Ronan Farrow is an American journalist. Ronan sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his childhood growing up among 10 siblings, the discomfort of having a public family and his commitment to uncovering the truth. Dax is obsessed with Ronan’s wunderkind status and Ronan corrects Dax on calling him the “vanguard of the me too movement.” The two talk about universal insecurities, Ronan gives a piece of advice to celebrity parents and Dax and Monica beg him to be their best friend.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Welcome, Welcome welcomed, armchair expert on deck shepherd. I'm jain by panic, come mad man you're, so excited that you realise it's a recent years. I don't really understand what you realise at its mad man, yeah Oak, the area switch the peony, Emmets Pontica mad mad upon a case, rail hollowed out sounds fine like and she put on their spikes at the bottom of Ghana, like me, was virtually madman's your last name punchy pit, mad man, you guys we ever fuck in real life, Douglas Hauser M D to the duty Hauser again, if I really as Monica, I am talking about a bunch sense interviewing him. I thought this was stuff of fiction
yeah. I did not think people went to college at eleven years. Old Vander here wandered can Ronan Pharaoh's here and boy. Do. I hope you listen to this one, because I was so blown away with every single aspect and I wrote him Pharaoh one I believe, a p body for his work with the new Yorker in uncovering the allegations of sexual abuse against Harvey Weinstein's Yeahs points the wine staying coming out of the sky, so much everyone sitting Oh, my god, I worked. There remains nine lines. Then we should Levin Army I'm having a dialogue as we speak. There also ronin. You know he worked for the government before he did that he's a lawyer he's the son of actors me and Filmmaker Woody Allen he's just an altogether fascinating person
a new book called catch and kill, and he also has a great podcast of the same name, catch and kill. So I think, after listening to him, you're definitely going to want check that out. So please enjoy Ronan Farrow, aka phone and retro we are supported by a square space. Have you been no our website? I have many a time you aren't. You bowled over by its beauty, is gorgeous in high, generally. It is ok. Well, that's all a product of Square Spain. Now Wabi while went on, swear space, and he Is there a ray of beautiful templates that were created by world class designers any? set this whole thing up and we have powerful e commerce functionality just like any one that would you square space? Can you have the ability to customize look feel and said: its products and more with just a few clicks, and everything comes optimize, formal all right out of the box. It's a great way.
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in sugary products, and I paid the price bigtime red, flaky, itchy, skin it the more our pit started H and ended. They stank. No, they small group of boilers, did she now so I was at my mom's. I've got to reset and you know Mary sat was mom Dear Bob's, she did at Bob's. I got into four five mornings in a row of Bob's red mail. I write it. The ship all was good, listen, twenty twenties all about those resolutions and making healthy choices, and I really think you should make Bob's Red mill a part of that choice. It certainly a big big cornerstone of mine, learn more about watts of awesome and delicious products, and recipes at Bob's, red male dot, com, Slash Dax and, while you're there be sure to enter for a chance to win an exclusive Bob Red Mills Prize pack in an arm chair, Expert Asia,
that's Bob's, red male dot com, slashed acts he's around and I have to I'm gonna start with an admission. Please on sent with some of my baggage, as it were so excited have we really I'll ever happening, but I must admit increasingly over the last two days of reading about you and stuff You are from New York, your very well spoken you're, very well dressed. You have great hair even right. Now, I'm wearing my my dream. She was so I can go to berries bouquet. I bet you're wearing the shit out of less likely that fake third deed is boosts Eileen over the years. Is I've seen you on television and stuff, my terrible hang up. My class warfare hang up where I was feel less than by people who are either coast and Welsbach
think, was initially triggered off like I, I have a chip on my shoulder, and I'm very embarrassed to admit it? Is I'm now consumed a bunch, your stuff, and I just m legit, we now in enormous fan of everything you ve done. A muscle completely blown away your story. I had no idea you're a legit, wonder Kim, which we ve never spoke into a real. I underlined in wanting to make him such a disappointing, wonder, collect Valley, cut out. The task now is to be regretted that it's no more be about you you're, the youngest graduate of barred does that's still hold. I believe that still holds yet that is so very old. I started college. Let them real live, do the owls or where to like many lawyers, I'm basically failed. Doktor left, I sat at organic come and then I went to school, but I did a deferred mister
that law school for two years, so I could be eighteen instead of sixteen started last year, an eighteen year. Do you copy Basically, I Peoria they wanted to do. In those I mean that's when I started working for this guy Richard Holbrooke, who is this kind of veteran diplomat character who figured heavily in my first book, which was called war on peace and was about how were ravaging the state department and cutting the budget and respecting diplomats and obviously we're seeing some of the consequences of that yeah right now. What the impeachment stuff you in that one was that with the Obama administration. So at that point this is was way back now you didn't hear and thirty one are you up. There are thirty one. Now
how to regulate. All of our guests are older. The monitors in her mind, just like me, he's like. Why could still do bad? How old are you prepared to tear contacts so never, as we feel like they cut the contact? Your love for we're we're we're the kids, the Erasmus programme re there, but I started college at seventeen that's better than most near, not buried. It certainly not no love. I started working offer Holbrooke walls he was doing, can if they just foreign policy. Free land, saying like keeps the advice and carry campaign. That's how far back were tall hat consultant. Yes, I mean he was just there. Would what establishment democrats do between regimes happiness? He was floating around with Madeleine Albright and stuff, and I worked for UNICEF for a little bit as a youth spokesperson in a couple african countries and then later ass
the law school. I went back in during the Obama administration and was in Afghanistan and Pakistan how'd you get on the track of ending up in college at eleven like is that process start well. You know to your, about me being slowly annoying and her from her. No, no! No! No! No! It's me. It's mediates up. It's me. It's not! You know. It's me turn its income and army to be conscious of it. I mean I I look. I famously had a childhood lot of pain and turmoil and trauma like death and destruction in a literal sense, but also had a tremendous amount of privilege and really feel very fortunate. And you know I always had access to incredible educational opportunities and but were not. Everybody does and part of that was like I test in a certain way early on, and then they put me in a Johns Hopkins God. It's called the centre for TAT Did you learn? Can basically you take the essay t really young for that
some really good words. Are we talking at that point eight and ten yeah? That's limit exact age, but it's a round there. So is starting the asset, yet eight nine ten and then you know I got a score where people said what K or already given all these grades and taking your high school credits early and tested in a certain way. So can you tell us what it is its I did. I did get it get out perfect as it whatever was at the tea gotta. Sixteen hundred were ok, we'll see you here, where the same it here remember when that was an important big number huge number. Now people are like what the hell is. The sixteen hundred stood there got some funky other number, that's only than ever. They added a third category. I say category we need, I think I still have PTSD from ought to it to be clear. I did not get by score the first time around Like I took it a couple of times, ok, so I just want to get into the particulars a little, but because the leading up to that task, their steps for your even taking the Us Ain T, so your mother
soon, like this fucking kids, pretty bright or did you just have this crazy tension in desire in appetite for learning, or were you making mom happy De Mom Qana label? You shit this. on the sub immense dear you that way or was itself generated, so I definitely didn't. Have a helicopter mom pushing things in orchard single mom, ten adopted so things moment has special means visit, disability is mental health issues that they have had to surmount and she was busy musically. She was incredibly supportive. I think it was self generated. I mean I think there is always an element of wanting to impress either mom or like the figurative. Some, like a yearning bottom, was cavern of insecurity that I'm constantly billing charming yeah.
I've been here among us doesn't really shocked me like I don't know if it's over this objectively, the most attractive human beings on planet earth in here and you somewhere they see when they look in the mirror and they see the same gargoyle icy euros in its bungling. Very I need no one can ever sense of themselves, but bullets fascinating to me, though, that everyone has a different species of insecurity. There's always that thing that lay just hit you where you live. When someone insults you about it or where you really need validation and praise about it. Than himself were enough to know what my thing is. I think it's all the things you have you get terribly difficult. Do something at some point you another area where I ended up in you'll have to do a forced up in bygone you'll find out what they are. You will find everyone. I've worked with in programme has about two or three fears that are pretty much governing their entire life or they always the same two or three. No people have,
everything grow mine. You know, I'm. I have a few true that people think I'm stupid. I have a huge status sphere. I am constantly obsessed with my status ranking, unmarried scenario, a man and then at this huge financial insecurity thing growing up kind of without I and my mother working very hard to get money. So all my things can adjust all led back to that in those when I'm getting a mad or emotional was somebody like one of these three things right now is going off. That's what's happening, fascinating yeah. I think. There's a lot of truth to that sure that's true me, it's what's chile! That, too, is those things never go away. Right, like I assumed a matter how financially secure you are you. You always feel that same I'm lucky enough to find out that giving lots of money didn't solved the problem
recognizing oh, it's all a mental racket. It's because we either aerial they carry a renowned we're out of the other branch of Arab hurry up. It's a funny, though, because I was actually having a conversation with a very drunk friends. Last night, saying simmered what you just said. He said my group security, is that people think I'm dumb, and this is someone who just it would have. No, The crossed my mind that people would think he's done. Like he's always struck me as a reasonably smart person, and I put him in that category and not that I don't also love Madame friends, categorize and now I like that he just has this profound insecurity about it. For what it's worth, I also would not have put you in the category of anything but extremely smart yeah. Did it
not rooted in any right foundation is. Why was this? Why sickened and learn to rebuild a went to? Let everyone you know knock on the door in the two people who can't learn leave and they go down with the people who have some serious meant real mental challenges ahead as tough and yet, and I can't shake it, doesn't matter what degree I get or what accolade. I gave an understanding that has nothing to do with intelligence and riots up by the way I have shaken a bit. You should have met me twenty years ago was oats insufferable as though I have made progress me too, I was, I was so much more in the vice grip of insecurity and, I also created a long long time. So, ok, sounds like my wife's, similar to your mom, in that she has bottomless empathy in Bottomless capacity to take on causes. what I sometimes will say to hers. It's beautiful, it's lovely and also
you have a bandwidth in their certain people that you ve brought into? this circle in a kind of got a stake out of action on a your bandwidth for those people. This is the great existential conversation for many of my son, things. So my mom, you know, adopted all these kids and was adopting like in the seventies when it wasn't invoke and she was getting called crazy forehead and even then in standing by my sister or my sister. Had this allegation of sexual abuse against Woody Allen also was exe Erin, blacklisted she's been really treated terrible I am fairly and I think is also, on the other hand, rightly regarded as a hero in some circles, he'll show him alone assailant. Your mom is. It is a hero to me and I think, that's correct, Jimmy she's, a hero to me and what it took away from the altruism was my God. I don't think, however, have the strength to do quite this right. about my whole life. Give up the possibility of being totally comfortable
on the level that I would have, if I didn't have the Ford Genk, yeah she's really limited goose, she can be partners well tremendously isolating like fame is already isolating, so she made a lot of sacrifices. I really Yo were well enough to know sincerely for the greater good and I think for her. That's rooted in she was raised with Super Super Catholic like she still has. of her hand, written note books from when she was in nine and ten years old and they're all super detailed. Restrictions of Christ on the cross. Crown of thorns and her writing diaries about going to lords and bathing in holy water and like she was waste. few. Please answer any getting rapped on the knuckles by by none assumes a catholic boarding school, and you know then, is also a hippie and she's lots of fun and stuff, but I think that she retained the philosophy of that.
Of hair shirt. I gotta do good sound or five. I fell away so much the better we didn't were raised with the philosophy of happiness is king. It was very much like you have been given privilege you better, go out there and make the world a better place: That is all that matters yeah and I think for a lot of my siblings, they did not take. As I did from it this like. Oh, how inspirational MRS Difficult, but it's great, they really I think, not unfairly any of the amiably. Everyone has their own experience of its own say they like all of them, but some of them, I think, really walked away with a ton of resentment of that char, because in a they could have had a totally comfortable child and instead it was chaos and yeah. You feel like you deserve, or you're entitled to apparent who's got me no in a lot time young that significant. She was a fantastic mom to all of us, but it is a very different, situation growing up with you know a few kids there is growing up with so many kids with so
special need to who also often were adopted older, so it's not just physical, specially shore or mental health special needs, its ten years of abuse before we even met. Somebody We are hearing in really tough developing country, orphanage type situations and I'm area inspired by them and how they ve overcome incredible challenges, but it definitely makes for a childhood where you have a great sensible, directive and also its hard times the yeah. It's down the surface, it what's privilege in two and now I'm realizing. Oh, I had at way better for my own personal year itself is desires of having all my mom's attention at all times where we ve oh god, our shared, and you know I really feel
it's on the privilege of the positive stuff, because there is plenty of it. Is it likely that, amid that chaos, you were like what I better be God, Damn Sears tower accomplishment to get noticed absolute, let it not! Actually, I think, the last half of what you said is not right. I think I felt like had to be a kind of like that. The model tat elderly family not to stand out or get attention and not to set set an example, but to just make life easier. You know that this was not one of those situations where, like I didn't, have an authority figure. She was. She was a great mom was always an authority figure, but I had a sense empathy and understanding, as I would with a friend where I realized like oh this is this is a lady who said, to do a really good thing and is shouldering an immense burden, and you know I better,
you ve been easy one year with a little bit part of what order are you and this therefore younger than me I'll, your middle middling, Madeleine, but their older, but they came after. He has some of them. Technically right. They think there is also the ear there's a train. Remember that, term in gay. Lit, there's like the best boy in the world. Fear a meter had gay sons. You feel the need to overcome say it in some tremendous way that may sounds like you're gonna. Let them down in your mind, set at that age, you're gonna! Let them down eventually on this one part you're not gonna, get married the right to go to your wedding, so you better crushed the other yeah, and also just that. You know you're gonna get teased or ostracised for something. So you're not gonna, be out in these particular national ways, but you're gonna be really dominant in these outer and inner.
fine. Now, as I'm in impositions him like hiring people from a team and stuff, there are all sorts of great arguments for hiring in a diverse way, whether its people of color or people from various Blount gender and said quality minorities, but one of them Definitely that you get these incredible journeys where people kind of have to assert themselves early and find themselves early while they ve overcome a bunch yeah. It's not even that yours selecting for that year. Checking that there we'll see about that they bring us back to theyve honed in on what their good, I think early like people who were growing up as minorities feel like ok, where's the lane. When do I sell out, because I gotta go gung ho at that, because the others are.
other elements that Monica stay champion, cheerleader just what you know: timed underrated owner of a bow and my hair ass. If that's, what you're doing a look, even younger cause, you're eliminate Verona. Thirty one years, you I'm in my stories to everyone, has a different journey that informed how they respond to hey. Can you tell this incredible? invasive personal account of something that's gonna get a bend your life, if you tell it publicly in for you at odds, these powerful interests and wait for the catching go pod. that's what I'm doing now. That's a book, but it's also a podcast right. So I wrote this book catching kill it's this series of stories that I broke about Donald Trump and Harvey I'm staying in the various tools deployed by powerful people to suppress stories in the press yard.
Pilot NEWS outlets and have tabloids by stories for them to kill them. That's where the term catching kill comes from and its also its cause. It's a memoir of a very low point. In my life I was like physically deteriorating and not sleeping, and I was on the run from literal spies that Barbie Winston I heard this israeli private intelligence firm, called black cube and they sent like them fatalities false identities after resources and me at all to russian spies that outside my apartment and chased beer owned, and am I really quick eye they Gunnar, so I have to imagine in those moments its both scary and intimidating at times and then and others I'm, so where you like, I'm goddamn James Bond Movie and MRS Exciting was earn excitement associated with it as well, not at the time in the midst of it, because I was losing my job and scared shitless the item, but in the aftermath writing the book I had to make these decisions like ok,.
priority number one is: the reporting has to be airtight and incredibly respectful of the real life people who are affected by this. Is it lots of backtracking lots of legal review, but then also there was this process of its an incredible dramatic story that can be a in terms of getting what I think is an important story to the widest audience possible. So in terms of structure, let's right it in that is a page turner and propose a new. Thankfully, people have gotten that I haven't been eaten alive for making it dramatic in the year honestly attempts Fun Lake shouted go through these and credibly heavy stories you need to their an alternate with some levity and am proud without came out. But now I'm doing this serve accompaniment podcast if they catch and co podcasting our straightforward name- and it's like, if you finish a book that you love the idea is then you get to spend half hour.
Forty five minutes with each of the characters and their little true crime, documentaries about that characterise life story. So for the people who liked the plot of the book and more. There see ass new stuff and, in some cases its people who didn't speak for the book, but figured in the plot. We did this episode with this wonderful woman who is an assistant to Harvey Wednesday in the nineties named Rowena, chew, who I had talked to round the initial Winston story. I did and twenty seventeen and she wasn't ready to talk. Her name didn't come out at all and it's been a long journey that she talks about of why she didn't speak and allow That is circumstantial and will be true for anyone. You know it's. The career repercussions its having it tell Europe how sits having you tell your parents yeah, but Europe We were taught met earlier if you bring your own story to that decision, when she talks a lot about being
chinese, British and those two cultural forces. You know the sort of stiff upper lip thing of the English and also the kind of which he describes as the model minority pressure of being Chinese. Do both it and making it extra hard for her to speak. Yeah, which assassinated by air. One was really my arm catching kill. I was I was wondering what look? What would be your most generous reasoning for why people protect well they admire who they love. The like, there's loyal, see, there's some kind of heavily. Canary during a there to really ignored the truth. I think many of us really vulnerable to that it in terms of pay acting bad guys. Yeah. On occasion, it's well, I think, were built as a speed.
Jeez, two former judgments based on the limited data points we have, and so you know a bike name any number of names here but pick your favorite person comes out and says well, but I loved working with Roman Polanski or Woody Allen are built Cosby an that's like, of course, the Eu Loveday, of course, he's gonna be great too. You famous person on especially famous guy onset you're, not an under age girl or you know, a model that has just been drugged. Awry was the Johnson that's an area, and I am not perfect in that respect either, but I try and this is where there is someone that I like and even care about, feel loyal to whose credibly accused of this sort of thing to say. Outside of my own experience of that person and acknowledge
that there is another universe that I dont get to see first hand shower at, and I think it's just about respecting the unknown as well. Like a great example of what you're talking about is I broke these stories about sepia? We must remember less Moon vat in a chain of executives under including in the news division and many many Dozens of people talking about up could have a culture of harassment. Can it gets baked into accompanies practices, corporate launchers, a real thing and an end? It can turn bad in these ways right and it's all these different factors for the legal department. To word. That's saying these crazy muster Swirling villainous things in the board minute meetings that they're saying like you know, I don't care if its dozens of women, accusing them of re writer, has brought that striped literally, that was very close to and they came on board. I
number, in the wake of, I did too stories back to back about Moon bears and in the wake of the first one, which had six women, accusing him of assault and harassment. And they were very serious stories with people like ITALY, on a Douglas wonderful trusts saying you know he jumped on taught me Let me down in this business meeting and they are not super cool, prefer you're, gonna have to re run run, and yet there was, even after those first six came forward, a real contingent of CBS talent, but also but in the wider Hollywood community people who really to his defence, and there were people who came out, and sad? You know, that's not the less that I know sure, and of course that was true for that. I'm sure right, but it's it's like it never entered into.
calculus. What I knew already at that point, which is that there is another six coming without ilium, even more extreme violent claims, backed by a lot of evidence, and I just think it there's wisdom in like I said before, respecting the unknown in it. If there is a sign that there might be a wider pattern, then you're, aware of just don't say anything: Few minutes looking great so this is this you'd, be the perfect person to ask about this, because I don't feel like there's room. Currently, to take the non by Mary option, which is either. you come out and condemn the person or you come out and defend the person is their room or Is it wrong to? say, but I dont know Louis UK looking, but I do hear many of his friends end up on stern or any of these places, There are now put in a position where they have to kind of publicly say they don't like this person who they do like and they love
is the room for me to go. Look. I love this person and I absolutely believe the accusers, and I think this person has a problem I also love them in and, to be honest, will continue to be friends with them and hope on the part of some growth and solution, like is that option on the table in? Should it not be or should it be it We talk, I mean, first of all, it's not really for me to say like I'm, not in other the high priestess of ethnic, what people should say, People accused of you are in a unique position that you really are the vanguard of the meat to movement. So I would hope that people would consider your opinion on how we course correct to be relevant well, This is a bit of aside Barbara? I actually, I dont really agree with that characterisation. I see how people could see that from a ways away for it, but from my perspective being in it there's a really
sharp distinction. I mean I'm an investigative reporter. I report on all kinds of corruption and malfeasance and to me it was actually philosophically very important that the stories I've been fortunate enough to break about sexual violence. Weren't decision from any other serious kind of story. I think that these kinds of Williams had been almost a wise for years and years and described as something that was distinct from any what kind of criminal I like it have loyalty tabloid or not. It is impossible to bring of the realm of he said she said, and I just even based on my legal training, understood. That's not the case. It's in some kids, its. He said she said and in some cases it's actually backed by tangible evidence, whether it's an audio recording or a video or paper trail of settlement.
to conceal something or theirs. I witness, as he saw some, leave a room and saw how distraught they were. There's all sorts of mechanism was your take uniquely corporate corruption, not just corporate budget systems. Why our systems, whereby learning about this hopefully were Just learning about an individual were learning about the ways they aided and abetted, and how that is baked into, or culture or corporate practices. Our government practices, Europe does all sorts of in a legislative implication, to the reporting that I've done on Andy's, for instance, and they are a bunch of reporters have now done. Good important work, kind of exposing how, for years and years, non disclosure agreements worry just used very freely to conceal. I was Monica and I have one it was now no, we do. I don't have one remember. One person were a baby sitting. No, yes, you sign and help me help
a sign. I mean not much of a word, but I took contract law. One l, I'm very There is all sorts of valid uses as and I have signed many an employment contract with a standard non disclosure clause where the reporting I've done his specifically The application of India is to conceal criminal activity. Yes, yes, I just wanted to say like oh down the toilet, and now we do thousand present you have I that you for not promise you widow Wilson. This lovely staging arms, if you dare
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if you have ever committed remark which I believe you some crimes, then that I now against them across the board. I am because, even if it's not criminal, it's still a way to inflict power on somebody in June are all, and even just treatment behaviour all of that stuff, even if it's not like a criminal, they or a wheel, but little images for us in our exact situation, looks it is a you're coming into the house and you're gonna be exposed up every aspect of our life and then a year and a position. If you are a piece of shit, what you're not to go, write a book about the fact that I've far to March has just like embarrassing, boldly, barely talk about that on here. All the time he farts too much while embarrassing grows staff that could potentially, let's even say, a diminished my
Comcast Samson doesnt want a guy who's got hold of. She wants to sell a refrigerator and now holdings in some way. I need some roughly Vietnam disparagement claw. Ah, what we mean that you are related and there's a lot of other policies and, like I think I know, I have observed that Chris Index Heaven had sex in three months, like you know, there's I can only agree, but let's say that you do something to me. I get fired because of that lets say that also affects my income. Being far worse. If I'm trying another job- and I can't because I can't really say all this is actually what happened. I don't think that's fair I know I agree. So are you seen an under the very sound like that would be the compromise I think they're always gonna be valid applications of confidentiality clauses of some kind. I mean him I'll. Give you a more clear cut. Example: you're, a scientist. We are working in a lab on some incredibly sensitive
technology, for it whatever our car company and they have to be able to limit contractual in some way you bring that took competitors. There's only asked very clear cut cases where I don't think this is a terrible but social ill to have this as a legal institution. I agree to your boy Monica that they were over used widely and particularly in the context of the kinds of stories I did just two years of work, resources who were scared shitless because they had signed the bad. Very, This we, as you know, Harvey, wants him to get me a million dollars to destroy all evidence of the crime he did the year and never speak about it again. That's one of the episodes of the the pod cast is about this young woman. Amber Gutierrez who participated in a police got a recording of admitting to groping her very dramatic, crazy store, Why don't you give her a million dollars and she'd signs away her right to ever talk about it and has all her devices scrubbed of the recordings and thoroughly? For me, she finds a secret way to preserve.
How do you ever that's like that's a bad india. You I feel I give a criminal active. Something criminals happen that you're pretty much void in India is journey room legally for that to be part of how the fact is, though, that tax should be the case that the end there is a conversation happening, indifferent, legislative bodies. Now about how you make that more clear and like actually preemptively preventing them from being used in cases of sex crimes, I think that that actually is now the case. California, in the wake of this report, and yet, if you sign in India, you should probably say will- I will sign this, but what I want included in this is that this is excludes any kind of sexual misconduct towards me or something that car, while various jurisdictions that is now mandatory, already all arrive or Yahoo. You cannot at this point, do the kind of agreed I just outlined of it is expressly for the purpose of covering up a sex for him, so
Here's who are engaged in brokering that kind of agreement should know. We had hoped that yeah they can't do that and they should put a stop to it. If someone's trying and now just in a juicy gossip, Why do you have a sense of global sense or cumulative sense of what Harvey had paid out over the years? I mean I want thank you, it other than say it's. Obviously, it's in the seven figures because you know what they are It's a lot of money, and it is one of the remarkable things about that story, and so many others that there are. pull echelon of power of the person who is just buying their way out of criminal accountability for a long time. Well, I wants that out its voice in the room, which was incredibly well acted by Russell Crown just want to add that did you ask that they didn't want yet, but I know Gretchen a little you I'm sure you know the particulars of all these things, but yet they were paying out. You know tens of millions of dollars. I mean it really added up to the huge amounts of money. Well, that's where I think the reporting.
Especially important, because we need There are many journalists as possible digging in two cases of corporate culture. Arising that sort of thing, and I think it's pretty widespread- I mean I've done now. This reporting on it You see on CBS, it wasn't just a single rogue studio, like the Winston copy to your point Fox, was in one of the leading examples that I hope that we're seeing the death of this idea that powerful guys figure heads Companies are so Dispensable that it's worth concealing potential criminal activity, it just never is it's bad for the bottom line in the city story. When word leaked that we were about to run at the new Yorker, not even the article itself had lake tenor, before when I think the Hollywood reporter put out a pc now run a virus, but to put out this CBS reporter. I had been much room for months and we were sitting with my fact checker and work
let's just focused on the one thing we have to do- is getting the reporting right and kind of trying to turn out the noise. But meanwhile, the new cycle around this starting and deep turns his phone. For me and stock is just you lie like a billion value. On the one hand here you hate to see that happen, but based on speculation I mean that's the around waiting for the actual facts: investors, on the other hand, I hope that's a lesson for companies everywhere. They thought they were doing the right thing for the bottom line covering this up, and this was a boar. I knew that there was a criminal investigation, oh boy. They knew that there were pay out and they kept him in power,
I hope. Now. People have internalize the lesson. Actually, there's a cost that I imagine you gather all of your information and you're structuring and writing you doin things in your fact. Checking in that has this whole. I would imagine, excitement to it like you really onto something you ve really got something, and I wonder what the journey is from going like fuck. I got this. This story is good, solid am very proud of it and then the panic chatter that probably legal threatens not the start, dropping you now. really offers like a bill Dollar movement. Did you lose your conviction at all? You gotta, oh my god. If I've got this wrong now, I'm fucked bar you at that you're, so solid on an art. What's that
You only get to that point if you're so solid on it and I'll give you an example. I had a major political story that would have been the kind of thing that would take over the new cycle, fur but weak or something, and we had it fully drafted and multiple sourced. But I and my editors just decided at the eleventh hour, not multiple sourced enough, we wanted another voice in the room for this particular thing that had happened, and it's just never worth putting it out in less, Your other proof, so so rock solid and, as you pointed out All of these stories generate these crazy legal threats and attack. on me personally, and so here there is really no tempt. Listen to put it out prematurely. I wish I could do no credit myself for that. It's the new Yorker has this absurdly high standard effect. I think that things only really progressed to that point
If you know it's gonna weather the storm, so I guess that's away that your bolstering some confidence, as you have the vote of this institution, the new Yorker, that's behind you that could lead to your own confidence. A little bit were, I think, just to make it more specific for people, because there's no reason any one at home would necessarily know what that process looks like it's, not lake, your doing, secret research, in a void and then saying we feel confident so we're to put this out and see how people react. The fact making process entails going everyone who is mentioned saying: ok, here's what we're reporting and here's the evidence and getting older, rebuttals So no one who is a subject of this kind of reporting is this? Can reporting investigative reporting is shocked. You can have no, what the responses are gonna be in calibrating it to those responses. It still can be a shitstorm when it comes out publicly and even in our you see people admitting two things
that checking and then still being under. and in the public discourse and sharp dying and yeah imagine know that you're getting a lot of opportunity to exercise your muscle of constructing a real argument for the other side, which I think is one unlike the healthiest thing people can do and seems to be one of the things people are most reluctant to do, which I give it a real real shot. What is that other point of view? Absolutely and it? Oh, it's away which I think the law training hopes because that's very much embedded in legal thinking and yeah, sincerely. You know, my work involves burning. A crazy him, however, bridges all the time. But I do think that if you're gonna be in the crosshairs of some kind of tough investigative reporting. Better to have it be an outlet like the new Yorker. That's really gonna sincerely want to cure you out. All the time I listen to someone during a fact checking process and think. Ok, I guess
I see that point, or they presented this piece of evidence that persuasive in and it changes the tenor of the thing I've had. Sometimes I guess a provocative view of some of these situations I am of the opinion. Not certainly not the wine seen things certainly not in many of them, but in some of them I do have a hunch. Both people sincerely believe they're telling the truth. I think we do process experiences so differently again, with the baggage of fears and insecurity we all carry as we already discussed. I have a voice it's in my life that you would think would be there's no way, We should remember this differently. My brother and I watched my mom get beat up by our step death. That's a very memorable experience. He has it completely other house that we lived and we have an indifferent houses and we have enormous ain't when I experience in my own life, that kind of distance of like how could we have this drastic
different memories of this experience, and yet I witness it all the time and benign things aren't. There are many cases. Words like I believe her in I'm a believe him. I believe that they may have had completely different experiences, walking away from the situation, so certainly in principle think that can be true. I I think that in the stories that I have chosen to report yeah there actually on a specific subset that is about sufficiently violent criminal allegations that you don't get into Greer Janusz emulate the prominent examples of stories about sexual violence that have reported really are. Sometimes there are less violent anecdotes in there that are meant to establish an m o, but they're always rooted in very, very serious criminal claims where they're they're just wouldn't be a lot of, room to have been a reasonable interpretation of events that would be totally sensuality.
Frustrating because I can tell by that answer, you're making a real distinction, as you totally should between what you report alarm and what I will just say when I read the these account, of course, the universe is frustrating to, and I think I think I might be guilty of having times loved you and to all of the stuff, and is it frustrating and all that what you're doing and such a specific thing gaming? This is where we get back to the distinction I talked about earlier, like I am not the hype. just as the medium of the Toronto Burke who found The meeting movement arrived at that term and is an activist working in the trenches with survivors advocating for them is she's the high priest. as a major millennia and those are different jobs at midnight. I admire her so much she's a truly bad ass. individual and I'm really It was a reporter that you can put out facts into the world and then are activists who have an agenda
and turn them into change. Yeah. That's a meaningful part of our culture should work, but actually to preserve the independence of this kind of reporting. I dont even get involved in that I dont really. I have in my hand and of course, I care about the issue. I have of a belief that you know a variety of she's ever on need more tension on yeah, but I really mean in the posture of going wherever the fact take me and get aid not going forward with the story. Like its rock solid and not being an advocate for me, MRS Schreyer you're trying to respect them and make them feel protected in the process. But you're not carrying water, further set of facts until you have the evidence to back it up that. That is a hard distinction, and, yes, I I think fur outside observers, dear swirl of names, the Alley underhand there's a lot of social change happening around this issue,
There's no reason to necessarily understand, like this person is a reporter, and this put other person is an activist in this. Other person is a source who came forward, but it is relevant because I went on talking to my wife about you Maybe it was when you on bill more recently, and she made a point to say to me Romans met is to investigate situations that that is what you're. Here a mission is your mission? Isn't too, like you're not trying to go expose every person is what you believe, and everyone should be heard and everything should be investigated. I love your wife, I love or even more hearing that she's heard my talking voyage. I was, I thought, maybe your because I am very supportive of the movement and yet, at the same time I kind of region I believe all women. I just think I dont believe all anybody to yet no and it's actually it's antithetical to what I do too to say believe all anybody. I have always been very clear. I talk about this a lot in my
Those is listen to all survivors of sexual, listen to all women, listen to many categories of peace. we weren't listening to for too long, and I think the best service you can do to claims of this type is to investigate them thoroughly. Even adversarial. I was having this conversation for one of these episodes at podcast with a woman named Emily Nestor, who was one of the first wine snake users to come forward and had gear documentation to back it up and so forth. So so her account of events was very important to these. This early phase of the reporting and she was reminding me that I basically grilled her to the point where it was an extraordinarily unpack. process for her right I've, I've made sources cry with
question I mean it's either you have as every question that your denounces are going to ask ultimately right. That's right, the our colleague when you prepare a witness right for testimony. You have to act as the prosecution, even further defence. Yes, with the important distinction that I'm not. I don't have the agenda preparing them. I just literally have the objective of finding out what's true rights and God bless every source who puts up with that sign up for it stands like that's part of the process, and I tried it in a way that compassionate and makes them feel safe, also, Ultimately, they understand that's important one I was reading about your life and you wonder kin status and then graduating at fifteen and then went on the Yale LAW school. Not a doktor! I law is Yale LAW buckle the forgot. They never hear road scholar to write No, it's insane is preposterous, but in he passed the New York BAR so have to imagine at some point you at least work without considering practising law. You know you get
to this tunnel vision when you're in any closed universe, like that, like the legal profession and my, yes and I think, new going into law school, even going to Yale LAW for people who don't know no law school year? Laws kind: it's the modest source The rule of law. Schools is our belgian Heller remained is where a billion Korea. They turn out a lot of the great sort of League professors and judging the stereotype about the places. Eighty candid don't learn black letter rather in a hate me for saying this, but Go there then let them Lydia is either I mean a vast majority them fact do there's plenty of great Braxton, whereas the command of, but just relative, to the competition year relative to Harvard law. Even there are corked steel. I, like you, don't have to take property. There's your basic
you'd have to take tax basic gaps in your legal knowledge emerge with Russia. I love that about the place because you can have this incredibly kind of philosophical legal education and I was very very fortune to be able to go there and use it. As training that necessarily have to be for practising or Morocco Far from so, I was summer associated a big firm, but I knew pretty early on that. I wanted to do something a little more public services. I guess right so looking at the road, it would appear from the outside and credit. If I'm wrong, that this specific focus of your journalism seems to have found, you is that backup you workin the Obama administration and you were doing work in Afghanistan and Pakistan with how the? U S government is interacting with non governmental and civilian populations over their right here. So I was there
two thousand and nine, and there was a resurgence of what came to be known as going straight. Did she counter insurgency strategy in it? It was a school of thought. The champion by general betray us and the idea was in you- send the soldiers into the community is and the series of steps where in you, you clear out the enemies but then you're actually like living with the local population and trying to win them over and that there is a huge body debate about- is this terrible approach? Is this a good approach and ultimately em I read about it: you're, not gonna, failures of our policy and Afghanistan again or on peace. You can buy it now, but I In this case, where his writing about is how are militarization of foreign policy that happens as we scale back or investment in diplomacy, backfire anyhow. Understand, is a great example of that
there, many many great books about how we ve messed up Afghanistan over and over again, and it's this quagmire and veto famously the graveyard of empires, and I don't know that I'm gonna be able to offer any new insights into that and this conversation, but I think that would have for the merits of that counter. Insurgency strategy that we were just talking about it did not work. right did you have to send cited as your? wine over Afghanistan there's nothing to capture it's the moon kind of theoretical place. to have a wart, there's, no town to overrun. There's there's nothing! It's just mountain! in deserts, and you fly from one previous of pigs to another previous soviet base in you realize like this is really a thing you can get your arms around it yet everyone's there. You know again I'm not making the case for organs are emboldened there To my mind, is we just keep making the mistake of thinking and its in old are often it
out of the Pentagon. Your or military brows just is able so are what whatever the White House at the time on this idea that we can win arrived and write it. If not how it works over and over again going back to the proxy wars of the Cold war era, the whole country of that understand as it exists now, is a creation of proxy wars. Right here and there not gonna change and We need many more hours to discuss like what should happen and elegant arrived at in the context of what was writing about in the time I was there, there was a small but local contingent of diplomats saying we should try to negotiate or way out, because this military solution isn't gonna work right, and I think there is ultimately something to that him were found Billy years late, cut of coming around to that idea are just now: soreness, meek, outriders and more negotiations happening with the Taliban and so forth and there's been fits and starts to that. It's complicated, but certainly
he lost a window of opportunity where I think there was a viable negotiation path that we didn't take, because there was a a frenzy of military. the action and a White House Guess the Obama White House in the thrall of these were celebrity generals right. You know that had the appearance of defeat, if we left at that exact time or stands, always part of the political incentive e others, I do think that there is a real phenomenon in domestic politics where there are sort of an intoxicate. that comes along with a war, yeah yeah.