Why do civilisations collapse? This TED Talk seeks to answer this question.
Why do civilisations collapse? This TED Talk seeks to answer this question.
Milo Yiannopoulos, senior editor of Breitbart, face of the alt-Right and keynote speaker for The American Conservative Union’s CPAC gathering this year, is now defending pedophilia. His advocacy of Pederasty is limited to those who have reached puberty, his defence being based in a personal experience he had aged 14.
Here are two videos of him voicing his position on the matter.
Other (bullshit) arguments he has voiced have included vulgar criticisms of feminism (devoid of content that refers to anything Real) and calling Black Lives Matter a hate group.
In defence of his politics, Yiannopoulos recently bullied a transgender person (video below).
And a recent appearance with Bill Maher has also sparked controversy, over his delight in upsetting people, supposedly in the name of freedom of speech (video below).
While PC culture and moralist thought policing does warrant criticism and discussion – in the wild are there safe spaces (really)? – but causing upset for the sake of causing upset and advocating non-consensual sex, performed on young people just entering puberty, is an entirely different thing; it is something that is vile and abhorrent.
As consequence of his recent child abuse comments, the book deal for his autobiography, Dangerous, has been cancelled. These comments have also stirred dissension among Brietbart employees, with many threatening to quit if he is not fired.
While I do not wish to grant Yiannopoulos the outrage he desires – the outrage that has been the fuel for his rise in popularity – I find it impossible to not take disgust in his advocating the rape of children, or not take delight in his book deal being cancelled. So ultimately, when it comes to Milo, I feel like joining Larry Wilmore in telling the dickhead “go fuck yourself” and ROLFing for the foreseeable future over his failed literary enterprise.
Theodore Kaczynski’s infamous status amongst radical environmentalists is unparalleled. His life as an underground activist and work as the Unabomber, for which he now serves 8 life sentences with no possibility of parole, have branded him a domestic terrorist within popular culture. And while he isn’t always viewed positively by environmentalists or anarchists, his influence in the world of tech-critical and radical-activist thought is undeniable.
Kaczynski, Harvard graduate who holds a PhD in Mathematics, is obviously a highly intelligent and analytic thinker. His cipher journals stumped the US intelligence agencies, “cracking” his code 10 years after his arrest after finding his own key to the code. So reading his book, Anti-Tech Revolution: Why and How, with the intent to write a review was personally quite a daunting task.
Kaczynski starts the text by inviting the reader to look past the writings of similar thinkers and to focus on strategy, in such a way he suggests has not previously been done. He states that the book is not one to be read but one to be studied, suggestive of a program to be analysed by the reader and followed – a program he argues should be practiced “thoughtfully and creatively” rather than “mechanically or rigidly”.
The first section, The Development of a Society Can Never Be Subject to Rational Human Control, is extremely well argued. Kaczynski presents a well constructed argument as to why the “green revolution” has been “nothing short of catastrophic”, arguing that “(i)n order to control the development of a society you would have to be able to predict how the society would react to any given action you might take, and such predictions have generally proven to be highly unreliable”. He analyses predictions regarding macroscopic systems and argues that “(i)n some contexts, reasonably reliable and specific short-term predictions can be made …”, but ultimately concludes that “no society can be consistently successful in planning its own future in the long term”. He covers historical attempts to rationally control society by humans and states that “… not even a powerful dictator like Francisco Franco can overrule the laws of economics … (e)very complex, large-scale society is subject to internal developments generated by “natural selection” operating on systems that exist within the society … (t)he result will be that the development of the society in the long term will wander at random, rather than being steered in any consistent direction or in accord with any consistent policy as to what constitute desirable or undesirable outcomes”.
The second section, Why the Technological System Will Destroy Itself, opens with Kaczynski acknowledging foundationalist assumptions and that he will be drawing inferences from them. Over the course of this chapter, Kaczynski analyses self-propagating systems – “a system that tends to promote its own survival and propagation”. He presents an argument as to why “desperate competition among the global self-prop systems will tear the world-system apart … new self-prop systems will be arising all along to challenge the existing global self-prop systems and will prevent the hypothesised “world peace” from ever being consolidated in the first place … fierce competition among global self-prop systems will have led to such drastic and rapid alterations in the Earth’s climate, the composition of its atmosphere, the chemistry of the oceans, and so forth, that the effect on the biosphere will be devastating”. Most of this chapter follows this line of argument, covering Kaczynski’s pessimist and determinist positions on the potential for action.
In section 3 the line of argument takes a decisive and unexpected turn. Titled How to Transform a Society: Errors to Avoid, a number of postulations and rules for practical radical actions are presented for an anti-tech revolutionary movement. These rules and postulations are obviously written with the intent to create and maintain a structurally organised and pragmatic approach for the movement Kaczynski hopes to ignite through his work. Towards the end of the section he states “(a) neo-luddite movement would be able to gain control over the resources it needed only if it became big, powerful, well-organised, hence ripe for corruption. In order to carry out the necessary social reorganisation, the movement would have to be the dominant force in society, and the process of reorganisation would surely take at least a few decades … (c)onsequently, the reorganisation of society in accord with neo-luddite principles would never be completed”, which appears confused in conjunction with the rest of the chapter. Kaczynski draws from nationalist and Marxist political movements to support his arguments over the course of the chapter, stating “let’s follow Mao’s advice and ask what is the principal contradiction of the situation with which we are faced.”
The fourth section, Strategic Guideline for an Anti-Tech Movement, follows from previous one, presenting an argument that fits the politics of nationalists and Marxists more than those of anarchists and (even militant) environmentalists. Kaczynski’s Leninesque argument throughout this section draws from Castro, Trotsky and Stalin, in it’s appeals for organisational uniformity to his program. Later though he goes on to critique leftism and mainstream environmentalism, in a way befitting the typical green-anarchist criticisms of these movements.
The argument Kaczynski presents over the course of the text is highly reliant on determinist social-ontological presuppositions, drawn from a certain interpretation of evolutionary theory, which is open to criticism. Determinism is highly questionable in a metaphysical sense, as I argue in my book, and as such warrants exploration in radical environmentalist discourse. But if we do presume a determinist social ontology, following from Kaczynski’s arguments in the first 2 sections, why should anyone follow his program for an anti-tech revolution? Determinist philosophy seems incompatible with any radical project, so why should anyone who embraces determinist philosophy embrace any radical project?
Also, assertions like “(t)he principal contradiction, clearly, is that between wild nature and the technological system” presents a Manichaeist cosmic and moral dualism, of an entirely domesticated outlook – the ideology of the very system Kaczynski wants to stop. As I argue in my book Feral Consciousness, the struggle against this global system isn’t a moral struggle, alienated from the authentic Being of the individual, but an egoistic one; we aren’t living in a cosmic dualism of forces, but a corrupted cancerous monism, which should be treated as such; and, while tactical organised resistance is clearly needed to lessen the effects of this culture and hasten its collapse (with perhaps some strategic influence from similar movements to those Kaczynski draws from), we need to avoid alienating Symbolic narratives, that mediate us from the horrors of the Real we are immersed in, and forge personal subject-sensitive relations to the world.
Ultimately though, this book, even with its inconsistencies, is an important addition to radical environmentalist thought. It is engaging, well researched and is deserving of any potential readers time. I would suggest though that the reader doesn’t read it in isolation though as the-radical-environmentalist-book-I-read, as reading it alongside other writers who focus on this stuff, such as Zerzan, Jensen, the new Atassa Journal and (dare I say) myself, should help them identify the weaker aspects of Kaczynski’s arguments and separate them from the stronger elements.
A study published in Science has found that Zebra Finches change the songs they sing to their young while they’re still in their eggs, varying with temperature differences.
Under experimental conditions – during incubation some of the eggs were removed and not exposed to the parents warning songs (hearing different sounds), while the others were kept in the nest with their parents and heard the warning songs – the researchers found that those babies who hatched who hadn’t heard the warning song displayed growth, developmental and behavioural differences to those who had.
Taken from an article in Smithsonian –
“This acoustic signal is potentially being used to program the development of offspring,” says Kate Buchanan, an associate professor of animal ecology at Deakin University in Australia and the senior author of the new paper. “Hearing the call affects your rate of growth relative to the temperature that you experience.
“Animals have very subtle ways of inferring how the environment is likely to change, and (being able) to develop and adapt accordingly,” she added. “We’re only looking at the tip of the iceberg in terms of what we recognize so far… It is quite paradigm-shifting.”
Alongside the interest this raises in an academic sense, regarding evolutionary theory, non-human psychology and zoosemiotics, this scientific research is valuable for environmentalists. An immediate reason for this is that it further calls into question what Derrick Jensen calls “human supremacism” in the great chain of being – the social hierarchy of civilisation that places God, “civilised” humans and the mega-technic above non-human animals, flora and indigenous “savage-primitives”.
We environmentalists and people who embrace feral-being all sing our songs about climate change and ecocide, in all manner of ways, in desperation and despair towards the horror as we witness this cultures onslaught. I invite you to now listen to the song of a mother Zebra Finch singing to her eggs.
A search of thousands of British Beaches has found that almost three quarters of them are littered with lentil sized plastic pellets, known as nurdles.
These pellets are used as a raw material in the production of plastic products.
They soak up chemical pollutants from their surroundings and release them into animals who eat them, such as fish and birds.
Over the coming years, finding means of feeding ourselves, individually and collectively, are going to become increasingly important. Permaculture is an approach to food production, that attempts to exclude the violent and destructive aspects of agriculture and civilisation.
Social conformity and indoctrination have largely been counterproductive to our instinctual response to legitimate threats. Both morality and legality, for example, remain as social barriers in our heads to maintain ‘correct’ behaviour for this social order. I’ll explain: Morality, or codified social ethical beliefs, is a hindrance to practical survival in the face of danger(s). For example, it’s highly stigmatised to not hit a woman. Of course you shouldn’t bully or abuse anyone! However, if a woman is in a rage, with a steak knife, and showing the physical symptoms of a will-to-engage, are you going to let that social standard prevent you from reacting correctly? Surely, most won’t act with resolve. Half-hearted decisions based on morality are not safe enough. We forget about survival for the sake of ‘fitting in’ and not doing anything deemed questionable by the masses or the controlling institutions. This is what causes freezes, rather than fight or flight, in modern society. Getting stuck on what ‘what ifs‘ rather than the ‘right now‘. We are so worried about doing ‘right’ by society and playing by the rules and codes set up before us, that we neglect our instincts.How bad is it that we get adrenal responses to job interviews, dating, traffic, etc? Our brains and fight or flight system do not seem to want this environment. Where once we had a fight or flight reaction from a saber-tooth in the wild, we now have it because we are afraid of losing a job. Or because we want to look our best on an outing, but become sceptical of our appearance. Or because we have a big test coming up. This social order does, from my viewpoint, stand to be the antithesis of our true, hardwired nature. Social indoctrination, since birth, inherently interferes with our natural responses with codified sets of beliefs. You SHOULD do this. You CAN’T do that. You’re told what to say. When you can eat. What your future should be like, if you wish to fit in. Then, we all proceed to believe these things to the point where our life is forever controlled by them. This has softened society to the point of a ridiculously LARGE percentage of the population being completely unable to react appropriately to threatening stimuli.We have played into the lies to the point of becoming victims. Why defend your home or pursue an aggressor when you can call the cops and have them arrive late and most likely do nothing? Perhaps if we can cast away our armour of reliance on the state, we can find a sense of freedom and once again, come in touch with our instinctual reactions rather than letting social conditioning debilitate instinctual responses.Legality, on the other hand, can be just as debilitating. Self-sufficiency is looked down on tremendously by the state. Just ‘call the cops’. If someone is showing aggression and a clear intention to cause you bodily harm, and you feel the Fear (fight or flight) reaction starting to kick, it’s time to act decisively. However, if even in a corner, and you were to strike someone first, based off your instincts, there’s a good chance you’re gonna end up in legal trouble. Even though, in your head, you can justify it as you felt threatened, the crowd, if there was one, might not have seen the same reactions. They might not have noticed the aggressor’s pale skin, clenched jaw, clenched fists, rapid breathing, etc. They just saw you strike first. You are now the aggressor.Let’s make it clear: the state does not give a FUCK about your instincts. If we followed our instincts, there’d be a good chance that we probably would not even have a state. We are animals at heart. Yet we are expected to remain civil and conform to social standards. Otherwise, we are a threat. Not only can you end up in legal trouble by reacting appropriately to physiological/psychological reactions to a threat, but even the understanding of legality can end one up in a dirty situation. People will freeze while trying to figure out, “Will I go to jail for applying this level of force?” or, likewise, “Would I be arrested for a pre-emptive attack?” It’s easy to get stuck playing with courtroom proceedings in our own mind. Next thing you know, you’re unconscious in a parking lot.Let me give a personal account to rap this up. Years ago, I was attacked in front of a restaurant. Some thug, with two other people, jumped out of a car and proceeded to walk towards me. I felt the surge. I felt the flushing, the shaking, etc. My body was undergoing the physiological fight-or-flight reaction, preparing me to fight or flee – simple as that. It should’ve been simple. However, I froze. Because I froze and did not respond appropriately, I had my face mashed in pretty good, staples in the back of my skull, went into shock, and have slight PTSD from it. Why did I freeze? One, it would’ve been ‘wrong’ to pre-emptively attack him first, right? I mean, he clearly was walking at a pace and showing physical symptoms of a desire to engage. Why didn’t I hit him first and just go wild? It’d be wrong. Hitting someone is wrong. “Just curl into a ball,” I was told in highschool when asking what they considered appropriate self-defense. So, my moral upbringings did not recognize this as mutual combat. I thought, “Maybe, just maybe, I can de-escalate it. Surely he has the same moral capacity as me?” Wrong. On top of that, I had been in legal trouble off and on. I felt, subconsciously, that if I assaulted him first, I would be held accountable and end up in jail and facing legal repercussions. And of course, it’d be cowardly to run. Got to be MACHO, right?! All these things hit me at once. It’s not like it was even conscious thought. It just froze me up.My social conditioning, as I see it, prevented me from properly reacting to an obvious threat. Because of that, I sometimes beat myself up over it – but I believe recognition is key. I recognize my (martial) faults. This is why I’m typing this up right now. To hopefully give some insight to people who might face a similar situation. I feel as though we live in an industrial Rome, softened and brainwashed by propaganda. We are content with watching other people duke it out in sports to satisfy some weird bloodlust. We are quite an egotistical lot, controlled by various institutions that have debilitated us physically, mentally, and spiritually. Can we regain control? Can we, once again, rely on our natural reactions? Can we follow our gut rather than our social indoctrination? Is it possible to live in this society and not be weakened by social conditioning?I believe so. Train hard. Fight hard. Live free. Live happy.~ Rudester