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Gavin
01-11-2007, 08:34 PM
I had my humanities classes read an excerpt from Antigone, and we went through the standard discussion of the relation of state/law to ethics/morality. To my surprise, many of my students interpreted Antigone as a "drama queen" who just wanted attention (I think it was due to the part where Antigone tells Ismene not to keep her transgression a secret, or maybe they think burying your brother isn't that big a deal). I guess this kind of pop psychologizing is pretty commonplace, but it still struck me: how could the concept of dying for your beliefs get conflated with being an attention whore? I almost asked them if they had any beliefs they would die for, but I didn't. Got me thinking though:

Do you? Would you? Could you? Which ones? Myself I am not sure -- I have no discipline. And apparently people would think I just wanted attention anyway.

zhao
01-11-2007, 09:35 PM
if i wasn't a complete coward and had real balls, if i wasn't so trapped in the capitalist comfort zone (even as i criticize it), i would be a "73rrori5t" / 5uicid3 8om8er. but i would plan very well, hit a GOOD target (no civilians), and take out as many of the people that desperately need to be taken out as possible.

difficult to name one specific cause i would die for, because there are many, and they all kind of blend together in a way...

i'm an artist at heart. a lover not a fighter... but there is a lot in this world that i hate. and think/feel needs to be destroyed. I'm not going to actively seek this path but honestly, if it came down to it, if i find myself in that situation, if fate delivered me to that place where everything hangs on this one moment, i can do it. without much hessitation either.

swears
01-11-2007, 09:42 PM
if i wasn't a complete coward and had real balls, if i wasn't so trapped in the capitalist comfort zone (even as i criticize it), i would be a "terrorist" / suicide bomber. but i would plan very well, hit a GOOD target (no civilians), and take out as many of the people that desperately need to be taken out as possible.


What good would this really do though? Wouldn't actions like this simply lead to victimisation by the state and demonisation in the media against whatever cause you had died for?

A friend of mine said he wanted to shoot Blair, my opinion was that some kind of Watergate style expose that ended up with him behind bars and totally discredited would be preferable, rather than having him mourned as a martyr.

secretagentgel
01-11-2007, 09:44 PM
if by giving my life i could make a whole lotta people better, safer, happier, healthier, i would. but where i would draw that line? dunno.

nomadologist
01-11-2007, 10:00 PM
The more I read some of the threads in the Politics section of Dissensus, the more willing I think I am to die in any form of protest against American imperialism.

Dusty
01-11-2007, 10:45 PM
I think I'm too much of a coward to actually stand up and defend to the death any of my beliefs. What do I feel strongly about? Disgust at organised religion perhaps? I think thats the only thing that really stirs me.

Would I go to the grave standing against it? Depends how painful the death would be, I'm sure I'd crack at the slightest hint of physical abuse.

I'd die for loved ones, but that doesn't really count - hardly a belief.

Mr. Tea
01-11-2007, 11:40 PM
Re.: the terrorism/suicide bombing thing - wouldn't it be far better, if you wanted to strike fast and hard at the heart of some hated enemy, to organise some kind of attack that didn't involve your own death? For one thing, even if you disregard the fact that it doesn't involve your own death, it means you can do it again, and again, making it a much better strategy in the attainment of your overall goal.

Of course, a suicide attack has the advantage that you're not arround to witness the aftermath and suffer any possible guilt/remorse-related consequences.

nomadologist
01-11-2007, 11:54 PM
if i wasn't a complete coward and had real balls, if i wasn't so trapped in the capitalist comfort zone (even as i criticize it), i would be a "terrorist" / suicide bomber. but i would plan very well, hit a GOOD target (no civilians), and take out as many of the people that desperately need to be taken out as possible.


What good would this really do though? Wouldn't actions like this simply lead to victimisation by the state and demonisation in the media against whatever cause you had died for?

A friend of mine said he wanted to shoot Blair, my opinion was that some kind of Watergate style expose that ended up with him behind bars and totally discredited would be preferable, rather than having him mourned as a martyr.

Hmm. Does anything do any "good" in this sense? Political action often demands that acts be carried out for their (for lack of a better word) 'symbolic' value.

Gavin
02-11-2007, 12:02 AM
http://blogs.guardian.co.uk/news/archives/ritschdone.jpg http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/f/fd/Thich_Quang_Duc_-_Self_Immolation.jpg/250px-Thich_Quang_Duc_-_Self_Immolation.jpg

"My position is that I only get one death, I want it to be a good one. Wouldn't it be better to stand for something or make a statement, rather than a fiery collision with some drunk driver? Are not smokers choosing death by lung cancer? Where is the dignity there? Are not the people who disregard the environment killing themselves and future generations?" In his self-penned obituary he confessed to feeling guilty for not killing Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld when he had the chance.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malachi_Ritscher

Gavin
02-11-2007, 12:04 AM
Between Zhao wanting to be a terrorist, swears mentioning shooting Tony Blair, and my previous post referring to assassinating Rumsfeld, we have to be on all sorts of government watchlists now... maybe this was a bad idea. Mods do what ye see fit.

nomadologist
02-11-2007, 12:09 AM
Yup, the computers/programs that search for these things aren't very good at nuance. It might do well to erase this.

Mr. Tea
02-11-2007, 12:28 AM
Yeah, because the CIA/MI6 have nothing better to do than monitor an online forum consisting mainly of thousand-word essays on dubstep...

nomadologist
02-11-2007, 12:47 AM
my parents got on the FBI list because some damn church that was affiliated with the KKK got their address from somewhere. a rep called them and TOLD THEM.

it's all automated now stupid--they run random searches on the entire internet ffs

Mr. Tea
02-11-2007, 01:11 AM
my parents got on the FBI list because some damn church that was affiliated with the KKK got their address from somewhere. a rep called them and TOLD THEM.

it's all automated now stupid--they run random searches on the entire internet ffs

The "entire internet" is quite big. My point is, I sincerely doubt the various security agencies of the USA or any other country have either the resources or inclination to follow up any and every Internet discussion by a bunch of armchair anarchists.

Also, I'd have thought the FBI had your family on a list because they were basically the Mob? (At least, that seems to be the impression you want to put across.)

mistersloane
02-11-2007, 01:19 AM
A friend of mine once said 'No more sacrifices' and I was impresssed.

nomadologist
02-11-2007, 02:06 AM
The "entire internet" is quite big. My point is, I sincerely doubt the various security agencies of the USA or any other country have either the resources or inclination to follow up any and every Internet discussion by a bunch of armchair anarchists.

Also, I'd have thought the FBI had your family on a list because they were basically the Mob? (At least, that seems to be the impression you want to put across.)

The "entire internet" is easily searchable by machines, and key words (such as "terrorism" and "kill ____ politician") are tagged. Viva la Patriot Act. I'm not saying there's someone combing through it all, but do we need to get Dissensus tagged? I mean really.

And sure, the FBI knows about my mom and her family from way back (we brought the fucking Gambinos to power), but this was a separate incident. When her name got put on this KKK church's list (my mom ordered a Bible for someone from a sketchy catalogue, I think), just to be nice and let them know not to further affiliate with these people, a rep called and told them that it got them on the white supremacist list.

I was talking before about the CIA, not the FBI. Different entities.

zhao
02-11-2007, 05:55 AM
Yeah, because the CIA/MI6 have nothing better to do than monitor an online forum consisting mainly of thousand-word essays on dubstep...

and against dubstep ;)


A friend of mine once said 'No more sacrifices' and I was impresssed.

in what context was this statement made?


Re.: the 73rrori5m/5uicid3 8om8ing thing - wouldn't it be far better, if you wanted to strike fast and hard at the heart of some hated enemy, to organise some kind of attack that didn't involve your own death? For one thing, even if you disregard the fact that it doesn't involve your own death, it means you can do it again, and again, making it a much better strategy in the attainment of your overall goal.

of course you are right. but to take out certain key players in certain key locations, especially where they are assembled, would almost certainly mean a situation not possible to escape from... but this is pointless, I'm not going to do anything close to that. maybe a few protests but mostly shouting millitant slogans on the internet :o

zhao
02-11-2007, 05:57 AM
everyone just code the key words in your posts like i have done (first reply). better safe than sorry.

mistersloane
02-11-2007, 09:13 AM
in what context was this statement made?


me talking about Jesus and similar stupid fucking wheat gods. I like it as a slogan.

zhao
02-11-2007, 09:38 AM
me talking about Jesus and similar stupid fucking wheat gods. I like it as a slogan.

yet we live in a time when sacrifices on a big scale should be made as soon as possible, because they will have to be made eventually, but with different degrees of dire consequences... see "Carbon Thread".

i'm not planning on having children. that's a kind of sacrifice innit?

swears
02-11-2007, 10:31 AM
"certain key players in certain key locations"

There are always others willing to take their place, for the right money. And of course, more security firms willing to protect them, more cops to harass and detain anyone associated with you, media to discredit your ideas, etc, etc...

You'd be helping out the economy, at least.

zhao
02-11-2007, 10:38 AM
"certain key players in certain key locations"

There are always others willing to take their place, for the right money. And of course, more security firms willing to protect them, more cops to harass and detain anyone associated with you, media to discredit your ideas, etc, etc...

You'd be helping out the economy, at least.

hard to argue with that. sigh...

so there is no place for armed struggle at all is what you're saying? that doesn't sound right either...

i love the pieces in the last Semiotext reader hatred of capitalism by Mienhof... so passionate and resolute. "the pen is no longer enough..."

Mr. Tea
02-11-2007, 02:04 PM
Did anyone see the second part of Britz last night? I thought the ending was a bit, well, melodramatic. I mean obviously a suicide bombing is a pretty dramatic event, but the woman just happening to bump into her brother like that, I dunno, it seemed a bit forced. Although it was interesting that he could have perhaps stopped her if the cops hadn't jumped on him as he was running to her.

(If you didn't see it, it was a well-made if somewhat contrived two-part drama about a young British Muslim who works for MI6 or CID or something in a counter-terrorism unit, and his sister who trains as a terrorist in Pakistan and suicide-bombs Canary Wharf... :slanted:)

Mr. Tea
02-11-2007, 02:06 PM
i'm not planning on having children. that's a kind of sacrifice innit?

Arguably less of a sacrifice than many aspects of bringing up kids, no?

zhao
02-11-2007, 02:18 PM
Arguably less of a sacrifice than many aspects of bringing up kids, no?

i haven't smoked any weed in almost 2 weeks. now THAT, my friends, is a proper sacrifice.

ecohook
02-11-2007, 04:55 PM
Not being familiar with the story of Antigone it seems there's a divided between what was considered proper, as it regards public knowledge and the fact that youth are increasing not giving to shits about the shame of any thing that has or may eventually happen to them.

I've met people that have offered themselves up on the pop-psychology chopping block only to self-id later as attention of the center seekers, on the one hand. Otherwise I've also encountered people who don't appear comfortable unless they insistently and continually qualify themselves as psychiatric messes. It roles both ways these days, but it's still interesting that the Greeks were ruminating what we're still engaged with.

Dying for a cause, nope. Causes, movements, and crisis can be timed and avoided. It's the split second familiar motivation that usually gets me thinking. Like the guy who may have seen what the BushCo's would do 50 years ago and only today regrets not having a gun with hollow points. Family's are too damn important, whatever definition to which you happen to subscribe.

How you do seperate sacrificing freedom vs. sacrificing your life?

nomadologist
02-11-2007, 05:00 PM
I've met people that have offered themselves up on the pop-psychology chopping block only to self-id later as attention of the center seekers, on the one hand. Otherwise I've also encountered people who don't appear comfortable unless they insistently and continually qualify themselves as psychiatric messes. It roles both ways these days, but it's still interesting that the Greeks were ruminating what we're still engaged with.

Umm none of this has anything to do with the story of Antigone.

Antigone is not about being an uptight, priggish Old Empire type who feels the need to tell other people what they should feel "shamed" by.

zhao
02-11-2007, 05:24 PM
i didn't really understand very much of what ecohook said... :confused:

Mr. Tea
02-11-2007, 05:31 PM
i didn't really understand very much of what ecohook said... :confused:

Ahh, so it wasn't just me then. Jolly good.

nomadologist
02-11-2007, 06:59 PM
Yeah--what does "self-id" mean? Is this supposed to read "self-identification" or "self-Id"? Either way it makes kein Sinn, as they say auf Deutsche.

zhao
02-11-2007, 07:23 PM
kein Sinn

well here's what he said in german, maybe would help?


Nicht vertraut mit der Geschichte von Antigone es scheint Gibt es eine geteilte zwischen dem, was als angemessene, Was sie öffentlich bekannt sind und die Tatsache, dass die Jugend Erhöhung nicht zu geben, scheißt Scham über die von allen Was hat oder kann auch vorkommen, zu ihnen.

Ich habe Leute, die haben sich auf der POP - Psychologie chop Block nur auf Selbstbestimmung id später als Aufmerksamkeit des Zentrums Asylsuchende, auf der einen Seite. Ansonsten habe ich auch, die Leute, die nicht erscheinen Komfortabel, wenn sie beharrlich und kontinuierlich Qualifizieren sich als psychiatrische beschmutzt. Es Rollen sowohl Wegen dieser Tage, aber es ist noch interessant, dass die Griechen wiederkäuend wurden, was wir sind immer noch engagiert.

Sterben für eine Sache, nein. Ursachen, Bewegungen, und von der Krise Gesteuert werden kann und vermieden werden. Es ist die Sekundenbruchteilen vertraut Motivation, die normalerweise bekommt mich denken. Wie die Jungen , Die möglicherweise schon gesehen, was die BushCo's tun würde, 50 Jahre
Vor und bedauert, nicht nur heute mit einer Pistole mit hohler Punkte. Familie sind auch verdammt wichtig, unabhängig Definition, auf die Sie passieren zu abonnieren.

Wie Sie mit separaten opfern Freiheit vs opfern Ihr Leben?

nomadologist
02-11-2007, 07:28 PM
hehe very Babel Fish of you

I love the sound of German, it's so sexy. Especially Hoch Deutsch spoken by northern men who have deep voices and speak sort of slowly and languidly, so the fricatives are more subtle than in southern German accents. Got me an ethnically German and german speaking boyfriend so I could enjoy this often.

EDIT: Has there ever been a "turn ons" thread? Or is that too lowbrow for Dissensus? I guess it would probably devolve into semi-nude images and bad soft-porny youtube embeds.

zhao
02-11-2007, 07:50 PM
is that too lowbrow for Dissensus?

um... you should ask people in the britney thread

nomadologist
02-11-2007, 07:51 PM
Good point.

nomadologist
02-11-2007, 08:02 PM
me talking about Jesus and similar stupid fucking wheat gods. I like it as a slogan.

That was a pretty brilliant statement.

zhao
02-11-2007, 08:15 PM
what is a wheat god?

nomadologist
02-11-2007, 08:18 PM
From the parable of the "wheat and the tares", where Jesus tells people that you have to "uproot" the bad professing Christians (the tares) and make sure you keep yourself (the wheat) separate from them?

Also, there's all that talk about a little sin "leavening the whole lump"...

Maybe I'm reading too literally here.

ecohook
03-11-2007, 01:39 AM
Why would Antigone be thought of as a drama queen, when she has the connection she does with her family and wants to bury her sibling? Couldn't tell you. It may be that kids don't care enough about family relations or pick up bad habits from family making them apathetic toward their own (and others) family circumstances.
Anybody who reads German really understand what I said in that translation?

I sometimes use the expression 'I'd kill me own mother for a Bavarian beer' doesn't mean I wouldn't die for her, or throw a car-washer from the path of falling brick. Considering, I'd probably sacrifice my safety for tons of things that don't involve liberating a single soul. Probably more likely to risk donating a kidney than have and take the opportunity to kill a general, though it doesn't mean I wouldn't, depending what I'd take from it, of course.

mistersloane
03-11-2007, 11:47 AM
what is a wheat god?

All of those skinny boys that get cut up in mythology only to come to life again. Usually called corn gods but I quite like corn, and wheat's got such a bad rep nowadays via coeliacs that it seems more appropriate to use it as a cuss.

gek-opel
03-11-2007, 01:13 PM
Yeh- the sacrificial Gods of mystery religions basically... Also dudes like Osiris...

I'm electing not to comment on the substantial point of this thread cos every time I typed a response it looked a little overly mentalist!

noel emits
03-11-2007, 01:15 PM
Yeh- the sacrificial Gods of mystery religions basically... Also dudes like Osiris...

I'm electing not to comment on the substantial point of this thread cos every time I typed a response it looked a little overly mentalist!
Oh go on. :D

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 01:37 PM
Ahhh that's what a wheat god is. Nevermind me, I was just raised by Xtians.

mistersloane
03-11-2007, 01:42 PM
Oh go on. :D

seconded!

gek-opel
03-11-2007, 04:18 PM
Hmm... Just that I agree with Zhao to the extent that I have been looking for just such a praxis, but that I would disagree with his methodology- in that it seems obvious that you can't 5u1c1d£ 80m8 Capitalism out of existence even if you had an army at your disposal. So the approach needs to be just as committed, but incorporating a broader conception of the terrorist war machine. There was an exceptionally interesting article in the journal Collapse on this topic by Reza Negarestani ("The militarization of Peace" I believe it was called) which focused on the ability of covert terrorism in the post Qutb mold to create its most disruptive effects by allowing agents to manifest themselves as nothing more than hyper-conventional versions of ordinary citizens and in so doing turn the state against itself, in the manner of what Negarestani called the die-back mechanism in plants.

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 04:55 PM
Where I can read Collapse? Is it online?

Like this "die-back" idea...

mistersloane
03-11-2007, 05:00 PM
in the manner of what Negarestani called the die-back mechanism in plants.

Is that like self-fertilisation to induce death?

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 05:02 PM
It's a mechanism that rots out the roots, steals nutrients from the root structure. A form of fungus I think.

gek-opel
03-11-2007, 05:15 PM
Re: Collapse-Don't think its available online unfortunately. It is an absolutely superb journal though, from the design (like a small victorian pocketbook) to its interdiscerplinerary thematics (first one on science/mathematics and theory, second one on speculative realism, third one on Deleuze) and cutting edge brain mashing theoretics (especially the Quentin Meillassoux in vol 2)...

linky: http://blog.urbanomic.com/urbanomic/archives/2007/09/collapse_volume_1.html

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 05:19 PM
Thanks, these look excellent. You think it's worth it to buy all three (or four?)? Or do you have a favorite?

P.S. Vimothy linked to a Nick Land--who has a piece in one of these volumes of Collapse--article the other day and was claiming that he is a "right-wing" Deleuzian. Is this true??

gek-opel
03-11-2007, 05:23 PM
Thanks, these look excellent. You think it's worth it to buy all four? Or do you have a favorite?

P.S. Vimothy linked to a Nick Land--who has a piece in one of these volumes of Collapse--article the other day and was claiming that he is a "right-wing" Deleuzian. Is this true??

Yeah its well worth getting. You can read it on the tube/subway with ease cos its so dinky! (the second one is the best so far tho... ) Uh yeah Nick Land has taken a turn for the neo-con it would seem... my friend was telling me about a piece of his (which probably is online) against what Land terms "Transcendental Miserablism" (ie moaning about capitalism)... and his response to it (err "Everything is great- shut the fuck up" apparently) He also is obsessed with Qabbalistic numerology (which I haven't a fucking clue about). And he's ex CCRU so obviously Deleuzian... Lets just say I like his perversity and oppositional status, but I'm not especially sure how productive it is.... Linky: http://hyperstition.abstractdynamics.org/archives/008891.html

Actually on re-reading I totally agree with part of his argument. However Capitalism cannot be thought as the only force at work, and needs to be accelerated OUT of the po-mo loop that its trapped in at present in order for the more radical aspects to be correct...

gek-opel
03-11-2007, 05:32 PM
Also-- I would add that the cosmic despair that he alludes to is precisely what needs to be incorporated into the body of capital itself, to become self-aware, self-conscious of its annihilist status.

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 05:33 PM
Ahhhh, I remember reading 'Transcendental Miserablism' quite a few months ago--didn't make the connection between this and Vim's linked article. I actually sympathized with a couple of his points in TM, but this other article was full of strange contradictions.

We all know that I am all in favor of a "strict constructionist"-style reading of Deleuze, and find it extremely silly when people try to twist such obviously anti-capitalist strategies and goals into anything but. Why would you want to use the deterritorialization of market structures to *accelerate* a descent into "chaos" if you believe those structures to be positive or "vital" forces?

Weirdly contradictory.

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 05:44 PM
The weak part of his argument in TM is right here:


ĎPost-capitalismí has no real meaning except an end to the engine of change.

Life continues, and capitalism does life in a way it has never been done before.


Newness is always in and of itself good? Newness is = to change? Capitalism is an agent of change and newness?

This is a profoundly anti-Deleuzian sentiment, in a very backhanded way. One of D's major ontological sticking points was his very clever insistence on the notion of "difference", where to have being--to be a thing, entity, idea, whatever--meant that something or someone was "different" than every other thing. To be alive, to have being, is to be constantly differentiating/differentiated from other beings. This is how beings flow, they did before capitalism and they will after it.

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 05:50 PM
Also-- I would add that the cosmic despair that he alludes to is precisely what needs to be incorporated into the body of capital itself, to become self-aware, self-conscious of its annihilist status.

Agreed.

gek-opel
03-11-2007, 05:59 PM
Well there are two options as to "acceleration"- either the "chaos" effectively removes whatever the barrier IS which is created by this latest form of capitalism to innovative thought, or instead of chaos Capital is pushed into a new form, bringing with it unimaginable change.

Also Land effectively fails to effectively differentiate between the merely churning changing same of fashion and the shocking ontological shifts of the new (though weirdly he alludes to it). This is cos both he AND the positions he criticises fail to effectively differentiate the fact that Capital shifts through eras, each bringing their own inimitable costs and benefits, and changing regimes of political organisation, changing flows of productive energy. Whats interesting to me is how THIS Capital of now has given rise to effects quite distinct from those of 40 years ago, and how we can intervene to change those effects.

But lots and lots of ideas in that article that I agree with, especially about Capitalism and time, and the need to adopt a position INSIDE capitalism, that the flaw in post-Marxist thinking is that in all its avowed immanence it never ever deigns to get INSIDE the infernal machine itself, that it is itself the one system (and not the proletariat) capable of delivering the unimaginable change. But the miserablists are accurate when they point to the fact that presently the de/re-territorialization of time has led to an utterly deadlocked moribund position of un-death, a cancerous ahistorical replicator effect, dyschronic grey goo eating the planet, all dead-eyed death-drive...

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 06:09 PM
Yes, the problem with TMs is their failure to deal with the fact that we are alreay INSIDE the machine--that we are already cogs. We are the viral contagion. The CHALLENGE (and D&G recognize this, and this is why I think they were the pre-eminent thinkers of the 20th century after Heidegger) is to resist capitalism on the level of individual desiring machine, by deterritorializing desire, remapping your cognition, controlling the flows, redistributing them, feeding them. Not *fighting* capitalism, but *flight-ing* out of it in what D&G call the "stationary" mode of the nomad. This is the only way to create a successful war machine that stands a chance against capitalism.

A good analogy might be antibodies. We need to become antibodies, participants in the expression of the virus that bind to the antigen/microbe (capitalism) and immobilize/destroy it.

gek-opel
03-11-2007, 06:12 PM
Hegel's "spirit" reinterpreted not as= "the human" or "species being" or whatever, but rather as the INHUMAN, as the virus mind-state of infinite interoperability of materiality which is Capital. A phenomenology of Capital itself is what is needed! (with Absolute Knowing posited as the event horizon of Capital...?)

The only possible resistance is through the machinery of Capital, true. But in a sense the goal is for a self-conscious Capital, the machine designed ultimately to assure the creation of the new human.

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 06:17 PM
Snuck some Badiou in there! And Hegel.

So you think we need to remap cognition on a cultural level and become non-human(ity)?

I have trouble with this but only because Baudrillard on plastic surgery (and having observed surgeries for a few years just for fun) influenced me so much. I have trouble with our current medical fixation on *aesthetic* modes of remapping ourselves phenomenologically.

gek-opel
03-11-2007, 06:42 PM
Sorry Ive got a bit lost in the theory-rush... had to go off and rant maniacally at my father... which only made me realise that I need to write some kind of article on Iggy Pop's "Mass production" (as the single finest interweaving of commodified sexuality, post-fordist production, James Brown's sex machine re-mapped onto a sluggish skullfucking zombified death drive, the interoperability of all humans and the impossibility of release...)

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 06:45 PM
Love love love love LOVE that song and album, was listening to it all day yesterday as a matter of fact.

I'm writing the same paper but about Kraftwerk Die Mensch Maschine.

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 06:47 PM
I really like the idea of using Iggy Pop instead though, because, as you say, the thanatic sonic elements are all there, and of course there's the Burroughs-esque jouissance in thanatos on top of that. Sort of more of a challenge to Deleuze instead of a direct application of his thought like in Kraftwerk. Sort of like Iggy Pop on the Idiot is the BwO that just flipped cancerous.

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 06:51 PM
Damn you!! If you get this paper.article written I would love to read it.

gek-opel
03-11-2007, 06:53 PM
Seriously the level of allusion between machine/capital/sex/undeath/romance-as-market... its the coldest fucking song of that whole era! I have no idea how he came up with something that fucking insightful, genius genius genius. Also weirdly reminds me of Dizzee Rascal's first album in its cold eyed appraisal of love as coldy realist Capitalist system...

Also the link between Detroit (Igy's home town) and Berlin (where he wrote album) (cross referenced with detroit techno/berlin techno).

Also UNLIKE kraftwerk or John Foxx the fleshiness of the man inside the machine, the cyborg creature is so blood and piss and heroin and alcohol and trudging muscular ache PRESENT, this is no antispectic future but immediate reality, the alienated labour of fucking...

gek-opel
03-11-2007, 06:57 PM
Woah we've derailed this one!

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 06:59 PM
Yes!! I was just listening to the lyrics yesterday and was blown away by the fact that someone who ostensibly never even read Freud had written them--like this:

mother was in my bed/and I made love to her
father he came for me/shot at me with his 6 gun
calling sister midnight/what can i do about my dreeeams??

The correlation between the heroin womb and the realm of the Imaginary is all over that album. We always used to call it a withdrawal album, that feeling of trying to make yourself walk in the bass and rhythm section parts in Sister Midnight, Nightclubbing, Mass Production.

Seriously, this paper will be awesome, I am tempted to steal your idea but I know that is not fair.

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 06:59 PM
Being Nomadologist is pretty much like being derailed at all times, though. I have that midas touch.

gek-opel
03-11-2007, 07:01 PM
I've not even begun to get into the other songs. Its an immense album which proves Iggy's clever dumbness (or dumb cleverness I'm not sure which) is every bit as rich as anything ACTUAL theory heads like Gang of Four or Scritti Politti came up with.

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 07:03 PM
Ugh. "meeesss-THE-teehhks"

I hate that shit. I think Iggy P is much richer lyrically than either of those heads.

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 07:05 PM
There's also I Wanna Be Your Dog, one of my personal favorites, that's another paper though. You could talk a lot about Deleuze and Bataille. And maybe Genet.

That paper's probably been written.

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 07:11 PM
Calling sister midnight
Youve got me reaching for the moon
Calling sister midnight
Youve got me playing the fool
Calling sister midnight

Calling sister midnight
Can you hear me call
Can you hear me well
Can you hear me at all
Calling sister midnight
Im an idiot for you
Calling sister midnight
Im a breakage inside
Calling sister midnight
Calling sister midnight
You know I had a dream last night
Mother was in my bed
And I made love to her
Father he gunned for me
Hunted me with his six gun
Calling sister midnight
What can I do about my dreams

Listen to me sister midnight
You put a beggar in my heart
Calling sister midnight
Youve got me walking in rags
Hey where are you sister midnight
Can you hear me call
Can you hear me well
Can you hear me at all

nomadologist
03-11-2007, 07:12 PM
Before you go
Do me a favour
Give me a number
Of a girl almost like you
With legs almost like you
Im buried deep in mass production
Youre not nothing new
I like to drive along the freeways
See the smokestacks belching
Breasts turn bronw
So warm and so brown

Though I try to die
You put me back on the line
Oh damn it to hell
Back on the line - hell
Back on the line
Again and again
Im back on the line
Again and again
And I see my face here
And its there in the mirror
And its up in the air
And Im down on the ground

By the way
Im going for cigarettes
And since youve gotta go
Wont you do me that favour
Wont you give me that number
Wont you get me that girl
Yeah, shes almost like you
Yes, shes almost like you
And Im almost like him
Yes, Im almost like him
Yes, Im almost like him
Yeah, Im almost like him

mistersloane
04-11-2007, 10:54 AM
There was an exceptionally interesting article in the journal Collapse on this topic by Reza Negarestani .

Thanks for that tip Gek, just ordered them, they look like they'll keep me happy on tubes til Christmas, hadn't heard of it.

nomadologist
04-11-2007, 03:31 PM
Thanks for that tip Gek, just ordered them, they look like they'll keep me happy on tubes til Christmas, hadn't heard of it.

The internet is awesome.

zhao
04-11-2007, 04:46 PM
and i'm about to order them right now :)

nomadologist
04-11-2007, 05:14 PM
Maybe we could have a discussion thread about them after we read them? I would be down for that, as long as I don't get distracted by less important things like my midterms.

hundredmillionlifetimes
04-11-2007, 06:50 PM
Ahhhh, I remember reading 'Transcendental Miserablism' quite a few months ago--didn't make the connection between this and Vim's linked article. I actually sympathized with a couple of his points in TM, but this other article was full of strange contradictions.

We all know that I am all in favor of a "strict constructionist"-style reading of Deleuze, and find it extremely silly when people try to twist such obviously anti-capitalist strategies and goals into anything but. Why would you want to use the deterritorialization of market structures to *accelerate* a descent into "chaos" if you believe those structures to be positive or "vital" forces?

Weirdly contradictory.

There was a thread last year that addressed this very mis-appropriation of Deleuzian terms - and by none other than Vim's fave country, Israel's IDF: The IDF's Use of Theory as Warfare (http://www.dissensus.com/showpost.php?p=60225&postcount=1).

This further example of capitalism's 'worldless' reappropriation of otherwise revolutionary dynamics now takes on black-comic side-effects. Like Freud's nephew raiding his ideas for manipulative marketing and PR purposes, in order to 'conceptualize' the IDF urban warfare against the Palestinians, the IDF military academies regularly refer to Deleuze and Guattari, to Thousand Plateaux, but emptying it out, using it as a thoroughly depoliticized "operational theory" - the catch-phrases most often invoked include "Formless Rival Entities", "Fractal Manoeuvre", "Velocity vs. Rhythms", "The Wahabi War Machine", "Postmodern Anarchists", and "Nomadic Terrorists". One of the key distinctions they rely on is the one between "smooth" and "striated" space, which reflect the organizational concepts of the "war machine" and the "state apparatus". The IDF now often uses the term "to smooth out space" when they want to refer to an operation in a space as if it had no curvature, limits, or borders. Palestinian territories are redefined as "striated" because they are bounded by fences, walls, ditches, road blocks and so on.

As Eyal Weizman describes such dementia, in Israeli Military Using Post-Structuralism as 'Operational Theory, "The attack conducted by units of the IDF on the city of Nablus in April 2002 was described by its commander, Brigadier-General Aviv Kokhavi, as "inverse geometry", which he explained as "the reorganization of the urban syntax by means of a series of micro-tactical actions". During the battle soldiers moved within the city across hundreds of metres of overground tunnels carved out through a dense and contiguous urban structure. Although several thousand soldiers and Palestinian guerrillas were manoeuvring simultaneously in the city, they were so "saturated" into the urban fabric that very few would have been visible from the air. Furthermore, they used none of the city's streets, roads, alleys or courtyards, or any of the external doors, internal stairwells and windows, but moved horizontally through walls and vertically through holes blasted in ceilings and floors. This form of movement, described by the military as "infestation", seeks to redefine inside as outside, and domestic interiors as thoroughfares. The IDF's strategy of "walking through walls" involves a conception of the city as not just the site but also the very medium of warfare "a flexible, almost liquid medium that is forever contingent and in flux"."

The insight to be drawn from all of this twisted gibberish is not, of course, the nonsensical allegation of Deleuze and Guattari as 'theorists' of a Zionist-militaristic colonialism - but the conclusion that the conceptual machine articulated by Deleuze and Guattari, far from being ruggedly "subversive" or impervious to logistical sanitization, can also be 'adapted' to such warped pragmatism, to the military, social, economic, and ideologico-political operational mode of late capitalism.

nomadologist
04-11-2007, 06:53 PM
The insight to be drawn from all of this twisted gibberish is not, of course, the nonsensical allegation of Deleuze and Guattari as 'theorists' of a Zionist-militaristic colonialism - but the conclusion that the conceptual machine articulated by Deleuze and Guattari, far from being ruggedly "subversive" or impervious to logistical sanitization, can also be 'adapted' to such warped pragmatism, to the military, social, economic, and ideologico-political operational mode of late capitalism.

Amazing, amazing points, but can't this last part happen to any conceptual machine under capitalism?

gek-opel
04-11-2007, 08:34 PM
Twisted or not this is fascinating stuff HMLT. Especially the idea of city-as-flux... (tho this alone is obvious from their tactical re-defining of borders as their prime strategic long-term maneuver).

zhao
04-11-2007, 08:42 PM
the conceptual machine articulated by Deleuze and Guattari ... can also be 'adapted' to such warped pragmatism, to the military, social, economic, and ideologico-political operational mode of late capitalism.

anything can be used to facilitate anything. see Japanese state perversion of Zen Buddhism as vehicle for milliatary aggression, nationalism, and mass murder.

nomadologist
04-11-2007, 09:04 PM
Twisted or not this is fascinating stuff HMLT. Especially the idea of city-as-flux... (tho this alone is obvious from their tactical re-defining of borders as their prime strategic long-term maneuver).

See also Virilio.

gek-opel
04-11-2007, 10:10 PM
So if most theoretical systems can be effectively incorporated (albeit hollowed out, emptied of normative content and utilised as skeletal conceptual technology) by capitalism, this above all else must influence the design of such concepts (ie- their incorporation and perversion is to be assumed and expressly utilised as the very system by which they can effectively operate on Capitalism itself... rather than critique or whatever... ideas as IEDs... the notion of critique replaced by the model of ideological terrorism)

nomadologist
04-11-2007, 10:14 PM
Bingo.

gek-opel
04-11-2007, 10:17 PM
I have no idea how you would create a good enough model for all the potential ways Capital can abuse ideas though in order to make this a workable proposition... (ie you basically have to retro-fit the conceptual technology to take into account the likely abuses... which appears to involve way too much contingency to be effective.) Hmm perhaps some historical studies might be useful tho...

nomadologist
04-11-2007, 10:33 PM
On a pragmatic level, I think it's misguided to throw out a good idea simply because it can be twisted by the enemy. This is why the war machine is so important.

vimothy
05-11-2007, 02:47 PM
Well, this is an interesting thread.

Regarding "the discussion of Vimothy's childish, infantile, and quite sad misreading of the Left's established canon":


I have studied this stuff extensively, as has HMLT and several others here. I'm sure they will be glad to clear things up for you eventually.

Oh good.

HMLT:

The insight to be drawn from all of this twisted gibberish is not, of course, the nonsensical allegation of Deleuze and Guattari as 'theorists' of a Zionist-militaristic colonialism - but the conclusion that the conceptual machine articulated by Deleuze and Guattari, far from being ruggedly "subversive" or impervious to logistical sanitization, can also be 'adapted' to such warped pragmatism, to the military, social, economic, and ideologico-political operational mode of late capitalism.

Gek:

Uh yeah Nick Land has taken a turn for the neo-con it would seem... my friend was telling me about a piece of his (which probably is online) against what Land terms "Transcendental Miserablism" (ie moaning about capitalism)... and his response to it (err "Everything is great- shut the fuck up" apparently) He also is obsessed with Qabbalistic numerology (which I haven't a fucking clue about). And he's ex CCRU so obviously Deleuzian... Lets just say I like his perversity and oppositional status, but I'm not especially sure how productive it is....

gek-opel
05-11-2007, 02:51 PM
Hey Vim Re:Land/"Critique of Transcendental Miserablism" I did revise my position upon re-reading it... It has a lot of exciting and useful points to make, with some obvious flaws...

vimothy
05-11-2007, 02:55 PM
@Gek:

Surely you're deliberately misreading Land in overly simplistic terms. He isn't prescribing behaviour in his critique of the modern left, but rather tracing its development from a posited alternative and superior mode of economic production, to a self-contradictory song of "cosmic despair":


Who still remembers Khruschev’s threat to the semi-capitalist West – “we’ll bury you.” Or Mao’s promise that the Great Leap Forward would ensure the Chinese economy leapt past that of the UK within 15 years? The Frankfurtian spirit now rules: Admit that capitalism will outperform its competitors under almost any imaginable circumstances, while turning that very admission into a new kind of curse (“we never wanted growth anyway, it just spells alienation, besides, haven’t you heard that the polar bears are drowning …?”).

Money-shot:


“Go for growth” now means “Go (hard) for capitalism.” It is increasingly hard to remember that this equation would once have seemed controversial. On the left it would once have been dismissed as risible. This is the new world Transcendental Miserablism haunts as a dyspeptic ghost.

Brilliant essay.

vimothy
05-11-2007, 02:55 PM
Hey Vim Re:Land/"Critique of Transcendental Miserablism" I did revise my position upon re-reading it... It has a lot of exciting and useful points to make, with some obvious flaws...

Could we talk a bit about what you mean by "Capital" when you use it upthread?

gek-opel
05-11-2007, 02:59 PM
I get what he's doing Vim. I'm trying to see what I can drag out of it that might be useful tho (obviously Transc Miserablism is a bleak dead end and most be broken free from). The left is utterly defeated and sits in an elephants graveyard weeping over the bones of its Utopian promise unfulfilled. But time is just as equally out of joint within the fair ship Capital...

gek-opel
05-11-2007, 03:04 PM
Could we talk a bit about what you mean by "Capital" when you use it upthread?

I'd love to but I have serious amounts of work to get done this afternoon... later perhaps...

vimothy
05-11-2007, 03:04 PM
This was the passage I was thinking of:


This is cos both he AND the positions he criticises fail to effectively differentiate the fact that Capital shifts through eras, each bringing their own inimitable costs and benefits, and changing regimes of political organisation, changing flows of productive energy. Whats interesting to me is how THIS Capital of now has given rise to effects quite distinct from those of 40 years ago, and how we can intervene to change those effects.

What do you mean here when you capitalise "Capital" - capital as an "epistemological" marker or sink of some sort?

EDIT: Not epistomological, episteme-ic perhaps, in the Foucauldian sense - somehow characterising, representing, embodying or affecting aspects of an episteme / aeon or epistomological order...

How is "Capital" now different to C/capital in the 1960s? Is this a technical, financial difference, in your opinion, or more metaphysical? Ever read any Howard Bloom?

mistersloane
05-11-2007, 05:15 PM
Maybe we could have a discussion thread about them after we read them? I would be down for that, as long as I don't get distracted by less important things like my midterms.

yeah that'd be fun. I may get distracted by more imprtant things like drugs though.

trouc
05-11-2007, 05:36 PM
1, theories are not subversive, only actions can be so. The IDF isn't misappropriating D&G, it's a tool like any other. To riff on Massumi, a tool's what you do with it, not what it was meant to do. I actually think the two of them might admire this. At any rate, you're not going to theorize your way out of capitalism.

2, a strict constructionist reading of D&G just strikes me as an off the wall chunk of insanity, not least because I'd judge them guilty of providing more diagnoses than prescriptions. I read both MP & AO as extremely pessimistic books.

3, it's off base to read D&G as against capitalism anyway. It seems more appropriate to see them as anti-capitalist and anti-corporatist

gek-opel
05-11-2007, 05:41 PM
Mistersloane/Nomadologist- yeh im up for this... which ones did you guys get in the end by the way...? (the new issue on Deleuze is being delivered to me as we speak...)

Vim: (quickly as these midterms aren't going to write themselves)... yeah something along those lines though more orientated in the other direction (ie ontological primacy given above all to Capital/ism), the forms of relation and exchange bringing with it shifts in the episteme/cultural shifts etc etc... the technical differences (ie how finance is organized, yes but probably lots of other stuff I haven't even begun to think about yet) and how they impact on everything else... how they end up shifting and manipulating man/time/everything considered "natural"... and most importantly HOW these interact, exactly how the effects are transmitted into culture more generally.

Also obviously it isn't a block, a monolith... it would be better to talk of Capitalisms... different regimes occurring at the same time, an ecosystem of Capitals...

And yeah metaphysically the impact can definitely be felt in terms of post modernity (ie- the logic of late Capital)... But differentiating different eras enables one to identify why certain good, productive, innovative aspects decline across time, others replacing them. In this way culture can be used to trace the shapes of Capital as it mutates...

vimothy
05-11-2007, 05:42 PM
@trouc:

Fully agree with 1 & 2. Point 3 is probably irrelevant to me, even if accurate - I think it runs straight into point 1. Whatever D&G intended, Zizek, Land and the IDF are beyond their control, as are all their other readers.

gek-opel
05-11-2007, 05:43 PM
theories are not subversive, only actions can be so. The IDF isn't misappropriating D&G, it's a tool like any other. To riff on Massumi, a tool's what you do with it, not what it was meant to do. I actually think the two of them might admire this. At any rate, you're not going to theorize your way out of capitalism.


Spot on. Didn't D+G devise their ideas as a "conceptual toolbox" anyway?

mistersloane
05-11-2007, 05:45 PM
Mistersloane/Nomadologist- yeh im up for this... which ones did you guys get in the end by the way...? (the new issue on Deleuze is being delivered to me as we speak...)


I lumped em 30 quid which covers up to three and four if they do one, if not hey ho. I'm flush this month.

hundredmillionlifetimes
05-11-2007, 06:30 PM
theories are not subversive, only actions can be so. The IDF isn't misappropriating D&G, it's a tool like any other. To riff on Massumi, a tool's what you do with it, not what it was meant to do. I actually think the two of them might admire this. At any rate, you're not going to theorize your way out of capitalism.

Spot on. Didn't D+G devise their ideas as a "conceptual toolbox" anyway?

Isn't this somewhat deeply flawed reasoning? Next someone will be arguing that if D&G had been writing in the 1930s, they might have admired how Nazi architects and engineers 'applied' their conceptual schemas to the design, construction, and operation of the concentration camps and gas chambers [or alternatively having Einstein admiring Nagasaki and Hiroshima].

Theories can indeed be subversive (unless you haven't actually read Marx), language itself can be extremely subversive, but this can never be enough - The philosophers have only interpreted the world, etc, and what a very important 'etc' that is ...

[When you peel back Land's deep accretions of scrambled jargon in that Miserabilism article, what emerges is both a ridiculously simplistic, nay, naive, understanding of Capital and yet another strawman (his mis-reading of an imagined K-punk).]

EDIT:


Fully agree with 1 & 2. Point 3 is probably irrelevant to me, even if accurate - I think it runs straight into point 1. Whatever D&G intended, Zizek, Land and the IDF are beyond their control, as are all their other readers.

Here we go again [the real intent of your tired ravings] ... D&G's anti-capitalism is now in question because Land is now a right-wing looney and the IDF are supposedly 'using' their ideas. Yeah, and Nietzsche was a Nazi ...

And the IDF, fortunately, are far from being beyond our control, numbnut.

dHarry
05-11-2007, 06:31 PM
Anyone read Delanda on Braudel's theory that "Capitalism" as a term should be abandoned as it fails to take account of its top-down control of "free" markets (He's also a D&G fan, so the antimarket/market idea is roughly analogous to striated/smooth space, arborescent/rhizomatic etc.)? Interesting and germane to the both Vimothy and the lefties around here:


In this discipline, we tend to uncritically assume systematicity, as when one talks of the "capitalist system", instead of showing exactly how such systematic properties of the whole emerge from concrete historical processes. Worse yet, we then tend to reify such unaccounted-for systematicity, ascribing all kinds of causal powers to capitalism, to the extent that a clever writer can make it seem as if anything at all (from nonlinear dynamics itself to postmodernism or cyberculture) is the product of late capitalism. This basic mistake, which is, I believe, a major obstacle to a correct understanding of the nature of economic power, is partly the result of the purely top-down, analytical style that has dominated economic modeling from the eighteenth century. Both macroeconomics, which begins at the top with concepts like gross national product, as well as microeconomics, in which a system of preferences guides individual choice, are purely analytical in approach. Neither the properties of a national economy nor the ranked preferences of consumers are shown to emerge from historical dynamics. Marxism, is true, added to these models intermediate scale phenomena, like class struggle, and with it conflictive dynamics. But the specific way in which it introduced conflict, via the labor theory of value, has now been shown by Shraffa to be redundant, added from the top, so to speak, and not emerging from the bottom, from real struggles over wages, or the length of the working day, or for control over the production process. [4]

Besides a switch to a synthetic approach, as it is happening, for instance, in the evolutionary economics of Nelson and Winter in which the emphasis is on populations of organizations interacting nonlinearly, what we need here is a return to the actual details of economic history. Much has been learned in recent decades about these details, thanks to the work of materialist historians like Fernand Braudel, and it is to this historical data that we must turn to know what we need to model synthetically. Nowhere is this need for real history more evident that in the subject of the dynamics of economic power, defined as the capability to manipulate the prices of inputs and outputs of the production process as well as their supply and demand. In a peasant market, or even in a small town local market, everybody involved is a price taker: one shows up with merchandise, and sells it at the going prices which reflect demand and supply. But monopolies and oligopolies are price setters: the prices of their products need not reflect demand/supply dynamics, but rather their own power to control a given market share. [5]

When approaching the subject of economic power, one can safely ignore the entire field of linear mathematical economics (so-called competitive equilibrium economics), since there monopolies and oligopolies are basically ignored. Yet, even those thinkers who make economic power the center of their models, introduce it in a way that ignores historical facts. Authors writing in the Marxist tradition, place real history in a straight-jacket by subordinating it to a model of a progressive succession of modes of production. Capitalism itself is seen as maturing through a series of stages, the latest one of which is the monopolistic stage in this century. Even non-Marxists economists like Galbraith, agree that capitalism began as a competitive pursuit and stayed that way till the end of the nineteenth century, and only then it reached the monopolistic stage, at which point a planning system replaced market dynamics.

However, Fernand Braudel has recently shown, with a wealth of historical data, that this picture is inherently wrong. Capitalism was, from its beginnings in the Italy of the thirteenth century, always monopolistic and oligopolistic. That is to say, the power of capitalism has always been associated with large enterprises, large that is, relative to the size of the markets where they operate. [6]

Also, it has always been associated with the ability to plan economic strategies and to control market dynamics, and therefore, with a certain degree of centralization and hierarchy. Within the limits of this presentation, I will not be able to review the historical evidence that supports this extremely important hypothesis, but allow me at least to extract some of the consequences that would follow if it turns out to be true.

First of all, if capitalism has always relied on non-competitive practices, if the prices for its commodities have never been objectively set by demand/supply dynamics, but imposed from above by powerful economic decision-makers, then capitalism and the market have always been different entities. To use a term introduced by Braudel, capitalism has always been an "antimarket". This, of course, would seem to go against the very meaning of the word "capitalism", regardless of whether the word is used by Karl Marx or Ronald Reagan. For both nineteenth century radicals and twentieth century conservatives, capitalism is identified with an economy driven by market forces, whether one finds this desirable or not. Today, for example, one speaks of the former Soviet Union's "transition to a market economy", even though what was really supposed to happen was a transition to an antimarket: to large scale enterprises, with several layers of managerial strata, in which prices are set not taken. This conceptual confusion is so entrenched that I believe the only solution is to abandon the term "capitalism" completely, and to begin speaking of markets and antimarkets and their dynamics.
Emphases mine.
http://www.alamut.com/subj/economics/de_landa/antiMarkets.html

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:19 PM
1, theories are not subversive, only actions can be so. The IDF isn't misappropriating D&G, it's a tool like any other. To riff on Massumi, a tool's what you do with it, not what it was meant to do. I actually think the two of them might admire this. At any rate, you're not going to theorize your way out of capitalism.

2, a strict constructionist reading of D&G just strikes me as an off the wall chunk of insanity, not least because I'd judge them guilty of providing more diagnoses than prescriptions. I read both MP & AO as extremely pessimistic books.

3, it's off base to read D&G as against capitalism anyway. It seems more appropriate to see them as anti-capitalist and anti-corporatist

Do you have any idea what I was referring to when I said "strict constructionist"? I was referring to a traditional way of reading the U.S. Constitution, but go ahead and be uninformedly literal about it if you want to be.

Vimothy, you have no idea what you're talking about RE D&G, and the only extent to which I sympathize with Land is insofar as I do not think the left have gone FAR LEFT ENOUGH.

Until you show an even basic mastery of a single work by D and/or G, I have no interest in hearing your opinions about it.

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:20 PM
Here we go again [the real intent of your tired ravings] ... D&G's anti-capitalism is now in question because Land is now a right-wing looney and the IDF are supposedly 'using' their ideas. Yeah, and Nietzsche was a Nazi ...

And the IDF, fortunately, are far from being beyond our control, numbnut.

I've finally realized that it's not even worth responding to people who are this delusional.

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:21 PM
Spot on. Didn't D+G devise their ideas as a "conceptual toolbox" anyway?

No, not at all. They meant them to be radically employed.

trouc
05-11-2007, 07:21 PM
cheers dHarry. I've been working through volume 2 of Braudel's "civilisation and capitalism" and I'm sure that's where part of my point 3 came from.

for hundredmillionlifetimes, if they could admire genghis khan, I'm sure they could admire the IDF, particularly since most anti-israel thought is humanist in nature. It's childish to not see the connections, they are there, and frankly, yes, fascists seem to have more use for people like Foucault or D&G than anyone on the left. Examples of this abound, whether it's Muslim fundamentalists or neocons here in the US. To ignore this is just to fantasize.

Anyway, if you think D&G set themselves against capitalism I don't think you've been reading them enough.

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:23 PM
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH.

Here it comes again. "D&G didn't set themselves against capitalism"

WHAT ABOUT THEIR INTERVIEW CALLED, "CAPITALISM: A VERY SPECIAL DELERIUM"?

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:29 PM
EDIT: Not epistomological, episteme-ic perhaps, in the Foucauldian sense - somehow characterising, representing, embodying or affecting aspects of an episteme / aeon or epistomological order...

How is "Capital" now different to C/capital in the 1960s? Is this a technical, financial difference, in your opinion, or more metaphysical? Ever read any Howard Bloom?

There is nothing "Foucauldian" about that sense of the word epistemic.

Howard Bloom is a complete hack, Vim.

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:33 PM
yeah that'd be fun. I may get distracted by more imprtant things like drugs though.

nothing ever distracts me from those important things

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:36 PM
Anyone read Delanda on Braudel's theory that "Capitalism" as a term should be abandoned as it fails to take account of its top-down control of "free" markets (He's also a D&G fan, so the antimarket/market idea is roughly analogous to striated/smooth space, arborescent/rhizomatic etc.)?
Emphases mine.
http://www.alamut.com/subj/economics/de_landa/antiMarkets.html

All of this only makes Marx more right, not D&G less.

The analogy between smooth/striated (both forms of muscle tissue, rememeber--smooth muscle is in the uterus, straited in the arms, legs, etc.) and markets/antimarkets is a terrible one. The entire point of "smooth" space is that it can't be commodified or stratified the way striated space can. It is everything that is outside markets.

trouc
05-11-2007, 07:37 PM
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH.

Here it comes again. "D&G didn't set themselves against capitalism"

WHAT ABOUT THEIR INTERVIEW CALLED, "CAPITALISM: A VERY SPECIAL DELERIUM"?

If you'd been reading the thread rather than spewing Lunchables all over your monitor, I think my point would be a little clearer, which is again, that D&G are anti-capitalist & anti-corporatist, not necessarily anti-capitalism (to the extent that it can be seperated from those two). I think they have an intense admiration for capitalism as a process.

ps- you don't need to school me on the meaning of strict constructionism, a Brooklyn education doesn't set you that far apart.

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:39 PM
What the fuck are you talking about? We've spoken extensively about this on Dissensus, you're hardly bringing up some sort of "new" point, dear. D&G are EXPLICITLY anti-CAPITALIST. Read Mille Plateaux, preferably in French.

And which one are you? Vimothy, or Mr. Tea, under another ID?

Why are you assuming I received my education in Brooklyn? That's awfully silly of you.

trouc
05-11-2007, 07:43 PM
I've been reading that book since you were pumping MBV in high school, so cut the crap. I don't have time to read through every single thread here, I'm making a distinction that seems relevant to THIS discussion.

noel emits
05-11-2007, 07:44 PM
If you'd been reading the thread rather than spewing Lunchables all over your monitor, I think my point would be a little clearer, which is again, that D&G are anti-capitalist & anti-corporatist, not necessarily anti-capitalism (to the extent that it can be seperated from those two).
I think your point would have clearer if you'd actually said that rather than saying something completely different.

:rolleyes:

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:44 PM
My Bloody Valentine? Yeah, that's it.

You really have a lot of insight into my personality. Please, tell me more.

That distinction is NOT relevant, it's sophomoric to the extreme.

Try reading source texts rather than secondary ones, dumbass.

trouc
05-11-2007, 07:46 PM
Noel,

this is an explicit quote from my first comment upthread

3, it's off base to read D&G as against capitalism anyway. It seems more appropriate to see them as anti-capitalist and anti-corporatist

something unclear on that ?

trouc
05-11-2007, 07:48 PM
My Bloody Valentine? Yeah, that's it.

You really have a lot of insight into my personality. Please, tell me more.

That distinction is NOT relevant, it's sophomoric to the extreme.

Try reading source texts rather than secondary ones, dumbass.

nomad, I'm not gonna get in a dick swinging match with you on who's read what, but suffice it to say I've spent my fair share of time on both AE and MP. If you want to make a point, then do it, stop telling me I haven't read a book that's sitting on my fucking nightstand

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:49 PM
Yes. The fact that it flagrantly ignores about 90% of Mille Plateaux, not to mention What is Philosophy, Postscript on the Societies of Control, Nomadology (the excerpt), just about EVERYTHING D&G ever wrote.

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:50 PM
Why don't you go read it then, and come back?

trouc
05-11-2007, 07:54 PM
Why don't you go read it then, and come back?

HAHA. Wooh.

%90? Look, if you can't see that every single resistive structure or technique they lay out is derived directly from capitalism's processes then, well, yeah, that's the problem with being a strict constructionist: it means you're an idiot.

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:56 PM
Ha, you're obviously not American like your Myspace is pretending you are. Americans put the percentage sign after numbers.

Give it up, Vim.

A Vim by any other name is just as obvious and ill-read.

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 07:57 PM
HAHA. Wooh.

%90? Look, if you can't see that every single resistive structure or technique they lay out is derived directly from capitalism's processes then, well, yeah, that's the problem with being a strict constructionist: it means you're an idiot.

Excuse me?? Every single "resistive" "structure" or "technique" they lay out is not "derived" from capitalism. Maybe virally infected with it. But not "derived" in any sense of the word.

noel emits
05-11-2007, 08:09 PM
I think it's an interesting idea. Explain more trouc if you would.

nomadologist
05-11-2007, 08:11 PM
The BwO and schizophrenia are the major forms of resistance to capitalism outlined by D&G. these are zones of radical deterritorialisation. How could these possibly be "derived" from capitalism?

noel emits
05-11-2007, 08:19 PM
Well there may not be a huge difference between 'derived from' and 'virally infected by' depending on how those terms are being used. They could mean the same thing really.

If someone makes a claim like 'every single resistive structure or technique they [D&G] lay out is derived directly from capitalism's processes' I'm curious as to the thinking.

trouc
05-11-2007, 08:26 PM
Ha, you're obviously not American like your Myspace is pretending you are. Americans put the percentage sign after numbers.

Give it up, Vim.

A Vim by any other name is just as obvious and ill-read.

Right, that's why everybody else there's posting from Europe too....


Excuse me?? Every single "resistive" "structure" or "technique" they lay out is not "derived" from capitalism. Maybe virally infected with it. But not "derived" in any sense of the word.

Given that they view capitalism much like they do the state, ie as ahistoric, merely awaiting implementation, I don't see how you miss this. If our formula is (as it is for D&G)

capitalism : revaluation of all values

then Genghis Khan's war machine is a gigantic capitalist endeavour
schizophrenia is a form of capitalism
the establishment of the BwO is the end goal of capitalism (ahistoric)


The BwO and schizophrenia are the major forms of resistance to capitalism outlined by D&G. these are zones of radical deterritorialisation. How could these possibly be "derived" from capitalism?

Economic Capitalism is THE massive deterritorializing machine, it is the premier form of deterritorialization which provokes the clinical schizo into his own deterritorialization.

hundredmillionlifetimes
05-11-2007, 09:28 PM
Right, that's why everybody else there's posting from Europe too....

Given that they view capitalism much like they do the state, ie as ahistoric, merely awaiting implementation, I don't see how you miss this. If our formula is (as it is for D&G)

capitalism : revaluation of all values

then Genghis Khan's war machine is a gigantic capitalist endeavour
schizophrenia is a form of capitalism
the establishment of the BwO is the end goal of capitalism (ahistoric)

Economic Capitalism is THE massive deterritorializing machine, it is the premier form of deterritorialization which provokes the clinical schizo into his own deterritorialization.

The inappropriate Genghis Khan analogy aside, we know this from the very first principle of Marxism, that capital is abstract, that coming to terms with it is not simply being 'anti-capitalist' [like the yuppie trader protesting against tobacco companies or animal testing, etc] or 'anti-corporatist', nor is it about just ridding the world of all the bad and greedy exploiters, the really nasty capitalists [to be presumably replaced by the 'good' multicultural-friendly ones, the 'liberal communists']. The problem with many on the liberal-humanist Left is that they actually wish to retain the category of the bad capitalist so that they can keep open the possibility that there are actually - or could be - good (paternalist, altruistic, welfare-friendly) capitalists. But capitalism - as an abstract viral-vanpiric plague - is unreformable , so any 'anti-capitalist' moralizing liberal socialism is not only actually inherent to capitalism itself [just as religous fundamentalism, patriarchy, etc, actually is] , is not only unaware and ignorant of Marxism, it is what Marx came to confront and abolish.


"We need to do just as Marx recommended, and accelerate, not resist, capital's destruction of traditions, ethnicities and territorialities. It might be tempting to find bolt holes of reactionary tradition in which to take flight from the scouring winds of capital, but it is a temptation to be vehemently resisted. The non-organic product of capital's 'Frankensteinian surgery of the cities' (Lyotard), the proletariat emerges from the destruction of all ethnicities, the desolation of all tradition, the destitution of any home.

Marxist atheism is not to be mistaken for the Last Man sniping at religion ... Crucially, Marxist atheism is only achieved once the theological critique of capitalism is completed. This is what separates Marxist atheism from the gliberal platitudes of the likes of Nick Cohen, who proclaim secularism while remaining attached to the theology of capital (liberal commonsense). Theism is defined not by any positive beliefs, but by the role of the fetish or totem as transcendental guarantee of any reality system. The critique of religion is the 'premise of all critique' because critique is about the exposure of such fetish-guarantees. It is necessary to recognize that capitalism is very far from being anti-religious. On the contrary, it is, as Karatani puts it in Transcritique, a 'relgio-genic-process'. 'Whether or not we believe in religion in the narrow sense, real capitalism puts us in a structure similar to that of the religious world. What drives us in capitalism is neither the ideal nor the real (i.e. needs and desires), but the metaphysics and theology originated in exchange and commodity form.' This theology continues to evade critique because it is a disavowed theology, obscured by ideology. We don't really believe that capital is an autonomous force, we know (so we think) that the only reality is that of free individuals. The full confidence in the 'reality' of our free individuality is precisely the ideological feint which allows us to act as if commodities are autonomous. The critique of capitalism therefore entails a ruthless demolition of commodity-theology and its support in the social fetish of the 'free individual'."------K-punk

gek-opel
05-11-2007, 09:46 PM
That whole k-punk piece is fucking marvelous.


Theism is defined not by any positive beliefs, but by the role of the fetish or totem as transcendental guarantee of any reality system

And this is exactly whats wrong with the Dawkinsian anti-religion line of course...

trouc
05-11-2007, 10:00 PM
1, I didn't say anti-bad-capitalist or anti-bad-corporation. I said anti-capitalist and anti-corporatist, full stop. Please direct your comments to my actual statements.

2, Genghis Khan's horde : revaluation of all values : capitalism

if you want to question this, I would suggest you look at his actual mode of governance where :

a) he presided not only over mass slaughter, but more generally over a targeted destruction of state and social structures, ie the elimination of native aristocracies (killing all aristocrats and government members in surrendered cities)

b) disestablishment of coercive religious systems

c) establishment of a free trade zone spanning nearly a million square miles, encompassing all of the major trade routes of the period, to the detriment of established economic elites, both inside and outside his empire

trouc
05-11-2007, 10:05 PM
Also, thanks, as I should have dug this up anyway :

<i>"We need to do just as Marx recommended, and accelerate, not resist, capital's destruction of traditions, ethnicities and territorialities."</i>

ie : capitalism as abstract process is the solution to capitalism as historic object

hundredmillionlifetimes
05-11-2007, 10:32 PM
1, I didn't say anti-bad-capitalist or anti-bad-corporation. I said anti-capitalist and anti-corporatist, full stop. Please direct your comments to my actual statements.

2, Genghis Khan's horde : revaluation of all values : capitalism

if you want to question this, I would suggest you look at his actual mode of governance where :

a) he presided not only over mass slaughter, but more generally over a targeted destruction of state and social structures, ie the elimination of native aristocracies (killing all aristocrats and government members in surrendered cities)

b) disestablishment of coercive religious systems

c) establishment of a free trade zone spanning nearly a million square miles, encompassing all of the major trade routes of the period, to the detriment of established economic elites, both inside and outside his empire

Yes, but the analogy is still a totally misleading one [these points were 'collateral damage' so to speak], just as Stalinism and Maoism subsequently were, and why they all ultimately failed: the atavistic regression into violent and reactionary patriarchy.

Some of the most bloody capitalists are ultimately, transpire to be, the most sentimental (and brutal) 'anti-capitalists' [and, of course, vice versa].

hundredmillionlifetimes
05-11-2007, 11:09 PM
That whole k-punk piece is fucking marvelous.


Theism is defined not by any positive beliefs, but by the role of the fetish or totem as transcendental guarantee of any reality system

And this is exactly whats wrong with the Dawkinsian anti-religion line of course...

And not just Dawkins, the whole gamut ...


When you are bombarded by claims that in our post-ideological cynical era nobody believes any more in the proclaimed ideals, when you encounter a person who claims he is cured of any beliefs, accepting social reality the way it really is, you should always counter such claims with a simple, yet intricate question: What is your gadget, your favorite illusionary escape-hatch?---Zizek

Yes, the excape hatch of the fetish ... is everywhere, from new-ageism, to 'real sex' to whatever the latest 'inner child' fad bullshit happens to be doing the rounds, anything but anything to avoid confronting the 'horror' of the theological real of capitalism.

So Zizek's question is: where is the fetish which enables us to (pretend to) accept capitalist realism, to accept social reality "the way it is"? Zizek likes to single out "Western Buddhism" as one such fetish, but there are all the other, more obvious, ones - the retreat into family, into 'homely' values, into sanitized 'multiculturalism', into ethnicity and racism, into social and class hierarchy, into religious obscuranticism, into la passion du real, into ... internet virtuality: such fetishes enable us to fully participate in the frantic pace of the capitalist virus, while sustaining the perception that we are not really in it, that we are well aware how worthless this whole destructive spectacle is ó what really matters to us is the ultimate 'self-experience' or the bucholic peace of the inner Self to which you know you can always withdraw. It is only through a critique of such - theistic - fetishes, in addition to the resulting 'magic' of commodities under capital, that capitalism itself begins to wither away ...

noel emits
05-11-2007, 11:33 PM
And not just Dawkins, the whole gamut ...



Yes, the excape hatch of the fetish ... is everywhere, from new-ageism, to 'real sex' to whatever the latest 'inner child' fad bullshit happens to be doing the rounds, anything but anything to avoid confronting the 'horror' of the theological real of capitalism.

So Zizek's question is: where is the fetish which enables us to (pretend to) accept capitalist realism, to accept social reality "the way it is"? Zizek likes to single out "Western Buddhism" as one such fetish, but there are all the other, more obvious, ones - the retreat into family, into 'homely' values, into sanitized 'multiculturalism', into ethnicity and racism, into social and class hierarchy, into religious obscuranticism, into la passion du real, into ... internet virtuality: such fetishes enable us to fully participate in the frantic pace of the capitalist virus, while sustaining the perception that we are not really in it, that we are well aware how worthless this whole destructive spectacle is — what really matters to us is the ultimate 'self-experience' or the bucholic peace of the inner Self to which you know you can always withdraw. It is only through a critique of such - theistic - fetishes, in addition to the resulting 'magic' of commodities under capital, that capitalism itself begins to wither away ...
I agree with a lot of this and that k-punk bit is indeed excellent but a few things:

What is this assumption that the 'bucolic peace of the inner Self' is somehow invalid? Isn't that another religious position in itself? Where does it come from?

Who are these (straw) people who '(pretend to) accept capitalist realism'? Vimothy? It's not everyone is it? Or is it that we feel pressure to pretend to accept because social unreality becomes too hard to bear otherwise? Might this not be a failure in understanding our own inner world and in that sense relate to the above point? Just an idea.

Also 'when you encounter a person who claims he is cured of any beliefs, accepting social reality the way it really is, you should always counter such claims with a simple, yet intricate question: What is your gadget, your favorite illusionary escape-hatch?---Zizek'.

- That's an interesting interrogation but it's also really obvious, to me at least. Hardly needs stating. It does seem perfectly possible that a person could genuinely hold no beliefs (merely strong suspicions...) and be 'aware of the 'horror' of the theological real of capitalism' whilst also utilising a escape-hatches. I mean I realise it's not a judgement but unless you are fully committed to living on the street and shouting at people or waging gu3rilla warfare from the hills or something then it seems kind of hypocritical. Where do you stand HMLT? Or maybe I shouldn't ask ;)

I'm still curious about what trouc was truculently approaching because it does seem that maybe this whole 'oppositional' stance might be too bound up in conceptualisations borrowed from the prevailing real, unfortunately.

Gavin
06-11-2007, 01:25 AM
- That's an interesting interrogation but it's also really obvious, to me at least. Hardly needs stating. It does seem perfectly possible that a person could genuinely hold no beliefs (merely strong suspicions...) and be 'aware of the 'horror' of the theological real of capitalism' whilst also utilising a escape-hatches. I mean I realise it's not a judgement but unless you are fully committed to living on the street and shouting at people or waging gu3rilla warfare from the hills or something then it seems kind of hypocritical. Where do you stand HMLT? Or maybe I shouldn't ask ;)

I don't know why but I keep thinking of people in my grad-school cohort... For all the critical theory we read and Marxist topics I made everyone discuss in seminar (I guess I was THAT GUY :o), they never seemed to really give a shit about it, I was so disappointed. I think comics and video games were their "gadgets." I preferred drugs&alcohol for mine, maybe why I didn't get on with them so well.

Actually there's a strong strain of "gadgetry" in cultural studies (what I got my m.a. in), a kind of fishing for "resistance" inside corporate media representations... People writing dissertations on why The L-Word is a Positive Step Forward for lesbians, tripe that doesn't hold up on even a superficial critique. There's even a theoretical canon devoted to it: Michel De Certeau, Henry Jenkins (never realized how much I hated this guy until after I matriculated), Janice Radway, a hundred meager scholars regurgitating received criticism of the Frankfurt School, appropriations of Bataille, Foucault, D&G... it all seemed like doing backflips to justify enjoying crap TV and silly superhero comics.

nomadologist
06-11-2007, 01:27 AM
I don't know why but I keep thinking of people in my grad-school cohort... For all the critical theory we read and Marxist topics I made everyone discuss in seminar (I guess I was THAT GUY :o), they never seemed to really give a shit about it, I was so disappointed. I think comics and video games were their "gadgets." I preferred drugs&alcohol for mine, maybe why I didn't get on with them so well.

Actually there's a strong strain of "gadgetry" in cultural studies (what I got my m.a. in), a kind of fishing for "resistance" inside corporate media representations... People writing dissertations on why The L-Word is a Positive Step Forward for lesbians, tripe that doesn't hold up on even a superficial critique. There's even a theoretical canon devoted to it: Michel De Certeau, Henry Jenkins (never realized how much I hated this guy until after I matriculated), Janice Radway, a hundred meager scholars regurgitating received criticism of the Frankfurt School, appropriations of Bataille, Foucault, D&G... it all seemed like doing backflips to justify enjoying crap TV and silly superhero comics.

Certeau, really???

I guess all that "flaneur" shit...?

Gavin
06-11-2007, 01:47 AM
Yeah, he was often read as "everything is resistance" -- See, they control the streets BUT THEY CAN'T TELL YOU WHERE TO WALK. Hippy little dude wanted the Foucault fist, I could so tell.

nomadologist
06-11-2007, 01:51 AM
hahhahaha

some people are really really bad readers, tho. i hope this accounts for at least some of this certeau problem.

hundredmillionlifetimes
06-11-2007, 02:13 AM
- That's an interesting interrogation but it's also really obvious, to me at least. Hardly needs stating. It does seem perfectly possible that a person could genuinely hold no beliefs (merely strong suspicions...) and be 'aware of the 'horror' of the theological real of capitalism' whilst also utilising a escape-hatches.

But it isn't about their beliefs/non-beliefs, its about how they actually behave in spite of their beliefs. The ideology that sustains capitalism is objectively subjective: it works, one plays the game, acts out its rituals even when one doesn't 'believe' in them, the fetish providing the alibi. And really, this is not at all obvious, it is systematically disavowed. There's nothing obvious about the unconscious.

nomadologist
06-11-2007, 02:17 AM
I'm still curious about what trouc was truculently approaching because it does seem that maybe this whole 'oppositional' stance might be too bound up in conceptualisations borrowed from the prevailing real, unfortunately.

This is exactly what his "oppositional" stance is bound up in.

noel emits
06-11-2007, 02:26 AM
But it isn't about their beliefs/non-beliefs, its about how they actually behave in spite of their beliefs. The ideology that sustains capitalism is objectively subjective: it works, one plays the game, acts out its rituals even when one doesn't 'believe' in them, the fetish providing the alibi. And really, this is not at all obvious, it is systematically disavowed. There's nothing obvious about the unconscious.
Sure, but who does this? Do you? Do I? Is it everybody, or is it just everybody else?

What are some examples of these rituals? Would you say it's possible to resist just by not playing along?

Sorry - a lot of questions. No reason for us to discuss in such abstract terms though.

nomadologist
06-11-2007, 03:30 AM
No reason for us to discuss in such abstract terms though.

Unfortunately, I think there are plenty of reasons...

noel emits
06-11-2007, 03:37 AM
Unfortunately, I think there are plenty of reasons...
Why - because it's 'literally impossible for us to think outside the box of disavowed ideology'? How big are we thinking here? Are we saying that literally unthinkable things would be possible if we could get away from this bind? Anything less than that and I'm not interested.

If I can't change the laws of physics I don't want to be part of your revolution. ;)

trouc
06-11-2007, 03:40 AM
Yes, but the analogy is still a totally misleading one [these points were 'collateral damage' so to speak], just as Stalinism and Maoism subsequently were, and why they all ultimately failed: the atavistic regression into violent and reactionary patriarchy.

Some of the most bloody capitalists are ultimately, transpire to be, the most sentimental (and brutal) 'anti-capitalists' [and, of course, vice versa].

Again, I think more familiarity with the actual history would benefit you here, because no, that's not what immediately happened. At any rate, I'm not holding Gengis Khan up as some perfect exemplar of anti-capitalist thought, I'm pointing out that within D&G's definition of capitalism he's a perfect fit.

edited to add :

I want to add that 'collateral damage' really doesn't do the facts of the mongol conquest justice, as it was at least partially through the 3 items above (elimination of unpopular political and religious elites combined with a flow of massive wealth) that the horde was able to spread. this was their mechanism

trouc
06-11-2007, 03:48 AM
More broadly, I'm not sure how clear I have to make my point here:

within D&G's thought there are 2 possible definitions of capitalism

1, as a historic socio-economic system (which I think they retreat from to some extent)

2, as a process of the devaluation (more accurately) of all values, the destructive creativity that nietzsche admires

obviously they set themselves against the first, but they are fascinated both by the second as fact and by its potentiality to become a revaluation of all values, hence it's reappearance in the modes of resistance they advise

noel emits
06-11-2007, 03:53 AM
But where do you stand on this trouc? What is your point exactly? Or are you just here to provide commentary on DG?

trouc
06-11-2007, 04:09 AM
But where do you stand on this trouc? What is your point exactly? Or are you just here to provide commentary on DG?

When did I say I have a stance here ? And anyway, how are my positions relevant ? This is a conversation about an idea. I'm merely pointing out what I see as a misconception

gek-opel
06-11-2007, 10:23 AM
I don't know why but I keep thinking of people in my grad-school cohort... For all the critical theory we read and Marxist topics I made everyone discuss in seminar (I guess I was THAT GUY :o), they never seemed to really give a shit about it, I was so disappointed. I think comics and video games were their "gadgets." I preferred drugs&alcohol for mine, maybe why I didn't get on with them so well.

Actually there's a strong strain of "gadgetry" in cultural studies (what I got my m.a. in), a kind of fishing for "resistance" inside corporate media representations... People writing dissertations on why The L-Word is a Positive Step Forward for lesbians, tripe that doesn't hold up on even a superficial critique. There's even a theoretical canon devoted to it: Michel De Certeau, Henry Jenkins (never realized how much I hated this guy until after I matriculated), Janice Radway, a hundred meager scholars regurgitating received criticism of the Frankfurt School, appropriations of Bataille, Foucault, D&G... it all seemed like doing backflips to justify enjoying crap TV and silly superhero comics.

This is interesting Gavin. I'm studying Crit Theory at grad school (just started) and whilst its not quite that bad (ie- pretty much what I feared cult-studies would be like unfortunately) the disavowal of the economic and the revolutionary-political is pretty strong. In a sense (and though of course it ought not to be) is theory not sometimes also (functionally utilised as) just such a gadget?

noel emits
06-11-2007, 11:49 AM
When did I say I have a stance here ? And anyway, how are my positions relevant ? This is a conversation about an idea. I'm merely pointing out what I see as a misconception
Of course you have a stance, you're either just not aware of it or are deliberately masking it behind a supposed 'objective' reading of some French people. Your position is relevant because it's much more interesting and useful to talk to people who think for themselves and express their opinions genuinely rather than just sniping from behind a fence.

vimothy
06-11-2007, 11:57 AM
[When you peel back Land's deep accretions of scrambled jargon in that Miserabilism article, what emerges is both a ridiculously simplistic, nay, naive, understanding of Capital and yet another strawman (his mis-reading of an imagined K-punk).]

The same challenge as Gek, then, though I doubt you'll do any better: define capital.


Here we go again [the real intent of your tired ravings] ... D&G's anti-capitalism is now in question because Land is now a right-wing looney and the IDF are supposedly 'using' their ideas. Yeah, and Nietzsche was a Nazi ...

It's not in question, at least by me. It's of no interest. I think the fact that nomadologist referred to D&G as being part of a "canon" is revealing.

vimothy
06-11-2007, 12:08 PM
Vimothy, you have no idea what you're talking about RE D&G, and the only extent to which I sympathize with Land is insofar as I do not think the left have gone FAR LEFT ENOUGH.

You do not sympathise with Land, because he doesn't think that.


Until you show an even basic mastery of a single work by D and/or G, I have no interest in hearing your opinions about it.

But I haven't told you my opinions. I simply said that it was possible to read D&G in a way that was pro-capitalism, in response to your insults about the fact that my band was influenced by them.

nomadologist
06-11-2007, 12:48 PM
yawn

vimothy
06-11-2007, 01:00 PM
Anyone read Delanda on Braudel's theory that "Capitalism" as a term should be abandoned as it fails to take account of its top-down control of "free" markets (He's also a D&G fan, so the antimarket/market idea is roughly analogous to striated/smooth space, arborescent/rhizomatic etc.)? Interesting and germane to the both Vimothy and the lefties around here:

Interesting - when and where was Braudel writing, dHarry?


Nowhere is this need for real history more evident that in the subject of the dynamics of economic power, defined as the capability to manipulate the prices of inputs and outputs of the production process as well as their supply and demand. In a peasant market, or even in a small town local market, everybody involved is a price taker: one shows up with merchandise, and sells it at the going prices which reflect demand and supply. But monopolies and oligopolies are price setters: the prices of their products need not reflect demand/supply dynamics, but rather their own power to control a given market share.

This is obviously true, but Braudel seems to be saying that most read capitalism as developing from free-market structures to monopolies (i.e. command & control economies):


Even non-Marxists economists like Galbraith, agree that capitalism began as a competitive pursuit and stayed that way till the end of the nineteenth century, and only then it reached the monopolistic stage, at which point a planning system replaced market dynamics.

However, this is clearly not the case, which is why I asked when and where he was writing from above. Capitalism developed out of planned economies, but to present it as a continuous process of monopoly is not coherent. Economic freedom has peaked and troughed through history and according to geography.

So for e.g., this is not true:


Also, it has always been associated with the ability to plan economic strategies and to control market dynamics, and therefore, with a certain degree of centralization and hierarchy. Within the limits of this presentation, I will not be able to review the historical evidence that supports this extremely important hypothesis, but allow me at least to extract some of the consequences that would follow if it turns out to be true.

trouc
06-11-2007, 02:42 PM
Of course you have a stance, you're either just not aware of it or are deliberately masking it behind a supposed 'objective' reading of some French people. Your position is relevant because it's much more interesting and useful to talk to people who think for themselves and express their opinions genuinely rather than just sniping from behind a fence.

I'm sorry Noel, but this is a pretty awful rhetorical move on your part. I laid out an interpretation (never claimed it was objective, just better), was attacked for it, and explained myself rather irritatedly (with no rebuttal in sight I guess). This isn't sniping, it's defending a point.

(also, masking and failing to be genuine? this is just childish man. there's some things on which one can withhold judgement. just because i didn't say "i believe..." doesn't mean i've got an agenda. when did dissensus turn into a witch trial anyway?)

Gavin
06-11-2007, 03:04 PM
This is interesting Gavin. I'm studying Crit Theory at grad school (just started) and whilst its not quite that bad (ie- pretty much what I feared cult-studies would be like unfortunately) the disavowal of the economic and the revolutionary-political is pretty strong. In a sense (and though of course it ought not to be) is theory not sometimes also (functionally utilised as) just such a gadget?

Oh of course, I would probably not enjoy it so much without its gadget-like properties of removing systems of exploitation into giant abstract concepts to be bounced around on intellectual volleyball courts like this forum. Still, I find it surprising that economics is left out of Crit Theory -- is it more textual stuff like Derrida or something? I suppose for many people grad school, whether "critical" or not, is just a step on the path to a comfortable middle class life. Which is not a crime, but I wanted it to be so much more!

Many cult studs and crit theory peeps are coming from lit, yes? I would imagine few have much of a background in economics... And revolutionary politics is subsumed by middle class accomodationist identity politics -- even if it weren't such a dire sell-out position, it's quite a boring intellectual pursuit!

noel emits
06-11-2007, 03:07 PM
I'm sorry Noel, but this is a pretty awful rhetorical move on your part. I laid out an interpretation (never claimed it was objective, just better), was attacked for it, and explained myself rather irritatedly (with no rebuttal in sight I guess). This isn't sniping, it's defending a point.

(also, masking and failing to be genuine? this is just childish man. there's some things on which one can withhold judgement. just because i didn't say "i believe..." doesn't mean i've got an agenda. when did dissensus turn into a witch trial anyway?)
It's not a witch hunt, I've been genuinely interested in what you have to say. I'm not really that bothered about discussing d&g as such it's just that I think (thought) that behind your interpretation of their 'admiration' of capitalism lies a bias which would be more interesting to hear about. This thread is more broadly about what you would consider to be 'worth dying for' so I was looking at it through that lens and assuming that posts here have some relation to deeply held convictions, or not.

I suppose I just find 'admiration' to be a loaded term. It's not the same as 'respect' for instance.

trouc
06-11-2007, 03:09 PM
Interesting - when and where was Braudel writing, dHarry?



This is obviously true, but Braudel seems to be saying that most read capitalism as developing from free-market structures to monopolies (i.e. command & control economies):



However, this is clearly not the case, which is why I asked when and where he was writing from above. Capitalism developed out of planned economies, but to present it as a continuous process of monopoly is not coherent. Economic freedom has peaked and troughed through history and according to geography.

So for e.g., this is not true:

Vim, Braudel was writing in postwar france up until maybe the early 80's when the reworking of "civilization and capitalism" was released. I think saying he was a fan of D&G would be overstated, but obviously there's some influence back and forth.

Also, I'm not sure exactly what you mean by monopoly here, but Braudel uses the term to refer to local and micro-monopolies, not just those held by large firms or cities such as Amsterdam (one example of a micro-monopoly: all grain imported into dunkerque during the 1700's was initially sold at the wharf in quantities that only wealthy merchants could afford, to then be carted a few hundred yards to the market where it was sold in smaller shares at a %25 markup.) So if he's talking about centralization and hierarchization, it's both micro and macro.

gek-opel
06-11-2007, 04:06 PM
Oh of course, I would probably not enjoy it so much without its gadget-like properties of removing systems of exploitation into giant abstract concepts to be bounced around on intellectual volleyball courts like this forum. Still, I find it surprising that economics is left out of Crit Theory -- is it more textual stuff like Derrida or something? I suppose for many people grad school, whether "critical" or not, is just a step on the path to a comfortable middle class life. Which is not a crime, but I wanted it to be so much more!

Many cult studs and crit theory peeps are coming from lit, yes? I would imagine few have much of a background in economics... And revolutionary politics is subsumed by middle class accomodationist identity politics -- even if it weren't such a dire sell-out position, it's quite a boring intellectual pursuit!

Yeah they're all from Lit pretty much, though a lot of the teaching staff are dedicated post-Marxists... but it goes for them too... in a sense professional academia is just as much of a control system (effectively) as others mentioned before... it engages potentially troublesome minds in harmless para-struggles whilst leaving the hegemonic situation as is. Im anticipating a disappointing lack of practical transformative progress, but I knew that anyway and am planning around such eventualities... getting economics back at the core of it is essential, and the inverse also -- to create a new form of economics really...

vimothy
06-11-2007, 04:55 PM
Vim, Braudel was writing in postwar france up until maybe the early 80's when the reworking of "civilization and capitalism" was released.

I thought as much. Does Braudel differentiate between different forms of capitalism? For instance, in the quotes posted by dHarry, Braudel states that "[Capitalism] has always been associated with the ability to plan economic strategies and to control market dynamics, and therefore, with a certain degree of centralization and hierarchy." But that's clearly not true. There are variations, from once-ubiquitous socialist command and control economics, to the Keynesian demand management strategies of the 1970s, to the Austrian and Chicago School free markets of the 1980s. The idea that capitalism has always been a system of "arborescent" top-down control is simplistic. Capitalism is both an event and a process, as you point out upthread, and as such the devil remains in the details: yes, post-war France had its top-down, monopolistic dirigisme, but other countries took other routes. And before the war, France was a different (more laissez-faire) story still.


Also, I'm not sure exactly what you mean by monopoly here, but Braudel uses the term to refer to local and micro-monopolies, not just those held by large firms or cities such as Amsterdam (one example of a micro-monopoly: all grain imported into dunkerque during the 1700's was initially sold at the wharf in quantities that only wealthy merchants could afford, to then be carted a few hundred yards to the market where it was sold in smaller shares at a %25 markup.) So if he's talking about centralization and hierarchization, it's both micro and macro.

I'm just assuming that Braudel means a price-controlling cartel, be it large corporation, government agency or local farmer.

So you might point to your example, which might or might not be evidence of price control (intentional collusion), but what does Braudel say about international price convergence of wheat under the first instance of globalisation? It's not always about individual entities controling markets to the disadvantage the many.

vimothy
06-11-2007, 05:00 PM
Still, I find it surprising that economics is left out of Crit Theory -- is it more textual stuff like Derrida or something?

Many cult studs and crit theory peeps are coming from lit, yes? I would imagine few have much of a background in economics... And revolutionary politics is subsumed by middle class accomodationist identity politics -- even if it weren't such a dire sell-out position, it's quite a boring intellectual pursuit!

Not that suprising - IMO.


Im anticipating a disappointing lack of practical transformative progress, but I knew that anyway and am planning around such eventualities... getting economics back at the core of it is essential, and the inverse also -- to create a new form of economics really...

Well, that would definitely be more interesting than Derrida. Does this mean that leftists will start talking about growth again?

hundredmillionlifetimes
06-11-2007, 07:03 PM
Yeah they're all from Lit pretty much, though a lot of the teaching staff are dedicated post-Marxists... but it goes for them too... in a sense professional academia is just as much of a control system (effectively) as others mentioned before... it engages potentially troublesome minds in harmless para-struggles whilst leaving the hegemonic situation as is. Im anticipating a disappointing lack of practical transformative progress, but I knew that anyway and am planning around such eventualities... getting economics back at the core of it is essential, and the inverse also -- to create a new form of economics really...

It's what we used to call Political Economy [what I once studied as an undergrad]... and urgently need to so call it again.

[But if you'll excuse me, I'm off to find my gadgets]

nomadologist
06-11-2007, 07:04 PM
Yeah, I don't know if they're always para-struggles.

I do prefer bloody ones when necessary though.

Mr BoShambles
06-11-2007, 08:43 PM
It's what we used to call Political Economy [what I once studied as an undergrad]... and urgently need to so call it again.

For anyone interested in critical theory applied to IPE (international political economy) check out Andrew Linklater, Robert Cox, Stephen Gill, Kees van de Pijl....

Some draw from the Frankfurt School and others from the work of Gramsci although tbh most take insights from both.

trouc
06-11-2007, 09:36 PM
It's not a witch hunt, I've been genuinely interested in what you have to say. I'm not really that bothered about discussing d&g as such it's just that I think (thought) that behind your interpretation of their 'admiration' of capitalism lies a bias which would be more interesting to hear about. This thread is more broadly about what you would consider to be 'worth dying for' so I was looking at it through that lens and assuming that posts here have some relation to deeply held convictions, or not.

I suppose I just find 'admiration' to be a loaded term. It's not the same as 'respect' for instance.

Noel, if I'd wanted to say something about my personal stance I would have.

On your second paragraph, you respect something you wish to keep at a distance. I don't think that's their agenda.

trouc
06-11-2007, 09:52 PM
I thought as much. Does Braudel differentiate between different forms of capitalism? For instance, in the quotes posted by dHarry, Braudel states that "[Capitalism] has always been associated with the ability to plan economic strategies and to control market dynamics, and therefore, with a certain degree of centralization and hierarchy." But that's clearly not true. There are variations, from once-ubiquitous socialist command and control economics, to the Keynesian demand management strategies of the 1970s, to the Austrian and Chicago School free markets of the 1980s. The idea that capitalism has always been a system of "arborescent" top-down control is simplistic. Capitalism is both an event and a process, as you point out upthread, and as such the devil remains in the details: yes, post-war France had its top-down, monopolistic dirigisme, but other countries took other routes. And before the war, France was a different (more laissez-faire) story still.



I'm just assuming that Braudel means a price-controlling cartel, be it large corporation, government agency or local farmer.

So you might point to your example, which might or might not be evidence of price control (intentional collusion), but what does Braudel say about international price convergence of wheat under the first instance of globalisation? It's not always about individual entities controling markets to the disadvantage the many.

Vim, the book was written about the 1400-1800 time period, so he's not exactly discussing capitalist command economies (US after ww2, south korea, japan? etc). When he talks about centralization in the quote you used above he's primarily discussing it as a local phenomenon, referring to meat monopolies outside paris, local grain or silk cartels, etc, and only mentioning the non-local monopolies of Amsterdam as an afterthought. I'd recommend you pick it up yourself, it's a great book. Don't immediately skip to v2 though.

vimothy
07-11-2007, 12:44 PM
Vim, the book was written about the 1400-1800 time period, so he's not exactly discussing capitalist command economies (US after ww2, south korea, japan? etc). When he talks about centralization in the quote you used above he's primarily discussing it as a local phenomenon, referring to meat monopolies outside paris, local grain or silk cartels, etc, and only mentioning the non-local monopolies of Amsterdam as an afterthought. I'd recommend you pick it up yourself, it's a great book. Don't immediately skip to v2 though.

It does sound interesting, perhaps I'll order it from the library and add it to the pile. One thing that I would say is that the extent to which an economy is command and control / planned (i.e. socialist) is the extent to which it is not capitalist, and the more capitalist, the less economic planning. So a command and control economy (heavily monopolistic), like the USSR or India after independence (and a whole host of others, especially in the third world) is much less economically free than a properly capitalist country like the Republic of Ireland or Hong Kong.

Gavin
09-11-2007, 06:08 PM
Watch out Dissensians:


An airport worker who wrote poems about beheadings is the first woman to be found guilty under new terror laws.

Samina Malik, who liked to call herself a "lyrical terrorist", called for attacks on the West and described "poisoned bullets" capable of killing an entire street in her poetry.

The 23-year-old Muslim wrote of her desire to become a martyr and listed her favourite videos as the "beheading ones".

Described (by whom? tricky passive voice)as a "committed Islamic extremist", Malik, a shop assistant at Heathrow, hoarded an extensive collection of terrorism manuals, the Old Bailey heard.

She was a member of an extremist group linked to Omar Bakri Mohammed, a hate preacher who fled to Lebanon from Britain two years ago.

Yesterday a jury found her guilty of possessing documents likely to be used for terrorism under the Terrorism Act 2000, by a majority of ten to one, after deliberating for 19 hours.

Malik, who wore a black head scarf, wept as the verdict was read out.

Earlier she was cleared of the more serious offence of having articles for a terrorist purpose.

"She is a committed Islamic extremist, who supports terrorism and terrorists.

"She had a library of material that she had collected for terrorist purposes.

"That collection would be extremely useful for someone planning terrorist activity."

The court heard how police raided her home in Southall, West London, after an email from her was found on the computer of a terror suspect in October last year.

She had a profile on the social networking website Hi-5, where she called for the execution of "depraved" Westerners .

The British-born Muslim (does this make her British or not British?) listed her interests as helping the Mujahideen "in any way I can".

Outside the court, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Peter Clarke, head of the Metropolitan Police Counter Terrorism Command, said: "Malik held violent extremist views which she shared with other like-minded people over the internet.

"Merely possessing this material is a serious criminal offence."


http://img.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2007/11_01/SaminaMalikENP_468x650.jpg

LYRICAL TERRORIST WATCH OUT she's got a LIBRARY!

http://img.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2007/11_01/poemsDM0811_468x504.jpg

ILLEGAL POETRY presumably does not incriminate the Daily Mail or those who "download such material on to their computers"

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=492460&in_page_id=1770

gek-opel
09-11-2007, 06:13 PM
LYRICAL TERRORIST WATCH OUT she's got a LIBRARY!

Haha

Gavin
09-11-2007, 06:23 PM
She looks kinda cool in that pic... I wonder if she smokes weed wif infidels...

Mr. Tea
10-11-2007, 05:43 PM
She looks kinda cool in that pic... I wonder if she smokes weed wif infidels...

Yeah, terrorism's well cool, innit.

Gavin
10-11-2007, 05:54 PM
Yeah, terrorism's well cool, innit.

I admire anyone looking that blase while facing criminal charges for writing poetry and "sharing views"....

Aren't these the freedoms we invade other nations to provide?

Mr. Tea
10-11-2007, 06:06 PM
I can't help wondering if you'd be leaping so quickly to defend this woman if she'd been a white supremacist writing material about wiping out Muslims, for example. Of course we have freedom of speech, but if she's putting hate-inciting material into the public domain (which she seems to have been doing) then she's guilty of, well, inciting hatred.

Gavin
10-11-2007, 06:21 PM
I can't help wondering if you'd be leaping so quickly to defend this woman if she'd been a white supremacist writing material about wiping out Muslims, for example. Of course we have freedom of speech, but if she's putting hate-inciting material into the public domain (which she seems to have been doing) then she's guilty of, well, inciting hatred.

Yes actually I would, and there's no shortage of white supremacist writing all over the internet -- they don't wind up in court and slimed by right wing rags though. The ACLU defends the KKK is cases like this all the time which I support -- you don't fight ideas by censoring them. I posted this case because things this woman "did" (thought?) were done by people on this very thread.

That poetry inciting violence, hah... we should ban de Sade too I suppose...

Mr. Tea
10-11-2007, 06:27 PM
That poetry inciting violence, hah... we should ban de Sade too I suppose...

Funnily enough, I can't remember the last time a twenty-something computer programmer from Birmingham was inspired to go on jihad after reading The 120 Days Of Sodom. (Although I like the idea that he might, on account of thinking it's a depiction of the sex life of the average modern infidel... :))

Fair play if you'd also support someone's right to propagate KKK/NF-type material, although I'm not sure I'd agree.

Gavin
10-11-2007, 06:37 PM
Fair play if you'd also support someone's right to propagate KKK/NF-type material, although I'm not sure I'd agree.

They'll propagate it anyway... Better to let them do it in the full light of the public sphere so everyone can see how stupid and shit their ideas are.

noel emits
10-11-2007, 06:41 PM
Isn't the real effect of a high profile prosecution and media execution like this to spread more fear and uncertainty manufacturing further public consent for arbitrarily repressive legislation?

That poetry is pretty sick so why expose it to massive publicity if not to further add to the constructed image of the latest public enemy? I have little doubt that although there may or may not have been 'potential suicide bombers in our schools' (ffs!), it's a damn sight more likely that this girl will find sympathy now that she has indeed been 'martyred'.

It's been said before but it's worth paying attention to how closely religio-cultural tensions can resonate with what would otherwise be framed as regular teenage angst and rebellion. Religion is the new punk rock.

Mr. Tea
10-11-2007, 06:41 PM
They'll propagate it anyway... Better to let them do it in the full light of the public sphere so everyone can see how stupid and shit their ideas are.

But what about the people who don't think the ideas are stupid and shit? This woman didn't write these poems for people to ridicule them, she did it so as to promote violence among like-minded, or potentially like-minded, people.

noel emits
10-11-2007, 06:46 PM
But what about the people who don't think the ideas are stupid and shit? This woman didn't write these poems for people to ridicule them, she did it so as to promote violence among like-minded, or potentially like-minded, people.
See my post above - she's just been handed a massive international distribution deal by those that claim to want to censor her.

Mr. Tea
10-11-2007, 06:47 PM
That poetry is pretty sick so why expose it to massive publicity if not to further add to the constructed image of the latest public enemy?

That's a good point, but I don't really see any alternatives other than not prosecuting at all, thus in effect abandoning laws against incitement-to-hatred, or having secret trials, which is just off the scale as far as authoritarian sinisterness is concerned. Remember that it's the press, not the judiciary, that creates the publicity.

Of course, we could have a less sensationalist, reactionary press, which would be fantastic - but how do you go about doing this without drastically further curtailing the kinds of freedoms these trials are all about?
Eeeurgh, knee-deep in a sticky moral morass already... :confused:

Gavin
10-11-2007, 06:53 PM
But what about the people who don't think the ideas are stupid and shit? This woman didn't write these poems for people to ridicule them, she did it so as to promote violence among like-minded, or potentially like-minded, people.

Think about this: When there's a racist or bigoted Facebook group (which there are many), wouldn't you a) want to know what exactly these assholes are saying so you can counter it; and b) want to know who buys into it and how many so you know how widespread these "taboo" beliefs really are? Even if you don't get into the abstract right to free expression and the state's (or in this case, a corporation) role in regulating speech, there are pragmatic reasons too.

Interesting take over here: http://lecolonelchabert.blogspot.com/2007/09/undershaftism.html

This is one reason why anti-racist activism is so hamstrung in this country I think: overt racist speech is effectively barred from the public sphere so it goes underground, mutates into new forms, and continues to support a racist hierarchy in this country. So you have to run around continually proving that racism still exists because most people only know what gets shoved in their faces by TV. Like people forget a KKK Grand Dragon had a respectable showing in the Republican presidential primaries just 15 years ago.

noel emits
10-11-2007, 07:00 PM
That's a good point, but I don't really see any alternatives other than not prosecuting at all, thus in effect abandoning laws against incitement-to-hatred, or having secret trials, which is just off the scale as far as authoritarian sinisterness is concerned. Remember that it's the press, not the judiciary, that creates the publicity.

Of course, we could have a less sensationalist, reactionary press, which would be fantastic - but how do you go about doing this without drastically further curtailing the kinds of freedoms these trials are all about?
Eeeurgh, knee-deep in a sticky moral morass already... :confused:
I think the first and key point to keep in mind is that it is a 'thought crime' she has committed and that our going down that route is the thin edge of a very nasty wedge indeed.

The press want stories but I think the Gov's attitude inevitably leads the way. There are many alternatives to prosecution, or at least approaches to it which do not simply and cartoonishly brand someone as 'evil'. Not sure what penalties she is potentially facing but I would like to see some kind of counseling or education suggested rather than just punitive measures. Can't really see that happening though, cos that's just not what it's really about in my view.

And of course then there's the old chestnut about tackling the causes of anti social behaviour - which for some reason the authorities never seem to actually manage to do. :slanted:

Mr. Tea
10-11-2007, 07:15 PM
. Not sure what penalties she is potentially facing but I would like to see some kind of counseling or education suggested rather than just punitive measures.

There are no doubt some who would see attempts at 're-education' like this as in some roundabout po-mo sort of way more Orwellian than 'merely' locking someone up...though I hasten to add, I wouldn't be one of them. I think this route could well be a lot more constructive, actually.

noel emits
10-11-2007, 07:18 PM
There are no doubt some who would see attempts at 're-education' like this as in some roundabout po-mo sort of way more Orwellian than 'merely' locking someone up...though I hasten to add, I wouldn't be one of them. I think this route could well be a lot more constructive, actually.
And out in the open as Gavin says. If we are all so opposed to attitudes like the ones this girl has (although she's probably just an angry kid) then where's the problem in sending her for classes on tolerance and education in comparative religion or something?

You're right though - I can envisage liberal outrage that we should suggest teaching people about different cultures, coz you know, that means you're not respecting their culture. What a paradox!

hundredmillionlifetimes
10-11-2007, 10:25 PM
Your right though - I can envisage liberal outrage that we should suggest teaching people about different cultures, coz you know, that means you're not respecting their culture. What a paradox!

As AIPAC and other Zionist-Jewish lobbies in the US and Europe and supportive organisations continue their campaign to shut down all book-stores and libraries that stock copies of Mein Kampf and related incitement-to-hatred documentation, with the arrest and conviction of all their staff as terrorist conspirators, along with all members of the public in possession of such terrorist material, Liberal Outrage is Expressed as Anti-Semetic Pope is Arrested and Sent to Israeli Kibbutz for Re-Education

http://i202.photobucket.com/albums/aa116/hundredmillionlifetimes/nazi-priests.jpg

nomadologist
10-11-2007, 10:46 PM
I can't help wondering if you'd be leaping so quickly to defend this woman if she'd been a white supremacist writing material about wiping out Muslims, for example. Of course we have freedom of speech, but if she's putting hate-inciting material into the public domain (which she seems to have been doing) then she's guilty of, well, inciting hatred.

Yeah, this is coming from someone who consistently has tried to ridicule anyone on Dissensus who has the nerve to point out institutionalized racism, even when it's covert.

If this obvious "terrorist" womans can be prosecuted, then by all means should we not be going after all of those white soccer moms who tell their children not to talk to black men because they're bound to rob and rape you?

hundredmillionlifetimes
10-11-2007, 11:08 PM
Interesting take over here: http://lecolonelchabert.blogspot.com/2007/09/undershaftism.html



Off-topic for sure, but I'm amazed that Le Currency Trader [ex Alphonso] didn't squeeze in a Zizek-ridiculing reference in all of this. After all, its hilarious reading both Le Opera Lover's (http://lecolonelchabert.blogspot.com/2007/11/right-on-cue.html) and American Stranger's (http://traxus4420.wordpress.com/2007/11/09/and-i-dont-care-about-the-little-us-above-zizeks-name/)latest self-righteously-indignant and obsessively moralizing, chronic mis-readings of Z-man's recent London Review of Books combinatorial defence of Chavez: Resistence is Surrender (http://www.lrb.co.uk/v29/n22/zize01_.html). The gesticulating-at-the-Man moralizing Left still don't get passive-philosophizing Zizek!

"The thing to do is, on the contrary, to bombard those in power with strategically well-selected, precise, finite demands, which canít be met with the same excuse."

Oooh, so neo-liberal!

matt b
10-11-2007, 11:14 PM
by your vague (and misunderstood) definition of 'inciting hatred' mr tea, anyone who owned a book by marx or a homophobic dancehall 7" would be locked up.

the terrorism act is disgracefully illiberal.


just remember when you're stopped under it (which will happen- i have been) don't give your name or address. you don't have to. bit of an oversight eh, mr blair?

Gavin
11-11-2007, 01:01 AM
Off-topic for sure, but I'm amazed that Le Currency Trader [ex Alphonso] didn't squeeze in a Zizek-ridiculing reference in all of this. After all, its hilarious reading both Le Opera Lover's (http://lecolonelchabert.blogspot.com/2007/11/right-on-cue.html) and American Stranger's (http://traxus4420.wordpress.com/2007/11/09/and-i-dont-care-about-the-little-us-above-zizeks-name/)latest self-righteously-indignant and obsessively moralizing, chronic mis-readings of Z-man's recent London Review of Books combinatorial defence of Chavez: Resistence is Surrender (http://www.lrb.co.uk/v29/n22/zize01_.html). The gesticulating-at-the-Man moralizing Left still don't get passive-philosophizing Zizek!

"The thing to do is, on the contrary, to bombard those in power with strategically well-selected, precise, finite demands, which canít be met with the same excuse."

Oooh, so neo-liberal!

Yes, I noticed that weirdness with the LRB piece.... I don't get too much into the blogosphere drama, but I really like a lot of Le Colonel's posts... she does not play fair in the comments section though.

hundredmillionlifetimes
11-11-2007, 02:21 AM
Yes, I noticed that weirdness with the LRB piece.... I don't get too much into the blogosphere drama, but I really like a lot of Le Colonel's posts... she does not play fair in the comments section though.

Yes, I agree. Perhaps you're not au fait with past blogo 'events', but when it comes to Zizek, LCC goes paranoid-ballistic, so much so that she's had very public falling-outs with such as Jodi Dean (via legal means, no less) and K-punk. Oh, I'm still very much in her 'good books', but lo-and-behold any favourable mention of anything whatsoever about Zizek/Lacan ... :cool: she's got a very efficient RPG launcher.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 02:16 PM
If this obvious "terrorist" womans can be prosecuted, then by all means should we not be going after all of those white soccer moms who tell their children not to talk to black men because they're bound to rob and rape you?

Well if our hypothetical soccer mom were running a website called www.allblackmenarerapists.net, that would be a rather different matter. Fortunately, it's not mandatory for govt. listening devices to be installed in people's homes; unfortunately this leaves parents free to fill their kids' heads with all manner of racial prejudices or religious nuttery, doesn't it? It's an inescapable facet of freedom of speech. Perhaps this should be extended to the wider public domain too, I don't know.

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 02:31 PM
So suddenly hate speech is NOT OK when it's directed at white people? Doesn't matter that we can't stop the KKK from demonstrating. Nope.

That's brilliant!

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 03:33 PM
So suddenly hate speech is NOT OK when it's directed at white people?

When did I say ANYTHING that could be interpreted as that? Are you even reading the same words I'm typing? OK, let's put it in simple terms: freedom of speech, on the whole, is a Good Thing. But speech or writing with the intention of inciting hatred that could lead to discrimination, violence, terrorism etc. is a Bad Thing. There is clearly a conflict here. Some people propose censorship to stop the more extreme kinds of inflammatory material being distributed; I'm not really sure where I stand on this, there are arguments for and against it. If I came across in this thread as pro-censorship it's only because I was discussing it with people who are clearly anti-censorship.

But if you want to take the censorial position, and pass laws to enforrce it, you can only do this when people put the material into the public or semi-public domain, eg. online. This applies just as much to neo-Nazi groups as it does to al-Queda. But clearly there's no way to stop people holding prejudices in the privacy of their own home, is there?

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 03:34 PM
I don't think we should censor anything. Ever.

gek-opel
11-11-2007, 03:39 PM
I don't think we should censor anything. Ever.

Do you draw a line at child pornography though? Or would you not class that as a speech act as it is usually necessarily derivative of a serious crime in the first place...?

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 03:44 PM
I suppose when people say 'freedom of speech' they usually (or at least often) mean 'freedom of expression', which would include images and material culture in the wider sense, so art, pornography, (controversial architecture? :D) etc.

And the child-porn thing doesn't necessarily involve any real molestation, as it could mean photo-manipulated images or even just a drawing. Or a perfectly innocent photo of a child in the 'wrong' hands, for that matter.

gek-opel
11-11-2007, 04:00 PM
Ok but could there not be some element of proportionality involved-- ie: that the purported benefit must be proportionate to the level of offence caused. Eg: in the case of the Danish Mohammad cartoons, the actual pictures themselves were pathetic, unfunny, and not worth the anger they created by any means. It seemed like a deliberately provocative gesture without anything actually to say about political Islam at all. Those backing freedom of speech there seemed willing to defend totally inane output.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 04:39 PM
Well yes, the cartoons were rubbish and the whole thing seemed like an exercise in causing trouble for the sake of it. I mean, did we learn anything? "Muslims offended by offensive-to-Muslims material", oh really, how revelatory.

gek-opel
11-11-2007, 04:54 PM
However, I'm loath to give some kind of moral/legal primacy to the category of "offence"-- its absurd. Those cartoons were pathetic though.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 05:21 PM
I agree. I suppose the editors were in the moral position I think of as "They should have the right to it - I just wish they wouldn't", if that makes sense.

noel emits
11-11-2007, 05:28 PM
The offended parties should have come back with a devastating art critical aesthetic beat down.

Like "Your cartoons suck donkey cocks. LOL!!!1"

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 05:39 PM
Pig cocks, surely?

That's appropriate to both Islam and Denmark. ;)

noel emits
11-11-2007, 05:47 PM
Do you draw a line at child pornography though? Or would you not class that as a speech act as it is usually necessarily derivative of a serious crime in the first place...?
This is the sort of thing Peter Sotos mucks about with isn't it? Fictionalised porn that attempts to find out where the lines are by ostensibly being produced for that very purpose. Ostensibly.

Here's a question for those that know - when people like D&G discuss schizophrenia as a resistance to being fully 'oedipalised', do they ever talk about the paedo thing as possibly being a similar response? I mean it clearly is, no? At least in some cases. Or is that unthinkable?

I think Sotos turned out to be too 'edgy' for Whitehouse in the end.

noel emits
11-11-2007, 05:51 PM
Pig cocks, surely?

That's appropriate to both Islam and Denmark. ;)
You should apply for a job in Political Islam PR Inc. They could use that kind of thinking. ;)

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 05:53 PM
Child pornography is usually made after the commission of a crime.

Where it's not, I don't think they guys should be censored, I think my uncle Vinny should mercilessly put them down.

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 06:06 PM
Here's a question for those that know - when people like D&G discuss schizophrenia as a resistance to being fully 'oedipalised', do they ever talk about the paedo thing as possibly being a similar response? I mean it clearly is, no? At least in some cases. Or is that unthinkable?

I've been waiting for this one :D

No, pedophilia is more about being stuck INSIDE the Oedipal than anything else, when it's not solely predatory (you can't really change a sociopath or a sexual predator, and children are far easier victims even than women...)

gek-opel
11-11-2007, 06:25 PM
I know we discussed this before Nomad but run me through your argument again: is it that Paedos are basically simply sublimating their Oedipally organised desire from adults to children...?

Also (slightly separately) what's the connection between the sociopath and oedipal?

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 06:28 PM
Hmm, some would say pedos are "enacting" or simply re-staging their own Oedipal desire power plays, but taking the part of the parent instead of continuing in the role of the child in order to try to find a way "out" (that they, of course, never find)

Sociopathy and the Oedipal would be a good name for an essay, but I'm not so sure they have much to do with one another. In the psychiatric community it is widely held that sociopathy is something like a birth defect.

gek-opel
11-11-2007, 06:30 PM
Hmm, some would say pedos are "enacting" or simply re-staging their own Oedipal desire power plays, but taking the part of the parent instead of continuing in the role of the child in order to try to find a way "out" (that they, of course, never find)

Sociopathy and the Oedipal would be a good name for an essay, but I'm not so sure they have much to do with one another. In the psychiatric community it is widely held that sociopathy is something like a birth defect.

Also Sociopathy is hardly inately resistant to Capital. Indeed it sits there very well indeed (although it need not do so of course).

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 06:31 PM
I wonder if there were sociopaths before capitalism?

That would be an interesting book to write. Sociopathy and Capitalism.

gek-opel
11-11-2007, 06:38 PM
I wonder if there were sociopaths before capitalism?

That would be an interesting book to write. Sociopathy and Capitalism.

That's a big question! In a sense Capitalism certainly provides an ideal habitat in which actual sociopaths may thrive, and perhaps which encourages others on the spectrum to indulge their more sociopathic tendencies... I'm quite interested in sociopathy but unsure as to how you could construct it as a productive model of a progressive political subject, given the obvious evidence that the sociopathic are at a considerable advantage under Capitalism (providing they don't actually start murdering people)... the moral sociopath might be the aim...? Implies you can detach morality from empathy (which I think is pretty vital actually)...

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 06:38 PM
I wonder if there were sociopaths before capitalism?


What about someone like Caligula or Genhis Khan? Would they count, or were they just very successful megalomaniacs?

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 06:39 PM
That's a big question! In a sense Capitalism certainly provides an ideal habitat in which actual sociopaths may thrive, and perhaps which encourages others on the spectrum to indulge their more sociopathic tendencies... I'm quite interested in sociopathy but unsure as to how you could construct it as a productive model of a progressive political subject, given the obvious evidence that the sociopathic are at a considerable advantage under Capitalism (providing they don't actually start murdering people)... the moral sociopath might be the aim...? Implies you can detach morality from empathy (which I think is pretty vital actually)...

Very interesting...it is certainly important to detach morality from empathy, otherwise every sociopath would inherit the earth---

Or have they already? I sometimes wonder this, especially after working in the private sector.

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 06:42 PM
What about someone like Caligula or Genhis Khan? Would they count, or were they just very successful megalomaniacs?

Good question, I'm really not sure. Back in the day, especially if we're talking tribal/nomadic warfare, men like Genghis Khan served very important social functions.

If GK WERE a sociopath, though...well, this theory would be lent credence given what a huge influence GK had on the genetic make-up of future generations. They keep making the genome and finding random "white" people in the U.S. who have his (patrilineal) DNA !!

gek-opel
11-11-2007, 06:50 PM
Very interesting...it is certainly important to detach morality from empathy, otherwise every sociopath would inherit the earth---

Or have they already? I sometimes wonder this, especially after working in the private sector.

In a sense Capital makes certain people act as if they were sociopaths even when they actually aren't.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 06:51 PM
They keep making the genome and finding random "white" people in the U.S. who have his (patrilineal) DNA !!

My money's on Rumsfeld.

Funnily enough, there's a bit in the Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy where the foreman of the demolition team due to knock down the guy's house is unknowingly a descendent of Genghis Khan, and gets these Mongol-type urges for reasons he can't understand.

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 06:53 PM
You're right Gek. I wonder if *acting* like a sociopath and *being* one are all the much different?

HA that's cool, never read that book. Was afraid that doing as much acid as I do and reading that book would be the biggest cliche ever. Then again I like krautrock a whole lot...

noel emits
11-11-2007, 07:24 PM
Very interesting...it is certainly important to detach morality from empathy, otherwise every sociopath would inherit the earth---

Or have they already? I sometimes wonder this, especially after working in the private sector.
Damn, why can't I find the Kurt Vonnegut piece that was in the Guardian last year about this. Probably it was in some other paper or something.

Ah - http://books.guardian.co.uk/extracts/story/0,,1691370,00.html

There is a tragic flaw in our precious Constitution, and I don't know what can be done to fix it. This is it: only nut cases want to be president.

Makes you want to laugh and cry don't it? Unless you are a sociopath that is.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 07:28 PM
It's surreal humour but not in a 'trippy' way, I would say. Not sure it quite merits its uber-cult status but it is fairly funny nonetheless.

Re. acting like a sociopath vs. really being one, this seems to strike a chord with what I think about insanity in general, which is that a society or culture can be collecively insane at the same time the vast majority of individuals within it are not. A number of experiments have been done that have shown how easy it is get pretty ordinary people to start acting like concentration camp guards. (Stanford Prison Exp., anyone? Not Nazism per se, but a pretty similar mentality.)

Thinking about it, this resonates further with something IdleRich and some others were saying about how situations can arise whereby a company is forced, either by legally or by its own internal rules, to act in a way that no-one involved in the enterprise - the CEOs of he company, its shareholders, its employees or its customers - actually want...it just does it anyway. Must be a whole load of writing out there on societies/corporations as gestalt entities, I'm sure.

noel emits
11-11-2007, 07:53 PM
What about someone like Caligula or Genhis Khan? Would they count, or were they just very successful megalomaniacs?
Wasn't someone here arguing that Ghengis Khan was a capitalist par excellence? I know I'm going to regret asking.

Gavin
11-11-2007, 07:54 PM
Re. acting like a sociopath vs. really being one, this seems to strike a chord with what I think about insanity in general, which is that a society or culture can be collecively insane at the same time the vast majority of individuals within it are not. A number of experiments have been done that have shown how easy it is get pretty ordinary people to start acting like concentration camp guards. (Stanford Prison Exp., anyone? Not Nazism per se, but a pretty similar mentality.)

http://aussie_news_views.typepad.com/aussie_news_views/images/lynndie_england.jpg

noel emits
11-11-2007, 07:54 PM
In a sense Capital makes certain people act as if they were sociopaths even when they actually aren't.
The super-egoic injunction to be a cunt.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 07:54 PM
Wasn't someone here arguing that Ghengis Khan was a capitalist par excellence? I know I'm going to regret asking.

I hear he got a garuanteed return of 8% APR on severed heads.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 07:56 PM
http://aussie_news_views.typepad.com/aussie_news_views/images/lynndie_england.jpg

Well, quite.

I like the photo of Bush I saw around the time all this stuff broke; he looked all confused (for a change) and it had been captioned "But I was only giving orders!".

noel emits
11-11-2007, 08:01 PM
A number of experiments have been done that have shown how easy it is get pretty ordinary people to start acting like concentration camp guards. (Stanford Prison Exp., anyone? Not Nazism per se, but a pretty similar mentality.)
Fascinating and chilling those experiments.

RD Laing was big on this - that mental illness could be seen as socio-structural - experiments were conducted where people could be made to appear schizophrenic to professional psychiatrists (and remember Laing was very much opposed to psychiatrists having the power to decide who was crazy) by putting them in situations where they were given contradictory instructions and information about a given situation.

Psychiatrists R.D. Laing, Theodore Lidz, Silvano Arieti and others argued that schizophrenia could be understood as an injury to the inner self inflicted by psychologically invasive "schizophrenogenic" parents, or as a healthy attempt to cope with a sick society. Psychiatrist Thomas Szasz argues that "mental illness" is an inherently incoherent combination of a medical and a psychological concept, but popular because it legitimizes the use of psychiatric force to control and limit deviance from societal norms. Adherents of this view referred to "the myth of mental illness" after Szasz's controversial book of that name. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-psychiatry)

Madness is rare in individuals and commonplace in groups.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 08:05 PM
experiments were conducted where people could be made to appear schizophrenic to professional psychiatrists (and remember Laing was very much opposed to psychiatrists having the power to decide who was crazy) by putting them in situations where they were given contradictory instructions and information about a given situation.


http://blogs.knoxnews.com/knx/eder/hal9000.jpg

noel emits
11-11-2007, 08:06 PM
Poor HAL :(

gek-opel
11-11-2007, 08:10 PM
Fascinating and chilling those experiments.

RD Laing was big on this - that mental illness could be seen as socio-structural - experiments were conducted where people could be made to appear schizophrenic to professional psychiatrists (and remember Laing was very much opposed to psychiatrists having the power to decide who was crazy) by putting them in situations where they were given contradictory instructions and information about a given situation.

Psychiatrists R.D. Laing, Theodore Lidz, Silvano Arieti and others argued that schizophrenia could be understood as an injury to the inner self inflicted by psychologically invasive "schizophrenogenic" parents, or as a healthy attempt to cope with a sick society. Psychiatrist Thomas Szasz argues that "mental illness" is an inherently incoherent combination of a medical and a psychological concept, but popular because it legitimizes the use of psychiatric force to control and limit deviance from societal norms. Adherents of this view referred to "the myth of mental illness" after Szasz's controversial book of that name. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-psychiatry)

Madness is rare in individuals and commonplace in groups.

Im with the anti-psychiatrists on this one: these are just labels used to control people with beliefs, attitudes and behaviours which are deemed threatening to society.

noel emits
11-11-2007, 08:23 PM
Also Sociopathy is hardly inately resistant to Capital. Indeed it sits there very well indeed (although it need not do so of course).
No, and yes. But it could definitely be seen as a resistance to being 'oedipalised' by just not giving a shit, opting out of the emotional hierarchy / social matrix whilst playing it for all it's worth. Not sure I agree with that though. I do get the impression that it is more like a congenital brain condition.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 08:25 PM
Im with the anti-psychiatrists on this one: these are just labels used to control people with beliefs, attitudes and behaviours which are deemed threatening to society.

Well they can be threatening to themselves, too. And I'm a part of society myself, and I'd rather be protected from people who irrationally want to do me harm (at least someone who wants to rationally do me harm might do so in a predictble way, that I can try to avoid).
That said, I think the way we treat people with these kinds of disorders is very far from ideal a lot of the time.

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 08:32 PM
All of these points are really interesting... go for a walk to Natural Foods and come back with no idea where to start...

Genghis Khan was being called a proto-capitalist in the misinterpreted "pro-capitalist" D&G sense where people believe capitalism is a system that tends toward disorder and like this idea. This could start a whole new superlong argument though so I'll wait on it.

I'm with the anti-psychiatrists in that I think that "mental illness" and "pathology" are not the self-same thing. I think certain mental illnesses lead to less pathological states of mind (or states of being) than the average or person whose life aligns with normativity perfectly. On the other hand, the problem with mental illness, and the reason I believe studying it and treating it is important, is more about the danger the suicidally depressed or mentally ill pose to themselves (rather than society).

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 08:40 PM
Sure, the risk of self-harm is a huge argument in favour of some kind of intervention when people suffer from certain kinds of mental illness, and like it or not there are some (a small minority, I know) who pose a severe threat to other people.

Gavin
11-11-2007, 08:44 PM
This anti-psychiatry stuff is pretty interesting... any book recs for Laing and others? I've got Foucault's Madness and Civilization (not sure if that counts).

Gavin
11-11-2007, 08:45 PM
Sure, the risk of self-harm is a huge argument in favour of some kind of intervention when people suffer from certain kinds of mental illness, and like it or not there are some (a small minority, I know) who pose a severe threat to other people.

To be human is to be a threat to others.

Edit: Sorry that just popped out.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 08:45 PM
There's always Dianetics. :D

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 08:48 PM
To be human is to be a threat to others.

Some of whom...http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/41028000/jpg/_41028174_stone.203.jpg http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Stone_&#37;28Russell_murder_case%29
...are more of a threat than others:http://www.maths.strath.ac.uk/~aap03102/img/timmy.jpg. (for the dubious benefit of USsensians) (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timmy_Mallett)

SHIT, I got them the wrong way round. Ah well, time I had some dinner I think.

Gavin
11-11-2007, 08:48 PM
I am actually sympathetic to Scientologist attacks on psychiatry (if not much else)... Quite interesting to watch all the hysterical criticism thrown at Tom Cruise when he dissed it.

noel emits
11-11-2007, 08:54 PM
Mr. Tea, please allow the Nu-Ravers.

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 08:55 PM
Ehh, I don't know, it wasn't that Tom Cruise objected to the misuse of pharmaceuticals or the abuses of big pharma as an industry, he personally attacked women who had taken SSRIs for post-partum depression, which is a particularly lethal and potentially damaging disease. I think women, who already get enough shit when it comes to the mythology surrounding and fetishization of motherhood, weren't about to let Dr. Cruise tell them they were bad parents because they made the decision to medicate their severe depression so they could better care for their infants.

Also, he literally tried to make a connection between pharmaceuticals and Nazism, and here's how the argument went--and I am not making this up--

Adderall is bad because it's named for Adolph Hitler (yes, this is what he claimed). Yes, Adolph Hitler. Because there's an "a" and a "d" at the beginning!! Not because there are Greek origins for the brand name. Nope!

And it's not like the first psychoanalysts were Jews or anything! How silly of people to refuse to acknowledge the origin of psychoanalysis in Nazism!

noel emits
11-11-2007, 08:55 PM
This anti-psychiatry stuff is pretty interesting... any book recs for Laing and others? I've got Foucault's Madness and Civilization (not sure if that counts).
I think it's "The Divided Self" and a biography (The Crucible Of Experience) that I read - was a while ago and I'm not sure how key these are to this discussion, it was just what I could find in the library when I got interested in that stuff.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 08:56 PM
Mr. Tea, please allow the Nu-Ravers.

Shit, you're not wrong! That outfit'd go down a storm at Bang Face...

Gavin
11-11-2007, 09:03 PM
Ehh, I don't know, it wasn't that Tom Cruise objected to the misuse of pharmaceuticals or the abuses of big pharma as an industry, he personally attacked women who had taken SSRIs for post-partum depression, which is a particularly lethal and potentially damaging disease. I think women, who already get enough shit when it comes to the mythology surrounding and fetishization of motherhood, weren't about to let Dr. Cruise tell them they were bad parents because they made the decision to medicate their severe depression so they could better care for their infants.

Also, he literally tried to make a connection between pharmaceuticals and Nazism, and here's how the argument went--and I am not making this up--

Adderall is bad because it's named for Adolph Hitler (yes, this is what he claimed). Yes, Adolph Hitler. Because there's an "a" and a "d" at the beginning!! Not because there are Greek origins for the brand name. Nope!

And it's not like the first psychoanalysts were Jews or anything! How silly of people to refuse to acknowledge the origin of psychoanalysis in Nazism!

Hah, did not know that about Adderall... Tom Cruise strikes me as not very bright or articulate in general... Still, his comments seemed to strike a nerve harder than his words actually deserved. Certainly very little criticism of pharmaceuticals in the corporate media sphere.

[Actually I often wonder how many celebrities are on prescription uppers -- all of them? Maybe why teen pop stars suffer from exhaustion all the time?]

Is post-partum depression related to motherhood fetishization?

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 09:09 PM
I think it's "The Divided Self" and a biography (The Crucible Of Experience) that I read - was a while ago and I'm not sure how key these are to this discussion, it was just what I could find in the library when I got interested in that stuff.

Well, what's weird about this--and I'm not entirely unsympathetic to Laing from what I'm understanding so far, I'd actually be interested in reading more--is that his definition of schizophrenia seems outdated at best. Schizophrenia is not split personality disorder, it's a disorder characterized by delusions and hallucinations.

noel emits
11-11-2007, 09:11 PM
Well, what's weird about this--and I'm not entirely unsympathetic to Laing from what I'm understanding so far, I'd actually be interested in reading more--is that his definition of schizophrenia seems outdated at best. Schizophrenia is not split personality disorder, it's a disorder characterized by delusions and hallucinations.
Well it's an old book...but that's absolutely not what he means by 'The Divided Self', obviously he has a very good idea of how schizophrenia manifests.

One thing that he and his colleagues are famous for is the instituting of a residential treatment centre for people experiencing schizophrenic and psychotic episodes. It was freeform and non authoritarian and sought to provide a safe environment for patient to go through their 'process'. They were encouraged to freely express and get involved in art creation and music and so on. For a while it was very effective and they had non-remission rates that were vastly in excess of the norm for psychiatric treatment of these disorders.

I think something went wrong at one point - someone got hurt, and this provided enough ammunition for their many (you can imagine) opponents to get their practice discredited.

I'll have to check on the exact details.

They often spoke of this process taking 40 days and 40 nights. Sounds like I'm romanticising the whole business a bit - I just think it's a shame how progressive endeavors like this come up against the blinkered self interest of the establishment. Same thing with Reich.

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 09:15 PM
Is post-partum depression related to motherhood fetishization?

Very much. Post-partum depression was also a hot-button issue at the time, because new research had just emerged that indicated that untreated post-partum depression in mothers made their own children several times more likely to suffer from depression and other mental illnesses down the road.

It's related to the fetishization of motherhood because post-partum depression was barely acknowledged by the medical community until recently, let alone the average person. Motherhood is SOO fulfilling to women, you see--it's the ENTIRE POINT of their existence, it's all women dream about from the time they're little girls (just like their wedding day! second only to wanting to be a mother)--it is so "natural" and consists of everything that should make women happy, that't there's NO WAY a new mother could be depressed. It's just not possible. Once women pop out a kid, all their wildest dreams have come true.

Oh yes, and they also stop wanting to have sex, because at that point they're so entirely devoted to their children that they cease to be sexual creatures. That and because moms can't have sexual urges, it's against the law of boyhood logic.

Gavin
11-11-2007, 09:31 PM
Wikipedia's take (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Post_partum_depression), which is rather noncommital, suggests lack of resources contributes to PPD -- not clear why it would affect Brooke Shields in that case, but "resources" can be pretty broad I suppose.

It made me think of the women I see on the bus, younger than me with two kids dragging strollers by themselves... I'd be depressed too in that situation! No doubt PPD is underdiagnosed in lower income women (of course if they have no health insurance it doesn't much matter any way).


That and because moms can't have sexual urges, it's against the law of boyhood logic.

Hmm...

http://imagecache2.allposters.com/images/pic/153/994066~The-Family-Guy-Got-MILF-Posters.jpg

...talk about Oedipal...

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 09:52 PM
Wikipedia's take (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Post_partum_depression), which is rather noncommital, suggests lack of resources contributes to PPD -- not clear why it would affect Brooke Shields in that case, but "resources" can be pretty broad I suppose.

It made me think of the women I see on the bus, younger than me with two kids dragging strollers by themselves... I'd be depressed too in that situation! No doubt PPD is underdiagnosed in lower income women (of course if they have no health insurance it doesn't much matter any way).


Yeah, lack of resources probably contributes massively, but there's actually a lot of evidence to suggest that the drastic hormone fluctuations that are naturally occurring after pregnancy have a lot to do with it as well. I wouldn't be surprised if wealthier, better educated people with more general emotional support from partners have better coping mechanisms and more access to better doctors, so they come through the natural hormonal changes less scathed than low income mothers (who are all too often going it alone in every sense)...

Gavin
11-11-2007, 10:10 PM
I'm thinking of doing a blog post on MILFs but I'm afraid of referring to porn too often....

nomadologist
11-11-2007, 10:14 PM
Do it!! I'd be interested in reading an intelligent take on the whole rise of the "cougar" in our collective not-so-unconscious (a la Desperate Housewives and the like). One that isn't by Joel Stein or in the form of a Vh1 "I HEART the 80s" rerun.

Here's a transcript of the interview with Matt Lauer and Tommy C.

http://youcantmakeitup.blogspot.com/2005/06/cruise-uncontrollable.html

Guybrush
11-11-2007, 10:27 PM
Ok but could there not be some element of proportionality involved-- ie: that the purported benefit must be proportionate to the level of offence caused. Eg: in the case of the Danish Mohammad cartoons, the actual pictures themselves were pathetic, unfunny, and not worth the anger they created by any means. It seemed like a deliberately provocative gesture without anything actually to say about political Islam at all. Those backing freedom of speech there seemed willing to defend totally inane output.

Yes, the pictures were not particularly funny, but the decision to publish them had nothing to do with their possible artistic qualities and everything to do with their being a means for examining the frontier of free speech. They were meant to provoke, obviously, but more than anything they were seen as a contribution to the Danish public discourse, aimed not specifically at Muslims but at Denmark’s political and cultural establishment. Providence had other plans, of course, but that’s a valuable lession in itself. And a very illuminating one. By contrast, I find something like Lars Vilks’ Muhammad-as-a-roundabout-dog (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lars_Vilks_Muhammad_drawings_controversy) ploy much harder to defend, mostly because the example has already been set.

Gavin
11-11-2007, 10:29 PM
Yeah, I've read the transcript before (don't see the adderall-Hitler connection)... maybe he comes off more manic in the sound clips, but reading through it again he doesn't sound all that unreasonable, certainly not unhinged. It's obvious that Matt Lauer's tripped Cruise's soap-box wire, and Cruise isn't particularly fair to Lauer, but the mockery it's inspired (see that blog) seems incommensurate with Cruise's positions. Yes, he's a presumptuous ass, but we're encouraged by the commentary on TV, radio, and blogs to see him as absurd, insane, and irrational for daring to suggest that prescription medication has severe limitations and in many cases harmful effects, the effect of which is to close down debate and critique. And he's right that Lauer doesn't seem to know shit about the topic that he himself brought up -- he's just regurgitating commonsense wisdom about chemical imbalances which from my own meager understanding is a gross oversimplification, if not outright mischaracterization of mental illness.

trouc
11-11-2007, 10:35 PM
All of these points are really interesting... go for a walk to Natural Foods and come back with no idea where to start...

Genghis Khan was being called a proto-capitalist in the misinterpreted "pro-capitalist" D&G sense where people believe capitalism is a system that tends toward disorder and like this idea. This could start a whole new superlong argument though so I'll wait on it.

I'm with the anti-psychiatrists in that I think that "mental illness" and "pathology" are not the self-same thing. I think certain mental illnesses lead to less pathological states of mind (or states of being) than the average or person whose life aligns with normativity perfectly. On the other hand, the problem with mental illness, and the reason I believe studying it and treating it is important, is more about the danger the suicidally depressed or mentally ill pose to themselves (rather than society).

Ugh, no. That was not my "interpretation," in fact I believe I laid out specific ways in which he promoted new/different modes of order.

To whoever brought up D&G and pedophilia (I know this is pushing the conversation back several pages), I think Foucault would be more relevant. He discusses the issue in the History of Sexuality, and comes out in a book of interviews I read a couple years back (put out by Semiotext(e)) as pretty much against all age of consent laws, going so far as to join some organization dedicated to their abolishment in France (basically a non-fictional NAMBLA). This seemed pretty fascinating at the time to me, but I'm having difficulty working through his motivations for it at the moment.

On PPD, everything mentioned above makes sense, but I think there's also a simple element of "What the fuck did I just do?" I'd imagine it's pretty easy to get through 9 months without realizing the actual consequences/life-changes that are inescapable once they've become real. This shows up elsewhere too, as in the first couple of months after marriage often being the worst.

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 10:48 PM
(basically a non-fictional NAMBLA)..

Hate to break this to you, but NAMBLA is a non-fictional NAMBLA: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nambla
(Sometimes truth is stranger than South Park.)

Gavin
11-11-2007, 10:50 PM
(basically a non-fictional NAMBLA)

NAMBLA ain't fictional; in fact, to uncharacteristically pick up a previous point in this topic, I believe the ACLU has supported their right to speech (if not kidfucking).

http://www.aclu.org/freespeech/protest/11289prs20000831.html

Mr. Tea
11-11-2007, 10:52 PM
Hahaha, we sure know our political nonces on the forum.

Also, I put it you that the correct plural of milf is milves.