9 Times John Mulaney Proved He’s A Fierce Anti-Capitalist

John Mulaney? Communism? It’s more likely than you think.

Story by Namrata Prakash

You might believe you know all there is to know about John Mulaney. The guy would tell you any insignificant detail about his life whether you asked or not. His commitment to oversharing is commendable, but there’s one thing people haven’t caught onto — the fact that Mulaney is, and has been, a fierce anti-capitalist.

After scouring two days’ worth of interview footage, I have been able to compile this list. Please appreciate this. Stan Mulaney.

1. He’s Been Anti-Police Since He Was a Teenager

Mulaney’s first run-in with agents of the state was at a high school party, where he was told police were showing up. Most students would look for the first opportunity to escape. Mulaney, however, took this moment to organize, starting a rallying cry of “Fuck da police!” with a hundred other white kids at the party. Nothing happened to them, because they were white, of course, but what a great show of class solidarity.

Photo courtesy of Netflix

2. He’s A Staunch Advocate Against the Death Penalty

Another time, an innocent debate turned into a squaring off between Mulaney and a friend when he mentioned his distaste with the death penalty, believing it to be a gross show of power through the use of capital punishment. Mulaney, knowing that people of color and other marginalized groups are far more likely to receive this treatment, saw it as a human right violation practiced by the government. He likens it to killing an innocent person who might look like Hitler, making the distinction that far too many innocent people have died due to negligence and abuses of power by capitalist nations.

Photo courtesy of Netflix

3. He Understands the Danger of Private Property

Mulaney even went so far as to co-write and act in a Broadway show called “Oh, Hello,” which critiqued landlords and the parasitic nature of the job which subsists off the privatization of land. Portraying one of two elderly roommates being forced out of their apartment due to increasing rent prices in New York, a seemingly harmless play turns into one of the most biting analyses of exploitation in decades. Mulaney uses his unsuspecting audience to his advantage to drive in the point that landlords do no actual work besides buying a plot of land and forcing the working class to pay to live.

Photo courtesy of Netflix

4. He is Henry Kissinger’s #1 Mortal Enemy

When speaking about favorite interviews at the 92nd Street Y in New York, Mulaney (dressed as his character George St. Geegland) jokes, “We love seeing Kissinger here on war crime amnesia night.” Many socialists and communists despise Henry Kissinger for pushing the Vietnam war into Laos and Cambodia, staging coups against democratically elected candidates in South America and egging on genocide in East Timor (to name a few things). Mulaney, a staunch anti-imperialist, is not afraid to openly criticize war criminals (something many people who claim to fight racism cannot bring themselves to do).

Photo courtesy of 92nd Street Y

5. He Condemns the Exploitation of Human Labor

“Work is not a good thing,” Mulaney said in 2014. “Income and food and shelter are good things.” During a GQ interview, Mulaney expressed his frustration with the nature of capitalism creating a culture in which people must have exchange their labor for means of survival such as food and shelter. He believes that under a just government, people will have access to basic needs so that everyone has an equal opportunities in life.

Photo courtesy of GQ

6. He Believes Education Should Be Free

In his stand-up comedy special “Kid Gorgeous,” Mulaney makes a stinging comment about elitism in higher education. He criticizes how colleges make students shell out roughly $120,000 in tuition and still have the gall to ask for donations after graduation. He makes the subtle point that college is a tool for the wealthy to get even wealthier. Students from low-income backgrounds find it harder to go to their colleges of choice because despite scholarships, a college education is a long-term financial commitment, and education should be free and accessible for everyone.

Photo courtesy of Netflix

7. He is Against the Commodification of Women’s Bodies

Like most comrades, Mulaney finds this phrase to be an extremely sexist expression fueled by patriarchal notions of treating women and their sexualities as commodities. He speaks about how misogyny functions under capitalism, and how colonialism and the imposition of the gender binary has led to women becoming devalued based on sexual “worth.” Since women are not treated as equals, it is easy for their bodies to turn into private property, which we already know is something Mulaney detests.

Photo courtesy of Netflix

8. He Supports Decriminalization of Drug Offenses

Mulaney is often candid about his past experiences with drugs and his appreciation for the legalization of marijuana in a handful of states. However, he is very mindful when praising these laws. He understands that for white people, weed has historically been an excusable offense, while the criminal justice system uses it to disproportionately incarcerate people of color, especially black people. The prison industrial complex serves capitalism by financially rewarding the wealthy through the exploitation of the prisoner’s labor.

Photo courtesy of Netflix

9. He is Also George H.W. Bush’s #1 Mortal Enemy

Even as a child, Mulaney was critical of American politicians. On one occasion, Mulaney proudly sported a cartoon button of George H.W. Bush being defecated on by a bird, with a caption that said “bird brained.” Mulaney was against the Bush administration for ignoring the AIDS crisis and its victims, fabricating information to start the Gulf War and heightening the War on Drugs (including faking a drug deal outside the White House). While some children blindly followed in the politics of their parents, Mulaney dared to speak out at a mere nine years old.

Photo courtesy of Netflix