Kaste op, bedøve sig, knokle videre, holde ud, skamme sig, stritte imod

Klumme i Information i dag.

Den om handler de voldsomme forberedelser til arbejdsmarkedet (uddannelse), som mange befinder sig i; at ikke have nogen fremtid, men at skulle ofre sig for den alligevel; og blive født ind i økonomisk arvesynd, således at man altid står i gæld til økonomien.

Meget af det burde slet ikke stå i en avis som Information, men være blevet sendt som brev til en god ven. Aner ikke om det virkelig giver mening at lægge alle de her ting ud, så gribbene kan læse med, men håber virkelig den også lander hos nogle andre. Og at det kan hjælpe os til at begynde at snakke med hinanden om vold.

Titlen var egentlig et lidt andet spørgsmål. Det lød: “Har du prøvet at være i et voldeligt forhold med din uddannelse?”. Det var måske for langt eller også for mærkeligt for redaktøren. Forhåbentlig forstyrrer erstatningsspørgsmålet ikke for meget.

Læs klummen her.

Adblock AFK

Metropolen er en strøm der gerne vil trække alting med sig i sin fortvivlede mobilitet, der gerne vil mobilisere hver og en af os. Hvor informationer overfalder os som fjendtlige tropper … (Den usynlige komité)

I kender sikkert Adblock, den Firefox-plugin der fjerner reklamer på internettet. (Hvis I ikke gør, så hermed anbefalet: det er en helt essentiel ting for at luge ud i den mentale økologi).

I bus og tog sidder vi lidt i samme situation: fra alle sider ønsker virksomheder og myndigheder at meddele os ting, lokke med underspillet eller endda spille på en anti-kommerciel æstetik, som virker netop pga. en udbredt lede mod reklamer. Uanset hvor meget du beder om at blive fri: reklamerne forstår ikke et nej. Vigtigst af alt: der findes ikke nogen plugin (som på internet) eller fjernkontrol (som ved TV eller radio), så man kan slukke for det. Kigge væk? Det går ikke. Og slet ikke med indførelsen af lydreklamer.

Venner af reklamerne vil måske sige, at de finansierer store dele af de goder som vi gør brug af, fx den kollektive trafik, hvor folk udsættes for flest mængde reklamer. Problemet med dette argument er, at det simpelthen ikke passer. I Stockholm finansierer reklamerne 1,7% af omkostningerne for den offentlige trafik. Lignende proportioner vil sikkert kunne findes i Danmark. Spørgsmålet, for politikerne, er om det er det værd. Vi vil skulle betale en vældigt lav pris for at afskaffe dem gennem skattefinansiering, men i stedet betaler vi en høj pris for at beholde dem.

Under alle omstændigheder, hvor kommer pengene ellers fra, hvis ikke fra virksomhedernes kunder? Hver gang vi køber hvilken som helst vare fra en virksomhed, der også budgetterer med reklamekampagner, betaler vi den ekstra pris for at senere blive spammet i bussen og toget. Vi betaler for vores egen mentale uhygiejne.

Der er brug for flere midler, som kunne kaldes Adblock AFK (internetsprog for ‘Away From Keyboard’). Også taktikker der ikke kræver boltsaks og værktøj, menneskelige taktikker, taktikker der skaber en almen fjendtlig indstilling overfor de fjendtlige informationstropper.

Controversial things, or the dual sense of ‘saklighet’

A quick comment on the translation of the term ‘nysaklig’ into ‘new-thingly’

It seems to me that ‘thingly’ loses one aspect of the dual nature in ‘saklig’. A ‘sak’ can actually refer to two things: First, a thing or an object in the most concrete way; crystals, ants, computers, gay bath houses or supernovas; the second aspect of the word ‘sak’ is more relational and refers to an affair or a controversy, the fact that something matters and have become important or crucial in some sense to certain actors; a quarrel between friends, a scholarly disagreement or the scandals of classical politics. ‘Sak’ can even refer to a cause, as in fighting for a cause etc.

I’m not sure that Rasmus Fleischer intended this, but then again that’s not the point.

What I like about the second aspect, which seems to me to have been lost in the translation, is that it places relationality by way of controversy, confrontation and affairs at the center of how to study objects. This does not mean that objects are merely reduced to their relations, that relationality “undermines” the independent being of things, as Graham Harman likes to say it. Rather, it brings forth the idea that to know, study or encounter a thing (a parrot, boulder or para-military group) is always in some way dramatic, or at least political (in the cosmopolitical sense of Isabelle Stengers, whom I haven’t read, but at least in the way Latour has made sense of it [pdf]).

In danish, this aspect becomes even more clear, as the corresponding word ‘sag’ specifically is used to refer to law suits or other legal disputes between parties. Also, the news media are especially obsessed about ‘sager’, ie. affairs, that are scandalous or revealing.

Curiously, ‘saklig’ (or in danish, ‘saglig’) also refers to a manner of discussing focused on facts – for some people this even implies so called “neutrality”, but I guess that sense comes from the party of dusty scientism. In a broader sense ‘saklig’ refers to an attitude of being to-the-point. But most interestingly, ‘saklig’ is usually used synonymously with being objective, which should be understood very literally in the OOOsense: oriented towards the objective, ie. the involved objects and what concerns them. Similarly, ‘saklig’ is also usually used synonymously with the expression ‘matter-of-fact’ (which is similar with to-the-point, but at least makes a for me still unclear reference to Latour in the article ‘Why has critique run out of steam? From matter-of-fact to matter-of-concern’)

This should be enough to give an idea of some of the richness that the term ‘saklig’ could reveal. To sum up the dual sense of the term that I have outlined above: ‘saklig’ implies both an object-orientation, but also an orientation towards confrontation, dispute and drama. If anyone was ever uncertain of the political implications of OOO and might have thought that it implied static or reactionary conservatism, where the subterranean qualities of object are always preserved and all the shallow entanglements and collisions between them are merely fleeting changes in a hard-as-diamond state-of-things, then the scandinavian expression might evoke a quite different idea of the object-orientation, of sakligheten.

To make a closing association (and I’m aware that this post has been almost entirely associating), we might consult Karen Barad and her agential realism in Meeting the Universe Halfway. Barad is certainly a philosopher of the speculative sort – in one occurence calling for a “weird materialism” – by audaciously launching her grand metaphysics by merging the micro-physics of Michel Foucault with the quantum physics of Niels Bohr. There are important differences between her and OOO though, and I feel that the concepts of apparatus, entanglements, intra-action and especially the Bohrian term phenomena bring up crucial problems (Instead of objects, at least in the non-entangled sense, Barad argues that ‘phenomena’ should be the real objective referents; a term that could also fruitfully be named situation). Nonetheless – or maybe exactly for that reason – Barad can help us grasp the dual sense of ‘saklighet’ in her discussion of “onto-epistemology”. The argument is fairly simple, because of an elegant wordplay, that she borrows from Judith Butler. Barad’s metaphysics can be summed up in a sentence: the universe comes to matter. Every thing comes to matter in two ways: comes to matter as in materialize; comes to matter as in having meaning, or making sense. It is in this way that epistemology always has ontological consequences (and vice versa). Every process of mattering (e.g. an experiment on the behavior of light) involves what Barad calls an ‘agential cut’ in the object (e.g. light), that makes certain aspects of the object come to matter (e.g. its particle-quality) and certain others not come to matter (e.g. its wave-quality). Agential cuts make certain things appear and other certain things disappear. It’s in this way that the ontoepistemological process in a profound way always implies ethics: in an almost literal sense to ‘take sides’ when making agential cuts, in a particular controversy between objects (where the ethical actor in question naturally becomes one of these objects).

Overvågningssystem der tagger

Næste fase er at introducere dette system, på samme måde som man introducerer al anden overvågning for tiden, som en service:

—Glemt hvor du var i går? Bare rolig, vi gemmer al din færden. Lige til at gemme i din online profil. Så kan du – og dine venner – til enhver tid se, hvor du har været. Du bliver fri fra at huske!

—Urolig over hvor din partner befinder sig? Bare rolig, vi gemmer al hendes færden. Lige til at checke, mens du er på farten eller til et møde. Du bliver fri fra at bekymre dig!

—Tag ‘n’ track. Smart, simpelt og sikkert.