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Panel Questions


Now, we could keep celebrating Halloween by traveling around the country and TP-ing each of our panelist's houses again, or we could play some of our favorite moments from them from the past year.

Amy, The Wall Street Journal reports that ChuChu TV is a YouTube channel, and it's having tremendous success making something a lot less upsetting for kids. What is it?

AMY DICKINSON: ChuChu TV? Is it about chewing?


DICKINSON: Or is it about choo-chooing (ph)?

SAGAL: No. It's a video channel for young children - specifically gives them much less upsetting versions of what?

DICKINSON: Parents, like, getting divorced, leaving the house.


SAGAL: Oh, my God.


SAGAL: Hi, I'm Debbie Daisy, telling you that your parents still love you both very much. That is...


DICKINSON: Less upsetting versions of, like...

SAGAL: Sure, that's Daddy's new girlfriend but not your new mom.


SAGAL: That's the worst thing you can possibly imagine.

DICKINSON: Wait a minute.

SAGAL: Think of her as your new big sister. She's young enough.



SAGAL: No, not that. Not that.

DICKINSON: Not that.


DICKINSON: Less upsetting versions of - is it like a story that's a version...

SAGAL: They're famous stories.

DICKINSON: Oh, nursery rhymes.

SAGAL: Yes, nursery rhymes.

DICKINSON: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

SAGAL: Yes, yes.


SAGAL: In their version, Humpty Dumpty falls off the wall. And all the king's horses and all the king's men can put them back together again.


SAGAL: Speaking of which, can we just stop and say, why even - why would you even ask for the horses in that situation?


SAGAL: Hey, I've got a cracked egg here. Send over the giant beasts whose legs end in hammers.

ROCCA: So wait. So everybody ends up OK. Nobody's injured.

SAGAL: Well, yeah. So instead of, you know, all the king's horses and all the king's men not being able to put him together again, in the ChuChu TV version, the village takes Humpty, puts him on bed rest in a little body cast. And while he's healing, they put up helpful signs warning other people not to climb the wall. It's dangerous.

DICKINSON: Oh, stop it.

ROCCA: So they're actually - they're nursing rhymes.

SAGAL: Yes, in a weird way.


ALONZO BODDEN: Is this because we want to raise a generation even worse than millennials?

SAGAL: Yes, probably true.


DICKINSON: I mean, look, fairy tales is one thing. But nursery rhymes?

SAGAL: Yeah, nursery rhymes.


SAGAL: Yeah.

DICKINSON: Has a child ever been harmed by a nursery rhyme?

SAGAL: Well, think of it. Nursery rhymes - right? - nursery rhymes can be violent. Jack and Jill went up the hill. And they came down and broke his crown. You know, I mean, so in their version, they go up the hill. They have counseling. They really learn to handle their conflicts.


ROCCA: But what about that old woman who's living in a shoe? Is that still happening?


DICKINSON: With all the children.

SAGAL: No, she gets moved into an assisted living facility. It's very nice.

DICKINSON: But remember - didn't she have, like, dozens of children?

SAGAL: She did.

ROCCA: I think she - wait. Is that the same as the woman...

SAGAL: She didn't know what to do - she had so many children.

DICKINSON: Maybe she gets an implant.


BODDEN: I'm beginning to like the idea of the divorce stories.

SAGAL: I know.


SAGAL: Alonzo, thanks to a tweet sent out by FEMA, Floridians who called a hotline for help after Hurricane Irma got what instead?

BODDEN: Wow. From FEMA, there's so many things that can be done wrong.


BODDEN: They called out for help, and FEMA sent them something? Or...

SAGAL: (Laughter) No. They didn't - when people called this 800 number, they didn't get...

BODDEN: Oh, they didn't get FEMA.

SAGAL: Yeah. They got...

BODDEN: They got some kind of sex line.

SAGAL: Exactly. They got phone sex operators.



SAGAL: Clearly hoping to prove that they could do just as good a job under Trump as they did under George W. Bush.


SAGAL: FEMA officials tweeted out a toll-free number to Florida residents looking for help recovering from the hurricane. Unfortunately, they swapped that 1-888 area code with 1-800, leading callers not to a relief organization but to a phone sex line.

BODDEN: Which is a relief organization.

ROCCA: Exactly.


SAGAL: Roy, a new study out this week finds that the secret to having a long, happy marriage is being what?

ROY BLOUNT JR: (Laughter) Alive?


SAGAL: Certainly better than the alternative.


SAGAL: What kind of people tended to have the happiest marriages?

BLOUNT JR: People who can afford to.


SAGAL: That's right.





SAGAL: Rich people, specifically - and this is where it gets interesting - rich jerks.



SAGAL: A study found that if you want to maximize your chances of being happy in a marriage, be a male, rich person with extreme political views.


SAGAL: All those things correlate with happy marriages. First of all, men tend to be happier in marriages than women, which makes sense because most women have to be married to men.


SAGAL: Second, extreme views help because you tend to marry other people with the same views. You don't argue as much. And also, finally, being rich helps because everything's better when you're rich.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Uh-huh. I would've guessed the answer would've been deaf people.

SAGAL: You'd think?



SAGAL: You don't think you can...


UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: You can just tune them out whenever you want. Like, blah, blah, blah.




BLOUNT JR: If you stay married long enough, you get there.


SAGAL: Paula, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin is a multi-millionaire financier and movie producer. But now, of course, he's all about public service...


SAGAL: ...Which is why, we guess, he asked for the use of a government plane for what important trip?

POUNDSTONE: For his honeymoon, isn't it?

SAGAL: Yes, indeed, Paula. That's what it was.



POUNDSTONE: Nothing solidifies high-level love like a government airplane.

SAGAL: Yeah.


SAGAL: It's a motto in the Trump White House - you're only going to get married three or four times in your life.


SAGAL: So why not do it in style and at taxpayer expense?

POUNDSTONE: And it's something like - the whole - it was something like $25,000 an hour or something for that plane.

SAGAL: Yeah. That's how much it costs to operate these planes.

ROXANNE ROBERTS: But wait. But wait. Here's what I don't get. That guy is a billionaire, right?

SAGAL: He is a very rich man.

ROBERTS: So he could, like, take a Lear jet...

SAGAL: If he wanted to.

ROBERTS: ...Or the Concorde or a space shuttle - whatever.

SAGAL: Pretty much.

ROBERTS: Is a government airplane, like, that much better?

ADAM FELBER: Well, here's the thing - I think because - if you're that rich, there's some satisfaction you get from stealing from the poor.


SAGAL: Yeah.


SAGAL: That's it for our not-at-all spooky Halloween preview show. Support for NPR comes from NPR stations and Fidelity Investments, taking personalized services to helping clients grow, preserve and manage their wealth. Learn more at fidelity/com/wealth. Fidelity Brokerage Services, LLC. The Herbert Simon Family Foundation supporting NPR and member station WFYI in Indianapolis, working together to cover stories and issues that inform listeners in Indiana and beyond by providing critical information about the factors influencing education. And Lumber Liquidators, a proud sponsor of NPR, offering more than 400 styles, including hardwood, bamboo, laminate and vinyl with flooring specialists in hundreds of stores nationwide. More at lumberliquidators.com or 1-800-HARDWOOD.

WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME is a production of NPR and WBEZ Chicago in association with Urgent Haircut Productions - Doug Berman, benevolent overlord. Philipp Goedicke writes our limericks. Our house manager is Tyler Greene. Our interns are Katie O'Reilly (ph) and Giana Cappadonna (ph). Our web guru is Beth Novey. B.J. Leiderman composed our theme. Our program is produced by Jennifer Mills and Miles Doornbos. Technical direction is from Lorna White. Our business and ops manager is Colin Miller. Our production coordinator is Robert Neuhaus. Our senior producer is Ian Chillag. And the executive producer of WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME is Michael Danforth. Thanks to Bill Kurtis. Thanks to all of our panelists and guests. Thanks to the immortal Carl Kasell, our prize. And thanks for to all of you for listening. I am Peter Sagal. And we will see you next week.


SAGAL: This is NPR. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.