What caught me by surprise was how quickly I’d lost touch with all the nuances of whole-body presence that, once upon a time (was it really only twenty months ago?), we routinely read and responded to in any of scores of encounters on any given day…
The pandemic very likely is the result of development pressing into once wild places and disturbing achieved balances between nature and human settlement, development that has been fuelling worldwide consumption and a disconnection from nature at an ever-accelerating pace.
The contemporary punitive turn in Australian social security features disinvestment from actual payments made to individuals...as well as investment in punitive mutual-obligation programs such as ParentsNext.
While an America oriented to international climate agreements will make an important contribution, ‘Me? A socialist?’ Biden is not very likely to understand or seek to basically reform the hyper-destructive forces of contemporary capitalism.
The southern states do not need more fossil gas. Energy needs can be met with existing resources, if smart demand-side tools are employed. Corporations should not be allowed to build new infrastructure to explore, process, store and transport fossil gas. More exploration onshore or offshore is not necessary.
The ‘artist’ is no longer simply an individual maker, an avant-garde visionary, a person exploring the specifics and limits of a medium, or indeed any of the other familiar figures of aesthetic modernity. Instead, the ‘artist’ is marked out by their success at doing exactly what late capitalism demands; that is, everything, and in a flagrantly vacuous way.
The bright young things of Silicon Valley, with their dreams of direct democracy on Mars and digital immortality, are often difficult to take seriously. But their hubris is only the gaudy version of a broader cultural and political belief in the power of science and technology to edit, alter and override the very stuff from which our world is made—in other words, to ‘play God’.
The crisis triggered by the pandemic will leave in its wake more inequality, more political tension, more militarism and more authoritarianism; social upheaval, civil strife and mass popular struggles will likely escalate.