May News Quiz

  1. In Iran, six people were arrested after posting on the internet a video of themselves dancing to the Pharrell Williams song “Happy.” Iranian authorities said the young people were arrested because: a) Iranian authorities feel that music about happiness undermines Muslim values; b) dancing reflects the decadence of western society that they are trying to keep out of Iran; c) the only dance currently legal in Iran is the Carlton Dance; or d) it took attention away from the new Iranian television series Dancing With the Shahs?
  2. In response to a state budget shortfall of $1 billion, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has announced that he will cut the state’s contribution to its employee pension fund by more than $750 million. Christie is doing this because: a) he’s the governor, and if he doesn’t want to live up to the obligations of the state, that’s the way it’s going to be; b) they’re only public employees and most of them are probably Democrats anyway, so who cares; c) he needs the money to fix the approach lanes to the George Washington Bridge; or d) you can’t campaign for president on a platform of fiscal responsibility if you can’t even balance a simple state budget?
  3. On a recent Middle East trip, Pope Francis stirred controversy when he made his first stop in the Palestinian territory and referred to it as a state. He did this because: a) he views Palestine as a state; b) he had a craving for baba ghanoush; c) he remembers the Crusades fondly and identifies with terrorists; or d) he was sending a message to Israelis because he believes Jews have never been appropriately grateful for the extraordinary lengths to which the church went during World War II to protect them from the Nazis?
  4. House Republicans are working on a bill to weaken the nutrition standards of the federally subsidized school lunch program. They want to weaken the program because: a) even if it’s a sure-fire plan for world peace, they’d oppose any idea that comes from Michelle Obama; b) they receive large campaign contributions from companies that sell unhealthy food to schools and no contributions from fourth-graders; c) if a high-sodium, high-fat diet is good enough for Congress it should be good enough for the kids; or d) since mostly low-income and minority children qualify for subsidized school lunches, all an unhealthy diet may do is kill off some children who are likely to grow up and vote for Democrats?
  5. Chase Bank is closing the accounts of clients who work in the porn industry. This is surprising because: a) porn stars make good money and banks are all about the money; b) no one realized banks care about how their customers get their money; c) banks always seem interested in obscene things – obscene profits, obscene business practices, and obscene abuse of their customers; or d) considering the abuses banks have been guilty of in recent years, the idea of banks deciding good and bad and right and wrong is pretty laughable?
  6. Actor Ben Affleck was banned from a Las Vegas casino for counting cards. Affleck was really banned because: a) he plays poker with skill, which casinos won’t tolerate; b) casino poker is rigged to favor the casino and card-counting makes it a fairer contest, which casinos consider unacceptable; c) they mistook him for Matt Damon, whom they dislike because he’s made movies about robbing casinos; or d) revenge for Gigli?
  7. Hundreds of ultra-orthodox Jews protested at the Jerusalem site of Jesus’s last supper, complaining about: a) the possibility of Israel losing sovereignty over the site; b) oy! their feet are killing them from the long walk, why no buses; c) no place nearby to get Chinese take-out; or d) gentiles everywhere!?
  8. Investigators are examining the role lawyers played in General Motors’ decision not to disclose defects in ignition switches that are thought to be the cause of a dozen deaths and hundreds of injuries. They suspect GM lawyers did this because: a) they were told to; b) doing the immoral thing is always a lawyer’s first instinct; c) it’s their job to protect the company from potential lawsuits – even suits by legitimate claimants seeking compensation for damages caused by GM’s defective workmanship; or d) what did you expect – isn’t hiding problems and denying justice to people who’ve been harmed one of the central tenets in the practice of corporate law?
  9. The Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team released (fired) a minor league player after he started a fight with a teammate and bit off part of that teammate’s ear. The Dodgers released the biter because: a) he wasn’t very good to begin with and the player he assaulted is an important part of the team’s future; b) they didn’t want a player with that kind of temper problem; c) they recognize that players can get into fights now and then but draw the line at kicking and biting; or d) eareconcilable differences?
  10. A dead whale that washed ashore in Atlantic City bore markings of the Greek letters Tau, Epsilon, and Phi. Authorities suspect that: a) the whale was Greek; b) Greek fishermen marked the whale at sea; c) college students marked the whale after it washed ashore but before authorities spotted it; or d) the whale was pledging a fraternity but died during a hazing incident?
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