The Personal Is Judicial

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S1: The following program may contain explicit language in the. It’s Thursday, October 15th, 20 20 from Slate. It’s the gist. I’m Mike Pesca. You know, we all need our Connie Moscowitz.

S2: Connie Moscowitz is a friend of my mom who was useful to my mom not as a friend, but as a point of comparison within our family, because she made my mom look temperate and reasonable by comparison.

S3: Oh, you think I’m embarrassing you by saying embarrassing things about you in public? You should see what Connie Moskowitz says about her kids. Oh, you think I’m overprotective? Connie Moskowitz wouldn’t let her son play even flag football. You don’t know from complaining until you hear Connie Moskowitz complain. We all need a Connie Moskowitz who outflanks us to make us seem like the reasonable one, who turns our flaws into foibles and our foibles into virtues by comparison. This is one of the reasons I think that Donald Trump surrounds himself with miscreants. True, no one else will work with him. But there’s also the oh, you think I’m a racist. You should see Steve Bannon going on.

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S1: Which brings me to Phil Ruffin. Phil Ruffin is the Las Vegas casino owner who Trump is in business with and who, according to The New York Times, last election gave Trump 21 million dollars in a campaign contribution when times get tough. Didn’t call it a campaign contribution. They called it a service or a fee or an expense and the to do own a large casino together. So it’s plausible, unless you did, as the Times did, a deep dive, which really indicates it’s not plausible. It was just some money that Trump needed that Ruffin gave him, probably in violation of campaign finance laws. Now, the Times has done a lot of great reporting on Trump financial chicanery, and this one is long and detailed. But you do have to say it’s not as illegal as a lot of the other stuff that we’re not even paying attention to. It’s not as nakedly unethical. It might probably be in the category of troubling, but no worse than troubling as opposed to the everyday horrendous and no better than horrendous. In fact, the political favor that Trump was being asked for by Roughen. Why would Ruffin do it? Will rough and wanted something. He wanted a bullet train from California to Las Vegas. But it’s weird politically because that is a project favored by Harry Reid and that is a project that was killed by Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell. So with Trump being in favor of this normally Democratic favored bullet train, the politics themselves get skewed. So I get the lack of attention. Overall, I am feeling a little guilty glossing over it. So here’s where Kony Moscowitz comes in. The thing that struck me about Phil Ruffin is his wife because she is striking Trump. This from the Times Trump served as best man at Ruffian’s 2008 wedding after introducing Roughen to his future wife, Alexandra Nikolaenko, Miss Ukraine 2004 at a Miss Universe pageant. When we said Phil Ruffin was 72 years of age, Aleksandra was 26. This makes the Donald Melania 24 year gap seem positively negligible. And Melania, while a great beauty, wasn’t a Miss Ukraine. She wasn’t even Miss Slovenia, though, who knows? Maybe she could have been. And Donald Trump was at one point described in the popular press as something approaching handsome. Right. The first profile of him in The New York Times begins. He is tall, lean and blond with dazzling white teeth. And he looks ever so much like Robert Redford. That was about Trump. Phil Ruffin. However, it does not strike one as ever, having been compared to Dustin Hoffman, who is the shorter version of the Trump Red 40. In comparison, the women who I have directed pictures of Phil Ruffin at sorry about the act. I said, hey, look at look at old Phil Ruffin and young Alexandra. They have not said, well, that’s you know, that’s your typical old guy, old rich guy, young Miss Universe pairing. I have said, look, I’m going to show you a picture of an old rich guy who married a Miss Universe. And I show them the picture and they shriek because she’s tall. She’s exquisitely graceful. She has perfect bone structure. He’s short with eyebrows splayed at odd angles, and he’s rarely photographed not wearing tinted glasses, which gives his face a lizard like Sheen. I’m not here to denigrate the pulchritude of casino magnate Trump backer and possible coconspirator Phil Ruffin. I’m here to say Donald Trump looks at Phil Ruffin and declares himself pretty normal, not excessive at all, very much in the mainstream and not even May December romance. More like a June September romance. We all have friends who double as human permission structures. Phil Ruffin is Donald Trump’s permission structure or would be if Donald Trump ever asked for or waited for permission for any of his misdeeds on the show today, I spiel about not the jurisprudential, but the sociological aspects of the Mikuni Barat nomination. But first, he was a top figure in the NRA. He found Wayne LaPierre to be a weak willed, duplicitous CIBER. Right now, he’s written a book about it. Josh Powell, author of Inside the NRA, A Tell All Account of corruption, greed and Paranoia within the most powerful political group in America is up next. Joshua Powell is the former chief of staff to Wayne LaPierre, the man who ran the National Rifle Association. His new book is called Inside the NRA, A Tell All Account of Corruption, Greed and Paranoia within the most powerful political group in America in which Josh tells tales out of school he can’t believe what he saw at the if not the revolution than the insurrection. Thanks for coming on the gist, Josh. Thank you. Appreciate having me today. Tell me give us a give the listeners a sense of who you are. It’s not the typical NRA suit, I would say. Why’d you take the job and what you thought of the NRA walking in?

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S4: Yeah, that’s a great question. You’re the first one to start off with that. Yeah, I’m not I’m certainly not from D.C. And, you know, I came into I mean, I grew up in Michigan and came from a background shooting, hunting and had developed this connection with the with the National Rifle Association. And over time, I was asked to come in and work with Wayne. And I had known to two large degree at that point. And and yeah, I was definitely a fish out of water coming into Washington, D.C. I was certainly naive to what I was about to experience, to say the least, because you are a finance guy, essentially. Yeah, no, that’s exactly right. I kind of cut my teeth in Chicago on the Chicago Board Options Exchange and traded on those for a long time, built a high frequency trading that’s working in some private equity stuff and consulting. And that was great and life was good. And it was, hey, can you come into the NRA? And what really drew me to the job and I had spent a lot of time with Wayne talking to him about. What he wanted to do, it wasn’t my job to come in there and dictate to change its course, but I certainly had my opinions of what I wanted to do. And and and the biggest one was I wanted to build an NRA that was inclusive of a lot more people. There’s only five million members and there’s well over one hundred million gun owners in this country, of which thirty five percent or more are self-proclaimed Democrats. And to go back to its roots to a large degree of building an educational training basis, we’re a lot more people could participate at this point. They only spend three percent of the entire budget on education training. And that was really why I came in there. And in addition to that was I felt incredibly strongly about the violence that had been going on, particularly in my home city in Chicago and with the NRA should be a it shouldn’t just be a vessel of no. It should be a. Changing it should be solution oriented, and that was something that it certainly was not.

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S1: And so this was around this was around the year when 2011. Am I getting that right?

S4: No, no, no. This would be 20, 16. Summer of twenty.

S1: Sixteen. Yeah, right. So this was and the book starts with how you and other members of the NRA brass react to the news of the Sandy Hook shooting. But when you joined I mean, the NRA has this long history and I think the majority of presidents since its founding had a membership in the NRA and Ulysses S. Grant was president of the NRA. So basically, for it was always a gun rights organization, but for most of its existence, it was about as controversial as the Chamber of Commerce, which isn’t to say entirely uncontroversial. The Chamber of Commerce is a mostly Republican organization. They try to get things done in their lobbying arm is strong, but I do mean that they’re not associated exactly with the culture wars. But when you joined, it was pretty Sandy Hook, but it was post Columbine. So to some extent you had to know what you were walking into, that this was already by then a a an organization both in the crosshairs and, you know, putting crosshairs on its enemies.

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S5: Yeah. So just I want to be really careful here to set the stage correctly. So in 2011, I start the book out in what I was doing the day of Sandy Hook and I was working in the private equity space and consulting. It wasn’t until twenty sixteen that I actually became an employee and working for Wayne directly. I was there for a little over three years. I was a board. I was the youngest guy in the board of directors prior to that for a couple of years. And so I certainly had a sense of, you know, the association felt really strongly about it, felt like there was lots of I looked at it is like, God, this thing could be so massive and you can make it this bigger, bigger, better thing where frankly, look, the more people you have safely using firearms, the better the better. The skits and I was passionate about I grew up with guns and I grew up hunting and shooting and I compete to this day. And it was something I really was excited about kind of doing. But one of the things you really point on is that, you know, it wasn’t really until Wayne’s tenure that it became and he would in truth, if he was telling the truth, he’d say, yeah, no, we absolutely embarked on the culture wars. And that was exactly where he wanted to to to move move the association. I think long term that that’s a mistake, but that is the fact of where it is.

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S6: So the thing that is going to fail, at least members of the NRA and might imperil the entire organization is not a question of legislation or strategy or tactics or morality. It’s a question of finances and a question of the excesses of spending among actually both of the power centers within the NRA. I’m going to give you a chance to talk about that a little, but maybe the way into it can be. Do you think that that is part and parcel of sort of the intellectual rot of the NRA, that it shows up as Wayne LaPierre taking all these private flights to the Bahamas on a whim? But what it really is, is somehow indicative of what you’re indicting them for, not being nimble, not caring about membership, not really caring, not being intellectually honest about the things they say they care about.

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S5: Well, I think that it’s I think you have to unpack it a little bit is I do agree with that’s exactly right. That they’re not really being intellectually honest and they’re not getting to solving some of these bigger problems is one side. The other side of it is, is that there are you know, the attorney general has just you know, she’s at the tip of the iceberg with this probe into the NRA, where she’s going to find is Letitia James of New York. Yes, sir. She’s she will find decades of corruption in the form of no bid contracts that have automatic escalators. Everybody’s getting a raise every year. There’s no deliverables attached to it. There’s no metrics to measure anybody by. And that is the part that is the the it’s it’s utter mismanagement that falls on Wayne’s shoulders to to run the organization. You know, they’d have a heck of a lot more money in spite of the fact that they burned through seventy five million dollars in legal fees in three years and Wayne’s jet travel and all that stuff, they’d have a lot more money if they actually just manage the place like, you know, a real business would. And there was absolutely zero from top to bottom understanding of how to even approach some of the most basic business practices. So if and then it comes down to if you’re always struggling for money, which they were, if you can believe it, how does a three hundred. Million dollar organization struggle for money, well, that’s how and and then the easy way out is, well, let’s go pour gas on the fire. Will Dana lash out? We’ll have her tell the media that they love mass murder. Wayne is going to trot himself out after Sandy Hook and say the only thing that’ll stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun and on and on, pour gas in the fire, throw the match and raise money off of it.

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S7: That’s the easy way out. It’s easy to raise money and fear.

S1: Tell me about Wayne LaPierre, his personality. I have read that well, you see his public pronouncements and they’re pretty incendiary, but I have read that actually in private, he’s a somewhat shy, unassuming person. What’s what’s your assessment of him?

S7: Well, that’s exactly correct. You know, the the persona that Wayne puts on in public is a mirage that is not him in private. And I think that, unfortunately, it became easy for him to do that over decades because it just it became easy to raise money off of that. And so Wayne built up this, you know, mad man persona in private. He’s literally the exact opposite, which is frankly led to this decades of real mismanagement, which is the guy doesn’t want to have any conflict whatsoever in his interpretation of conflict in the real world, is managing people, is directing people. And I mean, there was no such thing as a staff meeting in that place. I had a couple staff meetings and I think that people were about ready to faint and have a heart attack because he’d been the first time and I don’t know, a decade since they’ve had once it was this incredibly mismanaged place. The only way that I can describe it is it’s like One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, you know, multiplied by a hundred is Dysfunction Junction.

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S6: Right. So if Wayne is essentially this feckless character who is more or less addicted to his two hundred seventy five thousand dollars in personal expenses and his Beverly Hills suits and his private jets to the Bahamas and Lake Como and that six million dollar house in a gated community in Dallas, if he’s one pole, the other polar opposite in just affect is Ollie North, who you had a lot of dealings with. He was essentially the one who went head to head with Wayne, but he’s far from the hero of your story. Was that.

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S7: Well, you know, it is it’s one of these you know, everything is a shade of gray and certainly, you know, when Ali and Wayne got into this head to head a proxy fight, frankly, that was to get rid of Bill Brewer, our attorney, just stop in to drop this lawsuit against the firm that he worked for, making two million dollars a year that the NRA paid for. He had this ultimate conflict of interest. At the same time, Ali said, hey, we need to look at all these expenses that we’re racking up in twenty five million dollars a year in lawyers fees. And they need to be audited. They need to be looked at. They need to be. I mean, it was, in his words, a breathtaking amount of money. And he was right. The issue is, is that he had his own conflict of interest that he was sorting through. And so, you know, in that regard, Ali was absolutely right.

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S1: When you were there as chief strategist, was it ever on your radar that a state attorney general could do something like Letitia James is trying to do in New York?

S7: Not until after parklet. Parkland changed the ballgame for the NRA, put a lot of pressure on it that it hadn’t seen ever. And she started an investigation into it, or the Department of Financial Services, rather, in New York, started an investigation into the insurance side, which started to tip us off. But in addition, the attorney general, prior to Letitia James Schneiderman, had tipped off one of our board members in New York that Cuomo was looking at using the attorney general to probe into the NRA. And in essence, you guys better get your house in order. And that was a good year and a half prior to things becoming obvious that the AG was going to initiate this probe. And so it wasn’t a no, it wasn’t like all of a sudden the probe was launched and we had a problem. And that was it was far in advance. We knew there was a big problem. And and I certainly didn’t understand the the depth of it’s a big organization, you know, internally. I’d been there at that time for maybe a year. A little over a year plus and then all of a sudden we jump into hiring attorneys and my focus becomes, you know, kind of tearing through the organization and finding out what is underneath all these covers. And every day there was some other crisis that arrived. So it was it was definitely a whirlwind tour when I was there.

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S6: Now, James, this case is essentially specific to New York because the NRA was chartered. There is a non-profit, I think, in the 70s. But I have heard analysis and I’d like to check in on what you say of this, that even if she wins and it’s not a slam dunk that she will, then all the NRA has to do is charter in a friendlier territory like Texas. Is that what the organization thinks?

S7: Yeah, I don’t think that they certainly Bellbird is not adhere to that thinking. I think there is there is some merit to that. And you end up throwing yourself into another lawsuit with her. But I could see I could understand tactically why some attorneys would suggest doing that at this point, you know, whether she has the ability to dissolve the association. You know, this is one of these cases that will play out over time, but it’s really a it’s somewhat uncharted territory in that regard. But understand this, the attorney general in through because the NRA is in New York and the chair is under the charities bureau and there’s a lot of power there to to have oversight over these things. And they should you know, if you’re if you’ve got a three hundred million dollar organization that you’ve got members pumping money into and they’re not paying taxes. Right. It’s not for profit. And that’s why it falls under New York, because that’s where they are. There’s a lot of leverage that she can pull. And there’s no possible way that the association is going to come out of this, you know, incredibly, incredibly scathed more than they are now. I mean, at this point, you know, that the board of directors has a binary choice. They’re either going to hang on to Wayne, who’s 70 years old, who has no interest whatsoever in staying around that place and probably all go down with the ship or they tack and they bring in new a new leadership team and literally start from top to bottom, rehab the rehab and be able to make some argument that they’re actually cleaning the place up. Because the reality of it is, is that it wasn’t cleaned up.

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S1: Is the NRA as an organization, what, quaking in their boots about this or it’s another headache to be managed? Or I’ll give you a third choice. You know, it’s always good to fundraise off attacks from Democrats.

S7: Yeah, no, this is a this is this is the only thing that Wayne thinks about every day period. End of story. That’s it. That’s always dealt with for well over or I guess from a year or two now of this of this situation. So, no, this is really paralyzed the place and it’s paralyzed it in the fact, too, that if if you’re constantly dealing with, you know, this situation and you’re not moving forward, well, you’re not moving forward. You know, you’re not actually building and you’re spending all this time and money and energy on dealing with this litigation. And it’s not going to be over anytime soon, that’s for sure. I mean, they’ve racked up this point, I mean, this point. They have spent seventy five million dollars. By all accounts, on just the lawyers. That is a breathtaking amount of money, breathtaking.

S1: The name of the book is Inside the NRA, a tell all account of corruption, greed and paranoia within the most powerful political group in America. We’re speaking with Joshua L. Powell, who is the former chief of staff and senior strategist of the NRA. Thank you, Josh. Thank you. And now the spiel, the Amy CONI Barrett hearings were a crash course in the law, structural, legal deception and hard question avoidance. But whenever the country’s attention focuses on a high profile event and we are all, as one introduced to a new character in our national drama, I think we learn interesting things, not just about the new character, but about our fellow citizen. So beyond the fact that Amy Koney, Barack represents a reliable vote against abortion rights and for the conservative agenda, and that really will be the most important thing. Today’s hearing, which gaveled to a close, was interesting. The entire ordeal was interesting. It did get a four star review on Yelp. No, wait, I’m sorry. That was Dianne Feinstein’s personal rating service. She apparently loved the hearing before that unexpected outburst of comity. Different members of the committee commented upon Barrett as a wife, mother or person, or they commented on comments about Barrett as a wife, mother or person. Dianne Feinstein defended herself, began the hearings with a seemingly anodyne piece of etiquette.

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S2: Judge, it’s wonderful to see you here. Also, with the family that I have been observing, they still sit still quiet. You’ve done a very good job. I have eyes in the back of my head are watching now.

S3: This was the sort of statement that made Natalie Baptiste writing in Mother Jones say, quote, For senators questioning Barrett, her white motherhood appeared to be kind of intoxicating. Even Democrats sitting in a possible covid hot bed with the nominee being rushed through three weeks before the election couldn’t help themselves. Senator Dianne Feinstein’s first question to Barrett was about her children and she continued to comment on them throughout the hearing. While Barrett is white and she is a mother and two of her children adopted from Haiti are black, that is why the Mother Jones article was headlined The White Working Mom with Black Children is a godsend for the GOP. The subhead says, Just imagine if that adoration was extended to other mothers of black children. OK, I can imagine it. But in our imagination, does the other mother of black children who we are imagining is she also a brilliant former Antonin Scalia, law clerk who graduated at the top of her law class and is now one of the best teachers at one of the top law schools in America, then I think the GOP would similarly fall all over themselves to compliment her and push her forward. And you know who else would a lot of senators, a lot of Democratic senators, especially Feinstein, who was roundly criticized for noting Barrett’s Catholicism and in a way that was seen as potentially damaging to Democrats. So what does she do? She extends politeness in an area where people can find common ground. As a parent, Feinstein is also a mother. And guess what? Her daughter happened to be a judge. She’s retired now. And the text that Mother Jones piece, the author writes, Many trans racial adoptees have spoken about the damage done to them by well-intentioned white parents who simply had no idea how to talk about race. She then goes on to quote, a trans racial adoptee who spoke to the NPR program Code Switch about being South Korean and adopted by white parents. OK, and therefore and Mikuni Barrett has committed similar sins or has been inadequate in talking to her children about race or was a bad mother because she adopted Vivian when she was 14 months old and weighed 11 pounds and would possibly never walk now. By the way, Vivian Barrett is super healthy. Her mom cited her deadlifting prowess. But let’s be careful about what the allegations and counter allegations are. The Mother Jones piece doesn’t allege that the author of the Mother Jones piece and many others who agreed were decrying not necessarily the fact that Barrett is a white mother of black children, but they were decrying the fact that her status as a white mother of black children will be wielded by Republicans. And that is what happened. Thom Tillis of North Carolina thought it was necessary to read into the record some of the slings and arrows being lobbed at Barrett online.

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S1: Behind the curtains, we’re seeing people say all kinds of things about you. One one called you a white coloniser for actually adopting two Haitian children.

S3: There were variations of this claim from other senators like John Kennedy of Louisiana, some, but he professor at Boston University. Says that because you and your husband have two children of color. That you’re a white colonist. Now, I heard that comment, the white coloniser comment, and I thought it was out of bounds, but upon further inspection, it got more complex because the professor isn’t just some BU professor, it’s Ibrahim Kendy, the as of late, highly celebrated author of How to Be Anti-racist. I’m pretty familiar with Kennedy’s work. And I thought to myself, it doesn’t sound like him to just be leveling the charge of coloniser. Some professors would. It doesn’t seem exactly what Kennedy would say. In fact, it wasn’t. Here’s what really happened. A woman named Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, tweets a photo of Amy CONI Barret’s Haitian children with two white parents. These white parents, by the way, weren’t actually Amy and Jesse Barrett. They were apparently Amy’s sister. Anyway, Jenny Beth Martin taunts, quote, with two adopted children from Haiti.

S1: It’s going to be interesting to see the Democrats smear Amy CONI Barrett as a racist, to which Kennedy replied, some white colonizers adopted black children, white people using them as props in their life long pictures of denial while cutting biological parents out of the picture of humanity. And whether Barrett is or is not, he says, is not the point. It is the belief that too many white people have. If you adopt a child of color, you can’t be racist. It is ironic that he talked about cutting parents out of the picture of humanity because that original post, as I said, literally cut John PR and Vivienne’s parents out, not just her biological parents, but also her adoptive parents. There were literally cut out. It was the kid’s aunt and uncle.

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S3: OK, so I have some I’ve taken some issue. I have some questions about can these expansive definition of racism. Actually, his whole project is not even to get into a definition of racism. Fine. My first reaction to Barrat adopting Haitian children is to think it is a deeply moral act. And that, by the way, that’s my second through 11th reaction, too. But EUBAM, Candy is saying is not that she is a coloniser, it’s that the Tea Party activist who is no doubt speaking for millions of conservatisms, was engaging in gleeful tokenism. She was excited that two black children would complicate things for Democrats and potentially embarrass them. So go back to the original claim in Mother Jones magazine, where the author writes, Even for Democrats, Barret’s white motherhood was intoxicating. And it was for Democrats, Republicans, their defenders and their critics intoxicating in the sense that it led to stretches of incoherence and stupidity. I would say that adopting babies from anywhere, let alone a lesser developed country, is a moral good. And observers who would seek to use the symbolism of that act to make morally bad, excessive and inaccurate claims are doing something wrong. But here’s what happened. The right called out the left for cruelty toward Amy CONI Barritt that the left didn’t literally engage in, and the left called out the right for excessive kindness to Judge Amy CONI Barrett that it said was unearned. OK, moving on. If there is one fault line to rival race in America, it’s abortion. Though I would say abortion is more of a chasm. It is clear which side everyone’s on. Race is more of the classic definition of fault line because the seismic waves can come upon us unexpectedly and affect even those of us who didn’t know we were in the earthquake zone. But a major theme of the hearing was not Amy Barrett’s stance on abortion, but how that stance as a person might translate to her rulings as a judge. A version of this was said at least 50 times this one time by John Cornyn of Texas. Almost as pernicious as attacking somebody for their faith and suggesting that that disqualifies them from holding a public office. Is the attack that’s being made on judicial independence. Beyond the obvious that no one was attacking anyone for their faith, there is the question. Well, can’t you be independent as a jurist and still maintain your religion? Well, sure, you can take Supreme Court Justice Catholics Anthony Kennedy, Sonia Sotomayor or William Brennan, one of the concurring opinions on the original Roe v. Wade ruling. They’ve all voted to uphold abortion rights even though the Catholic Church is against it. You know who else has Chief Justice Roberts in a limited way last term? So the pose is how dare they think you can’t separate your anti Catholic beliefs from your legal thinking? The truth is, Amy CONI Barrett was specifically chosen because it is clear that her judicial thinking coincides with her religious beliefs. Now, I’m not saying it’s because of I’m not even saying it’s. Necessarily informed by it could just be a coincidence, but it is clear she is anti-abortion personally and it’s also clear that she thinks Roe v. Wade is bad law. And this is the important part. If she didn’t think it was bad law and publicly signal in ways that include expressions of faith and publicly signal that she thought it was bad law, that she would never have been a nominee for the court. So we could say over and over and over again, we want someone to set aside the personal in favor of the judicial or we want someone who will look at this with fresh eyes and not be informed going in with what the decision should be. But that is not what we want. That is not what gets anyone picked for the Supreme Court. There are all sorts of jobs in our society where we want people to separate their personal beliefs from their professional responsibilities. An emergency room doctor should treat everyone equally well. Who comes through the door? A good public school teacher. Like my dad, he never wanted to let the students know who he was voting for, an anchor on a news network or especially a debate moderator. Sorry, Skully. So in order to get these jobs, what do the people who want the jobs, what should they spend their lives doing? They should spend their lives actively separating the personal from the political. Yeah, yeah. Every reporter who one day wants to be an anchor or a debate moderator was a student and maybe they were involved in activism. But what they should do if those Facebook posts surface is to distance themselves from them. And not just to say I can separate the personal from the political, they could say now in my professional job, I no longer adhere to those thoughts. But and this is also important. It is seen as much better if you were to hire a classically unbiased journalist or debate moderator. It is seen as much better if they never made those statements in the first place. Having made those statements, I just heard an interesting interview with Robert Costa of The Washington Post, and he used to work for the National Review, which is, of course, a conservative publication. But it was very, very important to him because he wanted to be seen as an unbiased journalist. Very important that even though he wrote for the National Review, which could signal conservatism, that nothing that he actually wrote read as conservative, that is different from what every judge who wants to be put on the Supreme Court as nominated by a Republican and to some extent a Democrat, that is different from how they comport themselves. They do not go out of the way to make extra sure that nothing that they have said or written can be interpreted as indicating a bias one way or another. All of these people are debate moderators are emergency room doctors, if they express personal thought, they would feel a little bit of shame and they would, I think, probably accept that it would disqualify them from the unbiased job that they seek. So, like I said, there are all sorts of ways that people act if they want to attain a position that relies on being unbiased, being fair, not having a preconceived opinion, going in because of the position you want is justice on the Supreme Court. You don’t act with a judicious remove at every turn. You do enough by your professional associations and legal writings to signal where you really stand, and that is how you achieve advancement in this particular realm.

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S2: And that’s it for Today Show, Daniel Shrader is a producer of the gist. He claims his Twitter account was hacked when he tweeted at Scaramucci, If we only fist bump, can I still comprehend his true hand size? Margaret Kelly produces the gist of her bias was called into question when during an interview on Booknotes, she flew across the set at Brian Lamb’s throat screaming. You didn’t ask me about the appendices bench. Alicia Montgomery is executive producer of Slate podcasts, even though she knows Slate podcasts are rigged, totally rigged. What the hell? You get some good promo codes out of it. The gist, you know, I’m just wondering how many Ukrainian beauty pageant winners might secretly have a fetish for decrepit Nevadan octogenarians who aren’t rich, but therefore don’t have the means to fly the Ukrainian beauties over to Las Vegas to see if there’s a connection.

S1: So what I’m doing is I’m sending up a fund for all beautiful women throughout the world who are just naturally into weird looking older men who have no money. It’s the Manoogian Wish Foundation. Please give up Adepero Dupere and thanks for listening.