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We The 66

Author: RocaNews

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We The 66 is the official podcast of RocaNews. 66% of Americans don’t trust the news. We explore topics, people, and ideas that Big News ignores.
17 Episodes
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This is a message to our readers regarding the criticisms we received after last episode. But first some context.   Almost exactly one year after the murder of George Floyd, Canada had its own reckoning. But this time, there was no video or autopsy that sparked the unrest. There was a claim, and that claim may have turned out to be baseless. On May 27, 2021, the Kamloops Indian Band in British Columbia reported that they used ground-penetrating radar (GPR) technology to discover the unmarked graves of 215 indigenous children at a former residential school. The discovery sent shockwaves across Canada and then the world. Within 24 hours, the largest media outlets had jumped on the story. The Washington Post wrote, “Remains of 215 Indigenous children discovered at former Canadian residential school site.” The Guardian’s headline was virtually identical. The AP made it sound as though the bodies may still be warm: “More than 200 bodies found at Indigenous school in Canada.” Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau barely inhaled before mourning the news on Twitter and ordering the Canadian flag be flown half-mast – not just for that day, but until the Assembly of First Nations gave him permission to raise them again. That didn’t happen until November – five-and-a-half months later – marking the longest period of half-mast flag flying in the country’s history. Trudeau pledged to “bring these terrible wrongs to light” and the money started pouring out of Ottawa: After the Kamloops claim, numerous other tribes announced their own unmarked grave discoveries. In total, the Canadian government pledged $320M to support the searches. At the end of 2021, the Canadian Press crowned the Kamloops discovery its “news story of the year.” The below photo, meanwhile, earned the prestigious World Press Photo of the Year award. The AP describes the photo: “A haunting image of red dresses hung on crosses along a roadside, with a rainbow in the background, commemorating children who died at a residential school created to assimilate Indigenous children in Canada won the prestigious World Press Photo award Thursday.” Meanwhile, Canadians channeled their fury over the mass grave discoveries at Catholic and Christian churches, because many of the residential schools were Christian schools. The Kamloops Indian residential school operated under the supervision of the Roman Catholic Church until its closure in 1978. Canada established these schools to assimilate indigenous students. Today, critics allege they constituted a “cultural genocide” against indigenous peoples by forcing them into white colonial culture at the expense of their language and culture. They also point to many harrowing allegations of sexual and physical abuse perpetrated against children by the schools’ authorities. But the schools aren’t without their defenders, who generally say they were needed to integrate indigenous people into Canadian society; that parents generally sent their kids away to get an education or because they couldn’t take care of them; or that kids had to go because they lived in sparsely populated places with no day schools. This had been a controversial historical topic in Canada for decades. The Kamloops allegations brought it to the forefront. On June 30, 2021 – weeks after the initial Kamloops allegations – the executive director of the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association tweeted, "Burn it all down." Protesters heeded these words, and – as the media and government remained silent — set dozens of churches on fire. At least 33 were burned to the ground, according to the CBC. So three years later, what has been found at Kamloops? Nothing – not a body, not a bone. When we heard about this story, we reached out to a Kamloops spokesperson, indigenous leaders, and members of the media who reported on the mass graves. None responded. We only received a reply from Dr. Thomas Flanagan, an esteemed retired professor who authored a book – Grave Error: How the Media Misled Us –about the Kamloops allegations and their aftermath. He is the guest on our latest podcast. You can watch the full episode here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gc8IfsnB5ho&t=54s Let us know what you think of this episode.   Our email is wethe66@rocanews.com. Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/wethe66podcast X: https://x.com/WeThe66Podcast
On May 27, 2021, a shocking story out of British Columbia swept through Canada and eventually the entire world. The Kamloops Indian Band announced they had discovered 215 unmarked graves of schoolchildren under the ground of a former residential school. Everyone from the BBC to The New York Times speedily published a version of the headline: "Mass Graves of Indigenous Children Found in Canada." Canadian Prime Minister mourned the news, promising to provide funding and flying Canadian flags half-mast the next day. And the next day. And the eight months that followed. The backlash sparked a fire -- literally. Protesters took out their fury on churches across the country, vandalizing at least 100 and burning several to the ground. One Minister of Parliament likened the reckoning to Canada's "George Floyd moment." The Canadian government gave $8M to the Kamloops Band -- $250M to Indians total -- to honor the deceased and comfort their community. After all, the Kamloops discovery led to dozens more across the country. Canada was ready to make peace with their horrid past. Fast forward three years later and... not a single body has been found. We reached out to Dr. Thomas Flanagan, a retired college professor and former senior adviser to ex-Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who wrote a bestselling book in Canada called "Grave Error." He details what he believes has been one giant lie and shares his evidence for thinking this. Here is a link to his book: https://www.amazon.com/Grave-Error-Mi... If you live in Canada or have some insight on this story, please send us an email at wethe66@rocanews.com. We look forward to reading the comments and hearing your thoughts.
Mehdi Hasan is one of the most polarizing media figures today. When we polled the Roca audience to ask who we should invite onto our show, Mehdi Hasan was one of the more requested names. He has achieved a loyal following among progressive and pro-Palestinian circles and has sparred frequently on Twitter with previous We The 66 guest, John Spencer. Hasan called Spencer a propagandist and the urban warfare expert responded," I'm heartbroken." Mehdi has worked everywhere from Al Jazeera and The Intercept to MSNBC and the BBC. Late last year, MSNBC canceled his two shows at the network, resulting in his decision to leave MSNBC and start his own outlet, Zeteo News. It's unclear why MSNBC canceled his shows, although many note that he was vocally anti-Israel post October 7th and hesitated to, among other things, call the Hamas combatants "terrorists" instead of merely "fighters." We should note, however, that he has condemned Hamas' acts on 10/7 as terrorist acts. In this conversation, the RocaNews cofounders Max Frost and Max Towey asked Mehdi about his solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict, multiculturalism in the UK, whether Islam is reconcilable with Western values, how the Muslim community will vote in 2024, what he thinks of Wokeness, how Israel can defeat Hamas, and much more. If you have guest ideas or questions, please email us at wethe66@rocanews.com.
Batya Ungar-Sargon is the author of the new book "Second Class: How the Elites Betrayed America's Working Men and Women." We had first come across Batya on "Real Time With Bill Maher," where she's appeared twice in the last two years. In both appearances, she made points about the political state of America that surprised us. She cited statistics and made observations that we hadn't heard elsewhere, so it piqued our curiosity. We wanted to bring her on so that you could hear her perspective, too. We also invited on the authors of the rival book "White Rural Rage," but they went silent on us. In this episode we talk about the polarization myth, the working class, the immigration debate, Trump's appeal to the working class, how the Democratic party has evolved, Wokeness in the news media, and so much more. If you would like to check out her new book, here's a link: https://www.amazon.com/Second-Class-B... Also, thank you for your emails. We read all of them and try to respond to as many as we can. For any guest ideas, feedback, or questions, shoot us a note at wethe66@rocanews.com. Make sure to hit subscribe so you stay tuned for future We the 66 episodes. We are NOT your echo chamber.
Harvard Professor Avi Loeb is one of the world's leading theoretical physicists and the founder of the Galileo Project, which seeks to find alien civilizations in the universe. Our conversation with Professor Loeb proved to be highly educational: He gave us a brief history of the universe, discussed the recipe for designing "baby universes," explained why we still can't understand the history of our own universe, shared his encounters with alien objects, reveals why he thinks many of his colleagues are arrogant, and opens up about what he really thinks of UFOs. We found the conversation to be fascinating and super informative, and hope you do as well.   Comment what questions you'd like to hear more about because we intend to have him on again. Please make sure to subscribe and thank you for listening!
To some, Alex Berenson was the "pandemic's wrongest man." To others, he was a prophet, whose Covid and vaccine predictions -- although deeply unpopular and ultimately the reason for his ban from Twitter -- came true. A graduate of Yale University, Alex Berenson got a job as a journalist at The New York Times around 2000. During his award-winning 10-year tenure at the paper, he covered the pharma industry, Bernie Madoff, Hurricane Katrina, and the Iraq War. He ultimately left the newspaper to become a novelist, which proved a more lucrative and comfortable career. Then, in 2019, he published a book on the link between cannabis and psychosis called "Tell Your Children." From Joe Rogan, on whose podcast Berenson has appeared multiple times, to establishment scientists, critics accused him of cherry-picking data and being alarmist. Today, however, his cannabis research is less controversial. In 2020, in the early days of the pandemic, Berenson became a critic of the federal government's response to Covid. He called BS on lockdowns, mask mandates, contact tracing, and more. Then, when the vaccine came out, he raised questions about the clinical trials, saying they were run poorly and predicting that the vaccine may have significant side effects. In late summer 2021, he sent a tweet saying the vaccines would be "at best a therapeutic," and Twitter banned him. He sued Twitter and won the appeal, and has since sued the federal government for colluding with Twitter to ban him. He sat down with RocaNews co-founders Max Frost and Max Towey to discuss his lawsuit, censorship, his pandemic views, his cannabis views, and much more. Make sure to subscribe and please send your questions/thoughts/feedback to wethe66@rocanews.com.
About 10 years ago, Molly Winter decided she wanted to start seeing new men. She was an English teacher in Brooklyn at the time and felt that boyfriends would help spice up her life. That may sound entirely normal, but what made it unique is that Molly Winter was also a married mom. She and her husband then proceeded to open up their marriage. They first went on dating apps, and after 10 years of dating different people remain happily married. Or so she says. We interviewed Molly about her adventures into polyamory and her new New York Times bestseller "More." If you have any thoughts, questions, or feedback, please email us at wethe66@rocanews.com. Thank you for listening, and it would help us out if you hit subscribe!
Greg Lukianoff is perhaps the leading expert on free speech on college campuses -- and now even off college campuses. He is the president of the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE) and co-author of the #1 New York Times best-seller "The Coddling of the American Mind." In this conversation, we asked Greg about the history of free speech on college campuses, how the First Amendment applies to private colleges, how college students became so fragile, and also a number of topical questions: Were the rights of pro-Palestine student protesters violated? Is the Antisemitism Bill that the House just passed legal? Why is Harvard so bad with free speech? Are the pro-Palestine encampments civil disobedience or free speech? We hope you enjoy the conversation and check out Greg's new book "The Canceling of the American Mind." If you have any suggestions or questions, please send us an email at wethe66@rocanews.com.
Pastor Carl Day, known as the "Pastor of the Hood" was once the type of youth he's now trying to help. He grew up in a rough north Philly neighborhood without a dad and quickly fell into a life of crime. He had a kid at 18 and was charged with attempted murder and armed robbery a few years later. He spent the next three years in prison or on house arrest. It turns out those years were the best thing that ever happened to him. His conversion to Christianity -- already in the works before getting locked up -- flourished in prison and on house arrest. Today he runs a ministry called Culture Changing Christians. His goals are to help put at-risk youth on a path to a better life -- away from drugs, crime, and the streets. He took us through Kensington, the worst neighborhood in Philly, after the interview. Stay tuned for that, too!
In 2021, Winston Marshall was the lead guitarist of Mumford & Sons, one of the most successful rock bands of the 21st century. He co-founded the band in 2007 and was instrumental (no pun intended) to its extraordinary success. Then, after Tweeting a positive review of conservative journalist Andy Ngo's new book on the radical left's violence in 2020, a mob came after him. They bombarded him, his family, and bandmates with threats. He eventually apologized but later reneged on the apology and left the band. In the years since, he has become an outspoken defender of free speech and the importance of open discourse. He has since founded the Dissident Dialogues, which will be hosting its inaugural event in Brooklyn this weekend. In this interview, the RocaNews co-founders Max Frost and Max Towey ask him about his experience of getting canceled, his relationship with the band today, his time debating Nancy Pelosi, and what he's doing in this next chapter of his life.
Dr. David Hasan, a professor of neurosurgery at Duke University, was among the first cohort of doctors to enter Gaza in the wake of October 7th. It was late December 2023, and he had no clue what to expect. Although his visit was emotionally shattering, he later returned to Gaza in March and plans to do so again in June. Hasan discusses the morale of the Palestinian people, state of the Gazan hospitals, humanitarian efforts in the works, and so much more. We asked him if he's seen the Hamas tunnels, how his re-adjustment to life in America has been, what people in Gaza do all day, and so much more. If you enjoy the episode please like and subscribe. Also, we apologize for the poor audio quality! Hope the subtitles (done by scratch, so pardon the typos) help! 🌊
Today we bring you an interview with John Spencer, an expert in urban warfare who serves as the chair of urban warfare studies at the Military Institute at West Point and has visited Gaza twice since October 7th. John Spencer is a US military veteran himself. He served for 25 years in the Army including two combat deployments to Iraq as both an infantry platoon leader and company commander. We first came across John from his op-eds in the Wall Street Journal about the war in Gaza. John brings a unique perspective to the Israel-Hamas War. As a military expert, he’s seen Gaza in the company of the IDF, so we will follow this episode with a Thursday one on a doctor who's seen Gaza through the eyes of the Palestinians.
Steven Pinker is the guest on the latest episode of We The 66. He defended his thesis in "Enlightenment Now" and shared how progress isn't linear, which might explain the backsliding in various areas over the last decade. He also discussed wokeness, free speech, and how Harvard his changed. He continues to defend the Enlightenment and argues that our elite institutions have ushered in a culture of self-censorship. He also shared more about his friendship with Bill Gates and his visit to the World Economic Forum, among other things. 
A member of the Roca community, Michael Colgan, sent us a rather surprising message: He said he died for 7 minutes when he was a college student. At first, we didn't know if this was a joke, but we were curious. We reached out to him and brought him into the studio for an interview. He tell us his story, which was both terrifying and inspiring. It all happened during his senior year at Ohio State. Huge thanks to Michael for sharing his story. We end up the episode, by the way, with some fun trivia. Make sure to subscribe and thank you all for your support.
Marianne Williamson joined the pod to discuss her experience as an outsider candidate in the Democratic Party. She shares how she's lost friends on the campaign trail, why the Democratic Party hates her so much, claims that being a woman has made her candidacy harder, why her dad took her to Vietnam when she was 12, why she thinks her candidacy hurts Donald Trump, and what the biggest health problems are affecting the country.
Today we bring you an interview with Dr. Martin Kulldorff. Virtually overnight, Dr. Kulldorff went from being one of the world’s most prominent epidemiologists – a Harvard medical professor and NIH affiliate – to being labeled “fringe” by the government, blacklisted on social media, and, eventually, losing his job at Harvard. You may be thinking, “What did he do?” But the right question is, “What did he say?” In this interview, Kulldorff tells us why Harvard fired him, what Trump told him in their hour and a half meeting in 2020, why his case matters to you, and so much more. If you enjoy the episode, please make sure to subscribe. Send us an email with your thoughts or questions at wethe66@rocanews.com or send us a DM on Instagram!
Welcome to the first episode of We The 66! We are so thrilled to launch the first episode of our official podcast. In this episode, we share how Instagram has censored Roca, why we have this name, what we plan to cover in this show, and what we've learned about the news media in our 3.5 years of running Roca. We're the Maxes, and we hope you can follow us on Instagram (@wethe66podcast), subscribe to us on YouTube, and email us your ideas for the show at wethe66@rocanews.com. Let's ride!
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