Synnefocracy_Abstract.1

“Geography is the stage and history the play.” — Tim Ball.

♦ ♦ ♦

The Third Sovereign Form

At the level of polity-organization-and-development there have only ever been two prominent and durable civilizational models: tellurocracies (land powers), qua Karl E. Haushofer, and thalassocracies (sea powers), qua Sir Halford J. Mackinder. Traditional conceptions of geopolitics fails to account, however, for the new and as-yet untempered form of polity formation and sovereign governance, which I term synnefocracy (cloud power), wherein the principal organizing, culture-making and governance occurs and develops (though not exclusively) at the level of the cloud. Like lampreys, they exploit apertures in political geographies, both concrete and digital, metallic and pixelated, machinic and vegetal to stack, scalar, over existing sovereign sums in spectral machinic linkage. Vines, silent creeping between the mortar of some aged manse.

This parsing of forms is important as even though all of the technologically sophisticated governments of the world utilize web-infrastructure for communication, storage, surveillance and a variety of other ancillary factors, none of them develop and govern through the cloud, which is to say, none of them (ostensibly) see digital geographies or cloud polities as real in the same way as the polities of physical geography. The distinction between the two, however, grows increasingly thin with every step towards ubiquitous computing, what Adam Greenfield describes in Everyware as, “Information processing dissolving in behavior.”

The private sector and numerous online communities operate, however, in a markedly different fashion, as not just the cultural and commercial, but the political ‘fibers’ of polity life are drawn together through the amalgamation of thriving communal-nodes which act as the principal mediator for the polity (which in the biospace include markets, cafes, libraries, sites of worship, homes, landmarks, roads, etc—and in cyberspace include websites and subsite venues, such as forums, comment sections and private, secured chat rooms—all of which are increasingly interwoven and thus, formally interdependent to the mediating subject).

Land-based powers, especially those culturally enmeshed within a manichean historiographic framework, are simply not culturally attuned to the maintained fluidity of such an enterprise; they guard against the incorporation of the technical into the cultural in so far as it is felt or, less commonly, explicitly determined, to be in disalignment with the geo-historical “arc” (movement along the path of the ideal) of the civilization, and, as such, ancillary, unless circumstance forces it to the fore.

In contradistinction, thalassocracies are far more inclined towards the protean and it may well be this very inclination which allowed the first proto-synnefocracies to arise from thalassocracies (namely, but not exclusively, the USA). The existence of these new forms are not simply speculative but objectively observable. ICBC, HSBC Holdings, Deutsche Bank, BNP Paribas, Credit Agricole Group, New Corporation (FOX, Times of London, Barrons), ViaCom (Comedy Central, VH1, Spike, Nickelodeon, BET, Paramount Pictures) are all extremely powerful organizations, yet they are not polity containers but cultural and economic mediators. In contradistinction, Alphabet Inc (Google), Facebook, Amazon, The Club of Davos, Open Society Foundations, the Omidyar Network, and other similar organizations are all, effectively, fiefdoms or semi-sovereign platforms which maintain their autonomy both through indispensability (or the guise thereof) to a pre-existing government and the appearance of relative harmlessness (Inc./NGOism, “we are just company”/”we’re just a charity” yet so rarely only just]).

Burgeoning ventures like the blockchain-based, decentralized Skycoin Platform, which seeks to create “internet 3.0” is another good example of a proto-synnefocratic organization. When one considers the pace of automation, the 70% of people, globally, who work remotely at least one day per week, centralizing potential of big data through AI and the potential applications of VR and AR (especially when paired with tangible holograms), a certain pattern of interconnective fluidity begins to form.

Distance from distance itself.

It may occur to some readers to conflate synnefocracy with a vague sort of cosmopolitan diaspora or vacationism, however, this would be a grave confusion. Diasporic populations, no matter how well organized, are, by-and-large, reliant upon the generosity and productivity of their host population(s) and as a consequence, diasporic populations are (generally) not sovereign (with certain exceptions, such as the Naxalites of India, who, in a understanding of the massive costs required to oust them from the jungles in the heart of the country, are allowed free reign therein) nor can they even entertain the possibility of sole (earthly) territorial authority (without revolution or integration into the corridors of power which risks assimilation into the host polity). Further differentiation can be found in the grounded dimension of a cloud power, as it wouldn’t be in any meanful sense “rootless” (a term which is often deployed in describing transitory peoples) but rather more rooted then potentially any other kind of civilization, as the infrastructure (and thus the land) necessary to accomadate it, would be extensive (allotments must be made for industrial infrastructure, servers, grids, power sources, homes, etc), yet they would be rooted in a different way than a traditional nation-state, which digs one hole very deeply and cordones off that space exclusively for its own purposes, whereas a cloud civilization would be able to modulate itself around and between exclusion zones, whether on, or in, land, sea or sky, that is to say, it would have numerous roots in numerous areas; more mycelial-sprawl than carrot-concentration.


Sources

  1. Meredith Whittaker. (2018) AI Now Report 2018. AI Now Institute.
  2. Radu P. Iovita et al. (2004) Reconstructing The Origins & Migrations Of Diasporic Populations: The Case Of The European Gypsies. American Anthropologist.
  3. Ryan Browne. (2018) 70% Of People Globally Work Remotely At Least Once A Week. CNBC: Make It.
  4. Stephen Johnson. (2018) The Employees At This $610 Million Company Work On A Virtual Reality Island. WEF.

USA-Japan Nuclear Alliance — History, Importance & Prospective Policies For Technocultural Exchange

This text endeavours to lay out the history of US-Japanese nuclear relations, the geopolitical implications thereof and some tentative policy proscriptions pertaining thereto for maximally mutual advancement of both nation’s interests.

Table of contents

  • Background on US-Japanese nuclear relations
  • 2018 US-Japanese memorandum
  • Importance of the alliance
  • Reasons for the durability of success
  • Geographic particularities of the alliance
  • Tentative policy proscriptions for further US-Japanese technocultural development & geopolitical stability

Background on US-Japanese nuclear relations

Civil nuclear relations between the United States of America and Japan began with the signing of the US-Japan Nuclear Research Agreement in 1955. Japan’s first long-term atomic energy plan was deployed the following year, 1956. Throughout the 60s and 70s bilateral operations between US and Japan increased.

Nov. 1987, Japan and the United States signed a nuclear cooperation agreement: Agreement For Cooperation Between The Government of Japan & The Government of The United States Concerning Peaceful Uses Of Nuclear Energy. The agreement went into effect a year later in 1988 and was set to expire July 2018. The deal afforded Japan the unique distinction of being the only nation without a nuclear arsenal which was allowed by the nuclear-armed powers to produce plutonium (with the stipulation that such material be produced solely for peaceful purposes), obviating a lengthy process of step-by-step verification which would otherwise be required. This allowed Tokyo to pursue nuclear recycling.

July, 2018, Agreement For Cooperation Between The Government of Japan & The Government of The United States Concerning Peaceful Uses Of Nuclear Energy is renewed. The agreement meant that Japan could receive special nuclear material (reactors, whole or in part, fuel, etc.) from the US so long as they kept to the non-proliferation standards of Section 123 pursuant to the US Atomic Energy Act (AEA) of 1954 which was amended to better account for nonproliferation (NNPA) in 1978.

2018 US-Japanese nuclear memorandum

A nuclear cooperation memorandum between the United States of America and the unitary, parliamentary, constitutional monarchy of Japan (which needs to import 90% of its energy requirements) was signed Nov. 13. The memorandum was signed by Japan’s METI and Ministry of Science and the US’ DOE and Department of Commerce. The purpose of the memorandum was to “promote the global leadership role” of both sovereignties in the arena of peaceful nuclear advancement.

METI stated: “With this memorandum of understanding, we will further advance cooperative relations between Japan and the United States in the field of nuclear power.”

Importance of the alliance

This is a significant partnership given that as per the WEF 2018 Global Competitiveness Report, The United States of America is the single most competitive economy in the world (85.6‡) with Japan trailing only slightly as the fifth most competitive economy in the world (82.5‡), pertinent for the obvious reason that the respective countries economic effectiveness will directly factor into their nuclear research, development and deployment (RDD). Further, as per the WEF 2018 Regional Risks Of Doing Business report the top ten risks, globally include:

1 Unemployment or underemployment
2 Failure of national governance
3 Energy price shock
4 Fiscal crises
5 Cyber-attacks
6 Profound social instability
7 Failure of financial mechanism or institution
8 Failure of critical infrastructure
9 Failure of regional and global governance
10 Terrorist attacks

… whilst the top 10 risk of doing business in East Asia & The Pacific are:

1 Cyber-attacks
2 Unemployment or underemployment
3 Asset bubble
4 Energy price shock
5 Data fraud or theft
6 Failure of national governance
7 Failure of regional and global governance
8 Fiscal crises
9 Failure of critical infrastructure
10 Manmade environmental catastrophes

Thus, the USA-Japanese alliance signals a potential, if not solution, mitigation to most of these issues in varying ways, especially as pertains to unemployment and energy price shocks (via obtaining energy independence). Further, the successful renewal and re-commitment of the Japan-US nuclear agreement is the single oldest civil nuclear alliance in the world, which serves as a example of bilateral success which other developing states and non-state actors can build upon.

Reasons for the durability of the alliance

In 1274 Mongol Khagan Kublai launched a military campaign against the Japanese archipelago. The Mongol fleet was initially successful and conquered the Japanese settlements of Iki and Tsushima but met fierce samurai resistance at Hakata Bay and were forced to withdraw and as they did so, the fleet was struck with a kamikaze or divine wind which some believed to have been sent by the god Raijin; the fleet was decimated and most of the Mongol ships were swallowed by the sea. The Japanese then began to build high walls to prepare for future invasions. Seven years later, the Mongols returned but could not pass the walls. The invading armada stayed afloat for a long period of time before Raijin sent yet another kamikaze which destroyed the fleet. The mongols never launched another invasion of Japan.

Since this time Japan has become a formidable maritime power in contestant with China over the Indian Ocean (via their OBOR and String of Pearls initiatives), a further strain on a already sour relationship, given the historical contestation of the Senkaku islands. China/Russia and Japan/America now sit on opposite sides of a newly congealing international order with the former as a rising superpower at the head of the Eurasian Bloc and the latter at the head of the new Atlanticist Bloc (which maintains economic dominance via the encapsulation of 7 of the top 10 most competitive economies). Japan also shares numerous attributions with the United States which makes for a durable alliance; for example, both share democratic principals and both have strategic investment in the trade routes in and around the Indian Ocean. It is more than “just business,” a relationship built upon mutual understanding as opposed merely to trade is invariably more lasting, provided those values stay within a certain threshold of alignment. There is no clear indication that they will be shifting any time soon.

Thus, it makes practical sense for Japan and America to work together, given their history, amidst this turbulent and accelerating reshaping of political geography. This analysis is accurate but not sufficient, given that it does not account for the emerging synnefocracies — non-state actors which rival or surpass traditional Westphalian states — such as The Party of Davos, Amazon, Google, Facebook, The Omidyar Network and Open Society Foundations, among many others, a issue which, sooner or later, will need to be addressed with considerable resources, given the way that such organizations obviate or undermine sovereign totalities (both intentionally, in the pursuit of a new international order, and unintentionally, in the reckless deployment of resources, policies and philosophies without accounting for their attendant, spider-webing effects).

Geographic particularities of the alliance

The Indian Ocean region is of considerable strategic importance, given that its sea-lanes form the world’s single largest trade route and account for 14% of total ocean-surface, globally. As of 2018, approximately 100,000+ vessels, including oil and LNG tankers and container carriers, were active in the region. Nearly 80% of the world’s oil tankers pass through the Indian Ocean. Of relevance to these facts: Japan is a large purchaser of Iranian oil yet Iran is at cross-purposes with the USA. 2018 US President Donald J. Trump backed the Saudis against Iran, condemning the latter as the single largest state sponsor of terror, world-wide (a dubious claim). Iranian-US diplomatic disintegrations began after the overthrow of US-sympathetic Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. This transitory period beheld the rise of religious fanaticism and the re-instantiation of islamic theocracy syncretically fused with republicanism. Sayyid Ruhollah Musavi Khomeini, known in the western media simply as Ayatollah Khomenini, an usuli of Twelver Shia, became the country’s supreme leader. The same year the shah was overthrown Muslim Student Followers of the Imam’s Line took control of a US embassy in Tehran, holding the 52 US workers and citizens there hostage for 444 days. Khomenini was unaware of the the student’s scheme but supported their actions once they came to light. Shortly thereafter, the US shut down all diplomatic relations with Iran. The event still resonates discordantly to this day and, when paired with religious tensions, the US-Israeli alliance, past US support of Saddam, interventionism (on both sides) and posturing, a deep-seated animosity has blossomed between Persia and the land of the free and the home of the brave. This simmering hostility requires rectification, regardless of Japan’s relationship to it or the US, if a lasting middle eastern peace is to be established. Through Japan, this is possible.

Tentative policy proscriptions for further technological development & geopolitical stability

Accounting For Global Perception

A 2018 poll aggregation by Pew Research Center showed that the US is still generally viewed favorably and, of particular importance, globally, more countries prefer the US as the world’s superpower over China. Globally, the American People are still highly respected for their accomplishments and their dedication to liberty, however, global confidence in the Trump Administration is quite low (lower than both Bush and Obama, generally). Further, there has been a long-standing trend in other countries of a perception that the US does not adequately take other countries’ interests into account when making foreign policy decisions (a perception which is obviously laced in much truth, though the same may often be made of those who leverage the accusation). The US is generally viewed very unfavorably by Western Europe and very favorably in Asia. When the polled countries were asked who they would prefer as the world leader 81% of Japanese stated they would prefer the USA, indicating a extremely positive view of the USA. Additionally, the USA also holds a favorable view of Japan; a 2018 spring survey by the Pew Research Center showed that 68% (roughly two-thirds) of US citizens polled held positive views of Japan, a view Americans have held more or less consistently since 2005. Given this favorability and the history of US-Japanese relations, both nations should move forward, together, in a re-commitment to a rules-based international order.

PG_2018.10.1_U.S.-Image_4-3.png

Japan & Iran

Given the trade and lasting 90 year diplomatic relationship between Japan and Iran and the centrality of Iran and the Shia Crescent more broadly to stability in the Middle East, it would be preferable for the US to renew its commitment to diplomacy with Tehran, if stability is desired. This will require a tempering of Israeli/Iranian proxy aggression and a mitigation of hostilities against the US and the west more broadly. This may be accomplished, slowly, by, first and foremost, ceasing all unnecessary military adventurism in the Middle East and making appeals to Khatami’s unrealized dialogue of civilizations initiative and the organizational aspects of Köchler’s dialogue entre les différentes civilisations. To this end, a inter-cultural institute, whether digital-only or both digital and brick-and-mortar, could be created as a tripartite cultural hub to advance a working knowledge and of Japanese, Iranian and US culture and history. Enlisting the aid of pro US-Japanese education, research and policy advocacy organizations such as the Sasakawa Peace Foundation may be helpful in realizing such a project if it is found to be desirable.

Even if this plan proves fruitful, the question will still remain as to what is to be done concerning China, Russia and Saudi Arabia. Issues which should be kept in mind and integrated into further diplomatic ventures.

Indo-Pacific Strategy: Building Upon The TCTO

In 2016, during a speech in Kenya, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe expounded upon a Two Oceans, Two Continents (TOTC) strategy for stability and growth in the Indo-Pacific region. Abe’s plan centered around Africa, which has tremendous potential for growth, and Japan, which had been experiencing rapid growth. It would be beneficial for the US, Africa and Japan to, at the very least, encourage this arrangement along.

Bilateral Fusion Advancement

Nuclear fusion is a extremely promising technological possibility, one which is increasingly feasible qua the Wendelstein 7-X stellarator and China’s EAST reactor. Given this, it would be reasonable to propose a joint nuclear fusion — of a breadth acceptable within the constraints of the time of initiation — R&D venture between the US & Japan as a avenue of technological collaboration outside of the parameters of the EU-hosted ITER program. Co-development of breeder reactors or SMRs may also be beneficial to increase the speed at which these technologies are developed, the venture would also allow for mutually beneficial cross-cultural exchange outside of just energy development, a exchange which could serve to further cement positive relations between both powers. As of the spring of 2018, 83% (roughly 8-in-10) Japanese held negative views of the workforce, fearing that automation would increase income inequality between rich and poor, 74% thought that ordinary Japanese will have a hard time finding jobs. Japanese’s population is in decline and expected to decrease from 127 million in 2018 to 88 million in 2065 from low-birthrates and emigration, which only contributes to anxiety surrounding automation, among other issues. Without significant immigration or a sudden and marked spike in birthrates, a employment deficit is probable. Further, though the Japanese have a favorable view of immigrants, they do not wish immigration to increase and view emigration from Japan negatively. Given these factors it is preferable for Japan to initiate a multi-pronged approach to job cultivation to inspire confidence. It is here that a international, bilateral arrangement between US and Japan could prove fruitful, not just for economic ends, but for markedly improving the lives of the forgotten citizenry of both countries and the knowledge of all mankind.

There is no purpose without power, and no power without resources. Here the alliance finds its purchase.


Numbers given are ratings based on a 0-100 scale – the USA is 14 away from 100.


Sources & further resources

  1. Paul Kerr & Mary Nikitin. (2018) Nuclear cooperation with other countries.
  2. WEF. (2018) The Global Competitiveness Report: 2018.
  3. WEF. (2018) Regional Risks Of Doing Business Report: 2018.
  4. Phyllis Yoshida. (2018) US-Japan Nuclear Cooperation: The Significant of July 2018.
  5. SPF. (2018) Policy Recommendations by Quadripartite Commission On The Indian Ocean Regional Security.
  6. SPF. (2016) Japan-Russia Relations: Implications For The US-Japan Alliance.
  7. Tomoyuki Kawai. (2017) US to renew nuclear pact with Japan.
  8. Joseph V. Micallef. (2018) The Strategic Implications Of American Energy Independence.
  9. Joseph V. Micallef. (2018) The South China Sea & US-China Trade Policy: Are They Becoming Linked?
  10. Kristen Bialik. (2018) How The World Sees The US & Trump In 9 Charts.
  11. The White House. (2018) Statement From The President Donald J. Trump On Standing With Saudi Arabia.
  12. Carol E. B. Chosky et al. (2015) The Saudi Connection: Wahhabism & Global Jihad.
  13. Kara Bombach et al. (2018) Iran Sanctions ‘Snapback’ Finalized Nov. 5th, 2018.

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Globally, 183 Nuclear Units Set To Be Decommissioned By 2020

Globally, around 76 nuclear reactors are expected to retire by 2019, followed by 183 units in the 2020s and 127 units in the 2030s. As of Sep. 2017, more than 110 commercial power reactors, 48 prototype reactors, 250 research reactors, and various fuel cycle facilities have been removed from operation. Europe has been leading the charge, specifically, France (as of 2017, nuclear was 75% of France’s total energy output, 17% of which is recycled nuclear fuel) and Germany.

Talk of a ‘Global Energiewende’ casts a shadow over the world…

This should be of particular concern to Americans given that America had, as of the end of 2017, 99 nuclear reactors at 60 power plants, more than any other country in the world. The energy produced by America’s nuclear reactors (approximately 102 gigawatts) can power 70 million residences. As of 2017, 10 nuclear reactors were decommissioned in the US, with many more slated for future obsolescence. There are numerous reasons for this which range from the fracking boom, climate hysteria driven on by groups such as the IPCC and the burgeoning modernist religion of Envirocracy, vested green-industrial-complex interests, keeping-up-with-the-jonesism, the natural gas boom and a bevvy of crippling regulations on nuclear.

The problems attendant to a global energiewende (German’s moniker for its energy transition plan wherein nuclear and coal plants are phased-out for solar and wind farms) are numerous. In Germany it was disastrous (though it was heralded a success!). Without getting into the intricate details, (a couple of) the principal problems are this:

  1. So-called “clean renewables” are neither “clean” (whatever that is supposed to mean) nor ceaselessly or endlessly “renewable.” Wind and solar energy harvesting systems require resources just like any other form of energy production and furthermore, create by-products. This is not to say that this is bad, but simply to note that the marketing tactics (“go green,” “renewable,” etc) don’t really mean anything. Its pure hype, untethered from factual analysis. Further, when this hyping is conjoined with morally manichean political theologies (such as the Gaia cultism of contemporary environmentalism) it becomes overwhelming anti-dialogical. Every form of energy production, biological or artificial, creates a by-product, which is generally called “pollution.” Thus, where there is no “pollution,” there is no life. Understanding this, it should be shouted from the rooftops: “Pollution is life!” The issue of central concern should not be pollution-as-such, but rather, the threshold(s) of negative pollution (obviously, no one wants to revert back to 19th Century air standards), ie. the point at which a certain amount of pollutants become intolerable to human thriving.
  2. Solar and, particularly, wind, require massive land consumption. To generate the same amount of energy as a contemporary nuclear facility, a wind farm requires 5000x the amount of land. That’s quite considerable!
  3. Wind and solar are intrinsically unreliable, meaning that the inputs (wind and the sun, respectively) cannot be controlled for, whereas, with nuclear, the inputs are completely controlled for, meaning that it is intrinsically reliable. If no wind, no sun, no energy. That’s not a concern with nuclear power.
  4. Perhaps most obscurely – but no less importantly – any significant drop in nuclear interest will see a comparable drop in research into the highly promising field of nuclear fusion. In 2016 German researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Particle Physics saw great success with their initial nuclear fusion experiments utilizing the Wendelstein 7-X stellarator. The magnetic reactor was able to generate the first ever hydrogen plasma, a significant step forwards in nuclear fusion development. Unlike the atomic splitting of nuclear fission (which is used in contemporary nuclear power plants), nuclear fusion (as the name suggests) combines atoms (usually hydrogen ions) and thus generates far greater amounts of energy. It is a shame that climate and “green” (ie. primitivist) energy hysteria have so consistently overshadowed this extremely promising vector of research. For further clarity in understanding just how promising nuclear fusion is, look up at the sun.
zoom
The first plasma achieved with hydrogen within the 170+ million degrees Fahrenheit Wendelstein 7-X reactor. (Credit: IPP).

Sources

  1. https://globenewswire.com/news-release/2018/11/07/1647102/0/en/Global-Nuclear-Decommissioning-Market-to-2023-Increasing-Decommissioning-of-Nuclear-Power-Plants-Witnessed-in-the-United-States.html
  2. http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/d-brief/2016/02/03/germanys-nuclear-fusion-experiment-marks-initial-success/#.W-gt0SOyXIV
  3. http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/crux/2016/03/23/nuclear-fusion-reactor-research/#.W-gsZCOyXIV
  4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fukushima_Daiichi_nuclear_disaster
  5. https://book.energytransition.org/sites/default/files/etbook/v2/en/German-Energy-Transition_en.pdf
  6. https://www.ucsusa.org/sites/default/files/attach/2018/11/Nuclear-Power-Dilemma-full-report.pdf

Istvan Contra McAfee

During the 2016 presidential race, the majority of the US public were spellbound by the unlikely rise of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders and their various competing visions for the United States of America. Considerably less institutionally-heeled but far more imaginative and, some argued, outlandish, candidates, dead-ringer for the Dos Equis Man John David McAfee of The Cyber Party and Zoltan Istvan Gyurko of The Transhumanist Party. McAfee, a successful tech entrepreneur who worked with NASA between 1968 and 1970, was the more well-known of the two politicians, principally through the popularity (or infamy, depending on who one asked) of McAfee Antivirus Software. McAfee (the person, not the software) has also received a good deal of airtime and media attention for a scandal which saw him accused of murder and fleeing from the corrupt, Sinaloa-controlled Belize after the errant businessman found out about a government-sponsored plot to kill him.

Zoltan Istvan, a former NatGeo journalist and the founder of the US Transhumanist Party, though less well known than McAfee, garnered significant attention due to both his extraordinary statements concerning technological advancement and a 2015 four month campaign, wherein he drove around the country in a brown, coffin-shaped bus (dubbed ‘The Immortality Bus’) to bring awareness to his goal of working to end death itself through radical life-extension procedures. The Immortality Bus tour ended December 14, 2015, with Mr. Istvan delivering the Transhumanist Bill of Rights to the US Capitol Building in Washington, DC. The Verge dubbed him, a “modern-day Ken Kesey” referencing the beat generation countercultural figure, well known for his novel, One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. The comparison was not entirely inaccurate as Istvan was also a novelist, having penned the highly contentious sci-fi novel, The Transhumanist Wager, in 2013. He has also gained attention for inventing the sport of volcano boarding (alternatively, volcano surfing or volcanoging) on the isle of Tanna.

In 2016, the two men met during their respective presidential bids in Charlotte, North Carolina, and quickly fell into a series of discussions and debates surrounding their campaigns. Technology stood as a important mean for both of their platforms, however their ends were considerably different. Mr. Istvan, for example, advocated for radical life extension development (a central plank in the Transhumanist Party platform) aimed at eliminating aging as-such and the mitigation of warfare and various other exigencies and a general uplift of humanity. McAfee, in response, jestingly advocated for killing everyone by age 30 and, more seriously, stated that he despised the idea of indefinate lifespans which he described as both “horrific” and “anti-evolutionary.”

On the issue of security, the two also fell into cross-purposes, McAfee had been a long-time champion of total individual privacy and Istvan (who had been NCF RFID chipped) declared,  “I would prefer everyone gets tracked as it would increase safety dramatically. Transparency is everything. We’re all citizens. All public officials should be tracked 24 hours a day. They work for me, I want to know what they’re doing.” Whilst that might seem extreme, recall the mass support for body-cameras for law enforcement.

In terms of relation to the government at-large, Istvan said he’d work for any administration, whether Clinton’s, Trump’s, or anyone elses, so long as that administration advanced the transhumanist program; McAfee, in contrast, advocated for utilizing Article 5 of the Constitution to completely reset the government. It seemed they could agree on nothing.

Their debate and attendant motivating philosophies is worth-revisiting principally due to the way in which it highlights the divide between bio-conservatism and the emerging trends of bio-synthetic integrationism and modification, issues which are important to raise and properly elucidate, given the existential angst and slack-jawed utopianism they can engender when poorly articulated. Personally, I fall into agreement with Mr. Istvan and view life extension technologies not as something alien and new but rather as a continuation of the whole history of technological innovation. The principal points to make against McAfee’s vision of the optimal life being a short and merry one, are:

  1. Life extension, as-such, is nothing new. The sharpened stick of a human 150,000 years ago was a life extension tool. Toothbrushes, soap and reliable energy production systems are, similarly, all forms of life extension, they are merely so commonplace that it is strange to think of them as such; they are viewed as “givens”. The only difference between all hitherto life extension technologies (such as those aforementioned) and transhumanist and futurist life extension proposals is the prospective reversal of aging itself.
  2. Whilst many people doubtless think like McAfee and view the idea of living forever, or simply for a significant period of time beyond the “natural” human lifespan, as unnerving, no one is going to force anyone to take such procedures (given that, barring some kind of technological breakthrough, they will be costly for a very long time). If one does not wish to extend one’s lifespan, one does not have to.
  3. Perhaps most importantly, whilst one of the most common phrases used to describe treatments pertinent to increasing longevity is ‘life extension’ the phrase, ‘health extension’ should always be right beside it, given that the idea (within the circles of life extension theorists and researchers) is not to simply extend the aging process but to slow and reverse the aging process with the ultimate goal being the ability to chose one’s biological age at will. Thus, the project of radical life extension is not to simply have everyone live to 150+ in a state of decrepitude, but rather, to have as many people as possible live to be age 150+ with a biological age of 25-40 (or whichever age one wishes which is within the bounds of the technology at the time).
  4. Lastly, there is often a fear that the treatments required for significant life extension will be so expensive that they will be a fixture of the ultra-rich, far beyond the reach of the middle and lower income brackets. This is a valid concern, and it is almost invariable that such procedures, upon being developed (and much headway has already been made) will be extremely expensive; however, so were the first cars. The trend with groundbreaking technology is for it to always be expensive, at first, but then to become somewhat more affordable (even if it will never be as cheap as one would like). Further, it is a issue which the Transhumanist Party has built into their Bill of Rights, Article V of which states: Article V. No coercive legal restrictions should exist to bar access to life extension and life expansion for all sentient entities. Life expansion includes life extension, sensory improvements, and other technologically driven improvements of the human condition that might be achieved in the future. The point being not that this document will move the legal system anytime soon (it won’t), but rather that it has been widely covered (by outlets such as Wired) and is thus raising the issue in a interesting and accessible way. The more the issue is raised, and seriously considered, the more likely it is that similar articles may one day make it into law. That, however, is a debate for future times.

Sources & Further Reading

Anthony Cuthbertson. (2015) When Zoltan Istvan Met John McAfee: Watch US Presidential Candidates Discuss Life & Immortality. International Business Times.

Bitcoin Exchange Staff. (2018) Pro Crypto 2020 Presidential Candidate John McAfee Says US Dollar Can Collapse Anytime. Bitcoin Exchange Guide.

Luke Henderson. (2017) Is Zoltan Istvan A Libertarian? Being Libertarian.

Polina Marinova. (2018) John McAfee Says He Will Run For President In 2020. Fortune.

Simon Brew. (2018) John McAfee Confirms He Lobbied To Have Johnny Depp Fired From Playing Him In Hollywood Movie. Crypto News Review.

Steve Longo. (2018) Who Is John McAfee? Antivirus creator revealed after presidential run announcement. The Daily Mail.

Transcendent Man. (2017) What Is Radical Life Extension? Is It Possible To Live Forever? Transcendent Man.

Zoltan Istvan. (2017) To Grow Third Party Politics In America, Make John McAfee The Libertarian Party Nominee (Update). Huffington Post.

Zoltan Istvan. (2013) The Transhumanist Wager. Futurity Imagine Media LLC.

Zoltan Istvan. (2002) Extreme Sports/ Really Good Pumice Dude!/Volcano Boarding: Russian Roulette On A Snowboard. SF-Gate.

Zoltan Istvan & various members of the Transhumanist Party. (2016) Transhumanist Bill of Rights (2.0).

Division-Convergence: On The Accidental Perforation of American Sovereignty

On March 7, 2018, Defense Digital Secretary Director, Chris Lynch gave a talk at the Cloud Industry Day in Arlington, Virginia, announcing and outlining a Department of Defense (DOD) program known as the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI). Lynch’s talk was one of many, all of which revolved around a DOD-directed cloud migration entailing a ten year contract for platform-as-a-service (PaaS) and infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) instantiations, both classified and unclassified. The project was spurned on by DOD’s retrograde infrastructure and lack of cloud presence which paled in comparison to commercial innovators, as well as the fact that Amazon was the world’s single largest provider of PaaS and IaaS services (which made them a natural go-to). Cloud computing tools had become increasingly normative. The DOD, one of the largest employers in the world, could no longer compete. Thus, significant change was necessary.

Shortly thereafter, in October, Google – who had previously been attached to the bid – saw a upswing of internal protest against the action and swiftly backed out of the arrangement stating that their ‘corporate values’ were in conflict with the DOD deal. This marked the second government contract the company had backed out of; in June, Google had also removed itself from a second bid with the Air Force’s AI initiative, titled ‘Project Maven.’ Again, the Maven-disentanglement was driven by internal protest, with thousands of Google employees reportedly signing a document declaring that, “Google should not be in the business of war.”

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos shared no such apprehensions and went public with AWS’ direction in relation to the deal, emphatically declaring that he absolutely would not be backing out and that America was a great country which needed to be defended. He further went on to speculate that the country would be imperiled if the major tech companies turned their back on national defense.

As Amazon and the DOD continued hammering out the details of the cloud migration plan a intimate survey of 5,400 individuals was conducted by the Washington Post1 via support from the James L. Knight Foundation and the Baker Center For Leadership & Governance, conducted from June through July of 2018 and released in October. Of those polled 3000 were ‘nationally representative’, 800 were ‘african americans’, 800 further were ‘latinx2 americans’ and 800 were ‘asian americans.’ The results were, to many, surprising. Confidence in institutions was cratering amongst the polis and satisfaction with ‘democracy’ (despite the US being a constitutional republic and not a democracy) was also low. Upon being asked how satisfied they were with how democracy was working in the US, only 10% responded ‘very satisfied’, whilst 30% were ‘somewhat satisfied’, 25% were neutral, 21% ‘somewhat dissatisfied’ and 15% ‘very dissatisfied.’ There was very little variation between region and education; however, there was considerable difference of opinion between gender and race and especially, party affiliation. A meager 39% of Independents and 44% of Democrats were very or somewhat satisfied with democracy in the US whereas 76% of Republics were very or somewhat satisfied. Additionally, 35% of democrats polled believed that members of the opposing party were a ‘very serious threat’ to the United States and its people. 32% of republicans polled responded that the opposing party were a ‘very serious threat’ to the US and its people. Perhaps most interestingly, the study found that institutional confidence was highly driven by party affiliation. Google (which recently abandoned operations in Kreuzberg following heated demonstrations from locals), the US Military and Amazon were found to generally inspire high degrees of confidence from those polled whereas governmental institutions (congress, political parties) and Facebook were found to inspire low confidence.

Among republicans, the military inspired more confidence than any other institution (whether governmental or non), with the press inspiring the least. Among democrats Amazon inspired more confidence than any other company or governmental institution, with the executive branch (unsurprisingly) inspiring least confidence.

The results of the study were then predictably swept up by partisans of both parties and bandied as weapons to bludgeon their opposition. One Twitter user responded to the survey by declaring: “Democrats place more trust in a major corporation (Amazon) than in any other institution. Amazing encapsulation of the shift from the party of labor to the party of technocracy.” Another user responded to the findings by stating: “Incredibly sad. The FBI, Amazon, really??? Another reason not to trust the Democrats.” A list of similar comments could go on for some time, those above merely here interjected to illustrate a general public tenor which saw those opposed to the democrats expressing incredulity and outrage over the party’s affinity towards Amazon (and “big tech” more generally) and those opposed to the republicans expressing anger over their continued support for banks and the POTUS. However, what such commentators are missing is the uneven diagrammatic overlap of positive affinities between Republican and Democrat support as both heavily support Amazon. The Democrats support the tech giant directly where as the Republicans support them through their support of the military, of which the DOD is a part, the DOD in turn heavily relies on Amazon and hence, support of, at least the DOD, is itself, at this juncture, implicit support for AWS, which continues to unfurl itself across the world like a gigantic octopus. Whatever change they bring about it is unlikely that all of it will be negative; one thing, however, is clear, that the corporation and the state are becoming increasingly interwoven and as a consequence, increasingly indistinguishable. It is here worthy mentioning that this was largely accidental, Bezos didn’t set out in 1995 to completely restructure the US militaries technological infrastructure, he only got to his position through massive user consumption and promotion of his goods and services. A voluntary shift through the cloud from one sovereignty to another without disturbing the totality. A perforation of American sovereignty through a inability to successfully manage data-flows, the importance of which, can scarcely be overstated given that all states maintain their power, principally, through oversight, through being able to account for every pertinent perturbation (preferably before it occurs) when any other entity is able to better aggregate, manage and utilize dataflows that entity (without severe intercession) will nearly invariably assume a position commensurate or above the state. Displacing its conceptual efficacy without displacing its members or other appendages which will only be spurned on by the erosion of confidence in governmental institutions documented by the WaPo poll and recent Pew Research3 polls4 which are symptomatic of a continuing series of grand-scale narrative shifts and conceptual displacements (the new tale of various globalism running into competition with older narratives of nationhood; the tribal member vs the citizen vs the global citizen vs the ubiquitous non-citizen user).

Sovereign platforms congeal, regardless. Regardless of left or right or their imploding center. A political trichotomy for which there is little hope for extended future survival. Upwing is the future. Whether that will be for good or ill and who for will depend, chiefly, upon the constitution of those platforms which successfully integrate the US government and who, through new forms of sacral inscription (new cultural flows, modulated by multiplication of new data flows and attempts to controls them), garner the vestments of the priest (the ‘game changer’ the ‘tech guru’ the ‘self-made man’ etc) and subsume the contemporary clerisy. Where once the state was a great and self-contained machine, now it is the confluence of outputs of extra-national and intra-national forces. Neither, chiefly, user nor provider, but rather, mediating receptor.

1The Washington Post, just like Amazon, is owned by Jeff Bezos.

2A rebranding of ‘latino.’

3The Pew Research Center is a fact-finding and polling organization which describes itself as a ‘fact tank.’ Pew is led by President Michael Dimcock. They do not take policy positions.

4See: (2017) Political Typology Reveals Deep Fissures On The Left & Right. Pew Research Center.

Spectral Horror & The Insurrectionist Charnel House

Spectral Horror & The Insurrectionist Charnel House

Eyes preoccupied with watching do not see.”  Carlo Michaelstaedter.

In the golden cage of modern society, the very notion of the application of human power and its intensification, carries with it such a stench of mental putrification, that only the most brazen noetic scavengers would dare approach it in a positive and forthright manner, even as everyone does the same (quietly, or as quietly as they can manage), for such a vector of action is perceived to be the intrinsic forerunner to jingoism and ruin; a barbaric backslidding admitting of no positive exceptions; a prospect so terrifying that it appears almost cartoonish and as a consequence, unserious. Rather, the egalitarian model holds that if the powers of Mankind are to be intensified this is only to further passivity and indirectness and thus, weakness; under this regime, paradoxically, one is to accumulate strength1 only to better allow for weakness. Worse, the retrajectorization from man-ascending (as during the Industrial Revolution) to man-balancing (with the world at large in the conception of the envirocrats, or with the whole mass of humanity, in the fever-dream of the utopians) is a phenomenon which has spread all throughout the western world, one which is increasingly standardized at every level of society; it is this reconceptualization, this largely unconscious de-vitalization, that forms the groundwork of the charnel house, the belief that one’s society is a largely unintelligable disaster of increasing magnitude in which one is wholly trapped. Society as a livestock barn aflame. The pathology of this dispensation is summed up under another name by the Italian philosopher Carlo Michelstaedter in his book, Persuasion & Rhetoric, wherein he writes,

[men] let themselves sink into words that feign communication, because none of them can make his world be the world of the others; they feign words containing the absolute world, and with words they nourish their boredom, making for themselves a poultice for the pain; with words they show what they do not know and what they need in order to soothe the pain or make themselves numb to it.”2

Michaelstaedter is here concerned with rhetoric and its perpetual antagonism with persuasion and dream-actualization, a dichotomy which he saw at the heart of all human action. To utilize rhetoric is to attempt to persuade first and foremost one’s self(ves) as opposed to some other(s), for even if one does not previously believe in one’s own rhetoric it were preferable (for the purposes of successful persuasion) to attempt some self-hypnosis, if for only the briefest of moments. To fall so completely into one’s dream that it becomes a extension of all further action and thus becomes of the world itself is the end goal of all rhetoric. The failure of communication, of rhetoric, that is, the inability to make one’s world another’s, forms the backbone of the move towards increasing degrees of relativism and – as we shall later see – sufficiently widespread relativism invariably gives way to the horrorism of the charnel house. Urged on by our spectral present. Historically haunted by the future’s seemingly dim horizon. Psychologically disoriented by the distance of our closeness. Shocked and confused by the ever-increasing intensification of our technological prowess which is a development that flies in the face of the lion’s shares of established neoliberal and progressive orthodoxy (humans are supposed to be equal, not powerful, given that if one affirms the mantra “diversity is our strength” then what one is really affirming is that collective fragmentation is a strength; thus, that weakness is a strength) every bit as much as it defies traditionalist expectation and so-called “natural law” and the dictates of divine providence (for man is not supposed to have so much sway over the “natural world” he is not supposed to be as a providence unto himself, for if he can actualize the power of the gods, what need have we of them?).

Due this existential confusion the denizens of the charnel house are left vulnerable to the fickle disasterism of the day (and I include myself in the critique); a celebrity makes a racial joke concerning some immigrant population: It is clear he wants to kill all minorities! Scientists have uncovered a mild semi-global warming trend: The world is going to burn! It’s Gaia’s Revenge!”3 China’s economy still exists: Its the end of the west and the rise of a totalitarian Eurasian hegemony! GMOs: Murderous eugenics program? Nuclear proliferation: Strontium in every watershed and nuclear winter! Immigration pro and con: You just hate X group of people!

One of the most bizarre manifestations of modern catastrophism comes from a article published in Scientific America, wherein Kate Marvel compared climate change to dragons (the scaly, winged, fire breathing kind). She wrote, “And so it was. The reports were hazy at first- disappearing sheep, scorch marks on the ground, huge lizard footprints in the forest. But soon it became clear. The evidence was incontrovertible. A dragon was loose in the kingdom…”.4 Of course, by “dragon” she means “climate” and by “kingdom” she means “our current civilization.” And what do dragons do? They burn everything in their path. Another example the end-of-the-world churnalism that has grown out of every new IPCC report (a group which has been saying that everyone is going to burn up in a decade for decades). Though the IPCC is widely regarded as the foremost scientific authority on climate change the organization has a long history of not auditing their own data-sets (such as the HadCRUT4, which forms the basis of many IPCC reports), which makes sense of many of their faulty past predictions. Whilst pro-IPCC organizations and individuals, such as Common Dreams, constantly state that the IPCC’s predictions are extremely conservative (meaning the state of climate is far worse than they claim) the group’s previous failed predictions are rarely ever taken into consideration, for instance, in 1989, UNEP5 (which co-created the IPPC) declared the world had witnessed a global warming tipping point which, if not checked and reversed by 2000, would cause massive sea-level rise which would wipe entire nations off the face of the earth. 2000 came and went and this scenario, obviously, did not materialize.

The aforementioned kinds of over-the-top, evidentially unfounded, proclamations instills widespread psychic trauma, desensitizaion and ultimately, despair, upon the inflicted populace who then create feedback loops with the aggregated white noise and the matrices of their promulgation, pushing the message back to the media-government-NGO complex, on all levels, demanding it receive more – not less – play. In this way, the illusion of disaster creates a real and ever-intensifying disaster (because even when the initial doomsaying is found to be unverifiable or outright fraudulent, the next new disaster is the desire for revenge against the fraudsters by the formerly naive public; ie. The proud declaration of anti-journalistic sentiment in the wake of the 2016 US presidential elections has now spiraled into outright class warfare).

Yet to draw back the smoldering shroud of this apparitional charnel house is to reveal a maze filled with a near endless number of increasingly sightless brain-mules who mouth the facile doom-saying of the criminal, the mad-artist and the revolutionary – which are, really, at base, all one and the same, for true revolution in the classical sense is itself criminal and must have some aesthetic potency with which to instantiate itself. “Everyone agrees. It’s about to explode… there is a certain pleasure in calculating the risks,” writes The Invisible Committee in their bleak, paranoically overwrought (if occasionally insightful) manifesto, The Coming Insurrection, thus, declaring that things were terrible but that this was profoundly exciting. Terror as a portal, rather than a wall: a common trope of that doomed creature, the revolutionary. If only their footsteps were followed, the path out of the maze would be hastily actualized, and damned be the consequences, because, following Che, it is, of course, an act of love6. Heart shaped truncheons and smiley-face execution pits.

Advocacy of any ideology (with few exceptions) is, at base, really just the declaration, “On average, people should be more like me. I am better than most, hence, such an eventuality were better.” Public intellectuals, often, are merely second-hand thought dealers, passing on, or playing with, the concepts and words of others, without their own thought there being critically applied – which appears as a sort of mental volleyballism (working similarly to the self-enclosed philosophy of pure textual reading without recourse to external verification) – and when such cognitive mercantilism involves itself in the bloody business of overthrowing society, the already vexed problem becomes profoundly more so and generates all manner of illusory landscapes within the ideologically captive mind; dystopias which must be overcome, lest all be lost, which are transmitted both as sincere beliefs concerning future problems and insincere or half-sincere tools for political control (to keep a population within the charnel house one must first convince them it exists).

Always the revolutionary commonality: remake society by remaking the man. Homo sovieticus. Homo Americanus. Homo texticus. And so on. One can scarcely find a venture with a more spotty track-record. However, the true stuff of man’s composition – his biology – in the schema of the revolutionary, is rarely brought into question (for various reasons that are more theological than evidentuary), they are not evolutionary enough to stage a true revolt, a self-directed morphologically transformative break-with-the-past, which, of necessity, would be required for any long-term, wholesale societal reformation. Ideology is downstream from character, as politics is from culture. All are expressions of biological units interacting within an environment. Here we return to the beginning, for it is the would-be revolutionary who promulgates the aforementioned image of the maze and the haunting and the dim horizon, who lobs innumerable catastrophism upon his readership (whether real or imagined) all the better to foster the crucial moment which never comes when all the petty folk take up arms and surge out upon the streets and fill it up with the carcasses of the class-enemy and the detritus of all their machinery (which is evil, because the revolutionary does not understand how it works). Then there is the mercantile class, who are more interested in stuffing their mattresses and climbing the social ladders of their respective and ostensibly respectable milieus than they are with positive societal change and, as a consequence, repackage and peddle the revolutionary’s story to members of the population who want all the feeling of heroic struggle without any of the unpleasant business of fighting, killing, exercising or studying (charges on which we all might be brought up – we have it easy and wish to keep it so).

The revolution is spectral. The predictions of doom, often spun out of nightmare and desire. The catastrophism, even when based-upon real and present or soon-to-be present problems, is invariably overblown and societally damaging, mentally distabalizing. Things are rarely as terrible or as good as they are believed to be. When the techne of forecasting and the evidence of socioinfrastructural generation or degeneration, is shunted aside (to make way for the righteous revolutionary canon), one has only the vagaries of feelings and superstitions to rely upon, which are wholly insufficient for validly and soundly determining what is, and is not, likely to occur in the future. The question of what will happen as pertains to societal development from the post-modern, neoliberal model, what should happen and, what is happening, should not be confused, as all bear some distinct elaboration; at the very least, such a interrogation gives us a expanded roadmap and, at the most, if we are sufficiently creative, will give us precisely what we (that is the domesticated stock) need to see beyond the veiled horizon, beyond the illusory horror of the charnel house, towards a forthright contestation with all external processes which trend to human dissolution.

Sources

  1. Alex Newman. (2014) Embarrassing Predictions Haunt the Global-Warming Industry.
  2. Anthony Watts. (2018) UN Warns Climate Change Will Destroy Earth By 2005.
  3. Che Guevara. (1965) Socialism And Man In Cuba.
  4. Egil Asprem. (2014) The Problem of Disenchantment: Scientific Naturalism and Esoteric Discourse, 1900–1939.
  5. Francois Laurelle. (2010) Philosophies of Difference: A Critical Introduction to Non-philosophy.
  6. Gordon Clark. (2018) 2100, and the Fundamental Fallacy of Climate Change Predictions
  7. Hartmut Rosa. (2013) Social Acceleration: A New Theory Of Modernity.
  8. Justin Clemens. (2013) Vomit Apocalypse; or, Quentin Meillassoux’s After Finitude.
  9. Kate Marvel. (2018) Slaying The Climate Dragon.
  10. Michael Tennant. Climate Alarmists’ Temperature Data Erroneous and Incomplete, Says Researcher.
  11. Massimiliano Moschetta. (2007) Carlo Michelstaedter: Persuasion and Rhetoric.
  12. Peter J. Spielman. (1989) U.N. Predicts Climate Disaster If Global Warming Not Checked.
  13. Peter Stallinga. IPCC Climate Predictions Continuously Fail.
  14. Thomas J. Harrison. (1991) Carlo Michelstaedter and the Metaphysics of Will.
  15. Tomislav Sunic. (2017) Titans Are In Town: A Novella And Accompanying Essays.
  16. The Invisible Committee. (2009) The Coming Insurrection.
  17. Wouter J. Hanegraaf. (2017) The European New Right Doesn’t Get It Right: The Danger Of Manichean Historiography.
  18. Yuk Hui. (2018) On Cosmotechnics: For a Renewed Relation between Technology and Nature in the Anthropocene

1Strength and weakness are here utilized in a general capacity, encompassing the total human animal, not merely physical acts such as lifting or running.

2Carlo Michaelstaedter, Persuasion & Rhetoric, p. 68-69.

3This is not a overstatement, for in 2006 scientist, James E. Lovelock published a speculative work entitled, The Revenge of Gaia, which popularized the notion of positive feedback loops in earth’s climate system which has since formed the core of contemporary climate disasterism (ie. a run-away hothouse earth). Important to note is the distinctively anthropomorphic quality of Lovelock’s title as the tendency to treat complex non-organic systems as agents (who invariably behave very similarly to humans) is widespread amongst climate activists and ecologists and environmentalists more generally.

4Kate Marvel. (2018) Slaying The Climate Dragon.

5UNEP is the United Nations Environmental Programme.

6Che Guevara. (1965) Socialism And Man In Cuba.

Man Above, Beast Below

Democracy is the majority over Man.

Oligarchy is the minority over Man.

Theocracy is god over Man.

Autocracy is Man over Man.

One variant of Technocracy has been conceived as machine over Man. This, however, is wholly misguided, for machines are possessed of no agency. To assert the contrary is to flee all that is known into a neo-platonic world of pure forms. Such an arrangement would – at base – merely be another iteration of autocracy or oligarchy, whereby power over a populace was maintained via the efficient instantiation and maintenance of technological apparatus(es), as opposed to some military body or deference to deity, etc.

We posit it were preferable to develop a anthrotechnocracy which drives towards Man’s overcoming of the tendency towards ruling his fellows by first and foremost, ruling himself, not through mere habitual culmination, but rather, through radical self-directed morphological transformation – not because they do not need to be led but because this cannot be optimally accomplished without extreme self-transformation. Willing alone is sufficient but only if that willing changes the very substratum which allows that will to exert itself. Will comes, of necessity, before dialogue and dialogue before debate. Debate, whether rational or emotional, is wholly insufficient devoid of a intensification of empathetic union between the various factions of man, for without a desire or a will-towards-understanding, the impeccability of a logical formula is rendered irrelevant. It does not matter how crystalline and perfect one’s equation, the math will never be done nor known if all other parties save the creator thereof refuse to observe it. Yet it is the will-towards-understanding of The Self(ves) first, then The Other(s) second, which grant Man the ability to organize in so efficient a way as to seize dominion over every region of the planet to which our species lays claim. Thus, those attributes must be cultivated, but here the quandary: they cannot be cultivated by introspection alone, whether or one or millions. Through the extant will, a new and protean will must be forged for Man is not a beast to the extent he cultivates those attributes which set himself apart therefrom, hence we ask:

Who is better equipped to lead men then he who is more than?

The answer to this question is of paramount importance given that the validity of most contemporary and popular ideologies hinge upon the static nature of man (even if, in a given philosophy, that nature itself is considered non-existent, such a view still hinges upon the stasis of said nonexistence). The Christian believes Man to be inherently sinful, he is irrevocably “fallen.” The Progressive believes Man has not fallen out of some celestial favor, but rather, has instantiated a system of hideous, ethereal oppression which wholly hinges upon those of the present being culpable for some collection of past crimes (slavery, colonization, etc) which carries down the line, from past to present. The green ecologist – the envirocrat – believes that Man is an outgrowth of nature that is yet separate from Nature and thus, antithetical to it; a monster, a hideous polluter-parasite. And so on and so on.

The through-line common to all of these philosophies (and many more) is selecting some past action or set of actions which have had a (perceived) monumental impact upon the peoples of the world such that history has shifted in some fashion so terrible that its lay-lines trammel up to the present and – as a consequence – all attributions that lead up to this supposedly vile, history-changing action, must be expunged from the human mind, whether through prayer or political programs or some other vector, but never through willfully directed morphological change, for that is always considered part and parcel of that dark seed which is believed to have razed the world, whether that is believed to be religious myths of separation/disobedience from some deity or another, separation from “nature,” the industrial revolution, creation of rationalism, colonialism, greed and so on and so on. All of them find their roots in a disdain towards material desire, which is to say, in a unworkable negation of life itself (which is why hypocrisy is so rampant amongst the ranks of the aforementioned philosophies), for even the desire for transcendence of the material plane is itself a material desire and thus, like naive nihilism and totalitarian relativism, material-negation is wholly self-refuting. In addition to being self-rebuffing, such philosophies are also largely (though not wholly) negatory, concerned more with scrapping things away, with pruning down, than with constructing alternative vectors of being (this is still a problem even if that which is being scrapped away is principally damaging or that which should otherwise be removed).

Hence, in contradistinction to the meta-philosophy of material negation and historical-burden theology, we adopt a different vector, a vector of being which is evolutionary, not revolutionary, which is innervationist, not conservationist, which is Protean and unyielding and consciously self-directed (as opposed to the inevitablism of dystopian/utopian eschatology), which is technocratic but anti-bureaucratic, which places man above and beast below and that which next we facilitate even higher still.

‘Defamation Factory’ Now Available

Defamation Factory: The Sordid History of the ADL by Kaiter Enless (preface by Tomislav Sunic) from Reconquista Press is now available on Amazon. It is the only book which documents the colorful history of the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith, from its founding in 1913 amidst the furor surrounding the trial of Leo Frank, all the way up to their present campaigns of internet censorship, in detailed chronological order. The book is presently available in paperback format.

Defamation Factory Full Cover
Full jacket cover for Defamation Factory.

Pick up a copy from Amazon or Book Depository.