"...it's not the training to be mean but the training to be kind that is used to keep us leashed best." ~ Black Dog Red

"In case you haven't recognized the trend: it proceeds action, dissent, speech." ~ davidly, on how wars get done

"...What sort of meager, unerotic existence must a man live to find himself moved to such ecstatic heights by the mundane sniping of a congressional budget fight. The fate of human existence does not hang in the balance. The gods are not arrayed on either side. Poseiden, earth-shaker, has regrettably set his sights on the poor fishermen of northern Japan and not on Washington, D.C. where his ire might do some good--I can think of no better spot for a little wetland reclamation project, if you know what I mean. The fight is neither revolution nor apocalypse; it is hardly even a fight. A lot of apparatchiks are moving a lot of phony numbers with more zeros than a century of soccer scores around, weaving a brittle chrysalis around a gross worm that, some time hence, will emerge, untransformed, still a worm." ~ IOZ

May 23, 2010

Signs from the coming future?

As to my work in progress thesis that the transformation of occidental welfare states into military-police states reflects the awareness of the ruling classes of the oil scarcity induced crisis of late capitalism -  I admit that it remains a rough model.

As to the mounting case for the (at least partial) validity of that model:

"As America's War On Terror morphs into an endless assault on civil and human rights, the technophilic fantasies of our masters, and the corporations whom they lovingly serve, even amidst the doom and gloom of capitalism's global economic collapse, have taken extraordinary steps to ensure that the "state of exception" spawned by the 9/11 provocation remains a permanent feature of daily life here in the heimat.

And with moves by Barack Obama's 'change' regime to strip Americans of their Miranda rights, 'delay' their appearance before a lawful court should they be accused of a national security crime, or even assassinate them if an arm of the secret state fingers them as terrorists (evidence optional), it's a sure bet that as "ideas about security infect virtually all aspects of public policy," as Stephen Graham avers in Cities Under Siege, new silver bullets will be needed to 'keep us safe.'

Deep Learning: A Nerdy Way to Kill People

Long-time readers of Antifascist Calling are well-aware of the host of bizarre projects hatched in darkness by the Pentagon's geek squad, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

Working on things like Biologically Inspired Platforms and Systems that investigate the natural world, the better to create "significant new defense capabilities," the Defense Sciences Office (DSO) is focused "on understanding, and then emulating, the unique locomotion and chemical, visual, and aural sensing capabilities of animals," in order to hand warfighters neat, new tools to kill people..."



Yep. Those state paid agents of the ruling class - earning their keep, preserving the NatSec state even as Hopey Changey hastens the dismantling of the res publica...

...but, what the hell, right? As long as hipsters, brokers, professionals and banksters can foursquare, tweet, update and robo date, the hoi polloi get what they get.


Richard said...

OT: if you are reading about Spain during the Republic and the Civil War, I highly recommend "Blood of Spain" by Ronald Fraser, one of the most remarkable oral histories ever published on any subject.

Also, "The Anarchists of Casas Viejas" is quite moving, a work of covert scholarship undertaken by Jerome Minter in the late 1960s about the anarchists there responsible for a failed uprising in 1934. His emphasis upon the day to day social reality of their lives is a tremendous achievement, and provides flesh and bone to anarchism as a lived experience in a rural region.

Jack Crow said...

Richard, thank you. I'll add them to my queue.

Right now, Preston is junk. He operates as if the Republic was the be-all, and therefore it was the red-black coalition on the left, and the nationalists-falangists on the right who destroyed the goodness of the Republic.

Richard said...

Fraser's book is one of social history, from the bottom up, and reveals the tensions that emerge when you are there, on the ground, at the time, and have to make decisions, never really knowing whether you are doing the right thing or not

that's a special quality that is usually lost in most non-fiction, where the authors tend to assume that the participants should have known and acted upon after the fact insights that were anything but obvious at the time

but, overall, I can't praise the Fraser book enough, one of the top 10-15 books that I have read in my entire life, tremondously moving as it recreates a social world lost to the past