NPR

Who's Carl This Time

Carl Kasell reads three quotes from the week's news: Seven Million Served, The 2014 Chevy Weasel, The Sky Is Falling!

Transcript

CARL KASELL, BYLINE: From NPR and WBEZ Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT ...DON'T TELL ME, the NPR News quiz. I'm Carl Kasell. And here's your host at the Chase Bank Auditorium in downtown Chicago, Peter Sagal.

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

Thank you, Carl.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Thank you, everybody. Thank you. It's great to be back with you, especially today because we're going to welcome comedian Amy Schumer to the show. She just started the new season of her show "Inside Amy Schumer." This new season - the second - covers her digestive tract.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: It is exciting. But first, we want to know what's going on inside of you. So give us a call. The number - 1-888-WAIT-WAIT. That's 888-924-8924. Hi. You're on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

KATHLEEN: (Caller) Hi. This is Kathleen from Irvine, California.

SAGAL: Irvine, California?

KATHLEEN: (Caller) Yeah.

SAGAL: And how do you enjoy living there?

KATHLEEN: (Caller) I like it a lot. It's the second safest city.

SAGAL: The second safest city.

KATHLEEN: (Caller) Yes.

SAGAL: What's number one?

KATHLEEN: (Caller) I don't know.

(LAUGHTER)

KASELL: And why did you go for second best?

KATHLEEN: (Caller) Wasn't me.

SAGAL: Well, welcome to the show, Kathleen. Let me introduce you to our panel this week. First up, a comedian. She'll be performing at the Englert Civic Center in Iowa City, Iowa on April 18. It's Paula Poundstone.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Next, it's a writer for the Washington Post, Ms. Roxanne Roberts.

(APPLAUSE)

ROXANNE ROBERTS: Hello.

SAGAL: Finally, it's a humorist and author most recently of the book "The Baby Boom." It's P.J. O'Rourke.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: So, Kathleen, now that we have everyone assembled, you're going to start the show with Who's Carl This Time? Carl Kasell is going to read you three quotes from the week's news. Your job, of course, correctly identify or explain two of them. Do that, you'll win our prize. Carl Kasell's voice on your voicemail. Ready to go?

KATHLEEN: (Caller) Yes.

SAGAL: Here we are. Here is your first quote.

KASELL: There are still no death panels. Armageddon has not arrived.

SAGAL: That was President Obama celebrating the success, for the moment, of what?

KATHLEEN: (Caller) Obamacare?

SAGAL: Yes, indeed Obamacare.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: On Tuesday of this week, President Obama came out to the Rose Garden with a sick child, newly covered by the Affordable Care Act and spiked that kid into the ground.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Go team. It's all right. He's covered. He'll be fine, he said. For a long time, it didn't look like the White House would reach its goal of 7 million people signing up for Obamacare by the end of March. But as we do, a lot of Americans waited until the last possible minute to sign up and, in truth, most of those people only did it because they thought they had a chance to win a billion dollars from Warren Buffett. P.J., as our token Republican...

O'ROURKE: Yes. I feel, like, some burden here, you know...

SAGAL: I know.

O'ROURKE: ...To, like, undermine the president in some way and make...

SAGAL: Can you? Is there any sense of, wow, what do you know, it worked - maybe it isn't such a disaster?

O'ROURKE: No. No.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Just thought I'd check.

O'ROURKE: Let's just wait 'til April 15 when we get the bill for all this.

SAGAL: 'Cause you actually, of course, most famously said, if you think health care is expensive, wait 'til it's free.

O'ROURKE: Yes. Yes.

SAGAL: That's your...

O'ROURKE: If you think health care is expensive now, just wait to you see how much it costs when it's free. I did say that. But that was before I was on Medicare.

(LAUGHTER)

O'ROURKE: Now I'm on Medicare.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: I just got to say...

O'ROURKE: And if you think that just 'cause I'm some kind of right-wing Republican I'm going to give that money back, think again.

SAGAL: Kathleen, here is your next quote.

KASELL: What you just said is gobbledygook.

SAGAL: That was a very angry congressmen responding to a CEO's explanation of why her company never bothered to recall cars with a dangerous defect. What is the company?

KATHLEEN: (Caller) General Motors?

SAGAL: General Motors.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: GM, yes. Very good, Kathleen. It was a historic week when America saw that the first female CEO of a major car company could be just as much a weasel as any man. Mary Barra of GM was grilled on Capitol Hill about the company's latest scandal. Turns out they knew for years that one of their cars was defective, and they never did anything about it. It wasn't a big deal, they said. It was just that if you drove a Chevy Cobalt and happened to jostle the keys, the engine would turn off, the brakes and air bags would go dead and the radio would only play Christian rock.

(LAUGHTER)

PAULA POUNDSTONE: I could live through the first three things.

SAGAL: Yeah.

O'ROURKE: Yeah, but then it gets scary.

POUNDSTONE: Man, yeah.

SAGAL: So in front of angry representatives of both parties, Mary Barra evaded. She said she didn't know about any defects. She said that was the old GM that did it, even though she's a lifelong employee. Then she jostled her microphone and it exploded.

(LAUGHTER)

O'ROURKE: You know, their sales are up. I mean, people really like that Christian rock as it turns out.

SAGAL: Yeah, apparently.

O'ROURKE: 'Cause when you're in a ditch and you've been badly injured 'cause the airbags did not deploy, I mean, you need some faith...

SAGAL: That's true.

O'ROURKE: ...To pull you through. So I am mystified. I am glad, however, to see the gender imbalance in weasel-dom being corrected.

POUNDSTONE: I'm hoping that eventually they have, you know, gays and lesbians in the CEO position that are equally distrustworthy.

SAGAL: That would be a true - a true hallmark of equality.

POUNDSTONE: That's - we got a ways to go, but...

SAGAL: Or, you know, here's another idea. All right, they had to do a recall. But if you're going to, like, recall 600,000 cars, why not recall them fondly. Hey, remember the Corvette? That was a great car. Yeah, I loved that car. All right, Kathleen, here is your last quote.

KASELL: It's risk, risk, risk, risk, risk. We're all going to die.

SAGAL: That's a scientist saying in a new U.N. report may be a bit too gloomy while still warning about the current effects of what?

KATHLEEN: (Caller) Global warming?

SAGAL: Global warming, yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Climate change. Very good.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: The U.N. panel on climate change put out a report that basically says the last best chance to save this planet was back in the summer when everybody was obsessing over the "Breaking Bad" finale. We blew it. To summarize the report, it goes on for many, many pages outlining all the effects of global warming. I hope you like jellyfish because they're going to be taking over, and they will sting you if you are not polite.

ROBERTS: I thought when Carl said it's risk, risk, risk, we're all going to die, I thought that was a Cavalier GM buyer.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: You might be asking, well, what can we do? Actually, the report does have recommendations and this is one of them. Everybody should start wearing jeans and hoodies instead of suits, and that's true. And the reason is because a lot of energy is expended over cooling buildings in the summer to make it more comfortable, for men especially, to wear suits. So if everybody dress informally, will also...

POUNDSTONE: Wow. I like that idea about changing the, you know - I didn't know they'd been over cooling the building because of men.

SAGAL: Yeah, that's why.

POUNDSTONE: That doesn't surprise me now that I think about it.

SAGAL: I have to say, speaking as a man, it's not like we all said, hey, I'd like to wear a suit today. Could you crank up the air conditioning? It's more like, oh, my God, I have to wear a suit. I mean, I think that if we were to collectively decide, we men - I'll speak for myself and P.J. - would say, yeah, we can- well, maybe not P.J. I don't know.

O'ROURKE: I don't even get up in the middle of the night and go to the bathroom without putting on a suit.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: You know what? High-five, P.J. Me, too.

O'ROURKE: You got to be the 1 percent.

SAGAL: Absolutely. How will people know? Carl, how did Kathleen do on our quiz?

KASELL: Kathleen, you had three correct answers, so you win our prize.

SAGAL: Well done, Kathleen.

(APPLAUSE) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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