Police make things visible. They enhance situations, but no one mistakes them for the main show.
Ultimately, the antipolitics of fear would deprive the person of his status as a political, even a social being.
September 27, 2011
It was kind of nice to be at a protest and, instead of marching and shouting, to be talking about ideas. It felt like the script had changed, and that was a revelation.
It was kind of nice to be at a protest and, instead of marching and shouting, to be talking about ideas. It felt like the script had changed, and that was a revelation. As 7 PM approached, my friends and I left thinking the cops would clear everyone out in no time. When they made it through the night I began to give them more credit, so I dropped off a bunch of blankets and provisions later that evening.
July 5, 2011
Nearly every great philosopher in the era of the university has said somewhere that there is no such thing as education in schools. Nearly every one of these, too, taught or lectured (Nietzsche, Heidegger, Wittgenstein, James, Arendt), or was entangled as far as to have learned from a university, in its lecture halls and library, what philosophy would be.
July 7, 2011
Cafe. See Coffee Capital, 150–151, 161, 166. See also Cultural capital; Income Capitalism, 40, 47–48, 62, 79, 81, 166
Jonathan Franzen’s novel is a feeling-machine.
The octuplets were supposed to be a distraction: an oasis in the midst of the day’s gloomy news of AIG perfidy, mortgage defaults, bank closures, toxic assets, and spiking unemployment. Instead, the camera teams that camped on the lawn of the nice one-story house in Whittier, California, in the glitter of LA winter, got a living metaphor for the crisis.
If the household organization could be altered simply in the interest of desire, then anything could be changed.
June 22, 2009
Punk promised physical violence, a buzzing charge, like the wish that someone would hit you in the face.
One of the main features of our moment in history, in anything that affects the state of the body (though, importantly, not the life of the mind), is that we prefer optimization to simplicity. We are afraid of dying, and reluctant to miss any physical improvement. I don’t want to die. But I am caught between that negative desire and the wish for freedom from control. I think we barely notice how much these tricks of care take up of our thinking, and what domination they exert.
September 8, 2008
I have often asked myself whether eight years of George W. Bush has been God’s judgment on America for our sins.
You reach points in life at which you can no longer live like other people, though you don’t want to die.
The lure of a permanent childhood in America partly comes from the overwhelming feeling that one hasn’t yet achieved one’s true youth, because true youth would be defined by freedom so total that no one can attain it. Presumably even the spring-break kids, rutting, tanning, boozing with abandon, know there is a more perfect spring break beyond the horizon. Without a powerful aspiration to become adult, without some separate value that downplays childhood for sharper freedoms in age and maturity, the feeling of dissatisfaction can proceed indefinitely, in the midst of marriage, child rearing, retirement, unto death.
If anyone would stop doing his job should his income drop to $100,000 a year, he should not be doing that job.
The point of these shows was not just how people would be altered, but that they could be altered.
And all of us lovers of music, with ears tuned precisely to a certain kind of sublimity in pop, are quick to detect pretension, overstatement, and cant about pop—in any attempt at a wider criticism—precisely because we feel the gap between the effectiveness of the music and the impotence and superfluity of analysis. This means we don’t know about our major art form what we ought to know.
The Meaning of Life I
You could also easily say, how pointless — how uncomfortable I was, how much I disliked that person, how rotten I felt. somehow the experience seems definitive, for better and for worse. What was learned is not unlearned.
The growing influence of the Italian philosopher’s work seems in many respects to depend on his remarkable sense of taste.
September 20, 2004
Fashion is a dark forest of half-starved wolves, tarted up with stiff collars and eye-tints, mangy fur and sultry looks.
September 20, 2004
The tattoo does nice work, because it promises wildness without having to resort to those slippery items, words.
September 20, 2004
In between the naïve freak (the man who only wears purple, the man buying lumber in women’s clothing) and the sophisticated street success sits the childhood prototype of all great fashion: the girl who dares to come to school bizarre, wearing yellow plaid and leather and braids, eyes made up darker than an Ancient Egyptian’s, and a cut-and-resewn home modified t-shirt.
Were “In the Penal Colony” to be written today, Kafka could only be speaking of an exercise machine. Instead of the sentence to be tattooed on its victims, the machine would inscribe lines of numbers. So many calories, so many miles, so many watts, so many laps.
Right now we plant democracy like an orchid and depart—leaving behind oilmen to drain nutrients out of the soil.
The naked protests, which spread across the globe, were a reminder of what went unsaid.
In George W. Bush, we have a president for whom reading a teleprompter seems to be a physical exertion.