Mike Rashid King is a professional boxer, entrepreneur, fitness & lifestyle enthusiast. He began boxing as an amateur at age 12, and stopped at age 21. Picked up the sport again in 2017, and turned pro as a heavyweight a year later in 2018. Mike has also competed as a power lifter, and played many sports over the years. Mike is into optimizing his life, by means of stressing the body and mind, and learning to deal with the stress properly. He meditates, trains, and uses the sauna daily.
“So what I have likened this to is that the United States had something like a Ferrari convertible and it left the top down so that it started getting filled up with rain and it started scrawling, “steal me” in Mandarin, Farsi, Russian, on its front bonnet.” – Eric Weinstein
In this Portal podcast clip, Eric Weinstein shares some ideas about Jeffrey Epstein, and his possible connection to academia.
“All I’m trying to suggest is that for some reason I picked this one person to tell a 15-year story about that I believed he was an intelligence construct of probably another country operating in the center of the United States elite.” – Eric Weinstein
In this portal podcast clip, Eric Weinstein discusses his ideas about the mysterious life of Jeffery Epstein.
Over half a year ago, immediately following the reported death of Jeffrey Epstein, Eric recorded a solo episode that he never released in hopes that its subject matter would be overtaken by investigative journalism. As this has not happened, it is being released with some trepidation in March of 2020 due to the issue of state involvement with Jeffrey Epstein.
Eric discusses his memories of his single bizarre meeting (circa 2004?) with Jeffrey Epstein in Epstein’s 71st St townhouse in Manhattan. While at that meeting, Eric was surprised by Epstein’s strange behaviors and came to the conclusion that it was highly unlikely that Epstein was likely to be the money manager he claimed. Instead, Eric came to the conclusion that the person with whom he was sitting was more probably a construction of one or more intelligence agencies, interested alternatively in powerful actors and scientists.
This 15 year hypothesis and Epstein’s mysterious death lead to Eric’s four questions:
A) Where are the newspaper stories tracking the financial records from the Villard House offices on Madison Avenue of Jeffrey Epstein’s hedge fund and financial management firm J. Epstein & Co.? Who holds these records? What trades do they show? Who were the prime brokers? Where are any former employees who executed trades? Was there never a hedge fund at all? If not, is the inexplicable Epstein fortune and the missing Robert Maxwell fortune actually one and the same fortune?
B) Where are the newspaper stories detailing the known border crossings where Ghislaine Maxwell’s passports were last presented to the immigration agents of any government? Where was her last known social engagement? Is she continuing to file and pay taxes? Why is she not being sought by law enforcement and where is the government request for any information as to her last whereabouts? How did this person simply vanish in a world where Tech tracks everyone at all times? Where did her digital trail run cold?
C) Where are the newspaper stories asking whether Jeffrey Epstein was known to be connected to any US or foreign intelligence agencies? Where are the on-the-record stories asking if the US and its allies categorically deny refusing to work with any known child sex traffickers? Why has have such questions not terminated in at least a categorical denial or “no comment” response or even a refusal to discuss “sources and methods”?
D) Why is there no routine call from Journalists, Senators, Congressmen and women, Academics, Clergy or Business leaders for hearings into the intelligence communities in the wake of Epstein and related affairs, as there was during the 1970s when the Church and Pike committees uncovered dirty tricks campaigns against lawful citizens? Why are these agencies now protected and immune in a way that they were not previously?
Hello, this is Eric with a few notes on today’s release. This was recorded over half a year ago, and I’ve sat on it because I didn’t want to release it. I had hoped that the story it discusses would have been followed up by others as I never wanted to be entangled with it. Instead, that story has barely moved. For some reason, there is no one capable within the world of institutional media or government of moving this enormous story forward, despite worldwide interest, I’ve elsewhere named that unseen force the DISC or Distributed Idea Suppression Complex.
What I see when watching this video of the episode in question is a frightened 53-year-old man in an unscripted and perhaps occasionally rambling hour of discussion of Jeffrey Epstein. He doesn’t exactly know how to say what he has got to get across, but perhaps that is because he isn’t simply a middle-aged man at all. When I look closer, I see a terrified 10 or 11-year-old boy who many years ago was sent to therapist. Why was that child so terrified of going to see a therapist, you may ask? Well, because of inappropriate events set in motion by the therapist’s behavior at the first of their two meetings. That, however, was not what caused the lasting terror. Despite the therapist being a trained and established authority figure and the boy being a minor, it was possible for the boy to simply and firmly say, no, I do not want that, you must stop. Thus, the boy is not a survivor. He was not a victim and he did not want a random broken person to be integrated into his life story.
Today, the man in that chair addressing the camera is simply the man that became of an unlucky boy who was sent to see a professionally licensed therapist who crossed his path. What was terrifying instead was that when I explained that I did not ever wish to go back to that accursed office, I was forced against my will and with a good amount of screaming and terror I might add, to go again for a second meeting. At that second meeting, I was intimidated by the failed and inappropriate therapist who was obviously himself terrified. Being forced back into such a dark office alone as a boy to be berated, threatened, and shamed by an out of control representative of the world of institutional authority alerted me to just how badly outgunned the individual is when confronted by the terrifying reality of institutional actors attempting to silence a lone voice. Why would no one listen to the boy when he told them what had happened? Why wouldn’t any one adult, powerful and credentialed, speak up for that child and his right to be free of the suppose that therapy and therapist could no one see the terror in the child’s eyes? Why simply because two sessions had been booked did he need to continue with this random therapist who was clearly a damaged soul and one who needed real therapy much more than the boy?
This episode is ultimately about the world of institutions, the institutions of journalism that will regularly destroy individuals by reputation, but who will generally not ask comparable questions of other institutions. The institutions of the intelligence world, which owe us information as to what is known about Jeffrey Epstein, Ghislaine Maxwell and their operation. The institutions of government that will not hold hearings into out-of-control intelligence activities as we did in the 1970s. And the institutions of technology, which track our every move and know all our secrets yet cannot locate a single individual like Jeffrey Epstein’s accomplice, who completely improbably seems to have vanished from the face of the earth as of March, 2020.
But just as this episode is about institutions, it is also about individuals and the various ways that they’re made vulnerable to institutional objectives. Because every individual may be destroyed at will by the same complex of institutions that are themselves deciding not to act with vigor and policing each other, we are all at risk when we deviate from their scripts and expect structural change. Thus, the act of pointing out the absurdity of the story is in fact terrifying, which gets to the questions raised by the young boy in our story.
Why will no one listen to me when I say I do not ever wish to encounter the monster or the official class he represents ever again?
Why must I go back to the same institutions that harm me?
Why does a child’s evident terror mean nothing to any adult nor any institution at all?
Why can we not talk openly about the risks to the individuals from the expert and authority classes when we have a conflict between them?
As it happens, analogs of all of those personal questions are now being asked in hushed tones about Jeffrey Epstein and the bizarre institutional response to his story. Why are we not expending resources to figure out what giant structure we apparently just tripped over? Are we really going to sit here and not ask whether this was a protected or state-sponsored pedophile running some kind of intelligence operation to control people in positions of power, wealth, and influence? Are we okay with the idea that we aren’t even asking on the record questions about whether our intelligence communities traffic in underage minors, some as young as 12 years of age?
Well, I have an answer for that boy. One day you will become a man and you will fear loss in the battle between the flawed and vulnerable individual that all adults eventually become and the amoral institutional world who continues to hold most of the best cards. You will learn the story of Jean Seberg, and that alone will change your life. You will not know to whom you can turn. You will come to believe that there is no news media nor justice system, nor social movement, nor representative government that truly cares about protecting minors. In real terms, when institutional power, money, secrecy, and sex are all woven together, you will become part of the problem by remaining silent for a while to cope with your fears. That is unless you are able to overcome them to clear your throat and finally say, “You know what? I refuse to continue to be part of the charade in this way anymore.” I have always felt Jeffrey Epstein was a construct and I now fear that he was a state-sponsored pedophile, protected by governments, and I have kept quiet too long, partially out of fear that the trail could lead to either or both of the two nations I love most in this world.
I’m not really here for myself, and I’ve been avoiding this. And perhaps at least directly, I’m not even mostly here for the victims of Jeffrey Epstein and his organization. I am, at last, really here, selfishly, for a young boy, long gone, why abandoned, to prove to him that it was actually possible at personal risk to stand up for children and against the system. These young girls are no less deserving, of course, but I don’t know any of them personally, so I will stick to the issue that animates me. The individual standing against the institutions who would crush him or her.
So, to that long-dead, and previously abandoned former self, let me just say this: “Sorry, I’m a little late kid. I, uh, became afraid that the imperfections of what I’m about to say next could derange my adult life and make me vulnerable to those who would destroy anything and anyone who threatens them using everything at their disposal. I apologize for my cowardice. It is one of many character flaws that I am working to correct, but you as a boy did nothing wrong and it will be a pleasure to stand up for you, come what may. You’re a solid kid who didn’t deserve this, and I think you deserve a better champion, but Jesus wasn’t available, so you got me instead. Let’s do this thing.”
I know this is crazy, but I think that there’s even a remote chance we can take these guys. We can at least try and go down swinging. Let’s just release it, flaws and all and hope that the world is more kind than its failing institutions. But that said, stay tuned. Please be a little bit forgiving and enjoy the episode.
Beginning of Recorded Episode
Hello. You’ve found The Portal. I think this is going to be a little bit of an unusual episode because it’s going to deal with a current event, and I try to make most of these episodes somewhat more timeless so that they’re not referenced to something in specific that is going to age, but the event that I’m talking about is the very mysterious circumstances that are currently animating so many people’s speculations in the news. That is the apparent death of Jeffrey Epstein by his own hand.
Now, I want to say, first of all, that I have absolutely no special inside knowledge of the situation. I know people who knew him and I met him once, but it is not like I have any particular line on information from any particularly interesting source about the situation. Furthermore, I don’t think that I’m going to be using any special kind of analysis that is known only to me, but I did want to talk to people about responsible conspiracy theorizing. That is in the minds of many people believe that conspiracy theorists or people like Alex Jones, people who are spouting all sorts of crazy ideas, some of which might have some grain of truth in them, but in general, it feels like an exercise, in, uh, talking to the tin foil hat crowd.
Now, I don’t know much about Alex Jones; perhaps he’s better than I think he is, but what I want to talk about is a different kind of conspiracy theorizing. So, without further ado, welcome to this episode of The Portal on the subject of Jeffrey Epstein.
So the first thing I want to do is I want to be relatively clear, that I’m somebody who believes that there is a fair amount of organization behind the scenes, usually of a relatively low level of organization that, is unknown to the people who are watching TV or listening to, let’s say, NPR on the radio. And at various times I’ve dug more deeply into various stories, and so I want you to have some idea of my history in the space.
In the 1980s and 1990s, I became very active in believing that the so called STEM shortage of scientists and engineers that was claimed by the policy research and analysis division of the National Science Foundation, was in fact a conspiracy in order to make life easier for employers who would be facing American scientists with an ability to bargain, and make higher wage demands, and that the National Academy of Sciences and National Science Foundation interceded, interceded on the behalf of employers, which was tampering in the labor market in an absolutely vital sector resulting in the Immigration Act of 1990 or IMACT90, as it was called.
At that point, I also became aware of what I have termed the Borjas Rectangle Theory: that is that employers generally, in free market economies, when they’re complaining about labor shortages, are actually trying to transfer wealth from labor to capital, complaining instead that there is a small inefficiency that needs to be rectified, which we might call the Harberger Triangle. So that is, employers claim that there’s a small inefficiency, but in fact, they’re seeking large transfer payments from the vulnerable to the well-heeled. I also believe that NAFTA and the free trade agreement from the 1990s was a kind of conspiracy supported by the economics establishment of the United States; that they knew that free trade was not a freebie. It was not, in fact a rising tide that lifted all boats, but was in fact, again, a transfer, which was claimed to be a pure good for everyone. This is the difference between something called the Kaldor-Hicks objective function and the Pareto objective function.
I also believed that String Theory was largely a desperation measure in physics that was sold to the world to buy time, when in fact the field of theoretical physics was failing. I also claimed that the Boskin Commission, formed by Packwood and Moynihan in the mid 1990s, was a kind of conspiracy to transfer, actually, $1 trillion, by using the fact that Social Security payments are indexed to inflation, as well as tax brackets being indexed to inflation, so that if you could show that the CPI was overstated and you could reduce the CPI, you could transfer millions without having to touch the so called “third rail” of American politics.
This brings us to the two trading fortunes in New York city that, during the first decade of the new millennium, made no sense to me. And those were Bernie Madoff, then referred to as the Jewish T-bill, and Jeffrey Epstein. In the case of Madoff, I made a wrong guess. I believed that Bernie Madoff was front-running a traditional business that he held using actual orders that he knew were being placed and in his hedge fund was effectively cheating, based on the insight information he had from a legitimate business, in an illegitimate business. I goofed, and I was wrong. In fact, he was operating a pyramid scheme. It didn’t occur to me.
In the case of Jeffrey Epstein, well, we’ll get to that shortly, but it made no sense when I actually looked into the story. Let me keep going. I also became aware of what I called the Gated Institutional Narrative; in effect, a storyline, or narrative, that many institutions claim to believe, but would easily be disrupted if outsiders were allowed to comment on it in a way of walling it off so that these narratives could in fact govern the American mindset and get us talking about things that we would never normally choose to talk about in terms that seem completely unnatural to me.
This is also the origin of the Four-Quadrant Theory, which I’ve pushed out, which is a way of intimidating people away from holding positions that are not supposed to be habitable, like, for example, if you’re a xenophilic restrictionist on immigration, supposedly this is the position. The most famous example of the theory is Cathy Newman questioning Jordan Peterson saying, “so what you’re really saying is,” and this is an implied threat, which is that if you try to express something subtle, you will be mapped to expressing something that is beyond the pale.
In addition, in the early 2000s, I came out talking against the great moderation and mortgage backed securities. I published in—I think I submitted in 2001 to Risk Magazine, my first article on mortgage backed securities, and I kept talking about the fact that we had not actually banished volatility from the markets. And this is a period of time where I was sort of going around the hedge fund conference circuit with Nassim Taleb, talking about the fact that, even though volatility was decreasing, that this was not a permanent state of affairs.
Furthermore, I objected to non-recourse loans, in the wake of the great financial crisis, and I’ve talked openly about the false narratives of the inevitability of Hillary Clinton versus Bernie [Sanders], which was a giant mistake in my opinion, of the New York Times interceding in an election in a completely inappropriate way, and they doubled down and came up with the impossibility of Donald Trump, which I tried to use Preference Falsification, the theory of Timur Kuran, who we just had on the program in order to say that the likelihood of a Trump victory was far higher than anyone had imagined. I had also said various things about Brexit, where I thought that the likelihood that that would actually pass was high. And afterwards, after the 2016 election, I talked about fake news as an invented concept. It had been discussed before that, but there was a slew of articles about fake news, which I still think was a completely inauthentic attempt to put in a placeholder for some ability to control the internet, in particular, the large platforms, so that a repeat of 2016 could never happen in the year 2020; in effect that there should be some way of restoring the Gated Institutional Narrative, which had clearly broken.
I’ve also been quite vocal on the Data and Society Alternative Influencer Network Theory, particularly on the Dave Rubin program. I think that this was a transparent attempt to attempt to control the internet and the inability of influencers to gain stature if they’re outside the Gated Institutional Network, and I also made several tweets around Jeffrey Epstein, one of them, which says that if he is in fact, a construct of the intelligence community, either the US intelligence community or a foreign one, then clearly he could not be allowed to live. Many people also made similar predictions, but that gives you an idea of the kind of thing that I’ve been talking about.
I, in general, believe that where we are as a society is that we are expected to believe in narratives that any person with a modicum of intelligence and a certain awareness of history cannot possibly be expected to believe with a straight face.
All right, that leads us to the doorstep of what I call Responsible Conspiracy Theorizing. Now, in order to do Responsible Conspiracy Theorizing, it’s important not to be definite about things we don’t know, and I’m going to try to let you know that I actually don’t know what has happened. In fact, the official story is quite possible. From what I know, it’s not impossible that Jeffrey Epstein was a perverted, very rich man who is dead by his own hand in custody through an unlikely, but not impossible, set of circumstances.
However, unfortunately for me, I met Jeffrey Epstein in 2004, I think, or perhaps 2003, and I met him in his home in Manhattan on 71st Street when he took an interest in talking to me both as a scientist and as somebody who is interested in foreign exchange trading. I found that meeting so bizarre and so remarkable that it has stuck with me ever since.
Recently, when the news turned to Jeffrey Epstein, my wife said to me, “You know, Eric, you called this when you met him early on.” And I said, “What do you remember?” and she said, “That you called me immediately afterwards and you said, ‘I’ve just met a construct.’” And she asked what was a construct, and I said, “I’ve met somebody, who appears to be a hedge fund billionaire who I don’t think is actually, in fact, involved, particularly, in hedge fund trading. I felt like what I was meeting was an actor, an actor who had been hired or constructed to play a part.”
Ever since that meeting, I’ve used one word, and one word alone, when talking about Jeffrey Epstein, and particularly with people who knew him, who are friends or acquaintances or colleagues of mine, and by using the word “construct” repeatedly, I attempted to make an indelible image that I was very bothered, and was, in fact, making a prediction that one day it was quite probable, although not definite, and certainly not certain, that Jeffrey Epstein would be revealed to be something other than what he had apparently been chronicled as being, and what he had portrayed himself as being.
As a result, I now have a different situation; because I was making this prediction early on and I had no idea what turn of events would bring us to the present, I was quite vocal about something, which perhaps today if I knew how things were going to end up, I would have said nothing at all. So I feel in fact a little bit more vulnerable having spoken out on this as if I know something, rather than just a person who found himself in remarkable circumstances and didn’t believe what he was being told.
And this is why I’m doing this right now. In part, I want to disgorge everything that I know or believe that I know about Jeffrey Epstein, so that it will be very clear to anybody who would attempt to intimidate me that there is nothing to be gained. I know nothing proprietary. I have no special inside information, and I want to get to how I came to believe that Jeff Epstein was quite likely the construct of an intelligence community, either ours in the US or somewhere else. So in order to do Responsible Conspiracy Theorizing, my first rule is that one should not attempt to allege a type of conspiracy that has never been encountered before.
Over the years, many conspiracies have been uncovered, and so we have a menu, if you will, of proven conspiracies with which we can try to figure out whether something is in fact possible. And to give you an idea, I’m going to list a small number of conspiracies that have been proven, and give you the idea of why these things figure in my imagination. And I think that what will happen over time is that you’ll see that I’ll refer to the same conspiracies over and over again, because they give us an idea of the boundaries of the possible.
First of all, one question: Is it possible that mainstream media can be weaponized by the intelligence community for the purpose of destroying a well-known individual? That is, as I am recording this, I am aware that the intelligence community could decide to tarnish or destroy or, in their words, cheapen my reputation, by planting stories in mainstream media.
In this case, I would point people to one of the most important examples we have, which is the destruction of Jean Seberg, the leading actress who was originally found by Otto Preminger to play Joan of Arc, and also used by Jean-Luc Godard in the film “Breathless” as the heroine. Jean Seberg was accused, due to her radical politics, active in the Black Panther Party, of cuckolding her husband, and bearing the child of a Black Panther in a news item that was planted by the FBI with Joyce Haber of the Los Angeles Times, later repeated by Newsweek.
The great thing about this is you don’t have to believe me; you can just look it up.
Does the US have the ability to assassinate its own people who may be trying to do good? Well, in the case of the person who invented the term, the Rainbow Coalition, this appears to be the case. It wasn’t Jesse Jackson. It was, in fact, a man named Fred Hampton, and my understanding is he was trying to get black street gangs to stop warring with each other to form a political coalition and was assassinated for his attempt to do so in his bed in Chicago, Illinois. So, this shows that assassinations by our intelligence community and our particular form of secret police, the FBI, is also possible.
Can you have a highly coordinated, silent hit with tremendous complexity going off almost without a hitch? I believe that the surveillance photos that we have seen in Dubai indicate that this has, in fact has occurred recently. I’m not going to say who carried out the hit, because that is not known, but it is widely believed to be a particular country that is not hard to guess.
Is it possible to suicide someone? Normally we think of committing suicide as an individual action, but do we ever find the intelligence communities attempting to, in the sense of a transitive verb, “suicide” someone by letting them know that they will turn their life into a living hell, so that committing suicide is the only way out? In fact, this is, what the subject of the FBI’s letter by the hand of Sullivan to Martin Luther King Jr was when the attempt was to tell King that he was finished, and that if he didn’t commit suicide, that his legacy and his name would be tarnished.
Would an intelligence community ever contemplate using organized crime, such as La Cosa Nostra, in order to carry out an act that it didn’t want to do itself? This is what we found the comedian Dick Gregory was considered being subjected to when we found out that the FBI was thinking about having La Cosa Nostra be informed that he had been talking about union activities and labor racketeering. So yes, it is quite possible that the intelligence community would use organized crime; this is also a proven fact.
Would we ever have the use of orgies and honeypots together with an elaborately constructed backstory in which an actor and the character they played were entirely different? This is, in fact, the story of Ellie Cohn, perhaps Israel’s most famous spy discovered in Damascus, as if he was an Arab who had come from Argentina as a Playboy using alcohol and women in order to integrate himself into the highest echelons of Syrian society, particularly the intelligence and defense communities. So, yes, people are constructed to be something other than they are, and honeypots are very much a possible use in the intelligence world.
Is there intelligence community interest in control of the media? I would commend that you look at Project Mockingbird.
Is there any attempt to gain control of innocent influencers? That is, are there any circumstances in which people simply have the crime of being influential used against them? In fact, you can look for Section A of the Reserve Index, people to be rounded up in times of national emergency inside the United States. This might include professors, labor organizers, professionals, authors, the independently wealthy. In other words, there is very much an interest in keeping track of people who’ve done nothing wrong, but in times of national emergency, you might want to make sure that none of these people are capable of influencing the population.
Lastly, one of the things that we hear most frequently is that there is no ability to have conspiracies, because any large group of people would not be able to keep a secret. It’s a really silly idea, because COINTELPRO, which was discovered by the Citizens’ Committee To Investigate The FBI in, 1971, when the word showed up in documents they stole from an office of the FBI in Media, Pennsylvania, and then they used the Freedom Of Information Act in order to find out what COINTELPRO was, and it turned out that it was a permanent dirty tricks campaign living inside of the FBI, and that the Deep Throat construct inside of the Watergate story of Woodward and Bernstein was, in fact, Mark Felt, who I believe was the head of COINTELPRO after J Edgar Hoover. So what we’re going to be doing is simply exploring how the things that have been proven to be true might enter into the story of the unfortunate Jeffrey Epstein.
In this circumstance, I want to say what it is that I’m asking for, and I’m going to be talking about the Church and Pike Commissions and having them redone in the current era. If you don’t know what the Church and Pike Committees were, I believe the Church Committee was in the Senate and the Pike Committee was in the House. They were an attempt to investigate our own intelligence community in order to understand what the US had become in an era that was rife with dirty tricks campaigns, often against our own citizens and often against people who had done nothing wrong other than exercising their constitutional rights to dissent from official narrative, and, in general, mainstream perspectives.
It is extremely important to me that the United States remain a place that is not only not hostile to heterodox thinking, but leads the world in heterodox thinking. This is our comparative advantage against places like China and Russia, which use fear to intimidate their people. If we cannot have heterodox thinkers operating with a feeling of safety in our own country, I believe that we are lost. Because I don’t think we are going to be able to compete with powers that are able to organize people and use violence to coerce people into doing things that our people would find absolutely unpalatable.
Further, if you’re running a kind of conspiracy, and I don’t—I’m not against conspiracies, and I’m not against the intelligence community, but it’s important that the conspiracies be ethical, that they be public-minded, and that they be of a very high caliber. You shouldn’t be able to trip over a conspiracy doing nothing wrong, and find yourself in a world of pain.
What I’m going to say about Jeffrey Epstein is that if the official story isn’t true, and that in fact, he was an intelligence community construct, either US or foreign, then he was a very poor intelligence construct. It was easy to trip over Jeffrey Epstein. He was not well-constructed. And I’ll get into what I think may have been going on shortly. But the key point is, I had someone potentially reach out to me and intimidate me a bit. I don’t know if it was directed, but they seem to know a great deal about me and they were trying to, I thought, dissuade me from talking about this and investigating this.
My feeling about this is if I’m tripping over your construct, then you goofed; it’s not my problem. You drew up this person, whoever you may be, if I’m correct about this, and you made a mistake, and I’m going to say what that mistake is, but it shouldn’t be my job to get out of your way. It should be your job to make sure that I never run across your problem. So I believe that Jeffrey Epstein, if he was an intelligence construct, was extremely badly drawn.
All right, here’s what went into my meeting of Jeffrey Epstein. My recollection is that Jeffrey Epstein had a staff of young adult women who I would guess were in their late twenties, perhaps early thirties. They seemed very professional. They seemed very attractive and they seemed to take his schedule and all of the sort of incidental executive function duties off of his hands. Principally, I dealt with them, according to my recollection, and not with Jeffrey directly. I believe I became aware that Jeffrey wanted to see me, and since I was at that time involved in a small hedge fund, I went to see him on 71st Street across from the Frick Museum.
When I got to the door, it was an extraordinary experience. He in fact was living in what was, for Manhattan, which is famous for relatively small dwellings, even for the very rich, in a very large townhouse. I went through the door. I was greeted, treated professionally, and I was led to a waiting room.
In that waiting room, which I believe was off to the left as you entered, I sat in the chair for a while and I noticed that there was a large mechanical piece of art, and I believe that it had some electronics to it. After a while of sitting in my chair, my recollection is that I went up to this art object and I started trying to inspect it. As I was looking at the art object, which I thought was quite innocent, I suddenly thought that I saw something like a lipstick camera, that is, a very small camera whose lens was staring straight at me. My first thought was, “Holy cow. I’ve discovered that there’s a hidden camera that has been trained on me while I’ve been in this room.”
I thought myself to be rather clever for having found it. But my second thought was exactly the reverse of this: I bet this isn’t that difficult to find; the object that it was buried in attracts attention. And it must be that people who look at this object invariably find the camera. And then I started asking myself, “am I supposed to find the camera? Is this a test? Is this person trying to make sure I’m comfortable with being under surveillance?” The whole thing was now quite queer and I went back and I sat down, as I recall it.
Shortly thereafter, almost responsive to finding the camera, my recollection is that I was called out of this room and I was led to the back where I was to wait for Jeffrey Epstein in a very large room with an enormous dining table. Now, what was most memorable about this dining table was that it had a tablecloth that I thought to be incredibly inappropriate. What I recall was that it had the appearance of a draped coffin, because the tablecloth was an extremely large American flag.
If I recall correctly, there was another gentleman, perhaps another hedge fund person, or a science person, who sat to my left and I stared at this tablecloth and I thought, “Oh, you’re going to serve me food on a tablecloth made out of the flag of my country, or perhaps you’re going to give me a beverage that might spill on the American flag? Is this a test of some kind of my loyalty to my country, or whether I have some sort of morality that isn’t burdened by some petty reverence to an inanimate object.”
I couldn’t tell what was going on, but I started getting extremely agitated, and, in fact, angry, and I think my feelings involved in expletive, which is, “F the person who decided that this was a good idea to put an American table, a flag as a tablecloth to test new people coming to the house.”
My recollection is that Jeffrey entered from the right with the young woman. In my mind. I remember her as being perhaps 22-23; she was extremely attractive. As I recall, Jeffrey sat down and began bouncing this woman on his knee, so he motioned for her to sit down and she appeared to be quite happy in this role as Jeffrey asked questions and discussed science, theories I had about markets, how they related to gauge theory, theoretical physics. I don’t remember the man saying much to me who was also in the room at the time. And so, all I have a recollection of is the four of us: Jeffrey, the woman on his leg, and the other gentleman and myself.
My recollection is also that, in order to test our willpower and concentration, that Jeffrey would bounce this woman occasionally, that she would giggle in order to test our resolve as to whether we could stay focused in the conversation.
I found him to be quite intelligent. He clearly was no slouch, but I also found that every single interaction with him resulted in my being back footed conversationally. He was constantly trying to throw me off guard, and at some level I was also irritated and angry, and I was trying to keep my cool during this entire interaction. And I thought to myself, “I don’t know anybody who behaves this way.” I knew several rich people at that point in my life, and I’ve known many more very wealthy people, perhaps billionaires of 10 and 11 figure fortunes.
To the best of my recollection, I’ve never met a single other person who behaved in such a strange way. He didn’t appear to be really that focused on markets and trading, and he appeared instead to be focused on creating a kind of cartoonish notion of what a billionaire might be in a very poorly drawn James Bond or Marvel comic movie.
And in so doing, I came to start to believe that I was not really talking to somebody who was a hedge fund manager or a financier, but that I was instead talking to a very intelligent and extremely charismatic man. My recollection was that he was magnetically handsome, perhaps a little off in certain ways. Certainly he’s been compared to Ralph Lauren, which was my thought, but he was prematurely gray, if I recall the image, and he had a kind of charisma that could probably be quantified in an era of facial recognition. There was something very, very unusual and compelling about him, despite the fact that he was more than a little bit lubricious. The meeting ended abruptly at some point, and I walked out.
I remember feeling that there are very few times in your life when you feel the hair on the back of your neck rise up. I don’t know whether that’s literally what happened, but it was certainly the sense that I had met something unholy. And I remember calling my wife and I remember talking to her, and I’ve used the word “construct” ever since.
Now, in order to do Responsible Conspiracy Theorizing, there are a couple of techniques that I would like to share that I use.
One is that I would like to distinguish two separate elements that may in fact be the same thing. Let’s imagine that the character that I met is in fact the forward-facing construct, and that there was an underlying human being playing that character. Now, if he was genuine, then as we say in mathematics, without loss of generality, we can adapt ourselves to the circumstance that the actor and the character were one and the same. So if the actor and the character are one and the same and that he was in no way a construct of anyone, then no harm, no foul, the theory will accommodate that. But it allows us to have a different possibility that the character and the actor are two different people.
Another technique that I like to use is I like to think about a decision tree. And in a decision tree, I don’t want to have to say which branch of the decision tree is true, and which branch is false. Very often when you share a conspiracy theory, what you find is that people want to know exactly what you believe. “Well, what do you think happened? What do you think was really going on?” Well, the answer is, “I don’t know.” But what if you can come up with a theory that is true no matter which branch of the decision tree you’re on, that you have confidence in? This is where I’ve been headed.
Lastly, I want to use a technique which is extremely important to me, that I’ve talked about before at the best of Naval Ravikant on Twitter. So, you can find a Twitter thread that will go under something like the title, “The invisible world is first discovered in the visible world’s failure to close.”
Now, what do I mean by that? What I mean is, is that sometimes you discover that something is not right only because the explanation for everything that can be seen doesn’t add up. My favorite example of this is beta decay in something like cobalt 60. If you measure the momenta of all of the visible particles, you’ll notice that it doesn’t add up to a conserved momentum equation. And this is what allowed Wolfgang Pauli to hypothesize that there must be something carrying away some momentum that is electrically neutral and cannot be seen. And he named it the neutrino, “the little neutral one”.
Well, something didn’t make sense about Jeffrey Epstein. How could somebody have that much money claim to be a hedge fund manager, be so clearly focused on his persona, and not look or sound like anybody I’d ever met in trading at that point? I believe that this person, in some sense represented a failure of the visible world’s failure to close, and so I decided that it was with some probability, not 100% certainly, that this person was in fact a construct.
Now, around—I forget when it was, 2005?—some point through 2007, Jeffrey Epstein becomes entangled with Florida law enforcement for requesting, or arranging, massages from underage women; that was almost certainly a massage was a euphemism for some form of child prostitution. This was an extremely disturbing episode in which he was vigorously defended by a high profile team, which is his right in an adversarial system, but it was with a particular vigor that I found absolutely disturbing and unsettling. And that the sentence given to Jeffrey Epstein seemed to be so reduced compared to what he was being accused of, that I felt like I had to just check all of my intuitions. Why was such a light sentence being imposed?
Further, people I knew went and visited him in prison and talked about him being a friend, talked about him being a massage enthusiast. It made no sense to me that this person who was being accused of some form of pedophilia was being treated very differently than I would have imagined by people that I very much respected at the time.
I didn’t understand what was going on, but I started to formulate a second theory, and I haven’t heard it discussed much in the media, so I’ll share it with you now. The idea is that if you buy the idea that Jeffrey Epstein was in fact a construct of the intelligence community, my belief is that he was constructed to be a sapiosexual Hugh Hefner. In some sense. He was the Dan Bilzerian of his day. That is, somebody who is not interested in little girls, but is instead interested in young women, women over the age of consent, who by law have every right to associate with whoever they wish to and can engage in consensual relations. Now, you may frown upon it. You may look down upon it. You may say that it’s an abusive power, for a man in his 40s, 50s, what have you to be cavorting with some person above the age of consent. However, I don’t take the same exact view of it that I take the view of somebody going below the age of consent. So in the era of #MeToo, we have a different situation in which people are very uncomfortable even talking about the legal situation in which women in their early twenties, who may be trying to wield sexual power are contending with men who may be trying to wield political or economic power, and that’s an issue that I don’t have a particular interest in settling. But whatever it is, it’s very different than somebody sending people to a high school to find 15 year-old girls or 14 year-old girls for erotic massages or prostitution or what have you.
So my belief was, in effect, that the intelligence community that may have constructed Jeffrey Epstein, was constructing him to be a sapiosexual Hugh Hefner, but that they had stupidly and mistakenly hired somebody who was actually closer to Humbert Humbert as an actor. That is the underlying actor playing the role of Jeffrey Epstein, hedge fund genius, was in fact, someone with a pedophilia problem that was probably not known to the intelligence community when it constructed the project, which I believe would have had to have dated from the ’80s or ’90s, when Jeffrey Epstein first started amassing his network of high profile contacts under this mysterious reputation as a one-of-a-kind financial genius.
As a result, that would explain a great deal of why people’s intuition was wildly off about Jeff. People who did not have a problem with an older, rich man going after young women above the age of consent were suddenly forced to contend with the question of, was this person secretly interested in women below the age of consent, and perhaps considerably below the age of consent?
So this went to some of the way towards explaining that. But I’ve had another issue that I’ve tried to talk to people about, which I also think figures into this story. Why was Jeffrey Epstein so focused on science? And in particular, why was he focused on heterodox science? Keep in mind, I’m just, I’m reading, I’m reading nothing. This is a completely ad lib, so just allow me to catch my breath.
In my theory, what I fear and what I believe is that the American scientific project has not understood that it has been abandoning its scientific assets, and if you look at my work, you can notice that this is a through line having nothing to do with Jeffrey Epstein. In effect, we have made it impossible for American scientists to profit using the market from their discoveries, because we exclude fundamental discoveries from intellectual property protection. Therefore, you have a problem that when you make a discovery, it is both inexcludable, if you share it in the scientific literature, and inexhaustible, that is that anyone who discovers it can use it without precluding anyone else from using it.
Okay. When you have something that fits those twin criterion, then even free market economists will agree that it constitutes a public good, a failure of the market to keep value and price in lockstep. In essence, we pay for scientific research out of taxpayer dollars because the market cannot price it correctly. So you have something which I believe to be of fantastic value, including military value and potentially industrial value as it is translated from pure science into technology.
However, for some reason, the United States has been losing its appetite for funding high level scientific research and protecting it with academic freedom as the university system goes into free fall. That is, our university system is structured as a Ponzi scheme, and after Vannevar Bush and the Endless Frontier doctrine forced us to do our blue sky research inside of universities rather than inside of research institutions dedicated to the purpose, we developed a weird problem. We would no longer be able to pay our scientists and use the fact that people could contribute the labor of their youth into a system where they would then become professors to train other professors. If each professor trained perhaps 20 graduate students to become professors, you can tell that after a very short period of time, you’ve got a pyramid scheme that can’t keep expanding as we did in the postwar system, where we educated sub 10% of our population at a post-secondary level to around 1970 or so when we were educating at around 50% of our population at a post-secondary level.
So when the music stopped, the system started to decay. You had an extremely valuable system. I’ve said before that theoretical physics largely constructed our modern economy. It invented the world wide web. It invented the semiconductor. It gave us nuclear power, nuclear weapons, our communications technology in the electromagnetic spectrum.
So many of the things that we take for granted, including molecular biology, came out of theoretical physics. And so what I have likened this to is that the United States had something like a Ferrari convertible, and it left the top down so that it started getting filled up with rain, and it started scrawling, “steal me”, in Mandarin, Farsi, and Russian on its front bonnet.
We are not protecting our scientific assets. In fact, when Jeffrey Epstein came back out of prison, I think, if I recall correctly, I tweeted that Jeffrey Epstein was somebody who was funding what the American government refused to fund. And I recall, if I’m not being too self-kind, that I said, “Welcome back.” with a period rather than an exclamation point, because I was extremely dismayed that we are fundamentally leaving this open. We left a niche for such a person to start exploiting us. If Jeffrey Epstein was able to find this niche, then I believe that other nations will be able to find it as well.
So what happened inside of the scientific enterprise is that many scientists had some memory from inside of the system when professors would in fact have, potentially, second homes, or even third homes, where they would be paid at a level that was commensurate with financiers, or high-priced lawyers. That, in essence, the children of academic families were growing up, with the children of very well to do families because there wasn’t such income and asset inequality in the United States. I believe that the need to pay the scientific community, particularly the top members of the scientific community, at a far higher level, is not a question of taxpayer dollars. It’s a question of, first of all, being fair to the community that created our economy—those are not taxpayer dollars, they’re scientific dollars, in my opinion; we can argue that at some other point—but it’s also a question of national interest. That is, that is completely irresponsible for us to pretend that the market for scientific research talent should be determined by your ability to teach undergraduates.
We should probably decouple the teaching and research enterprises, we should probably get rid of the majority of our research enterprise, and we should take care of the people who are obeying power laws at a very high level for the national interest. It’s not a question about overpaying them. It’s a question of we are leaving a valuable asset unguarded, and I believe that Jeffrey Epstein was attempting, in part, to gain control of that asset. That’s why people like George Church, or Robert Trivers or Stephen Hawking, or any one of a number of people, like Lisa Randall, were found on Jeffrey Epstein’s island.
By the way, I think it’s very important to stop using the fun phrases, Pedophile Island, and Lolita Express, when you have people who almost certainly are not part of any kind of orgiastic culture like Lisa Randall or Betsy Devine. It’s ridiculous. In part what we’re doing is we’re turning a salacious story into a very dangerous national emergency, if, in fact, Jeffrey Epstein was up to something very different than the mainstream story would have you believe.
So why is it that I am so disturbed by this and coming forward in this way? Well, there are a number of reasons, but one of the reasons is that I came to think about the following issue, which I find potentially dispositive. I’ve started asking people who knew Jeffrey Epstein, “did the character you met, whoever that person was, impress you as being capable, characterologically, of taking his own life out of desperation when he’s still clearly had many cards to play?”
He almost certainly had many secrets involving very powerful people. The man I met was so confident and so contemptuous of normal morality that I don’t believe he was even bothered particularly by the reputation of being a pedophile from his previous stay as a guest of the state of Florida. I believe that Jeffrey Epstein, in fact, was contemptuous. He thought it was ridiculous that he would be jailed for such a thing, and he thought that while it’s a matter of petty morality for you and me to mull over, he simply had to make sure that he didn’t run afoul of the system again.
Alright. Assume that I’m correct, that he was such a person who would laugh at the shame that others would bestow upon him. Then something very interesting happens. As you go down the various branches of the decision tree, you find that there has to be another unseen force. If this is true, is he dead or not dead? Well, I can put a small weight on the idea that he isn’t even dead. People’s deaths have been faked before. I don’t think that that’s what happened, but it’s possible.
Or, he could be dead. Then he could be dead either by his own hand or the hand of another. If he is dead by his own hand, it could be an induced suicide, as we saw Sullivan was trying to induce in Martin Luther King. Or it could be, of his own hand. If his own hand, could it be out of fear, out of shame or out of a sense of duty to something more? If he was in fact murdered, a whole would’ve had to been punched in the timeline so that somebody could have gotten to him or there would have to be a tremendous coincidence that somehow he was left alone in a jail, which had not had a history of suicides in over a decade, if I recall correctly.
In any of these branches of the decision tree, something is at play and something is at work, unless you believe that somehow I have it wrong, and that people who knew Jeffrey Epstein would support the idea that he would take his own life out of fear or shame, which I find essentially impossible, given the character that he chose to project, or that the actor playing the financier and wiz kid Jeffrey Epstein chose to project to me. I’ve checked this with several people, and, in general, everyone had the same impression that he was completely contemptuous of normal human beings with their petty moralities.
It is by the ability to work over all branches of the decision tree that I’ve gained confidence, first that I started talking about this ages ago, and anybody who I’ve discussed Jeffrey Epstein with will remember me using the word “construct” even before he was arrested and jailed for solicitation, prostitution of minors. So I’ve been at this for 15 years, not knowing it was going to end like this. I think many of us have tweeted out that if he was, in fact, attached to the intelligence community, that he was going to have to die because otherwise these secrets would get out, and am I scared that I’m thinking about releasing this to the general public? Yes, but I’m also scared about not releasing this to the general public.
My belief is that this was a poorly constructed operation, and that when it comes to light which intelligence community it was, we are in danger of countries that I care a great deal about being thought to have constructed a pedophilic honeytrap, using kompromat, to use the Russian word, for that which would be used to control people in order to gain some sort of a geopolitical strategic advantage.
Now, I am not of the opinion that Jeffrey Epstein was a savory character, and I’m not saying that he didn’t hire prostitutes, or coerce women into orgies, or what have you. But my guess is that at the moment, he was not using that particular kink of his four children in order to enmesh scientists or other politicians, as the news media sometimes hints at, when it is not suggesting that he’s simply dead by his own hand.
In fact, I think it’s extremely dangerous to think about this as being the decision of a country. Now, I’m not going to lie, I’ve thought that the country might be Israel, and as an American Jew who’s lived in Israel, I don’t think Israel came to this decision, if in fact he is a product of the Israeli intelligence network.
In fact, this would be something that would be top secret. It would have been decided by a tiny number of individuals, and it is not right to take down in nation based upon the idea that you can’t even do intelligence work because you contrived such a ridiculous idea as Jeffrey Epstein in order to gain kompromat and therefore control over influential people inside of another country.
What I would believe instead is that this is a tiny program and that these people should come forward, or that we should find them by reinitiating the Church and Pike Commissions. There is now so much bizarre stuff of this kind that it is time to revisit the Church and Pike Commissions of the mid-1970s to find out what our intelligence and other intelligence agencies may have been up to. We need something to restore our confidence, and when and if we find out that a foreign power has been operating in the US, perhaps with our consent or perhaps we are in fact gaining some benefit from an operation that we could not ourselves do, post Church and Pike, I think what we would do well to realize is, is that this situation is not the responsibility of any country, but the responsibility of people in the intelligence community who would have gone out of control.
Now, do I know this to be true? Absolutely not. Am I infallible? Far from it. I wouldn’t have shared with you that I was wrong about Bernie Madoff, in fact, if all of these conspiracy theories turned out to be exactly true. Some of them still remain to be proven. But what I’ve tried to do is to try to talk to you about the idea that I don’t think that the story is being fully explored. I’m extremely dismayed that over a very brief period of time, we went from suggesting that Jeffrey Epstein was allegedly dead by his own hand, to believing the medical examiner’s report as if this was a conclusive. In fact, the charge that he might’ve been murdered, with an understanding of the powers that be that controlled the correctional facility in which he was housed, includes the charge that the medical examiner’s report would likely have been doctored. That’s not an additional charge; you wouldn’t murder somebody if the report would conclusively show murder, unless you actually knew that you had enough control over the system to control it all. Furthermore, there has to be a facility that keeps local law enforcement, local medical officers from stumbling over something of high value. You couldn’t responsibly run the intelligence community, which has to be able to carry out covert operations, operations that are disturbing, operations that are effective, without constantly fearing that low-level law enforcement and low-level medical examiners could blow the whole thing sky high.
Now, whatever the facility is that keeps our high-level intelligence work safe from low level enforcement could easily have been operative. I don’t mean to suggest that it was, only that it is not reasonable to suggest that it is crazy to assume that the medical examiner could be induced to file a report to support an official narrative.
It is time to return to investigative journalism we can trust. It is time to return to committees of the House and Senate that have the power to investigate these things, and it is long past due that the intelligence services be revisited. If they, in fact, have very little to hide, then this shouldn’t really be a big problem. But at the moment, the American people have lost full confidence in our ability to get to the bottom of truths, as to whether foreign countries are meddling in our national elections, as to whether foreign countries are using their ability to send graduate students into the STEM pipeline to spy on us, as to whether foreign countries are using our tech platforms in order to help them with their military advantage over the United States.
Now, I really don’t want to come back to the Jeffrey Epstein story, so what I’m saying to you is, it’s quite possible that Jeffrey Epstein is simply dead by his own hand, that he was a pervy billionaire or near billionaire who had an interest in science, and also, an interest in young women that ranged from women of perhaps age 23 down either to 18, 15, 12, what have you; maybe the official story is true.
All I’m trying to suggest is that for some reason, I picked this one person to tell a 15-year story about that I believed he was an intelligence construct of probably another country operating in the center of the United States elite, and I believe that that is an additional piece of information because there’s no one else that I’ve been telling the story about. I’ve never met another person like this. This is a completely suis generis exception to my general understanding of the world, and I think if I am correct that there was something very much amiss, that it was obviously amiss, obvious to anybody who wished to see it, just as the world clearly closed their eyes to Jeffrey Epstein’s problems when it was found that he was asking for massages from underage girls in Florida, somebody was turning a blind eye towards the story almost certainly, because it was too salacious not to be interesting. It’s the kind of a story that would move newspapers, it would sell advertising spots. It’s far too juicy for people to take this little of an interest in.
And I want to say one last thing about this. Jeffrey Epstein was enmeshed with a guy named John Brockman, who was a guy who in some sense gave me my first break on a larger stage. It is commonly believed at the moment by certain members of the media that John Brockman was complicit in the underage behavior, underage interest that Jeff Epstein showed in young girls. The one thing I can add is, is that I met John Brockman and his wife, Katinka Mattson, at Stuart Brand’s Interval Bar sometime in the last, I don’t know, one to three years. And when John and I sat down, I can tell you with certainty that John warned me that he’d had an interaction with Jeffrey that he had found very disturbing, and that John had been forced to walk out of his house, realizing that Jeffrey Epstein had had a problem. And John has not come forward, and I don’t know that there’s anybody else in a position to tell this story, but I can say with some certainty that John was not happy about this, and that if John was, in fact, a tolerant of a Hugh Hefner style person, the person I met had no reason to say this to me, was certainly not okay with Jeffrey Epstein, [and] was in fact warning me away from him, and I had no interest in seeing Jeffrey at that point.
So, I do wish to say that I think that the conspiracy theorizing that I’m seeing is of a lower quality and a lower level. Of course, if you want, I could find out that the entire Edge network is somehow at risk and implicated, but I can say as somebody on the very periphery—I wrote no books for John, I didn’t go to the billionaires’ dinners, I never went to this island and never flew in the plane—I met him once and I had a phone call with him afterwards. I can tell you that I don’t personally believe that John Brockman was caught up in this at the level that is now being alleged by certain members of the press, who I feel, are perhaps not as responsible as they might be.
Anyway, that’s more or less what I have to say on the subject, and with this, I intend to, to the extent possible exit the Jeffrey Epstein conspiracy business.
You’ve been through The Portal. Thanks for joining us.
What did Eric learn from his grandfather Harry Rubin? 12:05
How did Eric struggle with maths at school but go on to complete a Ph.D. in mathematical physics at Harvard University? 18:05
Eric’s adventures in finance. 21:16
What did Eric learn from the Global Financial Crisis? #holdthegold 30:25
What is Nassim Taleb’s Twitter strategy? 32:25
The time Eric met Jeffrey Epstein. 35:23
Lessons in physics and a taxonomy of theories of everything. 47:01
How the String Theory community “fucked up”. 59:43
When Eric presented his theory of everything, Geometric Unity, at Oxford University. 1:06:27
What’s it like working for and with Peter Thiel? 1:18:28
Why did Thiel support Donald Trump for President? 1:23:30
Eric’s work at Thiel Capital. 1:32:25
Australia and building The Intellectual Wild South. 1:38:22
Why has Western productivity growth stagnated? 2:10:10
How does the global economy keep growing sustainably? 2:23:55
Understanding ISIS execution videos. 2:30:25
What does Eric think of Sam Harris’s thesis in The Moral Landscape? 2:32:49
Has Eric learned anything new from his The Portal guests? How to raise children. 2:39:39
Standing up to the mob. 2:42:02
Rewards that await courageous contrarians. 2:48:31
The Good Cause Co.’s recommended charities for the Australian bushfires
The Portal, Eric’s podcast Duty to Warn Zero to One, by Peter Thiel
The Tyranny of Distance, by Geoffrey Blainey
The Lucky Country, by Donald Horne
‘Anthropic Capitalism And The New Gimmick Economy’, Eric’s edge.org article by Eric Weinstein
The Rise and Fall of American Growth, by Robert Gordon
The Moral Landscape, by Sam Harris