Posted August 23, 2013
by Jerry Alatalo
Matt Taibbi speaks here at the Public Banking Institute on June 2, 2013. His description of how he came to research matters financial is an example that those interested in creating a more just, peaceful world can learn from.
He talks about casual conversations with other journalists which sparked his desire to know how things worked on Wall Street. During one of those casual conversations he asked his fellow journalists why gas prices were rising in 2008, and nobody could answer the question. It was an innocent question which led to Matt Taibbi being one of the most recognized journalists around delving into the complexities of Wall Street transactions.
He researched Wall Street and has since written informative, lengthy articles in Rolling Stone magazine exposing corrupt practices and law-breaking in the financial industry. In those articles he has given many men and women readers an accurate view of what he calls “that other, more complicated reality.” This scenario of Matt Taibbi’s journalism career, where seemingly mundane, trivial chat leads to his speaking at this Public Banking Institute event, is an example of how our life sometimes turns on a dime and leads us to previously unplanned destinations.
From “why are gas prices rising?” in 2008 to becoming involved with a whole new banking framework for the United States of America is the road traveled by Matt Taibbi. His description of his journey down that road is inspiring in that it shows fellow journalists, bloggers, and all those involved in communicating ideas, that always asking questions does indeed lead to answers.
The first word in Taibbi’s transformational question was “why.”
why, adv., n., pl. whys. —adv. 1. for what reason. —n. 2. cause or reason.
Journalists and communicators learn to research their subjects and issues by answering the questions “who, what, when, why and where.” Given Matt Taibbi’s experience here perhaps writers should throw out who, what, when, and where and focus like a laser on “why.”
All the rest are details.