Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Portrait 1: Trevor Phillips, or senescence as a factor in social reproduction.

In the narrative of community, authority is assigned to that figure who is first cut off from the domain of their competence, and who upon returning as a stranger, brings the story of their irrevocable loss which then, as it circulates, is transformed into a decisive social content. A high status individual is cast out, wanders as a beggar, and returns so as to be recognised for their wisdom. 

Friday, 27 January 2017

Blackbird Braille: Winter (6)

  1. He: The struggle against yourself is the only means by which you may lay a hand on the world.
  2. He: Can you really compensate for the limits of your argument with the extremity of your commitment?
  3. He said, words appear to make other words disappear.
  4. He asked us, 'what if you contracted transformation sickness? What if you woke one day and wished things went back to how they were before?'
  5. He said, You unknowingly lived all your life in error, and you discovered it in the moment at which it became too late to change course.
  6. He said: It is right to strike back. Acting from the desire for vengeance is the only true motivation. The enemy is momentarily reduced by your taking revenge against him, but the bond between you, tightens. The world in which you are both embedded, expands.‬
  7. ‪He said, actions always show otherwise. Escape is not a return staged in the guise of escape‬
  8. He said, Being simultaneously 'inside' and 'against' is belonging's true form.
  9. He said, 'Imagine breaking down a wall on the day of liberation. Now imagine breaking down a wall every day, until you are sick of it.'
  10. He said, 'I want to be part of the problem because I am part of it. I don't want to be part of the solution because I am not part of it.'
  11. He: the most appropriate form of response to the world is formulated through this twofold operation: I am schismatic; am I schismatic enough?
  12. Isn't he the one who said, 'every instance of acquired knowledge takes you further from the life that you have been prevented from living'?
  13. He said, 'the damaged life is not more able to understand what is inflicted upon it. It knows the edge but not the force behind.'
  14. He said, 'the one who endures knows every detail of the boot but nothing of the foot inside.'
  15. He said, 'it is difficult for the oppressed to accept that the perpetrator has no rationale, no motive. The boot hides no foot.'
  16. Didn't he say, 'knowledge is also impoverishment'?
  17. He said, 'individualism is a disease,' or he said, 'individualism is susceptible to diseases that are all its own.'
  18. He said, 'check your transference.'
  19. He: I was given the very last piece of blank paper. The mark I made upon it was poorly done. And in the wrong place. I could not rub it out.
  20. He: The measure of an individual's commitment upturns the value of what is committed to. The best individuals fight for the worst causes.
  21. He: discover no fellowship between yourself and the world. Move quickly to cut off the chance for reconciliation.
  22. He: Let no platform be the only rule. Let every platform be empty. Let some emptiness be another platform. Let ideas find no platform. Let the idea of platforms be not the idea.
  23. He: As I cannot trust my desires, they are not mine but this world's, I must set my course by the compass of what I refuse.
  24. He: The true symbol withholds all but the edge of what it symbolises.
  25. He: favour the broken over the mended.
  26. He: The changing of the law changes what is to be done. And it changes what is to be not done. What is to be undone remains constant.
  27. He: The grain is not in the heap. The heap is in the grain.
  28. He: A politics should be judged only on the inconsistencies of its denunciations.
  29. He: Experiment is the difficult path towards conventionality.
  30. He: What is planned cannot be. Whatever is real must first emerge other than as a plan.
  31. He: All events, except the miraculous, contain within them all that has ever happened in the world to prevent miracles.
  32. He: Whoever speaks up for the ideal of communism without also vigorously asserting its impracticality, says nothing significant about communism.
  33. He: Those who may act, may not know. And those who may know, may not act. Those who may feel, may not act or know.
  34. He asked: Were you afraid to ask of your own presence amongst those assembled, 'Must I be the one to cause these companions to question each other'?
  35. He: The authority of the elder (as assigned by virtue of accident) is preferable to that of the veteran (implying a meritocracy of wounds).
  36. He: Youth, not willing to permit what it does not countenance, is expelled from its own principles into adult resignation.
  37. He: One’s acts either succeed by confirming the world as it is, or fail in their attempt to change it.
  38. He: I did nothing. The worm did everything. 
  39. He: dominion is renewed by rebellion, observance by neglect, conformity by festival.
  40. He: A trap sprung by the warning against it. 
  41. He: A hero is not a role model but one whose flaws and misdemeanours are elevated to a cosmic significance. 
  42. He: Ideals will die from drought or flood - and popular enthusiasm is as poisonous to a principle as absolute disinterest.
  43. He said, In refusing to look where the eye is directed, that is to look elsewhere, is also to risk compromising the integrity of the concept of elsewhere.
  44. He: We must live as always less than we were before, and know ourselves to be the last  - but even our decline will not result in disappearance.
  45. He: Nothing of the world that ever lived, lived by any means other than its failure to process its contradictions. Nothing of the world that ever died, died from any cause other than its failure to process its contradictions. 
  46. He: Our principle was a readiness to leave this world at a moment's notice. Then the moment arrived. And the principle became incomprehensible.
  47. He: There is no act of renunciation that did not first begin in love. There is no secession which did not first begin in belonging.
  48. He: Where there is no farmer, there is still a farm. Where there is no boss, there is still a factory. 

He variations:
The rule of difference is found in attempting the same, and contrariwise. Whoever attempts to avoid reference to Kafka, becomes bad Kafka. Whoever attempts to write as Kafka, avoids Kafka. These are the subsets of what is called mimetic desire. Above is a collection of aphorisms, in part derived from, or 'inspired' by, Kafka's 'He'. The texts began as a self-mocking of hubris and portentousness and they lack what Borges calls the 'smoothing (the reversing, altering, turning over) by usage, which is the collective dimension of true 'sayings'. They are numbered for ease of reference and for no other reason - the ordering is accidental.

Thursday, 26 January 2017

Blackbird Braille: Winter (5)

There is no reason not to accept Marx's theorem that every society is a self-solving problem.

A system self-perpetuates where it maintains its outline and modifies its interior.

Every society is a system that structures itself around the difficulties which it is seeking to resolve.

Every system's problems are intrinsic (and also 'internal') to its continued functioning.

Every system is dependent on its specific problematic - the energy derived from which it deploys in engagements with sub-problems.

All systems are also the blocked exit from themselves: that which is solved, ceases.

Therefore, every system both desires to solve its problematic but also to suspend implementation of the solution.

A system self-realises through a sustained engagement with it internal constraints.

Then, every society becomes a system directed towards incompletion.

Every successfully innovated fix is the outcome of a systemically necessary unresolved contradiction at a higher order of recursion.

No system seeks to resolve the contradictions of another society. No society engages its 'external conditions.'

All systems die in one of three ways: obliteration (by external force); exhaustion (the failure of a key internal organ); disappearance (the attainment of ideal, frictionless or problemless functioning).

Capitalism is the problem it sets itself; specifically, the further expanded realisation of abstract quantities as a mode of social regulation.

Communism is not a true system but it conforms to general rules for systems - it is only realised by its inward directed gaze.

The problematic of communism is not capitalism but communism itself - its coping with and processing its particular difficulties.

Communism will not overthrow or replace capitalism (the crisis of which, as for all forms, is system immanent).

Communism as a problematic is also the proposed exit from communism, or the internal escape into its constraints.

Communism sets the contradiction which only communism may resolve.

In suspending the resolution of its contradiction, and thus perpetuating itself, communism will direct direct its energies towards a subset array of lesser contradictions.

The problematic of communism as communisation is twofold: its incompatibility with presently existing humans; the historical tendency of communists in power towards genocidal violence.

The realisation of communism does not follow from its critique of capitalism but from the sustained engagement with its internal contradictions.

To this end, we should be prepared to accept any help in escaping the trap of our own ideas.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Blackbird Braille: Winter (4)

A song of two humans. A loose and non-exhaustive list of comparable traits discovered in the self-differentiating dynamics of anarchism and what seems to be emerging as the neo-right:

Friday, 20 January 2017

Blackbird Braille: Winter (3)

Heuristic for achieving steady state within small group relations:

1. Let the group promote its biggest loudmouth to the role of spokesman. And let it direct him to speak without pause.
2. Let the blessing of his loquacity also function as the curse by prohibition of his never speaking of what is on his mind.
3. Let his utterances be fatally restricted to commentating on group matters. 
4. Let the group's other members correct by means of ferocious ridicule the content of the spokesman's utterances.
4. And let this, necessarily tragic, relational mechanism be called: counter-subordination dynamics.

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Blackbird Braille: Winter (2)

Whoever recognises a threshold will not cross it. Leopardi records, as a trait of contemporary decomposition, that the viewer's interest in an artwork increases in line with the level of their attachment to the depicted object, and for this reason the typical remoteness of the objects in Romantic art necessarily repulse the 'interested' gaze. In identifying the advance of remote and alien objects through Romantic sensibility into everyday discourse, an event driven by the emergent need for 'connection' with an ever receding world, Leopardi also located an instance of abstract power's transformation of distinct cultural artefacts into representational structures.  He could not have known that the abstract would further integrate with perception and become the general condition for all familiarity. From a situation now wholly determined by intimacy with remote objects, consider for example the measures necessary to establish tolerance for synthetic fabrics against skin, we are destined to encounter the outer limit of Leopardi's foresight banally replicated everywhere. The commentator's source material is always extracted from the constellation of things just now falling into disrepair and never from those objects on the point of consolidation - the state of what decays is the necessary condition, and only evidence, for what emerges. Absence of foreknowledge is concretised within every cultural product, and is the particular shared content amongst a cluster of 1990's 'techno-thrillers' (Hackers, Enemy of the State and The Net) which half-presented nascent forms which still could not then be named  - mankind always sets itself only those problems that it cannot solve. Such thrillers, at a loss before the significance of their own content, were constrained to recirculate motifs from 70's paranoiac cinema and thus neglected to index the category of abstracted intimacy with objects, both imminent and occluded, like the faecal contamination of handsets, or bad contents such as Instagram's (already obsolete) puppy filter

Thursday, 1 December 2016

Blackbird Braille: Winter (1)

Slogans to be painted upon your tanks and embroidered into your banners:

One constraint upon formulating a political position is that it must remain deluded about its true relation to power. ‬

‪The nonsense of every political tendency's general form is a necessary, if false, opening to the fragments of knowledge it is thereby allowed to collect.‬

‪Some useful discrete concepts and insights have been made available by NRx which are dependent upon the intrinsic absurdity of its general position.‬

‪It is tedious to forage through general principles for palatable scraps. ‬

‪The question of political involvement is entirely situated in the ratio between energies expended and energies acquired.‬

‪Every political tendency's set of general principles is a preliminary narrative that must be endured before the opening of the casket of holy relics. ‬

‪We must endure the setting of the scene before the protagonist's appearance. ‬

‪You must apply a tourniquet to raise the vein. ‬

‪In a circumstance where letting go of the contents of the discard pile is decisive, political consciousness still prefers the slag heap to the mine. ‬

‪It is possible that neo-reaction's main problem is that it is still not reactionary enough.‬

We already knew that a kicked dog behaves differently to a kicked stone. But we are only just learning that the more often a dog is kicked, the more it behaves inanimately. 

‪We already knew about  the recuperative coding buried within leftist ideology without resorting to unpleasantness.‬

‪We had arrived at critiques of categories of left-identitarianism decades before NRx, and by a less arduous path.‬

‪We already know about the light averse quality in left discourse, its ploys for controlling interlocutors from beneath Enlightenment principles. ‬

‪Even so, the therapeutic return of what is derided by marxists as the neo-kantian has been a blessed comfort to us. ‬

‪Left and right iterations of the state-form utilise crypto-manipulative plays hidden within issue-based discourse.‬

‪It is the modus operandi of repressive discourse to refuse to acknowledge the real content of its accusations.‬

Ressentiment is the general term for the mode of power emerging from the internalisation of defeat.‬

‪But ressentiment as a concept does not articulate the organisational process of buried force (e.g. as exercised in the system of 'down on you' in Billy Budd).‬

‪There are unnamed repressive forms of power which operate nowhere but in the discourses of liberation.‬

‪Politics is the art of not naming determining factors. Or rather, it is the art of not even wishing to name them.  ‬

‪Always back to Fortuna. ‬

‪The principle error in general principles (left or right), is belief in self-positioning. 

In practice we are thrown, we do not throw.‬ We are occupied, we do not occupy. We are positioned, we do not position.

‪Both the NRx and the ULx imagine their identification with decompositional tendencies grants them some sort of historical privilege.‬

‪In truth, no political tendency dictates terms to process. Nobody decides on the manner of their own recuperation. ‬

‪No lesser power may capture a greater power. ‬

‪The state always expropriates, it is never expropriated. ‬