Re: [-empyre-] Re: sedition and nationalism

I regret if there can be a misunderstanding from my last email and this
relevant aspect from Claire Pentecost analysis which is more largely
referenced by Brian Holmes (quote below). My subject was not to statue on
the global relevance but to understand of any other suggestions answering on
the list among which my own 'allegations.

First I cannot forget that Empire was written before September 2001 but more
that it was  over passed by this terrific event -not only of its own
unimaginable reality, but more of its capacity of self-terror against ideas
of unalienable freedom of the citizens; ( all the contrary were the
consequences of the terrible attacks in serial taking place in Paris during
the years 70/80 without having for consequence to alienate freedoms, all the
contrary getting to the elective power of Mitterrand. See how the return of
centrist/leftist government in Spain raised the attempt of the putsch by
Aznar's government after the attacks of Madrid - the king himself refused to
sign the special power and same refuse to delay the elections ).

Why here and not there? Or of the powerful executive people inherited from
the local constitutions and of their modern past history as lessons in
Europe? But USA knew of its Past that the repression of the freedom could
hurt a lot of citizen powerfully and successfully during the cold war. Here
is the importance of the local traditions and constitutions of the freedom
at the moment an abusive power success to over passed them. I do not know of
Australia history and traditions. But Australian cannot forget to regard it
from their own and to explain us how and what.

But there was in Empire the absence of a glance per defect to consider the
predictable signs of the topicality of post modern News or of History which
had made the preliminaries of this event - among which devaluations of the
dollar and the Lewinski affair- more omission to take into consideration
such possible unpredictable event but the sort it had already occurred under
other forms during the cold war - can it be of spy affairs to foreigner
interests or of bacteriological experiments in the subway in NY city, or of
the code by Mac Carthy- all that announced it though in a strange
possibility (one can never know the precise turn that opportunities of the
circumstances will allot singularity to the events). But moreover, Empire
was a great work but completely beside the reality of such disastrous
opportunities to arm a new military and moral capacity in oneself, to home,
and to the world. It could be from a no relevant part of the rhetorical
point of view which could not integrate the predictable languages as a
emergent semiotics emerging from the news -even misinformation tells
something precious... Why? Because it is otherness of the question of the
truth. It is from emerging fiction. That does not take care of the enemy who
himself knows of the imaginative modes through the medias and uses them as a
weapon. (Remember of the European iconographic pub by Siemens (? -I don't
remember if it was surely of Siemens) under the strategic idea choice to the
representative spectacular attack against the City).

Italian materialistic studies of semiotics quote perfectly on these working
signs of the communication and of the medias and they study of them. From
the critical succession of Umberto Ecco of Bologna schola -Paolo Fabbri,
Federico Montanari and their colleagues (allied with a part of French
tendency of semiotic @ Limoges university).
"Per una semiotica della comunicazione strategica" - in 2004
fabbri_montanari_30_07_04-1.pdf (27 pages)

And before as an emergency of the same tendency thanks Juan Alonso Aldama
(sorry to quote again of my work of edition) as they were both studying
together; In the issue: "Socialbarbaric"

Click in the summary the English version or the bilingual
Spanish/Francophone version (and roll below):
The moved mass / La masse (é)mue / De la masa social actante colectivo"

Federico Montanari : Stratégies sémiotiques de la guerre / Semiotics of the
war. Here you have an abstract
(Live symposium in Paris, 2002-
Review of all the abstracts linked from the summary of the authors

Anyway it could not be hope to common of a new universal theory as a credo
even if this theory has its logical set of relevant concepts right now.
Because for all they cannot be exclusive points of view of the other views
or other manners to the analysis at the beginning of this century of which
predictable paradigm appears such as environment next to statistics.

Even in the same register of reference at the beginning of every emergent
critical power of Leninist-Marxist in the past Modernity the views more the
strategies were different : what of the victorious Chinese Long March
Increasing in number from the people and of these processes to overcome the
army of Chang-Kaï-Cheik, next to the takeover of the soviets by the
Bolchevik Party thanks Trotsky's army to get at the total power by
repressing the anarchists on the energy of whom it had been bet to implement
the soviets in Russia? A radical and opposite practice of the dictatorship
of the proletariat thought by Marx fronting the question of the massive
repression to the insubordination of the people undergone by the Commune of
Paris...  Millions of years light separate these strategies and their
concepts even if at the end the Chinese cultural revolution was a damaging
false note in the song -and worst suggesting to the post modern Red Khmers

Nowadays to believe in politics or in any thought cannot be a common cup of
tea as model of cognition at work, or just it would still rule as a model in
knowledge, as well to who does not believe in God  as well to who defend and
practice the pragmatic cognitive way facing the reflective or predictable
events which hurt to us (even a dialectical confrontation with the
individual or collective past experiences). In fact for my part I think that
both usefully points of view are usefully required front of the repression
to keep safe any of us who presently yet suffer from the repression.  The
global analysis of post capitalist society  -flexible as the production if
you want to call it with these special referent concept - for a hand, but
for another hand we are totally immerged in a perpetual war which denotes
that this part of the logical theory in matter of  real materialistic events
of the critical mass effects in the form of singular realities is missing.

But at last it remains one thing that you do not want to think of, it is the
question of the war : what happens of this perpetual war which appears as a
new mode of political global government of the world as much globally as
consequently really and locally in the facts, not being a dialectical mode
but a new fate mode edict by the faith of the new scarcity as a fatal (such
as a divine punishment after the progress) reality of the decrease of the
planet where stays a necessity to get rid of the liberties to enjoy it and
to live on it for the people? In that case in exemplary title the power
always begin (and it always made it traditionally all around the world, it
is as an anthropological reflex of the human species) to repress the active
representatives of the freedom: the intellectuals, the artists, the
creative,  and to constitute them in otherness to be expurgated.

The global analysis of post capitalist society  - flexible as the production
if you want to call it with this referent concept - for a hand but for
another hand we are totally immerged in a perpetual war which denotes that
this part of the logical theory the target of which is obviously missing.

But to tell again of actual semiotics regarding the question of the
generalization of the total war (it means no dialectical) as a model of
society and of language, there was not complete politics of the capitalism
and of the political economy or the critical political economy for the power
of the representative democratic States - as well as the "legimate"
dictatorships- outside of a dialectical relationship of the society and its
representative power to the dialectic war at certain moments being "a
manner of continuing the policy by other means" -Klausewitz.

And what of the permanent war as mode -to remind of the last texts by Susan
Sontag about the torture? Or Baudrillard and much more?

To imput to the societies even they would be in peace...

What of the radical evil as current means - Hannah Arendt writing on
Eichmann... More the radical nonsense of the thought able to turn out in its
contrary at he moment it reaches the extreme logic of its human system?
-Heidegger to apologize of any historical and ontological errors...

So we have to explore the contexts of environment, which informs these
reforms. And to observe of the singular opportunities under which it takes
different forms in Anglophone democratic societies - as you told us - or in
European republican societies... But a sign of a change of the symbolic
world to get out the paradigm of individual freedom.

Or we never will be able to change anything in this new post capitalism
where the most of them have known how to become the vectors protected by the
moral and the armies, the states even elective ones.


On 13/02/06 21:08, "Brian Holmes" <> probably wrote:

> I found a long and incredibly useful article by Paul
> Passavant that adds something important to the relation that
> Claire Pentecost drew between the new sedition and/or
> terrorist laws and the neoliberal mode of governance. Claire
> says: "as capital becomes more flexible, the state
> administers a compensating rigidity in order to govern the
> human dimension of wealth production and concentration,
> specifically that part of the labor pool that needs to be
> kept dammed in large reserves and managed through precise
> valves." What Passavant does is to show how the whole
> post-Fordist or neoliberal conception of society justifies
> the use of arrest and imprisonment by developing a
> conception of the abnormal individual, not as someone sick
> who should be cared for (that was the old psychiatric
> paradigm) but instead as a monster who should be put away,
> in the name of consumer security. The potential threat of
> the unpredictable individual becomes a focus of governance,
> determining the objects of suspicion, the kinds of policing
> procedures that are used and the way force is applied. Given
> the common associations between artistic activity and
> dissent, subversion, the abnormal and indeed the monstrous,
> this just might apply to the empyre discussion! Even if it
> is, once again, a study of current conditions in the USA.
> I'll excerpt the basic ideas, then offer a few comments.
> Here goes:
> "The Strong Neo-Liberal State: Crime, Consumption, Governance"
> by Paul Passavant, in Theory & Event 8:3 (2005
> ....
> Scholars have described a shift -- we can usefully if not
> somewhat arbitrarily date this shift to 1973 -- in the U.S.
> state from a Keynesian welfare state to a neo-liberal,
> post-Fordist state.... Fordism's state formation has a
> dominant political and legal mentality of social security
> and a politics of risk.  The risk mentality as it is
> configured under welfare state conditions is importantly
> different from thinking in terms of good versus evil or the
> notions of legal responsibility prevalent in the 19th
> century.  Rather than individualizing guilt for traffic or
> work-related accidents, or blaming the individual's morality
> for unemployment when the business cycle means that a
> percentage of the population will lose their jobs at certain
> points, these risk societies recognize a certain statistical
> probability within given populations for accidents or
> misfortune....
> A condition of possibility for these risk societies is
> solidarity.  Hence the significance that solidaristic risk
> societies place upon disciplinary institutions like the
> school, prison or helping professions.  These institutions,
> as Michel Foucault has taught us, seek to normalize their
> subjects.  Even with prisons, the emphasis is on corrections
> and reform in order to reintegrate the subject as a
> productive member of society....
> During the era of the welfare state, imprisonment rates in
> the U.S. decreased in relation both to the number of crimes
> recorded and offenders convicted.  In the period between
> 1973 and the late 1990s, however, the number of inmates
> incarcerated increased by more than 500 percent, the rate of
> incarceration per 1000 index crimes nearly quadrupled, and
> the prison population has become significantly racially
> disproportionate.  In the U.S., we have witnessed,
> particularly in the 1990s, a period of falling crime rates
> and rising imprisonment rates.  David Garland describes
> these trends by contending that the "prison has once again
> transformed itself," meaning that the prison fulfills a
> different function under post-Fordist economic conditions
> than it did under Fordist conditions. Rather than being
> understood as a correctional institution to reform
> individuals and to prepare them to return as productive
> members of society to the production line, the prison is
> seen now as an institution to incapacitate and to contain
> monsters....
> As contemporary society has rejected a social welfare
> orientation to the governance of poverty, Fordist economic
> premises, a correctionalist approach to penology, and the
> solidaristic risk mentality of social insurance, different
> fragments of the state are now seen as more relevant to
> governance than during the mid-twentieth century.  It also
> means that the status of different professions and
> institutions are reconfigured from their former positions
> within solidaristic risk societies that rested upon the
> disciplines.  Under these conditions, scholars note that the
> increasingly dominant political mentality in American
> society is to "govern through crime."  That is, crime and
> punishment are prioritized contexts and mechanisms for
> governance....
> Moreover, within the post-Fordist state, security has become
> identified with consumption.  Privatized spaces for
> consumption like shopping malls are secured spaces, while
> those zoned from such spaces secured for consumption or the
> spaces beyond the walls of the gated community (the feeling
> of security commodified) are viewed increasingly with
> apprehension by those with purchasing power.  In other
> words, under conditions of neo-liberalism, there is a
> consumer-criminal double.  Not only do we see this double at
> work in U.S. domestic policy, but we also see it projected
> outwards in U.S. security policy by the Bush
> administration's 2002 National Security Policy Strategy.
> Securing the Homeland Against Danger Post-September 11
> With the end of the Cold War, we have seen the reemergence
> of the racial discourse of Western civilization versus the
> savage or barbarian as the predominant mode for mapping the
> world and America's place within it.  The Bush National
> Security Strategy makes clear a twist to this racial
> discourse that has become particularly prominent since
> September 11th.  As this document indicates, the enemy of
> "civilized nations" -- and the American "homeland" -- is
> "terrorism."  This document borrows from the racial
> discourse that underwrote 19th century colonialism and
> imperialism, but with an important difference.  Now, the
> other is no longer represented merely as racially inferior
> but also as a criminal.  The Bush National Security Strategy
> articulates together two strands of the present -- consumer
> capitalism and fear of crime.  As William Finnegan has
> noted, it is both interesting and odd that a national
> security strategy would devote as much space as the Bush
> Strategy does to discussing economic policy.  As is clear
> from the section entitled "Ignite a New Era of Global
> Economic Growth through Free Markets and Free Trade,"
> however, it is in fact official U.S. policy to promote --
> presumably through military means since this has been
> identified as a vital U.S. national security interest by its
> placement in the Bush National Security Strategy -- a
> neo-liberal global economic regime.  Freedom to be a
> consumer is the form of freedom that U.S. policy seeks to
> make enduring through U.S. military operations as the
> strategy represents political difference -- those who oppose
> the promotion of the neo-liberal capitalist enterprise -- as
> criminal: the terrorists.  This only makes clear what had
> been prefigured in the immediate aftermath of September 11th
> by The New Republic's Peter Beinart who also represented
> anti-global capital protesters as equivalent to terrorists
> in an article published in the September 24, 2001 issue of
> that magazine.  Thus, U.S. national security policy is an
> external projection of the consumer-criminal double....
> ******
> The text goes on to point out a lot of details about the way
> commercial databanks are now used by government security
> agencies to profile so-called risky individuals. Thus the
> consumer-criminal knot becomes even tighter. What Passavant
> doesn't do is to point out the usefulness for labor-force
> control that can be derived from this profiling and
> repression of the often racialized "potential terrorists". I
> think that's one of the key points, just as Claire said.
> What you do get from this text, though, is a very strong
> explanation for the way that a society foregrounding the
> right to unlimited consumer desire can also produce such a
> willingness to persecute people and lock them up. We're
> talking not just about a single law or policy, but about a
> political rationality of neoliberal societies which both
> reconfigures the objective forms of the state, and affects
> the way that people are subjectively encouraged to see the
> world. The transformation is expressed in the very
> architecture of consumption: malls, tourist complexes,
> Disnified city-centers, what I call "the urbanization of
> blindness." You don't even have to look at the immigrants
> who do the work - because in a good neoliberal society, you
> know that if they get out of line they'll go into jail,
> forever. And if a few artists or intellectuals go with them,
> that may be the price we are asked to pay for keeping the
> fundamentals of neoliberal society invisible.
> Not a pretty picture but I believe it contains a grain of
> truth...
> best, Brian
> _______________________________________________
> empyre forum

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