Who's Bill This Time

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Bill Kurtis reads three quotes from the week's news: Diss-Robe, High and Dry, Hot Air Mass.

BILL KURTIS: From NPR and WBEZ Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!, the NPR News quiz. I'm legendary anchorman Bill Kurtis, filling in for Carl Kasell.



KURTIS: And here's your host, at Powell Hall in St. Louis, Missouri, Peter Sagal.


Thank you, Bill.



SAGAL: Thank you, everybody. We've got a great show for you today, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, four-time Olympian and proud daughter of East St. Louis, will be here later to see if she can win the gold in our sport.

But first, what an honor to be back in St Louis. It's great.


SAGAL: It's a particular honor for us in our business because St. Louis, don't know if you know this, home of the first radio station west of the Mississippi. This is where it all started, radio here. Just imagine Lewis and Clark, they pull out of town, they head west. The signal gets all staticky.


SAGAL: They ended up trying to hold Sacajawea up in the air to try to get better reception.


SAGAL: So radio started in St Louis. Today we will see if we can end it. Give us a call, the number is 1-888-Wait-Wait, that's 1-888-924-8924. It's time to welcome our first listener/contestant. Hi, you're on WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!

CHRISTINE LAW: Hi Peter, it's Christine from Alpharetta, Georgia.

SAGAL: Christine from Alpharetta. Alpharetta, I've heard of it. I've never been there.

LAW: Yes, it's Latin for first town.

SAGAL: Was it in fact the first town?

LAW: I don't think that's true.


LAW: But that is the prominence the forefathers wish it had.

SAGAL: Oh, I see. So you're living a lie is what you're saying.


SAGAL: Well, welcome to show, Christine. Let me introduce you to our panel this week. First, it's a comedian from Chicago you can hear in the next episode of the Nerdette podcast, it's Brian Babylon.


BRIAN BABYLON: Hey, hey, Christine, how are you?

LAW: I'm good.

BABYLON: Thank you.


SAGAL: Next is senior editor and columnist for the Houston Chronicle, Kyrie O'Connor is here.


KYRIE O'CONNOR: Hey, Christine.

SAGAL: And lastly, a correspondent for "CBS Sunday Morning" and the host of "My Grandmother's Ravioli" on The Cooking Channel, Mo Rocca is here.



MO ROCCA: Hi, Christine.

SAGAL: Christine, it's great to have you with us. You're going to start us off with Who's Bill This Time, of course Bill Kurtis, filling in for Carl Kasell, is going to read you three quotations from the week's news. Your job, of course, correctly identify or explain two of them. Do that, and you win your prize, Carl' voice on your home answering machine device, voicemail, whatever you got. Ready to play?

LAW: I am.

SAGAL: Excellent. Let's go. Here is your first quote:

KURTIS: Legalistic argle bargle.

SAGAL: That was Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia's angry dissent in a case, a big case, about what?

LAW: The Defense of Marriage Act?

SAGAL: Yes, very good, the Defense of Marriage Act.


SAGAL: Gay marriage.


ROCCA: Ooh, gosh.

SAGAL: A bare majority of the Supreme Court ruled that the federal government could not discriminate against same-sex married couples. And Justice Scalia, in the minority, stood proudly for the proposition that, yes, they can. After angrily disapproving of alternative lifestyles, Justice Scalia retired to his chambers where and he and eight other people in robes worship a 200-year-old piece of parchment.


ROCCA: You said a bare majority, but Antonin Scalia is one angry bear daddy, wow.

SAGAL: He is.


ROCCA: Does this mean I have to get married?

SAGAL: Yes. Yes, we all have to get gay married right now, sorry.


SAGAL: It's the law, they said so, the Supreme Court.

BABYLON: Now this was a big week for the Supreme Court. Do you think when they do their sweeps week kind of decision, because this is pretty much just sweeps weeks...

SAGAL: Yeah, pretty much. Well, this is when they sell their advertising rates for the next session, so it's very important. Scalia in his very angry dissent called, as you heard the decision striking down DOMA, argle bargle. Joining him in the decision were the Hamburglar, who...


SAGAL: ...called it robble-robble and a teacher from Charlie Brown who said, whah whah whah.


SAGAL: Now as you were saying, what they did in this case was they struck down the Defense of Marriage Act that was passed back in 1996, when it was utterly unthinkable that gays could ever get married. But people worried they might someday, so they passed a law. At the time, it was a little bit like passing a law called the Defense Against the World Champion Chicago Cubs Act.



BABYLON: They say Bill Clinton really feels bad about that. I can't believe I did that.


SAGAL: He says that about a lot of things.

BABYLON: A lot of things.

SAGAL: That's really not...



SAGAL: In other big news at the Supreme Court, they also struck down the Voting Rights Act, a decision which upset everybody in America except Paula Deen.


SAGAL: Why do they wait to the end to do the big cases? I mean, it's obvious they're just trying to generate suspense and interest in the Supreme Court.

ROCCA: Yeah, legal (unintelligible).

BABYLON: It's show business.


BABYLON: They should do it like, you know, how you would wait to see if you'd made the school play. It's going to be pinned up in the hallway, and then everyone rushes around the bulletin board and like, ah, gay marriage, civil rights, damn, I didn't make it.


SAGAL: All right, very good. Here is your next quote.

KURTIS: I won't be scrambling jets to get a 29-year-old hacker.

SAGAL: That was President Obama talking about what he wasn't willing to do to capture whom?

LAW: Edward Snowden.

SAGAL: Very good, yes.


SAGAL: Edward Snowden.


SAGAL: This is what happened. It is a great and true story. So Snowden, who was in Hong Kong somewhere, he flees Hong Kong, he goes to Moscow, that cradle of liberty, and he announces he's getting on a plane to Cuba. So all these journalists who were chasing him buy tickets for an Aeroflot flight to Havana he's supposed to be on, and they get on the plane, and they're looking around for him, and they're waiting. And then all of a sudden the attendants close the doors, and the plane takes off, and Snowden's not on it. Adios, suckers.


BABYLON: And then apparently Vladimir Putin was like I don't have time for these things, you know.

SAGAL: Yeah, he's like, whatever.

BABYLON: Because, you know, I steal Super Bowl rings. I mean, I've don't got time to worry about spies.

O'CONNOR: See, I think that's what - we should do a tradeoff, you know, you send Snowden back, you get to keep the ring.

SAGAL: Oh, he's going to keep the ring, Kyrie. There's nothing we can do about that.

ROCCA: Isn't he trying to get to Ecuador?

SAGAL: The rumor is that he wants to get to Ecuador, but it is true, Snowden is apparently in the Russian airport. And this is hilarious. He's the most famous fugitive in the world, we know exactly what his name is and what he looks like and where he is, and he USA still can't get him.

BABYLON: He's at the Cinnabon.

SAGAL: It's like, oh, we can't go in there, he's in the duty-free store, and we don't have an international boarding pass, says the CIA.


SAGAL: And Snowden's just in there. You know, he's stuck in there. He's like subsisting on big Toblerone bars and bottles of Drakkar Noir. That's all he's got.


ROCCA: We had much better success catching that red panda.



ROCCA: Much better at that because we remembered to revoke his passport.


SAGAL: All right, very good. Here is your last quote.

KURTIS: You should all take off your jackets. I'm going to do the same. It's not that sexy.


SAGAL: That was President Obama talking about just how hot it was at his speech that was appropriately about what?

LAW: Global warming?

SAGAL: Yes, climate change, very good.



SAGAL: So this week, President Obama, in the middle of everything else going on, gave a major speech on climate change and about how his administration is going to make all these efforts to curb it, and nobody cared. The only cable channel that broadcast his speech in its entirety was, seriously, The Weather Channel.


BABYLON: It's true.

SAGAL: They were like, finally. They didn't even know what it was about. It had climate in the title. Let's broadcast it. And then they broadcast this news story in their usual manner. They had a guy in a poncho standing in front of the president saying, sorry, I can barely hear myself over the sound of the speech going on all around here.


BABYLON: Well, he probably was a little bit more charismatic than our friend Al Gore because that - what was that docu-snooze that he had?

SAGAL: That was called "An Inconvenient Truth," Brian.

BABYLON: Oh, or Ambien.

SAGAL: Nobody - climate change is going to kill us all, and nobody cares. How do you make...

ROCCA: Well, it won't kill you if you can swim.


ROCCA: Maybe if we didn't all breathe so heavily.

SAGAL: Just sort of more shallow breathes?

BABYLON: Just pants, yeah.

ROCCA: I blame the mouth breathers.


SAGAL: Bill, how did Christine do in our quiz?

KURTIS: I'll bet Christine wishes this was on television after those three questions. She did great, won them all.

SAGAL: Well done, Christine.


LAW: Thank you.

SAGAL: Thank you so much for playing, Christine. Bye-bye.

LAW: Bye.

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