Zero Squared #98: A Red Worker in a Red State

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Terry Tapp is a red worker from a red state. He’s also an artist and a writer. His book, “A Serf’s Journal: The Story of the United States’ Longest Wildcat Strike” is coming out from Zero Books in 2017.

Micah Uetricht of Jacobin Magazine blurbed the book this way:

Every day, millions of people grind their way through miserable work. And every day, a few of them decide the status quo cannot stand — they have to fight back. Very few of either of those stories ever get told, particularly by the heroic people who lived them. Terry Tapp does both in a tale of unbelievably miserable, dangerous work and courageous, fed-up workers up against incredibly tall odds. Anyone who has worked a terrible job should read it. Anyone who has dreamed about fighting back should study it.

Thanks goes out to the Zero Books Club members and to Zero Books club readers. Join today for a second podcast called Inside Zero Books, and look for the Zero Books youtube channel.

Zero Squared #97: Punching Nazis?

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Brendan O’Neill and Fredrick DeBoer are the guests this week as we dedicate this week’s episode to the question of punching Nazis.

Brendan O’Neill is the editor of Spiked Online, a publication that I would describe as having an attitude that is both socialist and libertarian in the American sense of the word. They advocate both expanding the range of human freedom and capitalist economic growth, despite being smart enough to know why capitalist economic growth can only occur when the mass of humanity is fettered.

Frederik DeBoer is a writer for publications such as Jacobin, the Observer, The Washington Post, Foreign Policy and other publications. He is a professor at Brooklyn College and describes himself as having conventionally leftist views. A socialist he is something of a mixer and has engaged in many twitter battles with (neo)liberals like Jonathan Chait and Sady Doyle.

This episode is something of a mash-up. It is the result of cutting down two interviews into a single polyphonous episode. Two otherwise disparate voices have been brought together here, not because they agree, but because they both have opinions and were willing to share them.

To underline the point further, let me say again, there are two people in this episode and two different opinions. DeBoer is the man with the American accent, O’Neill is the Brit.
It’s Wednesday, February 8th, 2017, and I’m Douglas Lain the publisher of Zero Books and the host of this podcast.

Thanks goes to members of the Zero Books club. Zero Books Club members receive access to the Inside Zero Books which sometimes consists of unedited or full length interviews from the Zero Squared podcast, sometimes features conversations with Zero Books readers about the state of the left, and sometimes features public lectures from Zero Books authors or staff.

The music you’re listening to right now is Smash Things Up by ¡TchKung!, but in just a moment you’ll be listening to Brendan O’Neil and Frederik DeBoer.

Zero Squared #96: The Busybody State

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Josie Appleton is the guest this week and we discuss her book Officious: Rise of the Busy Body State. The book argues that the Busy Body State is defined by an attachment to bureaucratic procedures for their own sake: the rule for the sake of a rule; the form for the sake of a form.

James Heartfield author of The European Union and the End of Politics blurbed the book this way:

An intellectually gripping analysis of what its author Josie Appleton characterises as a new kind of state power, one that is arbitrary and encroaching on what is left of our unregulated lives. Overall this is a subtle and intelligently argued essay. Its reconstruction of the essential trajectory of the officious state will be a valuable weapon for those keen to argue for greater freedom in everyday life.

Thanks goes out to our Zero Book Club members. Zero Books club members gain access to the Inside Zero Books Podcast and are invited to participate in online workshops in critical theory. Now is always a good time to join.

In the last episode with Slavoj Zizek we claimed that Against the Double Blackmail was his latest book. That was an error. Zizek also published a book entitled Disparities and a book entitled Antigone in 2016.

11 Jan 2017, 2:56am
Zero Squared
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Zero Squared #95: Žižek and the Double Blackmail

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Slavoj Žižek is the guest this week as we discuss the flak he’s received for a few of his Lacanian interventions into politics recently, Marx’s Labor Theory of Value, and his most current book Against the Double Blackmail.

“[A]n urgent and entertaining diagnosis of the ongoing refugee crisis and global terror threat, highlighting the glaring contradictions in our attitudes and actions.” —Mother Jones

“Slavoj Žižek’s compellingly persuasive insights into the current refugee explosion…could not arrive at a more urgent time.”—CounterPunch

Thanks goes out to our Zero Books Club members. Zero Books club members gain access to the Inside Zero Books Podcast and are invited to participate in online workshops in critical theory. Now is always a good time to join.

This episode does not feature any sound collages or clips, except for one clip from a youtube video called “Slavoj Zizek Reacts,” and the song Raggle Taggle by A Hawk and a Hacksaw.


photo credit goes to Ellis Christopher