What is your superpower? Is it writing, speaking, communicating with power? It could be if you listen to this conversation with Joseph Romm, author of How To Go Viral and Reach Millions: Top Persuasion Secrets from Social Media Superstars, Jesus, Shakespeare, Oprah, and Even Donald Trump. This episode is like a short master class. If you want to get the most out of it, I advise you start by listening to my October 29th episode, featuring one of the greatest speeches you’ll ever hear: Admiral William McRaven’s 2014 University of Texas Commencement Address. You’ve already done that? Now listen to Romm walk us through some of the highlights of McRaven’s speech – to point out what makes it so powerful and teach us techniques we can employ the next time we want to write or say something that matters.
@YahooSports Senior NFL Writer and Hall of Fame Voter Terez Paylor joins me in Atlanta for a Super Bowl seminar and Football 101 combined – making it the perfect prep for those across the football spectrum: from super-novices to those who follow the NFL all year – all in under 25 minutes. Paylor’s show on Kansas City’s 610 Sports Radio & Radio.com has been a destination for Chiefs fans. Even though his Chiefs missed this Super Bowl by one drive, Paylor got over the heartbreak long enough to give us a primer on the Patriots v Rams. His crystal clear guidance might make us the smartest people in the room this Sunday.
Yoka Verdoner was separated from her parents when she was only 8 years old. Now 84, her life story is a window into the trauma that has been inflicted on so many migrant children separated from their parents at the southern border of the U.S. I spoke with Yoka over the summer, at the height of those separations, after she'd published a piece in The Guardian that was widely shared. Her story has urgency again, following last week's news that the Trump Administration's "zero-tolerance" policy has led to the separation of many more children than we believed – perhaps thousands more. This is Yoka's journey from her childhood in The Netherlands to the United States and the trauma that follows her to this day.
A Charlottesville, VA jury today convicted a white supremacist of first-degree murder for killing Heather Heyer. He intentionally drove his car into a crowd of counter-protestors at the “Unite the Right” rally for neo-Nazis and white nationalists. A week after that rally, in August 2017, I visited Charlottesville to speak with Henry Abraham. Abraham, now 97, spent his Jewish boyhood in Nazi Germany. He tells stories of anti-Semitism and how his mother made his survival and life in the United States possible. Armed with her optimism and his love of teaching, he became a scholar of the U.S. Constitution and an esteemed professor at the University of Virginia. We spoke about his life’s journey and the déjà vu he experienced during the rally. He has much to teach us.
America is hungry for the voice of an honorable leader. So Wavemaker brings you the voice of Retired Admiral William McRaven, former Navy SEAL and Commander of all U.S. Special Operations Forces. He was the architect of the raid that killed Osama Bin Laden. This episode features McRaven’s viral University of Texas commencement address: 10 memorable lessons from Navy SEAL training for those “who want to change the world” – aka the “Make Your Bed” speech. It’s 20 minutes of uninterrupted inspiration that parents can be proud to share with our children. My thanks to the Texas Exes, the University of Texas alumni association, for permission to post the speech.
Environmentalists don’t vote. At least not nearly as much as the general population. They have a turnout problem. By Nathaniel Stinnett’s estimate, 10.1 million registered voters who consider climate change or the environment as one of their top two priorities, sat out the 2016 presidential election. An even larger number stayed home for the 2014 midterms. But for Stinnett, those big numbers mean a big opportunity. Right now, his Environmental Voter Project is targeting 2.4 million environmentalists in Georgia, Florida, Colorado, Massachusetts, Nevada, and Pennsylvania – registered voters who are considered unlikely to vote. Stinnett employs an unusual messaging strategy to get them to the polls– which he explains in our conversation. If he succeeds, he believes no candidate will be able to get their name on a ballot without talking about the environment.
Jane Alexander’s illustrious acting career was launched in 1968 by her breakthrough performance in the Pulitzer Prize winning play (and later movie) The Great White Hope. She then took the political stage as Chairperson of the National Endowment for the Arts, when the NEA was on the political right’s hit list. She and her husband had virtually all their money stolen by an accountant who did a convincing job acting like their friend. And now, after dozens of movies and TV shows, including Kramer vs. Kramer and All the President’s Men, and some one hundred plays, she puts the spotlight on the men and women leading the conservation battle in her book Wild Things, Wild Places. So much fascinating ground to cover in this conversation, which was recorded live at the 2018 Nantucket Book Festival, courtesy of @NCTV17. We begin with an angry outburst…
Standup comic Pete Dominick joins me to dissect Michelle Wolf’s routine at the recent White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Why now? Because this Sunday, May 27th, Wolf’s new series, The Break, debuts on Netflix. That’s just as good an excuse as any. Dominick, with Wolf as a launching point, helps make us all more astute observers of the art of comedy. Among the issues we discuss: using the P word, punching up versus punching down, and what it was like being in the room during Wolf’s speech. Pete also takes a swing at my tennis coach in Georgia, who didn’t like Wolf’s routine. I gave Coach Ross air time to swing back. Is that punching up or down? Warning: contains some explicit language.
Here is Michelle Wolf’s entire performance at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Most people have only heard clips. Here is all of it – 19 minutes and roughly 50 jokes – unedited. This is the beginning of a broader mission on Wavemaker: exploring the deeper significance of comedy – from ancient Greece to the 2018 mid-term elections and beyond. What’s funny? Why? Can comedy enable Americans of divergent political perspectives to laugh – together? Should that even be its goal? Those are just a few of the questions I’ll be pursuing with future guests (one of whom you’ll get to sample at the end of this episode) from my perspective as both a journalist and the son of a standup comic. Warning: the language in this routine gets very explicit.
There’s a new surge of military veterans running for Congress. And they’re split about evenly between Democrats and Republicans. Do veterans have a competitive edge over those who have not served in the military? Are they better equipped for the job? Can they help bridge the hyper-partisan divide? This Wavemaker episode begins looking for answers with Jeremy Teigen, veteran, professor, and author of the new book Why Veterans Run: Military Service in American Presidential Elections, 1789-2016.