Mike Birbiglia explains the chain of events that resulted in him becoming the fall guy for his entire high school, and how it took him a while to catch on to what was happening. This story was recorded live in front of an audience in Cambridge, Mass. (10 minutes)
The story of a famous but not well-understood political fall guy, someone who became a scapegoat for American policies worldwide. Philip Gourevitch writes about listening to nine hours of interviews with Lynndie England, the American servicewoman photographed at Abu Ghraib prison holding a leash with a naked, Iraqi prisoner on the end of it. (15 minutes)
Philip Gourevitch's book about what happened in that prison and in those photos is called The Ballad of Abu Ghraib. Audio in this act came from Errol Morris's interviews in the film Standard Operating Procedure.
Planet Money's Alex Blumberg and Adam Davidson talk to Ira about the lawsuit phase of the economic crisis, and the ongoing search to find someone to take the blame. So far at least 196 lawsuits are simply banks suing other banks. (10 minutes)
In big families, there's often one kid who always gets blamed when something goes wrong. But Shalom Auslander came from a small family, so the role of fall guy was up for grabs. Shalom Auslander is the author of several books, including Foreskin's Lament. (13 minutes)