Zero Squared #93: Shouting at Marxists

This week’s episode of Zero Squared features a conversation with Anne Jaclard from the Marxist Humanist Initiative and activist Ravi Bali. The Marxist Humanist Initiative have published a number of statements on the dangers of Donald Trump in their journal “With Sober Senses” and in this conversation I attempt to test their ideas and seek out inconsistencies. You’ll hear that this is a more contentious conversation than is the norm. The reason for that is simple: I respect these obscure Marxists, want them to win, and so I find it necessary to critique them ruthlessly.

That said you’ll find that the conversation ends rather suddenly. I’ve edited out a bit of the more contentious part of the conversation, a bit where I find myself suddenly changing the subject. Regular listeners of the podcast will miss that bit as I think I go off the rails, but I will include it in this week’s members only Inside Zero Books podcast.

On that subject, thanks goes out to Zero Books Club members and we encourage you to join. Zero Books Club members gain access to a second podcast each week. The Inside Zero Books podcast sometimes features a second hour from this podcast, and sometimes features conversations about the left and left publishing with members of the Zero Books editorial team.

enjoying yer youtube shorts, seems the left is as splintered and given to infighting as usual.

I was very critical of your brexit conversation with Kliman, so I definitely have to give you props for being critical this episode. Whether you were trying to play devil’s advocate or not, you correctly pointed out so many examples of hypocrisy and weak arguments. The guests really came off poorly on their own merit, so I can only say good luck if these are the group you want to see succeed. Thanks for the show (and for what it’s worth, I thought #92 with Kimberley was one of the best shows in awhile).

24 Dec 2016, 4:20am
by Alex Welsh


Unbelievable. Doug, I think you demonstrated a super human level of patience with your guests. I don’t mean to sound unkind, but the the left desperately needs new life breathed into it. If we don’t lift our game quickly, it’s all over…

They’re not answering the questions. It’s like listening to a series of verbal tics.

I just recently discovered Zero Squared from a search for socialist-leaning podcasts. Your guests don’t compare well with Margaret Kimberley’s analysis of Trump and the 2016 Election. But I see most Marxists as impractical theoreticians constantly trying to make the world fit into their ideological framing.

To be fair, I went to their Marxist Humanist site to read two articles posted earlier on Trumpism, and found them full of obvious contradictions. Namely: How can you declare yourselves against Clinton, while in the same editorial demanding readers vote for Clinton to stop Trump from taking power? It doesn’t matter a crap what your claimed motives are, a vote for Clinton from self-proclaimed Marxists counts as much as the votes from Clinton loyalists, and would be declared as a mandate by Team Clinton if she had won the election! If the left has to postpone their own political objectives every four years to fight ‘the greater evil,’ when does it ever build its own political movements?

Maybe this is part of the reason why I’m not a Marxist, but identify as a socialist…some sort of ecosocialist to be exact. I want economic and political systems that abide by the constraints we will have to live with again for the first time in 10000 years, if we want a future for our children and grandchildren. For myself, Marxism’s contempt for nature and environment comes from the same source of enlightenment humanism as the other modern political philosophies that has set us on a course for destruction.
Chris Pierson makes the case for a radical rethinking of private property.
Arguing that we are currently in the midst of a property crisis, Chris challenges us to go back to basics, to ask whether ‘property is theft’ and to consider whether there might be another way of allocating property.


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