Behind the Bastards

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.

Part One: Roy Cohn: The Man Who Made Donald Trump

Part One: Roy Cohn: The Man Who Made Donald Trump

Tue, 08 Dec 2020 11:00

Part One: Roy Cohn: The Man Who Made Donald Trump

Listen to Episode

Copyright © 2022 iHeartPodcasts

Read Episode Transcript

Hey, Robert here. It's been like two months since I had LASIK and I'm still seeing 2020. All I had to do was go in for a consultation, then go in for a maybe 10 minute procedure and then my eyes have been great ever since. You know, I healed up wonderfully. It was very simple, couldn't have been a better experience. So if you want to explore LASIK plus I can't recommend it enough. They have over 20 years experience in the industry and they performed more than two million treatments right now if you want to try getting LASIK plus you can get $1000 off of your surgery when you're treated in September, that's $500. Of per eye, just to schedule your free consultation. Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried true crime. And if you want to go from podcast fan to podcast host, do what I did and check out spreaker from iheart. I was working in accounting and hating it. Then after just 18 months of podcasting with Spreaker, I was able to quit my day job. Follow your podcasting dreams. Let's breaker handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's Hey there, it's Ebony Monet, your co-host for the San Diego Zoo's Amazing Wildlife podcast. In this special episode, we're speaking with Doctor Jane Goodall about the fascinating journey that led to her social discoveries on chimpanzees SO4-O months, the chimps ran away from me. I mean, they take one look at this peculiar white ape and disappear into the vegetation. Bing wildlife on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. What's harassing people for their political beliefs? My Roy Cohn. This is. I'm Robert Evans. This is great ********. It's a podcast about terrible people. And I'm just gonna cut right to the chase, as I already did. Today we're talking about Roy ************* Cohen. Oh my God. Joelle. Monique is our guest. Joel, producer at iHeartMedia. How are you doing today? I'm good. I'm slightly unprofessional. I just bit into some peanut butter. I'm so sorry. Are you just doing yo? This has been my favorite intro to an episode ever. You guys. Thank you, Joelle. What do you what do you know about Roy Cohn? OK, so the good fight is one of my favorite TV shows of all time. Had like a very like strong leaning Roy Cohn arc. I wanna stay season 2. There's it's set in the past, no? It's it's it basically was an opportunity to educate people about how Trump could get away with some of the things he's getting away. OK, OK, cool, cool, cool. Yes. Because Roy Cohen is that guy. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So in there, they made this song, which I think you'll really appreciate. It's called Roy Cohn loves to party. There's an animated segment that goes along with it. It's peak excellence. And so I know like a two-minute, real quick history of Rick Cohen. I know he's an awful human, a monster. Yeah. Yeah, terrible, terrible guy. So I'm excited to find out how terrible today. What's funny about Roy Cohn is that if you kind of measure him objectively against the standards of, you know, a lot of the people we talk about on the show, he doesn't seem that bad like he's he's a bad person, but he he's not like Stalin or Hitler, but he's he was such an unpleasant while he may have he was such an unpleasant human being that his name has become kind of like a byword for a a monster. Like, he's he's up there just because of what a ***** ** **** he was to everyone around him. And it's kind of amazing if you watch documentaries, there's a great documentary called Where's My Roy Cohn that interviews people who knew him. And like, at least two of like, there are multiple people in that documentary who are friends of his who describe him as evil. Like, just because it's like, Oh yeah, we, I hung out with Roy, but he was evil like he was. He's absolutely was the the embodiment of human evil. Wow. How could she? I wonder what was he bringing to that friendship that they were like, we'll talk about over the e-mail part. He was, he was kind of a great friend. Oh yeah. No, it's all good when you have, like, a super ***** of a friend, but she's good to you and she's good to you and the monster you. Yeah. Yes. I like you. Get it? Yeah. It's the kind of friend we're like, yeah, I know they are a monster, but also, if I ever need them, they will burn the world down for me. My personal monster. Yeah. That's that's who Roy Cohn was. And it's one of the we'll talk about his relationship with Trump later. It's what Trump learned a lot from Roy Cohn, the thing he never learned. And Roy Cohn was how to be loyal, because that is something Cohen was good at to his actual friends. He was very loyal, and they weren't to him. Because it it just turns out when you're friends with people who can be friends with a person who is pure, unadulterated human evil, they're not good at being loyal to you, even if you are to them. It's fun. It's a fun story. That documentary where's my Roy Cohn? I do recommend watching. It gets its name from something Donald Trump said when Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself during the Mueller probe, President Donald Trump reportedly cried out. Where is my Roy Cohn? In a moment of panic and fear. Yeah, so we're going to talk all about that today. Roy Cohn was a lawyer. It's accurate to say that, but just saying like that's describing Roy Cohn as a lawyer is such an incomplete explanation of who he was as to be totally inaccurate. Roy Cohn was a black male artist, a political fixer of the highest order, maybe the best there ever was, a man famous for being infamous, and a man who weaponized sociopathy more effectively than any other political actor in U.S. history. He's a he's a hoot of a dude. He he created the shortcuts to help us get where we got today. Yeah. Yeah. He he's the man who built both Roger Stone and Donald Trump like he's legacy. He's a remarkable ***** ** ****. Love to see it. Yeah. So Roy Marcus Cohn was born on February 20th, 1927, in the Bronx, NY City. He was the only child of a wealthy Jewish couple, Dora and Albert. His father, Albert, was a judge and a major figure in the local Democratic Party. As a result, Roy grew up with politicians of all stripes, dropping by his home for dinners and cocktail parties. So he's he's he's born into the political upper crust, you know, from. I'm seeing the snobby rich kid evolving, like, Oh yes, he he learned he was one of those kids who spoke, like an adult way too early. You were like, how. Yeah, you know these things. Yes. Yes, absolutely. His parents let him drink at the cocktail parties. Absolutely. They thought he was an adult when he was. Yeah. It's an obnoxious trash child. Yeah. He was definitely drinking at the adult table from a young age. No, no, no. And obviously like he, he came from money. And not just like judge money, but his family has like wealth on all sides of it. His great uncle was the founder of the Lionel Corporation, which makes they make toy trains and we're for a while the largest toy manufacturer on the planet. Roy's maternal uncle, Bernard Marcus, was the president of the Bank of the United States. So again, ton of money in this family and obviously the fact that Bernard was the President of the Bank of the United States. Added to the family's gravitas and importance until October 29th of 1929, when the stock market crashed in the Great Depression. Got going because the Bank of the United States was one of the main things that caused, like its collapsed caused the Great Depression. Now Roy was too young to remember much of what happened at the time, the stress and the panic. It would have been passed on to him though, by the adults around him, especially because his uncle's bank was blamed for start sparking the stock market crash. This wasn't entirely fair. Because a lot of people and a lot of banks were to blame for the Great Depression. But Bernard Marcus was the head of the bank that was most implicated, and he was also a Jew. So he got blamed. He became, like, the scapegoat of the financial crash. America loves the scapegoat. We can't. We can't hold everyone responsible. But we can't believe you and say you did it. Yeah. So Bernard Marcus is Jewish. The Bank of the US is heavily frequented by Jewish immigrants, and everybody's angry at Jewish people when the economy collapses because racism. So. Yeah, Bernard Marcus actually becomes the only banker to go to prison for the financial crisis, for the Great Depression. Like they pick one and it's the Jewish guy, Lord Jesus, that's awful. Which is not to say that he didn't do anything, because he he definitely did, but it was he did not. He should certainly shouldn't have been the only banker to go to prison. He didn't row that boat alone. He had single handedly tank our economy. Come on now. Yeah. Yeah and yeah. So he. This is like a huge fact of shame for the cone family. And to this day Cone survived Roy Cohn surviving relatives consider the case to have been a matter of scapegoating because again, he was the only banker to go to jail. And this really left an impact on Roy because he visited his uncle in prison when he was a small child. Some of Roy's earliest memories were seeing his uncle Bernard and Sing Sing. One of his cousins later wrote quote that left Cohen determined to beat the establishment. So. Early age, you gotta think about it this way. He grows up thinking, like, yeah, we're Jewish, but like, we're part of the ruling class, the wealthy class, and we're all. It doesn't matter if you're Jewish or Christian or whatever, as long as you're in that upper crust. And then when a crisis hits, it turns out that we're not all part of the same thing because all of the other rich people blame the Jew, right? Like, that's the way it goes. Yeah. Have any sort of empathy in this episode at all. But as somebody who understands the realization of racism, like, oh. Me? Yeah. It's a fragment of empathy for baby boy Colin before he becomes the evil we know him to be today. Yeah, this has an impact on the evil because he realizes, like, oh, money won't protect me even, like, from like, the fact that I'm different actually does matter. We're not all the same, even though we're rich. And so I just like I am now. I like, I'm not a part of the establishment, so I must be at war with it. That's that's the idea that Roy Cohn, baby Roy Cohn grows up with. Conclusion Lord yeah, it's super fun. So a family friend who was around at the time claimed quote, the family had been absolutely shamed. When Bernard Marcus went to prison, Roy kept a scrapbook as a little boy of all the pictures of his uncle Bernie Marcus. He would show them to his babysitters. Once his mother saw him doing this and she yelled and took the scrapbook away because he loved his uncle. He was proud of his uncle. He had like a scrapbook of his uncle who was like a big figure in his life and his mom wanted to like pretend he didn't exist after this. There was a child psychologist here to like breakdown. So like a child purposely uncovering what the family has tried to hide in shame to be like, no, this guy is good and they're just like, no, hide that. And what does that do to your psyche? Psyche that says if you make a mistake also we will just remove you from our. Yeah. The scrapbook thing is like, I like my. I don't have a scrapbook. And one of my relatives is just so weird. Yeah, it's it's, I mean I, you know, it's. That's sweet. He clearly cared about his uncle, and his mom is telling him no, no, no. He made a mistake. So we don't celebrate his existence anymore. Which, yeah, you. You're right, Joel. That has to. That transmits a message to a growing little boy. Yeah, and it's not a good one. Don't **** ** OK? You can be disappeared. It's his mother. You can't believe. Discipline, Elizabeth. That's my question. Emotionally, yes. So fair enough. Despite the family shame, Royce father remained a judge and a connected person in Democratic Party politics. When Roy was ten, his father introduced him to his first president, Franklin Delano Roosevelt. So again, age 10 is when this kid starts hobnobbing with the president. Not just the President of President of the United States, but like the President of the United States, because no presidents ever had more power than ******* FDR. So, yeah, that's who Roy's hanging out with. At age 10, he started giving speeches. Political rallies the year before when he was nine and he was so comfortable talking shop that as soon as he met FDR, he told the president he agreed with his plan to pack the Supreme Court. So that's like this 10 year old boy meets FDR and the first thing he's like is like, yeah, you got to increase the number of people in the Supreme Court so that you can rule unchallenged, you know? That's that's where his head is. So the cold, the cone family, as you might have guessed, was not what we would call healthy. In fact, Royce parents marriage is generally described as a Lovelace. I found a yeah. Yeah. Well, what did you did you expect they were as a lot of love in that relationship, always shocked when I hear about loveless marriages. I'm like, how did you survive? But also I understand the era, you know, the marriages of convenience and or this is a financial person in my bracket who won't steal from me. So yeah, this is a political marriage. Yeah. Yeah. So yeah, I found a fun article in the rap by David Marcus, who is the son of Roy's first cousin. And by the way, his dad, David's dad refused to talk to Roy Cohn for decades now. David grew up to be a journalist and obviously, like as a journalist with Roy Cohn as an uncle, you're going to interview him. And he did interview Roy several times. In 2019, he wrote an article titled 5 Things You May not Know. About my vile, malicious cousin Royko, which is quite holistically. Here we talk about the 360 of like Roy, trying to show photos of his like imprisoned uncle to then his nephew, sharing with the world via paper the Horribleness of his uncle. There's something very balanced about it's a fun Uncle nephew relationship, it's a fun family. Yeah, he wrote. He wrote. He writes this about Roy Cohn's mother. Quote my relatives couldn't stand Roy's overbearing mother, Dora Marcus Cohen. She was the original helicopter parent long before anybody knew that term, fussing over her only son's grades, appearance, and relationships. When Roy went to Sleepaway Camp, Dora rented a room down the road. He lived with his mother until she died, when he was 40. So. Some Norman Bates vibes coming off this boy. Ohh no. Oh yeah, man. Listen, kids, we're not talking about you. We understand financial straits and everything. But if you could afford to not live with your mother, if you are a wealthy lawyer, especially in an era where that people used to clown on people so hard for still living with their parents, you know, that's that's what we call an unhealthy relationship. Yeah, he's not like, living with his mom, perhaps because, like, he's got to take care of her or because, like, he's living with his mom because he he can't imagine what to do without. For until he's 40 likes. Yeah, you get the feeling it wasn't. There was some. Yeah, there was. There was absolutely some weird **** going on there. So by the 1940s, the family fortunes had recovered and the cones were again at the center of a deeply influential network of New York socialites and politicos. As soon as Roy was a teenager, his parents pushed him to attend their parties. According to one of those guests, Roy took naturally to politics, socializing and schmoozing like an old veteran, one attendee later recalled. It was extraordinary to see 10 grown up couples and then sit next to a 15 year old. Roy was always on the scene. He fit right in, one of his friends later told an interviewer when he was 16. He was 40. Yeah. Those kids are not OK. This is they're not excuse we hear about, like, when we see very, very young girls with older and they're like, Oh well, they seem so mature. That person needs help. Yeah. But she's 17. Yeah. It's not OK yeah. Your genius does not make you mature, nor does it give you the years of experience. Yeah. You need to navigate situations with actual adults. Well, and then it's a bit different in Roy's case because, like, he's not in a relationship with these people, but they're the ones he's socializing with and they lead. Them to I don't think Roy ever had a childhood, and I'm not sure he ever. Yeah, exactly, yeah. Stolen from him because he never had the opportunity to be treated like a child. Yeah, you know, and then then you don't know the joys of childhood, which makes you a very weird, bitter old adult. Yeah. Which he absolutely is a weird, bitter old adult. So as a rich kid, Royce peers were from similarly August backgrounds. His buddy Generoso Pope Junior grew up to be the owner of the National Enquirer. And you wonder why that magazine is so close to Donald Trump. His friend, say Newhouse Junior, became the publisher of the National Enquirer. What? That was really. Quick to go over, yeah. Just like, yeah, let that sink in. Yeah, it's rose best buddy grew up to be owned the National Enquirer. His other best friend became the publisher. And then Roy became Donald Trump's good friend. And Donald Trump has had a lifelong positive relationship with the National Enquirer. Yes, I just wanted to say that one more time. Just so much in one little sentence, Roy Cohn's friend Richard Berlin became the chairman of Conde Nast, and his friend Bill Fugazy grew up to be the owner of a massive travel and limousine company. So these are Roy Cohn's childhood buddies like the act. The only kids he spends his time around grow up to be those people, and they're inheriting a lot of what they get, right? Like, though, they're not founding that **** you know? And if they are, they're inheriting a bunch of money to found that ****. So from an early age, Cohen showed a strong inclination towards what would become his life. He ran what his biographer calls the Roy Cohn barter and swap exchange while he was in junior high school. This was an influence and information peddling racket. Roy wrote a gossip column for his local newspaper, and he would trade stories and manipulate the stories he published in exchange for favors from popular kids. What, what, how? OK, I just so many things have just happened in my head first. Yeah, there's a lot going on there. I had no idea Roy Cohen was actually Dan Humphrey from gossip, which actually kind of, yeah, makes so much sense. And then the idea of like a 12 or 13 year old, like, again, having the foresight and knowledge to understand how an operation like that could work seems just like the most batshit thing I've ever heard. I'll lie for you. Yeah, spread that lie and, you know, you you can call me back some favors. Do we know what kind of favors he was getting in exchange? They were like, he got jobs and stuff as a kid over this stuff, and you have to assume he got, like, invites to parties and whatnot. Like, it it was, uh, you know, it was it was not the kind of favors he would be getting later, but he's experiment, because later his favors would be stuff like getting people in or out of prison. But he's he's he's starting to learn how if you have control of a media organ, you can get things from people. By either planting stories about them or refusing to plant stories about them. Like that's he's trading gossip for favors and he's learning how to do that again as a teenager, and he's learning to do that within the context of a high school. But he's also spending all of his time talking to adult politicians. And you can he's putting this stuff together like he knows what he's going to be. Roy Cohn knew what he wanted to be from a very young age, and it was always a shady political fixer. He is. You look at what Rudy Giuliani is doing these days. And he's bad at it. Rudy Giuliani's terrible, terrible, terrible even. File a lawsuit correctly. Sir, please look out the door. Roy Cohn is the good version of that. And not good in a moral sense, but good in. Roy was good at this, how to do it. He knew how to do it. And you can see the reason Donald Trump keeps having Giuliani do all this **** is because he's desperately wants to have a Roy Cohn. But he doesn't. Because there was only one. Feel like there's got to be somebody more capable. Giuliani, you know, not. Not who's also capable of the same kind of loyalty that's the thing Giuliani's loyal to the president, at least so far. But incompetent. Roy was loyal and competent, and that that's what Trump wants. But sadly, we'll talk about why Roy, Roy Cohn and around no more. So Roy went to the kind of elementary and high schools that rich kids get to attend, the ones that cost as much as a small house for a year of tuition. He went to Columbia. Law school. And he graduated at age 20 with both a bachelor's degree and a law degree. So, like, very, very smart kid. Yeah. So age 20, he's out of college. He's a, he's a, he's a, he's an admitted to the bar lawyer, and he is ready to make his mark on the world using his father's connections. He gets a job at the US Attorney's Office for the Southern District, and he got the gig the same day that he was formally admitted to the bar. In case you're wondering what kind of impact is Judge Dad had on all that the day he becomes a lawyer, he's working. For the US Attorney's office. Like, that's very convenient. Yeah, it helps. Now, for reasons that are not exactly clear to me, Roy became fascinated with what was seen as the looming threat of Soviet influence on the United States. His interest drew him in 1951 to the job of prosecuting Julius and Ethel Rosenberg for espionage. Now, do you know much about the Julius and Ethel Rosenberg case? I feel pretty educated on it. Yes, but I definitely need to hear more. Yeah, it's the Rosenbergs were committed Communists, and Julius was an electrical engineer with connections to all manner of sciency folks. He spent years in the Army Signal Signal Corps, and he fed the USSR information about a bunch of different US weapons technologies, at one point even smuggling his handler a complete proximity fuse. So Julius is absolutely a spy for the Soviet Union and and giving them a lot of stuff. He was eventually fired from the army when it was revealed that he had been a member of the Communist Party in the 30s. But he remained good at meeting sciency folks who were involved in the Defense Department. And one of the folks that he met after getting fired from the army was working on the Manhattan Project. Now, there's a lot of debate over exactly how helpful the nuclear secrets that he stole were. And I think the the consensus is that the USSR would have developed a bomb and more or less the same time frame without Julius Rosenberg. But he did give them information on the A bomb and the Pentagon was, you know, the the Soviet Union in the late 40s comes out with an A bomb of their own. And the Pentagon is really surprised because they had thought it would take the Soviets a lot longer to make an A bomb, and they assumed that the only way they could have possibly built it is if a spy had given them all of the information. And again, the Soviets had really good scientists, in part because they stole scientists from the Nazis too, in part because they just had good scientists, like they didn't need it. It's probable that they would not have needed what Julius provided them with. Two have built the A bomb, but he had. He had provided them with some secrets, and when he was eventually found out. The defense establishment uses him as a scapegoat for the entire fact that a nuclear arms race started right. They need someone to blame for the fact that the Soviets have a bomb, and they blame Julius Rosenberg. They also blame his wife, Ethel Rosenberg, now. Ethel had been an actress and there remains debate as to the exact extent of her involvement. She was charged with being a full party to her husband's espionage. She is charged with being just as much of a spy as her husband. Now, a lot of information has come out since the fall of the Soviet Union, and it suggests that while she was aware of and approved of her husband's activity, she was probably not playing an active role in spreading atomic secrets. And there was evidence at the time that she was not playing an active role in spreading. Comic secrets. They didn't have any evidence that she was, but Roy Cohn wanted both Rosenbergs convicted and executed. He didn't just want Julius executed, he wanted Ethel executed as well. And yeah, I'm going to quote from a a write up in the magazine forward quote. The case that made him the espionage trial of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg was a prime example of Cohen's law, skirting tactics and the demons that propelled his career. Cohen saw the case as an opportunity to make his name as a ruthless prosecutor and recoup the status his family had lost. He had a score to settle, said one person when Cohen was vicious. In pushing for Ethel and Julius Rosenberg's execution, illegally communicating with Judge Irving Kaufman, who ironically called Cohen from a phone booth outside the Park Ave Synagogue. He may have been trying to lift the stigma of family shame. Was responding, his relatives suggest, not just to anti communist animus, but to its inevitable link to Jews like him. He was the definition of a self hating Jew. Cohen's cousin David Marcus says in the film. He wanted to show the world that he wasn't Jewish. So Cohen's family are Jewish people scapegoated for the Great Depression. And then when Jewish people, when he has a chance to scapegoat another Jewish couple as responsible for the Russians getting the bomb, he does that in part to kind of wipe the shame. Away from his family and prove we're loyal Americans. Like the this Jewish family, like, is it our traders? But like the people prosecuting him and the judge, we're loyal Jews. Like, that's kind of the thing that's going on in codes. Head some real house slave ****. Yeah, that's just be honest about it. Like this idea that you could cleanse your family by destroying another is. I mean, it explains a lot about him and his ideology as a whole. It's pretty dark. Now Roy's defining moment in the trial came during his cross examination of David Greengrass, Ethel Rosenberg's brother. The prosecution had initially relied upon getting Ethel to testify against her husband in exchange for clemency, but she refused to talk. This ****** *** Roy, but it also left the state in a bind because there was no hard evidence that Ethel Rosenberg had done anything. So Cohen went to David, who had helped with the espionage, and promised him that if he lied about his sister's role in the conspiracy, David and his wife would get lesser sentences. Greengrass later admitted to lying on the stand at Conn's direction, but it didn't matter. Ethel was convicted, so Cohen goes to this guy, says like, I'll make sure you and your wife don't get XP. You get lesser sentences if you say that Ethel was a part of the espionage and David gets up in court and he lies about Ethel Rosenberg's complicity in the espionage, and so she gets convicted along with Julius, who, you know, for whatever you want to say about how fair or unfair the penalty was, Julius was guilty of espionage. He did the crime, but he did the crime. It's wild to me that like it seems especially in this era, like not a lot, not a lot of women prisons, not a lot of females behind bars, certainly not a lot being executed. It's kind of intense that like how much his own self hate was. Yeah, like if if that is in truth what stemmed a lot of these decision making? Like the idea of like no, we gotta fry them all is like just intense and horrifying. Yeah. Now here's the thing that's fun about America in this period of time is no American. At this point in time, when Julius and Ethel Rosenberg are being tried, no American had ever been executed for treason or espionage outside of war, outside of a war. So that hasn't happened. So people are talking about, like, most people who are like, well, yeah, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg are probably guilty. They need to be punished. Don't want them. A lot of people don't want them to be executed because we don't do that as a country. At this point, right. That's the idea. That's not what we are. We don't kill people outside of a war for engaging in this. And we're coming hot off the Geneva Convention. Yeah. Right. Yeah, that's all pretty recent with all these laws and stuff about how to conduct yourself. Wow. OK. But Roy Cohn wants them dead. And as it turned out, now, normally the prosecutor is not supposed to have any say in in the punishment. That's, you know, the judges in this sort of a case. That's the judges purview. But Cohen would wind up having a strong say in her punishment. He later claimed, number one, that he had pulled strings to make sure that Kaufman was the judge who got the case. There's no evidence that this was true except for the fact that Kaufman called Roy Cohn repeatedly when he had questions about the case, which kind of suggests that Kaufman was indebted to Roy Cohn. And again, he's in his 20s at this point. So the judge was calling Roy and being like, you know, I have some questions about this case. Yeah. Most most particularly, the judge is calling Roy Cohn and saying, hey. Should I execute? Should I have these people executed? Is that fair? Like that that's the kind of **** that, like, he's, he's he's coming up to them with. Wow. Yeah. So which is pretty dark and and of course, Roy Cohn is like, yeah, absolutely, you should be. You should kill these people. In my case, yeah. So yeah, again, like, yeah. So the judge calls Roy on the phone and it's like, I don't know, I feel like weird about executing these people. We've never done that before in this kind of context. What do you think I should do? And, like, should I, should I execute Ethel as well? And Roy is like, yes, you should execute them both. And he tells the judge, the way I see it, she being Ethel is worse than Julius. So he's he's whole hog. Like, yes, you need to have these people hung or exit, like, electrocuted. They were electrocuted. But yeah, I wonder if the silence. Well, listen, I'm not a psychologist, listeners, but I'm gonna play one for a second here. I wonder if, like part of the reason he was like, she's worse is because she was willing to not say anything. And this idea of, like possibly this couple representing his parents and the idea of their, like, hiding and then being part of the downfall of America during the Great Depression, I wonder if there are are links in his brain to those things. Yeah, you think? You get the feeling? Yeah, probably. Probably, yeah. What a ****** ** guy, Robert. Yeah, he's you know what time it is? Oh, is it time for products and services? Perhaps. You know who won't order the executions of a probably innocent woman and her husband during peacetime for espionage. I really hope. It's our, our sponsors and the product and service that is. That's the only standard we have for our, our, our, our products is the Julius and Ethel Rosenberg case. We ask all of them about it, and all of them say that happened decades before you were born. Why are you asking us about this? None of these. Companies existed at that point in time and we demand a response and that's why we have so very few advertisers. They think it's weird. A lot of people think it's weird. Here's ads. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. Mint Mobile just has premium wireless from 15 bucks a month. There's no trapping you into a two year contract. You're opening the bill to find all these nuts fees. There's no luring you in with free subscriptions or streaming services that you'll forget to cancel and then be charged full price for. None of that. For anyone who hates their phone Bill, Mint Mobile offers premium wireless for just $15.00 a month. But we'll give you the best rate whether you're buying one or for a family, and it meant family start at 2 lines. All plans come with unlimited talk and text, plus high speed data delivered on the nation's largest 5G network. You can use your own phone with any mint mobile plan and keep your same phone number along with all your existing contacts. Just switch to Mint mobile and get premium wireless service starting at 15 bucks a month. Get premium wireless service from just $15.00 a month, and no one expected plot twist at That's slash. Behind seriously, you'll make your wallet very happy at Now a word from our sponsor better help. If you're having trouble stuck in your own head, focusing on problems dealing with depression, or just, you know can't seem to get yourself out of a rut, you may want to try therapy, and better help makes it very easy to get therapy that works with your lifestyle and your schedule. A therapist can help you become a better problem solver, which can make it easier to accomplish your goals no matter how big or small. They happen to be so if you're thinking of giving therapy a try, better help is a great option. It's convenient, accessible, affordable, and it is entirely online. You can get matched with a therapist after filling out a brief survey, and if the therapist that you get matched with doesn't wind up working out, you can switch therapists at any time. When you want to be a better problem solver, therapy can get you there. Visit behind today to get 10% off your first month. That's better, HEL. better help calm slash behind this fall on revisionist history. Is there anything that we haven't talked about or or I should have asked you or you'd like to add that seems relevant? You should have asked me why I'm missing fingers on my left hand. A story about sacrifice. I think his suffering drove him to try to alleviate suffering. And the shocking discovery I made where I faced the consequences of writing a book I thought would help people? Isn't that funny? It's not funny at all. It's depressing. Very depressing. Religious history is back with more. Listen to revisionist history on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. I've never seen less enthusiasm for a great idea in my life. We're back. So Judge Kaufman, having consulted with Roy Cohn, sentences both Rosenbergs to die, telling them in court. I consider your crime worse than murder. I believe your conduct. And putting into the hands of the Russians the A bomb years before our best scientists predicted Russia would perfect. The bomb has already caused, in my opinion, the Communist aggression in Korea, with the resultant casualties exceeding 50,000. And who knows? But millions more of innocent people may pay the price for your treason. Indeed. Their betrayal. You undoubtedly have altered the course of history to the disadvantage of our country. No one can say that we do not live in a constant state of tension. We have evidence of your treachery all around us, every day, for the civilian defense activities throughout the nation are aimed at preparing us for an atom bomb attack. So. He's not wrong that Russia getting the bomb made everybody scared, but also. Not really. Right in saying that the fact that Russia's number one, that the Rosenbergs were responsible for Russia getting the bomb earlier, but also like, you know, the fact that the United States was had been so willing to use the bomb on Russia before they got a bomb of their own might be responsible for some of the paranoia and fear. Like the fact that, you know, Truman dropped the bomb on Japan largely to scare Russia and the fact that MacArthur attempted to use the bomb on Korea and had to be forced. You know, there's there's a lot going on there. Anyway, internationally, the cause of the Rosenbergs became one of the first major anti American movements of the post war era. And remember ******* post World War Two, basically everybody likes the United States, like very popular country worldwide because, you know, the Nazis and we're not the Nazis and a lot of refugees had come here and like, not to say that the horrible things the US had done, you know, genocides of the Native Americans and slavery and stuff hadn't happened. But like internationally pretty popular country in 1946, those were our golden days. Yeah, sure, yeah. Industry booming. Yeah. Happy? Yeah. People are pretty happy with us. The the fact that we condemn the Rosenbergs to execution ****** off a lot of people and again starts playing one of the first international anti American movements. A lot of people thought they were innocent and those who didn't feel they were innocent at least felt that the punishment didn't fit the crime. Marxist John Paul Sarte described the whole conviction as a legal lynching which smears with blood a whole nation. By killing the Rosenbergs you have quite simply. Right to halt the progress of science by human sacrifice. Magic. Witch hunts. Autos. Defay sacrifices. We are here getting to the point. Your country is sick with fear. You are afraid of the shadow of your own bomb. Hmm. Which is very much what's happening. We invite we invented doomsday device and assume we'll be the only ones to ever have it. And then when we have to fear it, we're like, oh, God, this is what we were doing to the rest of the world. But we don't. Everybody else is evil. We've never done anything. Yeah. Yeah. And and it continues today. So much fun. So stupid. It's really. Yeah. Yeah. So the United States and President Eisenhower did not listen to international outrage. The Rosen. And there's huge protests in the United States too, by the way. Thousands and thousands of people taking to the streets. Nobody in the government listened. The Rosenbergs were executed on June 19th, 1953. Julius's execution went smoothly enough, but the first several shocks failed to kill Ethel. The executioner was forced to repeat the process so many times he nearly lit her on fire. Smoke was pouring out from her head. It was, and remains, a profoundly gross story, and a lot of people at the time knew it was disgusting. Many of Roy Cohn's family were horrified about his actions, he later told a reporter with Pride. I, very early in my life, broke with tradition. And left my Jewish upper class oriented life in New York and became a contradiction of everything I was supposed to stand for. Yikes. Yeah, so he knows what he's doing. Yeah, it's really great to **** on your entire family and everything they stood for. Cool. Yeah. So there were, of course, people who deeply appreciated Conn's tactics and motivations. One of them was J Edgar Hoover, the director of the FBI. The two struck up a fast friendship and would actually exchange Christmas gifts for more than 20 years if you're looking at the kind of guy who Roy genuinely appreciates, and vice versa. 1 reporter described the two as ideological soulmates. Cohen became the FBI. You don't want to be, you don't want to be. Jagger Hoover soul mate. No, you do not. Real bad person. So Cohen became the FBI's unofficial liaison to the press. And I'm going to quote here from the LA Times, anything Hoover wanted to plant about someone, friend or foe, he directed the cone. So reliable was this gossip network that Walter Winchell secretary. And Walter Winchell is a very influential gossip columnist. At the time, due to Flea waited Conn's reputation, destroying phone calls when they wanted to stick it to somebody, former Rep Neil Gallagher told Von Hoffman, who's Roy's biographer. That was Roy's job. Ohh man, to be wealthy and be able to destroy somebody with a phone call? Yes. Power I don't think I will ever possess. That is Roy Cohn. Absolutely. That is just. It's it's too much power. Yeah, too way too much power. Just be like, I don't like you. LA Times print me something up bad about this guy who cares about facts. Yeah. And we are. What's fun about this episode is, you know that Billy Joel, we didn't start the fire song. There's like 5 different people who are named in that song that are in this episode, including Roy Cohn. He's right before 1. Poran, like, yeah. Also Walter Winchell. And Joe McCarthy, who we're about to talk about, is in the song. So yeah, this is really, we're really burning. Through that song here. Love it. So it was Hoover who introduced young Roy Cohn to a man who would come to define the early part of his career, Senator Joseph McCarthy. Another jam of a person, another another real hero. In short order, Roy became the senator's right hand man as the Red Scare kicked up into high gear. And this is where we need to peel away from Roy Cohn for just a moment to talk about the House UN American Activities Committee or who ACK. It was established in 1938 by a Congress **** named Martin D's and at first it wasn't entirely a bad thing. There were a ton of Nazi organizers and spies in the United States doing their best to **** slap American democracy and the DZ. Committee which turned into who act helped to identify and punish some of these guys. So not entirely a bad thing. If there's Nazis in your country. Probably gotta deal with that probably, right? Yeah. Yeah. You should probably have a committee who's responsible for being like, we got to get these Nazis out of here, huh? Unfortunately. Happy when you read a paragraph that I can tell you were you felt good about when you wrote it? Yeah. Yeah. Now, as is always the case with the US government, the committee's attention soon turned away from the dangerous right wing activists. You left wing activists who act was at the forefront of an unhinged and fundamentally irrational investigation into Hollywood communists. So they go from, like, actual Nazis trying to destroy the gut the country trying to destroy democracy to. And there's some comedies in Hollywood who think people ought to have healthcare and ****. Yeah, it's very funny. And the the list of people in Hollywood that HUAC investigates is just fundamentally absurd. Humphrey Bogart made the list, as did Clark Gable and 10 year old. Shirley Temple. Shirley Temple. She's dancing with the blacks. Yeah. But she's a commie badge, didn't you know? Yeah, because she's dancing with black people. Yeah, can't have that ****. She's hiding all the secrets in each one of her individual curls. I'm trying to imagine like, j.crew for listening to Shirley Temple's phone calls at 10. Is she talking to her grandmother? She's like animal crackers in my soup is like, what's that code for? What is that code for? She's gonna break him out of the zoos. Yeah, it's very funny because when I was a kid, like, Shirley Temple was like the symbol of American innocence in the 1950s. And the reality is that at age 10, she was interrogated by the FBI as to the nature of her connections to the Communist Party. Jesus Lord. Oh my. It's so good. You have to be like, this is unhinged if you're part of, if you're like, one of, like, 3 sane people. Are you kidding me? You're like, what is going on? Yeah, there was. There was briefly. A tiny amount of rationality crept into things and then, like during World War Two and I'm going to quote from a write up in the Minnesota playlist about that. World War Two put a stop to these activities, but in 1947 the committee renewed their investigations. Joseph McCarthy, a junior senator from Wisconsin, wanted to make a name for himself and along with attorney Roy Cohn and Senator, later President Richard Nixon, the committee assured blacklisted individuals wouldn't work for years to come. Among those first listed Humphrey Bogart, James Cagney, Katherine Hepburn, GAIL Sondergard. Melvin Douglas and Frederick Marsh screenwriter Dalton Trumbo was branded a communist, but continued writing under different aliases and won Oscars. In 1956, when Robert Rich's name was called for the Brave one, no one accepted the award, causing suspicions to rise. Trumbo, under the name Sam Jackson, wrote the screenplay for Spartacus, which parallels the HUAC hearings. Arthur Miller's play the crucibles is an allegory of these witch hunts. So. If you ever had to read the Crucible, you know, or the the play at least by Miller, you can blame Roy Cohn and Joe McCarthy. Now, one particularly cowardly actor, Adolph Minju, cooperated with the committee who act and named names the named People. Yeah, yeah, and the named people were interrogated publicly. Their careers were shattered tin brave actors and screenwriters protested this and refused to name names. They included IVA Bessie, Herman Biberman, Lester Cole, Edward Demetric, Ring Lardner, junior John Howard Larson, Albert Maltz, Samuel Ornitz, Adrian Scott and Dalton Trumbo, who act punished these brave people by subpoenaing. ****. Out of all of them and calling them before Congress, they were asked the now famous question are you now or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party? All but one refused to answer the question. The House of Representatives held them in contempt. The Screen Actors Guild was forced to make its members swear oaths of loyalty to the United States and members of the Hollywood Crazy Thing to do. Yeah, yeah, a union for workers have to that because unions are coming. Things you gotta you gotta show that you're loyal to the United States if you gotta be a union. Yeah, yeah, it was great. Members of the Hollywood 10 weren't allowed to resume their careers until they had sworn the oath and been cleared of any involvement in the Communist Party. Many of the Hollywood Ten served one year prison sentences. It's not cool. It's it's a bad time that that all this happens. And this is also, by the way, why Charlie Chaplin stops becoming a major figure in Hollywood, because he kind of leaves the country and can't be in movies for a while because he's seen as being a a dirty comedy. A lot of really important talent and again, very unfairly targeted a lot of the Jewish population. That's what Hollywood is, where the Jews hang out, yeah. Yeah. Now, Joe McCarthy was not a member of who act, although Richard Nixon was, and he was a part of all of this. But the committee's tactics served as the blueprint for what would come to be known as his two history as McCarthyism. By 1954, Senator McCarthy had launched his own crusade to ferret communist agents and homosexuals out of the US government. Roy Cohn was his chief counsel. Now, does it seem weird to you that Conan McCarthy would use the power of the Senate to hunt down both gays and communists? Welcome to the lavender scare. Have you heard of the lavender scare? All about the yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. This is some good ****. And by good **** I mean terrible ****. It's bad. It started in 1950 when Senator McCarthy had held up a list during a speech in West Virginia and claimed that the names of 205 card carrying communists who worked in the State Department were on it. A few weeks later, the Deputy Under Secretary of State had testified to the Senate Appropriations Committee that his department did not hire communists, but that they had fired a number of people for being security risks, including 91 homosexuals. This sparked mass panic within the government, and a month later congressional Republicans ordered an investigation into the homosexual. Problem and the infiltration of sexual perverts and government now. 1st just so **** you. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's not great whenever large political parties start talking about group X problem, you know? Yeah, yeah. But not not great. So it just so happens that Roy Cohn was super gay. Like, real, real very much, very, very much gay. And and Joe McCarthy also probably pretty gay and yeah, and again, Roy is. Like, Roy is famous later in his life for taking a new lover every single day. Like, like young male prostitutes. Like, every single day. Like and. And at this point in time, he is gay and so is probably McCarthy. And not just that, but before, like all of these trials get going in earnest. Roy Cohn gets together with one of Joe McCarthy's with an aide that he and Joe McCarthy had hired that both he and McCarthy had a gigantic crush on. And Cohen and this guy travel around Europe looking for like, in military bases. They have libraries and **** looking for communist books and libraries and like, also just traveling around Europe together and going to bars and pubs and ******* yeah, like, like they're, you know, they're partying in in making love by night and banning books from like State department libraries by day for being communists. Like, it's a very weird honeymoon that those two have. So I really feel like this is a reaction of, like, if we don't get these other people. There are other people will come for us, like it's very much like, oh, we're we're not gay, haha. Them over there. And the fact that you know all of the inside scoop, like if if you're gay, especially in this time, even nowadays, you like, you know where the other gays are, you want to go, you know what to look for. You know the trade secrets, you know the lingo it is. I think it is beyond immoral to like, oh, it's incredible people, but then these people who are already scared and afraid for their lives, he's just set them on fire. We'll talk about this a bit, too. One of the things that's also extra evil about all this is that it's not just that Roy Cohn and probably Joe McCarthy are gay. It's that most of their fellow Congress people who are persecuting the gay people that Conan McCarthy bring to them in, like in Congress, know that Conan McCarthy are gay. They make jokes about it, like, but they're also not punishing them and punishing other people. Like, it's all, it's very bad because these are the games we can trust. Yeah, these are like themselves. This is this is the Candice Owens problem. Yeah, today, where Candace Owens just clearly hates being black and black people, so *** **** much that she'll do anything to make sure people know that she hates it. Yeah, it's ridiculous. It's wild because, like, family members who give interviews will say that Roy would have done anything to hide his homosexuality from the public eye, and at the same time, a lot of people knew that he was gay while he was prosecuting other gate. It's a very strange situation. Who was going to cross him, though, if you're the king of gossip and you know all the things. Also, Rockline being gay and the king of gossip is just Sir. Yes, Sir, I can see you. Yeah. What a ridiculous man. OK, Perez Hilton. Like, calm down. Yeah. And one of the things that. So there's debate historically over how much Joe McCarthy is the driver of the Red Scare and how much it's Roy Cohn manipulating Joy McCarthy because McCarthy is, again, not just a drinker, but like, and not just an alcoholic, but like an alcoholic who cut his life short by, like, 30 years. Because of the sheer shocking quantity he drank. So there are people who will argue that McCarthy was very easy for Cohen to manipulate and that the Red Scare was largely orchestrated by Cohen and that he just wanted McCarthy up front to kind of take the hits if it blew back on them, which is what happened. So again, people will make that argument and you can make it. There's also people who say that no, no, no, McCarthy, while he was drunk was was as much a driver of this as Roy Cohn. I don't. I'm not an expert on either man, so I'm not going to weigh in there, but you you can find. People who will make either case. Yeah. So the panic over gay people and gay people being, you know, Communist infiltrators came at a great time for Joe McCarthy because the panic, this, like the lavender scare, started when it started to become clear that old tail Gunner Joe, which was McCarthy's nickname, had no proof that any of the 205 names on that list that he's he held up were actually communists. And I'm going to quote from a paper titled The Power of Masculinity by Leila Talley now quote to save Face with his colleagues in the American public. Changed his tactics, calling out those he was unable to trace back to communism as being homosexual. This began what is now called the Lavender Scare. According to McCarthy, homosexuals presented a huge security risk because of the ease with which they could be blackmailed. Therefore, they could not be trusted to hold government jobs during a time when the threat of Communist infiltration was so high. Although McCarthy was the man responsible for making the initial allegations, he was not the party responsible for rounding up the sexual deviants and questioning them. Clyde Hoey was recruited to lead the investigation and according to the transcripts from the hearings. Roy Cohn was responsible for the majority of the questioning. Now, obviously a lot of this questioning happened under wraps, but thankfully some of the victims of the lavender scare later discussed what they experienced. And I'm going to quote from a write up on the lavender scare in the feminist review, which describes the story of 1 Department of Commerce employee who was interrogated probably by Roy Cohn. I mean, this is so you get an idea of what these interrogations were like. Let's hear it like all civil Service employees working during the Eisenhower administration, Madeline Kress, a 24 year old business economist at the Department of Commerce in Washington DC, was required to pass a security investigation as a condition for employment at her position for only a few months. On that April day in 1958, Madeline was led into a room by two male interrogators, who began the interview by asking her a few mundane questions regarding her name, where she lived and her date of birth. Mistress, one of the interrogators then retorted. The Commission has information that you are an admitted. Homosexual what comment do you wish to make regarding this matter? Shocked, Madeleine froze and refused to answer the question. The men disclosed that they had reliable information that she had been seen frequenting a gay bar, the Redskins lounge, and they named a number of her lesbian and gay male friends. One of the men then sneered how do you like having sex with women? You've never had it good until you've had it from a man tormented into silence following the interrogation, she refused to sign a document admitting her alleged crime, and she she quit the next day. As any sane person would listen, if you're going it, it shouldn't. But it does add more insult to me that you went with the lamest, most common thing. Lesbians here like you never had a **** ****. So they don't want **** ****. They never wanted it. They're not interested. Please leave them alone. It is again. And nothing that happened in America should be shocking to me. And yet it's still always so upsetting to hear that. You can be dragged into a room and berated within an inch of your life. Simply because maybe somebody saw you walking into a building. Yeah. And it's it's I I want to be clear here, actually, that took place in 1958, and Cohen was out of the government at that point because of stuff that we'll talk about that happens later. But that's the kind of, like, #1 he set that into motion. It continues for decades after he leaves government, and that's what the interrogations were like. Like, you can assume that's more or less like the ones cone carried out, even though we don't necessarily have a ton of transcripts from those. So the lavender scare was a calamity for the gay community in the 1950s. Which had enough problems on his hands, as it was like 1950s already. Not an easy time to be gay. You don't need this ****. Absolutely, yeah, and now it was also a calamity for a bunch of random straight people who got falsely accused. Hundreds of people lost their jobs. Unknown, but significant numbers committed suicide due to the public shame. The long term fallout lasted more than two decades, and the federal government went so far as to calculate estimates of the total number of homosexuals in DC. The number swung from 5000 to 50,000, depending on who did the calculations. Layla Tal yeah. I mean, yeah. They think gay people breathe fire at this point, so we shouldn't be surprised. Irrational fear, yeah. Ever heard one of the idea that, like, none of them can keep a secret? Y'all are wild? Yeah, Layla Talley writes. Quote The Metropolitan Police were also asked to index the name, address, occupation and age of almost 5000 suspected sex perverts in the area. A vice Squad was created to investigate a possible link between homosexuality and communism, but the government never agreed that the two were related. Individuals let go this time due to their sexuality. We're officially fired because they were uncommonly susceptible to blackmail. About 20% of the total United States workforce had been investigated and interviewed in the three-year period between when McCarthy named gays in the State Department and when President Eisenhower issued his order demanding all homosexuals be terminated from the US government with executive order 10450. So again, because of this **** that Conan McCarthy start, 20% of the entire US workforce gets interrogated for their possible homosexuality. 20%, yes, truly. Why of the nations workforce, yeah. I mean, yeah, if you were like, I am, I have to stand and applaud your ability to stand in the face of that kind of oppression. I've I lived through Prop 8 and through don't ask, Don't tell, and I I thought all of that was harrowing. I had no I I knew about the lavender scare. I had no idea that it extended that far and affected that much of the entire population of the United States. Harrowing stuff, man. He I mean, like, and this is the thing, like, you talk about Roy Cohn, he affected millions of people's lives because, like, just at this point, just because of this **** that he starts now, during this whole period, Roy was the government's main anti-gay attack dog. He was the Guy Joe McCarthy sent in to carry out interrogations, possibly including, you know, including a lot of interrogations. And Roy was not living the repressed life of a self hating gay man during this. In fact, it was literally the opposite. He spent his nights out at a rotating carousel of gay bars. He had sex with men constantly, but he denied that made him the same as the gay men he spent his days. Not this ******. Yeah, listen, Roy had sex with other men every single day of his life, basically, and also never considered himself gay, bro. First of all, everybody's a little gay. Everybody. Second of all, they're on my guy. Come on. The repression and mental gymnastics to pull that off, to be like, no, I'm attracted and I'm gonna sleep with, but it doesn't make me gay. Sir, what is your definition of gay? What are you doing? He wouldn't even say that he was attracted to men. He preferred to say that. He said he. All he would say is that he preferred to, quote, expend his sexual energies on men, but not women. Bro, he's into my dude. Like I I am positive my dude Roman idea of like ohh it's more masculine to take a man. I know that he was a power top and it disturbing and disgusting. Yeah it's not cool. I mean it's not it's fine to be a power top, but it's not cool to do what Roy's doing. And he would also tell anyone who asked that he was no Pansy. By this he's he's he's a terrible person. Like again, his friend said that he was the embodiment of human evil. The people who liked him, like, said that. So, yeah, quote, he'd tell anyone who asked that he was no Pansy. And by this quote he meant that even though he engaged in sexual relations with men, he did not consider himself to be homosexual, because he was a better man than that. During the actual Senate hearings pertaining to the higher risk of employing homosexuals, Cohen was often condescendingly and accusatory in his line of questioning. McCarthy, who presided over most of the hearings, allowed this line of questioning with no objections. In the case of Eric L Kohler, for example, Cohn delved into Mr Kohl's. Personal life and presented personal letters that had absolutely nothing to do with his job. As evidence, Cohen also used the technique of frequently repeating Mr Kohler's responses to him for emphasis and intimidation. By questioning Mr Kohler in this manner, Cohen was able to easily confuse Kohler and made him appear to be lying. He's very abusive guy. He's a ***** *** like fundamentally just an abusive bad person. I would like a collection of essays from and many people as he slept with as possible so that I can understand. The experience of being with somebody who hates themselves. Yeah. You. Sorry, sorry. There's two good documentaries. One is where's my Roy Cohn? And one is bully, coward. Victim, I think, is the name of it, which is another documentary about Roy Cohn. And that we'll explain why it says. We'll explain why it says that title. There's there's actually a good reason behind why that title is what it is. But yeah, and they talked to at least one of those has an interview with with one or two of his. His former, like, sexual partners. I don't know if lovers is the right term, because I'm not sure that Roy sounds to me that Roy was the kind of guy who was like, well, and we saw this more in the 90s, probably because of Roy Cohn's influence with the idea that if you're not falling in love with the people you're having sex with, then that's not your it's not gay. You're you're sexual. I forget how we title these things. Yeah. Then that makes you not gay, which is, again, bananas. It's bananas. If you're attracted strictly to males and you do not want to have sex with females, that is. Just categorically you're gay. Yes, it's OK and it's it's fine. That's perfectly fine. But if you are a man who exclusively has sex with other men every day of your life, you should. It's you're gay, like, and it's fine, Roy. It would have been fine if you hadn't been such a ***** ** **** to everybody. You know, the gay community, really? We love. We love other gays, man. You could have been in here getting in on this love fest, like, well, not after the lavender scare, you know, before that, before that, you could have made a choice to be proud of who you were. And been accepted and loved, and instead, you know, you made your choices. He made some choices. Now, obviously, the damage that Cohen helped to do during the Lavender scare was incalculable. But you know what? Damage isn't incalculable? Joel, what kind the damage done by our products and services to your wallet key? Right. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. Mint Mobile just has premium wireless from 15 bucks a month. There's no trapping you into a two year contract. You're opening the bill to find all these nuts fees. There's no luring you in with free subscriptions or streaming services that you'll forget to cancel and then be charged full price for. None of that. For anyone who hates their phone Bill, Mint Mobile offers premium wireless for just $15.00 a month. Mint Mobile will give you the best rate whether you're buying one or for a family and. That meant family start at 2 lines. All plans come with unlimited talk and text, plus high speed data delivered on the nation's largest 5G network. You can use your own phone with any mint mobile plan and keep your same phone number along with all your existing contacts. Just switch to Mint mobile and get premium wireless service starting at 15 bucks a month. Get premium wireless service from just $15.00 a month and no one expected plot twists at That's Seriously, you'll make your wallet very happy. At now a word from our sponsor better help. If you're having trouble stuck in your own head, focusing on problems dealing with depression, or just, you know can't seem to get yourself out of a rut, you may want to try therapy. And better help makes it very easy to get therapy that works with your lifestyle and your schedule. A therapist can help you become a better problem solver, which can make it easier to accomplish your goals, no matter how big or small they happen to be. So if you're thinking of giving therapy a try. Better help is a great option. It's convenient, accessible, affordable, and it is entirely online. You can get matched with a therapist after filling out a brief survey. And if the therapist that you get matched with doesn't wind up working out, you can switch therapists at any time when you want to be a better problem solver therapy can get you there. Visit behind today to get 10% off your first month. That's better Com behind this fall on revisionist history. Is there anything that we haven't talked about or or I should have asked you or you'd like to add that seems relevant? You should have asked me why I'm missing fingers on my left hand. A story about sacrifice. I think his suffering drove him to try to alleviate suffering. And the shocking discovery I made where I faced the consequences of writing a book I thought would help people? Isn't that funny? It's not funny at all. It's depressing. Very depressing. Revisionist history is back with more. Listen to revisionist history on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. I've never seen less enthusiasm for a great idea in my life. Ah, we're back. So. We're talking about Roy Cohn and the horrible, horrible impact of his, his, his, his crimes on the world all over the nation. Americans, particularly Americans working in the government, started spying on each other as a result of the red Scare that Conan McCarthy kicked up. There were spying not just to see who might be a red, but to see who might be gay. And in fact, some people will make the case that the entire national security establishment that we have now, the espionage state that. Is, you know, spying one way or another in all of our communications was started by Conan McCarthy. That they they are the reasons for, like, everything that's Snowden uncovered about the NSA that that ball got rolling because of McCarthy and Cohn. I don't know if that's, you know, a comprehensive case that you can make, but some people will argue it now. Yeah. And again it was, you know, it it starts this avalanche of paranoia with an American culture. And in one particularly absurd case, a woman accused her boss of being a lesbian on the basis that she had. Peculiar. Lips, not large but oddly shaped quote a funny feeling, the fact that this woman was single and the fact that she had spent a lot of time in China. So like, yeah, like, that's the sort of, like, people are like, one person is like, this woman is accused of being a lesbian and a communist because she has very little in the way of hips. Like that's that's the kind of the kind of **** that starts coming out at this point. Yeah, the whole of America goes kind of ******* bonkers. So during this whole period of the Lavender Scare, Cohen was also helping his boss carry out the Red Scare because, again, everyone with power just sort of decided that gay and communists were synonyms. It was usually Cohen's job during, you know, interrogations in the committee to ask the question, are you now or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party? After the 1952 elections, the Republicans won control of both houses of Congress. For the first time in a generation, McCarthy became the chairman of the Senate. Eddie on government operations and its Subcommittee on investigations. This allowed him to expand his search outside the State Department to other government agencies and to the broadcasting and defense industries. He started prowling around university faculties in the United Nations wherever McCarthy and Cohn went. Their investigation shattered careers and lives. What they didn't find were Communist sleeper agents. The whole affair came to a disastrous conclusion in 1954, largely as a result of Roy Cohn's *********. G David Shine had been one of McCarthy's aides. Roy Cohn's big time crush, and in fact, probably both men had a big crush on David Schein, but he was definitely Conn's boyfriend. This is the guy he was traveling around Europe with. David shine. Yeah. Now, unfortunately, Shine was drafted in 1953 either out of genuine affection or out of a desire to make sure that a hot guy didn't get mangled in a war. Roy immediately tried to intercede on shines behalf to the army. He first tried to convince them to Commission his friend as an officer. The army said no because he didn't have any skills that would, you know. Testify commissioning him so Cohen demanded that shine get extra leaves so he could go home and **** Roy Moore often. Shockingly, the army did not agree to do this either. Now Joe McCarthy was just as enraged as Cohen, because again, Joe was also kind of had a hot the hots for this guy, and rather than accept that their friend had to do his time in the service, Conan McCarthy accused the army of drafting Shine in retaliation for their attempts to uncover communists hiding in the military, the investigation they carried out on the US Army. Tested two months and one of the really bizarre things about it is that you get the feeling again, everyone involved knew that Conan McCarthy were gay. And doing this to get a lover out of the service. Congressman joke about Roy Cohn being a fairy in like, you can find video of this like, wow, yeah, while he is. Yeah, it's it's really something else. It's very gross. It's one of those things you almost feel you start to feel sorry for Cohen for a second during that part of the video and you realize like, oh, you persecuted thousands of games. Like, **** you. Like, you know I'm not gonna feel bad for you, did you? I well and like, you made it this sham. Yeah. Like you, you put yourself why this is happening. Yeah, exactly like before, gays were just persecuted by the religious and now they have to worry about their entire government coming down on their house. **** you forever, dude. Yeah, you ***** ** ****. Yeah, it's it's remarkable. The Army spokesman referred to Shine and Cohen snidely as warm personal friends, to which Roy responded. He is one of my many good friends, Sir. Yes, the courtroom behind him laughed uneasily in response. Because they knew what was being discussed. We have transcripts from the investigation and I want to read from them now. It starts from with one fellow, Mr Adams, being questioned by the army about a conversation he witnessed between Roy Cohn and Senator McCarthy. Mr Adams, I said, let's talk about shine. That started a chain of events and experience similar to none which I have had in my life. Mr. Cohen became extremely agitated, became extremely abusive. He cursed me and then Senator McCarthy. The abuse went in waves. He would be very abusive and then it would kind of abate and things would be friendly. For a few moments. Everyone would eat a little bit more and then it would start in again. It just kept on. I was trying to catch a 130 train, but Mr. Cohen was so violent by then that I felt I had better not do it and leave him that angry with me and that angry with Senator McCarthy because of a remark I had made. So I stayed and missed my 1:30 train. I thought surely I would be able to get out of there by 2:30. The luncheon concluded. And then at this point someone named Mr Jenkins. Was a member of the committee asked him. You said you were afraid to leave Senator McCarthy alone there with him. Mr Adams, what did he say? You said he was very abusive, Mr Adams. He was extremely abusive. Mr Jenkins asks, was or not any obscene language used? Mr Adams? Yes, Mr Jenkins. Just admit that and tell me what he did say which constituted abuse. In your opinion, Mr Adams? I have stated before, Sir, the tone of the voice has as much to do with abuse as the words. I do not remember the phrases, I do not remember the sentences, but I do remember the violence. Mr Jenkins, do you remember the subject, Mr Adams? The subject was shine. The subject was the fact the thing that Cohen was angry about, the thing that he was so violent about was the fact that, one, the army was not agreeing to an assignment for Shine, and two, that Senator McCarthy was not supporting his staff in its efforts to get shy and assigned to New York. So his abuse was directed partly to me and partly to Senator McCarthy. As I say, it kind of came in waves. There would be a period of extreme abuse, and then there would be a period where it would almost get back to normal and ice cream would be ordered. And then about halfway through that, a little more. The same I missed the 2:30 train. Also this, this violence continued. It was a remarkable thing. At first, Senator McCarthy seemed to be trying to conciliate. He seemed to be trying to conciliate Cohn, and not to state anything contrary to what he had stated to me in the morning. But then he more or less lapsed into silence. So I went down to room 101. Mr. Cohen was there and Mr Carr was there. As I remember, we lunched together in the Senate cafeteria, and everything was peaceful. When we returned to room 101. Toward the later part of the conversation, I asked Cohen. I knew that 90% of all inductees ultimately face overseas. Duty. And I knew that one day we were going to face that problem with Mr. Cohen as to shine. So I thought I would lay a little groundwork for future trouble. I guess. I asked him what would happen if Shine got overseas. Duty, Mr Jenkins. You mean you were breaking the news gently, Mr Adams? Mr Adams? Yes, Sir, that is right. I asked him what would happen if Shine got overseas duty. He responded with vigor and force. Stevens is through as secretary. As the army of the Army, I said. Oh, Roy. Something to this effect. Oh, Roy, don't say that. Come on. Really. What is going to happen if if Shine receives overseas? Judy Cohen responded with even more force. We will wreck the army. OK, so there's a lot there, America said. Skirt what? You can't turn the same thing that you used on Communists and throw it at the Army, Roy, you've lost sight of the goal here. You've lost sight of the goal and also have gone after the one thing that Americans actually consider sacred, which is our army. And like, yeah, that. That's not going to end well for you, Roy. You could go after a bunch of powerless gay people and accuse communists, but if you attack the army, things are going to end badly. But what I think is really fascinating. There is because there's, again, this debate over was Joe McCarthy the driving force behind the Red Scare or was it Cohen driving him? And that transcript makes me think that the people saying it was Roy have a point because that that is textbook abusive behavior. That is absolutely the textbook of, like, he's screaming at you, he's screaming at you, and then he's nice and he's normal and things get back to normal and then he starts screaming and cream. Yeah. And you get ice cream. And like, he's he's he's doing that thing that abusive people do like abusive partners do. And I don't know. I don't think he and McCarthy. Had any sort of romantic connection. But I do think that emotionally, they kind of had that, that sort of thing going on. And Roy is basically vacillating between when you make me angry in the slightest. I will become so horribly abusive to you that this guy, Mr Adams, who's like an army dude is, is horrified by how cruel I am to you. And then everything will be nice and normal and we'll be friends again. And then if you say anything that said, like, yeah, and you see the chaos and confusion, that was for this poor guy who's like, I couldn't even tell you what was being said. No, I was afraid I was just struck by the violence. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I I yeah. Woof, woof. I can't feel bad for McCarthy because you allowed yourself to be. No, no, no, no. **** Joe McCarthy. What a way to hand your. And it's what a person to hand your career over to. What are the things that is striking about this? I have to assume this guy, Mr Adams, is like a pretty normal man for his time and position. But that's a very nuanced and, like complicated understanding of an abusive. Personality that he just laid out to Congress. Like, that's. Yeah. And. And to be able to like, I feel like a lot of men would have been like, Oh well, he was just yelling. And yeah, he's just yelling. Guys get some time. No. But for him to be like, Nope, it was dangerous. And so I put myself in the line of danger to try to protect. I couldn't leave McCarthy alone with him. Yeah. Oh, man. That's a really big thing to do, I think. I think the thing, the thing that Adams recognizes that I'm most impressed with is the understanding that, like, no, it doesn't matter. What he said. It's the way he said it. It's the violence with which he said it. That was that was the, the, the disturbing thing. That's a really kind of an impressive recognition for a 50s dude, you know? Absolutely, yeah. Anyway, that's episode one of Roy Cohn. Wow. Fun guy. No, ***** ***. Yeah. We're going to talk about the conclusion of the Red Scare and also the conclusion of Roy's life, which unfortunately happens many decades later after a lot more ******* around. We'll be talking about trains. We'll be talking about Reagan. It's going to be great. It's going to be terrible talking about trains like lots of trains, lots of trains, toy trains. They're coming back. He comes from train money. Toy train money. Yeah, Joel, do you have anything you want to plug? Uh, not really. Andrew, Monique, you can find me all over the Internet at Jewel. Monique, that's JOELEMONIQUE. If you're not following her, what the ****? Hmm. I can't get into my Beyoncé love Beyoncé. Alright, well, that's the end of the episode. Joel, thank you for talking with me about Roy Cohn, a fun guy who's super fun. Robert, thank you for breaking it down. Please, please. I really feel like you're going to appreciate the animated musical cartoon they did over at the real fight. Yes, and also, listeners, go watch it. It's on YouTube. It's like 3 minutes, but it's basically all of the goodness. Or give you constant of three minutes and it makes Richmond look stupid and hilarious, and that's always fun. Yeah, Robert, you have anything you want to plug? No, I've never done anything in my entire life. Other than this exact episode of this podcast, it's my only my only completed work. Ohh uprising. Yeah, I've got a I also did one other thing. It's a podcast about the the protests, the BLM movement and the the fighting with right wing fascist paramilitaries in Portland over the summer and in autumn of 2020. It's called uprising, a guide from Portland. Check it out, it'll be out by the time this episode drops. Thing. Check it out. I can't wait. Alright, that's episode one. Yep. Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried True crime, and if you want to go from podcast fan to podcast host, do what I did and check out spreaker from iheart. I was working in accounting and hating it. Then after just 18 months of podcasting with Spreaker, I was able to quit my day job. Follow your podcasting dreams, let's break or handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's Hey there, it's Ebony Monet, your co-host for the San Diego Zoo's Amazing Wildlife podcast. In this special episode, we're speaking with Doctor Jane Goodall about the fascinating journey that led to her social discoveries on chimpanzees. So, four, oh, months the chimps ran away from me. I mean, they take one look at this peculiar white ape and disappear into the vegetation. In wildlife on the iHeartRadio app, or wherever you get your podcasts, hey y'all, it's Caroline Hobby hosted get real with Caroline Hobby interviewing the most fascinating people in Nashville and beyond. I talked to artists, I talked to the wives of artists. I talked to women entrepreneurs who have created businesses who are moms, who juggle a million hats and do it all. Each episode will leave you inspired, feeling like you can accomplish your own dream and calling listen to new episodes of get Real with Caroline Hobby every Monday on the Nashville. Broadcast Network available on iHeartRadio App, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you listen to podcast.