Matt Taibbi is an American journalist. He reports for Rolling Stone, authoring a "Road Rage" column for the print version, and a weekly online column, "The Low Post." Taibbi is well-known for covering the 2004 US presidential election, and for his earlier editorial contributions to newspapers the eXile, the New York Press, and the Beast. In 2008, Taibbi was a regular contributor to Real Time with Bill Maher. Much of his most recent reporting has covered scandals within the U.S. financial industry.
Question: What idea has influenced you most?
Matt Taibbi: If you live life like there is no tomorrow actually it doesn’t work because ultimately there is a tomorrow. That is one of the things you learn if you do that long enough. You can’t... You do eventually have to plan and be smart and not be nuts and... but I think there is a time and a place for every life strategy. I think in the 20s, the way I lived in the 20s, which was really without a whole lot of planning and a lot... and more just seeking experience for the sake of it... that was appropriate then. It wouldn’t be appropriate at this time in my life, so I don’t have any regrets. I think that is kind of the way to go is live hard and let’s see what happens in the end.
Question: What keeps you up at night?
Matt Taibbi: This is a very public life that I'm leading now, which I wasn’t prepared for and when I was doing this for most of my life... You know, writing is a very solitary profession. I got into it because I loved just the process of creating something and writing and I never, ever thought about my whole life and personality being out in public and what people might think of me as a person and all that. And that's, it’s very nerve wracking that whole situation. I worry that I'm going to hurt somebody with my writing. I've had a couple of close shaves where I've written some things that may have done damage to the people in my stories and that freaks me out an awful lot and so I worry about being wrong more than anything. I think every time I write a story kind of I always hold my breath and worry that you know did I hit somebody unfairly in this piece or is it going to come back that I got something completely wrong and I think that is the thing I worry about the most.
Recorded on November 22, 2010
Interviewed by Andrew Dermont
Directed by Jonathan Fowler
Produced by Elizabeth Rodd