Faint gibbering heard from somewhere near the restricted stacks
Tag Archives: Conditions
These things are symptoms of political inefficiency. In a properly organized society like ours, nobody has any opportunities for being noble or heroic. Conditions have got to be thoroughly unstable before the occasion can arise.
Did our ancestors go peeping about with dark lanterns, and do we walk at our ease in broad sunshine? Where is the manifestation of our light? By what symptoms do you recognise it? What are its signs, its tokens, its symptoms, its symbols, its categories, its conditions? What is it, and why? How, where, when is it to be seen, felt, and understood? What do we see by it which our ancestors saw not, and which at the same time is worth seeing?
“In this chapter, the idea is given that all limitation and evil is an exceedingly rare accident; there can be no night in the whole of the Solar System, except in rare spots, where the shadow of a planet is cast by itself. It is a serious misfortune that we happen to live in a tiny corner of the system, where the darkness reaches such a high figure as 50 per cent.
The same is true of moral and spiritual conditions.” [via]
“In his 1985 cult anarchist treatise T.A.Z., Hakim Bey, aka the poet Peter Lamborn Wilson, described what he dubbed the temporary autonomous zone: ‘a guerrila operation which liberates an area (of land, of time, of imagination).’ Which is as good a description of Occupy Wall Street as any.
Such zones have flourished, however briefly, around the world, often in secret, Mr. Bey wrote, but in in contemporary America he thought such a space would most likely emerge after three conditions were met. First, people needed to understand not only how the State (Wall Street, the One Percent, whatever) had enslaved them but also ‘the ways in which we are ensnared in a fantasy in which ideas oppress us.’ When the Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek showed up in the park a few weeks back, he compared this process of awakening to the John Carpenter movie They Live, in which the protagonist, Nada, finds a pair of special sunglasses which reveal that the advertising billboards all around him carry hidden messages: submit, stay asleep, conform, consume. The dollar bill? This is your god. (And spoiler alert: the rich are all aliens.)
The second condition was that the internet would need to evolve into a useful tool of dissent and organization.
And third, Mr. Bey wrote, ‘The State must progress on its present course in which hysterical rigidity comes more and more to mask a vacuity, an abyss of power.’
Check, check, check.”
and also suggests
“If you really want to understand Occupy Wall Street, you have to talk to the poets.”