What is a “social assassin”?
A social assassin is someone who is not afraid or gives no f**ks about your feelings when he/she tells you things you don’t want to hear. Make no mistake, I did not coin the phrase. It’s actually been out there for many years. It was first mentioned on Curb Your Enthusiasm’s episode called “Palestinian Chicken.” Larry David’s agent Jeff calls him a social assassin. Then at some point my close friend called me that in reference to the show. It’s kinda like the idea of a honey badger. Somone who doesn’t give a f—.
How did you come up with the concept of Mr.L’s Tavern and the podcast?
Well, the name I use is obviously not my real name. It’s more like a handle. But it IS my name. It’s just my last name initial. Mr.L was a term of endearment that has followed certain men in my family. People, friends, coworkers, of my Dad, and I had a cousin who was very big in the entertainment industry, he was nicknamed Mr.L, and so was I. Don’t know, people get nicknamed and, it just stuck, so, it was only natural for that to be my handle.
Now, Mr.L’s Tavern was an idea I had when I was thinking of starting a podcast over ten years ago. At that time, podcasting wasn’t what it is now. Very few people were doing them. But those who were doing them, on the right, had these conservative pro-American sounding names for their podcasts. I thought of also doing that, but I wanted something, an angle, that set me apart from the rest.
Many years before that, before my first ever recording, I would be driving to job where I worked nights and weekends. I listened to this radio station, Q104.3, in New York’s market, and it’s still on the radio here. There was this DJ who did something called the Friday afternoon happy hour show. I think he still does it at five in the evening. He basically was talking over bar crowd noise and then played classic rock music. I thought, that’s kinda cool with the whole chatter ambience in the background.
So when I came up with the idea of Mr.L’s Tavern, which was what I used to do with close friends all the time, in an old bar or tavern, and you sit around and you discuss just about everything ranging from the silly to the serious while having a couple of pints. I thought that’s what I would want the show to be (laughs) politics and a pint. And all I did, and continue to do is, I downloaded crowd noise from the internet, and looped it to background sound under me talking. That’s really it.
How did you form your political beliefs?
I think my family. I came from an Italian working-class family. They always understood the way things were supposed to be. You had to grow up, go to work, your job sucked but you went because you had to, you raise families, you liked your taxes to be low, you liked having more money in your pocket. You thought politicians were basically people who would tell you one thing and then, when they got into office, they gave you a bail of shit. It’s cynical, I know, but that’s who we are, and that’s what I grew up around.
Now, if you’re talking about party politics, my family always voted Republican. All of them. They were all Republicans. Yeah, you had a pocket or two, a few idiots, who didn’t get the memo, but mostly…all my friends growing up who had this background were the same. And that’s a given with Italians in America, I think. It’s like with Cubans. There’s just something that’s baked into the cake like Irish Catholics were usually all Democrats and Kennedy worshipers.
My late eldest brother was a major influence on me forming my political ideas. He was this tall loud dude, louder than me, if you can imagine that, and he’d come home after work and he’d have his copy of the New York Post and Daily News and he’d sit and read and just shake his head and start complaining (laughs). So, I was around it all the time.
As I got older, I’d say a real defining moment where something just clicked in me and said “hey you’d better start paying attention to everything” was 9/11/2001. That completely changed my world view. I was always right leaning but that drove me more to the right.
What do you think of the Republican Party, conservatism as it is known, and the whole Trump phenomenon?
Well, I should start by answering about Trump. Because he and that phenomenon are all kind of tied together. The Republican Party and its ineptness and, what I like to call Conservatism INC., which is impotent, led to the ascendancy of Donald Trump in politics. Now, I thought Trump was a fraud. This was at the beginning of him as a political figure. This was way back in 2011 when he toyed with running then. That feeling continued with me until he started running in 2016. And it began to seem like he was really doing it. And the same people…(pauses) I’m a Sarah Palin fan since 2008. I’ve gone on record as saying, before anyone did after Trump won the presidency, that she was as much responsible for him becoming the president as anyone because she really was Trump before Trump was.
And the thing was, in that election, here were the same people, not only on the left, but the same people in the Republican Party apparatchik, donors, all of them pretty much losers and then, the conservative chattering class at National Review and such publications, these same people who were ALL against Sarah Palin when she was threatening to run for president back in 2010-2011 for the 2012 race, here they were all against Trump. All it told me was, he was pissing off all the right people. As she did.
I mean, here you had a Republican Party and a conservative movement that had been massacred in 2008 by Bushism and Iraq and the cult of Obama. A liberal McCain was basically forced on the Republican electorate. And then, like a flick of a light switch, there was this new energy from this unknown, beautiful, and accomplished woman Governor in Alaska. It’s really the only time during that whole election cycle—I lived through it—where I thought we actually had a chance to win.
And what did these morons do? They threw her away. Stabbed her in the back. Took side on the left when attacking her. Do you know how much money she raised for these freak shows in that race and for the GOP as a whole? And look what they did to Trump once he…umm… “lost” the 2020 election. Same thing. They really do not like that he’s the leader and face of their party and they’re going to do just about anything they can to install some piece of wood in a cheap suit and they’ll lose.
Look, the reason for their attitudes about us as their electorate, I really, really think that many of them, not all of them, but many of them… HATE us. And the reason they shun a Sarah Palin or a Trump or anyone in that mold, who are social assassins by the way, the reason they shun them can only be boiled down to an essay written in 2010 by Angelo Codevilla called “Ruling Class vs. Country Class.” Rush Limbaugh featured it on his show and that’s how I really heard about it. It was a text ahead of its time and it really boils down to these people in Washington, Georgetown, media, the elites versus us. I think people like Palin and Trump are those who really represent us. Because the ruling class doesn’t care about you paying $7.00 a gallon in gas and they certainly don’t want any politician coming up talking about closing the borders. Simply because, they’re all in their ivory towers no effected by any of it.
So, it really is a battle. It’s a battle not only between conservatism and liberalism, or left vs. right, it’s a battle of us vs. them. That’s where we crossed the Rubicon here in American politics. It took long enough but I believe we’re here. And if you’re someone who’s a devotee to the GOP or the National Review, you have to ask yourself, why do the candidates who you put up, who look good in suits and skirts, and give the polished answers, but are fundamentally WRONG on just about every issue are rejected? Perhaps it’s because we’re tired of hearing the same thing over and over again and when they get in we get a bag of s—t. Every mid-term election we hear “We have to get elected because if we don’t this, this and this will happen, and we’ll get rid of Obamacare and we’ll close the borders” and nothing. “Just give us the House” (2010) then it was “just give us the Senate” (2014). And they’re saying the same things for 2022. Yes, some of them who are elected will TRY to do the right thing. But most of them will just give us a bag of s—t.
Give me your thoughts on talk radio and who are your influences?
I can give you my thoughts on both radio and talk radio and both suck today. I mean, radio itself, FM radio, sucks. It is commercialized to the nth power. They play the same songs over and over again. I heard there are actual focus groups that these radio stations turn to, to play music and to build a playlist. In the old days, even when I was growing up, it was a DJ picking what HE wanted to play. Now it’s just horrid. I have a hobby of creating musical playlists because I can’t take terrestrial radio anymore. And satellite radio sucks too. All of it. Talk radio is commercialized as well. And it’s also controlled by liberal media. You think these guys on professional radio aren’t toeing a line? Please. The only guy who didn’t have to worry about that was Limbaugh and that’s because HE created the medium and he got away with a lot of stuff because of the stature he held.
He was the only person I really respected in talk radio, and he wasn’t really an influence because I started to really listen to him after I started podcasting. He started it all. Another person in the conservative movement who I admired terribly was Andrew Breitbart. He wasn’t a talk show host but, I believe, through time, if he had more time, he would have become a Rush type figure. But now that Rush is gone, I really don’t see anyone in the talk medium who can really carry the burden of that baton. Hannity is a different version of himself, Levin is at the stage where Rush was twenty years ago, he can’t decide if he wants to be on radio or TV. Savage, that inconsistent fraud, flamed out. He’s not even on radio anymore. So really who is there? Bongino? Shapiro? I really don’t think so. It’s a topic I can talk about for hours, but I think conservative talk radio as a platform, has hit a wall and in sort of a decline.
You claim that you’ve been “harassed” by YouTube and Google?
Oh, you mean it “didn’t happen”? Well, no, I don’t have a “smoking gun” but, yeah. And it has been going on for years. It’s what they do. It’s the reason we cannot have nice things and why I do not do political videos on YouTube. You have to remember when most people started on YouTube, YouTube itself was just starting. It was like the wild west. You could say or do just about anything on there just as long it wasn’t committing murder or suicide. And then, suddenly, they decided they wanted to be Walt Disney. They have all kinds of censorship rules. It’s a cesspool of censorship. They do it to prominent VBloggers and small ones too.
They started with me in 2020 when I posted a video, and it was when I was doing video blogs of me, on the street in White Plains, New York, next door to the county event hall. There was this FEMA camp. It wasn’t called that. But that’s what it was. Just like I can’t prove that I’ve been harassed, but it just happens. They had erected this thing to “treat people with Covid.” But most people knew what it was. The government was putting these makeshift sites up all over the country. They eventually tore it down and it’s just a parking lot now, but it was up for over a year and was never used. They wasted a ton of taxpayer money on those. I posted that video and immediately, I mean, immediately, it was removed, and my account was issued a suspension and a warning that if I did this again, my entire channel would be removed. That meant that everything I posted, hundreds of videos and hours of work, would be removed. Like POOF! Gone. Then they started going back into my archive. One by one they started deleting my videos that were “hate speech” about Islamic terrorists and the Pink Mafia, or my personal favorite, “promoting falsehood regarding the efficacy of masks and vaccines.” That’s my personal favorite. You cannot say ANYTHING against Covid or Covidians or masks or vaccines and if you do your video is removed.
So, they removed those videos without a strike against my account. Sure, you can appeal, but you may as well put a message in a bottle and throw it in the ocean. But anything a lefty wants up there, whatever sick and twisted shit they want to say just gets published. This is happening not only on social media but in society and with laws today. You believe a certain thing, you get a certain kind of punishment. Just look at what happened to this guy Matthew Perna. He was a January 6 protester. Faced 20 years in prison for trespassing and some other trumped-up charges. The guy didn’t even break anything, and he was getting 20 years. He killed himself. But Black Lives Matter and all these other left-wing groups can go to DC and actually riot in DC and not just the Capitol steps, the entire city, and break and loot and burn and nothing happens to them. They rioted the St. Johns church in DC. This is a historical church. Nothing happens. In Portland, they rioted for 100 nights straight and no consequences. You tell me if there’s equal justice under the law.
What is the show’s your philosophy? What sets you apart?
My philosophy? Truth. I try to stay true to myself. I mean, I have my own style. My own way of putting things. I have a New York accent, so I guess that is different than most people doing thing. I have a certain kind of delivery and dark humor. I also commit to, every show I do, I try to do as live as possible. Look, it’s a recording medium. It’s not live. But when I sit down to record, I press the record button on Audacity and I don’t stop or pause and re-edit. And I have notes in front of me, quotes from articles and that such thing, or I edit in audio clips later, but when I record, it’s one shot like it would be if I was on the radio.
Over the years of doing this, I had people tell me “Man… I don’t know what you do for a living, but you should be on the radio”. It’s a great compliment. But the thing is, I’m too real for radio. Radio is at a totally different place than when guys like Rush Limbaugh started it. How do you get into radio these days? I have no idea. And you can’t get away with anything anymore. So, my philosophy is to be me and, most importantly, to try and talk about things that no one is talking about. Talk radio is notorious for picking up with the latest media cycle and, I guess, they have to because they’re on news radio. But even the podcast world gets caught up in it. I was even caught up in it for awhile when I was on YouTube. But now, no, I try to take on topics and stories that not too many people are focusing on and speak about things that I’m interested in.