12 Months Later: Brooke and Bob on Covering Trump

So it's now a year since Election Day 2016. Back in July we revisited the day after: the mood was tense, and our Executive Producer Katya Rogers seized the opportunity to offer listeners some ultra transparency, documenting the moment when Brooke and Bob were at their most doubting. The result: a raw podcast extra, in which the hosts argued about how the show should cover the Trump administration. Flash forward to this this summer; Bob and Brooke re-listened to their November conversation and then turned on the mics. Eight months later, Bob expressed some regret about his approach.

Off the Radar

Following the announcement of the first indictments in Robert Mueller's special investigation, the media were scrambling to put together the pieces...or else ignoring the news completely. How to make sense of the details, and the silences, in Mueller's first public release and in some of the media's apparent apathy. Also, how the NPR newsroom responded when one of its own was brought down for sexual harassment. And a former Guantanamo Bay prisoner talks about unredacting the bestseller he wrote behind bars and what he's learned about America's opaque military and justice systems.
  1. Bob looks at how Rupert Murdoch's media empire spins all things Trump. And Sarah Ellison [@sarahlellison], special correspondent for Vanity Fair, helps to explain the mogul's long game.
  2. Marcy Wheeler [@emptywheel], independent investigative journalist, breaks down what we know from the first Mueller indictments, what we can surmise and what the media need to be Continue reading "Off the Radar"

Monumental Questions

Speaking this week on Fox News, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly warned against the removal of Confederate monuments on the grounds that it would erase important history. But the statues in question have never been about preserving a neutral version of history but rather about perpetuating a series of narratives and myths about slavery and the Civil War. Earlier this year we spoke to Malcolm Suber, historian and co-founder of the group Take 'Em Down NOLA, about the significance of removing monuments to white supremacy. And we spoke to Bryan Stevenson, director of the Equal Justice Initiative, about his work documenting the thousands of lynchings that took place in the South from 1877 to 1950, and the significance of remember and reckoning with the realities of our shameful past.


Since the news about Harvey Weinstein’s sexual predations, allegations have surfaced against other powerful men. We look back at the early days in the fight against sexual harassment with the woman who coined the term. Plus: journalist Matt Taibbi examines the life, death and legacy of Eric Garner; and the release of new JFK files brings the mother of all conspiracy theories back into the spotlight. 
  1. Lin Farley, author of The Sexual Shakedown: The Sexual Harassment of Women On the Job, talks about the term she coined in the mid-70s: 'sexual harassment'. 

  2. Matt Taibbi [@mtaibbi], journalist and author of I Can't Breathe: A Killing on Bay Street, discusses his exploration of Eric Garner's life and death in the media. 

  3. Ron Rosenbaum [@RonRosenbaum1] talks about his long-time interest in the JFK assassination and how the conspiracy theories changed "the landscape of Continue reading "Chokehold"

Cam Newton Rolls His Eyes at Reporter’s Question, Storms Out of Presser

Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton has made headlines with his press conferences throughout the 2017 season. First, he belittled a female reporter. Then he failed to show up for his league-mandated weekly media session. The former NFL MVP was back at the podium Wednesday — but not for long. Nine minutes into Newton’s press conference, the Charlotte Observer’s Joe Person asked Newton the following (via the New York Post: “The big plays, the big chunk plays that get you that energy you’re talking about, is this offense — I know you had several at Detroit and New England — do you guys have the wherewithal to do that consistently, week in and week out?” The Panthers Continue reading "Cam Newton Rolls His Eyes at Reporter’s Question, Storms Out of Presser"

Scary Clowns

The days are getting shorter, the leaves are changing and Halloween is on its way. And with these annual rites comes another yearly tradition: the coming of the clowns. Last year at this time, to believe the reporting, the country was overrun with so-called “evil clowns,” terrorizing communities across the United States. At the time, Bob spoke with Benjamin Radford, author of Bad Clowns and a research fellow with the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry about our historic and cultural relationship with clown sightings. With clowns again making their resurgence, we’re sharing that interview as this week's podcast extra.