RevolutionZ

Ep 247 - Oliver Anthony, the Right, and the Left

September 17, 2023 Michael Albert Season 1 Episode 247
RevolutionZ
Ep 247 - Oliver Anthony, the Right, and the Left
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Episode 247 of RevolutionZ controversially consider's Oliver Anthony's song, Rich Men North of Richmond, and especially responses to it. "Time will tell who has fell and whose been left behind."

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Speaker 1:

Hello, my name is Michael Albert and I am the host of the podcast that's titled Revolution Z. This is our 247th consecutive episode and our title this time is Rich Men North of Richmond, which is the title of a hugely popular Oliver Anthony folk country song that has gone to number one incredibly quickly, despite Anthony being publicly virtually unknown before its release in August. The song has created a huge amount of commentary, above and beyond the usual amount even for a very popular new release, due to Anthony's background and the song's lyrics and delivery, and I thought I'd like to spend this episode addressing at least the lyrics and delivery, ruminating on various kinds of initial responses that they elicited, even though there was and there remains, really very little to go on. And well then, on a question that arose for me watching it all happen, it will take a little time to get to that question which motivated this episode, and then we will see where doing so leads. I would have liked to have had Anthony on the show as a guest, but I haven't gotten anywhere near figuring out how to contact him other than writing to one email I found, but who knows, maybe that will reach its mark, while I hope most who listen to this episode are independently aware of his song and have even given it a listen or two.

Speaker 1:

I won't assume that's the case. Regrettably, I can't sing it for you, but take it from me. It is a moving, heartfelt and what music lovers call an authentic delivery. And I also can't play it for you, but I can read it here online and can report that he uses what they call a resonative guitar, whatever that might mean, and I can at least relate the lyrics. In any case, here is Rich Men North of Richmond, recited by me, and you can imagine, instead of my unmusical voice, a very powerful and soulful and, I feel, confident translation direct from his life, a natural and honest delivery. Or you can easily search it online and watch him sing it for yourself before continuing with this podcast episode. Okay, did you go listen? If not, the song goes like this First verse I've been selling my soul, working all day, over time, hours for bullshit pay, so I can sit out here and waste my life away, drag back home and drown my troubles away. I comment well, I don't know about you, but can four lines be much more explicit, especially since he is singing outdoors, which is to say he is singing where, as he says in the song, he sits out here to drown his troubles away. The song continues it's a damn shame what the world's gotten to for people like me and people like you. Wish I could just wake up. And it not be true, but it is. Oh, it is. I comment.

Speaker 1:

I think we can infer, and I certainly did that when Anthony sings of people like me and people like you, he is not talking about Elon Musk or Jeff Bezos. He is not thinking of rich owners or of quite wealthy professionals either. It is not capitalists or lawyers and doctors who are like him, who are in his class. It is disempowered, subordinated working people who together constitute the working class who he is singing about and singing to. The song continues live it in a new world with an old soul. These rich men north of Richmond, lord knows that they all just want to have total control, want to know what you think, want to know what you do, and they don't think you know. But I know that you do, because your dollar ain't shit and it's taxed to no end because of rich men north of Richmond. I comment rich men north of Richmond. Well, I looked on a map and north of Richmond is Washington DC. So Anthony is referring to rich senators, congressmen, corporate lobbyists and the rest, the fat cats, the ruling class, who together think that he and people like him are blind to rich people's agendas and who levy the taxes that he and people like him pay but to, as he says, no end and yes, I wish he had said no good end and which they pay even as, I add, their communities go to hell.

Speaker 1:

The song continues. I wish politicians would look out for miners, not just miners on an island somewhere Lord, we got folks in the street and got nothing to eat and the obese, milk and welfare. I comment. So the first two lines refer to rich people's degenerate affinity for Jeffrey Epstein and his island getaway for sexual predation of underage miners spelled with an O, and to their lack of affinity for miners, celled with an E, digging coal. And the second two lines refer to folks who are starving, while some he calls obese, or milk and welfare, with no more word spin down in form and interpretation.

Speaker 1:

This is like one of those Rorschach tests they show you a picture and what you see reveals who you are. Similarly, does what you hear when Oliver Anthony sings depend greatly on who you are. Is he punching down at the poor or is he relaying sentiments that are really widely about those who do get money, seemingly for nothing? The song continues. Well, god, if you're five foot three and you're 300 pounds, taxes are not to pay for your bags of fudge rounds. Young men are putting themselves six feet in the ground because all the stamp country does is keep kicking them down. I comment the first two lines refer to a very overweight guy eating, I guess, chocolate, candy or at any rate some not too healthy food bought with one may assume his welfare benefit. Or do they refer to rich people eating excessively on poor people's payments, while the second two lines refer to young men who put themselves in the ground. And does Anthony mean they do it by drugs or by suicide? And he tells us they do it because the country so abuses them. And so is he punching down at the young men or punching up at the systems that abuse them?

Speaker 1:

Again, it seems that what the listener hears from Anthony may depend as much on who the listener is as on the actual few words the song offers. The song continues Lord, it's a damn shame what this world's gotten to for people like me and people like you Wish I could just wake up and it not be true, but it is or it is. I comment. Anthony is clearly singing about bemoaning the mess that hurts people like himself, and he may be indicating other than wishes. It is what it is, or maybe he is on the edge of saying it is time to do something about it. What do you hear in his words and his voice? The song continues Living in the new world with an old soul. These rich men north of Richmond, lord knows, they all just want to have total control, want to know what you think, want to know what you do, and they don't think you know, but I know that you do, cause your dollar ain't shit and it's taxed to no end. Cause of rich men north of Richmond, and I comment After that recount of who the rich men are and what they want, anthony ends with repeating his clear description of who he is. I've been selling my soul, working all day, over time, hours, for bullshit pay. So with only this one song and with a few, what you see? Maybe what you get? Visuals of the singer on YouTube plus his vocal delivery. If you had time to give it a listen, what would you have made of the song and the singer.

Speaker 1:

A couple of weeks back, when the debate over that burst into public view, here is how I heard some react. First, some on the right, including Republican candidates for president, heard what they felt was a kindred spirit. They heard an angry young man. They heard him mention rich government figures, but somehow they missed that that included them. They heard him mention taxes, but ignored that the taxes he was upset about were to no end. And they heard him mention welfare payments spent unwisely, but they ignored him singing about working all day for bullshit pay, and they ignored the anger at the fact that people ain't got nothing to eat. So when these right ringers presumably thought to themselves based on what their ears heard or perhaps they didn't even think about it, but just took it for granted that hey, hey, hey, this guy can talk to millions we should reach out to him, we should make him ours, make him ours. And so they no doubt thought or again, they didn't even have to think it, but they just took it for granted that if they offered him enough, he would be theirs. His solidarity with his listeners will disappear as his bank account balloons. At the risk of getting a bit personal and hopefully making a point. This reminds me of a moment in my own life.

Speaker 1:

I was at MIT in Cambridge and I was the president of the entire student body and, as such, I made an incoming speech, a speech to incoming freshmen, along with the president of the university. He went first and I went second, and the speech that I gave was incredibly militant. It was a condemnation of MIT itself for its war research, for its approach to education, and it was a condemnation of the country or of the country's structure, especially around the war in Vietnam, civil rights and that which was going on at the time, and it was wildly militant. Well, I finished the speech, jumped off the stage and walked toward the back. I have to say the incoming students were a bit shell shocked. Of course, the president of the university was horrified.

Speaker 1:

As I walked down the aisle, I saw this guy at the end of it. He seemed to be waiting for me and when I got to him he told me he made me pause. He sort of put himself in front of me and he said to me and this is the absolute honest truth he said to me chemicals, one word. And I looked at him and said what are you talking about. He was dressed, you know, in a suit that probably nobody in the room had ever seen the likes of. And he said to me come with me, I'm here from Germany, I'm an official at a multinational there, a chemical firm. Come back with me and we'll make you an officer right away, right off. Your future will be fixed.

Speaker 1:

And I looked at him like he was insane and I of course, rejected his offer and walked past him. But later I thought about it and I thought to myself how could this guy possibly have made such an offer after what I just did, after the talk, the speech that I gave, which literally said that he and his company were spawns of hell? How could he do that? And I realized, and I was astounded by the extent of his arrogance, the extent of his confidence, that this offer to me would buy me off, that this offer to me would make me jettison everything I had just said, everything I was working on, and hop on a plane with him and go back to Germany. Pretty astounding, he was just oblivious to what I had to say. It didn't matter, because money talks. So my point is these rich men from Richmond are so fucking sure of themselves, so used to getting their way, so used to their money, buying everything just as it buys them, that they figured Oliver would join their army. And I have to say it's true for a lot of people, a lot of people, even militant, would join up, would Oliver? Well, what do you think? Listen to his song.

Speaker 1:

Second, some on the left progressives sometimes just in chatter, other times in print ironically seem to have heard Anthony's song more or less the same way as the right wingers heard it. These progressive people didn't jump to attract Anthony like the right wingers. They instead more or less harshly condemned him and the song as imperfect, flawed and even something to ridicule, dismiss or even condemn. They heard, one presumes, anthony's mentions of taxes as being too dismissive of the possibility of useful government expenditures and thus ignorant rather than born of a working class insight that what the rich do, in the end they do for themselves. For these progressives, anthony's song was heard as being anti-social democracy. I guess Not, as being aware that gains for people like Anthony arise only as a byproduct or as a means to rich ends, or when the rich succumb to hard struggle that forces working class gains on them, and never as signs of real solidarity from the rich toward people like Anthony or people like you and similarly.

Speaker 1:

These progressives presumably heard Anthony's mention of welfare and overweight recipients as punching down, as blaming the victim, and certainly not as reflecting what is really out there A squeeze from above and, by some accounts, from below as well, and somehow those progressives didn't hear, or maybe they heard but didn't pay much attention to the feeling in Anthony's voice or even to his anger at working people's plight and for the rich men north of Richmond. They just took that, I guess, as art or as trying to be popular or as rhyme, while they took what they didn't like as revealing something about the singer. It sounded to me like a reflexive dismissal. Here was someone touching the constituency that the left is supposed to talk with, is supposed to reach out to, is supposed to hear and to learn from and to fight alongside. And what does Anthony get back from informed, educated, sophisticated, committed radicals? Oddly, from too many, and wouldn't even one be too many. He seemed to get dismissive hostility or some kind of paternalistic guidance, as in do it our way. We know what you and people like you feel and you don't.

Speaker 1:

Third, trying to appear above or on a different axis than all that politics. Some listened and said what's the fuss? The melody isn't sophisticated, the lyrics aren't real clever, where are the subtle metaphors? Why is this guy getting so elevated, so lauded? So, albeit that the above summary is a highly truncated account of reactions and that it also highlights just what I was most attentive to and was most moved by, still for me a question arose what led to these reactions?

Speaker 1:

Or maybe it was really three questions. First, what led to the right-wingers being blind to many of Anthony's words and, I suspect, to largely misinterpret the rest, and so to see him as someone to rope into their following, which they very promptly thought to do? Second, what led the progressive critics to be relatively blind to many of Anthony's words and, I suspect, to largely misinterpret the rest and to see him as some kind of threat or enemy, to trounce into invisibility or at least into disrepute, as some very promptly thought to do? And finally, third, what caused some to listen to him and dismiss it as unsophisticated, not clever, lacking subtle metaphors and thus not worthy of its large audience? So let's take this one at a time, and while one could no doubt go on a long, long time with each of the three questions. Perhaps we can try for something more succinct.

Speaker 1:

Why did Republican presidential candidates and so many other MAGA types see Oliver Anthony as a kindred spirit they should capture for their agenda? Isn't the answer that they have a shared agenda, a sense of unity, even with all their many differences, and that they want to and believe that they can win their agenda, and that doing so guides their eyes, ears and actions? Isn't it that they heard a possibility of gain and went for it, tried for it and, yes, they thought, of course, they would succeed in getting Anthony fully on board? And what is it about this? The right-wingers reaction that is consequential here. Well, their shared agenda is disgusting, but we knew that already. There is nothing admirable in that. And their lying eyes and ears we knew about those too, and also their arrogance. But what is noticeable, I think, is that they are constantly attuned to the battle they are waging and they are constantly trying to move it forward. They are strategic. They saw a kindred spirit, or what they thought was a kindred spirit, to welcome to their cause, because of hope that it could occur, hope that it would help, and they offered what they have to make that happen High praise and big bucks.

Speaker 1:

Why did many progressives jump to criticize Oliver Anthony's song and assume the worst about his motives and direction? I can only guess at this. I really do wonder why. But it seems and asking others seem to anecdotally verify that many progressives felt threatened by this, in their eyes, ignorant rural singer. They heard what deviated from the script. They felt that deviations might intrude on their meaning. This guy has so big an audience overnight, this guy looks the part this guy has heard and this guy, in their eyes, has too much wrong. Attack him. These progressives, defending their understanding, defending perhaps their identity, found things to pick at, things to dismiss. It didn't occur to listen and learn, it didn't occur to dialogue and converse, to ask questions and offer observations, but not from above, but as potential partners. I'm going to suggest, or am I imposing, to pursue my own agenda, to protect my own identity.

Speaker 1:

Two possible underlying dynamics that might help explain this. First, many on the left have little contact with lives like Oliver Anthony's. In our current society they we often have more coordinator class aspirations, experiences and attachments. We are empowered by our circumstances as compared to workers who are not Perhaps under a rhetorical solidarity. There lurks a dismissive attitude to those below, deemed, at the slightest emergent difference, deplorable. And second, perhaps, unlike the right wingers, we don't constantly look to win what we seek. Perhaps we don't have a shared agenda, a shared sense of being part of one big movement of movements. Instead we are fragmented and we doubt that we can win very much at all, much less a new world. So every deviation from each of our personal priorities feels threatening and the idea of reaching out, of mass appeal, of shared program, just doesn't exist for us at the moment, and so we aren't very strategic. We are something more like a bunch of atomized contending cohorts who somehow can't see that to be unable to talk with and learn from someone like Oliver Anthony, or at the very least like who his song indicates Oliver Anthony may be, is tantamount to surrender, to putting our hopes, putting ourselves six feet in the ground. Of course, it's not everyone who has these views, but how many? And finally, why did some feel the song was not clever, lacked compelling metaphors and had a trivial melody or some such thing and therefore was dismissible?

Speaker 1:

I think this is perhaps just the seemingly civilized version of the progressive critic, but there is something interesting lurking here, albeit just a little off to the side of this whole essay. What is a worthy song, a worthy piece of art? Is the critic's answer astute or is it simply elitist, coordinator, classist? Do clever lyrics, compelling metaphors and complex melody make for worthy music? They could, of course, but are they the key? Or is touching an audience, conveying feelings and even insights? The key Is the emphasis on the former, just saying do it my way or the highway where my way evidences technical training and elite style. Well, consider this. You have a song. The lyrics are clever, the metaphors are subtle, the melody is complex, but listeners yawn. You have another song. Lyrics are not particularly clever, metaphors are absent or obvious, the melody is simple, but listeners are enthralled. In fact, isn't what makes a lyric clever, a metaphor subtle and a melody complex that each works itself and along with the rest, produces enthrallment and not yawns? And if so, is it more likely that the rich man north of Richmond is dismissible as too simple or is it more likely that the critic who says it is dismissible is being elitist? And above and beyond whatever answer as to why these three respondents had the reactions they did, isn't it clear that none of these respondents were in any position to arrive at the conclusions they did about the singer and even about the song based on, well, one song.

Speaker 1:

So here is another Oliver Anthony song, or its lyrics, that I found online. It is titled I Want to Go Home and it goes like this Well, if it weren't for my old dogs and the good Lord, they'd have me strung up in the psych ward, cause everyday livin' in this new world is one too many days for me. And I will add, by way of my own bard I guess that, like him, anthony might have sung if my thought dreams could be seen, they'd probably put my head in a guillotine. But would it have worked better? I doubt it.

Speaker 1:

And the second song continues Son, we're on the brink of the next world war, and I don't think nobody's praying, no more. And I ain't saying I know it for sure. I'm just down on my knees Beggin' Lord, take me home. I want to go home. I don't know which road to go. It's been so long. I just know I didn't used to wake up feelin' this way, cussin' myself every damn day. There's always some kind of bill to pay. People just doin' what the rich men say I want to go home. And I will add again by way of my bard they say sing while you slave and I just get bored.

Speaker 1:

And well, sure, it might be nice to know when Anthony is feeling, thinking, when he talks about home. Is it just how things were not too long ago or is it something much better in the future? And if it is the former, is that really a crime against humanity, against workers, against the left? Or is it just heartfelt pain that isn't yet propounding a way forward, a vision? And if Anthony doesn't have a future vision of a better home, a better economy and a better society, whose fault is that? Is it his fault or is it the fault of people who have been radical for years, decades, and have not heard him and conversed with him and worked out with him a shared vision? And the song continues. Now four generations farm in the ground, grandson sells it to a man out of town and two weeks later the trees go down, only got concrete growin' around.

Speaker 1:

And I will add, it is perhaps beside the point, but I heard the young Bruce Springsteen, who, ironically, was similarly misread, is what I am hoping was a misreading of Anthony over the song born in the USA. More on topic, I start to suspect that this singer has eyes wide open, sees what's going down and puts it into words all can resonate to, and it might be nice if more activists were able to do that too. But yes, it is also possible that Oliver Anthony isn't yet looking forward to a remade world, but only back to barely better times that bred these times. And the song continues and I want to go home. I want to go home. I don't know which road to go. It's been so long I just know I didn't use to wake up feelin' this way, cussin' myself every damn day. People have really gone and lost their way. They all just do what the TV say. I want to go home. If it weren't for my old dogs and the good lord, they'd have me strung up in the psych ward.

Speaker 1:

So Oliver Anthony and millions upon millions of others are bemoaning the increasing pain they are feeling and wondering where better times went and wanting them back and perhaps not yet wanting completely different times, revolutionized times. So what is the response to that? Should a revolutionary who wants completely different times dismiss as hopeless those who do not yet seek fundamental change? Should we forget that we ourselves, at some past point, weren't seeking fundamental change? Should we forget that, communicating with those hurt and angry but not yet seeking fundamental change, is what fighting for change is mainly about. Should we forget that the job of someone who does want fundamental change is not to dismiss those who don't yet want it, but to talk with them, share thoughts with them. Could any stance be stupider, could any stance be stupider, more suicidal for seeking a new world, than to hear rich men north of Richmond and assume that the singer and the song are hopeless, confused, dismissable, rather than to hear someone we should really hear, listen to, converse with, learn from and welcome.

Speaker 1:

Some progressives I don't know how many, but any is too many had two reactions Some fiercely condemned Anthony, while others condescendingly lectured him. Know what has Oliver Anthony said about the response he has encountered? It is likely just beginning for him being accosted from all sides, but will he be polarized by left hostility and or condescension toward beckoning right-wingers, or will the hypocrisy of the right keep him open to the left, as the left realizes it needs to start learning and growing, not circling wagons and shooting itself. Well, in the immediate tumult of his song's success, oliver Anthony reportedly turned down $8 million to do an album, and he certainly said the following things when interviewed about Rich Men North of Richmond. Anthony said that song's written about the people on the stage that is the Republican candidate debate stage, and a lot more too. Not just them, but definitely them. I see the right trying to characterize me as one of their own and I see the left trying to discredit me. I guess in retaliation, I comment it seems like he saw what I saw, but what will he make of it? And Anthony said I do need to address the left because they're sending a message out that Rich Men North of Richmond is an attack against the poor. If you listen to my other music, it's obvious that all of my songs that reference class defend the poor. At some point I will dissect all my lyrics of all my songs if that's what I need to do. And he said I wrote the music I wrote because I was suffering with mental health and depression. These songs have connected with millions of people on such a deep level because they're being sung by someone feeling the words In the very moment they were being sung. No editing, no agent, no bullshit, just some idiot and his guitar. The style of music that we should have never gotten away from in the first place. And Anthony said by way of introducing himself. My legal name is Christopher Anthony Lunsford. My grandfather was Oliver Anthony, and Oliver Anthony music is a dedication not only to him, but to 1930s Appalachia, where he was born and raised.

Speaker 1:

Dirt floors seven kids hard times. In 2010, I dropped out of high school at age 17. I worked multiple plant jobs in western North Carolina, my last being at the paper mill in McDowell County. I worked third shift six days a week for 14.50 an hour in a living hell. In 2013, I had a bad fall at work and fractured my skull. It forced me to move back home to Virginia Due to complications from the injury. It took me six months or so before I could work again. From 2014 until just a few days ago, I've worked outside sales in the industrial manufacturing world. My job has taken me all over Virginia and into the Carolinas, getting to know tens of thousands of other blue collar workers on job sites and in factories.

Speaker 1:

I've spent all day, every day, for the last 10 years, hearing the same story. People are so damn tired of being neglected, divided and manipulated. There's nothing magical about me. I'm not a good musician. I'm not a very good person. I've spent the last five years struggling with mental health and using alcohol to drown it. I am sad to see the world in the state it's in, with everyone fighting with each other. So that's what Oliver Anthony has said, that I have seen, and I wonder what exactly were Oliver Anthony's deep ideological thought crimes against progressivism so evident? No less in one fucking song. Okay, he sings Lord, we got folks in the street ain't got nothing to eat and the obese milk and welfare. Well, god, if you're five foot three and you're 300 pounds, taxes ought not to pay for your bags of fudge rounds.

Speaker 1:

I read one commentator, andrew Levinson, in Washington Monthly, whose head, I have to say, was screwed on rather well, and I paraphrase and then also quote him below. It's easy for progressives to condemn lines quoted immediately above. They stereotype welfare recipients and slip in what can be seen as a gratuitous slap against the obese. But now, closely paraphrasing, we liberals and progressives, much less radicals and revolutionaries, should keep a couple of things in mind before we hop on that criticism too aggressively.

Speaker 1:

First, if you read the hundreds of pages of focus groups where working people complain about welfare cheating, it turns out most of the anecdotes do not repeat reactionary cliches but offer stories about able-bodied friends, neighbors and relatives who draw undeserved disability payments or workman's compensation, or who cash in on social security checks that should be going to someone else in the person's family. The anecdotes report contempt for these people, who they know personally. And now I add to Levinson's observation, and this shouldn't be a surprise those complaining are around the actions they complain about, they see it happening, they feel it and they react to it. It is close to them, it is in their face, like the arrogance and dismissiveness of coordinator class types, lawyers, doctors, managers and sometimes, sad to say, some leftists who dismiss rather than converse with them, whereas owners, well, they may as well be on another planet, directing from afar but not felt so personally. For personal anecdotes, and now, quoting Levinson, the sense of injustice that workers feel about able-bodied people getting money without working is a far different thing when a worker's job is hard, physical labor than when the job is sitting at a desk in an office or working remotely from home. To the office worker, the injustice is abstract, but to a construction worker who spends all day driving nails into 2x4s with a 30-pound nail gun or running PVC pipe or 110 volt electrical wire through a claw space, on the other hand, the unfairness is a raw physical reality. They come home with throbbing cramps in their calves and palms of their hands, aches in their back and stiffness and swelling in the joints of their knees and hips that do not go away even hours after coming home and that lead many to self-medicate with alcohol or drugs, as Oliver Anthony does.

Speaker 1:

So now, what can I say? When I heard it, oliver Anthony's song struck me as honest. I guess the music lover's word is authentic and thus is art powerful, effective, revealing art. It struck me as a program, as vision, as strategy, not as what ought to be or as how to get there, but as what is really, succinctly, really felt and, in Anthony's own words, echoing those he hears all around. And as I saw that his words and tone had resonated for so many people, it said to me that his voice speaks to them and for them.

Speaker 1:

Does the pain he has felt mean he knows what to do about it? No, he may or he may not know what to do about it. Pain gives reason to want to know what to do and to think about what to do. But pain alone doesn't provide a map. But the pain Anthony voices and the anger he expresses and the desire for positive aspirations he elicits does say a lot about where people are at and about what not to do about it. And one thing not to do about it is to look down on, dismiss or otherwise not learn from him and, as he says, from people like him.

Speaker 1:

As I'm prepared to record this, I check Google again for new references to his unfolding story and, lo and behold, there was a ton of new discussion. But what got the most new coverage is that he has begun a tour and at what I think was the first stop he canceled the schedule event in Nashville no less, because the ticket prices were too high. Surely venues are going to notice that and many will still clear of inviting him to perform, and it would appear he doesn't give a damn. He is not in it for the money. I suspect we are going to see him in parking lots, in open fields as well as in indoor venues. Apparently, not only the ticket prices were high $100 instead of the $25 that Anthony said tickets should cost but then people could also buy access to a meet and greet session for $200. But Anthony said the latter should be free. So he not only canceled the event, he apologized to those who had already bought tickets and he said if the venue didn't return their fees, he would.

Speaker 1:

But will Oliver Anthony's message stop at identifying how bad things are? Will it stop at wanting better, like in the past? If so, it wouldn't make him much different than a whole lot of the critics of racism, sexism, authoritarianism and capitalism. Or will it start to seek gains that get us back to before recent losses, which would be better but still not that different than most critics of existing relations. Or will it start to imagine better, really better institutions and seek immediate gains, but on a path that keeps right on traveling toward a new society?

Speaker 1:

We'll see, but I think we can know pretty confidently that, among the many factors in his life and in the tumult he is experiencing, the odds of his fighting for immediate changes and enunciating visionary desires beyond them will go up if he isn't preached at and isn't castigated and isn't ridiculed by the left, but is instead heard clearly and converged with honesty by leftists. And that said, this is Michael Albert signing off until next time for Revolution Z. But wait. First, please visit patreoncom slash revolutionz to consider possibly supporting this podcast. Second, please visit znetworkorg where you can, in the right hand column, not only access recent episodes very easily, but also access a page that archives past episodes since Revolution Z. Episodes are almost all about vision and strategy and, as such, not particularly time bound, and there are after all, nearly 250 of them to choose from. And so now this is Michael Albert really signing off until next time for Revolution Z.

"Rich Men North of Richmond" Song Analysis
Reactions to Oliver Anthony's Song
Oliver Anthony's Authentic Vision for Change
The Importance of Listening to Leftists