Hello, new abnormal listeners. Well, you're about to hear is the second episode of The Daily Beast new podcast, Fever Dreams, the podcast takes you inside the rights push to retake power from the conspiracy slingers to the Magga acolytes to the straight up grifters thought the Trump era was crazy. Wait till you hear what they have planned next. The show is hosted by OSWIN Superceding and Will Summer. There's new episodes every Wednesday and you could subscribe on your favorite podcast app today.
Again, that's Fever Dreams. I hope you enjoy this episode. Hi, guys, this is us when soothsaying, but please call me Suyin, and welcome to The Daily Beast's Fevered Dreams. Hi, I'm Wil Summer, a politics reporter at The Daily Beast, where I dig into all the darkest recesses of American extremism and extremely online militants. I'm currently working on a book about KUNR and its disastrous impact on our society. I'm also a senior political reporter at The Beast and co-author of the book Sinking in the Swamp.
I've spent years covering the intersection of entertainment and politics, and in the post Trump era seems like that's the only sensible way to cover politics in this beautiful, hideously stupid country of ours. On this podcast, we're going to take you on a deeply reported plunges into the sometimes hilarious, sometimes scary fanatics who are infecting the way that millions of Americans view the world and how they vote. Even in the aftermath of the Trump administration, the energy of these conspiracy theorists, grifters and influencers is still pushing on mainstream political landscape closer and closer to a breaking point.
We're here to help you better understand how and why this is happening and who in the halls of power is letting it happen along the way. We'll also regularly bring on guests, including political pros, hard nosed reporters and some influential voices from Hollywood. Every once in a while, you might also hear from some familiar faces from the trenches of Trump Land and the veterans of the democratic corridors of power. All right, Suyin, I have a question for you.
Do you miss the boat? Which boat are you referring to? The boat that was blocking the Suez Canal that has now moved on and robbed us of a I think what was becoming a prime content opportunity. I've seen a meme or two about this on the Internet. I regrettably inform you that I have not been super following this. So if you want to explain to me the boat as if I'm a two year old, that would actually be super beneficial to me right now.
It sounds super complicated, right? I mean, it's a boat. It was a big boat and it blocked the whole Suez Canal. And, you know, we love the boat. How did it get. I mean, it got stuck. I mean, there was wind. Maybe it kind of ran aground. You know, it was kind of a big moment, I think, in terms of, you know, we all love seeing a big boat.
The tugboats, we're trying to move it. You know, they weren't getting much success. Obviously, it has now moved on as of as of Sunday night here in the United States. But, you know, I don't know, I kind of like the boat. And I was sort of settling in for a long, kind of a long a long saga is that, you know, there was talk, are they going to blow up the boat?
Are they going to maybe build a ramp for the other boats to jump the boat? And of course, that is not come to pass. What was in the boat? Well, we don't know. I mean, containers, it's all kinds of things. I mean, probably.
So are there any alternate theories floating around there about what was in the boat? Was the cargo weapons to Syria, or was it just like things from the wig factory? Well, OK.
So, I mean, obviously it's a lot of things. But in terms of my characters, my beloved figure is my my kuhnen people, my bleach people. The key thing to understand here is that Hillary Clinton's a Secret Service code name. You know, it always goes back to her. Her Secret Service code name was Evergreen, which is also the name of the boat company. And so the boat had a big evergreen on the side of it. This is really like horrendous lock on Hillary Clinton's part.
But the so they were like, oh, you know, maybe the boat was trafficking something on behalf of Hillary Clinton or maybe, you know, the captain ran it aground as a signal. And so, you know, there's always grist in the mill, you know, that these people can can draw on. And of course, now, you know, it was like, oh, the boat strapping children, whatever, we got to save the boat.
But now the boats moved on. It's like, OK, moving on. And it's like, well, I mean, aren't you still interested in the boat? But now it's out of the headlines. We're done with the boat. Anybody I know who is making these claims about the but also the evergreen thing is really funny. I'm sorry. That is a classic coincidence. You know, it just various unsavory characters. I mean, you know, this wasn't like, you know, people in Congress were talking about this.
But, you know, so much of the conspiracy theories is is believing that there isn't this random world where, I don't know, a boat got trapped or whatever. But it's, you know, it's all part of this kind of grand plan. And so, of course, the boat, you know, as with everything, had to play into that. OK, speaking of Hillary Clinton conspiracy theories, there is something I've been picking up on recently at the beginning of the Biden era in which the Biden related conspiracy theories that you would see emerging in all these major influential sectors of the right wing fever swamps of the online or whatever, they are not nearly as potent as what you saw with Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama or other Major or even John Brennan.
If we're talking about like b great cast members in these hall affairs.
And when you talk to Republican operatives or Republican pollsters, they consistently for these first couple of months or so of the Biden presidency, give you the exact same response. And this happened during the Biden campaign as well, where they were saying that among the Republican base, the Trump base and GOP voters, a President Biden or a candidate, Biden just does not inspire the same level of hatred or vitriol that you would see with a President Obama or a Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
And I mean, when we're talking about Biden. Compared to Obama, I mean, it's not a huge mystery why we can talk more about that later. And there was this fascinating detail in this piece written by Washington Post reporter and our dear friend Dave Weigel, while he was at the twenty twenty one CPAC that was held recently in Florida where he was interviewing people who were selling merchandise. You know, at CPAC, the all the halls are lined with people trying to hawk like right wing birch.
And you reported that people were telling him that, oh, we can't even give the Biden merchandise away. We've been trying and there's all this Joe Biden and Hunter Biden merchandise. But no, what people really want to buy and what is selling like hotcakes or something close to it is the Hillary Clinton march, the Obama Merche. So I'm wondering, does this bleed over into conspiracy theory land that you specialize in covering so well where it's just more just so much more of a snore than it is when you compare it to Hillary or Obama?
Yeah, I mean, you know, people they struggle to kind of figure out exactly what the deal with Biden is. I mean, the line is, you know, he's like senile. He's barely 70. And, you know, as Donald Trump memorably said, he doesn't even know he's alive. And so it just kind of like, what's Biden's deal to the extent that even some people, after he was inaugurated, one of their they're sort of refuge's was like maybe Biden's working with Trump and their buddies.
Last night I was reading this document that was circulated amongst kind of Sydney Powell and Linwood Associates that was, you know, alleging that there was this coup going on against Trump and they needed to do all this stuff. And it said this is kind of a high ranking figure putting this dossier together. And he said, you know, ultimately Biden will step down, but not in favor of Kamala Harris. And then you wonder, you know, who could it be, who's interesting enough to to make this this kind of nightmare vision of the world happened?
And he said, that's right. Biden will be replaced by the communist leader himself, Barack Hussein Obama. And so, you know, they're kind of bring them to dredge up the old characters because, you know, Biden, even even as he's passing all these kind of massive social programs, they just can't get a can't get an angle on him. Right.
Is that mainly just because they find him so personally boring? Like he doesn't look like a radical, he doesn't dress like a radical. It's harder for even former President Trump to sell him as a quote unquote, communist or socialist or whatever he would say over and over and over again. Even Donald Trump, who is devoid of self-awareness in so many ways, was aware enough to know that at a rally in tweets or whatever, he would have to message, as Joe Biden himself is not a socialist or whatever, but he will allow himself to be managed by, quote unquote, socialists in his administration.
Sure. I mean, you know, I mean, it is the whole idea, right, of the Biden candidacy was that he is kind of this boring old white guy who could sort of skate into office, as we've seen. I mean, I do think, though, we're starting to see, particularly with the right wing media kind of heating things up on the border. I mean, the idea is that Biden's out to lunch, that he's incompetent.
And then I think if you take this frame of this this surge of people at the border, those Masche and so I think we're going to see the immigration thing kind of continue to be to be the main the main slam on Biden right now. And obviously, a big factor here is simply that Joe Biden is not black and or a woman. There's that.
So, I mean, factor that into this as you will see this when you've been doing some reporting on the fights within Magga world over the vaccine. Obviously, some people who think, you know, Bill Gates has microchips, the vaccine, and then you have people in the Trump administration who are proud of their work on the vaccine and want to tout that. How's that breaking down?
Well, it's interesting because there is a sort of turf battle over this at certain parts of the upper echelons of Trump World and the Trump World Diaspora after Donald Trump left office. And it's interesting because as you point out, this is largely comprised of people who want to constantly remind the American people how much, quote unquote, credit Donald Trump deserves for helping to shepherd us to this point. I mean, that's their framing, obviously not mine. And but also there was this large sector, including among the Republican and Trump base, which is anti-government and has it almost built in with or without the pandemic, that they should be skeptical of things that the government is pushing, especially if it has to do with a mass vaccination drive at this point headed by people like Joe Biden, who they might as well give us the devil now.
One of the guys who is a veteran of the senior ranks of the Trump administration is this guy named Michael Caputo. Listeners might know him as this really brash, incredibly Trumpy longtime Republican operative who in the final year or so of the Trump era was tapped by then President Trump to head up communications at HHS. He's a guy who known Donald Trump for a long while. He worked on the 2016 campaign as a adviser to Trump and as a communications operative.
And he was someone who left the administration in the fall of twenty 20 under this gigantic miasma of controversy in which he was a very. Public figure, while the Trump administration was being hit with negative story after negative story and was embroiled in covid related scandal after covid related scandal, and one of his last things on the job was this widely circulated video that he did on Facebook, where he accused CDC scientists of being seditionists against Donald Trump and warning of far left hit squad, stuff like that.
So he exited the administration on this really, really, really accelerated Trumpy turn. And at some point in September 20, 20, it was announced that he had also been diagnosed with a very serious case of cancer. So for that, he had to leave the administration. OK, so when we were talking about this, you told me this crazy story about this biker bar where Caputo's been going, you know, tell me about that.
Oh, absolutely. He's he was mentioning how on top of being on Facebook and going to Republican committee meetings and doing Zoome, cause there was this biker hangout called KIPP's KPP apostrophe s near where he lives that has these Life-Size cutouts of President Trump and Melania, where you can stand there and smile and take your photo. He described as top bottom Johnny Cash memorabilia in this biker hangout when it's not top to bottom Donald Trump memorabilia. And he talked about how he'd go there and have discussions with various people who invariably, many of them would be anti vaccine, and he'd do what he could to tell them that the vaccine is safe.
You should take it. It is part of Donald Trump's solution. The former president wants you to take it, and he would find himself both at this biker hangout and elsewhere, including on Facebook, oftentimes meeting heavy resistance to the idea he would run into people who, even when they were told that Donald Trump had said on stage at CPAC, on national television during recent Fox News interviews as a post president that the vaccine is a great thing and you should take it.
They would argue that Donald Trump didn't actually mean that or that he was somehow forced into the situation and that someone or something is making Donald Trump do this.
And they would throw arguments back at Caputo. And I'm sure you've heard stuff like this a lot, too, will that people will use the fact that Melania Trump and Donald Trump during the final days of his presidency, got the coronavirus vaccine in secrecy.
So, I mean, what was the reaction here? I mean, so he's talking to the Sons of Anarchy and he's saying maybe the Magga Sons of Anarchy here. I mean, he's in this biker bar. Is he getting the bum rush or are they taking the vaccine?
Well, he says that some of them have come around to his way of thinking, but others, whether he's arguing with them on Facebook or in person or wherever, will, according to Caputo, will sometimes ask him if he's been working for the pharmaceutical industry now and then unfriend him on Facebook.
Look, I have to say, there is sort of an irony here, right? Which is that Michael Caputo, this guy who was promoting nonsense himself, is tight with Roger Stone. You know, suddenly he's basically coming face to face with what he helped create. He's going to this biker bar. You know, he's on this kind of one man journey to get Republicans vaccinated. And then they're like, oh, no, you know, because we believe all these lies.
So, you know, I mean, there is a certain irony here, right?
And when you're talking about people who are also close to Trump and friends with Trump who stand on the exact opposite end of the vaccine spectrum of this, you got guys like Mike Lyndell, who, of course, is the my pillow founder, who is a perfect avatar of the MCG. Diehard will seemingly will never give up on the fiction that Donald Trump actually won the 2020 presidential election.
And he is incredibly anti vaccine. He's told us before that the social media website that he's trying to get off the ground, that he's launching it in large part because he wants it to be a quote unquote, free speech haven where people can flock to to denounce the vaccine. He's telling us things like, oh, the vaccine has the motive of the beast. I will never take it. It's against my religion. And then you have all these different people on Fox News, even when they're not blatantly spreading anti vax misinformation or disinformation, they sort of front loaded with saying, OK, well, you can take the vaccine, but also freedom in America is important.
I just love this idea of a particular like it's like we got to reach out to the bikers know Michael Caputo rolls up to the Bandidos headquarters. He's got like CDC on the bottom rocker of his vest. This is really, you know, I think a very evocative imagery. So when I mean, you know, kind of pulling back the lens here, I mean, where do you think this this larger effort to get Republicans really big Trump supporters vaccinated?
I mean, where do you think this is headed?
Well, I think it's headed to a point and hopefully I'm wrong on this, that in order to make a significant dent in the national polling right now in terms of Republican voters and Trump fans who are either highly skeptical of coronavirus vaccines or just outright saying, I do not want to take it, I don't want it anywhere near my family, you would have to have people like Donald Trump and Melania Trump mounting a. If not PSA campaigns or video campaigns, but make a major messaging push, sure, and you know, the opposite of this is that people often in cities who are looking for vaccines know that they can go to red areas where there's a lot of surplus of vaccines because people aren't going for him.
For example, I know in St. Louis, there's people who have been hunting out in the rural areas outside of St. Louis. I know in here in D.C. there was a lot of talk about this town in southern Virginia that was called the Dansville miracle, because you could just drive out there and get a vaccine. And that's the world we're living in now.
Something else I've been following recently has been absolutely fascinating. Me is that if you read the granular details of these official court documents and records that have been coming out as the feds are charging in, investigating more and more MAGGA rioters or insurrectionists or whatever you want to call them, is that just sounds so appallingly dumb that little details that they have to work into the footnotes of these documents and that they have to explain, because when it comes to MAGGA writers and their ilk, these are some of the biggest dumb asses who have ever set foot on the American Internet and they frequently go out of their way to sound like it.
So in some cases, the FBI is actually reduced to explaining in court and official documentation the slang they use and the parlance of the MCG Internet. And that includes one recent affidavit related to a capital riot case that Huffington Post reporter Ryan Jay Reilly screenshot it recently on Twitter. And it caught my eye, it reads, in which an FBI special agent who typically investigates violent gangs explains what a, quote, soy boy means in a capital case affidavit. Now, this apparently is on page 14 of the affidavit.
And if you read the number six bullet point, it reads, European understands the term sorry boy to be a derogatory term used by certain people to denigrate individuals they perceive as lacking masculine characteristics, parentheses because they drink soy milk instead of cow milk. And quote, you know, this is just fabulous to me.
So as perhaps the first reporter to notice, soy boy is an insult. That was you. Yeah, man, that was me. I invented it. No, it's a it has been a true journey watching this grow. So so I never thought I would see soy boy playing into a federal case about attempting to overthrow the government. So the idea here is cooked up around maybe twenty, seventeen ish on the right wing. Is this idea that these these effete liberals, they drink soy milk instead of cow milk.
And as a result, these hormones in the soy have feminized them. And so then they start calling people soy boys. And this you know, this plays out in so many different ways. They say, you know, there's the soy face, which is, you know, kind of a man with a patchy beard getting excited because he got a Nintendo switch or something like that. And so, yeah, I mean, it really has, you know, even gone, I think, from the right into into our more general Internet discourse.
OK, as someone who obviously works with you and follows your work very closely, I was not aware that the world knows about soy boys because of you. When did this happen and why?
Well, this is Daily Beast. I mean, this was maybe twenty, seventeen or twenty eighteen early. And I realized that, you know, these guys were just going in. They were calling each other. So I always looked they were calling me a soy boy. Right. And so I decided you do drink a lot of. Well yeah. I mean, you know, I decided to get into it and then, you know, it's kind of like with a lot of these things where it's like, oh, how ridiculous.
Soy soy, you know, it doesn't make you feminine. And then I would think but maybe I don't know. I mean, scientifically, we know that it doesn't. But but you know why it kind of seeped enough into my head. But really, soy boy, you know, as we saw here, has really become, you know, one of the the key right wing insults alongside, of course, cock. And now I would say Cemp.
So did people start going with soy because latte sipping liberal was too passé?
I definitely think, you know, latte, you know, I mean, the kind of people they're going after. Right. Are they're imagining these kind of like these do to write for video game websites perhaps, or, you know, post about social justice on Twitter. I mean, these are not people like a latte liberal, I think has as has implications of like this guy's like kind of rich and fancy. Right. But in this case, I mean, these are people who are seen as like guzzling soy milk is very effete, you know, perhaps an antifa type.
And so, yeah, I mean, look, I never said the insult made sense. I mean, you know, but but it's really the other thing I would say is I love how in these federal documents related to the riot and we can see this in other instances, too, the FBI agents who are clearly just like really dreading having to go into parler and Gabb and that they have to say to the judge, Your Honor, you know, yeah, this is this is what a soy boy is.
God, I don't actually feel sorry for these federal agents and prosecutors who have to dig through all this like insipid idiocy, because, you know, fascism is already incredibly dumb. It doesn't matter what decade you're in, but especially now.
I mean, if they had to explain pepé frogs yet in inlike court filings, because that would be yet another step beneath the floor to me if that end up coming around.
I mean, they definitely I don't know. In the riot, I mean, I would be really surprised if Pepé hasn't come up somehow in federal court, know you've got other stuff like, of course, the boogaloo, right? They've got to explain. Oh, your honor. Well, when they say Big Blue and they wear Hawaiian shirts, they're talking about the boogaloo. Yeah, I mean, look, I mean, it's just another crossover between our the Internet and our increasingly crazed, Internet crazed world, you know, which is what Fever Dreams is all about.
Well, I wonder if they've had to yet explain where the name crowd voice comes from, because it's my understanding and correct me here, well, if I'm wrong, that it was derived by Gavin McGuinness or one of his cohorts from a deleted song from the animated film musical.
Yes, it is a song called Proud Of Your Boy from. And I want to be clear here, not the animated Aladdin movie, but from the Aladdin musical. And so Gavin McGuinness, I believe, went to a recital at his son's elementary school or middle school and he saw some kid performing proud of your boy. And this really I mean, this is kind of like your supervillain origin story, right? And so he sees this and he goes, how decadent and effete.
I need to create a group that plays off of this, again, kind of an obscure song, even for Aladdin aficionados. And we're going to play off of that. And so so that is is how we then ended up with groups allegedly plotting to overthrow our government.
Imagine you're a federal prosecutor and you have to waltz into court and convince a judge or a grand jury about how what happened on January 6th and beyond was a grave threat to the American democratic fabric. People died. Blood was spilled everywhere. And that these people are akin to your common terrorist and you're trying to walk in there with this level of gravitas and urgency about how this is a danger to the republic. And we need to address this as judiciously as possible.
And then you spend half of your time explaining things like Daffy Duck, Nimes.
And now we'd like to bring on a guest who is a fellow based here. Her name is Kelly while she is another reporter at The Daily Beast who also specializes in covering the same kinds of extremism and debauched lunacy that our friend William Summer does. In February 22, she'll be releasing her first book titled Off the Edge, which chronicles the bizarro flat earth movement of the will be published by Algonquin Books. You can follow Kelly's work, of course, at The Daily Beast, Dotcom and also on Twitter at Kelly.
While Kelly, welcome to your debut on the Pod. How does it feel?
Thanks for having me. Oh, frightening and terrifying. I'm glad to be here.
Excellent. That's exactly what we go for. We're an intense bunch. That's the kind of attitude to bring to Kelly, your story for The Beast recently about this this lawyer. I don't know if I should even call him a lawyer. This gentleman who's who's been representing all of these businesses trying to flout covid rules. Tell us more about that.
Yeah, so this guy's name is Rick Martin, and you can't legally call him a lawyer. That's actually the subject of a criminal case now in big trouble. They're coming for you next. No. So if you were following the cases of a few businesses across the country this summer, barbershop in Washington's restaurants in California and Michigan, they were trying to stay open against mandates and outdoor seating rules by saying that any kind of covid measures were actually domestic terrorism by the government and therefore they were allowed to stay open under the Patriot Act.
That's not, to my knowledge at all how the Patriot Act works. But you've got to roll. So lo and behold, one of these cases did come to court.
A restaurant got shut down because they filed this Patriot Act guidance a little too literally.
This man, Rick Martin, comes into court, says I'm their lawyer. I'm going to protect him. And what his name is Ricky Martin. Just Rick. But I mean, listen, everyone's playing Ricky.
You know, he has to tell people so much. He has to be like, no, it's Rick has to clarify. There's a there's too many on that list. Yeah. And the judge pointed out that he is not a lawyer, that he's been passing himself off as such and he and his client went to jail.
I love it. Is this kind of sovereign citizen. He uses a lot of sovereign citizen like legal tactics. I don't know if he explicitly calls himself that, but his whole theory is that the the bar you know, the bar test that attorneys pass to get accredited is actually a British conspiracy. And they're all accredited lawyers are actually loyal to the crown and therefore they don't have your interests in mind. And that that, to me is extremely subsect. So he says he's a he's a constitutional attorney and he's not loyal to the Crown.
He's loyal to you, the American citizen. But unfortunately, that does not mean he's a lawyer and does not mean he can pass himself off as such in court.
OK, and lately you have been covering not just this guy, but but lawyers, generally speaking, in this world. And I mean, I don't think it's a mystery to anybody listening to this why these guys can't seem to start getting better lawyers. But you've done some reporting recently on how the Oath Keepers Best New Hope is a lawyer who cites Lord of the Rings. Can you tell us a little bit more about these lingering references and what they have to do with this case or not the case, the lawyer himself or herself?
So the lawyer's name is Kelly Sarrell. She is one of the crew that kind of sprung up around the 2020 elections saying that the results were fraudulent and that via a an extremely arcane set of legal filings, she would overturn the government and dissolve Congress. How she and her colleague are used that was citing, you know, the the elf story and the I don't know about Lord of the Rings, OK? I just you can't press me on the legal precedent from there, but they know it very well and said that there was like some elf king who wasn't actually in line to the throne.
So the throne was open and the hobbit.
So Donald Trump gets to be president now because.
Yeah. So because of the precedent set forth in Gondar law in Lord of the Rings. Exactly.
Got it. And they said it was a metaphor. But, you know, there's only so many pages of filing you can really start offering before. It's like this isn't a metaphor, guys. This is something deeply personal to you.
OK, so the name of this lawyer is Kelly Surrell, if I'm pronouncing that correctly, and you describe her as a failed Texas House candidate and a member of the group Lawyers for Trump.
So how much I don't really remember hearing much about her in that anti-democratic month long blitz that Trump and Giuliani and those guys oversaw and the belated efforts. How big of a deal was she in that before she pivoted to being this Oath Keepers go to?
She was sort of the Beeley, you know, the second string of the weird lawyers, I think the Sydney Powles and the Lynwood. Really sucked up all the oxygen, but she was trying for, you know, she was trying for her place, they're filing some really weird stuff to try and keep up with the pack. She was around right after the election. And in fact, the night before the capital riot, she was in this infamous video with the head of the Oath Keepers with this really fringe Virginia politician, with the head of a PAC that supports the Cowboys and with this guy who was previously arrested for bringing in AR15 and a CATANA to a Philadelphia vote center.
So she's around, you know, they network where they can show these Oath Keepers.
I mean I mean, they're facing like some pretty heavy charges. I mean, is Kelly Sarao up to the up to the challenger?
So it's entirely unclear to me what capacity she represents. I mean, she is right now, she's fundraising saying that she's a an attorney for them. I don't think she's taking on any of their cases criminally, at least not in any filings I've seen, which for the Oath Keepers say good for them. I don't want The Hobbit lawyer arguing my sedition case in court. But she is yeah.
She's going on like Gateway Pundit and all these fundraising sites representing herself as their lawyer.
So, Kelly, obviously, a lot of us are the proud boys getting involved in the January 6th insurrection. But you have some reporting recently that the boys, after going a little undercover amid federal pressure, are now back in the mix. Tell me more.
Yeah, so the boys actually took a B after the capital riot. They were kind of off the streets for a little bit, you know, just kind of coasting away from from the safety of their phones. They're starting to come back out. You know, I don't know if it's the nice weather or the distance from the capital riots, but they're not advertising many of their own events. Instead, they are just hijacking a weird little regional things. They showed up and anti-gay churches like Straight Pride Party, they showed up at some failed.
There was this event was two week weekends ago that it was like patriot's around the world will rise up in their respective cities. And it turned out to be like fifty people standing around in a North Carolina parking lot. So they were there, you know, and they were actually just this past weekend out in Salem, Oregon, at the Capitol. So they're kind of starting to dip their toe back in, but not always in the boldface way that they used it was the Cowboys game here.
I mean, like, you know, they're they're chairmen's, facing a felony charge in. You see some of their other top leaders have been arrested regarding the riot. I mean, what's what's the next step for them, do you think?
I mean, they do not really seem cowed by all this. And that kind of makes sense. Their whole ethos is that they're, you know, ready to brawl.
They don't really care about the law. So I think they're going to stick it out. They're going to still be in the streets. But I mean, anyone with any sense would stay ten miles away from them. I mean, they're riddled with informants. They turn on each other. It's really just a it's a one way ticket to jail.
You mentioned a while ago this capital rioter and this straight pride guy who recently stiffed their lawyer, who was the attorney and what was the response to this?
So the the accused the fellow here is Mark Zahedi. He's kind of infamous around Boston for hosting these, quote, straight pride events.
That's just an inflammatory title for the whole banner of awful reactionaries.
Show up, you know, neo-Nazis regular, just more low profile racists. You just love being straight.
It's absolutely, you know, what's what's wrong with being a proud boy. So he and another another associate organized eleven buses to the Capitol riots. So they were pretty involved. And, of course, you know, they're busted like everyone else on charges, I think, of entering the building.
They he obtained a lawyer and one of the conditions for his bond release is they're like, OK, buddy, you can go back outside, but you can't go to any more riots. Well, what do you know, like two weekends ago, he's out there again. Not only is he out there at one of these like these far right events, but they introduce him, they give him the microphone.
They're like, do you guys want to meet a domestic mark, get on up here? And it's like you couldn't stay inside for a weekend, man. Like, it's not even it's Boston. You don't need to go outside. So and so.
My colleague called up his lawyer to see, like, hey, do you think this violates his his bond conditions and his lawyers? Like, don't ask me about this guy.
He hasn't paid me. I know he has the money. He's just not talking to me or giving me.
I was like, you know, listen, everyone's got the right to an attorney, but at a certain point you do have to pay them or answer their emails or at least abide by the conditions of your bond release and not show up to an event calling yourself a domestic terrorist when you're kind of on trial for that sort of thing.
The guy doesn't respect the basic. Tenets of American democracy and Republicanism, he's not going to respect a contract where it says, oh, you have to pay me this or here's my retainer, can I just say that that's straight pride bit is one of the dullest bits out there for those guys.
I mean, I was at a Trump rally in December and I saw this big flag and I was like, oh, man, we got a new movement on the loose ampm. And so I went over to interview a man and he's like, Oh yeah, straight pride. I was like, Oh, this stinks. I'm out of here. So, you know, I mean, they have been riding this thing for several years and now, I don't know, possibly facing, you know, some serious consequences.
Yeah, man, would I not be mad at all to see that go away because I do it because I get a rise out of people. People like you can't have a straight pride parade and they're like, ha ha triggered the left.
I mean, they get a lot of pick. I mean, that's the it gets so much pick up on Twitter because people like what's straight pride and it's like, folks, calm down. It's three people, it's three people facing like a collective like 175 years in prison.
It's, you know, not worth your afternoon.
Well, hey, Kelly, thanks so much for joining us. Where can people find you? I'm on The Daily Beast dot com and on Twitter under my own name. And, you know, just walking around New York, if you want to find me. What are you on, Gabb?
I will never disclose that I had my parler up my my name, that it was just like a torrent of abuse. So I had to change it to something else. Oh, great. Well, Kelly, thanks again for coming on.
Thanks for having me, guys. All right, welcome now to Fresh Hell, the segment where we talk about some new nightmarish thing in our in our reality and today for fresh hell, I have one that I think may have gone a little little under the radar, at least for a little how crazy it was last week. Some National Guard soldiers outside of in the Dallas area were transporting vaccines in what was expected to be a, you know, a relatively mundane job.
And then suddenly a man comes out of nowhere in a car and starts trying to run, run the National Guard troops off the road. And he succeeds and he jumps out with a gun and he says he's a detective. You know, he's not really a detective and that he was convinced that these vaccine transports were being used to to transport, in fact, sex trafficked children. Jesus. OK, so was anybody hurt? No, no. Surprisingly.
I mean, truly a bizarre instance here, because this is a guy, Larry, Lee Harris, allegedly out of Arizona, big beard, this guy who seems to have taken some sort of vigilante action based on his own ideas. You know, he basically takes these Guard members hostage until the actual police arrive. And then he goes, you know, I guess I was wrong. It's kind of reminiscent of the the pizza gate gunman who, after he was busted, said, oh, I guess there's no kids in there.
So to told the cops. Oh, well. And so in this case, yeah. I mean, this guy is crazy. I mean, you have a guy who runs some soldiers off the road and is we don't have an official kuhnen connection here, but I kind of have to suspect there's one in the offing. I asked the sheriff's department, I mean, this kind of small area outside of Dallas that was involved in this case, they seemed pretty baffled.
They said they kind of have no idea why this guy did this, besides the fact that he was very amped up on Internet tales about sex trafficked kids.
So it's the exact language of Kuhnen. Even if the letter Q never came up in his literature.
That's exactly right. And I mean, you know, this kind of gets into a pet peeve of mine, which is when there seems to be a kuhnen or other kind of one of these crimes. And you want to say, you know, the cops are then like, all right, Bookham. And it's like, well, ask him why he did it, you know, and, you know, maybe maybe write it down in a way that I can report.
And there's this parsing among some people where they tried to deny that stuff like this is necessarily kuhnen, per say. But at the same time, like, if a guy is caught, like shooting up a bunch of people and says he is not a fascist, but he believes the undesirable should be exterminated and is really into The Turner Diaries and the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Of course, the dude is fascistic in many ways. And I don't see how you look at a case like this and not see like the markings of Kuhnen rotting your brain just completely all over.
Yeah, I mean, absolutely. I mean, you know, whether or not he's such a cute guy or if he's into other kind of similar stuff, I think more broadly, like this is, you know, this is something we're seeing more and more of. Is this kind of weird, just really weird violence coming out of the conspiracy theory Internet? You know, just recently, the FBI issued their report on the Nashville Christmas bombing, which turned out to be, you know, essentially was just like, well, I don't know.
The guy was really amped up on conspiracy theories. So he decided to build a car bomb. But we're seeing more and more of this stuff. Again, a lot of his not related, not all of it, unfortunately. I think it's something that we will only be seeing more of.
And also, a lot of guys like this, like the guy you were talking about who held up 11 National Guard soldiers, they also don't just seem like they were infected the really deep online, but also they are still treating real life as if they are doing nothing more than simply posting on the Internet, something that is generally consequence free. I mean, how do you hold up a bunch of National Guardsmen with a what I'm assuming Will was a loaded firearm and then kind of shrug it off like think, oh, I guess I was wrong.
I had good intentions. Do I get like a speeding ticket now or something like that? It's like, you know.
Right. I mean, it's sort of the same thing we saw with the riot. Right, where I mean, if you were actually consciously like, I am committing a felony, you would not constantly be posting about it. And then arguing on Facebook, when people say Antifa did, you would be like, no, it was me. It was me, you know, or you know, just recently we had one of the alleged rioters who was arrested wearing a shirt that said, like, I was there January 6th.
And so, yeah, there is this sense that I think that it is bleeding over like people just aren't. It's just like like you're just making another Internet post. And then, of course, there is also, I think with a lot of these kind of cute on or Q related crime, there is this idea. It's almost like you're playing a video game or it's like I'll take matters into my own hands.
Right. Except in a video game, you don't necessarily get ten years in a maximum security lockup.
Well, on that note, let's wrap up this episode of Fevered Dreams from The Daily Beast in future installments. We'll also be speaking to some awesome reporters and some other colleagues at The Daily Beast and beyond from politics, popular culture and other overfed, underdeveloped institutions. We hope you'll subscribe to us on your preferred podcasting app and share the show on social media and with your friends. If you'd like to follow us on Twitter, I'm Attwell Summer and Swen is at Suyin twenty four.
Come say hello. This podcast is produced by Jesse Cannan with Music by Brian De Meglio. Thanks so much for listening and we'll see you next time.