The Scramble: Insider Trading, Anxiety, and David Brooks Best Friend

Jan 6, 2014

The trading floor of The New York Stock Exchange
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Today on The Scramble we lead off with some reporting that will be featured this week on a PBS' "Frontline" story, To Catch a Trader. It's the story of a federal probe into insider trading and the specific role of Connecticut's Steve Cohen, and his SAC hedge fund. 

Is he the brilliant mastermind trader behind a $9 billion fortune, or just a ubiquitous trader of inside information masterful at insulating himself from wrongdoing? Federal investigators have indicted several high-level analysts and portfolio managers from SAC, but have yet to catch Cohen. 

We follow that up with a story about a Connecticut psychotherapist and author who wrote a satirical piece in response to a David Brooks' column he didn't like. The central claim of the piece was taken seriously by a lot of big names in news who  subsequently got very angry about being gulled.  

Our final segment concerns new research into the nature and treatment of panic attacks. You'll learn about the phenomenon of subtle hyperventilating and about the spiral effect that sends many people into emergency rooms. Here is a link to more information on the study, or you may call 860 545 7039.

There may be some subtle thread tying insider trading, anxiety, and satire together but I can't figure out what it is right now.


  • Nick Verbitsky is the co-producer and director of To Catch a Trader, Frontline's expose on Steven A. Cohen, founder of SAC Capital
  • Martin Smith is the co-producer and co-writer of To Catch a Trader, Frontline's expose on Steven A. Cohen, founder of SAC Capital
  • Gary Greenberg is a psychotherapist, author, and contributor to Mother Jones, Harper's, the New York Times, Rolling Stones, and more
  • David Tolin is the founder and Director of the Anxiety Disorders Center and Center for Cognitive Behavioral Therapy at The Institute of Living.

What do you think? Comment below, email Colin@wnpr.org, or tweet @wnprcolin.