The Colbert Report

Season 2 Episode 107

Geoffrey Nunberg

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Aired Weekdays 11:30 PM Aug 21, 2006 on Comedy Central
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Geoffrey Nunberg
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Tonight Stephen welcomes Geoffrey Nunberg, professor of linguistics and columnist for the New York Times and author of Talking Right: How Conservatives Turned Liberalsim into a Tax Raising, Latte-Drinking, Sushi-Eating, Volvo-Driving, New York Times-Reading, Body Piercing, Hollywood Loving, Left-Wing Freak Show.
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      • Stephen: …brings us to tonight's word: Side Effects. The side effects of this plan [Using prisoners to test drugs] are wonderful. (May include nausea, pangs of conscience) Over the last 30 years the U.S. prison population has quadrupled to around 2.3 million, (Over 2 million served time) and we currently have more prisoners than any other country in the world. (Suck it, China!) And those criminals owe a debt to our society. So let's put them to work making money for the pharmaceutical industry. (Call it "insourcing") Prisoners are already society's black sheep, now we can make them society's black guinea pigs. (Already in cages) Of course some of the criminal coddlers are gonna say that this is cruel and unusual punishment, but I know of another prisoners willing to suffer for the good of mankind: Jesus. (Side effects may include salvation) Now I'm sure He'd have tested a little pill to help cure leprosy or the leprosy of the twenty first century, restless leg syndrome. (Easier to walk on water) Of course the pharmaceutical testing should fit the crime. For a white collar crime say accepting $2.4 million in bribes you get to test a cholesterol medication in its final stages. But if you're in for murder, you don't take the drugs, your cellmate does, and it's new Extra Strength Viagra. (Longer-lasting corrections) Not only will this plan advance medical science it's great for the poor. If you can't afford health insurance go and rob some convenience stores. If you're not caught you have the money to go see a doctor, if you are caught, hey, free health care. (After 5 cigarette co-pay) Same goes for old people. If you're confused by the new Medicare Plan D, don't click a bunch of links on a website, all your prescription problems can be solved with the click of a shotgun. (Terror at Bingo Night) Prisoners are one of America's biggest and fastest growing natural resources. (Will they fit in my gas tank?) So let's just do to them what we do to all our other natural resources, exploit them.

        And that's the Word.

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