Nature is not natural and can never be naturalized — Graham Harman

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

I've Been Kicked in the Biosphere

50% of all animals. By which is meant things with a spine, fish, primates, lizards. 50% gone in 40 years.



I never personally signed on for this mission. Neither did you.

As one of the animals, I never signed on.

Why do some scholars reject “species” right now? Because its uncanny. Not for any of the stated reasons. Because we notice that we are collectively a zombie, just executing an algorithm.



It's like the idea of the consumer. I personally never “demanded” vacuum sealed products encased in plastic. But I'm told that “the consumer” (invented by Ricardo btw) demanded it. So like it.



Uncanny is the spooky reaction that something totally intimate is weirdly jutting into your world, yet has been unavailable, because taboo mostly.



Of course in the manuals (Freud et al.) it's your mum's body (shock horror). And in the philosophy coming out of that uncanny horror (name your favorite David Lynch interpreter and some of the speculative stuff) it's about juicing oneself with that horror experience. Like taking a cocaine hit of the uncanny, over and over and over again. “Is none other than” is the favorite trope of the uncanny addict.



Can someone say misogynistic?



You know what I think? I think if you stay with this supposed horrible, taboo thing like your mum's body, it's actually quite sad. Even John Carpenter's misogynistic Thing isn't captured totally in the horror fantasy of the viewers and those Arctic researchers. The Thing makes “sad,” sad sounds, the sound of just existing. Like moaning or just breathing.



And if you really stay with it, underneath the sadness is the joy.



And your mum's body--it's not just a sign of the biosphere, it is the biosphere, in the form of her body.



And my stomach, that feels like it was just kicked really violently, isn't my stomach. I'm not talking about little me suffering here. My stomach is also this biosphere. It implies all the not-me beings.



I've been kicked in the biosphere.



If some scholars want to denounce it as narcissism go right ahead. It's fully and utterly narcissistic in the Freudian sense of physical good-enough energy feedback between oneself and one's environment.  Our only task is to include more and more beings within that circuit.



It's really just being with the pain, without suffering. How to do that. Tricky.



I am an escape artist. I admire anyone whose first impulse, when this pain happens is, jump right into it and find the exit, inside it.



Let's not stay frozen in horror. Now we know all this information we don't have to keep juicing ourselves. Solutions like geoengineering are, as a brilliant PhD student Eliot Storer pointed out today, ways of not going further, but of begin trapped in the horror tragedy.



Let's make it down into the sadness, and proceed further down from there.



I could hardly teach today because of this. Guess what I was teaching Freud! Uncanny right?! But that's why it was a good class, maybe. I could only just hold it together emotionally. Actually I lost it about three times.



Can the zombies have a crisis and form like a support group, and start to laugh? I would pay big money to make this zombie movie.

UK Food Stamps, at Last!

Conservative party conference yesterday, fixed:

“Hey now that we've been calling it welfare for five years, the public must be ready for step two of the biopolitical scheme. Why don't poor people get a card, a prepaid card, with which they can buy food and pay rent?

“Despite our determination that poor people take responsibility, we are keen to create what we loathe, a class of people who are totally dependent on ‘welfare’ and never get to even have actual money in their pocket. Then we can demonize and crush them a bit more, and then a bit more, and then...”

Conservatives in charge, you are talking about my parents here, and my brother, you *************

Monday, September 29, 2014

Future Fomentation

Dominic Boyer and I are making an intellectual something so berserk that it could actually have a positive effect, you know, in the ahem actual world! Having to do with politics and all that.

We think the anarcho-surrealists will like it!

I'm not telling!


Thursday, September 25, 2014

Sparkly Goth Meltings

Cocteau Twins, “Squeeze-Wax.” Someone got the delirious fluidity right on the video didn't they?

When I bought this I was pretty sure that the age of boys playing guitars without women couldn't possibly return. Erm...


Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Dark Ecology

Coming in to land. I needed to get ahead of about 20 essays. Putting in some new thoughts and brushing up the old. There's about 12 more books I need to talk about and some others too.

Some things you may not yet know:

Dark can mean depressing.
It can also mean strange.
It can also mean sweet.

I'm going to try to take the reader through all three tunnels. In that order.

We've kinda had enough of pure despair. Some people still need to go in there but what comes next?



Language

PS: “fix” means “gut.” Like “I'll fix you, you *** ** * *****”

"Deficit"

Thank you BBC for amplifying the tweet of my old classmate, the chancellor, who said that someone didn't say the word “deficit.” When I say thank you, it's simply because it cements my existing opinion of you nowadays, and I like having my opinions cemented. Maybe.

You only say “deficit” if you are

1. Terribly terribly dull.
2. You have accepted a discredited piece by two economists who forgot to press a certain button in Excel.
3. You have confused deficit with debt.

I'm not making that up. They forgot to press a button and came up with the idea that you should start to destroy education and healthcare as soon as your debt to GDP ratio reaches 90%.

In other words “He didn't say deficit” means “He didn't vow to eliminate healthcare, and that's bad.”

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The Chemical Reaction Known as Blame

That's one of the nicest things I could imagine someone saying about me. “The chemical reaction known as Morton.”

I know it's dangerous toasting or rapping over drum and bass but DRS pulls it off quite quite well.

The next best thing: “Because the psychic organism has arisen, Logical Progression release you from your sound prison.”

Taken quite literally this is sort of what I believe! In particular, the shout out to logic as a tool for freedom.

You're jolly well going to have to buy it!


Sunday, September 21, 2014

What Is Ecological Art? (MP3)

I had had a very very moving time in Cumbria (where I used to live a bit) and the exhibition of work at the Wordsworth museum, inspired by the idea of a fusion between Basho and Wordsworth, was really, really touching. So I almost did lose it, just like I warn at the beginning! Also I made people laugh, don't worry...

It was to non-scholars who really liked it and really cared about ecology and all that. Thank you Jeff Cowton and everyone who put this together. Highlight talk so far.


OOO the World of Baby Ford

That's what it's called. Not making it up!

Oh 1988.

“Poem for Wigan” and “Wigan,” because I'm at Wigan station.




Friday, September 19, 2014

Billions of Micro-Transcendences

Dear chap, I'm not undoing the transcendental. I'm allowing everything to enjoy it. Not just (human) subject, Geist, history, economic relations, will to power, Dasein.

It's everywhere, man. Not just at one point in the universe.

I think that's quite a lot of transcendence.

I just said it today!

...and I Feel Fine? (MP3)



My talk in Glasgow. Really good q&a. Thank you everyone! Rune Graulund was a terrific host. Martin Leer from Geneva was so good--haven't seen him forever. You hear his voice just after I start talking. Hayden Lorimer, we have the same record collection involving Aphex Twin and Mu-Ziq and Cocteau Twins. And you have a 12" of "Sueno Latino" which is just incredible.

Edward Casey was there (been a fan of his work for ages) and he totally bonded with me, and asked an awesome question (right at the end).

The conference was called The End of the Place as We Know It so I had to use REM...

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Eco Conference in Glasgow Today and Tomorrow

“The End of Place as We Know It.” Here's what is happening. It will be so good to meet Edward Casey whose The Fate of Place is just an awesome book that inspired me a huge lot in the 90s.

Scots, China Doesn't Want a Yes Vote Because...

It might encourage the Tibetans...

I am not making this up.

Yet another good reason to etc etc.

The Right Book to Read on the Train to Glasgow Today



It's absolutely brilliant. Totally disarming.

Comic timing is how you actually write good sentences, and the sentences in this are very very good indeed.

Comic timing is interlocked with thought I have found.

Happily I am already writing about The Best Party in Dark Ecology. (The sound of sinister reverberant laughter.)