UNCERTAIN TIMES

These are uncertain times. So everyone keeps saying. “In these uncertain times…” “In these times of great uncertainty…” Uncertain times — and yet so predictable. So predicted.  Two years ago, on 27th April 2018, vaccine Messiah and ‘strategic philanthropist’ Bill Gates, invited to deliver the Shattuck Lecture in Boston, Massachusetts, warned that we were all […]

PYROTECHNICS

Ten years after Simulacra and Simulation, as the USA assembled a coalition to expel Iraqi forces from Kuwait and geared up for Operation DESERT STORM, Baudrillard published the first of a series of three essays: ‘The Gulf War Will Not Take Place’ (January 1991); followed by ‘The Gulf War is Not Taking Place’ (February 1991); […]

THE DEATH OF GOD

‘Never resist a sentence you like,’ wrote Baudrillard in Cool Memories (1990), and his incandescent style overflows with irresistible sentences. If you interrogate them, however — which is perhaps to ‘misread’ Baudrillard — you find that his beautiful paradoxes mask assumptions and transitions which must be explicit in a valid argument.  Take, for example, the […]

PASSENGERS

TELEVISION, STARS, AND THE SADNESS OF ASTRONAUTS “We set out to explore the moon and instead discovered the Earth.” — William Anders, Apollo 8 astronaut. Television — or at least, the image dissection technology at the core of it —was invented by Philo T Farnsworth II in 1927, but it did not bring him much […]

McLUHAN IN MANHATTAN

“The tactic of the terrorist model is to provoke a surplus of reality and to make the whole system collapse under it.” — Jean Baudrillard, The Spirit of Terrorism (2002). ∆ Baudrillard’s work is coolly psychedelic, giving us the same sense of dizzying replication that we love in doppelgänger stories and much science fiction. He was […]

THE MEMORY HOLE

My first real encounter with the Thought Police.  This essay, part of a series applying Jean Baudrillard’s simulation theory to contemporary events, has been suppressed by WordPress. The piece evoked a series of mass-shootings in 2011-12, viewing them in the light of the document usually referred to as The Report from Iron Mountain. It sketched a timeline of […]

SACRAMENT, MALEFICE, SORCERY

The Disappearance of Jean Baudrillard “Abstraction today is no longer that of the map, the double, the mirror or the concept. Simulation is no longer that of a territory, a referential being or a substance. It is the generation by models of a real without origin or reality: a hyperreal. The territory no longer precedes […]

ENTER THE PSEUDO-GANG

Dissimulation has been at the heart of the terrorist tactic from the beginning. If you terrorise people, you will only solidify the political resistance against your aims — making it impossible for officials to entertain your demands. Terrorism, therefore, is not an effective tool, and terrorists rarely realise their aims. It is only effective when […]

ANATHEOSIS

“It is through the death of God that religions emerge.”  — Jean Baudrillard (Simulacra and Simulation, 1981) “What comes after God? What follows in the wake of our letting go of God? What emerges out of that night of not-knowing, that moment of abandoning and abandonment?” — Richard Kerney (Anatheism, 2010) Whence, whence this creation […]

PLASMA, PYR TEKNIKON, HERAKLEITIAN FIRE

— EVERYTHING FLOWS — Panta rhei. Everything flows. So wrote Herakleitos. You usually see his name in its Romanised form — Heraclitus. But he was Greek, not Roman. And I prefer the spikiness of the K and the more complex vowel. I don’t know, it just suits my conception of him. Herakleitos the Ephesian, who […]