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Re: <nettime> dark days
Felix Stalder on Fri, 14 Jun 2013 10:50:10 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> dark days

On 06/13/2013 06:15 AM, Brian Holmes wrote:
I prefer to find this recent news a light in dark times.

At the moment, i think in the West (core and periphery) we can
distinguish between three struggles in advanced stages.

One is against authoritarian regimes that force a closed set of values
on an increasingly diverse societies. Within these societies, a new
mind set is emerging that values, understands and can deal with this

Another one is against the subversion of the democratic processes
through the capture of the traditional institutions of liberal
democracy by financial markets, which includes the fight against
austerity policies and the invention of new democratic institutions
redrawing the balance between participation and representation.

And, one is against the increasing subversion of civil liberties
through the militarization of the state. This process is certainly
the most advanced in the US, and so is the resistance against it is
also mainly coming from the US. However, not from organized interests,
but from brave individuals who cannot tolerate the contradiction
between what they are supposed to do (defend liberty) and what they
are actually doing (destroy liberty).

Of these three, I think the first one we can win and many many people
in networks like this and places too numerous to count are working
on this. This is what the Internet was made for, particularly those
layers that we all can access (aka the "front end of the internet")

The second one is really hard, but also manageable. Perhaps not
winning, but it can redraw the balance of forces. The contradictions
evident in society can mobilized by us. A lot of people are working
on this too, and there is an increasing mood, from what I understand,
that the next step is about creating can realize the promises we all

The third one is extremely difficult. Because it works on layers
that are largely removed from access by any form of democratic
process and this, too, is what the Internet was made for. It's
about engineering the layers of the Internet that only few very
well-financed and well-organized interests have access to (aka the
"back-end of the Internet"). It's not just this is taking place as an
expression of the contemporary "techno-political paradigm" (as Brian
and Armin call it) but that there are very few social contradictions
(except for the hacker ethic of some of the people working in the
machine rooms) that we can mobilize in our favor.

It is also because of the structure of the third conflict, that the
potential of actually winning the second conflict is sharply limited.
But, of course, anything can change, and it's possible not the let
the financial and security interest re-engineer our communication
infrastructure. But it's really hard, because what is happening
largely invisible and there with few actors to mobilize for it.



-|- http://felix.openflows.com ------------------------ books out now:
*|Cultures & Ethics of Sharing/Kulturen & Ethiken des Teilens UIP 2012
*|Vergessene Zukunft. Radikale Netzkulturen in Europa. transcript 2012
*|Deep Search. The Politics of Searching Beyond Google. Studienv. 2009
*|Mediale Kunst/Media Arts Zurich.13 Positions. Scheidegger&Spiess2008
*|Manuel Castells and the Theory of the Network Society.Polity P. 2006
*|Open Cultures and the Nature of Networks. Ed Futura / Revolver, 2005

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