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Blunt truth and dark humor for a world in chaos. A Daily Beast podcast hosted by Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast. Tune in every Tuesday and Friday.

The New Abnormal with Molly Jong-Fast & Rick Wilson The Daily Beast

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Blunt truth and dark humor for a world in chaos. A Daily Beast podcast hosted by Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast. Tune in every Tuesday and Friday.

    How the Trump Campaign Lit a Billion Dollars on Fire

    How the Trump Campaign Lit a Billion Dollars on Fire

    The Trump campaign raised more cash than just about any campaign in history—and it’s still broke, pulling TV ads in big states and slowing down key data operations. On the latest episode of The New Abnormal, Rick Wilson breaks down for Molly Jong-Fast—and the rest of us—how Team Trump managed to burn a billion bucks. First off, the Trump spent something like $400 million to raise that billi, an absolute ungodly sum, straight into the fundraisers’ pockets. So you’re down to $600 million. Then you take the Trumps’ skim off the top, call it 20%, and you’re at $480 million. Throw in some bonehead moves, like $11 million on Superbowl ads and another million on D.C. market ad buys. Layer in $20 million per month in staff costs and—well, it ain’t the first enterprise Trump has run into the ground. But that doesn’t mean you should count Team Trump out of the election. “There's nothing they won't do to hold power,” Rick says. “If Donald Trump was told tomorrow, 'you have to go personally kill Ruth Bader Ginsburg.' He would do it. If Donald Trump's told tomorrow that you have to feed Melania to dogs, he would do it. This guy has to hold power or he is in the deepest possible hole.” Then! Molly talks about taking part in a COVID vaccine trial—to show the skeptics on the left that it’s safe. Former Obama national security aide Ben Rhodes talks about how world leaders have “already moved on” from America. And progressive congressional candidate Jamaal Bowman dishes on the advice he got from AOC: “Jamal, don't be shocked when you get here. It's like an upside down world.” Plus! Fascist Huckleberry Hound! ‘Sexy’ Ben Shapiro! Gourmet food stores filled with Antifa! Teen trolls! And the Trump campaign kid who’s monitoring this pod for his slice of that billion-dollar pie.


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    • 50 Min.
    Cheat Sheet Podcast from The Daily Beast

    Cheat Sheet Podcast from The Daily Beast

    The juiciest stories in politics, pop culture and more -- fast.


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    • 6 Min.
    Adam Scott: The Parks & Rec Cast Has Never Gotten Too Political—Until Now

    Adam Scott: The Parks & Rec Cast Has Never Gotten Too Political—Until Now

    Dems say that the Russians hacked into our political system to help Trump win. Trump and associates blame former President Barack Obama for the interference. But the truth is, both sides have it wrong. Filmmaker Alex Gibney (known for documentary films like “Enron and “Taxi to the Dark Side”) has been immersed in the world of foreign hacking, troll farms, and most importantly, what happened in 2016 for his upcoming docuseries “Agents of Chaos.” And he knows the real reason that the Kremlin came after our democracy. “It wasn't a ‘flip votes in order to give Trump the election’” kind of thing, he tells Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast on this episode of The New Abnormal. It actually was all about Hillary. (“It's that kind of ruthless de-legitimizing of the rule of law and democracy that I think is ultimately the larger agenda here, both for Putin and for Trump.) Speaking of Trump and the 2020 election, Gibney says there’s definitely a lot more “scary” disinfo campaigns to come—and they’re “more sophisticated.” Is there anything we can do to fight it? Good news: Yes. Bad news: It’s on the Trump administration to take certain actions, and well, yeah. Then, actor Adam Scott joins the party (er, podcast) to talk about the just-announced Parks & Rec reunion in Wisconsin to support Democrats. (Leslie Knope, 2024) and why he is not gonna “stick to acting” despite ticking off the “shut-up-and-be-an-actor” Twitter trolls: “I think I'm just looking for ways to help out without being too gross and annoying. It's tough, because I'm frightened. I think a lot of people are.” Plus! Rick and Molly give Adam the special honor of his very own Fuck That Guy pick. And! The two discuss Roger Stone’s Civil War, QAnon’s own Jason Gelanis (who works for CITIGROUP!!) and whether Trump has secretly gotten the COVID vaccine.


    Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.
     
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    • 52 Min.
    TEASER: Will The Republican Party Ever Be the Same Again?

    TEASER: Will The Republican Party Ever Be the Same Again?

    What you're about to hear is a teaser for our new bonus episodes we are doing for subscribers to Beast Inside, the Daily Beast's membership program. We have a very special guest with Rhode Island Senator Sheldon Whitehouse who is going to be talking to us about a wide variety of subjects including how dark money is affecting this country and how the GOP has become a toxic force. Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.


    Senator Sheldon Whitehouse thinks the biggest problem with climate change deniers is the people that line their pockets. The Rhode Island Democrat joined The New Abnormal co-host Molly Jong-Fast and producer Jesse Cannon to talk about the environment, the GOP dropping the ball, and how putting an end to secretive political cash could be the key to solving it all. “The key thing to do on the environment is to focus on the dark money problem,” says Whitehouse. “I don't care whether you're talking to Tea Partiers or Bernie Bros, the notion that big, powerful, special interests can spend unlimited money anonymously through front groups and deploy huge political power out of sight is equally offensive across the board.” He explained how certain groups are in the pockets of political donors (cough cough, Republicans) and how the party's disdain for science has similarities to their COVID-19 response. “The power of the science denial industry is manifest in both examples, Coronavirus and climate, and the willingness of Republicans to bear pain and scorn and deny truth.” But does the GOP stand a chance of ever going back to being that Grand Ole Party? For the sake of the climate, at least? In Whitehouse’s opinion, there are two options for that to happen, one of them involves a complete overhaul. (“You wait until the Republican party is so discredited and its climate denial that a surge of new Republicans come in and sweep out.”) Then, the three discuss Trump’s eerie Supreme Court scouting and the funding of the Federalist Society: “The whole thing is being basically run like our intelligence community would run a covert operation against a hostile nation.” Plus! Molly really wants to know how Whitehouse can work with Rand Paul and if Rhode Island calamari is really as amazing as the DNC made it seem.


    Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.
     
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    • 4 Min.
    Has Any American Killed More Americans Than Donald Trump??

    Has Any American Killed More Americans Than Donald Trump??

    So Donald Trump copped to it. He told Bob Woodward that he knew how deadly the virus was—and downplayed it anyway, encouraging MAGA nation to act as if COVID-19 was a cheap Chinese knock-off of the flu. “It's remarkable that in these interviews, the President of the United States confessed to fucking manslaughter,” Molly Jong-Fast says on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. The lawyers might debate whether Trump has any criminal culpability. But to Rick Wilson, there’s no question about Trump’s moral responsibility. “No American has killed more of their fellow Americans in this country than Donald Trump, except for Robert E. Lee and Jefferson fucking Davis. No one has a body count to rival Trump's. He knew it. He knew it was there. He did it. He let it happen. It is the most unbelievable and horrifying outcome that we can imagine.” Molly adds, “Mike Pence was at a pro-life event the other day. And I was thinking about the irony, right? This administration has killed 100,000 plus plus plus people. And they're talking about embryos. Like, it's almost beyond parody.” Mike Schmidt, the Pulitzer-winning New York Times reporter, joins Rick and Molly to talk about his new book, which examines some of Trump’s closest confidants—to stop the president from using his power. “What is that human experience to be one of those guardrails and those containers? What is that like? What is the human experience of standing between the president and the abyss?”






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    • 33 Min.
    UNLOCKED: Trump DHS Official: Of Course There Are Racists in the Administration

    UNLOCKED: Trump DHS Official: Of Course There Are Racists in the Administration

    As you’ve probably heard, we also run bonus episodes every Sunday that are only for Beast Inside members. As a small token of our gratitude, we’re sharing one of those bonus episodes in full with you here. If you want more bonus episodes like this, with more of the spicy interviews and blunt banter you know and love, consider joining Beast Inside. Doing so supports us, The New Abnormal, and the rest of fearless journalism from The Daily Beast. Head over to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to become a member now – or after you listen to this amazing interview with Elizabeth Neumann. 


    Even a former member of Trump’s Department of Homeland Security thinks he is bat-shit, and surrounded by actual racists. It would be funny if some of the stories that former DHS official Elizabeth Neumann told Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast on this episode on The New Abnormal weren’t so terrifying. She admits that she did “hold her nose” and vote for him in 2016 and really believed he would rise to the occasion. But that dream died super quick—by the end of summer 2017 to be exact: “It was clear he didn’t have a strong enough character to put aside some of his bad habits,” she said. There was one moment, though, that changed it all. Or, as Molly put it, “made you realize we’re not in Kansas anymore.” “He was having some sort of school yard bully fight with a man who is trying to launch a nuclear weapon,” she explained. “It was a huge wake up call for the department.” Neumann also spoke to the influence Trump senior adviser Stephen Miller had on immigration and when she, a pro-lifer, realized the president “wasn’t a true Christian.” And then she makes two scary admissions, which says a lot because they are all pretty scary, tbh. The first is that Nuemann can say with certainty that many of those in Trump’s orbit are racist. In fact, she had a moment while working in the department in which she thought, “Oh my God, some of these people are racist.” The second, and related to the first, is the role that Trump has had on domestic terrorism and white supremacy in the United States: “The president not speaking out against white supremacy and against QAnon is extremely dangerous. He is creating that fear that creates vulnerability in people to be recruited and radicalized by groups that have an intention of violence.” Plus! Will more former administration officials come out? Neumann shares her thoughts.


    Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.
     
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    • 34 Min.

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