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  • Pankaj Mishra - Adbusters | Journal of the mental environment
    that the Chinese intellectual in André Malraux s prophetic novel The Temptation of the West 1926 makes when he says Europe thinks she has conquered all these young men who now wear her garments But they hate her They are waiting for what the common people call her secrets Many of these secrets are now in Asian hands Television and the internet and in particular the growth of virtual communities have helped stoke an unprecedented intensity of political emotion around the world It is no exaggeration to say that millions probably hundreds of millions of people in societies who have grown up with a history of subjection to Europe and America the Chinese software engineer and the Turkish tycoon as well as the unemployed Egyptian graduate derive profound gratification from the prospect of humiliating their former masters and overlords who appear uncompromisingly wedded to their right to dictate events around the world The images from Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib the deep Western financial crisis and the brutal but inept military actions in Afghanistan and Pakistan all sustain a powerful sense of Western hypocrisy failure and retrenchment No convincingly universalist response to Western ideas of politics and economy exists today even though these seem increasingly febrile and dangerously unsuitable in large parts of the world Gandhi their most rigorous critic is a forgotten figure within India today Marxism Leninism lies discredited and though China s rulers increasingly make gestures toward Confucian notions of harmony China s own legacy of ethical politics and socio economic theory remains largely unexplored And even if it is exportable to other Muslim countries Turkey s Islamic modernity doesn t point to any alternative socio economic order The Washington Consensus may lie in tatters and Beijing s Communist regime mocks simply by persisting as long as it has Western claims of victory in the Cold War and the inevitability of liberal democracy But the Beijing Consensus has even less universal application than its Washington counterpart it sounds suspiciously like merely a cynical economic argument for the lack of political freedom Today much of the emerging world now stands to repeat on an ominously larger scale the West s own tortured and often tragic experience of modern development In India and China the pursuit of economic growth at all costs has created a gaudy elite but it has also widened already alarming social and economic disparities It has become clear that development whether undertaken by colonial masters or sovereign nation states doesn t benefit people evenly within a single territory not to mention across larger regions Certainly China s and India s new middle classes have done very well out of two decades of capitalism and their ruling elites can strut across the world stage like never before But this apparently wildly successful culmination to the anti colonial revolution has coincided with a veritable counter revolution presided over by political and business elites across the world the privatization and truncation of public services de unionization the fragments

    Original URL path: https://www.adbusters.org/article/pankaj-mishra-2/ (2016-02-09)
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  • Progress - Adbusters | Journal of the mental environment
    pillage Battle now get paid later This makes empire financially possible It is the identical philosophy of the buy now pay later and zero percent down schemes so ubiquitous throughout the West The relationship between empire and pillage has changed little save for the fact that the ability to exploit nature has now outpaced humanity s ability to exploit one another though it hasn t replaced it Where there is a center there must also be a frontier to feed the center This translates into a new set of mutually dependent entities where there is a shopping mall there must be a factory where there is energy there must be ecocide where there is health there must be sickness where there is consumption there must be waste where there is pristine there must be polluted where there is progress there must be regression and desire This material reality has a mental parallel Within each of us there is also an insatiable thirst for increase and abundance This is fuelled by advertising propaganda and increasingly self delusion This internalized graph of progress one that points exponentially up governs our relationships our careers our sex lives our friendships our families our waste lines our jobs our purchasing our houses our cars our travels everything According to this way of thinking satisfaction is a sign of weakness Poverty is a sign of laziness and ineptitude Wealth is a sign of attraction and prowess This new moral compass of modernity the consciousness of our world today is dependent on a single paradoxical truth infinite growth FROM Adbusters 109 Endless Summer Order this issue Subscribe to Adbusters Facebook Twitter Google Pinterest S17 Anniversary A manifesto for the year ahead Snort Snort Also In This Magazine Great again At the height of the post 9 11

    Original URL path: https://www.adbusters.org/article/progress/ (2016-02-09)
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  • The Psychic Economic of Occupy - Adbusters | Journal of the mental environment
    archetypal pattern behind it And with this patterning enters the term economy An economic crisis could be described both financially and psychologically as a disturbance in the balance of exchange patterns that creates certain painful manifestations So the patient divorces her husband or the citizen is evicted These are very serious issues that should be addressed in themselves but when we enter a process that gives a context to the issues when we go into Depth Psychotherapy or join the protest in Zuccotti Park then it is no longer about the divorce or the eviction but about what these phenomena are indirectly manifesting In clinical terms symptoms point to a much larger conflict that has two vital characteristics it is unconscious and systemic The depths of a psychic or financial economic crisis the aspects of the crisis that reveal how it is present in every aspect of a system are by definition outside the scope of any individual s consciousness particularly the individual suffering the symptom The conflict that underlies the symptom is too complex and painful to be fit into our frames of reference So let us ask the uncomfortable question what underlies the symptom of Occupy What are its undercurrents What is actually moving us to protest to become outraged at inequality to occupy and to write about occupation Movement Diagnostics As clinicians the only thing to do is follow the symptom and see where it takes us we swim the wave When it is truly followed the process is filled with suffering for it involves letting go of many sometimes all of those identifications that gave meaning to the life of the patient In other words as the wave moves and crashes the entire psychological economy of the patient s personality is reconfigured and that reconfiguration rewarding as it might be eventually involves multiple movements examining neurotic emotional patterns reliving hurtful memories confronting dark aspects of our personality that are often much more difficult to endure than the pain of the initial symptom Painful because this involves a radical letting go of our psychological safety nets and an embracing of utter uncertainty Pursuing this process however can revolutionize a person s life and absolutely redefine their place in the world In the case of Occupy this means that although a stabilization of the American economy might be good enough for US citizens or that the end of the drug war might be sufficient for Mexicans or that the resolution of the credit crisis might do for the Europeans stopping there would take care of some symptoms but not of the underlying crisis that sustains them If we extend our view of the crisis of exchange into its emotional intellectual and cultural aspects and look into its unconscious and systemic levels then our vision gains much complexity initially because it becomes both intrapsychic psychological and interpersonal social Additionally such a perspective might also provide us access to the hidden unseen or unspoken aspects of the movement It is

    Original URL path: https://www.adbusters.org/article/the-psychic-economic-of-occupy/ (2016-02-09)
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  • Enigma of Revolt - Adbusters | Journal of the mental environment
    that it sometimes even looked as if officialdom and life had changed places It follows now that we too need the greatest caution in everything we do we need to look around on every side before we can make a single step The gravity of the situation isn t lost on any of us But the gravity of this situation nonetheless pampers and enervates us as well and tries to rule out all possibility of conflict by absorbing us into its light and frivolous bearing It has integrated us into its reality a reality that satisfies all our unimportant wishes and desires it has integrated itself into us as an apparently non alien force In our own times the Kafkaesque castle has become the Debordian integrated spectacle a phenomenon that permeates all reality If the dynamics of The Trial exhibited the traits and the leakiness of the concentrated and diffuse spectacles that Debord outlined in The Society of the Spectacle 1967 then The Castle is late Debord and tallies with the Comments on the Society of the Spectacle he d make twenty one years later When the spectacle was concentrated Debord says the greater part of the surrounding society escaped it when diffuse a small part today no part The society of the castle and of the integrated spectacle is like a vast whirlpool it sucks everything into a singular and unified spiraling force into a seamless web that has effectively collapsed and amalgamated different layers and boundaries It has created a one world cell form Erstwhile distinctions between the political and the economic between form and content between conflict and consent between politics and technocracy have lost their specific gravity have lost their clarity of meaning integration functions through a conflating process of co optation and corruption of re appropriation and re absorption of blocking off by breaking down Each realm now simply elides into its other Where K goes astray and where his quest borders on the hopeless is that he s intent on struggling to access the castle s occupants he wants to penetrate the castle s bureaucratic formalities and the flawlessness of its inner circle K struggles for a way in rather than a way out Using all the Cartesian tools of a land surveyor he confronts the castle on the castle s own terms on its own ostensible rational frame of reference K s demands consequently are too restrictive and too unimportant too conventional and too self conscious He wants to render the world of the castle intelligible as opposed to rendering it unacceptable Instead of trying to enter the inner recesses of our castle of unpacking its meaning of demystifying its fetishism instead of trying to find doors to knock on and people to make rational complaints to we need to rethink this enigma of revolt rethink it on our terms not theirs not on the castle s terms not on the terms of any logic of capital Two young lovers sit near the window of a dazzling new café lining one of Haussmann s newly minted boulevards They re inside sharing one another s company admiring one another yet they re able to survey through the window the gaiety outside the street activity its delightful bustle After a while a ragged homeless family passes by Enamored by the café s garish opulence they stop They peer in How beautiful it is Baudelaire has his ragpickers explain the poem Paris Spleen How beautiful it is But they know it s not for them not for their type Their fascination didn t carry any hostile undertones it is sorrowful not militant not resentful but resigned These people with their great saucer eyes Baudelaire has the young female lover declaim are unbearable A precedent had been set a new reality of public private space In Haussmann s privatized urban reality private joys sprung from wide open public spaces One can henceforth be private in the crowd alone yet amidst people one can be inside while outside and outside while inside There are walls and there is transparency There is social closure and physical openness There is private invisibility and public visibility Marshall Berman says that Baudelaire s Eyes of the Poor poem evokes a primal scene a primal scene that reveals some of the deepest ironies and contradictions of modern capitalist urbanization For Berman the setting that now makes all urban humanity a great extended family of eyes also brings forth the discarded stepchildren of that family The physical and social transformations that drove the poor out of sight now bring them back directly into everyone s line of vision Haussmannization and its neo Haussmannization counterpart share a historical and geographical lineage But the primal scene of its progeny nowadays needs updating and upgrading now it involves superstructural software as well as infrastructural hardware Neo Haussmannization is now a global urban strategy that has peripheralized millions and millions of people everywhere Baron Haussmann s spadework pales alongside it Neo Haussmannization has peripheralized so many people in fact that it makes no sense anymore to talk about these peoples being peripheral Yet it s a process in which centers and peripheries oppose one another even if the fault lines and frontiers between the two worlds aren t defined by the old hoary dualisms of urban versus rural of North versus South of public versus private rather centers and peripheries are now somehow immanent within the accumulation of capital itself immanent within accumulation by dispossession and on a planetary scale The significant change is how today s grand boulevards flow with energy and finance with information and communication they are frequently fiber optic and digitalized ripping through cyber space as well as physical space Those great saucer eyes are now digital media eyes all seeing and with the internet and WikiLeaks often all knowing too People can now see the global elite along this global information and communication boulevard see them through the windowpanes of postmodern global urban

    Original URL path: https://www.adbusters.org/article/enigma-of-revolt/ (2016-02-09)
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  • Occupy Theory - Adbusters | Journal of the mental environment
    fit what occurred around the globe in 2011 and in many places before this and much further south from Chiapas and Oaxaca Mexico to Argentina Our movements are the shouting of No The Ya Basta The Que Se Vayan Todos They are our collective refusal to remain passive in an untenable situation And so we pull the emergency brake freeze time and begin to open up and create something new We are not even sure what that something is We know we want to create open space What that looks like we are discovering together as we create which is also how we create together horizontally and with affect What we are doing and how we are doing it are inextricably linked and both are part of this prefigurative movement Marina Sitrin OccupyTheory org FROM Adbusters 103 OCCUPYMAINSTREET Order this issue Subscribe to Adbusters Facebook Twitter Google Pinterest Vive Quebec The Strategic Pincer Also In This Magazine Falling in love is the ultimate act of revolution November 20 2015 The Revolution of Dignity The dregs of the Maidanistas were still living in the tents refusing to leave Wandering among them I found a crucible of utopias June 26 2015 On

    Original URL path: https://www.adbusters.org/article/occupy-theory/ (2016-02-09)
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  • Viva Zapata! - Adbusters | Journal of the mental environment
    amount of naïveté to think that the Mexican media which is completely under the control of the worst kind of neoliberalism and of the mafia and the drug cartels is suddenly going to become democratic it s just not going to happen Nor did it happen in the US or Britain or any other so called democracy The media is not free or neutral in any country in the world especially not during elections It s a naïve demand but in some ways it has opened up the whole election by exposing the dependence of the political class on mass media manipulation If there is to be a reform of the media in Mexico it will have to come from below This movement will go on after the July 1st presidential campaign That s evident Patrick Cuninghame activist and Professor at the Metropolitan Autonomous University FROM Adbusters 103 OCCUPYMAINSTREET Order this issue Subscribe to Adbusters Facebook Twitter Google Pinterest The Strategic Pincer Bohol Also In This Magazine Welcome to PeñaNietoland All is not well in Mexico January 12 2016 Love and Survival By late July 2014 I couldn t put it off any longer I had been living in Mexico

    Original URL path: https://www.adbusters.org/article/viva-zapata/ (2016-02-09)
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  • Mystical Anarchism - Adbusters | Journal of the mental environment
    mannerist Situationism where the old problem of recuperation does not even apply because such art is completely co opted by the socio economic system which provides its lifeblood To turn to politics perhaps we witnessed another communal experiment with the events in France surrounding the arrest and detention of the so called Tarnac Nine on November 11 2008 and the work of groups that go under different names Tiqqun the Invisible Committee the Imaginary Party As part of Nicolas Sarkozy s reactionary politics of fear itself based on an overwhelming fear of disorder and a desire to erase definitively the memory of 1968 a number of activists who had been formerly associated with Tiqqun were arrested in rural central France by a force of 150 anti terrorist police helicopters and attendant media They were living communally in the small village of Tarnac in the Corrèze district of the Massif Central Apparently a number of the group s members had bought a small farmhouse and ran a cooperative grocery store besides which they were engaged in such dangerous activities as running a local film club planting carrots and delivering food to the elderly With surprising juridical imagination they were charged with pre terrorism an accusation linked to acts of sabotage on France s TGV rail system The basis for this thought crime was a passage from a book published in 2007 called L insurrection qui vient or The Coming Insurrection It is a wonderfully dystopian diagnosis of contemporary society seven circles of hell in seven chapters and a compelling strategy to resist it The final pages of L insurrection advocate acts of sabotage against the transport networks of the social machine and ask the question How could a TGV line or an electrical network be rendered useless Two of the alleged pre terrorists Julien Coupat and Yldune Lévy were detained in jail and charged with a terrorist undertaking that carried a prison sentence of twenty years The last of the group to be held in custody Coupat was released without having faced prosecution on May 28 2009 on bail of 16 000 and was forbidden to travel outside the greater Parisian area Late that year fresh arrests were made in connection with the Tarnac affair Such is the repressive and reactionary force of the state just in case anyone had forgotten As the authors of L insurrection remind us Governing has never been anything but pushing back by a thousand subterfuges the moment when the crowd will hang you L insurrection qui vient has powerful echoes of the Situationist International Yet revealingly the Hegelian Marxism of Debord s analysis of the spectacle and commodification is replaced with very strong echoes of Agamben in particular the question of community in Agamben as that which would survive the separation of law and life The question is the relation between law and life and the possibility of a nonrelation between those two terms If law is essentially violence which in the age of bio

    Original URL path: https://www.adbusters.org/article/mystical-anarchism/ (2016-02-09)
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  • Deadly Freedom Fight - Adbusters | Journal of the mental environment
    s teachers as well as her headmaster were subsequently fired and replaced Kyi is reported to have told a close relative in early January of this year that she understood the motivations behind the growing numbers of self immolations in Tibet and China that no one could go on living like this Over 30 Tibetan monks nuns and civilians in Tibet China and India have self immolated over the past year in protest of an increasingly repressive and violent Chinese regime that aims to assimilate Tibetan language culture and religious practice In March 2012 the Tibetan Youth Congress TYC issued a statement that referenced the militarized 1912 struggle for Tibetan freedom from the invading imperial Chinese Army After a year of fierce fighting the statement says Tibet regained its status as an independent nation Later on down the page the TYC asserts that a century later the contemporary struggle for Tibetan independence has reached and passed a similar snapping point The Dalai Lama has not condoned or condemned the self immolations He instead referred to them as a very very sensitive political issue in a recent BBC interview and has been quoted by China s Forbidden News as saying that the self immolations were acts of desperation a direct result of the Chinese Communist Party s policy of cultural genocide in Tibet While the Dalai Lama remains a spiritual leader to millions of Tibetans around the world he recently stepped down as a political leader admitting that his 50 year strategy of advocating non violence had failed to established understanding with the Chinese government or improve the situation inside Tibet The Tibetan Youth Congress has been more vocal about why the self immolations are happening now and what they mean for the fight for Tibetan independence On April 12 2012

    Original URL path: https://www.adbusters.org/article/deadly-freedom-fight/ (2016-02-09)
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