Nov 12, 2014

Million Masks March 2014: Thousands gather for anti-capitalist protest in London,
Kashmira Gander, The Independent, Nov 5, 2014.

Thousands of protesters hit London for Million Mask March
, Zing Tsjeng, Dazed, Nov 6, 2014.

The ongoing story of the global movement Anonymous with its association with the movie V for Vendetta, that includes the perfect speech to us citizens, is only disregarded by the political élite. And this is our situation in a nutshell. There are a lot of movements that are not a part of the established political system. The projects, issues and concerns that we have are not considered to be real politics.

Consequently there are two sides; a political class that protects the established and static traditions of the state and on the other are we who are interested in improvements. And in between the two sides there is only silence. And as Simon & Garfunkel sings: no one dared disturb the Sound of Silence. In other words, the problem is that there is a tradition to eliminate the possibilities of change and instead support and protect what already exists. And there are many examples that make it easy to observe this anti dynamic tradition and the impregnable Wall that destroys any alternative to what already exists.

In this context of two opposing sides there is a third way, if you skip what they train you to deny: the beginning of new ideas. Courageous bastards begin to explore new perspectives. The opening video in this post is a good example of this curiosity. You might not understand it at first, but if you look at the other stuff by the same producers, FifthWallTv, you will find that they are genuinely interested in for example art in a context. They say on their YouTube channel: "Fifth Wall create and enhance projects based around art, culture and social movements." That statement is revolutionary in itself since the élite of the state demand you to say that art can only be what they call experiences, which results in that art can never have anything to do with thinking to reach understanding.

Another example of the new, that cannot exist according to the established ideas or values of what is real, is the message of Russell Brand, Wikipedia / Site / @Rustyrockets on Twitter / YouTube channel.

Brand’s book Revolution (2014) have had harsh reviews from the establishment. They complain that he does not deliver the total fix for the stinking mess of suffering, death and destruction they have made. One example of this is David Runciman’s review in The Guardian, October 17, 2014, with the headline Revolution by Russell Brand – soft-soap therapy when we need a harder edge.

Finally, here is someone using their top position in the hierarchy to say something. If you, someone in the bottom or outside of the cozy pyramid, try to say anything at all the élite will guarantee that you end up without an audience. Because whatever you say will not be considered to be of any value. And if you try anyway, they will stop you with their standard procedure that kills everything: you must not disturb our perfect democracy with your perspective.

Nevertheless, Brand is addictive. Brand’s excess of somewhat brutal British flair annihilates traditional arguments, or at least makes these questions seem redundant. Whatever the method, the vital point now is to dissolve the conform static stupidity that the élite have trained everyone – YOU – and themselves to believe is the same as democracy, security and the only possible perspective.

Brand does not necessarily talk about what is possible. But, he pinpoints the border, the wall, that separates us from our possibilities. Brand exposes the wall of static power that the élite of the state defends, to force people to be commanded like simple machines. The firebrand melts the ice. What Brand talks openly about makes him a whistleblower with the same message that Morpheus gave in the movie The Matrix or that was given in the speech in the movie V for Vendetta.

What is going on in front of our eyes in the world right now are visions that earlier were only possible to show in objects of art. What earlier was done in movies is now transformed to the real world. And that is exactly what the established western tradition of art denies: the potentiality to transform. And observe that this ongoing transformation is so far made without violence, which is the usual ingredient in movies made for the consumers.

To realize what is wrong must be a first and necessary step before we, as a culture, will be able to discuss the actual possibilities and find the tools to create a life and a world. So, get yourself an over-dose of Brand immediately (after you have read our post to the end to get the full effect).

"We got a graph – everything is tidy!" Russell Brand on BBC Newsnight, Oct 23, 2014.

Mentioned in the interview:
Thomas Piketty and his book Capital in the Twenty-First Century (in English 2014)
Housing crisis & Richard Benyon
- Good overview: Britain is suffering from a housing crisis - who is to blame and
how can we fix it?
, Ben Chu, The Independent, Feb 9, 2014
- Richard Benyon MP and London's Housing Crisis, Diane Abbott MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington, The Huffington Post, July 5, 2014
- New Era Estate families face rent hikes as Benyon landlord takes over, Ella Jessel, Hackney Citizen, July 1, 2014
John Lewis is a chain of department stores
Built-in obsolescence: The Light Bulb Conspiracy (2010)
Che Guevara

Russell Brand is a part of an ongoing motion where the participants are trying to break away from the static ideals that have led to the current economic and humanitarian disaster. Other significant examples are the leader of the Italian Five Star Movement Beppe Grillo, that like Brand has a career in comedy (Grillo's English blog), and Spanish Pablo Iglesias of Podemos, with its roots in the Indignados movement (the outraged). See for example Spain's Indignados protest here to stay, BBC, May 15, 2012. The article A crisis of trust - and the rise of new political parties by Alberto Nardelli, The Guardian, Nov 6, 2014, specifies the situation in numbers.

An interesting detail is that Iglesias got his doctorate with a thesis about postnational collective action (pdf in Spanish). Other examples of this motion to try to come out of the static traditions are the Scottish independence referendum (2014) and the Catalan self-determination referendum (2014) in Spain.

It is worth to remember that the same struggle also has reignited a distinctly reversed movement founded on that the only possible cure to the hopelessness must be to get even more static. These movements want to go back to a society built on clear-cut hierarchical obedience, a society built on structures we know well. And that is exactly what the established political élite with their mass media, their schools and their universities train the people to believe is the same as reason. The result is citizens who don't know how to create a next step, anything that is not preconceived, and they are therefore scared of a society that is not built on commands.

Many of us who want to dissolve static ideals are currently in an angry protest mode and are therefore not yet able to comprehend the big picture and the possibilities. This pathetic situation, to not be able to have a concrete vision of the next step, is just a result of the denial of art, or the denial of everything else than total obedience in combination with the command: do not bother. Because art is actually about what we are able to do. See our post The Guardian Launch a Neo-Stalinist Art Theory and the video from 1968 in which Marcel Duchamp (1887–1968) says:

The word art etymologically means to do, not even to make but to do, you see. The moment you do something you are an artist. … the word art means action, activity, of any kind … for everyone. But, we in our society have decided to make a group that is called artist … which is purely artificial.

Have a look at the magazine Arc. They have realized the gap between our real possibilities and the static illusion that the élite of the state protects. The Independent published an interesting article when Arc began its life: New Scientist's new digital magazine combines science-fiction and futurology, Enjoli Liston, The Independent, March 22, 2012. Arc is not published online for free, but they have a great blog called Arcfinity and interesting tweets.

Regarding art, in the form of literature, to change the real world, see also:
Project Hieroglyph: Fighting society's dystopian future, "Pop culture has painted a darkly dystopian vision of the future. But a new book hopes to harness the power of science fiction to plot out a more optimistic path for the real world." Debbie Siegelbaum, BBC, Sept 3, 2014
Project Hieroglyph
The Uncanny Power of Weird Fiction, From Leonora Carrington to Haruki Murakami, disparate writers tap into something universal when they channel the bizarre, Jeff VanderMeer, The Atlantic, Oct 30, 2014

At this time of year we are reminded of the fall of the Berlin Wall, like for example the article The fall of the Berlin Wall: what it meant to be there, “Twenty-five years on, Timothy Garton Ash asks what hindsight can’t reveal – and wonders where the 1989 generation might lead us”, The Guardian, Nov 6, 2014.

Yet many have to realize that the Berlin Wall was a result of a particular worldview where physical walls make perfect sense to preserve a static perspective of life. The Berlin Wall is gone but THE WALL that made the Berlin Wall is still here to kill your potentials.

Dirk Kurbjuweit writes about The Merkel Effect: What Today's Germany Owes to Its Once-Communist East, Der Spiegel, Oct 02, 2014. The intro is "East Germany ceased to exist following the 1989 revolution and the fall of the Berlin Wall. But did the former communist country help shape today's Germany? The answer is yes, and Chancellor Merkel is a big reason why". Kurbjuweit says:

 A dictatorship fears open discourse and conflict, and it thrives on the fiction of unity. The ruler or the ruling party claims that it is executing the will of the people, and because that will is supposed to be uniform, everyone is under forced consensus. Silence in the country is treated as approval. Merkel grew up in this system.

Elements of it are reflected in her political style. She despises open dispute, she does not initiate discourse and she feels comfortable when silence prevails. She prefers to govern within a grand coalition, because it enables her to create broad consensus within small groups. Things have become quieter in Germany.

Kurbjuweit’s words are not alone. In the article West Berlin recalls 'island' of freedom that vanished with Wall, Reuters, Nov 7, 2014, Stephen Braun quotes:

"There was incredible investment in education and culture ... There was a feeling of liberty. Anything was possible." "West Berlin's musical scene of the 1970s and '80s lured the likes of David Bowie." "The Berlin of the '80s was a pool of crazy, creative and inspiring people. After the Wall fell, the city changed." and "It's a shame to lose this part of West Berlin's identity".

Regarding David Bowie: His song Where are we now? (2013) is most probably about both the lost Berlin and the forgotten hopes of the West in general.

If you want another injection of Russell Brand we recommend:

Russell Brand interview with Mehdi Hasan, The Huffington Post UK, Nov 7, 2013.

Russell Brand on revolution: "We no longer have the luxury of tradition"– But before we change the world, we need to change the way we think, Russel Brand, New Statesman, Oct 24, 2013. Brand writes:

We British seem to be a bit embarrassed about revolution, like the passion is uncouth or that some tea might get spilled on our cuffs in the uprising. That revolution is a bit French or worse still American. Well, the alternative is extinction so now might be a good time to re-evaluate. The apathy is in fact a transmission problem, when we are given the correct information in an engaging fashion, we will stir.

So, once more we refer to The Matrix and say:
“Buckle your seatbelt Dorothy, 'cause Kansas is going bye-bye!"


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