Copyright ©2013 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Obama just lost the nerd vote. That was one of the many tweets after the president committed a cardinal sin at his press conference today. He conflated "Star Wars" and "Star Trek." And you just don't do that.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

The president was asked why he couldn't just stop congressional leaders from leaving their meeting with him until there was a sequester deal. He responded he couldn't just...

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Do a Jedi mind meld with these folks and convince them to do what's right.

CORNISH: A Jedi mind meld. Politifact quickly retweeted one of the many corrections: It's a Jedi mind trick or a Vulcan mind meld, not a Jedi mind meld. And for those who may not be clear on the difference, we'd like to use this sci-fi faux pas as a teachable moment.

BLOCK: The "Star Wars" Jedi mind trick is when you influence someone's thoughts. For example...

(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "STAR WARS")

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: (as Stormtrooper) Let me see your identification.

ALEC GUINNESS: (as Obi-Wan Kenobi) You don't need to see his identification.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: (as Stormtrooper ) We don't need to see his identification.

GUINNESS: (as Obi-Wan Kenobi) These aren't the droids you're looking for.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: (as Stormtrooper) These aren't the droids we're looking for.

BLOCK: As for "Star Trek's" Vulcan mind meld...

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SERIES, "STAR TREK")

LEONARD NIMOY: (as Spock) Captain, you're aware of the Vulcan technique of the joining of two minds.

BLOCK: A technique that can sometimes be quite unpleasant.

(SOUNDBITE OF SCREAMING)

CORNISH: So we're guessing the president really meant to say he couldn't do a Jedi mind trick because a Vulcan mind meld with congressional leaders...

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SERIES, "STAR TREK")

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: (as character) Pain.

CORNISH: Not pretty.

Copyright © 2013 NPR. All rights reserved. No quotes from the materials contained herein may be used in any media without attribution to NPR. This transcript is provided for personal, noncommercial use only, pursuant to our Terms of Use. Any other use requires NPR's prior permission. Visit our permissions page for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR's programming is the audio.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

Support comes from: