Statism’s Typicality

Izabella Kaminska’s recent article in the FT[1] on seasteading does have some genuine criticism’s of the Seasteading Institute’s more utopian goals, including its supposed desire to achieve full political independence from the modern world. No such project can ever truly do this, and despite the heady heights of some of seasteading’s advocates I’m sure most recognise that pragmatism and time are needed. However the rest of the article is a glorified diatribe against political competition and in support of our static status quo. The simplicity of Kaminska’s message underlies the simplistic worldview that defines it. Continue reading

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Mass Democratic Assuaging

The supposed nationalist revolt encapsulated by Brexit and Trump have now been adequately shown to be elaborate exercises in pacification, further sweeping away questions of European and American White identity in the 21st century as populist insurgencies prove to be wholly conjunctural. They represent neither the beginning of a new order or the end of the old, instead showing a stopgap in the working orders of modernity. Trump nor Brexit will become harbingers, as both are mired in discourses and forms of mass. Mass in this case being a centralised totality of peoples, flows and governance. Alongside the mass of the Cathedral and the neoliberal economy, these new populist totalities are effectively vying in this centralised arena. Continue reading

Tentacles of Automaticity

Modernity’s fascination with the depolitical continues to be seen even in the heady times of populist groundswells, secessionist movements and economic and climatic change which potentially necessitate new ways of thinking about wider economies and polities. Many dominant and even nascent ideologies implicitly rely upon this drive toward depoliticisation, separating public spheres, counter-publics and the everyday political from the wider governmentality of the macro-environment. In effect, the issue of governance as a multiplicity of issues is skirted by placing institutions and mechanisms into situations of automaticity. The surrounding environment of markets and regulatory agencies are ruled by this automaticity, with their innate laws dictating the movement of resources and assuming an implicit equality of power. This understanding then colours how things are to be seen, with politics as a critique of existing power and an arena for the debate and creation of alternatives sidelined in favour of a kind of expertise and independent knowledge that remains unquestionable except to those ‘in the know’. However this in itself is a political concept. Expertise as knowledge and the structuration of markets and regulatory laws as scientific and ethereal suggest a politics of resources and power that removes agency from the public sphere toward precast institutions that internalise governance. Continue reading

The Opportunity of Nihilism

by Michael James

The Opportunity of Nihilism

“The nihilist’s capacity to act is increased (what Nietzsche calls “spiritual vigour”) when the goals or missions that once directed you are no longer suitable; the nihilist begins as an existential exploration: discover your own challenges.”

– Glen Fuller

The liberating and invigorating spaces of reasoning, acting and becoming opened up by radical negational cognition are multitude. Instead of remaining content to reiterate centuries old maladaptive semiotic commitments and social enactments the advent of radically nihilistic thought violently breaks with contemporary assumptions and social norms. It is therefore long overdue that we begin to understand and present the advent of nihilism primarily as an opportunity for emancipation, experimentation, and creativity in the search for more adaptive living. Continue reading

Catalan Independence as a Spear for Decentralisation

The Catalan parliament’s declaration of independence is not a sea change in the way modern governance will work, particularly as the Spanish government has come down on this declaration of independence with an iron fist, allowing the Guardia Civil to abuse referendum voters and now removing the Catalan government from power. Instead it is a potentially catalytic moment that signals new possibilities in a world still largely (but only nominally) determined by the consensus of large, centralised nation-states controlling the main levers of political and socio-economic power. And judging by the reactions of the Spanish government and the EU, such potentiality worries the established governmental frameworks in Europe. Of course the Catalan independence movement is not a panacea, with many problems from the actors involved to the endgame vision envisioned by activists and politicians. Its strength lies in its innate ability to question received wisdom and the apodicticity of the state as the only means of legislation and decision-making, suggesting that Catalan independence can become a spear for further decentralisation and the move toward a multi-scalar, multi-institutional complex of governance and rule-making. Continue reading

Brexit as Conjuncture?: Developments in the Modes of Production and Politics

Brexit is being considered the most important geopolitical development in the UK this century. It has already been cemented as a great plebiscitary revolt that has smashed the establishment narrative, repositioning British politics and causing a sudden change in the way the general electorate understand politics and government. In this sense, Brexit can be seen as a conjuncture, splitting open the common sense of modern politics in a fragmentary and indeterminable way. The way this conjunctural effect has evolved in the referendum vote and the resultant Brexit can be seen as a development of the extent of neoliberal subjectivity in the UK, where the economy has become practically depoliticised, removed from political/social critique, which the Leave campaign and the vast majority of Leave voters accepted as a political norm, as polling data and campaign discourse showed. Brexit then is a conjunctural revolt of culture, developing a half-way house lebenswelt that is pre-nascent, unable to develop a fully explanatory critique of modernity due to neoliberalism’s enclosure of the economy as an unquestionable dynamic of modern life.

The full study is here: Brexit as Conjuncture Continue reading

Charlottesville as a Microcosm

Charlottesville seems to have been the coming together of two groups who pine after political power and control. Both Antifa and the Alt-Right seem determined to control the cultural and societal apparatuses that inform the major narratives and discourses of the US, pushing their understandings to the forefront of media exposure. Thus both groups are trying to stake their own political power within the state structures of the US government and its subsidiaries, attempting to exist within the centralised organs of governmental control. With this we see the fundamental problem. Two completely opposed groups vying for socio-cultural recognition and fighting for scraps from the US government itself. The fact that both are trying to do this will inevitably lead to conflict like that seen in Charlottesville. There will never be a political system that will encompass both anti-fascists (and their narratives of white privilege, structural racism and anti-dialogic engagement) and the Alt-Right (and their narratives of White identity, ethnocentrism and cultural homogeneity). The violence of Charlottesville shows the innate tendencies of modern politics when there is no dialogic or deliberative arena in which to air grievances and construct debate. The views of both groups are so anathema that such an arena is not even theoretically possible. The simple reality is that these groups cannot co-exist, and will when possible chase after the illusive power of institutionalised governance and the control of social and industrial complexes. Continue reading

The Conservation of Coercion

There is a significant degree of ignorance in relation to politico-economic history and political theory here, but the overall understanding is pretty sound. The real answer seems to me to abandon the stupidity of cosmopolitanism altogether, and recognise the innate tribal reality of social life. And surely the point of understanding a multi-institutional setting that the author intuits is that it allows for the potential of exit. Certainly the Papuan example doesn’t show this, but the large movements of people in the Feudal era, particularly before the advents of industrialisation and enclosure, show that exit and movement can facilitate stateless and quasi-state societies that combine high levels of social trust while allowing for a patchwork of institutionalism and exodus. (by the blog author)


by William Wilson Continue reading

Interview with Chris Shaw

Originally published here by Millennial Transmissions: https://millennialtransmissions.wordpress.com/2017/08/18/interview-with-chris-shaw/

Chris Shaw is an independent writer and researcher that I became aware of through an address he gave to the Libertarian Alliance titled ‘The Libertarian Moment.’ He has his own blog, The Libertarian Ideal (‘for secession, decentralism, mutualism and organic tradition’), through which he espouses his unique and varied philosophical, political and economic views. Continue reading

For a New Libertarian

This is the kind of libertarianism that needs to be encouraged, something that is polyvalent and multi-faceted rather than the universalistic nonsense which pervades many libertarian forms of thought and understanding. This is why libertarianism should move beyond markets and a simple defense of private property to something more integrative and nullificatory, such as by recognising the importance of tribalism and civil society as the author does here. (by the blog author)


by Jeff Deist

https://mises.org/blog/new-libertarian Continue reading