Zero Squared #63: Marx on Machines pt. 2

Marx’s Capital, Volume 1, Chapter 15 entitled “Machinery and Modern Industry” is the subject this week as Andy Marshall and Andrew Kliman return for part two of the podcast. However, the three of us also discuss how capitalism deforms education and what today’s education system really is and how it works.

It’s Wednesday, the 6th of April, 2016 and I’m Douglas Lain the publisher of Zero Squared and the host of this podcast.

I’m curious to know what people think of Brendan O’Neill’s essay The Panama Papers: Rich-Bashing Won’t Fix the Crisis. You can find the Zero Books Facebook page, find us on twitter, you can contact me at me through my personal website (that’s or just leave a comment below.

The music in this episode includes street musicians covering Pink Floyd’s Another Brick in the Wall and Negativland’s A Nice Place to Live. The music you’re listening to right now is an excerpt from Negativland’s first album entitled Negativland, but in just a moment you’ll hear Andy, Andrew and I discuss The Machine.

Zero Squared #26: Romeo and Juliet in Palestine

Tom Sperlinger is the guest this week and we discuss his book Romeo and Juliet in Palestine. Tom Sperlinger is director of Lifelong Learning for English at the University of Bristol, where he has set up a part-time BA in English Literature and Community Engagement. He has written about literature, universities and adult education for publications including The Guardian, The Independent on Sunday, The Times Higher, The Times Literary Supplement, Open Democracy and The Reader. Romeo and Juliet in Palestine is his first book and came out from Zero Books last month on June 26th.

John Berger who is best known for his book and television series Ways of Seeing blurbed the book this way:

A book of vivid first-hand experience about the daily lives, suffering and courage of Palestinians living in the West Bank. Read it, imagine it and pass it around.

The voices you’ll hear in this episode include Rick Roderick, Stephen Greenblatt, Hamlet, Horatio, Robin Williams in the Dead Poet’s Society, Michael Fassbender, a Librivox recording of David Cooperfield, and Gretrude Stein reading If I Had Told Him a Completed Portrait of Picasso. The music in the episode is The Carmans Whistle by William Byrd.

Diet Soap Podcast #202: Fatalism and Falling

The guest this week is David Blacker whose book The Falling Rate of Learning is currently out from Zero books. Blacker is a philosophy professor at the University of Delaware and a regular guest on Diet Soap. This time we discuss his book and the notion of fatalism. This is part one of a two part conversation.

I want to thank David W for his very generous one time donation as well as thank John L, Jacob L, and Andrew M for being subscribers. Right now I’m working on a new short story about Lucid Dreaming, a time travel birthday cake story, a rewrite of an old novel, the first chapter of a new novel, and I’m waiting for word on a book proposal for a nonfiction book about Marxism and Star Trek. When I manage to finish off any one of these projects I’m hoping to make advance copies available to you, my loyal listeners. In the meantime you can follow me on Facebook or Twitter. Or you can send me an email through my website, that’s

In this episode you’ll hear a reading of Nietzsche’s madman parable, a clip from the Matrix, and the movie Reds.

From the Madman Parable:

How shall we comfort ourselves, the murderers of all murderers? What was holiest and mightiest of all that the world has yet owned has bled to death under our knives: who will wipe this blood off us? What water is there for us to clean ourselves? What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we have to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us? Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it? There has never been a greater deed; and whoever is born after us—for the sake of this deed he will belong to a higher history than all history hitherto.

Diet Soap Podcast #194: Raising Our Collective Consciousness

The guest this week is the radical thinker, writer, and editor Anne Jaclard. Anne Jaclard is a long-time activist in the U.S. women’s movement and international solidarity movements and her current work concentrates on the theoretical and practical relationship of philosophy to revolutionary organization and we discussed  her paper and lecture ‘Let’s Mobilize the Left to Reject the Dogma that Workers Need their “Consciousness Raised“.’

I want to reiterate my thanks to everyone who donated to the Think the Impossible book and podcast tour through Kickstarter because this weekend you’re sending me back to San Francisco where I’ll be reading or performing as a part of the Writers with Drinks variety show at the Makeout Room along with Kim Stanley Robinson, Tom Barbash, Kim Wong Keltner, Mollena “Mo” Williams, and Tatyana Brown.  If you’re in San Francisco I urge you to turn up.  The Makeout room is at 3225 22nd. St.

There are a couple of sound clips in this episode.  You’ll hear the New Seekers and Chad African talking Coca-Cola along with Joan Baez and Noam Chomsky.dietsoap194