The Revolution Will Be Monetized: How Capitalism Devours Radical Movements

by Russell Dobular

In the long out-of-print “The Making of a Counter-Culture,” journalist Theodore Roszak argued that the 60’s-era left was greatly underestimating the ability of capitalism to co-opt their movement and sell it back to them. One example he cited was how Playboy had taken the sexual revolution and connected it to an upscale, sophisticated lifestyle. He was right then, and his insight still holds true today, extending far beyond Playboy. 

When we look at the beliefs born from 60’s radical movements that have survived down to the current era, they are exclusively limited to the ones that were not only compatible with, but in many cases, an improvement on American capitalism. The oldest line in advertising, after “Patronized by Caesar,” may be, “Sex Sells.” In the end, disposing of the prohibition on using blatant sexual images and themes to sell everything from soap to The Jerry Springer Show, was a boon to corporations and that’s why they framed that aspect of the counterculture in a positive way. 

Similarly, racism and sexism have always been bad for capitalism. Commercial peoples have historically been more socially liberal than theocratic or feudal societies, because capitalism depends on large numbers buying, selling, trading, starting businesses, etc. Mo’ people participating in the economy, mo’ better for the generation of wealth.

And so the civil rights movement is allowed to continue in various forms today, with the core assumption that sexism and racism are bad, going unchallenged outside of truly fringe corners of the internet. Even a Tucker Carlson, who is often accused of dog-whistling on those issues, isn’t really arguing for racism and sexism. What Carlson and others like him are arguing is that these things are no longer the problem the left is making them out to be. This point can be debated, but the idea that the conservative faction Carlson represents is arguing FOR sexism and racism, or challenging the idea that those things are wrong, is simply not true. In the end, Carlson is a capitalist. He has no interest in cutting off the spigot from which his frozen dinner wealth derives. 

But there were many other ideological touchstones of the so-called New Left that have been scrubbed from the narrative. Much of their revolutionary effort was aimed at undermining capitalism, and far from being theoretical, some ingenious real-world efforts were made to displace “the money system.” Labor exchanges were common on college campuses and in big cities; networks of people who would barter for goods and services. Both urban and rural experiments in communal living proliferated, and there was nary a leftist individual or organization that didn’t identify as some shade of socialist, Marxist, or Maoist.

But unlike free love and civil rights, these ideas were not compatible with capitalism. And almost as soon as Hollywood began treating these subjects, a formula developed:

Act One: Naïve idealist hooks up with commune, or radical group.

Act Two: Idealist is gradually disillusioned by the reality of their lifestyle, and beliefs (the leader of the group will either be portrayed as a fool, sucking others into an unworkable scheme, or alternately, an abusive narcissist).

Act Three: Now Former Idealist returns to conventional society, sadder, but wiser. See: Alice’s Restaurant, Fritz the Cat, Where the Buffalo Roam, Across the Universe; even Jenny’s storyline in Forrest Gump is lifted from the genre.

Today we can see this process playing out anew. The “revolutionary” movements of our era that are being embraced by the establishment and its mouthpieces in the corporate media, are the ones that can turn a profit. This is quite a bit easier for them than it was in the 60’s and 70’s, because to be anti-racist, anti-sexist and pro-LGBTQ is now an elite position that’s been decoupled from any radical social or economic theory. It’s a snap for the powerful to glom onto these causes, using them as both profit centers and cudgels against legitimate threats. 

Want to smear a figure, or movement? Just accuse them of racism, sexism or homophobia, on any pretext. The pretext hardly matters in a world full of lonely, depressed, smart-phone addicted people, constantly on the lookout for the latest virtue-signaling opportunity. That was what they did to Bernie Sanders, and it’s what they’ll do to anyone like him who gets anywhere near the levers of power.

In this context, post-modernism and the academic disciplines that have arisen from it can be seen as the greatest boon to corporate profits and elite power ever to be conceived by the minds of humans. Anti-fact, anti-science, premised on the idea that reality itself is a social construct – people who have been taught to think this way are a marketing department’s wet dream. Or a totalitarian government’s. 

And the best part is the way all these ideas can be sold as rebellious assaults on the citadels of power, thereby satisfying the need for activists to feel as if they’re fighting for a cause and changing the world, when really, they’re just making the population dumber and easier to manipulate.

A few examples: 

When the majority are obese, telling fat folks (since all the libs are throwing around “folks” like they grew up on an alfalfa farm, I figured I’d appropriate it) they can look amazing at any size, is pretty appealing if you’re trying to sell clothes or cosmetics to the greatest number of people. But you aren’t sticking it to the beauty industry by promoting obesity as a lifestyle choice. You’re just opening up a new market. 

If children experiencing gender dysphoria are allowed to let it play out, studies show 60-90% will end up not trans, but gay. Not much money to be made in that, though. Now, making these kids dependent on a lifetime of hormone treatments, and possibly surgery – that’s where the big bucks are, or as Dr. Shane Taylor of the gender clinic at Vanderbilt University Hospital in Nashville put it, in a now infamous video, “There’s entire clinics . . . supported just by their phalloplasty’s, and that is like, a fraction of the surgeries they’re doing. These surgeries are labor intensive . . . they require a lot of follow-ups . . . and they make money, they make money for the hospital.”

And that’s a big part of the reason why the medical establishment is working overtime to normalize the idea of applying extreme, irreversible, and life-altering medical intervention to a group that no one would seriously argue should be allowed to get a tattoo.

This is the same medical industry that has made a fortune pushing mood-altering drugs on children as a first resort, instead of suggesting completely free and ultimately safer options like diet and exercise for depression and/or hyperactivity. No filthy lucre to be had in prescribing less cheeseburgers and more sports though. Or in letting a population made up mostly of gays and lesbians come to maturity without their “help.”

And how would obscure crackpot academics like Ibram X. Kendi, or Robin DiAngelo get rich, except by ginning up racial resentments and tensions, then selling their “services” to corporations as a remedy?

Groups like the Black Panthers had an economic component to their activism-giving out free breakfasts to the poor and questioning the system that produced them. Today’s book tour activists diligently stay off those topics. Were they to broach them, their positive media coverage and consulting contracts would dry up pretty quick.

The Black Panthers feeding the poor. Maybe if someone were to offer Kendi or DiAngelo their usual fee . . .

This is why you’ll see a rainbow flag on the side of a Starbucks cup or on the Amazon website, but they’ll fight to the death to keep their stores from unionizing. None of this other crap costs them a nickel. Well, maybe once in awhile when they have to pay a race-hustling $1500-an-hour consultant to do a sensitivity training. But that’s just a rounding error compared to what they make selling it all back to the rubes.

A good barometer for gauging revolutionary ideas then: if it can be packaged as a color scheme that Meryl Streep might want to incorporate into the design of her Oscar night dress, you’ve been had, sunshine. 

When they ban the idea from their media, when they attack any politician who mentions it, when Hollywood pretends the idea doesn’t exist, when to mention the idea is career suicide for members of the professional class, when subscribing to the idea will get you driven out of academia, and when you have to be careful how you mention it on Twitter, lest you be banned: when all those criteria have been met, then you’ll know that you just might have stumbled onto an idea worth having. 

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As Dems Fail to Protect Roe, Sh*tlibs Finally Realize They’re in a Sh*t Party

by Russell Dobular

Anyone who has ever tried to reason with, cajole, prevail upon, talk sense to, or in any other way, shape, or form, get anything out of the Democratic Party, has come to discover pretty quickly that there’s no one manning the phones. At least not if you aren’t promising to show up at their next fundraiser with a T-shirt gun stuffed full of hundred-dollar bills. 

For the average Democratic voter, with nothing to offer beyond their single, solitary, measly little vote, the answer to any and all requests for relief, be they financial, medical, judicial, or racial, is a beet-red, screwed up, fat-cheeked face, howling, “WHAT, DO YOU WANT THE REPUBLICANS TO WIN???!!!!”

More understand this now, than ever before. Everyone will catch on eventually. 

Coming from an arts background, I know some of the shittiest shitlibs that God ever shat. And even they started seeing the glitches in the Matrix when the party dropped old, white, male Joe Biden on their asses and told them they had to suck it up. 

Buttigieg was more their kind of bloodless, technocratic, checking the identity boxes, flavor. And for the Warren folks, even though they focused most of their bitching on the biblical plague of digital serpents that Sanders’ supporters unleashed on Liz after her desperate claim on the debate stage that he told her a woman couldn’t win, it didn’t escape their notice that the press and the party leadership wasn’t giving Warren the ol’ Hillary footrub, in spite of her similarly being in full possession of a vagina.

As she began to gain in the polls, WAPO organized the same op-ed firing squad that had previously been reserved for Sanders, and even Mama Bear took a swipe at her Medicare for All proposal. It was reported that in blue states, incidents of cerebral hemorrhage increased ten-fold after Pelosi attacked Warren more or less openly in the press, with some victims heard to say through clenched teeth and spittle, “Pelosi woman, Warren woman, both woman, ahhhhhhhhhhhh!”

For Sanders voters who had switched to Liz, this was all familiar territory, but the Hillbots in her coalition had no experience with being on the wrong side of the party’s Mean Girls leadership and their obsequious toadies in the press. They really thought -wait for it – that the establishment gave a flying fuck about sexism, and not simply about preserving and extending its own power through whatever vehicle they consider best suited to that objective in any given election.

Did you hear? Liz just put out a Medicare for All proposal. So gross!

 These days they prefer that their corporate tools be on the diverse side so that they can attack all criticism as sexism, homophobia, transphobia, racism; whatever gets the Twitterverse clucking its collective tongue. It also allows them to tell their base that they’re doing something with their time in office other than trading stock on inside information and starting up new wars on behalf of Lockheed Martin. Look! A gay, black, female, press secretary! See, we’re doing stuff!

 On this score, they didn’t want Joe Biden. But they would be damned if they were going to let Warren, or, God forbid, Sanders, anywhere near the White House. Getting a taste of that medicine opened up enough daylight between some former Hillary voters and the establishment for the leaked Roe decision to act as a final straw.

TYT’s Ana Kasparian, in the clip below, is speaking for many when she says she’s done with the party:

Never mind that Kasparian has spent years labelling anyone who said what she’s now screeching at the top of her lungs a grifter, a right-winger, a Russian agent, etc.  In that, as in many things, she is emblematic of her shitlib fellows.

So why does this realization come only now?

Because where healthcare, wages, affordable education, criminal justice reform, and structural racism are concerned, the liberal class are mostly immune from the consequences of belonging to a party that hasn’t taken any meaningful action in any of these areas for decades. Indeed, this is a party that is currently, however theoretically, led by a man who during his long tenure in the Senate did more to create the student loan crisis and the carceral state than any other living politician. That didn’t stop them from vote-blue-no-matter-whoing anyone who had the poor taste to point out the obvious hypocrisy of the Kente cloth party nominating the warden from Cool Hand Luke.

“Seems the American people got rabbit in their blood. Thinking about running. Going North. Show ‘em which way’s North, Pete.”

But abortion. Ah, now we’re talking about an issue they actually care about. 

Let’s face it. The Democrats are the modern stewards of a Protestant work ethic that has long informed the country’s attitudes towards the poor. In the end, in their heart of hearts, they don’t really believe that everyone deserves access to healthcare and education. They believe that everyone deserves the opportunity to gain access to healthcare and education. 

Discrimination is the only true sin in their philosophy. Purge that from the system, and it’s all kosher. If you didn’t get the grades to win a scholarship, and you didn’t land a job that provides healthcare, that’s on you, isn’t it? Should have cracked those books before you got that cancer diagnosis.

It’s not an exaggeration to say that the thing that held this whole repulsive clusterfuck of narcissistic self-regard disguised as a political project together, was Roe. As long as the right to an abortion was nominally protected, the shitlibs could always justify themselves. Roe was the first thing they mentioned when trying to bully others into voting for the D-designated, psychopath du jour, and it was their last line of defense when confronted with the real-world uselessness of their party. But now . . .

Now, the Democrats have failed at the one thing the powerful suburban wine mom lobby entrusted them with. And they are pissed. Perhaps not as pissed as someone who can’t discharge their student loans in bankruptcy because of Biden, or someone who got thrown out of their house because of Obama, or someone who’s serving twenty years on a BS drug charge because of Bill Clinton, but still, pretty pissed.

Pissed enough to withhold their vote? Yes, I think so. Not in an intentional, willful way. After all these years of vote-shaming and Bernie Bro blaming, they’ll never openly proclaim their intention to stop voting. They just won’t make the time between soccer practice and Chardonnay to get down to the polling station. That’s how it usually works; not with a movement in the streets, but with thousands individually deciding they have better things to do with their Tuesday. 

That’s why voter enthusiasm is such a reliable predictor of outcomes.

Voting is a pain in the ass in this country. In order to win you need your side motivated enough to dodge the dragons, swim the moat, defeat the Gorgon, stand on line, present ID, and then, should they make it through all that, pull the lever, punch the chads, touch the screen, sacrifice the goat, or perform whatever other bizarre ritual the particular locality requires in order for voters to simply register their preference for Douchebag A over Douchebag B, along with whether or not Main Street needs a new stop light.

So, how is the post-SCOTUS leak polling looking for Democrats? Not good. 

While Dem enthusiasm to vote has increased by 6%, GOP enthusiasm has gone up by 2%, giving Dems only a +4% net gain-not nearly enough to dig them out of the hole they’ve been in all year. Morning Consult/Politico shows a current 7% gap on enthusiasm with 54% of Dems excited to vote, vs. 61% of the GOP.

Remember, this polling was done well after the SCOTUS draft leak. Which means that even in the face of an almost certain repeal of Roe, Dems cannot whip what’s left of their base into a full-on voting frenzy. 

Pelosi refusing to rescind her endorsement of Henry Cuellar, a pro-life Democrat, who’s house was raided by the FBI in January for still unknown reasons, probably isn’t helping. James Biggest-Scumbag-In-Congress-And-That’s-Saying-Something Clyburn going down to Texas to campaign for him, literally two days after the leak, might not have been the best of optics either.

This kind of fuck you peasants, governing style from the Democrats has been on display for a long time. But as long as Roe held, it was mostly invisible to the voter-donors that they cared about. Now that even those are getting the middle finger from a leadership that nonetheless wasted no time sending out the fundraising e-mails as soon as the draft decision first appeared in Politico, the Dems are down to MSNBC viewers and the immediate families of office holders. Have you seen the ratings for MSNBC? You can’t win an election on that.

While a lot of Dem politicians secretly greeted the news of Roe’s death with a sigh of relief, thinking it would save them from a midterm rout, failing to do the one thing they were charged with doing by all the disparate elements of their dwindling coalition, probably signifies the end of the party. Without enough voters left to hold meaningful power after 2022, and particularly after 2024, they are likely to go the way of the Whigs, over the next few election cycles.

The only question now is, what comes after? My money’s on a few decades of social chaos, fascism, and de facto civil war. At the end of which, Bernie Sanders’ disembodied head in a jar may finally be given some latitude to reform the healthcare system.

. . . now let’s talk about the high cost of prescription drugs

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A War for the 21st Century: Putin’s Goals are Bigger Than Ukraine

by Russell Dobular

“If you should go skating on the thin ice of modern life,
Dragging behind you the silent reproach of a million tear-stained eyes,
don’t be surprised when a crack in the ice appears under your feet.”

-Roger Waters

When Putin attacked Ukraine, some part of me said, Of course. No way we were getting off with just a once-in-a-century global pandemic. That’s only the first seal broke. Legend has it there’s six more. 

Things fall apart.

When they do, an infernal momentum takes hold that’s impossible to stop, or even slow most of the time.

That’s what Chamberlain didn’t understand, stepping off the plane, proudly waving around his little piece of paper with Der Fuhrer’s signature on it. The thing was bigger than both of them by then. A historical inevitability.

When Shiva works up a powerful thirst, the blood will flow until she’s good and satisfied. Entropy will have its way, and many will call it justice.

From the slave markets of Libya to the killing fields of Cambodia, we’ve left a lot of pissed off people in the wake of our Pax Americana. Those who have given parents, children, and limbs to our armies will be cheering for Russia right about now and hoping that we do something incredibly stupid. Like impose a no-fly zone on the request of a corrupt comedian.

So far, cooler heads are prevailing but at the Guggenheim last week, with the kind of gesture that would make a second year art student at The New School say, “Too pretentious,” a group of 15 artists and activists threw 350 paper planes across the museum’s famous winding walkways, in order to call for a no-fly zone over Ukraine.

“Imagine all the people, demanding nuclear annihilation for all the world-er-er-her-er-errrllld.”

Artists often believe that if their cohort ran things, utopia would naturally follow. But the only examples we have from history of artists with real political power are Nero, Hitler, and George W. Bush (whose work is featured below). This does not fill one with confidence in their geo-strategic judgment as a class.

 “We had that one in Abu-Gharib for ten years. Turns out she was just a school teacher, like she said all along. So, I painted her portrait. Figured it was the least I could do. Heh-heh-heh.”

Putin has no artistic pretensions. At least none that he shares with the public. His pleasures run more towards polonium and the occasional bare-chested horseback ride.  The problem is he craps bigger than any President we’ve had in recent memory. You’d have to go back to Nixon to find an American leader with the kind of vicious sewer-rat instincts necessary to go ten rounds with Vlad. This is only Round One and Biden is already looking tired.

Putin has been plotting this moment for a long, long time, and it never had much to do with Ukraine. It has everything to do with the way the Americans unleashed their hedge funds, banks, and political consultants to pick over the bones of the failed Soviet state at the end of the Cold War. By the time they were done having their filthy way with the Russian economy, the only growth industries left were organ sales and prostitution. 

To keep the gravy train running, Bill Clinton sent his own people in ‘96 to interfere in the Russian elections by advising degenerate drunk Boris Yeltsin, who was polling at 6%. With Bubba’s help, which included securing a $10 billion dollar loan for Russia from the IMF, he went on to defeat his Communist opponent by 13%, in an election so crooked that bombed-out Chechnya was recorded to have handed 70% of their vote to the man who had ordered the bombings.

Enter Putin.

I would insert the Russian for “Payback’s a bitch,” here, but Google no longer provides that service.

It’s true that Russia has traditionally been ruled by one strongman or another, first under the Tsars, and then under the Party. But it didn’t have to be this way. Not this time. With the collapse of the USSR there was a hunger on the part of the Russian people to join the West and to adopt its then vaunted democratic institutions. Rock n’ Roll, blue jeans, Jefferson, all that jazz.

What they got instead was an ass-raping from Goldman Sachs, under the auspices of a US-controlled puppet government. Naturally, they turned for protection from their rapacious new American “friends,” to the devil they’ve always known. And right up until he crossed the border into Ukraine, Putin pretty much held up his end of the bargain. For two decades he made sure that if anyone was going to grow fat exploiting Russia, at least they’d be Russians.

It wasn’t much, but it was something and compared to the chaos and humiliation of the Yeltsin years, it wasn’t half bad. At least you got to keep your kidneys, and if your daughter chose prostitution, it would only be because of an affinity for the lifestyle and not because the family had run out of tires to trade for eggs.

The big question now is whether Western sanctions will have the desired effect of knocking the Russian economy right back to where it was during the giddy years when Goldman was “advising” the country into bankruptcy.

The other related question is whether a population that burned its own capital in order to deny shelter to Napoleon’s troops, and that fought the battle of Stalingrad, five men to a rifle with the understanding that when one died the next would pick it up and keep fighting, are going to be broken by an absence of Target stores and Big Macs. That probably depends on how much they perceive the sanctions to be part of a Russophobic Western crusade. 

On that score, kicking Russian children out of the Paralympics and firing Russian conductors from orchestras might not be the way to go. But going all the way back to Salem, Americans have never been ones to let common sense get in the way of a good witch hunt. Once the wood is stacked and the pitch ignited, its best for rational, fair-minded people to keep their heads down and their mouths shut until the fire burns itself out and the mob moves on to another target. Last month it was Joe Rogan, the month before that it was the unvaccinated, this month it’s everything Russian, and next month; who knows? Tweet the wrong thing and it could be you. 

No matter how the war turns out; whether Bloody Hillary gets her longed for Afghanistan Part Deux, with the Russians bogged down fighting an armed insurrection for years to come (unlikely); Russia and Ukraine come to an agreement over the next few weeks (much more likely); or some downed drone over Krakow sets off World War Three (I give it 50-50 odds), Putin will come out of this having achieved his overall strategic objective: to accelerate the decline of American power and influence.

The non-Western world has been watching our moves closely and taking notes, drawing the obvious conclusion that as long as the dollar remains the world’s reserve currency, Washington can always impose devastating sanctions on any nation that defies it’s wishes. In response, the beginnings of an alternative economic system have been taking hold.

First, Russia’s banks announced that they would respond to Visa and Mastercard pulling out of the country by switching over to China’s UnionPay. Not long after, our Saudi “allies” floated the idea of pricing oil sales to China in Yuan rather than the dollar. And while Western nations have been more or less uniform in imposing sanctions, there are a lot of non-Western nations out there like India, Turkey, Brazil, and South Africa that have diligently refrained from criticizing Russia’s actions, and continue their trade relationships.

The war in Ukraine will likely resolve in a negotiated peace over the next few weeks, but the war for the 21st Century is just beginning. Both our enemies and frenemies will continue to poke and probe our weaknesses, with the long-term strategic objective of creating a multi-polar world where the West is one power base among many and, ideally, the weaker one relative to Asia. Bringing this future into being is Putin’s true strategic objective and whatever the realities on the ground in Ukraine, so far, all signs suggest that he’s succeeding.

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Photos: CC 4.0, Public Domain (Wikimedia Commons)

In a Duel of Dying Empires, Could Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine Have Been Prevented?

After weeks of building up his forces in a way that screamed, “This is not a drill,” Vladimir Putin finally gave the order on Thursday morning to invade Ukraine. This was perhaps the single greatest act of white-on-white violence since the release of Taylor Swift’s Welcome to New York album.

The sanctions from Western powers rolled in fast and furious, right alongside the obligatory dumb takes. Stephen King wasted no time bringing his own Master of Shitlibbery perspective to Twitter:

Despite their posturing, it’s hard to believe that even the most loyal of Biden’s supporters honestly feel he’s up to the task of mastering a wily opponent like Putin.

After Putin gave a speech this week, explaining and justifying his decision to invade Ukraine, the Western press predictably used it as a pretext to label Putin as crazy and out of touch simply because much of the speech contained exaggerations and ahistorical claims regarding Ukrainian independence. But lies and exaggerations are par for the course in war propaganda and considering Putin’s longevity as head of state in what is essentially a country of gangsters, it seems foolish to believe that his words weren’t calculated for maximum domestic appeal.

Wall Street had a bad minute or two as Russian artillery began to bombard Ukrainian cities in the wee hours of Thursday morning, but they needn’t have worried. Later in the day, when Joe Biden announced the raft of sanctions that we had been led to believe were going to destroy the Russian economy, every trader on the street cursed themselves for selling in the morning. By the closing bell, the Nasdaq had swung from an over 3% loss, to a 3.4% gain, its biggest one-day move since November 2008.  

While Germany did place a hold on the Nordstream 2 natural gas pipeline, at the same time joining the UK, US, and France in targeting Russian sovereign debt, banks and oligarchs, Putin has evidently been preparing for such an eventuality for quite some time. For the past ten years, Russia has been reducing its debt and building up reserves of foreign assets, so that it can now withstand a regime of Western sanctions, possibly for years. In order to truly have an impact on Russia’s economy, the sanctions would have to target Russian oil and gas sales, and/or cut the country off from SWIFT, the international banking system that underlies trade. Neither can be done without the effects rebounding back on the West, which is both heavily dependent on Russian energy supplies, and deeply invested in Russian assets.  

Putin surely thought all this through before making his move. To suggest otherwise is ridiculous. China will be watching these developments closely and thus far liking what they see as they consider their own options regarding long-standing thorn in their side, Taiwan. If the West won’t take the financial hit that would come with meaningful sanctions against Russia, our biggest customer doesn’t have a lot to worry about. And boots on the ground? In Asia? They know we don’t have the stones for that anymore.

No, Ukraine isn’t the start of World War III. It’s the warm-up act. The big show hasn’t started yet, but it’s getting closer and with this week’s events its features start to take on definition.

We reacted to the news of the Russian invasion in our latest podcast episode. Click the player below to hear our full conversation, and and subscribe to our podcast on any major podcast player.

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Photo: JBouchez (CC 4.0)

Daring to Comment on the Neil Young Joe Rogan Spotify Showdown

Mostly, the podcaster gig is a blast. Get yourself a microphone, connect it to the internet, and start spewing your opinions consistently and with some modicum of wit, or at least personality, and while the world might not beat a path to your door, a small following is sure to come a’ knocking. Keep it going long enough and that following can grow into the thousands, and maybe more, even in this environment of ever more repressive algorithms constricting our rights to free speech and virtual-public assembly.

But there’s a downside to having a platform. I’ll give you an example: one time I was walking up Broadway and I saw a crowd of people gathered at the stage door of the old Ed Sullivan theater. I figured they were waiting for David Letterman to come out, so I decided to go stand with them and see what kind of ironic prank he was going to pull. Next to me was the kind of freak who ends up on the news sooner or later, usually for gunning down some poor schmuck who spent their whole life dreaming of being on a TV show, never thinking about the way that kind of exposure can end up attracting the capricious attention of the terminally weird.

Joan London came walking up, gamely waving at the crowd as she made her way to the entrance. Then she noticed this skinny little goateed weirdo in a denim jacket saying over and over again, “Hi Joan, hi Joan, hi Joan, hi Joan . . .” I could see her shoulders visibly shudder and her face stiffen, even as she maintained her Queen of England smiling and waving routine. And then she was gone.

In that moment, I saw in her eyes the secret fear that any public figure with a recognizable mug experiences: the fear of being murdered by your audience.

These days that fear usually isn’t quite so literal, although if you’re even D-list famous it’s always a possibility. But social media and cancel culture have made the idea of going to all the trouble of finding out where the target of your madness is going to be, purchasing a weapon, buying a bus ticket, standing around waiting, and then finally taking them out, always with the risk that you’re going to be gunned down yourself by the authorities, terribly anachronistic. If Mark David Chapman had access to social media and thousands of like-minded, Twitter-obsessed morons, he’d likely have just kept his ass in Hawaii and started a #Lennonhypocrite hashtag.

Today the Chapmans and the Hinckley’s and the Squeaky’s are all hunched over their computer screens and their smartphones, constantly on the prowl for meaning in the form of ideas or people they can disagree with by way of defining themselves. They’ll come for you if you’re Joe Rogan, and they’ll come for you if you’re just a couple of jerks with the aforementioned small, disturbed fan base defending Joe Rogan. Or Jordan Peterson. Or Alex Jones. Not because you necessarily like them, but because you recognize that your speech rights are only as protected as theirs. 

But that’s a concept that requires more depth of thought than psychopaths and narcissists are generally capable of. If the medium is the message, the message our medium is madness.

This brings us to this past week, when legendary songwriter Neil Young picked a fight he’d surely lose. Objecting to Joe Rogan’s comments regarding covid vaccines, Young gave Spotify an ultimatum: they would have to choose between hosting his music catalogue or Rogan’s podcast on their streaming platform.

Spotify chose the latter, a decision easily predictable given their blockbuster exclusive deal with Rogan’s chart-topping podcast inked in 2020.

In response to this conflict, we posted what we thought was a fairly innocuous joke on our page: a statement that we would continue to host our podcast on Spotify because we like both Joe Rogan and Neil Young, and we need all the listeners we can get.

Reactions were mostly positive, but we got a far bigger and more intense response than anticipated, and so we thought we’d follow up by recording a podcast on the topic.

Listen below, and subscribe to our podcast on any major podcast player – yeah, including Spotify.


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Photo: Joe Rogan Experience, Per Ole Hagen

Nancy, ‘Queen of Stonks:’ Why Pelosi Belongs in Prison

by Russell Dobular

SEC Rule 10b-5 prohibits corporate officers and directors or other insider employees from using confidential corporate information to reap a profit (or avoid a loss) by trading in the Company’s stock. This rule also prohibits “tipping” of confidential corporate information to third parties.

An “insider” is an officer, director, 10% stockholder and anyone who possesses inside information because of his or her relationship with the Company or with an officer, director or principal stockholder of the Company. Rule 10b-5’s application goes considerably beyond just officers, directors and principal stockholders. This rule also covers any employee who has obtained material non-public corporate information, as well as any person who has received a “tip” from an Insider of the Company concerning information about the Company that is material and nonpublic, and trades (i.e. purchase or sells) the Company’s stock or other securities.

This policy also applies to your family members who reside with you, anyone else who lives in your household, and family members who do not live in your household but whose securities transactions are directed by you or are subject to your influence or control, as well as trusts or other entities for which you make investment decisions.”

Based on all of the above, Nancy and Paul Pelosi should be getting fitted for orange jumpsuits right about now. That’s what would be happening to you or me, or Martha Stewart, were our stock picks to repeatedly, mysteriously, outperform the S&P 500, and leave the annual returns of professional money managers in the dust. Once may be a lucky pick. Twice even. A good year here and there is plausible. But the Pelosis’ “good luck” isn’t confined to a particular company, transaction, or calendar year. Trade after trade and year after year they bury the smartest minds on Wall Street. There is no reasonable explanation for this feat other than the proposition that they are trading on inside information. And really, how could they not be? For a member of Congress, much less the Speaker of the House, to trade stock is like a referee making a bet on the game that they’re about to call. Let’s go back to the summer of 2021 for an example:

In May and June, investment manager and spouse to the Speaker, Paul Pelosi (this is how they work the scam-Nancy doesn’t execute the trades), purchased $11M worth of risky call options in Amazon, Apple, Alphabet (Google), and Nvidia. These types of trades only pay off if the stock reaches a “strike price,” by a certain date. If the target price isn’t met in the proper time frame, the options expire worthless. 

Adding to the risk was the fact that the House was at the very same moment creating anti-trust legislation that would better regulate large tech companies.  In the end, a few weak proposals were drafted and passed by the House Judiciary Committee, none of which were seen as a major threat to Silicon Valley, and that weren’t brought up for a full vote in the House in any case. All of the stocks Pelosi had purchased went through the roof, partly in response to the toothless proposals.

While this doesn’t constitute hard proof of insider trading (the Pelosi’s are far too wily to do anything that wouldn’t meet the “reasonable doubt” standard in a court of law), the sheer mathematical impossibility of their annual gains simply can not be explained any other way. 

How good are the Pelosi’s’ trades?  In 2021, they made a 69% gain on their investments. Warren Buffet, widely considered one of the greatest investors of all time, did 20%. So did George Soros, a man so canny that he is often credited with causing a collapse in the British pound in the Fall of 1992 by heavily shorting the currency. Peter Lynch, the Wall Street legend who took Fidelity’s Magellan fund from $18M to $13B between 1977-1990, did 26%. And yet the Pelosi’s left them all in the dust, more than doubling Lynch’s returns, and more than tripling Buffet’s and Soros’.  

Funny side note, the Twitter account “Nancy Pelosi Portfolio Tracker,” which produced the below graphic, was shut down immediately upon Jack Dorsey’s exit as CEO.

This was after they had received a “cease and desist order from a lawyer representing someone high up in the [Political] office.”  Apparently having her corruption laid out for all the world to see on Twitter was putting a bug up the ass of the reigning Queen of Stonks. But as the erstwhile Speaker herself has trenchantly observed, “We are a free market economy.”   

In that spirit, a plethora of Tik Tok groups and websites have sprung up to track the financial maneuvers of the Speaker and her husband, so that retail investors can pile into trades that are widely perceived as being among that rarest of beasts in the world of stock picking: a sure thing.  Time and again we have seen that any stock the Pelosi’s buy is almost guaranteed to outperform the broader market. 

As Christopher Josephs, co-founder of the social media investing app Iris, which helps users track the investments of celebrities, friends, and political figures, told Yahoo Finance Live, “The reason why Speaker Pelosi became so popular was because every trade she was making inevitably turned out to be such a long-term winner.  Albeit the entire market has gone up significantly, but these are very, very risky bets because she’s been buying LEAP options as opposed to just stock…It started early in 2020 with Crowdstrike (CRWD), and then she bought Tesla (TSLA), and there were some laws passed pro for the EV market…Then she bought Google (GOOGGOOGL) and then the laws came out that they weren’t going to go after Big Tech.”  Each of the stocks Josephs mentions were up 20-30%, as of October, 2021. 

But if you, dear peasant, want to grab some crumbs off the Congressional Corruption table by trading like Nancy does, you may not have a lot of time left to get in on the action.  After Business Insider revealed that 54 Congressional lawmakers and 182 senior staffers were in violation of the STOCK ACT, which requires the reporting of all stock trades made by members of Congress and their staffs, momentum began to build for broad reform. 

Moderate Senator Jon Ossoff, of all people, seemingly in response to the Speaker’s contention that members of Congress should be allowed to trade unfettered because capitalism or some shit, has introduced a bill that would ban members of Congress from trading individual stocks, with the penalty being total forfeiture of their Congressional salaries.  Senator Josh Hawley is about to introduce a competing bill, which would fine lawmakers their total profits if they are caught trading. Given the kind of money the Pelosi’s and others are making off their insider moves, Hawley’s penalty is probably the one with the most teeth.  Nancy spends more on gourmet ice cream than her Congressional salary can cover.

What neither proposal includes is jail time.  ‘Cause jail is only for the little people.  And occasionally Martha Stewart.

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This Christmas, America is Officially Pottersville

by Russell Dobular

This is a strange holiday season.  To gather, or not to gather: that is the question for many as Omicron bursts onto the scene just in time to turn our seasonal festivities into millions of individual party games of Covid Russian Roulette.  

Does Aunt Jen look a little under the weather?  Or will it be the friend from work who looks perfectly fine that turns Christmas dinner into a super-spreader event?  

Should I go out on New Year’s Eve, or content myself for yet another year with the depressing televised Times Square ball drop? 

Is it okay to go see the local Christmas tree lighting? It’s outdoors after all. But the new strain is twice as contagious as Delta, so will being outside really make a difference?  

Or do we just stay home and do nothing?  Again?

The only tradition we can truly rely on in times like these are the one thing that, by their nature, will never change: our Holiday Movie Classics.

Miracle on 34th Street (favorite line: Of all the isms in the world, the woist of ‘em is ‘commoicialism’), A Christmas Carol (the Alistair Sims version), A Charlie Brown Christmas, A Christmas Story, Home Alone 2, Elf, Polar Express . . .

Even as our world crumbles around us, these remain frozen in time, representing not only a fantasy holiday season, but a fantasy America; one that is vaguely, permanently, stuck somewhere between 1932-1955, and where the nation always lives up to its highest ideals.  

It is a world of small towns, snowy vistas, tow-headed tykes, red rocket sleds, prosperous small businesses, and contented shop keepers. It is an America whose people are innocent and yet somehow possessed of an innate, native wisdom. Salt of the Earth types abound while the bad guys are either banished from the merrymaking in the final reel or invited to join in once they’ve seen the error of their ways. By the end we all learn the true meaning of Christmas, which, in our national cinema, is synonymous with the true meaning of America.  

No film exemplifies the formula better than Frank Capra’s classic, It’s a Wonderful Life. Capra, an Italian immigrant deeply enamored of his adopted nation and its institutions wove together the “America as Christmas” conceit more effectively and explicitly than any other filmmaker before or since. The “no man is poor who has friends,” thing? I tear up every time. Every. Single. Time.

Far from being naïve about the dark side of America, Capra’s two most enduring films, It’s a Wonderful Life, and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, both pit his favorite Everyman, Jimmy Stewart, against figures that represent an America gone wrong: greedy old businessman, Mr. Potter, in the former, and the corrupt Washington establishment in the latter.

But in Capra’s telling, one good, plain-spoken man, sure of his purpose and just in his cause, can always triumph over the rapacious and the corrupt. His honesty and truthfulness will ultimately rally the people to his cause, ensuring that the nation will never fall into the hands of the Mr. Potters of the world.  Hell, even that Sam Wainwright “Hee-haw,” jerk comes through in the end.

It goes without saying that this was always a, shall we say, generous version, of how America worked. Ask any black or brown person. Or all the women that Capra would never have considered choosing as a protagonist. But cultural ideals are always made up of myths and fantasies intended to point us towards our better selves. Without stories like It’s a Wonderful Life, would people ever look around at the country they actually live in and realize how far short it falls of what they want it to be? Of what it’s supposed to be? Of what they’ve been told it was?

It is in that spirit that I watch the film now, in this hellish plague year, and come to a terrible conclusion: 2021 America isn’t the one where George Bailey learns what the world would have been like without him and then returns to Bedford Falls with a renewed sense of purpose and vigor. This is America as Pottersville, the dog-eat-dog slum that Mr. Potter creates in Bailey’s absence.

A healthcare system that bankrupts its citizens; a childcare system that is completely unaffordable for the working class; a political system that is entirely owned and operated by the wealthy and corporate interests; an education system whose quality depends on your zip code; a level of wealth inequality that is truly medieval in scale; a news media that only exists to spread elite propaganda; a workforce that hasn’t had a raise in 50 some-odd years, even as productivity has soared; skyrocketing home prices making the market unaffordable for young families while large corporations buy up what little housing stock is left: this is a society that only Mr. Potter could feel at home in.  

For the rest of us, America has become the nightmare place that George beholds after his near-suicide. Like him, we look around at this horror our society has become, bug-eyed, disgusted, confused, and desperate. Only for us, there is no Clarence the Angel to set things right. The closest thing we had was Bernie Sanders and, in the end, he was no match for the forces of greed and ignorance that have taken control of our country. No one is coming to save us. We’re stuck here in Pottersville. Forever.  

And so it is a strange feeling watching these films this year. They are just as they ever were. But we are not the same. Like the boy in Polar Express, we have lost our capacity to Believe, and all the magic bells in the world aren’t going to fix it this time.  

Universal Healthcare might do the trick. Or Student Loan Forgiveness. Drop a $15 Minimum Wage on us and we may hear the music once more. Hell, even dental, vision and hearing coverage for Grandma would go a long way.

But we aren’t getting any of that. Not ever. Not without social collapse and possibly a civil war in between. We know that now.  

No, we don’t live in Bedford Falls. Never did. Us Americans, we’re straight outta Pottersville.

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Photo: It’s A Wonderful Life, Senate Democrats

Russiagate Collapses: Show Us on the Puppet Where the Media Touched You

by Russell Dobular

Hey, Little Liberal. We know you’re probably feeling pretty betrayed right now, and maybe you feel like you can’t express those emotions because they’re too big and scary. Especially because it didn’t just happen to you – most of your friends and family were right there with you hanging on every twist and turn of the Russiagate story for four whole years. What’s even worse is most of them still have a relationship with your abuser. How can you save yourself without confronting them? 

So, you stay silent even as The Maddow walks around free, never taking any responsibility for what she and her friends did to you. You try to move on with your life, but with every new arrest of the people ultimately responsible for turning you into a drooling McCarthyite troll, your feelings of shame, worthlessness and stupidity keep on getting bigger. You try to distract yourself by obsessing on 1/6, but your heart just isn’t in it. When people bring it up you want to scream, “Are we really going to do this again!?  Really?!”  

Now I’m going to tell you something huuuuuge, and it’s important that you listen: there’s nothing wrong with you. Your reaction is a perfectly healthy response to being lied to and gaslit by corporate media for fun and profit for your whole entire little life. Because the truth is, it didn’t start with Russiagate, did it? That’s what made you finally notice the abuse. But it started waaaay before, didn’t it?

WMD’s were the thing that first made you think that maybe something wasn’t right about the relationship. But then they told you it wasn’t the whole media that lied to you, it was just that one Judith Miller woman, and that made it all better.

Then they told you Donald Trump would never be the President. Never, ever, never. Not ever. They promised you that he’d lose in a landslide and that your absolute favoritist boss bitch Hillary might even take Texas. Texas! Boy, would that be something! 

On the day of the election, The New York Times told you Hill had an 84% chance of winning. You were soooooo excited that you never saw it coming. You felt so betrayed when Trump won. Finally, you were ready to walk out on your abuser.  

But then they explained it in a way that made total sense: Russia! It was all Russia’s fault, just like in those old movies from the 80’s. And it was time to go all Rambo on their Commie asses! So not only did you stay in the relationship, you committed to it harder than you ever had before. Because Democracy Dies in Darkness, or something.

For four long years Maddow and her buddies passed you around between them. And the worst part is, you let them. It didn’t matter how many Russiagate stories turned out to be total bs, or how little sense it made that Russia was able to change an election outcome with $100,000 worth of ads on Facebook, or how the same media that was filling up your little head with all this stuff had also gifted Donald Trump with $5B in free advertising, something they never seemed to want to talk about.

You didn’t ask questions, because it was too scary to ask them, and you were hooked. And the truth is, on levels that you’re ashamed to admit, you stuck around because you liked what they were doing to you. It gave you a sense of purpose and meaning. It made you feel like part of a club – like you were one of the good people fighting against absolute evil. Like Star Wars, only with pussy hats instead of lightsabers and sick burns instead of X-wings. Take that, Darth Putin!

Then came the Mueller report. You tried to swallow the “well, he might not have said there was collusion, but he didn’t say there wasn’t either” spin, but it just made you feel cheap and dirty. After that, when you’d see your friends hunkered down in a dark room, letting Bob Acosta, or Joy Ann Reid, wash all over them, you felt the urge to save them. But it was all you could do to save yourself. You stopped watching. You stopped listening. You tried to move on with your life.

But now with the arrest of Michael Sussman for lying to the FBI about his work for the Clinton campaign and Igor Dachenko for basically inventing the Steele dossier, it looks more and more like it was all made up. . .By the Clinton campaign! Even your fav boss bitch lied to you. You feel so used. So ashamed. Why didn’t you do something? Why didn’t you stop them?

Listen little liberal, that’s just stinking thinking. None of this was your fault. There’s no one to blame for what happened but the people who took advantage of your trusting nature. You were brought up to believe that reporters were trustworthy grownups who based their reporting on this thing called objectivity, and that because of it they’d never lie to you. That made you an easy target. There was nothing you could have done to stop them.

Now is the time for you to reclaim your power. Now is the time for you to look them all in the eye and say, “I am strong! I am powerful! I am not going to go down the rabbit hole of your obsessive 1/6 coverage, not even when the committee hearings start!”

Go ahead! Say it! Say it loud and proud!

Now, don’t you feel better? It’s going to be a long road to recovery Little Liberal, but you’ve taken the first step on your journey to reclaim your personal power today.

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Photo: Rob Walsh, Public Domain Dedication

Weenie Roast: 5 Reasons the Dems Got Toasted, and Why 2022 is Going to Be Even Worse

by Russell Dobular

From a drunken, jibbering James Carville appearing on CNN to lament the state of the race in Virginia a few days out, to the NBC poll that dropped over the weekend showing Joe Biden with a 42% approval rating, there was bad Juju for the Democrats written all over the first major election night of the Biden Presidency. As the results unfolded, with Youngkin holding a lead from jump that shrank but never disappeared, and Ciatterelli holding a much tighter, but also consistent lead in New Jersey, a state that should have been an easy lay-up, the punditocracy cast around for easy explanations while diligently avoiding the hard ones that get your network barred from sit-down interviews with the President.

Everyone’s favorite convert to the Church of Shitlibbery, Nicole Wallace, unbelievably tried to blame the multi-car Democrat electoral pile up on the fact that we pulled out of Afghanistan, as if Americans are sitting around their kitchen tables, sadly lamenting the unfulfilled promise of a woke Kabul.

And all the flavors of racism were invoked, as has become de rigueur in the face of Republican victories: Brianna Keilar at CNN, blamed “dog whistle racism” for Youngkin’s victory in a state that elected its first black female Lieutenant Governor right alongside him, and the ever reliable Queen of Dumb Takes, Joy Ann Reid, confidently declared that parents’ expressed concerns about “education,” (air quotes, Reid’s), is “code for white parents don’t like the idea of teaching about race,” apparently without digging into the demographics of Virginia voters expressing those concerns, a large number of whom were Asian, Latino and African-American.

But the real reason behind these losses and the even more devastating and consequential losses to come is far simpler: no one likes a weenie. If you look up the definition of “weenie” in the dictionary, then plaster the face of pretty much any Democrat you can think of next to it, 9 times out of 10 they’ll go together like outed sex procurers to the powerful and mysterious suicides

Okay, that may not be the only reason, but running candidates with faces as eminently punchable as Terry McAuliffe’s, may just not be the winning strategy that it appears to be if you only talk to the kinds of people who don’t want to punch Terry McAuliffe: a tiny subset of Washington insiders and donors, along with maybe a few of his closest relatives, and probably not even those if you get them liquored up enough to be honest about it. 

For everybody else, he’s just a Clinton-era bag man with the same weird Trump fixation that his old Domme Hillary rode right into embittered obscurity. So, here’s the real deal top 5 takeaways that didn’t make it into Politico:

1. Let’s Go Brandon

Honestly, we could just stop here. Nothing better demonstrates the way the left and the right have switched places than the eruption of this phrase and the desperate attempts of the establishment and its media mouthpieces to do what they always do with dissent in the post-Trump era: define it as dangerous right-wing extremism, if not outright domestic terrorism. It used to be the left that tweaked the nose of the powerful with a mix of subversive humor, vulgarity, and impromptu guerilla theater.

“Let’s Go Johnson”

Now it’s the right that challenges the absurd hypocrisy and dishonesty of our institutions by parodying one hapless NBC reporter’s attempt to pretend that “Fuck Joe Biden” wasn’t really being chanted at the NASCAR race she was covering. 

Meanwhile, the left has taken on the role of its one-time nemesis, the humorless censor, ruling every challenge to its authority as uncouth, uncivilized, dangerous, and out of bounds. America has always hated a stiff and a scold, and while those types have occasionally held sway, they’ve never held it for long, and have always been regarded with derision and loathing in the end. Welcome to the beginning of the end.

2. $1,400 Doesn’t Buy As Many Votes As It Used To

What exactly has Joe Biden done for you, other than send out a check for $600 less than what he originally promised?  Now, here’s an even more salient question: what has Joe Biden done for you that Trump wouldn’t have done? Exactly. You see the problem here.

3. You Can Fuck With People’s Heads, But You Better Not Fuck With Their Kids

For several years now, the identitarian left has been proudly touting its support of ideas about race that are derived from Critical Race Theory. As soon as it became clear how deeply unpopular those ideas are, not only with white people, but with many POC, they began to swing between denying that CRT exists (which would be news to originators like Derrick Bell and Kimberle Crenshaw), claiming with intentional obtuseness that even if it does exist, it’s a theory about outcomes in the legal system that certainly isn’t being taught to children, and finally, asserting that it doesn’t represent anything more than an attempt to teach America’s history of slavery and segregation in schools.

No, CRT itself isn’t being taught to children, and yes, it did begin as a theory of law. But since its inception, it has morphed into a General Unified Theory of race that colors the way the “soft sciences” and humanities are taught at the university level, and the students who have directly or indirectly absorbed these precepts in the course of their academic training then bring that perspective to the way they teach children

This is what parents are reacting to, because most people aren’t all that keen on the idea of having their children taught that they’re divided between race-based oppressed and oppressor classes, before they’re old enough to reliably tie their shoes. Yes, there is a conversation to be had about the way slavery and Jim Crow are taught in schools (badly, like pretty much every other historical topic), but do we really believe that liberal Northern Virginia parents voted for Youngkin because they don’t want their kids learning about Rosa Parks?

These are separate issues that proponents of CRT desperately want to conflate because most people are not actually against teaching children about slavery, but they are very much against having their children taught to see themselves as victims and victimizers. The more Democrats are tied to these ideas, the better for the GOP.

4. Covid Fatigue

Based on where they rank Covid among their concerns, at this point a majority of Americans probably feel that the juice of further lockdowns, mask mandates and general restrictions, isn’t worth the squeeze. This puts the party that’s been blowing Dr. Anthony “what could possibly go wrong with funding gain of function research in China” Fauci for two years running, at a distinct disadvantage. Throw into the mix the fact that Florida and some other Southern states are doing as well, and in some cases better, than covid restriction model citizen states like California and New York, and you’re looking at the makings of virtual GOP hegemony after 2022, as people run right into the arms of the party most likely to just leave them the fuck alone already.

5. Personally, I Could Give Two Shits Who Shits Where, But . . .

. . . maybe that’s not the hill we want to die on? Sometimes I just want to ask Democrats, “Do you know any normal people?”  Y’know, the kind of people who don’t believe there are seven sexes, or at least don’t believe that extreme outliers are all that relevant to their day-to-day existence, and are also deeply uncomfortable with the idea of sharing a bathroom with someone of the opposite biological sex, no matter how they identify? Set aside what your opinions on the subject are; we’re talking political realities here. If I had to come up with a policy proposal that would piss off parents enough to overwhelmingly flip to the GOP, I couldn’t come up with anything better than imposing gender-neutral bathrooms in public schools, without offering single-sex options. All it took was one sexual assault in such a bathroom to undermine the Democrats’ suburban strategy.

This sort of incident was inevitable, not because of gender neutrality, but because unfortunately, sexual assault is a thing, and it’s a thing that sometimes happens in bathrooms. Thing is, when it happens in a gender-neutral bathroom in a public school, now you’ve realized parents’ worst fears, and they’re going to vote accordingly.

On a final note, as I wrote this article, I could already hear the identitarian shitlib pushback. It’s the same pushback you get when you defend Dave Chapelle, or Joe Rogan, or – God forbid! – Jordan Peterson. Meanwhile, Chapelle’s special has a 97% audience rating on Rotten Tomatoes, Joe Rogan continues to be America’s most popular podcaster, and Peterson sells a lot more books than Robin DiAngelo.

Liberals’ response to this evidence of how deeply out of touch they are with most of their fellow citizens usually boils down to: everyone else is stupid, racist, reactionary, and evil. And they aren’t shy about expressing that opinion, as any casual peruser of pretty much any social media platform will have experienced first-hand. Then, after charming the voting public with this behavior day after day for several years running, they are always somehow shocked that when people get a chance to vote on the matter, they’d sooner elect the reanimated corpse of John Wayne Gacy than a Democrat. The response is never to re-evaluate their beliefs or messaging. It’s always to double down on attacking the voters, as was the case after last week’s latest wipe out.

This is not the behavior of people who can or will win elections, policy battles, or anything else. Flame wars and petty cancel crusades do not a meaningful political movement make and that’s more or less all Democrats have got at this point. The future belongs to the other side. Because nobody likes a weenie.

We discuss the 2021 election results and more on episode 125 of the Due Dissidence podcast. Click the player below to hear our full conversation, and subscribe to our podcast and listen on Apple, StitcherSpotifyCastbox, Google Podcasts, or any major podcast player.

Image: Don DeBold

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[Satire] Sinema Aides Reveal Her Pact With Satan

“She literally has the devil on speed dial,” says terrified intern

A special Halloween-time investigation by Russell Dobular

Senator Krysten Sinema this week denied claims that she sold her soul to the devil in exchange for earthly power and riches after several former and current aides came forward to make the accusation. 

“Can’t anyone just be bought off anymore?” Sinema replied to one reporter inquiring about her alleged connections to Lucifer, adding, “I also don’t appreciate the sexist ‘in thrall to the Devil’ trope. When it’s a man, he’s simply corrupt. When it’s a woman who’s violated every principle she ever claimed to hold, all of a sudden everyone thinks she’s gone to a crossroads in the middle of Tempe, stripped naked under a full moon, sacrificed an animal of some sort in the delicious night air, possibly an armadillo, and given herself completely to the Dark Lord, body and soul. It’s just wrong and I won’t stand for it.”

Still, rumors persist that through her voting record, Sinema is preparing the way for the antichrist foretold in the Book of Revelations, under the direction of one or several demonic entities. 

According to Arizona State University lecturer and demonology expert, Dr. William Hellstrom, Sinema’s journey from Green Party candidate and immigrants’ rights activist to human pharma cash vacuum attachment is typical of those who sell their souls to the Devil.

“We see this again and again throughout history,” he said from inside a protective circle made up of hastily scrawled ancient runes, “Caligula, Napoleon, even Atilla the Hun; they all started out with noble intentions, but in the end they weren’t able to resist the Prince of Lies. How do you think Nancy Pelosi made $150 million dollars as a sitting member of Congress anyway?  Sinema has already racked up her first million and believe me, she’s just getting started.”

Perhaps most disturbing is the series of disappearances connected to Sinema’s office. Since she was first elected to the Arizona State House in 2011, no less than 12 of the Senator’s interns and staff members have gone missing under mysterious circumstances. 

The pattern has not gone unnoticed by some of the parents and partners of the missing, who have created the non-profit Loved Ones of Missing Krysten Sinema Aides and Interns (LOMKSAI), with the aim of pressuring law enforcement to investigate. 

Mary Cafferty, spokeswoman for the group and mother of one of Sinema’s alleged victims said, “It’s very clear that something evil is going on in that office. Who holds up a vote on lowering prescription drug prices, then just runs off to the gym like nothing happened?  Her familiars in the police department need to stop conspiring with the Beast and do their jobs.”

One wan and clearly terrified intern who spoke only on condition of anonymity painted a chilling picture of life inside Sinema’s office, “Everyone has to wear a sweater because it’s always freezing, even in the middle of summer and that’s without air conditioning. It can be 90 degrees out and you can still see your breath. Of the staff that was here when I started, I’m the only one left.  And also, I’ve been having these crazy dreams of her scratching at my window, asking to be invited in.  And after every disappearance, she seems, like, I don’t know . . . younger.” 

Here she paused, her eyes darting nervously as if afraid someone might be listening, before whispering, “I’m afraid I’m going to be next.”

This is a developing story. 

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Photo: Elizabeth D. Herman, NYT (altered for use)