Peter Thiel scares a lot of people. He’s the tech billionaire who was able to shutter Gawker and he holds a lot of influence in Silicon Valley and politics, and the intersection of the two.
On the latest episode of The New Abnormal, author Max Chafkin, whose upcoming book The Contrarian is all about Thiel, tells Molly Jong-Fast that “if there’s a Trump political party or a Trump faction, Thiel wants to be the Koch brothers to that faction.”
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That’s because Thiel allegedly got richer than he already was during the Trump presidency. And that leads us to the secret meeting that he attended with then-President Donald Trump, Jared Kushner, and Mark Zuckerberg in response to Zuck and Facebook coming under fire for manipulated ads whose targets included House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, as well as for supposedly suppressing conservative content—despite analytics proving otherwise.
The meeting is not news, but Chafkin shares some details that haven’t been in the news.
“Thiel told a friend, [and] according to the friend, Zuckerberg and Jared Kushner basically reached an accommodation…”
Also on the episode, Rep. Mondaire Jones (D-NY) and Molly talk about the two main bills Congress is working to pass, including one that may finally give the country paid family leave. He also does not go easy on Democratic holdouts Sen. Kyrsten Sinema and Sen. Joe Manchin.
“Joe Manchin has no excuse” for not passing the bill, says Jones, and neither does Sinema.
“[She] comes from a state that Biden won and that overwhelmingly supports things like a $15 minimum wage, as does, by the way, West Virginia. And yet those two senators voted against the interests of their constituents when they voted a few months ago not to overrule the parliamentarian who said that a $15 minimum wage could not be contained in the American rescue plan. We are dealing with people who are looking out for people who are not their constituents,” he says.
Plus! Historian Dr. Timothy Snyder gives a grim look at the road ahead for American democracy.
“We’ve gotten ourselves to a point where we think that not following our own procedures is somehow a sign of liberty, but it’s not, it’s a sign of tyranny,” he says.
Molly puts it in simpler terms: We’re “slow-rolling” into a civil war.