Propagating

aaihs.org
The Fallacies of Neoliberal Protest

By Russell Rickford

This post is an amended version of remarks read at a rally organized by Cornell University’s Black Students United (BSU) on September 23, 2016. Students gathered to protest the recent police shootings of Tyree King, Terence Crutcher, and Keith Lamont Scott.

Neoliberalism is a vicious but cunning form of capitalism. And like all varieties of capitalism, it rests on a foundation of white supremacy.

Neoliberalism’s goals are not merely privatization and the decimation of unions and the social safety net. It also seeks to manage the social order and ensure the continued political dominance of the ruling class by absorbing social threats.

Sisters and brothers, YOUR opposition to racist state terror is a major threat to the normal functioning (and thus the hegemony) of the neoliberal regime. To neutralize this threat and destabilize the most rebellious segments of the population, the corporate power structure aggressively propagates certain false assumptions among the public.

Let’s examine these fallacies:

Fallacy Number One: Dialogue and Awareness

The managers of the status quo hate resistance. So they try to guide any dissent that arises into “safe” channels. You will notice a proliferation of forums, discussions, and meetings organized by system administrators and devoted to “dialogue” and “awareness.” The premise of such efforts is that the problem of racial unrest stems from misunderstandings among rational and well-meaning parties. Thus communication and moral suasion—rather than pressure politics—is the answer.

Fallacy Number Two: The Appeal to Authority

In our technocratic society, we are conditioned to believe that experts and officeholders hold the answers to social problems. Supposedly these professionals are able to mediate between contending groups and interests. We are taught to endlessly petition established authorities for relief, never realizing that such gatekeepers are themselves instruments of the status quo.

Fallacy Number Three: The Myth of the Disembodied Voice

Part of capitalism’s response to grassroots opposition is to assure the distressed that their “voice” is heard. That the authorities who “hear” you also enable your brutalization is immaterial. The point is to convince you of your continued stake in the system. It is to guide you toward the politics of representation and away from the politics of resistance.

Of course, there are other fallacies employed by the oppressor to confuse the oppressed. The fallacy of inclusion v. transformation, for example. Or the fallacy of “diversity” v. genuine antiracism. We are taught to be patriotic, to be patient, to strive to embody the very values of peace and goodwill that this society defiles.

These and other myths only perpetuate the system. They leave intact our society’s basic power relations. And they cause us to police ourselves and to seek interpersonal reconciliation rather than confront structural racism and oppression.

Truth is, we don’t need “diversity” training. We don’t need focus groups. We don’t need consultants and experts. We don’t need the apparatus of our oppression—racial capitalism itself—to rationalize and regulate our dissent. The logic and techniques of the corporate world won’t end the slaughter of black people, or the dispossession and degradation of indigenous people, or the transformation of the entire Global South into a charred landscape of corpses and refugees.

We need an uncompromising, multiracial, grassroots movement against white supremacy, endless war, and vicious corporate capitalism. We need to build solidarity with the resistance in Charlotte, Standing Rock, and Puerto Rico. We need to join the rebellions of workers and the colonized all over the world.

This is a human rights struggle. And it will be waged in the streets, not in boardrooms, the halls of Congress, or other strongholds of global capital.

a very long text post with lots of things i feel i need to say

I don’t really know how to start this or how I am going to organise my thoughts and say what I need to say. So I guess I will just begin.  I have struggled a lot with mental illness in my life, I used to post about it a bit probably over 18 months ago. I stopped because of how broken mental illness discourse often seems to be on this website. Illness and suffering is not only romanticised and glamorised but coveted and seen as necessary: the echo chamber environment that has been created has led so many people (especially young girls) that to be creative, or beautiful, interesting, or popular on this website, one must be mentally ill. That the goal is to suffer and not to recover. Obviously this ethos is damaging and awful, I kept quiet about my experiences because I was terrified about inadvertently propagating this idea. Of course this is not everyone here, so so many people have healthy views, but these damaging ideas are alarming far spread. I am, obviously, not the first person to talk about this. A lot of people have spoken about this at greater length and better than I ever could, but I still feel I needed to preface what I am about to say.

My mental health has been very poor over the last few months, and I feel that it is probably time for me to be a little bit honest with you all. I won’t go in to detail for the above reasons as well as the fact that this is very difficult to talk about. I will just say that I have been very unwell and steadily declining over a number of months, until things reached a crescendo of awful early this week. think you all should know the reasons for my days long absences and the reasons why I have been posting things that I am not entirely happy with, just because I have nothing to else post and am too afraid to go out and take any new pictures or share what I have been working on.   But I am finally getting help and have found that I am finally able to feel hopeful as long as I am constantly directing my energies into creative endeavours. So look forward to seeing the results here and thank you for you patients with me, I hope to be a little more open and a lot less scared of you all in the future..

Sorry that this post doesn’t have much of a point and could be way more concise but I had a lot of things I needed to express on here.

adeptarcanist said: Ehh, I’m still on the “self-actualization maximizer that was being twisted by LE” side, since the one really evil thing it does is destroy a planet of civilization and then give the players the powers to save it easily if they want to and are resourceful enough, but different strokes I guess. 

adeptarcanist said: I mean, wouldn’t it make more sense to just intercept game meteors and redirect them to someplace already dead like Mars, so that you don’t stop the propagation of reality in its tracks? Plus, you’ll need Sburb to escape with your civilization to a new universe if you can’t bubble away Caliborn somehow. Or figure out how to deal with heat death.

See now, a lot of it is up to interpretation, but my view has always been… it’s not evil, exactly, but it’s singleminded in the way that the alpha timeline is singleminded. The alpha timeline in its purest sense would just be making sure every time loop gets completed properly, but Lord English ended up warping that to make it mostly twined around his existence, choking out what otherwise probably would have been perfectly viable realities. (In fact, I tend to think you might be able to have *multiple* coexisting, functional timelines all fulfilling the alpha set of requirements, it if weren’t for his insistence on there only being one.) Similarly, I tend to read Skaia as bending reality down the one path it has approved - Space at its worst, creation and expansion at any cost. Something that, just like the English alpha timeline really, eats and eats and eats and spits out bones. It destroys whole universes and races, then piles the pressure on a bunch of traumatized kids selected to be at an impressionable and malleable age (not to mention strips away their guardian/guiding figures) and gets itself presented in the lore as all seeing and all knowing and unquestionably the good guy!! because it’s the kingdom of light and yellow and stuff, and everyone knows that’s how stories work. 

I tend to read alt Calliope as behind it, or at least involved in it, and alt Callie knows how stories work. But she doesn’t know how people work. She sees them as pawns, as very basic “characters”, pieces to move around to accomplish her ends. That’s how Skaia treats these kids - any self actualization they achieve is secondary to its main objective of propagating reality. After all, it doesn’t care how many alt versions of them are discarded, and there were no penalties for those who seemed to stagnate or regress, as long as the frog got made. 

And sure, propagation of reality is important, but do we know Skaia and SBURB is the only way to do that? Something set that system up. Something’s running the show. Sometimes a system doesn’t work anymore, external pressures change, and it has to find a new way. That’s how evolution works on a level playing field - maybe Skaia’s afraid of the competition. I would think it’s at least worth it to not take Skaia/SBURB for granted as the One True Way and at least explore other options that don’t build new worlds on the backs of dead old ones and the blood and bodies of children. 

One of my many issues w/ the end of HS was that we’re shown this shitty, awful, murderous system and the suffering it causes, and then… it’s never dealt with. The status quo remains the status quo. It’s like a conversation I was having last night about the Harry Potter ending - one of my problems with THAT is that we’re shown how iffy the wizarding world really is, how quickly the systems within it can get warped and transformed into something completely evil, but we end with the characters… just happily participating in the system same as always, with no indication that they achieved genuine upheaval. Voldemort’s gone, but he’s only one dark wizard. Did they really kill the prejudice that made part of the wizarding population watch the ministry start rounding up muggle borns and torturing students and go ‘I thiiink something might be up but I can’t be sure??’

So yeah, that’s my take, more or less, and it’s def informed by some of my preferences and views, but basically… I don’t think Skaia is actively malevolent, but I think it doesn’t care about anything but the big picture, no matter what “little things” get shattered along the way, and although that might benefit the universe, I would’ve liked to see something get done about that. Or at least see it addressed at all.

youtube

Here is Hillary Clinton supporting a follower who associates Obama with Muslims in 2007. 

 Jesus christ it’s like the entire media had an aneurysm. How DOES NOBODY ELSE REMEMBER THIS?!?!?! This took me 5 minutes to find a this video on youtube.  


FIVE GODDAMN MINUTES. And yet not one mainstream media outlet has the honesty to say “You know…Trump is right…Hillary did propagate the Muslim rumor. “

The Fallacies of Neoliberal Protest

By Russell Rickford

Sourcehttp://www.aaihs.org/the-fallacies-of-neoliberal-protest/#comments

“Sisters and brothers, YOUR opposition to racist state terror is a major threat to the normal functioning (and thus the hegemony) of the neoliberal regime. To neutralize this threat and destabilize the most rebellious segments of the population, the corporate power structure aggressively propagates certain false assumptions among the public.

Let’s examine these fallacies:

Fallacy Number One: Dialogue and Awareness

The managers of the status quo hate resistance. So they try to guide any dissent that arises into “safe” channels. You will notice a proliferation of forums, discussions, and meetings organized by system administrators and devoted to “dialogue” and “awareness.” The premise of such efforts is that the problem of racial unrest stems from misunderstandings among rational and well-meaning parties. Thus communication and moral suasion—rather than pressure politics—is the answer.

Fallacy Number Two: The Appeal to Authority

In our technocratic society, we are conditioned to believe that experts and officeholders hold the answers to social problems. Supposedly these professionals are able to mediate between contending groups and interests. We are taught to endlessly petition established authorities for relief, never realizing that such gatekeepers are themselves instruments of the status quo.

Fallacy Number Three: The Myth of the Disembodied Voice

Part of capitalism’s response to grassroots opposition is to assure the distressed that their “voice” is heard. That the authorities who “hear” you also enable your brutalization is immaterial. The point is to convince you of your continued stake in the system. It is to guide you toward the politics of representation and away from the politics of resistance.

Of course, there are other fallacies employed by the oppressor to confuse the oppressed. The fallacy of inclusion v. transformation, for example. Or the fallacy of “diversity” v. genuine antiracism. We are taught to be patriotic, to be patient, to strive to embody the very values of peace and goodwill that this society defiles.

These and other myths only perpetuate the system. They leave intact our society’s basic power relations. And they cause us to police ourselves and to seek interpersonal reconciliation rather than confront structural racism and oppression.

Truth is, we don’t need “diversity” training. We don’t need focus groups. We don’t need consultants and experts. We don’t need the apparatus of our oppression—racial capitalism itself—to rationalize and regulate our dissent. The logic and techniques of the corporate world won’t end the slaughter of black people, or the dispossession and degradation of indigenous people, or the transformation of the entire Global South into a charred landscape of corpses and refugees.

We need an uncompromising, multiracial, grassroots movement against white supremacy, endless war, and vicious corporate capitalism. We need to build solidarity with the resistance in Charlotte, Standing Rock, and Puerto Rico. We need to join the rebellions of workers and the colonized all over the world.

This is a human rights struggle. And it will be waged in the streets, not in boardrooms, the halls of Congress, or other strongholds of global capital”

How to make succulent babies!

Step 1: Pick leaves
Gently twist the leaf near the base, it should snap off the plant cleanly. Good cuttings will be slightly rounded at the ends, and have no ‘open’ wound:

Bad cuttings will not grow, you need to make sure the whole leaf comes off in one go. Bad leaves are jagged, torn, or cut:

Step 2: Lay all cuttings inside on a piece of cloth.
I usually put a piece of old scrap material down on my desk and lie all the leaves out in rows. I try not to pile up the leaves, as this tends to promote rot. Do not water at all. AKA no misting the leaves, no watering the leaves, nothing. Everything the baby succulent needs to grow is stored in the mother leaf, watering may rot the leaf before the new plant is big enough to survive on its own! Make sure the leaves aren’t in direct sun, as they will wither before they form new plants. Filtered light from a window is strong enough!

Step 3: Waiting
After about 4 weeks you will start to see the first signs of life. The leaf may send out roots first, it may start to grow with no roots. Both are okay! 

Step 4: Planting (Start watering once a week at this stage)
After 6-8 weeks the baby succulents will be big enough to plant outside! I do this by placing the leaves on top of loose, sandy soil that has not been compacted. I do not bother burying the leaves, as it tends to do more harm than good (you may snap roots/damage new shoots in the process):

I place all the plants together, they don’t really seem to mind! These is how they look after about 10 weeks:

When the plants are big enough, the mother leaf will shrivel up and start to die off:

TADA! You’ve created baby succulents :)

April 23rd {18/100}

Day 18 of my 100 days of productivity! Today was another biology-heavy day. I spent most of my time re-writing my in-class notes and making sure that I actually understand all of the concepts. I was tackling nerve impulse propagation. As you can see, the notes I take in class are really rough and unorganised, all written in the same color and just general not aesthetically pleasing whatsoever. I wanted to show you guys that good looking notes, always started out as messy ones. 

5

Did some succulent propagating today! One of the pots with leaf cuttings are from a month ago.. Wanted to try it out before I started to cut up the entire plant (poor thing?). Now that they have grown some pretty roots, I was confident enough to do so. Let’s hope these baby’s are gonna be pretty little succulent plants! Not sure if all the forgotten leafs I collected from garden centers will be able to grow roots or a new plant, but it’s worth a try, right? 

3

October 11, 2015 - Three months’ worth of succulent propagation later… some parent leaves out of my 100+ propagating leaves have started to shrivel so I spent this lovely Sunday morning transplanting them into their own pots.

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