Harlan Coben 'Long Lost'



Long Lost


by Harlan Coben


GLENN: We have Harlan Coben in. He is the author of Long Lost, number one New York Times best selling author. How are you, sir?

COBEN: I'm glad to be here, Glenn.

GLENN: I think you just saw you with Al Roker on MSNBC.

COBEN: Yeah, a lot of sexiness.

GLENN: The two of you.

COBEN: Had to have extra security to keep the babes back.

GLENN: Yeah, women were just licking their chops there. So welcome to the program.

COBEN: Thank you. It's great to be here.

GLENN: I will tell you that I have not read your book yet but Kevin who is part of my publishing division, he's read it. And Kevin, correct me if I'm wrong. He came in this morning and he said, Glenn, this is the fastest I've ever read a book. It was absolutely tremendous.

COBEN: Kevin's a very bright young man, very well read.

GLENN: He's usually my gatekeeper on fiction.

COBEN: Yeah.

GLENN: Because I just have such little time.

COBEN: Yeah.

GLENN: And so I don't, I just don't read fiction as much as I like to and so, you know, he usually is my gatekeeper. Says, this one you want to read, this one you want to read. And he brought this one in and he said, this one you really want to read. So I can't wait.

COBEN: Thanks, man, thanks. And thank you, Kevin.

GLENN: It's my my understanding is and I don't want to get into don't tell me anything because I do want to read the book.

COBEN: Yeah.

GLENN: But it's my understanding that you take a look at torture in a way Kevin says he has never seen before, that it's a mind game that you're like, ooh, wait a minute, I don't know how I feel on this.

COBEN: Yeah. Well, it's a little bit using the old fashioned twilight sleep. You know, I don't know if you my mom told me she doesn't remember my birth, that she felt all this horrible pain, doesn't remember it. And like 50 years ago I'm 47. But those many years ago you could do that, I'm surprised we haven't taken this technology to the next step where you could actually maybe torture somebody, just horrible and make the person forget. Why is that so hard if we could have done it with childbirth 47 to 50 years ago?

GLENN: And he said this to me this morning, do you remember the movie the Manchurian Candidate?

COBEN: Yeah, sure.

GLENN: The reason why that wouldn't work because the Manchurian Candidate, you would have flashbacks. Do you remember I mean, I don't think you could do scars to the psyche without it manifesting itself some way or another later in the road.

COBEN: The answer's maybe. But you do meet a lot of women who have gone through childbirth and will say to you, I don't remember anything about it. They have used a certain combination of drugs. Now again, this was the norm 50 years ago. Are you telling me in 50 years our government, the CIA, all that putting together, it's not feasible or conceivable that they could have come up with a way to actually make you forget it. Maybe you would have flashbacks. Maybe that guy on the street that you see is damaged, maybe he suffered this and he doesn't really know why he's damaged now, his mind. We don't know.

GLENN: So

COBEN: Could be a scar.

GLENN: Hook me into the story.

COBEN: An ex girlfriend says come to Paris and he thinks it's for a romantic weekend. When they get there, there's a murder scene and they find blood at the murder scene. The blood belongs to Terez's daughter. The problem is she died 10 years ago in a car crash.

GLENN: That happens all the time. I hate when that happens. I'm like, didn't your daughter die 10 years ago? Oh, come on, let's just have sex. We're in gay Paris.

COBEN: Well, they were hoping to hook up and here he is involved in this thing. But as they explore this, it actually normally I just like to keep it personal in this tragedy just in one community. But actually has global implications and all of a sudden, you know, Al Qaeda's after him, Massad's after him, Homeland Security's after him and he's got to put together why this is all happening, a major terrorist attack.

GLENN: Does he not find out in the end of chapter 1 that the war on terror's over?

COBEN: No.

GLENN: Really? That's weird. What is it called now? Stu, it's the overseas conting

STU: Contingency something, I don't know.

GLENN: Yeah, I love that. It was declared over here.

COBEN: One of the themes of the book is that these guys are patients. I mean, one of the things that we sometimes forget is how long it took them to set up 9/11 and in this book Long Lost without giving anything away, how long these guys have been working on a particular plot, they are not in this for a short term. You know, they don't have that short term mentality, something that we as Americans have got to remember.

GLENN: That's what works against us in everything, in absolutely everything. People come over from Europe even. I mean, imagine China. They come over from Europe and they see our cities and they're like, these are brand new.

COBEN: Right.

GLENN: We don't have anything old here.

COBEN: Right.

GLENN: And we don't understand the concept of centuries and centuries and centuries building on top of each other.

COBEN: Right.

GLENN: You know, China is the same way. What, you think they're you think they have a short term plan? They have been waiting for 1,000 years. They will be like, yeah, right, we'll get there.

COBEN: The dynasty's lasted five times, six times longer than our country's been in existence.

GLENN: Right.

COBEN: So this is hardly new stuff to them.

GLENN: Do you watch 24 by chance?

COBEN: I've seen it. I haven't seen the season too much, though.

GLENN: I'd love to hear from the listeners. I'm a little out on this season because I think that we're getting indoctrination now. I think that they have did you see it last night, Kevin? I think they have un one of us has moved. Either I have moved away from 24, or 24 has moved away from me. First of all, we get the global warming lecture from one of the stars every single episode, but also last night they were going after, you know, basically Blackwater.

COBEN: Right.

GLENN: And the president was saying "We have a private army and this is wrong to have a private army." And for a conservative show, what used to be a conservative show is now starting to look at all of the things from, you know, the Bush administration and say that was bad, yeah.

COBEN: But is it still gripping? Is it still moving, is it exciting? It's entertainment.

GLENN: Do you like I mean, see, what I really like is one of my favorite novels was State of Fear. I love State of Fear because I learned something in it, too. You know what I mean?

COBEN: Right.

GLENN: I like novels that aren't just complete fiction.

COBEN: Right.

GLENN: There's

COBEN: An issue you can discuss.

GLENN: Yeah, and that's what intrigued me about the idea of your book with a little bit of the torture in it and what we're doing. If you don't remember it, is it still torture.

COBEN: Right.

GLENN: Do you have an opinion on that or is that revealed in the book?

COBEN: Well, I don't actually. You know, all the torture stuff, of course, is a horrible and confusing issue and I'm suspicious of anybody who's too far on one side or the other. I mean, the people who are gung ho for Gitmo and those who are can't understand under any circumstance doing anything that may be stressful, I don't get either side. And I'm suspicious of anybody on either side of that claim. It's a hard question for a reason.

GLENN: Yeah.

COBEN: If it was an easy answer

GLENN: But it doesn't mean you don't answer it.

COBEN: That's true.

GLENN: No, seriously.

COBEN: I agree. It's great. And if you come with a strong if you are telling me, yes, we should definitely do it or definitely not do it, I'm just a little bit suspicious. It should trouble you. And it should trouble you. If you can actually say to me, all right, if I say to you this man, if you punch him really hard in the face, you're going to save the lives of 10,000 children. Anybody would say to me, no, you can't touch him under any circumstances, that's our law. I'm just, that makes me obviously uncomfortable.

GLENN: And anybody who also steps up and goes, "Punch him in the face!" You're kind of like, you are a little too eager.

COBEN: It should be hard. That's why it's exciting to write about because it will be fun.

GLENN: We're releasing today the guy who was the anthrax doctor, you know, in Gitmo and the I'm sorry, the ten Chinese Muslim extremist terrorists that were held at Gitmo we're now we can't send them back to China because they'll be killed or tortured or whatever over there because and the rest of the world does not want these guys because they're terrorists. We're going to release them on the streets and give them welfare and set them up. How do you solve this problem? Me personally, I put them in a little bamboo boat and I send them back to China. You are Chinese citizens; God bless you. How do we solve this?

COBEN: I think you probably have the right answer on that one. You know, let them go back and, you know, go with Allah, go with Allah and see how it all works out over there. I mean, I don't know. These are that's why I have you, Glenn.

GLENN: (Laughing).

COBEN: I'm fiction. Long Lost is fiction. People ask me what I do for a living, I make stuff up. You know what I mean? I don't have to worry

GLENN: We have so much in common. We have so much in common.

COBEN: Like most of your politicians you have on this show.

GLENN: Hang on just a second. Let me take a quick break. I want to ask you a little bit about AIG and Barney Frank's idea of going ahead and saying, yeah, you know what, let's have the government decide what everybody should make in salaries. Back in a second.

(OUT 10:43)

GLENN: Harlan Coben, the name of the book is Long Lost, high, high, high marks from my crew here. I have not read it yet but, you know, number one on the Times.

COBEN: Tonight you better start crying.

GLENN: Holy cow. I want to talk to you real quick about, you know, there's been a lot of there's a lot of people that say, oh, if you think we're marching to socialism, you're crazy. You're just I think socialism may we may be quickly passing socialism. I mean, it is amazing what's going on with now Barney Frank saying you take a dime of government money; we're also going to control all of your salaries and everything else, we're going to control it all.

COBEN: Yeah, it's another strange issue because the demonizing of the AIG guys was just really wrong. I mean, there's certainly problems in the system but, you know, this sort of personally demonizing I think to gain a lot of political capital was fairly horrible. There's no you know, these guys are not evil. That's what makes it so interesting. It's a very gray area in terms of what these guys are all about and to start that stuff

GLENN: Well, I think some of them, Bernie Madoff, he clearly is.

COBEN: That's a criminal. That's the problem. You shouldn't link Bernie Madoff with the egg guys.

GLENN: Exactly. There are good guys in congress that don't have any clue as to what they are doing and others do exactly.

COBEN: Others who have the AIG faces, for years they sort of made fun of welfare moms. They are on welfare. They may not like it but, you know, the Wall Street's on welfare enough and you have to face up to that, also.

GLENN: Where are the people that were against corporate welfare? Where are they?

COBEN: They're no one's around anymore. All of a sudden everybody is a little bit socialist. It's not just

GLENN: I saw on the back of the book here, is this in Europe?

COBEN: That's in Europe.

GLENN: You were spending a lot of time over in Europe when you are doing research on this?

COBEN: I had a French movie made of one of my books called "Tell No One" and I pride myself on being the Jerry Lewis of crime fiction. I'm big in Paris, France. So I was over there on book tour.

GLENN: Okay. So then you are a perfect guy to talk about it. G 20 is happening this week.

COBEN: Yeah.

GLENN: Obama last time was greeted as the savior of all mankind over in Europe. Not so much this time.

COBEN: Right.

GLENN: Because they are saying we're spending Europe is saying we're spending too much program too much on programs and we are out of control. What do you think the response to him over in Europe is going to be?

COBEN: I still think he's still in the honeymoon phase over there but that's what's sort of interesting. You know, the G 20 also points out one of the problems we Americans ignored, it's not an American problem, the economy. You want to blame Bush, this is worldwide. It's just as bad in the U.K. and all over Europe. But it's funny because they used to be able to point to us, you Americans, you don't have any of these programs and you are not spending enough. Now wait a minute, you know, we want to be the ones spending more than you guys. So calm down over there.

GLENN: Yeah, they are really, they are quite concerned. And you know what I find also interesting is who was it I read about today, you know, Brazil last week said that it was blonde hair, blue eyes, the president of Brazil, blonde haired, blue eyed problem and was it Sarkozy? Who was it that came out yesterday and said that it was the Anglo Saxons? Basically England and America that has caused this problem. The world is really starting to demonize.

COBEN: Right.

GLENN: Us.

COBEN: I think it's the same way that we are demonizing AIG or Wall Street that, you know, people are always looking for the person to blame and a person to demonize. That's so one of the most convenient target. It's our fault, we were greedy and all of that.

GLENN: It's interesting to me that while everybody wants to demonize and take it out on, you know, the wealthiest 1% or 5% or 2%, whatever it is, I've been making this case for a long time, when these politicians say I'm going to go up and I'm going to buy these drugs from Canada because it's not right that, you know, Canada pays less than we do, yada, yada, and I keep pointing out, no, no, no, that's just your theory that we're the wealthiest 1% that, you know, the wealthiest 1% should pay more. We are the wealthiest 1%, or 5% in the entire world.

COBEN: That's an interesting point, yeah.

GLENN: So everybody is doing what we're doing now to ourselves. We're demonizing the wealthiest 1%; the rest of the world is saying, "Yeah, it's the wealthiest 1% that did that to us." Even our poorest in America are still part of the wealthiest 1%.

COBEN: Right, right.

GLENN: You know the difference in France. Tell me about the houses in France compared to the houses here.

COBEN: Well, in Paris they are actually awfully beautiful. What can I tell you. But, you know, you are absolutely right that it's always a problem when you are trying to demonize because one day you may be on the wrong side of that demonization.

GLENN: Yeah.

COBEN: You know, I mean, Barney Frank is, you know, going too far and I really think he is. And I back a lot of the stuff they were doing but you've got to be careful when you're making, you know, political hay, you pointed out, I guess it was last night you had the attorney general from

GLENN: Yeah, it was a little, a little ugly.

COBEN: Well, you know, there are laws. This country is based on laws and things like that. Someone breaks the law; Bernie Madoff, you go after them, you go after them hard. Here's the other thing. I don't get why Bernie Madoff's kids get to keep anything. If I steal your TV and I give it to my kid, it's not his TV.

GLENN: Yeah.

COBEN: So even if they didn't do it, even if they didn't know.

GLENN: They did know.

COBEN: But even if they did I'm giving them that. Even if they didn't know, if I steal your TV and I give it to my kid and never tell them, does my kid get to keep that TV or does he have to give it back to you?

GLENN: More on Long Lost in today's e mail newsletter. That is the name of the book. Comes out today?

COBEN: Comes out today.

GLENN: Long Lost, Harlan Coben, rave, rave, rave reviews from the Mercury staff here at the Glenn Beck program. Thank you so much and we'll see you again.

Today is the 75th anniversary of D-Day, the largest amphibious invasion in history.

The Allied invasion force included 5,000 ships and landing craft, 11,000 planes, and almost three million allied soldiers, airmen and sailors. Despite such numbers, the location and timing of the invasion was still an enormous gamble. The Nazis fully expected such an invasion, they just didn't know precisely when or where it would be.

Despite the enormous logistics involved, the gamble worked and by the end of June 6, 1944, 156,000 Allied troops were ashore in Normandy. The human cost was also enormous – over 4,900 American troops died on D-Day. That number doubled over the next month as they fought to establish a foothold in northern France.

There were five beach landing zones on the coast of northwestern France, divided among the Allies. They gave each landing zone a name. Canada was responsible for "Juno." Britain was responsible for "Gold" and "Sword." And the U.S. had "Utah" and "Omaha."

The Nazis were dug in with bunkers, machine guns, artillery, mines, barbed wire, and other obstacles to tangle any attempt to come ashore. Of the five beaches, Omaha was by far the most heavily defended. Over 2,500 U.S. soldiers were killed at Omaha – the beach so famously depicted in the opening battle sequence of the 1998 movie, Saving Private Ryan. The real-life assault on Omaha Beach included 34 men in that first wave of attack who came from the same small town of Bedford, Virginia. The first Americans to die on Omaha Beach were the men from Bedford.

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America has a national D-Day Memorial, but many people don't know about it.

America has a national D-Day Memorial, but many people don't know about it. Maybe that's because it wasn't a government project and it's not in Washington DC. It was initiated and financed by veterans and private citizens. It's tucked away in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, in the small town of Bedford, Virginia. Why is the memorial for one of the most famous days in modern world history in such a tiny town? Because, as a proportion of its population of just 3,200 at the time, no community in the U.S. sacrificed more men on D-Day than Bedford.

There were 34 men in Company A from Bedford. Of those thirty-four, 23 died in the first wave of attacks. Six weeks after D-Day, the town's young telegraph operator was overwhelmed when news of many of the first deaths clattered across the Western Union line on the same day. Name after name of men and families that she knew well. There were so many at once that she had to enlist the help of customers in the pharmacy's soda shop to help deliver them all.

Among those killed in action were brothers Bedford and Raymond Hoback. Bedford was the rambunctious older brother with a fiancée back home that he couldn't wait to return to. Raymond was the quieter, more disciplined younger brother who could often be found reading his Bible. He fell in love with a British woman during his two years in England training for D-Day. Like in that opening sequence of Saving Private Ryan, Bedford and Raymond barely made it down the ramp of their Higgins Boat in the swarm of bullets and hot steel before they were cut down in the wet sand.

Bedford and Raymond Hoback's mother, Macie, learned of both their deaths from two separate telegrams, the first on a Sunday morning, the second the following day. Their younger sister, Lucille, remembered her mother's devastation, and her father walking out to the barn to cry.

The day after D-Day, the killing field of Omaha Beach was already transforming into the massive supply port that would help fuel the American drive all the way to Berlin over the next year. A soldier from West Virginia was walking along the beach when he saw something jutting out of the sand. He reached down and pulled it out. He was surprised to find it was a Bible. The inside cover was inscribed with: "Raymond S. Hoback, from mother, Christmas, 1938." The soldier wrote a letter and mailed it with the Bible to Raymond's mother. That Bible, which likely tumbled from Raymond's pack when he fell on D-Day, became Macie Hoback's most cherished possession – the only personal belonging of her son that was ever returned.

Of the 23 Bedford men who died on Omaha Beach, eleven were laid to rest in the American cemetery in Normandy.

These men, many of them barely out of their teens, didn't sign up to march to the slaughter of course. They had hopes and dreams just like you and I. Many of them signed up for adventure, or because of peer pressure, and yes, a sense of honor and duty. Many of the Bedford Boys first signed up for the National Guard just to make a few extra bucks per month, get to hang out with their buddies, and enjoy target practice. But someone had to be first at Omaha Beach and that responsibility fell to the men from Bedford.

Over the last several years, the D-Day anniversary gets increasingly sad. Because each year, there are fewer and fewer men alive who were actually in Normandy on June 6, 1944. The last of the surviving Bedford Boys died in 2009. Most of the remaining D-Day veterans who are still with us are too frail to make the pilgrimage to France for the anniversary ceremonies like they used to.

It's difficult to think about losing these World War II veterans, because once they're all gone, we'll lose that tether to a time when the nation figured out how to be a better version of itself.

Not that they were saints and did everything right. They were as human as we are, with all the fallibility that entails. But in some respects, they were better. Because they went, and they toughed it out, and they accomplished an incredibly daunting mission, with sickening hardship, heartbreak, and terror along the way.

So, what does the anniversary of D-Day mean in 2019?

In one sense, this anniversary is a reprimand that we've failed to tell our own story well enough.

In one sense, this anniversary is a reprimand that we've failed to tell our own story well enough. You can't learn about the logistics of the operation and above all, the human cost, and not be humbled. But as a society, we have not emphasized well enough the story of D-Day and all that it represents. How can I say that? Because of an example just last weekend, when common sense got booed by Democratic Socialists at the California Democrats' State Convention. When Democratic presidential candidate John Hickenlooper said during his speech that "socialism is not the answer," the crowd booed loudly. When did telling the truth about socialism become controversial?

Sure, socialists, and communists and other anti-American factions have always been around. America certainly had socialists in 1944. But the current socialists trying to take over the Democratic Party like a virus don't believe in the D-Day sacrifices to preserve America, because they don't believe America is worth preserving. They are agitating to reform America using the authoritarian playbook that has only ended in death and destruction everywhere it is followed.

Ask a Venezuelan citizen, or an Iraqi Christian, or a North Korean peasant why D-Day still matters in 2019.

The further we move away from caring about pivotal events like June 6, 1944, the less chance of survival we have as a nation.

At the same time, the D-Day anniversary is a reminder that we're not done yet. It's an opportunity for us to remember and let that inform how we live.

Near the end of Saving Private Ryan, the fictional Captain Miller lays dying, and he gives one last instruction to Private Ryan, the young man that he and his unit have sacrificed their lives to rescue in Normandy. He says, "Earn it."

In other words, don't waste the sacrifices that were made so that your life could be saved. Live it well. The message to "earn it" extends to the viewer and the nation as well – can we say we're earning the sacrifices that were made by Americans on D-Day? I cringe to think how our few remaining World War II veterans might answer that.

Honor. Duty. Sacrifice. Gratitude. Personal responsibility. These used to mean a lot more.

Honor. Duty. Sacrifice. Gratitude. Personal responsibility. These used to mean a lot more. I don't want to believe it's too late for us to rediscover those traits as a nation. I want to believe we can still earn it.

The challenge to "earn it" is a lot of pressure. Frankly, it's impossible. We can't fully earn the liberty that we inherited. But we can certainly try to earn it. Not trying is arrogant and immoral. And to tout socialism as the catch-all solution is naïve, and insulting to the men like those from Bedford who volunteered to go defend freedom. In truly striving to earn it, we help keep the flame of liberty aglow for future generations. It is necessary, honorable work if freedom is to survive.

The end of Lincoln's Gettysburg Address is remarkably relevant for every anniversary of June 6, 1944. This is what D-Day still means in 2019:

"It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us – that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion – that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain – that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom – and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

Letter from Corporal H.W. Crayton to Mr. and Mrs. Hoback – parents of Bedford and Raymond Hoback who were both killed in action on June 6, 1944

Álvaro Serrano/Unsplash

July 9, 1944 Somewhere in France

Dear Mr. & Mrs. Hoback:

I really don't know how to start this letter to you folks, but will attempt to do something in words of writing. I will try to explain in the letter what this is all about.

While walking along the Beach D-day Plus One, I came upon this Bible and as most any person would do I picked it up from the sand to keep it from being destroyed. I knew that most all Bibles have names & addresses within the cover so I made it my business to thumb through the pages until I came upon the name above. Knowing that you no doubt would want the Book returned I am sending it knowing that most Bibles are a book to be cherished. I would have sent it sooner but have been quite busy and thought it best if a short period of time elapsed before returning it.

You have by now received a letter from your son saying he is well. I sincerely hope so.

I imagine what has happened is that your son dropped the Book without any notice. Most everybody who landed on the Beach D-Day lost something. I for one as others did lost most of my personal belongings, so you see how easy it was to have dropped the book and not know about it.

Everything was in such a turmoil that we didn't have a chance until a day or so later to try and locate our belongings.

Since I have arrived here in France I have had occasion to see a little of the country and find it quite like parts of the U.S.A. It is a very beautiful country, more so in peace time. War does change everything as it has this country. One would hardly think there was a war going on today. Everything is peaceful & quiet. The birds have begun their daily practice, all the flowers and trees are in bloom, especially the poppies & tulips which are very beautiful at this time of the year.

Time goes by so quickly as it has today. I must close hoping to hear that you receive the Bible in good shape.

Yours very truly,

Cpl. H.W. Crayton

It's not as easy as it used to be for billion-dollar entertainment empires like The Walt Disney Company. It would be more streamlined for Disney to produce its major motion pictures in its own backyard. After all, abortion in California is readily available, as well as a protected, cherished right. And since abortion access is critical for movie production, right up there with lighting equipment and craft services, you would think California would be the common-sense choice for location shooting. Alas, even billion-dollar studios must pinch pennies these days. So, in recent years, Disney, among other major Hollywood studios, has been farming out production to backwater Southern lands like Georgia, and even Louisiana. Those states offer more generous tax breaks than Disney's native California. As a result, Georgia for example, played host to much of the shooting for the recent worldwide box office smash Avengers: Endgame.

But now it looks like it's Georgia's endgame. The state recently passed what is known as a "heartbeat" bill – a vicious, anti-woman law that would try to make pregnant women allow their babies to be born and actually live. It's a bridge too far for a major studio like Disney, which was largely built on creating family entertainment. How can Disney possibly go about making quality movies, often aimed at children, without access to unfettered abortion? It's unconscionable. Lack of abortion access makes it nearly impossible to shoot movies. So, what's a major studio to do? Disney might have considered migrating its business to Louisiana, but that state too has now signed a heartbeat bill into law. It's utter madness.

These monstrous anti-abortion bills, coupled with having to live under President Trump, has led Disney to seek a new home for its legendary movie magic. Last week, Disney's CEO, Bob Iger, announced that all future Disney movies will now be filmed on location in the Sub-Saharan African nation of Wakanda.

"Disney and Wakanda are a match made in heaven," Iger told reporters. "Wakanda was, until recently, a secret kingdom, much like our own Magic Kingdom. With this new partnership, we'll not only get to continue our legacy of making movies that parents and children everywhere enjoy together, but we'll get to do so in a safe space that reveres abortion as much as we do."

Wakanda is one of only four African countries (out of 55) that allow unrestricted abortion.

As home to the most advanced technology in the world – and with the planet's highest per-capita concentration of wokeness – Wakanda offers women painless, hassle-free abortion on demand. As the Wakandan health ministry website explains, the complete absence of any white-patriarchal-Judeo-Christian influence allows women in Wakanda to have complete control of their own bodies (with the exception of females who are still fetuses). As winner of the U.N.'s 2018 Golden Forceps award (the U.N.'s highest abortion honor) Wakanda continues its glowing record on abortion. That makes it an ideal location for Disney's next round of live-action remakes of its own animated movies in which the company plans to remove all male characters.

Iger says he hopes to convince Wakandan leadership to share their top-secret vibranium-based abortion procedure technology so that American women can enjoy the same convenient, spa-like abortion treatment that Wakandan women have enjoyed for years.

Wakanda is one of only four African countries (out of 55) that allow unrestricted abortion. Disney plans to boycott and/or retaliate against the other 51 African nations, as well as any U.S. states, that restrict abortion. Specific plans are being kept under wraps, but sources say Disney's potential retaliation may include beaming Beverly Hills Chihuahua into the offending territories on a continuous, indefinite loop.

When asked how Wakanda's futuristic capital city and distinctly African landscape would be able to double for American movie locations, Iger said, "I guess America will just have to look more like Wakanda from now on."

One potential wrinkle for the Left-leaning studio is the fact that Wakanda has an impenetrable border wall-shield-thing designed to keep out foreign invaders as well as illegal immigrants. Iger said he understands Wakanda's policy of exclusivity, adding, "After all, not everyone gets into Disneyland. You have to have a ticket to get in. Anyone is welcome, but you have to go through the process of getting a ticket." When one reporter pointed out that Iger's answer sounded like the conservative argument for legal immigration under the rule of law, Iger insisted that the reporter was "a moronic fascist."

What if the unthinkable happens and Florida also enacts its own "heartbeat" law? That would be problematic since Walt Disney World is located in Florida. Iger responded that Disney would "cross that bridge if we get to it" but that the most likely scenario would entail "dismantling Disney World piece-by-piece and relocating it to the actual happiest place on earth – Wakanda." As for whether Disney would ever open character-themed abortion clinics inside its theme parks, Iger remained coy, but said, "Well, it is the place where dreams come true."

With the Wakanda solution, Disney may have found a place where Minnie Mouse can finally follow her heart and have true freedom of choice.

When pressed about the cost of ramping up production in a secretive African kingdom that has no existing moviemaking infrastructure (which could easily end up being much more expensive than simply shooting in California) Iger said, "You can't put a price tag on abortion freedom. Wakanda Forever and Abortion Forever!"

With the Wakanda solution, Disney may have found a place where Minnie Mouse can finally follow her heart and have true freedom of choice. And that will be welcome relief to traditional families all over the world who keep the Walt Disney Company in business.

*Disclaimer: The preceding story is a parody. Bob Iger did not actually say any of the quotes in the story. Neither is Wakanda an actual nation on planet Earth.

"Journeys of Faith with Paula Faris," is a podcast featuring conversations about how faith has guided newsmakers and celebrities through their best and worst times. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is a much maligned religion so Glenn joined the podcast and took the time to explain what it means to him and how it changed his life.

From his suicidal days and his battle with drugs and alcohol, it was his wife Tania and his faith that saved him. All his ups and downs have given him the gift of empathy and he says he now understands the "cry for mercy" — something he wishes he'd given out more of over the years.

You can catch the whole podcast on any of the platforms listed below.

- Apple Podcasts
- Google Podcasts
- TuneIn
- Spotify
- Stitcher
- ABC News app

One of these times I'm going to go on vacation, and I'm just not going to come back. I learn so much on a farm.

You want to know how things work, go spend a summer on a farm. You're having problems with your son or daughter, go spend a summer on a farm.

My son changed. Over two weeks.

Getting him out of bed, getting him to do anything, is like insane. He's a 15-year-old kid. Going all through the normal 15-year-old boy stuff. Getting him on the farm, where he was getting up and actually accomplishing stuff, having to build or mend fences, was amazing. And it changed him.

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Our society does not allow our kids to grow up, ever. I am convinced that our 15-year-olds could be fixing all kinds of stuff. Could be actually really making an impact in a positive way in our society. And what's wrong with our society is, we have gotten away from how things actually work. We're living in this theoretical world. When you're out on a farm, there's no theory here. If it rains, the crops will grow. If it rains too much, the crops won't grow.

If there's no sun, they won't grow. If there's too much sun, they'll shrivel up and die. There's no theory. We were out mending fences. Now, when I say the phrase to you, mending fences, what does that mean? When you think of mending fences, you think of, what?

Coming together. Bringing people together. Repairing arguments.

I've never mended a fence before until I started stringing a fence and I was like, "I ain't doing this anymore! Where is it broken? Can't we just tie a piece of barbed wire together?"

Let's stop talking about building a wall. Because that has all kinds of negative imagery. Mending fences is what we need to do.

That's called mending fences.

And why do you mend fences? So your animals don't get out and start to graze on somebody else's land. When your fence goes down, your cow is now on somebody else's land. And your cow is now eating their food.

We look at the phrase, mending fences as saying, hey. You know, we were both wrong. Mending fences has nothing to do with that.

Mending fences means build a wall. My neighbors and I, we're going to get along fine, as long as my cows don't go and steal their food, or their cows don't come over and steal my cow's food.

We're perfectly neighborly with each other, until one of us needs to mend a fence, because, dude, you got to mend that, because your cows keep coming over and eating my food.

You know what we need to do with Mexico? Mend fences.

Now, that's a phrase. You hear build a wall. That's horrible.

No, no, no. We need to mend fences.

In a farming community, that means putting up an electric fence. That means putting up barbed wire.

So the cows — because the cows will — they'll stick their head through barbed wire. And they'll eat the grass close to the road. Or eat the grass close to the other side of the fence. And they'll get their heads in between those fences. And they can't get out sometimes. Because the grass is always greener on the other side. You look at these damn cows and say turn around, cow — there's plenty of stuff over here.

No. They want the grass on the other side of the fence.

So you mend it.

And if it's really bad, you do what we do. We had to put an electric fence up. Now, imagine putting an electric fence up. That seems pretty radical and expensive.

Does it really work? Does it shock them? What does that feel like to a cow?

The cows hit it once, and then they don't hit it again. They can actually hear the buzz of the electric fence. There's a warning. Don't do it. Don't do it. They hear the current and they hit it once and they're like, "I'm not going to do that again."

So you mend fences, which means, keep your stuff on your side. I like you. We're good neighbors. You keep your stuff on your side and I'll keep my stuff on my side and we'll get together at the town hall and we'll see each other at the grocery store. Because we're good neighbors. But what stops us from fighting is knowing that there is a fence there.

This is my stuff. That's your stuff. But we can still trade and we'll help each other. But let's stop talking about building a wall. Because that has all kinds of negative imagery. Mending fences is what we need to do.

You can have a tough fence. It could be a giant wall. It could be an electric fence. But you need one. And that's how you come together.

The side that's having the problem, mends the fence.