[-empyre-] OSW: open source writing in the network

Dmytri Kleiner dk at trick.ca
Fri Jan 13 22:10:20 EST 2012

On 13.01.2012 11:09, Simon Biggs wrote:

> I agree that something must be done and that open
> source and alternate models of production need to be part of any
> effective strategy of resistance - but I fear that this is what it
> will amount to, heroic but futile resistance to inevitable change.

The power of the corporations comes from the power of the state, 
without the territorial monopoly on the legitimate use of violence 
enforcing their rights, the corporations are paper tigers. Their 
privilege to capture and control productive assets, and thereby 
accumulate capital, comes from the state.

Without the state, there are no corporations. The entire concept of 
"legal personhood" rests in the premise that there is a body of law that 
defines personhood, and thus rests on the premise of the state.

It's not so much that globalisation is transferring power from the 
state to the corporation, as that corporations are increasing their 
power over the state. Meaning that power is (further and further) 
concentrating in the hands of capital, the loser is not "the state," 
whose role has always been to mediate among the classes on behalf of the 
ruling class, the loser is labour, or in other words: people.

If we can apply ideas from open source and peer to peer networks to new 
forms of production the state's power vanishes, and that of the 
corporations with it. A borderless, peer to peer world is not one that 
is friendly to the rentier.

However, in order to achieve such a world, we fist need to create 
alternative forms of provisioning the public goods that the state 
currently provides, because the complexity and size of our society can 
no longer survive without them, and we also must create alternative 
means for forming the productive capital the corporations currently 
provide, because maintaining the scale of our productive capacity 
demands it. And that is perhaps the part that is most difficult to 
grasp: The Scale.

We can't confuse token or fringe alternatives to be the embodiment of 
that change, only as potential models that prefigure it, we need to ask 
ourselves how we can transform the whole, not just escape into a 
self-satisfied subculture, content with our own perceived "innocence" 
from complicity.

And yet, it is such self-congratulatory innocence from complicity is 
what is most often presented as a solution in our community.

To be continued in my responses to Adam and Tiziana.


Dmytri Kleiner

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