Who's Bill This Time
(SOUNDBITE OF BJ LEIDERMAN'S "WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME THEME")
BILL KURTIS: From NPR and WBEZ Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME, the NPR news quiz. Hey, there. No matter who you are, you're welcome to serve in my Bill-ilitary (ph). I'm Bill Kurtis.
KURTIS: And here is your host at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park in Chicago, Peter Sagal.
PETER SAGAL, HOST:
Thank you, Bill.
SAGAL: Thank you everybody. It is good to be here. We are once again at the Pritzker Pavilion. This is in downtown Chicago on the lakefront. It's next to Grant Park, which, last fall, hosted the Cubs' World Series celebration right over there.
SAGAL: An estimated 5 million people came down here, making it the seventh largest gathering of humans in all of history. Now all of the others, one through six, were religious celebrations, which makes sense because, frankly, so was that.
SAGAL: But anyway, we're having a little reunion of that here today. We've got a crowd of our own, and we've got Ryan Dempster. He was a pitcher for the Cubs for many years. He'll be joining us later on.
SAGAL: But first, it's your turn. 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.
JUSTINE POST: Hi. This is Justine Post from Saxapahaw, N.C.
POST: You got it right.
SAGAL: That sounds like if I say it backwards, you'll have to go back to the dimension from which you came.
POST: Yeah. Probably...
SAGAL: So where is Saxapahaw?
POST: It's about 20 minutes west of Chapel Hill, N.C.
SAGAL: OK, you're near Chapel Hill, the research triangle there. What do you do there?
POST: I'm a social worker.
SAGAL: You're a social worker - dealing with the problems.
SAGAL: We've got, like, 20,000 public radio fans, which statistically means we've got about a thousand social workers. So...
SAGAL: Welcome to the show, Justine. Let me introduce you to our panel. First up, it’s a writer for HBO’s "Real Time With Bill Maher" and the co-host of the new podcast, Live From the Poundstone Institute, Adam Felber.
ADAM FELBER: Hey there, Justine.
SAGAL: Next, it's a features reporter for The Washington Post, Ms. Roxanne Roberts.
ROXANNE ROBERTS: Hello, Justine.
SAGAL: And finally on this stage, it’s a correspondent for "CBS Sunday Morning" and host of "The Henry Ford Innovation Nation" Saturday mornings on CBS, the irresistible Mo Rocca.
MO ROCCA: Hi, Justine.
SAGAL: So Justine, I bet you anticipated this. But you're going to play Who's Bill This Time. Bill Kurtis, right here, is going to recreate for you three quotations from the week's news. Your job, of course, explain or identify just two of them. Do that, and you will win the voice of scorekeeper emeritus Carl Kasell on your voicemail. Are you ready to do this?
SAGAL: Now your first quote is from the new White House communications director, promising us he's not your typical Washington backstabber.
KURTIS: I'm more of a front-stabbing person.
SAGAL: And he proved it, as he stabbed just about everybody in the White House this week. Who was it?
POST: Anthony Scaramucci.
SAGAL: The Mooch, yes.
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FELBER: Mooch, Mooch.
SAGAL: By the way, the quote you heard from Bill was the only one of his that the FCC would allow us to use.
SAGAL: Apparently, what happened was the president looked at the chaos and madness among the staff at his White House and said, yes, good. But how about actual combat to the death? So...
SAGAL: ...He brought in his old friend Anthony Scaramucci, known as the Mooch, to take over communications. Sure, he seems completely unhinged.
SAGAL: But Trump loves the Mooch, not least because the Mooch sounds like something the president would try and grab you by.
FELBER: Yeah, the Mooch. You know, they love the Mooch, Peter. And when he's on the field, they're not booing, they're - oh, wait. They're booing.
SAGAL: Yes, they are.
ROBERTS: Has it - I mean, it occurred to me, like, he talks like him. He uses his hands like him. Do we think maybe the Mooch is the secret love child of Donald Trump?
ROCCA: Sort of a clone, yeah.
SAGAL: I don't think love - it is true, though, that...
ROCCA: He doesn't look anything like Ivanka. Come on.
FELBER: I think he's very - I think he's got sort of a Chachi charm. And we know how he likes Scott Baio.
SAGAL: That is true.
ROCCA: He's very much like a sitcom character of that era, like a cross between sort of, like, Carmine Ragusa from "Laverne & Shirley" and Chachi. Just wanted to put that out there.
SAGAL: It's possible. The Mooch is kind of like the son that Donald Trump never had, even though he has three.
ROCCA: It's very...
SAGAL: Where are those who think that the reason that Trump likes Scaramucci is because Scaramucci, unlike other people, doesn't try to constrain him. He lets Trump be Trump, which might explain...
SAGAL: ...The greatest Boy Scout Jamboree in history.
SAGAL: President Trump, speaking to 40,000 Boy Scouts, spent five minutes telling them a story about a rich guy he knew who had orgies on his yacht. It was a historic moment of presidential oratory, Trump's Gettysburg Address.
SAGAL: Hey, Boy Scouts, I scored four times 20 years ago.
FELBER: Four score and 20 chicks were on this yacht.
ROCCA: What badge does that get you?
SAGAL: I don't know.
SAGAL: All right, Justine, your next quote...
SAGAL: Your next quote is actually a series of very critical tweets.
KURTIS: Attorney General Jeff Sessions has taken a very weak position...
KURTIS: ...On Hillary Clinton crimes. Why isn't our beleaguered attorney general looking into Crooked Hillary's crimes and Russia relations?
SAGAL: So who was that slagging unmercifully and even unfairly on President Trump's attorney general?
POST: That would be No. 45 himself.
SAGAL: That would be President Trump, yes.
(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)
FELBER: Our 45th and final president.
SAGAL: You have to pity Jeff Sessions. First, everybody thinks he's a racist just because he's a Southerner named Jefferson Beauregard Sessions who doesn't like black people.
FELBER: Somehow, that makes him a racist...
SAGAL: I don't - it's just not fair. Then, the president gets angry that Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation. So now Sessions has to deal with all of these attacks from the president, all the questions about his longevity in the job. Do you know how hard it is to roll back civil rights when the president is tweeting mean stuff about you?
ROBERTS: You know, I never, ever thought I'd feel sorry for Sean Spicer. And then I felt sorry for Sean when he didn't get to meet the pope...
ROBERTS: ...Which is the one thing in life he really, really wanted to do. And I never thought in a thousand years I would feel sorry for Jeff Sessions. But I have found myself feeling slightly sorry for Jeff Sessions.
SAGAL: Right. I mean, it's a problem. It puts Democrats in a bind. They can't stand Sessions, but they don't want him to be fired because then he'll be replaced by somebody even worse. I mean, there's no real guarantee a worse person exists.
SAGAL: But if he does, his number is programmed into Donald Trump's phone.
ROCCA: Hey, does it look to you - he looks sad. His ears are drooping.
SAGAL: They are.
ROCCA: And he's gone - now he's gone from Huckleberry Hound to Droopy Dog.
SAGAL: I know.
FELBER: Well, he's always relied on the kindness of presidents.
ROCCA: Of the Confederacy.
SAGAL: Jeff Sessions?
SAGAL: All right, here is your last quote.
KURTIS: Turning humans into robots - this is disgusting.
SAGAL: That was a Twitter user talking about a Wisconsin company's decision - made the news this week - to be the first company to give all of its employees what?
POST: (Laughter) Can I get a hint?
SAGAL: Well, they do - we usually we just do this to our pets to keep them from getting lost.
POST: Oh, like, a microchip?
SAGAL: Yes, to install microchips in them.
(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)
SAGAL: Very good.
SAGAL: Three Square Market, a tech company in Wisconsin, is offering their employees the chance to just wave their hand to unlock a door or pay for food or prove that they are safely in their work cube during mandatory productivity periods.
ROCCA: OK - wait - it's a volun (ph) -
SAGAL: Yeah, they can volunteer to be chipped, much like your pet.
SAGAL: It's a little bit of - it's a little rice grain-size of - it's a rice grain-sized thing that goes between your fingers under your skin. It's the same kind of chips they put in dogs in case they run away with the important difference that these employees will never, ever be allowed to roam off leash.
That said, all the employees will also be spayed or neutered free of charge.
SAGAL: The CEO, who says he is getting a chip, says these are perfectly safe and will never be used to track people's movements.
SAGAL: Weirdly, the question he was answering was, how are you?
ROCCA: It's sort of like being the queen probably. Right?
SAGAL: What do you mean? Like you wave...
ROCCA: Well, I mean, she doesn't - she never takes her wallet with her anywhere.
SAGAL: That's true.
ROCCA: She waves her hand and gets what she wants.
SAGAL: We'll all be queens in the future.
SAGAL: Bill, how did Justine do on our quiz?
KURTIS: Very, very smart. She got them all right. Justine?
SAGAL: Congratulations, Justine.
POST: Thank you.
SAGAL: All of Chicago says congratulations.
(SOUNDBITE OF RADIOHEAD SONG, "PARANOID ANDROID")
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