To all those fighting in good faith and solidarity towards Medicare for All,
The “March for Medicare for All” (M4M4ALL) refers to a multi-city march in support of Medicare for All (M4A). It is currently scheduled for July 24. While M4M4ALL sounds like a great development on the surface, a closer examination reveals a variety of serious issues. These issues include poor operational security (opsec) and vetting practices, ties to crypto-fascist social media influencers and other far-right operatives, as well as an utter refusal of leadership to take responsibility for endangering the many well-meaning organizers and volunteers with whom they work.
Before last week, members of CROH Lehigh Valley were unaware of M4M4ALL. That was a bit odd to us, because collectively our members have dedicated countless hours to the cause. It’s a major issue. The Lehigh Valley is ranked the worst place to live in the US if you have asthma. Our parents are falling apart before our eyes. We know people who worked jobs that literally broke their back. We’ve all had to deal with being uninsured and under-insured. The problem is, the movement as a whole relied a great deal on National Nurses United (NNU) to lead the fight. But over the past year, nurses have gone through a lot. They had to confront a major pandemic with inadequate PPE and constant short staffing. 3600 healthcare workers have died from COVID-19 in the US since the start of the pandemic. One third of the dead were nurses, and two thirds were people of color. In the present moment, organized labor has been focused on keeping nurses, teachers, and other essential workers alive. So we were a little surprised when we heard that there was a major, nation-wide march being planned, presumably without the backing of major organizations like NNU. But when we found out M4M4ALL was tied to Force the Vote, we began to put the pieces of the puzzle together.
Force the Vote was a campaign that attempted to pressure progressive House reps to force a vote on Medicare for All on the Floor of the House of Representatives. The campaign faltered, unable to convince progressive leaders to give Pelosi an excuse to strip the Progressive Caucus of their committee seats. That is the last we heard of it. But it interested some antifascist researchers because it was organized by streamers, youtubers, and other paid social media influencers–an area where grifting, abuse, harassment, racism, ableism, sexism, anti-labor sentiment, and conspiracism are common, and where far right influencers regularly recruit. As we trace the M4M4ALL infiltration through networks within the progressive influencer industry, it is important to note that we are critical of the entire ecosystem, including what are colloquially referred to as “breadtube” and the “dirtbag left.” Critiques of those not involved in the infiltration, however, are not within the scope of this memo.
The stakes here are high. Neoliberalism is deeply harmful and dangerous to the future existence of our species. But we are in a three way fight, and collaborating with fascists to take on the “establishment” is historically a deadly proposition.
Not all fascists are brainless clowns. Fascists lie about their true intentions to outsiders and new recruits. It should not be surprising when fascists attack left wing causes, or worse yet, co-opt them for their own purposes. This is one defining characteristic of fascism. It, like neoliberalism, embraces hierarchy and is capitalist in orientation, and therefore strongly opposed to socialism in all its forms. Unlike neoliberalism, however, fascism can marshal popular support in much the same way as left movements can. It’s imperative that socialists understand this key distinction between fascism and traditional reaction, as it means that fascism poses a unique danger to the left.
The enemy of our enemy is not necessarily our friend. We cannot afford to allow fascists or their enablers into progressive or radical spaces, even though they often express legitimate grievances with the “establishment.”
M4M4ALL Boosts Matthew Heimbach
On June 27, news broke that the national M4M4ALL Instagram account shared an image announcing neo-Nazi Matthew Heimbach as keynote speaker of an M4M4ALL march in Muncie, Indiana. Heimbach is one of the most notable public-facing neo-Nazi activists in the so-called United States. Naturally, many took notice, shared screenshots of the M4M4ALL promo image featuring “Matthew H. Bach,” and demanded an explanation from organizers.
Unfortunately, Instagram does not play nice with archive.org, so we could not locate the post on the Wayback Machine. We first spotted the Heimbach promo image on June 27th when Geoff Campbell (former chair of the People’s Progressive Caucus in Miami-Dade) posted a screen shot of the Instagram post to Twitter. It should be noted that Geoff Campbell is heavily critical of the Force the Vote/M4M4ALL crowd. But his screencap was legitimate. The M4M4ALL steering committee confirmed that the official Instagram account did post the announcement here. And here, they acknowledge the infiltration of their graphics team.
After the Heimbach promotion became widely publicized on June 27th, antifascist researcher Sadie Farrel looked into the information available about the Muncie infiltration. This research strongly indicates that the infiltrator is associated with the Boogaloo Boys. The Boogaloo movement is a rebranding of the anti-government militia movement. These are folks who are violently opposed to “government controlled healthcare,” so they obviously do not belong in Medicare for All organizing spaces.
M4M4ALL Circles the Wagons
Initially, CROH Lehigh Valley worked closely with other antifascist researchers to offer good-faith suggestions. Unfortunately, the leadership of M4M4ALL has responded only with defensiveness and false claims that all critiques of their organizing were trolling or part of an “establishment” psyop. While many criticisms on Twitter were disingenuous attacks from liberals, the leadership of M4M4ALL defaulted to conspiracism in the face of justified criticism and concern from experienced organizers.
It was also immediately obvious that the organizers of M4M4ALL had zero understanding of opsec best practices. A campus anti-hate group from Indiana reached out and stated that they had joined the national organizing Slack in a matter of minutes with absolutely no vetting. They provided us intel on what was happening in the Slack and DMed us screenshots, which were independently verified when the Daily Beast quoted the same comments that concerned us.
In the Slack workspace, a volunteer graphic designer expressed concern that the infiltrator may have received login credentials for M4M4ALL social media accounts. Presumably, the passwords have since been changed, but due to leadership’s non-existent opsec practices, no one knows whether a far-right infiltrator had access to volunteers’ sensitive information.
This all speaks to our concerns. The complete lack of vetting and opsec practices by M4M4ALL leadership has already exposed their well-intentioned volunteers to potential harassment and recruitment at the hands of far-right groups.
M4A organizing spaces necessarily include people with disabilities/chronic illnesses, mental health advocates, women’s health professionals/advocates, LGBT health advocates, racial justice health advocates, and labor organizers. All of these groups are targets of fascist hostility. It is our duty as organizers to take reasonable steps to keep movement builders safe from those who might do them harm. M4M4ALL is gathering data on volunteers using mobilize.us and they are likely correlating that information to voter registration records using a tool like VAN. If a far right infiltrator gains access to those tools, they can do a lot of damage.
On June 29, One People’s Project (OPP) added social media influencer Niko House, owner of the MCSC media network, to their Rogue’s Gallery. Along with Idavox, One People’s Project is the home of Daryle Lamont Jenkins, an experienced grassroots antifascist researcher based out of New Brunswick, NJ. In the article, OPP clearly lays out the argument that Niko House has strong ties to far right conspiracy theorist and propagandist Jack Posobiec. As it turns out, multiple MCSC Network employees are either speaking or working as the master of ceremonies for local M4M4ALL events on July 24.
Fiorella Isabel, co-host of MCSC’s flagship stream the Convo Couch, attended the attempted coup at the Capitol on January 6th and provided an extremely friendly analysis of the attempted coup’s participants. They were one of the most welcoming networks to the Boogaloo recruiter Zach Dougherty (aka Magnus Panvidya) as he made his rounds earlier this year. MCSC employee and master of ceremonies at the Detroit M4M4ALL rally, Rome Bethea has collaborated with Zach, inviting him to provide armed security for mutual aid distributions in Detroit. Detroit antifascists were told by concerned community members that Zach and his crew were drunk and pissed on the side of people’s homes while armed. When CROH confronted Rome about this, he did not deny it. Instead, he responded, “I do what I want at MY events!” Turns out, they admitted to the drunken stunt on Twitter.
Zach regularly lionizes far right anti-government militants like Timothy McVeigh and Duncan Lemp, traffics in anti-globalist conspiracy theories (ie Alex Jones nonsense), and collaborates with neo-Nazis. His mode of recruitment could be called “Libertarian Third Positionist,” in that he claims to be an “anarchist” and argues for a union between reactionaries and revolutionaries against “the establishment.” “Anarcho-capitalists” (ancaps), operate on strict proprietarian notions of freedom (similar to ancient Rome) and generally favor the Austrian economics of the crackpots Mises and Rothbard. Zach and his friends talk a lot about Murray Rothbard on Episode 2 of his Unity or Death Podcast. Of particular note is Rothbard’s notion of child ownership. Murray Rothbard argued that “we must face the fact that the purely free society will have a flourishing free market in children” (CW: you know where this is going). This position is not an aberration but the logical conclusion of Austrian economics and its reactionary conception of freedom that means freedom to exploit the labor, minds, and bodies of children. Jonathan Swift could not write satire as absurd as “anarcho-capitalism.”
These are people you do not want to organize with. Social anarchists want nothing to do with reactionaries who appropriate the label “anarchist” to apologize for capitalist hegemony and the exploitation of the weak by the strong. Social anarchist communities are openly hostile to ancaps because they pose a threat to their egalitarian ambitions. This explains why Zach had to go after unprincipled, anti-establishment electoralists within the progressive influencer industry instead of actual anarchists.
MCSC has ties to the Jimmy Dore Show. Dore has attended Free Assange events organized by MCSC and platforms MCSC employees regularly. Dore platformed Zach the same day he was on Convo Couch, then doubled down when he was educated about the Boogaloo movement. Currently, Dore & Ana Kasparian from TYT are the central figures in a series of mutual denunciations and accusations within the TYT orbit. We must stress again that the only reason we are singling out Dore and MCSC in this memo is because they acted as the vectors for the far right infiltration into M4M4ALL.
For those who are still sympathetic to Dore, we recommend Michael Brooks’ years old analysis:
None of the problems I have with that dude has anything to do with the fact that he swears, or he hates Democrats, or he’s enraged at the disgusting buffoons on our cable news networks. That’s all great. I have a problem with the false equivalencies, moralism, electoralism obsession, and… with whataboutism for fascism.”
Ron Placone, writer for the Jimmy Dore Show, will be speaking at the Los Angeles M4M4ALL march.
Finally, CROH Lehigh Valley found an NY M4M4ALL organizer’s YouTube channel, on which he openly rejects M4A, parrots talking points from the incel (involuntary celebate) movement, spreads disinformation about vaccines, and interviews a Jan 6 putschist. He’s also seen attending events with MCSC employees. This organizer was allegedly removed from the Slack and from the group organizing the NY event. But still…
More information will be published in a large report, after it goes through fact-checking and editing. Researchers are finding ties between the MCSC network and other notable fascist figures, including Kevork Almassian, who works for the anti-immigrant party Alternative for Germany (AfD), and Holocaust denier Ryan Dawson.
In Favor of M4A, Against Collaboration with Fascists
Right now, we are interested in warning organizers about the infiltration in a timely manner. If we’ve demonstrated that there’s a “there” there, then we’ve achieved our main objective. The MCSC Network is still involved in the organizing and planning of M4M4ALL, and that should be enough to avoid participating.
In summation, a closer look at M4M4ALL reveals multiple organizers and speakers with far-right connections, egregious failures of opsec, followed by a refusal to update practices, an inclination to blame their personal mistakes on an “establishment” psyop, and a constant stream of far-right conspiracies and Third Positionist rhetoric from the march’s most prominent supporters within the progressive influencer industry. We believe that the receipts above speak for themselves.
Every member of this collective supports socialized medicine. But it is extremely dangerous for the left to align with the far right against the neoliberal establishment. It’s even more absurd to trust reactionaries at their word. CROH Lehigh Valley advocates that progressive and radical activists avoid M4M4ALL events for their own safety. Let’s help our nurses get back into fighting shape and make an organized push for Medicare for All.
Community Research Opposing Hate (CROH)
Lehigh Valley, occupied Lenapehoking
Slight edits made on 7/16