104 episodes

The most interesting conversations in American life now happen in private. This show is bringing them out of the closet. Stories no one else is telling and conversations with the most fascinating people in the country, every week from former New York Times and Wall Street Journal journalist Bari Weiss.

Honestly with Bari Weiss Bari Weiss

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.8 • 4.9K Ratings

The most interesting conversations in American life now happen in private. This show is bringing them out of the closet. Stories no one else is telling and conversations with the most fascinating people in the country, every week from former New York Times and Wall Street Journal journalist Bari Weiss.

    Bibi Netanyahu: Israel's New Prime Minister. Again.

    Bibi Netanyahu: Israel's New Prime Minister. Again.

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is a polarizing figure. For some, he's the ultimate defender of the State of Israel, willing to do whatever he thinks it takes to protect the one Jewish state located in the most volatile region of the world. For others, Bibi symbolizes everything that's wrong with 21st century Israel: the state's rightward turn and its never ending conflict with the Palestinians. His supporters chant “Bibi, King of Israel!” at his rallies, while at protests, his enemies call him “crime minister.”

    Bill Clinon said: “you should never underestimate him.” Barack Obama said he was “smart, canny, tough” but that they “did not share worldviews.” And Trump called him “the man that I did more for than any other person I dealt with” but then later, infamously “f— him.”

    But there's one thing that everyone can agree on: Benjamin Netanyahu is the reigning master of Israeli politics. And despite being ousted from the Prime Ministership just over a year ago, Bibi is back. For a third stint.

    Why is Benjamin Netanyahu the man that Israelis just can't quit? And what does it mean for Israel that he's attempting to form a government with some of the most radical, far-right parties in Israel? 

    Today, an interview with Prime Minister Netanyahu on the eve of his return to power and on the occasion of the publication of his book, Bibi: My Story, an autobiography about his evolution from soldier to statesman. We talked about how he draws moral lines as a leader, about the prospect of peace with the Palestinians and the prospect of peace with the Saudis, and about how he plans to uphold Israel's delicate balance between Judaism and democracy as he steps in to lead his country once more. 
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    • 1 hr 6 min
    A Better Way to Disagree

    A Better Way to Disagree

    A few months ago, I had writer Freddie deBoer on the podcast for an episode we called, “Does Glorifying Sickness Deter Healing?” We talked about his experience living with severe bipolar disorder and the dangerous ways in which mental illness has gotten wrapped up in our growing cultural obsession with identity politics. It’s almost like sickness, he argued, has become chic.

    We spent some of the conversation talking critically about a New York Times article by writer Daniel Bergner about a movement away from medication and more towards acceptance. A movement that replaces words like “psychosis” with “nonconsensus realities.” This article, in Freddie’s view, was exemplary of the very phenomenon he was calling out. 

    A lot of people responded extremely positively to my conversation with Freddie. Others, not so much. One of those people was Daniel Bergner. So I invited him on the show.

    Today’s episode is not just a debate about how society should handle the epidemic of mental illness. It’s a model for how to disagree with someone productively, respectively, honestly. It’s a reminder not only that it’s okay to come out of a conversation strongly disagreeing with someone, but that it’s of vital importance.
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    • 1 hr 14 min
    Nuclear War Games with HR McMaster

    Nuclear War Games with HR McMaster

    Last week, Ukraine recaptured the city of Kherson from the Russians. It was one of the most stunning victories for Ukraine since the war began eight months ago. And yet, the road ahead is long and uncertain. Just this week, Putin unleashed a heavy bombardment of missiles across Ukraine, in an attempt to destroy Ukraine's energy infrastructure. The stakes of this war are already high for Ukraine, but they are made exponentially higher – for countries across the globe – because of the looming danger of nuclear war. 

    Today, three star Lieutenant General HR McMaster returns to Honestly to talk about the chance of nuclear escalation, what plans our military has in place in the case of a nuclear attack on Ukraine, what a realistic end to the war might look like, how concessions will only embolden Putin, and why McMaster believes America needs to remain actively invested in this war until Putin is finally convinced that he has been defeated.
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    • 1 hr
    The Midterms No One Saw Coming: A Postmortem

    The Midterms No One Saw Coming: A Postmortem

    With inflation soaring, the worst crime wave in decades, and Biden’s approval rating at a pitiful 41%, everyone predicted last night’s midterm elections would be a bloodbath. It wasn’t. The red wave the Republicans were hoping for did not arrive. In fact, it was barely a red trickle. While results are still coming in, it looks like Republicans will narrowly win control of the House, and Democrats will remain in control of the Senate. 

    What happened? Today, journalists Mary Katharine Ham, Josh Kraushaar from Axios, Batya Ungar-Sargon from Newsweek, and Olivia Nuzzi of New York Magazine – all of whom didn’t sleep a wink last night – discuss the stunning results of the 2022 Midterms. 
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    • 1 hr 19 min
    Who Do Voters Hate More? A Midterm Roundtable.

    Who Do Voters Hate More? A Midterm Roundtable.

    Less than a week out from election day, and more than 20 million people have already cast their votes – a record number of early voters for a midterm election. But it isn’t so surprising when you consider the stakes: inflation at a 40-year high, economists saying we’re heading towards a recession, and the largest crime surge across America in decades. Just to name a few small issues voters may be thinking about.

    Midterms are typically hard for the party in power, but President Biden’s approval numbers are among the worst for a first-term president. Given this, many are predicting a red wave. And yet, Republicans have problems of their own: candidates who spent their primaries trying to out-MAGA each other and continue to pedal election denial conspiracies, others who seem entirely unfit to serve, and, of course, since Roe v Wade was overturned this summer, many young voters, especially women, are particularly motivated this election cycle to vote against the GOP.

    So what’s going to happen on Tuesday? Will Democrats keep control of the Senate? The House? What races should we be watching? Could Oregon go red for the first time in decades? Today, as voters head to the ballot box, a roundtable with Mary Katharine Ham, Josh Kraushaar, and Batya Ungar-Sargon.
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    • 1 hr 40 min
    Has Criminal Justice Reform Made Us Less Safe? A Debate.

    Has Criminal Justice Reform Made Us Less Safe? A Debate.

    Over the past two years, the United States has experienced the largest crime surge in decades. Aggravated assaults went up. Shoplifting went up. Domestic violence went up. Homicides went up. In 2020, the U.S. murder rate rose 30%, the largest single year increase in recorded U.S. history. And yet, the most dominant voices in the last few years, are the ones that believe our attempts to mitigate crime have been too punitive, and that the solutions lie in less people in prison and less police on the streets. 

    Today, guest host Kmele Foster moderates a debate with Lara Bazelon and Rafael Mangual about the state of criminal justice in America. Bazelon has spent her career advocating for criminal defendants, directs The Criminal and Juvenile Justice Clinic and The Racial Justice Clinic at the University of San Francisco School of Law, and was a federal public defender in LA. Mangual, author of Criminal Injustice, is a fellow at the Manhattan Institute, where he's the head of research for the Policing and Public Safety Initiative.

    While Foster, Bazelon and Mangual all agree that the criminal justice system is, in many ways, broken, today they debate the particular defects, the scale of the issues, the root causes, and ultimately what we ought to do about it. 
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    • 1 hr 20 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
4.9K Ratings

4.9K Ratings

Jess G in Nevada ,

Favorite Podcast

Absolutely my favorite podcast!! Bari picks the best guests and her topics are well thought out and researched. Must listen no matter your political or religious beliefs.

Tom from TX ,

Excellent Q&A with HR McMaster

Just finished listening to Bari’s in-depth interview with General McMaster. Incisive and insightful comments on his part, smart questions on hers. Well done!

bjohns383 ,

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