We take the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the Zapatista uprising in Chiapas, Mexico to interview teacher, researcher, and author of Zapatistas: Rebellion from the Grassroots to the Global, Alex Khasnabish. Alex takes us through the roots of the rebellion; the military conflict and subsequent negotiations; the unique and refreshing character of the movement; its broad influence both inside Mexico and internationally; and the ongoing grassroots work the Zapatistas continue to do today. In our debrief, we discuss the influence the Zapatistas had on us as young, irritating, and pedantic but well-meaning twits, and the connections between indigenous movements in places like Mexico and indigenous resurgence here in Canada. But more importantly: Propagandhi tour news, and a new song from War On Women!
While on a short break from our clandestine preparations for liberating Santa’s reindeer from chattel slavery, we recount some of the feedback we received on last month’s Chris Hedges interview. Then we review Alex Gibney’s documentary We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks; do what may be our first ever science segment, about the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and the coming post-antibiotic age; and have our plans for an Escape Velocity Radio intern dashed by Charles Davis’ article about poorly-paid (and unpaid) interns, “The Exploited Labourers of the Liberal Media”.
This month we bring you our conversation with Pulitzer prize-winning journalist and author Chris Hedges. Recorded during his late-2013 visit to Winnipeg, we discuss the idea of human progress; religion’s role in the world and the “new” atheists; his controversial attacks on the black bloc tactic; the role of electoral politics in agitating for social justice; and more. Then your intrepid hosts debrief on where some atheists go astray, and enter the fray regarding living clown celebrity Russell Brand, concluding that he and Chris are basically living parallel lives.
On this month’s terrifying episode, which may or may not have been recorded in an actual haunted house, we spend the hour with activist and economist Robin Hahnel discussing his book Of the People, By the People: The Case for a Participatory Economy. Robin tells us about the bone-chilling failings of free market capitalism, the spine-tingling reasons why he feels viable alternative economic models need to be part of activist discourse, and the blood-curdling details of how his proposed alternative to capitalism — called Participatory Economics — works in practice. Join us for this mortifying discussion about how humans organize their economic affairs — if you dare!
This month, we take time out from exposing each other as undercover operatives working for the corporate state to discuss Jamie Meltzer’s new documentary Informant, about the bizarre case of activist turned FBI lackey Brandon Darby. We then look at Canada’s recent history of undercover operations in activist movements, and hear from Toronto-based organizer Sharmeen Khan about her experiences being infiltrated by the Ontario Provincial Police during the G20 protests in 2010.
Come, sit by the lake and eavesdrop while we review your copious feedback to episode 11’s discussion of the BDS movement against Israel; debrief on Propagandhi’s European tour and the ubiquity of corporate sponsorships in music; and reflect on what it means to live an ethical life under capitalism. Next we discuss Neill Blomkamp’s film Elysium, Kim Stanley Robinson’s book 2312, and alternative economic models which take inspiration from the past. Then Derek gets hungry and eats a cultured hamburger while Chris simultaneously praises lab meat and compares it to dog shit.
Derek barely reviews World War Z (the shitty movie, not the excellent book), which segues into a discussion of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel (wherein Chris calls for a Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Canada). Then we sit down with Montréal-based activist and journalist Stefan Christoff to discuss the 2012 Quebec student strike and its historical significance, outcomes, and legacy. Also: Chris airs his grievances against the armchair audio engineers amongst our listenership.
Derek backpedals on calling Jared Diamond “douchebaggy”, we give wildly divergent recommendations of who to follow on Twitter, and we attempt to convince you to back the new Media Education Foundation/Tim Wise documentary on Kickstarter. Then, Chris interviews sports columnist and author Dave Zirin about the intersection of sports and politics, discussing sexism, homophobia, racism, militarism and labour in the professional sports world. Plus: listener feedback!
After a month-long absence we explode back onto the scene with a hilarious skit about the media coverage of Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez’s death, followed by a recap of Propagandhi’s European tour, and news regarding the 20th anniversary re-release of a certain “seminal” album. Then, after a pit-stop at “what Derek’s been reading” corner, we talk with author, podcaster, chef, and vegan educator Colleen Patrick-Goudreau about her new book On Being Vegan, “fake meat”, effective advocacy, and more.
Sink your teeth into our discussion of the hypocrisy and absurdity behind the horse meat debacle; the real scandal behind SodaStream’s SuperBowl ad; the 10th anniversary of a key propaganda coup for the selling of the U.S. invasion of Iraq; and the utterly sad Gun Appreciation Day events held this past January. Then our interview guest — author and journalist Chris Mooney — talks with us about political psychology and his book The Republic Brain: The Science of Why They Deny Science — and Reality.
Join us for a discussion about the Idle No More First Nations movement in Canada, as we review the key issues and timeline of events; talk to John K. Samson about the Canadian Artists Statement of Solidarity; and chat with author, storyteller, and academic Leanne Betasamosake Simpson about Indigenous resistance and resurgence in Canada. Plus, a conversation with the only person we know who has ever received a book endorsement from an international terrorist figurehead, William Blum, on the occasion of the release of his new book America’s Deadliest Export: Democracy.
Ring-in 2013 by listening-in on our conversation with Laura Jane Grace from Against Me! where we discuss gender dysphoria, her decision to transition, and the band’s forthcoming album. We also discuss the Duets for Abdelrazik project, activism opposing the Keystone XL pipeline extension, and the Liberator comic Kickstarter project. Plus, Chris tries to convince Derek to stop suckling at the corporate teat and join alternative social networking sites.