Home » NewColonial Critique » Algorithmic Administrations » ELECTRONIC SHOW BUSINESS AND THE THEATRICKS OF MICRO-FEUDALISM


{01} The notion of internationalism or cosmopolitanism segueing easily between nations is only going to be a viable reality for those possessing the necessary articles of entrance to such internationalisms.

{02}The qualifying conditions necessary to facilitate access to internationalism are of course visas and Visa cards, official documents of international bureaucracy and money, but there are other protocols of cosmopolitanism, too.

{03} If the problem is that because of the Internet, communication is international and instant, but a lot of the mindsets communicating over that Internet are irredeemably insular and ignorant – then that produces a “global village”, indeed!
But though Marshall McLuhan predicted that electronic environments would produce or reproduce tribalism, he didn’t say that those tribalisms would necessarily be nice.

{04} “Local yokel” and “hillbilly” workforces, globally, are set and maintained within highly regulated physical and psychological environments, within consumer land and mind -scapes catering towards all the usual consumer desires that themselves cater to the fascist unconscious.
The expectations of consumer desire begin to model and configure political expectations.

{05} Traditional forms of consumer desire are answered by commodity products which exercise no other reciprocity than the payment of capital. No greater or wider forms of responsibility are required, than those attaching to consumption and commodity transaction.

{06} But are the protocols of consumer culture sufficient to constitute models of citizenship conducive to any kind of political stability beyond those of consumer self-interest?
In the USA, the answer seems to be an unequivocal, ‘No’!

{07} The oscillation seems to be between consumerism and fascism, with consumer advertising exploiting tropes of the fascist unconscious.
There’s a history, a backstory, a context, to the contemporary architectures of carefully crafted ignorance and irresponsibility currently assailing the USA.

{08} Christian banning of usury was the banning of not only financial speculation but of the imaginary of financial speculation. That is to say, the imaginary of financial speculation leading to merchant power and bourgeois (conceptions of) freedom.
Without that imaginary of financial speculation, feudal relations are retained as hegemonic.
The concept of lordship (Christ is referred to as “Lord”) and the “divine right of kings” link both feudalism and religion, reinforcing the hegemony of feudal relations.

{09} Because Judaism was not bound by the ban on usury, Hebrews were not bound by feudal relations in quite the same way as Christians. So Hebrews were coerced into fulfilling a role within the Norman imaginary of financial speculation serving the needs of sovereign, Treasury, and state; probably in that order.
Norman sovereigns used Hebrews to circumvent the Christian banning of usury in order to administer state finance.
Cromwell and Britain’s bourgeois merchants encouraged the readmission of Hebrews into England on the basis of the international power of Jewish trade networks and the Protestant belief that the second coming of Christ was contingent on conversion of the Jews to Christianity.

{10} So Cromwell and Britain’s bourgeois merchants were then able to access the international imaginary of financial speculation through the power of Jewish trade networks.
This reinforced bourgeois merchant power taken from the nobility and King and created the beginnings of new channels of revenue, primarily colonial in nature.
Colonial revenues financed bourgeois projects of industrialisation and the emergence of modernity.
Feudal relations retracted themselves to make room for bourgeois relations, the merchant relations of capital and investment.

{11} This had the effect of displacing rural peasantry from the land and relocating them in the workhouse and factory. It was in these new locations of workhouse and factory, that the components of prefabricated consumer heavens, of predesigned heavenly consumption, were produced.
Rumbling along and shunting off the tracks of industrial logic called “assembly lines”, countless replicas of any sort of consumer heaven could be conveyed.

{12} The mise en scène or staging of imperialism was available to everyone through the crowning glory of consumerism – everyone could be a tyrant in their own castle, so to speak.
Castles and crowns, could be bought, both as toy facsimiles and as real things that could be bought on the market. Impoverished nobility were selling their castles in the 1970s.
All of that, together with this or that philosophy bolstering up concepts of the sovereign individual; and new markets began to arise, catering to those new micro-feudalisms and sovereigns.

{13} With so many imperious sovereigns of the new sorts of selfhood, ruling over so many micro-feudalisms, the stages of modernity were set to host the dramatics of multiple feuds, between all of those imperious sovereigns.
There is more than one reason why the genre of which “Game of Thrones” is a contemporary instance is so popular with the masses.

{14} In feudal times, “internationalism” usually meant wars of religion and resources, not the smooth and un-ruffled cosmopolitanism of airport lounges and modern city states.
The Internet has enabled the theatricks of micro-feudalism to hold hostage the impersonal bureaucracy of modern states, to hold hostage the model of the modern state, itself.

{15} The theatricks of micro-feudalism is the default consumer reality accessible to everyone.
But that theatricks was based on industrial replication; assembly-line reproduction; on what someone like Baudrillard might call ‘the simulacra of consumerism’.

{16} So, in a sense there are ‘simulacra sovereigns’, each catered to out of industrial processes presupposing the remote individuality of the psyches that industry marketing is directed towards alleviating the alienations of.

{17} So, taking into consideration the element of impersonal bureaucracy characterising modern states; it begins to seem as though industrial modernity and ‘the simulacra of consumerism’ constructed to alleviate the alienations of that industrial modernity and its characteristically impersonal bureaucracy; are the basis for a granular reemergence of feudalism as “the theatricks of micro-feudalism”.

{18} Economic inequality is conducive to promoting social differences structurally similar to feudal organisation.
Bourgeois merchants or the bourgeoisie, were able to displace governing feudal structures of sovereignty and nobility through the economic and military powers that they were able to deploy.

{19} So, if economic power is central to the development of modernity and to citizenship within that modernity, then does economic inequality necessarily produce different kinds of citizenship?
Does economic inequality produce social inequality in conditions of modernity?

{20} And if such is the case, are counter-movements towards personality over the impersonal; and “the theatrics of micro-feudalism” over the modern, only forms of expected, mass social response, given market conditioning, et cetera?

{21} It’s very much the case that in the USA, there seems to be a virtually pathological avoidance of the impersonal; indeed, an avoidance of any objectivity not susceptible to the easy personalisation and simplicity of common discourse characterising market advertising.

{22} So, the virtual pathology of avoiding the impersonal, results in the pathological, conflict-ridden “theatricks of micro-feudalism”, a theatricks of both “personal virtuality” and “virtual personality”, trolling and politicising its way over the Internet and World Wide Web.

{23} It’s a politics of feudalism; yes, the old sort of feudalism!
But it’s been processed into reconstituted and instant feudalism granules, all of it swirling around and dissolving into cups and mugs (faces? social media) of electronic show business!

{24} And that ‘electronic show business’?
          How much more “society of the spectacle” can it get, than “social media”?
          Social media, where society and spectacle coincide.

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