Who's Carl This Time?
CARL KASELL: 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 State Theater at Playhouse Square in Cleveland, Ohio, Peter Sagal.
PETER SAGAL, HOST:
Thank you so much, Carl. Thanks, everybody. We are proud to announce, after a lot of thought and prayer, we have decided to take our talents to Cleveland.
SAGAL: To help us understand the wisdom of our choice, Cleveland's own Drew Carey will be joining us here later on.
SAGAL: He will show how it is possible to grow up in Cleveland, become rich and famous, and leave, and not be a jerk about it.
SAGAL: Unlike some people we're not going to mention. Give us a call; the number is 1-888-Wait-Wait, that's 1-888-924-8924. Hi, you're on WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!.
TOM: Hi, Peter this is Tom Hait (ph) from Wynne, Arkansas.
SAGAL: Hey, how are things in Wynne, Arkansas?
TOM: Pretty hot right now, rather dry.
SAGAL: Now, did you grow up talking like that, or did you have to learn to talk that way to fit in?
TOM: Well, I watched a lot of Huckleberry Hound growing up.
SAGAL: That'll do it.
TOM: You know.
SAGAL: Well, welcome to the show, Tom. Let me introduce you to or panel this week. First up, a comedian and host of the Whose Paying Attention podcast, Mr. Alonzo Bodden is here.
ALONZO BODDEN: Thank you.
TOM: Hey, Alonzo.
BODDEN: How you doing, Tom?
TOM: All right, you?
SAGAL: Next, a columnist and editor for the Houston Chronicle, Ms. Kyrie O'Connor.
KYRIE O'CONNOR: Hi, Tom.
TOM: Hey, Kyrie.
SAGAL: And lastly, a correspondent for "CBS Sunday Morning," Mr. Mo Rocca.
MO ROCCA: Hi there, Tom.
TOM: Hey Mo.
Tom, you're going to play Who's Carl This time. Carl Kasell is going to read you three quotes from this week's news.
SAGAL: If you can correctly identify or explain two of them, you'll win our prize, Carl Kasell's voice on your home answering machine. You ready to go?
TOM: OK, just three quotes?
SAGAL: Just three.
TOM: Add one more and you'll have a gallon.
ROCCA: Oh, oh, that's...
SAGAL: There you go.
ROCCA: That's very folksy.
BODDEN: You got to do that in Wynne, Arkansas.
SAGAL: I feel like rocking back in my rocking chair on the porch and laughing loudly.
SAGAL: You ready to play, Tom?
TOM: Yes, sir, ready to go.
SAGAL: Your first quote is just a sample of the many reactions to some big news this week. First, from Mr. Albert Brooks.
KASELL: "It's a terrific day in America. I'm gonna go out and get wildly sick."
SAGAL: Next, from conservative columnist Ben Shapiro.
KASELL: "This is the end of America as we know it. No exaggeration."
SAGAL: And finally, from someone named Casey, we found on Twitter. "Obviously the United States doesn't know what they are doing anymore. I'm moving to Canada."
SAGAL: All those people were reacting to news that the Supreme Court had upheld what?
TOM: The individual mandate for the Affordable Care Act.
SAGAL: You're good. Yes, that's exactly right.
(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)
SAGAL: Everybody was expecting a big surprise on the last episode of this Supreme Court Season, and we got it when Chief Justice Roberts was revealed to be a secret communist.
SAGAL: Roberts joined the four liberal justices in the 5-4 decision to uphold Obamacare. The conservative bloc was furious that their plans to overturn the law were dashed. Justice Thomas spoke for the first time in years. He shouted "I would have gotten away with it too, if it weren't for you meddling kids."
ROCCA: Individual mandate sounds like something you do home alone on a Saturday night.
ROCCA: When they kept talking about individual mandate, I kept thinking all right, well, what does the Supreme Court have to do with that?
O'CONNOR: You know, I'm not really proud of it, but I watch an awful lot of cable news.
O'CONNOR: And, I mean, there are a lot of pundits on there. I mean, wouldn't you think one of them would have seen this coming and it wouldn't have been such a total surprise to everybody?
SAGAL: Well, that's interesting. It actually was a surprise to everybody, possibly including the Supreme Court. Because people have read the decisions and it seems as if at the very last minute Justice Roberts switched sides. That he was going to go with the four conservatives and tear down the law.
ROCCA: Maybe he had a cold this week or something. Maybe he was feeling...
SAGAL: All of the sudden.
O'CONNOR: Yeah, all of the sudden he thought, geez, I might need this.
ROCCA: I'm coming down with something.
SAGAL: Maybe he was visited by three ghosts of healthcare past.
SAGAL: Speaking of cable news, everybody knew that the decision was going to come 10 a.m. Thursday morning, all the cable news channels were in place, they were ready to go. And of course, immediately they got it wrong. Even the President - this is true - watching at the White House, was devastated to see that his signature law had been overturned. Then somebody pointed out he was watching CNN. Don't worry.
SAGAL: The President found out the truth from other sources; meanwhile, Wolf Blitzer sought out President McCain for his reaction.
SAGAL: It was a very busy week for the Supreme Court. They had other issues. They issued an opinion upholding the right of police in Arizona to enforce immigration law when they make an arrest. Right, they preserved that part. So if you combine the two rulings, health care and immigration, you'd have police checking your papers and your prostate.
BODDEN: So with the upholding of the immigration law, you could actually be arrested and get free health care in the prison.
SAGAL: You could, that's the way it'll work.
BODDEN: I mean if you know something's wrong with you, it's probably the best way to save some money.
BODDEN: I think I'm going to go Arizona, just tell them I'm Nicaraguan and get a checkup.
SAGAL: All right, very good Tom. Here is your next quote.
KASELL: This is the first time in my life I see a single person here happy with the results of the presidential elections.
SAGAL: That was a man named Bassem Sabry reacting to the news that Mohammed Morsi has been elected, one of the first democratically elected presidents of where? What country?
SAGAL: Yes, Egypt, very good.
(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)
SAGAL: Now, it's complicated. It's an unfamiliar country for many of us. So let's try to translate Egyptian politics to American terms. It's not hard, we've got Pyramids in Vegas; we can do this.
SAGAL: There's this guy, Mohammad Morsi, nobody knows much about him. He's bland, he's dull, but they hate him less than they hate the other guy. In other words, he's the Egyptian Mitt Romney.
SAGAL: Now, it's true, just like Romney, Morsi has ties to the radical fringe, though he seems mainstream himself. And, once he drove his car with the family camel strapped to the roof.
SAGAL: Strange coincidence, Mohammad Morsi's real first name, is also Willard.
ROCCA: This is the Muslim Brotherhood, right?
SAGAL: Yeah, he is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood.
ROCCA: Can't they just - they just need to rebrand. It should be the Brotherhood of the Traveling Muslims.
ROCCA: It would feel a little friendlier.
SAGAL: Something more friendlier, yes.
O'CONNOR: Well, you know, I don't pay a whole lot of attention to Egyptian politics. So, at first, I was kind of wondering why the guy from the Smiths was running for the president of Egypt.
SAGAL: I know, Morsi? Now he's going to be really depressed, I guess.
O'CONNOR: You think you were depressed before.
BODDEN: And didn't he say that he's going to bring in women into the government and Christians, like he's going to try to open it up.
SAGAL: Yeah, he's a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, but he is reputed to be a moderate. He will require women to wear burkas, but they can be like sexy fishnet burkas. You know, he gives them that freedom.
BODDEN: So what they're saying is he won't be around long?
SAGAL: Yeah, probably not.
SAGAL: For your last quote, Tom, let's hear a tearful farewell.
KASELL: For all of you who saw me as a groundbreaker, I'm sorry I couldn't carry the ball over the finish line. But, man, I did try.
SAGAL: That was somebody who was forced out of her job as co-host of the "Today" show. Who was it?
TOM: Ann Curry.
SAGAL: Yes, Ann Curry, well done.
(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)
SAGAL: A year ago, Ms. Curry was promoted from her long time job of newsreader to become a co-host of the show. It was a crazy idea. Nobody could be expected to make the transition from hard news to light entertainment.
KASELL: Almost nobody.
SAGAL: Apparently, part of the problem was she had no rapport with long time host Matt Lauer, which may explain why, after her long tearful farewell, he said, "I'm sorry, were you saying something?"
ROCCA: Yeah. I actually know Ann Curry. She's absolutely a lovely person. I don't know why they couldn't just let her host like the ninth hour of the "Today" show."
SAGAL: Exactly. It goes on for a while.
ROCCA: I mean I think it's longer than "Nicholas Nickleby."
BODDEN: I mean they've had so many guests come in recently to just host on the "Today" show right? Sarah Palin did.
SAGAL: Sarah Palin did it. Yeah, that was sort of a stunt.
ROCCA: Kardashians, yeah.
BODDEN: When they bring Sarah Palin in to do the job you're doing, don't you know it's over?
SAGAL: Carl, how did Tom do on our quiz?
KASELL: Tom had a perfect game Peter, three correct answers. So, Tom, I'll be doing the message on your voicemail or home answering machine.
SAGAL: Well done.
SAGAL: Thank you so much, Tom.
TOM: Hey, thank you, Peter, it was fun.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.