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 Two: The Idiot Who Made, And Destroyed, WeWork

Part Two: The Idiot Who Made, And Destroyed, WeWork

Thu, 19 Dec 2019 11:00

Part Two: The Idiot Who Made, And Destroyed, WeWork

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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, it's Bobby Bones from the Bobby cast. We are Nashville's most listened to music podcast in depth interviews with your favorite country artists, plus the biggest songwriters and producers in Nashville, all from the comfort of my own home so it gets a little more laid back. They're sharing stories behind the biggest songs in country music and personal stories that you will not hear anywhere else. So if you love country music, I think you will love this podcast. Listen to the Bobby cast on iHeartRadio, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you listen to podcast. Introducing the biz tape you're all things music business and media podcast. Join me, Joe Waslewski, and my co-host Colin McKay every Wednesday where we discussed the breaking news, changing the music industry, and what your favorite artists and creatives are up to. Listen to new episodes of the biz tape every Wednesday on the Nashville podcast network, available on iHeartRadio App, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you listen to podcasts. What? Still in Chicago? Meet me. This is the part two of our episode on Adam Newman and and we work. I'm Robert Evans, hosted behind the ******** podcast. Bad people talk about it. Introduce poorly. My guests in Part 2, as with part one, are Dan and Jordan. I pointed at the wrong ones of you. Don't worry about it, but I know which ones you are. Should I do the bit Robert? What, Robert? What? I don't understand the Beaver mind. It's the, it's the opening bit. Never mind. OK. Yeah. Jordan. Ohh right. Were you asking where you ask a question you can ask? That would be interesting. In their podcast, I have planned several questions in the podcast. Done 400 episodes. Hey, Robert, do you like music? Yeah. In the podcast that these two do, where they talk a little bit about Alex Jones, Jordan, who normally is the person who comes in a cold, asks Dan a question at the start. And I guess, yeah, you could hit me up with a question. Yeah. Man, oh, man. Now I'm on the spot. Mm-hmm. Let's see. Robert, I. Have you any experience? Roller coasters. What's your style on roller coasters? I I've only ever loved one roller coaster Jordan, and it wasn't a roller coaster Robert is married to. This was a it was a, it was a virtual reality sort of experience and Six Flags over Texas. This type of thing, a little bit, a little bit. You were like a like an F16 pilot, breaking the sound barrier of it. It was very cool. Not really a roller coaster. I don't really like roller coasters. I've been on a number of them. It's fine. It's just not my thing. OK, but but I liked that ride. And then Six Flags took it away and from you specifically. One day. One day I will take vengeance, OK? Is that is, that is. I want to clarify that is absolutely and that is. That is, I want to clarify that is absolutely a terroristic threat. One day they're gonna wake up and it's only gonna be 5 flats. *** **** it. Yeah, I'm gonna take, I'm gonna take at least 18% of those flags. I I don't know how to do that percentage. It's hard. Something along those lines. Rough for me within the ballpark. And my answer is, I liked that one, Mr Toads. Wild ride thing. That wind in the willows. That book about a frog that gets drunk and goes down in the Brer Rabbit one run. I love that one both before and then in a different way after I realized how racist it was. Song of the South. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. It was a real before it was just like, this is a fun ride. I'm seven. That's just after it was like really, really still. It is 2004. That's that's Splash Mountain, right? Isn't it that that's the one that has the Brer Rabbit and because I think at the end of it. Go over the waterfall and they killed that guy. Yeah, I think so. And and there's so much to unpack about Splash Mountain. I mean, it has that song of the South connection to it. There's also like a tradition of people flashing on the way down. Like for kids, there's a lot. There's a lot going on, a lot going on. Very complicated Disney parks in general. My favorite was the Velveteen rabbit, and you go up and you just stay down after that. My favorites? The Velveteen Dream wrestler fan. They should have a velveteen rabbit. Ride where they just take something the children love individually and destroy it in front of them. Less of a ride and more of child abuse. Yeah, but I'll the only way you become real. Yeah, the only way you become real. If it were Adam, it would be a bottle of tequila. Yes. Thank you for bringing it back to Adam Neumann. A great transition. Very smooth. So we ended the last episode with with we work nearing its height in 2016. 2017 with a lot of money. Just gets this in flush $4.4 billion. ******* cash, which they used to make atoms. Dumbest dreams come true. Dizzy, double back to the baby clothes. In a way now. After Trump got elected, so he just changed it to the KKK crawlers? Yeah, it did have OK now before we get into all that, what he did with all this VC money, I want to start this episode, but talking a little bit about cults some more, now we work has been described by a number of former employees as quote like, and Neumann has been described as a quote leader. Former employees often call his personal charisma almost intoxicating. One former executive said if you had to go to war, you wanted him to be your general. Another recalled his sense of himself. Beyond human, when you're in a room with Adam, he can almost convince you of anything. There are certainly cult like tactics at use in Wework Colts endeavour to separate their members from the wider world and the friends and family they have outside the cold, and you could argue that things like thank God it's Monday and mandatory after hours fun events fulfill that role. They also rely on consciousness alternating direction. This is all stuff we've talked about, keeping people tired, exhausted, ****** **. And of course the fact that I will note in a point of fairness the fact that Adam himself was often one of the drunkest. People in the company makes this a little bit less manipulative. It's sort of like he kind of just digs that stuff. Yeah. It would be a much clearer red flag if he was not drinking and handing out alcohol. That would be beyond a red flag. Yeah. Yeah. That that would be that would be deliberately drugging his employees. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So it's more complicated than just, he's a cult leader, but he uses a lot of those tactics, clearly. Maybe just sort of. You get the feeling with him that it's a lot of, it's not as much intentional as it is, like, instinctive. Yeah, Umm. Which I guess is how we get our first cult. Some people just know how to do that. Yeah, no, my family was in a cult whenever I was born. So I know all of the tricks and all of the ways that you get kind of accidentally swept up and all that ****. And then next thing you know, everybody's wearing the same clothes, dancing around a fire to journey. Yeah, tragic. That's the just the drain everybody circles. Although people should consider joining the cult that I'm gonna start. Is that right? What? You go Oh yeah, where do you go? Maybe the elevator pitch were people to talk in elevator. I mean we're it's it's a mix of people. Gifting me with large amounts of machetes? Great, getting really high and shoving Adam Neuman off of buildings. It's it's gonna be good cold if you can do it. Hmm. Ohgi. I was just, I was just contemplating, but there's a there's a shelf life to this thing is there's one Adam Neumann, there is. There is one of the tenants of this cult. There's a the great thing about shoving people off of buildings is there's always more people and more buildings. That's true. Or if you can just keep shoving, which is our motto, just keep shoving. Just keep shoving. They're going to be a Brigham Young to this Adam Neumann Wework situation. Maybe we haven't like, actual time hasn't really hit that point yet, so I can't say right now. If you're gonna compare Neuman to a cult leader and we worked for a cult, Keith Ranieri's Nexium cult might be the best one to reference listeners to part three of our series on Keith Ranieri and Nexium will recall that he hosted a yearly event called Vanguard Week, where followers from all over the globe would fly in to celebrate Keith's birthday. In the same vein, we work had summer camp, an annual event where employees would gather, celebrate and network. Here's the New York Times talking about this fun Saturdays, all kinds of activities. Crawford Yoga, axe throwing leaf printing a drum circle along with entertainment by an expensive array of visiting performers, The Chainsmokers once played and received Wework stock as part of their fee. While the weekend was flown in from Toronto by helicopter. Tenacious, we, an employee band, has also performed. Sounds insufferable. That's terrible. I didn't even want to see the real version. It was just so much everything, one former executive said. Alcohol, drugs. There was not a lot of food. That was the only thing. There wasn't a lot of anything. That would bulwark you against against the alcohol and the drugs. Yeah, I'm super high already, but I'm very hungry. I'm gonna eat all of these mushrooms. Yeah, just for something that has happened to me once and I it's not a great food. No, nor is it a great idea. As you were describing that festival, I did point at you very aggressively because they kind of almost swung you with the axe throwing, didn't they? Look, my my coat would indeed center around lots of drugs throwing axes. Dancing around fires the weekend. Well, that song often, actually, I do. I do quite like, but that's sounds suspiciously like the great outdoor games. So no, no, no, no, there's no, there's no games. No. I feel like, I feel like adding an element of competition to throwing sharp objects at inert things cheapens it. That's fair. You just you're just throwing axes and knives for the joy of throwing sharp things at wooden things you don't want to. It's all it's the purity of the purity of exactly, exactly. Exactly. Now, uh, summer camp included educational interludes like speeches from quantum physicist Michael Brooks, alongside beer pong and dancing to electronic music. And in the midst of these days, long bacchanals to employees plied with drugs, limitless alcohol, little food, and less sleep, Adam Neumann would preach his gospel in a 2013 summer camp. He took to the stage to say, I think the thing that all of us know is that if you want to succeed in this world, you have to build something that has intention. Every one of us is here because it has meaning, because we want to do something that actually makes the world a better place. And we want to make money doing it. The crowd reportedly broke into wild cheers at this, one former senior executive who was there later recalled. So many of the people were young and had never worked in a real company. They bought all of it, I realized after I got there it was a cult now. Summer Camp started as an event on the land of some of Neumann's friends, but in 2017 it moved to the English countryside. Using some of the billions of new money pumped into via Softbank's $4.4 billion infusion, they flew employees in from all around the world. Attendees. Reported that they were allowed to walk up to the bar and ask for multiple entire bottles of wine at once. People played Edward 40 hands with fancy bottles of Rose, which is what I would do. Yeah, yeah, that part sounds great. Yeah, that's that's your God-given duty. When you realize the liquor is free and expensive and they'll just hand you bottles, that's what you do. Have you ever done that? Take 40s to your hands? Yeah. Had a boy. The worst thing I've done in ******* lubiana, Slovenia was you can buy 2 liters of wine in a gigantic. Juice box for about a dollar and 1/2 time and you mix it with equal parts Pepsi and it is the worst idea. Doesn't hear that idea terrible do you duct tape those to your hands? No, we just drank. I blacked out, throwing an empty bottle on top of a stranger's roof, and I came to alone without any of my friends near me receiving a falafel from somebody having already paid with my phone. Gone 9 in the morning, like 8 hours later, just the first time. Only time that's ever happened. We're just like, I black out and I come back in the middle of a transaction. Yeah, and you could run the friendship contest. I assumed I had. No, I was alone. I had lost the friendship. The prize was a falafel. Yeah, I I did that once. I tape duct tape 40s to my hands. Edward. 40 Hands just now with wine. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's terrible. It's terrible because you eventually have to pee. Yeah, it's steel reserve isn't something anyone should drink two of yeah, that's definitely true. Yeah. Me and my buddies also had a thing we did called Freedom 40s. That was you have to chug a 40 and 9 minutes and 11 seconds or else the terrorists win. It's a shockingly hard to do because 40s are ghastly. Yeah, tasting really the best way to forget. Yeah. Now, one employee later told the New York Times that she realized it was time to quit. We work when she woke up in a teepee at summer camp to find one of her colleagues outside ******* on her tent, that employee later told New York Magazine. Talked to any community manager under 24 and it's the greatest weekend of your life, but I am not here to get peed on. Now I'm going to quote one more time from that. New York magazine article discussing the 2018 summer camp, which spoilers would prove to be the last one. At last year's event, according to report and Property Magazine, a British real estate publication, Norman sat on stage next to his wife and Mckelvey as the crowd sang. Oh, Leo, Leo lay a. We were employee from India, started chanting. Let's go, we work, let's go while another from California screamed. You're changing the world, Adam. We love you. Augusto Contreras, we were employee from Mexico City, proposed to his girlfriend next to a dodgeball tournament. I felt like I was surrounded by my extended family, he told the company blog he had been at. We work for seven months. So they find the people who are vulnerable to this and they're very vulnerable to it. When you were said that it was the last one, I expected this story to be something like really tragic or like fire festival, but that just was just like, no, just perform there though, you're sucking in people who need what this pretends to provide. Yeah, it doesn't really provide it, but that's coming later now. That fast company article I've quoted from a couple of times in this episode was released in 2016. It provides even more detail on the profoundly culty way that Adam presented himself at company events. Quote a Beatles chorus bounces off the bare concrete walls of what was once JP Morgan said. Quarters come together right now. The nearly thousand chattering we work employees who filled the event space looked toward the stage, expecting CEO Adam Neumann to appear from the wings at any 2nd. Instead, he sprints down the center aisle and giddy conversations evolve into a cheer. When John Lennon trills over me, Norman leaps onto the stage, sticking the landing. This is the way this guy's presenting himself to his employees and kind of seems like a lot of made it up. Yeah. Wall Street has already come out by this. Yeah. Yeah. They should know better. They should know better. But people never learn about this. Yeah, so many movies about. I mean World War Two came out and we all know what happened in 2016. So have you for saving private, right. Yeah. Have you ever watched like the presentations that like MLM's, like the multi level marketing? Yeah. Yeah. This is exactly similar. Yeah. I've watched a number of those like those seminars and the the gatherings that they do and it has that has all of those those signs. I wanna you know I try to repeat frequently that I think everybody has a kind of grift that they're vulnerable to no matter how smart, because there's nothing to do with intelligence. It's it has everything to do with the fact that everybody has needs and particularly secret needs that even they don't know how to voice a lot of the time and if someone other than you. Particularly predators. What they're good at is seeing things and others that they don't see in themselves but that are present. If they're able to pick that out, they'll get you. Hmm, doesn't matter how smart and well read you are, they'll get you. We all have a thing. And Adam found a group of people who I think were raised on stories like apples. You know, the the history of the Apple Court, the Google Corporation, these companies that like change the world and had these like grand visions and like these and legendary. Leaders and everybody got super ******* rich too. And Adam knew how to create the feeling that that's what was going on here. It wasn't there was just leasing office space, like it wasn't literally like Google that that is like a revolution. We organize the world's information apple. We changed the fundamentally the way that daily life exists for billions of people. Those are companies where you really can't oversell at least the impact of what's happening. These people are leasing office space, but they may not feel like that. Yeah, but there's kid that that is part of why it felt like that. It is. It is like he watched that Apple commercial where the the hammer is thrown into the giant screen and all the all the drones are there. And he was like, what if I made all those drones? Those guys were super cool. Yeah, that seems like that's the thing I wanna be. Wanna throw a hammer in **** that'll be there. Everything will fall down, will be terrible. It's hard for me not to think that, like none of this would be possible without booze. Like, it's like there's. It's not for nothing that alcohol is. In every story you read about we work, it really seems very the inflated, the only way to have achieved the inflated sense of self-confidence that was clearly a major aspect of this would have been to give everyone free guns, which is how my Colts going to work. I thought it was machetes. Machetes. And don't do it enough, man. It's really, it's gotta be an AK47. I understand now. That makes you feel like a revolutionary, like holding a Kalashnikov. That's what I hear. And then we're going to shove people off of buildings. Adam Neumann at first. But from each, according to the bullets, they have two each according to the bullets, they deserve. Is that yeah, that's really good. I feel like I should also abstain from this bit. And here's our special 3rd guest, FBI agent Don. Chicago's financially a lot more than one of you. OK joining us right now? Fire Department of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. Yeah. Not fans now hand, they have deep dish pizza. Are fused to try it. That's fine. Yeah, you're fine. Yeah, don't worry about it. Every everyone I know from Chicago has said that it's fine. People not from Chicago are like, oh, you gotta try the. Yeah, pizza. We're all fine. Yeah. Yeah, now it's like calimax. It's not as good as tech Max say it lived in both. Fair enough. Not nearly as good, I know, dogging the pizza fight. You know, Speaking of dogfights, not Speaking of dogfights. Speaking of dog fights, you know who would never train dogs to fight? Who is that? At one point, at one point you probably would assume he wouldn't. Yeah, when he was 5-6, sure. And like a 5 year old Michael Vick. Someone who is incapable of hosting dog fights is the sponsors of this show. Silky. One of the better ad transitions on this series. Off we go. So by now we imagine that you've seen the theories on Tik T.O.K. You maybe even heard the rumors from your friends and loved ones. But are any of the stories about government conspiracies and cover ups actually true? The answer is surprisingly or unsurprisingly, yes. For more than a decade, we hear at stuff they don't want you to know have been seeking answers to these questions. Sometimes there are answers that people would rather us not explore. Now we're sharing this research. With you for the first time ever in a book format, you can pre-order stuff they don't want you to know now. It's the new book from us, the creators of the podcast and video series. You can turn back now or read the stuff they don't want you to know. Available for pre-order now, it's stuff you should read or wherever you find your favorite books. In the 1980s and 90s, a psychopath terrorized the country of Belgium. A serial killer and kidnapper was abducting children in the bright light of day. His unspeakable crimes and the incompetence or unwillingness of the police to stop him brought the entire country of Belgium to the brink of revolution. From Tenderfoot TV in iHeartRadio this is la Monstra. A story of abomination and conspiracy that led to the demise of the entire institution of Belgian federal police and rattled the foundations of its government. A story about the man who simply become known as La Monster. Listen for free on the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. This is a story about land and oil, about family, about wealth. About the stories we passed down and the stories we don't. More than 100 years ago, the Osage nation negotiated something unique that brought a lot of money to its people. For the past year, I've been trying to figure out who ended up with that wealth and how they got it. The truth has got to come out, you know, and it's it's not always pretty and it's not always flattering. This is in trust, an investigative podcast about a massive transfer of wealth out of Osage hands and into white ones, and how the Osage nation is fighting to get it back in trust is a new series from Bloomberg and Iheart Media, reported and hosted by me. Rachel Adams heard listen on the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. We're back. Ohh. What I loved about those products and services was that none of them were for dog fights. It's true. It's true. Sometimes you just can't abandon the dog fight, but when you should, it's no, it's hard to, it's hard to abandon the dog. But it's also rare these days for me to guest on a podcast that isn't sponsored by a dog fighting ring. It is. It is. Well, and you know, I I just should say if you use the promo code, ********. You get access to the 2024 hour streaming dog fights. All the best dog fights we got Chihuahuas and all the sabermetrics about like the yeah, yeah, you get it, wins over replace fighting. Yeah, yeah, absolutely. OK, so now shortly after Adam Neumann founded we work, he'd made what seemed to be at the time an impossible promise that his company would one day beat out JP Morgan and become the largest private office tenant in the city of New York. Given that New York is New York, that's a pretty huge deal. Like, so JP Morgan was prior the the most office space, the gigantic bank with all of the money in the world. Yeah, is so saying I'm gonna beat them. That's a big. That's a big thing to to hit. But in 2018, this dream became a reality. We work now least 5,000,000 square feet over 50 locations across the city. So all of it still not making money, correct? Not a profit. They're making money, but not net, not net. Yeah. Now those locations as we got into a little bit, released with venture capital money, not actual profits made by the company. And those offices were kept full due to free rent offers and lease buyouts, which is not a strategy that can continue forever where you could just give people homes, you could give people homes for less. It does it make more sense. It does feel like people talk about like we can't afford universal health care and then it's like how much money did we work blow through, just blow like even outside of how much money do we spend on the F35, which is actually vastly higher like. But, but but still. And if he, like, housed people instead of all these offices, those people would get tons of booze. Yep. Yeah, they they'd be drunk as ****. Now Softbank's massive investments seem to confirm Adam's grand boast about the importance of his company, and his ego swelled. Consequently, he started talking to colleagues about his desire for eternal life. This is like moon base all over again. Nope. Nope. Nope. This is where Dan's ears perk up. He invested in Life Biosciences, a life extension startup. To further this end, the company mission is to create a future where age-related decline is not a fact of life. Adam increasingly throughout wild ideas for ways we work, could expand to areas well outside of its wheelhouse. Sometime after 17, 2017, he started talking about starting an airline called we fly potential **** where you're like, you look in history and you're like, how is it that people got sold on *******? Alchemy and the Philosopher's Stone and eternal life. And then you look at that guy and you're like, he's still doing it. Yeah, they're still there, they're still doing it. In fairness, we fly kind of like it's a good thing. It's a good, it's a good, it's fine enough name for an airline. It's just like, what's your experience renting buildings to companies? What do you want to do, run an airline? It's an airplane, but an office? That's sky office. Yeah, exactly. That is actually where these episodes were written. So exactly, Robert the WOW Airlines in Iceland that used to in the World of Warcraft Airlines. And there was Wizz Air, which is the worst airline started as like a bike share company and their next move is like, I think we'll run an airline. Turns out those skills do not translate. Translate. No. Weird. Wow now. Adam, increasingly throughout, wild ideas for ways we work could expand into areas well outside. Oh right, I read that a little bit. Ohh yeah, so we fly is one. There was also talk of we sail and something called we sleep, which I have no idea what that was supposed to be. Briefly discussed mattresses, mattresses, maybe like a sleep lab. He briefly discussed his ambition to become Israel's Prime Minister before amending that to say that if he ran for any office, it would be for president of the world. That's an awful cool part of how, you know this was a little bit culty is that if? My boss this podcast. Jack O'Brien. Mm-hmm. So when I have great respect for. I've worked with him 1112 years now, the vast majority. Basically all of my working life. If he told me seriously that if he ever ran for office it would be for president of the world and it wasn't like a bad joke, I would just start punching. And I love Jack. But that's what you do when you care about someone and they say **** you just start hitting them. It's it's a mentality that needs to be gone from that it needs to be hit. Yeah. Yeah, you don't. You just don't do that, especially when it's paired with. Like, I'm trying to put money into life extension technology and I wanna Mars based president of the world. Yeah, I'm gonna hit you with this brick. Like this is what needs to happen now have become a problem and I have a visceral response to that. Yeah. Could be president of the world with one eye. Yeah. You will not have both of your eyes while you do it. I will make sure of that. I think it is inevitable that if there is a President of the world, they will have one eye, but there will be an eye patch situation because it'll be a dystopian like water. World type. Yeah. I was going with the what? What? What was his name? D boy from Friday. The President of the world in fifth element. Sure, yeah, that's a great president. That's the one. That's the one that I'm all about. I I will say, as an anarchist, I have a lot of different, conflicting, always shifting ideas about, about how I think the world ought to be. One thing I'm certain of is that based on my ideology, if I ever think someone might become the President of the world, I'm going to try to hit him with a brick. I think that's fair. Although I also think that many try to break him. Yeah, I I think that anytime you hear someone say, like, I want to be president of the world, like, what scares me about that is not the possibility that they'll become president of the world. It's just what that implies about their mental state. Yeah. It's like, because it's like, this is this is trouble. Like, I would, I would have a very negative reaction to somebody who was like, I'm gonna be president. Yeah, because that's a bad thing to want to be. Yeah. But somebody wants to be president of the world. That's a bricking. Yeah, that's a bricken. It's it's getting to be this mentality. Yeah. I mean, the the truth is the only people that should be in power, the people who don't want to be in power. And that's why we're ****** now. All of this we've been talking about for several minutes now was a paragraph, and I haven't read the last sentence, and it's the most insufferable sentence. Mike down Jordan in the 2018 summer camp, Adam Neuman promised that we work, would solve the problem of children without parents and then eradicate world hunger. We're going to kill children without parents. This is just our guessing. Orphans. They shouldn't be hungry, though. We works. Value soared past 10 billion, then past 20 billion. Adam Neumann was now, on paper, at least 8 billionaire himself. So there was no indication of how he planned to solve those problems. No, none whatsoever. OK, well, a little bit. We'll get, we'll get that a little bit patient medium post right now. Elizabeth Warren made a white paper. Yeah. You know, he actually, if he had, that would have been more thought than I think he gave to it. Yeah. Yeah, uh. He immediately started bragging after becoming a billionaire again on paper that his personal goal was to become the world's first trillionaire. Do you not have brick? Brick him good. No, we don't have one. No, no, no, really. Jeff Bezos is out like Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates are like 120 million, something like that. 100 billion. That's not even all that close to a trillion. I have so little interest in money stuff that I just assumed we had a couple. I feel like it is a matter of like the survival of civilization level importance that we not let anyone reach that level. Yeah, I feel like it's a matter of survival that we don't allow billionaires to exist until. No, I mean we. We've we've gotta stop that too. That's gonna go. Yeah, that's a bricken. If I wanna be a trillionaire. That's a bricken. I see a shirt in your future. Yeah, that's a brick. That's a brick. And I'm. I'm gonna be. I'm gonna hit you with a brick. Yeah. I just gotta do it. If you were a stand up comedian touring the Midwest, you would sell a lot of. That's a brick and shirts. Yeah. Yeah. Now, the reality of Adams wealth was less impressive. He made millions as we work CEO. Because that's what CEOs do. And he made millions more from having the company leased from properties he owned. But he also had borrowed more than $740 million against his stock in the company. I think that is legal. For some reason he sold hundreds of millions of dollars worth of his own shares. This was often done in a very shady fashion. For example, in 2015 he sold 10s of millions of dollars worth of shares. Then he had the company launched a stock buyback program to buy employee shares of stock the buyback program offered employees. Per share price that was markedly lower than what Neumann had been paid for his stock. And since Adam stock sales weren't public, we work some Ployees didn't realize they were being screwed to subsidize Adams lifestyle. Mm-hmm. And I feel like all those guys who are like, OK, here's what we'll do to increase productivity, create a cult, and **** over. Everybody I work with could really be served by, like, reading all the literature where they're like, if you pay people a living wage and give them benefits and give them time off. They will work more for you on their own, Jordan. That is not how you become president of the world. It's definitely not is that, you know, you become president of the world. Crazy ****. It's racism. It's racism. Ohh, no. Now, because it's the world, it's a number of different racisms cause you gotta be able to. It's a balancing act. Mexicans, Tibetans, you gotta really all over the world, right? So it's really a lot of religion. And then, but even then you've got a I wonder, I wonder what it'll be. I wonder we might see it in. Lifetimes. And I'm really, I'm really curious. Yeah, I'm really curious to see whether or not it's a a racism or an an A religious bigotry thing. Yeah, well, no, just which one? Which plane to which sort of bigotry wins, you know? Because I feel like it'll be one president who's like, **** all these different individual races that I've calculated will maximize my vote, and one President will be like, **** this specific religion. What? It would be like a like a focused, tested racism versus instinctual racism. I mean, it's actually going to come down to Hillary versus Trump. Again, very frustratingly, yeah, the MPAA has to review what type of racism in a bunch of focus groups. Yeah, gotcha. Now. During this time, Adam and Rebecca bought a $90 million collection of homes around the world, including a 60 acre estate in Westchester County. And those kids made it. That marriage worked it. Dude, I expected a divorce by now. You know, it's weird when you have hundreds of millions of dollars. It's easy to stay married. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Which really speaks to how unpleasant Jeff Bezos is. Marriage must have been. Anyway, I'm not gonna comment on that anymore. Yeah, they had a $21 million mansion in the Bay Area with a room shaped like a guitar. They hired several nannies for their children, 2 personal assistants, and a chef. Even as much money as Adam was worth, his spending was incredibly excessive. And so was we works spending. While Adam's craziest ideas, like establishing an airline, never went into production, the company did embark on a number of side hustles. At his direction, they created we live, essentially a very expensive apartment complex with no privacy. Adam said this would drive suicide rates down because no one feels alone. Elevator talk. Getting really uncomfortable, but is that is kind of the natural progression if they're like, yeah, making this company that is like company towns. Yeah. Yeah, you you you've created this like, this is the workspace. We now own that. Why wouldn't you then get into like, now we're getting into your living. Yeah, I tried to create a workspace. Living space. So why not just a living space workspace? They also created a gym. I think it was called we rise. That should be their bakery. That should be their bakery. I know, I know. Missed opportunities. And then they created we grow. This was a school that Adam hoped would eventually expand into a project to house all the world's orphans. Jesus. Adam said. This ******* sentence, you guys, Adam said of we growth plan to save the orphans. We want to solve this problem and give them a new family, though we work family. I'm speechless. That's terrifying. What if what kind of person says that? A crazy. I think I'm just a just a straight up insane person. Yeah. I wonder if there was a moment. I wonder this because this is this is a quite like in the movie of this day, this dude's life. Does he have that Scarface moment where it's like, you can see him just go past that point and it's like everything past this is just going to be. It's probably that night on the roof. It was that night on the roof. Maybe, yeah, you might have been on there. I could get people to do anything if they'll drink this this poop beer. Could be. On the roof and then ohh, this is gonna be an insufferable movie, isn't it? That makes him into like, a cool guy would be another social network. It's like a Wall Street, but it turned out that even when you satirize, yeah, people, people, people are like, there needs, there should be a law that when you do a movie like Wolf of Wall Street, there needs to be a 7 minute scene where in the character ***** himself. Yeah. Really unbecoming, yeah. Make him embarrassing and make it uncomfortable for the audience. You know, it should be hard to get over that hump. You should expect it to be over like 3 minutes in and then it just and not not like funny. Not like the vomiting scene in Team America. Like, just just bad. Just a bad thing to be a part of. You know, because it happened. I I feel like that's a regulation we could pass. I think so, yeah, I think so. It's by bipartisan appeal. Yeah. Yeah. The ship, the movie ******** Bill, is passed through both houses and is now on the president's desk. He was reportedly unable to sign today as he was too busy chopping off his enormous poop so that it could flush in less than 10 flushes. That did happen. That's just that. That's just part of politics in America. You can't remove that from the history books where we live now. Yeah, amazing. It's gonna be really funny if we get past as a nation, him being in office and don't collapse into a civil war to hear people talk about the dignity of the presidency again. Like, really it's going to, it's going to be like, I hope I get to be on TV at some point when that happens and just get. What? What? What is left? Yeah. Did you hear the poop speech? I mean, historically, the dignity of the Presidency was lost. You know, I I guess after Andrew it was it was always, it was always an illusion. But even Jackson presented himself in a stately manner and stuff like like a 6 foot tall wheel of cheese is where I get off the off board on the dignity of the. That's the that's the best thing he did. Yeah, we called 6 foot tall wheel of cheese. I feel like that's different than than accusing. Everyone else in the country needing 15 flushes to get their poop down the toilet and every everyone listening, knowing like you couldn't get a poop down the toilet, couldn't you? The president. So you told on yourself there with this speech, it's bad. No one else is having trouble with this. Yeah. Here I am haven't pooped for four days and it takes 10. Yeah, I mean, you can. You can say that, like, the office is undignified, historically, forever. But I think there is a value to a shared illusion. Yeah. And that's kind of gone. I think there's a value, but it's not a good or a bad thing. It's just a value in the same way that an AR15 has a value. Yeah. When we last before we went on this regression, I'd said that Adam wanted to to solve the problem of of of parentless children and give them a new family that we were when we went on the digression. Because that is ******* crazy. It is. It's a nuts ******* sentence. Now, before we work could house the world's orphans, though, we're going to put them on trains. It has. Nobody's ever done this before. And we'll send it all the way across the nation, you know, it's better than that. Yeah. It's better than that, but Dumber. We train in order to make we grow, get to the point where it could house all of the world's orphans. It was going to start as a luxury boutique school for the children of rich people, charging the very wealthy in New York City 36 to $42,000 a year to educate their small children. Well, this seems like the opposite. The world's homeless orphan problem with making it impossible for them to afford with Waldorf education. Like, I imagine him like flying down to a group of Syrian refugees fleeing like a barrel bombing in Idlib and like putting a hand on one of their shoulders and saying and like 20 years when the cost comes down and I take care of you right now. No way. For now it's just Sean Penn's kids. And they're getting a great education. Absolutely. I believe. Do you know who Sean Penn is? Ohh, you're dead. Sorry about that. Now we grow. Was Rebecca Neumann's project his wife she'd been a core part of. We work from the beginning, of course. In 2017, the company had hired Soul Cycle founder Julie Rice as their chief brand officer. But when Rebecca came back from maternity leave later that year, she decided she wanted the title for herself and took it. So Julie had to quit. OK, according to we works established business practices, she should have been fired. Yeah, and demoted. I'm disappointed by this. She was, that's what. Because she was originally the chief brand officer, right? Yeah. Yeah. So but then Rebecca got it. Yeah. Now support this decision. Apparently Rebecca is somewhat famous among we workers for firing people she met and got bad vibes from. One example is a mechanic for the company Gulfstream private jet who was **** canned because Rebecca, quote, didn't like his energy. So she's the kind of person we are all we all like now. Obviously, she was the perfect person to design a brand new school from the ground up. Rebecca, of course, had no relevant experience in education. And also, what are children and running a school? What if these kids have bad vibes? Well, yeah, then then you just kill. That's you throw them off the top of that building real trouble. Someone who's, like, so yeesh, he's got. What was missing from public education was more capriciousness. Yeah. And good vibes. Good vibes? Yeah. She had nowhere else in experience, but she didn't think that really mattered. She told interviewers that her vision for Wegrow was a new, conscious, entrepreneurial school committed to unleashing every child superpowers at the school's opening. He reportedly stated in my book there's no reason why children in elementary schools can't be launching their own businesses. Hmm. Labor laws? Not if they're running **** Jordan. I mean, if you like, I'm gonna hire a bunch of eight-year olds to work in this coal mine. I mean, ******* nail it. If you wanna do a school where, like, hey, you, it's cool to do a lemonade stand and learn some lessons from it. I don't know how I'm not going to die on that hill arguing against that, but it sounds like that's not what she's talking about. No, no, she wants them making their own Wii. Didn't the Olsen twins even wait until they were 18 to start their fashion? Friend or whatever I think they did, and I I think that maybe working their entire childhood had some negative mental health implications, but I don't want to speak for them. It's it's telling that kind of the best case scenario for children who work a lot as children as Macaulay Culkin. Yeah, well, his best role is in party monster, which I'm sure he's ******* awesome. In part of the monster, it's that's a that's a great movie and that's great. Yeah, yeah, it's great. I like Macaulay Culkin and I'm glad he made it out. He was also good and saved. He's also good and saved. It's tough is what I'm saying. Being a child who works heavily as a child. It's not. Maybe it's not good for children. Maybe should. Children shouldn't work a lot. Give me the backing of thousands upon thousands of psychological studies and then I will listen. Yeah, you know what's typologically would be awesome for kids in school ******* looking at payroll inventory. It's like you talk about like, like like child actors and actresses. Obviously, a lot of them have very negative experiences. Yeah, it's it's very it's a damaging thing. Which is why, like, we have so much respect for, like, Daniel Radcliffe parents who are like, no, we're not gonna let our kid move to ******* Los Angeles. Like, you either film it and you like, we're just not gonna put them through that. It's tough. It does things to them and they're not in charge. They actually have a lot of people there to support them. And it still is a very difficult is a very difficult to deal with healthily having a kid managing payroll, having a kid managing like debt and like venture capital and like, what a bad idea. It seems like woefully stupid. Now we grow. Launched in the fall of 2018, it was housed. Neworks headquarters problems immediately cropped up due to the fact that Rebecca and her colleagues had failed to anticipate minor details like paying the school security guards. HR had apparently forgotten to add them to payroll. So this was an immediate bump in the log. Sometimes you don't pay the people, the little people, when you're, well, trying to start a school for entrepreneurs, sure you're going to make mistakes that entrepreneurs should make to be fair, under no circumstances, should not make should be fair. A second grader was in charge of HR. Yeah, so and security. Yeah, so these things will happen now. It's a learning experience. Other problem. Other problems came as a result of Becca's own peculiar preferences. She made a rule that parents were allowed to wait in the school lounge to pick up children, but nannies had to wait outside in the vestibule. This was reportedly because Rebecca didn't want her own children's nannies to enter the school. One person close to the school told interviewers. The whole thing was about her and what was right for her children. Right? Right. Yeah. What if I made a school based on Downton Abbey? Gotcha. Yeah. Cool. Rebecca herself told Fast Company something similar. She claimed that the inspiration for Wegrow had come when she and Adam were looking for fancy rich people schools for their five kids. And quote, we couldn't find the school that we felt would nurture growth. These children come into the world. They are very evolved. They are very special. They're spiritual. They're all natural, not entrepreneurs, natural humanitarians. And then it seems like we squash it all out of them and the education system. Well, it sounds familiar. Think of anybody this is this is very reminiscent of like kind of a lot of the extreme right home school kind of yeah. There's some aspects of a lot of different things yeah in that now like everything else the Normans embarked on, we grow put style before substance. The school was designed by a famous architect and featured a vertical garden and whatever acoustic clouds are on the ceiling. We work, bought an alternative college start up mission you in order to hire, etc. Oh, for we grow. Who presumably knew something about teaching kids curriculum included classes on mindfulness, yoga, meditation, and farming. All meals were vegetarian. I don't have any problem with the last two parts, I just include them for context. Mindfulness and meditation? Yeah, maybe not a great idea for teaching. I don't know. 9 year olds love can't hurt gold spaces. Yeah. Therefore we'll talk about mindfulness in another episode as we work. Matured and started doing mindfulness. Yeah, **** that ****. As weird evidence takes down meditation, don't think. I wouldn't have lit nearly as many fires as I've lived my life if I if I thought right. And I've learned so much from those fires. What happens when insulation catches on fire? What happens when drywall catches on fire? What happens when shingles catch on fire? Basically, what happens when people catch on fire? All lessons I wouldn't have had if I'd thought more. That's a good point. Mm-hmm. Thank you. Alright, I retract. Now it's my supportive meditation. As we work matured and started expanding into every conceivable realm, Adam began to revamp his ideas about the we generation. He modified this to what he called me, plus where we go. That's what I was waiting for. I literally was about to say that he's going to say it's the ME generation, but never mind you. And then he's gonna get speed plus Pepsi. Yeah, he explained at a Wework summit quote. On one hand, you want to be your own person, have your own goals, and on the other hand, you understand that. Being a part of something greater than yourself is an amazing opportunity and actually makes you stronger. Now Adam had earlier claimed that we worked multi billion dollar valuation was much more based on our energy and spirituality than it is on a multiple of revenue, pointing out that his real estate leasing business was not a real estate business but instead a community company. We're not selling office space, we're selling community. It's amazing that the thing that can't be sold, rich people are always telling us that. It's just not about money, Robert. It's only about money for again, that people who will die immediately without a little bit more of it, right? But we can put them on trains and solve homelessness or some ****. I don't know. Yeah, I've noticed at this point, like, there's been literally no conversation at all about like, people having good experiences and we work offices or like, I'm sure they exist. Actual community that he intends to build, actually. There's a lot of turnover. It's not like early Apple words like people stay for ******* ever. Mm-hmm. Or a lot of stuff you hear about early Google. There's a ton of turnover, but he's not even talking about this, like, great thing that he's bringing into the world, being about the employees of we work. It's the people who rent the office space. And it's always vague and community too, because it's not real. He's, again, he's selling this to the bosses, but I mean, in reality, if you're living, if you're working at a Wework. Space. It's just a very mundane office space. Yeah, like if you're working at. But they have cases. All the slightly better interior design, you know? Worked. I worked at a shared office space for for a while and it was just it was fine. Everybody was there. Yeah, I could never. Like, I don't know. I can't be productive in a space where I can't wander around shirtless with an AR15 strapped to my chest. We all have our process strapped or taped strapped strapped. No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. I I have a very nice Ling now. Several. You know who doesn't sell slings for AR fifteens? Maybe yet, although we're courting them, yes. The products and services that sponsored this show. 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. 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That's better So by now we imagine that you've seen the theories on Tik T.O.K. You maybe even heard the rumors, your friends and loved ones. But are any of the stories about government conspiracies and cover ups actually true? The answer is surprisingly or unsurprisingly, yes. For more than a decade, we hear at stuff they don't want you to know have been seeking answers to these questions. Sometimes there are answers that people would rather us not explore. Now we're sharing this research. With you for the first time ever in a book format, you can pre-order stuff they don't want you to know now. It's the new book from us, the creators of the podcast and video series. You can turn back now or read the stuff they don't want you to know. Available for pre-order now, it's stuff you should read or wherever you find your favorite books. We're back. We're talking about a thing that we won't talk about after this will be a mystery for the nine of you who are listening after that digression about dog fighting. Strangely enough, Michael Vick is still listening. Yeah, Michael Vick. Big supporter of the pod, really huge into the podcast. And you know what I support north of 60% of what he's done with his life. A lot of passes, a lot of passes were good, a lot of rate. His rent on time for a spell. He was a good football player. I don't know anything about Michael Vick other than the dog fighting and football. Those are the only two things I know is I don't know anything about the football. I know he was a footballer, but I don't know, I I can't analyze him among pretty good 60%. He's run for more than 100 yards in it. OK, never mind. Sorry. So he was good. He was good at the balls. He was very good at the balls. OK, that's good. That's good. Well, no, because of the dog fighting. But now I understand more. Now, Adam Neumann's most constant refrain when he talked about we worked his employees. Was this, and this is a quote. We are here in order to change the world. Nothing less than that interests me. And for a while, it seemed like that really might be happening. By 2018, we work had 466,000 members working at a 485 locations and more than 100 cities in 28 countries. It had more than doubled its revenue every year of its existence. Not only was it Manhattan's largest tenant, but in central London controlled more space than anyone but the British government. So this is like, like, you can't overstate, like, how much this company ******* expands, right? Do you own anything in London? You're an evil person. Yes, yes. Including the British government. Yeah. It seems to be all the metrics of like success are all just sort of geographical and yes and like and not based on actually profit, anything other than just based on. And they don't own these buildings thesing them. Yeah, they're leasing them. So even even the geographical brag is kind of a liability. Yeah, that's you can't be the most profitable, profitable company. If you're essentially a middleman. Seems like that shouldn't be possible, huh? Seems like you're almost offering nothing. Yeah, huh. Just in the way of getting a thing. I wonder if this will ever crash and burn on a page or two. No, I'm pretty sure. I'm pretty sure it's gonna go crazy. As the summer of 2018 rolled on, there were increasing signs of trouble within the company. One warning came out of what could be plausibly described as Adam's good intentions, his desire to ban the eating of meat, or at least the subsidizing of the eating of meat by his company by exchanging it for tequila. From the Wall Street Journal when Mr Newman announced in July 2018, via video call from Israel, that the company was banning meat, executives in New York were caught off guard with little explanation for Mr Neuman. A group huddled around to determine a rationale. They settled on sustainability and the mechanics of what would be banned and how. They determined employees couldn't expense meals with meat and that, but that they could eat it in company offices so long as the company didn't pay. Former employees say they have since seen Mr Neuman eat meat, so he gets a hair up his *** that eating meat is bad. Fine. I'm even down with the idea of a big company being like we're not going to use company money to support the inning anymore. Good, fine, yeah. But clearly touristic of the aristocracy is Caprice. Yeah, exactly. Like the important thing here is not the meat thing, it's the idea that, like this guy has an idea and now what is a multibillion dollar company changes, has to change on a dime. And that's not good. But I honestly think he's like not going far enough, like still letting people eat meat in the office like that, you know, still letting people. Yeah, I don't know. Hearing legally do that, to be honest. Yeah, probably. I don't know if you could legally stop people on their lunch breaks from eating whatever they wanted, but. Back when I worked at Groupon, like people would, you know, the microwave fish stuff and that just be complete. Disaster differ. But you couldn't stop him from eating fish. You just can't microwave it. Man, I'd like to. You know what's fun about laws in America is technically a lot of the things you can't do. But yeah, you just do it and people won't bother you. That is true. And I have a story to tell you about a machete and a nap, the bomb. But when we were prepared to go public, they basically bribed the major exchanges by promising to list on them if they would ban meat and single use plastics. In their cafeterias, the President of the New York Stock Exchange agreed to cut out plastics but refused to remove meat. NASDAQ turned them down, but offered to create a new index. The We 50 of companies committed to sustainability. So that's. OK, you're a big hating on plastic. I'm not against that. That's fine. Yeah, I'm absolutely fine with that. But that with this dude that's like, and and we're going to take the money we save from that and invest it in fracking like this? Yeah, this is ****** **. Like, I have no trust in him. Yeah, and it's it's more of a like, he agrees to cut that requirement out. If they create a NASDAQ index about sustainable companies named after we work, he's got to cut it out with the Wii stuff. Yeah. I'm I'm a big fan of they rebranded the weekend, essentially extorting people for climate justice. That's yeah, fine. I guess so. We were kid gotten off the ground at this point and secured major investments because of its charismatic founder. But now that the company had matured into a multibillion dollar enterprise, it was still run as an extension of the personal will of Adam Neumann. In November of 2018, Adam showed up late and profoundly hung over to a meeting with Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak, the CEO and managing director of the Sovereign Wealth Fund of Abu Dhabi. This was a critical meeting. We work was on track to lose hundreds of millions of dollars that year, and Mubarak had gotten nervous about all of the. Money that he had gambled on the company's success. Adam's job at this meeting was to reassure Mubarak. The fact that we work CEO couldn't stay sober long enough to take a meeting worth potentially billions of dollars rightfully angered the board. That'll happen. That'll happen. That'll happen. Neuman couldn't have cared less. In the summer of 2018, he'd worked out a deal with Masayoshi and SoftBank to sell the bulk of Wework stock to that company for $16 billion. Only relatable thing that I've heard about this showing up to a meeting hungover. Hungover even though it's a really, I've never been sober in a meeting. Right, I get this guy a little bit at least. But it is like, you know, I'm gonna be honest. If there were billions of dollars on the line and probably show up over to the meeting, probably, yeah. I've got a self-destructive streak. I think I would. I think part of me would really want to tank this meeting on a on a like important level, which is why I would never have the meeting. I would sit staring at the bottle, but thinking about all of the explosives that the billions of dollars studies, yeah, militias. I feel like buildings to toss people off. Absolutely. I'd just be sitting in a meeting and just being like. I'm like the only person right now who is a chance to assassinate you. Shouldn't we do feel like if you had a billion dollar meeting tomorrow, you'd show up drunk as **** or hungover? But if you had to go through all the steps that this dude has had to go through to get there, there's a decent chance by then you'd be like, I'm going to take this seriously. I'm going to do this take this seriously. This thing that like the the thing that I've built for 10, you would become acclimated to like the cult rebuilding if you had a critical meeting. About your book, you would probably force yourself to be in the kind of mind state to deal with. Like a publisher? Yeah, I would hope so. You would hope so. And if you if you didn't, I have yet to prove that that's true, that's true. And if you didn't, that's a bad sign. Wanna become president of the world? I feel like that's OK though, right? Robert? Where's that? Give me that brick. Yeah. Ambition, right. OK, this is Chicago. There should be bricks. Ohh everywhere. City of bricks. Yeah, that's our nickname now. So, yeah, no man had worked out a plan with Masayoshi in 2018 to sell the bulk of we work stock for $16 billion to SoftBank. Now, Vanity Fair says that this was Neumann's escape plan, quote. He and his investors would be insanely rich. This was a pivotal moment, a former Wework executive recalled. Adam was acting like the soft bank deal was done and we would be flush with cash. So he was planning and again, like cashing out and escaping, which kind of hints to the fact that he doesn't believe any of this. He was just trying to get a big enough investment that he could get the **** out. That's the thing that these guys. Like every time we go through a story about these types of guys, they're one failing is they take the grift too far and they don't know when to just bail on. Like like with the guy we talked about with Alex Jones. He should have just bailed a while back. He nailed his grift. He got what he needed. Could have walked away with the net worth 5 to $10 million. Way more than that. Yeah, I'm saying, yeah, minimum. Yeah, after after the election, probably could have. Yeah, like and a great golden parachute. They're not capable. Yeah, get out. And they just don't do it because you love the smart. None of them are smart. As Tom from Myspace. No, right. Cash out. 600 million bucks doesn't destroy democracy, goes and retires. I got nothing against Tom. Did he cash out for $600 million? He did. Great. Good on Tom. And you know what? He didn't destroy democracy. Yeah, anything. He provided bands a way to share their mediocre music and great mistake files. Yeah, nobody's ever been like, ohh man, Myspace really facilitated the younger. Nobody hates Tom. He's rich as **** and it's fine. You know what, though? You know, though, almost everybody who was on Myspace, who was old enough to have been on it has a negative opinion of him because you were forced to be his friend and we should forgive him for that. You know what? I'll go out and say the only cool person worth hundreds of millions of dollars. TomTom, Tommy, Tommy, Tommy. So? He's got the soft bank deal. It doesn't matter that he shows up hungover to a meeting with the head of the Abu Dhabi Sovereign Wealth fund, but then that SoftBank deal for $16 billion falls through. Ohh no, because people other than Masayoshi Son took a look at the company financials and decided that we work, which was losing at this point billions of dollars a year. Maybe wasn't the best way to invest $16 billion. Masayoshi agreed to invest another 2 billion, but at the rate we weren't burned 3, which is still like. This is why I say two things. Money isn't real and it's dumb as **** right? Yeah. Listen, listen. Your company's ******. Here's 2 billion, here's $2 billion. This is what happens when you have a group of people around you who is willing to say no to you. And then it was like, oh, it's only 2 billion. I was like, never ****. **** this guy. No, **** this guy, stupid. Eat them all. So at the rate we work, burned through cash, $2 billion brought the company 8 months, something like that, 8-9 months. They lost 1.3 billion in the first six months of this year. Jeez, million buys you 8 months. That's insane. 8-9, I'm not going to do the exact a lot of leases. One point 1.3 billion in six months. So 8-9 months seems fair. That's absurd. And less than Uber loses. Hmm. Yeah. Now it's all like real estate expenses, right? Like it's got, like the leases. Yeah. Paying leases. Yeah. So other people will pay him lease and he's giving them free rent in order to suck them in. Yeah, lure them in. But he just keeps giving free rinse. They just keep moving around business. It's a terrible business. It's a great con. Yeah. That's a great. That's that's a that's a Ponzi scheme. Yeah, basically. Basically, yeah. It's essentially in every way but the legal way. Yeah. Yeah. Which is the best kind of Ponzi scheme. Yeah. Like there should be a legal problem. It does seem like he should be fired out of a catapult for his crimes. Yeah. Now, so again, the $2 billion just gave, we were months of breathing room, not what they really needed. And so Adam started to get desperate for more funding, and I'm going to quote again from Vanity Fair. So he started dog fighting. See, you're trying to and this is where our sponsor dogfighter without an E comes into the product. Use code ******** on dogfighter and you'll get. Alright, I'm gonna quote from Vanity Fair. According to sources, he pitched Apple CFO Luca Maestri on doing a deal with we work. It's unclear why Apple would want to invest in Wework, and not surprisingly, the company passed. Norman went to Google and proposed a partnership. They too passed. Newman batted around other investment ideas. He earlier discussed buying slack. He sat there saying, what companies can we buy? Maybe we should buy Slack, a former executive recalled when Neuman returned to reworks New York headquarters later that winter, he seemed desperate. He barked orders and. The HAZARDOUSLY reorganized divisions, at one point having as many as 20 direct reports, according to a former Wework executive. Massa said. We're going to be a trillion dollar company, he shouted, according to a former executive who heard it. You're thinking billions and we should be thinking trillions. You people need to be better than you are. Newman seems shocked by the scale. If we works losses sources say he tangled with reworks then CFO Artie Minson over the cash squeeze. Minson declined to comment, but a former senior executive said Newman drove the decision making. Nothing could happen without Adam's former executives, said Neumann. Often reacted poorly. You don't bring bad news to the cult leader, one said. Whoa. I've never heard that before. No. But there's someone making, you know, making that, that pretty blue than one. Yeah. Yeah. It's it's like that old phrase kill the messenger. That's the sure idea, right? I guess that's the the, the way that you succeed. It's one of those things where Steve Jobs is a guy come back to a lot because he had a lot of this in him, but he also had. I guess it's different. So they both both Neumann and jobs have this kind of deep understanding of the human psyche that allows them to manipulate people in a profound way. Jobs uses it to figure out something people want that they don't know they want, and then deliver it and create changes the entire world. The smartphone he knew before anyone else, what exactly everyone in the world wanted to carry in their pocket and would addict them and everything. And he was right. Yeah, Neumann knows how to manipulate people, uses it to get billions of dollars of investment, but provides nothing. And I'm not going to say what. Alfred isn't that good, obviously, because the smartphone is ******* complicated. Is **** in terms of that, but at least it's a thing. It's more. You can't argue with it not. It's not a Ponzi scheme. It's not. It's maybe like heroin, but it's not a Ponzi scheme. Yeah. This guy just just a lot of ideas. Yeah, kind of, you know, like a lot of. And mostly the idea of how to convince investors. Yeah, he's a megalomaniac. Yeah. Yeah. Still, there were bright spots for Wework in 2018. Earlier in that year, JP Morgan had LED a $700 million bond offering for we work. While Adams Charisma had started to fail with Masayoshi, it worked on JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon. Jamie Dimon is a profound ***** ** ****. One of the architects of the 2008 financial crash. I'll probably do that. Went to jail for his participation? No, of course not. No, he's the CEO because he's a CEO. That we helped those people accountable to make sure that it would never happen again. No, you went to jail for the. Eventual dog fighting ring. He ran with with Neumann. And that's when Michael Vick took sure Jamie Dimon's bank had a diamond bank, handed Adam $100 million personal loan and a $500 million personal credit line. That's not that much for him though, right? Like based on like too much? Well, sure, but like you were saying, like $2 billion. He was worth 4 billion at this point on paper, right? But he's also got $750,000,000 that he owes the company, right? Yeah. That's tough. Yep, I feel bad. Like just being broke. Way better. But you're rich. Way, way better than that. When you're that broke, it comes back around to rich. Yeah. Yeah. You know, that's the way it works. Yeah. For some reason, I remember I played, I played a SIM game. I remember when I was like, in my early teens, that was essentially like creating an apartment building. SIM tower. SIM tower. Yeah. Yeah. I remember that so clearly. And I was really good at it. And I feel like I would run. We work a lot better than that. If I just had a SIM city. Well, because you wouldn't try to make it. Everything. You would try to run a very simple company that leases office space to people that need it, which is fine. But knowing, knowing Jordan, he put a movie theater in the basement where you're supposed to put parking and they're just like, no, but you do remove the fire escapes because that ****** expensive. Yeah, no. And the extinguishers detectors buildings don't catch on fire. If I know one thing about Chicago history, it's that fires never happen. It's all a myth. It's all a lie detector is definitely. Real and hooked up all the time. Now Adam was heard to brag to people that Jamie Dimon, one of the architects again of the financial crash, was now his personal banker and might soon leave JP Morgan to run the Adams Family investment office. Speaking of family, Adam had started bragging that his children would follow him as the leadership of we work and Speaking of unfathomable nepotism. Let's talk a little bit more about Adam's relationship to Jared Kushner. They hung out of that fire. They hung out a lot. Ohgod. See, it turns out that the neumanns and the Kush clan are actually very close friends. Don't call them that. That is what they are. Trash clan. Did Bessie, Betsy, Davos work with? They did body shots. Like what the **** is going on? Is all evil surrounded by itself. Eric Prince ran security at the school. Yeah, yeah, yeah. And also did body shots. Yeah, you came back to life just to run thing. Yeah. Now Jared. Completely believed in atoms. Promised ability to change the world. In the summer of 2018, we work executives rather suddenly learned that Adam had been drafted by Kushner to work on Jay Kusht Mideast peace plan. Don't call no rush I will. Neumann had put we works director of Development Ronnie Behar on the task of finding an advertising firm to put together a video for Kushner about how an economically revitalized West Bank and Gaza might look. This I am never. I'm never, ever envious of their money. I don't want, I don't even understand a billion dollars. But the confidence that it takes, the ridiculous, insane confidence that it takes for you to be a ****** Wework CEO and be like, I think you know what I'm going to solve? Middle East 44, **** you for the. This in company and the son of a man who went to prison for real estate scam. Yeah. To sit down together, be like, you know, this thousand you this, this conflict. I think we can do it. We can deal with this. I think we can bang it out in four years. All I can think of is, like, do they, do they, like, like each other? I think so, yeah. Do you think they do? I think that's why he gets this, this task. Part of me wonders if they're even capable of liking each other. You know? It seems like each would know that the other is a fraud. Right? I mean, like, yeah, right. I don't think. No, I don't think. I think Trump maybe does. I don't think, I don't. I don't know how much he believes in himself, but I think Kushner is just that, deluded and dumb and has always been rich and totally special. And I think, I don't think he's doing anything. Might actually know he's a con artist. I really, I go back and forth on the guy. Yeah, I think Kushner really is genuine about his beliefs. I just think he's stupid as ****. No, I think that I think Trump is so analogous. To Alex Jones, that it's it's insane. Like that idea of you waffling back and forth like, is this guy stupid? Does he know? Is he insane? What is he doing? Yeah, and I I don't waffle on Kushner. I think he's just never not been rich and has no concept of reality. OK, I I think that I think that about Kushner is a lot of people around him. I don't know. Adam might be in the same boat or he might be, like a literal sociopath. I really don't know with Adam, but I think Kushner is just completely out of. Out of reality. So sources close to Adam Neumann tend to credit the $4.4 billion infusion of soft bank cash with inflating Adams ego. Beyond the realm of sanity, how could money in the what? How could it not? How could it not? No. That that is fair. Like, of course that would break you. If I got $4.4 billion, I would have 1000 tanks tomorrow. I hate journey and I would make people dance around a fire journey. If someone who wouldn't, it's it's it is the equivalent of giving someone a mental illness to give them that much money. It's terrible for you. There's a lot of, there's a lot of data on that. Yeah, the money in the international success if we work. Got him sit down meetings with world leaders discussing the refugee crisis and problems of peace and war with people like the President of Canada. OK, So what he does is lease space. Yeah. And now he is working with world leaders. Yes, on, I assume the thing that he is an expert at, leasing space, solving the refugee crisis. OK, that's very different that now. Nope. Same. Not the same thing. See the reason all those people are leaving Syria? Not enough. Not enough leases. Bashar al-Assad reduced. The number of leases? Yeah. Struck by argument, Assad's big thing was like, there's no office space hates leases. Non leased space right now, one former executive claims when Adam got in front of world leaders it was like he started thinking he was one. And I'd like to quote now from a particularly batshit insane Gizmodo article which covers Adams ambitions as a global peacemaker. And this might be the most deluded paragraph anyone's ever written. The paragraph itself is not diluted, but what it's about is so diluted I can't ******* describe it. I will **** in BB's mouth right now. Is that the no, but you should put down. In conversations with people inside and outside the company, Norman's pronouncements became Wilder. He told one investor that he'd convinced Rahm Emanuel to run for president in 2020 on the We work agenda. Emanuel did not respond to a request for comment. Norman told colleagues that he was saving the women of Saudi Arabia by working with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to offer women coding classes, according to a source. In another meeting, Norman said three people were going to save the world bin Salman, Jared Kushner and Norman, shortly after the news broke. In October 2018 that Saudi agents tortured dissident and Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi and carved his body with a bone saw, likely an order from the Crown Prince himself. Neuman told George W Bush's former national security adviser, Stephen Hadley, that everything could be worked out, have been Salman had the right mentor. Confused, Hadley asked who that person might be, according to a source familiar with the meeting, Norman paused for a moment and said, me your boy. Cards on a special level of deluded. I'm George W Bush's former national security advisers. Like, this guy's a ******* idiot. Yeah, I I only killed hundreds of millions of people. There's hundreds of thousands of this guys ******* nuts. Honestly, I believe that. Wrong part, though. Yeah, I totally believe that. Yeah, that's that's within the realm of believable. We work agenda within the realm of reliability. Yeah. He wanted to be bin Salman's Mentor II that that dude, terrible guy, but not an idiot would ship him out like ohh man. Adams spent the first half of 2019 preparing for we works long-awaited IPO. In the startup world, initial public offerings are the stuff of legend. When Apple went public, it created hundreds of millionaires in a matter of minutes. Even the secretary got rich. Google's Ipreo brought even more multimillionaires into the world. Employees, if we were clearly expected their IPO would bring the same windfall. CEO Adam Neumann showed no outward signs of worry. His company had been valued at $47 billion earlier in the year. The fact that he hoped would bring even more VC money in and ideally convince SoftBank that we work with safe to keep pumping money into and who would will convince any of my not convinced listeners? Money isn't real and is dumb as ****. What kind of what kind of person is 47 billion dollars, $7 billion? That's that's that's an insane number. It's. It's it's idiotic. It is an idiotic number, yeah. 12,000 people who I don't know what they're doing. Picking lamps? Sure it is. It is all stock in the kegs system enables these lunatics. The entire system is built by them. Yeah, and I. But there has to be some grunt worker at one of these at Moodys or whatever. It's just like they're not worth this much, guys. And then the top yeah, **** it, we'll put I think all of the grunt workers are like, yeah, this grifting gonna last long. Yeah, but I'm gonna get my $19.00 an hour while I can. Yeah, look at these ********. Yeah, yeah. So. The reality of we work success was less attractive than the $47 billion valuation. By 2019, more than $12 billion of venture capital and debt had been pumped into the company and lost. And while it's true that we works, revenue had doubled every year and also lost hundreds of millions of dollars per year and eventually billions of dollars per year. And there were no signs of this trend debating. On September 18th, 2019, the Wall Street Journal published a massive expose on Wework, revealing details about its toxic internal culture and, more worryingly, to the suits. Details about Adam's own self dealing the report, based in part on the August filing his employees had made to the SEC as part of the IPO process, revealed that Adam had taken out more than $740 million in personal loans on his company's stock. Since Adam was dyslexic, he had to have his advisers brief him on the revelations and the story while he huddled with his people to work. At a response to the damning article, investors and board members called for him to step down. Adam was initially defiant, telling one colleague I'm never not going to be CEO. But that was not in his hands anymore. We work CFO held a conference call with the Board of Directors and said that Adam had to step down. Jamie Dimon soon joined the consensus, arguing that we work would never get investors to pump in more money. While Neumann was CEO, the company that had been worth $47 billion mere weeks ago now teetered on the edge of bankruptcy. In the end, Adam stepped down. His wife was forced to leave the company too. But don't worry about them. They walked away with a severance package. Worth roughly 1 1/2 billion dollars. And she's still a licensed to Yogi and a licensed Yogi so they can make him come. So was she licensed or was she certified? Certified? Excuse me, it's very different. Who's the licensing board for yogis, right? I mean, Gina is the Dalai Lama. She was at his birthday. Yeah. Yeah, uh, Masayoshi Son agreed to pump another 9 1/2 billion dollars into. We work as a rescue package. All talk of exponential growth and world conquest were gone, though we grow with shuddered suddenly, leaving dozens of wealthy parents with no fancy school to send their children to. Many were presumably forced to go with. Avert your eyes, gentlemen. Public schools. This is the best. Private schools all have long waiting lists. 4000 employees, 1/3 of reworks workforce were laid off. More layoffs are likely to come, and that is more or less where things stand now. And I'm Neumann vaporized more than 10 1/2 billion dollars, stole another $1.5 billion, put thousands of people out of jobs, and raised the costs of real estate in cities throughout the globe. Yeah, that's that's a that's a little side effect of this that. Yeah, that gets sort of under recognized. Yeah. The part where is like, I'll pay double for. Yeah, yeah, that is an issue. It's like even as this collapses all the people who would have used the space or we're using it before now, it might be prohibitive for them. That's something even the landlords are going to collapse, which isn't my primary worry, but. Still, compared to him, people who operated. Reasonably legitimate businesses. It's just a a. Lot of human shrapnel in the wake of this. But he's got a billion and a half dollars. Good for him. No, not no. Not good for him. No, no. Bad. Bad. Yeah, they're pretty bad. So, Jordan, I want to tell you about a dream I have. Yeah, it's a dream of a group of people, group of human beings pushing for their greatest potential, vibrating off of 1. Another positive, positive, positive vibrations maybe. Machetes are we got machetes? Machetes? We got machetes. OK, we're all drunk. Really drunk. And we're just, we're just shoving neumanns off of buildings just right off the top. Maybe a Kushner or two. Right now. I have a personal sense of morality that I believe recruit you. You'll learn to subsume that to the group. You can just let that go for a little while. There you go. I feel like a temporary suspension of morality is fine when it yeah, we all gotta shave our heads. We live in yurts. These are all key aspects. Do I get to push him? Myself? Yes. What if? What if? What if I were to tell you you'll get a cubicle on Mars? On Mars? Oh yeah. This ends in Mars. Yeah. Quick question. Yeah. Oxygen? No. OK. But you won't need it by the time we get there. Yeah. The kegs provide the oxygen. I'll take the deal. So, gentlemen, this is the Adam Neumann story. An ******* who did nothing but scam people seems to have fell apart pretty recently, it seems. Yeah, just within the last couple of weeks. Yeah, I do like his meteoric rise and fall to only having $1.5 billion. Really? A tragedy system works we should subsidise an extra couple billion for? Yeah, absolutely. Where's where's Masayoshi with that $16 billion? Huh? He only gave 9 at the well 11. I've got something to sell him. It's called regularly. And it's like Masayoshi. The whole reason he has all that money is that he invested a bunch of money in Alibaba back when it was tiny and one of the biggest things ever. But, like, clearly he's a dumb guy who got lucky once. Ohh, I'd tell him that to his face. I think you're dumb. I don't think you're very smart. You got taken in by this ****. Let's crowdfund an opportunity for Robert to tell him to his face. He's dumb. More people need to do that to these people. I watched the documentary recently. I was in, I was in Amsterdam and I had an opportunity to attend a movie at the the documentary festival that they hold there. And it was a documentary about the World Economic Forum in Davos. And it was the kind of thing where as I was giving it, we found out that like. I think Klaus Schwab, the guy who founded it, was like like 3 rows behind us in the room and stuff like they did a Q&A with them afterwards. But this documentary, which will be, I think, out for the general public soon, is very much worth watching. And it's about like behind the scenes at Davos, the first one that's been able to do that. So it's really a lot of interesting stuff, a lot of kind of like you get a feel for these people as human beings and what they actually believe. I mean they are. That's the problem. Yeah. So there's a a great moment in it where the the head of Greenpeace confronts Jair Bolsonaro in a in a like a soiree sort of thing about ostensibly they should talk about think about how she wants to like confront him and these other people with their damage to the climate and she gets a chance to and she basically says like, well, you know, we're we're looking at what you're going to do the Amazon like everybody's watching and then walks away. And Jerry, like, clearly doesn't give a ****. Like, doesn't have the least impact on her. And all of her friends are like, I can't believe how brave you are. You're so brave. You did this great thing, and, like, that's the ******* problem. Like, if you go, if you go up to Jair Bolsonaro and you don't have a lining of questioning, that's going to make him awkward. Bottle them. Hit him in the face of the bottle. Nobody does that to these people. Nobody bottles them. Nobody bottles these people. That is true. I will. I will back you up that no one does do that. Yeah, woody. Woody. What would y'all think at the end of this? I don't know. It's it's interesting. Like I, I whenever you hear a story like this about somebody who like, there's a like real, like, not terrible. I mean, he's got a billion dollars, although that is terrible. But like whenever there's a big fall, it's just so clear over and over. Like there there's so many times at which were there should have been like, hey, you said you wanted ******* offices on Mars. Hey you, you you want to be president of the world. There's like indications along the way. They like someone should have stepped in and just. We have a system that's based on no one ever stepping in. Yeah. Like, as long as the pretense is there and the appearances of, you know, like, this is moving in the right direction, people are profiting off it that then there's no incentive to be like, hey, you seem like you you're acting out here. There's some, there's something you're acting out that we should probably. Deal with yeah, we just let it happen and then it just plays its course and everyone gets hurt. The way that's how I feel anyway. The way I view it is cause I'm trying to exist in the present without losing my mind. So the way I view it tends towards, like, trying to find a historical context to all of this stuff. And these types of lunatic grifters have been around since the ******* beginning. It's only the scale that has gotten larger. So I never know if this shared imaginary idea of $47 billion, which just doesn't exist. No, it's like it's just imaginary. It's just fantasy. Yeah. Yeah. So it's not like that's too much different from so many, you know, like of obviously the. The 1929 Stock Exchange crashed because all of that **** was imaginary too. Go back further and you get so many different times the economy collapsed in London because that was all imaginary too, like all of this ****. And the only thing that's changed, though, is that now a company like we work is influencing some dumb guy who invested in Alibaba along with MBS, and now he's given power to help solve the Middle East peace crisis. He seems qualified, you know, like it used to be. Kibbutz in Gaza just ****** **. The people in the financial world died. Not like ******* the entirety of Palestine. Part of the problem with our system is that if you're good at one thing and that one thing allows you to make money, then we decide you're good at everything because money is really the only thing that matters. So you're good at money. You get to control healthcare, you get to control foreign policy, you get to pick where the the army guys go. I mean, how different is it? Like the idea that this guy is having conversations about foreign policy? How different is it then? Trump was a landlord and is now president. How how different is it than a king? Yeah. This guy's parents were the kings. So now he's in charge of the army. Yeah. And what was the original reality show about the royalty? It's 15% smarter than a monarchy, but not a lot. No. The original reality show might have been royalty, but the one that will change the game is you getting tricked by every cult leader in the world. Really want to. That would be a great. I want to find out. I it's it's one of those. Like, I wanna test myself against the best. Could fail every test. That's the problem. You just need to reduce those people. I wanna do enter the draft via pushing them off of building. OK. Here's here's my new pitch. Right. OK, if I don't get taken in by the cult leader, I get all of their money and power. Let's raise the stakes for both of us. You can't have their power because you're constitutionally incapable from doing the emotional equivalent of ****** people, which is what cult leaders do, right? And their money isn't real. Yeah, sometimes it is. That is true. Sometimes it is Ron Hubbard's. That **** was real. Yeah, ************ had real lucra. It's it's rolling the dice. He owed it all to somebody else. He just kept it and tricked them into giving him stacks tax-exempt status none of these guys are as good as. LRH. He's he's successful. One out for one of the real ones. He realistic one. What was it? Operation whites white. Snow White? Snow White. I was more a fan of the time he made his own private Navy, of course for 10 year. God, I love L Ron Hubbard. Can't not love the guy to the to the Admiral Commodore, Commodore Andy Daly is L Ron Hubbard. Now Ron Hubbard should burn in hell twice. We're going to end this episode. Ignoring Jordan statement fair with a statement of our undying love to L Ron Hubbard stopping and some plugs. Yeah, for your puggles we yeah we do a podcast called Knowledge Fight about Alex Jones. We put out too much content. People can find it by Googling knowledge fight dot Coms or website and you know, we're on iTunes and all that stuff on Twitter. Sure. Knowledge under score fight. And I am Jordan. I am a comedian. Still, technically speaking, I am not busy. So go ahead and book me for at go to bed, George. He's available for any dates in Nome, Alaska. Lutely. Nome is high on my list. I will also do corporate gigs exclusively. Only work only known. Only know only known. Only known. There's a we work there's a working. OK, well, then we'll work for. We work for, I guess twice the cost of a normal comedian. We riff, but you gotta send them up. You gotta send them up. Double economy class. Yeah. That's twice his economy, no? Thanks for having us. This has been a lot of fun. Yeah, this has been fantastic. And it's a pleasure to meet you in in real life human person. Yeah. Well, thanks for inviting me to your wonderful city, Chicago. The city that sleeps occasionally, never is often awake. Yep. Slightly broad shoulders, but not very. The City of Angels that is regularly awake but often asleep with broad shoulders. And also an apple that is large and windy. Yes. City of grandfathered in 4:00 AM bars, I feel like, is what we should be known as. Yeah, that's a good nickname. That's true. Yeah, it was grandfathered in. 5:00 AM bars completely changed my opinion of your city based on that knowledge. I was going to just slander it for years after this, but now that I know that. There's a bar near my place that is apparently so old, they open at 9:00 AM. It's against the law to sell alcohol before 11. But if you've just been around long enough all bets are off. Umm ohh beautiful. Yeah, exactly 4 space, the sky is 4. Leave some grain ohh while I'm Robert Evans, this is been behind the sources. ********. Pod Twitter, Instagram. I am on Instagram and that I write. OK, continue listening to this podcast. Listen to knowledge by it's what I listen to when I'm at the gym, when I'm driving, when I'm ************ shamefully in someone else's. Kitchen yeah, yeah yeah yeah. Naledge fight the podcast for all those moments. That's what we set out to be. Also, there's T-shirts on teepublic from my show. Coming soon. I forgot what the T-shirt was. I think you got to make a ************ joke. No fight if you accidentally catch yourself in the mirror. Don't look. Hmm. By. 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