Most of the federal and state studies that were conducted focused on this preferred route and very little information was available about this main line alternative route. There were also a number of landowners who had no idea and were never aware that they were in the line of the mainline alternative route. And so I think that that is causing a lot of confusion and there's a lot of questions about what will happen now.
CO: I think confusion is probably a pretty good word to use here because where did the idea of the alternative route come from then?
CR: Well the applicant was required to submit an alternative route, just as part of the major oil pipeline siting act, they were required to demonstrate that they had looked at other routes and that they were proposing the route that, in their view, was the best route. I don't believe that they ever intended for the Commission to consider it. There certainly was very little, or almost no evidence, presented related to that mainline alternative route. And so I do think people are a little stunned and very confused about what happened today.
CO: OK. But you sit on this commission, and three out of the five people — you voted against approving the pipeline, the other three of the five voted to have the pipeline. But on this alternative route that TransCanada seemed that they didn't really want anyway. So what do we make of this?
CR: What we know for sure is that the courts are going to have to weigh in on this and they're going to have to review the decision of the Commission as well as the evidence and determine if this is appropriate. And then from there, there will have to be a lot of sorting out between the landowners and the applicants.
CO: But I understand that there are things that go on in camera you can't discuss but can you give us some sense of how the commission came to decide — Yes, good news is TransCanada will approve it but we're going to give you this alternate route that you don't really want?
CR: I really can't speak to what was in the minds and hearts of my fellow commissioners, I'm sorry.
CO: What was in your mind and heart?
CR: Well, I was very concerned that approving this main line alternative route was going to violate the due process of the landowners. If they don't know what's happening or what might happen to them there's no way for them to exercise their due process rights and join the other landowners and have their case heard in front of the commission. And I was also very concerned about the fact that the route that the commission elected to approve — we didn't have any substantial evidence to support that it was in the public interest. In my view the commission really had two choices: we could approve the preferred route or deny the preferred route and ask them to submit another route and evidence to support why that other route would be in the public good.
CO: You're saying that the alternative route, it doesn't change or doesn't alter the problems with the original route. Because one of the biggest parts was that the pipeline will go across the sandhills as they're called and parts of where they've The Ogallala Aquifer is this was the area that people were very concerned about. Does this alternative route also cross that same area?
CR: It does. And in fact it's five miles longer, so it crosses even more of it. And it also crosses more streams. So I don't believe that it mitigates the concern related to the fragile soil and the aquifer.
CO: The other thing you say is that now a whole different group of landowners are affected. Did these land owners know that the there was an alternative route, that it would pass over their land?
CR: I don't believe that they did. As part of the proceeding and under the statue TransCanada and Keystone were required to provide us proof that they had made public notice of every county which the pipeline would pass. We never received that proof. And so because we don't have any evidence that they were notified we can only conclude that they weren't.
CO: And does TransCanada have to do anything else at this point if they just say well OK you've agreed to this alternate route and here we go?
CR: That will largely depend on what happens next. All of the parties in this proceeding have a window where they can appeal to the court and I think that they will wait to see if such an appeal is made and then make a decision.
CO: You told us what was in your mind and heart about this, what you wanted to see, the outcome you wanted. How disappointed are you with the results?
CR: I'm really disappointed. I don't feel that the people of Nebraska got a fair shake. I really feel that we ought not have approved a pipeline route unless we were absolutely certain that all the landowners had been notified and that those landowners had had an opportunity to participate in this proceeding, I think it violates their due process.
CO: Is it possible though, with all the new hurdles that TransCanada will face — a longer route, a route they didn't want, a whole bunch more landowners they have to deal with, a growing protest, especially after the Keystone pipeline that spilled oil last week — that perhaps what your commission has done is dealt a backdoor way of shutting this down?
CR: I don't know. I really don't know what will happen next.
CO: We will be watching. Commissioner Rhoades, thank you.
CR: Thank you and have a good day.
JD: Crystal Rhoades is a member of the Nebraska Public Service Commission. She voted against the approval of TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline. We reached her in Omaha. And if you would like to see a map of the proposed routes go to our website; www.cbc.ca/aih.
[Music: Guitar and Bass]
Charles Manson Obit
Guest: Linda Deutsch
JD: He was a failed musician, an aspiring cult leader and a mass murderer. Charles Manson died behind bars yesterday of natural causes. He was 83 years old. In 1971 Mr. Manson was convicted of seven counts of murder, and later two additional murders. He was not present for the crimes but he did plan them and he convinced his young female followers to carry them out. Linda Deutsch is a retired crime reporter for The Associated Press who covered the trial of Charles Manson. We reached Ms. Deutsch in Los Angeles.
CO: Linda, you were a 24-year-old reporter when you got the assignment to cover the murder trial of Charles Manson. What were your first impressions of the man?
LINDA DEUTSCH: Well, I think that I was stunned when I first saw him because he came with this mythology of how weird and controlling that he was, and when you walked into the courthouse he was tiny. He was 5-foot-3 and very slender. He was a very slight man. He had this kind of stringy hair hanging in his face and he was wearing a buckskin jacket and he looked bewildered at that point because there were so many reporters and camera crews around.
CO: And now throughout the trial you were there. Did you get any sense as to how he could be such a captivating figure or why so many people, so many women especially, were attracted to him?
LD: Well, I don't think I would say that women were attracted to him. I think his genius in this whole thing, his mad genius, was to collect a very, very young people, mostly women, who were alienated in some way from their families, who were involved with drugs, who had no serious beliefs at that point. They had no belief systems. One of them was 14 years old. One of them that killed was 19 years old. It was choosing his followers that made all of his madness possible.
CO: There were three female followers who were prosecuted with him, were in the courtroom with him, is that right?
CO: Can you describe this because this is one of the more extraordinary things, just all the antics that went on in the courtroom during those days. Just describe what happened.
LD: Well, Manson was a master manipulator and so he choreographed the whole trial. He would get messages to his followers every day, to the three women on trial with him, of what they were to do. And that was things like jumping up in court and singing, chanting Buddhist mantras. Manson, himself, at one point, propelled himself across the counsel table at the judge with a sharpened pencil in his hand shouting “someone should cut your head off old man.”
CO: And you were 24 years old at this point? What was it like to be covering this trial? I mean, it must have been very disturbing at times.
LD: Well, it was — I was not much older than some of the followers — it was chaos from beginning to end. You had the girls camped on the sidewalk outside the courthouse, the followers who weren't arrested, and they were threatening to immolate themselves if Manson was convicted. There were people having LSD flashbacks in the courtroom. There were followers who came in and sat in the courtroom and got up and chanted or said they were there to save Manson. It was pretty much almost a psycho-drama going on there.
CO: As you know the prosecution's case was built by this one man, this prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi, who later he wrote a book called Helter Skelter about the trial. And in that story he describes how he built the case, which was to portray Charles Manson as a cult figure who was trying to start some kind of a race war. Others are disputing that narrative. What do you think?
LD: It was exaggerated. Bugliosi wanted to have something very dramatic for his opening statement. And so he told the story of Manson wanting to start a race war. A lot of us were skeptical of that and thought that he wasn't really smart enough to come to that conclusion. But then some of the Manson family members testified that he did talk about that. In the end I thought the judge had it right when he said that these were incomprehensible murders done for no reason that anyone could discern. It was inexplicable in the end.
CO: Do you think that the reason was mental illness?
LD: No, I think he was, he was a bad seed from the beginning. If you consider a sociopath mentally ill, maybe, yes. But from the time he was 8 years old he was in reform school, then he was in prison. He was a bad kid and a bad guy. And he could not function normally in society. The summer of 1969 when he got out of his last prison term he asked them to keep him in prison because he felt it was his home. And it would have been wonderful if they could have but they couldn't because he had served his term for a check forgery and they had to let him out. And that was when he landed in Haight Ashbury in San Francisco and saw the hippie movement that was going on. And being a wise con, which he was, he thought ‘wow this is something I could take advantage of’ — and he did.
CO: What do you make of — over all the years you, of course, stayed involved with this story and covered aspects of it — but at the same time this other cult following developed it, through pop culture, pop songs, an opera, films and T-shirts. What did you make of all that?
LD: I thought it was very disturbing that anybody would try to make him into anything other than a monster. He did change the culture and, I guess that that is why he's so remembered. He did away with all of the love and peace and understanding that the hippies were trying to promulgate. Why anyone would try to make him into any kind of a hero, I can't understand. I hope they are not, because if the devil had a face it was Manson's.
CO: Linda we will leave it there. And I appreciate speaking with you about this case. Thank you so much.
LD: Sure. Thank you. Bye, bye.
JD: Linda Deutsch is a retired crime reporter for The Associated Press. We reached her in L.A..
[Music: Sombre ballad]
Guest: Bob Unger
JD: When Bob Unger was a young guy he bought a goalie mask that he thought looked neat. It didn't provide a lot of protection from pucks to the face but he still wore it while playing junior hockey in Winnipeg in the 1970s. Well more than 40 years later, that neat mask is now on its way to the Hockey Hall of Fame. You may recognize the style as the one Montreal goalie Jacques Plante wore in the late 50s, or the one donned by Jason in the Friday the 13th franchise. Bob Unger's mask will be part of a new exhibit that shows how the protective gear has evolved over the years. Mr. Unger now coaches hockey in Winnipeg and that is where we reached him.
CO: Bob, just first of all describe this goalie mask from your childhood?
BU: Well, it was a mask that back when I was 11 or 12 — it's a form fitting type mask kind of like what Jacques Plante used to wear when he played, and the reason I bought it was just I think because I liked it so much, it looked really nice. My dad was totally against it because of the protection.
CO: Exactly, what did it look like?
BU: It looks like a Jacques Plante mask, you know, it was tight-fitting. It hardly had any protection to it and it was just a fiberglass, it was really cool.
CO: And some of them were painted all kinds of colors and patterns. What was yours?
BU: Well mine came white and my dad actually took it and wanted to put a star on it. So that's where the paint job came from, the yellow star is I guess what attracted the curator of the Stanley Cup towards it.
CO: We’ll go get to what's become, what's going to happen with your goalie mask in a second, but I want to ask you just a bit more about these kinds of masks because you mentioned Jacques Plante. He was the one who kind of originated the whole idea of a goalie mask. Everyone remembers in those days that those dramatic and kind of frightening masks that the goalies is wore. Is that what you liked about it?
BU: I really liked the style of this mask. It fit my face very well, I could see the puck very well with it. But I'll tell you, when the puck hit you, you felt it. I ended up using it about two years and then I had to get rid of it, it just hurt too much.
CO: And what did you replace that with?
BU: I went to the cage type mask.
CO: Which is what we have now. How did your mask become — this old mask of yours from childhood, from when you were 11 — how did it come to be noticed by the hockey hall of fame?
BU: I actually posted some pictures on Twitter with it and the curator of the Stanley Cup actually saw it and he shot me a message asking if they could display it. And at first it didn't really sink in, but he was actually pretty excited about the paint job and the history of the goalie mask. He loved the yellow star and he loved the marks on it. He like the history and he loved the story of me wearing it for a couple of years and then getting, of course, hit a few times.
CO: The marks are pretty frightening there are puck marks on the head.
BU: I know, and did it ever hurt when that puck hit.
CO: When I when I saw that in the picture, I can't imagine what that felt like.
BU: Yeah, but I guess back then it really stung. Again, there was just like pieces of little foam inside separating your face from the fiberglass itself. So you felt it back then, and the responses I got from the kids that play goal now going “oh you wore that back then, I’d love to see it.’ So I took it to the rink and showed some of my newer goalies and I couldn't believe that that's what protected our faces.
CO: But they must remember that, or seeing pictures of the goalies from that era right?
BU: Yeah, they they've seen the pictures but a lot of them haven't really seen the mask or actually felt it or tried it on. But I whenever I take it to the rink I would always have four, five, six goalies always wanting to put it on, to kind of experience that the feeling of fiberglass up against their face.
CO: And did you explain to them that it was a big improvement over what they had before, that Jacques Plante started wearing that.
BU: Yeah, exactly like that came a long way from having no mask to even less protection of what that had. They just couldn't imagine wearing them in today’s game and how fast it is and how the pucks come at you so fast. A lot of kids have put it on and it just brings a big smile to their face.
CO: Wasn't that mask, that fiberglass mask, the model for Friday the 13th the movie?
BU: I never thought of that, I guess it would have been yeah.
CO: It’s the same face.
BU: I’ve never thought of that.
CO: I think it is, well in any event, now your mask will be in the Hockey Hall of Fame just for this exhibition. What other masks are there what's it included with it?
BU: You know, I was there about 10 years ago and I saw like some of my childhood heroes — Ken Dryden, Cheevers — I saw at least about 50 different type of masks that were on display, so hopefully mine gets to go in that same exhibit. Now I've been told that it's going to be at the Hockey Hall of Fame for a while and then some kind of a road show, where they'll take it around the country and show it off with different displays.
CO: It's going to be there with all the others, you're donating it, and will you get a chance to see it there you're going to go and take a look?
BU: It's in the plans, probably maybe next year or the next couple of years. I'll talk to the curator, of course, and make sure that it's on display, and when I make the trip down there I would love to see it. Also with the mask they’re going to have my name and a brief story about the history of it.
CO: People like to be able to see those scuff marks on the head that you took.
BU: Yes, I hop so, that's part of the fun of seeing it, seeing how the paint’s all chipped up and that it did go to battle.
CO: And they should know thank goodness they don't have to have that as their mask anymore. A lot of parents are going to be quite happy to see that.
BU: I don't think it would pass the standards for the hockey people.
CO: Bob it's great to talk to you. Thanks.
BU: Yes, thank you for having me.
BU: Bye, bye.
JD: It was a different game. Bob Unger's old goalie mask will be displayed at the Hockey Hall of Fame. We reached Mr. Unger in Winnipeg.
[Music: Guitar Strums]
JD: Bob Katter is a longtime Australian member of parliament and the founder, and the leader, of Katter's Australian Party. His politics are sort of complicated but I can tell you this for sure — he does not like crocodiles. Now he doesn't blame the crocodiles for killing North Queenslanders quote “at the rate of probably one a year now” unquote. He blames his colleagues whom he has called “murderers” for not supporting a cull of what he has called “croc roaches.” Last month after a woman was apparently killed by a crocodile in North Queensland Bob Katter said the following.
BOB KATTER: The person that prevents us from shooting those crocodiles should be dragged into a courtroom and held to account for the deaths of North Queenslanders.
JD: And later in that interview he summed up his views of crocodiles.
BK: A crocodile is a crocodile, they eat people. They see you and they say that’s lunch.
JD: So his views on crocodiles are clear — they’re crocodiles. But his views on same sex marriage are also clear — he's against it. In an interview with Sky News in August he accused the LGBT community of trying to “take marriage from straight people.” He also accused them of stealing a perfectly good word. He said quote “I have a very clear idea of what is going on here. The homosexuals in Australia, they took the word gay” unquote. And he added “It has a particular meaning to me because I got 84 per cent in English in matriculation, which was very, very high mark indeed” unquote. Now you would assume that these two subjects — crocodiles and marriage equality — would be mutually exclusive. But last week Australians voted in favour of same sex marriage in a mail survey. And when he was asked about that Mr Katter showed a surprising change of opinion on that particular subject before making a surprisingly swift emotional left turn into a surprising and unrelated subject.
People are entitled to their sexual proclivities. Let there be a thousand blossoms blooming as far as I’m concerned, but I ain’t spending any time on it because in the meantime every three months a person is torn to pieces by a crocodile in North Queensland.
JD: Australian MP Bob Katter pro-sexual proclivity, anti-crocodile.Back To Top »
Part 2: Franken Bill, Argentina Sub, Della Reese Obit
Guest: Abby Honold
JD: Just days after a woman came forward alleging that Senator Al Franken kissed and groped her, a second woman has come forward with her story. A woman from Texas, by the name of Lindsay Menz, has accused Senator Franken of touching her inappropriately in 2010. She alleges he grabbed her buttocks while they were taking a photo together. Before these allegations emerged Senator Franken was working on a bill to help sexual assault survivors. Abby Honold was working on that bill with him. She has since asked his name to be taken off it. We reached Ms. Honold in Minneapolis.
CO: Ms. Honold, how did you react when you heard yet another woman has come forward with groping allegations against Senator Al Franken?
ABBY HONOLD: I think that it just confirmed everything I've been trying to say since Thursday, and confirmed my decision to transfer the bill and to Senator Klobuchar’s care.
CO: And when did you decide that you wanted to move Al Franken’s name from your bill?
AH: Almost immediately. I just knew, not only that you know that that behaviour was not something that I would approve of, but also that it would really delay the bill and this legislation is too important and would impact too many sexual assault survivors to be slowed down by something like this.
CO: Can you describe what you're hoping this legislation accomplishes?
AH: I am really hoping that this changes the way that law enforcement investigates sex crimes. Right now I don't think I've ever worked with a single victim who's been satisfied with their experience with law enforcement. The rare exceptions that I meet usually were interviewed at law enforcement agencies that have had this training.
CO: And what is the training that you are hoping that police have? And this is training in how to question a victim of sexual assault, is that right?
AH: Yes. Essentially the training deals with how the brain works when it's in shock. So during my police interview I was frustrated that at the time with my detective because he kept trying to force me to go in chronological order, and I didn't know this at the time, but what the brain is a shock things get kind of jumbled up. There are a lot of trainings out there, FETI (Forensic Experiential Trauma Interview) in particular, that help whoever is questioning the victim to get all the information that they possibly can and tie in sensory components to be able to get the victim to really connect with those memories.
CO: When was that situation that you were in? Tell us about your dealings with police and what led to that?
AH: Yeah, I was raped in November 2014 at a tailgate party while I was a student at the University of Minnesota. And I called 911 immediately and before the forensic nurse got to the hospital I was interviewed by a detective. At this point I knew that I was in pain. But throughout our entire interview I didn't even tell him that I was in pain. He kept trying to redirect me to go back and said “No you can't talk about that yet. We're on this.” And I really shut down during our interview and I got really frustrated. I felt like I wasn't doing a good job. I just wasn't in the mood to try and deal with the way that he was talking to me. In addition to just being a frustrating experience, I was told repeatedly that I didn't try hard enough to say no.
CO: How different was it when the forensic nurse arrived? How did that change things?
AH: The whole mood changed as soon as she came in the room. She sat me down, she explained what she was going to do, and she asked me about what I smelled, what I tasted. And she let me just talk.
CO: And this technique is something called Forensic Experiential Trauma Interview so trauma interview is that right?
AH: Yes it is.
CO: And what is it you hope that is done now — who would have that kind of training to do that technique?
AH: Well, most forensic nurses at least aim to try to have this training already. But I would hope that law enforcement, specifically sex crimes investigators and even any kind of responding officer would have this training.
CO: How did Senator Al Franken become involved with the bill?
AH: I had watched the media coverage of my own trial and the arrest and everything of my rapist. And I learned through that that my rapist had interned for Senator Franken. I had already been thinking about all the things that I wanted to change about the world, and I thought maybe he'll listen to me because there's a personal connection here and I and I'm sure that he's seen the news. So his office responded very quickly when I reached out which I was very grateful for.
CO: And so he decided he agreed to sponsor the bill.
AH: Yes. I talked through a bunch of ideas with him and he and his staffers really thought that the idea about the training was very doable.
CO: And what did he think — how did he react when you told him that his intern had been the man who was convicted of raping you?
AH: He had known about the news and all he said is that he remembered him and that he was horrified by the connection.
CO: Well how do you reconcile that — your experience with Senator Franken, with the stories that he has apologized for, for having groped a woman?
AH: Well, you know, it's difficult. And in no way am I trying to compare Senator Franken to Daniel Drill-Mellum, who is the man who raped me, but I never want to be the person that makes someone else feel like they are being believed about something that's happened to them.
CO: When you told his office you didn't want his name on the bill. How did Senator Franken respond?
AH: His staffers were very supportive. They affirmed for me that that is my decision. It is my legislation and that they would help me get it transferred to another senator.
CO: And did Senator Franken say anything — did you speak with him?
AH: I haven't heard anything, but from what I know about the senator I would hope that you understand my decision. And I think he has a lot of other stuff to deal with right now.
CO: I understand when you went public about wanting to drop him as a sponsor of the bill you were harassed online.
AH: I was. It’s kind of funny you can't really win on the internet. I was getting some harassment before I made the announcement but it doubled and tripled after I spoke to The Washington Post. I was told that I was being ungrateful, that no one would help me, that I was stupid, that I expected everyone to be perfect and I couldn't possibly hold everyone to my standard. And I even got rape threats.
AH: It was — yeah. People are kind of nasty sometimes to me on the internet just because of what I do and I'm used to it, but it was really hurtful average people who are actually using their own name to come at me with that kind of stuff.
CO: Well nothing should shock us with what turns up in social media anymore.
AH: Yes, I think that that's true unfortunately.
CO: Who is supporting your bill now?
AH: Senator Amy Klobuchar.
CO: And it's going to move ahead?
AH: It will.
CO: All right.
AH: She’s very excited.
CO: Thank you.
AH: Absolutely, thank you.
JD: That was Abby Honold. We reached her in Minneapolis. In a statement to CNN, Senator Franken said he did not remember taking the photograph with Ms. Menz and that he felt badly that she felt disrespected.
[Music: Ambient Guitar]
Quote Unquote: Quit Smoking
JD: And now Quotes Unquote.
[Music: Laid back Hip-Hop]
JD: In one of the classics of the early French new wave of cinema Jean-Paul Belmondo is hardly ever seen without a cigarette. That is not why it's called Breathless but you do have to imagine that he would only be able to run about three metres before wheezing to a halt. We never see that of course, which is why Breathless is still considered stylish and influential. And apparently even today, the vast majority of French films — 70 per cent — according to one French Senator, include at least one scene of someone lighting up. Well that statistic caught the ear of France's health minister Agnès Buzyn, who has now said that she will speak to France's culture minister about smoking in movies, which French cinephiles refer to as The Seventh Art. Now what exactly she is proposing is not clear, although she has promised to take firm action. That's pretty vague, but it is enough to make everyone in France very angry and certain that the state-du-nanny is hell bent on destroying all that is essentially French. And no one expressed his horror more Frenchly than philosopher Raphael Enthoven. During an interview with Europe One radio he scoffed quote “Injecting morality into the Seventh Art is like pouring cola in a Château Lafite” unquote.
[Music: Laid back Hip-Hop]
Guest: Bob Bush
JD: There were 44 people on the Argentine military submarine when it disappeared. And today, days after it vanished, the search continues — but rough waters and winds have made it complicated. Today Argentina's Navy said it was analyzing a sound that could possibly be from the sub. Bob Bush is a retired commander with the Canadian Navy. He has worked with submarines for decades and he has been watching the situation unfold from Ottawa.
CO: Mr. Bush how difficult do you think this search is?
BB: Well, from what I've seen online — and actually I was just watching a video taken from the bridge of one of the Argentine ships that's out there — the weather looks pretty bad. That's going to affect both surface search, on the off chance that they were still on the surface somewhere and underwater search because, of course, that sea state makes a lot of ambient underwater noise as well. So it's going to be very, very, very difficult.
CO: The last report I think they had was five days ago. So what do you think is going on there? What would it be like for those 44 people in that submarine?
BB: It would be desperate at this point in time, if they are underwater on the bottom, their air quality would be pretty bad. They do have systems to replenish the oxygen and take carbon dioxide out of the air. But depending on what the environment was like, to whatever kind of equipment failure would have actually put them on the bottom, and they may have started with not such good air quality to begin with.
CO: And likely they're at the bottom, they wouldn't have been at the top and with a mechanical failure?
BB: If they're on the surface with a mechanical failure that means they have no communications whatsoever including — because I think the satellite phone they have is probably a handheld system like you or I would have, if we had a satellite phone — they’re pretty good almost anywhere in the world. If they're on the surface they should be able to use that satellite phone to communicate. So if that isn't available to them then, if they are on the surface, they're in really, really bad condition, because they have no, virtually no power I guess at all, which would mean they'd be rolling around in that high seas state. That would be that would be preferable to being on the bottom but it certainly wouldn't be very comfortable.
CO: Now we heard today that the captain of the submarine reported some kind of a mechanical failure last Wednesday and was told to head back to base and then disappeared. This is a diesel powered submarine. What could it be?
BB: Well, what I've read — again and just relying on the same news everybody else reads — is that they reported an electrical failure or a quote unquote “short circuit,” that could be all kinds of things — but if it means anything to do with the main batteries which power the submarine that that could be quite serious. A submarine, of course, being a diesel-electric, well any submarine batteries for power backup power even, has a large bank of very large batteries that if they do malfunction can be catastrophic. I'm not saying that that's what's happened, but certainly there is a possibility.
CO: If they’re 330 miles off the coast, if they are at the bottom it’s pretty far down. If they can be located, which seems difficult, how would they get the submarine up?
BB: They probably wouldn’t but they would get the crew out. The submarine as has a German built boat. It has an escape and rescue system that's compatible with NATO standards, the equipment of the U.S. Navy is sending there is compatible submarine, they would be able to get the crew out of the submarine using that submersible that The U.S. is bringing. The other side of that is that the crew could in fact escape from the submarine. They're trained, I'm sure, to do that in Argentina and they would have the equipment to do that, which means that they could, in fact, get out of the submarine themselves that are on the bottom. The difficulty there, of course, is that the sea conditions on the surface it would not make a lot of sense to go to escape of the submarine unless you absolutely knew there was somebody on the surface there to pick you up. And they're not in that situation.
CO: You described how the oxygen and how they can to some degree replenish that. How many days oxygen would they have? How much more air do they have?
BB: Well, that kind of depends on how they started. If they had a fire onboard, for instance, they would have an air quality that was pretty poor to begin with. So it might be very difficult for them to survive any length of time at all. I know they’re reporting that they have seven to 10 days worth of oxygen, quote unquote, on board. But of course they have to generate oxygen and remove CO2 from the air to make a breathable atmosphere. They have equipment to do both those things. So it really comes down to just what the air quality was to begin with. But the pressure inside the boat as is light because, of course, that compresses the toxins in the air if the pressure is up.
CO: So for a few days, few more days?
BB: I would not say a few more days. They've been down there for five days already. Even in the best of circumstances I think they would be getting pretty close to the end of the storea that they have and the end of the ability to keep the atmosphere in reasonable condition. So there, again, would be a reason for them to decide to escape from the submarine if they're still capable of doing that.
CO: Those poor sailors.
BB: It's terrible to think about.
CO: And what is it like for you to watch this?
BB: Well, hard to describe it. You can certainly put yourself in their shoes. We train to respond to these types of situations, both in the submarine and we in the international community, to help in this type of situation. So it's something that we've always been aware could happen, but when it really does, it certainly hammers it home.
CO: We’ll leave it there. Mr. Bush, I appreciate speaking with you, thank you.
BB: Thanks very much.
JD: Bob Bush is a retired commander with the Canadian Navy. We reached him in Ottawa earlier today.
[Music: Whimsical Banjo]
Della Reese Obit
JD: She could act, she could sing and she could host. Della Reese was a true triple-threat, although her most famous role was the opposite of threatening. For nine seasons the jazz and pop singer played Tess, the wise angel, in the enormously popular television show Touched By An Angel. Della Reese died yesterday at her home in California. She was 86 years old. Her prolific television career included more than just acting roles. She was the first black woman to host a national television variety talk show. It was called Della. It ran from 1969 through 1970, and she filled in for Johnny Carson a few times as guest host on The Tonight Show. Back in 1983, Della Reese spoke with former CBC radio host Vicki Gabereau. Here's part of that conversation.
VICKI GABEREAU: Did you really used to be a cab driver.
DELLA REESE: Yes, and a truck driver, an elevator operator, switchboard operator, I was a secretary to a real estate agent, secretary to a dentist.
VG: Where did you drive a cab?
DR: In Detroit, Michigan — I did it all in Detroit Michigan. I made good money, I was a novelty. I made sometimes bigger tips because when I got out to open the door and they found out I was a woman they would go ‘Oh’ and do something extra for me, you know.
VG: Not too many of them I guess?
DR: Not too…
VG: Women at that time.
DR: At that time there were not, no.
VG: You gave it up thank heavens.
DR: But it brought me through that period of time. I don't know of anything else, at that time, that would have paid what that paid.
VG: And gave you a certain sense of freedom.
DR: I enjoyed the driving, I learned the city, I made a lot of friends doing that. I got a different look at life from that seat because you hear a lot of things in a taxi cab when people don't think you're paying attention.
VG: Right. Yeah that's the best part I think.
DR: One time, I don't know why I just thought about this now, but one time a man got in the cab and he’d just come from a house of ill repute and he wasn't satisfied with what had happened to him there. And he was really talking women down. He was saying they were no good no good. And then you and I, at the time, had my hair cut short and I wore this cab cap and he never knew that I was a woman. And he was talking to me like ‘Buddy!’ So when I got out to open the door for him I took off my cap and he saw the lipstick and he saw my eyes that he realized that I was the woman, and to compensate he gave me $20 as a tip. He was just so frustrated and it was like everything that he had said ran back across his mind, you know, and he was so sorry. He just went to fumbling for his money and he ended up giving me $20 for a tip. I never said a word.
VG: I love it. Easiest $20 you ever made.
JD: That was actress and gospel singer Della Reese in conversation with former CBC radio host Vicki Gabereau in 1983. Della Reese died yesterday. She was 86 years old.Back To Top »
Part 3: Libya Slaves, Tape: Roy Moore Accuser, Truck Accident
JD: Levi Budd is a Grade 2 student in British Columbia and he would like to expand your vocabulary by one word. Now those of you who are out there with young kids might not see that as that unusual of an occurrence. But the Budd family is hoping that the word catches on — the effort has even attracted the attention of Canadian actor and icon William Shatner. Lucky Budd is Levi Bud's father, he explained his son's proposed addition rather to the lexicon to the CBC's Sheryl MacKay yesterday. Here is a clip from that interview.
LUCKY BUDD: This all began with my son Levi who, when three years old, started reading. And when he was four years old he got this stuffed animal that was a long snake. It's about six feet long and he named it Snakey Bob. And he quickly learned that Bob spelled backwards is Bob. And he asked us “What is that?” And we said “Oh, well that's a palindrome.” And then he got really excited about palindromes and for the next few months we kept hearing things like otto and level, and that eventually turned into a race car. And when he was five he was driving with his mom and they pulled up to a stop sign and he said “Mum stop spells pots backwards. That's not a palindrome. What is that?” And she said “I don't know. Let's go look it up.” And so she went home and we looked it up and there is no word in the dictionary for a word that spells another one backwards — and he couldn't believe that. He said “Well why don't we name it after me? Why don't we call it the Levidrome instead of a palindrome?” And we thought well, hey that's a really great idea, though I think you'd probably pronounce it more like levitate — Levidrome right. Yeah that sounds great. So I got in touch with Webster's Dictionary and I had to explain the story to them about my six-year-old, who's still five actually, my five-year-old son. And they said well that's great and all that is a good word but that's not really how it works. If you want to get a word into the dictionary it needs to be in common usage. So he said to me “Well how are we going to do that?” And so I thought about it and I thought well let's make a video and tell your story so we made a YouTube video. And in the first month I think it had something like 6,000 or 7,000 views and it just started going and people are starting to talk about levidromes.
SHERYL MACKAY: So what's been happening lately? Has it ended up in any dictionary?
LD: Well, it's been accepted into two online dictionaries, it's been accepted on to urbanditcionary.com, and recently I got in touch with Webster's just to tell them how things were going and they said “You guys should submit it to our open source dictionary.” So we submitted it to the open source dictionary and it was accepted by a committee into the Webster's Open-Source dictionary, so it is it is coming along. It's not quite made the popularity to be in the print version yet but it is on their radar which is incredibly exciting.
JD: That was Lucky Budd in conversation with Sheryl MacKay, host of CBC's North by Northwest, in British Columbia.
[Music: Laidback Jazz]
Guest: Nima Elbagir
JD: They were referred to as the merchandise — but they were people — and they were for sale, at auction, in Libya in 2017. Nima Elbagir is a correspondent with CNN. She was sent a video of one of these auctions and then she traveled to Libya to investigate. Upon arrival she was able, to not only verify the authenticity of the video, but she was able to witness and record one herself. We reached Ms. Elbagir in London.
CO: Nima, when you first saw this video what did you make of it?
NIMA ELBAGIR: I mean, it sounds ridiculous for someone who puts words together for a living but I found it indescribable. I don't think I'll ever be able to genuinely do justice to what it felt like to watch that video because your brain almost suspends disbelief. It just feels unbelievable. And it was just — what I found so incredibly chilling was the casualness, the utter banality of the auctioneers and the way that they were almost like horse traders they were kind of geeing up the prices. Your brain almost won't allow you to process it as real life.
CO: Then you went to do your own investigation in Libya and can you tell us what you were able to go undercover and actually witness in the form of one of these slave sales?
ME: So we were able to find someone who at great, great risk was willing to bring us along. So when we arrived we were taken to the back of the yard outside of these warehouses where the people who are being kept and they were brought out. And what really struck me at the time was, first of all, how fast it all happened. Within minutes it felt like these people had been sold. And then secondly how they just kept going. We walked in we were strange women, they had no idea who we were, and yet they were so bizarrely comfortable about the fact that they were able to continue doing this that they just kept going.
CO: And these were — what you saw were men from Niger. How many of them were sold in front of your eyes?
ME: Twelve, twelve. We confirmed that with the auctioneer himself.
CO: And two what were they sold? What were they being sold to do?
ME: There was a combination of things. Some of them were sold to operate farm machinery. There was this incredibly surreal moment where clearly the guy being sold was concerned about the ramifications of him being sold somewhere and being unable to do his job. So when the auctioneers said “I've got a driver, I've got a driver.” He jumped up said “ No, no, no. I don't know how to drive. I am a digger. I can operate digging machinery.”
CO: And the men themselves how are they responding? I mean, were they resisting? Do they have, do they seem to have a voice in this at all?
ME: They seemed very resigned. I think for a lot of them they don't realize what awaits them. So they seem to believe that it is yet another step on their journey to Europe. Obviously there's a lot of beatings, there is a lot of duress, but at the same time, I think, ultimately they do believe that if I pay off this so-called ‘debt’ to this smuggler then I will be allowed to continue my journey to Europe. And then speaking to the people who'd actually been sold, you realize that, actually, often they're sold multiple times, so they're told that there's initial debt and that's why they have to be enslaved so that debt is paid off. But then a few of the men that we spoke to who had been former slaves said even after that so-called ‘debt’ was paid off they still were forced to pay a ransom, that their families were contacted. And one of them, Victory, the young man we spoke to in the piece, even after he'd been sold multiple times and then his family had paid off a ransom of about $3,000, still they did release him. And it was only when the anti-illegal immigration agency squads were able to go into these warehouses and free them he was finally freed.
CO: These are men who have been trying to escape from other places. Libya is, as we know, the port through which so many of the migrants and refugees are trying to get across the Mediterranean, trying to get into Europe. How do they end up being owned by these merchants who are selling them?
ME: It’s a combination of factors, so on one hand you have the Italian government, for instance, is actually providing resources to Libyan factions to force a drop in the number of smugglers boats that successfully make it to Europe. So there is a build-up of these migrants in these warehouses. So part of it is manufactured by the smugglers this pretense that actually the trip is more expensive than it was initially, it's become more expensive, and so therefore instead of you sitting in my warehouse and me having to pay to feed you, you're going to go out to make money for me.
CO: So essentially it would appear to be that men who are being sold they somehow believe it's their debt that's being sold and not them. But, in fact, on top of being sold, that's not the case, they're not going to get anything back from it themselves.
ME: Yeah, absolutely. But in addition to the issue of the debt is also the issue that they have no means, there's no way for them to escape, there's no way for them to go back home. The men that we spoke to said that while they were being held in those warehouses they were beaten every single day and you see those scars that they showed us. So some of them may think that it is the debt that's being sold but they also know that there is no other option and they have no alternative.
CO: Did you get any sense of the scale of these kinds of sales?
ME: That's very hard to get any sense of. But I think what was really telling for us was that we walked into that detention centre in Tripoli and within about five minutes we'd found 15-20 men who said that they'd been sold.
CO: The detention centres where the men who do escape, the ones who were then taken into custody because they're illegal. The pictures you have of them, the conditions are horrendous. They’re just being piled in there and also warehoused there. The Libyan government does not want these people in the country. What are they saying about your investigation? You've sent tape over to them. You've told them what you found out. How are they responding to this?
ME: Well, I think the images and the fact that we were able to witness this ourselves puts them in a situation where they having to acknowledge something that they'd rather not acknowledge. But at the same time they do make some very good points, which is the fact that Libya has become this front line. They are enforcing the borders in Europe. They're the ones who are policing those borders with very little resources. Libya itself is teetering on failed statehood. So while there is the reality of the Libyan authorities not being particularly proactive, I think there's also the issue of Europe not being particularly proactive — of the world. There is a level of complicity that doesn't just begin and end with the Libyan government.
CO: Nima, it's a very disturbing story and I appreciate that you went in there and you got this tape. Thank you for speaking with us tonight.
ME: Thank you so much for having us Carol.
JD: Nima Elbagir is a senior international correspondent with CNN. We reached her in London, England. And we have more on this story, including the video of the slave auction in Libya, on our website: www.cbc.ca/aih.
[Music: Ambient Tones]
JD: At some point in your life you have likely told a story that you perhaps should not have. But I mean, sometimes the story is just too good not to share — even if you risk hurting someone's feelings or causing an international incident this weekend. New Zealand's prime minister Jacinda Ardern told comedian Tom Sainsbury about meeting U.S. president Donald Trump for the first time at last week's ASEAN Summit. Prime Minister Ardern Mr. Sainsbury were presenting an award together at the New Zealand Music Awards. So here he is on a New Zealand radio show explaining what she told him.
HOST: What did she say about Donald Trump by the way?
TOM SAINSBURY: He's not as orange in real life, and I don't know if I should be saying it but, she said that Donald Trump is confused for a good amount of time thinking that she was Justin Trudeau’s wife.
HOST: He had no idea?
JD: Definitely an awkward first meeting. Now New Zealand's prime minister says that is not exactly how it went. So when you tell a funny yarn, you see, it changes ever so slightly as it makes its way through the old grapevine. So here is Jacinda Ardern herself, explaining what really happened on TV New Zealand's morning show with host Jack Tame.
JACK TAME: Did Donald Trump mistake you for Justin Trudeau’s wife?
PRIME MINISTER JACINDA ARDERN: Secondhand someone observed that they thought that had happened. But in all my interactions, certainly President Trump didn't seem to have confused me when I interacted with him but someone else observed this.
JT: So someone in your team observed this?
JA: No, no someone else entirely.
JT: Who observed this?
JA: This is you trying to dig into the details. I know it's a matter of intrigue but lots of things go on behind the scenes when we were in — they hold us in these pens before you go into your meetings and those are the occasions when you interact with one another and someone else believes that observed some confusion. But, as I say, none of my interactions suggested that was the case.
JT: Who thought they observed.
JA: I’m not going to give you the details.
JT: Is it a New Zealander?
JA: No, but I'm not going to give you…
JT: It was another world leader?
JA: I'm going to leave it there and just say look nothing.
JT: So why did two different people in New Zealand think that Donald Trump mistook you for Justin Trudead’s wife?
JA: They heard the full story but I'm leaving it at that. Tom's a mate of mine. I shared a story with him, he shared it with someone else, I can see how that then spirals. But the conversation I had with him was very brief behind the scenes. What I want to be really clear on is that in my discussions with the president he didn't seem to be confused. Someone else believed I was, it was a bit of a funny yarn, something that I don't want to cause a diplomatic incident over.
JT: Do you think you should have been clear in recounting the story?
JA: No, I think I should never have recounted the story.
JD: Moral of the story — don't tell embarrassing stories about other people — especially when you're talking to a comedian, and especially when you're a world leader, and especially when the story involves one world leader in particular.
Roy Moore Accuser
JD: The woman who first accused Roy Moore of sexual assault is speaking out again. Earlier today Leigh Corfman gave her first televised interview on NBC's Today Show. She opened up about her encounter with the Alabama Republican Senate candidate, and how it affected her, her self-esteem and her life over the years. Corfman first told The Washington Post her story earlier this month and in the past few weeks nine women have come forward to accuse Mr. Moore of inappropriate behaviour. He has denied the allegations. During her interview today Ms. Corfman spoke about how she met Mr. Moore when she was 14 years old. She also addressed Mr. Moore's response to the allegations. Here's what she told Today Show host Savannah Guthrie.
LEIGH CORFMAN: Well, I wouldn't exactly call it a date, I’d say it was meet, at 14 I was not dating, at 14 I was not able to make those kind of choices. I met him around the corner from my house. My mother did not know. And he took me to his home. After arriving at his home on the second occasion that I went with him, he basically laid out some blankets on the floor of his living room and proceeded to seduce me, I guess you would say. And during the course of that he removed my clothing. He left the room and came back in wearing his white underwear and he touched me over my clothing, what was left of it. And he tried to get me to touch him as well. And at that point I pulled back and said that I was not comfortable and I got dressed and he took me home. But I was a 14-year-old child trying to play in an adult's world. And he was 32 years old.
SAVANNA GUTHRIE: A couple things, Roy Moore denies these allegations and further says he does not even know you. I wonder how many ‘me’s he doesn't know. Kayla Moore, Roy Moore’s wife, has suggested that some of the accusers, although she didn't name you specifically, that some of the accusers were paid. So I have to ask you were you paid or compensated in any way by any entity for your story?
LC: Absolutely not. Absolutely not. If anything does this has cost me. I've had to take leave from my job. I have no tickets to Tahiti and my bank account has not flourished. If anything it has gone down because currently I'm not working.
JD: That was Leigh Corfman in conversation with Savannah Guthrie, host of NBC's Today Show. Ms Corfman is one of several women accusing GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore of sexual assault. Mr. Moore has denied all the allegations.
[Music: Ambient Tones & Bass]
Guest: Ken McInnes
JD: What would you do if your vehicle plunged over a bridge into the icy waters rather of a river below. Would you panic? Would you scream? I would too. But Ken McInnes did neither. When the 73-year-old man's pickup truck hit ice and plunged into a waterway last week, he was prepared. We reached Mr. McInnes in St. Claude, Manitoba.
CO: Ken, have your boots dried out yet?
KEN MCINNES: I got them all dried now, yeah.
CO: And have you warmed up?
KM: I was warm an hour-and-a-half afterwards.
CO: But I'm sure you were pretty cold when you were in that water.
KM: Yeah but you know what, you don't even think about it because you got so much else on your mind.
CO: Like getting out.
KM: Yeah. You know, you don't notice it so much until I actually got out — till I was out on land.
CO: Well, let's just go back to the beginning and how this accident happened. What were you doing when it happened?
KM: I was towing a fifth wheel trailer, like a gooseneck trailer, I was towing that over to the mine's place behind my truck.
CO: And what happened?
KM: You're coming up to a big drainage ditch, the river runs into it, there's a big curve. So I took that curve and then there's a sharp curve coming onto a bridge, onto a bridge over there over the drainage ditch. And I had been on that road a week previous. There was no ice or anything but we had a couple of warm days last week and I guess it just melted somewhat and then froze. So I just went around the corner and just normal — my truck never skidded at all — but the trailer that I was towing once the truck straightened out on the bridge the trailer slid sideways and hit the wooden guardrail. You know, it was rotten, so it just took the guardrail right out, then over the bridge went the trailer — 36 foot trailer. It probably weighs 10,000 pounds, the weight of it just pulled my truck right over backwards and over and over we went and landed on the ice.
CO: And it pulled you backwards you landed on the ice. Were you upright? What position was your truck in?
KM: I have no idea. I'm thinking just the way everything happened, I think it landed upright but straight up and down the back end of it landed probably on the ice. And then that flopped over on its side.
CO: And did the ice hold?
KM: Oh no the ice didn’t hold, I went right through the ice. So then the truck started filling with water of course. The truck was laying on the driver's side and so then I had to stand up and I tried to open the door on the passenger's side without any success. And so I then thought well I'll just break a window but tried to break the window and couldn't break it, couldn't break the window. So in the meantime the truck was still filling up with water. So it was getting really high then — when I say really high I mean that was about two inches left. I actually took a couple of mouthfuls of water but at that point I figured well that door has to open. There's no other way, it has to open. So I guess at a time like that a little more adrenaline kicks in and so a little more strength. And I tried the door the door again and I got it open. So climbed I up, got just about out, got all out except one foot and the door slammed down shut on my one on my right foot.
CO: And trapped your foot.
KM: Yeah. So then I was just laying on my back in the water. But at this point in time I'm already out, so nothing is going to happen now. I mean, you know, I could lay there for the next half hour until somebody comes for that matter.
CO: And what did you do when you got to, you finally got out and got on the road?
KM: I got to the edge of the ditch and a passerby had stopped by this time, he comes down and gives me a hand walking up, because it's pretty steep. So he came down gave me a hand up there and another fellow stopped by and he backed his pickup down and got me into the back of his pickup and by the time he drove me up to the top the ambulance was there. So they just loaded me in there and took me to the hospital to warm up.
CO: And got you all wrapped up in the ambulance.
KM: Yes. Yes.
CO: So did you have a moment when you were finally rescued that you thought gosh I might not have survived that?
KM: Not really. At no time did I ever think that — there was no time that I ever did think that I wasn't going to make it out.
KM: I am a pretty positive person — I don't know where to give up. So even as I was going down I was I was already thinking of how I was gonna get out, you know, how I was going to — what I was going to do first.
CO: Have you been in a situation like that before?
KM: Yeah, a few probably, more than I want to remember.
CO: Like what?
KM: I lost the steering on a truck, headed into the dealership and they, I guess they didn't do a good job I lost the main sharing arm at 110 kilometres and plowed through a snow bank down an embankment so steep that when it hit bottom the whole truck just went right over end-over-end and landed upside down in five feet of snow. So sometime during that I guess my head must have broken the window the side window and the truck was still absolutely packed with snow so I had to dig my way out of there and then I was four feet under the snow. I got out the window and then dug my way to the top. I don't even want to relate all the rest — there have been quite a few.
CO: I understand d you you've been in Australia and Alaska and every place and that had a few rescues there.
KM: Yeah in Alaska I was in colder water because, of course, it's saltwater, but that was to rescue somebody else who was drowning. I just went in and got the life preserver around him and then they got him pulled in. So I was only in there for five minutes. I mean, you know that was pretty cold but it was never any danger. I'm a good swimmer so I just kept the life preserver on him and then they got him hauled in and then I got in too.
CO: Well Ken, I'm glad that people were around to help you get out of that. That was a sticky situation. Ken it’s good to talk to you. Thanks.
KM: OK. All right. Thank you.
JD: We reached Ken McInnes in St. Claude, Manitoba.
[Music: Piano Ballad]
Gary the Goat obit
JD: Tributes have been pouring in for an Australian legend — Gary the goat. The six-year-old Billy goat rose to fame as one half of a traveling comedy duo. Comedian Jim Dezarnaulds, also known as Jimbo Bazoobi, says he was offered the goat in exchange for a case of beer in 2011, after which Jimbo and Gary toured Australia performing stand-up comedy. Gary has a massive following of more than 1.7 million people on his Gary the goat Facebook page, and it was there that Mr. Bazoobi broke the news that the animal Castello to his human Abbott, was euthanized last week after being diagnosed with a bleed from a heart tumor. Carol spoke with Mr. Bazoobi On January 23rd of 2013, after Gary the goat showed up in court to dispute a $440 fine for destroying vegetation. From our archives here's part of their conversation.
JIM DEZARNAULDS: I've got the fine for what Gary did and then we're walking down the road and someone recognized him and he said “I'm a lawyer” and I said I “Can you help us out?” And so basically Gary came up to the court steps but they wouldn't let him in. I was going to put some glasses on and pretend I was a blind guy who had been ripped off all the guard dogs association but security didn’t go for that he just hung out for it and we went in and dealt with it.
CO: So Gary did not get his day in court then?
JD: He couldn't get into court. So legally you can’t fine an animal so they basically fined me, but it's all completely ridiculous and no one can really believe how it actually got to court in the first place.
CO: How did it get the court in the first place?
JD: I don’t know what it's like with you guys, but there's a lot of rules and regulations these days which are just sort of an abuse of common sense really. And so the policeman basically came out to me and said “You've done a whole lot of things wrong,” when he saw the goat and I said “Can you name one?” And then he said “Out of control animal” and he's a really tame animal, I went and patted him and said “Oh you think this is out of control?” Then he said “Well it's not on the lead.” I said look the sigh says you have to have dogs on a lead, this is a goat.” And it kind of escalated from there. And then at the end he couldn't get anything out of me after detaining me for an hour and he said look “I'm going to get you on something, I'll mail it to you.” And then he mailed me this and we took it to court basically the end of the day Gary taught these cops a valuable lesson, don’t bite off more than you can chew.
CO: So now what was the what was Gary's lawyers argument in court as to why he shouldn't be fined for vandalism?
JD: Well I'm sitting back just kind of not really understanding, but he came down to our intent. We went to this place to eat but there was no intent to vandalize anything in particular. The police were trying to say he was eating flowers and I was just saying it was bush, and then it came down to was it a flower or a half open bud. How many did he eat. Oh he's just eating one or two with it one or two and it was just getting more and more ridiculous. And then it was like have all I got control over Gary to tell him what to wait. And it was just basically weird. The police once it escalated and got into the press they’ve into court trying to say that he eats flowers and he ripped out of a bush, which is complete slander of Gary the goat. Up in court they really couldn't back it up with any evidence.
CO: And it was proven that Gary had no criminal intention? He was not he didn't have a criminal mind?
JD: The judge is basically saying look he wasn't destroying or damaging vegetation. He was eating and that's what goats do. So these rules and regulations are not only sort of abusing common sense but they’re no starting to abuse the laws of nature.
CO: All right well Gary is free is a he?
JD: I don't know are goats allowed to eat grass over there?
CO: They definitely eat stuff here. Yeah right.
JD: Well we’ll try to get over there one day, it sounds like a free country.
CO: All right Mr. Bazoobi good to talk to you. Bye, bye.
JD: Thank you.
JD: That was Australian comedian Jim Dezarnaulds also known as Jimbo Bazoobi speaking with Carol in 2013 about his pet goat’s fine for vandalism. Gary the goat Mr. Dezarnaulds’ comedy partner died last week. He was six years old.
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