Thursday, November 23, 2006


1 The whole of post-modern life is mediated by a series of abstractions. Creativity, pleasure, imagination, desire, all have a role to play in the maintenance of the capitalist system.

2 Those who do not reiterate accepted mystifications find their activities and ideas suppressed by both the media and the soft cops in the universities and community relations

3 In the past, life was mediated by such abstractions as honesty, truth, progress, and the myth of a better future. Creativity, pleasure, imagination and desire are a further refinement of this process. In the post-modern era, they serve the same function as progress &c., in the classical modern age (1909 - 1957).

4 Creativity is labour reified to moral good; the name of the work ethic after its modernisation. To those who oppose all moralisms, creativity is just as alienating as wage labour. We reiterate the anti-moralist slogan "Never Work" and hold that this formulation embraces the refusal of creativity.

5 Pleasure is a method for the ordering of experience into a hierarchy of desirability. It is an abstraction that negates the lived moment and requires reference to the possibility of past/future (or at least other) experience. We must reject all such systems of value.

6 Imagination is an abstraction that negates concrete experience. It is the central mechanism for the dominance of the image as chief agent of repression in our spectacular society.

7 Desire is the permanent deferral of the actuality of the present in favour of the purported gratifications of an illusory future.
8 We engage an active nihilism for the destruction of this world and all its abstractions:

No more leaders. No more experts. No more politicos. No more thinking 'culture' can change anything except a few bank accounts. The show is over. The audience start to leave. Time to collect their coats and go home. They turn around. No more coats! No more homes!


Wednesday, November 22, 2006

grandeur only works at low speed


west broadway 1958


Fifty milligrams of Paxil, another hundred
of Trazodone, not enough to loosen the knots
you tied in the tendons of my thighs. Half hitch
clove hitch, sheepshank, useless save

the square knot. I interpreted your uniform
as trust, the patches as promises, unaware
that a seam ripper had unspooled your mind,
threaded it across the Pacific, from Nam.

I sewed a diamond patch onto my sleeve,
silver, five years in your troop. Deeply I slit
my khakied wrists, unable to remove

your signature, that stitch you mis-stitched
across my flesh. Your fingers sutured my life
to your felony. What I couldn't rip out, I forgot.
- Michael Hardin

"Passing Time in Skansen"

I went dancing in Stockholm at a public dancing place
Out-of-doors. It was a beautiful summer evening,
Summer as it could only come in Sweden in nineteen-fifty.
You had to be young to go there.
Or maybe you could be old. But I didn't even see old people then.
Humanity was divided into male and female, American and other, students and nonstudents, etcetera.
The only thing that I could say in Swedish
Was "Yog talar endast svenska"
Which meant I speak only Swedish, whereas I thought it meant
I DON'T speak Swedish.
So the young ladies, delighted, talked to me very fast
At which I smiled and understood nothing,
Though sometimes I would repeat
Yog talar endast svenska.
The evening ended, my part of it did, when they started to do folk dances.
I didn't even know how to look at them, though I tried for a while.
It was still light out though it was after eleven p.m.
I got on some kind of streetcar that eventually stopped near my hotel.


Just to read Keats’s letters, drink a beer,
Watch the yard slip quietly into its petticoat of darkness:
How in the one to his brother the soul emerges only
After great effort and even then along a steady

Dialectic of loss and more loss, each of us
Perambulating our own dim forest of predatory grandmothers
And invidious wolves, our bread crumbs eaten hours ago

In a moment of now-embarrassing weakness.
Which explains, I think, the kiss.
- Spencer Short

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

the neoist impulse of the k foundation

Burn a million quid
: do it today

Indeed, it may be the iPod's role in constructing the illusion of a home away from home that is the most monstrous thing of all. As cultural critics are fond of pointing out, the German title of Sigmund Freud's famous essay on the uncanny, Das Unheimliche, translates literally as "the un-home-like." That's an apt description of the eerie feeling we get watching people who sit for hours staring blankly into space, ears plugged with music of their choosing, looking like they've lost the passage back to the place they were before. They are out in public, to be sure, but primarily to act out their desire for privacy. Maybe what these listeners want is to be seen wanting both company and solitude.

It's a paradoxical wish, but one that captures the peculiar anxieties of the postmodern era in their most acute post-9/11 form. In the end, the iPod is the ideal product for the era of homeland insecurity.

The iPod's Moment in History - Charlie Bertsch