ploopt

ploopt wrote

It was crazy seeing so many people I thought I knew turning into warhawks. Punks with American flag patches and shit. Fucking surreal. That didn't last all that long though. I distinctly remember one sudden patriot who I cut ties with only to run into him at an anti-war rally ~1.5 years later. "You were right, dude." Small comforts I guess.

The really terrifying stuff was the Patriot Act, the daily threat-level updates, the creation of a department of Homeland Security, etc. It really felt like an Orwellian tale. The reality turned out to be much more banal and much more insidious. I remember Rick Roderick saying in a lecture that he found Orwell's boot stomping on a human face to be overly optimistic. Orwell supposed that there would be a situation in which there were clearly drawn lines, a resistance to join, a world with human faces. It seems we weren't so lucky.

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ploopt wrote

"When progressive democratic politicians in the US refer to the Scandinavian welfare states as a source of inspiration, they do not see its flip side: the total control of and emasculation of every living soul," notes Smidl.

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Reply to comment by ploopt in by !deleted18967

ploopt wrote (edited )

No, I mean the communists that imagine they will come up the correct military strategy to seize power.

edit: Which is to say, yes, those are the ones.

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Reply to comment by ploopt in by !deleted18967

ploopt wrote

I 100% buy this criticism of leftism (though am less optimistic about the anarchist's ability to avoid that power fantasy) but I do think it's abundantly clear that there is a deep state. We can generally bracket out further analysis - i.e. it's still just the state - but sometimes it feels like it precludes further discussion of certain topics. Things like COINTELPRO, media manipulation, cybernetics, etc.

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Reply to by !deleted18967

ploopt wrote

There's no use losing sleep over it, but the alphabet soup agencies, the technocrats, and the military-industrial heavyweights certainly coordinate with each other. I think a lot of anarchists are hesitant to acknowledge the sheer size of the entire apparatus because it calls into question the viability of their revolutionary fantasies.

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ploopt wrote

Ursula K. Le Guin said that she didn't deserve to call herself an anarchist. She may have meant that there were people who deserve to call themselves anarchists, but I also think this points towards the paradox inherent in the beautiful idea. Of course there are no anarchists - we all live in the "real" world. The world of compromise and defeat.

We might be, in some ways, lucky that the revolution in Spain was defeated by the fascists rather than succumbing to bureaucracy and internal power jockeying. There is no capital-A Anarchism as historical embarrassment to apologize for. We remain a constellation of tendencies that sometimes align and sometimes don't, plucky underdogs that can continually experiment and reinvent ourselves.

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ploopt wrote

Weird - my school, also for security reasons, took the opposite approach. After Columbine happened, we were no longer allowed to carry bookbags. We had to scurry back and forth to our lockers all the time. They also put up a single camera at the main entrance. The security state slowly but inexorably establishes itself.

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ploopt wrote

from Vice:

a short window of opportunity exists for an emergency, global mobilization of resources, in which the logistical and planning experiences of the national security sector could play a valuable role.

endorsed by a former Australian defense chief and senior royal navy commander.

The future looks fucking scary.

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ploopt wrote

I don't know that there's anything interesting I could say about what he did, but I think it's worth looking into the specific focus of his ire, which was the emerging field of cybernetics. The Net - The Unabomber, LSD and the Internet is a great documentary that explores the historical forces that led to the creation of the Unabomber. Cybernetics is a recurring theme in Adam Curtis' work as well, and the second part of his film series All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace is worth checking out as well. Looking back from this point in history, I think it's safe to say that Kaczynski had some incredible foresight.

I'll try and keep the tinfoil hat off of my head, but I think it's worth mentioning that he was almost certainly a subject of the CIA's MKUltra mind control program. This is likely an important part of his story, but when we venture into these topics it's impossible to distinguish the signal from the noise.

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ploopt wrote

Taking a broad look, this may just be what happens when all communication is subsumed into social media. Aesthetics becomes the primary locus of political association. It's the most advanced evolutionary form of the spectacle.

An ontology of tweets and memes emerges, qualitatively no different than what came before. Everything is a reboot or a remake, and so too is the paradigm of Christianity rebooted, with a new cast of saint-heroes and sinner-villians, new forms of orthodox and heresy.

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