An enemy of society

‘Caught up in mere words a child is cut off from all reality: Kantian doctrine uproots him from the soil of his ancestors. A surplus of diplomas creates what we may call, after Bismarck, a “proletariat of graduates”. This is our indictment of the universities; what happens to their product, the “intellectual”, is that he becomes an enemy of society.’

—Maurice Barrès, in J. S. McClelland (ed.), The French Right (London: Jonathan Cape, 1970), cited in Zygmunt Bauman, Modernity and the Holocaust, (Cambridge: Polity Press, 1989), 59-60.

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The Maul

Thirty years ago Jameson felt novel, daring. Now we are living inside the future and many (most?) of us have largely forgotten what was, after all, a quite recent past. It’s anonymous here, sterile, stultifying.

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Everybody Knows

The main characteristic features of a capitalist economy are the presence of a market that serves as the main mediator of relations of economic exchange in a society built of classes of private owners of the means of production and the proletariat, that is, the army of (potential) workers who have to sell their labour force to the owners of the means of production in exchange for the means of survival, that is, wages. It is precisely this unevenness in terms of ownership and control over the means of production of goods and services that separates classes from one another and puts them into an endemically antagonistic position of class war dictated by their contradicting interests in that relationship. Thus, the owners will want to extract as much value out of workers as possible, while the workers aim to earn a higher wage and effectively have a higher share of the final surplus value generated in the process of production. This antagonism underlies what is known as the ‘class war’ and is typically mediated by the institution of the state via formalised rules, that is, laws, negotiated by and through trade unions, CSOs, lobbies and other forms of civil society organisations. The USSR, however, was a particular type of state, where organised civil society groups have not enjoyed the autonomy necessary for effective bargaining but instead were controlled by the state…

—Yuliya Yurchenko, Ukraine and the Empire of Capital: From Marketisation to Armed Conflict, (London: Pluto Press, 2018).

Effective bargaining by autonomous organised civil society groups?

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BBC:

Russia’s RT banned from UK media freedom conference

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Look what’s happening!

I find this as amusing as Ivanka Trump with Christine Lagarde. Like Joe Biden I have been “look[ing] what’s happening in Hungary”, Poland, and elsewhere, and I must admit I find myself a little confused. The DNC’s story is that Russia stole the 2016 US election, however this did not happen on Barack Obama and Joe Biden’s watch?

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Tommy Weisbecker Haus

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CrowdStrikeOut

Aaron Maté:

While the 448-page Mueller report found no conspiracy between Donald Trump’s campaign and Russia, it offered voluminous details to support the sweeping conclusion that the Kremlin worked to secure Trump’s victory. The report claims that the interference operation occurred “principally” on two fronts: Russian military intelligence officers hacked and leaked embarrassing Democratic Party documents, and a government-linked troll farm orchestrated a sophisticated and far-reaching social media campaign that denigrated Hillary Clinton and promoted Trump.

But a close examination of the report shows that none of those headline assertions are supported by the report’s evidence or other publicly available sources. They are further undercut by investigative shortcomings and the conflicts of interest of key players involved

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Fourth of July

BBC:

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