Janelle Jolley 0:10
We are back. This is What's Left To Do and I'm your host, Janelle. Let's dive back in with Matisse, his never ending life full of fascination, and some bold political predictions. You felt like that was a worthy transition after being a union carpenter. Like, "Okay now want to learn how to build things and not build, quote, evil buildings. I want to- my desire to build things will take form, or take shape, with my education in architecture. And that'll be the next endeavor of my, not career, but endeavor."
Janelle Jolley 0:56
Okay, okay. What was that like?
I met some people who I'm still friends with to this day.
Janelle Jolley 1:01
Mm-hmm. Wait, where did you go to architecture school?
Janelle Jolley 1:04
Oh! In the city?
Janelle Jolley 1:05
Yeah, I know somebody who went there. Okay.
Janelle Jolley 1:08
It was free?
Yes. If you got- not anymore. But-
Janelle Jolley 1:11
They changed that in the aughts, right?
Yeah. They built this student housing thing and they made a really big- they own the land that the Chrysler Building is on.
Janelle Jolley 1:22
And they made- anyway, they- that's a whole other story. They fucked up. And a... Peter Cooper funded it to be a place for working people to get a first class education. When the school opened, it was only night classes because it was for working people.
Janelle Jolley 1:39
They had, at that time, a view of what architecture was, that I didn't really appreciate 'til I went there, that I vehemently disagreed with. Its what I would call abstract formalism. They were concerned with architecture as a study and practice of form in a very abstract sense. And we're not interested in thinking about, much less discussing, what it actually means to the lived experience of anybody. It was just about ideas, and ideas divorced from the actual consequences in the world. Cooper Union is in a certain location in New York, near, in between the Lower East Side and the West Village. It's right, literally, between them. And at that time, the city was broke, there were a lot of abandoned buildings. I had been living in one at one time, that's another story. They had no engagement in the community. They had an art school, an engineering school, and an architecture school. And why they didn't have five storefront art galleries in that neighborhood.
Janelle Jolley 2:59
Where students were doing whatever they were doing. In the gallery right there, is the easiest indictment I can make of them.
Janelle Jolley 3:09
Politically, artistically, they they still managed to make themselves kind of an ivory tower.
Janelle Jolley 3:15
I was waiting for one of us to use that phrase.
Janelle Jolley 3:20
There was another student, Gabby, Gabriella Salazar, who I really liked. Her father from Argentina was an architect and came to visit. She was living with her mother in New York, but I think her parents were divorced. But he came to visit and I met him and got along with him. And I had told him- this happened during this exact day or two days, or whatever. I told him of this experience. And I guess he went to say goodbye to me when he was leaving, and I wasn't there, and he left a note on my desk. And he said that, I forget the exact words, but it was to the effect of like, people who have, you know, who aren't trying to answer existential questions have given up, or are not really living. He was very supportive of my thinking. So I was at Cooper Union, trying to answer existential questions.
Janelle Jolley 4:18
And it wasn't helping.
Janelle Jolley 4:20
Being at Cooper Union was not helping?
It wasn't helping.
Janelle Jolley 4:23
What existential questions were you looking to answer? Or-
How do we make this better?
Janelle Jolley 4:29
The whole catastrophe.
Janelle Jolley 4:35
Okay. The whole catastrophe of New York?
No, no, no.
Janelle Jolley 4:38
Or the world, or the United States? The galaxy, the cosmos?
Anything within our can.
Janelle Jolley 4:43
So...I had been interested in architecture because of the work of a particular architect named Christopher Alexander and his team at the Center for Environmental Structure in Berkeley. They had written a book called A Pattern Language, which I had read about in the Whole Earth catalog in, like, 1980. And, to shorten the story somewhat, I ended up moving to California to work for Christopher Alexander as an intern. While I was at Cooper, I went to the dean, John Haydock at the time, and said, "Look, there's this architect whose work I'm really interested in. Could you recommend someone on staff that I could talk?" And he said, "Oh yeah, sure. Who is it?" And I said, "Christopher Alexander." And he said, "Go to California." I said, "Excuse me?" He said, "He has a different idea than we do."
Janelle Jolley 5:34
I was like, "Huh?" And this was in my first year, early there, and I...and he was not mean about it. And he was right, you know? I wish he had explained it to me more deeply, because I went through a bunch of suffering trying to circle the square of being there, and so on, and so forth. But I did- I moved to California to pursue architecture in that form. It was made easy because my uncle Steven, the Double Rainbow, was living in San Francisco and had a room in his house that I could live in.
Janelle Jolley 6:11
Okay. All right.
Janelle Jolley 6:13
So having an unpaid architectural internship was made easier.
Janelle Jolley 6:16
Right, because you had a place to lay your head at night.
Janelle Jolley 6:19
Okay. What were your aspirations in coming out here? You wanted to be an intern, but-
I was gonna become a licensed architect.
Janelle Jolley 6:26
And that would help you answer the, what existential questions? Or change things in what way?
You answer existential questions by living. By doing stuff, right?
Janelle Jolley 6:35
Church. Yes. Uh-huh, uh-huh.
So it would help me do, right? I could...I would have gained understanding and skills and experience in how to shape the built world. I understood a lot about construction and carpentry and things like that.
Janelle Jolley 6:53
But there's other aspects to it, which architecture justly covers. And beyond that, kind of the work of being a contractor, or a developer, or whatever, all of the interactions- you know, if you want to...let's say you want to build affordable housing.
Janelle Jolley 7:11
Well, what does it take to build affordable housing?
Janelle Jolley 7:14
A lot of things. A long answer, right?
Janelle Jolley 7:19
I wanted to be able to help all of, you know, do all of things like that. And it requires more than just knowing how to lay out a stair stringer.
Janelle Jolley 7:29
Janelle Jolley 7:30
It requires more than literally putting together the components to put a structure together.
Janelle Jolley 7:35
Gotcha. What was the biggest difference between California and New York, that you remember?
I had spent a summer here in '83, living with Steven and managing the construction of one of the Double Rainbow stores. And so, that biggest difference, I had already experienced. Which, the immediate biggest difference was the light. There was just so much more of it, and it just felt different.
Janelle Jolley 7:59
You said you started to vote for the first time after moving out here.
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Janelle Jolley 8:03
Okay. But what- like, how, at that point, how did- what was your understanding of the world and your place in it?
I have very little affinity for ideologies as such. I can discuss them.
Janelle Jolley 8:17
Right? But to actually have an affinity for an ideology is kind of foreign to me.
Janelle Jolley 8:22
There was a time when I was 15, something like that, that I joined the Young Socialist Alliance.
Janelle Jolley 8:29
Which was the Socialist Workers party's youth branch.
Janelle Jolley 8:32
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
In New York.
Janelle Jolley 8:33
And after a short- there was a point where we're gonna have a national- it was a national convention was coming up. And our little chapter had, like, five people in it, or something? And there was some thing that we were voting on about a position to take at the national convention. And there was a very heated debate on it. And then we voted and it was, like, three to two to do it one way. And I was in the two that lost, right?
Janelle Jolley 8:58
And I was like, "Well, we should at least represent the minority opinion," because it was such a thing. And they were like, "No, that's it."
Janelle Jolley 9:05
End of it, right?
Janelle Jolley 9:05
I was out of there.
Janelle Jolley 9:09
You're like, "Well, this isn't what I thought it was gonna be."
I knew, then, I don't know if I would have articulated it, I might have, that democracy does not mean that 51 people get to vote to execute the other 49.
Janelle Jolley 9:22
Right? That it's all about how we maintain a balance between the majority and the minorities, and how we allow ourselves to shift from being in the majority to the minority, and so on, and so forth.
Janelle Jolley 9:41
And that was your understanding, even at that time, because of that incident as a youth?
Well, it was not so much because of that incident, but because of that understanding, I did not accept that.
Janelle Jolley 9:51
Right? You know, it was as Winston Churchill said about split infinitives, "There are some things up with which we shall not put."
Janelle Jolley 9:59
So I, like, I'm very pro-union.
Janelle Jolley 10:02
Janelle Jolley 10:03
I also recognize what a terrible fucking bureaucracy they can be and how the way many, not all, but many unions acted towards non-white people in the '60s, and it was disgraceful, and was sort of the end of unions' moral authority, in many ways.
Janelle Jolley 10:21
Right? Where the, "Don't bite the war that feeds you," thing, you know? At that same time, I probably still wouldn't cross a picket line.
Janelle Jolley 10:31
Janelle Jolley 10:32
There's some things, I guess they're deeply ingrained and that- you know, I'm a big proponent of public education, you know? I don't have kids. I want to help pay for other people's kids to get an education, right?
Janelle Jolley 10:48
Over the past 30-something years, I have changed my position on firearms.
Janelle Jolley 10:59
From what to what?
Allowing the general public to own firearms was unimportant, had no, had very little weight. And now, and over that time, and now, I no longer believe that. I think that it is not trivial and unimportant to allow the general public to own firearms.
Janelle Jolley 11:02
Mm. Why? What-
It's a very complicated conversation.
Janelle Jolley 11:25
But that- my opinion changed there.
Janelle Jolley 11:29
What do you think was the- what was the impetus for change there?
Familiarity. So, my father was a Boy Scout.
Janelle Jolley 11:39
He was an Eagle Scout, right? And he, I think...I think when I was born, I think he had a 22 rifle in the house. I remember him telling me how he had made it safe in a certain way by moving the bolt and stuff. But there was a point where he bought an air rifle. And I remember him showing me how to shoot an air rifle. And so he was not gun phobic, right? That was this background where I wasn't automatically gun phobic. But I saw it as part of a right wing culture. And I didn't see any other value to it. And I forget exactly how it happened, but there was a point where my friend Bill and I went to a shooting range in South San Francisco, and where you could rent firearms. And I remember learning like this, I was like, "You mean, I go and I give you my driver's license, and I'll be back in an hour?" "No, no, no, you have to shoot them here."
Janelle Jolley 12:36
You know, "With our ammunition."
Janelle Jolley 12:37
Yeah. "In our facility."
Yes. But Bill bought a pistol, I bought a rifle, and started going to a public shooting range in the East Bay Regional Parks, like Chabot, which was there- it got closed down. The gun grabbers closed it down a few years ago.
Janelle Jolley 12:56
But it was purpose built as a public shooting range in the '60s. It was there for 50 years. Was therefore exposed to people who were shooting guns all the time. These are Northern California people who were shooting.
Janelle Jolley 13:08
But they were still people who were shooting. And, you know, not everybody was a Klan member, right?
Janelle Jolley 13:16
Sure. Sure, sure.
And on and on, and on. And now today I'm a member of the Liberal Gun Club, whose name I really dislike, because all these labels liberal, conservative, Democrat, Republican, I find them almost more harmful than useful. But I understand why the club is called that and blah, blah, blah. But any form of power-
Janelle Jolley 13:42
Is self increasing, or tends to be self increasing. And since you have, I gather, you know, some kind of background in sciences and maths and things like that with software and stuff like that. If you imagine a membrane, like a sheet of rubber stretched, like on a drum head?
Janelle Jolley 14:04
And you put a billiard ball in the middle of it. What happens, right? It sags down in a certain shape, right?
Janelle Jolley 14:11
Well, if there's stuff lying around on that, that stuff will tend to roll into the saggy place.
Janelle Jolley 14:19
Making that place heavier.
Janelle Jolley 14:21
So it sags more.
Janelle Jolley 14:24
And that process will continue until there is no more stuff to roll down, or the membrane breaks.
Janelle Jolley 14:30
Ah! Mm-hm, mm-hm.
Right? And power has like a gravitational pull like that.
Janelle Jolley 14:36
And in a capitalist system, where capital is privileged, is given privilege over labor, for example, right? Like, we tax labor at a higher rate than capital and so on.
Janelle Jolley 14:47
If you have a chunk of capital, on average, you will accumulate more of it.
Janelle Jolley 14:55
And you get to a point where it's no longer randomly distributed people accumulating capital, but you start having a few, fewer and fewer, bigger and bigger lumps of capital controlling and accumulating more and more.
Janelle Jolley 15:13
And that's sort of inherent in any system that allows power to accrue to itself.
Janelle Jolley 15:20
Right? Unless there's something that systemically is opposing tha, that's what will just naturally happen.
Janelle Jolley 15:28
In your analysis does capital equal power? Or is power an abstract concept, separate from capital?
Well, there's all kinds of power. Power is the ability to make something happen.
Janelle Jolley 15:38
Right? So, but capital certainly take- comes with a lot of potential energy, if you will, right? Right?
Janelle Jolley 15:51
The...capital won't help you do some things in and of itself. But it...it doesn't help you understand something, for example, by itself.
Janelle Jolley 16:03
It might enable you to pay somebody or to do something else, which would enable your understanding. But, it enables a lot of things.
Janelle Jolley 16:10
Right? And I could see in the '80s that the gulf between people who have and people who have less and less and less and less, was tending to get greater.
Janelle Jolley 16:28
In the '80s?
Yes. I remember very clearly having this conversation with my friend Nick in a hallway of that apartment in the abandoned building. And he wasn't necessarily disagreeing with me, he just didn't see it.
Janelle Jolley 16:46
Sure. Why did you see that in the '80s? What were you seeing in the '80s that led you to that conclusion?
A general sense of experience and perspectives that I had of seeing power, mostly on a small scale, but sometimes on a large scale, and how it worked. That... it's gonna, this is gonna sound, like, trite, or condescending sounding. But it was sort of obvious that if you have power or strength or control over something, and the thing that gives you power is connected to that, in the absence of other forces, you will tend to get more of it.
Janelle Jolley 17:31
If you acquire a certain amount of capital, and you have the countervailing force of being a compulsive gambler, you won't keep accumulating capital.
Janelle Jolley 17:40
Janelle Jolley 17:40
Because you're gonna shit it away.
That could balance it out, right?
Janelle Jolley 17:43
Or if you have a strong countervailing force of philanthropy, and every time you get another $1,000, you give it away, that would counter balance. But most of us don't have that.
Janelle Jolley 17:54
Sure. Sure, sure, sure.
And the structures of our society, of our economic system, are set up in... to tend in this direction.
Janelle Jolley 18:04
How would you describe the degree or magnitude of economic inequality in 2016 versus 1980? Like, orders of magnitude different? Or, basically about the same?
Jobs at the low end of the pay scale were paying a smaller fraction of the cost of living in 2016 than they were paying in 1980. Right?
Janelle Jolley 18:32
Ah-ha, okay, that's one way to measure. Mm-hm.
One of- a common metric that I use in my head for things, how much does that thing cost? Is what multiple of minimum wage-
Janelle Jolley 18:43
Is that thing?
Janelle Jolley 18:44
That's right, that's right.
You know? Or, you know, if you're talking about something that was a long time ago, when there was no minimum wage, you know, for an hour of unskilled labor, you know, how many hours did you need to do to get one of those things? Right? Or that service, or whatever. So that got- that ratio got worse. Right? The...I remember in 19... when would this have been? When was the first Gulf War?
Janelle Jolley 19:12
Janelle Jolley 19:13
So it was around that time, I was living a few blocks from here in house I rented with two other people. And I was a licensed general contractor. There was a recession on and I was living on credit cards. And I was talking to my mother who was living in New York at the time, and I was saying, you know, how old am I? I was, like, 29, or something, or 28 or 29. And, like, "I don't know how I'm supposed to make this work," kind of thing. You know, my father and his brothers were all like, married with kids and careers, you know, when they were my age. And she said, "Well, you know, Matisse, it was a different time. They had a lot of that handed to them." And, you know, it's true.
Janelle Jolley 20:06
Right? And by the time I was...you know, when I was a teenager, New York City went broke.
Janelle Jolley 20:14
Right? That famous Ford to City: Drop Dead.
Janelle Jolley 20:17
Right? By the time I was...watching Bernie run for president in 2016, the fraction of people who had health care in this country had gone down. And I- it's in my head, I might have this wrong, but I think we had actually started to see life expectancies go down by then.
Janelle Jolley 20:36
We absolutely did.
Around that time.
Janelle Jolley 20:39
Right? So yeah, a lot of ways to measure it, but things were worse.
Janelle Jolley 20:43
And I saw it, you know, not getting better. And I saw a moment where it looked like a lot of people were willing to put some energy into changing that.
Janelle Jolley 20:59
And you wanted to be a part of that?
Yes. And I felt I had the opportunity to do that.
Janelle Jolley 21:07
Did you- had you felt that in past election cycles with other candidates? Like, were there other-
Janelle Jolley 21:14
No? Really? Never? Not once? Not with Edwards, not with Clinton?
Janelle Jolley 21:18
Not with Gore?
Clinton...I don't think I had as many illusions about him, perhaps, as other lefty type people might have. Same with Obama. I remember when Obama was running-
Janelle Jolley 21:35
Completely forgot about him.
Running the first time and he had the nomination, but he was in the general election. And I was at a shooting range in the East Bay, and I was talking to my fellow shooters, and they were like, you know, "Obama's gonna take our guns." And I'm like-
Janelle Jolley 21:49
"No, he's not, dude."
"Dude, no. This guy is a moderate."
Janelle Jolley 21:53
Yeah, that's right.
The problem I was concerned about is...has huge structural components. Therefore, it requires structural change.
Janelle Jolley 22:04
Sure, sure. Sure.
Janelle Jolley 22:06
But so you weren't even, not even for a second, were you even- you weren't even, like... Hillary didn't tickle your fancy at all in 2016?
No, I certainly wanted her over almost any of the Republican candidates who were- there were, like, 16 or 17? You know.
Janelle Jolley 22:22
It was a clown car.
Right. So this may be, come back to this conversation we had in Doreen's yard.
Janelle Jolley 22:30
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
So you know, if you're...in France in 1941 and you're a lefty, do you like Charles de Gaulle? The answer is no.
Janelle Jolley 22:44
You do not like Charles de Gaulle, right? He does not like you either.
Janelle Jolley 22:48
Janelle Jolley 22:49
Do you like Marshall Petain?
Janelle Jolley 22:51
Do you know who Marshall Petain was? He's the guy that Nazis put in charge. He was a World War I hero general.
Janelle Jolley 22:58
And he ran the Vichy government.
Janelle Jolley 23:00
Right? Right? So his posters, "Strength, fraternity and order," or something, "Father, land and order," were all over the place, right? You don't de Gaulle, he doesn't like you. You don't like Petain, he wants to put you in a concentration camp.
Janelle Jolley 23:14
So, you know, what do you do?
Janelle Jolley 23:16
Hillary was like de Gaulle.
Janelle Jolley 23:18
Sure. Sure. Sure. Yeah. Uh-huh. And it's just like, "Fine, because these are my options right now."
Janelle Jolley 23:26
You know, I do not see voting as primarily a form of artistic self expression. I see it primarily as a way in which individuals participate in a democratic election. That's it. Because the other ways all get into like influencing other people to vote or not vote, right? You don't do voter suppression as an act of artistic self expression. Maybe somebody does. But that's not the reason why people are willing to put a lot of money and effort into suppressing the vote, right? It's because they want to influence the outcome of the election.
Janelle Jolley 24:06
But I'm saying, yes, you made the case while you're canvassing during the primary. But the primary ended, you know, the bullshit of the Democratic Party was on full display. Hillary got the nomination. In the lead up to the general, were you honestly nervous about her losing to Trump?
Janelle Jolley 24:24
Oh, okay. You didn't take it as a given that she would absolutely-
Janelle Jolley 24:28
I didn't take it as a given that he would win, but I was afraid both ways.
Janelle Jolley 24:33
Ah! Why? What did you see or understand that made you afr-
Well, I understood why a lot of...Trump voters were either voting against Hillary or voting for Trump, but I did not see her meeting the moment.
Janelle Jolley 24:52
There's a significant portion, and I don't mean a majority, but a significant in that it would tip the election-
Janelle Jolley 24:59
Portion of folks who voted for Trump in 2016, who voted for obama twice.
Janelle Jolley 25:07
Yeah, that's right.
Janelle Jolley 25:08
Over 200 counties.
Janelle Jolley 25:09
She wasn't effectively reaching out to the white voters who were afraid of losing their position, right? But weren't threatened by her being black, because she wasn't, right? And who had actually been willing to give Obama a chance because it was a black guy who didn't seem like Malcolm X, right? So they were-
Janelle Jolley 25:36
So she, so-
She didn't address them. And she didn't address the very real economic degradation-
Janelle Jolley 25:43
That had taken place-
Janelle Jolley 25:45
In these communities.
Roughly since the '70s.
Janelle Jolley 25:47
Right? That whole economic inequality thing we were talking abouta, there's structural aspects of that, right?
Janelle Jolley 25:53
You know, if she wasn't going to say free college education, which, you know, not free, taxpayer funded college education, everywhere that we have taxpayer funded high school, you know? If she wasn't willing to say that, okay, but can she address why that is good, right and necessary and what it does for your kids?
Janelle Jolley 26:13
And I did not feel that she did that well enough.
Janelle Jolley 26:16
She didn't do it at all!
I think you could find-
Janelle Jolley 26:18
She started deriding people! Like, "Oh, they want ponies... like, they want all these things." She made it sound fantastical and like it had no bearing in reality, as if there was no capacity to do that here or anywhere else on earth. And then you look up-
She peed on your dreams.
Janelle Jolley 26:35
Yeah, she- yeah, she pissed on you and told you it was raining! Fuck that lady.
She was not inspiring in that way.
Janelle Jolley 26:41
Now she would probably say, "Well, I'm just being realistic."
Janelle Jolley 26:45
No, but then that-
And I think that that's...that is a false choice.
Janelle Jolley 26:51
That's not only- that's not only a false choice, but presenting- presenting being realistic, or realism, as some neutral...as some neutral entity is also, like, is...is...is not-
Yeah, I don't think at first...I would start by saying, number one, I don't think that's just being realistic.
Janelle Jolley 27:11
Saying that it is not- you're just saying that it's realistic, because you don't think there's the political will to do it.
Janelle Jolley 27:16
No, no, no, you're saying it's not realistic because you don't want to do it.
Not because there's not enough money.
Janelle Jolley 27:20
And you don't think it's worthy of being done.
Well, I don't know...what- I don't know that I agree with you on that. I don't know neces- I don't know that Hillary Clinton doesn't want everybody who can go to college to go to college.
Janelle Jolley 27:33
I abso- she absolutely doesn't. What do you- what about her makes you think that she, she's-
I haven't seen her express something that, to me, reads that way. So I'm not arguing that I can prove you wrong.
Janelle Jolley 27:45
I'm arguing that I haven't seen it prove you right.
Janelle Jolley 27:48
You're not sure. Okay. Okay. That's fair.
So I'm open to you, to you showing me.
Janelle Jolley 27:52
I'm inferring that that is not what she believes because during the primary campaign, from what I remember, and I wasn't as keyed into the 2016 primary as I was the 2020 primary, but you saw this groundswell of support from young people for Sanders in favor of free college tuition, and she didn't even partially give that lip service. So I'm saying, I'm inferring from her opposition to him and his platform that, no, she doesn't think that people should have the right to tax funder-
I don't think you can legitimately draw that inference.
Janelle Jolley 28:30
Okay. Tell me why.
I'm not saying that it's, we can prove that it's not true, but I think I can make a case where she's coming from a place of saying, "Well, look, we don't have the votes. We're not going to get that. And so to argue for it in the campaign, is to alienate the people who don't want to fund that. And I think we need those people's votes in order to win." Now, I can't prove that that was her line of thinking, but I don't think you can prove that her line of thinking was that we don't want people to get a taxpayer funded education.
Janelle Jolley 29:13
Okay. I see what you're saying. I don't like it, but I see what you're saying. Okay. That's fair. That's fair.
I will say that I think- I will offer that my view is a more interesting one.
Janelle Jolley 29:28
Let's say that she was right, just as a thought experiment.
Janelle Jolley 29:32
Right about what?
That there was insufficient votes to support taxpayer funded college tuition.
Janelle Jolley 29:41
All right. Let's say, you know, you know that you're in the minority for the thing that you want to do.
Janelle Jolley 29:48
So what then do you do, politically in the small p political sense of, "We're trying to negotiate resources," right? So do you, as Bernie would do and did, say this is a moral imperative. This is- you make a rhetorical, emotional argument for why it is a good thing, and that we should try to do it. And even if people oppose us, we should try to convince them that it is the right thing.
Janelle Jolley 30:23
Or do you not take up as much time with that exhortation, and instead pick something else that you think is closer to immediate possibility?
Janelle Jolley 30:37
Well, I think that goes back to your original thesis of her not meeting the moment because if you take it as a given that, using the example of taxpayer funded college. If you take that example and say, "We don't have the votes right now. We don't," and they didn't. That's fine. But to accept that as static forever and to eliminate the possibility of building political power for that in service of something that's maybe a little bit more expeditious, but not- doesn't have the same, you know, overwhelming redistributive impact, I think is a part of her not meeting that moment, because-
I agree. I think that is a very good way of saying one way in which I think she did not meet the moment. Yes.
Janelle Jolley 31:29
Sure, sure. Okay. Because- and, I mean, this isn't the same, because this is not-
What the moment wanted, in my, our, opinion-
Janelle Jolley 31:37
Was somebody who would make an emotional connection with people around the issue-
Janelle Jolley 31:44
Around a bold agenda.
Of what is right. And Donald Trump did do that.
Janelle Jolley 31:48
Yeah, I- you know I know that .
He made an emotional connection with people around a bold agenda.
Janelle Jolley 31:53
Janelle Jolley 31:54
He didn't mean it.
It was a fucked up agenda.
Janelle Jolley 31:55
Right? But there it is.
Janelle Jolley 31:58
Right. That's right.
In California, there's a 1% wealth tax on real estate. Right? Every year, all real estate is taxed at 1% of what it last sold for, right? And that's a whole other...there's no reassessment and blah, blah, blah, right? But what if there was a 1% tax on all assets? Or all liquid assets? Or, you know, or some category of financial instruments? Would I be paying more than I'm paying now? Yes. I'd be fine with that. Right? Now, would I be out there with everybody else arguing over how efficiently or corruptly the money was being spent? You bet your ass I would.
Janelle Jolley 32:38
Right? But that's an argument that we're having together.
Janelle Jolley 32:42
If you will.
Janelle Jolley 32:42
Yeah. Out in the open.
You know, if we're all trying to push the bus up the hill, I don't mind participating.
Janelle Jolley 32:50
If it's just me trying to push the bus up the hill, I'm not as, you know, I'm not as interested in it.
Janelle Jolley 32:57
Well, what would you say to someone who, you know, got to know you? You know, see how you livin', you good. Like, you don't...do you really mean it? Like, do you really want- do you really want things to be better for other people? Like, why do you feel- like, why not just- why not just decide to take your ball and run off and-
It doesn't feel good.
Janelle Jolley 33:15
What do you mean?
Cuz I live with all these other people.
Janelle Jolley 33:18
Right? Davey, this homeless guy who hangs out in this block all the time, you know, I see him all the time. And I help him out a little bit, and I think about what, you know, would it take to really help him? And it's, like, beyond anything I can easily think of because he's not completely mentally there, right? And that requires all of us to do it.
Janelle Jolley 33:41
And just, you know, euthanizing him or something is not something I'm, you know, I believe is good.
Janelle Jolley 33:48
So, yeah, the reason I'm in favor of-
Janelle Jolley 33:52
I'm a tax and spend, whatever the hell I am-
Janelle Jolley 33:57
Is because I think it's good for all of us. And, believe me, we can get- you know, I can tell you how badly I think government does at this, that, and the other thing. One of the great mechanisms of this degradation that we've had in the last 40 years or so, has been this very conscious effort, very effective, as casting government as the enemy.
Janelle Jolley 34:24
In ways in which it shouldn't be.
Janelle Jolley 34:26
But I don't believe that. I sued the CIA once, right? So-
Janelle Jolley 34:31
What are you saying, Matisse? What do you mean you sued the CIA?
When I was in high school, I got social studies credit for my lawsuit against the CIA.
Janelle Jolley 34:40
What was the substance of your lawsuit?
Freedom of Information Act.
Janelle Jolley 34:44
The agency exceeded the time period allowed and did not provide a statutory, legally acceptable reason for their refusal to release information.
Janelle Jolley 34:56
What were you trying to get released?
I asked for information that they had on WBAI and the Pacifica Foundation.
Janelle Jolley 35:02
Ah! Cuz they were-
They had done domestic spying, which was against the law.
Janelle Jolley 35:06
Janelle Jolley 35:07
At that time.
And the COINTELPRO, or MK-Ultra. COINTELPRO was the FBI, MK-Ultra was the CIA. And, anyway, I ended up- there's a side story here, you can edit it into something else or in the right place, but- so during the lawsuit, so I was 14, right? There's a point where there's a pre trial conference in the judge's chambers, right? This is in the Southern District of New York. And I show up and the Assistant United States District Attorney for the Southern District who's, you know, probably the youngest, lowest tadpole in the USDA's office at that time, is sent to go to this pretrial. And the judge's office, which is, you know, a six by 10 room filled with papers and stuff. I think it was Judge Robert W. Sweet, if I remember correctly. And the US Attorney sees that I'm a 14 year old kid, and he was pretty young, he was in his 20s. And he starts disparaging me in front of the judge, and not taking it seriously. Now, I don't know how much you've been involved with the American judicial legal system-
Janelle Jolley 36:23
Not much at all.
But, like, when you get arrested at the local police station and you go to the county court, that's one thing. But the federal court is a different thing. And I could see at that moment that I had won the case.
Janelle Jolley 36:37
All I had to do was keep my fucking mouth shut.
Janelle Jolley 36:41
Because this guy's making an ass out of himself.
Right. He had disrespected the process.
Janelle Jolley 36:45
Oh, I see.
And the judge, right? The judge did not care that I was a 14 year old kid.
Janelle Jolley 36:51
Right? Probably, you know, a bright kid because he did this lawsuit and you could see he typed it himself.
Janelle Jolley 36:56
Right? And, in those days, you had to make the little box around the title thing by putting x's and equal signs in the right spot. Anyway. But, you know, they set the trial date. And then the trial comes around, and I go into the court, and we're waiting while the case head of ours is being heard. And there's no talking in the courtroom, right? If you go to traffic court or whatever, you know, it's not like that. This is like the floors are clean.
Janelle Jolley 37:32
Right? The windows are clean, and there is no talking in the crowd. And you can tell that the judge is reading a paperback book while the lawyer is making his arguments.
Janelle Jolley 37:45
Oh, like he's not even paying attention.
And the lawyer lets something change in his tone of voice. Because he's annoyed. And the judge is unhappy!
Janelle Jolley 37:55
On his ass. Yeah.
"You ever do that again, in my courtroom!" He was paying attention to every word.
Janelle Jolley 38:04
Wow, wow, wow.
While this is going on, there's the guy next to me who's like the assistant DA for my case, elbows me and points to somebody else, and points to the door. So we go outside into the hallway. And he says, you know, "Mr. Enzer this is Mr. Jones from the CIA. He came up on the train from Washington this morning." And, yeah, and I'm thinking, "Oh, man," you know, like, "The taxpayers pay to send this guy to New York, from Washington." Like, "I'm in this courtroom, this is serious." And they said, you know, "What do you want?" I said, "Well, I want more information."
Janelle Jolley 38:54
Right? You know, I'm not, you know, just what I said in the lawsuit, I want more information. And they had already released some more information during a process called discovery.
Janelle Jolley 39:05
And they had released something they weren't supposed to release during that process. But, anyway. And they said, "Well, look, if we give you more information, will you drop the suit?" I said, "Well, how do I know that you're going to do this?" And he said, "Look, you've seen this place. If we tell the judge that we have a deal, we have to do it."
Janelle Jolley 39:25
Abide by it.
And I believed them because of that context.
Janelle Jolley 39:28
And that is, in fact, what happened. We went back in, they said we reached an agreement, and they did, in fact, release more information. But what I would tell my 14 year old self now if I could be there is, politely decline their offer and insist on- there was this thing that I knew that I could ask for, which is where the judge looks at the disputed material, and they decide. The Freedom of Information Act provides what's called in camera review, where the judge looks at the stuff and decides whether or not the agency is properly witholding it or not, right? And I should have asked for that. But I was too overwhelmed as a 14 year old kid by this whole thing, and I didn't do that.
Janelle Jolley 40:15
Sure. Interesting. You sued the CIA. That was certainly not on my bingo card when I came over here today.
Anyway, so I know that the government isn't always right.
Janelle Jolley 40:25
No, of course- c'mon.
And isn't always the best way to run things, etc, etc., right? The way the fucking vaccination rollout is happening in San Francisco.
Janelle Jolley 40:26
Yeah, that's right.
Right? Has been less than stellar.
Janelle Jolley 40:35
Yeah, that's right. That's right.
Janelle Jolley 40:36
They're not my enemy.
We should raise taxes.
Janelle Jolley 40:39
And spend more money on social programs.
Janelle Jolley 40:41
That's my policy.
Janelle Jolley 40:43
Janelle Jolley 40:44
But let's say so, in light of that, what...in light of that, nodding to the name of this podcast, what's left to do? Like, what are- for people who are at a place where they have...for people who have arrived-
Well right- so right now, very immediately, I'd say 2022.
Janelle Jolley 41:12
Right? The entire house of representatives is up for reelection.
Janelle Jolley 41:15
Right? Every two years.
Janelle Jolley 41:16
And a third of the Senate.
Janelle Jolley 41:18
And...so right now making sure that the fascists don't take power, is an immediate concern. And the somewhat larger context I would put that in is that I think it's going to take another 10 or 15 years for demographic shifts in the country to let us reach some kind of new equilibrium.
Janelle Jolley 41:50
I call bullshit.
You think that it-
Janelle Jolley 41:53
I don't think demographics are destiny.
Janelle Jolley 41:56
Demographics are not destiny.
That- are not going to help?
Janelle Jolley 41:59
Okay, I'm open to hearing that.
Janelle Jolley 42:04
Sure, sure, sure. So-
I think that the people who were first able to vote in the last two, in the last five years, right? And the people coming after them, are generally less authoritarian than the people before them.
Janelle Jolley 42:25
And there are more of them. And they are participating in voting at a higher rate. Not high enough for Sanders to have won in 2020, but higher, right? And...but I'm open to you- I'm predictin, so I can't prove that what I'm saying is true. Why do you think that that's not gonna happen?
Janelle Jolley 42:47
Demographics aren't destiny because ascriptive identities that are...are kind of encircled and fetishized by liberals don't really tell us much in the way of-
When I say demographics, I don't mean...brown people will be a bigger percentage of the population, and therefore we win. That's not what I mean.
Janelle Jolley 43:10
What do you mean?
I mean that...cultural demographics, people who see universal health care as something that a reasonable society should provide.
Janelle Jolley 43:23
That's right now,
Right. There isn't enough of them who are willing to vote on that right now. But that is increasing.
Janelle Jolley 43:28
75% of people in the country. I'm talking, not across- not all ?
75% of the people say, "Do you think we should have universal health care?" Yes.
Janelle Jolley 43:37
If you say, do 75% of the people say, "I'm willing to change- to give up my current health insurance and change it for that?" It's different. Right? Do 75% of the people say, "I'm going to vote for this person for congress if they push that?" No. In some districts, they might.
Janelle Jolley 43:58
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Right? Eight years ago in no districts-
Janelle Jolley 44:02
Would they have.
Janelle Jolley 44:03
Right? So I- maybe we're just disagreeing to a matter of degree, but I don't think that the 2022 House of Representatives election is going to see a majority elected to the House who are going to pass a universal health care bill, right? I do think that-
Janelle Jolley 44:21
Those were the gains this time. More people-
Do you think there's a majority in the House today who will-
Janelle Jolley 44:26
No, no no. No, no, no. There is not a majority in the House today. No, no. You're exactly correct.
What I'm saying, 10 or 15- within 15 years, there will be.
Janelle Jolley 44:33
You think so?
Janelle Jolley 44:34
You think the forces of capital on the side of big pharma, health insurance, are gonna- they're gonna loosen their group?
Are any other- are there capitalist countries in the world besides the United States?
Janelle Jolley 44:44
Janelle Jolley 44:48
France, Great Britain, Taiwan.
Do any of them have universal health care?
Janelle Jolley 44:57
All of them.
Somehow it seems compatible with capitalism to have universal health care. In fact, the United States is the only major capitalist that doesn't have it. So I don't think that holding up the forces of capital as a reason why we won't have universal health care is a sufficient argument. It is in the interests of a lot of capitalists to have universal health care. The reasons we don't have universal health care isn't because it is automatically not in the interest of cap- Nixon tried to pass it.
Janelle Jolley 45:28
Yeah. And he got beat down. Hillary got beat down in the '90s with CHIP. I mean, come- I mean, you know, Dean when- before he lost his mind, like, he was a universal healthcare-
There's a reason why Amazon and Walmart are looking at trying to maybe start some kind of health care system. Right? They're not, like, necessarily the friend of every worker, right?
Janelle Jolley 45:50
But the- how...whether we have universal health care or not, I am predicting, and I could- I definitely could be wrong, but what I believe is likely to happen is that the forces of capital are actually going to realign around that, and some other things, as being a more, a reasonable baseline to have. And that the culture war arguments for why we don't have it are less important to them.
Janelle Jolley 46:21
I don't think that- I don't think that this is a function of culture war, I think this is a function of their ability to voraciously accrue capital. I don't think culture has anything to do with it. This is all financial.
You think that...how much less money do they make if- so, right now, about 1/6 of all the money spent in the United States is spent on health care, right?
Janelle Jolley 46:43
Yeah. Trillion dollar industry.
Right. And...so, there's two things here, and I'm conflating them, and I wish I wasn't, but I'm going to. So, there's universal coverage.
Janelle Jolley 46:54
And there's how much we pay for it.
Janelle Jolley 46:56
We would like to spend more like 10% instead of 17%.
Janelle Jolley 47:00
Right? Maybe even less than that, but let's just say 10%. If we did that, someone is not going to get the seven cents.
Janelle Jolley 47:08
Right? Those people are, have a pretty strong interest to argue for keep doing it the way it is right now, right?
Janelle Jolley 47:15
However, everybody else-
Janelle Jolley 47:20
Right? Have a reason to argue to redistribute that 7%.
Janelle Jolley 47:25
The biggest forces of capital in this country are not that 7%. There's an overlap there-
Janelle Jolley 47:33
But those are- the insurance company- a short way of putting this is everybody fucking hates the insurance companies except the insurance companies.
Janelle Jolley 47:40
Yes, of course!
And so all the other big companies, all the other big sources of capital-
Janelle Jolley 47:45
Would be okay with taking them apart and eating them.
Janelle Jolley 47:48
In theory, but if people were empowered, or had a political or electoral system that delivered on that-
It might ask for other things that they don't want.
Janelle Jolley 47:56
Yeah, that's right, then the gun is turned on them.
So your argument is, they don't want to give the peasants health care, because if they ask for health care they're going to ask for-
Janelle Jolley 48:03
That's one of the arguments.
For all the other things.
Janelle Jolley 48:06
That's one of the arguments, but-
I think that there has been more force behind that in the past, but there is less now.
Janelle Jolley 48:15
Matisse, square that circle for me because we're in a pandemic and in the former president elect, now President, still is- said he would veto Medicare for All if it came across his desk. So tell me how you're squaring that with the knowledge that they are-
That fits into the culture war thing, I think. The art- when I talk to people who are more Republicany right wing-
Janelle Jolley 48:35
About Medicare for All, and things like that, the arguments I get from them- it's not that it'll cost too much, it's that...people who don't deserve it-
Janelle Jolley 48:46
Will be getting some of my money.
Janelle Jolley 48:49
Janelle Jolley 48:52
And that their- they don't trust government to be the arbiter of who deserves to get this.
Janelle Jolley 49:01
And that government will redistribute their money. They agree that getting health care is good.
Janelle Jolley 49:06
And their girlfriend got laid off from her job and went, had to go through Covered California and doesn't like what was available because of that-
Janelle Jolley 49:17
But is glad that they could get it.
Janelle Jolley 49:19
Right? And that's all fucked up.
Janelle Jolley 49:21
Right? But they remain concerned that having the government run it will result in people who worked hard and deserve something, losing something so that someone who didn't work hard gets it instead of them. Right?
Janelle Jolley 49:39
But that's a, but-
And that's a cultural argu- I'm calling that a cultural argument. And that-
Janelle Jolley 49:45
But who seeds that? We can call it a cultural argument, but who seeds that?
That's what i'm saying is changing, is that that cultural argument doesn't have the currency that it did. And I am arguing that over the next 5, 10, 15 years will have even less, and that the people who were seeding it- you even have the Koch brothers saying they fucking made a mistake in writing. Right?
Janelle Jolley 50:09
I missed that.
I'm not saying that they suddenly became, you know, Mother Teresa.
Janelle Jolley 50:13
Right? But this wasn't what they wanted.
Janelle Jolley 50:16
Sure, sure, sure.
Right? And so, in that issue, and there's other issues where I think I might agree with you more, by the way, but but this issue of universal health care, I think that the system is willing, over time, and by that I'm saying over the next 15 years, to realign itself so that it, you know, we're the same as Switzerland. So that we have the vast economic equality that Great Britain has. Maybe not so much. Right, right? But they do have the National Health Service. So if you want to do something effective in politics, you have to...you have to address what is true.
Janelle Jolley 50:58
As well as what is possible.
Janelle Jolley 51:03
If you do only what is true and you never talk about what is possible, that's bad, because you just stick with the way things- you never change.
Janelle Jolley 51:09
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Right? And if you talk only about what is possible, but don't confront what is true, you also won't change because you can't make it happen. You need some reality to actually move anything. Again, we're spending 17 cents of every dollar in this country on healthcare. Right? It's plausible that we could get that down to 10. Maybe somebody could argue that we could get it down to eight, or something, right? But assume that we're equally smart to all the other rich countries in the world, get it down to maybe 10.
Janelle Jolley 51:38
Or something like that, right? You know, Switzerland has private insurance, but it's- they have universal coverage because of how they manage it. There's- Medicare for All is one way of getting universal coverage.
Janelle Jolley 51:48
It doesn't, by itself, reduce that 17%.
Janelle Jolley 51:52
Right? There's a whole other bunch of factors in that.
Janelle Jolley 51:55
The entire economy is dragged by that, let's say the 7% that we're arguing about, right? So the big companies and the big concentrations of power, right? This is what I said earlier, most of them are not getting that 7%. The insurance companies and stuff are getting that.
Janelle Jolley 52:16
But most of them don't give a fuck about the insurance companies. Their bottom line would go up. Their ability to attract and retain workers, and their hassle and all that other stuff, would be better if there was lower cost health care available to everybody.
Janelle Jolley 52:32
One of the big arguments for Medicare for All is that, yes, your taxes will go up, but...
Janelle Jolley 52:41
Net, you're spending less.
But the money that your employer is contributing on your behalf, they will give to you instead. Which is like-
Janelle Jolley 52:48
Janelle Jolley 52:50
Right? But, I mean, you could mandate it, there's things, but that's the argument, right? And mathematically it's correct. It's the same pot of money, right?
Janelle Jolley 53:01
And then we argue about, well, how do we get it from 17 cents down to 10 cents? And that's where we say, well, we put the insurance companies out of business. Right? And the, under one version of it, you basically can't have private insurance anymore.
Janelle Jolley 53:18
Right? I have Kaiser, right? What happens to me and Kaiser under Medicare for All? I'm honestly not sure.
Janelle Jolley 53:25
Right? Because Kaiser is both the insurer-
Janelle Jolley 53:28
And the health care provider.
Janelle Jolley 53:29
Right? I don't know. I'd still vote for it.
Janelle Jolley 53:34
That...most big companies, I think, are ready to see that happen.
Janelle Jolley 53:40
I hope you're right. Do you think is likely that Dems will defend their gains in the House and the Senate in 2022?
Yes. Do I-
Janelle Jolley 53:49
What would it take for them to defend and/or pick up seats?
I don't know right now. My answers are more general than I wish they were. I might ask you our opinion. But an acquaintance of mine makes an argument for a shift to a more populist, leftist populism, is what would be necessary.
Janelle Jolley 54:14
Okay, my man, how did we meet? And that got utterly destroyed! So I'm saying, how likely is that, given that Nancy goddamn Pelosi is still like, you know, the third most powerful Democrat in the country?
I don't think she'll be the speaker after the 2022 election.
Janelle Jolley 54:30
Then how's it gonna get mopped in 2022?
Even if the dems win, I don't think she's gonna be the speaker. I think she's done.
Janelle Jolley 54:38
You think so?
Part of the problem there is, who is going to replace her?
Janelle Jolley 54:43
Any- dog, you! You! You could be a speaker of the House! I would be much happier with you as speaker of the House.
Being a speaker of the House means you got to have the support of the majority of the votes in the House.
Janelle Jolley 54:55
Yeah, and- I didn't literally mean you.
And they're not gonna vote for me.
Janelle Jolley 54:55
No, they would not vote for you.
You're saying, if I magically got installed by-
Janelle Jolley 55:02
No, I'm saying I cannot stand her so much that I think a dog catcher could do a better job at being speaker than she.
Janelle Jolley 55:09
That's because I hate her, but go ahead.
Alright, but that, as they say, that is as may be.
Janelle Jolley 55:14
But the question of how to prevent Josh Hawley from becoming the speaker of the House.
Janelle Jolley 55:21
He's a sentatoe.
Oh, he's the Senate. Sorry. McCarthy.
Janelle Jolley 55:24
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
How to prevent Kevin McCarthy from being the speaker of the House is a more worthy discussion.
Janelle Jolley 55:31
I think that there are strong fascist tendencies in the country. And this is not the first time, you know, we saw, before World War II, we saw openly fascist supporting organizations in the US.
Janelle Jolley 55:49
It's not a new thing.
Janelle Jolley 55:51
What is the environment that makes fascism...that are conducive to it's taking root and growth?
A lot of things. As a shorthand, I think a lot of it is described well in what's his name's book? Stranger In Their Own Land. The...over the...in our current time, there's been a concerted effort over the last several decades to argue that people who don't deserve it are getting some of yours.
Janelle Jolley 56:27
And the government is helping them.
Janelle Jolley 56:31
That pitch is, I think, been the largest antecedent, or fertile ground. It's not the only one.
Janelle Jolley 56:42
But it's the largest one in the last, you know, 40 years.
Janelle Jolley 56:47
But can we can we dig a little deeper on that? When that pitch is made, what are the conditions that the people who are most susceptible to that pitch, what are they- describe their conditions that make that pitch attractive.
Oh, I think it varies. It's like, you know, when people will say that Trump supporters were all, like, you know, lower middle class, poor white people.
Janelle Jolley 57:10
But it's actually not true.
Janelle Jolley 57:12
There's quite a lot of-
Janelle Jolley 57:13
Small business owners.
Better off people.
Janelle Jolley 57:15
Yeah, that's right.
Right? So for them, there's just the racism part is enough, right? Or the-
Janelle Jolley 57:24
Or the positive, the affirmative, economic gains they rightly thought that they would get under him. Tax cuts.
Yes, yes. In order for them to sign on for all those things to happen, they also had to feel insecure even before then.
Janelle Jolley 57:39
I don't think-
I think- I have met people where I think that they're...they were brought up to believe in a world that had a certain kind of order and stability to it.
Janelle Jolley 57:48
And as they came into contact with the world, outside of the more insular community that they were in-
Janelle Jolley 57:57
They experienced things that didn't fit that narrative. Right?
Janelle Jolley 58:02
And I'm not talking about economic insecurity, I'm just talking about their broader view of where order-
Janelle Jolley 58:11
But order has to-
Or even if the world is ordered. This- in fact, I'll even pick on this one in particular, the idea that things are predictable. And that if they left an environment in which things were kind of predictable, then went into an environment where things weren't, they began to look for reasons why-
Janelle Jolley 58:32
They weren't pretty.
Janelle Jolley 58:33
And in many cases, I will argue, that it's because the world just isn't predictable. It was never- it was never true.
Janelle Jolley 58:41
How is the world not predictable?
You know, my dad died of cancer when I was eight.
Janelle Jolley 58:47
I would not have predicted that when I was six.
Janelle Jolley 58:50
Sure, of course. Of course.
I don't think it was because of the economic policies of anybody.
Janelle Jolley 58:55
Janelle Jolley 58:55
Not in the case of your dad, no.
And that's unpredictable, right?
Janelle Jolley 58:59
So, as a consequence of that, I had a deeply felt experience of the unpredictability of the world. And so to some degree, to a greater degree than some people, not everybody, but some people, I simply experience the world as unpredictable.
Janelle Jolley 59:15
Right? And I can see, maybe really, or maybe I'm projecting it, I see lack of predictability in places where somebody else may expect predictability. Progressive politics, or social justice politics, also offers-
Janelle Jolley 59:30
A fantasy of a certain kind of life.
Janelle Jolley 59:32
And so on. But it's grounded in valuing...relationship more than order.
Janelle Jolley 59:43
If you were to have an audience with Joe Biden and Kamala, what would be the things that you would heavily stress to them in order to stem this potential fascist tide? Like, what are the things they need to get serious about so that 2020-
Beyond getting COVID- dealing with COVID-
Janelle Jolley 1:00:07
Yeah, beyond the-
The immediate crisis.
Janelle Jolley 1:00:09
Beyond the immediate crisis, what are the things that they need to-
Janelle Jolley 1:00:13
What are the things they need to do to not get mopped in 2022 and 2024?
I would argue to go to your non-metro counties with, you know, left wing populism. You know, health care and jobs and-
Janelle Jolley 1:00:29
And the DCCC will fund them?
Janelle Jolley 1:00:32
You know, taxpayer funded shooting ranges.
Janelle Jolley 1:00:36
Right? And you can, you know, you get free health care and dental.
Janelle Jolley 1:00:41
That's my policy.
Janelle Jolley 1:00:43
That's the playbook for 2022?
For the non-metros.
Janelle Jolley 1:00:46
Janelle Jolley 1:00:47
That would be my sound bite.
Janelle Jolley 1:00:48
So focus, not on the blue archipelagos, but the, you know, the rural, or exurban?
Well, in the urban ones, I don't think that we're in his weakest state there, so I'm not as concerned about trying to fine tune it. Right? Like, I don't think the republicans are gonna win a lot of urban House districts.
Janelle Jolley 1:01:09
Janelle Jolley 1:01:10
Right? It's the other ones-
Janelle Jolley 1:01:13
Although they're now in control of redistricting on a state level, because they're-
Janelle Jolley 1:01:19
Well, not everywhere.
Janelle Jolley 1:01:21
Almost everywhe- in most places. In most places they're in control of redistricting now.
But in general, I would say that in the non-urban districts, put in people who are going to get your kids health care and dental, you know, and take them to the shooting range.
Janelle Jolley 1:01:39
Okay. All right. So...and that's it?
If we keep McCarthy and Hawley and Cruz from taking over in 2022, to me, that's a victory.
Janelle Jolley 1:01:53
Right? We should have a Supreme Court seat swap somewhere in there.
Janelle Jolley 1:02:00
New person, not necessarily pick up a seat, but-
Janelle Jolley 1:02:02
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
There'll be an appointment-
Janelle Jolley 1:02:06
Somewhere in there. One thing that keeps me up at night is, like, who could succeed Nancy Pelosi? You know, if she- I don't think that she's going to be Speaker in 2022, even if they win. But if she isn't a serious candidate for it, and there isn't a good replacement, there's, you know, hungry dogs fighting over-
Janelle Jolley 1:02:34
And it's bad.
Janelle Jolley 1:02:36
The- picking up some Senate seats would be-
Janelle Jolley 1:02:41
Which ones you think are ripe for pick up?
Janelle Jolley 1:02:43
Which ones do you think are ripe for pick up?
I don't have the list right now. But I know that the map is not great for the Republicans in 2022. It's worse for them than it is for the Democrats. They have more seats up.
Janelle Jolley 1:02:57
The...you know, we might get somebody better than Feinstein.
Janelle Jolley 1:03:03
What you mean might? We must!
Well, you're expressing desire, I'm- which I share. But the-
Janelle Jolley 1:03:12
You don't think anyone's gonna step up to challenge her?
I think that she's gonna- she may...leave before her term is up and-
Janelle Jolley 1:03:20
She just got her- her campaign just filed paperwork for the next run.
Yeah, well, we'll see. Right? And that Gavin might appoint someone who is not better. That's-
Janelle Jolley 1:03:28
Oh, I see what you'e saying. Okay, okay, okay. Hm. What was your- what were your thoughts-
And I don't know who would be someone good to run against her. You know who I would, just for the drama of it, I would enjoy, would be a Schwarzenegger ran for the seat.
Janelle Jolley 1:03:43
He could win it. He won statewide office once before.
Janelle Jolley 1:03:49
But weren't you guys trippin' your balls off at that point? Like, everyone was just, like, high and dumb when he won?
Well, the incumbent Democrat that he replaced was very weak. Right?
Janelle Jolley 1:04:03
Sure. But wasn't he snuck because of the-
Arnold has burnished his anti-Trump credentials. He's done a couple of really good statements. Very effective, heartfelt.
Janelle Jolley 1:04:19
That will be dramatic. And I will be so sad if Arnold is the one that-
Didn't I preface it by saying I would enjoy the drama of it?
Janelle Jolley 1:04:27
The drama, yes. Okay, yes, that would be...
It would be fun to watch.
Janelle Jolley 1:04:30
So you're- so 2024 you're not- who are you- what are you nervous about in 2024?
Basically, in general, I'm worried about, you know, the rise of authoritarianism and fascism.
Janelle Jolley 1:04:39
That's what I'm basically worried about.
Janelle Jolley 1:04:40
Worst case scenario: In 2022, Dems lose control of the House. Then, what are you worried about in 2024? Who are you worried about on 2024?
And the Senate, right? If the Dems lose the House and the Senate in 2022...
Janelle Jolley 1:04:53
Which, they might.
I'd be worried about Ted Cruz becoming president, I guess.
Janelle Jolley 1:04:58
Come on. Ted Cruz?
He's a very intelligent lizard fucker.
Janelle Jolley 1:05:06
I won't argue with that. You're not more worried about Cotton or Hawley? Or Tucker Carlson, either? I think he might be a dark horse. Or, if they do not convict in the Senate, Trump coming back in 2024.
I hope that Trump starts a political party.
Janelle Jolley 1:05:22
That would be interesting. Let's just say Dems just lose the House, but they...
Keep the Senate.
Janelle Jolley 1:05:29
Keep the Senate. Or, vice versa, they lose one of the houses of Congress.
I mean, what I'm worried about is the fascist and the feudalists uniting in a competent fashion.
Janelle Jolley 1:05:44
But isn't that inevitable if this crisis is not handled handily?
It's- I don't know if it's inevitable, then, but, certainly, that would make it much more likely. The world around you is in better shape than it was 200 years ago.
Janelle Jolley 1:06:03
Or 400 years ago, or 1000 years ago.
Janelle Jolley 1:06:07
And that the ability of people to work together for a common good, has been gradually getting better throughout all of human history.
Janelle Jolley 1:06:24
It sort of his human history.
Janelle Jolley 1:06:27
Well, you know, it's never going to get done, right? Not in our lifetimes, ever. It won't ever get done. And you're participating in that. You are a participant in that.
Janelle Jolley 1:06:38
And that what you're doing contributes to that, you know. To people being- to us humans getting better at working together, collaborating, being together with each other with the universe, if you want to be more metaphysical about it-
Janelle Jolley 1:06:59
But just, you're participating and making it better. And that-
Janelle Jolley 1:07:04
Even though it doesn't... it doesn't always seem that way?
Yeah, even though it isn't always that way.
Janelle Jolley 1:07:11
Right, right? The- there's this, you know, this, the author, William Gibson? Sort of invented cyberpunk?
Janelle Jolley 1:07:18
He said, once, you know, "That the future is already here, it's just not evenly distributed."
Janelle Jolley 1:07:25
Right? So, even while good things are happening over there, a bad thing is happening, you know, 50 feet to the left of it, or on the- even while, you know, good things may be happening here in this neighborhood, or in San Francisco, somebody might be getting murdered, right now, right?
Janelle Jolley 1:07:46
So, it's all happening. What you are doing with your life is contributing to that evolution of human capacity for togetherness. And the particular things that you're doing right now, at this point in your life, with exploring other people's stories and trying to understand your own story in the context of theirs, and so on, seems to me to be a very, you know, reasonable and intelligent and useful thing to go about. That, you know, so keep doing it. Finish it, whatever that means to you. Things finish in different ways, you know?
Janelle Jolley 1:08:34
But find some way of feeling that you have actually- that you've done it. So that when you evolve to something else, or you stop doing it, or whatever, you can say, "Well, yeah, I did really do it. I did that."
Janelle Jolley 1:09:00
Okay, quick rundown. Paul Castellano used to sign us checks. He sued the CIA and won as a teenager. Hillary Clinton was a de Gaulle. And we're gonna get single payer inanother 10 to 15 years. Did I get it all? Anyway, please subscribe and share if you enjoy this wild ass little podcast. Your humble host would really appreciate it. Thank you very much. See you next week.