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Panel Round One


We want to remind everyone to join us here most weeks at the Chase Bank Auditorium in beautiful downtown Chicago, Illinois. For tickets and more information, go to wbez.org. You can find a link at our website, waitwait.npr.org. Right now, panel, time for you to answer some questions about this week's news.

Faith, the U.S. has been trying for years to get Colombian drug gangs to put down their guns and abandon the drug trade. Well, they think they've finally found a way to reach them. Well, they think they've finally found a way to reach them. They will be delivering the message of peace through what?

FAITH SALIE: Song and dance?

SAGAL: No, although that would be fun. It is a form of entertainment.

SALIE: Oh. OK. We, the U.S...

SAGAL: We, the U.S.

SALIE: We're delivering a message of peace to Colombian drug lords...

SAGAL: Want them to stop it.

SALIE: ...through entertainment.


SALIE: It's not pole dancing.


SAGAL: And it's not pole dancing, which I know somebody who's looking for a new opportunity, too, so it's a shame.

SALIE: It's not song and dance.


SALIE: I'm running out of entertainment genres. Is it...?

SAGAL: Well, let me try to do it for you. Here we go: Like powdered cocaine through the hourglass, these are the days of our lives.

SALIE: Soap opera.

SAGAL: Soap operas. Even the most hardened, vicious Colombian drug lord takes an hour out of his busy murder schedule to watch his stories.


SAGAL: You know, soap operas are huge in Latin America, as you know. So the U.S. Army is creating a 20-episode soap opera or telenovella with characters that convey anti-violence messages in, quote, "furnished, functioning state institutions," unquote. It's a terrible mistake, though, to expect people to learn morals through soap operas. I mean, for example, they'll all believe it's OK to kill people because they all miraculously come back six months later.


LUKE BURBANK: Are they going to hire, like, real actors in Colombia to do this? Or are they going to have, like, U.S. military to do it? Because that would be unconvincing.


SAGAL: That would be - like there's a Marine in a blonde wig.



SAGAL: Yes, sir, I've always loved you, sir.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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