The New Abnormal with Molly Jong-Fast & Rick Wilson

Oct 23 2020 34 mins 4k

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





Final Debate Just Proves Trump ‘Can Lie in Different Gears’
Oct 23 2020 53 mins  
On a special episode of The New Abnormal responding to the final presidential debate Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson are joined by GOP political consultant Mike Madrid, Daily Beast senior editor Tim Teeman and Gary Peters, the Senator from Michigan, who is here to outline the fight against voter intimidation at the polls.   Molly was aghast at Trump’s almost normal debate performance. “It’s almost worse when Trump tries to be normal than when Trump is just insane,” she said. “When he acts like a normal president… then you have constantly fact check him in a way that you don’t when he’s just huffing and puffing and screaming.”   Madrid, a veteran Republican pollster now working with the Lincoln Project, said Trump’s relative calm on stage means he can’t be counted out of the race yet. “If he had just blown his top and set his hair on fire and started stomping on his feet, then we’d be like, OK, it’s done,” he said. “He can lie in different gears.”   But Rick is not convinced that Trump did enough to turn it around. “My theory of the case going in was that Trump needed an absolute knockout, absolutely needed to slaughter Joe Biden on that stage tonight. And I don’t think he got there. I don’t think he even got close to getting there,” he said.   Away from the debate stage, Tim Teeman joined the gang to discuss the Trump campaign’s last gasp “gaslighting” effort to court LGBTQ voters by claiming Trump had been an ally all along. “I don't know about Donald Trump’s personal bigotry, but it doesn’t matter if he’s a bigot personally or not,” he said. “He’s advancing a course of bigotry for his own ends. And that honestly makes him just as dangerous as the bigot with a pair of keys in their fist, ready to punch you in the face on the street.” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.





Does Rudy Giuliani Have an Ounce of Pride Left?
Oct 20 2020 48 mins  
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.  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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Town Hall Sh*tshow Was a Truth Window into Trump
Oct 16 2020 54 mins  
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.”  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.




Trump Is Polluting the Planet With a Thousand Mini-Dons
Oct 13 2020 51 mins  
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 bullshit 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? 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


TEASER: Val Demings Says She Has a Plan to Stop Trump’s SCOTUS Pick
Oct 12 2020 3 mins  
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.)  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Why Pence Is So Good at Being Evil
Oct 09 2020 46 mins  
Author and Daily Beast Editor-at-Large Goldie Taylor is, um, not exactly Mike Pence’s biggest fan. “He does things that boil me,” she tells Molly Jong-Fast on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. Take that fake gentility of Pence’s. He’s the kind of guy who’s “always genteel when he tells you, you shouldn't be in the room with him. He's always genteel when he tells you that because of his manness, his whiteness, his superiority, that he's better than you.” Molly is right there with Goldie, saying of Pence, “he is good at being evil in a way that Trump is not.” Rick Wilson adds, “Mike Pence wasn't as shouty as Donald Trump [in this week’s debate], he was still as dickish as Donald Trump in every possible respect.” Speaking of debates, Rick sizes up Trump’s threat to skip the next one. (Bluff.) Molly muses about “Fox Business, the last bastion of the impossibly racist.” (“Imagine if Lou Dobbs gets me deported, that would be like the greatest moment of my life,” she says.) And Mike Espy talks about his run for U.S. Senate in Mississippi. Plus! Trump’s imaginary girlfriend! Pence’s shellacked head! Stephen Miller’s kitten rampage! Steroid rages! Bill Barr’s strange absence! Michigan militia-fails! And super-spreader events: the new Republican brand! 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Kathy Griffin: Pence Is ‘Nothing But the Crap Under Trump’s Shoe’
Oct 08 2020 23 mins  
Kathy Griffin joins Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson for a special episode of The New Abnormal recorded right after the vice presidential debate. The gang thought Kamala Harris was the clear winner but they couldn’t stop looking at the vice president’s eye. “The closeup shots of Mike Pence’s bleeding eyeball were like watching an eighties horror movie. I expected some sort of snake to come running out of it at any minute,” said Rick. And that was before the fly stuck to his head. “It's almost like it gets inflamed during the debate. And the fly was doing some triage,” said Griffin.   Pence came into the debate needing to try and help Trump win back the women voters who have deserted him since 2016, but that was a total fail.“Maybe I'm biased because I hate Mike Pence with passion and burning fire of a thousand suns,” said Molly. “But I just saw a guy who doesn’t give a shit about women and who doesn’t respect women and who talked over [the moderator] Susan Page and talked over Kamala.”   Rick agreed: “He comes across as a guy, who’s saying, ‘Well, hey little lady, what can I do to get you into this beautiful ‘89 Camry today?’ Just there’s a little creepiness about him.” “I will say, as a female watching, I did feel like Pence was doing a very classic gaslighting, the woman,” said Griffin. Pence also failed to commit to President Trump accepting the result of the election and agreeing to a peaceful transfer of power. “Mike Pence will be in a Nuremberg trial someday,” said Rick.   Griffin said it was tragic as Pence had once been seen as a mainstream Republican. “It’s shocking to watch him get indoctrinated like a freaking member of right-wing ISIS, go on his degenerate journey to becoming nothing but the crap under Trump’s shoe,” she said. “And it’s disheartening watching him tonight… just parroting, conspiracy theories that seem to get crazier. As the night went on, I just looked at him and I went, fuck that fly—that guy.” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Should We Replace the Trump Administration With Chimpanzees?
Oct 06 2020 52 mins  
No, seriously. After turning the Rose Garden into a superspreader party, after lying 143 ways to Sunday about the virus and 17 more about the president’s health, maybe it’s time to let some other mammals have a shot. “I could release 50 chimpanzees in the White House and they would behave with more care,” says Rick Wilson on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. Molly Jong-Fast replies, “My favorite moment was when they”—the White House staff, not the monkeys—”said, ‘you know, he's totally fine, but we've given him this experimental drug that has only a compassionate-use approval... Being lied to about the president's health is a time-honored tradition. But this group has really done it with a kind of zeal and flare and incompetence that we have never seen before.” Speaking of those experimental drugs, Yale’s Dr. Howard Foreman breaks down all the different therapeutics the president is taking—and lays out why he thinks Trump has been sicker for longer than anyone realizes. Maybe as long as two weeks. Then! The New Yorker’s Susan Glasser and The New York Times’ Peter Baker compare covering Trump’s D.C. to covering Putin’s Moscow. Plus! Matthew McConaughey’s Camaro! Hugh Hewitt’s dumbest moment yet! White House moles emerge! Bill Barr gets even sneakier! And Rick shares his thoughts about Biden’s decision to take down his negative ads while Trump was in the hospital. “Joe Biden is falling victim to this asymmetric bullshit, civility, fuck that noise. Get on it. Get back on the negatives, do it. Now he's attacking you. He's attacked your family. He's attacked your campaign over and over again. Do not hesitate.” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.



TEASER: Busy Phillips on Her Abortion and Embarrassing Louis Gohmert in Public
Oct 05 2020 5 mins  
Busy Phillips had an abortion when she was a teenager. It’s been known for a while, but given the uncertainty of Roe v. Wade after Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death, she’s determined to not let people forget. (Kind of how she and many women like her will never forget the night Trump won the election—“I was really knocked back by Trump's win to the ground. I mean, I like to the floor, like in hysterics.”) In this new members-only bonus episode of The New Abnormal, the “Freaks and Geeks” actor tells Molly Jong-Fast how and why she transitioned from acting to activism, and why she is so passionate about standing up for reproductive rights. “I just wanted to say very simply, you know me, I had an abortion when I was 15 and the situation surrounding it is unimportant, but I deserve bodily autonomy. I deserve equality and I'm not going to be shamed for decisions that I've made about my own body and my own life based on my own beliefs,” she said. Of course, the two had to discuss that time last year that she testified in front of Congress about her abortion. If you missed it, it was definitely a moment worth seeing, especially if you despise Louie Gohmert (R-TX). Phillips explains the wonderful moment when she shut him DOWN from her point of view. (“I have to say that was my favorite thing that I've ever done in my life was saying that to him.”) She also poses to Molly an interesting question: What if vasectomies were as stigmatized as abortions? (“They're like, well, don't be insane. It's like, well, how is that insane?”) Plus, Phillips shares her favorite RGB quote and her feelings on Trump’s “mismanaging” of the pandemic. (“The lack of empathy in this country that's been learned is incredibly overwhelming to me.) 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Why Trump Can't Quit His Most Awful, Most Racist Fanboys
Oct 02 2020 48 mins  
Donald Trump is now claiming he’s not a Proud Boys stan. But let’s get real. When he was on that debate stage the other night, shouting out that racist crew? That was the true Trump. Like Rick Wilson tells Molly Jong-Fast on the latest episode of The New Abnormal, if someone told Trump, “‘Hey, a robot Adolf Hitler and Pol Pot came back from the grave along with robot zombie Saddam, and they all formed the Undead Dictators for Trump Club, would you issue a statement?’ He would say, ‘Well, they like me. So, you know, whatever they did before in the afterlife now in their necromantic incarnation,’” that’s okay. “If they like him, he likes them. This is the simplest rule of the crazy, narcissistic, authoritarian horseshit that defines Donald Trump... He knows the Proud Boys are part of his team. They're part of his base. He likes them.” Speaking of true colors, what does it say when a president surrounds himself with men accused of abusing women? From Parscale to Rob Porter to Corey Lewandowski, “it's a pattern that is really pretty shocking. And one of those people wouldn't be able to survive in a real administration,” Molly says. Plus! Princeton’s Sam Wang talks about the Democrats’ juiciest Senate targets. (Alaska? South Carolina? Kansas?) The New York Times’ Mara Gay talks about her bout with COVID—and her rage at Bob Woodward for keeping quiet for so long about what Trump really knew. (“I thought of [him] at dinner parties in Washington telling his friends, ‘Oh, make sure you get a mask,’ while the rest of us are running blind.”) Molly goes over her voting plan. (You have a voting plan, right? If not, make one right now.) And Rick discusses “the president's continued flirtation—and by flirtation I mean, they've been at a cheap hotel room fucking for three days—with white supremacists.” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Trump Came Across As ‘A Total Assh*le’ In The First Debate
Sep 30 2020 24 mins  
Former Republican operative Stuart Stevens joins Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson for a special episode of The New Abnormal on the night of the utterly chaotic first presidential debate. Trump’s amped up ranting reminded everyone that he’s “a guy that you just would not want in your face for another four years,” Stevens concluded. “Trump just came across as a total asshole.” It was a night when the moderator, Fox News’ Chris Wallace, was unable to keep control. Stevens suggested giving the moderators the right to cut off the microphones of unruly candidates. “I think the moderators ought to have the rights to shock collars,” said Rick.   They all agreed that this kind of Trump performance was unlikely to make inroads with the college-educated voters or the white moms he needs for a second term. “Chris Christie and Rudy Giuliani did not kill it with the debate prep,” said Molly. “It was not a great debate for women tonight, but I don't think Trump really gives a shit about women quite frankly.” Molly wishes they would just cancel the rest of the debates. “Trump is insane and he is just so destructive. And when you give him a mainstream media venue, it ends up undermining elections and civil society as a whole,” she said. Stevens, who was part of George W. Bush’s debate team, was more upbeat. He said this had been a terrible night for the president. “I think that there's going to be a big movement for Biden after this,” he said. 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Trump’s America Meets All ‘Four Threats’ To Democracy
Sep 29 2020 50 mins  
President Donald Trump isn’t a threat to American democracy on a metaphorical level. He’s a threat to the country’s entire political structure, literally, according to two academics who have studied American democracy throughout history and wrote a whole book on the topic. Dr. Robert C. Lieberman, Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University and co-author of Four Threats: The Recurring Crises of American Democracy, joined Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast on this episode of The New Abnormal to share which of the “four pillars” that help sustain democracy Trump has completely bulldozed over (hint: all of them.) According to Dr. Lieberman, that’s a big problem. “The American democratic system is supposed to keep one person or one small group from gaining all the levers of power at the same time. And that's where things have kind of fallen down,” he says. See, these threats have always crept up in our history (even Alexander Hamilton was involved in partisan games) but Leiberman says it’s the “piling of threats on top of each other” that triggers the alarms. (“Trump seems to have an unerring instinct to make just about every situation, worse. He is a product of this confluence of threats. He is a product of the time.”) The team also hears from Rev. Warnock, who is running for Senate in Georgia’s special election race against Sen. Kelly Loeffler and would become the first Black Senator for Georgia if he won, “at a time in which we're dealing with a renewed conversation and reckoning around our age old problem of race and racism in this country.” Plus! Rick tells Molly the cold, hard truth about the future of the Supreme Court and the two discuss why the GOP is headed for an Ice Age, just how sketchy Deutsche Bank is, and of course, Trump’s “all kinds of illegal” tax revelations. 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


TEASER: Is Trump or Biden More Likely to Keel Over on Debate Night?
Sep 28 2020 3 mins  
“People are dying, tens of thousands of people are out of work, he’s embarrassing,” is not only the quote of the year from Philippe Reines but also sums up how he, Rick Wilson, Molly Jong-Fast, and Mike Madrid feel about Donald Trump’s dwindling support among his own base. To make matters worse for the president, he is set to debate Joe Biden for the first time Tuesday night, and he doesn’t have that same 2016 anger and energy he drummed up to defeat Hillary Clinton. In this new members-only bonus episode of The New Abnormal, Rick, Molly, Philippe and Mike discuss what Joe Biden should say, word for word, when he gets on that stage with Trump and the one thing that could sink the president without Joe’s help. Two words: no crowds. “That is where Trump is at his worst,” says Mike. “Without that he’s going to be like a goat in the wilderness.” There’s also the whole painting-Biden-as-senile by the Trump campaign thing, and it just won’t work, Mike says: “They’re tried to convince people that he’s senile and will drool on people while at the same time trying to convince people he’s some mastermind of the left that’s going to being about socialism.” It is quite ironic. “If one of those guys is more likely to keel over Tuesday night on stage, it’s not Joe Biden,” adds Philippe. Then, the group switches gears to talk about Trump losing support among a few of his core voter demographics: senior citizens and non-college educated men. (“COVID has broken the Trump fever) Plus! Rick gives a dramatic reading of one of Trump’s rally quotes and it’s just as bogus as you’d expect. And the group discusses that awkward moment when the crowd booed Trump at Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s funeral: “This is the only time he’s worn his mask when we desperately needed to see his face.” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


It’s Time to Thank Donald Trump for His Dictator Routine
Sep 25 2020 47 mins  
Most of us were horrified when Donald Trump hinted that he might not be willing to give up power. Rick Wilson was kind of appreciative. Trump has long flirted with the dictator thing. Now the mask is off. “I think the correct response to this is defiance,” Rick counsels on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. “‘Thanks for being honest about it. And also fuck you, we're coming to vote you out of office and humiliate you.’” And while the Trumpkins are doing everything they can to undercut every ballot they don’t like, all of that election interference doesn’t matter if it’s a landslide. “If there is a massive voter turnout on November 3rd, these are still only marginal,” Rick says. Molly Jong-Fast puts it more urgently when she adds, “The only way our democracy is going to survive is if every Democrat goes out there and fucking votes.” Then! Molly talks to Danielle Moodie about the appalling results in the Breonna Taylor case. (“How much does this country expect Black people to swallow? You want to be able to kill us with impunity.,,. And then you expect us, what? To wait for justice that we know is not going to come?”) And Sister Simone Campbell tells Molly who she thinks is the better Catholic in the presidential race. (“What we find is, Vice President Biden is totally in line with Pope Francis, caring for the unborn and caring for the born.) Plus! A dispatch from Qongress! A love letter to Mitch McConnell! (J/K) Pig farmers run wild! What to bring to Election Day! Who’s in Marco Rubio’s ratfuck brigade! And is there enough mayonnaise in the universe to turn Comrade Ron Johnson’s chicken shit into chicken salad? 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Mitch McConnell Is About to Punch America in the Penis
Sep 22 2020 55 mins  
You know our politics are beyond fucked up when the showrunner of Veep says he can’t compete with real-life Washington. “I mean, we did a Supreme court episode. And as sort of horrible and tragic as our Veep worldview was, we have lapped it, maybe even double lapped it,” David Mandel tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. “I shake my whatever to Mitch McConnell. He really has outdone himself, best comedy writer of our generation... And he's literally about to punch the country in the penis. I mean, I'm sorry. There's no other way of saying it. It's literally a dick punch.” (To which Rick quips, “that would be so on brand for 2020.”)  Then! Molly and Planned Parenthood Action Fund chief Alexis McGill Johnson talk about the Supreme Court fight—and what it means for the November election. (“I feel pretty fucking galvanized,” Molly says.) Plus! Meet the new polling firm of “Rasputin, Devil, and Death Squad”! Listen to Rick render his opinion on the SCOTUS-packing talk (“dumber than a fucking sack of hair.”) And take a trip with Mandel down Republican National Convention memory lane: “I've never seen a convention where you thought to yourself as you were watching, ‘boy, a lot of these people seem really high on cocaine.’ Like, person after person after person. What convention could you even say that about? I'm not even sure you could say that about a cocaine convention, that this many people [are high]. I think at a cocaine convention, people pull themselves together for their big speech and they'd go, ‘I'll do cocaine after my speech. Not before I address the nation from the White House.’”  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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.





How the Trump Campaign Lit a Billion Dollars on Fire
Sep 18 2020 50 mins  
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. 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.




Adam Scott: The Parks & Rec Cast Has Never Gotten Too Political—Until Now
Sep 15 2020 52 mins  
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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


TEASER: Will The Republican Party Ever Be the Same Again?
Sep 14 2020 4 mins  
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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Has Any American Killed More Americans Than Donald Trump??
Sep 11 2020 33 mins  
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?” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


UNLOCKED: Trump DHS Official: Of Course There Are Racists in the Administration
Sep 09 2020 34 mins  
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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Who Is Trump’s Handler in Russia?
Sep 08 2020 45 mins  
Peter Strzok, the FBI agent who helped launch the Trump-Russia investigation, says the current occupant of the Oval Office “poses the greatest counterintelligence threat of any president in modern history.” It’s not just that Trump and all of his top people have lied about their connections to Moscow, Strzok tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson in the latest episode of The New Abnormal. (Although that is super weird.) It’s that he takes all of these inexplicably pro-Kremlin positions on issues he clearly doesn’t care about. (Montenegro? Really?) Which leads Molly to wonder: If Trump is really acting like a Russian asset, who would be Trump’s handler in Moscow? “I don't think he needs one,” Strzok responds. This isn’t some old-school spy case, with dead drops and covert communications. “The best intelligence relationship… if you want them to do something is: ‘I've got you on the hook. I know you're going to do, you know what I want. And I don't ever have to tell you because of the leverage I have over you.’ And that's what I think Russia has over Trump. How else do you explain all these fucking inexplicably things that he's doing with regard to NATO, with refusing to say word one about [Putin critic Alexei] Navalny being poisoned, about the bounties” Russia offered the Taliban for killing U.S. troops. Plus! Strzok addresses the charges that the White House dialed up his  investigation into Trump’s Russian connections. (No way, Strzok says.) Rick teases some material from Michael Cohen’s newly released book. Molly sheds tears over the sunken Trump flotilla—and reports from the raging hellscape that is Manhattan. And! Strzok reconsiders his earlier position. “I was maybe a little too flippant about saying [Trump] doesn't have a handler,” Strzok says. There are so many things Trump “says and does that are very much in Russia's interests [and] that he doesn't have an independent knowledge of.” It makes this counterintelligence veteran wonder.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.





What Will Happen to Fox News When Rupert Murdoch Dies?
Sep 04 2020 50 mins  
Everybody has got to die sometime, even the Great and Powerful Fox News giant Rupert Murdoch. But what will happen to the empire when papa ‘Doch finally does kick the bucket? CNN’s Brian Stelter shared his theory with Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast on this episode of The New Abnormal and it’s hard not to see it as a possibility. But spoiler alert: It’s super complicated. (“There will be a battle over the future of the company because there's this trust right now. There's eight votes in the trust,” he says. “Rupert has four votes and the kids have four votes. So he wins. If, and when he dies, there will be four votes from four children,” and dun dun, dun” one of them leans more liberal.) Stelter did the work none of us wants to and wrote a whole book about Fox. He brought up a personal Molly Jong-Fast nightmare (Tucker Carlson 2024?) and the trio discussed the very obvious occurrence of the network literally controlling what the president says or does. (“Tucker will tweet or say something on the air. And two days later, it's Donald Trump's policy.”) Then! Dr. Al Gross, who is running for Senate in Alaska as an Independent, spoke with Molly and producer Jesse Cannon about why the state isn’t as red as everyone thinks and how he’s able to balance his time as a commercial fisherman, an orthopedic surgeon, and Master of Public Health. Oh, and that stimulus check the state’s citizens get called UBI. Plus! Find out which hill Bill Barr is dying on to protect Trump this time. 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Trump Jr. Loves Boats, Hates Rhinos and Is So-So on Democracy
Sep 01 2020 36 mins  
Ike Barinholtz—of Eastbound and Down, Suicide Squad, and Mindy Project fame—loves, and I mean LOVES, Donald Trump Jr. It was a passion that grew white hot on safari. “I went with DJ TJ, we went to beautiful Tanzania back in 2014 and it was amazing,” Ike tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson on the latest edition of The New Abnormal. “We talked to the locals and they were really great. And then this really nice man, he was a guide. And he took us to just the most majestic group of sleeping rhinoceroses and we just blew their fucking heads off. It was beautiful.” But Ike admires one of the president’s top four smartest children for more than his guns. Ike also appreciates Don’s nuanced political views, especially when it comes to boats. “Look, everyone is born with a boat. We know that, but only people who really commit—to not just the boating lifestyle, but also the MAGA lifestyle—have earned the privilege to fuck up all of the wakes in a lake. And so once again, DJ TJ is right and that's why I'm supporting him in 2024.” Plus! Trump Senior turns the White House lawn into a NASCAR parking lot. Melania goes dictator chic. And Molly—this part is serious, I swear—recites a Tiffany Trump tweet over an electropop beat.  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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.




Ivanka Is an Idiot but Unequivocally the Smartest Trump
Aug 28 2020 27 mins  
It’s the last night of the Republican National Convention and former GOP operative Tim Miller joins Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast to break down what Rick calls “four hours of sweaty Castro-esque speechmaking.” The most surreal speechmaker of all may have been Ivanka Trump. “There were a lot of lies,” says Miller. “But I thought the lie that really stood out to me was when she talked about how much he loves his grandchildren.”Molly was impressed, sort of. “I did think tonight, Ivanka is an idiot, and she is absolutely unequivocally the smartest of all of the kids.” Aside from Trump, himself, the gang agrees that Rudy Giuliani gave the most despicable speech of the night. Former Giuliani staffer, Rick, says the former Mayor of New York was kickstarting a Republican race war that will run until the election. “There's never been a more perfect exemplar of ‘everything Trump touches dies,’ because that speech tonight; it was, at one point, everything but the n-word… They're coming for you, they're coming for you to your suburbs. These black lives matter…” And when it came to Trump himself, Molly says he was totally off-form: “He finds reading very boring. So, I mean, every speech where he's not saying crazy shit is him being totally bored by whatever they're making him read."Rick agrees “it was very low energy speech,” but predicts the calm—maybe even electable—Trump will not last long. “We all know something about Donald Trump. After he’s been disciplined and held down by his staff for a couple of days, he has an equal and opposite reaction and goes fucking nuts.” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Mary Trump on Whether ‘Despicable’ Ivanka Could Be New VP
Aug 27 2020 23 mins  
Mary Trump, The New Abnormal’s favorite guest, is back for the third night of the Republican National Convention. Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast want to know if it’s too late for Trump to drop Mike Pence as his running mate and bring in fresh blood. “Pence is a total drip and his only value to Donald is that he sucks up to him,” says Mary. “Do we seriously think that Mike Pence could not be convinced to step down?” Rick admits it would be incredibly tough to bring in a new vice presidential candidate at this late stage, but can see why Trump would do it. “It's a difficult enterprise. Although, I think Donald would be tempted don't you, Mary? Because it’s like a reality TV play. It’ll be dramatic. The ratings will be yuge.” Molly was taken back by the sheer scale of dishonesty at the convention tonight. “Those were C-PAC-level lies, not RNC-level lies,” she says. Rick suggested Richard Grenell, who was briefly Acting Director of National Intelligence, was making a strong entry into “the Trumpian liars Olympics” with his convention speech. Mary says he was the undisputed champion. “It was the worst, most damaging performance of the evening, if not of the entire convention, because of the things he was lying about with a straight face. Everything he said was a lie.” Rick selects Trump as today’s ‘Fuck that guy’ for his defunding of FEMA as a hurricane makes landfall in Louisiana and Texas, but Mary says: “You know, that money stolen from FEMA that may not have been needed if Bannon hadn't stolen it from the GoFundMe…” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Why Are These Crazy People at The RNC Saying What They’re Saying?
Aug 26 2020 23 mins  
Former George W. Bush speechwriter David Frum joined Molly-Jong Fast and Rick Wilson on a special edition of The New Abnormal for the second night of the Republican National Convention and he just couldn’t work out what the Hell the GOP thought they were doing? Stephen Harper, the former prime minister of Canada, used to have a sign up on all four walls of his campaign war room, Frum explains: “And the sign said, ‘Why are you saying this?’” While the Democrats realized they needed to create lots of short video segments that would be shared online, Frum compares the RNC disaster as a low-rent version of the Tucker Carlson show on Fox News. “He's a professionally competent white supremacist with a volume controls on the input device that matches the volume output,” he says.   Molly was also unimpressed by Melania’s “dictator chic” and her very long speech. “In the end she was just like this weird alien trying to mimic a human,” she says. Amid the cavalcade of nepotism, Molly also thought Tiffany Trump’s performance was instructive. “There's always been a liberal fantasy that Tiffany is not as evil as the rest of the adult children. I think tonight, that fantasy has been put to bed,” she says. The sight of former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi prompted Rick to issue a warning that Bondi has been working with Rudy Giuliani and Steve Bannon on concocting “Hillary's emails 2.0”—some kind of opposition research attack on the Bidens. “Tonight was a preview of the October surprise,” he says. 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


White House Insider: Trump Wanted to 'Maim' Immigrants
Aug 25 2020 32 mins  
It’s the first night of the Republican National Convention and Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast are joined by Miles Taylor, the former chief of staff at the Department of Homeland Security, who shares eye-watering tales of what Trump is really like when the cameras are switched off. You thought what happened on screen on night one of the convention was crazy? It’s nothing compared to Trump behind the scenes, where national security officials couldn’t get through a meeting “without him doing 20 tangents, becoming irascible, turning red in the face, demanding a diet Coke, spewing spit,” Taylor explained. “Literally out of goddamn nowhere, he'd be like, ‘You know, who’s just my favorite guy? The MyPillow guy. Do any of you have those pillows?’ When it came to the issue of the border wall, Trump would be dreaming up “sickening” medieval plots “to pierce the flesh” of migrants, rip all the families apart, “maim,” and gas them. “This was a man with no humanity whatsoever,” Taylor says. “He says, we got to do this, this, this, and this, all of which are probably impossible, illegal unethical,” Taylor recalls, but he was writing them down as the president spoke. “And he looks over me and he goes, you fucking taken notes?” All that, and there was still time for the “Fuck that guy” segment, and Jerry Falwell Jr. won a hotly contested race after it was claimed that the anti-LGBT preacher had encouraged the pool boy to have sex with his wife while he watched from the corner of the room. “I would like to salute you for providing the most meta and self-referential ‘Fuck that guy’ ever,” Rick says to Molly. “Because Jerry Falwell said to his wife, ‘Fuck that guy.’” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


TEASER: Trump Is Pushing Even the Quietest Celebs to Speak Out
Aug 24 2020 5 mins  
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. Actor, comedian and activist Billy Eichner totally gets why Taylor Swift took so long to get publicly political. In this bonus episode of The New Abnormal, the “Billy on the Street” star explains why celebrities may take a long time to speak up—and how Trump is changing that. “It's easy to sit back from a distance and say like, ‘why doesn't so-and-so get more political.’ And I definitely feel that way sometimes, but the few times I've had like internet backlash for something or, you know, people being angry at something, I can hold my own. And it doesn't, like, ruin my life at all,” he explained. “I think Trump pushed us to a place” where celebs who were previously silent on major issues now feel compelled to speak up. That said, he is just “sick of getting angry on Twitter.” Eichner also spoke about the ways he’s trying to make one of his biggest dreams come true: “It would make me so pleased to flip the Senate.” Plus, he shares his thoughts on the South Carolina race between Lindsey Graham and Jaime Harrison. “Lindsey Graham, to me, is the epitome of someone who makes me physically ill,” he added. And of course, he answers our burning question: When is Billy on the Street going to come back? (“Coronavirus killed my career.”). Again, this is for Beast Inside members only. To hear this along with the rest of our upcoming bonus episodes head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com.   See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.





Rockstar Obama Sure as Hell Triggered Trump
Aug 20 2020 24 mins  
It’s night three of the Democratic National Convention and The New Abnormal team are getting a little punchy. Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson are joined by Hillary Clinton’s former senior advisor Phillipe Reines and it’s a barnburner.There were always going to be two gigantic rockstar performances from Barack Obama and Kamala Harris tonight that were going to trigger President Trump—"and sure as hell, they did!” said Rick. “You could disagree with Barack Obama about every policy thing under the sun, but you could always remember that the guy was a spectacular speaker and communicator, and he brought that shit tonight. I mean, he peeled the paint off the damn walls without raising his voice.”Reines nailed Trump’s fury at Obama. “He brings something to the table that really no one else in the world does, which is he can't be called a loser... He was elected president twice. He got more votes twice. I think there's an intimidation there.”Molly has warm words for Hillary Clinton’s focus on winning the election itself, and Reines praises his old boss: “She refrained from mentioning Jim Comey, which is always a positive.”The team agree that Trump is “the platonic ideal of an asshole” but debate whether it would be worth trading a few more years of Trump in office if it meant Don Jr. and Jared Kushner wound up in jail.“Donald Trump can be president for life,” said Rick. “If I can watch Jared torn apart by a pack of wild dogs.” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Why Mueller Dropped the Ball. Was He Corrupt or Incompetent?
Aug 19 2020 24 mins  
Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson were up late to fight crime after a “seamless” night two of the Democratic National Convention. Former Democratic presidential candidate Rep. Eric Swalwell joined a special edition of The New Abnormal which asked—after the publication of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s final report on Russian electoral interference—what the Hell happened with Robert Mueller?   Molly’s interpretation of the 1,000 page report was pretty clear: “It seemed like a lot of shoes dropped in that the Trump campaign was giving clues to Roger Stone, which got passed to Julian Assange to influence the 2016 election. But it seems like Mueller dropped the ball on this… I’m no expert, but it, it sort of looks like collusion.”   “Is Mueller incompetent? is Mueller corrupt? What is happening with him?” she asked.   Rick, a former Republican insider, suggested that the failure of the Mueller report to nail the Trump campaign came down to Mueller’s temperament. “I think Mueller was too much of an institutionalist and too much of an incrementalist. And I think when you’re that kind of person, you have trouble understanding sometimes just how fucking wily and corrupt people like this are.”   Rep. Swalwell had another answer. “He did not pursue the finances. And also he did not put the President's ass in a witness chair. And those, I think, were the two shortcomings.”   Trump’s failure to stand up to Russia on behalf of the U.S. has left a huge opening for former Vice President Joe Biden and Rick was impressed by his move to lock down the kind of voters who backed Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.   “The Democratic Party for the first time, in a lot of ways, since John F. Kennedy seized control of the national security narrative again, and position themselves as the party of strength because they came right out and made it a centerpiece of tonight,” he said.   Molly suggested the DNC also did well to contrast the potential First Ladies. “It seems almost unfair, you know, to watch Jill Biden in the school she is teaching at versus Melania building a tennis pavilion.”  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


What Biden, Harris, and the Dems Need to Do Next
Aug 18 2020 19 mins  
Night one of the Democratic National Convention is barely done. And Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson are already previewing nights two, three, and four on a special edition of The New Abnormal … with a little help from James Carville, the legendary political strategist. The thing to watch, he says? How much Joe Biden and Kamala Harris make this “about Trump and themselves, and how much of it is about voters. And the ratio that’s about voters should be at least two thirds,” Carville says. “The great mistake of 2016 was that Trump would be so unacceptable that people wouldn't have a place to go.” So yeah, even though the first part of the convention’s first night was awkward and telethon-y, at least it kept the focus where it needed to be: on real voters, and their real struggles. Rick nods, “In some ways I think there's an appeal to that. Ordinary people will watch that performance, and say, ‘Hey, you know, they're doing the best they can. They're struggling through this thing.’” Plus, Molly says, “Bernie really delivered for Biden tonight.” But did the DNC really need the celebrity hosts? Really? Like Molly says, “It's not the Emmys.” Then! Rick muses about contracting herpes from a rabid badger. Carville wonders what genius thought attacking the post office was a good idea. And Don Jr. gets an extra pep in his step.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.




Blame Fox News For the Rise of QAnon
Aug 14 2020 46 mins  
It’s the “secret sauce” of Fox News: “tell people who feel socially inferior that you're really the smart one. You're really informed, you know the real secrets about what's really going on,” explains Rick Wilson on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. For 20 years, Fox has been force-feeding this sauce to its listeners, saying “that your life would be perfect if it wasn't for that George Soros, your life would be perfect if it wasn't for ANTIFA. They prep these people's minds to reject empirical truth all the time.” And finally, you have them believing in lizard people. In satanic pedophile rings. In QAnon. But maybe, Molly Jong-Fast offers, the QAnon takeover of the Republican party isn’t so bad. Marjorie Taylor Greene, the conspiratorial congressional nominee? Maybe “she and Devin Nunes could someday be on a reality show where they've run away from their spouses. And they're living in a bunker in South Dakota. It's called ‘My Dumb Congressmen.’” Then! Rep. Lauren Underwood, a public health nurse and the youngest Black woman in Congress, talks about her experience doing pandemic preparation in the Obama administration—and whether we can do anything now to reverse Team Trump’s missteps. And! Hank Gilbert, who’s running against Congressman COVID Louie Gohmert, talks about staring down pistol-toting Trump minions for daring to question Dear Leader. Plus! Molly breaks down Kamala Harris’ generational strengths. America’s worst governor compares reopening schools to killing bin Laden. And the ghouls running the late Herman Cain’s twitter account attack 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Donald Trump Actually Did Us All One Big Favor
Aug 11 2020 36 mins  
Kurt Andersen has been tooling on Donald Trump for decades—the Spy magazine co-founder once even tricked the Donald into cashing a check for 17 cents. But, Andersen tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson, Trump did us all a favor. He showed America just how rigged our system is in favor of the ultra-rich. “His final ad [of the 2016 campaign] was all ‘Wall Street has taken all of your wealth and ruined the working class. And we must defeat these people of whom my opponent is a puppet,’” Anderson recounts on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. “Well, yeah, you had a point. But you didn't actually govern at all on that basis. So maybe, maybe he's sort of put that critique of the system on the table”—especially for Republicans who couldn’t take in that kind of message from someone left-of-center. Rick, the GOP consultant, says it’s time for Republicans to realize that “the party of free markets is full of shit because it [isn’t] about free markets. It’s about gaining enough power to use the regulatory state and legislative process to advantage your individual companies or markets. That's not capitalism, that's crony capitalism on a good day and something much worse on a bad one.” Then! Molly and Rick answer listener questions, revealing how they met (not on a chain gang, they swear) and what their surprising super powers are (“I can hit my head on almost anything,” says Molly). Plus! Will our dynamic duo actually open a dogfighting pit, or will they go straight to selling meth? And what does Rick enjoy more than “getting rip shit on cheap gin and watching the Teletubbies?” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.





The Yachts, the Private Jets, the Safaris: NRA Grift Exposed
Aug 07 2020 57 mins  
National Rifle Association boss Wayne LaPierre rails against the elites trying to take real Americans’ guns Meanwhile, the NRA is taking gun-owners donations—to fund LaPierre’s ultra-lux lifestyle. That’s the crux of New York Attorney General Tish James’ landmark lawsuit against the NRA. “And it looks like they're in a ton of trouble,” The Beast’s Harry Siegel tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. “Tish has the receipts”—from the 107-foot yachts to the complimentary safaris to the private charters to the gazillion-dollar wardrobe. Then! Rebekah Jones, the former Florida state government data geek and whistleblower, talks about how she was pushed to juke the COVID stats by Ron DeSantis’ cronies. “We changed how we count cases. We changed the criteria itself. So pneumonia was originally one of the surveillance criteria—we had ER, data for pneumonia, influenza, and COVID-like illness. And one of the first things they did was cut out pneumonia. It was too high,” she says. Jones is convinced a similar game is going on throughout the country. “We really don't know how many COVID cases we have in America; we’ll probably never really know.” Plus! Molly rolls out a new campaign slogan: “Vote for Trump, even if we kill you.” Rick opines on drool buckets. And Alexa orders a rat stick for Molly. 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.






Tammy Duckworth: Trying to Teach Kids During COVID Is FUBAR
Jul 31 2020 56 mins  
Sen. Tammy Duckworth may be on Biden’s VP shortlist. But when it comes to childcare during the pandemic, she’s just as confused as the rest of us. “So my choice is five hours of homeschooling every day for my daughter and failing her, because I'm not a trained educator, or sending her to a school where she could very likely get this virus or bring it home and get her two year old sister sick or my 79 year old mom, who lives with us,” Duckworth tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. “That's the problem: impossible choices.” Duckworth also opens up about just how hostile the Senate was to working moms until a hot second ago. One particularly ridiculous question stands out. “They want to know if you're gonna breastfeed on the floor. [And I said,] ‘I’m not exactly planning on whipping one out in front of them. But if the baby is hungry, I'll feed her.’” Then! Princeton’s Sam Wang talks about the out-of-the-way campaigns that could make a huge difference for decades to come. Plus! A Trump ambassador goes to a Nazi cemetary—and gets all wistful. A Republican candidate swears “celebrities and Democrats catch COVID and magically heal.” The Stephen Hawking of the U.S. House of Representatives displays his genius—at infecting everyone around him. Finally! Rick asks the big questions: Who’s more popular, Zombie Bin Laden or Ron DeSantis? Was Tulsa Trump’s Jonestown? And does Chuck Schumer realize that “he's got Mitch McConnell's balls in a bag for once?”  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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.




Trump Has a Nuclear Arsenal—and Can Remember 5 Whole Words
Jul 24 2020 48 mins  
Feeling comfy? Secure? Relatively unbothered by the state of the world? Then consider this: The President of the United States, who holds at his fingertips a devastating nuclear arsenal, also is bragging on television about acing a dementia test that involves remembering five whole words and counting backwards by seven. It’s one of a number of pleasant scenarios contemplated by Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. “What I am so impressed with in this administration is how dumb everyone is,” Molly quips. She and Rick muse about which rich scumbags will get shout-outs in those sealed Ghislaine Maxwell court documents. Prof. Eddie Glaude, the Chairman of Princeton’s African American Studies Department, ponders whether Trump is the worst president in 150 years—or the worst one ever. The Beast’s Michael Tomasky wonders which foreign government will attack our election this time. And Molly has a few words for all the media geniuses who think Donald Trump has totally changed his M.O. because he’s finally starting to acknowledge the pandemic: “The guy only has one tone, which is deranged.” Plus! Will Mike Flynn do donuts in a tank on the White House Lawn? Will Bill Barr literally wipe his ass with the Constitution, or settle for a metaphorical move? And what does this phrase mean? “Person. Woman. Man. Television camera. Sean Hannity. Bat shit cuckoo pants.” 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Mary Trump: What Really Shocked Me About My Family & the KKK
Jul 21 2020 48 mins  
Mary Trump joins The New Abnormal with a giant barrel of tea to spill about her family. Her uncle Donald? “He was protected at every turn from his incompetence, from his total inability to handle money. The media, the banks kept propping him up and protecting him and letting him fail up consistently and constantly—until the Republican party started doing the same thing.” Her grandfather Fred, the family patriarch who got arrested by a Ku Klux Klan rally? “Honestly, that story surprised me. Not because my grandfather wasn’t antisemitic, he was, but because he would spend time doing something other than making money. I'm totally serious. Like he went to a Klan rally with what free time? He's perfectly happy being racist and anti-semitic in his own house and his place of work.” And on the pathologies that drove them all, Mary dives deep. “Just like being kind was weak, or being wrong was weak, so is needing to sleep like a normal human being. I think that's why Donald doesn't sleep, because daddy wouldn't approve. So that's maybe why he drinks 12 diet Cokes a day and is up until three in the morning tweeting,” the Too Much and Never Enough author tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson. Then! The Nation’s Elie Mystal joins Rick and Molly to discuss the passing of John Lewis—and the rise of a new generation of activists. Plus! Can Allen West turn Texas blue? Is Rick part of Antifa? And is there anything—anything—Bill Barr hates more than graffiti? 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Donald Trump Is America’s Abusive Dad
Jul 17 2020 55 mins  
Legendary filmmaker Judd Apatow really liked Donald Trump—when he was on TV. “I watched [the Apprentice] all the time because I found it so hilarious that all of his opinions were so wrong and everyone he would fire was always for the wrong reason. It was so terrible and crazy that it was fun to watch,” Apatow tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. These days, Apatow isn’t laughing. “When you're in show business, you meet people like Trump, you meet people who literally don't exist in the same dimension as you; they're just gone. And that's what he's like. He's like Cosby in a way, these people who are completely deluded and they've been famous and all of their wishes are attended to — they lose complete touch with reality,” Apatow adds, calling Trump the “abusive parent to the country.” Then! Washington Post media editor Margaret Sullivan weighs in on the Bari Weiss controversy. “If Bari was truly bullied at work, then that's very regrettable and I'm sorry to hear that, but she was not forced to resign. I guess you could say cancelled herself,” says Sullivan, author of the new book Ghosting the News. Plus! How many minutes will Trump’s new campaign manager last? WTF is up with the Trumps and Goya beans? And how did Molly possibly survive an entire day without Twitter?!  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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.



Biden-Palin 2020?
Jul 14 2020 47 mins  
Joe Biden is so far ahead of Trump, James Carville jokes on the latest episode of The New Abnormal, that the former Vice President could win, even with Gov. Youbetcha by his side. The strategy is simple, Carville tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson: “Attack, attack, attack. Attack from the right, attack from the left, attack from the center, attack everywhere. People say, ‘Well, you know, you got 89% of Republicans will be for [Trump] no matter what.’ Yeah. Maybe so. But watch the number of people that identify as Republicans go down. 89% of 34 is a lot different than 89% of 30.” Then! The Beast’s Erin Banco describes the Trump administration’s “parallel conversations” on the escalating COVID-19 threat. There’s the one the professionals are leading, Banco explains, and “those tend to be pretty serious and Dr. Birx is not shy about issuing warnings to the nation's governors.” Meanwhile, “you have president Trump seemingly either unaware of the conversations that are happening within the taskforce or deliberately twisting the truth.” Plus! Rick begs to go to Gitmo! Molly ponders how the hell you can close Starbucks and open schools. And our wonder twins ask themselves: Are Trump Steaks actually made of … Trump himself?! 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


How Silicon Valley’s Sociopath CEOs Are Just Like Trump
Jul 10 2020 52 mins  
Recode co-founder Kara Swisher has this thing she likes to call the “prick to productivity ratio”—how big of a jerk a particular executive is, verus how much he gets done. And these days, both in Silicon Valley and in Washington, that ratio has gone all wrong. “Taking advantage, just not caring about the consequences—that's being played out in Silicon Valley over and over again. So don't be surprised at what Trump is doing. Silicon Valley sets the tone,” Swisher tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson in the latest episode of The New Abnormal. “Their lack of self reflection is so vast that I always say they can't see themselves in mirrors, like they're vampires.” Then! Separated author Jacob Soboroff talks about exposing the Trump administration’s child detention facilities. “But when you had the opportunity to see what these 5,400 families go through,” he tells Rick and Molly, “it's impossible to understand this for anything other than a government-sanctioned torture program.” Plus! Rick and Molly discover that the Donald used to kick his own children back in the day. And our dynamic duo wonder if anyone can stop the man in the White House from making this pandemic worse. “We need a federal government to control our president,” Molly says. 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.




Ben Stiller Dishes on Trump’s Obsession with Zoolander
Jul 03 2020 38 mins  
Ben Stiller had no idea he was casting a future president when he grabbed Donald Trump and Melania for a quick cameo in Zoolander. But Trump apparently never forgot about it, Stiller tells Molly Jong-Fast, Rick Wilson, and Matt Wilstein in the latest episode of The New Abnormal. Stiller recalls how Trump even derailed an interview during the last campaign to talk about Zoolander 2. Trump “started going into detail about, you know… in the culture, people don't care about male models anymore,” Stiller recalls. Not that Stiller is particularly gratified by the attention. “Everybody has their own theories about whether or not [Trump] still wants to be president, but I think it's gone so far now. People's lives are being affected. And really, to me, it's not funny anymore. It's kinda just like, it's a little bit insane,” Stiller says. The actor/writer/director/comedian also discusses his work as an advocate for refugees, what it’s like to play Michael Cohen on SNL, what he wants to see from Joe Biden if he wins, and what are the boundaries of comedy in 2020. (“Tropic Thunder probably would not have been made... It would be tone deaf right now to make it,” he says.) Plus! Rick, Molly, and George Conway talk about whether Tucker Carlson will run for president (yes, with Eric Trump as a running mate); whether a war criminal is about to become a new Trumpworld star (unfortunately, that’s a yes, too); and whether our commander-in-chief actually gives a shit about the troops he’s supposed to be leading (hard no). As George says, Trump “expressed more concern about how he was perceived walking down that ramp at West point than he did about the fact that the soldiers that he spoke to that day could go to Afghanistan and get killed, because some Russians are paying money to the Taliban.” Subscribe to The Last Laugh: https://link.chtbl.com/thelastlaugh 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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.


Did Trump Blow Off Some Sketchy Intel? Or Commit Treason?
Jun 30 2020 51 mins  
Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast have some thoughts on the matter in the latest episode of The New Abnormal. “It's not just treason. It's historic treason,” Rick says about the revelation that the Russians offered bounties on U.S. soldiers—and Trump kissed up to the Kremlin anyway. “This is a guy who was already going down into the dustbin of history. And now there's going to be a line at his grave where they're going to have to throw cat litter down. Because people are gonna piss on it for all time.” Plus! Democratic Rep. Connor Lamb talks up his favorite Republican. Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison gets real about police unions. (“I'm reluctant to even call it a police union because a union is an honorable, wonderful institution,” he says. “These institutions are not like that at all. The teacher's union does not deliberately harm the kids. Nurses don't hurt the patients. UAW doesn't break the cars.”) And Molly dishes on White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany: “At least with Sean Spicer, you did feel he possessed a human soul. Whereas with Kaylee, it's just this sort of terrifying, blonde sea of obfuscation.”  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.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.



















































5 • 9 Ratings

GIZZI316 Sep 23 2020
ALWAYS GREAT DISCUSSIONS! KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK WE HAVE TO RID OURSELVES OF THE VIRUS KNOWN AS TRUMP! MOLLY CAN YOU PLEASE GET RICK TO COME OUT OF HIS SHELL A LITTLE & SPEAK MORE FREELY! THANKS FOR EVERYTHING YOU GUYS ARE DOING!! #VOTETRUMPOUT

lou Sep 22 2020
Entertaining and informative!






Stable Genius Aug 30 2020
Great podcast. Very funny about a deathly serious subject.

Hajnalka Jul 16 2020
So good! It's like if the Lincoln Project sat down with Pod Save America, and they actually had an honest discussion on how to save our country. Plus it's funny.

BashTheFash Jun 19 2020
Excellent!

chigg76 Jun 12 2020
Rick Wilson is my spirit animal-- the kind of well-worded, unapologetic, and magnificent dickhead (to those who deserve it) that I can only dream of being. Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast have a great chemistry on air. As screwed up as things are right now, they can get me laughing. I so look forward every Tuesday and Friday to this podcast, the first thing I do when I wake up on those days is to check for a new episode.

Shiry Saar Jun 09 2020
My favourite show! Smart, funny and current.. Can't wait for the next episode

GiGiJuly847 May 29 2020
Two of the best: TheRickWilson and Molly Jong-Fast plus humorous, sardonic, erudite guests

kentgeek May 15 2020
My new favorite podcast. If you are dismayed by the current occupant of the White House, this will help. Molly and Rick are on opposite sides of the spectrum, but they agree that Trump has got to go, and they are funny and engaging in delivering the message.