In honor of the upcoming 2 year anniversary of being "discovered" by Fred Hahn ...

... I bring you Being Interviewed 101   (hat tip LynMarie Daye).   In response to a request for advice on an upcoming interview, Fred had this response:
Be honest.
Good start.
Keep your answers short. Make the points you want to make regardless of the questions asked if asked questions that throw you. Have 5 major points you want to get across and get them across.
Sounds a lot like Fred's debating technique if you ever get sucked into a discussion with him.  The inexperienced don't realize Fred is not discussing the issues, he has several pat phrases he'll default to once the circular logic fails.  Like "no diabetic does better on more carbs" and such.   But don't answer "questions that throw you", rather answer about what you want to talk about.  I'm surprised he's never been a spokesperson for a politician ... I think he missed his calling! 
Have a sense of humor. Speak clearly. Don’t say “Um.” Don’t say things that might allow people to make themselves feel as if you’re trying to make them look stupid.
White lie when necessary but only when absolutely necessary in order to get the greater good point across.
Say what?  Let's see that again ...
Be honest.  ...   White lie when necessary but only when absolutely necessary in order to get the greater good point across.
Whoa boy.  Given this is written advice, one wonders if that disconnect even occurred to Fred as he proofread it before publishing.   There is no way those two sentences can be reconciled.  You can either be honest, or you can be honest when it's convenient, but lie when necessary.  This leaves open pretty much any behavior, right?  Because one can always rationalize a lie if this is "how they roll".
Speak with authority.
Good advice ... would be better if more could speak FROM authority, however.
Let the audience feel that you are listening to the moderator. When the moderator asks a question, don’t answer immediately – take a VERY short pause, then answer. Don’t talk when the moderator is talking. If the moderator is being boring, spice it up. Don’t allow long pauses. Keep it moving.
All well and good, but if the moderator asks you a question that you don't want to answer, just stick to your talking points.   Easier to speak with authority if you stick to your schtick!
Stay positive. Have passion. Have a glass of water nearby. Don’t clear your throat audibly.
Never bad mouth another person.
I just gotta laugh at that.  Comment at will :-)
Don’t be a wimp. Don’t be a know it all, but know it all.
I think that last sentence should read:  Act like a know it all, even when you don't know a thing.
Say thank you. Be polite.
From the always ever so polite Fred Hahn.
Have a few aphorisms or witty quotes at the ready like “Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.” –Twain.
Ha ha ha!
Show up on time. Remove distractions. Answer call in questions with respect and care for people’s feelings.

So to sum up:  Be honest, lie when necessary, stick to your canned phrases so you can sound authoritative.  Feign respect for your host and those asking questions and you'll do just fine. 


bentleyj74 said…
Dale Carnegie better watch his back :)
MM said…
I saw the "white lie" thing too and thought, "What is he talking about?" Is he referring to telling the interviewer they look nice when they don't or something more insidious? Something like "carbs cause diabetes" because it simplifies the message? The more I think about it, the more disturbing I find his attitude. Is this that whole "truth is relative" thing? Geez, I should just get with the times and stop being such a moral absolutist.
Unknown said…
Might this be one of the main problems with very low carb diets

Robb: Joe says, “I have a question concerning your last post on your blog (which was back in February). I’ve always been under the impression that the brain could run efficiently on ketones, but in your post on carbohydrates you unequivocally state that glucose is necessary for optimal brain function. Am I mistaken in my belief that you do believe that ketosis is dangerous for brain function? How would you situate ketone bodies in your classification of fuel?”

KGH: The thing to know is that the brain requires glucose in an obligate fashion: meaning it’s not an option. The brain has to have glucose. Where ketones come in is that, instead of having it be all glucose you can substitute — I don’t know what the number is, 50 or 60 percent let’s say — of the energy requirement can be made up of ketones. That’s an adaptive response to starvation. To the degree that being on a very low carbohydrate diet or constant ketosis all the time … I’m going to take a tangent here that doesn’t directly answer the question. …

We just got done talking about hormesis. This answers the question when people say “Why don’t you think you should be in ketosis all the time? If ketosis is good for you, why shouldn’t you stay on a ketogenic diet?” Because it’s hormesis.

It’s hormetic to be in ketosis. It’s probably hormetic to do intermittent fasting, it’s probably hormetic to have reduced meal frequency or go 16 or 18 hours every day without a meal versus snacking. That’s probably hormetic. Taken to extreme, it’s called Auschwitz. It’s called starvation. That’s the extreme of not eating.

In the same sense, I think ketosis is good for us to do once in a while. It’s something that naturally occurred during our evolution occasionally. I don’t buy the thrifty gene hypothesis, but periods without food were not that unusual, so it’s logical that that might be good for us. But staying in ketosis all the time is not good for us just because some ketosis is good for us.
M. said…
Yeah, I thought white lies were about being polite or diplomatic (no, those jeans don’t make your ass look fat), but the whole “only when absolutely necessary in order to get the greater good point across” does seem to have propaganda connotations.

It’s hard to tell exactly what Fred is getting at sometimes. Chris Masterjohn once had a blog post that argued against dietary dogmatism, and Fred showed up and seemed to be arguing that it was okay for Low Carbers to be dogmatists because they are right.

In the comments there he even used the argument that “all humans have a normal circulating blood glucose level of about a teaspoon or two” as evidence that low carb diets are best. So if he doesn’t mind using inane or stupid comments “to get the greater good point across”, I am not inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt when he talks about using “white lies” for the same purpose.
bentleyj74 said…
There's a lot of ways people can tell "white lies" that will all bite them in the butt when the people lied to don't agree with the terminology and standards or appreciate being treated like disposable assets.
Woodey said…
So according to Fred its ok to lie as long as its for the greater good. Hmm I've noticed that thought process is a recurring theme in circles that like to make a buck off of people. Of course my first thought is "why lie in the first place?" People generally lie whenever they have something to hide. If your case has a lie or multiple lies in it then whatever you are building cannot be credible.

Thanks for posting this, it made my decision of what to do with Fred's book Slow Burn that much easier.
ProudDaddy said…
I recently commented on Fred's blog to the effect that whey protein is highly insulinotropic. He basically ran around the implications for his insulin theory, implied I didn't know what I was talking about (with authority), and ended up saying that we NEED protein. Duh! I ended by saying I was sorry to be such a dunce. That was a white lie - I suspected somebody else was.

I can only imagine how he would react if I were to ask why serum FFA is higher in the obese if it's all locked up by insulin. How anyone can consider some of these guys authorities is beyond me.
ProudDaddy said…
His grasp of the physiologic journals is only marginally better than his knowledge of biochemistry. But yes, his muscles are bigger than mine.
bentleyj74 said…
Deceit always boils down to control. If I tell the truth you might employ autonomy and DISAGREE with either my methods or my definition of what constitutes the greater good.
Woodey said…
@Proud I'll take brains over brawn any day, or as Boyd Rice put it, "The strong rule the weak, and the clever rule the strong".
Josh said…
That was classic Fred in the comments of Masterjohn's dietary dogma article.

"We also know that people odd creatures and lie through their teeth about what they eat and the diet approaches they have "faithfully" tried and stuck to for months. IOW, you absolutely cannot go by what people say. You have to go by the data. I've had clients tell me they feel like crap on a low carb diet. I ask them what they are eating and it sounds like a fantastic low carb diet to me. Like the woman who got the shakes, they do not stick to it faithfully and/or long enough."

I think I get it now. He tells white lies for the greater good, then his clients lie back to him, and that helps to build up trust and achieve fantastic results ... except when it doesn't ... but that is only because they lied about faithfully following the diet that was based on lies.
Tonus said…
"White lie when necessary but only when absolutely necessary in order to get the greater good point across."

I think that what Fred was trying to say is that "[w]hat's important is personality, drive, sensation, conniving, influence, and a whole list of human attributes people pay attention to, in the end."
MM said…
"Fred showed up and seemed to be arguing that it was okay for Low Carbers to be dogmatists because they are right."

Wow! At what point will he drop the science sham and just start admitting it's a religion? In fact I think I could almost see him arguing that it is a religion, but that's ok because it's right!
Mike Howard said…
Oh my... that guy is a piece of work all right. I used to engage in debate with him but his circular arguments and red herrings became nauseating. A true poster child for Dunning-Kruger - he makes a living off peddling a narrow-minded viewpoint of health and fitness.

There is a pattern to his methods that goes something like this:

1. Fred makes broad-based, unsubstantiated statement
2. Fred gets called on it.
3. Fred defends his position with cherry-picked/otherwise irrelevant/useless research. and/or
4. Fred moves goalposts to justify his opinions and frame himself as correct.
5. Fred re-groups (ie. he runs to his friends of the low carb PCRM... errrrr... the metabolism society and begs them for some research to back up his braod-based claims).
6. Fred accuses detractor of being rude.