I was asked to appear on What’s Left?, a podcast put on by three fellows, all identifying as socialist, and all concerned about the shut down of critical thinking, alternative narratives and questioning. In many cases, What’s Left? could be questioning the scientism of today’s Corona Craziness, and then looking at the madness of the Lockdowns, and then for sure looking at the censoring of medical treatments — life saving ones — by mass media, left media and by so-called leftists.
A great idea turned into a regular twice-a-month discourse with a guest and these three dudes — Eduardo, Kenny and Andy.
Here, recent shows:
- JUL 17, 2021 — Biden’s Sleight of Hand in Afghanistan
- JUL 10, 2021 — Abolish the Police! I Mean, Defund the Police! Never mind, Fund the Police!
- JUL 3, 2021 — Haeder’s Reimagining Sanity – Batty Bioweapons, 5G, Star Wars
- JUN 26, 2021 — The Lowdown on Higher Ed
- JUN 19, 2021 — Secret Societies and the New World Order
- JUN 13, 2021 — What is the New World Order?
Even Kenny was interviewed a while back on the show — What’s Left? interviews Kenny Zepeda on his journey from Guatemala to the United States and from liberal reformist to socialist revolutionary. Previous What’s Left? Episodes Kenny on revolts in Chile and Latin America Kenny on Climate Change Nicaragua and Fake Socialism What’s Left? Kenny Z.: The Revolutionary Road
Their first episodes dealt with myriad of issues — beginning August 2018
- Sacrificing Everything for Nike
- Prison Strike 2018!
- Interview with a Pro-Capitalist Anarchist
- What’s Left of Abortion Rights?
- Is the U.S. Turning to Fascism?
As teachers, Andy & Eduardo have been dealing with lockdowns and Zoom doom rooms for educating (sic) youth. They are dealing with fellow teachers who have taken the Covid-19 pill that has turned them into Covidians.
They are concerned about the censorship of leftists who might question the bioweapon theories, or promulgate them, citing USA DARPA and other nefarious actors in higher ed, industry, etc.
In the new world, it is not the big fish which eats the small fish, it’s the fast fish which eats the slow fish. — Klaus Schwab
That was May 22, 2021. The episode was great, far-ranging and with my own brand of frenetic fervor, and, alas, it was taken down from YouTube:
I am of the opinion that people have the right to decide whether to accept vaccines or not, especially since these are experimental vaccines … My concern is I know there are risks but we don’t have access to the data … We don’t really have the information we need to make a reasonable decision.
— Dr. Robert Malone, “Inventor of mRNA Interviewed About Injection Dangers“
Now, I will give readers the entire interview I did with them, via email, here, to give the reader a decent look at three very different men and their narratives, their avocations, their work now, and what makes them tick as socialists-Marxists.
They have moved into the Fourth Industrial Revolution to what is a new world order?
For me, I was asked to handle the ungainly topics of DCovid-19 as a bioweaponized monster, possibly put into the world intentionally by USA, and then 5G and 6G, what that means to public and environmental health, and then tying in the militarization of space as part and parcel part of the pogrom.
Now, I believe Andy at first gravitated to me because I am an unapologetic communist, and that is a refined term in some sense since I’m not espousing a communism that has been bastardized by USA, by the media, even by some history.
Tolerance is another buzzword, and for all those gigs I worked where I questioned the management, the deans, the presidents, provosts, the managers, the editors, et al, well, this country is propaganda central, wink and a nod, smoke and mirrors, and triangulating those who doubt the goals of management and the leadership — triangulating us out of the discussion, the discourse, hence, the death of critical debate/thinking/questioning.
Now, I don’t see on What’s Left?, 163 episodes, a deep look at some of these shenanigans, in the world, and not just Rogue State USA. Israel.
That in a nutshell is the death knell:
Here, a far-ranging discussion on Israel and on the Covid program:
Listen to Julianne Romanello, Gilad Atzmon, and Jason Bosch go deep into “ideological and spiritual thoughts that have turned our world into an open air prison.” This sort of show, well, scrubbed, and right along the lines of looking at this concept of “chosenness, and then at the work of Leo Strauss, Athens & Jerusalem, Noahide fundamentals, the origin of Zionism and many other crucial topics most intellectuals insist to avoid…”
These are the times, but they were the times for me a long time ago, when I was 13, questioning cruise ships knocking over coral reefs, or bulldozers destroying the Sonora, or the Vietnam War narratives, and it just continued every place I ended up as a worker: the people “in power” are lunatics, for the most part. On one level, sure, let’s do some trauma informed care, but in the end, this society’s underbelly — USA, Canada, UK, Europe and Australia — has to be questioned!
Education, since all of us are educators, that is, with the What’s Left? reference, is amazingly entrenched in indoctrination and deadening of critical thinking:
Check out an interview of Andy on Left Lockdown Skeptics — “Fighting lockdown in California: A US teacher speaks”
Q & A for Paul Haeder
Paul Haeder: What is “What’s Left?” and how did it come about?
Eduardo: Oh golly… I think, for me, it started back in 2017 in the aftermath of the “Unite the Right rally” in Charlottesville as I was attempting to politically make sense of the times and debate a childhood friend of mine on a public social platform. I had watched many Oxford debates before and wanted to do something similar. I really thought my friendship was on the line. Fortunately, Andy had come along at that time and shared with me he was interested in taking our own café political discussions online. So, we had a long conversation about the idea of “What’s Left?” and it’s intention. Something we both agreed on early on was to have open, honest discussions about our personal politics and ideas. We wanted to create a space for alternative points of view that challenged the mainstream Left. We had noticed there was a growing tribalistic way of thinking on the Left that seemed to cancel all deviant political discourse. Hence, “What’s Left?” came into being.
Andy: Eduardo and I started “What’s Left?” 3 years ago. For me, I had been politically frustrated at not having an outlet for discussing my own political ideas and thoughts that came up as events happened. At the same time, I watched YouTube channels on groups of friends who would get together and review movies or video games. They seemed to have fun doing that and I approached Eduardo about trying to do the same thing but with politics. I have always enjoyed talking with Eduardo and I trusted him to be passionate and honest about his beliefs (just as I was trying to be). It has been both rewarding and fun despite YouTube’s censorship nonsense.
Kenny: I joined the show a couple years ago. I first joined Andy and Eduardo in a conversation about the events unfolding in Nicaragua in 2018. From then on, I participated as an occasional contributor regarding Latin America related topics until I was approached to contribute on a weekly basis.
PH: “What’s Left?” is composed of three hosts. Can each of you share your background?
Kenny: I’ve been a restaurant worker and a manager at a small mom and pop restaurant in San Francisco, CA. most of my working age life. I grew up in Guatemala until the age of 12 when we emigrated to California. Much of what has informed my road to Marxism has to do with lived experiences such as migration from Guatemala to the U.S. A , my father’s dealing with immigration and eventual deportation, attending public school in San Francisco, entering and dropping out of UC Berkeley, growing up around sex work, growing up in a U.S. backed military dictatorship in Guatemala among other things. The search for answers that actually make sense has shaped my life and led me to Marxism.
Eduardo: I was a “cross cultural kid” having lived in México with all of my tías/tíos, abuelitos and primos, then as I got older went to public school in San Francisco, CA. I would study in San Francisco then spend my rather long summers back home. It was an atypical Latino experience of back and forth. I cannot say I had the common undocumented Latino experience for most families in the USA. I mean most families are not crossing the border over skies multiple times a year. So, it shapes one in a way. But I would say my 18 years as a Jehovah’s Witness had the most impact in my life. I would read forbidden literature late into the wee hours, be curious of all things deprived of me and learned never to trust ANY person, organization or ideology claiming to be the “right way.” I will say it fulfilled my desire to be of service to others. It was just an awful sort of service of conversion. Although, I did teach many illiterate people how to read over that time. I found another way to fulfill that void when I witnessed the massive anti-war protests of 2003 and joined the school walkouts. From there it was joining many Lefty movements and campaigns, such as supporting progressive candidates. I think my skills as an organizer and activist of rallies and protests, though, were sharpened by Occupy Wall Street and protests against GMO companies. Those experiences have influenced the way I think and do things. If I had to label myself, I would say I am anarchist-leaning-syndicalist-Leftist-libertarian. If you have an issue with that mouthful, too bad.
Andy: I am a school teacher in San Francisco (who lives in Oakland). I have been teaching science (physics and chemistry) for over 20 years. I have been a Marxist for that long as well. I have been in socialist organizations and active in my union over that time. Currently, while still active in my union, I am pretty much a solo communist trying to find a political community to work with. “What’s Left?” has been a big part of rebuilding that community.
PH: What for you are some of the more compelling topics and issues you all have covered?
Andy: I think the one episode that stands out for me is our interviews with Eric Lerner (part 1 and part 2) challenging the notion of the Big Bang as a theory that explains our current universe. This was such a surprising issue for me and uprooted a core premise of my beliefs in an area that caught me completely off guard. At the same time, it explained the nagging sense I had that there was some real problems with these things like dark matter and dark energy. So these episodes, for me, symbolize the way my world has been continually shifted and uprooted as I take this political journey with Eduardo and Kenny. It also symbolizes my attempt to use truth as my North Star, not ideology.
Eduardo: Oh there are so many. But I think I’ll go with what has recently changed me in many ways. The topics around the Internet of Things with Alison McDowell, and, what I call “my COVID journey”, the reopening schools debate as well as the vaccines. It’s been a rollercoaster and re-traumatising being rejected and attacked on a personal level from friends on the Left who disagree with everything we have recently discussed. I also realize we have to discuss unpopular topics or say more than “We oppose Trump!”.
Kenny: For me, the show has been instrumental in processing and dissecting a number of topics, but most especially everything related to the pandemic. I’ve been particularly captivated by the fast encroachment of tech into our lives and the implications it will have for dissenting working class voices.
PH: What topics would you like to cover in the future on “What’s Left?”
Kenny: I’d love to continue covering relevant topics to fellow workers, in ways that are accessible and not elitist, in the hopes that we can spark interest in thinking outside the parameters chosen by our ruling class. I would definitely love to continue tracking the implementation of the techno-fascist world being built in the name of social justice with rhetoric of inclusion. I’d love to continue processing the implications of current events outside the mainstream manufactured narratives.
Andy: “What’s Left?” has really been a labor of love, and we have pretty much been able to interview the people and cover the subjects we want. I would say that I hope that it can increasingly become a locus of organizing for me as I try to build a community of parents, teachers, activists and even students who are prepared to join me in fighting the implementation of the 4th industrial revolution in education. I also look forward to the day when Kenny
Eduardo: We have to continue covering on-the-ground worker’s experience and any significant mobilization. However, if it’s slow and there isn’t much going on currently, I’d like to delve into more labor history and revolutions. Hopefully that will inspire more workers to organize.
PH: Your channel has experienced a lot of censorship with YouTube taking many of your videos down and threatening you with “community strikes”. How has this affected your channel? How has it affected you personally?
Eduardo: The ruthless censorship of YouTube and big social media platforms is outrageous. I don’t understand how we can criticize China and North Korea for their censorship when we have it going on here as well. The recent strikes on our channel have been eye-opening. I just don’t get why it hasn’t been for others. I wish our channel could reach more people. Unfortunately, we started at a time when the play of algorithms has been used against us. On a personal level, sometimes it feels discouraging because I imagined we would reach more people. Andy and I discussed from the beginning, though, that our intention wasn’t to gain “followers” or “subscribers” for popularity contests. I just hope our political conversations reach more folks as we see people really relieved to have found us when they write to us on our blog. They feel connected and not so alone anymore.
Kenny: I suspect that regardless if we are straight up taken down, the algorithm gods will manage our content’s diffusion. In my perspective, this is only the beginning of the even more dystopian doctored sense of ‘reality”. YouTube’s censorship hasn’t affected me personally in any significant way. At least not now. I expected it in some form or another. It does shed some light into the fast approaching dystopian future. The censorship and political isolation in my community is another story.
Andy: YouTube’s censorship is bullshit. It has definitely been a disruption to getting our message out on YouTube, but from what I understand, even without the censorship, YouTube’s ‘algorithm’ has kept our channel in check. But, I think one good thing about it (if you can call it that) is that it has forced me to really challenge my beliefs in pushing me to speak my beliefs in the face of censorship or isolation. Of course, I want our channel to be seen by more people, but not at the expense of us staying true to our vision of “What’s Left?” is a place where people can speak honestly. So, I am going to stick with honesty and let YouTube decide for themselves if we can do so there. If not, I am content with the idea that we will find other places to have our discussions.
PH: Given the sort of culling of discussion and debate and information flow back and forth being by the elites, What would you tell students who might ask you why all the websites and podcasts and videos are coming down.
Andy: As a teacher, my political focus has always been on organizing and talking with other adults (co-workers and parents). The best way to help students organize is to be a model for them in my pursuit of getting us adults to wage a fight for our collective liberation. I have found this road a difficult one, but I do not think I can teach my students anything about the fight for our own liberation unless I engage in that pursuit with my fellow workers right now. I do talk with students who ask me about my beliefs but I rarely use the classroom as a vehicle for getting my politics out there, although I will facilitate discussions when they come up to see what students’ ideas are.
Eduardo: I think there are enough great episodes from Black Mirror to ease the conversation into the idea that we are increasingly approaching a dystopian future if we don’t organize to intervene. From there, I would share and facilitate discussions around the culling of our political freedom of speech. But I think it goes beyond the classroom. So many educators want to contain or effect change within the confines of the classroom. We have to organize together alongside them to create the change we want to see.
Kenny: I’m not a teacher/educator. I’ll sit this one out.
PH: If you were stuck with a stranger on an elevator and could only talk briefly, how would you describe the core of your political beliefs?
Kenny: I’m highly suspicious of power and strongly believe in the power of community. I think capitalism rewards antisocial behavior and it’s inherently coercive. Capitalism cannot be contained with legislative reform as advocated by liberal ideology. I think we live in a world technologically capable of sustaining organized human life and only a socialist revolution can and must take over the wealth workers create for the good of the masses and away from the truly privileged few. Capitalism, through its inherent violent and competitive nature, cannot bring about a world of peace and abundance for the masses. Only a revolution that suppresses wage slavery and other coercive and destructive mechanisms of capitalism can change the course of the cataclysm ahead of us. The profit motive must be obliterated out of production. What we produce must serve life, NOT profit.
Andy: I am a Communist. I believe the collective working class is the only force that can make a revolutionary change of our current system, Capitalism. Capitalism is the organized theft of our labor by a minority and is at the root of virtually all the problems we see in society today, war, racism, sexism, environmental destruction and the deep isolation and alienation all workers feel. The only way out of this is a socialist revolution that eliminates the profit motive for production and establishes worker’s rule through mass working class democracy.
Eduardo: I am an anarchist-syndicalist-Leftist-libertarian-anti-capitalist. I don’t claim to have the answers. I don’t know what is the best approach. I am skeptical of many things. But what I do know is that the current system that we are living in isn’t working for us. It’s detrimental and we are going to suffer greatly if we don’t put a stop to this system. I believe we have to organize as workers and see that the Leftist identity politics isn’t getting us anywhere. We can’t be shutting down or shutting out other people because of their political positions. We have to challenge them and we have to continue sorting it out together… but by working together.
PH: Are you a pacifist, and if so, why, and if not, then what, and why?
Eduardo: I want to say yes. I dream of a world where our revolution could be achieved in such a way. Unfortunately, I am struggling seeing how that could become possible. The capitalist class and all people with power have waged violence on us. They have started this fight and are willing to massively destroy us if we don’t defend ourselves. I still have a lot of conflicting feelings over this topic.
Kenny: “For the oppressor, peace is the absence of a response to their violence.” I think history has been sanitized to make us believe fundamental change arrives through Disneyfied slogans and appealing to the morality of the oppressor. Capitalism is inherently violent, and it attempts to have a monopoly of violence in the hands of the police/military and other coercive institutions. If we pretend to rattle the cage of power, we have to be ready to respond to the unleashing of the institutions built to protect a violent system. We have to be able to contend with their monopoly of violence. My mother taught me to exhaust all the means necessary to avoid violence, but she also taught me some abusers can only be pushed out of the way by punching them in the face when you must.
Andy: No. I believe we will ultimately need to be armed to liberate ourselves from Capitalism. A class war will be necessary and I do believe violence has a role in workers’ experience of liberation (such as anti-colonial struggles or anti-occupation resistance). We live in a system where two great classes are in opposition to each other (Capitalist and Worker), and we live under their violent boot every second of every day that Capitalism exists. This system will require violence to uproot it. The better we are organized, the less violence required, but we must recognize our struggle as a war if we are to understand both the stakes and the seriousness of the struggle we are engaged in.
PH: Where do you see the world in 20 years?
Andy: I believe in the possibility of working class revolution, but currently I don’t believe we will make it happen in time. I think Capitalism is headed to its 3rd global war which will embroil China, United States, Russia, Europe, and India as the major players in a life and death struggle to see who will control the globe (and secure maximum profits, resources and markets for itself). Unless stopped (and I believe working class revolution is the only way to stop this inevitability), we will have a war that will go nuclear and kill billions and likely destroy the world enough to push all of us back into feudal existence at best. I think some of the sci-fi depictions we see in “The Road” or “Mad Max” are pretty good descriptors of where things are headed. That’s what I see for us in the next 20 years unless we do something to stop it.
Kenny: I think we need a global workers socialist revolution with the most decisive battle happening in the economic north. The U.S., the world’s dominant hegemon, is being challenged and will continue to be challenged as it overextends itself. All empires suffer a violent end. The U.S. threatens to bring the entirety of organized human life down with it. Cooperation in capitalism is only a tenuous illusion. The illusion of cooperation will be exposed as the major powers come into a competitive clash under the pressures of dwindling resources and markets.
Eduardo: It’s unfortunate that I don’t think the world will get any better if we don’t do something about it now. My view is quite grim. Alison McDowell has been on our show many times and has shown us how fast the fourth industrial revolution is accelerating. I fear we are losing a part of ourselves, our humanity. But I think we each have to continue this lucha one step at a time.
PH: Define what it means to be a human?
Eduardo: To be human is to be of service, to think, to understand we are linked and interconnected. In the USA there is a strong selfish individualistic culture. Where I am from people live together communally as families and neighbors for years, if not forever. I fear we have lost that in many ways here. I think we can only come to an understanding by building those long-term relationships to understand such values as compassion, care and love beyond our immediate selves.
Andy: Being human means being free to both express yourself, be yourself and through that find out who you truly are. But humans are social, so society must be free to have free associations so that a community can likewise be free to find and express itself through the free participation of its individual members. At the root of being human is being free to be yourself and free to associate with whomever best fits your true self.
Kenny: Being human is the ability to understand processes beyond our individual survival. Being human is the ability to understand how our destinies are inter-connected with other life forms. Being human is the recognition that we are social beings and that our individual well being rests on the well being of our communities and our environment both locally and globally.
PH: What does community mean to you?
Kenny: Community is a pillar of humanity.
Eduardo: Bees come to mind. I mean I can think of many animal examples we could admire for their systems of communities. We can be more than that. I think we would not allow much of what is happening, such as the destruction of our environment, the occupation of lands and other profit-driven acts if we felt that pull and tie to one another. If we work together, if we think of all our comrades/companions, we would build a stronger and brighter future.
Andy: A community is a set of people I trust enough to be my true self with. A community is a collection of people who make worthwhile the sacrifice of my time and abilities to make that community stronger and more able to bring the best out of all of its members. A true community celebrates and strengthens its individual members and is strengthened and celebrated by the individuals who compose it.
PH: What have been some of your biggest influencers in your life to have gotten you where you are now? And, exactly where are you now?
Andy: Politically, my development as a Marxist who tries to blend my ideas (theory) with practice, I would say my friend, Brian Belknap, has been the most significant influence. Personally, there are many people I could cite, but I think I would put my decision to engage in counseling over the last 15 years as the most significant decision to help me integrate my current self with my past self and integrate my political self with my personal self. In terms of historical political influences, I would put the major ones as Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin, and Rosa Luxemburg as the biggest influences who help me orient myself as I try to make my way in the confusing journey of trying to change the world.
Kenny: My mother has always advocated for the marginalized by putting her well being in harms ways. She influenced me by showing up for others and for justice. My mother inspired me to speak against inhumane and despicable acts and to side with the weak and abused while advocating for myself. Even though she never engages in theory, my mother has always been a communist in practice. A passionate enemy of maliciousness.
Eduardo: Oh so many… Noam Chomsky helped me make sense of world politics. How wars, greed and power trips make these empires run the world. Christopher Hitchens gave me a way to leave my former Jehovah’s Witness life. Subcomandante Marcos, from the Zapatista movement, was an inspiration early on and provided the hope that class/native action can happen. Though small, they have achieved something that you won’t find anywhere in the USA. I think these are the top three figures that have paved the way for me.
Note from Andy: We’d like to thank Paul Haeder for the opportunity to share our story and our thoughts on Dissident Voice. If you like what we have to say and want to talk to us on “What’s Left?” feel free to contact us at: https://what-s-left.webnode.com/contact/