David Garcia on Mon, 16 Jan 2017 14:01:02 +0100 (CET)

[Date Prev] [Date Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: <nettime> The Meme Wars

Thank you Chris for the link…

>  An explication of your statement would
> prove productive:

>> On a related note, I think that an important part of this discussion
>> will be to challenge the shallow discourse of "fake news" and 
>> "post-truth” which only serves to set up a smoke screen covering the
>> "actual dynamics at play, though others may dis-agree. 

I’ll give it a shot.. hopefully others can do better..

I believe that the term Post -Truth is the expression of a one wing of the political and media establisment, who fear they are 
losing their grip on power. Many (particularly those in science based industries) have failed to recognise that we have 
moved from an era in which risk was calculable to one of radical uncertainty  (U.Beck). Black Swan times (Taleb) Kontrolverlust 
(M. Seammann).....unknown unknowns (D. Rumsfeld) etc.. Volkswagon have shown how adept this sector can be at managing 
truth/evidence. They one end of a spectrum of these kinds of practices that are rife.

The language of science, not the actuality of systematically applied doubt, but a technocratic rhetoric 
has dominated our phase of modernity, through neo liberal economics (the dismal science) and its hand-maiden, neo-managerial 
audit culture.. armed with weaponised -grey media- (M.Fuller).. gantt charts, excel spread sheets and power points, seek to protect their 
hegemony by drawing on the authority on models from another age that no longer work in a boarderless world - Its sometimes difficult 
but Foucault’s suspiscious view on the constructedness of all social knowledge categories still works for me.  

The mass revolt taking place against this technocracy has taken the equally dubious form of “authenticism” (for me a better term than 
populism). Its power is drawn from another kind of truth claim based on the pose of the outsider (the Ancient Mariner, the ultimate party 
crasher) with gut feeling for the -deep story- and uninterested in the small minded fact checkers. (I hate Hitler comparisons but ..decorated 
war hero.. not a member of the officer class..). For the authenticist even the worst behaviour and character flaws come accross as fearless 
expressions of their authenitc nature- a truth higher than fact. It is as vital to expose the authenticist -straight talking truth to power schtick- 
as another rhetorical pose. Just as much so as the technocrat’s claim that they have the key to truth. Both positions need to be exposed and 
resisted as a power struggle between different wings of the establishment. 

Of course we might argue that what we must learn from the victory of alt.right meme magicians is that exposure of the workings of power is a poor 
substitute for taking power. 
David Garcia

#  distributed via <nettime>: no commercial use without permission
#  <nettime>  is a moderated mailing list for net criticism,
#  collaborative text filtering and cultural politics of the nets
#  more info: http://mx.kein.org/mailman/listinfo/nettime-l
#  archive: http://www.nettime.org contact: nettime@kein.org
#  @nettime_bot tweets mail w/ sender unless #ANON is in Subject: