Robert Stark Discusses His Podcasting History

young Robert Stark

Francis Nally and Brandon Adamson join Robert Stark to discuss his podcasting history, political and cultural evolution, and where he is at now.

Podcast is available here

Topics:

The new book, The Stark Truth With Robert Stark: A Legacy 2009-2018

How for a long time Robert was known as the guy who randomly interviews people

How The Stark Truth doesn’t get the credit it deserves

The lack of substance of firebrand alt-podcasters and Youtube political celebrities

How Robert has now established his own unique “Starkian” ideology and cultural vision

New “Starkian” blog, Alt of Center | Life. Liberty. And the Pursuit of Beauty

How Robert’s novel Journey to Vapor Island helped brand the Starkian Identity

Robert’s adolescent traumas which provided inspiration for Journey to Vapor Island

How Robert’s experience growing up in LA and observations on society as a teen shaped his
basic cultural and political outlook

How Robert always had many of the same core principles but felt the need to belong and conform to a political tribe

Robert’s political phases including Libertarianism, Paleoconservatism, and Third Positionism

How ironically both Robert and Brandon started out on the right economically and moved closer to the left

How Robert is now at a point where he is entirely independent both politically and culturally

Robert’s podcasting history starting at Voice of Reason Radio, Counter-Currents Radio, and establishing his own podcast

Robert’s past interviews with political dissidents

Robert’s decision to focus the show on culture rather than politics

Brandon’s reference in the book to his trip to Las Vegas with Robert and the inspiration for Vapor Island

Is the future of the dissident sphere a Starkian, Alt-Center, Retro-Futurism?

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The Truth About “Mystery Shoppers”

“Mystery shopper” has to be one of the scummiest occupations. The mystery shopper is basically a low level informant, spying on underpaid retail employees and helping big corporations enforce compliance with all kinds of pointless rules and tedious protocol (which smart employees often ignore to maintain efficiency and prioritize the achievement of broader goals.)

A typical mystery shopper review would consist of something along the lines of the following:

“The employee failed to give the official FashionMart 4 point company greeting when I entered the store. The associate also took a sip of water while at the counter and leaned on it as well while sipping the drink.”

First off, almost no one follows company guidelines to the letter and the only people who fetishize them are overpaid executive do-nothings whose time is spent dreaming them up and perhaps a few overzealous cultist true believers in retail management. The only other employees that blindly adhere to them are the natural slaves of retail who never question anything and are easily exploited like pawns.

What mystery shoppers and their nefarious puppeteers do not realize, is that they are not entitled to what they have decreed as the ideal shopping experience. Why? Since they are not genuine customers, mystery shoppers do not deserve to be treated like them. By misleading the employee as to their intentions and ultimately wasting everyone’s time, the mystery shopper is not acting in good faith. If the company demands employees that employees make genuine personal connections with shoppers (a demand which is inherently oxymoronic in itself,) this is not possible with the mystery shopper, because everything about the mystery shopper’s interactions is phony. The entire premise they present for their visit is a facade. They are there to spy on you, to trick you, to watch you, and ultimately to catch you in violation of some sacred creedo on a technicality.

An employee can often sense when someone is not genuinely interested and there are all kinds of reasons why they will be inclined to be less helpful. The mystery shopper may have a resting bitch face. They may appear like too much of a busybody. It may creepily show in their eyes that they are sizing the employee up and judging their every move. Truth be told, there are plenty of shoppers which give off such an annoying vibe, that an employee will prefer the customer would just go away, concluding that the person’s business just may not be worth the potential hassle of future customer service issues, inevitable returned merchandise, arguments over warranty, etc.

The worst part about being preyed upon by a mystery shopper though, is the lack of recourse. The employee has no opportunity to face his/her accuser and refute the mystery shopper’s claims. The report is filed, and management accepts the account provided by the mystery shopper uncritically. It doesn’t matter if the mystery shopper was grossly exaggerating, failed to take into consideration possible context or misperceived the entire course of events.

In conclusion, mystery shoppers are among the lowest forms of humanity, right down there with people who eat chips loudly in public places. Employees do not owe them anything but scorn. Retail employees have enough to juggle with in the form of genuinely shitty and irritating customers: middle-aged women that ask to speak to the manager, aging suburban wiggers attempting to shoplift, fat white men with neck tattoos and Star Wars t-shirts that talk shit because they don’t understand purchasing etiquette in the 21st century. The last thing the retail employee needs is a fake customer, whose sole purpose is to tattletale and document behaviors from the perspective of those with dubious motives and a limited understanding of the situation on the ground.

People Who Hate Each Other Against the War

The following exchange was taken from a 2002 interview with Gore Vidal on Doug Henwood’s WBAI radio show, after Henwood brought it to Vidal’s attention that Tom Metzger was offering videos of one of Vidal’s lectures for sale on his website.

Doug Henwood: There is this long-standing, kind of right-leaning nativist critique of Empire and centralizing power. What affinities or lack of affinities
do you feel in that?

Gore Vidal: Well, look at Pat Buchanan, who borrowed a great deal from me, for “A Republic, Not an Empire.” That is what I’ve been saying for half a
century, that we’re not in the Empire business, or we should not be in
the Empire business, because we’re not very good at it, and we have so
much wrong in our own country. So there is a moment, I would suspect,
that the far-right has to have something positive to talk about, instead
of worrying about getting rid of the inferior breeds, or what they think
of as the inferior breeds. So, the anti-imperial is an interesting
thing for them to take up, ’cause I’d think they’d be on the other
side. But as many people want to join that, why not?

As Trump’s schizophrenic rhetoric continues to erratically oscillate between blunt statements in support of non-interventionist principles and random threats to attack other countries under dubious pretenses, it all seems rather surreal. One begins to wonder whether it is even possible to convince our government to act in America’s interests in any meaningful capacity. Perhaps not, but who cares? We specialize in unlikely alliances and the stubborn exploration of far-fetched possibilities here, so let’s go for one more.

As Trump contemplates engaging in further military action in Syria (and who knows where else,) I would love to see a joint AltRight / far left war protest event. The sight of people who typically spend all day trashing each other on twitter (and occasionally even physically battle each other in the streets) come together for a day of solidarity against war, would send a striking message. Instead of “Unite the Right,” or “Bash the Fash,” a rally should be held called “United Against War” or maybe even “People Who Hate Each Other Against the War.”

Many on the right would reflexively point out that the anti-war left (what remains of it) despises the AltRight with such visceral ferocity, that they could never partner with them on anything, even for a moment. “Nazis” (a term which has expanded in recent years to such an extent that it could now include just about any non self-hating white person,) we are told, are to be punched, attacked, not spoken to, and certainly not courted as allies. For their part, the far right is just as much of an obstacle to any kind of cooperation, given their inability to coordinate (even with one another) except when satirizing / ironically sniping at their own movement, usually from the anonymous peanut gallery. In my observations, the far right in the US contains a significant number of people who just cannot seem to restrain themselves in any way from being aggressive assholes, even when it comes to casual conversation. It’s also worth noting in the case of Syria, much of the AltRight is less motivated by general non-interventionist ideals. Their opposition to US involvement is rooted in their admiration of Putin and Assad as leaders. They don’t wish to stay out of the war because it’s none of our business and a waste of time. Rather, they oppose it because Russia and Syria are the “good guys” fighting our enemies (ISIS, ) while Assad “protects Christians,” “is a family man,” etc. Many AltRighters would be more than eager to launch full scale Conquistadorian invasions of sovereign countries under other circumstances. The fact remains though, a lot of people who hate each other agree that we should stay out of Syria.

Given the levels of polarization among dissidents and the divergence in motivations, you might still be asking, “What’s the point in even trying to work together on this? Why bother?” Well, because in this particular instance, it would be worth it. Getting involved in another pointless and misguided war is such a terrible idea, that it is worth preventing at almost any cost. In fact, the only way supporting wars like these make any sense at all is from the accelerationist perspective, since every new catastrophic US policy blunder serves to speed up the collapse of the US from its own weight, potentially making room for something new and improved to replace it that much sooner. I won’t support the war on that basis though, even as cynical as I am. After all, this isn’t just about us. There are other countries’ fates at stake, other people’s lives being needlessly jeopardized. Instead, I’ll keep the accelerationist contingency provision in my pocket as a cheap consolation prize, a souvenir to be admired in the eventuality of yet another misadventure.

cassandrafairbanks

On a mildly encouraging note, there does appear to be an emerging market for unlikely alliances against increased intervention in Syria. Glenn Greenwald appeared on Tucker Carlson and both seemed broadly in agreement of their skepticism of the need for the US to escalate our involvement. Cenk Uygur of The Young Turks seems to be firmly against beating the War drums for military action in Syria, as is his paranoid AltLite nemesis, Alex Jones. Could a genuine AltRight figure like Richard Spencer share a stage with a far left personality, even an Antifa or prominent SJW, to denounce the war, without the spectacle turning into a total shitshow? Would anyone agree to be part of any of it? Probably not. You never know though until you put the offer out there and see what happens. To borrow a quote from the Lawgiver’s scene in Battle for the Planet of the Apes: Who knows about the future of US foreign policy? Perhaps, only the dead.

Belief in Protecting a Particular Society Can Protect a Particular Society

Ramzpaul has a video that’s worth responding to because it repeats one of the common mythological tropes in reactionary circles about how religion (specifically Christianity) functions as a kind of immune system for a nation, protecting it from outside invaders. I don’t want to resort to Reddit tier “correlation does not equal causation” cliches so I will simply say that it isn’t true, or that it isn’t necessarily true, meaning that religion isn’t a necessary component to the protection of a nation (and in many cases is counter productive.) I won’t waste a lot of time on this subject because I don’t have to.

People that use the argument Ramzpaul makes always use immigration restrictionist “Christian” countries like Hungary and Poland to illustrate how religion is useful in the context of keeping out migrant hordes and other unwelcome outsiders. However, they conveniently leave out the fact that the Czech Republic (a country which also is notably hostile to third world immigration) is one of the least religious countries in the world. In fact, Prague is one of the most “degenerate” cities in Europe (by prudish, American traditionalist standards anyway.) Young people in Hungary are not very religious at all, so the notion that their religious faith is the magic ingredient for opting to control their borders is pure fantasy. It’s worth also mentioning that China and Japan (unless you count Shinto) have a high percentage of “convinced atheists,” yet seem perfectly able to act in their own national interests. Meanwhile, America has a higher percentage of believing Christians than Hungary, as does Italy, but the Christians in these countries have done little to stem the tide of mass immigration from the third world. Indeed, many actively encourage it, (in addition to engaging in costly quixotic dogooder enterprises in many third world countries.) Outside of corporations looking for cheap labor, the churches are some of the most prominent advocates for mass immigration in the United States.

So the common denominator here isn’t really religion but rather, an interest in preserving a particular kind of society or way of life. This can mean pretty much any kind of society where the natives believe that the unimpeded admission of openly hostile outsiders would be detrimental to the quality of life of those already living there. A cohesive set of beliefs (mythological, spiritual, material or otherwise) harbored by the majority of people in a particular nation offers little to no intrinsic protective value in and of itself. It matters ultimately what those beliefs actually are and whether they explicitly include a collective belief in the preservation of the preferred form of a particular society’s existence.

The Stark Truth: Discussing The AltRight Implosion

Podcast is available here

Topics:

How the Alt-Right is imploding and splitting into factions
The incident with Matthew Heimbach and the disbanding of the Traditionalist Workers Party
The never ending hypocrisy of preachy Traditionalists
The implausibility of success for those re-branding as American Nationalists
The parallel SJW culture in the Alt-Right that has developed in terms of being shamed into having to publicly disavow and distance yourself from people you have disagreements with
The Class Divide on the Alt-Right
Vanguardism vs. Populism
The importance of building Alternative Institutions
How we made the right decision to move in our own directions a few years ago when we saw where the train was headed
The future of all these movements
How anonymity has largely outlived its usefulness
European Identitarianism
The Balkanization of the US; secessionist movements vs retaking America as a whole
How Trump won with economic populism and social centrism but is now basically a mainstream Republican
The Scapegoat Generation – A Half-Hearted Defense of Boomers

Brassless Balls

Not brass dinosaurs

Several years ago I went through a phase of collecting brass (and sometimes bronze) statues from antique and thrift stores. Through working for a company that distributed electronic components, I learned that the price of copper had gone up quite a bit (brass contains both copper and zinc.) This was often a factor in the price increases of certain products. “Tell him we can’t honor that price anymore. The price of copper has gone up,” would be a typical explanation you’d have to give to a customer.

Anyways, occasionally I would have the inclination to go to contemporary outlet and department stores hoping to find similar statues and artifacts, with the hope that I could score something neat that might increase in value in the future. Well, I was sorely disappointed to discover that nearly everything was absolute junk. Worse than that though, was that these companies would try to pass off something that was meant to look like one of those nice brass statues or bookends, yet it would be merely come cheap metal or ceramic that was slathered with gold paint. To add insult to injury, they would sell it for the same price (even adjusted for inflation) as what one could get a quality brass knick knack back when you could still get them 20 years ago. The savings in manufacturing a cheaper, lower quality product is barely even passed on to the consumer. My guess is that if there are people still making legit brass and bronze statues, they are being sold as luxury items at exponentially higher prices. This might all seem trivial, but it’s a microcosm for what corporations do:

1. Manufacture something as cheaply as they can and provide the lowest quality product that people will accept.

2. Claim to be offering the product at a better price, even though they’re pocketing the bulk of the money they’re by saving using cheaper materials and labor, and the consumer is still paying almost the same as before.

3. Offer something as a luxury item that used to be a standard, inexpensive item or add-on. A good example of this is when hotels started tacking on “resort fees” for things that used to be free like using the pool or making a local phone call from your room.

4. Copy each other, so that all companies basically have the same policies, processes and products, leaving you with no choice (you decide to take your business to another department store and then another, only to find that none of them carry genuine brass statues, and the gold painted ceramic triceratops is your only option.)

Libertarians or republicans might read this and say, “Well that’s just the free market, bro.” Perhaps, but let’s not pretend that the free market innovation inherently results in better quality products being made. They are only “better” in the sense of being able to make a more efficient profit for someone, somewhere. Just as beautiful and intelligent creatures don’t always survive the evolution and natural selection process without a little help from their friends, often times, the unchecked free market often leads to one being surrounded by cheap junk.

Not brass (not marble either)

Brandon Adamson is the author of Beatnik Fascism