There’s a reason the History Channel has produced hundreds of documentaries about Hitler but only a few about Dwight D. Eisenhower. Bad guys (and gals) are eternally fascinating. Behind the Bastards dives in past the Cliffs Notes of the worst humans in history and exposes the bizarre realities of their lives. Listeners will learn about the young adult novels that helped Hitler form his monstrous ideology, the founder of Blackwater’s insane quest to build his own Air Force, the bizarre lives of the sons and daughters of dictators and Saddam Hussein’s side career as a trashy romance novelist.
Tue, 05 Feb 2019 11:00
Part One: Roger Stone: Evil Genius or Sad, Broken Boy?
Peace to the planet I go by the name of Charlemagne the God, and this summer I'm bringing my show back to Comedy Central with a new title and a new podcast. It's called hell of a week, but don't worry, every Friday I'll be keeping that same calling out the ******** energy, and I'll have some of the biggest names in comedy, politics, and entertainment with me. So if the news is terrorizing your timeline and causing your anxiety to rise high and gas prices, don't worry. We got you. Listen to hell of a week with charlamagne the God on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. I'm Bob Pittman, Chairman and CEO, iheart media, on the new season of my podcast mathemagic, I sit down with the Trail Blazers on the frontiers of marketing leaders like Susie Deering, CMO of Ford Motor Company. We are at that moment when it all changes and I think that a big part of why we're at that moment is because of the F-150 Lightning. It changed everything. Listen to the new season of math and Magic premiering September 22nd on our own iHeartRadio. Apple podcasts or wherever you get your podcast. I'm Ebony Kay Williams, host of Holden Court, and I'm so excited to announce that Holden Court has a brand new home at interval presents. That's right, we're back and better than ever. Season 2 is here, and we're bringing you the same in-depth legal analysis and cultural commentary that you know and love. Listen to Holden Court on the iHeartRadio App, Apple Podcast, Spotify, Amazon Music, or wherever you get your podcasts. So y'all, let's hold court. I'm Robert Evans, and this is the introduction of behind the ******** my podcast where we talk about terrible people and all the things you don't know about them. With me today, my guest for this episode is Tamar Kattan, host of they tried to bury us, a podcast about immigrants coming into the United States. That's exactly so every week is a different American origin story, so we have a different immigrant every week. Awesome. It's been great. Well, today we're not talking about an immigrant. We are talking about someone who has done a lot of damage to immigrants, not directly, but just through the people he supported. Sure. Yeah. We're talking about Roger Stone. What do you know about Roger Stone hammer? I know a little bit about him. I know that he is. He lives in the upside down is, I think, a phrase I said to you outside. Yeah, I think he is a white Malcolm X to me, a political version of a by any means necessary. You know what I mean? Like before Malcolm. Into Mecca and and got balance in his life. Without principle, without principle, by any means necessary. I don't care who I hurt. I don't care how often I have to lie. I think that lying is good. I think if you believe in doing things that are virtuous, that you're a chump. It's a cancer in our political system. Yeah, and he is a human cancer. Absolutely. Now, listeners will note that we did a two-part episode on Paul Manafort months ago. I recommend checking that out too, because they're they're two halves of the same coin. So we talked about one coin back in 2018. Today we're dropping the other side, so let's get into it. On August 27th, 1952, Little Baby Roger Stone was born to Gloria Rose and Roger J. Stone. His mother was a journalist who followed local politics. His father drilled wells. Roger grew up in Lewisboro, New York and described his family as middle class and blue collar. So, so far we're doing fine. He's a normal middle American boy. Roger was eight years old when he got involved in his first political election. He campaigned for John F Kennedy, and even at that tender age he knew that honesty was not the way to achieve. Political goals. That's right, he later recalled to the Washington Post. Quote, I remember going through the cafeteria line and telling every kid that Nixon was in the favor of school on Saturdays. It was my first political trick, which is cute. It's fun. It's so unnerving. It's like an origin story of a villain. Yeah. Yeah. Where he learns that the power of a large. Yeah. The disinformation. I think he was quoted about that story where he said, that's why I learned the power of disinformation. Yeah, that you can just, if you just. And it's speaking as a. Whole white guy. This is something I've battled with my whole life. I really like telling a good lie to people, like, like a like, like a joking, like, I'll make up a fact about history or something and like and and then you set it to a friend and you hear him tell it in like a party or something. And it's it's a really funny joke for just you. Not a great thing to do, but if you're confident and you have the right sort of look in this society at least because it works particularly well in the United States. It's the same reason why, like if you've got a mixed race group of people and someone has to go talk to the cops. You picked the guy who looks like me? Yeah. I go talk to the cops, and I it's it's it's fine. I think Roger Stone had that realization and decided to make that his whole life rather than be like, what if I just made some jokes at parties? Yeah, it's it's such a bizarre thing. Like you, if this was a show about a nice, normal, responsible family, there would be a massive teaching moment that was missed where like, Andy Griffith sat down young Roger Stone and was like, well, I know you won that classroom election, but you know. Here's why it's bad to lie to everyone you know exactly. It's like winning a beauty pageant by going topless. Like it's against the rules. You can't do that. Oh, Roger, OK, so, uh, it is entirely possible that that anecdote is a lie. I do want to note that because we talk about Roger Stone and every time we talk about it, literally 100% of the things in this, there's multiple versions of it. So I have tried to call the versions of reality that coincide the most with what I can back up with, like, objective facts and with multiple people have said. But like, if you do your own research on Roger Stone, you'll run into different variations of everything here, because I think he's just been lying consistently for about 70 years. 100% agree. Yeah. Yeah. I mean, it's a negative version of one of my favorite Maya Angelou quotes where she says people may not remember what you do or say, but they'll always remember how you made them feel. Yeah, and he he'll make people the right people feel the right way regardless of the if the information is true or false or damaging or hurtful or even leads to violence, he just doesn't care. He just does not care. So Roger did start out supporting JFK, which basically everyone did is an interesting note 19. 61 that we do surveys like the Pew and whatnot do surveys on like, people's level of trust in government. 1961 is the peak in American history of people trusting the federal government. So it's not weird that, like, everybody's on board with JFK in this election now. Roger Stone claims that his personal political ideology took a rightward turn for the first time at age 11 when he read Barry Goldwater's the conscience of a conservative. Barry Goldwater, for those of you who don't know, was the kind of the Trump before Trump. I think he was a. Better at appealing to, like, intellectual conservatives than Donald Trump was. But he, uh, you know the the reason that, like, you're not supposed to, as a psychiatrist, psychoanalyze a presidential candidate. It's called the Goldwater rule because, like, so many people thought he was crazy when he was running. So this guy's book is what, like, lights a spark in Roger Stone's brain at age 11? The next year, he started volunteering for the Goldwater campaign at age 12. So he's like a very young volunteer for this hard, right? Presidential candidate and while he's doing all that, he comes across a book called a Texan looks at Lyndon. Now, this book was self published by self-described ultraconservative named Jay Evitt Haley. Haley argues that LBJ was a lifelong criminal and a murderer. Roger Stone would go on to write his own book about LBJ's role in the Kennedy assassination, accusing the former president of at least 8 murders. This is yeah, yeah. It's it's a nutso book. Not that I don't think LBJ had some people murdered because he was LBJ, he definitely did. But This is why you see the start of like two things that are going to be through lines in Roger Stone's life here. One of them is of course hard right conservatism and one of them is he really likes conspiracy theories, which is probably how he's going to wind up in the Infowars orbit a little bit later in this story. So young Roger spent a lot of his childhood alone in reading this period of time seems to have crystallized the ideology that would carry him through to the rest of his life. Quote from Roger well, you have to understand, there were no kids my age, male or female, for 25 miles. I suppose I could have thrown a football with my dad, but my old man left at 5:00 AM and came back at 9:00 PM. But he ate his supper and fell to bed, and he was covered with grease from head to foot, and he never complained. A day in his life. You have to amuse yourself. This is the way Roger tells the story and kind of how he presents this so Americana. Yeah. Yeah. So innocent. My dad never talked to me because he was working all the time, and this is good. Like, he never complained that he didn't have time to raise a child. How can you tell that story and not be like, maybe that's not a healthy culture? That's not ideal, I think. Anyway, Stoneham used himself by engaging in politics as often as possible. He volunteered for the Goldwater campaign at age 12, as I said, but he also stayed active in his school's political process. Here's the New York Times. As a junior, then vice president of his Northern Westchester High School, he manipulated the ouster of the president and his own succession. Running for reelection as a senior. I left nothing to chance, he said. I built alliances and put all my serious challengers on my ticket. Then I recruited the most unpopular guy in the school to run against me. You think that's mean? No, that's smart. So, yeah. When he was 13, Roger Stone started taking the train into New York City on weekends to volunteer for the mayoral campaign of William F Buckley Junior. That campaign did not work out, but the experience of. Traveling from small town America into its largest city to work in politics had an impact on young Roger as well. Quote, the key thing I remember about Louis Burrow, his small hometown, is that it was just across the border from New Canaan. So early on, I saw myself as living in a kind of bridge between two cultures, the right white working class and the white upper class. Very specific about white there. Yeah. Yeah. Now, Stone believed both groups fundamentally hated the government, so they were natural bedfellows. Should all be able to get on board this, whether or not we're poor or rich white people. But. White people is pretty clearly who's angling towards now. In 1970, Stone senior year of high school, he attended the Connecticut State Young Republican Convention. The young Republicans were more conservative than the mainstream of the party at that time. They're kind of trying to push the party further to the right. Roger hadn't been able to afford to book a hotel room for his trip, so he'd showed up just sort of assuming he could meet someone and convince them to take care of it. Stone's best friend at the time, a guy named Dolan, introduced him to another teenage young Republican named Paul Manafort. Yeah, it really is. Yeah. Villain origins. Yeah, yeah. Crazy. These young guys meeting, they're both wearing I'll fitting suits. Nobody's got a lot of money yet. I knew he was involved in politics really young, but my God, seven from the age of seven. So, you know, his family had to be involved in this, like take kind of like directionally, at least push them in a direction. At 7 years old. He doesn't talk about that. Not that I found. So you I think you got one or two possibilities either. His mom and dad were both way more political. And he lets on. And he was pushed in that direction, or he didn't have much supervision at all. And he's way more white collar, by the way. Yeah. And way more white collar changes his story, makes him a little bit less likeable, especially if there's more money in the picture. And then he wants to talk about how many guys at work, at oil rigs while he's on a farm. Miles. Wells. Wells. Yeah. Miles and miles away from neighbors where his family's going. You should get into politics. Yeah. There's there's holes in the stone story, making mythology. He's definitely making a mythology. And again. This is the picture. He wants it. Maybe didn't ******* do anything in school. Maybe he was never involved in young, like, I I don't know. We're we're trusting Roger here, and it's, well, I've seen pictures of him as a young Republican. Yeah. I mean, that stuff is real. This stuff is definitely real once we get to where he's in high school and he's with like, man, like, that stuff. There's a lot of people. But, like, when he's talking about being 11-12 years old and stuff, like, who knows? Yeah, yeah, this might just be the image. He wants to sure. You know. Anyway, here's how the Washington Post wrote about the first meeting of Roger Stone. And Paul Manafort, I'm just gonna say the greatest friendship of all time. Hey kid, how you doing? Stone recalled Manafort saying before getting down to sussing him out. Why are you supporting weaker? Manafort was referring to lower weaker, a moderate Republican candidate for US Senator. Manafort clearly was testing the kid. You think I give a **** about weaker? I'm here to elect Meskel, Stone shot back, meaning Thomas Meskel, a conservative gubernatorial candidate admired by youthful Republicans. So that's like how they get started is like Manafort's like, you like this ******* Rino, Republican in name only and only and stones like, no, I only like the crazy people. Like, that's where I want to go is, like, the furthest right we can possibly be. So bizarre. Yeah. So Roger Stone, Paul Manafort were instant buddies and would be not quite inseparable, but frequent collaborators over the next, like, 30 some odd years. How old were they? At this point? They would have been, like, 1718. They're just just babies. Yeah, they're babies, but yet their personalities held firm. I have two strong opinions here. One of them is that you shouldn't be able to join the military unless you're 30. And the other is that you shouldn't be allowed to participate in any kind of politics until you're there. I like it a lot. You start doing drugs when you're 21? Hey, man. Yeah. Yeah. Let's give him nine years of experimenting without ingredients. You know what I mean? To make people make these huge moral decisions before they've lived life. You're absolutely right, 30. You look at this stuff Ben Shapiro is writing when he's 17. He's, like, advocating war crimes in Afghanistan. It's like, don't let a 17 year old write about politics. Yeah. Do you know how ****** ** that is so crazy? Yeah. I mean, that's how we get Paul Manafort and Roger Stone. So in addition to the young Republicans, stone joined the teenage. Republicans, the College Republicans, and young Americans for Freedom Right might have noticed a theme there. He became tightly wound up in Republican Party politics, enough so that in 1972, the year of President Richard Nixon's reelection campaign, 19 year old Roger Stone was selected to be one of Nixon's Hench men. Now, Stone was the youngest member of the committee to reelect the president, literally known by the acronym Creep, which does nobody like check on this stuff Nixon just has, like. Right. Yeah. Create. That's good. That's what we call it. Go commit crimes. Stone recommended that creepier a guy named Theodore Brill who was a college classmate and friend of his. He recommended that creep pay Brill $150.00 to spy on radical groups. Stone claims that his work for creep was all kid stuff, none of which was illegal at the time, and all of which would have been done with or without him. Unfortunately for Roger Stone, but fortunately for the concept of truth, the FBI was keeping tabs on him back then, too. There exists on this hellish Internet of ours, a website called property of the people they host government documents retrieved. If buyer requests and the like, they have a super fun article titled FBI documents on Roger Stone reveals sabotage, espionage, and the life of a serial bagman. Oh my God, I'm going into an Internet death spiral right after the 7th. It's a great website. Check them out. Please do. Now, my favorite thing about that title is that Roger worked for Nixon as a literal bagman and one point taking a sack containing a jar of money to donate on behalf of a Republican presidential candidate, Paul McCloskey. Yeah. To the young socialist, it was social nickels and Dimes and quarters. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Just a jar of change in a SEC. So he donated on behalf of this Republican presidential candidate Paul McCloskey, to the Young Socialist Association. Stone claimed that he was the young Socialist Associations treasurer. Now, this was all a lie, obviously designed to make McCloskey look bad and torpedo his chances of Primarying Nixon. The original FBI documents about this dirty trick are interesting because they give us some insight into the precise nature of young Roger Stone's moral compass quote. Stone met with Porter in his office at Creep, where Porter asked him if he would be willing to travel to Manchester to make a cash contribution to the McCloskey campaign headquarters. Porter wanted Stone to disguise himself as a member of the Gay Liberation movement. When making this contribution, stone flatly rejected this proposal. However, he concurred with the basic theme of this tactic. So basically, that's Roger Stones line at age 19, I I'll pretend to be a young socialist, but not a member of the gay list. Unbelievable. I mean, you see the pattern, right? You see the pattern like from? Such a young age. He's like, I see the power of disinformation. Yeah. And then Fast forward a decade later and he's still doing the same. He's still doing the same thing, doing the same ****. Did you ever see 7UP, the British documentary? No. It's amazing. It was like one of the first reality shows. And they interviewed kids at 7 years old and then at 14 and then at 21 and then at 28 every seven years. Wow. Now they're in their 60s. Oh, wow. They've been doing it the whole time. But it was a study on social classes. Yeah. And the interesting thing they found is when wealthy kids were seven years old. And they asked him, what do you want to be? They were really specific. They're like, I'm going to Cambridge, I'm being a barrister, blah, blah, blah, and all this stuff. And they did where's the kids in the poor neighborhoods were like, I'm going to be a spaceman. Yeah. Or like, I'm going to be a truck. I don't know what I'm going to be. Yeah, funny. But like human, like it was. So he's one of those kids where they knew at such an early age they were just, and he doesn't pick, I want to be in politics, he picks I want to be a dirty tricks guy in politics. Like I want to be like the filthiest version of a political guy. It's it's remarkable. That that's his only ambition in life. Yeah. Ever. Yeah. Now, a researcher named Emma Best found ten separate document releases from the FBI, all of which mentioned Roger Stone, according to property of the People's Write up quote, the documents detail. Roger Stone's role was a bagman for the Nixon campaign, in which he funneled over $25,000, equivalent to $150,000 in 2018 to fund political intelligence gathering and other dirty tricks, including mole embedding and a mysterious payment related to the Watergate break in. The documents include a copy of the FBI's interview with Stone. As well as other statements to the Bureau about Stone and Jason Rainier, the alias stone used for his anti Democratic spy operations. So Stone paid another operative, the moderate equivalent of 60 grand to surveillance sabotage the campaigns of Nixon's Democratic rivals. After the Watergate break INS, he put together a payment of almost 100 grand in modern dollars for an oil executive and Nixon fundraiser named Darius Keaton. Far from being minor acts of political malfeasance, as stone sort of presented them, Roger Stone seems to have been an enthusiastic and prolific dirty trickster, happy to do almost anything. For Richard Nixon, yeah. Quote in one case, Stone sent 200 Democrats invitations to a nonexistent primary campaign breakfast. In another, stone directed Democratic campaign literature intended for the black community to be sent to union workers and literature intended for union workers to be sent to the black community. And yet another stone saw to it that phone lines used by a Democratic primary campaign were tampered with. This resulted in democratic failure to connect with many potential voters while other yeah. So this is the way he works. This is the way he works at age 19. You know what's so interesting about him? Was he never as big as his ego got for a guy whose dad never talked to him? Right. He always looked to another man to please. Yeah. He never said I'm going to be president. No, he never chased himself. He was always. I'm going to please dad. Yeah, he and he's always picked a bigger man to idolize, which for most of his life has been Nixon. Yeah, a bigger than life, man. And even now he imitates Nixon with the peace signs that he always throws up. There's weird *** wanky arms. It seems like he's a case study for like, a broken brain. Like a father son fracture, I mean you know, to get real here, this podcast behind the ******** because just as well be called Daddy issues. But really almost 100% of these guys had real ****** ** times with their fathers. Like I don't. They just strip like everybody else. You know, Roger Stone actually might be able to do that. He's a bodybuilder, self-proclaimed. Well no, I mean if you've seen, I've seen shirtless pictures of when he's young. He was reasonably swole even even in his late 40s. Really fit looking guy and if you see the modern. Pictures of his back tattoo. You can see in the build of his shoulders, he's got a really broad build. He could he could have stripped, which is a noble and honest career. I just mean, I worked out with real bodybuilders at Gold's Gym. He his cemeteries all off, he's got like baby calves and we're well on. His face is weird, face is weird, his hair is everything's weird. They all have weird hair. The crazies. It's like Paul Manafort. We're spending $100,000 on suits that look like $100 suits just to just to know that it's, I don't know, they're all weird guys. And that's fine, unless you're ruining the world. Which case it's exactly yeah. Now all the unfathomable shadiness of Richard Nixon's reelection campaign led to congressional hearings in 1973. During those hearings, Roger Stone, secret identity as Jason Rainier Young Socialist became public knowledge, was also revealed that Stone had hired someone to spy on the McGovern campaign. At the time of the hearing, Stone had gotten a job on Bob Dole staff. He was fired for this and seems to have taken the job loss as a sign that a man of his temperament was better served by working as a consultant than working for the government in a 2008 interview with The New Yorker. The Dirty trickster stone reminisced about his time with creep and justified his actions by saying the Democrats were weak, we were strong. He was, by the way, the youngest person caught up in the Watergate. That's right. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Which is a they had. They had him on one of the charts and the court showed that he'd taken money. Yeah. Yeah. That's how he starts his career. So in the mid 1970s, after Nixon's impeachment, the Republican Party was most assuredly not strong. Stone seems to have elected not to waste his time on the doomed presidency of Gerald Ford, history's greatest monster. Instead, he worked to insinuate himself ever deeper into the right wing organizations that clustered around the GOP. Paul Manafort. On the other hand, made the error of backing Gerald Ford in the 1976 elections. When Ford lost, it did serious damage to Manafort's reputation as a political strategist. Prior to Ford's loss, he'd been the clear pick for president of the young Republicans. And you said clear prick. Oh, and I'm glad that you did. You know what? That works. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Sorry. No, it's it's. Yeah. Yeah. So we're going to, we're going to talk about what happens after Gerald Ford's fall from grace is the wrong word. I don't think he was ever quite there, but yeah, yeah, we'll we'll get into that. But first. Are you a fan of some products? Sure. Service or two? Sure. Well, that's what is happening now. Let's pay the bills. Ads time. Being a real estate agent isn't about listing houses, it's about connecting to people. I need to find new buyers every day, so I promote my listings using radio commercials from iheartadbuilder.com. Now every time I have an open house, it's a full house. 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So Gerald Ford's Paul Manafort was suddenly persona non grata amongst the young Republican intelligentsia, whatever you want to call them, showing either a surprising amount of loyalty to his friend or just confidence that Manafort would eventually wind up on top. Roger Stone worked with congressional aide Charlie Black on a scheme stone ran for president of the young Republicans, winning and basically acting as a stand in for Paul Manafort to preserve his access to the halls of power. So you see Roger Stone basically. Agreeing to become a figurehead leader of this party so that Paul Manafort can continue to have influence, which is, yeah, you don't run into a lot of things, that Roger Stone doing something for someone else. It's so true. It's so interesting. His career, there's been so many times where he's been fired but kept as an advisor. Yeah. So outside of all the trickster stuff, he really is a legit political strategist. Well, that is actually the question we're going to have to answer over the course of both parts of this podcast is whether or not he's actually any good, because it's kind of a mystery. He certainly has managed to stay in contact to a lot of powerful people over the years. The question of whether or not he actually did very much is really hard to answer. So we're going to, we're going to dig into that here. OK, so Manafort, black and stone all worked on Ronald Reagan's 1980 presidential campaign. Roger Stone managed the northeast United States and earned a claim for successfully turning much of that region against the Democratic Party during that election. He did so by appealing to groups who were committed Democratic voters, black and Hispanic people. Jewish people and Catholics. Stone had stayed in touch with Richard Nixon because he just loved the guy so much, and he was successful at bringing the former president and definite criminal in. As a strategist for the Reagan campaign, Nixon is purported to have put together the Ohio strategy, which is less impressive than it sounds. It boiled down to spending a **** load of money in Ohio for its 25 electoral votes. Stone would later make a big deal out of this, essentially as a way of reinforcing his reputation as a political kingmaker. But Ronald Reagan won 49 states in that election, so it's kind of doubtful that. The Ohio strategy and specific did that much he he didn't really need Ohio. It was kind of a blowout. Still, Roger Stone had performed well in a winning presidential campaign. He was offered a sweet gig in the Reagan administration but turned it down, saying, quote, I would never take a job in government. I'm interested in politics. Wow. That's what pieces of **** say. Yeah. Yeah. In 1980, Roger Stone and his friends also letting us know the game we think that they play is not the game that we recognize. No, it's not about beliefs. It's about winning and preserving access to power and money and stuff, you know? And I'm sure every one of them. Sure, Roger has one or two things he believes in. But to call him, like, ideologically or Republican or anything else, no. He believes Roger Stone should be influential. Yeah, I mean, he claims his libertarian now. He's been claiming that for a while, in fairness. And that. Is a vague enough ideology that I might say that's fair for Roger Stone. You know, it's it's open-ended enough. Like, yeah, you probably are, Roger. Yeah, probably also the one party that hasn't rejected him. Yeah, that need him more than any other party. Probably. No, I mean, they he and John McAfee could make a powerful presidential combo. McAfee Stone, 2020. Enough hair out of my head. In the last two years combined, 20 indictments between us don't need more nightmares. Oh God, it's it's crazy that that would almost be an upgrade, you know? You know what it would be? It would be at least. I'm pretty sure they can both spell. We don't need to get political in this political podcast about politics. Remember, we're not interested in government. We're interested. Wait, you know what Roger Stone said in 1980s Trump? Trump doesn't govern. He's still campaigning. Yeah. Yeah. I mean, he's he's never stopped campaigning. Yeah, although in a little bit of fairness, that's kind of how being president works now. Like. You're always running until, I mean, he's done it to a level I've never seen. Yeah, but I feel like it just gets escalated every single election, like the fundraising that starts the year after the election and everything like that. You know, there's a lot to say about, you know, the compromises Obama made and the Affordable Care Act in order to not get a **** load of insurance industry money thrown against his campaign in 2012, which is, like, at least more principled than anything Trump's done, but like. There's a lot of gross problems in politics. Yeah, Speaking of which. Roger stone. It's a perfect segue. In 1980, Roger Stone and his friends formed Black, Manafort and Stone, a lobbying organization. Spy magazine would later declare the torturers lobby. Now, you'll want to listen to our two parter on Paul Manafort if you're interested in that story. Because while Paul instantly abandoned Beltway politics to work for dictators, Roger stayed burrowed deep within the warm, cash rich bosom of the Republican Party. So stone makes money off of these. We talk a lot in the Manafort episode. There's guys like. The Marcos regime, Mobutu Sese Seko and Zaire, and there was a bunch of different dictators that Paul Manafort worked directly with during this period of time. Roger Stone is making profits off of that, and I'm sure he has some degree because they're having meetings regularly and stuff. So I'm sure he has some input here. But it really is Manafort who's doing the direct work with these dictators. And stone and black are more involved in domestic politics in the United States. But yeah, so he's profiting off of. Murderers. But he's not working with him to the same extent that Manafort is. For whatever it's worth, Manafort is an objectively worse person than Roger Stone. Now, Roger Stone became known during the 1980s as the gatekeeper to Richard Nixon, which is a debatable honor. He hosted a series of dinner parties and interviews with the now elder statesman right up until the president's death in 1994. And that New Yorker interview Roger made what I think is an unintentionally hilarious statement quote. The reason I'm a Nixon aide is because of his indestructibility and resilience. He never quit. His whole career was all built around his personal resentment of elitism. It was the poor Me syndrome. John F Kennedy's father bought his house seat, a Senate seat, in the presidency. No one bought Nixon anything. Nixon resented that. He was very class conscious. He identified with the people who ate TV dinners, watched Lawrence Welk, and loved their country. I love this because literally the most famous thing Nixon did was quit being president. Exactly. Incentive and quit and also saying no one ever bought him anything. When it was your job to buy people for Nixon during the reelection campaign, that was literally what you did. Roger isn't he like the creator of the Super PACs, like he's one of the he's he's one of the of that and of lobbying like Black, Manafort and Stone was the first really modern lobbying firm made a cancer in our political system because in addition to helping dictators lobby the US government foreign aid, they kind of invented the idea of working. With both sides and an elections though, no matter who wins, we've got someone who we can then sell access to. Like unbelievable. Yeah, we go into a lot of detail about in the Manafort podcast. It's anti American, it's anti everything. But the couple of dozen people who make money off of it. I don't know why the Republican Party attacks so many people on who is and isn't made in America, but the Democratic Party doesn't enough attack people who isn't made of America. It's so unamerican what he's doing. It's against the policies of the people that founded this country. Well, I mean, the only correction I might say is that, like, it's what you and I don't want to be American, but there's a lot of people who want it to be American, and that's like the great conflict of our time. Well, if all of us voted I think they vote more like a Yes. If all the number. I think the numbers are on. On our Democratic side. I would agree but 2016 taught us, the numbers aren't nearly everything they ought to be like. Yeah. Yeah. And Roger Stone is probably one of those people who, like Mitch McConnell, does not want there to be a federal voting holiday. Yeah. Yeah. Amen. You're he's terrified of that. Got people vote. Yeah. Yeah. I also love Roger Stone's embrace of, like, how down to Earth Nixon is considering that Roger Stone is a man so infamous for his love of expensive clothing that he calls suspenders braces. Which dude. Dude. You know he swept chimneys when he was five. Braces, braces, British. It's like, yeah, I got a whole rant about waist coats and vests, but that's not this is not the place for that. By 1985, Roger Stone's reputation as a serious political player seemed to be fairly solid. I found a New Republic article from December of that year that referred to him as the enfant terrible of northeastern politics. Yeah, quote, Stone is widely credited with making the difference in Thomas Keane's narrow victory in the 1981 New Jersey governor's race. This was achieved by portraying the liberal Republican contender as a conservative supply sider stone convinced, Keen to campaign on the promise of a tax cut. Once elected, Keene raised taxes. He also convinced prominent friends like Kemp to do television spots for Keene, assuring him victory in the Republican primary. I don't advocate candidates changing their positions, just trimming their sails, stone says. I do have principles. It sounds like Roger now. Stone bragged that he had created a plan to basically build a permanent Republican majority in New Jersey back in 1985. You may note that that did not work out entirely, but as the New Republic article made Clear, Stones greatest and perhaps only real gift was in dropping negative dirt on his rivals. To the press quote. He is an expert at dropping stuff unfavorable to his opponents. As a political writer who has used and been used by stone for years and he is very accurate, you don't last long at that game if you leak ******** so this does seem to be one of the through lines of his career. Like, outside of The Dirty tricks and stuff, the thing he's really good at is figuring out dirt on people and getting it to the right person. You could. I mean, it's it's the Intel inside of the Trump campaign. Yeah, he's a Pentium processor. All the stuff he says is the stuff. Trump's repeat, the birther thing. That was Roger Stone. Well, it was a Jerome Corsi, who is a Roger Stone contact. Didn't Roger Stone advise Trump to use that language? It's possible. I mean, very. He he definitely. What? We'll get into some more later. About like what he did with Trump. But like one of the guys really responsible for kicking off the birther thing was Jerome Corsi, who was probably Roger Stones contact with WikiLeaks and who Roger Stone got a job at Infowars. And so it's very likely that there that that was one of the anyway. But it's also possible it all goes back to the same little jacuzzi is 8 or 9. It's a small apartment in New York. It's worth exactly. Yeah yeah. So bizarre that are responsible for ******* this democracy so believable. Yeah. It's really remarkable. Roger was not particularly. Loyal to the people he worked with, which is perhaps not surprising given Black, Manafort and Stones reputation for working both sides of the political aisle. In 1984, he wound up working for Mary Mockery and a New Jersey senatorial race, one of his colleagues recalled. Quote, Roger was characteristically badmouthing his client, saying she wasn't up to it. He was being paid to say she would do well, and already who's working to dissociate himself from her in Washington now? The article noted that Stone was also famous in the Beltway for bragging about the work he'd done for Richard Nixon's campaign, David Keene, a lawyer and lobbyist, said. Quote Roger likes the aura of having done something bad in his past. You get the feeling that he's sorry it was so minor. He likes to say, watch me. I'm a tough guy. Hmm. Yeah. It's one of the truer things I've run into someone saying about Roger Stone. Yeah. In 1986, during another interview, Roger Stone listed Roy Cohn, Richard Nixon, and the Duke of Windsor as his biggest political idols. Now, Roy Cohn was a former McCarthy aide and famed political dirty trickster himself. The Duke of Windsor was a literal Nazi. It was Roy Cohn who would later proved to be Roger Stone's liaison to infamy. In 1988, while working for President Reagan's reelection campaign, Roger was given Roy Cohn's contact information on a list of President Reagan's friends in the city. Since virtually all of Ronald's friends were dead, and since Roger was a big Cohen fan, he reached out to the elder Creepin for some advice. What Cohen told him would set into motion a series of events that have irrevocably altered the course of all life on this planet. Roy Cohn told Roger you should talk to this guy Fred Trump and his son Donald. Now, Trump had met Cohen at a members only Manhattan club called creatively the club back in 1973. According to Washington Monthly quote he Trump asked Cohn. The government has just filed suit against our company saying that we discriminated against blacks. What do you think I should do? Cohen advised him to tell them to go to Hell and fight the thing in court and let them prove you discriminated. So Donald had hired Cohen to represent him and Cohen became something of a mentor to Trump. Well, he taught the future president a number of things, including his lessons on legal conflict, lessons like this, no matter what happens, no matter how deep in the muck you get, claim victory and never admit defeat. Yeah, now Stone met with Donald and wound up getting $100,000 out of him for Ronald Reagan's reelection campaign. Christine Seymour, who worked for Cohen as a switchboard operator, wrote in her notebook at the time about how stone referred to Donald Trump. Quote Roger did not like Donald Trump or his new house told me they were losers, but if Roy used them, he would too. So this depiction of events put forward by Washington monthly is not consistent with other descriptions of the beginning of the Trump stone relationship. As one of the many things there's debate about, an NPR interview with Morgan Paymy, or Pam, one of the directors of the documentary Get Me, Roger Stone, put forward this version of events instead. Quote Roger was the very first person to suggest to Donald Trump that he should run for the presidency back in 1987. Then he spent the next 29 years cultivating Trump's candidacy until he was ultimately triumphant. I think he believed from day one that Trump was a legitimate candidate now. Certainly Trump's previous flirtations was running for the president. It's hard to look at as anything other than publicity stunts, but Roger was always dead serious about the effectiveness that Trump could convey as a candidate. Now, Stone himself put forward this version of events as recently as 2016, when he was interviewed on the floor of the Republican National Convention. Is it true that people say you convinced him to run for President? Convince Trump to run for president started in 1988. That is true. I've been trying to do this. I've been trying to get him to run for a long time, trying to get him run in 88, try to get it running 2000, trying to get him running 2012. He could have beaten Romney, although Romney had a long head start. Push that for a long time. I'm happy with that. So now what? So? It's hard to say where the truth lies here. To my thoughts, I think the cone switchboard operator is probably closer to accurate that all this stuff about Roger Stone recognizing Donald was a perfect presidential candidate is a lie. It was kind of like everything else in his career. He just sort of went with things as they rolled. And certainly in 1984 when he met Donald, I don't think he had much respect for the guy. And there's evidence that Trump didn't like him very much either until pretty recently. But we'll get into more of that later now. In 1996, the National Enquirer published an expose. And Roger stone. Stone had been posting ads in a number of swingers magazines and websites I heard about. Yeah, he and his wife Stern just yeah, yeah, yeah. He and his wife were looking for single men and couples to join them in ***** ***. Stone described himself as a bodybuilder. There's a lot of detail on stones love life that I'm not going to get into here because I don't really care. I don't think that's anybody's business. Like, just they weren't, like, molesting kids or anything. They're just doing weird sex. That's fine. But the uproar over all this forced Roger Stone to retire from Bob Dole's presidential campaign. Roger initially denied the rumors. Claiming first that they'd been placed to frame him and then that some help at his house, like basically like a cleaning lady or something, had like, leaked this stuff to the press to, you know, discredit him or whatever. But he later admitted that the ads were his and that he'd only denied them because his grandparents were still alive at the time. He cheerfully admitted from 1996 on to being a libertarian and a libertine in an interview about all this. He also said some very strange things about famous homosexual and AIDS victim Roy Cohn. Quote, Roy was not gay. He was a man who liked having sex with men. Gays were weak, effeminate. He always seemed to have these young blonde boys around. It just wasn't discussed. He was interested in power and access. He told me his absolute goal was to die completely broken, owing millions to the IRS. He succeeded in that. Wow. Just want to note that Roger has reiterated several times that Roy Cohn is his idol and the person he aspires to be like. You think he's gay? I doubt that. I think he's bisexual. Yeah, maybe. Yeah, maybe yeah. Maybe he's dipping toes. It's such a bizarre. I'm always fascinated by people who are ******** Republican, staunch Republicans who don't live the life at all, but then you go, OK, well, he's just doing whatever he needs to do to win. Yeah, I mean, it doesn't matter. You've got that staunch economic wing of the party, a lot of whom you know, are super socially like, whatever. Like you can meet them at like a ***** eyes wide shut **** party and never know that they're like supply side economics guys. You know what confused me? Because I thought. He might have empathy. No, no. That's what a normal human being has. And it would be hard with someone with empathy to, to participate in a gay lifestyle and then do things that hurt gay people. Well, I don't. I don't know the stone ever did, but that's certainly a good criticism of Roy Cohn because he was a big backer of of the Reagans, which are the worst presidents in history for gay people, you know, and Cohen died in the AIDS epidemic, like, yeah. But when we get back, we're going to talk about Donald Trump's first presidential campaign and how Roger Stone helped make that a reality. But first, the only reality listeners of this podcast need is the reality of the wonderful products and services that support this program and or content module. Being a real estate agent isn't about listing houses, it's about connecting to people. I need to find new buyers every day, so I promote my listings using radio commercials from iheartadbuilder.com. Now every time I have an open house, it's a full house. A custom radio ad from iheart AD builder is the fast, affordable way to drive customers to your business. Put the power of radio to work for you. Get started now at iheart advrider.com. More than a movie, American Me is a new podcast that digs into the history and mystery of American Me, a film directed by and starring Edward James Olmos that had a huge impact on Latino cinema and culture. I'm your host, Alex Fumero, and I'll be diving into the behind the scenes controversy, including an alleged backlash from the Mexican mafia. Several people who worked on the movie have been murdered and even today people are still scared to talk about the film. Everything else, I mean. You know, I don't want to speak about it. And we had to sign a paper saying that if we were taken hostage that they would not bargain for us. Eddie, I know he said that he had permission to do the bill, so I don't know where it got lost in translation. Learn about what really went down from the people that were there. Listen to more than a movie American me, that's part of the Michael Duda podcast network, available on the iHeartRadio app Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts. I'm Anderson Cooper. Earlier this year, while packing up my late mom's apartment and her things, I felt isolated and alone. Weighed down by grief, I began recording a series of deeply personal conversations with others about their experiences with loss and helped me and I hope it'll help you. Whatever you're going through. All there is with Anderson Cooper listen on the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you listen to podcasts. We're back. So a little bit earlier, we were talking about sort of the competing theories about when Roger Stone wanted Donald Trump to run for election. And the guy who did the get me Roger Stone documentary was like he saw him as a serious candidate from the beginning. Always. Even though the first campaigns weren't all that serious, Roger believed in him. This story is why I think that's ********. So in 1999, Roger Stone got another chance to help a Republican presidential candidate and finally make use of his friend Donald Trump. That year, Pat Buchanan. Announced that he would be running for president under the Reform Party ticket. This worried Republicans because third party candidates are always scary. We're dealing with that right now, with Schultz and the, you know, the Democratic primaries and stuff. So Roger's strategy was to neutralize Pat Buchanan by using Donald Trump to run against him from the left. Roger had Trump embrace gun control and universal healthcare, as well as accuse Pat Buchanan of being a Hitler lover, which is, you know, actually kind of Fair. Trump dropped out soon after, but the campaign did its job as the weekly standards. Matt La Bouche. But a weakened Buchanan went on to help their reform party implode, and Republicans suffered no real third party threat. So it does seem that, in 1999 at least, Donald Trump was just a convenient tool for Roger Stone. Not a serious presidential candidate, he represented a good way to deal with a third party candidate who might have threatened George W Bush's election. Roger Stone would go on to play another major role in the election of the man the world would come to know as W Bush 2 electric Boogaloo and a literal war criminal stones first job to the Bush. The pain was helping them win in Florida. He did this by buying advertising in a number of Spanish language radio stations. He and his Cuban American wife would show up and push a conspiracy theory quote. From Roger, the idea we were putting out there was that this was a left wing power grab by gore the same way Fidel Castro did it in Cuba. We were very explicitly drawing this analogy. Al Gore making a violent power grab, Al Gore the dictator. I have trouble imagining Al Gore. Like even shooting A3 pointer like that's too aggressive for Al Gore. I didn't even think Al Gore is such a like. He's such a lover, I. I feel like he's just made to hug like he was born without bones. He's a real hugger, like, you know, bones of that body. If a dog bit him, he wouldn't even pull his hand away. He would just he would just be like, OW. He would just be like, owl, you stretched my leg. This is a problem. Oh, how gore. Only you'd had any charisma at all. Ah, poor guy. Poor guy. Poor guy. Who would have really helped us avoid some problems. Yeah. Now, during the infamous 2000 election recount, Roger Stone claims to have been the organizer of the infamous Brooks Brothers Riot. This was essentially a bunch of Republican operatives swarming South Florida and Miami to protest the ongoing recounts was called the Brooks Brothers Riot because they all wore Brooks brothers suits. Sure, here's that New Yorker article quote. At one point on November 22nd, Stone said he heard from an ally in the building. Gore supporters were trying to remove some ballots from the counting room. One of my pimply faced contacts said two Commissioners have taken 2 or 300 ballots to the elevator, stone said. I said, OK, follow them. Have you guys go on the elevator and half go in the stairs. Everyone got sucked up in this. They were trying to keep the doors from being closed. Meanwhile, they were trying to take the rest of the ballots into a back room with no windows. I told our guys to stop them. Don't let them close that door. They're trying to keep the door from being closed. There was a lot of screaming and yelling. In fact, The New Yorker notes the Gore official in the elevator, Joe Geller, was carrying a single sample ballot. Now, the dual scenes of chaos both inside and outside the building prompted the recount officials to stop their work. The recount Miami was never restarted, depriving Gore of his best chance to catch up and overall state tally. So the Brooks Brothers Riot is pretty consistently across the board, considered an important fact in Bush's winning election. You know, Cork, didn't they eventually get to the numbers, like months after people proved that Gore won the popular vote? Never entirely, but it's pretty like, yeah, basically like in essence. Now, Brad Blakeman, a lobbyist and political consultant for the Bush campaign, claims that Roger Stone is lying about his involvement in this. You know, obviously the Brooks Brothers riot happened, but Blakeman says Rogers just taking credit for something he didn't do. Do you think he'd be sued for that? Like, you know, that's not ringing. It should be that that's his whole career is is that not illegal? Yeah, the Roger Stone story you interfered with the democratic process. You interfered with the voting process. I have some issues with the. Get me Roger Stone documentary and I do think a better title would have been. Is that not illegal? Is that really? That's what my stop the government for a second every time. How does he know the law better than I don't think he does. I think he's gotten lucky enough in the past that his, I don't know maybe it was illegal what he was doing but like nobody charged him with it and like I think he's he, it's called the first mover advantage in essence. Like if you're willing to take that, you got like 2 animals and there's like a food resource in between them. The animal that's most likely to go for it, you know, sometimes he might get challenged by the other animal and he might get beaten up, but it's more likely that that other animal will back off and not want to have a fight. And so it's good to just. Try and lunge for the food, which Roger Stone always does. Yeah, OK, so Brad Blakeman says claims he was the guy in charge of the Brooks Brothers Riot and says, quote, Roger did not have a role that I know of. His wife may have been on the radio, but I never saw or heard of him, which again reinforces one of the most common patterns. When you talk about the life of Roger Stone, it's really hard to tell if he's a legitimately influential operator or just a prolific liar. I doubt most of the people who have hired him can truly tell you, Ed Rollins, former political director for Ronald Reagan, told The New Yorker in 2008. Roger was a fringe player around town. He always had this reputation of being a guy who exaggerated things, who pretended he did things. Roger was never on Nixon's staff, was never on the White House staff. I don't think you'll find anyone in the business who trusts him. Roger was always a little rat. In a 2008 interview, Donald Trump echoed that sentiment. Roger is a stone cold loser. He always tries taking credit for things he never did. Everyone who writes or talks about Roger Stone winds up dealing with this issue eventually. No one can seem to agree on whether or not he's any good at his job, even people who talk about him being good at his job. At one point we'll talk about him being a liar and a fraud. At other points, I found one Washington Post article that noted quote in a post profile, one Republican luminary called him the party's single best consultant and another dismissed him as one of the great. Full time frauds of American politics, sure. I mean, it's hard to praise someone who hurt you. And it might be that, you know what I mean? Like, I I think they're part of it, too. There's a lot going on. There's all these guys. I mean, there's so many times where something has happened in American politics and American history. I'm like, that's crazy. It's fraudulent, it's wrong, it's corrupt. And there he is. Yeah, he's always there and it's it's a lot harder with, like, with Paul Manafort. You've got a bunch of cases where, like, there's this, this war going on. I forget the name of the dictator. This war going on in like Central Africa and like the USSR's, backing one side and the US is backing another side. And then the USSR pulls their military aid and everyone's like, OK, the civil War is going to end. And these guys, Jonas Savimbi is the guy who was backing and these guys are going to stop. And then Manafort goes directly to the federal government and lobbies and gets Savimbi to continue having weapons for another 10 years and half a million more people die. OK, that's a direct thing. Paul Manafort did undeniably extended the length of that war by his lobbying. It's never that clear with Roger Stone. There's always multiple people. So that's part of the thing that's difficult is like Roger Stone, because of just the kind of dirty tricks he gets up to is a lot slipperier. Or at least he wasn't till recently. So that is where we're going to leave off for today. When I come back, we will be talking about some things that are inarguable about Roger Stone. Finally, his foundational role in the Trump campaign and all of his many, many, many dumb crimes. So Thursday? The day after tomorrow. No, Sophie, we don't edit this podcast. What is time? You can't edit audio. That's the most basic rule of this. Are you doing the lift thing? The :( No, she's no all right, listeners. I am the ******* this week because I made Sophie sad. So. Buy a T-shirt on teepublic. It's the only thing that brings her joy is our T-shirt sales T public T public sound bite. That goes for tea public. That's our sound bite now. There you go. You feel free anytime. Just me going deeper. Blue blue. Here, you want to plug your plug cables before we we check out for the next couple of minutes? Sure. If you guys are looking for live comedy, do you wanna see a Arab American who grew up in East LA thrown his thoughts out? You could follow me at tamaracatan.com for all my shows at Tamra Cat on Instagram. And then of course I'm the creator and host of my podcast called. They tried to bury us along with my mom where we meet a new immigrant every weekend here. Their American origin story? Check out. They tried to bury us. Check out Tamer on Twitter. You can find this podcast on the Internet and all of its sources on behindthebastards.com. You can find us on Twitter and the gram, as the kids call it these days, at at ******** pod. I have a book called A Brief History of Ice, where I. Hurt my friends with dangerous drugs. Uh, until Thursday. Roger stone. Piece of the planet I go by the name of Charlemagne the God, and this summer I'm bringing my show back to Comedy Central with a new title and a new podcast. It's called hell of a week. But don't worry, every Friday I'll be keeping that same, calling out the ******** energy, and I'll have some of the biggest names in comedy, politics, and entertainment with me. So if the news is terrorizing your timeline and causing your anxiety to rise high in gas prices, don't worry. We got you. Listen to hell of a week. Charlamagne the God on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. I'm Bob Pittman, Chairman and CEO of Iheart Media. On the new season of my podcast Mathemagic, I sit down with the Trail Blazers on the frontiers of marketing leaders like Susie Deering, CMO of Ford Motor Company. And when it all changes, and I think that a big part of the why we're at that moment is because of the F-150 Lightning. It changed everything. Listen to the new season of math and Magic, premiering September 22nd on our own iHeartRadio App, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcast. I'm Ebony K Williams, host of Holden Court, and I'm so excited to announce that Holden Court has a brand new home at interval presents. That's right, we're back and better than ever, Season 2 is here. And we're bringing you the same in-depth legal analysis and cultural commentary that you know and love. Listen to Holden Court on the iHeartRadio App, Apple Podcast, Spotify, Amazon Music or wherever you get your podcasts. So y'all, let's hold court.