the difference between politeness and tact: ‘Imagine you inadvertently enter a bathroom where a woman is standing naked under the shower. Politeness requires that you quickly close the door and say, “Pardon, Madame!”, whereas tact would be to quickly close the door and say: “Pardon, Monsieur!”
. . .[the] regime "only imagines that it believes in itself and demands that the world imagine the same thing. If it believed in its own essence, would it. . . seek refuge in hypocrisy and sophism? The modern ancien regime is rather only the comedian of a world order whose true heroes are dead."
The film’s take-home message is that lying is necessary to sustain public morale: only a lie can redeem us. No wonder the only figure of truth in the film is the Joker, its supreme villain. He makes it clear that his attacks on Gotham City will stop when Batman takes off his mask and reveals his true identity; to prevent this disclosure and protect Batman, Dent tells the press that he is Batman – another lie. In order to entrap the Joker, Gordon fakes his own death – yet another lie.
This is precisely our situation today: we face the shameless cynicism of a global order whose agents only imagine that they believe in their ideas of democracy, human rights and so on. Through actions like the WikiLeaks disclosures, the shame – our shame for tolerating such power over us – is made more shameful by being publicised.
What WikiLeaks threatens is the formal functioning of power. The true targets here weren’t the dirty details and the individuals responsible for them; not those in power, in other words, so much as power itself, its structure. We shouldn’t forget that power comprises not only institutions and their rules, but also legitimate (‘normal’) ways of challenging it (an independent press, NGOs etc) – as the Indian academic Saroj Giri put it, WikiLeaks ‘challenged power by challenging the normal channels of challenging power and revealing the truth’.[*] The aim of the WikiLeaks revelations was not just to embarrass those in power but to lead us to mobilise ourselves to bring about a different functioning of power that might reach beyond the limits of representative democracy.
The other point is, the jealousy which Congress unhappily entertain of the Army, and which, if reports are right, some Members labour to establish. You may be assured, there is nothing more injurious—or more unjustly founded. This jealousy stands upon the common, received opinion, which under proper limitations is certainly true, that Standing Armies are dangerous to a state—and from forming the same conclusion of the components parts of all, tho they are totally dissimilar in their nature. The prejudice in Other Countries has only gone to 'em in time of peace—and then from their not having in general cases, any of the ties—the concerns or interests of Citizens or any other dependence, than what flowed from their military employ—in short from their being mercenaries—hirelings. It is our policy to be prejudiced against them in time of War—and tho they are Citizens, having all the ties—& interests of Citizens, and in most cases property totally unconnected with the military line. If we would pursue a right system of policy, in my opinion, there should be none of these distinctions—we should all be considered, Congress—Army &c., as one people, embarked in one cause—in one interest; acting on the same principle, and to the same end.
From: Power-Elite-L <>
Subject: RE: WL anonymous protests agitprop or ignore?
>>Hey let's put a old police vehicle on the street as send some agitprop guys to smash it.
>>Great TV AmIRight. -Name redacted
>Redacted 2 wrote;
>Dude it's the NFL playoffs, I don't want some breaking news bulletin delaying the game.
Oh right Baltimore Pittsburg I totally forgot. Maybe Assange and Roethlisberger can share dating tips.
n unnamed Australian MP articulated this position much more honestly & succinctly than Žižek, or the various mefis I've seen oppose wikileaks, when he said "The Catholic Church shut down Galileo for a hundred years. I think we can shut down Julian Assange."
The Joker doesn't want truth, he wants chaos. [...] The Joker is an anarchist.
He opens a copy of Living in the End Times, and finds the contents page. "I will tell you the truth now," he says, pointing to the first chapter, then the second. "Bullshit. Some more bullshit. Blah, blah, blah." He flicks furiously through the pages. "Chapter 3, where I try to read Marx anew, is maybe OK. I like this part where I analyse Kafka's last story and here where I use the community of outcasts in the TV series Heroes as a model for the communist collective. But, this section, the Architectural Parallax, this is pure bluff. Also the part where I analyse Avatar, the movie, that is also pure bluff. When I wrote it, I had not even seen the film, but I am a good Hegelian. If you have a good theory, forget about the reality."
« Older Clang Jingle Clang | Pride and smokeless fire Newer »
This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments