Thursday, December 16, 2010

Its the trouble with the future

It goes without saying the future is one of the more problematic of tenses. As Hiedegger brilliantly realized, the trouble with ti really if that it needs to be understood not as merely a future present, but as it is right here right now. Time after all in itself implies some kind of relationship with the future = what else is being in time at all? The future is never something then hidden or some present far way - it is rather always right here right now - an entity all decisions political, biological, social economic and eve artistic are made - and made constantly .
Such an overhanging future has several key aspects. Firstly, following still Heidegger it is clear that the future is caught up with possibility. To have a future is always to feel something more can happen in our lives- we are never done never finished- life is always shaking new thing into us. w have the behave then in accordance with this possibility- We need to always open up certain options, and evolve them in the hope of more options to come. We have to plan now, but plan in the idea that what is planned is no necessarily what will come in itself, so much as the platform or deck that runs out into possibility, our projection into it, from onto which the possibilities far, and around which they coalesce. Heidegger would have us then at once revel in the creative of the what is to some that hangs over us- while suggesting we create nets of capturing those possibles we look to and for, those that we feel peculiarly suite ourselves and our lives. A move which defines reasonable enough personal choice but is lousy when it comes to the game of modern politics.... Hence is love of dictatorships which expend the politics of one person into the nation.
In opposition to this pole there is of course the future or probability (an option Heidegger for one derided). That is the future were one reckons up what one thinks is likely to be - what is likely to come and modifies ones behaviour accordingly in the here and the now. these numbers of course define their own reality - create there own level - on which historically at least policy tended to be made. It might hurt some the argument always goes, but over all the average or the expectation or the trend line is going our way. the trouble with this approach (and hi is Heidegger's critique) - is that it misses the key fat of temporality as such namely that it is self-conscious as it is time. Time is born in us, in the fact that we have being, and know we have a future. Probabilty then deadens that looking towards - or defines a level where it can be safely ignored. It does not matter where we know what is happening or no, the argument runs, the future is the same nevertheless - it does not matter what we think, the future appears in the numbers. A point of course heidegger lampoons,a s what is the point of time as we live it, as it is in us if it were not self conscious? to set theorize that deny that aspect is to create a theory that tears out the essence of temporality in describing it.
In terms of modernity we would of course now say that Heidegger is half right. The is wrong to demand the self-consciousness of being is the critical determinant - that it is all that matters and does so in defiance of maths, but he is right to insist that the fact that being knows what it wants effects the future. We are all very used to the fact that belief is something, in something in some mass happening is itself a real truth - and has become increasingly (and often very irritatingly) an increasing power in the land. indeed so much is this the case that it has become as it were a third pole of the future - the belief in others believing, and the way to manage their expectation in the face of the fact that belief is nonsense, is the task of modern politics. Debates such as health and safety or immigration are carried out in never never land of what we think is being done and the future we imagine we are running towards.
A new pole has then been created of the collectively imagines future - the actions we assume and assuming create other different futures. But as an opposite pole to this future is is then clear yet another has emerged. Starting from Heidegger's perspective has arise the demand that we all have a right to a future - to possibility to creation - and it ii
s the task of someone else - say the state or the society or the law or the nation or whoever to ensure those sacred rights. possibility has then moved into stroppy insistence of right to come, the future is come little more that an land grab for possibilities. a place were we anxiously stake out our claims and demand what is to come.
Between these different corners of ways we do the future many different poles exist, and we compose many futures for ourselves and for others . A composition which has clear rules. Firstly and most importantly such an act of composition is hand in glove with what we call our personality. that is our personality in a sense is(in part) the name we have to the manner in which we infer differing futures: Our prejudices or fear, our hopes and dreams, our dominant thougths are then all given in the kind of futures we are likely to make and remake; To be gloomy or introspective or hateful or lovable is to allows for certain futures. But such a personal composition is also in a sense collective, our personality also, defines how we allow others also into these future how we share them- and who we share them with (Heidegger brilliantly understands here that the past is the having been of mood and personality- that which one is already, which conditions what possibles are possible). The shared future then evolve in this merging of personality (and becomes a power). a sharing which will that enter are trend lines from the here and the now and develop them into what is to come. The here and the now then forms the bridge into possibilities- into those possibilities one looks to create - and the actions needed. an bridge building that is highly creative but also plastic and collective. many in the process, a mulitude that will of course warp the bridge itself and its direction - turning it aside or naming it take other paths in a shifting world, were belief as well what is believes itself is a force. moreover the bridges become then part of the non-believers the non bridge makers possibility as well pricing other action within them,actions that will further change the landscape for the bridge, making it increasingly tricky where it is going. the bridge of course ultimately becomes merely a jut into somewhere - and often so massive that it cannot be taken down or changed.
futures has an irritating habit of avoiding all plans, all believes and even any one set or series of possibilities. What tumbles into being is then always something from somewhere else - light by the vividness of reality, a light that shines never where it is meant to. The problem then with the future is that it actually out thinks us - while demanding that we think it: our thoughts are then always a part in this avoidance, in what othering it composes. a problem that of course haunts all our lives, and makes any attempt tp be free so very very difficult.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Vivisection of desire

It is one of those things we are all so used to we hardly notice anymore: But the real power of money surely lies in its ability to cut through the very futuring tense of desire. Desire yearns after all towards what s not their: Or perhaps better it makes the what is not into a positive place. It is then the art of not being where one should, and so yearning - or question or creating or perhaps blindly conjuring that other world, lost past or imagine present, into being: forcing to become whatever else it was to be also implicated in a futuring - in a becoming what I will be.
Desire quite probably left to itself is a bit of a messy affair. Its highly poly-vocal (if only he have the patients to listen) and quite likely to diffuse. a desire will the infuse a sequence of possibilities, when one gives it moves, shifts changes evolves across time - and this essentially is the point: It works across these shift of perspective - and never resolves itself exactly....
More than that it always oscillates in that strange land which runs between actuality and virtuality. So much desire is my internal yearning - it is not really realizable or i might not realize that it is realized:and yet of course something it needs to edge into what is actual - it is merely exactly what and where and when and even whether that is a movable feast.
A fact that become all the more complex as desire is collective - that is good desires are never purely mine- we share in them; but also in the sharing we find community- so its fact changes everything =makes in a sense what was not actual matter or event feel present. the slips into the virtual then might involve from another level a social reality that is far more important than any realization. Except of course it may well feel more complex in our heads. here is no reason we have top realize the power of the sharing - the desire is ours after all: We almost by definition then confuse what we are as individuals for a more nebulous communal feeling. we demand also to be that, and so loose sight (ironically perahaps given our indvidualism) of how our minds n there very essence and caught up with each other an actually- and compossible through one another
Desire then is often as not half dreams and a quarter hope and eighth reality, and sixteenth memory....and infinite harmonic series of shifting elements. And yet of course we routinely cut this creative if irritating and in neat form highly manipulative world with the cutting edge of money.
money operates by creating a hard divide between dreams and fiction. The former which are of course inchoate and complex and left free, while every actualityward of he latter becomes chargeble - and valued.
Money takes for itself all the mutlilayered aspect of desire. it then looks to what is and what will be and as you always to reckon up- according to it one voice the relative values of everything. Money threads desires which might have run in parallel up, in sa single thread of value: they become memory beads against it power. In doing so it usurps the futuring tense of desire. it is the future the future right here right now- the slip into what will be.
But of coruseti is a desire which one can desire. money is a sense is a coupe of the self-conscious aspect of desire over the merely conscious. that is it is what we hold in our hand, what in a desire is real (even i that reality is merely a number - and the necessarily communal belief that number works. It then becomes very quickly the only communal desire we all share- a desire which structures and infuses pretty much everything. The ambivalence of meum and tuum is thereby resolved and made into something: It becomes genuine and real, and sorted through. We dream the same dream on the level of money; But if we dream the same dream of actual things that will both cost us more (as we are competing) but also make that dream ore likely to happen (it is cost effective). Our power to think and feel then same is then marketed back to us - as ordered consurmerism
The irritating world of shifting selfish yet shared desire, is viviseted- forced into a single thread of realized thought: I is made then to account to itself in terms of another realized and actual desire (counted in money).
Accept of course does not work quite like that - for desire will not conform. It perculates money with is own polyvocal nature, and will recreate itself if it can - either when (by reason of wealth or poverty) one is set free from money- or else with money itself where one product will work by talking to many dreams (and needs then not merely to be judges by what it is) or else in resentiment (noisy or quiet) of the system and the desire to find another or finally be creating refuges of old fashioned desire, free from the scalple of money (the family, but also art, loyality etc). Desire then adds to its assemblage the desire to say otherthings than money does allow for - a quest that is in a sense forlorn as those desire main in the most part either marginal or mere dreams - as the money then become actually articulated money seeps in, as the lesser of evil - for desire left to its self need not be scary merely confusing to fail and confuse then spirit.
We vivisect then with a reason: We vivisect in spite our self- and every attempt to move beyond that vivisection will ail it is cannot find another way to be structures desire and so marshal it effectively.
The true power in capitalism is then the rendered powerful shifting decrees, and making our own nature an actual force in the world. Hard to out think that - without slipping into idiotic tyranny (that aspires to do the same)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Back to that old demonology

Demon are strange unions of mind. Waves that sweep up thought -and captures part, to they are part of it an inventing reason explainations or perhaps merely ruses for its advancement before ever they know what is happening. The great wave of collective sentiment is little more that a demon:They demoninc in the strangness of their union, and the fact that it hooks up many disperate elements, elements otherwise unlikened or thought differently at different times: Demons are the botched beasts, made of spare parts- or mismatching parts: Beast use only unity lies in the sweeping their part along with crazy other earthly power. It is true some demons become fixtures in our lives and the oddness fades from notice- and yet and yet - that oddness blights through and is readily seen by those with eyes to look.
- Demons has then very different life chances and lifetimes. Some are over in and instant- some are long terms conjurings. Some are the centuries old whole others over in an afternoon - some in conflict other piece. Demons come and go.
But to Abyss is a strange world- governed by the rules of segmentary opposition. Demons then are always something friends and other times foes. but other than these rules, which govern the interaction of the great demons, each individual demon has its own court- with attendant figures and powers- dimension if you or masks for the great demon - each with their own distinct powers to challenge the world, and yet each linked to the rest: demons wage then fierce wars one with the other, seeking to devour each other or better perhaps to strip each other of independent status, to rob one another of different aspects, and to force each other at the last to be a mere suppliant in their own courts.
Never more so that in the West, where three great demons have governed action from the mid seventeenth century (say onwards.
The first Avatar is clearly Baal- the modern incarnation in the state of princely might. The entire idea of nation state combines pieces of (cod) history, an old powers, with a new setting - it creates organs for states to think and to act- to decide and govern, and a quiet distinct ideologies of freedom and another of land and third of people. Ideologies that the Baal the sweeps us up as his court. A demon that it goes without saying is the king of hypocracy and double standard, and yet only of a certian kind. All policies are then twisted into being somehow of use to Baal and his advantage, while at the same time appearing to be good for others, for his parts. A twisting that takes place immediately and powerful (one Baal defends with his life); and runs counter to the actual fact that most of these policies were actually created not in the throne room of Baal or according the the rules he loudly chants, but in squalid back room. The Demons weak spot s of course those back rooms, where much negociated, and much hidden: much of the source of his powers then lie in squalid deals where he impresses himself, his will on other demons.. Finally this demon is always paraniod. there is a real demonic fear running across his court that somehow this hypocracy will be exposed, and this power revealed as pretence. The power is then defined fiercely and immiedately.
The second great demon for our times is of course Mammon the the self confident strident demon of wealth, and sweep all before him a demon who rushes where were angles would ear to tread- and talks endless and confidently about the justice of the market and its transforming eternal power. the demon then who feels they have no equal, and certainly has or respect for Baal, or appear not to. and yet this Demon is actually very vulnerable. The power of the market to be free is a gossamer affair- if Baal looks to limit it, the the market and the bluff confidence vanish. Mammon;s power then lies in the perpetual claim that his wealth breeds wealth - when all is certain that it breeds a greed that operates as a battering ram. that i Mamaons true vassal is the unfettering of greed itself, so that it itself runs riot, twisting truths and warping reality in its direction. a force that almost trumps Mamon (and which he cannot stop)- and certainly is both his greatest strength and weakness.
the two are then sometimes allies some times foes, and never trust one another. They are allies form Mamon needs Baal to allow the condition for greed and the market to thrive; More tan that it needs Baal to protect that which it has (property rights ) and to force others to allow it its right over them.: Baal uses Mammon wealth, but also the hope hat bottomless greed conjures up, and uses it for its own purposes. and yet the two runs against each other constantly in small skirmishes - but are in Euroland clearly squaring up to for a major war (the like of which we have not seen in many a long year).
but for of this these two operate as a team, in in the name of their respective freedom devour all other demons when young or at least attempt to. The only demon that has partially escapes is Young Astaroth- the demon for knowledge and thought. a demon that endless throws the world, and teaches one to perpetually question, and constantly re-examin nature. The demon then that dob any world or always wants it thought differently or other than it is. A demon that is a potential threat for both the major demons, and yet has be been caged by the other two in universities, or research centres and their ilk. So much so that they are different times treat Astaroth as their mere minion, their pawn, to play with use and then out back in its case. Bring out the performing thinkers, in a call heard in both court. The only fear is then that in a all out war or demons Astaroth might escape. Or perhaps that the world he looks to, the world of chaotic force pulling hither and thither might actually become more real that the world mammon and Ball create - a truth that might unseat there powers.
These three though have for three centuries or so waged an imperial war- all other pretends, the demons of free speech or communism or collective power and even religion have been by and large devoured by one or all of these three powers, in a series of very violent and aggressive actions. so much so that The unholy trinity who like to think that they have it all covered. Oh of course their exists in the margins the old demon of tyrant and autocrats. Asmodeus. but he is a Demon that traditionally they have all three kept away from - well until recently and yet, when of course Mamon and Astaroth started o flirt with his course also (modern China).
Other chaotic demons incarnation of behemoths have by and large been devoured or checkmated and their freedom comprehended under the universal powers- r else rendered ineffective and made powerless- so that they might howl in poverty and fear, but no more. the ld partial exception is of course Terrorism which menaces the three from without, and yet as a ghost - demon - only half there - a mirage which their action themselves partially create. and yet we clearly live at a time when two further behemoths demons of Chaos are materializing, the first is that of the internet and the freedom of knowledge to flow. This demon has grown within the two court of Baal and Mammon who fostered it for their own reason, but is now of course a real power - leading to a belated war, as both existing demons attempt to destroy the still forming power of this pretender. But of course it might be too late to contain this cloud like polyform demon. it might be free - and if it is the we are in for a bloody conflict as the three older demons jostle wit each other as they attemt to renegociate there powers in respect to this other power.
The second demon, is old Satan himself- the chaotic power of nature - occluded for many a year as Astaroths special concern,. but a demon in all likliehood of the move again- a movement that Mamon and Baal cannot and do not comprehend and wish to ignore (and hope that is proves but a ghost demon)- or else to tackle in such a way that does not hurt their other interests - a luxury they do not necessarily have.

in short it seems our abyss is n even more turmoil than normal - As new demons struggle to be bon, and old demons return from outside. the question then is whether Mammon and Baal ca as they have for often before head of these challenges and devouring them from inside and making them mere facets of their court- or whether they cannot or perhaps miss their opportunity as in the conflict they two square up to a fight of their own (just when they might need to be allied).
A question us Witch citiziens need to ponder as we decide our own conjurations.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

The imperial Past

It is just what minds do.....
We generalize our pasts to form abstract nets to capture presents if.
We have a past, where local rebellion, classical education, and a movement of wealth fro land to good helped create a society which aspires to allow individuals to be part of the choice about you govern. a system which is then abstracted as 'Free' (thanks hegel) - and unwound across the planet It becomes the only system we think is fair- the only system thaw feel can handle the economic free for all which was part of the ideal in which the original system was created.
We instinctively assume that the two elements free for all, and political freedom must be linked into each other. in a sense this aspiration is not daffy. the point of the free for all system of economics is that it tends to create individuals who manages the system to become very wealthy though bending rule. Markets then are rather easy to corrupt, and rather easy to manage (it is their natural state).
It makes theorectical sense then to have a rival pole to this freedom - namely a system of political control that is free from economic and can investigate it freely - and using its own powers. The double democracy of money and votes the could well make sense of a capitalism. there i is hard and fast rule here- many capitaliams through the world have flourished in oppressive regimes (including our own at its birth)- idea of the double freedom is then a relatively recent one.
But what is clear that this doubling of freedom is never simple- and it makes little sense to abstract it and then impose that abstract. That is if we simply impose the two models one and the other, and hope then will jangle around and get regulating- the process is really not going to work. the system in the West is after all carried by the elements that rule between the double freedoms- in both directions at once
so that successful democracies need established political parties with their feet in both worlds. That is parties which need to draw both funding and members from the econmic world, and then articulate these two into real politik. The economic then becomes translateble into an political vision. But these parties of course also need to be plural. that is there needs to be competition in the political world, and real competition at that. Parties must then actually look for and articulate real economic difference and make those differences matter and real.
the point then being that in the West (well Britiain at least) the parties are older than real parliamentary democracy. they were always there clamouring fro freedom, reflecting economic and political freedom one at the other. a presence that then permuated the entire system, be it educational or economic. the parties and the freedom they were part of, were everywhere.
And the system does not make that much sense without it.
the point sit then that freedom itself without pre-existing parties or at least their nub - their ideal does not make sense. If political freedom is then forced on other cultires, they will need to find these parties from within themselves and do so at once The point of course is that the parties they will- nay must find will reflect their current culture (and not the economic culture we hope to fo(i)sture on them. The parties will then be ethnic or religious
once again this actually no surprise- the same was true in Britian and the West where political parties in their inception where parties originate in religous turmoil- and are shot through by religion (even to this day). The problem is though that around the time of mass democracy our political parties sate also the deal with the free for all, as its partial critique and rival power. the point then for the of having a mass democracy was this move- it allowed another pole, nationalism or else socialism trivial the powers of the business classes (or else complement those powers, and make then feel more natural). Our political parties then evolved with the economic system - a system we then force or oblige or perhaps merely coerce other nations to accept in full (and with themselves in the one role thank you very much- supplier of raw materials). We thereby ensure that their political system has not got a hope. religious parties group around in the politics we think of as art of our histroy (whigs and Tories) and yet have to cope with problems imposed them, which are very modern, and highly complex. The system the mutatess way from any dreams of freedom, and into either a plutocracy or a enthnocracy (or often both). One political party/ethinic group/ league of corrupting business folk cease control. in a sense what else can they do? The system they are operating under simply cannot work it juxtaposes to very different times: The theorectial time of the eighteenth century and the creation of political parties within religious struggle, with the complexity and wealth of the current epoch - and the two do not work together the result is what we get an assortment of ethnic parties and little increase in actual freedom.
more than that - parties might form (even those that resemble western parties in countries where we share a history - I mean India) - have a deep problem with addressing the grinding poverty of the states. This poverty which is in part at least a lack of empire (we crashed existing orders to create the poor as labour class), is the rather deep rooted, and the parties shallow based on the modification of existing ethnic divisions). These parties are then unable to articulate their won economic situation adequately - and we are likely to not want them in the west to do so (as it limits our profits). We will encourage each nation to create a wealthy class, like us and ignore the very poor, whose political representation the west, ad those parties that come to represent images of that west actually fears). Parties then form which organize very effectively the middle classes and democracy will operate- but deep poverty remains beyond the system, and cannot be articulated within it - it si simply beyond its pale.

In short the world is caught in a very odd place. the logic of economic is that the West actually has to share its economic system with the world. it needs to trade somehow or other. as part of that trading, and perhaps to ensure freedom, in wishes or craves a would that shares its political system as well - and so desires other nations to have had a different history for the one it has had. history in then abstracted and elements of it imposed across the world under the ethic of freedom It does nto work very well. that is no surprise. the problem tough is given the economic necessity to advance capitalist production, no other ideology tends to gets the time to work - well not until china stared to work out other ways to do capitalism and perhaps eventually other voices in freedom ......
A hoc that the West might find rather hard to bare(or even understand).