Parallax Views w/ J.G. Michael
A Left Libertarianism? + Chile & the Limits of Neoliberalism w/ Camilo Gómez

A Left Libertarianism? + Chile & the Limits of Neoliberalism w/ Camilo Gómez

January 13, 2020

On this edition of Parallax Views, Peru-based commentator and analyst joins us to discuss his work with The Center for a Stateless Society (C4SS), an organization that describes itself as pro-market but anti-capitalist and has been referred to as left libertarian or market anarchist in its orientation, as well as his recent piece covering the Chile protest entitled "Chile and the Limits of Neoliberalism". What is driving the protests in Chile and what do they mean within the broader context of the growing global resistance to neoliberalism worldwide? All that and more on this edition of Parallax Views.

Pop the Left! + The Iran Situation w/ C. Derick Varn

Pop the Left! + The Iran Situation w/ C. Derick Varn

January 8, 2020

On this edition of Parallax Views, C. Derick Varn joins us to discuss his new and improved Pop the Left! podcast series for Zero Books. Additionally, Derick and I also discuss the Iran Situation in the wake of the assassination of Gen. Soleimani. This was recorded a day after the assassination and tensions have continued to heat up since then, but Derick provides what I consider to be useful insights. We also discuss a number of other topics in this conversation that marks the first episode of Parallax Views for the new year of 2020!

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Parallax Views 2019 Holiday Special w/ Shane Bugbee & The Horror Vanguard

Parallax Views 2019 Holiday Special w/ Shane Bugbee & The Horror Vanguard

December 25, 2019

Gather around the Christmas tree and crack open some eggnog because it's the Parallax Views 2019 Holiday Special! On this edition of the program we bring you some holiday cheer with not one but two conversations with previous Parallax Views guests.

First up, "The P.T. Barnum of the Underground" Shane Bugbee returns to tells us all about the time he organized the first ever Jean Shepherd Festival in Hammond, Indiana.

For those not familiar, Shepherd was the great humorist whose writings served as the basis for the classic holiday movie A Christmas Story. Hot off the heels of his controversial Expo of the Extreme in Chicago, Shane had moved to the small, downtrodden town of Hammond and was surprised to find out its residents were unaware that Jean Shepherd, who impacted such influential figures as Jerry Seinfeld, was raised in their very town. So Shane decided to put together a festival that would celebrate Shepherd as Hammond's hometown hero and brought in a number of actors from A Christmas Story for the occasion. In this conversation you'll hear how Shane organized the events, his experience getting the "Key to the City" from the Mayor for it, how Shane had to sign a paper stating that Satan would not appear at the event, how he thinks it helped uplift the spirits of many in the town, and much, much more. Additionally, we cap off this conversation with a brief discussion of Shane's encounter with the late great Rudy Ray Moore, who was recently immortalized in the Eddie Murphy-starring feature film Dolemite is My Name, and the pranksterish shenanigans Shane and Rudy got up to that raised the ire of Penny Marshall and Cindy Williams, stars of the TV sitcom Laverne and Shirley.

Shane Bugbee rocking the infamous Leg Lamp from A Christmas Story

Then, multi-time guests and friends of the show Jon and Ash of the Horror Vanguard podcast join us to discuss the wild world of Christmas horror movies! This is a light-hearted casual conversation that covers alternative holiday classics from Black Christmas and Gremlins to the 6 film Silent Night, Deadly Night franchise and, of course, the greatest holiday horror of them all... ELVES, the movie where Dan Haggerty, Grizzly Adams himself, goes head-to-head with genetically modified Nazi demons elves! Hell, we even discuss such obscurities as the mean-spirited British slasher Don't Open Till Christmas, Santa's Slay starring pro wrestling legend Bill Goldberg, the fantastic short film Black Santa's Revenge, and the French proto-Home Alone thriller Deadly Games.


MERRY CHRISTMAS
PARALLAX VIEWS LISTENERS
AND
MAY YOU ALL HAVE A

Frankly: Unmasking Frank Capra w/ Film Historian Joseph McBride

Frankly: Unmasking Frank Capra w/ Film Historian Joseph McBride

December 23, 2019

On this edition of Parallax Views, Frank Capra is generally one of the most beloved filmmaker in Hollywood history. Best known for movies like the Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, and the holiday classic It's a Wonderful Life, Capra is often seen as being a forerunner to the auteur (thanks to his motto "one man, one film) and whose cinematic efforts championed the working class. Noted film historian Joseph McBride, whose storied career has included working with the legendary Orson Welles as well as writing biographies of Welles, Steven Spielberg, and John Ford, however, found that the popular image of the man was a myth in writing the biography Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success. For one thing, McBride found that Capra, contrary to the myth, was not as big a fan of the masses and everyday man as his films would lead many to believe. In fact, in interviewing Capra and others, as well as engaging in extensive research, he found that Capra had a certain fear for the masses, was a lifelong Republican who disliked FDR, and, despite being an immigrant himself, a xenophobe with anti-Semitic tendencies. Most damning of all perhaps was McBride's discovery of a file in Capra's archives which revealed that Capra snitched on his fellow Hollywood colleagues during the era of McCarthyism and the Red Scare.

McBride set about telling the true story of this legendary filmmaker, not to destroy his legacy but instead to reveal a complex man that considered himself an ardent patriot who felt betrayed by his country when he was accused of being a subversive. As a result of this betrayal, McBride argues, Capra lost his way and went against the very values espoused in his beloved filmography by feeding the McCarthyite menace. The story, however, did not end with the publication of Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success in 1992.

In his new book, Frankly: Unmasking Frank Capra, McBride relates the Kafka-esque tale of his struggle to complete and see published Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success. The experience found McBride, after having the project initially greenlit by his publisher, Capra's archivist, and Capra himself, being stonewalled. As such Frankly: Unmasking Frank Capra serves not only as the follow-up to Frank Capra: The Catastrophe but also as a story about the monumental struggles journalists and biographers often face in attempting to, as reporter Walter Lippman once said, "Tell the truth and shame the devil." On this edition of the program Joseph McBride himself joins us to share this fascinating story.

2nd Vermont Republic + The Post (Truth) World w/ Dr. Rob Williams

2nd Vermont Republic + The Post (Truth) World w/ Dr. Rob Williams

December 19, 2019

On this edition of Parallax Views, we discuss two very distinct topics with Dr. Rob Williams, a Media/Communications professor at Champlain College and the University of Vermont as well the publisher of Vermont Independent (not to mention a musician, author, and a yak farmer/enthusiast; Dr. Williams wears many different hats!). First up, Dr. Williams tells us about the Vermont Independence Movement or Second Vermont Republic, which would like to see Vermont return to it's former status as independent republic by seceding from the United States. Regardless of one's thoughts on secession the topic has had occasionally breached mainstream discourse vis-à-vis not only the 2nd Vermont Republic's efforts but also CalExit, a California secessionist group, in recent years. It is my hope that this part of the conversation with Dr. Williams, who is a staunch supporter of 2VR, can provide an insight into what leads a small-but-vocal number of citizens to advocate for secession.

Then, in the second half of our conversation we discuss Dr. Williams short book The Post (Truth) World: Fighting Fake News with a 21st Century "Propaganda Model" for our Digital Age. In this brief work Dr. Williams attempts to update Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Hermann's "Propaganda Model" for understanding systemic biases in corporate media as outlined in their 1988 book Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media. We begin this portion of the discussion by delving into Dr. Williams' critical take on Steven Spielberg's recent critically-acclaimed film The Post, which detailed The Washingto Post's publishing of the scandalous Pentagon Papers during the Vietnam War. From there we explore the issues facing news media today and the digital age's impact on said media.

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Meet the Cognitive Psychologist Taking on Jordan Peterson w/ Cass Eris

Meet the Cognitive Psychologist Taking on Jordan Peterson w/ Cass Eris

December 16, 2019

On this edition of Parallax Views, there have been many critiques made of the controversial psychologist Jordan Peterson since he first became an internet sensation in 2016. Much has been made of Peterson's fusion of self-help and Jungian psychology with a thinly-veiled conservative political agenda, but what about the criticism of Peterson from an academic and psychology-based perspective? Rising YouTube star Cass Eris is seeking to fill that void as a cognitive psychologist taking the deep-dive into Peterson's 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos in a series a videos that dissect the popular 2018 self-help book chapter by chapter. On this edition of the show Eris joins us to discuss not only the series but also her background; criticisms of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, and Carl Jung; Peterson's lack of citations; the just world hypothesis; and, of course, lobsters. All that and more on this edition of Parallax Views!

KEEP UP WITH THE WORK
OF
CASS ERIS ON YOUTUBE!

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Start the (Unicorn) Riot w/ Dan Feidt

Start the (Unicorn) Riot w/ Dan Feidt

December 11, 2019

 On this edition of Parallax Views, the decentralized, non-profit media collective Unicorn Riot has gained notoriety in the past few year for its databases and exposés of leaks pertaining to the inner world and workings of the American far-right or alt right. This, however, is only a small part of the work done by Unicorn Riot, whose motto is "Your Alternative Media". Recently, for example, Unicorn Riot has been publishing investigations related to scandalous, seedy world of offshore banking. Specifically, Unicorn Riot, alongside Distributed Denial of Secrets, has been shedding light on the data hacks of The Cayman National Bank and, shortly after the recording of this episode, the London finance firm Formations House.

On this edition of the program, Dan Feidt, a co-founder of Unicorn Riot, joins us to discuss the collective's work, mission, its decentralized nature. In addition Dan fills us in on his reporting in regards to the shadowy world of offshore banking, specifically the recent Cayman National Bank data hack leaks. Dan and I also chat about conspiracy theories and offer a critique of right-wing conspiracy theories like QAnon and figures like Alex Jones of Infowars. And yes, we do discuss Unicorn Riot's work pertaining to the leaks they've published and databased pertaining to the inner world and workings of the alt right. All that and more on this edition of Parallax Views.

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Indie Filmmaking w/ Henrique Couto, Director of Boggy Creek: The Series

Indie Filmmaking w/ Henrique Couto, Director of Boggy Creek: The Series

December 7, 2019

On this edition of Parallax Views, we return to the world of true indie films with Henrique Couto, director of the recently released Boggy Creek: The Series. For the uninitiated, Boggy Creek: The Series takes it's name from a series of popular cult movies, starting with Charles B. Pierce's 1972 docudrama The Legend of Boggy Creek, about the Arkansas-based legend of a Bigfoot creature called the Fouke Monster. In this new series, a pair of investigators for "The American Yeti Project", Roger and Sarah, try to find the mysterious Beast of Boggy of Creek while also having various misadventures involving bandits, a serial killer, the town's alleged witch, and even a murderous supernatural scarecrow! Available now for streaming on Amazon, Boggy Creek: The Series was produced by prolific B-movie maven Fred Olen Ray and features a guest appearance from noted "Scream "Queen" Brinke Stevens and narration by Academy Award-nominated actor Eric Roberts.


Sasquatch hunter Sarah and Roger (Joni Durian and Mike Hillinski) with Sheriff McCay (Joe Kidd) in Boggy Creek: The Series

Sara (Joni Durian) getting menaced by the legendary Beast of Boggy Creek

"Scream Queen" Brinke Stevens makes a special guest appearance on the first episode of Boggy Creek: The Series as the town's alleged witch

Eric Roberts, who won an academy award-nominated actor and multi-time Golden Globe-nominee Eric Roberts provides the narration for Boggy Creek: The Series

Henrique Couto, enjoying himself in between filming Boggy Creek: The Series

In addition to Boggy Creek: The Series, Henrique Couto has also directed such features as the horror anthology Scarewaves, the neo-slasher movie Babysitter Massacre, the western Calamity Jane's Revenge (starring former WWE Superstar Al Snow), the family feature A Bulldog for Christmas, and comedies such as Depression: The Movie, Making Out, Awkward Thanksgiving. During this conversation Henrique discusses how he became involved in film at a very young age, being mentored by fellow indie filmmaker Andrew Copp, finding his voice as an artist, Boggy Creek: The Series, and much more.

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A Casual Conversation w/ GNN’s Cole James Cash

A Casual Conversation w/ GNN’s Cole James Cash

December 4, 2019

On this edition of Parallax Views, a casual conversation with a rising star in the YouTube left media space, Cole James Cash of GNN (Ghetto News Network). Cole has been giving his take on current events through GNN since March of last year. He's also interviewed such personalities as Jamie Peck of the Antifada podcast, author Ben Burgis of Give Them an Argument: Logic for the Left fame, and progressive commentator Benjamin Dixon. Additionally he has tussled with such figures as Tulsi Gabbard supporter Niko House and, most infamously, black conservative broadcaster Jesse Lee Peterson. In this free-wheeling conversation Cole and I discuss rap music (before GNN Cole was a rapper), the military, American history, and much more. And yes, we do discuss his confrontation with Jesse Lee Peterson.

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Reevaluating the Forgotten Historian Charles Austin Beard w/ Dr. Richard Drake

Reevaluating the Forgotten Historian Charles Austin Beard w/ Dr. Richard Drake

December 2, 2019

On this edition of Parallax Views, the historian Charles Austin Beard is not widely discussed today, but in the early 20th century he was a juggernaut amongst public intellectuals. Along with his wife Mary Beard, Charles Beard is one of the forebears of the progressive school of historical interpretation. He is perhaps best know for 1913 book An Economic Interpretation of the Constitution of the United States, which provocatively re-evaluated the founding fathers as being driven primarily by material factors rather than ideals. Additionally Bear was a staunch anti-imperialist. So much so, in fact, that he went on to oppose U.S. intervention into WWII. Due to his stance on U.S. involvement in WWII at the time Beard fell out of favor with historians in the latter half of the 20th century. On this edition of the program Dr. Richard Drake, the Lucille Spear Research Chair in Politics and History at University of Montana, joins us to discuss his reevaluating this forgotten figure in his new book Charles Austin Beard: The Return of the Master Historian of American Imperialism.

 

We begin the conversation by discussing Richard's adjacent research into the great poet Robinson Jeffers, whom shares a great deal in common with Beard. From there we delve into how Richard became interested in figures like Beard and Jeffers, which he says originated with his historical research into European history and the Italian Red Brigades. We then delve into the concept of America as Empire, what it means, and how it relates to Beard's work. After laying that groundwork, Richard and I begin delving into our main subject, the historian Charles Austin Beard, by explaining how Richard's new book relates to his previous work The Education of an Anti-Imperialist: Robert La Follette and U.S. Expansion. Additionally, Richard fills listeners in on how Beard had a strong intellectual collaboration with his wife Mary Ritter Beard, a historian in her on own right who chronicled American women's history, that led to the influential two volume The Rise of American Civilization.


Early 20th Century Wisconsin Senator Robert La Follette

Charles Beard's wife, Mary Ritter Beard, was an influential historian her on write often credited as a founding figure for the field of American women's history

The Rise of American Civilization by Charles and Mary Beard was influential to historians in the first half of the 20th century

Richard and I then dig into how Beard became more staunchly anti-imperialist after WWI. Additionally we talk a bit about Beard's radical reinterpretation of the United States Constitutions and his influence on latter 20th century public intellectuals like Gore Vidal and Howard Zinn as well as the Wisconsin School of American diplomatic history as championed by William Appleman Williams. More broadly Richard explains just how much of a revered public intellectual Beard was in his own time and the values that drove his thought.


The title of Gore Vidal's Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace is a reference to Charles Austin Beard

 We close out the show by discussing the controversy surrounding Beard's opposition to America's entry into WWII. During this portion of the conversation Richard notes how Beard became increasingly critical of FDR both domestically (Beard criticized the New Deal as not doing enough) and in regards to foreign policy. Despite this, Richard points out that Beard was firmly opposed to Adolf Hitler and viewed the notorious Fuhrer of the Third Reich as monstrous. Nonetheless, Beard ultimately believed that U.S. entry into WWII would lead to a disastorous. expansion of American empire and militarism. Richard says that Beard's analyses of these matters are not infallible, but argues that there is still something to be gained from reevaluating Beard. Additionally, Richard and I briefly touch open how Beard, in contrast to some of his contemporaries (most notably Harry Elmer Barnes), refused to dabble in or promote anti-Semitism and in fact had many pro-semitic tendencies. We close out the conversation with Richard's comments on the present and why he believes it is important to reconsider Charles Austin Beard in the 21st centur

CHARLES AUSTIN BEARD:THE RETURN OF THE MASTER HISTORIAN OF AMERICAN IMPERIALISM
BY RICHARD DRAKE
AVAILABLE NOW FROM
CORNELL UNIVERSITY PRESS

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