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I thought you were going to say we've replaced the theme song like Katie Holmes for Maggie Gyllenhaal. Oh, we've replaced it with something that's like better. And yet at the same time, kind of unsavory for the way it makes you feel that none of your memories are real.
If should put all of this in just a long, long process, I think of them shitty tagline as you think of the great tagline, welcome to You're Wrong about where prosecutors are problematic and the satanic panic might be real throwback.
I'm going to be hearing about the satanic cults of California for the rest of my life.
Tonight, I am Michael Hobbs.
I'm a reporter for the Huffington Post. I'm Sarah Marshall and I'm working on a book about the satanic panic. And Mike thinks I should call it the same panic realness, because Nancy Grace has so blown our minds with her treatments or whatever.
Is that what you're saying?
Like we are on Petrona page on dotcom slash you're wrong about and lots of other places to find the show.
And we have been getting a lot of questions for our first ask us anything and we're going to record it this week. We're really excited. We are. And today we are talking about Nancy Grace, again, part three, the trilogy.
Yeah. So, yeah, where are we where we diving in this week? What have we learned so far?
Mike, I would love to hear you sum up what we've done. We have learned, first of all, that Nancy Grace rose from a sort of random lady into law school and into becoming a prosecutor after the murder of her fiancee, which it appears she then sort of twisted into this simpler and more convenient origin story that confirms her beliefs.
And then last week, we talked about how she hates the Constitution and defense lawyers.
OK, here's a here's a comparison. I was reading this book about the art and science of homemaking. And there is a moment when the author is talking about rags versus sponges and she go and the sentence is, I am no fan of sponges, but, you know, from her kind of authorial voice that it's like I am no fan of yours. And I feel like that's how Nancy Grace feels about the Constitution, where she's saying she's no fan.
She's saying it in italics. Yes.
I mean, another thing that to me is really interesting about this book is that Nancy Grace and, you know, this is what it's going to be going forward. Spoiler alert is the yeah, this is Nancy Grace's argument. And then each chapter is going to be like fairly anecdotal examples of ways that different aspects of the legal system are either corrupt or not to her liking. In the end, the book is a collection of anecdotes. It's like the Trader Joe's bacon ends and pieces of the little bacon ends and pieces.
I was actually thinking about this in terms of kind of the relationship between anecdotes and actual data, because as a writer, it's like if you're writing about, you know, income inequality, for example, you want to have like anecdotes in there that make it real for people. Right. You would have all these statistics about like the top one percent has gained 40 percent of the income gains, blah, blah, blah, whatever the number is. But then because numbers are kind of boring and people don't remember them, you wouldn't include a bunch of indicative anecdotes like Jeff Bezos owns 75 yachts and Bill Gates has fifty one houses or whatever anecdotes are there as kind of like color.
But it seems like there's also this turn with first of all, it's kind of like bad journalism generally, but especially with people that want to confirm something that really doesn't show up in the data.
It's like they just strike all of the quantitative parts of that, like they skip to the anecdotes, but like they haven't actually established that the underlying facts are true.
Well, yeah. And I feel like if you're telling a story and this is something that you do very well in your writing, I think if you're telling a story with anecdote and data, then it's kind of like knitting with two fibers and one is very colorful and beautiful and really makes the piece, you know, shimmer, but it has no tensile strength. And I just like comes up with the least bit of tension and then you blend it with something that's like very strong and is never going to, like, wear or fall apart, but just isn't interesting to look at at all.
Right. And you put those two things together and then you have a great sweater. What I find most interesting about this book and the anecdotes she chooses to be in it is that they aren't even good. Anecdotes like this to me, is maybe the most amazing thing about this entire book, because she was talking about this last episode. She starts with the stories of the trials of two men who each tried and convicted for murdering a little girl. They were each horrible stories.
But the interesting thing about that, too, is that, like, you're left with no sense of injustice because, like, these men both were convicted and are never going to walk free. You don't have the sense of justice thwarted in the way that Nancy Grace would want you to understand justice.
So even her cherry picked anecdotes are like withered little old cherries, like they're not even like plump, red, sweet cherries.
So, I mean, these little cherries.
Oh, you said it, man. What I find most interesting about. That isn't just like the sheer laziness of it, because, like there are plenty of defense lawyers who've done terrible things. Sure, there's so many of them. It's like trying to find dentists doing unethical things, like, of course, that they're like, I'm sure you can find people to post conviction, lawyers who never filed exculpatory evidence, you know, people who were overwhelmed and did a bad job.
People engage in various forms of corruption. You know, there's like there's so many possible stories out there and not even stuff that has to be reported because stuff that's, you know, that you could find looking at newspapers is that a professional writer who you hire to write a memoir for you?
Could it just hanging off the cherry tree? It's just right there, right?
Listen, yeah, it's it's a it's a Kerry filled world out there. Yeah. And what instead we get is sort of this list of like things Nancy Grace kind of remembers and that she talked about on TV at one time. Right.
Right. But let's crack on. I like it when you tell me anecdotes and then we debunk them from sources outside of Nancy's book.
All right, let's do it. Chapter two, we the jury on elevators and in restaurants, at bus stops and airports. I am constantly asked, what's the secret to winning cases? My response is always the same. You win or lose in jury selection. Once the jury is struck, 12 jurors who hear the case selected from a pool of people, it's all over.
That's a massive indictment of the criminal justice system. The fact that it doesn't come down to the facts of the case, it comes out to the randomness of jury selection. But find Nancy, let's keep going.
Yeah, I mean, there's a million ways that jury selection can skew in a weird and non representative direction. And that's something that you can write a really interesting chapter about.
But that's not what his captors shock horror.
This is going to this country's jury system is under attack as never before, largely because the juror mindset has been left mostly unexplored and unchallenged. Awesome. Many recent cases have resulted in downright shocking verdicts that have left veteran trial watchers and legal analysts shaking their heads in disbelief that we have as titles. Jurors who loathe the oath now is Exhibit A, it's all about me. And then she talks about a Martha Stewart juror.
Celebrity trials proceed. Yes.
And basically this juror lied about a past arrest on the juror questionnaire, OK? And she's like, he shouldn't have lied. Why did he want to be on Martha Stewart's carry badly enough to lie? This is bad. OK, I agree. And she says no one knows what the jurors motives were, but evidence suggests he had an issue with Martha Stewart and her millionaire lifestyle. It's not clear his agenda involves getting Stewart convicted out of his own pecuniary interests.
If you have some other more personal reason like exacting revenge against the rich, that was fulfilled by sitting on this jury. And it's like or he just wasn't thinking it through when he filled out the questionnaire, just wanted to be on the jury. It was an exciting celebrity case.
Also, Nancy, quick follow up question. Do you just have the data on how many millionaires go to jail every year?
It seems like if there's widespread bias against millionaires and that's affecting the justice system, we would see large numbers of millionaires going to jail. Do you just have those numbers for me, Nancy?
You just want to grab those. I want to see Haves and Grace. I don't want to cry machine to pivot to that.
She would destroy me if we ever got, like, a debate. I would be so scared. What do you guys cry? You did great just now. That's good. She's not here.
We can just make a large scarecrow and you can pretend it's her for six months and get an Fedele. No way.
I have gotten like invites to appear on like Fox News and stuff and I would get absolutely fucking owned if I ever showed up on my channel or anywhere near Nancy Grace, she would destroy me. I'm much more comfortable with writing spicy things on the Internet.
Yeah, that's how Tucker Carlson breaks your back over his knee and then you end to die in prison and an unnamed country going anywhere fucking near that.
OK, so and exhibit B, can't we all just get along? Nancy Grace talks about a case where CEO Dennis Kozlowski and defendant Mark Swartz are leaving the courtroom when a juror makes the OK sign at them, OK. And after this becomes news and obviously suggests that the juror is impartial, the juror whose name is Ruth Jordan goes public and appears on 60 Minutes, says that she didn't do it and the judge declares a mistrial.
So, again, you're like, OK, well, but there was a mistrial. So it seems like that all worked out pretty well.
This is like me telling you what really bugs me is like people not having their dogs on leashes in the park. And then I tell you a story like people walking through the park with their dog on a leash. Right. And then there's a woman with brown hair came in. Her dog was on a leash. And you're like, Mike, when when are you going to get to the part where, like, something bad happens? Right.
And then it's like, do you really just dislike dogs? Like, will you dislike people help me out here, buddy. And so and exhibit C, we get a juror and the Scott Peterson trial, juror number two nine three zero eight was polite during questioning by the state, insisting she can definitely be fair and impartial. But then defense attorney Mark Geragos, who is like as close as we have to a protagonist. So that's a pain. But then defense attorney Mark Geragos abandon his usually charming demeanor and went on the attack, grilling her over a senior citizen bus trip she took to Reno, Nevada, which sounds like a Raymond Carver story.
Did you tell people on that trip that you passed the test to get on the jury and Scott Peterson is, quote, going to get what is due to him? Geragos asked. The juror, a volunteer at a senior citizen center, acknowledge the bus trip, but denied talking about the Peterson case. The trial judge ultimately booted her off the jury again, seems like it worked out, but OK.
Nancy says the more Geragos could trump up the motives of allegedly dishonest jurors, the more likely his accusations become the basis for a venue change or an appeal. A new trial could conservatively cost the state millions as it took months to get through the six hundred jurors vetted for the trial. The bottom line is that these particular stealth jurors may be gone, but the damage has been done OK. And so what I think she's saying actually, is that the defense is allowed to be too liberal in its claims of juror impartiality and that this is bad and it is too expensive, which is the closest she comes to making an argument.
So, like, you have to give her that.
But then what actually happened with the Scott Peterson case? Did he is she mad that he got off or mad that he didn't get off?
No, Scott, none of these. I mean, I can't think of anyone. She talks about who was acquitted. Scott Peterson was convicted. OK, he's in prison.
But so the jury like, was there a million appeals and a change of venue?
But it could have gone differently. I think she's saying, like, Geragos got an edge and like, what if he had taken a mile? And it's like, well, yeah, that didn't happen. Right. It's interesting, right? Like, she's very fixated on these things where everything she wanted to happen happened, but like. Yeah, exactly the way that she wanted to get there, like, that's like that's really interesting as a focus. If she had wanted to fill this book with stories that would actually make the reader feel like America was full of criminals who weren't serving enough or any time for their terrible crimes, like she could cherry pick those anecdotes for children doing that, which is really interesting.
It's also interesting because, of course, if you wanted to look at the problems with the jury system, you would look at things like black defendants getting convicted by all white juries or the fact that juries have ideas that have been implanted in their brains by people like Nancy Grace and a bunch of true crime media. There are actually like real critiques of the jury system to me.
Yeah, I guess I feel like this really highlights how what she does is like it can't be communicated in the book. Right. OK, this is a this is a nice section intro agreed by the book. When Chaucer wrote the Canterbury Tales, he put greed on the list of the seven deadly sins. Use that degree. Nancy Grace has been around since time began and now it has wormed its way into the jury deliberation room. Centuries ago, there was no National Enquirer offering big bucks for first person accounts from jurors and no competition crazed TV and movie producers wooing jurors to trade information for national notoriety.
There was no dateline, no local news that can make instant celebrities out of jurors addicted to the limelight.
I can just imagine you reading this had been like there was no Nancy Grace.
Nancy, in the not so distant past, jurors may have gotten some semblance of notoriety within their communities, but they couldn't make any real money out of it. Now they can and they pose a serious threat to our justice system here.
But again, in celebrity trials, there's like five celebrity trials a year. What is she talking about?
That's a really good point. Yeah, she's not addressing the fact that, like most jurors in the United States serve on juries for cases that no one talks about or wants to pay the money to talk about.
Yeah, my mom was on a jury about a dude, stole another dude's bike. It took like half a day. And like no one, she's not getting a book deal.
No one wants to publish her memoir. So I want you to try and think of what she might use as an example for why juries are corrupt and being bought out.
Oh, is it O.J. Simpson? Yes, because some of those people wrote books, right? Yes.
To be fair, a lot of OK. Yeah.
And so Nancy says, a decade ago, the trial of the century ignited the juror term literary cash cow phenomenon.
The Simpson trial spanned scores of books, including I want to tell you my response to your letters, your messages, your questions written by the defendant before the trial even started. Jurors quickly followed suit and then she talks about a couple of different books published by jurors on the O.J. Simpson trial. As far as I know, there are three of them. And I don't know, what do you think of that, Mike? I mean, I actually agree that, like, that's it does seem distorting, but it's distorting to celebrity trials.
I mean, the fact that she's calling it the trial of the century is maybe a tell that, like, this is not a typical trial, that this isn't significant from a data perspective.
Yeah, I mean, that's a much more objective argument than I have come up with. So I appreciate that. I know.
What do you think about I mean, you probably read these books, but what do you think about them?
I have I haven't read all of them yet. But I mean, what I find really interesting is that in the same breath, she is leaping from OJs book to the jurors books. Right. This one I want to tell you, this is him responding to letters he receives from his fans. OK, you know, he worked with a ghostwriter on this while he was in jail awaiting trial. This was a calculated PR move.
And Nancy doesn't like that. I mean, I don't like it either. Right. Again, this is a point where I'm like, yeah, Nancy. Like, I agree. Like, once again, like of Nancy and I were having a pajama party, which would be the scariest thing I can imagine. My God. But if we did that, that's where we would like, clink her glasses and be like, yeah, fuck that guy.
So, yeah, this is a calculated PR move.
I think it was something that his defense team turned out for him. It was a very cynically produced object, like I can understand from a prosecutorial or human perspective, being very bothered by that and bothered by the implications of that. And I can even see being bothered by the celebrity trial as a phenomenon, because even if there aren't that many of them, they do serve as these very significant markers which both inform and gauge public sentiment. Yeah. About various themes in our legal system.
But yeah, that has nothing to do with juries, though. Well, that's the thing.
And then she leaps straight from O.J. to these jurors. And to me, the you know, the thing that's worth remembering about the jurors is that like none of these people were making very much money.
They were trapped in hotels for like nine months. I mean, according to the Ryan Murphy show, anyway. And aside from that, like they didn't have lucrative jobs beforehand. I mean, many of them were government workers, which is why they were able to be on a jury at all. And nobody thought that the trial would last this long, but they knew that it would last at least, you know, at least a couple of months. And then after this trial is over, I mean, everyone hates them.
Oh, right. Yeah. You know, I mean, I guess the discourse at the time is about how these jurors, they must be so stupid. Right. You know, they must have been duped by Johnnie Cochran. And the tone of kind of mainstream white American media is just frustrated, doesn't begin to describe. But I think there's real anger and hostility and fury at these people.
So they have a right to basically write something, saying, this is why I did it. This is the information I had. This is the calculation that I made.
I'm extremely happy these books exist. I mean, that's my perspective. I like take that as as significant as we want to. Like, maybe that doesn't matter at all. Yeah. But to me, as someone who's trying to understand this trial and what it was like for the jurors and the alternates on it, hearing them, it was really interesting. And all of these books are out of print because they were kind of quirky properties that were lucrative for a hot second.
And then this kind of O.J. fatigue set in not to be like super let the free market work. Its magic guy like these are people who had a unique experience and people one right here, that unique experience described in detail.
I don't know that that seems fine to me. Also, have there been does she establish that there have been other trials since nineteen fucking ninety four where jurors have cashed in and gotten book deals?
I mean maybe there's a couple but like now this is not a trend. Yeah. Derek Simpson trial is is interesting too. Can you believe I think it's interesting that like one of the ways it's interesting is that we like to use it, you know, certainly at the time, like to use it as indicative of all these issues in the system. And it's like the whole reason that trial was what it was, was because it was exceptional.
And the way I think about someone like trying to write a hot take about the publishing industry and like all the structural factors that make the publishing industry problematic, but the only example they use is like Stephen King, like, yeah, the problem is that authors are like writing prequels and sequels to their work and like no one edits the text anymore and there aren't enough girl characters on the stand.
Yeah, it's also Nancy Grace revealing how out of touch she has become with the very part of the world that she's trying to describe to us. Yesterday, she had her prosecutor days when she was seeing the kinds of cases that were sort of churning through an American city. And she just is seeing a completely different part of the legal system from her perch on TV. And she really doesn't know what she's talking about anymore.
Yeah. In a way that is invisible to her. Yeah. She gets cross-examined by the camera all day.
You know, she's just like she used to like, go after real witnesses and stuff.
And now she's like cross examining how.
Yeah, OK, here's another O.J.. Tracy Hampton, the 26 year old flight attendant who quit the jury early in the case claiming stress posed for a layout and the March 1995 issue of Playboy in keeping with the decorum of the trial. The spread was shot in a courtroom, setting my verdict and the words of O.J. Simpson himself. Hampton is definitely one hundred percent not guilty of having too much class insane zing, Nancy.
Do you think about that seriously? Because I really that really bothers me.
Who fucking cares, Nancy? Like Playboy did a thing like your beef there surely is with Playboy, not the actual person.
That's a good point, Mike. I don't think Tracy Hampton like the site of the layout for her whole photo shoot.
If Playboy offered me a million dollars to pose nude, I would fucking do it. Who cares? I'm picturing you're like at a library and there is like just books and sort of strategic places and they might be OK.
I'm going to jump ahead in this book to the part where Nancy Grace slanders one of my past loves on this show, The Beautiful and Irreplaceable. And Jessica Hahn.
Oh, God. Oh, no. Can you remind us who Jessica Hahn is?
This is a woman who, according to her, was brutally raped by Jim Baker, the famous televangelist, and she described this in great detail. And the entire country was just like that. It seems like some sexy, weird stuff happened and just like didn't care.
It's an astounding episode in American history to me because classic Cohon, she did this layout with Playboy where she's, you know, topless. She's like in the ocean. She's got a golden retriever. And then in the interview, she described in great detail the way that Kim Baker raped her. And I think that this happened over and over again, that sort of mainstream media things. You know, AP is like Jessica Hahn was naked in Playboy.
Right. Isn't that incongruous with her accusations?
And she described a tourist in a hotel room.
And it's like, OK, if I say the phrase sexual assault to you and you hear sex, right?
I'm like, I don't know what to tell you. Right. And anyway, here's what Nancy Grace says.
Speaking of pseudo celebrities fleecing the courthouse, remember Jessica Hahn? She's the former church secretary who shot to fame after her affair with PTL.
Televangelist Jim Baker was exposed in 1987 after she received two hundred and sixty five thousand dollars in hush money taken from the preacher's ministry to communicate about their tryst.
Oh, my God. Baker was booted from his TV ministry and indicted on charges of fraud and conspiracy for her part, been seized the media moment and capitalize on her infamy. Oh God. People magazine inexplicably named her as one of the 25 most intriguing people of 1987. The following year, she bared all in Playboy. The Long Island native went on to launch her own 900 no phone line and popped up on television programs like the Howard Stern Show, which I think is a radio show and married with children.
While Baker's sexual shenanigans and tearful apology failed to ignite a tinderbox of television deals on millionaire pop culture curiosity status as long as she could.
Oh, it's just so dark, dude.
I guess I want you to guess Ginsu knife, the same thing. Well, what's funny also is she's completely downplaying she's not really downplaying the rape. She's also downplaying all of the other fraud and financial shenanigans, quote unquote, that Baker was doing as if, like this woman brought him down on these trumped up charges when like he was never actually charged, like he never actually faced any justice for the sexual assault. He faced justice for the blatant financial scams that he was doing.
So, like, those two things are not actually related. I mean, she's doing exactly what you have said on the show so many times, where she's giving Jessica Hahn all of the power like she orchestrated this entire thing. She was part of this trist. She like concocted this story so that she could get a book deal so that she could get in Playboy, etc., even though all of the evidence is that she was kind of like riding a wave as well as she could.
Yes, I feel like this is this really explains my very mixed feelings about to die for by noted Portland director Gus Van Sant.
Do you know that movie? I have seen the movie roughly 400 times. I have read the book that is based on I fucking love that movie. Thank God that movie is iconic. Yeah, it's perfect.
I love it. It's my favorite Nicole Kidman role. It's my favorite Joaquin Phoenix. It's beautiful. And it is this wonderful.
I think almost Stepford Wives like horror story because it does this weird thing where the details of the case are very recognizably pulled, ripped from the headlines of the Pam Smart case. And so the novel version of that.
Gives us this wonderful character named Suzanne Stone, who is sort of like Faye Dunaway in network, like she's always wanted to be on TV. I feel like the to die for a model really kind of solidified the ways that Americans already tended to think about these women who the media suddenly couldn't stop hounding for like a period of weeks, like smart Lorena Bobbitt, Amy Fisher and Jessica Hahn. These really very vulnerable young women, basically girls who had been through some amount of of abuse, some kind of traumatic experience.
And now we're being chased around by the media and who, if we watch them come to the conclusion of like, well, my life has been pulled out from under me and I need to make some money. And I'm being offered a lot of money for the first time in my life. And I guess I'm going to make some is then going to be accused of wanting all of this to happen. Yeah. So that she could be on married with children.
Right. We were so afraid of manufacturing, the kind of human who like the Nicole Kidman and to die for character, like only feels anything when she's on TV, right. That we may replace that anxiety in the wrong part of the story. Like Nancy Grace is accusing Jessica Hahn of being Nicole Kidman. And it's like, I think that you're Nicole Kidman.
It is interesting. I mean, of course, all of this subtext was lost on me when I was obsessed with that movie because I was like a 13 year old boy in the 90s. And so I was just like, this movie is dark and cool.
That's if someone were to make like a you know, a little like splitscreen story of our adolescence is as it would be like you and me watching to die for before we met. But in the same moment, so nice.
But it's like it really is like the creation of an archetype or I guess the sort of definition of an archetype. This idea of like the fame, hungry, not very special person like Eve and all about.
I don't know, in like recent American history, if there is a confirmed case of that happening, of somebody sort of setting out to become famous and then debasing themselves only for the fame. It's just a matter of twisting all of these anecdotes that meet that like halfway their story is where someone did become famous.
And then the media, in an attempt to wash the blood off its hands is like you wanted us to do this to you. And it's like I don't think anyone would ask for this, you fucking idiot. Right. All right. And now she is bringing in some other books that are examples of jurors publishing books. So she has her first example is one of the jurors in the trial of Jack Ruby.
How much is a book, what that's like 50 years ago? To be fair, it was only thirty nine years earlier when Nancy Grace's own book came out. So I don't know if you feel, you know, you get down by that rebuttal.
I think cars go too fast. And here's a Studebaker that illustrates my point.
And then his nephew published a book in 2001 called Big Jack Ruby Trial Revisited. So I just think that this Jack Ruby industrial complex that we have is pretty outrageous, honestly. Yes. OK, what is most disturbing is not the books about high profile murder cases are being written, but that the plan to write them may be born before during voir dire. Oh, my concept is critical because if true, it bears on the motives not only for jury service, but for a particular verdict.
The outcome of the trial itself. Most often a conviction sells the best, followed by an acquittal with a hung jury placing a very distant third place. What is she talking about? That's a really weird argument.
She doesn't bring in any proof of that. Yeah. So Nancy tells a story about finding out a potential juror as a stripper, and then she tells us a story about this juror. OK, this is an aggravated assault and armed robbery case called State v. Wilson. She says during jury selection, I noticed the behavior of one woman when the pulisic, the general juror, she stood stiffly with her hands by her sides and refused to raise her right one to swear on anything.
She was the only person out of nearly 100 who wouldn't raise her hand and solemn promise to uphold her duty. And she questions her and finds out that I guess read this to you. He says, What do you do in your spare time? What do you mean by that? Well, do you like to read? Do you like to dance? She stiffened at the mere suggestion she'd like to dance. I don't dance. That struck me as odd being the make and Cotillions swing champion for my age category.
The only word in that sentence that I know is champion.
I had a woman who refused to dance who wouldn't raise her hand and take the oath and I put her on the jury. It turned out her religion disallowed her from passing judgment in any way on another person under any circumstance, even at a jury trial. It's a miracle I got a guilty verdict at all and I thought the stripper was my problem. No way. It was the church lady. Then aren't jury trials in all but two states unanimous? So if she got the guilty verdict, that indicates that this juror eventually voted with the rest of the jurors.
So it's interesting that most of Nancy Grace's stories are like fear that could have gotten bad, but it didn't. Yeah, close one. And then we have y sequestration doesn't work.
But again, this is only for fucking celebrity trials. Yes. I want numbers of how many fucking sequestered juries there.
You are not going to get any numbers at any time like that is not what's going to happen for you.
And her argument is basically that an embitters the jury and then it doesn't protect them from media, that if they decide they want to find out what's in the news for family members, they're going to anyway.
I can't take this. I am googling how many juries are sequestered? Hang on. Go for it. OK, this is a article from J. Rank Jury sequestration is rare.
Typically order in sensational high profile criminal cases. It sounds like it was done for the George Zimmerman trial. It was done for Bill Cosby. This is not something that happens very often, Nancy. This is not a problem with the criminal justice system.
Yeah, you're not really thinking about the goals of this book.
So a true. True. The goal here is to inflame and upset the reader. And it's like having a bucket of ice water dumped on you to be told that, like, this is an issue and like a fraction of a fraction. Yeah. Of our legal proceedings that work their way into the system every day.
But like, she's very deliberately like picking all of the cherries around the big, fat, plump cherries, Nancy.
Little tiny cherries, grapes. I'm just belaboring this metaphore as much as I really like it.
It's kind of like a I mean, it's mean, but it's like so silly of me that it that's the kind of meanness I can get behind. OK, so here's a nicely boring point that she made that I really like. And many jurisdictions, juries are not allowed to take notes, so I'm showing his at some don't. It's all a function of the local rules. OK, lawyers aren't expected to keep track of everything without notes. So why should a jury it's very hard to take in all the evidence without them.
This might be the best part of the book. Actually, she's got me right.
That's the one thing I will unreservedly agree with Nancy Grace. People should be able to take notes.
So if people ask you what the fuck is about, which I'm sure happens all the time, you feel like it is. A book by Nancy Grace bravely argues that jurors should be allowed to take notes.
Here's a good one. Another nonsensical courtroom practices with holding a written copy of the law from the jury. I mean, she's to refer to my client this. They are the sole judge of the facts and the law of the case. I say give juries all the tools they need to do their job properly. Have you ever heard of anything so ridiculous? No pen, no paper, no way.
Hmm. This book is good. Actually, I'm sorry you're wrong about this book.
I'm glad we're back to the slumber party again.
This is what clinking glasses with Nancy. OK, so Nancy thinks in conclusion, the jurors should only be able to talk about the case, quote, well, after the trial, OK, she thinks that jurors should be screened based on media consumption and that there should be detailed questions about jurors television viewing habits.
So that's an interesting one, because if you screen for that, you'll end up screening for like education and just general media literacy as well.
Right. Like any category of question can provide a back door for, like, other questions. Yes.
Oh, she thinks that judges are too easily swayed by celebrity, which again, is an argument we're getting because it happened with Lance Ito, although there is an interesting Pam Smart connection here where she doesn't bring up, but which I'm going to bring up where the judge in that case, God bless him, was asked like who would play him in the movie version of this? And he said, Clint Eastwood. It's funny because, like, this book is counter to, like, everything that I want to argue about the system.
And also I'm like, I could have done a better job.
Like, it's almost painful, but also like imagine looking about the structures of judicial discrimination and picking out like they're too nice to celebrities, you know?
I mean, like judicial bias is a real issue. And like, again, Nancy, let's spend some time on Google Scholar.
So this is probably her most contentious idea. She says, I also foresee the looming possibility of credit checks run on juries, discover any civil suits pending against them that would bear on the case, which is like that seems specific and invasive to me.
Yeah, that's super distorting because again, then you get mostly people with high credit scores, which is not a remotely representative jury.
Yeah, because if you're going to say someone with bad credit should be considered a less reliable juror because they're like vulnerable to being approached with a bribe or something like that. I mean, I don't have very good credit because I'm not a millennial. It's this thing of like you want to strike people who, like, read the newspaper a lot, but then you also want to strike people with, like, low credit scores.
She clearly she clearly has not thought this through, like so many like solutions sections to long magazine articles. It's very clear that they thought of it like the last 15 minutes. Yeah.
Nothing in the chapter preceding this has prepared us for this idea. It just comes in out of nowhere.
And then she's like, well, by write Grace out, like, wait, what credit check? She says, but here's the problem.
If this becomes common practice, it would almost certainly dissuade people from sitting on juries. What do you want to sit on a jury if it was going to be made public that you were sued for nonpayment on a bounce check in 1991? Oh, my God. How about if your credit card problems or brush with bankruptcy were uncovered? I wouldn't. So do you want us to do this or not? Yeah.
The last thing we want, Nancy, is for people not to want to serve on juries as opposed to now when we get a super representative sample of Americans every time we call a jury.
OK, the bottom line, penalties for juror misconduct must be instituted and enforced. Those who violate the oath and taint the jury should find themselves back in court again, seated behind the defense table, facing charges of their own. That that's how valuable the jury system is. We must be prepared to deal harshly with those who abuse it. For those who slip through the cracks, for whatever reason, justice needs to come down hard yet fast. People who lie to get on juries or lie during the trial must be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
I have a firm belief and the jury system and the people who violate the integrity of the court, I say hang em high.
I think she's like pointing her bat at the bleachers and just like swinging for the fences. Exactly.
And it's like, how do we get justice? Nancy Grace? She's like, I don't know. But it's going to be hard and it's going to be fast.
Mm hmm. Yeah, it's beautiful.
It's such a marked difference. Like the part the parts where she's talking about cases and like stuff, they're hard to follow. You don't really know where she's going. And then as soon as she's out of specifics like she's back again, she's fire Lord Odai flames coming out of her fingertips.
Yes. So for our next episode, I would like to get a little bit meta now and now that we've gotten a sense of Nancy Grace's book. And I would like to kind of do my own attempt, my own objection, where I make my own arguments about some things that I don't like and just mushed together a bunch of stories, because I think that even with that really silly way of making an argument, I can make something more compelling.
I think we should do that thing for horror movies like when you're being chased through the library by the monster and you're like pulling books off the shelves behind you to block its path, that's what we're going to do with her arguments for the rest of this book. Yeah, just dashing through, yanking them off the shelves.
And also, OK, here's my real goal. I think here's what we're going to try and do together. Your agenda. We're going to try and make soft on crime sexy.
It's going to be soft and it's going to be slow.
This got so sensual at the end. It's got so awkward. I had to wake up and.