Just eighteen days after Kanye West vowed that he was taking a thirty-day cleanse from talking, drinking alcohol, watching porn and having sex, the disgraced rapper is back. And like his idol Donald Trump, he's even announced a 2024 presidential bid. If at first you don’t succeed, maybe don’t try again?
In a video shared on YouTube this weekend, Kanye revealed far-right provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos as a new campaign staffer. "This is Milo right here, working on the campaign," the mogul said.
When the cameraman asked if that was an announcement, Kanye laughed as Milo confirmed: "I...
Just eighteen days after Kanye West vowed that he was taking a thirty-day cleanse from talking, drinking alcohol, watching porn and having sex, the disgraced rapper is back. And like his idol Donald Trump, he’s even announced a 2024 presidential bid. If at first you don’t succeed, maybe don’t try again?
In a video shared on YouTube this weekend, Kanye revealed far-right provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos as a new campaign staffer. “This is Milo right here, working on the campaign,” the mogul said.
When the cameraman asked if that was an announcement, Kanye laughed as Milo confirmed: “I guess it is. Thanks, I accept.” The cameraman then asked Kanye: “So you are running?” to which he responded after a delay: “Yes.”
If, by some miracle, you don’t know who the incessant attention-seeker Milo Yiannopoulos is, allow Cockburn to explain.
Initially a contentious Catholic reporter and tech columnist in his native Britain, Yiannopoulos was propelled to international attention by his biting Breitbart columns about Gamergate, the vicious online debate over the influence of women in the video game industry in the mid-2010s. Milo was anti: notoriously, he once asked his Twitter followers if they’d rather their child had “feminism or cancer.”
In 2016 Milo embarked on a censor-baiting jaunt around American college campuses, which he branded the “Dangerous Faggot” tour (Yiannopoulos is homosexual). In January 2017, when they stopped off at University of Washington, a man was shot while protesting against Yiannopoulos and suffered life-threatening injuries.
After being warmly embraced by more established figures on the Trumpist right — he was set to give a main stage address at the 2017 Conservative Political Action Conference — Milo’s career imploded. Comments he made on a livestream years earlier resurfaced, in which he suggested that sexual relationships between thirteen-year-old boys and adult men and women can “happen perfectly consensually,” because some thirteen-year-olds are, in his view, sexually and emotionally mature enough to consent to sex with adults.
At around the same time, Yiannopoulos had set up a “privilege grant for white men,” to balance scholarships for women and minorities. He raised around $100,000, and claimed a further $250,000 had been pledged. The money never made its way to any prospective students. Milo apologized for “mismanaging the grant,” but denied that he had spent the money. Fellow darling of the alt-right Lauren Southern later alleged his claims of mismanagement were false, and that instead the money had been transferred to Yiannopoulos.
After this, most thought that there was no way back for Milo. In 2018 he was reportedly in at least $2 million of debt.
His next move? To declare himself as an anti-gay, born-again Catholic — he said his husband had been “demoted” to housemate — then start a conversion therapy website which includes disparaging mentions of a couple of unmarried male senators (sessions start at $500 and go up to the tens of thousands). Sometime thereafter, he took an unpaid internship with Marjorie Taylor Greene (who was just unbanned from Twitter) and finally join the Kanye campaign. The career path is all so obvious!
The video — and what it suggests — offers more questions than answers about Ye’s latest antics. How, if at all, is he hoping to rebuild his desecrated business empire? How does running for president help with that? And what makes Milo Yiannopoulos a useful soldier in the cause? How did they first meet? Cockburn attempted to reach Yiannopoulos and Ye to find out — you’ll know as soon as he does…