Volatility

January 23, 2020

Forget the Apocalypse, the Elect Can Be Raptured Today

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You already proclaim you’re evil. Why be cheap and gutless about it?

 
 
Yes indeed, anyone who so chooses can be enraptured today by the electoral circus, now entering its loudest, shrillest, fakest, most deranged manifestation of all. Still to have faith in liberal electoralism at this extreme late date, still to believe when all evidence proves how absurd it all is, verily demonstrates that one is of the electoral Elect and is capable of immeasurable Raptures in the throes of one’s hallucinations.
 
Yes indeed the main purpose of such infantile distractions is that the masses want to forget the looming, inevitable ecological-spiritual Apocalypse. And if anyone actually were quixotic enough, not only to face this mounting transformation squarely but call upon others to do so as well, the impresarios of the system are there to enforce the campaign of distraction, co-optation, suppression, repression.
 
*This piece is not meant to reflect any personal investment in the fake election. On the contrary, it’s meant to highlight how fake the spectacle is and how there’s no way forward within this system, nothing to be accomplished within system electoralism as such. No presidential or other federal election has been more than a plebiscite on the fake-political, fake-democratic charade of neoliberal electoralism itself.
 
*Proposition: The evidence record going back decades, strongly reinforced in 2016, demonstrates that Bernie Sanders is sheep-dogging for the Democratic Party; for “progressivism” and social democracy as such; for electoralism in itself; most of all for the economic civilization and the proposition that the predicaments of this civilization can be solved, and the ecological and spiritual crises it drives can be resolved, within the framework of this civilization, especially within the electoral framework.
 
*The same is true of most Sanders fans. Early in 2017 I pointed out the paradox:
 
Most absurd were the Sanders and Stein fantasies. Ironically this mode of voting Yes [in the plebiscite on fake electoralism] indicates the most active, conscious affirmation of the status quo, since it takes the form of constructive criticism. One votes this way to say, “I like the status quo but want a few changes.” These voters are more likely to pay lip service to reality, but still are unwilling or unable truly to face reality, reject the status quo, and commit to what’s necessary. They too ultimately refuse to confront the crises, they flee to fantasy, and they vote for the status quo volatility which created Trump.
 
It’s especially amusing to see our aspiring “revolutionaries” whining or lecturing about how Sanders and Warren are “forced” to attend the proceedings of the impeachment geekshow.
 
Impeachment of course is worthless to any human beings let alone to the Earth; on the contrary it’s designed to misdirect and astroturf the mental energies and waste the time of those who pay any attention to it. Since the system includes both the Sanders con-job sheep-dogging faction as well as factions which despise Sanders in spite of the fact that he’s on their side, it’s not surprising that part of the purpose of the impeachment circus is to keep Sanders and Warren off the campaign trail for awhile by tying them down in the Senate. The system factions all have a shared interest in this.
 
But that can’t work unless they willingly play along.
 
We often see this kind of lament: “Sanders and Warren being unable to properly campaign due to Senatorial considerations…”
 
In what way are they unable? When fans of these politicians say these are “unable” to campaign, they mean unwilling.
 
Now one might expect the corporate technocrat-posing-as-a-progressive Warren to play along with the impeachment farce. After all, Ms. “Capitalist to the core” is supposed to be a Responsible Adult, not an unwashed insurgent. But if Sanders were really on the level the way his fans claim, and not a con artist the way many of us long have assessed, wouldn’t he be flouting such fake “considerations”? None of his fans ever answers questions like these.
 
I was told, “Sanders was forced to cancel a campaign event he scheduled for tomorrow evening in Iowa because of the crazy impeachment schedule that will run on past 1 a.m. in the morning.”
 
Who forced him other than himself? If Sanders were on the level and a real insurgent rather than a sheep-dogging fraud, why would he do that? I sure wouldn’t if I was in his place. Not if I was for real. If Sanders is for real why would he be having anything to do with this geekshow?
 
I’m told, “he’s got a job, being a senator…All Senators must be present for the trial–or should Bernie add dereliction of duty to his campaign platform?”
 
Yes he most definitely should. As one of the original American revolutionaries proclaimed, “When tyranny is on the march, obedience is a crime.”
 
By Bernie’s own lights and those of his followers, if he’s sincere then his job is not to “be” a senator (whatever that’s supposed to mean) but to fight for the people. Therefore, to paraphrase Lincoln, if he could fight best by punctiliously carrying out his “senatorial duties” he would do so, and if he could fight best by flouting all such duties he would do so, and if he could fight best by fulfilling some duties and flouting others he would do that too.
 
Impeachment always was worthless from the point of view of anyone who wants to change anything. If one believes in Sanders, and if he himself is not a con man, then the election is all. Any insurgent would be hitting the streets deliberately playing up the proud assertion:
 
“Here with you is my post, not with the fraudulent establishment political game.”
 
That would appeal not just to sincere “progressives” (if there are any, which I doubt; their run-home-to-establishment-mama position on Sanders and impeachment is evidence of that) but to all sorts of independents and maybe some previous non-voters. That would really be doing something different, not just mouthing empty words while doing nothing even when there’s a real opportunity like this moment (the Sanders specialty).
 
Especially when Hillary Clinton is handing Sanders such a gift by attacking him, such a target-rich opportunity to really counterattack Biden, Buttigieg and the whole Democrat establishment. Anyone who says Sanders should throw away this time in order to time-serve a preordained geek role at the impeachment farce is simply admitting that they recognize the scam character of the Sanders phenomenon and like it that way.
 
Anyone who thinks Sanders should be at the “trial” is at least objectively pro-Hillary, pro-Biden. (Sanders bots have whined about Hillary’s ingratitude, that she attacks Sanders after his abject sheep-dogging for her in 2016. But his Shillary-ing came after the Clinton faction stole the nomination from Sanders. So this is clearly a one-way relationship, with Sanders’ full consent. In 2015 he unilaterally declared at the outset that he would ultimately support Clinton and do his best to deliver his followers to her. This time around he made the exact same unilateral declaration of support for whatever nominee the Democratic party retches up, thus voluntarily throwing away the one big bargaining chip he had, the threat to run an independent campaign. This too is proof that he’s a con artist to any rational person capable of assessing evidence. No, “gratitude” has no place here. Sanders never asked for it, never demanded it, never wanted it, and has gone out of his way to reward the party’s ingratitude.)
 
Sanders followers with their technicality-fetishes seem very confused about what exactly they think Sanders’s job in life is. Which is evidence they’re false themselves.
 
I was told, “Bernie would be the most hated man on the planet next to Trump if he ran as an Independent flouting Congressional responsibility”
 
A real insurgent would welcome this hatred and make a virtue of it, while only a fraud would attempt the kind of fence-sitting and bet-hedging called for by cowards.
 
More and more people hate the system. In their eyes to earn the hatred of that system would be a great credential.
 
The kind of Berniebots who through some bizarre convolution want their Sanders to be an insurgent and yet simultaneously want him to act in the most domesticated, housebroken, tame, lame, Corbynesque way merely are demonstrating how they themselves are tame and lame and utterly incapable even of wanting change, let alone fighting for it.
 
It won’t do to say that if Sanders were to stay away from Washington and continue to campaign he would get slammed by the media as irresponsible or derelict. He’s already being slammed for that. On the contrary, if Sanders were a real insurgent against the status quo (or if he wanted to change into that right now), if he were a real alternative campaigner who wasn’t an incompetent spineless coward like Corbyn, he would be fighting to make a virtue of flouting the fake conventions of the partisan geekshow. He’d be doing it as a feature of his campaign.
 
You would speak only to the people, telling them:
 
“I’m not here to be a prop in their political con jobs which are meant to distract you from the real problems we have to face. I’m here for you, to be your representative and to speak to you about what’s real, since the establishment politicians and media have nothing to say to you except what’s fake.”
 
The establishment would whine and attack him for it, which would only be one added detail of their attack and therefore wouldn’t change anything since they’re already attacking him across the board.
 
*One advantage of having an enemy who simply is out to get you by any means possible is that it frees you from having to worry about any legitimate criticism, which if it existed would simply be confounded with the attack campaign. If you choose to use that advantage (i.e. if you’re not morbidly cowardly and inept like Corbyn; no circumstance ever could wrench him out of his congenital appeasement mentality), you can use it to accelerate your assertiveness and counterattacks as well as dispensing with the “for show” obstacles the enemy tries to put in your way. The demand to Sit Still and Be Quiet in one’s Senate seat while a geekshow is performed is one such fake obstacle.
 
(The fanbots also refuse to answer about things like Sanders’ willing participation in the NAFTA-vote geekshow. After CNN and the pathological liar Warren did their best to make Sanders look good at the last debate, he went right back to sheep-dogging form, willingly playing a geek role in this typical Washington geek-show:
 
“As one of the only candidates opposing Trump’s trade deal, I want to thank Sen. @ChuckSchumer for joining this fight. USMCA will make climate change worse. We will do better when I’m president.”
 
By “Trump’s trade deal” Sanders of course means the Trump-Democrat trade deal which passed the Senate 89-10, with several or all of the Democrat No votes being purely for show. Maybe Sanders means that as president he’ll tell better lies.
 
Of course one expects no better from an NGO technocrat/scammer like Bill McKibben (also quoted fulsomely gushing about Schumer’s heroism), but how do the Sanders fans explain such abject role-playing on the part of their would-be hero? Shouldn’t their version of Sanders be denouncing the nihilism and cynicism of Schumer and those cheering on his purely theatrical fake gesture and naming them complicit in this awful legislation?
 
Unless, of course, Sanders’ own No vote on NAFTA was equally for show. Just like Trump’s war budget, the Patriot Act and other legislative crimes, the revised NAFTA was passed with great bipartisan enthusiasm at the exact moment the impeachment farce was underway. How retarded would someone have to be still to believe there is any substantive difference whatsoever between the Democrats and Republicans, or not to recognize impeachment as pure misdirectional farce?)
 
 
*The fact that Sanders fans all seem to have such a morbidly conformist mindset about things like what a senator “has” to do when some stupid political circus is going on, is good evidence that they too, like their sheep-dogging Leader, don’t really want to change anything, just run a circus spectacle of their own.
 
When Sanders followers claim he’s constrained by system niceties, they’re really talking about their own preference for a fake alternative who really doesn’t want to change anything, only to put on a show. I bet if Sanders really were to start acting like an insurgent, his “progressive” support would lose enthusiasm. Otherwise why do they keep making excuses for his lukewarmness?
 
It’s also strong evidence of the falseness of Sanders fans who have been fanatical impeachment devotees. But any Sanders fan who really believes Sanders is an insurgent would never have wanted him to have anything to do with the geekshow, nor would they be so indelibly mired in the mentality that he “has to”. On the contrary they would denounce the misdirectional stupidity of it in principle while also pointing out how, as many of them already admit, part of the purpose of impeachment in the first place was to derail the Sanders campaign momentum. If you recognize that, why would you say “nevertheless we must comply”, unless you yourself were fraudulent to the core and are admitting that your Leader is as well?
 
*To repeat: Still to repose religious faith in this electoral system at all, let alone to be so congenitally enslaved in mind to it that one even believes in the impeachment geekshow, is to be objectively pro-Hillary, pro-Trump, pro- all the worst. No wonder Sanders is having such an easy time performing his pro-Hillary/pro-Trump sheepdog routine – look at the intellectual and moral quality of his fanbots.
 
Sanders would be in “dereliction of duty”, Oh heavens! Oh my pearls!
 
These people never would’ve been able to agree in the first place on the constitution’s getting rid of titles of nobility, they’re so beholden to worthless formality. There’s our “revolutionaries”!
 
 
 
 

November 4, 2019

Electoral Geeks

Filed under: Climate Crisis, Dance of Death, Reformism Can't Work — Tags: , , — Russell Bangs @ 3:42 am

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The notion that the vote is sacred in some way, with its implication that saintly people once fought and died so you can vote for whatever wicked lunacy you like, tallies well with the propaganda lie that “the troops fought for our freedoms.” Once again we see the fundamental pro-war affinity of liberals, and how the vote-sacralizing ideology itself is implicitly pro-war. (It also has a deep affinity with Mammon’s tenet that money is sacred and not just a tool.) And for the American mainstream “freedom” means nothing but license.
 
I’m not a member of this religious cult of electoralism. I view voting purely as a tactic and judge electoralism purely by its results.
 
By now the results are long since in: From the point of view of ecological sanity and human freedom, well-being, health and happiness, electoralism is a failure. Beyond the local level there’s seldom any context where voting makes any tactical sense at all. It’s purely for entertainment purposes or, in the case of the electoral fundamentalists, religious ritual.
 
The partisan bots worship celebrity politicians in the exact same way any other fan club worships any other kind of celebrity and root for their party in the exact same way sports fans root for their team. Those of us outside the cult recognize that there’s nothing here but carnival geeks in kangaroo elections, and that the alleged differences between Democrats and Republicans, for which sectarians within the cult are willing to throttle one another, are nothing but fighting over how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, 36 or 37.
 
And then many of them are so deep into the cult that they think even such an existential predicament as the climate crisis and the escalating Sixth Mass Extinction can be solved at the ballot box.
 
Of course the beyond-human animals and plants don’t vote, nor do forests or rivers or mountains. Nor do the great majority of our voting do-gooders want to figure out a way to give beyond-humans a vote. Gaia as a whole doesn’t vote until she renders the electorate insane to the point that they vote to accelerate their own destruction. This is happening now.
 
In the meantime liberal electoralists assure us that they and only they can save humanity and the whole world, and they can do it only and exclusively by voting Democrat. (I single out liberal Democrats because they’re the most obnoxious proselytizers for the electoral religion and because they carry the corporate-environmental program into the ballot box with them. Of course voting Republican is no better.)
 
If we vote their way we can be, not the cartoon X-Men but the equally cartoon XR-Men.
 
“This my friends is where we stand today. The myth becomes reality. The villain is corporate and government sponsored environmental destruction. The townsfolk are all of us, trying to just live out our lives in peaceful prosperity. The goddess is nature, loved by all for her beauty but so often misunderstood, abandoned, used and abused. The hero is the extinction rebellion and all sincere activists, drifting through town intent on righting the wrong, challenging the villain, setting the example and hopefully, when it’s all said and done, settling in for the life ever after with the glorious goddess.”
 
There’s the mentality of corporate environmentalism and the climate industry. “Nature” still is helplessly prone on the rack where Francis Bacon strapped her for what he gleefully called a gang rape. Only now our heroic XR Men are coming to the rescue brandishing ballots and petitions to their favorite politicians.
 
On the contrary the task of we primalists, we pioneers and returners, is to endure Gaia’s Kinesis, doing whatever we can along the way to assist the Earth, wherever we see opportunities. But in spite of the Dominionist delusions of exploiter and would-be savior alike, we know that Earth remains infinitely dominant and now is beginning to smack down this vermin infestation called “modern civilization”. (That is indeed what this civilization is in the most literal biological sense of the term.) And we build the necessary movement against this culture and polity and for a post-fossil Gaian society.
 
Meanwhile the fake elections of this civilization are just one of the circuses while the basis of bread rapidly shrinks toward nothing.
 
 
 
 
 

March 8, 2019

For the Civilized War is A Domestic Ritual

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Where the first civilization eradicated the first forests, generating the first man-made desert, war still rages to this day.

 
 
Civilized people love war. They cherish war since they know deep down their civilization depends completely upon predatory war: War on traditional peoples, war on weaker civilized societies, incessant economic civil war within each society, most of all war on the Earth itself. Modern global-Western civilization was born in war, built through war, is sustained to this day through war, and must commit suicide through war. This sums up the only meat of the religion of all civilized hominids.
 
Take for example one of their most cherished rituals, elections. Elections have no objective reality to them: There’s never a real choice, nor do the elected personnel feel any responsibility to give the voters what the voters claim to want. On the contrary, they deny in principle that they have any responsibility to the people at all. They openly proclaim that their only responsibility is to the binge and destruction imperatives of the economic civilization, and that any national election is nothing but a ritual where one votes Yes to the extreme-energy binge and the destruction. That’s all democracy has turned out to be, all it ever was. This is historical fact. And in truth this is what the voters really want, nothing more or less.
 
An election is nothing but a religious ritual. One can vote Yes, vote one’s yes-confidence in the priesthood and in the church of the extreme-energy ecocidal civilization. All else is the meaningless fake politics of a population which is nothing but squatters and vandals infesting the surface of the Earth, which give the Earth nothing in return for all they take, which wantonly despoil far more than they actually take, which are no part of the Earth at all.
 
Therefore the voters always vote unanimously for permanent war. They’ve long voted unanimously for permanent imperial war in the Mideast, for the Zionist genocidal war, for permanent war in Afghanistan, in Iraq. They all voted for the military destruction of Libya and have wanted the same for Syria. They’ve voted unanimously for twenty years of economic war on Venezuela, and next chance they get they’ll vote for military invasion, as in the past they voted for every kind of assault on every part of Latin America. They all want nuclear war with North Korea. They all want World War III with Russia and China. They all want permanent war unto total ecocide, total genocide, total suicide. All this is proven by their political actions and their day-to-day actions.
 
War always is mass murder, and war always is ecocide: The direct destruction of the explosives and poisons and vehicles and carbon emissions; the residual poisons left behind, from Agent Orange residue to every kind of chemical waste to radioactive ammunition waste; most destructive of all is war’s pretext for accelerated technological deployment and escalated over-production, again synonymous with ecocide. This is the most profound aspect of how the economic civilization loves war for the sake of profitable destruction, loves war for the sake of ratcheting up the production/consumption binge, loves war because it destroys in order to free up space to ratchet up production again. That’s a big part of why civilized people in general love permanent war: In tandem with commodity production the permanent global imperial war is a permanent world destruction machine, a permanent exercise in Dominion which is the core theology shared by monotheism and modern scientism-technocracy. The civilized voters vote for nothing but murder and suicide, with nameless decadence and misery throughout the way.
 
Thus all political Americans lust for war. That’s proven by the fact that they vote for it every time. Every election is a Yes or No plebiscite on permanent war, and the only way to vote No is to boycott the fake election completely.
 
Are there anti-war Americans? Yes, but we’re among those who gave up on fake voting. Part of reason I’ve never voted is that I truly am anti-war and therefore cannot participate in an election which is nothing but a Yes vote for war.
 
(But don’t mistake me, thinking I yearn for “better elections”. No, these are what modern elections are, what they’ve always been, just as these are what voters are, what they’ve always been.)
 
The same goes for Yes-voting for the binge economy, for ecocide, for technocracy, for the police state and prison complex, for the cultural and economic genocide of indigenous/traditional peoples and community farmers, their physical destruction soon to follow. These are the only true matters left, the only things that matter. The rest is mere squatter politics, trivia curated by the media. And even there there’s only one party to vote for and the vote always is unanimous: Yes to the same economic tyranny which drives all the real elements of the gathering apocalypse.
 
For the civilized, war is a domestic ritual, just as elections and voting are a ritual. And in fact they’re the same ritual, inextricable. The only vote being offered is Yes to war. Yes to total war unto the end.
 
I’ve never been able to think in any terms of the intrinsically murderous politics of the intrinsically murderous system. I’ve only ever been able to think in terms of building a movement completely outside the system, completely without any of the system’s personnel, completely against the system. And since it’s clear that no such movement is going to exist, today I think only in terms of spiritual kernels and arks to endure the gathering Kinesis and tribulation, to bring through the flames whatever is worth salvaging for a post-civilized, Gaian humanity. Gaia knows there’s little enough of that.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

January 28, 2019

Gaia and Consumer

Filed under: Freedom, Mainstream Media, Reformism Can't Work — Tags: , , , , — Russell Bangs @ 9:15 am

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At this stage of our existential crisis we have only the either/or: Ecological vs. consumerist. One’s primary thoughts and actions go one way or the other. (As for myself and anyone else brought up with the indoctrination to be a consumer, we who consciously have renounced this, I don’t know how likely it is we can be born again truly as of the Earth. But at least we can think and live as ecologists and help bring about a new way of living, and eventually a new way of learning to be human.)
 
Corporate production-consumption imperatives dominate all rhythms of power in modern societies. Corporate-Randroid “competition” ideology, corporate austerity, and corporate marketing dominate all modern culture, intellectual life, science, and the pseudo-politics of fake democracy. Consumerist politics is inherently non- and anti-political. This includes almost all aspects of modern political speech and campaigning, and all of electoralism. Fake-political ideas, attitudes, campaigns, are marketed exactly the same way as any other aspect of commodity culture. Those who consume these experience them and act them out in exactly the same way.
 
That’s why it’s usually impossible to have anything recognizably like a political discussion, let alone an argument (in the proper sense of that term). It’s almost always like an angry and childish dispute over which sports team or movie is better, because that’s exactly how most of the “politically aware” conceive and experience politics these days. That’s part of why Politics is Dead in just the sense Nietzsche meant when he wrote God is Dead: People still superficially “believe” in it, but it really means nothing to them except as a superficial identification. They don’t live it. The kind of movement or political party one joins, with membership as a core part of day-to-day life, no longer exists. Thus the term “identity politics” is, in the broad sense, redundant. At least in the West almost all politics is identity politics, no matter what its superficial ideology.
 
(In all this I’m talking about the West, and any strata anywhere which apes the political and cultural framework of the globalist cancer economy and society.)
 
This is the complete, though temporary, victory of the production-consumption ideology. Even those who identify as “radicals” see this as a hobby, while they see their “real life” as consumed by their private imperatives: Job; materialism of car, lawn, and “stuff”; maybe sometimes family. They don’t view ecological-political participation and the responsibilities of citizenship, even in a polity let alone an ecology, as being even a co-equal value, let alone the paramount one.
 
Electoralism always was driving politics inexorably into this pit, and at the latest under neoliberalism’s corporate rule has been deliberately designed that way. The focus on large-scale electoralism was an historical mistake for those who fought for freedom and equality. If these are attainable at all, it’s not by that path. God knows today’s alleged “alternatives” within electoralism do all they can to prove that electoralism doesn’t work. And by now only cultists of an electoral religion still believe in it. Thus today’s “radicals” and “progressives” are, ironically, a type of reactionary.
 
Some people eat to live, others live to eat. So it is with politics. A tiny few experience politics as essential to human life, if only because where subjugated health and happiness depend upon this, while most prove by their actions that they experience it as just another consumer product.
 
 
 
 
 

January 9, 2019

The Housebroken Environmental Movement

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You can’t “vote” against this. Indeed those who vote all vote for it.

 
 
As a rule, people’s principles and goals boil down to what they personally want to do. Every religion started with the invention of the kind of gods the inventors wanted, and everything followed from there. One starts with desire and ramifies a philosophy and program from this all-too-human wellspring. There are few exceptions, the main one being understanding of the physical and biological crisis of the global ecology.
 
Ironically, the mainstream environmental movement is one of the worst examples of self-indulgence. It is congenitally hobbled by the fact that its participants and supporters mostly are middle class types who have faith in the Extreme Energy Civilization, who desire its high-energy, high-maintenance, high-input, high-impact junk, and therefore whose “environmentalism” can only be an afterthought to these and can exist only within that consumerist framework. They then generate the political ideology which goes with this consumerism – statism, regulatory bureaucracy, politics conducted through government-controlled elections. All quite prim and proper and well-monocultured. This is why all mainstream environmentalism is performed within the framework of productionism-consumptionism, capitalism, technocracy. That’s why all its prescriptions boil down to “Keep Shopping!”
 
 
In many pieces over the years I’ve offered my corporate regulator template. Its explanatory and predictive power surpasses any other model I’ve seen. It goes:
 
1. Corporate productionism must always go forward. Its core imperatives of profit, power, control, and techno-religiosity must never be hindered.
 
2. Given (1), the regulator may sometimes work to mitigate the worst extremes, illegalities, “abuses” of corporate action. More often it only pretends to be taking action but never does. Often it doesn’t even pretend.
 
3. The regulator then puts its imprimatur on the corporate project, assures the public that things are orderly, sound, safe. Most of all it conveys the message that knowledge and action can be left to the regulator, and that the people should be content to accept the dispensation, relinquish all public responsibility and concern, get on with their private affairs.
 
Thus the regulatory bureaucratic model is anti-political, anti-participation, anti-democracy, but rather works to enshrine and reinforce authoritarian technocracy (but with a pseudo-democratic facade – that’s what the fake elections, and the ideology of electoralism, are for).
 
The regulatory ideology is an outgrowth of liberal ideology, which rose out of capitalism as a mode of indoctrination against the cooperative social primate nature we evolved over millions of years and into a competitive, privately-oriented, self-indulgent individualism. In this case the public faith in regulators, and the corporate state as such including its fake electoralism, dovetails perfectly with the brain-washed urge to fixate on one’s individual predicament, ignore our collective plight, and automatically reject all thought of real organization and organic community.
 
I first developed the template to apply to pro-corporate regulators like the EPA, FDA, USDA in their context of assisting poison-based agriculture. I quickly found the template applies just as well to all regulators, the media, academia, the legal system, the scientific establishment, establishment funders and NGOs, individual opinion leaders. In every case (1) is the same: Corporate productionism, or the productionist civilization no matter how it’s formally organized, must continue. Nothing the entity does must try significantly to hinder productionism or call it into question in any way.
 
This applies especially well to mainstream environmentalism, and most of all to the climate-industrial complex. Climate scientists, all mainstream activism, all mainstream media coverage (for that matter almost all “alternative” coverage), all academic study, all prescriptions (here too mainstream and “alternative” meld as one), all adhere to this template:
 
1. The productionist Extreme Energy Civilization, usually in its capitalist form (some alternatives call for “socialism”, but only as a cosmetic formal change – it’s still the same extreme energy productionism), must continue no matter what.
 
2. Given (1) they may try to reduce some emissions in some cherry-picked way, preserve some wilderness here, an endangered species there, all on an ad hoc basis. More often they only pretend to do these. Their touted climate solutions are usually based on inherent false accounting, including the monumental “offset” fraud, and are ecologically highly destructive in themselves such as the mining required for industrial “renewables”. Of course electric cars, biomass, and biofuels are both horrifically destructive and examples of fraudulent carbon accounting.
 
For Big Green NGOs (1) is always primary and getting big funding always second. Or we could conflate these – they combine to give the NGO a mandate to collaborate with the destroyers of the Earth rather than oppose them. And indeed many NGOs are nothing but corporate front groups, while others pick and choose where to explicitly collaborate and where to pretend to oppose. Even those who sometimes do oppose do so firmly within the civilization’s framework and assume the productionist imperative as God-given.
 
And then good liberal individualists can mouth the words, sign a petition, contribute to the World Wildlife Fund or the Nature Conservancy, vote Democrat. In other words do nothing, and in fact support the ongoing massacre, but attain cheap grace.
 
3. Then the “movement” puts its imprimatur on the state of things. Corporate collaboration deals mean progress, they assure us. If the NGO says a deal has done real preservation work it must be true. At any rate the official NGO-coordinated Movement is on it, and all the people need to do is support the movement, accept its prescriptions as sufficient and practicable, sign and vote where told, of course donate, and otherwise get on with their non-political, apolitical, anti-political private lives.
 
Today, indeed, Politics is Dead. To a big extent this is because the natural political space has been constricted and filled by the kind of fake politics described here. One might shrug and think that’s all the more reason to go with the private individualist flow.
 
But the vaster reason there are no longer meaningful politics is that all struggles internal to civilization pale and shrink in the face of the mounting, already catastrophic ecological crisis being driven by the war this civilization has launched against the Earth. By now everything fades in the spotlight of the only real Either/Or left: Are you willingly part of the onslaught or do you oppose it.
 
To be clear, one can’t burn down one’s house and live in it too. In the millennial war of Man vs. Nature, “man” always was doomed to lose. Homo domesticus certainly will become the showcase victim of this Sixth Mass Extinction event it has launched. Just as prior mass extinctions are named after the formal time periods they cap and bring to a close, so the most appropriate use of the otherwise suspect term “Anthropocene” will be to denominate the (very short) period which closed with the extinction of “civilized” hominids. Whether the hominid species will go physically extinct depends to a large extent on how many people choose a new ecological road home now, and how well we work to endure the imminent great storms of history, climate, biology.
 
It’s an irony that the movement which first had inklings of all this seems to have domesticated itself out of any potential to help with this necessary transformation. But anyone fixated on a “green new deal” amid their ongoing dealing gaming life isn’t going to be able to help escape the casino, or indeed even to understand the concept. And in fact they love the casino, love the gamble, love the rush. And to switch to a closely related metaphor, they’re addicted to the drug. They only squabble with fellow addicts over who’s using too much etc. Where it comes to the productionist civilization that’s barely a metaphor; it pretty much directly describes the psychosis of stuff.
 
And this, along with the theological urge to destruction all the civilized have in common, is what the civilized truly desire. Their “politics” never will transcend this. We who want the great transformation, and we who recognize the ecological necessity, must burn our bridges once and for all. As we see, Gaia shall insist regardless.
 
 
 
 
 

January 8, 2019

Indelibly Authoritarian

Filed under: Freedom — Tags: , , , — Russell Bangs @ 7:31 am

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The intensity on the left when a Supreme Court appointment – that utmost seat of authority – falls to a Republican president, while the actual ongoing multi-front evils of creeping neoliberalism continue almost unnoticed, may suggest an unconscious obsession with authority.
 
From.
 
Obsession with the “supreme court” is one of the litmus tests by which you can tell whether someone’s a true anti-authoritarian or just another kind of authoritarian. Anyone against “authority” as defined by capitalism would be at least skeptical of the court as such, and would understand that it makes little difference which party fronts the president, since any judge who could be a candidate for such a court automatically would have to be an authoritarian. Otherwise they could never have any respectability within this system.
 
The same goes for anyone who would be capable of saying something like, “Trump makes me ashamed to be an American.” That means the person identifies with the presidency as such, and with the US government as such. Only an authoritarian could hold such identifications.
 
By contrast, Trump doesn’t make me ashamed of anything. How could he? I despise the presidency as such, the government as such, and regard it all as a regime of occupation. Therefore I have zero identification with any of it.
 
This is just one of the many reasons it’s impossible to accomplish anything but self-destruction with the Democrat Party or with anyone who makes a cult of voting and elections: They are indelibly authoritarian and will never think or act against the corporate state in any but the most trivial ways. Their authoritarian bent is demonstrated by many things, but most obviously by their very fixation on such elements of the system as courts, presidents, elections.
 
 
 
 
 
 

November 5, 2018

Anti-Electoral

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You can vote for the One or the One

 
 
I was going to write yet another new anti-electoral piece but really I’ve said it all already: That American elections are fake; that Republicans and Democrats are merely two factions of the Corporate One-Party; that they only pretend to disagree but in practice fully agree on literally every significant point; that even where they believe they’re disagreeing it’s only the narcissism of infinitesimal difference within their cult, meaningless to anyone outside the cult (i.e. almost all of humanity); that in particular both are fully dedicated to the total destruction of the Earth and humanity; that both agree the Earth and humanity should be nothing but a resource mine and waste dump for big corporations and the rich; that there’s nothing within the system which offers any alternative whatsoever to this total destruction; that partisan voters aren’t political at all but rather are types of celebrity fan club or fans of a sports team; that partisan voters are criminals, every bit as much as their Leaders; that they willfully and deliberately vote for every crime of their Leaders; that for anything to be done there’s no alternative to building a radical cultural movement completely outside and against the entire existing system.
 
So instead of writing a new piece I’ll just list a few of the pieces where I’ve already elaborated these facts.
 
 
https://attempter.wordpress.com/2017/03/18/the-vote-was-unanimous-for-trump/
 
https://attempter.wordpress.com/2018/08/06/us-electoralism-is-no-difference/
 
https://attempter.wordpress.com/2018/06/15/more-electoral-foolishness/
 
https://attempter.wordpress.com/2018/06/27/note-on-movement-and-party/
 
https://attempter.wordpress.com/2016/10/22/why-would-one-have-anything-to-do-with-the-kangaroo-election/
 
https://attempter.wordpress.com/2016/07/14/on-bastille-day-the-idea-vs-the-leader/
 
https://attempter.wordpress.com/2016/11/11/no-place-to-go-with-your-vote/
 
https://attempter.wordpress.com/2018/10/22/the-vileness-of-progressives-on-the-climate-crisis/
 
https://attempter.wordpress.com/2010/11/01/the-cult-of-voting/
 
 
 
 

August 6, 2018

US Electoralism is No Difference

Filed under: Mainstream Media, Reformism Can't Work — Tags: , , , — Russell Bangs @ 1:02 am

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How can we explain electoral idiocy? To a significant extent it’s ignorance and stupidity. Years ago when I was masochistic enough to “debate” politics with Democrat partisans of my acquaintance, I was always amazed at how ignorant they were of almost everything their Party and their Leaders actually do. Thus for example they’d always be astounded to learn that Obama and Hillary Clinton are hard core supporters of Monsanto, GMOs and the whole regime of poison-based commodity agriculture, indeed that if anything Obama was even more aggressively pro-GMO than Bush was. And in truth they’d never learn any of this but forget it immediately.
 
But most of all it’s non-political egoistic perspective. If A and B agree on 99% and differ only on 1% of details, they may argue all the more fiercely over the 1% in dispute. But from the point of view of C, who completely disagrees (agrees on 0%), A and B are practically identical.
 
Thus both Democrats and Republicans are imperial war-mongers who support US wars of aggression. They disagree only on some details, which to them take on huge proportions.
 
But to those of us who are anti-imperialist, anti-war, they are identical.
 
In the same way, both Democrats and Republicans agree that America should be ruled by the rich and big corporations, that these should pay little to no taxes, and in fact that the purpose of society and the Earth is to serve the rich as a resource mine and waste dump. They disagree only on details, and that the Republicans “go too far”.
 
But to those of us who recognize that the rich are purely parasitic and destructive, who want to abolish the rich completely, who want to abolish concentrated wealth as such, Dembots and Repbots are identical.
 
They both agree on ecocide. They both agree that the living Earth should be nothing but a resource mine and waste dump for their worthless civilization. They only differ on details of how absolute the destruction should be, and how fast total destruction should be carried out. They argue about details like whether national parks should be privatized. They agree on the total destruction of everything not specifically “protected” in this formal way. (There we find the mission of the mainstream “environmental” groups: To help the destroyers of the Earth “manage” the destruction, which in practice means to carry it out somewhat more slowly. The role of NGOs is much the same as that of the WWII Judenrate (Jewish Councils) who helped the Nazis organize the deportations to the death camps.)
 
But to those of us who love, revere, cherish the Earth in all its beauty and mystery, we who recognize the absolute dependency of humanity on the only home we’ll ever know, the Democrat and Republican parties are identical in their insane and evil drive to murder the Earth and force the total murder-suicide of humanity.
 
 
 
 
 

July 23, 2018

This Civilization is Collective Murder-Suicide

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The end point for everything the extreme energy civilization is doing: The Earth nothing but a desert with ruins.

 
 
1. Civilization is destruction. For humanity and the Earth it is death. We’re bogged down in it. It’s driving us to the brink of nuclear war at the same time it’s giving us all cancer. Most civilized people want the missiles to fly, and most want cancer for themselves and their children. Their actions prove it.
 
“Growth”, the idol of fundamentalist worship by all the civilized, including “environmentalists” and the climate crocodiles, is physically unsustainable and must collapse with unfathomable consequences. It is cancer as well. Symbolically growth is directly analogous to cancer metastasis, and growth’s reality depends upon physically killing us with cancer, starvation, bullets.
 
Look everywhere Western globalization has spread, look at any government, any Leader, any journalist, any academic, any NGO, see what they unanimously say: If you’re not rich, then die.
 
It is self-evident that anyone who thinks this way also will think murderously, though few are as honest as the Canadian bankster who openly says, “There are some people that are going to die in protesting construction of this pipeline.”
 
What this means is, “We should kill anyone who is in the way of our tyranny, whether as activists or simply as obstacles.” This means the entire 99%. All system cadres think this way and intend to act on this. This is the intended consummation of modern civilization, the total murder of the Earth and murder-suicide of humanity.
 
Smash the bottlenecks.
 
2. Politics is dead. Electoral democracy is a proven failure and by now a fraud. We’re bogged down in it. Its partisans – “voters” – aren’t political at all but rather are rival mobs cheering on entertainers and wrestlers, like the Blues and Greens of ancient Constantinople. Most of all they’re chanting for the missiles to fly. Only the most cloddish and inertial still dream of “alternative parties”, which invariably turn out to be new glosses on the same scam. Humanity and the Earth need something vastly greater than paltry reforms. The need is a movement and spiritual way dedicated to joining Gaia in destroying the stale and toxic anti-culture and building a whole new vision, a whole new culture.
 
Smash the bottlenecks.
 
3. Ecological catastrophe is rampant, still gathering tremendous force, and accelerating. The consequences are unfathomable but will include mass starvation and mass cancer. The campaign of destroying the Earth and provoking Earth’s kinesis in response has been deliberate on the part of all governments, corporations, the entire political and media class, the scientific establishment, all of academia, all system NGOs. It’s the intended action and goal of globalization, capitalism, technocracy, scientism, productionism, the economic/commercial civilization as such.
 
The catastrophe deniers are merely witting or unwitting tools of these destroyers of the Earth. Worst are the de facto deniers with their crocodile tears and fake “solutions”. All deniers are peas in a pod.
 
The climate chaos driven by civilization’s greenhouse emissions and destruction of sinks is gathering momentum to destroy us all unless we take action against the monstrous machine itself.
 
Here most of all we see the affinity of liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans (that is, identical Party-mongers). Both want humanity to sit still while the death machine devours us all.
 
Keep Shopping! That’s the prescription for the climate crisis propagated by liberals and scientists. This also is their prescription for all the other ecological crises. Keep Shopping. And of course Keep Driving.
 
Just shut up, sit still, stay the course. Keep voting when told. Believe your Party Leaders, and your media and academic betters. Yes, the two types of denier are peas in a pod. Just as the Dembots and Repbots are peas in a pod in every other way.
 
4. Democrat Party partisans are the most vile of all. Anti-ecology, anti-human, pro-destruction, pro-Mammon, pro-famine, pro-war, pro-police, pro-corporate, pro-technocracy – there’s not a single evil on earth the liberal Democrats aren’t doing all they can to drive to its worst.
 
That applies to America. A similar anti-political process has transpired in most or all other Western countries.
 
 
By now we have to give up on the Party people, the terminally inert, stupid, and malign. Those who even at this late date still receive their marching orders and their very ideas and words from Party Leaders, from corporations, from academic/scientific nabobs. These are nothing but purely inertial conformist non-entities.
 
 
The extreme energy civilization, having bottlenecked all human potential and driven humanity into a socioeconomic and political dead end, now drives itself into its own terminal bottleneck.
 
Do you feel ill, or your children or pets? Do you fear sickness? Do you feel financially secure? Secure in your job? Are you optimistic things will change for the better? Do you know who has destroyed all security? Do you know what’s making us sick? Do you feel safe when you look at the news from America and around the world? Do you know why the world is going insane?
 
You’re feeling the great bottleneck. Our health, our security, our peace of mind, our work, our culture, our spirit, our freedom, all are bottled up. You feel the fear, you sense our psychological, spiritual, cultural, economic bottleneck.
 
To anyone who feels bottlenecked, whatever the surface reason seems to be, you must understand that yours is a symptom of a global ecological crisis. You cannot solve your crisis within the bottleneck which causes it any more than the civilization can pull itself out of its own bottleneck.
 
All of this civilization’s bottlenecks boil down to the simple equation: Wealth and power accumulation must be accompanied by an equal level of physical, economic, spiritual, cultural, and ecological destruction. Modern civilization’s accumulation of wealth and power, which has not and will not trickle down to us even if we wanted it to at the price of murdering humanity and the Earth, equals our destruction.
 
Smash the bottlenecks.
 
 
 
 

June 28, 2018

Appendix and Prediction

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Of course for most participants Congress is a luxury beach resort. But anyone who really does view it as a swamp, who enters alone and on foot, is going to get sucked down.
 
(This is an addition to yesterday’s post about movements and parties.)
 
Lots of people are excited over the Democrat primary wins of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and others who calls themselves social democrats and such.* Well, here’s a chance to make a prediction:
 
If they reach office, none of these people will buck the system in any significant way. (I’m not predicting that they’ll try and fail; I predict they won’t try in the first place.)
 
For example, if a number of them get to Congress, they won’t form a bloc which truly will fight status quo measures using whatever means available. (As opposed to the existing “progressive bloc” which is nothing but a rubber-stamp sham.)
 
Why won’t they? No doubt some are con artists or will sell out. But let’s be optimistic and say some are sincere. Nevertheless, they ran as Democrats. So how can they accomplish anything lacking any institutional support? Nor will they get together to build their own institutions, their own street organization. But these are the things necessary to fight an entrenched system from within that system.
 
One classic indicator is: Do you have your own grassroots organization? And assuming you had one in the first place, then upon reaching office: What do you do with that organization? Do you keep it independent and continue to build it up against the system, or do you destroy it in some way.
 
For anyone who was in any doubt about Obama in 2008, a key indicator was: Now that he’s been elected, what’s he going to do with his grassroots organization? Sure enough, within days of the election he announced that he was going to assimilate it to the regular Democrat Party structure. In other words, destroy it.
 
For those who had any doubt at all, this was clear proof that Obama intended nothing but to continue with business as usual.
 
In the same way, one proof that Bernie Sanders was offering nothing new, and all other pseudo-alternative candidates as well, was that he did nothing to build a lasting movement structure when the dynamism of his campaign gave him a chance to do so. Nor did he try to use the November debacle to galvanize anyone. In November 2016 I checked the Sanders website to see what kind of great renewal he was promising. What did I find? A banner across the top of the page with a slogan announcing some kind of millennium, with a notice below: “Page Under Construction”. That was all.
 
Such nothingness is typical of all these so-called alternatives. None of them even have a permanent organization to call their own, let alone draw upon the living force of a real social movement.
 
Today’s alleged reformers-really-honest-and-for-true-this-time among the Democrats have no grounding and aren’t seeking any. Like Sanders said of himself from day one of his campaign, they’re Democrats through-and-though and intend to remain dependent upon the Democrat Party organization. That guarantees they’ll either remain part of the Democrat Party status quo ideology, or else fail miserably for lack of any basis for their being.
 
There’s no way forward voting and party-mongering within the system. The only group action possible is the blood, toil, tears and sweat of building a movement against the productionist system itself.
 
 
*I also said yesterday that these alternatives aren’t really offering anything alternative even in principle. So I saw that the media is calling Ocasio-Cortez a “climate hardliner” who will stand for no more nonsense. I clicked the link to her site, and of course she touts the same old industrial renewables build-out. Same old nonsense indeed: Implicitly dependent upon fossil fuels in order to be physically possible – thus a scam in principle; ideologically geared to champion the standard “we’ll deal with climate change and still keep capitalism growing!”; highly destructive ecologically in itself; designed to continue the general civilizational project of destroying the Earth. To sum up: The best way to deal with the climate crisis is to Keep Shopping!
 
(Note how the media’s quiver includes the lie that a real New Deal-type commitment to renewables is radical and would mean the climate action gloves are really coming off. They’ll keep that one ready to deploy as the climate kinesis really starts to bite. At that point, in order to forestall any serious consideration of real action, they’ll put the Big Renewable idea into mainstream play.)
 
So there you have it, the kind of “alternative” that all the people who say they want alternatives really want.
 
 
 
 
 
 
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