Nirvana's Krist Novoselic on Punk, FairVote, Why He Dumped the Dems, & Why the GOP Should Embrace Anarchy

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Krist Novoselic
is best known as the co-founder and bassist of Nirvana, one of the
most influential music groups of the past quarter century. The
release of the band’s albums Bleach,
Nevermind, and In Utero in the
late 1980s and early '90s not only mainstreamed what became known
as grunge but helped to forever end what was once known as the
mainstream. After Nirvana, it seems there is only alternative music
and alternative culture, a transformation that is both liberating
and anxiety-producing.Born in 1965 in Compton, California, but raised in Aberdeen,
Washington, Novoselic (pronounced know-voe-selitch) embodies the
forces Nirvana helped to unleash. Since the 1994 suicide of band
leader Kurt Cobain, Novoselic has continued to play with various
groups, including a stint with the legendary post-punk band Flipper
and sporadic collaborations with former Nirvana bandmate Dave Grohl
of the Foo Fighters. But the bass player is also pushing to create
an alternative approach to electoral politics.In 2004, Novoselic published Of
Grunge and Government: Let’s Fix This Broken Democracy,
and these days he’s chairman of FairVote,
a nonprofit that lobbies for electoral reform such as instant
runoffs and proportional voting. After serving as chairman of his
county Democratic committee for several years and supporting Barack
Obama early on, he has broken with the Democratic Party, in part
because “it’s a top-down structure” impervious to change from the
grassroots.Like Nirvana’s music, Novoselic’s politics cannot be easily
categorized: He has donated money to Ron Paul’s campaign and he
speaks in favor of the liberal-loathed Citizens
United Supreme Court decision, which ended limits on
non-coordinated political spending by corporations in federal
elections. He’s active in his local chapter of the fraternal
farmer’s organization, the National Grange of the Order of
Patrons of Husbandry, proving you can go from grunge to
Grange.Novoselic recently sat down with Reason TV's Nick Gillespie to
discuss FairVote (4:18), gerrymandering (8:34), how he
self-describes politically (11:30), the Grange (12:23),
decentralization in the punk rock world (14:43), his issues with
Democrats (20:00), why Republicans should embrace anarchy (22:08),
why he fled the anti-World Trade Organization demonstration in
Seattle (27:51), living in Colorado in 1980 (30:33), the early days
of Nirvana (34:32), playing Germany just days after the Berlin Wall
fell (37:46), Kurt Cobain as an individual vs. as an icon (43:20),
drug legalization (45:57), going to college online (47:50), why he
owns guns (51:31), his musical guilty pleasure (55:34), and
more.Interview by Gillespie; produced by Meredith Bragg. About one
hour.Scroll down for downloadable versions and subscribe to Reason TV's YouTube
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