77 episodes

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

    • News Commentary

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

    Sacha Baron Cohen on Borat, Trump and Risking His Life for Comedy

    Sacha Baron Cohen on Borat, Trump and Risking His Life for Comedy

    Comedy legend Sacha Baron Cohen goes deep on all of the crazy things that happened during the filming of his Showtime series ‘Who Is America?’—including truly incredible stories about his interactions with Sarah Palin, O.J. Simpson, Ben Carson and more. He also talks about interviewing Donald Trump as Ali G. and reveals some big secrets behind his classic film ‘Borat.’This episode was recorded in front live audience as part of the SAG Conversations series at the SAG-Aftra Foundation in Los Angeles on May 21, 2019.Follow @SachaBaronCohen and @mattwilstein on Twitter and @lastlaughpod on Instagram. 
    Highlights from this episode and others at The Daily Beast.


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    • 52 min
    Does Rudy Giuliani Have an Ounce of Pride Left?

    Does Rudy Giuliani Have an Ounce of Pride Left?

    Rick Wilson spent years working for Rudy Giuliani. He used to look up to his boss, the mayor. These days, he can barely look down without spitting. “The worst possible Greek tragedy doesn't encompass the fall of Rudy, from calamity to clown show to complete moral and physical collapse,” Rick tells co-host Molly Jong-Fast on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. “The fact that Trump views him and uses him as this hatchet man, his delivery boy for these absurd attacks… You know, there's a part of me that like, ‘Do you have no fucking pride left? You only get trotted out for the shit jobs like these. You only get brought out and hosed off once every few months when Donald Trump has to do something disgusting.’” Caroline Giuliani, Rudy’s daughter, isn’t happy with the decisions he’s made, either. That’s why she recently announced that she’s voting for Joe Biden. “I felt like I had an obligation just because it's, it's just so bad. We're in such a crisis,” she tells Molly. “I want to be on record as being on the right side of history. I also felt like people feel so alone right now. I've had such a great reaction from so many people just saying, ‘Thank you... You articulated things I've been feeling.’ And it just made me feel a little less alone.” Then! Alabama Sen. Doug Jones talks about why his opponent, Tommy Tuberville, is even worse than Roy Moore, the last guy he beat. 


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    • 48 min
    Town Hall Sh*tshow Was a Truth Window into Trump

    Town Hall Sh*tshow Was a Truth Window into Trump

    On the night of the duelling townhalls, Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson recorded a special episode of The New Abnormal as a desperate Trump delivered a wild performance that virtually served as an ad for Joe Biden. Two guests join the show to sum up the state of American politics right now with Jay Michaelson, legal affairs columnist at The Daily Beast, Rabbi and editor at 10% Happier, on hand to run down the latest from the Amy Coney Barrett hearings. And audience favorite Hank Gilbert, who is running for the Texas first congressional district against Republican Louie Gohmert, is back to share the unprecedented election buzz he says he is seeing in Texas. Gilbert says he can’t believe it took so long but Texans have finally realized that “this narcissistic bastard” is bad for America and they’re ready to vote him out. “People are excited. I’ve never seen this type of atmosphere before,” he said.
     
    Trump seemed to be doing his best to show viewers himself that he was not fit to be president during the NBC townhall, says Rick. “You had Trump with one leg on the ground, leaning over, hunched over, glaring at Savannah Guthrie like he was a mad man, like he was about to flee the scene of a crime. And you had Joe Biden sitting in the chair, legs crossed, hands gesturing, talking smoothly and calmly.” “When he wouldn’t answer the QAnon question, all I could think was, ‘Does Joe Biden need to report this like an in-kind contribution?’ This was fucking crazy,” Rick said. “This shitshow was a truth window into Trump.” He had, at least, managed to directly criticize white supremacy after failing to do so at the presidential debate, which just confused Molly: “Wouldn't it be more of a no brainer to disavow QAnon—the Democrats eat children—than white supremacy? His supporters are already racist.”
     
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    • 54 min
    Cheat Sheet Podcast from The Daily Beast 10/14/20

    Cheat Sheet Podcast from The Daily Beast 10/14/20

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


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    • 7 min
    Trump Is Polluting the Planet With a Thousand Mini-Dons

    Trump Is Polluting the Planet With a Thousand Mini-Dons

    It’s bad enough that we have to deal with one Donald Trump here in the U.S. of A. What’s worse, Mehdi Hasan explains on the latest episode of The New Abnormal, is that Trump has become a template for a whole planet full of bad-faith actors and wannabe strongmen. Before he became the host of his own TV show in America, Hasan interviewed all sorts of international politicians. “What I noticed over the last few years is that they all now start talking like Trump. They all use the same verbal tics, the same ‘fake news,’ the same completely brazen lies,” Hasan tells Molly Jong-Fast. “This is not a coincidence. People around the world have said, ‘well, it worked for Donald Trump. Why can't it work for me?’ Of course, all politicians are b******t artists. But what’s different today, Hasan adds, “is the way in which Trump and co. have turned lying into not just an art form, but an instrument of power. They don't lie just to get their way. They lie because they want to destroy our shared reality. They want to demonstrate their power. They want people to back them and say, yes, ‘I don't believe my lying eyes.’” Speaking of belief, you’ll be gobsmacked by the lengths Alex Gibney had to go to in order to make “Totally Under Control,” his documentary about the government’s response to COVID. For some interview subjects, he’d drop off a high-tech camera rig so they could basically film themselves. For others, “the camera person would go in alone to an Airbnb, kind of scrub it down, and then set up this shield—a series of shower curtains and tarps—between the subject and the camera person. And then there would be a lens sticking through,” he tells Molly. “That was a way… to do a proper lighting setup, but also be safe.” Then! Rick Wilson asks the questions on everyone’s mind, like: How much cash would it take to turn Texas blue? Why does Mike Lee hate democracy? Is mail order herpes a thing? And will Ted Cruz even remember Trump’s name on November 4th?


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    • 51 min
    TEASER: Val Demings Says She Has a Plan to Stop Trump’s SCOTUS Pick

    TEASER: Val Demings Says She Has a Plan to Stop Trump’s SCOTUS Pick

    Rep. Val Demings (D-FL) helped get Trump impeached, but now there's a new battle: his SCOTUS pick. She worked within the government’s Internal Affairs department and became one of the impeachment managers in Trump’s case after 27 years as an Orlando police officer. And impeached he was. So on this members-only bonus episode of The New Abnormal, co-host Molly Jong-Fast asks for her thoughts on Trump's SCOTUS appointment and how exactly Democrats and citizens alike can stop it. (Mitch McConnell is “pushing it down the throats of the American people,” she says.) Her plan? Lots of pressure. (“This is not a moment for partisan politics. And we expect our leaders, Mitch McConnell, to lead the way there. His number one responsibility is the health, safety and wellbeing of the American people. And so I am hoping that he will feel the heat, if you will, from the American people.”) The former cop also shared what the future of police departments should be, and for her, abolishment is not the way to go (“When you talk to people who live in some of the highest crime areas, they say they don't want to see less police. They want to see more police, you know, because they know what it means. We should not talk about the police and the community as if there are two separate entities. If the police are the community and the community is the police one cannot exist without the other.”) Plus! Demings subtly takes a dig at her state’s Gov. Ron DeSantis. Then she explains the best way to get Disney World, and the economy at large, back up-and-running safely. (Spoiler alert: we’ve got to get the virus under control first.)
     
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    • 3 min

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