In the first half, former member of the NYPD and the Secret Service, Dan Bongino, talked about his experiences in the Secret Service during the administrations of Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama. There are currently about 4,000 Secret Service members, but in recent years there's been retention problems, which was unheard of in years past, he said. It used to be that "you either died or retired, and no one left," but things have really gone downhill in the organization since it was transferred from the Dept. of the Treasury over to Homeland Security--- there's been a lot of mismanagement and various scandals have taken their toll on the collective morale, he stated. The White House, he noted, wasn't built for security-- it was designed to be a home, yet the location has a lot of installed security measures that the public doesn't see.
Though Bongino wasn't aligned with the politics of the Democrats, he quipped that Bill Clinton "sweats charisma," and has the magical ability to make you feel like you are the only person in the room. Barack Obama initially seemed somewhat overwhelmed (he lacked the governing experience that Clinton and Bush had), but both he and Michelle were always very pleasant to work with, Bongino remarked. The White House has been called one of the loneliest places on Earth-- even in the residence area, there are windows everywhere, and there is very little privacy. Speaking about privacy issues, Bongino commented that in the future there may be a cottage industry for countering the constant level of monitoring and surveillance, as the wealthy seek out more concealment.
In the latter half, mentalist and memory expert Jim Karol discussed what we can do to enhance our mental performance and memory. Interestingly, playing poker is actually a way of developing a higher emotional intelligence, as it sharpens your ability to read other people, and deal with stress, he said. One of the keys to memory is focus, he revealed. For instance, if you forget where you parked your car, it may be because you were distracted when you were leaving the vehicle. Try linking the location to something you won't forget, he advised.
Cognitive exercises can enhance focus, he suggested, such as reciting the alphabet backwards, or turning lettered signs into numbers, based on the numerical order of the letters in the alphabet. Studying various brain research, Karol learned that knowledge and memorization can increase the firing of neurons, and he believes that mental exercises actually encourage more neurons to grow in the brain, even into a person's 60s and 70s. Karol also shared his method for counting cards, memorizing zip codes, and how he's partnered with various veteran-related organizations and events, such as the G.I. Film Festival.
Bumper music from Thursday January 14, 2016