Posts Tagged ‘Media’

How it Ends

You thought Slate had a lock on Cathedralist direct current? Then you probably haven’t been keeping up with The Atlantic.

I’m old enough to remember when The Atlantic Monthly was a serious magazine. That was before James Fallows took it over, and drove it into a ditch. It has since progressed to Atlantic Trench depths of comprehensive intellectual ruin. Some gratitude is in order for the clarity with which it exposes our destination, guided by the supreme Leftist Law: Any cultural institution that is not dominated by the oppressed talking about their oppression is oppressive.

As Professor Zaius explains in the comment section of the vibrant debate article:

… the judges, while they are experienced debaters and coaches themselves, don’t by and large subscribe to the notion that the “best argument” in conventional terms should win. Many, if not most, see debate as a means for advancing social justice and dismantling oppressive hierarchies of whiteness and patriarchy. Inasmuch as “logic” upholds these hierarchies and personal experiences from POC and non-linear storytelling and music fight them, then “logic” should lose.

We’re so screwed.

ADDED: “… while one has some sympathy for Hardy and the other traditional debate do-gooders, they seem to be pining for a format, and a world, that has already passed. Have a look at Twitter. Or MSNBC. Or the New York Times. Or Attorney General Eric Holder. Or any of the rest of the grievance-mongering chattering class for whom the unbeatable trump card these days is discerning ‘racism’ in their opponents. Debate isn’t what it used to be. The college kids might as well learn this brute fact sooner rather than later.”

April 18, 2014admin 19 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Discriminations , Media
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Instant Publishing

Composition and publication are two different processes, but the distance between them is collapsing. Of the many ways new media trends might be defined, doing so in terms of such time compression, and process amalgamation, is far from the least accurate and predictive. The Internet accelerates writing in this specific way (perhaps among many others) — so that it approaches a near-instantaneous communicative realization, comparable to that of speech.

This can be elaborated variously. For instance, it might be re-articulated as an incremental suppression of privacy. The author of a book lives with his words in solitude, perhaps for years. An essayist, awaiting publication in a periodical, might wait for weeks, or even months. A blogger is consumed by self-hatred if his words remain private by the time he retires for the night, or early morning. A twitter-addict sustains a particle of semiotic privacy for mere seconds. (Speckle comes next.)

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April 11, 2014admin 11 Comments »

Future Mutation

Our first Time Spiral Press product is up on Amazon. (Yet to update the TSP site in recognition, though — Dunhuang and all.)

We put it up in a Jing’an District bar, over a few cocktails, which somehow rubbed-in the revolutionary aspect. It was hard not to imagine Rimbaud and his Absinthe-sozzled crew producing some delirious poetry and sticking it up on Kindle before the end of the evening. Amazon is going to disintermediate publishing so hard. In my experience, this fate never befalls an industry before it has abused its position to such an incredible extent that its calamity is necessarily a matter of near-universal celebration. Broadcast media, publishers, academia — into the vortex of cyber-hell they go …


April 10, 2014admin 4 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Commerce , Philosophy


It’s time for another (quick) Umlaut rave. There’s no getting around it after reading this, then following the back-link to this, and being reminded somehow that this comparatively obscure online magazine has somehow rounded up two of the half-dozen or less people in the world who really get what Bitcoin is going to do to this planet. (I’d say “two-and-a-half” — but with no disrespect to Adam Gurri, his soul just isn’t in it, which is to say: terminally distributed.)

After reading this stuff, it’s easy to think that the only meaningful role for anything else on the right is to run interference while ‘Bitcoin’ (i.e. a-centric digital crypto-commerce) consummates the destiny of capitalism. The intelligence gulf between the emerging Bitcoin machinery and legacy political controversy now yawns so abysmally that inherited conceptions of ‘activism’ have become low comedy. Poke at Bitcoin with a political stick and it slithers sideways while turning more feral — the ‘instinct’ for that is already locked in. The confused idiots who are trying to manage human societies today will almost certainly make it into a monster. Since I don’t like them very much, it doesn’t upset me to see it stealthing into the shadows, with venomous claws emerging. It will be darkly amusing to see it coming at them out of Hell.

April 8, 2014admin 46 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Commerce , Technology

Suey Park Unplugged

Some instant-classic comedy at Salon.

(via @CineRobert)

April 4, 2014admin 15 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Discriminations , Pass the popcorn
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Democracy is Doomed

Even UK Cathedral mouthpiece The Economist seems to be getting the message that democracy is cooked. While careful to code the most sensitive perceptions, it givers every indication of recognizing that democracy can’t be transplanted beyond a dying ethnic core, that it relentlessly collapses time-horizons, and that it systematically selects for demagogic leaders (among numerous other problems). The Chinese model, despite its manifold imperfections, works far better.

No worries though — The Economist has some solutions. All democracies have to do is practice government self-restraint, reverse the growth of the state, and suppress majoritarianism, and everything will turn around for them. In other words, if democracy could just stop being democracy, it would have a future. (It can’t, and it doesn’t.)

When democratic societies were far less deeply degenerate, they degenerated. Now they’ve become social wastelands of super-entitled dependency, led by professional pop-star liars, the idea that they have the cultural resources to reverse their morbid course is pure comedy.

It’s all going down. (Learn Mandarin.)

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February 28, 2014admin 16 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Democracy


It’s probably less true with each passing week that Neoreaction can be accurately described as a small, dispersed population of libertarians mugged by reality. Nevertheless, it is part of NRx heritage that such a characterization made considerable sense in the past. There should be no surprise that between libertarianism and NRx a significant zone of complex friction and interchange can be found. Right now, Umlaut is the media motor of such contact.

This is more than a little strange. Partly, it is odd because Umlaut‘s CATO institute parent is the principle representative of respectable libertarianism, feeding ideas into the political process (where they are of course completely ignored), while stressing a non-threatening strain of Statist harm reduction, rather than the rougher anti-state antagonism of the Mises Institute, or even the dope-head dissidence of Reason. Secondly, it seems an unlikely follow up to this.

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February 17, 2014admin 20 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Media , Neoreaction

Undiscovered Countries

After (re)reading Adam Gurri’s critical analysis of the core problem of Neoreaction (a tragedy of the political commons), read the surgical response by Handle. The calm intelligence on display from both sides is almost enough to drive you insane. This can’t be happening, right? “In a way, it’s a bit sad, because I can guess that Gurri’s article will be the zenith and high-water mark of coverage of neoreaction which means it will only get worse from here on in.” Enjoy the insight while it lasts.

My own response to Gurri is still embryonic, but I already suspect that it diverges from Handle’s to some degree. Rather than defending the ‘technocratic’ element in the Moldbug Patchwork-Neocameral model, I agree with Gurri that this is a real problem, although (of course) I am far more sympathetic to the underlying intellectual project. Unlike Gurri — who in this crucial respect represents a classical liberal position at its most thoughtful — Moldbug does not conceive democracy as a discovery process, illuminated by analogy to market dynamics and organic social evolution. On the contrary, it is a ratchet mechanism that successively distances the political realm from feedback sensitivity, due to its character as a closed loop (or state church) sensitive only to a public opinion it has itself manufactured. As the Cathedral expands, its adaptation to reality progressively attenuates. The result is that every effective discovery process — whether economic, scientific, or of any other kind — is subjected to ever-more radical subversion by political influences whose only ‘reality principle’ is internal: based on closed-circuit social manipulation.

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February 14, 2014admin 15 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Neoreaction

Lord of the Trolls

Mark Shea might not quite be the most ludicrous idiot alive (judge for yourself), but he earnestly shares the following warning — received from one of his readers. I’m putting the whole story here, because Shea’s credulity about it is so radically humiliating I can only assume he’ll want to take it down.

The Dark Enlightenment Exposed

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February 13, 2014admin 83 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Humor , Pass the popcorn
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Macromedia (too)

Perhaps even more than print, the movie industry has epitomized the macromedia (few-to-many, or broadcast) model of cultural distribution. In two penetrating articles, Hugh Hancock examines the impact of electronic games software and impending virtual reality technology on film production. Extreme change seems inevitable.

As with any social process touched by computers, the basic tendency is to decentralization. By down-streaming productive potential into ever-cheaper digital systems, the ability to execute complex media projects is spread beyond established institutions, encouraging the emergence of new agents (who in turn stimulate — and thus accelerate — the supportive techno-economic trends). Since the Cathedral is primarily a political-media apparatus, which is to say a post-theistic state church reproduced through the effective delivery of a message, these developments are of critical importance to its functional stability. It seems the unfolding crisis is destined to be entertaining.

February 12, 2014admin 8 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Technology