aphorism from an upcoming “My Thoughts Inexactly”
aphorism from an upcoming “My Thoughts Inexactly”
don’t hear them? don’t despair
speak them, to show you care
In response to Capitalism is Cruelty and this facebook discussion which indicates fundamental differences and problems of reconcilability between two general camps—anarcho-capitalists and anarcho-communists—I’ve decided to republish my responses to a fellow “ancom” where I don’t think it makes sense to try at this juncture to unwed the people from the political identity of “ancap” that they dress themselves in. I like to think that I’ve undressed down to a naked animal, and my skin and inner organs are all “ancom”, but whether this is ontologically accurate, and important to conceive of at this juncture, I throw in doubt. When an important alliance looms between our two groups, which is arguably always an important alliance to make so long as these two groups of people exist, I am quite fine with putting these differences aside, no matter how much the idea of private property “gets under my skin”, to mix metaphors! So, here is my responses to what he said on facebook and in his one article:
I read Cap is cruelty, and I agree fully with all you are saying (though I am doing theoretical anthropology and am guessing that the seeds were sown more than 10,000 years ago, but no matter property is an ancient burden that has been unsuccessfully challenged heretofore). I guess I just feel a time pressure and if we hold the bar so high for full on mental revolution to a sense that mutual aid and sharing are the ideals that we are ready to unbag all the cultural baggage we’ve inherited, we will lose many people along the way that might have been a few years away from that leap, and might be turned off to the ideas if they are too much of a radical leap. I’ve visited some intentional communities where, to me, they seem at the forefront in western culture towards retribalizing in a sharing, horizontalist as possible fashion. some are only a couple of generations away, in my opinion, of realizing your and my dreams for people. obviously that collides and is not enough given the speed of the holocene extinction event/desertification, a real crisis indeed. but the teacher in me would rather “chunk” mental revolution and i see being a libertarian that doesn’t like global expansion, itself the most harmful general trend to the environment, to subaltern people, to dangerous new military arms weaponizations, i would rather these people be included than excluded in this movement and perhaps their culturally acquired ideas of rabid individualism will start to soften as they find the comraderie with others that the culture was unable to provide them with beforehand. Psychological barriers are so deep, I have found this true within myself, and they generally need to be crawled out of, so as to slowly stretch them. It’s taken me a long time to get to the latent content and fully be conscious of this nightmarish reality, and break down the self-inner-monologue bs narratives. I give a lot of credit to people even being libertarian and having a sense that imperialism is wrong. it to me is a huge leap in the right direction, one that should not be admonished by any who have had a lifetime to think deeply and move their mental states further along. But I think your article might argue against what you’re proposing here, which is “the first step is to get more people talking about it.” I completely agree with this sentiment. Peace!
and lastly wanted to say there still are indigenous and psuedo indigenous people who are farther ahead than intentional communities, and surely should be learned from. the difference is they possibly never lost the core of sharing going back tens of thousands of years, whereas westerners really have to go to some core instinct that private property is wrong and rebuild from that, aided of course by ideology of anarchists or revolutionary marxists.
and lastly lastly, ha I keep having add ons, or new ideas (which may work to support what I’ve been getting at) – private property is not just solely something that exists in human minds and therefore perpetuates because of their ideas. property is outside of humans in historical Alien archaeological visitors viewing our planet shortly after we all were extincted would be able to decipher that we were “thing obsessed” people by noting both how our skeletons were gathered and separated in our dwellings, but maybe even more by our infrastructure and mass strewn about separatized possessions. It is a battle of ideas in our minds for sure, but it is also a battle against hard and individualized matter that has suffered us and our recent ancestors who industrialized and thingified so much of the physical planet. Though I call myself an anarchocommunist, how often do my habits unawares stray back to the default of being possessive, spiteful, paranoid? Not infrequently enough! And how often does an an cap do something cooperative, or feeling something mutual? Probably more often than would be given credence. We are all works in progress/regress. Let us throw out the gray bathwater, but certainly not any comrades rinsing and refining, or polluting their halfway decent ideas. We need all the comrades that we can get in this lopsided, terrain destroyed battle for the ecosphere to survive this human-led extinction effort.
For expedience, the below is all [sic] —
Ron Paul was recently quoted as saying of the current elongated, drawn out financial crisis, that “we can’t blame capitalism because we haven’t had any.” I appreciate the spirit of what Ron said, and of course he was referring to free-market capitalism. However, I would argue that you can’t unwed the current deep-state state capitalism from the free-market ideology, for both are just phases. It is not teleological necessity that state capitalism emerge after a span of free market capitalism, or that one has to even come before the other, as China’s wonky mixed economy would evince. There is however I think a correlation between the two, and that is the ideological values that conceive of property, whether private or state owned. Further, going against the aforesaid, a free-market situation that most libertarians, minarchists, and anticapitalists would be happy with, would have naturally both losers and winners who wanted to consolidate their (dis)advantages in larger structures that would either align with government, or become quasi-governmental themselves. These can be beaten back by strong vigilance, but capitalism has a way of narrowing and focusing our views on making money, and weeding out other concerns such as keeping check on all these other people to make sure they are doing what they are supposed to (let a government govern, would be a cliché of this epoch paving the way for governance). We could always hire regulators to do this for us… thus the inevitable slippery slope. If you align with gravity don’t be surprised when you go down!
Fascistic state capitalism is a stage to capitalism that free market ideologues don’t want to admit or believe.
(put my fascism capitalism is the misspelling difference as the pic here)
but all that being said, I think it is time for anarchists of many stripes (and libertarian socialists, as Chomsky puts it) to start banding with libertarians that we may have some longterm philosohpical disagreements with.
Crude libertarians as a term to use to connote difference with libertarian socialists, a more natural liberty granted by social extensions?
Libertarianism (more true of anarcho capitalism), usa at least, is clearly a synchronically narrow ideological system that falls apart when any temporal element is introduced. there would be constant need for correction. It presumes a false ecosystem exists and can endure in solely human individuals and their property inhabiting the surface of the earth.
“I’m doing a campaign to encourage fellow Americans to consider not voting in the national election next month,” is what I’ve said on some surprise October occasions, following a knock at a door that was then opened (close to 50% thus far). Depending on their response or lack thereof, I commonly continue with the rhetoric that “by voting for either candidate you have to own what they do once they are in office” or the point that has been central to my argument, that “any vote—regardless of for whom— is a vote for the system that allows such corrupt, narrow, and elitist choices to get elected in the first place”.
Concurrently to my talking points, I’ve offered a copy of this flyer that has reasons listed for considering this no-vote alternative. Points such as disenfranchisement of the youth who have the most time left on this planet, yet no decision making power, is what I save when a high or grade schooler opens the door. Gerrymandering also came up once, but not yet the argument that prisoners should have, more than anyone, a right and need to have a say; a slippery issue is prisoners, perhaps analogous to taking sides with the Palestinians in that unending conflict, but nonetheless this hasn’t come up yet.
Generally, the discussions don’t focus on the flyer because of practical reasons (no one has chosen to read while an odd stranger stands there silently at their door watching them). The flyers have been what I lean on as my public speaking tries to grow out of its cocoon. Perhaps it was read later on, or thrown away—a fate unbeknownst to me. The depth of conversation that I had with three particular people (ranging over 30 minutes each) told me they at least would check out the flyer at some point. More importantly than that, it was nice for both of us to have the open political discussion that is so rare in this supposed democracy; so that has been refreshing. Several people felt they could open up to me about the things that annoyed or infuriated them, including the media, the constructed race tensions, political correctness, and the candidates of course. I got to introduce fears of mine that I had not considered at the time of the flyers’ mass printing: one candidate’s words and policies may cause a civil war; the other candidate’s words and policies will cause a world war; and both may cause both! Other natural tangents to our conversations have been on the option of third parties (being taken up by more than a few I have met). I have interjected at this point, somewhat of a reiteration, that “voting for a third party in a structurally two party system is voluntarily signing on for the system and agreeing to let it marginalize your voice further”. The canvassing I did at my college brought me in to contact with some third partiers as well as some asking, “what next: because really, what will not voting really accomplish?”. A good question, and feeling the necessity to give a quick response, I think I did well to the student by saying “growing our own food”. A point, perhaps a weak point, one that hasn’t yet arose in discussion, is: how to differentiate that one’s not voting should be interpreted by the authorities as the symbol of a person disgusted by the status quo and declaring themselves free of the responsibility of condoning government corruption, and a person who is merely apathetic. Not a central issue, but there is lots of room for ambiguity, and misappropriation of intent by the manipulators up on high.
Hopefully the above gives you some flavor of what we commoners are doing in this pen-ultimate month, and what some of our thoughts and reactions are to this continuing and upcoming shit show. There are still 3 weeks left and many doors to be knocked on until the nadir, and a November 9th Coalition for me (and you?) to promote in case it helps smooth out some of the hard landings that truly progressive (my definition probably is quite different than the amorphous term used by people who wear it as an identity) people will feel if they lock themselves in to electoral politics as being the be-all-and-end-all.
Say no more, &
Vote no more!
Death is not the problem—dying without having first lived is the issue. Accordingly, oppression and extinction are synonymous.
Beauty dances most exotically as the eyes of the beholder are closing.
You might repeat some mistakes, but there are some mistakes that wont repeat you.
Religions flourish in the void of meaning that civilization creates.
Alienation is subjects choosing objects instead of other subjects.
Justice is blind, and can only hear those who have the power to get close enough to whisper in its ear.
If vibrations of music can move us so, what do the deep vibrations of the earth enliven or suppress within us? And what motions are restricted by the harsh daily vibrations of an industrialized world, and what senses blunted to disallow pain at the cost of pleasure, too?
Those in this time who fail to understand the process of thingification will fail to see the world as anything but a collection of things.
There are no realists, just idealists of bad ideas.
Wearing God’s glasses is more apt to make you blind than to make you God.
If we keep passing our growing problems on to the next generation, eventually there won’t be a next generation to pass them on to.
The only thing more dangerous than real war is false peace. We are surrounded by danger.
Dying will be quite put off when living rudely interrupts it.
In the modern destructive environment, most of the purported additions are overestimated subtractions. The reified mind, such as it is, allows for the murder of one human to be confused with the birth of six new vital organs.
Proverb for a Buddhist. It is never too late, not even on one’s death bed. Even then, actually, it is still too early.
Science is less about understanding the world and more about standing over the world.
That their reputation does not already precede them is one of the original crimes of these delocalized times that allows the bad to exploit the distance gaps. The longer the distance of a connection—whether it’s personal, social, economic—the more we ought to expect exploitative interference.
A focus on production without “re” prefixing it will be short lived. Thus the productivity of the industrial revolution that has confused and displaced and blocked our desires, will soon be displacing us.
The only kingdom I would choose to be part of is the animal kingdom!
Related Previous Posts:
If I relocalize the first portion of MLK’s famous quote “DARKNESS CANNOT DRIVE OUT DARKNESS; ONLY LIGHT CAN DO THAT” and use it as an antecedent to one proposition herein—GLOBAL SOLUTIONS CANNOT SOLVE GLOBAL PROBLEMS; ONLY LOCALITIES CAN DO THAT—is that in a paradoxical relationship with another proposition herein—THERE IS NO GLOBALIZATION; ONLY GOOD AND BAD LOCALIZATIONS
All that exists now as comparatively different from all Earthen times previous to the industrial age is that a particular species (humans) wields the digital leveraging tools to alter internal relations in distant localities and concomitantly welcome alterations in their own localities. Roughly speaking, the Earth still weighs the same as for millions of years, and has the same quantities of chemical elements, yet many humans erroneously have it backwards when they conceive of it as a more connected world; it is neither the case in terms of human society nor in thermal relations of material and living systems—both instances are more objectified than ever. The large scale tendency since the Earth began has been for more connections in an increasingly deepening fashion, but this is all being curtailed as humans impose their roadways for superficial connectivity, to the loss of a great many more connections. How could this be? Every road created—whether of asphalt, airwaves, or cables—is a severing of countless other roads, the majority of which are subtle biological interconnections that would be insulted by bringing them in to analogy with a simplistic road. These human-made roads, as destructive as they may be in their origination, maintenance, and energetic persistence, allow for other disconnections while flaunting a facade of connectivity.
There is true connectivity that the Internet enables, to be sure, but it is a highly mediated, digitally reductive connectivity that forces a user to narrow themselves to the proscribed categories and languages of interaction so that a transferring across the channels may be possible. A great coloring is lost by the time (by the space) one locality successfully connects with another locality, creating a relatively superficial and flavorless experience. What is given up, however, is the greatest loss, and that is namely that the person or entities ensnared in connection to other localities is vacating themselves from their own immanent surroundings. The social and psychological damage to people has been blunted and forgotten through normalization, but it is clear to anyone who is reminded of the positivity of mutually attending to a face-to-face interaction with others, how much is lost when people are looking down at a phone in ignorance of their own body and its surroundings.
More and more it seems people are generally choosing to attend to the localities that are wrong for their person, which are all localities that don’t include their bodies; a thousand thousands of immediate connections are traded off for a dozen mediated connections. The problem worsens not by biological imperative, but for the simple fact that the more others are absent, the less reason to be present oneself and the more incentive to leave, also. The collective loss that we all endure might sound analogous to the tragedy of the commons, and that is because it is an extension of the very same problem! As fewer and fewer are caretakers of our immediate social environments and choose to use them as mere individual placements for our bodies while our attention is funneled in to a narrowing device, others will choose to treat the space the same rather than trying to preserve what appears to be a losing cause. One example is the uphill battle of being on a bus or subway and trying to not only muster the courage to start a conversation, but the energy to maintain it and avoid an “awkward ending”, all in a social environment that has social skills atrophying.
In addition to the creeping deteriorations, these re-localizing technologies also create immediate danger to the body and those around it. Someone from Asia might be investing attention in the minutiae of a few bits of information located in a server farm in Mexico while their absentee body unbeknownst to them is pending assault by a vehicle, driven by a man looking down at his GPS to know where he is. The blunting of the senses that takes place during mediated time will also be less and less available during immediate time, again reinforcing escape to a de-locality because of real losses incurred in one’s own locality.
Wagers of peace might say that through the Internet or parallel “technologies of connection” humans are less and less likely to desire war with a now humanized other, but always overlooked in this analysis is the increased risk that humans will now be more apt to wage war against their own neighbors who they come to resent, for reasons such as their not being enough like their Internet pal on the otherside of the planet (these incorrect and often negative assumptions about one’s neighbors—one’s real neighbors—are able to proliferate in an environment where local society is not attended to and ignorance of it runs rampant). If it were truly a global neighborhood, one person’s network of neighbors would be the same as another’s, and this is obviously not the case even when facebook allows up to 5,000 friends, a superficially large number to say the least, and yet insignificant next to the global human population of 7,000,000,000.
This peculiar age (that curiously coincides with the holocene extinction event) affords people the ability to divest from a good locality (the one that their entire bodies currently dwell in) for a bad locality (one in which they can leverage digital tools to impose their energies, albeit in narrow form). Humans are increasingly making this choice to be involved in a distant “bad” locality which necessarily sows (perhaps unintended) negative impacts to their own locality. Contrarily, connectivity looked at globally is decreasing (think of fewer migrating animals, pathways altered, species extincted) in an entropic situation compared to how it might be in a healthy, unpolluted evolving biosphere. True that to humans it may look more connected, but if we blinded our vision instead of our other senses, we’d feel the disconnect more clearly. Surely many animals that have deeper memories would be able to do a diachronic comparison.
Going forward, one can be global in their own locality, or global in an irrelevant, distant, inefficient locality. One cannot achieve globality by means of the Internet, that is just interfering in distant localities while allowing your own locality to atrophy. True global connection can only be achieved by life in a very sophisticated advanced ecosystem, something which we are currently drifting away from.