Sunday, September 29, 2013

How I'm doing? + Oneohtrix Point Never.

Emerging habits I've noticed in myself: I have been more socially involved. I've been drawn to old friends, some I hadn't seen sense high school, and my social circles are diversifying, each day I hang out with a different group of friends. I often feel quietness in my nasal cavity, stillness that indicates to me that my resolve is strengthening. I'm talking more. I've been acting as a passive instigator in group projects. I'm learning welding with some friends, some new and some old. I've been taking night shifts again and finding enjoyment in the solitude. I've been on the hunt for new music to listen to, and have been finding myself enjoying things I previously wouldn't have, as well as reconnecting with long abandoned aesthetic preferences. I’ve been experimenting with dance rhythms on my guitar. I've been painting portraits of imagined faces, and potting my more ambitious metaphysically inspired projects on the back burner, this has proven to be a success each painting is better than the last. I’ve had a cooler approach to people with whom I disagree, it doesn't matter as much to me what they think. I find myself making friendly jokes when I see someone behaving rudely, rather than reprehend them and getting in a petty fight. I find it increasingly easy to state my opinion without care if others share it. I still have a hard time keeping my surroundings, my room and my car, in order. I’ve been more focused on improving the things I do, like music and art. I'm becoming more interested in psychology.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Gilles Deleuze in the Mirror of Nature

My genes come from Finland. I don't really know what that means for my identity. This or that identity is often invisible to the one that embodies it. I see people from other places with their unfamiliar ways and find my self floored, filled with wonder, and jealousy for that something spatial which they possess, whatever it may be; an accent, a sense of poise, a style of thinking, a sentiment, I notices these things are distributed differently in different peoples, and I delite in it. It's so clear to me people carry their terrains with them. Gilles Deleuze wrote a lot about something he called deterritorialization, which is for him the way that travel, (in addition to changing the traveler), also changes the places where the pilgrim arrives. This is because we like any plant or animal or rock formation or cityscape are ourselves environments and part and parcel of the environment. We are environments and when we move we move oneterrain to another--and we put its sentiments into a new context. When I meet someone with a strong connection to their place of origin I find myself deeply attracted to them, (not necessarily in a sexual way) maybe they’re from Tokyo or the Caribbean, Tel Aviv or Bagdad, Ireland or France, the British Isles or the Northern Lights, when I talk to people from other places I feel a new possibility, another land is landing on my shore.We must remember though that it is often a terrorizing thing to have another land port on your shore unexpectedly. There is pain when boundaries are crossed. We must respect eachother. We have to learn from each other our unique modes of patience. Each others sense of signicher and style.

Let’s not forget the first nations of the western world and the trail of tears. It’s my firmly held belief that it is not possible for new comers to ever reach the depths of those that have been here all along. I can’t really explain it, but deep inside me I feel that first nations people have a deep authorship in regards to land, I don’t really know what that means exsactly, it certainly isn’t something we can see with so-called "natural eye’s," on the face of it foreign guns continue to fortify the land and extract its inky life blood like a mosquito, but I feel it, there are mysteries in the land, mysteries that take literally... that take millennia to learn. And this knowledge is a kind of authority that is almost intangible, but powerful even when its being suppressed. There is a common cliché among certain circles that any kind of affiliation, especially if it isn’t passive politically is a form of fetishism, or worse racism. I don’t know... have you encountered such attitudes? I myself find this very unnatural. I once asked my friend Bernard Untalan, (who is Guamanian/Mexican) what he thought about xenophobia, after a pause of timehe replied from a perspective I hadn’t heard before, (so wisely) “most people like to travel.Why?... It’s to connect with a different experience; there must be something in the human soul that longs for that kind of experience." A longing that is not afraid of the other.I think my friend identified a very subtle will to diversity and perhaps an even more subtle form of unity, umong the tribes of the world, in the ordinary desire for travel. No doubt this issue of land and ethnicity is complicated and is even a painful issue for millions of people around the world, but more and more I’m seeing with more natural eyes the importance of these factors; of land, traval, and ethnicity. Slowly a new picture is emerging. I for one don’t want to shy away, and go back into the bourgeois mass cult of popular culture, with its white washing and its ironing down, but neither would I hand the whole thing over to those that seek to cryogenically freeze culture in place forever and neither does the hyper critical identity policing alternative, seem all that appealing. Lets start again... one more time. I think it’s time to make new connections­--new more rooted and connected rhizomic identities for ourselves. We could make deeper connections with the places we live in, with the places we carry with us (across the ages), and perhaps more importantly with those that have been here or there longer then us, (there is always someone who has been here or there longer). I think this would actually make something new for all of us. Something we can’t yet imagine. It’s important to remember that culture is alive, it is and has always been a changing thing.

It's these encounters with deterritorialization that has finally inspirited me to dig into my own ground, (place of origin), and see what I can unearth and bring to bare on our experence. Because I don't have the means to actually travel, instead I scour the internet through a kind virtual tourism. Along the way I happen upon this very nice collection of Finnish nature paintings, A Mirror of Nature, and I form a link with it. The thing I want ya'll to notice about this collection, beyond the paintings themselves, is the writing, exquisite writing on this site.

I don't know who wrote the descriptions to these paintings but truly, the writing on, A Mirror of Nature, does more than just give us a historical back drop for its paintings, it articulates the affections of the paint and its nature as it moves these beautiful Finnish landscapes through time and space, across the globe, and into our eyes. It makes of the beautiful (historical) Finnish terrain a new conception of ur-place of origin. It shows that writing is importent to painting.
In a sense our place of origin is each other, because we are remade each moment, but we are made of what we bring to each other.

A Mirror of Nature.

An Excerpt from A Mirror of Nature

Imatra in Winter, 1893Akseli Gallen-Kallela
Finnish, 1865-1931
Oil on canvas, 153 x 194 cm
Ateneum Art Museum, A I 576

The Imatra rapids were Finland's best-known tourist attraction in the 19th century. Russians in particular came in droves from St Petersburg to wonder at the untamed force of the waters. The rapids had already been harnessed for generating electricity at the time, and the power company invited Gallen-Kallela, Albert Edelfelt and Louis Sparre to photograph, draw and paint the rapids in the coldest month of the year, when the contrast between the freely flowing water and the frozen natural environment around it would be greatest. Gallen-Kallela created several images for publicity purposes. The large Imatra in Winter is full of drama and Romantic admiration for natural forces. The encounter of frost and thaw creates a rippling in the air that is conveyed skilfully and naturally, and there is a wealth of detail. The bridge spanning the rapids in the background is an almost inconspicuous reminder of how, here too, Man has tamed nature.

TOPS (Hosted Media)

TOPS is a band.
   Love TOPS.
 TOPS is Love.


                                          Rings of Saturn 

                                          Turn Your Love Around (Official Video)

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Conceptual Personae: Francois Laruelle and creativity



Francois Laruelle says poverty is inspiration, not for prosperity but for creativity. Out of all the things
Poverty inspirers prosperity is the least interesting and the least useful. This is a weapon in his arsenal
which he welds agents Alein Badiou's usurpation of the vital resource of creativity.
Bourgeoisie bull shit or the bed rock of a new economy of the starving artist? You decide.  

Aesthetics: Wabi-sabi.

Wabi-Sabi: the Japanese aesthetic principle which means, a perceiving of the sad/sweet beauty of time passing.

                                             Wabi-Sabi plays prominently in the photography of Brett Becklund.


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Religions of the world: Shinto. (Hosted Media)

In my last post I presented the ideas of media analyst Marshall McLuhan. In that post I related his fames proclamation, "the medium is the message" to an animist world view. As a fallow up, I thought it be nice to present a documentary on an ancient Japanese animist religion, Shintoism.



Sonic Youth - Small Flowers Crack Concrete 



Friday, September 20, 2013

Conceptual Personae: Exploring the Peculiar Style of Marshall McLuhan.

                                                          A reflection on Marshall McLuhan.

Eleven years ago I watched a documentary on the IFC broadcasting network that absolutely blew my mind.

The documentary was McLuhan's Wake: The Descent into the Maelstrom, and Marshall McLuhan instantly became an intellectual curiosity for me. I remember carrying around an old dog eared copy of the Understanding Media, and feeling like the world I lived in was every bit the science fiction utopia we had long been promised, that is that the technology that surrounds daily life were returned to their original splendor, as relics of the future. I remember reading passages like, "The instance of the electric light may prove illuminating in this connection. The electric light is pure information." And not knowing at all what it meant, but feeling like it was some kind of sacred knowledge that if I could understand would open up new worlds for me. I thought, what a wonderful couple of sentences! The bulb flickered in my head, I was encountering a whole new world of ideas. But I didn't understand them, it took years for me to begin to understand them, but I enjoyed them. The effect of watching an interview with McLuhan or reading his work is similar to watching a vintage sci-fi movie, all this weird jargon flying at you at a million miles per second, and soon realizing that each word is drenched with meaning, that the crew understands the orders. It's a fun experience when you really get into it.

        "Instead, it is more feasible to "present" TV as a
              comples Gestalt of data gathered almost at random."

McLuhan really is alien when being interviewed, the interviewer will ask him a seemingly strait foreword question like... well... I'm thinking of one lady, (not really an interviewer exactly) from a live studio audience asked him, (so smartly), "I would like to ask him(McLuhan) if he would agree with that nuclear energy represents; mass suicide, the ultimate expression of the death wish, or more in line with his terminology the last ditch fight to the death of the left hemisphere world of the military industrial complex(...)I'm curious to know how he expects they are going to lose."(check out 7:39) McLuhan responded in characteristic "coded" fashion, "...But development in these electric media is the loss of privet identity, mass man means man as related to all other men simultaneously, so that the nuclear world is a kind of rip off as far as privet identity and privet values and goals are concerned(...) and ha...just how that relates to the atom bomb, and so on, would take a little while to develop." He went on to say that the patterns can be discerned. McLuhan wasn't trying to evade the question here. Basically he's revealing his method. McLuhan studied mid-evil literature in grad school, part of his approach to analyses is to examine the roots of the words that make up a concept, this is a very old method, but McLuhan applies it to modern technology. It's kind of like he answered, personal creativity is being hijacked for the ends of mass destruction, and, well…I don’t know…we could go on a million tangents. The point is that, part of what makes McLuhan so awesome is that he can deal with real world social problems as if he's a technician of the Starship Enterprise. In his chapter on radio in Understanding media he said that if TV where invented before 1933 Hitler would have never come to power and WWII would have never happened, because he would have been shown for the raving lunatic he was. If it seems like McLuhan didn't care about nuclear threat, this wasn't the case, Marshall McLuhan’s stated scholarly interest was to prepare people for the extreme effects of technology. It's just that the level of awareness that this requires is far deeper then saying the left hemisphere of the brain is going to destroy the world. McLuhan seeks to understand how technology works in a larger context. Some times his context is so far out that it seems like he's missed the whole point, but bar with him he eventually ties it all together. McLuhan is cool because he is an alien. He's here to help us.
One way to understand a thinker like Marshall McLuhan is to take some of his concepts and explain them until they start to connect into a larger vision. McLuhan's most fames concept is, the medium is the message, some of his other concepts include, the global village, hot and cool media, Affect (something that was later pick up by Gilles Deleuze), and figure and a ground, put all together these concepts make up a vision of the world in which technology comes alive and begins to take an active and not just a passive role in our lives.
In this sense McLuhan wasn't only a mystic but also an existentialist, the media is the message, means the same as "existence precedes essence," but as applied to a thing (in-itself) and not just a people(for-itself). People always used to ask McLuhan, "The medium is the message; does that mean the content isn't important, to what is be conveyed?" To this McLuhan would usually say that each media will tend toward a different content, but that's not the thing to focus on, it's what these things do to us, that we should analyze. This begins to explain why he sounded so alien, it's because he wasn't looking at these things like a person would, he was looking at it the why we might look at an ant hill, or a bee hive, he was looking at things from a distance. This is way when people would ask him about his perspective he would say he had none, he would say he was being objective. In a sense he must have known the difficulties of a claim to objectivity in this regard, but he had a point in insisting on it. The point as McLuhan would say is not to get hung up. He was engaged in observation, just like a biologist. He certainly would have been familiar with the primacy of subjectivity in the work of "other existentialist" like Jean-Paul Sartre, he made reference to them quite often. He just wants to stress a sense of dis-interestedness in observation.

One of his main concepts, Figure/ground, was lifted from the work of Gestalt Therapist like Fritz and Laura Perls. For McLuhan the way to understand the essence of a medium is to analyze the effects it has on the wider environment. Perhaps this confused a lot of people because we're used to hearing about the environment in a different way. We usually use it to refer to plants and animals, but when McLuhan uses it he means something more basic, he means our surroundings, but what he wants to avoid is to think of the ground or environment as a back drop of a play. He says, "all the world is a sage" instead of a stage. McLuhan understands a figure through its ground, and a medium through its affects, that’s part of what he means by, the medium is the message. You don't understand a medium like TV or a car until you analyze its effect on its surroundings or environment, the first generation to grow up after the advent of TV was less eager, (like a paper boy might be) more laid back, more gestural, less emphatic, you know that greaser thing. When the car was first invented "city slickers" would take it out for a country drive, later under the influence of TV They decided they could just move away altogether.

So what's the big deal? Why should we care if the medium is the message, or the message is the message, or a medium is just something to hold something else? Isn't it in a way obvious that the experience of listening to the radio is different from watching TV, even if it were the same program being broadcast? Well yeah, that’s great if that is obvious, but what fallows from this observation might not be so obvious. The implication is that the things we use have a kind of power aside from what we bring to them. This is a radically different kind of perspective from the one that see's matter as inert, or dead. McLuhan’s view of the world is one in which the things of this world have a life of their own. McLuhan is in a very real sense a modern animist. Animism is a world view in which physical entities—including animals, plants, and inanimate objects possess spiritual power.
As a modern animist McLuhan can help us understand a world view that humans have held for the vast majority of our existence on this planet. In a way though, according to McLuhan’s own philosophy he doesn’t really need to teach us this, because the technology will eventually teach us this, any way. Each technology teaches us about the environment it creates. What McLuhan is really trying to teach us is how to stay vigilant, so that these new technological circumstances don’t catch us off guard. In a sense McLuhan’s project is similar to the psychologist Carl Jung who analyses myths and dreams in order to uncover the subconscious forces that disrupts modern life. This new world, ever more animated by things then ever, is part of what McLuhan means by the global village. It's often been pointed out that technology will bring us together, but what a lot of people miss about the Global Village is that it’s a place where inanimate things become animated, where the tools of man become caricatures in a vast cosmic drama, a new epoch where the world once again becomes enchanted by Angles and Demons, messages and mediums.

A prominent student of Carl Jung, Joseph Campbell, was once asked if there were a mythic tail that could illuminate the struggles of our own time, to which Campbell replied, technological development is moving too fast for such a story to be told just yet, it would be out of date before it could shine its light on our ever changing social environment--(or something to that effect), maybe though we do have such a myth, one that stands high enough to illuminate the hidden mysteries of our ever changing times. Many have referred to McLuhan as a prophet, for his anticipation of the decline of traditional forms of literacy and the increases of globalized connectedness, maybe the secret of his prophetic power lies in his discovery of this new kind of story. Perhaps The Extensions of Man is the myth of our time. The Cosmic story that shines a light on our on going struggle with Being.


Extra Link:

Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man, By Marshal McLuhan.

Daniel Coffeen’s teachings on the work of Marshal McLuhan.


On truth and Lies: Jessica Berry on the partially examined life Show (Hosted Media).

Partially examined life Show: Episode 61: Nietzsche on Truth and Skepticism.

Notice that Jessica Berry totally kicks ass.

Read along with the conversation and make up your mind about, On Truth and Lies in a Nonmoral Sense, by Friedrich Nietzsche.


Kevin Carson makes an interesting argument for the re-opening of the commons. (Hosted Media)

          Don’t Tell Us What Our “Marginal Productivity” Is; We’ll Tell You, by Kevin Carson.


Chuck Berry - You Can't Catch Me (Rock Rock Rock 1956)


Saturday, September 14, 2013

List of smarties that talk about new-imperialism.

This list of critics of neo-imperialism is in no way complete.

Albert Ayler - Spiritual Unity (full abum) (Hosted Media)


Doo-Bop from wikipedia: Miles Davis.

        I thought this wikipedia entery was fun to read. What an amazing man this Miles Davis.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Doo-Bop was jazz musician Miles Davis' final studio album, which would have marked the beginning of his turn to hip-hop-oriented ("Doo-Bop being a portmanteau of "doo-wop" and "be-bop"[2]) tracks. However, Davis died on September 28, 1991, at which time only six pieces for the album had been completed.[3] To finish off the album, producer Easy Mo Bee was asked to take some of the unreleased trumpet performances (stemming from what Davis called the RubberBand Session), and build tracks that Miles 'would have loved' around the recordings. The album's posthumous tracks (as stated in the liner notes) are "High Speed Chase" and "Fantasy". A reprise of the song "Mystery" rounded out the album's nine-track length.[1]
The project stemmed from Davis sitting in his New York apartment in the summer with the windows open, listening to the sound of the streets. He wanted to record an album of music that captured these sounds. In early 1991, Davis called up his friend Russell Simmons and asked him to find some young producers who could help create this kind of music, leading to Davis' collaboration with Easy Mo Bee, his last, the result of which, Doo-Bop, was released by Warner Bros. Records on June 30, 1992, to mixed reviews. The album won the 1993 Grammy Award for Best R&B Instrumental Performance.[4]

22 years earler he recorded, In a Silent Way.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Imperialist Economics 101

Under a fractional reserve monetery system: inflation causes prices to swallow savings, and deflation causes defaults. Both are bad. The reason for this is that in a fractional reserve system debt is always larger than the money available to pay that debt. This means that if the banks don’t continue to expand the money supply people will default and if they do continue to expand the money supply then prices will rise, and swallow up the savings. (It is important to note that this wouldn't happen in a full reserve system, because a full reserve system means that debt is never larger then amount of money available to pay that debt.When fractional reserve is done to other countries most smart people called it neo-imperialism, when the Fed does it here they call it Keynesianism or progressivism.

Robert Hass's poem, Ezra Pound's Proposition, is rather stunning in the way it presents the invisible connections between International finance and prostitution.

Robert Hass:

Ezra Pound's Proposition

Beauty is sexuality, and sexuality
is the fertility of the earth and the fertility
Of the earth is economics. Though he is no recommendation
For poets on the subject of finance,
I thought of him in the thick heat
Of the Bangkok night. Not more than fourteen, she saunters up to you
Outside the Shangri-la Hotel
And says, in plausible English,
"How about a party, big guy?"

Here is more or less how it works:
The World Bank arranges the credit and the dam
Floods three hundred villages, and the villagers find their way
To the city where their daughters melt into the teeming streets,
And the dam’s great turbine, beautifully tooled
In Lund or Dresden or Detriot, financed
by Lazard Freres in Paris or the Morgan Bank in New York,
enabled by judicious gifts from Bechtel of San Fransisco
or Halliburton in Houston to the local political elite,
Spun by the force of rushing water,
Have become hives of shimmering silver
And, down river, they throw that bluish throb of light
Across her cheekbones and her lovely skin.


Occupy Wall Street revisited: ideas in conflict.

Don't forget the dream of occupy walls street: to make a true alliance against the two main modes of empire; the Corporation, and the State. Most people are starting to understand that these two things are linked, but It seems that very few people understand the impossibility of corporate power apart from the state. The State is the monopoly of force. The corporation is a legal entity contracted, sustained, and defended by the State. Who does Black Water call when it's systems get hacked? One of the major pit falls of the ill faited occupy Wall Street, in my opinion, was its unwillingness to address the role of progressivism in the very formation of the Corporation. The Corporation as we know it today arose from the kinds of public works programs and progressivist policies one sees in F.D.R.'s New Deal. The corporate charter was penned in order to lower the burden (responsibility) of corporations so that they could produce more jobs for the working class. But it wasn't just the progressivis that refused to see the pit falls of there ideology, the Libertarian wing of the movement had even harder internal conflicts to deal with.
                                         How progressive are the interment camps?

No Doubt the Progessivist wing had a few blind spots, but they weren't the only ones protesting wall Street. It was Libertarians like Peter Schiff and Ron Paul, who most accurately predicted both the coase and the nature of the 2007 finical crises, but alas, they where unable to reach out to the people hardest hit by the crises, because of their opposition to the kind of government ad that this population has come to depend on, larglely do to sustemic problems with both wings of politics. Thus came the re-emergence of Marxism in the occupy movment. No Doubt Marxism is sexy, although I fail to see how 1x1=1 could salve the real world problems we find our selves in today. I do owe a debt of gratitude to Marx for inspiring a number of my own direct influences; Guy Debord, and Herbert Marcuse to name a few--"Zizek will put you in gulag!"...[[one of the most glaring, yet unanounced, conflicts between Zizek and the occupy wall street movement is Zizek's concept of the "Big other." For Zizek the "Big other" is an imagened conspiracy that limits our ability to enjoy pleaser, the 1% is an example of the "Big other" only for occupers the 1% is real. This aperint contradiction with the movment didn't stop Zizek from capitalizing on the movement though.]] It was occupy Wall Street that got me seeking out these Marxist types. There is a lot of veriety in Maxist thinking. But really, what does a credit bubble have to do with labor value? It does, albeit in an indirect way, the Fed prints money to keep pace with the debt they make possible, which leads to inflation, which widens the gap between wages and the cost of living, which increases the working classes dependence on credit, starting the whole process over again. Each time this process is repeated the working class gets more in debt to the "capitalists.” See Richard Wolf,When Capitalism hit the Fan, for a more detailed alyises. Richard Wolf thought he came up with a radical new theory, What he doesn't seem to realize is his thoery depends on the kind of credit critique that was pioneered by the Austrian school economists like, Friedrich August Hayek, and Murray Rothbard. Marx doesn’t address the calculation issue, which is the core problem of bubbles, overproduction is one of the major contributors to bubbals. One way that Marxism could solve this problem is by putting the power of "market" planning in the hands of the consumers themselves, and sense workers are also consumers this could be done at the factory level. Worker counsels that make only what they need, pace Guy Debored, and/or anarcho-syndicalism. But that’s not really what the current wave of Marxists like Slavoj Žižek and Alain Badiou are calling for, those guys are Trotskyite globalists that just want to incress global codependency. In the end the issues that divided all these groups to begin with proved to be insurmountable to make a true opposition to the status-quo, and the open form made space for all manner of washed up old ideology. In the process of examining all these political philosophies I've come to realize something though. The State is primarily concerned with controlling the means of production, in our case the State has handed over that control to the Corporations, through land grants, production contracts, legal immunity, money laundering privilege, I couldn't list all the ways the government makes corporate corruption possible. We can't forget that this handing over is no lose to the State its self, the State and the Corporation are made up of the same people, the Corporation is powerless without the State and the State is even more powerful with the Corporation as a mechanism of manipulation and rescores extraction. Government services, the benevolent arm of the State, is just a way to keep its host alive while it sucks its vital life blood. The means of production, and the land it is made from, does not belong to the Government. It belongs to the people, and the plants and animals that inhabit it. It is only though a monopoly of force, and contral of vital resources that the Government is able to continue its false pretense of benevolence. This is the same strategy the Empire uses to conquer other countries through the faults pretense of nation building, foreign ad, and (predatory) lending.

                                          This guy gets it.

                Lost of good stuff here, we should re-open the comens, and be more cooporetive. That stuff the interviewer was saying about greed being good is a lowed of crap. As fare as the interviewy... did I miss somthing? How can you defend the bail out and protest it at the same time?