Jesus Christ.What have we done?What have I done?I put on Pat Metheny’s Song X, with Ornette and all, first thing in the morning.Is it a sort of mirror image to The Rite? It sure matches my mood - enraged . . . is that a mood? Whatever, it’s September.
I’ve been trying to write a post for days, yesterday I did a long rant about a couple books I’m reading, but it went kind of negative. I guess I just got up to change the record then forgot about it. Oh yea, it has kind of an abrupt ending. Do you want to read it? The adventurous can continue (attached) - I’d definitely be interested in your thoughts on the books if you’ve read them.
Anyhow it’s cool man, I put on Bright Sized Life, calming it down a little. Psyched to do a few Special Sauce shows next week - Grand Forks North Dakota here I come! Then the Beachlife festival in LA. Right on, hope y’all are vaxed!
Portland OR, Sunny, cool.
For Blog Post: Whew, Checking In
Yo! How’s your end-times going? How’s the global pandemic/fall of empire/failure of capitalism/end of mankind going for you?
I’m fine, whatever. Super bummed at the Aristocracy and the Hoi polloi.
My friend recommended a couple of books to me, probably as I was blathering on about David Graeber (I see feudalism everywhere.) Anyway, both were right on point.
Weapons of Math Destruction by Cathy O’Neil is a great one that explains how the robots - at least the algorithms that will run the Terminators/RoboCops of our future- have already taken over and have already exacted a terrible price on all of us. Like all science gone awry, it’s the hubris and bias of its implementation that gets us. Economies of abuse abound and are enabled and exacerbated by machine algorithms. It totally relates to Graeber by-the-way as the feudalism gets coded into the robots. There is a bit of hope, that we can create better and more equitable algorithms - the fundamental ideas are not implicitly evil, it’s just a matter of design.
The same cannot be said for the more destructive hell-scape described by Shoshana Zuboff’s The Age of Surveillance Capitalism. I’m only about 1/3 of the way through it and . . . I don’t know if I will be able to finish it. It’s just freaking me out. It’s like the nuclear version O’Neil’s Math Weapons. Controlled by the devil. The thing is that - since 2004, there’s been a wholesale market in surveillance - and yea, that’s Google. They created this creepy invasive 'advertising' market and now it dominates everything.
It’s the Neoliberal, winner-take-all, just, fiscally evil economics of extraction. Extracting your behaviors for short term gain, with no regard for law or morality or anything but profit. They are watching you, and you can’t avoid it unless you remove yourself from society. The miracle of the Internet has been turned against us. From its very altruistic and progressive roots it has been coopted by the very capital that it was disrupting. Remember the Dotcom bust? The 'recovery' from that was the sellout of a grand experiment in collective intelligence. They ruined it with greed and extraction.
They ruin everything. I just got my shit together to do a series in Instagram and they changed the damn aspect ratio! I was just gonna commit to their square thing - with a program that was like designed for it, and now the IGTV isn’t square. Why? They’re trying to make me buy more shit, or they just change it based on what TikTok is doing?
I’m livid. It’s a constant low level abuse we’re all suffering from this system - let’f face it - capitalism. There’s no one person abusing us - it the structure of the system, a hysteresis we create where below a certain financially defined class, you’re fucked. The penalties and injustices inflicted on you are irreconcilable. The pandemic pushed this financial threshold up, and now a whole swath of the lower middle class is going to be thrown into poverty - and if you don’t realize that’s already rippling through our society you’re dreaming.
It’s a nightmare on top of a disaster all of our own doing.