Aired 3 months ago 1:36
Imperial Beach Discussed on KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO
KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO
From the news
Aired Aired just now 37:27
Episode Nine: Action Bronson
Uh-huh. Dan Le Batard. And the last time I saw this guy. He was hugging me on Espanola way a little bit strange. I was not expecting it. But he is a giant sports fan. And he has an unusual story to tell you don't usually go from chef to hip hop. And he's going to tell that story with us now action Bronson has taken a real unusual path to get to where he is. And he is admired as a Lear assist is a vigorous hugger, I can tell you that. I was again surprise looks like a good hugger. Yeah. He was he was just very excited to see me because secretly in. There is a really giant sports door. But before we get to that we've been asking you guys to support were out of the way. And it is recruiter time watch out. Oh, man. I come here every damn week. And I tell you how challenging hiring is yet. Not enough. People are listening to me. Okay. So this is full on. Threatening Mike now, okay. You're gonna go to ZipRecruiter dot com slash beach. It's the only place that has powerful matching technology that scans thousands of resumes to find people with the right experience and invite them to apply to your Jain. You turn that down. Just a little. You get the hell Addy here. Oh shut up because as applications come in ZipRecruiter analyzes each one of them and spotlights atop candidates. So you never miss a great match. And that's what I love so much about ZipRecruiter dot com speech, but the mood is quieter around here for south beach sessions, you're shouting wrapper on this week. It's time to bring the energy level up action. Bronson is probably going to be high. Okay. Listen to this it sets a record for f words in the south each really, it seems responsible. But trust me, you'll find out Dan as anyways, I want all of you. That are listening to south beach sessions, okay to go to separate dot com slash beach. That's B E A C H and try ZipRecruiter for free. How hard is that? It's free. Try it out for free. And I always tell you and you listen to me what I'm telling Chris Cody ZipRecruiter. It's the smartest way to hire. All right. So on that note, you listen, very, Well, Chris I salute you for just. Taking that barrage that threatening barrage, but listen to what makes telling you. They're just go do that for us real quick. It doesn't cost you anything literally doesn't cauti- anything. And you're supporting what it is that we do around here. And without further ado, no one gets introduced that way anymore. Here is action Bronson. This path has been crazy. The journey has been nuts. You do not have the resume that this guy has that goes a chef rapper and New York Times bestselling author. He tells you how to eat. Well, he seems to eat. Well, he does the kind of things with stone beyond belief his latest book that follows again, the New York Times bestseller. That's delicious. He stoned all the time all the time action Bronson right now. Right. All the time. All your always stone. Yes. Absolutely. That you are correct. And you go to great lengths, right? Like, this is a habit that you're supporting can you explain it to us, can you detail because I'm looking at this and the cover of your book, you're smoking five joints here. I couldn't get enough. I couldn't get enough in this about a month. It's not really not something that's has it or not. I don't look it up on. And I don't look at it as something. That's all. It's just a part of my life. You know what? I mean. This is just this is my this is my way of my. Way of being forgive me for a second. But what is your real name? How do you pronounce it my real name idea? Okay. Boss lonnie. And so what is your backstory because I've read about you and the way that you arrive is unusual. But what can you tell us about your early years? I don't really know what to say about it over the years. I was a young man growing up slushing queens, come from a working class family was always imaginative and curious and ready to do whatever down for whatever. Or in the street running around thirteen years old all around the city while out. What did you wanna be a simple, man? What remember, but you don't remember whether you wanted to be a chef for rapper. You didn't remember what you wanted to be as a kid? No. Of course, when I was young once again shift was I wanted to play sports, you know, gonna be baseball player how much trouble did you get into? I got to amount of trouble. I got trouble bad. Trouble. Trouble that lingered some trouble that stays around. You know, I like it was always a good boy just as well as Ross up wrong scene where you a happy kid. Absolutely. But I went through my patterns. I mean, I went to patches of like thirteen being legal. So you know, when you're thirteen you don't know what the full. You are. You're just the Ansel. And so at that point where you at interested in rap at that age. Yeah. Absolutely. I would never I was number wrapping until later on by all the music. I listen to all the music sellers. Eight years old, you know, since a kid nonstop that was my thing. And so how did it happen for you though? How how does one transition from being a chef who's very good at his job to becoming a rapper? Like, how did that happen? It happened while I was just you know, it was it was a happy at first I started taking it a little bit more seriously as my friends were encouraging me. And usually, you know, you always love to bust your balls tell you your garbage should Strache you stop doing it. And it was absolute opposite. So I figured I had something here and those keep on doing it 'cause I like doing it. Anyway, I'll fast like you go from doing this for your friends to being a professional, and how long I would say I started rapping in two thousand nine two thousand and eight around. And then in two thousand ten I hadn't had the internet for years. Like, I wasn't on computers wasn't doing that type of shit. I think kit so so one of my friends put it on the computer on YouTube one of my clips, and it just started rolling. You know, one of these rats flags put it up and people just started taking notice not just not working harder from there. You know, broke my leg while I was working in the kitchen, and I was just like I'm done. I'm going on whatever I want to confine when my heart followed, my heart. And here we are. You know, my starting my first two thousand and ten thousand eleven but you know, it hasn't been like a New York rise. It's been a slow burn. That's pretty quick man that doesn't sound like a slow burn go from. I I started rapping in two thousand eight to two thousand and ten year popular, you know, sort of pre social media right at the advent of social media. He was right Greece. Appre media like Twitter started around two thousand nine not someone told me about it. You know, like. Stuff like that like social media and the internet pretty much out me out. I had no clue. No idea. I'm used to doing everything manually. So you break your leg in the kitchen and your thinking to yourself beyond screw it. I'm gonna go try this. You're thinking what you're thinking? I'm going to change careers. Now. What I was thinking was that. Okay. Of course, my that's gonna do now that but after a while I started changing, my attitude stopping negative and becoming five things start happening in your life as pretty much what happened with me. And so at the time, did you think the broken leg was a horrible thing. Absolutely. But in hindsight it was in blessing. I mean, not just the blessing like you couldn't have seen. Right. You couldn't have foreseen any of your success. Right. You're leaving the kitchen for the moment. You're leaving the kitchen not seeing this. And you you imagine what? In your wildest dreams is being the top. Chef you know, like every being emerald pretty much, you know, being MO. That's what I wanted to be. And I wanted to be. On television. Obviously a once the ship was more important. I never thought that being on TV and all this other stuff was reachable, and so social media. And then the fact that you could take video and then edit yourself and put it up there and get millions and millions of us and become a household name seemingly overnight, but it's been a lot of hard work that goes into all this stuff. Just didn't just happen for no reason who did you wanna be more enroll or not shit. That's why I'm unique. Character is I'm putting is part emerald. And I'm part get Don Mattingly. You know what I mean? So that's just where I'm just a unique gathered to wonder some of your favorite sports and wrestling sort of lyrics, which ones do you like the references that your proudest of when you I mean, and you're too young to Don Mattingly honest, by the way, you're like thirty five years old how much Don Mattingly's career? Did you even see I saw plenty of it? There's all kinds of my first of all my grandfather was Neil giants fan from the old. Polo grounds. He came here to the Neal city Ellis Island, nineteen seventeen I'm people rooted in New York in New York, sports, and everything that comes with it. So, you know, going from watching the Neal Jain that move away then he'd watch the San Francisco Giants go to house in West Palm Beach, Florida century village. And he's called can people over the coming. Bring like baseball cards from me, Andre I remember specifically laying on his looking at the point. Like, I said, I'm just a different type of guy my favorite set, references obscure ones like when I mentioned old and policies like. Like old and they're on a gym with the knees like older policies all like just randomly shutting out shuck. Now, blah things like that things are accent by you'll. Weird obscure shit gets me. I love I'm fifty years old and the name all. No, you're not going to do better than Olden Polynice. I believe later in life. He ended up in person a police officer and ended up in some higher. For that. But that is a great coming like, let's do this. I want to do this with you. What are the great sports names that have because you got a lot of comedy in. You have comedic timing older pollinates. You're not going to do a lot better than Olden Polynice as a funny old Reverend. It just doesn't make any sense that you're thirty five years old that references more thirty five years old. I know there's a lot of references. I make to the world strongest man also world's strongest men competitions like Marius culture now scheme and Vicki's and John all big missing and legless for Maxon. Like, I don't know. I'm not stump the Schwab. But I guess we acknowledge that leaving those comes from you could probably hit us with something from your Benny AGA by Yanni catalog, right? You got some any act by on the listen fifty. How about wrestlers? You wanna talk wrestling with me because I love talking wrestlers you love throwing the regulars into into your lyrics. Yeah. Absolutely. Like after watching a of WWE network like old WWF, wrestler and stuff. Just refreshing my memory, just it was so ridiculous amazing at the same time. That's reminiscent. What did you like what who are your favorite from the aero like EC w I used to go thirteen years old easy events at the elks badge on queens boulevard. You know me. And my boy was the only two young boys. They're going crazy shrimpers and all kinds of crazy shit going on you know, like has been and have boo are the shit like that like some era Gray's little moon diesel, even before that like Tito Santana, Rick the model, you know. Tito, santana. Do you do you? Find yourself in the company of these people very often. Are you do you get star struck around athletes and former wrestlers -absolutely, I that's the only people I really get star struck for. I was very star show up when I met with where he was an amazing that I met Mick Foley mankind. You know, like, I I've met a lot of these a lot of famous people. I stand out the biggest one that you too. He's New York City icon. Let's so when I met him I had driving gloves in my pocket. Had a car shirt on it made me feel like a man he gave me a hug he told me. He loved me told me all I ever needed in my life would've been more exciting for you meeting Derrick jeeter or meeting olden pollens Olden Polynice, I would've just loved to just to be in his presence because like I had his hoops car. It was terrible. No, like, I still have the basketball like, you know, sometimes they're in a position is like terrible. He's back in someone down into post, not even like good bad positioning. You don't get star. Struck about around anybody except athletes in wrestlers. I gotta look saw truck when I saw the Niro when me into Niro acting in the same scene, I was pretty starstruck. But I had to do my job. So have keep it professionals. Did you have any memorable conversations with them about anything? Did how do you even the Louis, and what can you share? This is what he said to me. I was doing the scene. More Scorsese go, okay action. And then I do the scene. It's a walk into scene. And I don't, you know, walk into a pretty hard hard to just talk periods of walk and talk. So. I seen a couple of times and Niro gets out of his wheelchair. He pulls me over to the side. He goes somebody could say really blowing it not just look at the most shit, and I'm really sorry. Zagging out of here. And so. Probably gets that all the time. People are probably nervous around him all the time and couldn't help that. He was watching you. Yeah. No. It's it's face to face. I'm acting with him. It's just me and him. I'm talking. Robert Shapiro, and my first seen pretty much ever do as pretty mind blown at any point during that. Are you looking across from you? And being like what the how did my life get here? Absolutely. There's no doubt about it. And there's a lot of moments like that like had a hell my ear right now. Like, what did I do to get this two subunits thing? It's blessing. So it's all these things everyone everything that people all those things that people say, it's really a beautiful thing. So give me some of the other stories wherever it is that you wanna put them meeting chefs or performing somewhere meeting musicians partying with musicians gear. Like gimme some of those stories. You know, I have to show that I was doing. It was called the untitled action. The shows pretty much like a live variety show inside of the kitchen in ilk of emerald lag. But more stone than cooler, you know, younger so I've had all kinds of people come through ships that I couldn't. Even like shock to ten Daniel Balu, people that are just mind blowing chefs, you know, what I mean, like don't you don't think you'll ever be able to eat type of 'cause they're rock stars of their world. You know, one of my most memorable things when Christopher multi aka Michael imperial, you came through for my birthday. And I just saw I was like Chrissy just kept calling Chrissy. I'm sorry crit as I'm such sopranos fan. And he was just such a good, dude. He came out for my birthday, son too. Big fans assigned some books for him for the kids. He gave me a Buddhist prayer necklace and the gun that you know, like the thing that you do down vast with little gung that's gone. So I was pretty blown away by that how softspoken and spiritual. The men was what you know do place. Christopher more Santi. Yeah. I promise fan. Of course, that's going to be you probably watched all of those have you found yourself smoking in the company of people where you're like look at this. I can't believe this is happening right now. I met Anthony junior in the street. You just made me I was like what Anthony Julia. I couldn't believe it was anti union street. Like, yo also I saw Cody Kokin after summer jam in Brooklyn sitting on the corner in one of those shares that in elementary school has funny ravages on. So that was pretty mindblowing. Imagine it would be how about at festivals. Like what what's the crowd, you've overlooked in the city or someone you're performing with or someone you're sharing stage with at some point where you've been like holy shit. This is the top of the mountain. I mean, I've been on ill with Billy idol. I've been on bills like crazy musicians known to man like I've been I've been in festival. I make shoes. I've been on tour with Eminem. I open directly for him in Johannesburg and in Cape Town and in the hotel. He was staying at Carlos Santana a meeting breakfast watching Carlos Santana would drippy hair and beautiful samples on that leather jacket. He's like my man, you know, I couldn't even have the balls to say what's up? You got any good Eminem stories? Oh, yeah. I'm the man we wanna eat took me each took me to each of meat in New Zealand, and he took me to a trillion. So with him. No. He's just he's cool too. You know, there's a cool, dude. He's a regular duties just Michael Jackson s like, you don't even believe he's real. So like in London when I met him for the first time, it was at this speech reading testable. He's was standing in a circle he's kind has back tuned and is like the shining light on the middle of the circle. He just turns his head slightly in shine. The light of the shine of the light. Just hitches features. Evan still can't be. And then I. It was him. And he was real. I was like oh shit. He's an actual person is growing up. You think he's not even a real person? Couldn't even imagine being here with you people. Well, who represents the most of that for you like who among all the people in the music game is an or somebody else where you're like that is not a real human most antenna Stanton. Because I've been so close to meeting him, you know, so many different times. Like, I actually know his bodyguards handle it, and we just good do big fan. And he he invited me to come meet him in fallish co stadium queens. I got there a little late, and I only got to meet the son and daughter, no, cool action. No, no. You didn't get there on time for the drippy hair and the tassels on the jacket and disrespect last one. I I don't know for being early on time everything in my life. I'm I'm on shift. I don't play games. I'm the most. Punctual rapper person everything. So the fact that I missed that was a travesty. But like I said I watched so sacrifice performance from where stack every day is perform I watch, you know, she's like, that's that's my that's my spirit animal. That's my in what part of the world where you when you were performing. And you looked over a sea of people, and you were sort of a mazed that, you know, this kid who comes from an American Jewish mother, and I'll Bainian Muslim father and was selling drugs in his youth that you've arrived in this place, and it moved you while on stage. There's been a lot of those early on early on. It was that coach shallow when I first before that coach show, I think it was sows and twelve thousand thirteen and you know, it was early afternoon set, and I was with two of miles of friends one named Danny Brown and another group named trash-talk. So it was like a three block of us. So we made it like a little tour date, and we just smashed it in people with chasing. I jumped off stage and people were chasing around the campground while I was grabbing surreal, but then you go all over the world. And just recently New Year's Eve, I was in Zeeland at Queenstown, which is one of the furthest places away New York in the world and five ten thousand people just freaking out. And like what is on the lyricist that you most respected was my my nemesis that most respected your lyricist, the lyricist as you were growing up not. Emphasis. Although that's a good question. To would you prefer to answer that one? Well, you know, I'm gonna have to go. I don't have any nemesis per se, but I'm gonna have to say my tasteful team has an emphasis, and I respect the Red Sox. Oh, wow. You have to give them respect. After all of these years. You have to give them respect. Not just I do respect him. I just do. They just if hard no scene, and they keep coming back, but hardnosed place, and I do respect him that hurt to say. But lyricist most respected growing up as nice has to be proud of g for my teeth. It doesn't get better than that. Cool. She rests. It's just doesn't get better than when it comes to. Wrapping suck words. Can you give me a time where you've been surprised because someone whoever it is is really discerning about how good you are at writing. I was at the twenty third anniversary Jordan party Chipper Yanni's on Wall Street, and I leave the party and Michael Moore gets out. Limousine comes up to me like oh my God. I love your show. That's this. I was just watching it in the hotel room. Of course, some. Michael Moore's bowling for Columbine of crazy shit craziness. Of course, if we were like somebody though that was shaped that would love your food. It would look like Mike Moore, right something decadent and greasy and wonderful. It's not ruling over. There wasn't a TV. It's not surprising that he was watching a cooking show. Sorry got caught up in their got caught in your throat. What happened which one of the pieces? I've read that you have twenty and thirty thousand dollar marijuana pieces that you use right? Are they bonds or something? Just pieces of you know, like glass sculpture could bird could be a dragon if any shape, you know, this just happens to be functional beautiful piece of glass on one. Do you have in front of you right now right now? Incredible north advocate couscous restaurant called kiss cash. I'm down over here in in the lower Manhattan Tribeca area. How often are you cooking? These days. Do you cook for yourself as much as you can? Yeah. Absolutely. I'm actually here. Having a meeting about a collaboration. Do you have a business mind as well? My I have a business mind, but it doesn't run it's superficial business mind. They'll have an idea you always do this. But it doesn't go much further than that. I need. No. I'm an RT's. You know, my brain is on another wave Lanston numbers. I'm curious with that lack of accurate in that area. Do you find a lot of people approaching you with an interest in taking your shit? There's always someone that's interested in. Representing you collaborating with you to grab the money that you could potentially make yourself. So I mean, if it's lucrative everybody. And it makes sense. And there's no there's no problem with that. But you could see through a full shooter. You can't both should've OSHA mother. So me that well in what ways were you shaped by your parents? And specifically their heritage is like what has imprinted you from American Jewish and all main Muslim? I'm sorry. Not just heard of Turkey song that just came on in the rest of and I got hike. He told me exactly what you said again. Yes. But what is the Turkey? The Turkish song in the restaurant. Yeah. Might go. All right. You got some reps favorite, my favorite circus performers. He's like the legendary he's like Michael Jackson Turkey is name is Badische Manco. And so now you're hype. Okay, Khokhlov black hair. He looks like looks like Dracula. I don't even know what was the guy who's the one with the sole patch and the long black hair. I don't know Leonardo DiCaprio father. Talking about what I asked. You was your American Jewish mother Albanian Muslim father in what ways where you imprinted with those Heritage's. Yes, you know, they would. I had twenty or fifteen different Bainian people in the house with me and living in the house. And then there were times, right? Went down to West Palm Beach and stayed with Jewish family. You know, like I was Smith Sam between both. But how being inside always overpowered because that's why I lived with. But my mother is like they don't eat pork Muslims only in my family need folks, when everyone would go by my mother would. Both fried rice from Chinese and ribs. So we were conflicted from an early early age. And how does this work though, when you say they're fifteen Manian in a house? How big is that house? What are you? What can you? Tell us about that time in your life, two bedroom. Apartment has a swifty taps talking about my father had his whole family over here. You know, because he kept on in eighties hip bring people to Mexico and Canada bringing family through, and you know, that's the way we had to do it. And then when the war was when the war erupted out there and the ethnic cleansing went down. There was a lot of refugees came around. So we would we would take in refugees, family members and all kinds of crazy shit. My grandfather would spit at the TV watching CNN one of the surprising things about fifteen people living in a thousand square feet like how I mean that couldn't have been very comfortable. Well, the amount of cigarettes that are being smoked is phenomenal. At least, you know, they're smoking cigarettes at time and you're sleeping on the floor. Right. Like what I mean? Fifteen people hundred. Yeah. No, I didn't have I had a bed, but you know, cousins slept on the floor. Everyone be spelled out everywhere. What something that, you know, now that you didn't know ten years ago? That working class men and have to pay a lot of guys in taxes. When you work, and you make money, you pay a lot of money to the government. I rather just trucks. I rather just do something that's illegal because this is crazy. Just ailing my money. That's true. Healing from my grass Shaquille O'Neal used to say he'd look at this track. All the time and be like, I'm going to up this fight a person who's this fight a person straight up. I mean shack really have to worry about that type of thing. But imagine that the taxes that shack out of gracious when you're doing books, why are you doing books like why of all the things that you've tackled if you decided to write for example, the new book, and it's going to be available March nineteenth stone beyond belief. Right. Well, what I what when I get out of the books is it's a journey takes a long time. You know, and it's a it's like an art project. It's like a school project. You put it together throughout you know. And then you present it almost like a piece this type of thing. But I get creative another ways they can't really orders, and and telling stories and getting to keep into it in illustrating the stories and giving people anecdotes in shaping the the way that they could cook and and pretty much families together. Like, so many people told me that me, and my mother cook everything out of the book, it's really brought us together, you know, funded heavily owning this type of thing, and I'm intimate delicious, the new bible type of things culinary world. So the young culinary world and the old guard as well because you show us back to the old God and as well as the new guys coming in. That's really where I'm at with it. I'm just I'm trying to different avenues creativity of all the nice things that people say to you when they meet, you, what are the compliments that you cherish, the most you were mentioning, you know, the idea of family coming together over your food. What are some of the comments that you most chair when someone has? The wherewithal notice to like notice how I treat people talk to people, and you know, with with a certain amount of respect. And with is, you know, always give them a spec gives them your is. Because when you go. Take your eyes somebody where you're saying. How does someone over, you know, certain traditions and certain countries in places and cultures that, you know, you gotta be very serious about certain things. I just feel like my my humanitarian affect is something that I like to be complimented on because I've never say no to anybody for for picture of autographs or whatever wanted to stop and talk about the Knicks whatever because I'm just another guy. I'm on it that people want to see me and can show love that is a good attitude and he wants to do serious stuff. But I'm going to read something here about your book. It is called the ultimate love letter to the world most magical plant, we'd bestselling author rapper chef and television star action. Bronson is a marijuana superhero. And stone beyond belief is his masterpiece. This is an exploration of every corner of the pot galaxy from highly scientific botanical analysis in the study of. Pot medicinal benefits to guide to the wild world of we'd paraphanelia. It's also very personal tribute to a substance Bronson refers to as life changing a horizon expanding a conduit for happiness a connector expound upon that. You know, the plant has no bigger advocate than you prolific smoker. Can you expound upon those words? No. It's my changing like I said, my changing effect is something that comes from earth. This is in myth. I'm sorry to be Frank that didn't miss. This is not to be looked upon as drug look at this look on to be medicine. This is looked upon to be like, I said, a relaxer something that is integrated in life, not something that's like overbearing or something to be looked at as taboo or illegal. It's helped people throughout the world history. So many different things. I don't wanna start getting Hetty definitely came from the sky from another planet to give into us in some other way. And it was given to us for reason. There's a reason why answering killed with besides the things and all sides of diseases and sick to be presented with name essential makeup of these plants. You know, you're saying they come from alien. Though like, you think it comes from a different place. What isn't area we might be aliens? This is another conversation to have what I'm saying is we don't know where it came from. It was just presented to us. And we need to respect it in. You know, enjoy beauty not to look down upon it. Just because you know, the world in in in America, they say to drug problem is that because you know, they make it that way don't make it so hard to obtain and you'll have to arrest people. I don't have to shove it in my nuts to hide it. And I don't have to worry about driving around with it make it like, it's a normal thing. And my thing more people become in enchanted. When are you having to shove it into your nuts when travelling yeah, you have to shove it into nut sack area because you have to hide it? And no one wants to go down there. The cops come. They're not going nuts. They don't you. Don't wanna go. There. We sell a cop. I'm not. Wearing underwear? That's good. That's a good way to do. It's a good way to do it. How how have you seen many things that the stigma has fallen on the more than marijuana over the last ten or fifteen years because I believe that. Now, your espousing what's a much more popular opinion than it was not as recently as even five years ago. Yeah. Movie at the only thing that I speak of the only quote, unquote, substance that I use. I don't use any other don't take don't take any of that type of shoot. I'm allergic can codeine my wildest dreams. I wouldn't shoot dope. Shut that really many times. But that's intramuscular. He's not going into the rain. Once you start talking about putting a needle in vain. I get queasy, but I could shoot it directly in my ass. She very easily. So you tell me what's going on. I didn't know your a steroid user. I was a steroid abuse it when I was like twenty three really, yes. Tell me about that tell any three twenty four I was trying to gain council. Since I was trying to wait and get off. My whole life has been trying to get his thirteen years old. I've been working out now to limp is Jim I'm no them boulevard. I remember seeing one Asian dude. He was huge. But he had acne over his back. As couldn't understand what the hell that was. But I still wanted to be that big. And then, you know, years go by started doing powerlifting at Lewis talion on boulevard stunted, my growth, matured piece of shit cause of it. But I lift a lot of weight. Did you wanna be a bodybuilding anything to anybody? No. I wanted to be like more of a powerless to body. I don't know why it cut was always more relatable to me. I imagine that you've got a great deal of confidence from these things where there was success. But what what were you like around women as a youngster where you someone who had some success or did that come with music and cooking and confidence. No, I successful women early on because they always thought it was cute. And you know, and that that's. I learned how to cook. Because of that. And that was really that. But it wasn't like I was a cats and over in. There's no doubt about that later on with obviously being in the realm of music, and that type of stuff you become more. You become more of exploratory sexual I in because there's more readily available, and then more people more women that are just, you know, I don't know if it's it's sucks that that's how it has to go down. But no life. Thinking how you get it. What what came with success that you weren't expecting constant battle and sat on my mind. Trying to keep on going, you know, and not wanting to ever stop not wanting to get satisfied you mean. Yeah. And I wanted to get satisfied, but never want people to stop caring about me. And you know, stuff like that knows my game play with yourself. Oh, you mean, you're successful. And then you can think the next day. So can't see how many careers one day. And then over in in the next I've been here for almost ten years now. So I'm trying to be forever. I just want people to care for ever. And if they don't still be mean, but those are the things you struggle with a month. What do you consider unusual about your journey because I've said before that it's just a crazy story, and everyone knows it's a crazy story. But what do you consider craziest about it? Now that I sit back and I looked back. It happened away should've I'm wild, and you need crazy guy and no way that my path would have been normal. So the way that everything worked out the way it was supposed to we're gonna let you go on that note. I appreciate you giving us so much time. Again, the book is called stone beyond belief. It's available March nineteenth. And if you want to ticket or information on the white Bronco tour you visit action Bronson dot com. I haven't seen you since Espanola way. And you just ran over and hugged. I was I was startled by because I was not expecting that. But you are like maximum sports dork. You have not lost any chrome Anya. My God, we'll watch you improper all the time. You remember? I was on the show. I do remember you are on the show. But that was at the very beginning. It felt like right? That was about six seven years ago. You're just coming up. Exactly. And you guys, you know, you were gracious enough to have your money. And there was just a beautiful thing. Well, thank you for doing this. No, you're very busy. Congratulations on your success. It's fun to watch. Thank you much. Love. My bro- good. Our thanks to action Bronson. We again, remind you guys to rate and subscribe and review on this stuff. So we can keep bringing into you next week. We bring you a real interesting conversation with Dan, Patrick, so good. We might have to make it to podcasts.
Le Batard and Friends - South Beach Sessions
Aired 2 weeks ago 73:55
Life after climate change, with David Wallace-Wells
We brought ourselves to the threshold of true climate catastrophe in the time span of a single generation. We now have about the time of a single generation to avoid unimaginable suffering. And we are the ones writing that story. Hello, welcome to the as recline show on the vox media podcast network. I am not as recline. In fact. My name is David Roberts. I may staff writer here at vox, I cover energy and climate change and the politics thereof. Our guest is David Wallace wells, the author of a new book on climate change called the uninhabitable earth life after warming. Hesitate to kick off my podcast career with a moldy cliche. But if you read only one book on global warming make it this book, it is a painful, and sometimes emotional read, I had to put it down a few times walk my dog hug my kids. But every word feels necessary. I loved my conversation with the other David we talked about exactly what it means that climate change is worse than you think. And what's in store for us? We talked about the dark blunt tone of his writing the lack of sort of canned and scripted hope and this sort of tension that's caused among the climate communications and and climate science crowd, and we talked about US climate politics in all their glorious and ongoing dysfunction. And finally, we talked about how. How climate might in the twenty first century shape? Our imaginations our sense of history, our sense of identity, the stories we tell our children about what kind of world they live in. It was as any conversation on this subject. A not always the most uplifting. But it was very interesting. I thought and I think you'll really enjoy it as always you can Email the show at as recline show at vox dot com here without further ado is David Wallace wells, David Wallace. Wells, welcome to the podcast. Thanks, so much great to be here and talking to you in particular. I I have to ask David heavy read the famed Dr Seuss story too many Daves. I can't say that I have. But something tells me, I know the meaning I thought that was our anthem. Well, you should check it out. I have I have occasion to think about it quite frequently. My mom tells me that in the in the nursery school where she put me that they were. I think the status there were six kids in my class in four of them were named David. Well, try having a last name like Robert clawing my way up the Google search results, my whole my whole career onto the serious stuff though. So David in terms of at least of climate journalism, you kind of debuted with a bang or came out of nowhere with a bang with a two thousand seventeen New York magazine story called the uninhabitable earth, which is now, of course, the name of the book, you just released as far as I know that was the most read story in New York magazine website history in remains. So as far as I as far as I know it actually it was passed by extra that we published of Michael wolf's, fire and fury. So no longer held holds the title. But you know, close enough. Yeah. Number two. I wanted to get into that piece a little bit later. But I maybe just tell me a little bit about your background and how you ended up covering climate change as your beef. Well, totally by accident is the short answer. I mean, I'm a I'm a journalist. I'm mostly editor. Actually, I don't do a ton of writing. But to the extent that I do right for a number of years. I've been sort of especially interested in the near future of science and technology, and you know, so following that news as best I could reading academe agree. Search, you know, reading some obscure magazines and websites that cover it. And I wasn't especially interested in climate. I'm a lifelong New Yorker and have always thought of myself, as you know, an urban who is living outside of nature and while I was concerned about climate change in theory in the abstract. I always also sort of thought I was conducting my own life outside of its forces and also trusted that. Most of our policy makers and leaders would though the threat was meaningful and large would be able to figure out a way out of it and beginning in about twenty sixteen the stuff that I was reading from new research from academics. And scientists first of all I was just seeing much much more about climate change than I'd seen before it seemed like eighty percent of the news. I was reading from science generally was about climate. And Secondly that it was much more harrowing painting a much bleaker portrait of what was possible over the coming decades than places that I thought of is my competitors. So this is like punching up a little bit. But places like the New York Times or the Washington Post or the New Yorker the Atlantic tended to be talking about the issue. So I saw that there was like a a great divergence between the news as I understood it from climate science and the way that that story was being told in climate journalism, and I responded to that really. As a journalist more than as an environmentalist more than as a advocate. I just felt that there was a story to tell there that the news was getting bleaker by the day. And in a way that actually many scientists were reluctant to talk super forthrightly about to the public because they were worried about what that what's scaring people would would mean and not just that it was darker. But that the story was bigger. And by that, I mean, you know, we had sort of learned through the ninety in the two thousands hearing about climate change in this and that arena that it was mainly an issue of sea level rise. I mean so much of the conversation about climate change is about sea level, and that meant and pole and polar bills, don't forget the polar polar bears. And that meant that if you were off the if you lived off the coast, you could feel like it was going to happen. Elsewhere to people living somewhere else, and that while you may understand that it was a tragedy. What was going to happen to Bangladesh? Miami Beach say you could also feel like your life was going to be not all that directly impacted and the more that I was piecing together this research, the more at felt like an all encompassing system that enclosed us all and in fact, governed much of what we think of as modern life. So it impacts, you know, economic growth that impacts conflict and not just conflict between states, but between individuals. So that murderer goes up when temperatures rise and that kind of thing, right? Well, you you you begin both the piece and the book begin with the same striking line. Which is it is worse much worse than you think. Which which I think captures everything. So so. I want to get into some of the journalism dynamics, and some of the social dynamics, but I I think just for for the benefit of maybe of listeners who have not followed climate change very closely or not kept up with the news, or who who have that sort of same vague understanding of it that you had a few years ago sort of as a casual news, consumer let's give those listeners a sense of what you mean by that. When you say it's worse than you think you've said that that that traditional climate change coverage is misleading sort of gives you a false sense of security in three ways. Namely, the speed the scale and the severity of the problem walk walk through those real quick and say what you mean by that? Yeah. Absolutely. I think that climate journalism is changing a little bit on this way. So it's not as misleading as it was just a few years ago. But I think it was a problem for really long time. So there's three problems are speed. I think we'd been sort of led to believe that Clement. Change was really slow that it was going to happen on the time scale of decades at the fastest and probably centuries. And so we would when we were worried about it. We're worrying about our grandchildren and their children, not our own lives and the lives of our children. In fact, half of all the carbon that we've emitted into the atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels has come in the last thirty years that since Al Gore published his first book on global warming. It's since the UN established. It's I- PCC panel on climate change, which effectively broadcast to the world a scientific consensus that this was a real problem a real threat that everyone needed to worry about we've done more damage to the climate since then than we did in all of the centuries before then which means we've done more damage knowingly than we ever managed ignorance, and that's really terrifying. In terms of what it means going forward, though. It's also, of course, a terrible indictment for how we've behaved of the last three decades. So that's the speed things are happening much much faster than we thought. We're doing this damage in real time. And because of extreme weather, we're starting to see the impact in something like real time as well. As I've talked as I've talked to people about your book. I find that. That's the most cited fact that they tell me the one that struck them hardest in the sense that the book of the damage that's been done to the climate has been done by people who are alive now and knew what they were doing in who who will live to see the effects is not a centuries thing. Right. It's a it's within a generation. And that's really I think you're right. Not how the story was traditionally told at all, and it means that we have that same responsibility going forward. So the next thirty years are going to be just as consequential as the last thirty the last thirty brought us from what was basically a stable climate. Although scientists would dispute that but functionally kind of stable liveable climate to one that we're we're now on the brink of something like real crisis. And if we project ourselves forward. Thirty years. We could have brought ourselves to really catastrophic impacts in that same amount of time. So if we got there it'll be because of what we do going forward. Not because of what happened two hundred years ago one hundred and fifty years ago. This other responsibility is really really hours. That's that's the main lesson that the speed. The second issue is with the scope. So I mentioned the coastlines and Arctic melts issue before this really was the main way that scientists science journalists. Science communicators advocates talked about the issue until very recently. We've started to see here a little bit more about extreme weather heat waves droughts hurricanes and wildfires have been a much bigger part of the story over the last few years for sure but up until a few years ago, really the the when people were telling you the big picture state of climate change in what we should be worried about they were almost invariably talking about sea level rise in coastlines. And yeah, as I mentioned a minute ago that meant that if you didn't live on the coast, you could feel sort of safe. But the more that we know about what these impacts are going to be that more total, and all encompassing a system climate is. And it sounds naive to say, right? Like, we all live inside nature. That's what the air that we breathe when you walk down the street. No matter how man-made that environment. Is it is also an environment that has been built within nature and still exists with an insurer. But I speak as someone who, you know. I didn't live that way. I didn't think that way when I was as recently as a few years ago, I felt like New York is a fortress. There's no nature that can penetrate this fortress, but you're seeing especially with the wildfires in Los Angeles. I mean, the forces of nature are coming roaring back, and they are going to get to us. No matter where we are. No matter how fully defended against those forces. We are the that's just the wildfires are of really vivid case, I think they're in a grotesque perverse way. Kind of a good teaching tool for climate change grotesque because they also involve obviously so much suffering. But there are a lot of other more. Mysterious forces that climate change will unleash into our lives as well. So that's, you know, the impact on growth, there's really good research showing that if we stay on the course that were on by the end of the century global GDP could be at least twenty percent possibly thirty percents smaller than it would be without climate change. There's an impact on public health. You know, mosquitoes are going to be flying much farther afield, which means that all of the mosquito borne diseases that have been restricted to the tropics for all of human history will be transported. Elsewhere, there's an impact on conflict. So for every half degree of warming. You get between ten and twenty percent increase in warfare. Which means again, if we get to this level that we're scheduled to at the end of the century. If we don't change course we could have twice as much war than we do today. And in fact, more than that likely, and yeah that that violence happens at the level of nations. It also happens at the level of individuals. So you see more rapes more murders. More assaults that scientists a little. It's a little more complicated too. Pack, and it's like a little less clear to rely on than some of the some of the stuff about say sea level rise. But it's terrifying. The impacts are seeing on agricultural yields. So if we end up on the course, we're on by the end of the century. We could have grain yields that are half is bountiful as the ones that were counting on today, and we could have considerably more people to feed with that those crops that are growing much less productively. And it's really it's you know, when when you walk through all of the impacts, you just start to see this is not one issue among many, it's not one political problem. It's not one cultural challenge, it is these system in which we are all going to conduct our lives going forward that is how total on compasses climate change is I really feel like this century that we're walking into will be dominated by these forces in much the same way that you could say Madeiran ity dominated the nineteenth century or financial capitalism dominated the late twentieth. And it's there's almost nothing that you can look. In modern life, even as an urban living in an affluent city, like New York City that won't be impacted in some way by climate. And that's one of the big things I'm trying to do in my book is beyond the coastlines in sea level rise questions, although I deal with a bit to all of the more unusual personal humanity is based questions about how will endure in this new environment. So that's all the the sort of scope question than the third. One is severity. Scientists really have focused on this two degree threshold for a long time in climate as you know, sometimes it's misleading stock about thresholds because one point nine and two, you know, it's hard to know when we're gonna hit wet and what each tiny tick of degree means, but they have a way of focusing attention and scientists attention have the attention has been long focused on two degrees, which is often talked about is this kind of threshold of catastrophe in which many of the island nations of the world have described as genocidal level of warming. And because. Scientists were so focused on that threshold. I think most lay readers understood it as ceiling of what was possible that that was kind of worst case scenario, given where we are. Now, it's basically a best case scenario, you know, there's some there's some unusual technological innovations that could possibly allow us to avert two degrees of warming. But through the process of conventional decarbonisation, which is like replacing dirty energy with clean energy. I really don't think there's any chance that we stay below two degrees. So that's basically our best case scenario and the science suggests that some ice sheets would begin irreversible melted. That point the UN believes that we'd have hundreds of millions of climate refugees. Many of the biggest cities in in South Asia and the Middle East would become unlivable hot in summer, which means you couldn't go outside. You certainly couldn't work outside in summer without incurring a lethal risk. That's going to happen to degrees, probably by mid century. And that's really really bad. But it's about our best case scenario will. We're on track for by the end of the century is four degrees or north afford agrees. And there was basically because there was so much focus on this to degree level. There was basically no storytelling about what what life would be like north of two degrees. Nobody was really willing to consider what life was going to be like a two degrees. There's that one the the World Bank. I think I feel I did one big report on on four degrees of big highlight report on turn down the heat. And he's like corny titles for the reports. But yeah, but that's that's the world that we're almost certain to be living in. I mean, maybe not all the way to four degrees. I think we'll we will avert that at least this century, but this range from two to four which is basically from our best case scenario to our worst case scenario, the century, it encloses just about all of the imagine a, you know, all of the outcomes that you could possibly imagine for humanity. And yet it was almost entirely undiscussed in the mainstream climate press, which was focused so much more about one degree one point five degrees. Two degrees. And so they were huge questions left. Unaddressed unanswered unexplored about what life would be like at three degrees or at four degrees. And at four degrees. It really does begin to start to look like a climate. Hell scape? I mean, I think we can talk about this a bit more. I think it's you know, they're still be civilization around. Humans will still be around there. Still be people who probably think of their lives as prosperous in. Happy, but you're talking about global climate damages totaling six hundred trillion dollars, which is double all the wealth that exists in the world today, you're talking about climate refugees, probably approaching five hundred million. And also, I don't know I still to this day don't know how or whether this affects most people, but the fact that we will have driven most of the rest of the life on the planet extinct. I mean, I don't know how to put that in GDP terms. But but that's a that's a weighty. That's a weighty thing to contemplate. Yes. Absolutely. I mean, it's it's interesting. I I come at the subject to someone who has a little bit less invested in the fate of animals than I think most people who write about climate in the environment, but me to be to admit I came from outside of environmentalism as well. And I don't I'm not a big hiker either. And you know, I don't feel that sort of intrinsic love of nature. But just on a moral. I mean when you when you're talking about numbers that big affects that large. It's very striking. Even if you don't, you know, even if you're not a nature lover. Oh, of course. Yeah. And has huge human impacts. I mean, I think one of the one of the ways I've, you know, the book is kind of big picture look at the state of climate science. But one of the few ways, I've tried to narrow the Gaijin focus, it is to really focus on human impacts. But what happens to animals affects us to? And this goes back to what I was saying earlier that like you may think that you live outside nature. Nobody lives outside nature. Nobody lives disconnected from nature. And if we lose all in all the insects in the in the world, and personally, I think that some of the research about that has been a little overstated. But there have been a bunch of reports recently that insects are dramatically declining that will have a major effect on, you know, animal ecosystems plant agriculture and these effects just add up to on one another. I think it's possible. If you're just thinking about one affect of your. Just thinking about sea level rise. Or if you're just thinking about drought. You're just thinking about the effect on crops. You're like, oh, well, we can all together we can figure out how to address one of these issues. But it's everywhere you look absolately every aspect of life on this planet is going to be impacted by these forces. And when you see it that totally when you see it as that kind of all encompassing system made up of hundreds or thousands of challenges each of which would be overwhelming to to kind of generation to to solve it just gives you a sense of the scale of the problem as a whole, so many people point pointed out to me, you know, the example of the the whole the zone, which we quote unquote, solved other. There's actually the right doubt about whether we've solved it. But it's like that was such a trivial challenge compared to the all encompassing challenge of climate change in the one other misunderstanding that I think is very frequent and the us sort of address obliquely at a couple of times in the book. But I think even people who who study this new think about this a lot because so much of the discussions oriented around. Two degrees and be twenty one hundred this century, right? What's going to happen this century? What temperature we're gonna reach a century. We sort of tend to forget that time is not going to stop at the end of the century. And even if we limit temperature rise, you know, sort of optimistically to two or two and a half or three degrees time, we'll continue and and temperatures will continue rising. So it's not just a twenty one hundred target here. The bigger larger target is kind of a bending the curve as they say like stopping the rise in reversing it, which is, you know, which is like if you need to make the task even bigger is an even bigger in more daunting task. Yeah. I mean, it really really messes with your sense of timescale because on the one hand you have this. You know, if you take the UN's reading seriously, which I think, you know, the problems with an and shortcomings, but I think it's basically the best shared conversation. We can all. Have about about climate. If you take their their perspective seriously, we need to have our global carbon emissions over by twenty thirty in order to avert catastrophic warming that is an extremely short time for him. It's even shorter than the timeframe that I was talking about that sort of thirty year timeframe. So we have an enormous amount of responsibility in a very short amount of time. But the damage that we could do if we fail to take action will unfold as you say over many centuries, maybe even millennia, and so we're dealing with at the same time an incredibly compressed sense of time and urgency and responsibility at the same time an unbelievably along gated sense of impacts that are so so drawn out that we can't really comprehend like what would it mean? If in the you're twenty four hundred it's seven degrees celsius warmer than it is today. There's so many different components to imagining that scenario that it's impossible for us to really take it seriously. But. We are imposing that temperature burden on those future centuries in these decades, and that is you know, that that mix of responsibility, I think is really confusing and disorienting to people. But I think it's also a sign of just what a profound like if you pardon the expression, existential situation, we find ourselves in that we're dealing with. Really? These epic epic timescales Willie totally mismatched to our our cognitive and emotional machinery on both sides, really a quesion Yemi into judge from our how our how how little action we've taken absolutely mess. Right. Yeah. And the one other misunderstanding are aspect that. I feel is not well appreciated by the public which you also touch on several times as I think we get the impression when we talk about this people talk about, you know, X amount more rainfall X amount more storms and people get in their head. Said a sense of sort of we're transitioning from this to that. Right. And so you know, that will happen, and we'll adjust our systems to fit with that. But, but there is no that there is no new steady state, right? What's happening? What's beginning? Now is continuous relentless rapid change which innocence is harder than any given in state right for for human to adjust to and to plan for. Yeah. And every tick upward temperature is going to increase suffering. And that means that you know, we talk a lot about this threshold of catastrophe two degrees. But two point one degrees is worse than to two point. One degrees is worse is better than two point two. And I think that yeah, we're we're a little we're a little too focused on averting, this particular threshold and not conscious enough that this is a system that will be sort of cascading on. Under our feet as soon as we set foot on it. This is, you know, not a new normal, but we're entering into a long time period where nothing will ever be the same. Everything will always be changing a permanent, permanent loss of normal. Ray? I think that's the way to put it. This is advertiser content. We use disposable water bottles for twelve minutes on average, but they could take two four hundred and fifty years to decompose your world. Explained the journey of the single use plastic water bottle begins after petroleum is pumped out of the ground refined and turned into the raw bottle material using more oil they're manufactured shift shipped again, then filled with water. The end up at a store where the bottles twelve minutes in the spotlight finally begins. You buy it. Lug it home drink it. And tosses the bottle heads to the dump and just sits there for about four hundred and fifty years because plastic will likely never biodegrade bacteria won't consume it plastic can photo degrade which is when objects are broken down by heat or sunlight, but that's not going to happen at the bottom of a dump? So what's the fix ditch? The single use bottled water and filter. Your tap water with Britta instead, the British Trine pitcher filter replaces up to three hundred single use plastic bottles and filters instantly as you pour you get great tasting water fast. And you keep hundreds of plastic bottles out of the landfill. By a British stream pitcher today at Amazon, WalMart or target. Okay. Well, having established then for our listeners that things are dire. And terrifying I wanted to move on and talk about something else related to that. In the book. You talk about a scientific reticence, which I think was James climate, scientists James Hansen's term originally, it refers to the sort of tendency of scientists I think generally, but specifically in especially climate scientists to sort of reflexively avoid anything that might be seen as alarmism or you know, sort of over the top. And I think that's for for temperamental reasons. You know, do to how scientists are trained but also specifically among climate scientists thanks to the sort of thirty to forty years of kind of relentless bad faith attack. They've been under. I think is. Has given them a sort of, you know, they've put them in kind of a permanent defensive crouch and given really the whole climate community a kind of hyper sensitivity to tone in messaging, and a and framing all these things you mentioned this in the book, you are are too nice to do any score settling in the book. But I'm going back but into that. Anyway, when you're when you're two thousand seventeen piece came out in in New York magazine, it was a by design and and explicitly openly a dwelling on worst case scenarios. When that happened it it prompted just torrent this outburst of of criticism from climate scientists and climate journalists and climate messaging people you later subsequently released an annotated version of that piece, which you know, from where I'm sitting more or less settled ninety five percent of the strictly scientific questions. I mean, you more or less had a citation for every line in the peace. And so what was left of the criticism was basically about tone? You're too dark to pessimistic too focused on worst case scenarios to fatalistic not enough. Hope. I'm curious. I have my own thoughts on that. But I'm curious with the benefit of retrospect what you took away from that whole episode. Well, it's a complicated question to answer. I mean, it my big lesson was this is too big a story to tell in any one way. I think personally that there's great value in raising the alarm and in using fear. I know that from personal experience because I'm someone who's awakened from complacency by fear about climate change. I also know that from history of environmental activism, you know, when Rachel Carson published silent spring, not to compare myself to her, but, you know, her book was attacked for being hyperbolic alarmist, and we have it to think for the elimination of DDT, we basically have to for the creation of the EPA many many campaigns being waged over the years. In the environmental movement and outside of it have drawn on alarm, and panic and fear to mobilize public opinion and action, and I just think the lessons from that are obvious that it's useful. Now, I don't think that like being scared about climate change is the only correct mood. It's not the only mood that I have about climate change. There are times when I'm reading about carbon capture technology, and I feel really optimistic there times when I'm, you know, moved by the tragedy of it there times when I'm interested primarily in sociological questions about or, you know, philosophical questions how we make sense of this how we're going to navigate this new world together. What our politics will look like what our culture and storytelling. We'll be like all those kinds of questions. And I don't think it makes sense to approach this story, which is the story of our time, and which will dominate all of our. Lives. If we don't change course quite rapidly. As though there's only one way to talk about it. It just seems so narrow I could defend using alarmism as the only way if we had only go one way, I think it's that valuable and more importantly, I think it is the lesson of the science. I'm really not layering on much beyond what the scientists themselves are projecting for this future for us. It's the facts that are scary. And of the facts are scary. I think we owe it to the world to share that information. So that we can make choices and decisions. Take policy action commensurate with the scale of the threat and the urgency of the crisis. But more importantly, I felt at the time, and I feel even more strongly. Now, why does every article about climate change every speech about climate change every book about climate change after come out of the same cookie cutter mold? I s in and they're so boring. Anyone's read more anyone who's read more than one of them can practically recite them from memory at this point. Yeah. I mean, I wrote that article because I thought that there was a kind of storytelling shortcoming with climate. I felt that the way that I saw the issue both scarier and more total and on compasses was not a way that I saw reflected in much storytelling. And I thought well, there must be people like me who see it that way to or who would like to see it that way if someone would tell it to them that way. And also imagine imagine finding out that like the people in your society who you have charged with developing scientific knowledge knew something of this scope and horror, and and had decided to communicate with you like you're a nervous child like it's just so it's so condescending I would be so angry. You know, like the the notion that we need to treat the public as though. As though we're teaching preschool almost or not even I mean, not not even talking about impacts north of two degrees. It's not just that they were often couched in euphemism. It was that this whole range of possibility was basically off limits and yet that's not like very unlikely but still tiny possible outcome. That's like where we are headed. My arctic. My magazine article was focused on temperature rises of five six eight degrees. So ev- even mentioned a point or two up to eleven or twelve degrees. So these are warming levels that were very unlikely to see, you know, on time scales that makes sense for us to plan for, but which remained technically possible. And I thought it was valuable to showcase those outcomes. The book is much more focused on this two degrees to four degrees range, which is really where we're headed and the absolutely horrifying thing about it is like it's not less scary than the article, basically just as tariff. Firing even though I'm not going through the exercise of walking through worst case scenarios. I'm walk. I'm just walking through the science about what the science says about our likely outcomes. Yeah. And like we need to we need to adjust. We need to plan. We need to do everything we can to avert these outcomes. But we also need to understand what they promise them threaten. So that we're informed as we walk into this new world rather than you know, stumbling into it blindly, which is really how I feel we've been acting for a long time. And I I just felt like it was a real is kind of a testament to kind of the insularity of of the climate community that somehow on the basis of these sort of sketchy, scattered social science results had kind of convinced itself that in this vast sea of indifference in ignorance and complacency we find ourselves in that like scaring a few people. People is the greatest danger is just the whole thing. Kind of struck me as surreal, I think that's exactly right. I it's something I've been thinking about more and more just how the people even some of the most prominent most famous most well known writers in communicators on the subject seem really to be speaking to the choir to the people who are already committed and converted and many of whom probably are actually at risk of burnout for whom you know, they've been working for a couple of decades. They don't see much progress. I think you can slip into fatalism, and despair, and that would be that would be bad. But the number of people who are on the brink of despair about climate to me just seems transparently categories smaller than the number of people who are too complacent about the issue when I look around the world when I talked to my friends, my family, you know, when I watch TV it just seems so obvious to me that at the level of individuals, but also at the level of our politics at the level of our culture. We're far far far far too complacent and the risk of like fatalism is just trivial compared to the risk of complacency. But it's I see the same effect on like people ask me all the time about, you know, my lifestyle choices, and my diet might travel, and it's true, actually, you know, of the last year or so I've really come to feel a lot more guilty about air travel, and we'll be doing less of it going forward. But I also know that first of all like the impacts of individual individual choices are really trivial compared to what policy can achieve on this on this basis. And in fact, I think it's basically kind of neoliberal distraction that we've been taught that we can make our political Mark on the world through what we buy. And what we eat rather than the politics that we that we push forward. But putting that aside it's like, you really wanna tell a newcomer to the climate movement that they're not a legitimate activist or advocate because they happen to be slow in giving up meat or travel. Yes, we want more. We wanted to make a lifestyle choice. Right. It's gotta be like you have to sign onto the whole package of, you know, a certain set of concerns a certain group of people you're hanging out with a certain, you know, like, clothing and music styles. Like, how high of barriers do we wanna raise for people to get involved in this? Yeah, we need as many people as we can get to care as much about it as we can get them to care, and you know, anything that we do to raise the cost of admission is going to be really damaging in the long term. So I you know, I have the same perspective about that. As I do about the storytelling question, which is just let's make this a big ten anybody who cares about the climate bring him on in like like come on board. I mean, I'm a total newcomer. I'm not in a position to be welcoming people or anything like that. But I just think strategically morally politically, obviously, the logic is in more people caring more, not in making sure that everybody who does care care. In the optimal. Way as we know it and optimal way. Even is. You know, I also feel like a this confusion is is related to the confusion of, you know, written about this before sort of climate kind of entered our political life through the channel of environmentalism in his now sort have been categorized as a as a capital E environmental problem in consequently, sort of all our habits of thought and all are sort of historical experience with environmentalism all the cultural associations of environmentalism all kind of attached to climate in people's minds in I just really don't think they fit very well. I think those are a mismatch and part of that it's treated by this question of personal action. Like, you know. I e even even on something like polluting, your groundwater, if you and your neighbors two or three your neighbors. Make a choice to not dump joke in the water. You can actually have like a measurable effect on the quality of water small but measurable, but the scale of climate change is so utterly out of wack with that. I just don't think people I think it's like a difference in kind and people are thinking of it as a difference in degree probably because they're thinking of it as just another environmental pollution problem. Yeah. I mean, I think it's important to remember everything we do in the modern world has a carbon impact and to reduce that or eliminate. It will require a really thorough rebuilding of just about everything that we know in recognize as contemporary life. So our infrastructure. Our transportation are agriculture. It's it's really everywhere. And that can be totally overwhelming. But it also means it's a problem exclusively for as far as I'm concerned for politics. And yeah, I just think there's you know, there's reason for hope there that politics is moving quickly people are there's a lot more grassroots activism both in the US in Europe. You know, Greta thumb burgers climate strike extinction. Rebellion sunrise, the impacts has had on on producing the green deal here in the states. And the polling is is really strong. Things are moving actually quite rapidly over the last few years much more rapidly than I would have predicted or then we've seen in in the recent past. But the challenge is huge, and whether we can leverage that that energy into an answer to the problem that actually can address it. I think it's a real open question. I'm a big fan. Of course. Plus telling you about them since we launched the show they've been supporting the show since we launched it. And I think the reason they've been such a good partner for us sponsor for us here is it what they do. And what I try to do here really aligned. This is a show about learning about lifetime learning and on this show, hopefully people enjoy it you're really stuck on whatever I'm interested in that week with great. Plus, you really get anything economics cooking has Yala Judy political science history. I mean, if you want to if you wanna learn practical skills or a hobby or something abstract you can flip around. It's all presented by experts who really know what they're talking about. And actually know how to communicate it. And I think you're gonna love the great course, plus two I've got an so many emails from listeners over the years, sending me photos, he took after checking out, the, photography course. Or just telling me, they love something in the Russia course, but ever it might have been people seem to really like this product. And I think part of the reason there is it is really convenient. You can begin on your smartphone. You. Tablet, finish watching our computer, very modern way to be learning forever. And with over nine thousand lectures, pitchers from you're not going to finish it off any time soon. So right now, the great Crispus are giving my listeners a sample begin a free for an entire month unlimited access to learn about anything for an entire month. No, you don't have to sign anything cancelled the end of the month. There's no risk here. Check it out. You don't like it. Stop checking it out so to begin your free month. Now, go to great, Chris plus dot com era. Remember, the great courses plus dot com slash easy are. Well, let's I want to get back to politics in his second. But let's I thought the first two sections of your book, I just found. Devastating. You know, I've I've been studying this stuff for fifteen years now. And I have had kind of a built myself a pretty good fortress of of compartmentalization in strategic strategic denial, but it did not withstand the avalanche of of of facts that you that you Marshall in these I two parts. So I think that was a great public contribution on its own. But actually, the part of the book that I found most fascinating in novel in different than most of this stuff. I've read about as the third section, which you which you call the climate kaleidoscope in the get it gets into addressing effects of climate change that don't frequently get discussed, namely, kind of the social in the psychic and even kind of the mythological effects of this. This on our on our culture on the way, we think about ourselves on our storytelling is really really fascinating. So just just to start off tell us what you mean by the term climate kaleidoscope. I think what I mean is that when we look out at the world twenty years from now, we won't be able to see it except refracted through the prism of climate change that the forces of global warming will be so universal that their fingerprints or many cases, their footprints will be everywhere. And in some cases, those impacts will be undeniable in the case of, you know, looking at the path of a hurricane in other places, they'll be a little stranger. So I think you know, to name one random example, I think the wellness culture that we've developed over the last few years has been in. Part as a response to intuitions of environmental, doom and impacts like that are likely to multiply dramatically as climate situation gets worse. But but kaleidoscope I also mean that we can't see the whole picture in our heads at once. It's all fractured and refracted, and you know, broken in against itself. The force of warming is confusing. In addition to all of the other impacts that it has on us. So what I'm trying to do in that section is isolate a few areas that you can think about a little more clearly or sort of in a more segregated way and walk through, you know, I don't know what what it will mean for our pop culture or movies in our television to be living in, you know, a world three degrees warmer. I don't know for sure I'm not making predictions. But I'm just sort of sketching out some of the terms of what is what is likely to unfold, what kinds of transformations are possible. And then I do the same for a relationship to technology. What we expect from technology. What do we think it owes us? What we think it's responsible for to what degree of ownership? Do we feel? We have over technology. What degree of ownership? Do. We feel technology has over us. And to what extent will we rely on tech to solve this problem in the form of carbon capture or distract us from it in the form of say, you know, smartphone funk functionally smartphone addiction. Virtual reality. Yeah. All that our relationship to capitalism like what extent do we to? What extent do we think that climate changes the fault of capitalism to what extent could climate change threaten capitalism as non compasses system, which I also think as possible how are we likely to navigate a future in which we are probably still going to want to trade. We're still going to want some creature comforts in consumer goods. But we have lost the promise of perpetual, future economic growth that was the basic infrastructure of modern life at least in most of the west since World War Two. I know as you know, speaking personally about that. I'm someone who came of age in New York in the nineteen ninety s I'm an end of history kid, I really did believe even though I was skeptical of these meta narratives at the time, I would have argued with you. If you put them forward to me, I still in my core emotional relationship with the world. I thought overtime things got better. Other people got richer were the world got more, just and more peaceful. I thought that the arc of history. Yeah. And I saw it moving in my, you know, in my from my childhood to my teenage years, and I expected that that would continue throughout my entire adult lifetime. But now, I'm just twenty years later, and I've gone from being an end of history kid to an end of the world profit, and that is largely the result of climate change. I mean that is you know, there are obviously a lot of other things that are unfolding. Our politics are falling apart, which it will have an impact on how we deal with climate. Which is maybe something we can talk about later, but you know, the the basic idea that future generations are going to be better off than previous generations. This is such a deeply ingrained idea. It really does govern our emotional relationship with the world, and I really do feel like climate change threatens to if not completely eradicate it. Then meaningfully shake that as a as a presumption and really limit just how much growth and progress will be able to measure in the decades ahead. So. That we may not be worse off. But like, I think we're, you know, we're going to be moving much more slowly into the future. And what that means for how we relate to the future. How that relates to the, you know, our how we relate to our children. And what we expect from politics. What we expect from the economy all those things are really tied up in this in this in the sort of major meta narrative, which I think climate change will really undermine that really struck home for me that the that part of the book in for me. It's been a bit of a two sided thing. I like you. I think probably wouldn't have explicitly said as much, but I had no idea. How thoroughly and implicitly I had kind of imbibed that vision of history, you know, sort of like Obama was its last and greatest spokesperson deep in his blood. It's his it's his sort of life story. And I an end for Trump Trump for me was sort of began to dislodge that. And then when I started thinking about climate in combination with the forces that had brought about Trump, and I thought I started thinking about how the forces that bra. About Trump will interact with the forces driving climate change. And it really he really start to have to strain to see that are once you start contemplating what's going on and what we can intimate in in the near future. And to me, also like maybe this is the same for you. But not only did I not know how much I had kind of imbibed that. But I I have found the loss of it tragic. I it, you know, it's it's sad. It is genuinely sad for me. Almost the saddest thing about all of this is that sort of hovering in the background is that that hope that sort of in the aggregate in the long term in the long view things will basically work themselves out. Once you lose that almost all these more proximate, you know, sort of a crises just take on a whole different character. Yeah. I feel exactly the same way. And I also feel like God. How how naive I was. And how privileged you know, to be to be really I mean to be looking out at the world of the nineteen ninety s and being like everything's great. We've got this more or less go. This nailed coaching and coasting in for a landing. And I do I do think that the way that these climate the climate change interacts with our current politics is really fascinating. I think you'd have to say if you were making predictions in a lab that what you would expect from a world that was getting a little hotter and therefore producing a little more resource scarcity and a little more pressure on particular societies would be up a retreat into self interest. And I think that's basically what you're seeing around the world. There are a lot of climate scientists who believe that the whole phenomenon of Middle Eastern terrorism is on terrorism as a result at least in part of climate pressure. And that we're likely to see more strife of that kind going forward as a result, which is not. Not encouraging. I've always thought that one of the one of the most naive beliefs that a lot of Clement people have had for a long time is this notion that, you know, people are kind of sleepwalking now, but once there's a sufficient Chris string of disasters or once enough horrible things happen in close succession, it'll wake people up, and they'll get started on this. But it's always seemed to me vastly more likely that a string of disasters is going to exacerbate the worst most tribalist most nationalist most violent tendencies like it, typically stress and anxiety do not produce an outbreak of cosmopolitan fellow feeling. Well, I think the I I mean, I feel exactly the same way. I think we've seen in the way that Europe has responded to the Syrian refugee crisis as. It's it's a kind of case study in that. And that was that was one million Syrian refugees who made their way to Europe, they were more refugees than that. But they didn't make their way to Europe. And that totally destabilized that continents politics, the UN's low end estimate for how many refugees were like this by twenty fifty is two hundred million. I think that that's numbers high. But even if it's fifty million then it's fifty times the Europeans crisis. Now, there's I think there's some couple reasons that I have a little bit of hope about this. And they may be totally naive. And they may be functions of wishful thinking, but there is some social science that shows that the sort of initial response to an influx of newcomers, but in a community is harshest and that when more newcomers are there and the proportions change, then the community can become more welcoming. So maybe that will happen at a global level. I think that there's some reason to think it might other reasons to think, that's, you know, naive, but I think it's possible role again. Then though that you bet you have to think that like in isolation. Yes. But once again, you know, the gotta train yourself to think like a like a climate alarmist. I either is going to be like ten other terrible going on at the same time. So people are not going to be in a general mood of. No, absolutely. A acceptance generally one of the most memorable studies I came across recent. Suggested that by twenty one hundred if we continue warming unabated that there'll be communities in the world that could be hit by six climate driven natural disasters at once which just gives you a sense of what kind of impact we're talking about. But I just wanted to mention the the other reason that I have for some hope about unavailing geopolitics is that I don't think we can continue with the politics that we have in an age of real dramatic climate change. I think that we will see a new order emerging that puts climate at the center in much the same way that human rights or peacefulness and prosperity where at the center of the post World War Two Liberal International order. I don't I don't know that the the global order that emerges will be kinder or more humane on questions of for instance, climate refugees than the one that we have today. But I do think that there will be some kind of meaningful shift and it's hard to make projections about. You know, what kind of response the world will have some of these challenges if the whole political infrastructure of the international order is different. And I do think I do think it will be you know, NBS the sort of horrible leader of Saudi Arabia has said that he needs the Saudi economy to be off oil by twenty fifty. I think he that's contained some real wisdom that it will not be possible by the middle of the century for a country to be producing oil selling it or burning it and still expected seat at the table of nations like the order will change enough people understand enough the cost of that kind of activity that it will mean at the very least horribly crippling sanctions, and maybe something more like military action, which sounds almost pulled out of a SCI fi novel to think that there could be military action to take care of climate. But I don't think it's at all inconceivable, and it, and it it raises another I think sort of subconscious association among climate, folks. Is this idea that if we do wake up and really start internationally focusing on climate change that will be tantamount to a sort of progressive world order, but I don't necessarily think it will I can entirely see an international order focused on climate change. That is extremely authoritarian a oppressive in Terry. And I think it's kind of the one of the weird perversities of the present moment that there's actually some enthusiasm. I would say on the climate left for for instance, like what could be achievable by Xi Jinping in China as a kind of single minded autocrat will in command of what may be quite soon. The world's biggest economy, and in charge of the world's biggest population in also building much of the infrastructure of Asia and Africa going forward, and that's not a place that like a liberal American would have put much hope ten years ago. And it just shows you how hope. Klis we collectively find our present politics, and how little seems possible from where we sit that. We're some of us at some level cheering on the climate awakening of this horrible dictator who's also like thrown several million Muslims into concentration camps. Yes. Well, in another sort of story from the a different side of the same coin right here in the US, you see now this big push from the left for a green new deal, this concerted climate action investments, very much wedded to progressive social policy taking care of people making sure they have jobs making sure they keep their healthcare. And they and they are finding outraged backlash from other Democrats. So if you wanna know how well the sort of conjoining of climate policy and progressive social policy is gonna go. He can't even get the left in America to agree on it. You know, house China going to approach that house? You know, Saudi Arabia can. What can I ask? What do you make of the like, what seems to be this inherent infighting among even the climate left? Even the people who are like engaged on this issue. It's like they're all picking fights with each other over like the smallest rhetorical differences. And what does that about? This is my whole this is my whole life, man. Oh, no. I mean, I mean, it's part just people have their little sort of identities in their kind of their thing. You know, you got the nuclear people nuclear is their thing, you got people who hate Bernie and the Bernie left, and that's their thing in everybody's just sort of this. You know, this is, you know, this is just sort of like evidence that climate is like the fifth priority for everyone. Right. Climate gets filtered through these filtered through these things that people feel in a much more proximate and intense way. Like, you know, the people who ate the Bernie left. That's that's a fire inside them in a way that like there's sort of general concern for climate change never is. So so, you know, it just gets filtered through the normal politics the left, which is participant of infighting in ridiculous factional disputes and always has been that's this was the my experience a back in two thousand eight with the last time, you know, Democrats made a go at at unified comprehensive climate action. They came up with a solution that basically had no fans, you know, the right hated it. The left side of the left hated it. The middle of the left was indifferent to it. And just there was nobody for it. And you know, I sort of feel like we're kind of like it's like a waking nightmare village where just walking into that whole cycle again. And I have zero idea how to out stop that other than other than yelling online. The thing that's striking to me. Is that you know, the deeper you look into the research, the more you see that. Whatever your political priorities are they will be impacted by climate. So if you're concerned about economic activity inequality, either within nations or across nations that you know, that's tied up in climate. If you're worried about conflict violence against women like that's like, no matter. What your what your hopes are for the future? They depend on some degree of stabilizing the climate. And it just seems so clear to me that this is the story. The political story the cultural story, the personal psychological story that governs and touches all of others. And it seems so strange to me that people who are so devoted to it might choose to pick a fight with someone who's ten feet to their left or ten feet to their right rather than saying all hands on deck yet. You would think at the very least the left could unite to just say, yes, we need to. Decarbonised and we'd like to do it in a roughly fair and just way. Right. That seems simple enough. Can we not get R S together to just say that when you say when the UN says the decisions that matter most for centuries are going to be made in the next ten years, one of the reasons that so bracing and kind of depressing to me is that really makes clear that whatever we do. We're going to do it with roughly the systems, and the people that we've got right now, there's not some magic we're not going to replace the order, you know, replace the old order or whatever in ten years. So like, these are the folks like like Feinstein, you know, like Joe Manchin, these are the folks we've got to work with and so many of them came up in time, I feel like basically the Clinton years when the fundamental position or positioning. Of the left was defensive, you know, Clinton was in essentially, a defensive president defending the old advances of the left against the sort of a Cendant. Right. And I just feel like a lots of people in congress. You know, they're old they sort of came of age in that me, Lou with that attitude, and the sort of whole notion of boldly claiming something that everyone knows is politically impossible right now. Right, but needs to happen. Anyway, just going out on a limb like that is just profoundly at odds with the temperament and history of of that of those people, and you know, and those who I, you know, I don't I don't mean to sound like an optimist. But how dare you, sir? But you know, I think there is some reason for hope about this in the sense that, you know, the the progress in the greener deal, which is you know, as you know, better than anybody. It's a resolution it's not a piece of. Legislation is basically a position paper. It doesn't answer many of the tough questions about what we need to do. And where we need to invest, but as a sort of statement of principles, it's actually conquered the sort of center of the Democratic Party, you know, at least all the major presidential aspirants have signed onto it in some form, that's really remarkable progress. And I do think that a a president, you know, with a particular agenda can make a huge difference. I think that many of the Clinton I holdovers would have been really reluctant to talk about a major healthcare initiative in two thousand five but once it became the the priority of democratic president they came along. And I think that we have to hope for something like that on on climate. But the challenges that I see are as much, you know, outside of politics as inside of politics. You know, just the Indies infrastructure projects we need to do. They take a long time on the investments we need to make. They take time to pay off. We have a lot of, you know, working systems that we need to replace. And it's in everybody's immediate interest to not replace them yet because they're still benefiting us. And I think those obstacles to me are are even more concerning like even if we decided today to really go as fast as we could two zero out on carbon. Like, I don't think we could meet the goals that were set in the green new deal. I think they're just too many public obstacles there. I have two sons two boys fifteen and thirteen and I'm given to understand that you have a relatively new daughter. Is that right? A very young daughter. She's almost eleven months. So she will she will live to see all of these kaleidoscope nightmares. You are describing in your book. She might even see a twenty one hundred and then, you know, she'll she'll finally know which of our which of our climate models was was right. What is the story? You tell yourself about her life is just one of sort of decline of just increasing stress and in violence is there a heroic story about our children's lives available to us to tell them. Well. Yeah. Absolutely. I mean, everything about what we're describing all of the Harz that we've talked about they will only happen. If we make them happen. They're not going to happen if we stop burning carbon immediately. They're not going to happen if we have carbon emissions in ten years. They're only going to happen. If we continue acting as we do and with a abhorrent moral indifference towards the suffering of many millions or billions of people around the world. You know, I live like you do think like just about everybody in this world. Does I live in part through compartment? Position in denial about it. And when I'm honest, I would say that you know, when I'm imagining Rocco's life. I'm not imagining a climate house Cape on the Najing world that looks like mine, I think that's a reminder of just how strong Oliver psychological reflexes and biases are that. Even someone who's really spent a couple of years deep in the horrors of climate science when they think about what it means for their own life. They don't think first of wildfires in natural disaster and economic collapse and all that stuff. But I also think that there's some truth and wisdom in thinking that way because nothing about our future is set in stone. It will be up to us to write that story. It will be up to her and your children to write that story. And that will always be the case. So no matter how hellish gets no matter how hot it gets. It will always be the case that the following decade could be a little bit hotter or a little bit less hot and could contain a little bit more suffering and a little. Less suffering, and we have our hands on those levers because of our relationship to carbon. We could at twenty one hundred four degrees. We could continue creating more suffering or not the dilemma that. We have now the sort of challenge that we face now will be always with us in with climate. Even if we will lose the opportunity to avert anything south of catastrophe. It will still always be the case that there will be some degree of warming. We can avert if we take action, and I feel very an always get worse or better. I mean, honestly or better with negative emissions technology in particular. I mean, we'll see how that all unfolds. But it's possible that will be able to reverse some damage, we, you know, it's it's a huge open question in a huge open story. And when I stand looking at it now, I see it in those epic mythological even as uncomfortable as it makes me say theological terms, which is to say like we brought ourselves to the threshold of true climate catastrophe in the time span. Ten of a single generation. We now have about the time of a single generation to avoid unimaginable suffering. And we are the ones writing that story. We are. But we will be both the victims or victor's heroes and villains. We will be all of those roles, and that is just an incredible saga that I and you and our children are all going to be participating in together. Truly terrifying. Though, I think about all the like the, Jim Inhofe. So the world who who say some some version of God's got his hand on the wheels. Right. God's in control. This not us. We we could never do that. I think that has less to do with any sort of scientific misunderstanding than than something closer to what you're talking about like feel like the idea that we are now. God's right that we are now in charge is innocence terrifying in and of itself, even separate from all the possible impacts is just. That's a level of adulthood for our species that I really don't know totally prepared for. Yeah. Well, let's hope well final final question as always ends the podcast on. He and our listeners would like to know what three books would you recommend to us nurse on on this to to brief themselves or prepare. I was actually going to answer it slightly differently which is to get away from climate environmentalism. So I'm not gonna mention Bill mckibben or Betsy Colbert, I'm not gonna mention. Yeah. Rachel Carson, all those people should read all those books, but the three things I've thought of most often as I wrote this book were the first is the Kat Tun Hassi cuts book between the world in may. And really what I've been trying to do in writing this book is right? A kind of moral explanation or moral exploration of the meaning of climate change. And his work has been really really important to me. I also have. Thought a lot about it's not actually not a book to magazine article. But on the Kathryn Schulz wrote for the New Yorker a few years ago, the big one about the possibility of earthquake. I mean, the it's similar similar in spirit and tone. I think both really apocalyptic, but also scientifically rich end Mench. And she is such a fantastic words that that article is a joy to read. And even though it's terrible and written with so much humanity to right? And then the third thing is, you know, it's it's a play by while Sean who is someone who's personally really interesting to me in his work. I really adore. The play is maybe actually not his best. It's called the fever. And it's about it's sort of an autobiographical story about how he an extremely privileged person. He's the son of the longtime New Yorker editor William Shawn basically woke up to the suffering that was being imposed in his name by imperial America in Central America. And I feel in a certain way that's been my story and working on. It is just first of all realizing how naive and deluded. I was to think that this was a solvable problem that our politicians were in charge of it. And that our life is going to get better. But also that all of that damage that has been imposed on the world in a certain way was done in my name, and as a result and imposes a really intense responsibility on me to act to avert its worst impacts, and do whatever I can to help alleviate the suffering that's already been made inevitable. So those are the three well that sounds like a good note to finish on David Wells wells. Thank you so much for being here. Great pleasure. Talk to you. Thanks so much. Thank you to David for being here. Thank you to our producer and engineer, Geoff geld. The Ezra Klein show is a box media putt cast network production, and we will be back in your ears in just a few days. So why are you buying and drinking bottled water is it the taste that could be the wonderful feeling of wantonly doing damage to the environment. Listen the energy used to power. Our love of plastic water bottles is enormous. And the cost is outrageous. We used millions of barrels of oil every year just to make those bottles. Those bottles just like hang out in oceans at landfills, basically forever. So how about using British stream instead each filter keeps hundreds of plastic bottles out of circulation, and it's their fastest filter ever. It's an hour waiting for your pitcher to fill. It happens in real time. You can pour injuring instantly. Get your British stream today at Amazon, WalMart or target. Are you going to be in Austin for south by south west? I am not this here breaks by heart a bit. But if you are gonna be you gotta go by the deep end, by vox media, which will be hosting a live taping of the weeds, featuring my colleagues gracie's Dera, Linda engine coast n-, the deep end by box media is taken over at the Belmont for three day event at south by from March eighth to March tenth featuring live podcast from a bunch of media podcast network favorites, including care swishes, Rico, decode and the verge cast. You can RSVP at box media events dot com slash SX, w again RSVP at vox media events dot com slash s s w it was a great event last year. I am not going to be able to go this year for some personal recency L. We'll hear about at some point in the future. But I I wish I could be there. It's a cool space to they just do a great job on it designed was and there's a ton of cool podcast happening there. So I'm we're time. If you're going to south by good a box media events dot com slash s s w to go check out box. Media's of the deep end and hear all the awesome live podcasts.
The Ezra Klein Show
Aired 6 months ago 53:26
AT#626 - The Liberation Route Europe (WWII)
The bags back on a roll. And read. It's go real good pass board. Amateur, traveler episode, six hundred twenty six to the traveler talks about Churchill and Patton and Hitler. The movies, the battle of the bulge band of brothers and bridge too far as we go to Europe on the liberation route. Welcome to the mature traveler. I'm your host Chris Christensen let's talk about the liberation of Europe in World War Two. I'd like to welcome back to the show Gary aren't, who has come to talk to us this time about the liberating route in western Europe. Gary welcome back to the show after a very brief hiatus this time. Thank you. I think this is show number fourteen for me. It is well, we didn't wanna leave it on thirteen for very long. I'm about to travel including the amateur traveler trip, where I'll be traveling with some of you. And so I'm trying to get a number of shows in the canon, Gary head just done the trip that we did an episode about two episodes ago now on Switzerland, but you did this trip before that. So we're actually doing these a little out of order in terms of how you did it. But this is an interesting trip, especially as we're recording here in two thousand eighteen because there's some big anniversary's coming up here in two thousand and nineteen seventy. Fifth anniversary of the Normandy invasion, which will be a big to do that's part of liberation route that will be talking about. Now I had not heard of the liberation route. So tell me what it is. It's relatively new. What it is is kind of a consortium in a collection of sites that are dedicated to the history of World War Two in particular the liberation of Europe. So we're talking about sites that deal with nineteen forty four in nineteen forty five, and most people are familiar with this from the various movies because this was the part of the the war that the Americans were involved in. This is saving private Ryan, a bridge too far, the battle of the ball, all these things which most people don't realize Ulta place in an eleven month period. Right. Sure. June forty, four to may forty five. That was be day and it was less than a year. So the liberation route stitches all these things together. And like I said, it's still rather new. And what they're attempting to do is to to sort of provide some sort of narrative cohesion to all of these different places which up until recently have been separate museums, cemeteries, battlefields, that you could visit. I think even in their future plans, even may want to make this a community Santiago type route. It's a lot longer than that thing from Normandy to Berlin. You're looking at three thousand kilometers, so it'd be something that you could bike and if it was a bicycle route, it would take about the same amount of time as the community sandiego as you would hiking it, which is about thirty days you did this road trip, right? So this was about seventeen days for me starting in London and ending in Berlin. So I can dense into seventeen days what took the allies, eleven months and. A lot more losses. Now you started in London. Is that where the actual start of the route is or does it start at the south coast? This is a collection of places. So there isn't one linear path that you necessarily have to go on in London you have sites. I'm sure you've talked about on other shows and you may have been to some of these, the imperial warm air warms him. Yeah, yeah, being the biggest one and then also cabinet were yeah, where we're Churchill. Sure, yeah. And if anyone saw the recent movie about Churchill darkest hour, I think some of that was actually shot their aid. Sure. Looked like it was if it wasn't shot there, it was shot in a very good recreation of it and of the two British World War two movies that came out this year Dunkirk and darkest hour. It's the one I would highly recommend. I like Dunkirk to the plot was very thin, but I thought the cinematography and everything else was really good. Cinematography was good, but so London is kind of where things got ready right for the planning. For the invasion of your know if you're familiar if you've ever seen the movie patent, but basically had patent in northern England with a fake army, and they did all of this counter-espionage to make the Germans believe that we had this army that didn't exist that was basically gonna cross over at Dover, which is the narrowest point in English channel to play. Yeah, that was actually turned out to be really important because Hitler hand lot of ranking Germans. They thought that that's what the allies would do. And they thought that the Normandy invasion was just a diversion and so they did not move troops to Normandy because they thought that the real invasion would happen Kelly. I remember one of the major things that happened is Hitler reserved for himself the positioning of the punter units of the tank units, and they couldn't move them without his authorization. And he delayed for several days. I don't remember exactly how long it was, but it was a critical time period that allowed the allies to get a foothold, basically Normandy while. While he was still convinced that no, they wouldn't do it without patent and they wouldn't do it where they were doing it. That's got to be a fake. And of course, if you see the videos of the tanks, for instance, of the inflatable tanks that they were using, the Germans were taking pictures of of patents fake army. It is just fascinating too much on London. I think if you've done shows on London, probably the one place on this list that most people will have been right. But from London then went to Portsmouth in southern England, which just as an aside is a really wonderful city. I have not been to Portsmouth, but I as a history fan as a British naval fan, it's embarrassing that I haven't been there. It's a great little town. I was there in a wonderful day in the summer on the coast. It was beautiful. And this was one of the launching points for the ships in operation Neptune, and just a point of clarification up. Ration- overlord was actually the code name for the entire invasion of Europe. Operation Neptune was the name four. The infamous landing on d day at self. I did not know that. Okay. I didn't know that either until this trip overlord Lordos kind of in. That's what's used because of the greater thing, but the but the specifics of the beach landing craft and that element of it that was a subset of operation. Overlord in Portsmouth, has the d day museum, which is not a big museum. It's very nice museum, and they also have a very interesting thing called the overlord embroidery. Okay. This like the bay. Oh, temp ustry except much more recent. Yeah, the overlord embroidery. So it was a work of art commissioned in the nineteen sixties nineteen sixty eight and it is eighty three meters long. And it was done. By the Royal embroidery society in the UK and each panel of it depicts a different aspect of d day, whether it's the soldiers in the ship's or Churchill in Montgomery all these started different things and was initially, like I said, commission in nineteen sixty eight took several years to do, went on tour in Canada and the United States for a long time until it eventually found a home in Portsmouth, which is it's permanent home today, but it's a really impressive work of art in just the size and scope of it. It was commissioned by a man who was a businessman. He was a veteran of d day and wanted to commemorated in. It's really one of the best art works that I've seen that deals with World War Two and the ROY -tory is in the same location as the d day museum imports. So you can visit them both at the same time and well worth visit. Okay. And then from Portsmouth. You follow the route of the allies and you cross the English channel to Normandy. Of course, you just do it with a ferry. You don't have to land on the beach and your rive in can. And that's kind of the major city which is the the hub for a lot of the sites in the Normandy region. And this is the one part of liberation route that I think most Americans will probably be familiar with. If they visited any World War Two sites, they probably went to Normandy and visited these places. So there's five different beaches where the allies landed strung out over a pretty sizable section of the coast to were American beaches to British beaches, and one was a Canadian beach. So the American beaches were Utah in Omaha. The Canadian beach was Juno and British beaches were sword and gold, and the biggest museums are definitely on the American beaches. I think. They draw the most tourists, although there is a very good museum on the Canadian beaches while that Bizet on Juno beach, that tells the Canadian story. And the interesting thing also is that the entire staff of the Canadian museum is staffed by Canadians. So they bring people in bilingual in French and English. That's who runs the museum in. I should note that in this assertion will be talking about a lot of different museums. They all tell the same story at least in the initial stages because most museums, their stock in trade is gonna be school groups and things like nine show. It's it's going to be local kids and they, they kinda give the background of World War Two how it happened. They may actually start with World War One, but each museum is different in that they always tend to give a local twist to talk about what happened in that area. So for example, the memorial con is a very big museum in. Khan and talks about a lot of the World War Two background. But then they get into like the French resistance that worked the Vichy government, things like that. And when you're in the museums in Belgium, they talk about the Belgian resistance. When you're in the Netherlands, talked with another Lund's resistance and then also fascist party their equivalent than other Lund's. Actually, they kind of tried to tell the whole story, so everything kind of has that basic theme, but then everything else is is a little bit different. Commun- is fantastic. Certainly, the biggest museum I visited in this entire trip simply because I think they get the most visitors. So the Utah beach museum really goes into detail about not just the d day landing itself, but that beach and and the interesting thing about these World War Two Newseum said, if you, let's say, we're talking about some battle that the Romans fought the battle of Canada or something like that. We know who. The generals were, we have no idea who the individual soldiers were. Right. And so much of that has been lost at one of the interesting things about visiting all these places is that it still recent enough where there are still some veterans who are survivors of the war, decreasing numbers. But yeah, true. But in many of them are around for a long time when we have interviews with them, we have all the original stuff. And a lot of times we know the story of on this particular hill at one twenty eight this soldier, and these guys did this right? They attacked this bunker, there's a level of detail that you're gonna get here that you're just not really gonna be able to get in any other war simply because we have so much more information. So many artifacts in so many people stories. When thing while you're here the tapestry getting back to the overlord tab. I did look up to see whether there was any parallelism to the bay, oh, tapestry which was made to commemorate the invasion of William the conqueror into England and this tapestry that's made or this broader that's made about the English coming back in the other direction. And the Lord Dover tan, who is on the commissioning committee did give a speech where he said, basically focuses on one history and explicitly important campaign to which the world conflict had led and made possible and the bay, oh tapestry nearly nine hundred years before day. Certainly beckoned it to be made. So it is seem like they were inspired by that idea and they made it ten meters longer than the tapestry. I think probably intentionally so Omaha in Utah. Beach have good museums, then you also have Sameera gleese. So the village of Sameera gleese this. Was the village where the paratrooper famously got stuck on the church tower in to this day, they have a mannequin and a parachute hanging from it. So I thought that was interesting. And another interesting thing is that the parachutist who got stuck on that tower, and I think that was in the movie the longest day, his name was John Steele a man. He was a man of steel and guess what town he was from. He was from Kansas than you from metropolis, Illinois. Oh, no, I kid you not. He survived the war and visited several times after the war was over coming back to the city before he passed away, and there's also an airborne museum in Saint Mary gleese. There's a lot of little museums that you'll find Oliver Normandy, most of which are kind of private. I went in and visited the airborne museum as well, which was also kind of interested in that just focused again on. On the experiences of the paratroopers. So they had a glider an original glider from World War Two that was there. And boy, would that be a horrible experience. You thought parachuting was bad, but most of these gliders even if they made it safely, they still kind of crashed. Oh yeah. Yeah. I remember seeing all the pictures from my history books and yet seemed like that was as good as it was a crash landing. Well, the other thing you mentioned same Eric lease. That's also then the first town to be liberated. No, I think you're right because it was liberated before the invasion started by the pair. An hour. Yeah. So I think it was like five AM. It was liberated and the invasion. I started up six twenty. And the other amazing thing I learned about this was how well synchronized. This all was sure in. We don't think of World War Two has having within GPS or atomic clocks or anything. But the last bombing run by the fighter-bombers on the barracks on the coast were done two minutes before the troops hit the beach. And they had to really time that extremely well in order for. So there wasn't any friendly fire casualties. But yes, amo gleese was liberated by the paratroopers who landed the night before the infamous assault began. And the only reason I was question is because the near Juno beach where the Canadians landed, there are literally houses on the beach. Yes, and they took that over within twenty minutes. That one was not the same kind of fighting use and saving private Ryan. That was more on the the US speeches that landed at the base of cliffs and things like that. And if somebody goes there, one of the other things I would recommend is so they had a timetable. It's like, okay, we land on Anita. And then we have x. number of days to do the following and the problem, the encountered where the hedgerows all arms go and actually drive down one of these really narrow roads because you can see these hedgerows built up over centuries, right? These were the dividing areas between the farms and what ends up happening is that the soil in the growth of these things builds up and so the roads between them, they're like an valley and they're very narrow, basically one lane and I accidentally because it took a wrong turn. Went down one of these and I was like, oh, wow, so this is the head I can see what happened. And so they were behind their timetable to get to Cherbourg their first big goal. Because from there they could use the ports right to then start resupplying. Everything else. So I think they were two weeks behind liberty Cherbourg, but once they got through that marshy swampy hedgerow area, the ended up liberating Paris head of schedule. So that was supposed to be done ninety days after day and ended up camman sooner almost. I didn't realize it was that much because he learned so much about this. The logistics of d day was perhaps the most incredible thing mid logistics often get overlooked. I don't know if you've ever heard the expression that amateurs talk about tactics and professionals talk about logistics. Yeah, basically the head these sinkhole Pluto, peers. I think what what they were and these were the basically create temporary harbors. Right? And there are still some remains out near the British beaches that you can see and some other wouldn't metal bits that are on the beaches in some other parts. But basically they ended up using those a lot longer. Than they thought. And even after they liberated chair. Berg because damage to the to the port there in there was a a system I hadn't heard of called the red ball express, which was the highway basically to get all the logistics in Queant food and everything else. So it was like one way highway that they created from the loading points in just kept going further further north as troops, advanced and the red ball highway listening to the stories. I mean, I don't know if it would make a great movie, but basically a lot of these truck drivers which is what they were often African Americans were driving Jerry high speeds for what these trucks could do for sixteen to eighteen hours a day. They'd get very little sleep and they had to get to the supplies. The final thing to probably talk about would be the cemeteries. The Normandy, American cemetery is by far the most popular. One, but there's also a German war cemetery, and I actually visited two German cemeteries on this trip. And if you go to its German cemetery is in LA Cam, it doesn't get a lot of visitors for obvious reason. The tombstones are kind of like a gothic cross, and they have three names on each tombstone as opposed to the American cemetery where every soldier gets their own. One of the right one of the left one of the middle, and it's very interesting and they have inscription at the cemetery just to paraphrase it. It's basically here lies a lot of people who are on the wrong side of history fighting a cause that for many of them was not. There's interesting it's kind of a bit awkward but to the German cemeteries in Belgium in after World War One. And the interesting thing there is that there's not very many American cemeteries because the Americans had the right to bring the. The bodies home if the family wanted to, they would pay to bring it home. There's quite a lot of British cemeteries and Commonwealth cemeteries because that was not the rule in the common with KOMO throws. You could not bring the buddy home and they were given the land for the cemeteries. They've basically paid for those cemeteries in defense of Belgium in blood, and the Germans were leased the land. And over time the leases would run out and they would consolidate. And so I went to a relatively small cemetery that was a German cemetery, but I think it held a crypt with twenty thousand remains of German soldiers, but very, very tight space. The German cemeteries were kept in good shape, but obviously they don't get as many visitors. There's no museum or anything like that, whereas the American cemeteries are really done well little further up the route. I actually got to visit the cemetery, the American cemetery in the Netherlands, and there's only one in that other Lund's I met. The superintendent and learned all about the American battlefields monument commission? Yeah, I didn't know a whole lot about the people in charge of all of the foreign Semporna. Theories are all the cemeteries for US soldiers. All of the all of them. Yeah. So there's some in Asia. I know there's some in the Philippines, and then quite a few in Europe. They keep very good care of it while I was there, they were power-washing some of the headstones so they're made sure that they're kept very, very clean. They don't get dirty. They don't let anything grow on it. And I know in the cemetery in the Netherlands sex to a smaller town, and it's not nearly as big as the Normandy, one that it's a tradition that a family will adopt several of the headstones and then once or twice a year, they will go there and wash it plant some flowers, things like that. Interesting. This is probably a good time to mention the big difference as an American. We talk about World War Two. We talk about it in the abstract because it didn't happen here in the big difference I found is when you're there. I had one guide who literally okay in band of brothers. This is the intersection and this is the house and one house still had bullet holes that they never fixed. I saw FOX holes from the battle of the bulge, and then most importantly, all the stuff. So we talk about the industrial capacity of the United States in World War Two in all the tanks, all the planes. All that got flown over to Europe and then we left it there. So there's museums that have a fantastic collection of World War Two equipment so we we can move on now from Normandy, let's go to Estonia or as a lot of say, best known in Belgium, which was the focal point of the battle of the bulge. And we're kind of going temporarily out of sequence here because the battle of the ball JR actually occurred in December of nineteen forty, four and January in some of the sites later occurred earlier, but. We're going straight line not backtrack, and this was a very interesting site as well, because in there was a movie, battle of the bulge came at the nineteen sixties. Also, the movie patent covers part of that, correct. They have a very good museum really from a just an interpretive standpoint. One of the better ones I've seen in, they do some really clever things, but I also went out. We had a guide from the Ziam. This is where he literally showed me like some of the FOX holes that are still there, and it was on the side of a road and there's all these trees because it's in the are dense forest. And I'd never been to this part of Belgium before I always been gained Brussels Antwerp right here almost in Luxembourg at this point. Exactly. So I'd never been to this part and it's it's very hilly, very thickly forested, and you could definitely see how they were all these ditches along the side of this road. Over time. These foxholes will disappear because that's what holes. Do in the forest, but you can definitely see where they were still there. And the famous quote from the the battle of the bulge, the short quote, yes, from general, Anthony mccullagh. The Germans asked him for a surrender and his reply back was nuts. And the story behind it was actually interesting because when one of his officers said, all, we got a request disruptor, he just sort of said on nuts. Oh, that's a bad thing in. That's what they ended up sending back wasn't like a necessarily a purposeful thing. The primary battle of the bulge museum is in one spot. Then if you go into town into Stony, ah, they have a the barracks which was the headquarters for general McCulloch during the battle. And there they have the actual rooms where the staff was. It's actually a Belgian army facility right now, but it's not really active than the primary thing to do is restore old military equipment, but they have a garage there that has the biggest collection of World War Two machinery I have ever seen, and they have an example of every tank jeeps cranes in fibia s- vehicles you name it. It's really impressive. So if you're kind of a general history buff, definitely go to the museum, but if World War Two is really your thing, make sure to actually. Go to the barracks in best Dona to check out this collection because it's it's really fantastic and McCulloch square the main square in the town. It's where out of the tourist activity in a lot of the hotels are, and there was actually a cafe there called the nuts cafe. Of course, there would. We talked about the movies that talk about this particular conflict also band of brothers because that would be about one hundred first airborne and general McAuliffe is the general from the one hundred first airborne so. So as we move forward, we're now kind of going into the Netherlands. I should also add that where these locations are are where there were battles. So there wasn't a whole lot in northern France because there just wasn't a lot of battles in northern France. Once they had that breakout from Normandy, the units move quite rapidly. The Germans abandoned Paris and they retreated north. So there's not a whole lot of sites in northern France in that area where there are a lot of World War One sites. So I remember driving north to best Dona passing for done and right sure. A lot of these famous sites from World War One. So if you wanted to make it a World War One World War Two combo trip, plenty of opportunities to do that and Francis. Well. We were talking about band of brothers and big part of that was operated market garden, and a lot of what you're gonna find in the Netherlands deals with that operation. Market garden was a plan by field marshal Montgomery. I wouldn't necessarily call it a huge success, but it was kind of the book and move your bridge too far. So that will give you some clue. I'll be talking about that because actually went and rewatch d- a bridge too far another Lund's to catch up on it. But yeah, that's a good summary of basically what they wanted to do was go along one highway drop paratroopers into the several bridges to take them. So they could then move the rest of the army up through this to kind of thrust into the Netherlands. And once they were across the Rhine to then hopefully move quickly into Berlin. And it didn't quite that way because every time they came to a river, the Germans wanted to blow the bridge. To slow them down. Hence the movie, the Bridget Remond. So we got a lot of movie references in this particular one. It's a great way for people that may be their best understanding of insurance too. So we're in the Netherlands, and the first museum is the over loon museum, and I didn't know a whole lot about battle of over loon, but it was primarily fought by the Americans and the Germans and here to a really great collection of stuff. They have so much Queant and not just trucks, but uniforms, helmets, guns, amunition, c, rations all the kind of miscellaneous things that nobody would ever bothered a save that they have in this museum. And I spent several hours there in the morning and I could have spent a lot more time. They even had one guy who donated by shouldn't, say donates on loan. He collects artillery shells and he has mazing collection of the actual munitions. And I think he's going to start his own museum or something. Small eventually, but it was there when I was there. They just had so much and get over loon, not very big town, but important battle happen there and a fantastic, fantastic museum. So you're in southeast corner of Netherlands at this point, really close to Germany. Yeah, I don't know this battle either. Yeah, it wasn't. Then I went to the. Concentration camp, and I always have trouble with any Dutch word of the with g the concentration camp auntie enough. So it was it was not a death camp. Auschwitz Losch was. Camp too, but they didn't have gas chambers. They did kill people usually through firing squad or hanging, but it was not that kind of camp. It was a detention center, Jews and other people were certainly brought there, but it was also just political dissidents and things like that who were brought to this camp. And the really weird part is that the camp was a rather large facility after the war. A bunch of got actually turned into housing. Some refugees from Indonesia who ended up coming to the Netherlands and a prison, and it is still a prison today. So right outside the museum front door if you turn to the right, that's the gates of the prison. So the former concentration camp is today a prison, and it's really weird going there, hearing the stories of all these people who were imprisoned. And then right outside the door is a prison. There isn't a whole lot there. There's one building which was the crematorium which still exists, but all of the bunkhouses things like that are. Have you been repositioned in different part of it or been torn down the camp was something that I was not that aware of. I think we're more aware of the things that happened in Poland in the east. But I remember seeing some of the museums in the Netherlands in after liberation, of course, a lot of shaming and attacks on people who were considered sympathizers. And I remember. This, this photograph of this one man who basically had a sign that says I was a hangman at, so it was it was really powerful. Next went to the town of best, and they had the wings of liberation museum here to nother amazing collection of equipment including aircraft and as as Walsum tanks and went to the Canadian cemetery in CRO spec. And I'm, I'm probably butchering that one, and there's also the national liberation museum is there. And then I ended this particular day in the town of nine again. Nine again, if you do any sort of World War Two stuff in this trip, the one thing you absolutely must do. This was the top experience I had on the liberation route was in the town of nine. Again, they do every single day something called the sunset March. So if you've seen the movie a bridge too far, Robert Redford has to cross the river in canvas boats to go take the opposite side of a bridge and they are not quipped for this. They didn't even know where the boats were the head no paddles. So they're using the butts of their rifles and entire way. All this kept saying as hail, Mary full of grace hail Mary full of grace in forty eight men were killed on this assault. So when they built a new bridge several years ago in two thousand thirteen, they put forty eight pairs of lights across the bridge. In every single night, they have a veteran who. Who marches across the bridge at sunset. When the lights turn on to honor the, the forty minute gave their life in the town of nine again and anybody can show up there were about, I think about six or eight people when I was there, they have thirty different veterans in town who share the duty. So like one day a month, but other veterans groups can show up if they want and they can do it as well. There's always a veteran at the front of the March who doesn't. And even if no one's there, even if it's inclement weather, they have somebody who doesn't. And when I first heard about this, I was questioning it's like World War Two veterans. They're just any veteran. So the guys who were there the day I did it. We're actually veterans of the Bosnia campaign where the Dutch peacekeepers, but they've had many Americans who are veteran show up as well as veterans from other countries. The actual walk across the bridge doesn't take long. It's about twelve minutes. Just make sure you're there at little bit before sunset to do it because. Because it's amazing trip. And the other thing I should mention about nine again because this is another thing I did not know about. There were about eight hundred people killed in nine again from a bombing run. I American, we accidentally bombed the wrong town. What happened was is that there was a mission that the Americans went on in Germany and they couldn't reach the target and their orders were that they were to attack if they found any targets of opportunity that they were to unload their payload on that. Well, they didn't realize that name again was in the Netherlands, and they thought it was a German city and they bonded without. I don't think there was air raid siren or anything, and it was kind of in the middle of the day, entire school got wiped out, and it was one of the biggest single biggest things that happened in the war to the Netherlands, the single biggest catastrophe and it was friendly. Fire. Yeah. And when you say they didn't realize it was in the Netherlands, it's about two miles from the border to downtown nine, Meghan. So it'd be easy to see without GPS and detail maps and flying in the dark, I guess. Daylight run how you would make that a state, but still, yeah, there was a lot of friendly fire things that we don't hear that much about. That's a bit of history that is not discussed, and so I got to walk around the city with with one man who was a child when when this happened and the city was really devastated, not a lot of cities necessarily were, but nine again was from there. We went to Arnhem Arnhem was the location of the bridge too far. Right? This was the bridge that crossed the brine and there's a very small museum right near the water. It's not. It's really not very big, but you're very close to the bridge. The bridge that's there now is basically the same location as the former bridge, but the bridge from World War. Two was destroyed by the Germans when they retreated. So that's not there anymore. The other major place in the Netherlands that I would mention is the concentration camp, fester, Brooke. So this is a bit further north, and this was a transition camp for Jews who were being sent from the Netherlands and Belgium and other places to sites in the east. And it was originally designed as a holding place where Jews were told to come there in the eventual ee as as they were rounded up arrested, they would come here and then be shipped off. Somewhere else in this is actually were Anne Frank was briefly before she was shipped off to other facility, and they have a a very good museum here, talking about the holocaust at what happened in the Netherlands, and he Dutch perspective on it and the people that were lost and exactly what happened. Location of the camp is about wanna say two kilometers from the muse. Liam, so they do have shuttle bus in. That's how you have to get there. But it it's really hard because they're running the bus constantly. The next big stop was in the town of Schmidt, which is in Germany. And this was a location for one of the biggest battles of World War Two. The lot of people don't know about in terms of the the cost of American life. I think it was the largest battle in the European theater in. That's the battle of hurricane forest. Okay. Only vaguely familiar right there. I don't think there was a movie made about it. I don't know the the logic for why they attacked here because it was a very hilly area, Gary forced at area. So it didn't really lend itself to offense of maneuvers. But here I could actually see part of the Siegfried line, which was the defensive line built in Germany. It was kind of their version of the measure no line and today what you can probably see are these things called dragon's teeth which were cement Puram IDs, like more like a trapezoid that were designed to stop tanks writes a very difficult for them to drive over. So as part of what we didn't, we also visited a camp or facility called Vogelsang which the best I can describe it is it was like West Point for Nazis. They had, I think, four these facilities at the intended to build. But it wasn't a military academy per se. It was more of a political place where they wanted upcoming national socialist leaders to be trained and indoctrinated. So they, it's actually a very. Pituresque place. Really a Vokes. All these Canarian teutonic type things at the Nazis were were big into. But yeah, it was basically a train facility and then after the War, I think it was a army base for the Belgian army and Belgians basically gave it up. And now it's a tourist place where people can visit has museum. And the museum is really interesting because it's not the typical World War Two museum. It really gets in-depth about how this facility was used by the Third Reich, what it was intended for. And then what a lot of the graduates here who ended up becoming the mastermind and the people that actually implemented a lot of the final solution because a lot of hard core Nazis all came from this facility or places like it. This is where the super hardcore Nazis went and Savell to the public now. And I think Hitler actually was there a few times for graduation ceremonies or something, but it's really kind of worth visiting. It's technically not part of the liberation. It was very close by and definitely were seeing. And then from there, the final stop was in Berlin itself, and and it was, I think, quite a drive to get from the the little town of Schmidt to Berlin. And the one thing in Berlin is the allied museum notice. Yes, the allied museum is in the former west Berlin, and it was built in the movie theater of what was a US base at the time. So this where the Americans had a movie theater and it talks about the allied occupation of Berlin in how that was in four different sections and how they all dealt with each other. In an also that museum sort of transitions into the beginning of the Cold War where they talk about the Berlin airlift in things like that. And there's actually, I think one of the planes that participated in the Berlin airlift is there because it's an old theater. It's not an enormous museum, but. If you're going to be in Berlin. Anyhow, it's definitely will worth it. It's not like in the central part of Berlin at all. It's in more of a. Residential area. But again, it gives a very different perspective from all the other museums in that it focuses really on that ending point the occupation of Berlin and then going forward. So you kind of have everything in the the places. I just mentioned the start in the planning of day in England, Yeshua landing operation market garden, and the battle of the ball, JR. The battle of hurt can forest and then the day in the occupation of Berlin. Now you said that there is also or going to be also a liberation route from coming in from the east. If you go to liberation route dot com, they have a list of all of the sites that are currently part of liberation route, and there are a few of them in Poland. But I think that most of the emphasis right now is definitely on western Europe simply because there's been more development of the museums and things like that. So actually. If you go to the website and look at the locations from the countries I mentioned, there's also Italy has a couple Poland has to. There's one in Luxembourg and a ton in the Netherlands, and it was originally a Dutch lead what still is Dutch lead project because I think are so many of the sites that that area of operation market garden in the Normandy are the two big hubs of everything. Interesting. What surprised you just a lot of the things I just mentioned that it was operating Neptune was the actual d day. I always thought it was overlord. Yeah, d- amount of logistics I've been doing a lot of reading in the last couple months about World War Two. And one of the things that a lot of historians have noted is that the Americans weren't necessarily the best fighters at the at the start of World War Two. We didn't have an army basically not very big. Yeah. No, it wasn't much and we had really three things going for us incredible industrial capacity that couldn't be touched by the enemy right? There was an ocean away, right? We were very good at adapting in learning, whereas say the Germans and the Japanese had very hierarchy structure, and you could never go to a commanding officer and say, hey, you know, this didn't work. Let's do something else where the Americans are much more open to that. So if something didn't work like our first battles in North Africa did not go well. But we adapted quickly, and there was a lot of that that Adam nation that as the war went on, I think we got better. And then the third is logistics. The American soldiers were better fed, better equipped will better better equipped not in terms of the quality of any one tank, for instance, but that there were more of them. You couldn't put a Sherman tank for tiger tank and expected to win. But if you put twenty, there was a great book. I recently finished called the second world wars plural that that really takes more of an economic perspective. One of the things they looked at were German tank production, and they made very good tanks and. German machineguns rashly really good, but then they look at what was the amount of labor that went into making one of these and the amount of material. And it was just really enormous compared to what the Americans are, especially the Soviets were doing. Whereas the Soviets didn't even bother to lacquer the butts of the rifles. They just wanted to crank stuff out and get in people's hands where where's the focused on quality. The Americans were really more focused on quantity, and there was one quote from German soldier, some anonymous German soldier that were shocked that when the Americans like a Jeep or something got damaged, they would just abandon it and get a new one. Right. And the German, what you we gotta fix it. We don't have a lot of vehicles, but the Americans had so much stuff coming in especially into nineteen forty five that that was their attitude to Slyke don't don't stop, just leave it on the side of the road and keep going well in versus you mentioned the the Russians not bothering to lacquer the bus. Of the guns. I remember as they're sending troops into Stalingrad and in the book enemy at the gate, they were talking about the soldiers coming across the river, and they've only got a gun for every other soldier. Everybody gets five bullets, and every other person gets a gun and they're basically told, don't worry guns will be available. It's like he. The other thing I learned is being able to physically be there and to see the sights and to see the things. For example, the the town I grew up in, I think we had one of the squares there is a memorial. I think we have a howitzer, no sure or the VFW post, I think, had a tank that they got from somewhere, but that was one thing. Whereas all the stuff was left in Europe, right? So these museums just have everything. They have all these things. And so two really, viscerally get an idea of what happened. Thank you really do have to go there and see it, and it really made me more interested in going back and actually visiting some of the World War One sites because I've never really been World War One battlefield. I think that's going to be a very different experience because it wasn't as dynamic a war. You didn't have. It was just a lot of stationary bombing. Each other, a lot of people go to Europe and they're going to Paris Berlin. London in this was really the first time. I've been traveling very long time. I've done a ton of episodes in your show. One of the very first time I've done a trip that was theme attic that wasn't a UNESCO world heritage site, at least what you go to a place, and then you see things at that place wherever they may be, and maybe it's an ancient ruin. Maybe it's something from the nineteenth century, whatever. But for this, I just focused on the World War Two aspects and. Is a very different kind of trip because I'd never really done something like that anymore. And I think that in general, I would want to do another trip like this at some point in the future when we should say to there are some sites in Italy, and that would have been predated the sites that you went to buy another year so that the liberation starts earlier than that, but doesn't get that far from from Italy. Excellent. The invasion of Italy took place beforehand and that could be considered part of the liberation roud. Well, Italy's already knocked out of the war by the time to happen. So I'm trying to think of what makes sense in terms of my usual questions, I don't know that I will necessarily ask you, what's the prettiest sight you win to what's the most visually interesting site you into as photographer. It is the German war cemetery that I visited in the town of Yeltsin very big cemetery. There's forty thousand people buried there still maintained, but they had the central area that was these trees that kind of are over all the branches had the path made a little tunnel and yet was very, very interesting. There's thirty two thousand soldiers from World War Two in eighty five from World War One all in twenty eight acres. So that's a lot of bodies, but still very interesting place will in those dark crosses that you're seeing there look just like the German cemetery visited outside of leaper in Flanders in Belgium. Interesting. Yeah. I think there's a style in just to kind of tie in with with my last appearance on the show, the location I found while I was in Switzerland, much of the marble for the American tombstones. Comes from Switzerland. Oh, I didn't know that. That's what they told me. It's a very particular type of very white marble that they use. Interesting. Well, Gary, do you want to summarize this trip in three words for us, and then we'll call it done. I opening. Interesting and historic excellent off any everyone can do the entire route like I did, but certainly I think parts of it and maybe some of the parts that you might not be familiar with runs from Normandy, but some of the Belgian Dutch sites would definitely be worth people's while making stop. Excellent. And if we wanted to send them to a particular post at everything dash everywhere dot com, your home base, where would we send them? Go to everything everywhere dot com. And by the time this episode is out or people listen to it. I may have stuff posted. I just got back from my trip, so I haven't written it yet hopeful Lincoln the show notes to whatever great post Gary has written by them. So I'm definitely going to be doing guide to visiting American cemeteries in Europe because they're actually quite a few from both world wars. Well is doing a general overview of the liberation route and then a special article I wanna do on nine again because I do believe that sunset March is. Really a special thing in if you are veteran. If you have a family member who is a veteran, it's something that I would definitely consider doing if you're in the Netherlands. Excellent. If you do do an article about American cemeteries in Europe. The one that I went courage to look into is the American cemetery in Russia. One of those forgotten cemeteries from the Americans who went over after World War One to try and intercede in the Russian revolution. I remember that from history. I didn't know there was a cemetery there. Believe there is. I couldn't tell you where it is though. Excellent. I guess again, it's been Gary aren't from everything everywhere that conger thanks for coming back on the show in just a very short period of time and telling us about your trip. Any were love for history in western Europe on the liberation around. Thanks for. In news of the community. I heard from Peter who responded to an older episode, five twenty one on Greenland. I left his thoughts as comment on that particular episode. But what he said is, I just returned from hiking, camping trip to Greenland, run by the WWF. That's the World Wildlife federation and I thought your guest was remiss in not mentioning some of the hazard. Your guests would be prepared for Greenland is stunningly beautiful and unique, but solo travelers need to be prepared for certain risks. One polar bears during the end of the summer there ravenously hungry and aggressive are hiking group of ten had to guides both armed with flares and shotguns one with scout ahead during our hikes on our first night camped on the edge of the smirk fjord they had to kill a bear outside the village of tickle lack across the fjord from us because it was threatening the village and pair of hikers from cool Suk. Kayaking among the icebergs very pretty, but beware of the hazards ninety percent of the Burgh is below the water and because they melt faster from the bottom, they often become top heavy and roll over, which is very dangerous for kayaks zodiacs at nearby. So give them a very wide birth. Medical evacuation is difficult at an emergency because of whether and fog one of our guests developed internal bleeding. Luckily, two guests were doctors and very nearly died because weather prevented helicopter access for thirty six hours. We had a satellite phone. They sell them in the supermarkets in Greenland and any solo hiker should carry one Peter. Thanks so much for the comments with that. We're going to end this longer episode of amateur, traveler, remember that we're trying to decide where to go in two thousand twenty for the mature travel trip in we're signing up people for two thousand nineteen for the trip to South Africa butts wanna and Victoria Falls. If you have any questions sent an Email to hosted immature, traveler dot com or better yet leave a comment on. In this episode at amateur, traveler dot com. Use the same Email address if you'd like to sponsor the mature traveler, and thanks so much for listening. See. Jam. Okay.
The Amateur Traveler Podcast