Vaush is an American commentary YouTuber known for his far-left views and work against the alt-right.
Vaush has claimed to always be fairly left-wing, though at one point he identified as a libertarian. He claims that he was radicalized and pulled into the left by his University professors.
Vaush claims that one of the YouTubers that inspired him the most was Destiny, despite him being a reactionary at the time. He cites him as someone who he learned a lot about argumentation and rhetoric from.
Vaush became an anarchist sometime around late 2013. Vaush had an old username IrishLaddie that he had been using since he was a kid. Using this pseudonym, Vaush would debate Destiny, who was less extreme than Vaush, in the hopes of convincing Destiny to move farther left.
On January 6, 2019, Vaush stopped using the pseudonym IrishLaddie and registered the Vaush account. A week later, on January 13, 2019, Vaush uploaded his first video, a video entitled E N L I G H T E N E D C E N T R I S M, in which he, Vaush, explained why he believed Centrism to be an ineffective form of stopping Nazism.
Vaush holds far-left views and identifies as a libertarian socialist. However, he has said he doesn't care for the label that is put onto him and identifies more like a leftist in general. In spite of this, he despises authoritarian leftism, in fact having heavily fought against people espousing political positions similar to that of Mao Zedong and Joseph Stalin in the past, who he refers to as tankies. Vaush's long-term goals are similar to those of an anarchist, meaning that he believes in the conditional abolition of all unjust hierarchy in society. However, he stopped labeling himself as any kind of anarchist (anarcho-syndicalist, to be exact), around November 20th of 2019 due to his belief in an intermediary stage between capitalism and his ideal society which runs contrary to anarchist thought.
Vaush has fought against homophobia, transphobia, racism, sexism, and anti-Semitism. Vaush also believes in the abolition of private property, emphasizing the use of worker co-ops, a business where instead of a private owner is owned by all the workers democratically. He is anti-sectarian, meaning that he believes in working with those he doesn't fully agree with to accomplish common goals. The two most prominent examples of coalition-building Vaush advocates for are between socialists and social democrats to push the Overton Window further Left, and between anarchists and leftists, in general, to push for socialism. He has also said he is willing to work with liberals against fascism until such a point comes that they have no further common goals to work towards with.
The previously-mentioned intermediary stage Vaush advocates for is market socialism, which will reinforce the values of the Enlightenment (Equality, Fraternity, and Liberty) in a way that capitalism can't, which is what will make the establishment of an anarchist society possible. Vaush advocates for a violent revolution to bring about said market socialist society, although he believes one should only happen in the future since the material conditions for such a revolution to be successful aren't present in the moment. His belief that the US is incapable of reaching socialism through democratic means is one of the main reasons for his support of the 2nd Amendment's right to bear arms.
Sexual Harassment Allegations
Around August 2017, Vaush, a pansexual man, met a woman under the username Poppy through the voice & text chat app Discord. The two, both known for their provocative views, began speaking in direct messages. Either later in 2017 or early 2018, Vaush doesn't remember, the two stopped being friends over what he calls her "misappropriate use of feminist rhetoric".
Several months after the end of the friendship, Poppy shared several sexually explicit messages Vaush sent to Poppy during the time they were friends. Because of this, the Discord server through which the two met became divided over who was in the right. In early 2019, Vaush debated a person under the username of Pastel on Discord. Pastel later accused Vaush of sexually harassing them.
Because of the release of the logs, people began spreading a rumor that Vaush only began becoming a leftist in 2012 or 2013 to gather a collection of women who were also leftists to have sex with them. Vaush strongly denied that rumor and apologized for the messages in a video published to his account on March 31, 2019. He has also released logs of his interactions with Poppy and clarified the events of their friendship in a Reddit post on September 9, 2019.