An Interview with Dr. Shiva Ayyadurai

TDR: I’m Devon Kurtz with The Dartmouth Review and I’m in Cambridge today With Dr. Shiva Ayyadurai, who’s running for senate against the fake Indian, Senator Elizabeth Warren. So Dr. Shiva, let’s start by discussing your time in college, can you tell us about what kind of student you were and if you were involved in politics on campus?

DS: A great question. You know I came to MIT, if I recall, with enough credit to probably graduate MIT in like two and a half years. But I was more interested in how systems work. You know I built this email system as a kid, growing up under the caste system in India. So one of the things MIT was known for was systems theory and so I started really wanting to understand how systems worked: the caste system, political systems.

My interest in politics really peaked around 1983, 1984. I was essentially becoming more and more anti-establishment. I got a little bit intrigued by this campaign called the ‘Rainbow Movement’, which seemed to be initially against the Democrats and Republicans, and was led by Jesse Jackson, a man who later tendered to be a sellout and Uncle Tom. On the date of the Democratic convention [Jackson] gave all of his votes to Walter Mondale, and basically mislead, just like Bernie Sanders did, all of his followers back into the establishment Democratic Party.

So that’s when I broke with both parties, and started a radical newspaper on campus called The Student. Our core theme was coming out against both Democrats and Republicans and from that standpoint, we analyzed all different issues. So it was a very powerful newspaper – the administration of MIT at one point got so scared of our newspaper and the influence we were having they actually started another fake news newspaper called The Thistle. We were so far radical against the establishment that the administrators started an intermediary newspaper to mislead people.

That’s what the people in establishment do. You have the establishment, you have the change agents and when there’s a vacuum they create a third group, which is designed to mislead the change agents back to the establishment. So yeah my life at MIT was very, very political, in fact, you can read about it, we even organized the food service workers to demand better benefits and pay.  You know the Liberals [at MIT] were complaining about South African apartheid, but many of these liberal students wouldn’t go near Dorchester or Roxbury. So while it’s easy for them to talk about racism 10,000 miles away, many of them had racial issues themselves.

TDR: How do you believe the political climate on college campuses has changed since you were a student?

DS: Yeah, it’s a great question. In the 60s, you know, the political environment was very rich, with a lot of varied debate and a lot of different parties. When I came to MIT my 80s, it was still there and we had a very vibrant college discourse.

What’s happened over the last ten years that’s unfortunate is that we have seen the culling of discourse into a very narrow framework, so that if you’re too far right or too far left — you know libertarian or Tea Party or even very far left — that’s not allowed on college campuses. What’s actually happened with academics — you know academic research, academic professorships — which were really meant for free discourse and free speech, what’s happened is that we actually get rid of professors if they’re too radical. So, what you have now is a lot of professors who are all part of this sheep, you know, and so that’s what’s happened. You don’t have as much discourse among students, but also among faculty to make tenure — you know faculty many of them have seven years to get their tenure — so they all have to speak the party line to make it out there.

TDR: Senator Warren has a large, arguably cult-like, following in both Massachusetts and the US as a whole. Do you think it is most important to damage her image in an effort to lower her popularity to a point where a challenger could stand a chance or is it more important for you to create your own image that can gain momentum? Obviously, you’ll use both tactics, but which one is more important to the overall campaign?

DS: Well, getting back to the whole “real Indian” versus “fake Indian,” it sort of is doing both. It’s a double-edged sword. In our view, the reality of that slogan again comes back to the issue. You’re talking to someone who has been a real fighter, a real innovator, and a real Indian. You know if you go to our website, shiva4senate.com, we have an about section. From the time I was six or seven, I was introduced to the ridiculous caste system in India. If you go to the about section of our website, you see me fighting MIT, fighting for good things, exposing the war in Iraq, which is fake, a fake war, we didn’t have to send our soldiers to fight there, exposing fake news, and fighting against Monsanto. Here’s a real fighter. You also have a guy who’s a real innovator. You know, I invented the first e-mail system when I was 14 years old, and then went on to innovate, create seven different companies, and actually had to hire people and create jobs. The fake Indian hasn’t done that. What she has done is destroy small banks—Dodd-Frank destroyed 1200 community banks and it explosively grew big banks. She singlehandedly also supports Obamacare. They’re reveling, her and [Senator Chuck] Schumer, fondling each other and stroking each other, but the reality is that Obamacare has nothing to do with the small doctor, the healer who can help you or I. It has to do with explosively growing big insurance, which means big hospitals, corporatization of medicine, and Sarbanes-Oxley, which she also support[ed]. She has destroyed thousands of small companies in both healthcare and finance.

So what I’m trying to say is that it’s not one or the other. The fact is that a real Indian is running against a fake Indian. I’m also a real innovator, a real fighter, and I’m the only one who can defeat her, so she has a lot of problems. The issue is getting on the stage against her, because we have to deal with the swamp of the establishment Republican Party in Massachusetts, who actually wants to throw the election to her, and that’s really the fight. I’m not concerned about beating her; it’s having the right to beat her.

TDR: It is no secret that Senator Warren has vast financial resources. Do you plan to try to out-raise Senator Warren? If not, how do you plan to head-to-head with her and win?

DS: Well, look, if people want to know our website, it’s shiva4senate.com, and people should be donating to our campaign, but let me tell you this. Jeb Bush had lots of money, right? Hillary Clinton had lots of money. And they both lost. It’s the message that matters. Ultimately, people get moved by the message. You know, a small group of people fought against a huge British empire. It wasn’t the resources or money, but it was the message and the fact they were willing to do things in innovative ways. Our campaign is explosively growing in spite of the local establishment in Massachusetts—RINOs and Democrats who don’t want to support us. We have explosive growth on social media, and nearly fifty million views all over the Internet. And we’ve done this without any approval from the establishment and that proves it’s our message that is carrying this campaign. What is our message? Our message is real Indian versus fake Indian. It’s about winning the future for you. It’s about unleashing science and engineering for real jobs, real health, real education, you know, including clean air, clean food, and clean government. This is very powerful and it’s coming from me, who’s actually gone through that journey. These aren’t just words, this is something real that we’re going to go implement.

So what I’m trying to say is that the message is what matters. You can have all the money in the world and your message means nothing. With Elizabeth Warren, I’m the only one who can defeat her because I can expose everything fake about her, and I can expose everything fake about the establishment. We’re here to drain the swamp, which includes not just her, but also the sewer rats among the RINOs and the Dems. That’s what our whole movement, Shiva4Senate, is all about. That’s why we haven’t even started our fundraising. We did $50,000 last quarter without even trying. I’ve contributed a lot of my own resources, I’m a very successful entrepreneur, and I can’t be bought. So I think money is not the issue, it’s the message. The money will come if the message is right.