Tenet's Awesome Book-Promoting Skills
ALEX COHEN, host:
As Mike Mentioned, George Tenet has been on 60 Minutes talking torture. This past weekend, he was on Sunday's Meet the Press, once again telling his story about the run-up to the Iraq war. Tenet is everywhere, but one person he has not spoken to is Brian Unger. Here's today's Unger Report.
BRIAN UNGER: George Tenet has shown the country he can hawk a book like nobody's business.
Mr. GEORGE TENET (Former CIA Director): And as I say in the book...
UNGER: His determination to tell the world, buy my book is awe inspiring.
Mr. TENET: I say in the book...
UNGER: Watching him work at these past two weeks, I wonder why we wasted talent like Tenets on the CIA. This guy should have been Barnes & Noble, at the very least driving a book mobile. He really wants America to read a book.
Mr. TENET: And as I say in the book...
UNGER: Tenet has sold himself to more Larrys, Toms, Scotts, Tims, and Terrys than Deborah Jeane Palfrey's escorts. With apologies to the D.C. madam, her girls don't leap from the sofa to yell slam-dunk when they get excited - in any context.
But when it came to stopping dubious WMD claims, Tenet made phone calls. When it came to pushing his book, Tenet flew on airplanes, marched onto the airwave, put on make-up, and raised a ruckus. That's putting your money where your mouth should have been. Not since Gutenberg got distribution by J.W. Marriott has a book gotten such notoriety. Never mind the Book of Genesis; have you read the Book of Tenet, brother?
From get-a-load-of-these-mobile-germ warfare Winnebagos to I wasn't privy to any serious debate about Iraq, it's the real story of evolution. Whether you're filled with regret or should have voted the other way, having lots to say when it's way too late is evidence of natural selection, political survival of the fittest.
Many jumped aboard the WMD bandwagon, so in this current climate of reconciliation, come clean. 'Tis the season for saying, I got it wrong about WMDs. If you hinted that Saddam Hussein had so much as a Red Ryder BB Gun; if you insinuated for a moment that Hussein was out back behind the palace shooting milk bottles with a slingshot - there is no better time than the present to say, I was wrong.
If you even mutter to yourself the words slam dunk while watching basketball; if you made a girl cry on a date; if you ruined a Thanksgiving dinner; if you argued with the owner of a flower shop; spare us the book and open your windows and stick your head out and yell, I was wrong about WMDs. That's evolution.
And that is today's Unger Report. I'm Brian Unger.
(Soundbite of music)
COHEN: Speaking about evolution or de-evolution: cockroaches, popular mythology says they'll be the only creatures left standing once we destroy all other life forms, including ourselves.
MADELEINE BRAND, host:
That's not entirely true, but it turns out can actually withstand radiation anywhere from six to 15 times better than humans, thanks to their cell cycle.
COHEN: Still, I think most of us can agree that we'd just as soon squash a roach as let it survive.
BRAND: But here's another idea: why not make a little profit off your spare cockroaches?
COHEN: Later on the program, we'll hear why a museum in Houston is offering cold, hard cash for cockroaches. Stay with us.
BRAND: NPR's DAY TO DAY continues.