Skip to main content
Failed State Update

Failed State Update

By Joseph L. Flatley
Stories and conversations from the end of America.

Subscribe to the newsletter: lennyflatley.substack.com
Listen on
Where to listen
Apple Podcasts Logo

Apple Podcasts

Breaker Logo

Breaker

Castbox Logo

Castbox

Google Podcasts Logo

Google Podcasts

Overcast Logo

Overcast

Pocket Casts Logo

Pocket Casts

RadioPublic Logo

RadioPublic

Spotify Logo

Spotify

Currently playing episode

26. The Jeffrey Epstein corner of the conspiracyverse w/Pearse Redmond

Failed State Update

1x
29. The Real Story Behind Oliver Stone's JFK w/Fred Litwin
If you know anything about the assassination of JFK, the odds are good that you learned it from Oliver Stone. Even if you haven't seen JFK (1993), the claims made in the film — claims made by the likes of homophobic New Orleans District Attorney Jim Garrison and antisemitic conspiracy theorist Fletcher Prouty — have kind of seeped into the mainstream and become part of our common understanding of the tragedy. In his latest book, On the Trail of Delusion, author Fred Litwin turns the clock back on the Jim Garrison investigation and makes us reconsider what we think we know about November 22, 1963. Fred Litwin on Twitter: https://twitter.com/FredLitwin Fred's book: https://www.onthetrailofdelusion.com/ Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com Music: "Garrison's Obsession" (JFK motion picture soundtrack) and "Bullet" by The Misfits
46:23
November 22, 2020
28. JFK, Oswald, Norman Mailer, Jim Hougan, and Lawrence Schiller. And Me
By its very nature, the intelligence community holds more sway over this country than we will probably ever know. This reality—which has played a key role in transforming the United States into a Failed State—has its origins in the Cold War and the establishment of the Central Intelligence Agency in 1947. Norman Mailer was one of the most insightful chroniclers of Cold War America, and in this episode I talk to two people who knew him personally and saw him in action as he reckoned with the realities of the CIA and that seminal event in conspiracy culture, the assassination of President Kennedy on November 22, 1963. Jim Hougan on Twitter: https://twitter.com/jimhougan Jim Hougan on the web: http://www.jimhougan.com/ Lawrence Schiller website: http://lawrenceschiller.com/ The Norman Mailer Society: http://normanmailersociety.org/ Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com Music: "Oswald Defense Lawyer" by The Fall, "Love Field" by Elvis Costello and the Attractions, "Havana Affair" by Ramones, "The Day John Kennedy Died" by Lou Reed
1:16:30
November 20, 2020
27. Paranoids' Game Night!
In this action-packed episode of FAILED STATE UPDATE, I break out a certain conspiracy theory-themed trivia board game ("Conspiracy Theory" by Neddy Games) and host an action-packed competition between four fascinating dudes. Come for the conspiracy questions! Stay for the learned discursions! With internet celebrities Joseph Matheny, JG Michael and Jon Marsh (and one international man of mystery, Kirk 'Mad Dog' Cooke). Conspiracy Theory by Neddy Games: https://shopneddy.com/products/conspiracy-theory-trivia-board-game Jonathan Marsh on Twitter: https://twitter.com/erieforage Jon's Construction Dorks podcast: https://www.constructiondorks.com/ Joseph Matheny homepage: https://josephmatheny.com/ JG Michael on Twitter: https://twitter.com/ViewsParallax JG's podcast, Parallax Views: https://parallaxviews.podbean.com/
1:07:50
November 16, 2020
26. The Jeffrey Epstein corner of the conspiracyverse w/Pearse Redmond
Pearse Redmond is a podcaster, writer, and one of the leading figures of the Jeffrey Epstein research community. For years, when no one in the mainstream media cared, Pearse and his cohort were diving deep into Epstein-world, trying to figure out what the man was up to and how to get him put in the slammer for good. In this episode of Failed State Update, we discuss some of the more bizarre aspects of the Epstein case and why it took the mainstream media so long to catch up with the conspiracy theorists. Pearse Redmond on Twitter: https://twitter.com/porkinspolicy Pearse Redmond on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/pearseredmond Pearse Redmond website: https://porkinspolicyreview.com/ Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com Music: "Kevin's Gate," "Slow Gaze to Nowhere," and "Pale Machine" by Eric Smith & Glowing Cloud
1:08:05
November 11, 2020
25. More Gunderson, QAnon, et. al
Back by popular demand, this episode features more dirt on Ted Gunderson. It starts out pretty straightforward, with digital forensic investigator Ed Opperman talking about his experience with the disgraced former FBI agent. Then public satanist Lucien Greaves talks a bit about his investigations into the Satanic Panic, including his experiences with ol' Ted. Finally, Joseph Matheny comes on for a wide-ranging chat about QAnon, the Finders as metaprogramming, the gameplay-theater-ceremonial magick nexus, and more! Things start out pretty down-to-earth, but by the end of the episode, there is plenty of esoterica for you to chew on. Get ready to have your mind blown, then press play... But for chrissake, if you haven't listened to the previous episode (24), please be sure to, so you don't get too lost... Grey Faction (Lucien Greaves) website: https://greyfaction.org/ Lucien Greaves on Twitter: https://twitter.com/LucienGreaves Joseph Matheny website: https://josephmatheny.com/ Joseph Matheny on Twitter: https://twitter.com/ongshat1 Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com
1:08:48
October 21, 2020
24. From Satanic Panic to QAnon, feat. Ted Gunderson and the Finders
What we have here is my first ever presentation to a conference, in which I use the story of The Finders—a small commune unfairly maligned as a "cult"—to discuss the political dimension of conspiracy theories. The talk also covers the story of Ted Gunderson, who went from being an FBI-COINTELPRO guy to a major figure in conspiracy theory culture. And of course, I tie this all back to QAnon. Ends with a brief discussion of Grey Faction, the group that sponsored the conference. There's a lot of interesting, little-discussed history here, suitable for listening during jogs, long car rides, and wherever else you consume your podcasts. Grey Faction website: https://greyfaction.org/ Grey Faction on Twitter: https://twitter.com/GreyFactionTST Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com
1:08:46
October 18, 2020
23. Suckers for Fascism w/Jared Yates Sexton
Very excited to once again have author, academic, and political commentator Jared Yates Sexton on the show to address the (failed) state of the union. He has a new book out called American Rule: How a Nation Conquered the World But Failed Its People, and it's one you're definitely going to want to check out, as it lays bare all the myths and falsehoods that Keep America Great Again for the 1%.  Podcast up this episode of FAILED STATE UPDATE to hear about political cults,  the Third Reich as an American phenomenon, how Pizzagate has been going on since the Roman Empire, and why Americans are suckers for fascism. Jared's Muckrake podcast: https://muckrack.libsyn.com/ Jared Yates Sexton website: https://www.jysexton.com Jared Yates Sexton on Twitter: https://twitter.com/JYSexton Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com Music: "Grid," "State of the Union (STFU)," "Fight the Power" by Public Enemy
1:00:35
October 4, 2020
22. cTom's Conspiracy Cinema w/Dylan Coleslaw
In this episode of Failed State Update I'm joined by film critic, artist, and social media provocateur Dylan Coleslaw to discuss cTom's 2011 film Song of the Blind Girl. There are underground filmmakers, and then there's cTom—or Tom Charley, as he's also known (both are pseudonyms, actually).  cTom has directed four films, all of which are ham-handed polemics against elite pedophilia and other crimes against the republic. But there are two things that make these films stand out: The fact that they were made a decade before QAnon, and the all-out incompetence of the director's craft. His films are perfect examples of the "so bad it's good" (a/k/a "awfulsome") approach to filmmaking.  Tom Charley on IMDB: https://www.imdb.com/name/nm4123469/ Song of the Blind Girl (trailer): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dm5AhJYsrMM Dylan Coleslaw on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/teen_sports_news/ Article about cTom by Joseph L. Flatley: https://www.splicetoday.com/moving-pictures/the-worst-filmmaker-you-ve-never-heard-of Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com
52:01
September 21, 2020
21. COVID-19 Brain Candy w/Alexander Zaitchik
On the latest episode of Failed State Update, journalist and author Alexander Zaitchik discusses the profound implications of capitalism-run-amok on the pharmaceutical industry and the battle against COVID-19. It's one heck of a wild ride!  Alexander Zaitchik's website: https://www.zaitchik.com/ Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com MUSIC: "5 Million Ways to Kill a C.E.O." and "The Guillotine" by The Coup
46:12
September 8, 2020
20. The Phantom Patriot: A True Tale of Comic Books, QAnon, and the New World Order w/ Tea Krulos
In 2002, Richard McCaslin raided the elite Bohemian Grove campground in disguise as his alter ego, The Phantom Patriot. His plan was to prevent the kind of ritualistic child sacrifice that Alex Jones had talked about in the film Dark Secrets Inside Bohemian Grove. Luckily, there was nothing of the sort going on. He would spend the next six years in jail for the armed raid.  Author Tea Krulos, who knew McCaslin personally,  joins me in this episode of FAILED STATE UPDATE to discuss McCaslin, Alex Jones, and the strange turn this country has made over the last year or so. Where The Phantom Patriot was once a lone kook, these days the kookiness is endemic.  Tea's book, American Madness: https://feralhouse.com/american-madness/ Tea Krulos on Twitter: https://twitter.com/TeaKrulos Tea's Weird Week: https://teakrulos.com/ The Phantom Patriot vs. The Sons of Saturn: https://youtu.be/fUIYKAWnuNM Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com MUSIC "Phantom Patriot" by Les Claypool "Spirit of America" by Boxcar Willie
1:06:45
August 30, 2020
19. Tim Schwab on Bill Gates, the Media, the Covid, and the Public Rehabilitation of Bad Billionaires
Tim Schwab is a freelance journalist based in Washington DC and 2019 Alicia Patterson Foundation Fellow. Tonight he's visiting the Failed State to talk about his latest for Columbia Journalism Review, "Journalism’s Gates Keepers." In the post-Covid world, where Bill Gates is seen as something of a technocratic foil to Trump's science-blind political posturing, it's important to examine the Gates's eponymous foundation with a critical eye. And that's what' Schwab has been doing, in articles for CJR and The Nation that ask if all that cash the Foundation is spreading around doesn't have some pretty significant strings attached. "Journalism’s Gates Keepers" (CJR): https://www.cjr.org/criticism/gates-foundation-journalism-funding.php "Bill Gates’s Charity Paradox" (The Nation): https://www.thenation.com/article/society/bill-gates-foundation-philanthropy/ Tim Schwab on Twitter: https://twitter.com/TimothyWSchwab Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com All music in this episode by Jon Sudano
59:21
August 27, 2020
18. Failed State, Cult State w/Mark Laxer
Mark Laxer is an author and former follower of the cult leader Frederick Philip Lenz. He broke away from Lenz some time ago, only to realize recently that Trump's base is going through the same process that he went through as a member of a destructive cult. Mark has written about this in two books: Take Me for a Ride: Coming of Age in a Destructive Cult (1993) and his latest, Rama Trauma Trump: I Left the Cult and Now Look What Happened. Mark Laxer on Twitter: https://twitter.com/marklaxer Read Rama Trauma Trump for free: https://www.ramatraumatrump.com/ Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com MUSIC: "(We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang" and "Right Wing Pigeons" by the Dead Milkmen
54:04
August 23, 2020
17. Portland Police State
I have a trio of great guests on this episode. And we'll need to talk to a lot of people if we're going to get to the bottom of what's happening in Portland with the feds, and the kidnapping, and that sort of thing. KRISTIAN WILLIAMS is the author of a number of great books, including Our Enemies In Blue. He's also a police abolition activist based in Portland. He's able to give us some perspective on who the feds are in the city, what they're up to, and any broader implications there may be. JUNIPER SIMONIS provides a firsthand account of what it's like to be arbitrarily detained and then released for doing nothing illegal in the general vicinity of the feds. And lastly (but first on the episode) freelance journalist GARRISON DAVIS will give us the skinny on what it's been like to be on the frontlines of the Portland uprising since the beginning. It's a nebulous story, but I think these three individuals will get us a lot closer to what's really going on. Kristian Williams's website: http://kristianwilliams.com/ Juniper Simonis on Twitter: https://twitter.com/JuniperLSimonis Garrison Davis on Twitter: https://twitter.com/hungrybowtie Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com MUSIC: "Aftershock," "Wasteland," "Neuromancer" and "Shock to the System" by Billy Idol
1:18:51
July 21, 2020
16. UFOs, Radical and Conservative
Has "cancel culture" hit the UFO scene? Probably not. But MUFON (Mutual UFO Network) has had a few controversies over the years, including a recent one where the State Director of Vermont and Rhode Island lost his position for some really messed up Facebook posts. To shed some light on what's happening there, I spoke with Eric Smith, a MUFON field investigator based in Rhode Island. He says that the UFO scene is getting increasingly younger and more progressive — and that MUFON doesn't seem to be keeping up. We'll also speak to Andy Gittlitz, host of The Antifada podcast and author of I Want to Believe: Posadism, UFOs and Apocalypse Communism, a book about a strain of communism that isn't afraid to incorporate more outlandish ideas into its philosophy. Tune in and find out what "fully luxury automated communism" is anyways, Eric Smith on Twitter: https://twitter.com/EricJamesSmith Eric's website, Strange Observer: https://strangeobserver.com/ Andy Gittlitz on Twitter: https://twitter.com/spaceprole The Antifada on Twitter: https://twitter.com/the_antifada I Want To Believe available *now* from Pluto Books: https://www.plutobooks.com/9781786806208/i-want-to-believe/ What if Aliens Met Racists? (Newsweek): https://www.newsweek.com/ufo-sightings-mufon-2018-john-ventre-alien-extraterrestrial-905060
1:01:01
July 12, 2020
15. Boy's Bible Study
NOTE: I've fixed the wonky audio 30 minutes in and updated the file. I've always been fascinated by the weird, parallel Christian media universe, so for this episode, I figure we'd consult the experts. Boys Bible Study is a podcast known for its hilarious and insightful reviews of faith-based movies (a fair amount of which involve Kevin Sorbo somehow). In this episode of Failed State Update, I will be joined by the Bible boys: Ash, Julian, and Scott, as we discuss The Reliant (2019). This film ostensibly stars Kevin Sorbo and Eric Roberts, but in reality, it's just two hours of kids camping in the woods. Their time is spent cowering from a vague, Antifa-like threat that has taken over the cities and whining about God. It's a look into a parallel reality that's only becoming more prevalent in this country every day. Special thanks to J.G. Michael of the Parallax Views podcast for the film recommendation! Boy's Bible Study on the web: http://boysbiblestudy.com/ Boy's Bible Study on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/boysbiblestudy Boy's Bible Study on Twitter: https://twitter.com/boysbiblestudy Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net/ Joseph L. Flatley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley
1:00:13
July 7, 2020
14. Josh Lilly on living in (and being kicked out of) a destructive cult
From my other podcast, The So-Called Prophet From Pittsburgh about a UFO cult in Arizona and its leader, Gabriel. Joshua Lilly (spiritual name: VanMon) was brought into the Global Community Communications Alliance as a kid, kicked out as a teenager, and joined again as an adult. Practically his entire family is still in the group. In this in-depth conversation, Josh relates the path that drew him to Gabriel of Urantia (twice). We also discuss cult members' motivations, cult "mind control" techniques, how the group gets its money, and the spiritual elitism in our culture. At the beginning of the episode, I share a little bit about how the GCCA is handling the COVID-19 crisis. The So-Called Prophet From Pittsburgh: https://anchor.fm/pghprophet Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net/ Joseph L. Flatley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley 
1:49:43
July 2, 2020
13. Police Cops! w/Stuart Schrader
Stuart Schrader is a Lecturer/Assistant Research Scientist in Sociology at Johns Hopkins University and the author of Badges Without Borders: How Global Counterinsurgency Transformed American Policing. In this episode of Failed State Update, we talk about the little-understood facts that the United States is an empire, and that what our police do at home has a striking resemblance to what our military does overseas. Of course, this has some very serious implications for the current resistance movement that's been so busy on the streets of America since the murder of George Floyd. Stuart Schrader's website: https://www.stuartschrader.com/  Stuart Schrader on Twitter: https://twitter.com/stschrader1 "Wanted: An End to Police Terror" by Stuart Schrader: https://www.viewpointmag.com/2020/06/09/wanted-an-end-to-police-terror/ Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Failed State Update Newsletter: https://lennyflatley.substack.com MUSIC: "The News" and "The Network's Going Down" by Carbon/Silicon
1:02:29
June 24, 2020
12. The Fascists Are Telling Us Who They Are
For this episode, I spoke with two pretty smart dudes. First off, Jared Yates Sexton (a political analyst, associate professor, and author of the forthcoming book American Rule: How a Nation Conquered the World but Failed Its People) discussed authoritarianism, both in the Trump White House and in the hearts of too many of us. We also covered the role of conspiracy theories in... well, almost everything. After that, my interview with Shane Burley (author of Fascism Today: What It Is And How To End It) covers fascism, anti-fascism, and the George Floyd Protests. This is good content to consume if you want to pretend you've read the above books. Jared Yates Sexton on Twitter: https://twitter.com/JYSexton Shane Burley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/shane_burley1 Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley FAILED STATE UPDATE (the newsletter): https://lennyflatley.substack.com Music: "Black Steel In The Hour Of Chaos," "Brothers Gonna Work It Out," "Lost At Birth," "Fight The Power," "Party For Your Right To Fight" by Public Enemy
1:00:45
June 18, 2020
11. Busting R. Kelly with Jim DeRogatis
For fifteen years, Jim DeRogatis was the pop music critic for the Chicago Sun-Times. It was while there that Jim and his colleague Abdon Pallasch became the first reporters to expose R. Kelly's sex trafficking cult. His book Soulless: The Case Against R. Kelly both exposes what rich people get away with in this country and gives the reader a first-hand account of the work that investigative journalists do. I think it's one of the most important books of 2019. Jim DeRogatis on Twitter: https://twitter.com/JimDeRogatis Soulless: The Case Against R. Kelly: amzn.to/32x1MOP Music: "City of Crime" by Tom Hanks and Dan Aykroyd
53:44
June 10, 2020
10. Protest in the Age of Magickal Thinking
There's an uprising goin' on. But while the oppressed are uprising, and the cops are knocking heads, right-wing thugs are waiting to take advantage of the chaos for their own fiendish ends. And these ain't your daddy's racists: they believe in meme magick and wear aloha shirts. In this episode of Failed State Update, I talk to two people who have devoted some serious time and effort to understanding Q Anon, the Boogaloo Bois, and other absurd modern manifestations of the radical right.  Mike Rains is the host of the Poker Politics podcast, for those who want to get into the weeds of Q Anon analysis.  CV Vitolo-Haddad is a researcher at the University of Wisconsin-Madison who studies the Alt-Right, Boogaloo Bois, and other fascist creeps. Poker Politics podcast by Mike Rains: https://soundcloud.com/user-961354561 "Make a Whole New Religion: QAnon and the Age of Trump" by Mike Rains: https://medium.com/@pokerpolitics/make-a-whole-new-religion-1a0f0eae3f43 Mike Rains on Twitter: https://twitter.com/PokerPolitics  CV Vitolo-Haddad on Twitter: https://twitter.com/notcolloquial Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley FAILED STATE UPDATE (the newsletter): https://lennyflatley.substack.com Music: "United" by Throbbing Gristle "(Every Day Is) Halloween" by Ministry "Love Missile F1-11" by Sigue Sigue Sputnik
58:33
June 4, 2020
9. The Battle of Pittsburgh
I'm a veteran of the anti-globalization movement, but sadly these days COVID-19 and some seriously messed up lungs have turned my activism into slacktivism. When I wasn't busy yesterday Venmo-ing my donation to the Pittsburgh Freedom Fund (see "Pittsburgh Jailbreak," below), I spent about 12 hours monitoring Twitter feeds, live streams, and my handy police scanner to try to get an idea of what was going on during the Battle of Pittsburgh. On this episode of Failed State Update, I will ponder paranoia, provocateurs, the Phoenix Program, and the one weird thing that connects Vietnam to political activism. Special guests include Pittsburgh activist Vincent Scotti Eirene of Duncan and Porter House, and Douglas Valentine, author of The Phoenix Program: America's Use of Terror in Vietnam. The Black Political Empowerment Project: https://www.b-pep.net/ Pittsburgh Jailbreak: https://www.gofundme.com/f/aftercare-for Duncan and Porter House: http://www.notowar.com/ Music: "Back Off Boogaloo" by Ringo Starr "Children of the Revolution" by T. Rex "Panic In Detroit" by David Bowie "Urban Guerrilla" by Hawkwind
46:34
June 1, 2020
8. The Jakarta Method (w/Vincent Bevins)
Clearly, the American Empire is clocking out — it's anybody's guess whether it will go with a whimper or with a bang, but it seems likely that we'll know the answer to that question relatively soon. But what did it take to forge this empire in the first place, and how can it be that so many Americans are unaware that this imperium even exists? In the latest episode of Failed State Update, I will be speaking with Vincent Bevins, a journalist and the author of the recently released The Jakarta Method: Washington’s Anticommunist Crusade and the Mass Murder Program That Shaped Our World. As it turns out, the bloodiest and most horrific acts of American imperialism are the ones we've never heard of. Also discussed: Covid-19 as a symptom of America's collective insanity, and Russiagate as psychological projection. Vincent Bevins on Twitter: https://twitter.com/Vinncent Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley FAILED STATE UPDATE (the newsletter): https://lennyflatley.substack.com Music: "Washington Bullets" and "Charlie Don't Surf" by The Clash
58:22
May 28, 2020
7. The Opperman Report
UPDATE: The latest on the story of THE SO-CALLED PROPHET FROM PITTSBURGH is available now from Please Kill Me Online: https://pleasekillme.com/cosmopop/ Ed Opperman is like a character in a movie: Private investigator, native New Yorker, conspiracy researcher, and former Yippie. It was a pleasure to talk to him on his radio show recently about the UFO cult I'm investigating (including some new wrinkles in the story, available here for the first time). We also spoke at some length about this podcast and my new FAILED STATE UPDATE NEWSLETTER, available at: https://lennyflatley.substack.com/ The Opperman Report website: http://www.oppermanreport.com Ed Opperman on Twitter: https://twitter.com/oppermanreport
45:23
May 26, 2020
6. To Live and Die in L.A.
Yasha Levine is an investigative journalist and the author of Surveillance Valley: The Secret Military History of the Internet (PublicAffairs, 2018). We spoke recently about the response to COVID-19 in the city of Los Angeles, where he currently lives. Since it's Yasha, the conversation quickly turned to surveillance and empire and the fact that the systemic collapse of the USA (ca. 2020) is largely the result of the chickens coming home to roost — as web 2.0 influencer Ward Churchill might say. After taping that call I decided to expand the discussion a bit by bringing on Anne Orchier, an organizer with NOlympics LA, about why the Olympics is bad news and how Los Angeles is, much like the rest of the country, experiencing "disaster capitalism" run amok.  FAILED STATE UPDATE (the newsletter): https://lennyflatley.substack.com/ NOlympics LA on the web: https://nolympicsla.com/ NOlympics LA Twitter: https://twitter.com/NOlympicsLA NOlympics LA Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nolympicsla/ Yasha Levine on the web: http://yashalevine.com/ Yasha Levine Twitter: https://twitter.com/yashalevine Yasha's newsletter, Immigrants as a Weapon: https://yasha.substack.com/  Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net/ Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Music: "We Care A Lot" by Faith No More "Chariots of Fire" by Vangelis "Join the Chant" by Nitzer Ebb "To Live and Die in L.A." by Wang Chung
56:15
May 23, 2020
5. I Am Seeing UFOs (w/Adam Gorightly)
This episode of Failed State Update is about the intersection of government spies and ETs. As far as I can tell (and who can really tell?) the UFO community has been encouraged to pursue and promote some wacko ideas over the years by the United States Air Force to distract them from the shitty things the government is doing (and the scary weapons their government is creating). The best evidence supporting this hypothesis is the story of a defense contractor named Paul Bennewitz who we will discuss here in some detail. But there is also the strange case of Tom DeLonge of Blink-182: can we really trust an overgrown pop-punker whose think tank fraternates with the CIA and Lockheed Martin? As usual, Failed State Update provides few answers, but asks plenty of questions. Adam Gorightly website: http://adamgorightly.com/ Adam Gorightly on Twitter: https://twitter.com/AdamGorightly Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net/ Joseph L. Flatley twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Music: "I Am Seeing UFOs" by Dee Dee Ramone "The Happening" by The Pixies
54:08
May 19, 2020
4. You're Donezo! (w/Chuck Ochelli)
I recently appeared on The Ochelli Effect to discuss this podcast and the sorry state of the world in general. I had a great time, so I thought I'd share some highlights of our conversation with you. If you like what you hear, make sure you check out Ochelli.com to listen to the whole two hour conversation. Topics include: rich people/disaster capitalism/Hurricane Katrina, The Day After (again!), my cursory understanding of Jung, the COVID-19 lockdown, and more. The Ochelli Effect website: http://ochelli.com/ Chuck Ochelli on Twitter: https://twitter.com/ochellieffect Joseph L. Flatley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Joseph L. Flatley's website: https://www.lennyflatley.net/ Music: "Beautiful Future" by Primal Scream "Blank Generation" (original version) by Richard Hell and the Voidoids "Countdown to Armageddon" by Public Enemy "Enola Gay" by OMD
47:08
May 15, 2020
3. Radical politics and the Peoples Temple
Laura Johnston Kohl grew up as an activist in Washington, D.C., and watched as many of her heroes were assassinated in the 1960s. She attended college in Connecticut and continued her commitment to work for change and to make a difference.  While exercising her civil rights to protest peacefully, she was tear-gassed while protesting the war in Vietnam.  After a brief marriage, a visit to Woodstock, and a stint working with the Black Panthers, she moved to California to join her sister. Soon after that, she was introduced to Peoples Temple and spent the next nine years in California and Guyana. In this episode of Failed State Update, Laura will tell us how Jim Jones used radical politics and religious faith to trap people in his apocalyptic cult. It's a riveting history and an important cautionary tale. Laura Johnston Kohl website: https://www.jonestownsurvivor.com/ Music by Forest Lawn: "Beyond the Gates," "A Sunny Day in the Graveyard," "Mausoleum Blues" Forest Lawn on Bandcamp: https://forestlawnpsych.bandcamp.com/ End music by Frank Zappa: "Jonestown" Joseph L. Flatley website: https://www.lennyflatley.net/ Joseph L. Flatley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Joseph L. Flatley on Instagram: https://instagram.com/lennysbookclub
51:29
May 10, 2020
2. Amazon.com and the crisis of meaning
In the second episode of Failed State Update, we check in on Christian Smalls, the ex-Amazon employee who lost his job fighting to protect his coworkers from Covid-19.  And then we'll have a wide-ranging conversation with J.P. Sottile, the journalist behind the influential Rundown newsletter, about the strange political and psychological times we've found ourselves in. Topics include the generation gap, fascism, nuclear war, and looking at the bright side of the system's collapse.  [CORRECTION: I'm pretty sure I referred to Christian Smalls as "Christopher" on the podcast. Apologies.] Christian Smalls on Twitter: https://twitter.com/shut_downamazon J.P. Sottile on Twitter: https://twitter.com/newsvandal J.P. Sottile's website: http://newsvandal.com/ Joseph L. Flatley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Joseph L. Flatley's website: https://www.lennyflatley.net/ Music: "Democracy" by Adolescents "Sixty Seconds to What?" by Ennio Morricone "The Bottom Line" by Big Audio Dynamite
1:06:21
May 3, 2020
1. Militia Dudes and Juggalos
In the premiere episode, Joseph "Lenny" Flatley talks to J.G. Michael of Parallax Views about the politics of the anti-quarantine movement and the tragic canceling of Insane Clown Posse's 2020 Gathering of the Juggalos music festival. He also speaks to Christian Yingling of the Pennsylvania Volunteer Militia and John "Wagz" Wagner of the PA Lightfoot Militia about the militia movement's response to Covid-19. Parallax Views: https://parallaxviews.podbean.com/ Joseph L. Flatley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/lennyflatley Joseph L. Flatley's website: https://www.lennyflatley.net/ Music: "World Destruction" by Timezone "Thy Unveiling" by Insane Clown Posse  "Watch Out for Martial Law" by Carl Clang
56:41
May 2, 2020