amor mundi

Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Long Teaching Day

Rain is pouring down and this promises to continue all the livelong day hideously enough. In that rain, I'll be splashing along to the BART, soaked to the knee no doubt. The stale steam pouring off the damp humanity corralled into the train cars is sure to be a treat. A faculty meeting and then I face my usual undergraduate lectures, but I am expecting the usual decimation this close to the Thanksgiving holiday. In my first course I'm lecturing on Joe Orton, in my second on William Burroughs and Valerie Solanas. Usually these texts are a pleasure to teach, but I am expecting a handful of students who haven't read the material, checking their plane reservations on their cellphone while rain pounds the window panes, inviting me to catch pneumonia as I stumble my way through the dark slick street to commute the long way home. Grumpy I am. Grumpy. Blogging, as usual, low to no.

Monday, November 23, 2015

What They Fear

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Just Breathe Together

Conspiracists get right that incumbent elites are capable of anything, but get wrong how incapable incumbent elites are of everything.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Everything Old Is New Again

I really thought it was funny when I used to lampoon ridiculous VR gear as glorified Viewmaster until I noticed Viewmaster now hyping itself as VR.


Behind every great man is my dick ready to fuck him.

Goes To Show

No preoccupation with good taste is an example of it.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Relevant Expertise in the Critique of Robocultism

Longtime readers of Amor Mundi will be amused to see that my current twitter exchanges with robocultists trundle along the same well-worn grooves as they did a decade ago. Must be because all that accelerating acceleration of acceleration is disrupting everything to shock level one!

Back to Pancryptics?

It is agonizing to contemplate, but there are times when I think I should dust off my more-than-a-decade-old-by-now dissertation Pancryptics, strip it to bare bones, update it a bit, and try to do something with it. Whatever its faults it did provide me with a critical vocabulary that gives me some purchase on crypto debates that continue to this day. Here's an interesting scrum I found myself in yesterday:


Encryption fixated politics seem to me regularly to expose a paranoid/aggressive project of cyborg-ruggedized selfhood, very closely akin to what is revealed in gun-nuttery.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Pay Attention When Your Congress Votes To Refuse Terrorized Syrian Refugees Asylum

We Must Burn The Species To Save It: Faith-Based Techno-Transcendentalist Condemns Faith

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Explains A Lot

It's hard to read the Bible when you're hiding behind it.

This. Changes. Everything.

Startups don't impress me, but their endups do amuse me.

The Politics of Fear -- Now With Even More Stoopid (A Twitterrant)

(I got the numbering a little muzzfuddled there, sorry.)

Now, Now, Why Overgeneralize? Why So Extreme?

Those who admonish the palpably obvious observation that all Republicans are either outright racists, or dismiss impacts of structural racism (which ultimately depends on racist animus or racist insensitivity), or know they depend on racism for their power (a form of opportunism which is also racist), do remember these disgusting days of rancid racist Republican hate.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Long Teaching Day

Teaching over in the City all day today: Noel Coward in my first course, Judith Butler in my second. This semester is flying along. As usual, blogging today will be low to no.

Monday, November 16, 2015

My Heart Will Be Blessed

Sins of the Futurologists

Chapter One
Chapter Two
Chapter Three
Chapter Four

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Solutionism "Beyond Left and Right"

Every technofix (including most simple, marketable "policy fixes") advocated as a circumvention of left-versus-right politics ends up being either a rightist apology or has to make concessions amounting to legible leftism.


Saturday, November 14, 2015

Periodic Reminder

I'm a registered Democrat in the United States of America in the brutal and debasing years of its imperial plutocratic consummation, in the ruins of neoliberal globalization, universal precarization, and ongoing ecological catastrophe and yet I am still a believer with Michael Harrington that "the best liberalism leads toward socialism. I’m a radical, but... I want to be on the left wing of the possible." To conjoin democratic radicalism with partisan compromises is a pain in the neck, fraught with peril and error, but in my view just as vital and necessary as ever.

Friday, November 13, 2015

"Look for the Helpers."

And try to be one.

Socialism Versus Capitalism According to the Onion

via The Onion:

It's never a good idea to nitpick a joke, but the premise here seems to be that "fuck you" is a "spot-on" summation of human behavior. Needless to say, the Onion wouldn't be the endlessly entertaining and insightful publication it is if that were not true all too often, but it should be no less needless to say that were it true all or even most of the time then society would not function sustainably enough to keep the Onion -- and other, less vital institutions -- a going concern in the first place. It is also worth noting that the misquotation of the Louis Blanc slogan popularized by Marx ("to each according to their needs") are hard to square with the benefits actually properly attributed to socialism two lines later. Also worth a reminder: the "Mine, mine, mine!" of capitalism involves wealth redistribution no less than socialist equity does, there is no "natural" distribution capitalism honors more than socialism does. As for the assertion that both work "in theory," I agree with what I am reading as the insinuation that neither does in practice.


Lately, libertechbrotarian Thought Leaders really do seem to be taking to heart the Poverty Disruption wisdom of Swift's "Modest Proposal."

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Crass Mess Season Has Begun

It's beginning to look a lot like buy! buy! buy! buy! buy! buy! buy!

Long Teaching Day

In the City today, I'll be teaching Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest then Sontag and Bruce LaBruce on camp in my first seminar, and then Arendt and Foucault in my second: I call that a good day. Blogging low to no, as usual.