Anger Management with Nick Clegg

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7: “This is not America”: former US Vice President JOE BIDEN on the power of positive example

Ep. 7

Few politicians have dealt with weightier global issues, or dealt with more devastating personal tragedy, than JOE BIDEN, two-term Vice President to Barack Obama. As a young senator in 1972 he lost his first wife and his daughter in a car crash. During his second term as Vice President, his son Beau succumbed to brain cancer aged only 46.

On the latest edition of ANGER MANAGEMENT WITH NICK CLEGG, Joe Biden speaks movingly about how to deal with unimaginable loss without lapsing into despair. He talks about where the rage that now defines our political climate comes from, and how to fight it. And he warns that America’s current attitude to friends and allies is imperilling its influence as a global force for good. “The world responds to America not because of the example of our power,” he says, “but the power of our example.”

This conversation between Nick Clegg and Joe Biden took place at the Copenhagen Democracy Summit at the Royal Danish Playhouse, Copenhagen, Denmark on 22 June 2018.

  • “Character is not made up of one big decision. It’s a thousand little decisions. If you lie to the waiter, you’re going to lie to me someday.

  • On the separation of migrant children from their parents: “It makes me feel shame. I really mean that. I’m proud of the response the American people have shown. This is is not America. We are not as good as we believe we are – but we are much better than this.”

  • “Right now America is sending a signal that is so damaging to our ability to be a positive force in the world. Praising Duerte, praising Putin, praising Kim Jong-Un? What are we doing?

  • On ‘Promise Me, Dad’, the book on the aftermath of his sons’ death: “I wanted it to be about redemption. To give people hope. If you can find purpose after loss, it’s your way to deal with that loss. And internalise the good part of what you’ve lost.”

  • On Brexit: “America’s ability to meet our responsibilities around the world rests upon a Europe that is whole, free and at peace. It is the platform that allows us to maintain our security. We badly need Europe whole, free, at peace – and united.

  • On the aftermath of Brexit: “I think we‘ve got to have a period of saying ‘OK, you want a bite out of that apple? How‘s it taste? What's going on? How do you feel about that?‘“

  • On Britain potentially leaving the EU: “I was really disappointed in terms of US interests. If we had any voice in Europe, it was you. I was not surprised, because in times of confusion and great change I think we all become susceptible to demagogues and charlatans who in order to aggrandise their power find a scapegoat.”

  • On the future: “Right now there’s pace on the ball. Turnout is up among Democrats and Independents. Republicans are disillusioned. There is a sense that, damn it, I’m taking this country back. And I think you’re going to see it in your country too.

Anger Management with Nick Clegg is created by Podmasters, producers of the hit Brexit podcast Remainiacs. Producer: Andrew Harrison. Studio production: Sophie Black. Music by Jon Luc Heffernan used under Creative Commons licence. Photo: Paul Heartfield.

@nick_clegg

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© 2018 Nick Clegg/Podmasters

More Episodes

6/27/2018

6: Rome and away: Italy’s ex-PM MATTEO RENZI on power, populism… and football

Ep. 6
Britain and the United States are not the only political systems to be rocked by the forces of populism. The convulsions of the past few years have left Italian politics unrecognisable. So where do we go from here? On the latest edition of ANGER MANAGEMENT, former Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi – Italy’s youngest-ever PM and head of the fourth longest-lasting government in Italian history – talks to Nick Clegg about his country’s present and future. Showing a rare sense of humour in a senior politician, he recounts the experiences that shaped him, explains where anger is leading Italian politics, and tells us how populism’s strengths are also its weaknesses. “When I was a boy, if you were a good footballer you became a player. If you weren’t a good player you became a referee. So I became a referee. But if you weren’t a good referee, you became a politician. So I became Prime Minister…” “Italy is a chaotic country. But from the chaos we get our creativity.” “I’m in the same club as David Cameron — the club that’s against referendums. He lost his job after a Referendum in Britain, and I lost mine after one in Italy.” “In politics, you decide something today — and you don’t discover the consequences for many years. It’s hard to see what will happen to the UK. And when it does, people might not remember the real reasons why.” “The best way to defeat populism is time. Time is the thing that shows false promises to be wrong.” Anger Management with Nick Clegg is created by Podmasters, producers of the hit Brexit podcast Remainiacs. Producer: Andrew Harrison. Studio production: Sophie Black. Music by Jon Luc Heffernan used under Creative Commons licence. Photo: Paul Heartfield. @nick_clegg openreason.uk © 2018 Nick Clegg/Podmasters
6/13/2018

5: Global Soul: writer and campaigner ELIF SHAFAK on art vs. anger

Ep. 5
Can art defeat fascism? In the latest edition of ANGER MANAGEMENT, award-winning author, columnist and women’s rights activist Elif Shafak talks to Nick about the seductive dangers of sameness, how Western countries’ greatest weakness was our belief that we’d won all the big battles… and how we’ll never turn back the tide of anger until we understand where it comes from. “This is an age of emotions,” Elif tells Nick, “and emotions are guiding and misguiding politics. In an age of anger we need to increase our emotional intelligence.” Born in Strasbourg and raised in Ankara, Madrid, Amman and Istanbul, the self-declared “linguistic nomad” Elif Shafak is one of the world’s most influential writers, and the widest-read female writer in Turkey. In her non-fiction work and her ten acclaimed novels – including The Architect's Apprentice and The Bastard of Istanbul – she looks at identity, feminism and LGBT and women’s rights.   “Countries can go backwards. Generations can make the same mistakes that previous generations did. But if we can learn anything, we will learn it from people who are not like us.” “Populist demagogues tell us we will be safer if we’re surrounded by sameness. That is a lie.” “If you’re a novelist from a non-democracy — or a wounded democracy like Turkey or Russia — you do not have the luxury of being non-political.” “The opposite of kindness and goodness isn’t evil, it’s numbness. What art does is rehumanise those people we’ve been told are not human.”  Anger Management with Nick Clegg is created by Podmasters, producers of the hit Brexit podcast Remainiacs. Producer: Andrew Harrison. Studio production: Sophie Black. Music by Jon Luc Heffernan, used under Creative Commons licence. @nick_clegg openreason.uk © 2018 Nick Clegg/Podmasters
5/30/2018

4: The Mother of All Battlers: HARRIET HARMAN on anger as an energy

Ep. 4
Anger cuts both ways. It can destroy you and the people around you – or it can drive you onwards. In the latest edition of ANGER MANAGEMENT WITH NICK CLEGG, longest-serving female MP, Mother of the House and former Labour Deputy Leader Harriet Harman explains how anger against injustice and institutionalised bias has given her the energy to keep fighting. Have we ignored the voices of popular anger for too long – or are we letting the voices of rage set the agenda too much? What sort of popular anger will ensue if Jeremy Corbyn enables a Tory hard Brexit? And what was the ‘Night of the Mustard Yellow Corduroys?’ All this and more in Nick Clegg’s fascinating conversation with one of the most dogged fighters in the Commons. “We shouldn’t regard it as sign of weakness when MPs report death threats or threats of violence. We should look on it as an attack on democracy. Nobody should have to look over their shoulder.” “During the Referendum it was dismaying that I’d campaign with my LABOUR IN badge next to my Labour rosette — and people would say, But I thought Labour was in favour of leaving?” “Once my mother had achieved the ‘lofty ambition’ of marrying my father, her lawyer’s wig and gown literally went into our dressing up box. That was the way the world was in the 1950s.” “The thing with Cameron and the EU Referendum is, you shouldn’t ever put in your manifesto something that you know you’ll never want to do.” Anger Management with Nick Clegg is created by Podmasters, producers of the hit Brexit podcast Remainiacs. Producer: Andrew Harrison. Studio production: Sophie Black. Music by Jon Luc Heffernan used under Creative Commons licence. @nick_clegg openreason.uk © 2018 Nick Clegg/Podmasters