Home > The Colbert Report > Better Know a Guest, June 13 – June 15th

Better Know a Guest, June 13 – June 15th

Hello from the sick bed…

where I’ve been all weekend. Let’s just say this has not been fun, and sitting at my computer has been a trial. For that reason, I may be a little briefer than usual this time. We have a short week with only three new shows upcoming, probably due to Stephen’s Northwestern festivities. It begins with an old-time right-winger I dislike intensely and moves leftward to two very exciting (in my opinion) guests. Let’s get started!

Monday, 6/13: Henry Kissinger

For many in my generation, Henry Kissinger remains one of the most despised names, a hawk who supported the continuation of the Vietnam War for way too long (until he brokered a “peace” at the point of certain loss, which earned him the Nobel Peace Prize), and whose behind-the-scenes machinations in Latin America during the 70s likely led to the death of many thousands, particularly in Chile. Others, of course, view him as brilliant. I am not one of them.  Kissinger, of course, was Nixon’s National Security advisor and then Secretary of State, a job he continued into the Ford presidency. In addition to his government positions, he has taught at Harvard, from which he earned both his BA and PhD.

His newest book is On China, released only a few weeks ago by Penguin. Kissinger was part of Nixon’s surprising “ping pong diplomacy” that opened up relations with China, which as many have pointed out, could probably only have been accomplished by someone so notably opposed to communism.  (Any president on the left would have been accused of being “pinko” and soft on the “reds.”) This large-scale study examines the full, fascinating history of this amazing nation, including its diplomacy, foreign policy, and culture. The reviews so far have generally been good: Michicko Kakutani of the New York Times calls it “Fascinating, shrewd…” although Max Frankel of the same newspaper was less wowed. Kirkus, however, gave it a starred review.

Buy On China from Amazon or Barnes & Noble:
Hear his two-part interview on The Daily Show: Part 1 and Part 2
Hear Stephen on The Daily Show talking about Kissinger the Player

Tuesday,  6/14: Janny Scott

Barack Obama wrote Dreams of My Father – but what about the mother who raised him, took him halfway around the world, and ultimately left him with her parents whle she pursued a PhD in anthrolpology? Janny Scott tell us about her in the new biography A Singular Woman: The Untold Story of Barack Obama’s Mother, which has been receiving lots of attention, including an article in The New York Times Magazine adapted from the book.  Scott has been a reporter for the
newspaper since 1994, and before that she worked for the Los Angeles Times.

Buy A Singular Woman at Amazon or Barnes & Noble
Read Stacy Shiff’s article on the book in The Daily Beast
Hear Janny on Charlie Rose or see a brief video of Scott here

Wednesday,  6/15: Keith Olbermann

I’m counting down to this visit! Keith Olbermann, the dependably liberal pundit who not too long ago resigned from his job at MSNBC, comes to the Report for his second appearance just as he’s ready to debut his new show—also called Countdown—June 20th on Al Gore’s Current TV Network .  The controversial Olbermann has long had a problem with authority figures, including at ESPN’s Sportscenter, where he covered sports for years, and then at Fox Sports. (He’s allegedly banned from ESPN’s “campus” in Bristol, Connecticut.) He then moved on to politics, where he became one of the strongest (some might say strident) voices against President Bush, Fox TV, and especially his nemesis, often “Worst Person in the World,” Bill O’Reilly.

Olbermann was one of the newscasters mocked by Jon as he quested for “sanity” and imitated by Ben Affleck on Saturday Night Live. (I tried to find the video, but it seems to be gone. Pity. Affleck was really great.)

Oh, and…Stephen has made fun of Olbermann, too, on the last day of his show. Will that come up? Will there be fireworks? We shall see!

Here’s a video discussing what went wrong for Olbermann at MSNBC
Here’s his first Current TV ad
Follow him on Twitter

And Now, Let’s Check In With Our Good Friend, Jon Stewart!

Monday, 6/13: Alex Prud’Homme

Alex Prud’homme is author of The Ripple Effect: The Fate of Fresh Water in the Twenty-First Century, about our need for clean, potable water in an age when it’s diminishing. Prud’homme is also the great-nephew of the famed cook Julia Child, with whom he collaborated on her memoir, My Life in France.

Buy it at Amazon or Barnes & Noble

Tuesday, 6/14: J.J. Abrams

He sent Felicity to New York, put Jennifer Garner is a series of wild disguises in Alias, got a whole group of airline passengers Lost on a mysterious island, and revived the Star Trek franchise with his excellent prequel. His latest film, produced by Steven Speilberg, is Super 8, a sci-fi tale about some kids who capture something they shouldn’t have seen on the movie camera.

Hear him on NPR or at his now-famous talk at the TED Conference
Read the New York Times Magazine article on him

As of “press” time, Wednesday’s guest has not been announced. I will update as soon as information becomes available.

Let me know who you’re most excited to see!  Cheers, everyone.

Categories: The Colbert Report
  1. susan209
    June 14, 2011 at 4:10 AM

    Feel better, Karenatasha!!! Whatever it is that you have, it sounds just awful. Perhaps it would not be a good idea to view Kissinger until you’re feeling better ?!?!
    I’m actually really looking forward to seeing Stephen handle that interview as “Stephen.” I agree with everything you said about Kissinger. His anti-semitic rants alone make me sick. But watching what Stephen does will be very interesting.
    Again, feel better!!! Sending thoughts of extra sleep and warm blankets!


    • karenatasha
      June 14, 2011 at 4:14 AM

      Anti-Semitic? Actually, as he’s Jewish and his family escaped the Nazis–and he joined the US military to fight against Germany–that’s one thing I haven’t held against him. Perhaps you’re mistaking this for something else?


      • susan209
        June 14, 2011 at 11:28 AM

        I wish I were. When the Nixon tapes came out recently, the anti-semitic vitriol on the part of Kissinger was sickening. At one point he said something to the effect of it being too bad the ovens didn’t get more of them. I wish I were making that up. Kissinger was echoing Nixon at the time, who was trying to influence the Jewish community for some reason or other, and Nixon was coming up with plenty of his own anti-semitic ranting. Naming the Jews who were “okay,” and “useful,” and that sort of thing. Whether Kissinger actually meant it, or was just manipulating his boss, is up for debate. But he said it. It’s on tape for all the world to see. When he was confronted about it at the time the tapes came out, he said that his words were an error in judgment and that he didn’t really mean them, etc. But, as far as I’m concerned, I wouldn’t trust him. I mean it’s one thing to agree with your boss even if you don’t really mean it, but I don’t think that explains it by a longshot. And a lot of Jews loved Nixon and Kissinger at the time. And Nixon talked a good game, just like Kissinger. Whew. I didn’t mean to go on so long.


      • susan209
        June 14, 2011 at 11:58 AM

        Here’s the link to the NY Times article about Kissinger’s comments. If the link works (I’m not sure I copied it correctly), his unbelievable comment is in the 8th paragraph from the bottom. I misquoted him. He actually said that if the Soviets want to put Jews in gas chambers, it’s not an American concern. Not much better than what I recalled it being. Still pretty sick. Anyway, here’s the link:



    • karenatasha
      June 14, 2011 at 4:44 AM

      And thanks for the well wishes. I’m waiting to see the doctor right now.


  2. colbaby
    June 14, 2011 at 5:13 AM

    Aw, yuck. Sorry to hear you’re under the weather, karenatasha. Hope you feel better soon.

    I’m looking forward to Olbermann. I think I’ve heard Stephen mock him out of character as much as in character, in radio interviews and such. So a face off will be interesting. Wonder if Keith Olbermug will make an appearance. And as a Lostie, I’m looking forward to JJ Abrams on TDS. Oh I have so many questions for that man.


  3. anais0509
    June 14, 2011 at 5:17 AM

    Oh no! Feel better, Karenatasha! Make sure to drink plenty of liquids and sleep, sleep, sleep (does wonders)! I’m too young to have gone through anything that Kissinger was instrumental in, but from the little that I’ve heard about him, I don’t like him. So in order of whom I’m looking forward to most: Olbermann, Scott and Kissinger. Also can’t wait for TDS; their round-up sounds awesome. I wonder who their Wednesday guest will be.


  4. karenatasha
    June 14, 2011 at 6:02 AM

    Thanks, everyone, for the good wishes. The doctor has provided medication, which I’m waiting for now.

    Colbaby, that last meeting between the two seemed very tense and effortful. Wonder what it will be like this time.


  5. iwaspromisedpancakes
    June 14, 2011 at 9:20 AM

    My handle here comes from Guitarmageddon. Colbert was desperate for Kissinger to say the line “But I was promsied pancakes,” but Kissenger wouldn’t do it. I think they’ll be great together. Karenatasha, feel better! We Hubsters are in need of you, and in good health.


  6. lockhart43
    June 14, 2011 at 2:13 PM

    Wednesday’s episode sounds promising – just putting Keith Olbermann and Stephen in the same room together is a good idea. As for the TDS guests, I’m excited for J.J. Abrams. I saw Super 8 over the weekend and really loved it.

    Thanks for the post, Karenatasha! Hope you feel better!


  7. lockhart43
    June 16, 2011 at 1:19 AM

    According to the Late Night TV Page, Trey Parker and Matt Stone are the guests on tonight’s TDS. Whoo-hoo!


    • karenatasha
      June 16, 2011 at 3:13 AM

      Thanks for this info! I hadn’t had a chance to look. Now, no one here doesn’t know who they are, right?

      Should be lots of fun.

      But wait…weren’t they on TDS not so long ago? Why TDS again? Why not Tony friend Stephen Colbert?


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