Jeff Monson was the guest on 'No Holds Barred' this week discussing politics, history, and the economics of mixed martial arts.
Monson starts by talking about his last fight in Russia, criticises Bolsheviks and Stalin,simplistic but definitely not yer average MMA show content!
The Bolsheviks just ended up taking power. The Red Army actually fought the anarchists for quite a while [...]The soviets were... you know the communities were running smooth, factories up and working, farms doing good, they kicked out managers and leaders, they had equal rights and equal power, they were trading amongst themselves [...] the government came away and took it from the people which was the original intention of the revolution
He goes on to discuss his conception of communism and paraphrases Marx
Communism is everyone, the workers, owning the means of production... what you can contribute is what you contribute and what you need is what you get... I think that's a beautiful idea
He discusses the economics of MMA, reiterating that fighters are 'wage-slaves' He also weighed in on the Jon Jones controversy and sympathised completely with Jones' decision. More importantly he also corrects the assertion that the cancellation and consequent loss of wages was, as UFC president Dana White has said, Jones' fault.
Why you gonna risk that to make the UFC money? They're millionaires already"... if the UFC haven't put a card together that would sell without [Jon Jones] then that's their own fault
He makes clear that bosses and fighters' interests are not the same, even in the case of one of the most successful professional fighters.
They're pumping him up and he's the 'next best thing'[...] and as soon as he does something they don't like they throw him under the bus. There's no loyalty there. They love him because he makes them money[...] Jones has every right in the world either to take the next fight they offered or decline it, he decided to decline it.
The discussion naturally drifted into the idea of a fighters union.
We're pro-actively looking at talking to some fighters and trying to get something started... we're kinda using some of the guys form the IWW, you know the Industrial Workers of the World [...] seeing if we can get help from them [...] The union, it can't be a 'UFC union' or a 'Strikeforce union' or an M1 one - it's gotta be a fighters union. If it's a professional union it's gotta protect every fighter. I'd like to see some thing that protected everyone that was doing MMA fighting at all, amateur or professional, I dunno how realistic that is [...] Whether you're in the UFC or you're fighting in Kentucky for 500 dollars or 250 dollars... this union's gonna protect you.
On the relationship of UFC fighters to the UFC bosses:
Nobody stands up to them, it's sickening. It's all 'thanks Dana White, thanks'. Everyone is afraid to say anything. [UFC] own everything. It's sickening to see some of these guys lick their balls the way they do.
The host, Eddie Goldman asks Monson why the IWW and not another union. Monson alludes to them being less bureaucratic and having more admirable motivations than larger mainstream unions. It's an interesting discussion and unlike anything you'll hear another professional MMA fighter say.