Letters from a Contrarian

Letters from a Contrarian

By Eugene Fernandes
This is the podcast with all of the pot stirrers, devil's advocates, contrarians, and provocateurs of the world. We'll answer two questions: is it worth being a contrarian? And how do you thrive as one?

Hosted by Eugene Fernandes (me). If you'd like to reach out, tweet me at @eugenefds or email me at lettersfromacontrarian2020 [at] gmail [dot] com. Thanks for listening!
Where to listen
Apple Podcasts Logo
Breaker Logo
Google Podcasts Logo
Overcast Logo
Pocket Casts Logo
RadioPublic Logo
Spotify Logo
#metoo, Apartheid, StopSOP, and Boomers, with Ryan Handlarski.
We've made it to Episode 10! Ryan is a Criminal Defence Lawyer in Toronto who hates golf and loves irony. We talked about the #metoo movement, the presumption of innocence, the statement of principles, his reasons for objecting to the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion clerics, systemic racism, humour, Apartheid South Africa and his mother's life there, how law students can thrive off of Bay Street, responding to Hadiya Rodrerique's article Black on Bay Street, and how we can create new institutions that support freedom. You can find the episode's shownotes on my blog. Just go to eugenefernandes.com and search for Ryan's name. 
2:21:37
June 30, 2020
Kenney, Khalistani Extremism, and Journalistic Courage, with Candice Malcolm.
Hey everyone! On this episode, I speak with Candice Malcom. We talked about Jason Kenney and Danielle Smith (two of Alberta's political leaders), how Candice uses intimidation to drive her forward (she's antifragile!), her article on Sikh extremism in Canada and Jagmeet Singh, how she views the media, the value of taking a public position and arguing with friends, and, of course, some book recommendations. 
1:16:31
June 25, 2020
"hey Duolingo, i'm coming for your a**!" with Ara Ghougassian
That infamous and viral tweet was what launched Ara's startup "Fluent" into the public's view. I chat with him on this episode. This was an awesome episode! I loved loved loved it. Give him a follow at @araghougassian (ara - ghou - gas - sian). And here's the timestamps: 4:15 (How Ara got Fluent’s tweet to BLOW UP). 18:30 What Fluent is and its origin story. 28:59 (Odyss). 38:20 (University vs. a Startup for Education). 55:57 (A defence of interruption). 1:02.47 (The pros and cons of being an honest and funny person + Andrew Schultz). 1:17:12 (The Left-Right spectrum doesn't apply to violence). 1:52:52 (we get meta with politics and offer solutions). 2:16.06 (How to get a startup job without a degree - SELL YOURSELF). He ends with life advice.
2:28:43
June 16, 2020
Yaniv, TERFs, Motherhood and Courage, with Lindsay Shepherd
Hey everyone! We're back with Lindsay Shepherd today. Enjoy.
1:03:28
June 15, 2020
Revolution, Liberalism's Failings, and Transcendent Justice, with Caylan Ford
Today’s guest is Caylan Ford. Before you listen to this podcast, I would recommend you do a bit of background reading and research on her.  Her March 2020 podcast with Hugging the cactus is what I’d listen to fully first. This podcast got pretty philosophical too, so I hope we didn't get too abstract.  As always, you can find the show notes, book recommendations, and links to the Hugging The Cactus podcast on my website:  https://eugenefernandes.com/2020/06/04/notes-from-6-caylan-ford/. 
2:08:03
June 4, 2020
Traditional Architecture, Objective Beauty, and The Cult of Modernism, with Zach
Hey everyone! This podcast was about architecture and why architecture has become ... uglier and wackier over time. Thank you to Zach (who graduated from architecture school in 2019) for joining me and talking about his experience at architecture school. You can reach him on twitter at @cantradionalist. I would post all of the show notes here but they turned out to be three pages long. If you want to know the exact minute you should go to that touches on the subject you want to learn more about, you can read the show notes on my website at eugenefernandes.com. Thanks! Oh, and here are the links to the things we mentioned: Here's the NUMTOTS group on facebook.  Wrath of Gnon Christopher Liberatos Peterson and Paglia’s discussion  Palladio awards  Zach's thesis project - slavic inspired buildings.  Zach's example of "Frankenstein buildings" which poorly trained architects end up designing.   Adrian Vermeule 9 lane highway vs a beautiful town. Zach's book recommendation: Traditional Construction Patterns: Design and Detail - Rules of Thumb. To reach me, you can tweet me @eugenefds or email me at lettersfromacontrarian2020 [at] gmail [dot] com. This conversation was recorded on May 28, 2020.
1:39:59
May 29, 2020
Part 2 with Steve Paolasini - Deporting Native-Born Citizens, Facebook Arguments, and Government.
Hey everyone! Steve's back by popular demand for part 2. We talk about what he learned from running for office, his dreams moving forward, his thoughts on COVID-19 government policy, and non-alcoholic beers. Hope you like it!  Here's how you can reach me: twitter, facebook, website.  Here's a show index (give or take 3 minutes).  Enjoy! 5:00 – Stephen Harper, how it feels to run, and the Christian Heritage Party. 9:00 – What he’s learned from the process – don’t get started in politics to change policy. He did it to spread a message and to get his name up. He also now has a much greater appreciation for democracy. 14:00 – Running for the Libertarian party – WHY?! Marijuana legalization, pipelines, taxes (aka punishment), drug decriminalization, “last calls” at bars. Potential run for Calgary city council?! 21:00 – Competition between provinces, blockchain, competitive citizenship, US immigration. 33:00 – Going back into politics. Steve’s dream of retiring at 35 years old. The 4 hour Workweek. 36:00 – Future plans: Make Canada the BEST! Solve problems like Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong. We could be so much richer as a country! We should deport unproductive people. 41:00 – Immigrants > native-born citizens. Freer markets make people richer. All businesses are essential… Blockchain solves so many problems! 47:00 – “Is the juice worth the squeeze?” from The Girl Next Door. 49:00 – Change yourself first. 53:00 – Whether it’s worth it to get into Facebook Arguments. Guns. It’s wrong to say that “Americans are gun killers.” Time wasting, being a contrarian. 1:03:00 – Free expression. HustleCo's libertarian press release. 1:09:00 The Government has taken away our freedoms! Or has it? Fears of freedoms being taken away. The Runnymede Society. Our justice system and how it’s pretty good. 1:22:00 – Control is worse than privacy violations! AB tracing app. Blockchain is perfect for this! 1:27:00 – Is it worth it to be a contrarian? 1:30:00 – What would you tell your old self? Find the other contrarians, try not to get emotional, don’t let it affect you. “Facebook is a mental asylum.” Try not to drink your problems away. Have some humour! 1:38:00 – Trump.
1:42:43
May 27, 2020
7th Day Adventists, Atheism, Reason, and Thought with Michael Kudla
Thanks to Michael Kudla for joining me for the 3rd episode of the podcast. Here are the show notes (where you can find what subjects are spoken about, and when). You can also reach him on Facebook and on Instagram.  To reach me, you can tweet me @eugenefds or email me at lettersfromacontrarian2020 [at] gmail [dot] com. This conversation was recorded on May 22, 2020. 
1:17:37
May 24, 2020
Libertarians, Immigration and Starting a Marketing Company with Steve Paolasini
We've made it to episode 2! Hurrah!  Today I have Steve Paolasini with me. Steve's an immigration consultant based in Calgary, AB. I know him from my time at HustleCo, a co-working firm and marketing agency. He and his business partner Husam Rammini created the company and ran internships too.  Steve told me a bunch of really interesting stories in this podcast (like how he was about to ask HARPER for his ID when he was voting!!), so I hope you enjoy it! Link to the shownotes. Link to Steve's facebook page.  Thanks!
1:06:45
May 21, 2020
The First Episode! A Chat with my good friend Nikola Kuzmanovic
For the first episode of Letters from a Contrarian, we have the one and only Nikola Kuzmanovic!  Nikola and I met around two years ago at SciencesPo in Reims, France. I was there for a semester abroad, he was a full student; we've remained in touch ever since. Both of us caused a lot of controversy on campus.  In this podcast, we talked about persuasion, dialogue, social change, public art, and architecture, among other things.  You can find him on twitter - @thatserbianguy, and you can read the show notes for this episode on my website.
1:08:54
May 8, 2020