Ep. 24: Jake Dill on Comedy, California, & Psychedelics

August 13, 2018
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On this edition of Parallax Views I speak with stand-up comedian and radio DJ Jake Dill of ALT 98.7, the Jake Dill Podcast, and the Disinformation Podcasts about comedy, California, and psychedelics.

We begin the conversation by discussing ALT 98.7, Los Angeles' hottes alternative rock station, before talking a little bit about the Jake Dill podcast and how Jake ended up working with previous Parallax Views guest Thad McKracken of Disinfo. From there we get into Jake's love of comedy and adventures as a stand-up comic. We discuss political correctness, his influences like Bill Hicks, Redd Foxx, Andrew Dice Clay, and George Carlin, Joe Rogan's promotion of Alex Jones, staying at Doug Stanhope's house, and an anecdote about the Intellectual Dork Web's favorite right-wing comic Owen Benjamin.

From there we delve into Jake's experiences in California and his favorite places in Burbank. Burbank has a whole slew fun, weird, and bizarre stores along Magnolia Blvd. that have made it one of the most hip and happening spots in the general Los Angeles area. Unfortunately, many of these great cultural institutions are being threatened by gentrification, which leads Jake and I to discuss the importance of these types of stores to Burbank's culture.

We then delve into the news of Donald Trump's Hollywood Walk of Fame Star being vandalized and how such humor seems to be a weapon against Trump's fragile ego. And Jake hands me my ass a bit after I making a drunken elitist faux paux about Trump's mansion being "low-brow" by L.A. standards. After that we wrap up discussing Jake's experiences with psychedelics and whether he has, as the late Terence McKenna would say, "gotten the Elves".

CHECK OUT JAKE DILL'S COMEDY SPECIAL MANDALAUGH ON YOUTUBE

CATCH JAKE DILL ON ALT 98.7, LA's NEW ALTERNATIVE, EVERY MONDAY 7 P.M-12 A.M. PST

BONUS MINISODE: Steve Alten on The MEG

August 12, 2018
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On this special minisode edition of Parallax Views you'll hear from Steve Alten on his best-selling Meg series, about the mysterious megaldon shark, which was recently turned into the runaway blockbuster The MEG, which managed to chomp away the cinematic competition this weekend by raking in a whopping $44.5 on it's opening weekend! This is the book and movie series that's already given Steven Spielberg's JAWS more than a run for it's money!

BUY THE LATEST TALE IN THE MEG SAGA, MEG: GENERATIONS, AT STEVEALTEN.COM!

Ep. 23: Robbie Martin (Pt. 2) on Fluorescent Grey, Electronic Music, & More

August 10, 2018
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On this edition of Parallax Views you'll hear part 2 of a conversation with Media Roots' Robbie Martin covering his musical project Fluorescent Grey, John Carpenter and soundtracks, electronica, IDM (Intelligent Dance Music), and industrial/noise music. Expect a few musical easter eggs along the way for this portion of the discussion!

We begin this part of the conversation discussing Robbie's original soundtrack for his documentary series A Very Heavy Agenda. We get into the influence of film composers like John Carpenter and John Williams, the impact a musical score can have on a film, and Robbie's concept album The Masonic Assassination of William Morgan.

Cover art for Fluorescent Grey's The Masonic Assassination of William Morgan

From there we delve into Robbie's love of electronic music, specifically IDM (Intelligent Dance Music). We discuss what IDM is as well as covering some of the major players of the genre like Aphex Twin, Autechre, and Squarepusher and the concept of "trick wars".

Richard D. James AKA Aphex Twin

After that we delve into the connections between underground music scenes and politics as well as Robbie's concern that the underground is being neoliberalized. We discuss the politics of industrial bands like Skinny Puppy and Meat Beat Manifesto during this segment as well as the more unsavory aspects of the industrial/noise scene that may have influenced certain areas of far-right and proto-alt right politics.

Cover art for Skinny Puppy's Too Dark Park

In discussing the industrial music scene we delve into the bands Throbbing Gristle and Coil, as well as their original predecessor COUM Transmissions. Robbie gets into the transgressive nature of these projects and the pranksterish sociopolitical agenda figures like Genesis Breyer P-Orridge and Cosey Fanni Tutti had in mind with them.

Genesis Breyer P-Orridge and Cosey Fanni Tutti of Throbbing Gristle and COUM Transmissions

We begin wrapping up the conversation by discussing creating music without music theory, advice for making electronic music, Robbie's record label Record Label Records, and how he came up with the name Fluorescent Grey.

Ep. 22: Robbie Martin (Pt. 1) on Russia, Trump, QAnon, & the Neocons

August 8, 2018
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On this edition of Parallax Views you'll hear the first part of a two part conversation with Media Roots' Robbie Martin.  In part one Robbie and I discuss his sister Abby Martin's prior work with RT (Russia Today) and accusations that the Martins are "Russianbots", the Trump Presidency, the dangerous "scorched earth" politics and possible agendas behind right-wing conspiracy theories like QAnon and Pizzagate, and Robbie's documentary series A Very Heavy Agenda about the history of the super-hawkish neonconservative movement.

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I invited Robbie on the show initially to discuss his sister Abby Martin's previous work at RT. Because of this Abby and Robbie have been accused of being stooges for Vladimir Putin that helped to sabotage the Democrats in the 2016 Presidential election with their coverage of Hillary Clinton. I myself am critical of Putin, but I also feel that jumping the gun and accusing journalists critical of U.S. policy, the Democrats, etc. of being "Russianbots" is an oversimplification.

Robbie's take in this regard may surprise you. For one, Robbie admits that he and Abby were never under any illusions that RT has its own agenda. Moreover he expresses regret that Media Roots focused so heavily on Hillary Clinton at the expense of covering Donald Trump in the 2016 Presidential Elections. During this portion of the conversation Robbie also details Media Roots strong stance against and critical reporting on the Trump Presidency, how we've moved from the War on Terror to the Cybersecurity Wars, and more.

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From there we transition into a discussion of the QAnon conspiracy and its connections to the subculture surrounding Pizzagate conspiracy theories. Robbie lays out what the QAnon conspiracy theory is and how he believes it relates to a dangerous form of "scorched earth politics" by America's right-wing to dehumanize leftists. In addition we discuss the strange issue of military intelligence figures coming out in support of these conspriacy theories and the various agendas behind the proliferation of these conspiracy theories.

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We wrap up by discussing Robbie's documentary series A Very Heavy Agenda detailing the history of the neoconservative movement inside the beltway from the Project to the New American Century (PNAC) to the War on Terror. Part 1 of the conversation ends with Robbie discussing the Kagans, one of the most influential neocon families in D.C., and his brief personal encounter with Robert Kagan.

Ep. 21: Noah Tetzner on The History of Vikings & Norse Mythology

August 6, 2018
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On this edition of Parallax Views fellow podcaster Noah Tetzner joins me to discuss his show, The History of Vikings, and Norse Mythology.

We begin the conversation by discussing how Noah got into podcasting. From there we discuss the historical age of the vikings including misconceptions about the period, the infamous raids, and how the viking age came to an end.

Then we of course have a discussion of Norse Mythology, which has been repopularized by the success of Marvel Studios' Thor movies, most recently Thor: Raganarok. We discuss Snorri Sturluson and the Prose Edda, the death of Baldr, Ragnarok, the Volksung cycle during this fun portion of the conversation

Snorri Sturluson

We begin wrapping up the conversation by discussing viking runestones, Marvel's Thor franchise, and finally the ways in which far-right groups have tried to appropriate Norse Mythology and viking age history.

The "Jelling Stone" runestones in Denmark

Music in this episode: Bathory

Ep. 20: Yasha Levine on Right-Wing Dark Money & the Electronic Frontier Foundation

August 1, 2018
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On this edition investigative journalist Yasha Levine, author of Surveillance Valley: The Secret Military History of the Internet, joins me to discuss his new article in The Baffler entitled "All EFF'd Up" about about the corporate money and Silicon Valley agenda behind the "digital rights" advocacy organization the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

We begin the conversation by discussing Yasha's previous endeavors exposing the corrosive impact of monied interests on the political process starting with how he saw the negative effects of oligarchy on Russia during his time as the former editor of The eXile. Then Yasha details how he and Mark Ames were the first to expose the dark money networks of the now infamous Koch Bros. and their influence on GOP and Tea Party politics, the way mainstream journalists unfairly dismissed it as "conspiracy theory" at the time, and how their initial story on the subject ended up being censored by Playboy thanks to political pressure. Journalist Jane Mayer has done good work on this topic herself in Dark Money, but Yasha and Mark Ames were the first to break this kind of corruption and astroturfing wide-open.

Mark Ames and Yasha Levine

From there we segue into the corporate, Silicon Valley interests behind the "digital rights" advocacy group the Electronic Frontier Foundation. We discuss a number of topics including EFF's selectiveness (ie: private interest bias) in dealing with digital rights, the influence of a certain libertarian strand of 60's counterculture on the EFF, how Yasha' writing on these matters should not be misconstrued as neo-luddism, the Cambridge Analytica scandal, the tides of public opinion beginning to turn on the Silicon Valley in the Age of Trump, former ACLU lawyer Jerry Berman's relationship to the EFF, and whether the left will be able to deal with and imagine a truly democratic internet among other issues.

Please consider purchasing Yasha Levine's Surveillance Valley: The Secret Military History of the Internet, which comes highly recommended by Parallax Views!

Music for this episode by Snog

Ep. 19: Gary Lachman on Dark Star Rising: Magick and Power in the Age of Trump (Interview in Mono Version)

July 29, 2018
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This interview was originally published in a stereo version. This is mono version of the podcast for listeners who are unable to listen in stereo

On this edition of Parallax Views I speak with author Gary Lachman about his latest book Dark Star Rising: Magick and Power in the Age of Trump which details the metaphysical underpinnings of the Trump Presidency and the alt right through the New Thought Movement, Russian geostrategist Aleksandr Dugin, and the obscure Italian occultist Julius Evola.

The conversation begins with Gary explaining how and why he became interested in the occult and metaphysical underpinnings of the Trump Presidency and the alt right, comparing and contrasting it to his previous work Politics and the Occult: The Left, the Right, and the Radically Unseen.

From there we delve into the influence of New Thought on Donald Trump through the figure of Norman Vincent Peale as well as detailing the alt right's own flirtations with New Thought ideas. This leads us into the topic of "meme magic" which the alt right, sometimes seriously and other time ironically, claim led to Trump's victory in the 2016 Presidential election. In this portion of the discussion Gary guides us through the alt right's mythologization of the cartoon frog Pepe into a metaphysical avatar called KEK and how it ties into the concept of synchromysticism. This leads to Gary giving a rundown of what he calls "trickle-down metaphysics" in an era of social media and reality television.

Norman Vincent Peale and his book The Power of Positive Thinking

We then segue into discussing two of the most prominent figures discussed in the book: Russian geostrategist Aleksandr Dugin and the fascist Italian occultist Julius Evola. Gary notes how both names became relevant in Western media thanks to Trump's former right-hand man Steve Bannon before dissecting the thoughts and ideas of the two figures. He explains Evola's relation to the Traditionalist School of thinkers led by Rene Guenon and his significance amongst the far-right during and after WWII. Then he delves into the strange history of Aleksandr Dugin, who he descibres as starting out as Russian punk dissident before developing into a thinker of the modern far-right who popularized the concept of "The Fourth Political Theory". We get into how Dugin seems to have been influenced by the ideas of German reactionary and historian Oswald Spengler, author of The Decline of the West, and has begun taking ideas from pre-Bolshevik Russian traditions.

Aleksandr Dugin, often referred to as "Putin's Rasputin"

From there we delve into the idea of "occult war" which Evola and Dugin both subscribe to in their own ways. This leads us into a discussion of the philosphical tensions between postmodernist and essentialist thought. Gary gives postmodernism it's due in trying to grapple with the flaws of the Enlightenment project while also criticizing what he calls its "pop nihilism". This lead Gary to discuss the importance of the importance of imagination and the idea of transcendence. We round out the conversation by delving into the possibility of a future "bellum omnia contra omnes" or "war of all against all" arising from the round of culture wars. This allows us to briefly touch upon one of Gary's primary influence, the late British philosopher Colin Wilson, and how we can go in different directions philosophically than the alt right and overcome these tense political times in the age of Trump.

Gary Lachman

Ep. 19: Gary Lachman on Dark Star Rising: Magick and Power in the Age of Trump (Interview in 2-Channel Stereo Version)

July 29, 2018
00:0000:00

Click Here for the Mono Version of This Interview

On this edition of Parallax Views I speak with author Gary Lachman about his latest book Dark Star Rising: Magick and Power in the Age of Trump which details the metaphysical underpinnings of the Trump Presidency and the alt right through the New Thought Movement, Russian geostrategist Aleksandr Dugin, and the obscure Italian occultist Julius Evola.

The conversation begins with Gary explaining how and why he became interested in the occult and metaphysical underpinnings of the Trump Presidency and the alt right, comparing and contrasting it to his previous work Politics and the Occult: The Left, the Right, and the Radically Unseen.

From there we delve into the influence of New Thought on Donald Trump through the figure of Norman Vincent Peale as well as detailing the alt right's own flirtations with New Thought ideas. This leads us into the topic of "meme magic" which the alt right, sometimes seriously and other time ironically, claim led to Trump's victory in the 2016 Presidential election. In this portion of the discussion Gary guides us through the alt right's mythologization of the cartoon frog Pepe into a metaphysical avatar called KEK and how it ties into the concept of synchromysticism. This leads to Gary giving a rundown of what he calls "trickle-down metaphysics" in an era of social media and reality television.

Norman Vincent Peale and his book The Power of Positive Thinking

We then segue into discussing two of the most prominent figures discussed in the book: Russian geostrategist Aleksandr Dugin and the fascist Italian occultist Julius Evola. Gary notes how both names became relevant in Western media thanks to Trump's former right-hand man Steve Bannon before dissecting the thoughts and ideas of the two figures. He explains Evola's relation to the Traditionalist School of thinkers led by Rene Guenon and his significance amongst the far-right during and after WWII. Then he delves into the strange history of Aleksandr Dugin, who he descibres as starting out as Russian punk dissident before developing into a thinker of the modern far-right who popularized the concept of "The Fourth Political Theory". We get into how Dugin seems to have been influenced by the ideas of German reactionary and historian Oswald Spengler, author of The Decline of the West, and has begun taking ideas from pre-Bolshevik Russian traditions.

Aleksandr Dugin, often referred to as "Putin's Rasputin"

From there we delve into the idea of "occult war" which Evola and Dugin both subscribe to in their own ways. This leads us into a discussion of the philosphical tensions between postmodernist and essentialist thought. Gary gives postmodernism it's due in trying to grapple with the flaws of the Enlightenment project while also criticizing what he calls its "pop nihilism". This lead Gary to discuss the importance of the importance of imagination and the idea of transcendence. We round out the conversation by delving into the possibility of a future "bellum omnia contra omnes" or "war of all against all" arising from the round of culture wars. This allows us to briefly touch upon one of Gary's primary influence, the late British philosopher Colin Wilson, and how we can go in different directions philosophically than the alt right and overcome these tense political times in the age of Trump.

Gary Lachman

Ep. 18: Odd Things Considered’s Anita Dalton on Weird Books & Unusual Subcultures

July 28, 2018
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On this edition I speak with bibliophile and connoiseur of the outre Anita Dalton of Odd Things Considered blog, whose "greatest hits" writings has recently been compiled in TL;DR: The Best Things of Odd Things Considered (Nine-Banded Books; 2018), about weird books and unusual subcultures.

Anita's bookshelf, a collection of literary strangeness

We begin the conversation by discussing how Anita started the Odd Things Considered blog and became interested in odd and unusual books including reading about hauntings and true crime such as Vincent Bugliosi's Helter Skelter during her youth. From there we delve into a discussion of the books Anita has read concerning cults. Anita gives her take on why the subject of cults is so popular and speaks specifically of the The Source Family to elucidate why so many are fascinated by the topic.

The Source: The Untold Story of Father Yod, Ya Ho Wa 13, and the Source Family by Isis Aquarian and Electricity Aquarian

Moving on from cults we get into the topic of conspiracy theories starting with the big kahuna of the genre, the JFK assassination. Anita and I discuss why conspiracy theories are so popular and her skeptical, Occams Razor approach to the topic. We then delve into Anita's dissection of Senator John DeCamp's The Franklin Cover-Up, which posited a wild conspiracy involving government officials, child trafficking, and even gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson. Anita's natural skepticism comes out during this segment of the conversation and she takes particular issue with the way DeCamp's account smeared Hunter S. Thompson on scant evidence and shady testimonies This leads to a brief discussion of the works of Hunter S. Thompson and how they relate to the political climate today.

The Franklin Cover-Up: Child Abuse Satanism, and Murder in Nebraska by John W. DeCamp

Example of a Youtube video dealing with Pizzagate, which could be described as the 21st century version of the Franklin Cover-Up conspiracy theory

We return to the topic of conspiracy theories with the 21st century version of the Franklin Cover-Up, Pizzagate. This conspiracy theory, popularized by 4chan and various subreddits during the 2016 election season, posits that Clinton campaigner John Podesta and the DNC were involved in a child trafficking plot via Washington D.C.'s Comet Ping Pong restaraunt. Anita again takes a skeptical viewpoint on this alleged conspiracy and the dangers such theories can pose while also providing a sociological context for the popularity of Pizzagate. mass shooting false flags, and other conspiracy narratives in the 21st century. This sociological take on conspiracy theories opens us up for a discussion of current hot topics like cultural change, incels, and debates about free speech.

We then transition into some of the other topics covered by Anita's blog and book including:

- The recent passing of Adam Parfrey and the importance of his publishing outlet Feral House

- The acclaimed female African American author Gloria Naylor, championed by Oprah Winfrey, and her autobiographical novel alleging that she was a victim of a "targeted individual" (TI) or "gang-stalking" conspiracy

- Serial killer Ian Brady's analysis of other serial murderers in The Gates of Janus and why Anita takes issue with taking Brady seriously

- Manifestos by infamous figures like Valerie Solanas, Ted Kaczynski, and Arthur Bremer

- The works of actress and #MeToo voice Amber Tamblyn, the controversial Peter Sotos, radical feminist Andrea Dworkin, and small l-libertarian libertarian misanthrope Ann Sterzinger.

1996 by Gloria Naylor

Pure Filth by Peter Sotos and Jamie Gillis (who is also mentioned in the interview)

Dark Sparkler by Amber Tamblyn

We wrap up the conversation by with Anita explaining what can be gained by reading about taboo subject matter through a personal anecdote involving Anita's reading of the antinatalist book Every Cradle is a Grave by Sarah Perry.

Ep. 17: Justin Murphy on Accelerationism, Ideological Fragmentation, & Religion

July 20, 2018
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On this edition of Parallax Views I revisit the topic of accelerationism (covered in previous episodes with Elizabeth Sandifer and Eliot Rosenstock) with the help of University of Southhampton political scientist, Youtuber, and Other Life podcast host Justin Murphy.

We begin the discussion by brielfy delving into how Justin got into academia. From there we dive right into the main topic of accelerationism. We start out with Justin giving his definition of accelerationism and its take on modernity. Then we get into the different branches of accelerationism - r/acc (right accelerationism), l/acc (left accelerationism), and u/acc (unconditional accelerationism)- before discussing the criticisms of these lines of thought. From there we discuss some of the main players within the accelerationist milieu such as Nick Land and Edmund Berger. This leads us down the rabbit hole of Nick Land's dark accelerationist vision of the technological future and its implications.

From there we discuss the horrors that can be unleashed through modernity and the way in which religion can act as a social technology against these horrors. This opens us up for a discussion of the Frankfurt School philosopher/sociologist Theodor W. Adorno, his critique of instrumental reason, and the influence Adorno's writing has had on Justin's thought.

This leads Justin into making an unexpected comparison between Adorno and the currently popular conservative Canadian public intellectual Jordan Peterson. This leads us to discuss Justin's research into the political ideologies of Jordan Peterson's fanbase. His surprise findings in this regard cause the conversation to break out into a wider discussion of Justin's research into political ideology and fragmentation. This turn in the conversation allows us to discuss the central accelerationist concepts of "Exit" and "patchwork" in depth.

Finally, to round out the discussion we circle back around to the topic of religion. We discuss why religion has become so important to Justin and specifically his renewed interest in Catholicism. In this last segment we get into how Justin's radical politics are connected to his own religious beliefs as well discussing Catholicism's often overlooked history of breeding radically emancipatory thinkers and movement.

Justin's Other Life podcast

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Justin Murphy