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Newsroom/World View

NEWSROOM for December 14, 2000

Aired December 14, 2000 - 4:30 a.m. ET


ANNOUNCER: Seen in classrooms the world over, this is CNN NEWSROOM.

RUDI BAKHTIAR, CO-HOST: From the CNN Center in Atlanta, this is CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Rudi Bakhtiar. Welcome. Let's start with a look at the rundown.

We begin with an ending, the conclusion of the race for the U.S. presidency.

Then today's "Science Desk" takes us to the outer limits to ponder the ins and outs of life on the space station.

Moving on, "Worldview" orbits a little bit closer to home to discuss the problem of global warming.

And we'll leave you with more endings as we "Chronicle" some famous farewells.

More than five weeks after Americans went to the polls, the United States officially has a president-elect. George W. Bush claimed the presidency Wednesday night during a speech at the Texas House of Representatives. Vice President Al Gore gave up his presidential bid earlier in a nationally broadcast speech.


VICE PRES. AL GORE (D), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Just moments ago, I spoke with George W. Bush and congratulated him on becoming the 43rd president of the United States, and I promised him that I wouldn't call him back this time. I offered to meet with him as soon as possible so that we can start to heal the divisions of the campaign and the contest through which we've just passed.

Almost a century and a half ago, Sen. Stephen Douglas told Abraham Lincoln, who had just defeated him for the presidency, "partisan feeling must yield to patriotism. I'm with you, Mr. President, and God bless you."

Well, in that same spirit I say to President-elect Bush that what remains of partisan rancor must now be put aside, and may God bless his stewardship of this country.

Neither he nor I anticipated this long and difficult road. Certainly neither of us wanted it to happen. Yet it came, and now it has ended, resolved as it must be resolved through the honored institutions of our democracy.

Over the library of one of our great law schools is inscribed the motto, "Not under man, but under God and law." That's the ruling principle of American freedom, the source of our democratic liberties. I've tried to make it my guide throughout this contest as it has guided America's deliberations of all the complex issues of the past five weeks.

Now the U.S. Supreme Court has spoken. Let there be no doubt: While I strongly disagreed with the court's decision, I accept it. I accept the finality of this outcome, which will be ratified next Monday in the Electoral College. And tonight, for the sake of our unity as a people and the strength of our democracy, I offer my concession.



GOV. GEORGE W. BUSH (R), PRESIDENT-ELECT: I believe things happen for a reason, and I hope the long wait of the last five weeks will heighten the desire to move beyond the bitterness and partisanship of the recent past. Our nation must rise above a house divided. Americans share hopes and goals and values far more important than any political disagreements. Republicans want the best for our nation, and so do Democrats. Our votes may differ, but not our hopes.

I know America wants reconciliation and unity. I know Americans want progress, and we must seize this moment and deliver. Together, guided by a spirit of common sense, common courtesy and common goals, we can unite and inspire the American citizens. Together we will work to make all our public schools excellent, teaching every student of every background and every accent so that no child is left behind.

Together we will save Social Security and renew its promise of a secure retirement for generations to come. Together we will strengthen Medicare and offer prescription drug coverage to all of our seniors. Together we will give Americans the broad, fair and fiscally responsible tax relief they deserve.

Together we'll have a bipartisan foreign policy true to our values and true to our friends, and we'll have a military equal to every challenge and superior to every adversary. Together we will address some of society's deepest problems one person at a time by encouraging and empowering the good hearts and good works of the American people.


BAKHTIAR: So close was election 2000 that it reverberated throughout the American political system. Many called it the perfect civics lesson for young and old alike. This captivating election raised many questions, perhaps questions to ponder for years to come; questions like, what will you tell your grandchildren about election 2000? What have you learned from this unique election? And will you, as President Abraham Lincoln once said, strive on to finish the work and "bind up the nation's wounds."

Ponder these questions now as Bill Schneider reflects on what was an entrenched battle where both the Bush and Gore camps stood on their principles.


WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST (voice-over): The United States has never gotten a president in quite this way before. The popular vote winner lost the election. The electoral vote is closer than it's been in over 100 years. The election was decided by the courts. Democrats went to court to get the votes counted.

WILLIAM DALEY, GORE CAMPAIGN CHAIRMAN: We urge everyone to let the counting, supervised by the independent judiciary, proceed without interruption to a speedy conclusion. All of these matters should be resolved by the Florida's judiciary, not by the politicians.

SCHNEIDER: Republicans went to court to keep the results from being changed.

JAMES BAKER, BUSH CAMPAIGN OBSERVER: This is what happens when, for the first time in modern history, a candidate resorts to lawsuits to try to overturn the outcome of an election for president.

SCHNEIDER: And for the first time ever, the United States Supreme Court decided who would be president by a narrow, highly partisan majority.

AL GORE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This is America. When people vote, their votes are counted. They're not arbitrarily set aside because it's hard to count them.

SCHNEIDER: Yes, we do, said the Supreme Court, not arbitrarily, but when counting them does not meet constitutional standards. Gore must decide how strong a stand he wants to make on principle, the principle that came to define his campaign: every vote must count.

GORE: And we must not let those voices be silenced; not for today, not for tomorrow, not for as long this nation's laws and democratic institutions let us stand and fight to let those voices count.

SCHNEIDER: For Gore to say "I concede" is to say "I lost." Gore doesn't believe he lost. But if he takes that stand, he's encouraging Democrats to remain unreconciled to George W. Bush as the legitimate winner.

Bush has to decide how he intends to govern. Conservatives were amazingly patient during this campaign. But now Republicans will control the White House and both houses of Congress for the first time into nearly 50 years. There will be pressure on Bush to press a conservative agenda. But that's not the way Bush ran.

BUSH: I have worked with Democrats and Republicans in Texas, and I will do so in Washington. I will listen and I will respect different points of view.

SCHNEIDER: Other presidents have taken office after intensely divisive conflicts. After the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln began his second inaugural address by saying "with malice toward none, with charity for all," a view not shared by his party. After the tumultuous events of 1968, Richard Nixon promised to "bring us together."

After Watergate, Gerald Ford told the nation, "Our long national nightmare is over." The division in this election was over the election itself. That makes it tough for Bush, because the issue is his own legitimacy.


BAKHTIAR: Now we want to talk about something I find fascinating: space. At one time, I had aspirations of becoming an astronaut, but obviously my career path took a very different turn. Well, I did learn a little about being an astronaut. For example, the word astronaut is derived from Greek words meaning "star sailor."

Your odds of becoming a star sailor? Well, only about 100 people are chosen for the astronaut training program every two years. And your expected earnings? Roughly between $39,000 and $78,000 a year. Sound good to you?

What about living in space? Well, just this week, the shuttle Endeavour returned after spending 11 days working on the International Space Station. Once the station is ready, would you be ready to live there?

Here's Ann Kellan with some details that may just help you make up your mind.


ELLEN BAKER, ASTRONAUT: I'm going to put on my safety goggles.

ANN KELLAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Astronaut and physician Ellen Baker is a veteran of three shuttle missions, including a stint on Mir.

BAKER: Your thighs and your calves will get thinner because that fluid redistributes itself. Your face will get puffy.

KELLAN: A shuttle mission lasts a couple of weeks, while crews will live six months on the International Space Station.

BAKER: On the shuttle we get enough to pretty much change our clothes every day. On the space station they wouldn't be able to change their clothes that often; probably be closer to every five days. KELLAN: Exercise is crucial on the station, since muscles get weak and bones get thin in zero gravity.

There's a tiny bathroom.

(on camera): So where's the lid?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is supposed to indicate the lid.

KELLAN: This thing here?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, this lifts up.


BAKER: We don't have a shower, but we do have sponge baths and we do have soap that -- it lathers up pretty good and you can wipe it off, and your hair feels reasonably clean.

KELLAN (voice-over): No home cooking here. Half the food is Russian, served in a can, half U.S., served in a bag. And the meals rotate so each gets the taste of the other's culture. Many Russian cosmonauts had never tasted pudding before. U.S. astronauts had to get used to borscht. Russians wondered about eating vegetables on the side.

(on camera): Wine with dinner?


(voice-over): What about the Russian program? We saw them toast with vodka on Mir.

KLOERIS: I have yet to get somebody to officially admit that they take it, yet we know it's there.

KELLAN: Most people can get along two weeks cramped with strangers, but six months?

BAKER: After six months, your usual outlets are not there and you will have to have some personal strategy for how to relax.

KELLAN: On the International Space Station, along with exercise, they'll be able to watch movies, listen to music. And like ET, they will one day be able to phone home.

In the meantime, one great escape.

BAKER: It's not like being in a submarine where you don't have that kind of a view. You can look out the window and see the whole world.

Ann Kellan, CNN, Johnson Space Center.

(END VIDEOTAPE) BAKHTIAR: From astronauts to airplanes, in "Worldview" we'll flit the surly bonds of Earth, and we'll take a trip around the world to examine global warming, a problem that impacts us all. We'll also take a journey back in history to World War II, courtesy of a film project involving teenagers. But first, flights of fancy and fashion as we head to the United States.

We take airplanes for granted these days. But 100 years ago, that wasn't so. Orville and Wilbur Wright flew the first airplane near Kitty Hawk, North Carolina on Dec. 17, 1903, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Aircraft deliver people and cargo around the world. They're an important part of business and tourism, and they also provide influence in one area you might never have considered: the world of fashion.

Our report lifts off with Stacey Wilkins.


STACEY WILKINS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Fall fashion is cleared for takeoff. Helmut Lang is just one of the designers checking in for a non-stop flight with airline chic. His jet lag coat has a padded collar that can become a headrest.

HELMUT LANG, DESIGNER: I was basically not thinking (UNINTELLIGIBLE), which is an issue today, but the comfort of travelling, and the own person's comfort, the person who take a plane.

WILKINS: Mark Jacobs is another designer who looked to the skies for inspiration. His show featured clothing with elements of spirit of chic. It's a trend some flight attendants say won't take off.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, no, I wouldn't wear those clothes.

WILKINS: But flight attendants used to wear the clothes designers are copying today. The new designs are often inspired by the groovy stew gear of the 1960s.


ANNOUNCER: When a Branef (ph) international hostess meets you on the airplane, should we dress like this?


WILKINS: Hoochi (ph) sent the industry into a tailspin in 1966 with these psychedelic uniforms for Branef.

KEITH LOVEGROVE, AUTHOR, "AIRLINE": I think overall it was, generally, it was the creativity that airlines use. Their constant quest to vie for attention means that they've gone to all sorts of lengths to try and make themselves stand apart from other airlines.

WILKINS: Delta is one of the airlines going to expensive lengths to stand out. Style is this year's them, past and present. Next year, this is what Delta's cabin crew will be wearing. It's the airline's first new uniform since 1982.

PAMELA PERRY, DELTA AIR LINES: Now, most employees worldwide have the same uniform color on, and this definitely sets Delta employees apart from the rest.

WILKINS (on camera): The airlines want their flight attendants to look stylish, but not too stylish. Function takes precedence over fashion, especially when it comes to safety.

(voice-over): Southwest has taken flak for what some people call its "casual Friday" uniforms. For the second year in a row, the airline has been voted worst uniform by an aviation trade magazine. But Southwest flight attendants say they don't mind putting fashion on standby.

ROSEMARY SOUTHERN, SOUTHWEST AIRLINES: When we wore the dress uniforms with the blazers, it's just like a little straitjacket half the time. And this is a lot more free. You just feel like you could easily perform those duties that we need to perform in safety.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What is she doing?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She's working a crossword puzzle.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why can she -- I mean, can she actually write in a plane?


WILKINS: Safety definitely played a part in the early era of aviation. The military style look helped reassure an uncertain public about flight safety.

Those Golden Era uniforms inspire Charles Quarles. The aviation expert is curator of his own flight attendant uniform collection in North Carolina.

CHARLES QUARLES, AVIATION HISTORIAN: My favorites are the period from the late '30s, '40s and '50s. I think that's an authoritative, very stylish tailored look to uniforms.

WILKINS: Fasten your seatbelts, fashion is definitely learning to fly.

Stacey Wilkins, CNN, Atlanta.


SHELLEY WALCOTT, CO-HOST: In 1997, 180 countries signed the Kyoto Protocol in Kyoto, Japan. The agreement calls for industrialized nations to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 5 percent from 1990 levels by 2008 to 2012. One concern of the countries involved is the alteration of global weather patterns. Scientists say gas emissions will lead to an increase in global temperatures, up 6 degrees Centigrade, or 10.8 degrees Fahrenheit. Sea levels could rise by as much as a meter, or 3.3 feet this century.

Experts also predict a rise in extreme storms, including hurricanes and typhoons. Such changes would threaten 200 million people living in the coastal areas of China, Southeast Asia and Africa. But island countries are most at risk from dramatic global climate change. By creating the Kyoto Protocol, world leaders took the first step to protecting these areas. But countries remain divided on the best way to lower emissions.

Natalie Pawelski tracks their progress at a recent meeting at The Hague.


NATALIE PAWELSKI, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): When it comes to helping the Earth keep its cool, how much should forests count? Should a country be able to make up for its own greenhouse gas emissions by paying to clean up pollution overseas? And how do you get poor countries to opt for clean energy instead of cheap and dirty power?

Those are some of the questions tackled at The Hague. Delegates from about 180 countries try to fill in the many big blanks in the Kyoto Protocol negotiated in Japan in 1997. Right now, it's pretty much the only worldwide strategy for dealing with global warming.

MICHAEL ZAMMIT CUTAJAR, UNITED NATIONS: We've got to keep action going. We can't afford to put things aside for some years and say we'll start again later. We have to keep momentum. But we're headed in the right direction, and The Hague conference will take us one important step farther.

GLENN KELLY, GLOBAL CLIMATE COALITION: We remain opposed to the Kyoto Protocol because we think it's the wrong way forward on climate policy. We believe there's a right way forward, and that focuses on voluntarily -- voluntary, technology-driven ways to address concerns about greenhouse gas emissions.

PAWELSKI: Among the dozens of countries who signed onto the Kyoto Protocol in principle, there are fierce fights over the devilish details. For example, the role of nuclear and hydro power, which don't put out greenhouse gases but can cause other environmental problems. And while a lot of big companies are jumping on the emissions-cutting bandwagon, how do you convince individual consumers?

CUTAJAR: The biggest rise in emissions is coming from motor vehicles. It's those areas which are very difficult to get at because the fragmentation, of course -- we're all individuals -- and because you can't tell people what to do.

Natalie Pawelski, CNN. (END VIDEOTAPE)

WALCOTT: Here's a report card on greenhouse emissions. The United States emits more greenhouse gas than any other country in the world. Japan is a distant second, producing only one-fifth as much gas as America. Russia ranks third, and Europe's two large economies, Germany and Britain, round out the top five.

TOM HAYNES, CO-HOST: World War II took place from 1939 to 1945. Fighting spread to nearly every part of the globe. It killed more people and destroyed more property than any other war in history.

World War II was the defining experience for an entire generation of Americans. Millions of young men and women, many in their teens and early 20s, served in the armed forces, both in Europe and the Pacific. Today, those same veterans are well into their 70s and 80s, a long way from the young soldiers who fought the war to end all wars.

But thanks to a new generation, the stories they have to tell will be around for years to come.

Don Knapp looks at a unique project in California that's bringing young and old together to preserve a piece of history.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And we hit the men over the coast and we crashed into a field (UNINTELLIGIBLE).

DON KNAPP, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Jack Burke (ph) knows more than a few war stories. He flew 28 missions over Europe as a gunner on a B-17 bomber.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The No. 3 engine caught on fire. And soon after crossing the coastline at 13,000 feet, our pilot ordered the crew to bail out.

KNAPP: But for most of the past half century, Burke kept his stories to himself. He didn't think anyone was interested.

CHRIS CHEN, DIGITAL CLUBHOUSE NETWORK: What was the name of that -- those things that you took, the emergency packets or whatever, had a little bit of money inside?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, yes. We always carried escape packs.

KNAPP: Chris Chen is interested. He and a group of computer- savvy high school students are creating powerful mini motion pictures, preserving the stories of veterans of World War II.

WARREN HEGG, DIGITAL CLUBHOUSE NETWORK: We were looking for a common language that would bring elders and youth together -- storytelling. The kids brought the technology, the elders brought the stories. The rest is history.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) PAUL DE MARTINI, WORLD WAR II VETERAN: I was never so scared in all my life.


KNAPP: History almost too painful to record. Paul De Martini was a Marine at Okinawa.


DE MARTINI: I watched as they got stuck and drowned or were shot. In my nightmares, I can still hear their screams as they die.


KNAPP (on camera): This project set out to involve people young and old in technology and community service. Obviously what happened was something more.

ERIK DOVE, DIGITAL CLUBHOUSE NETWORK: And it's more than just his class. And you learn a lot more of people in the community and respect them a lot more.

TYLER ALVIS, DIGITAL CLUBHOUSE NETWORK: And you hear about what the war was really like. And it really is hell, you know? It's really, really unpleasant business. It's nothing like the movies you see about it.

CHEN: They don't teach you this in school. They don't get into the personal feelings.

KNAPP (voice-over): De Martini's story has a happy ending. The Navy nurse who treated him aboard a hospital ship became his wife of 55 years.


DE MARTINI: To my fallen comrades, I'm proud to have served with you.


KNAPP: Gay Pare (ph) died while working on this video. His son Randy finished it.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I've wept over you many times. You are the heroes.


KNAPP: Some will say they were all heroes, their heroic stories worth retelling.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You will never be forgotten.


KNAPP: Don Knapp, CNN, Sunnyvale, California.


HAYNES: This is Tom Haynes. On Jan. 17, the extraordinary story of my trip to the USS Theodore Roosevelt aboard an F-18 Hornet, how I flew the plane, and the rush of landing on an aircraft carrier. Plus, the newest members of the Roosevelt crew tell us about serving a nation.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're getting to get out and see the world, go to different countries, experience a lot of culture, new ways of life. And dealing with people being out on your own at a young age, you just, you know, you're forced to grow up quick.


BAKHTIAR: And so the closest presidential race in more than a century has finally run its course. As President-elect Bush prepares to become president, two history-making figures are bowing out of the political arena, at least for now. Last night, Vice President Al Gore gave a speech of a lifetime, and soon it will be time for Mr. Clinton to do the same.

Now Garrick Utley Ponders the importance of those famous last words.


GARRICK UTLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's not easy to leave the stage of public attention with style. A farewell is a revealing moment that can take us behind the public face and let us see the inner person, as when baseball great Lou Gehrig had to leave the game in 1939 when he faced a fatal illness.


LOU GEHRIG: Today, I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the Earth.


UTLEY (on-camera): Ever since George Washington offered his farewell address to the nation, well-known figures in the United States have understood the importance of last impressions. They can be important in helping to shape a person's place in the public mind and in history.

(voice-over): That was the goal of Gen. Douglas MacArthur when he offered his theatrical farewell to Congress and the nation. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RET. GEN. DOUGLAS MACARTHUR: An old soldier never dies, they just fade away.


UTLEY: And so do entertainers. Johnny Carson has chosen not to perform on television since his departure in 1992.


JOHNNY CARSON: I bid you a very heartfelt good night.


UTLEY: Carson's ability to see when and how to go was shared by Lyndon Johnson, who understood when it was time to give up not a TV show, but the presidency, because of the Vietnam War.


LYNDON BAINES JOHNSON, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I shall not seek and I will not accept the nomination of my party for another term as your president.


UTLEY: Sometimes public figures may feel the game is over.


MICHAEL JORDAN: It's time for me to move away from the game of basketball.


UTLEY: But Jordan came back to the game, just as Richard Nixon came back to win the presidency following the bitterness of earlier political defeats.


RICHARD NIXON: You don't have Nixon to kick around anymore. Thank you gentlemen, and good day.


UTLEY: So there have been plenty of examples and lessons for Al Gore on how to handle and not handle defeat. He may be out of a job, but he doesn't want to be out of the public's mind.

(on camera): A hope which cannot be shared by Bill Clinton, for whom no presidential comeback is allowed, which raises a question.

(voice-over): After eight years of prosperity, domestic peace, scandal and impeachment, it'll soon be time for this president to offer his farewell speech to the nation. What will he tell us?

Garrick Utley, CNN, New York.


BAKHTIAR: And so we close one chapter in U.S. political history and we begin another. We'll be here to tell you about it tomorrow.




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