Baudrillard

Critiques
The Catastrophe Fix........................................2 Catastrophe Fix 2NC Overview.......................5 Catastrophe Fix 2NR Overview.......................7 Disaster Porn..................................................8 Disaster Porn Overview.................................10 Commodification of Suffering.........................11 We Search for Images...................................13 Nuclear Hyperreality......................................14 Nuclear Hyperreality 2NC Overview..............19 Nuclear Hyperreality 2NR Overview..............21 Proliferation Stops War..................................22 Proliferation Stops War Overview..................23 Illusion of War...............................................24 Illusion of War Overview................................27 Biosphere 2...................................................29 Biosphere 2(NC) Overview............................32 Biosphere 2(NR) Overview............................33 Maleficent Ecology........................................34 Maleficent Ecology 2NC Overview.................37 Maleficent Ecology 2NR Overview.................38 Maleficent v. Deep Ecology 1AR...................39 Sentimentality to Animals..............................40 Sentimentality to Animals Overview...............41 Global v. Universal.......................................42 Global v. Universal 2NC Overview.................45 Global v. Universal 2NR Overview.................46 Globalization of Violence...............................47 Globalization of Violence Overview...............52 Spirit of Terrorism..........................................53 Spirit of Terrorism Overview..........................56 Infection of Democracy..................................57 Culture Crash................................................60 Culture Crash Overview................................62 Shadow-Boxing the System...........................64 Shadow-Boxing Overview.............................66 Strategic Passivity.........................................68 Strategic Passivity Overview.........................69 Infinite Remainder.........................................71 Feminist Plastic Surgery................................74 Feminist Plastic Surgery Overview................77 Implosion of the State....................................78 Imperialism as Anti-Imperialism.....................80 Viral Communism..........................................82 Power Lashing Out........................................84 Power Lash Out Overview.............................85 The Debt.......................................................86 Debt Overview...............................................88 Simulation of Politics.....................................89 Media Information Sucks...............................92 Banishing the Right.......................................94 Banishing the Right Overview........................98 Disney World.................................................99 ...................................................................100 Radical Thought Alternative.........................101 Our Framework...........................................103 Framework Overview...................................106 Aff Doesn’t Get to Pick Framework..............108 A2: Perm.....................................................109 A2: Postmodernism is Bad..........................112 A2: We Still Solve!.......................................114 A2: Need a Textual Alternative....................115 A2: Disaster Porn........................................116 Must Engage System..................................117 Alternative Fails...........................................119

Jean Baudrillard is a professor of philosophy of culture and media criticism at the European Graduate School in Saas-Fee, Switzerland.

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The Catastrophe Fix
The images of catastrophe and destruction they present are like a drug, used by the first world nations to feed off the suffering of the rest of the world. Their efforts to solve these problems are coproductive with the disasters themselves, and this constant search for new spectacle will lead to the destruction of the human species as the ultimate reality TV show. Baudrillard in 94 [Jean, “The Illusion of the End” p. 66-71]
We have long denounced the capitalistic, economic exploitation of the poverty of the 'other half of the world' [['autre monde]. We must today denounce the moral and sentimental exploitation of that poverty - charity cannibalism being worse than oppressive violence. The extraction and humanitarian reprocessing of a destitution which has become the equivalent of oil deposits and gold mines. The extortion of the spectacle of poverty and, at the same time, of our charitable condescension: a worldwide appreciated surplus of fine sentiments and bad conscience. We should, in fact, see this not as the extraction of raw materials, but as a waste-reprocessing enterprise. Their destitution and our bad conscience are, in effect, all part of the waste-products of history- the main thing is to recycle them to produce a new energy source. We have here an escalation in the psychological balance of terror. World capitalist oppression is now merely the vehicle and alibi for this other, much more ferocious, form of moral predation. One might almost say, contrary to the Marxist analysis, that material exploitation is only there to extract that spiritual raw material that is the misery of peoples, which serves as psychological nourishment for the rich countries and media nourishment for our daily lives. The 'Fourth World' (we are no longer dealing with a 'developing' Third World) is once again beleaguered, this time as a catastrophe-bearing stratum. The West is whitewashed in the reprocessing of the rest of the world as waste and residue. And the white world repents and seeks absolution - it, too, the waste-product of its own history. The South is a natural producer of raw materials, the latest of which is catastrophe. The North, for its part, specializes in the reprocessing of raw materials and hence also in the reprocessing of catastrophe. Bloodsucking protection, humanitarian interference, Medecins sans frontieres, international solidarity, etc. The last phase of colonialism: the New Sentimental Order is merely the latest form of the New World Order. Other people's destitution becomes our adventure playground. Thus, the humanitarian offensive aimed at the Kurds - a show of repentance on the part of the Western powers after allowing Saddam Hussein to crush them - is in reality merely the second phase of the war, a phase in which charitable intervention finishes off the work of extermination. We are the consumers of the ever delightful spectacle of poverty and catastrophe, and of the moving spectacle of our own efforts to alleviate it (which, in fact, merely function to secure the conditions of reproduction of the catastrophe market); there, at least, in the order of moral profits, the Marxist analysis is wholly applicable: we see to it that extreme poverty is reproduced as a symbolic deposit, as a fuel essential to the moral and sentimental equilibrium of the West. In our defence, it might be said that this extreme poverty was largely of our own making and it is therefore normal that we should profit by it.
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The Catastrophe Fix
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There can be no finer proof that the distress of the rest of the world is at the root of Western power and that the spectacle of that distress is its crowning glory than the inauguration, on the roof of the Arche de la Defense, with a sumptuous buffet laid on by the Fondation des Droits de l'homme, of an exhibition of the finest photos of world poverty. Should we be surprised that spaces are set aside in the Arche d' Alliance. for universal suffering hallowed by caviar and champagne? Just as the economic crisis of the West will not be complete so long as it can still exploit the resources of the rest of the world, so the symbolic crisis will be complete only when it is no longer able to feed on the other half's human and natural catastrophes (Eastern Europe, the Gulf, the Kurds, Bangladesh, etc.). We need this drug, which serves us as an aphrodisiac and hallucinogen. And the poor countries are the best suppliers - as, indeed, they are of other drugs. We provide them, through our media, with the means to exploit this paradoxical resource, just as we give them the means to exhaust their natural resources with our technologies. Our whole culture lives off this catastrophic cannibalism, relayed in cynical mode by the news media, and carried forward in moral mode by our humanitarian aid, which is a way of encouraging it and ensuring its continuity, just as economic aid is a strategy for perpetuating under-development. Up to now, the financial sacrifice has been compensated a hundredfold by the moral gain. But when the catastrophe market itself reaches crisis point, in accordance with the implacable logic of the market, when distress becomes scarce or the marginal returns on it fall from overexploitation, when we run out of disasters from elsewhere or when they can no longer be traded like coffee or other commodities, the West will be forced to produce its own catastrophe for itself, in order to meet its need for spectacle and that voracious appetite for symbols which characterizes it even more than its voracious appetite for food. It will reach the point where it devours itself. When we have finished sucking out the destiny of others, we shall have to invent one for ourselves. The Great Crash, the symbolic crash, will come in the end from us Westerners, but only when we are no longer able to feed on the hallucinogenic misery which comes to us from the other half of the world. Yet they do not seem keen to give up their monopoly. The Middle East, Bangladesh, black Africa and Latin America are really going flat out in the distress and catastrophe stakes, and thus in providing symbolic nourishment for the rich world. They might be said to be overdoing it: heaping earthquakes, floods, famines and ecological disasters one upon another, and finding the means to massacre each other most of the time. The 'disaster show' goes on without any let-up and our sacrificial debt to them far exceeds their economic debt. The misery with which they generously overwhelm us is something we shall never be able to repay. The sacrifices we offer in return are laughable (a tornado or two, a few tiny holocausts on the roads, the odd financial sacrifice) and, moreover, by some infernal logic, these work out as much greater gains for us, whereas our kindnesses have merely added to the natural catastrophes another one immeasurably worse: the demographic catastrophe, a veritable epidemic which we deplore each day in pictures. In short, there is such distortion between North and South, to the symbolic advantage of the South (a hundred thousand Iraqi dead against casualties numbered in tens on our side: in every case we are the losers), that one day everything will break down. One day, the West will break down if we are not soon washed clean of this shame, if an international congress of the poor countries does not very quickly decide to share out this symbolic
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The Catastrophe Fix
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privilege of misery and catastrophe. It is of course normal, since we refuse to allow the spread of nuclear weapons, that they should refuse to allow the spread of the catastrophe weapon. But it is not right that they should exert that monopoly indefinitely. In any case, the under-developed are only so by comparison with the Western system and its presumed success. In the light of its assumed failure, they are not under-developed at all. They are only so in terms of a dominant evolutionism which has always been the worst of colonial ideologies. The argument here is that there is a line of objective progress and everyone is supposed to pass through its various stages (we find the same eyewash with regard to the evolution of species and in that evolutionism which unilaterally sanctions the superiority of the human race). In the light of current upheavals, which put an end to any idea of history as a linear process, there are no longer either developed or underdeveloped peoples. Thus, to encourage hope of evolution - albeit by revolution - among the poor and to doom them, in keeping with the objective illusion of progress, to technological salvation is a criminal absurdity. In actual fact, it is their good fortune to be able to escape from evolution just at the point when we no longer know where it is leading. In any case, a majority of these peoples, including those of Eastern Europe, do not seem keen to enter this evolutionist modernity, and their weight in the balance is certainly no small factor in the West's repudiation of its own history, of its own utopias and its own modernity. It might be said that the routes of violence, historical or otherwise, are being turned around and that the viruses now pass from South to North, there being every chance that, five hundred years after America was conquered, 1992 and the end of the century will mark the comeback of the defeated and the sudden reversal of that modernity. The sense of pride is no longer on the side of wealth but of poverty, of those who fortunately for them - have nothing to repent, and may indeed glory in being privileged in terms of catastrophes. Admittedly, this is a privilege they could hardly renounce, even if they wished to, but natural disasters merely reinforce the sense of guilt felt towards them by the wealthy – by those whom God visibly scorns since he no longer even strikes them down. One day it will be the Whites themselves who will give up their whiteness. It is a good bet that repentance will reach its highest pitch with the five-hundredth anniversary of the conquest of the Americas. We are going to have to lift the curse of the defeated - but symbolically victorious - peoples, which is insinuating itself five hundred years later, by way of repentance, into the heart of the white race. No solution has been found to the dramatic situation of the under-developed, and none will be found since their drama has now been overtaken by that of the overdeveloped, of the rich nations. The psychodrama of congestion, saturation, super abundance, neurosis and the breaking of blood vessels which haunts us - the drama of the excess of means over ends – calls more urgently for attention than that of penury, lack and poverty. That is where the most imminent danger of catastrophe resides, in the societies which have run out of emptiness. Artificial catastrophes, like the beneficial aspects of civilization, progress much more quickly than natural ones. The underdeveloped are still at the primary stage of the natural, unforeseeable catastrophe. We are already at the second stage, that of the manufactured catastrophe - imminent and foreseeable - and we shall soon be at that of the pre-programmed catastrophe, the catastrophe of the third kind, deliberate and experimental. And, paradoxically, it is our pursuit of the means for averting natural catastrophe - the unpredictable form of destiny - which will take us there. Because it is unable to escape it, humanity will pretend to be the author of its destiny. Because it cannot accept being confronted with an end which is uncertain or governed by fate, it will prefer to stage its own death as a species.

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Catastrophe Fix 2NC Overview
Why is reality television so popular? People don’t like to exist in their own lives – the vicarious experience of other’s problems is one of the great joys of the modern age. Extend our Baudrillard 94 evidence. Baudrillard says that images of destruction, catastrophe and disaster are exaggerated by the media and used to give pleasure to those in the first world at the expense of everyone else. As a society, we export death and import back its image, drawing satisfaction from the exploitation of other people and cultures and our efforts to solve the problems that we actually enjoy so much. The affirmative is a perfect example of this process – their harms detail disaster in the status quo which they provide a simulated solution to through fiat, all in an effort to make themselves feel powerful in this exchange of suffering. Their supposed solution is a part of this process – they will never actually fix all the problems they claim, because then they would be left without a source of enjoyment. Even if their solution does work, it will have the side effect of creating more suffering to continue the cycle. A perfect example of this is Iraq – we get all worked up over what a terrible person Saddam is and the damage he could cause, so we go remove him to improve the situation, but now there’s been an explosion of porn, drugs and violence in Iraq after the invasion so we can continue to consume the images of disorder and trouble and justify even more interventions, which makes their harms are inevitable. Also, this quest for more sources of suffering is a constantly expanding process. Once we run fix some problems, we have to generate more to keep the images flowing, encouraging artificial tragedies to replace natural ones. This mindset ends in human extinction as the ultimate spectacle. If you buy into this system of representation by giving them the ballot, you’re helping the cycle of catastrophe to continue. Instead, strategic indifference is required. Don’t acknowledge their images. When there is no more demand for suffering, the supply will decrease as well, making the problems obsolete.

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Note that we don’t ask you to ignore suffering in the real world – Baudrillard has no problem with helping people out. It’s only in the context of this debate round and the illusion of fiat, which has no relevance to the real world, that you should refuse to be moved by images of catastrophe. Also, we can advocate the plan as a good idea minus the images they present – the affirmative can’t sever out of the discourse they already used, but we can advocate the rest of the plan as a good idea and get the same advantages.

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the only way out is strategic indifference and refusing to be moved by their images of disaster. their claims of disaster going on in the status quo are part of a process where we use the suffering of the rest of the world for our own vicarious enjoyment. even if the justifications for it aren’t. their harms are exaggerated by the media to get a response from the people. Giving them the ballot acknowledges the harms and lets the cycle continue – only by not giving them recognition can we escape. even if the 3 case turns above weren’t. they will require new catastrophes to keep getting their fix. so solving the case requires the creation of a new area of disaster to be acted upon. This is particularly applicable to debate. so you can still authentically help people in the real world. you can advocate the plan without advocating the images by going negative – they’re stuck with their discourse. That’s an immediate reason to reject the affirmative. just don’t buy their images in here. you can still get all the advantages of their case with a negative ballot. which is exclusively simulation. this constant search for new sources of suffering terminates in human extinction as an artificial catastrophe and the ultimate spectacle. Third.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Catastrophe Fix 2NR Overview Extend the Baudrillard 94 evidence. while perpetuating the exchange of pain and death that makes all their harms possible. their plan is masking the problem at best. Removing the demand for catastrophe decreases the supply as well. so their harms are either completely false or at best not as bad as they claim. Because they require this suffering to feel powerful by supposedly solving it. and more importantly. if they do solve their harms. which makes the case harms self-replicating. Second. DEBATENEXUS. Fourth. so extend: First. That’s an easy negative ballot right there. Fifth. Sixth.COM 7 . They miss some key points from my last overview. but we can say plan itself is a good idea.

to show something up as a fake. living their revolution as an exoticism of images. but the corpses being pressed into appearing before the television cameras. All that remains of it are traces on a monitoring screen. and these. by being placed under house arrest in front of their television screens. but abolished. shows us a convoy of refugees 'which. which turns the event itself into a form of mass entertainment that loses any reference to the real world but must constantly be given credibility by new images of destruction. In the past. 'It's put on for the cameras!'. are images without a negative. Baudrillard in 94 [Jean. Nothing is news if it does not pass through that horizon of the virtual. 'It's just TV!' Photographic or cinema images still pass through the negative stage (and that of projection). everyone wants to be on it at all costs. A photo in Liberation.not in the psychological sense. 'It's all romance!'. for example.which is a political problem. it was the faking of the dead in Timisoara which aroused a kind of moral indignation and raised the problem of the scandal of 'disinformation' or. From the moment the studio becomes the strategic centre. that hysteria of the virtual . was to be attacked by the Iraqi army'. was felt to be worse than the violence itself. as mystified TV viewers.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Disaster Porn Death and disaster are employed by the media to shock and titillate the viewer. emotional blackmail. and thus to all reference to the real or to events. some time after this shot was taken. engendering themselves without reference to a real or an imaginary. When television becomes the strategic space of the event. touristic spectators of a virtual history. deprived of the lived experience they have of it by being submerged in the media network. especially in a noble and revolutionary cause. <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. and hence without negativity and without reference. Many Romanian eyewitness accounts speak of being dispossessed of the event in this way. and the screen the only site of appearance. Spectators then become exoterics of the screen. The real object is wiped out by news – not merely alienated. and thus of our indifference to it . actually film one another. was felt to be a parody of history. morbid simulation. It was their being taken hostage. that image raises the problem of its indifference to the world. “The Illusion of the End” p. At a stroke. This time. as in the past dead souls were pressed into appearance in the register of deaths. It was the same on CNN with the arrival of the Scuds. the contagion of images.COM 8 . it becomes a bachelor machine. we were able to say. and our being held hostage too. It was not the dead that were the scandal. They are virtual and the virtual is what puts an end to all negativity. The street becomes an extension of the studio. 55-58] In the case of the Romanian revolution. as real to be consumed as unreal. digital and synthetic. rather. itself becomes virtually without limits. but in the sense of a compulsion for what is presented. the video image. in all bad faith. it sets itself up as a deadly selfreference. or else gathers in the street in the glare of the cameras. as it were. we said: 'It's just play-acting'. All the media live off the presumption of catastrophe and of the succulent imminence of death. of information itself as scandal. indeed. whereas the TV image. with Romania and the Gulf War. and this limitless engendering produces information as catastrophe. Being blackmailed by violence and death. Is an image which refers only to itself still an image? However this may be. themselves exogenous. Anticipation of effects.

By manipulating themselves. in the shadow of dictatorship. betraying a sharp sense of the image function. When information gets mixed in with its source. you get a feedback effect .function. there is no responsibility anywhere. DEBATENEXUS. It is not the judicial procedure itself which is scandalous but the video tape. The logical sequence of news and history turns back against itself.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Disaster Porn <<Baudrillard 94 continued>> that is. they also dragged all the Western media into the same news demagogy. The actors and the media sensed obscurely that the events in Eastern Europe had to be given credibility. And. of the non-site of the event. than it has with us. they decredibilized both war and news. the deterrence. No one is responsible. When demand is maximal (and everywhere today the demand for events is maximal). if the Romanians themselves got high on this media speculation which served them as a revolutionary aphrodisiac. It is all an effect of the infernal cycle of credibility. it short-circuits the initial situation and produces an uncontrollable response effect. The highest pressure of news corresponds to the lowest pressure of events and reality [Ie reel]. by putting their power and news control so extravagantly to the test. as with sound waves. This hidden jury. with the same consequences as occur when any kind of space is suddenly depressurized. It is the evil genius of news which promotes such staging. The Americans did just the same in the Gulf War. They were the Ubus of their wn power. Excess itself engenders the parody which invalidates the facts. Leading to a vicious circle of credibility. for the sole reason of its . Site of the definitive confusion of masses and medium. these defendants we are forced to see even though they are virtually dead. of the real-time confusion of act and sign. At the same time. just as the Romanians were the Ubus of their own mpotence. why we do the Romanians an injustice when we accuse them of manipulation and bad faith. in its cyclical movement. There is no will to communicate in all this. so the principle of politics [Ie politique] and history is wrecked by media speculation. rather. Or. The same unrealism in the Ceausescu trial. the Ceausescu trial was pulled off perfectly as a video production. then. its voice striking out against the accused. For.scenic abduction. the result of which is the decredibilizing of the revolution and the events themselves. In the eyes of the whole world. this empty space of representation which is the screen. ultimately. of the virtual site of the event. unacceptable as the only. We bear the same responsibility as they do. bringing. as though playing at sabotaging their image. That is. The only irresistible drive is to occupy this nonsite.COM 9 . By the excessive nature of their deployment and stagecraft. And the media themselves had to be lent credibility by the reference to the people. the intuitive grasp of these things has grown more sophisticated over there. Representation (political representation too) is currently a trough of depression . Deep down. We have nothing to teach them. One might even wonder whether the actors in this staged event were not deliberately trying to make themselves seem suspect in the eyes of world opinion. just as the principle of economics is wrecked by financial speculation. these dead prisoners shot a second time to meet the needs of news.which the media fill up with their turbulences. that that revolution had to be lent credibility by an extra dose of dead bodies. this will remain an event forever suspect.strangely obscene . The question of responsibility cannot even be raised. they caused us spontaneously to swallow their fiction. the blackmail-function.meteorological depression . a kind of deflation of historical consciousness. The street itself becomes a virtual space.an effect of interference and uncertainty. bloodless trace of a bloody event.

Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Disaster Porn Overview Extend our Baudrillard 94 evidence.COM 10 . to believe them as the “real. Here’s the argument. Their plan is a perfect example of this – they outline all sorts of terrible problems in the status quo in an effort to get you. into the unreal. and devalues the lives of those who are actually dying due to the harms they outline. because it is reduced to a spectator sport instead of a unique occurrence. the judge. images to be consumed by masses of people. as part of your TV screen and newspaper. death. This devalues the event. etc.” Their playing the role of the media implicates them in the production of the real to be consumed as unreal. This process creates the information itself as the catastrophe. DEBATENEXUS. the more will be provided. Also. guaranteeing their harms will be reproduced far into the future as a result of the destructive images they present. destruction. The media transforms real events. the demand for death to lend credibility to their political program of choice leads to an increase in its supply – the more destruction people want to see.

It is hell. one needs to head to where blood flows. including "solidarity". This parallels the way the political class and civil society are <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. This reality exits as such . so that it can be useful as a referent within the theatre of western values. hailing herself from New York. September 28. which should not exist. and unexplainable. and it must be preserved.it is the stark reality of action and destiny. Even if it is by the use of the most heinous of all paroles: "One must do something. and which very much constitutes the principle of European reality) a kind of alternative courage. To reconstitute reality. and with her all the Western world.COM 11 . But Susan Sontag herself is not the issue. These are not my words. And this reality has nothing to do with the so-called objective reality of their plight. And to those who have found in a radical delusion of reality (and this includes the belief in political rationality. in a process that guarantees the suffering must continue. they are in the absolute need to do what they do. One cannot remain idle. nor for liberty. but do not really believe in it. because it renders the attitude of the world towards them even less unfathomable. "No Reprieve For Sarejevo"] The problem lies indeed in the nature of our reality. They harbour no illusion about the outcome and do not indulge in self-pity. must know better than them what reality is. The people of Sarajevo are not bothered by such questions. Yet another unequal exchange. because otherwise. to do the right thing. We have got only one. Being where they are. is lacking the most. At the most it is an excuse for one's own powerlessness and a token of self-pity. made even more hyperreal by the harassment of the media and the humanitarian agencies. by making something cultural and something theatrical out of it. This is why they are alive. This is what it means to be really existing." Yet. Susan Sontag herself confesses in her diaries that the Bosnians do not really believe in the suffering which surrounds them. despite the fact they are in the midst of war and utter distress. senseless. This is why we feel the need to salvage the reality of war in our own eyes and to impose this reality (to be pitiable) upon those who suffer from it. to do something for the sole reason that one cannot do nothing never has been a valid principle for action. they would never have been able to stand up to it. which supposedly rules us. They end up finding the whole situation unreal. opened by us to funnel our foodstuffs and our "culture" are in fact our lifelines along which we suck their moral strength and the energy of their distress. to these people Susan Sontag comes to convince them of the "reality" of their suffering.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Commodification of Suffering Bereft of values. All these "corridors".which is fortunate. by the way: they say it so. Thus. our society demands images of suffering from others to replenish our moral sentiment. while we are dead. She is merely a societal instance of what has become the general situation whereby toothless intellectuals swap their distress with the misery of the poor. and which we do so much deplore. that is to survive a senseless situation. they live in a kind of ghost-like war . since she has chosen them to incarnate it. But then Susan Sontag. both of them locked in a perverse agreement. Baudrillard in 94 [Jean. We exchange our pity for their pain. Or maybe it is simply because reality is what she. to exist within reality. both of them sustaining each other. but hell of what may be termed a hyperreal kind.

shared by intellectuals and politicians alike. Loss and suffering. paired with human rights is the sole funeral ideology. just like the global debt. the pond of references. misery and suffering becoming the basic stuff of the primitive scene.COM 12 . Our whole society is thus on its way towards "commiseration" in the most literal sense of the word (under the cloak of ecumenical bathos). Thus. DEBATENEXUS.there is no dearth of mediators who take some surplus value of financial or symbolic nature along the way. The status of victimhood. Then. and in doing so. that is. not so long ago. Those who do not directly exploit it do it by proxy . Everywhere.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Commodification of Suffering <<Baudrillard 98 continued>> swapping their respective misery: one throwing up corruption and scandals. It looks like as if we are in the midst of an immense feeling of guilt. a New Intellectual Order is following on the heels of the New World Order. replenishing our game reserves with artificial fowls. "At the moment. we see distress. are negotiable and for sale on the speculative market. and which is linked to the end of history and the downfall of values. the other its purposeless convulsions and its inertia. Everywhere. it has become impossible to show anything else than suffering in the news broadcasts on television". the intellectual-political market . I gather that society is merely expressing its own disappointment and longing for an impossible violence against itself. one could witness Bourdieu and Abbe Pierre offering themselves as televisual slaughtering lambs trading with each other pathetic language and sociological garble about poverty. Ours is a victim-society.which is in no way undermining the military-industrial complex of old & sinister days. and to do so by using that smallest common denominator which is the suffering of the world. reports David Schneidermann. it has become necessary to replenish the pond of values.

It is the connective tissue between the planetary ocular strategies of the image-matrix and the solitude of the human body. Ironically. The matrix of image-creation as its evolves from analog to digital and now to the biogenetic struggles to keep pace with the capricious tastes and fast-bored appetites of human flesh as an image-machine. It has ocular appetites that demand satisfaction. The bored eye is bored with its (bodily) self. from scene to scene. It takes full possession of the housing of the body. It knows only the pleasure of the boredom of creation as well as the boredom of abandonment. Contemporary society is no longer the culture of the disembodied eye. It turns recombinant when fed straight narratives. March 20. It demands novelty. It never remains still. is to experience the fatal destiny of the image as both goal and precondition of human culture. the bored eye has itself now become both precondition and goal for the despotic image. A love affair turned sour. At dusk. but the bored eye is seductive because of its refusal to provide any sign of lasting interest. of course. It loves junk images. It needs to blast out of the solitude of its birth-place in the human cranium in order to ride the electronic currents of the global eye. The bored eye is a natural nihilist. The despotic image may demand attention as its precondition for existence. Which is why images can now be so powerful precisely because they are caught in a fatal miasma of powerlessness before the ocular deficit disorder of the bored eye. It is the age of the bored eye: the eye which flits from situation to situation. The bored eye is the real power of the image. the archival history of twentieth-century photography can now be safely interned. That is why it is always dissatisfied.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ We Search for Images Members of our culture are in constant search of new global.COM 13 . and the source of its endless seduction. Kroker in 2002 [Arthur. editor of Ctheory." DEBATENEXUS. With this predictable result-the increasing ressentiment of the digital image: "Analog is having a burial and digital is dancing on its grave. with a restlessness and high-pitched consumptive appetite that can never really ever be fully satisfied. our most singular fate. No longer satisfied with simply observing the power of the image. That is its secret passion.net “We Look for Images”] A story of body invasion? Not really. That we are possessed by the power of the image with such finality has the curious repercussion of driving the image-machine mad. As goal. But it can never be fully sated because the bored eye is the empty eye. Which is why. hyperreal images as a way to escape the body and satisfy the bored eye. from image to image. It is the nerve center of flesh made image. the eye of the image takes flight in the restless form of the bored eye forever revolving and twisting and circulating in an image-matrix of which it is both the petulant consumer and unsatisfied author. the power of the image inheres in the fact that contemporary culture is driven forward by the will to image as its most pervasive form of nihilism. It is in perpetual motion. Today. Our fate. the bored eye now demands to be the power of the image. As precondition. we play out the drama of our private existence along and within the iris of the image-machine that we once dismissed as somehow external to human ambitions. from ad to ad. we are possessed individuals because we are fully possessed by the enigmatic dreams of impossible images.

Atomic war. of anything that would be an event in the general system and upset its balance. Thus the money of destruction (without any reference to real destruction. and thanks to Damocles' nuclear sword. The whole world pretends to believe in the reality of this threat (this is understandable on the part of the military. What is hatched in the shadow of this mechanism with the pretext of a maximal. like the Trojan War. However. through the sophistication of weapons (a sophistication that surpasses any possible objective to such an extent that it is itself a symptom of nullity). implosive violence of metastable systems or systems in involution. except without a doubt in the very initial stages of the cold war. and the unknown is precisely that variable of simulation which makes of the atomic arsenal itself a hyperreal form.COM 14 . for installing a universal security system. a simulacrum that dominates everything and reduces all "ground-level" events to being nothing but ephemeral scenarios. nor an adversary nor a strategy-it is a planetary structure of the annihilation of stakes. of the violence without consequences that reigns throughout the world. it is deterrence that gives them leukemia. indifferent. The risk of nuclear annihilation only serves as a pretext. the fear of nuclear war is used to justify a state security apparatus that freezes the social and maintains a system of perfect control. of the aleatory apparatus of all the choices that are made for us. into a stake without stakes not even into a life insurance policy: into a policy that already has no value)." threat. And this deterrence comes from that fact that even the real atomic clash is precluded-precluded like the eventuality of the real in a system of signs. a universal lockup and control system whose deterrent effect is not at all aimed at an atomic clash (which was never in question. will not take place. Deterrence precludes war-the archaic violence of expanding systems. Baudrillard in 81 [Jean. the gravity of their exercise and the discourse of their "strategy" are at stake). any more than floating capital has a real referent of production) that circulates in nuclear orbit suffices to control all the violence and potential conflicts around the world. "objective. at the much greater probability of any real event. it circulates and is exchanged between nuclear protagonists exactly as is international capital in the orbital zone of monetary speculation whose fluctuations suffice to control all global exchanges. It is not the direct threat of atomic destruction that paralyzes our lives. transforming the life left us into survival. when one still confused the nuclear apparatus with conventional war) but. the balance of terror is never anything but the spectacular slope of a system of deterrence that has insinuated itself from the inside into all the cracks of daily life. equivalent signs. rather. 32-35] The apotheosis of simulation: the nuclear. Deterrence itself is the neutral. is the perfection of the best system of control <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. The scenario for nuclear escalation and war they imagine will always be prevented by deterrence. Nuclear suspension only serves to seal the trivialized system of deterrence that is at the heart of the media. There is no longer a subject of deterrence. The whole originality of the situation lies in the improbability of destruction. However. The balance of terror is the terror of balance. The most insignificant of our behaviors is regulated by neutralized. Deterrence is not a strategy. “Simulacra and Simulation” p.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Nuclear Hyperreality A. but it is precisely at this level that there are no strategic stakes. by zero-sum signs like those that regulate the "strategy of games" (but the true equation is elsewhere.

any story be deployed according to its own logic because it risks annihilation. it is the operational immanence of every detail that is law. but without fear or drive. the model vectors of a system of planetary control (where even the super. implosive. In fact. of maximum security and deterrence that today controls the spread of the social. of finality. or to develop concurrently as a form of "peaceful coexistence. of contradiction. and political desert. or complexity in a sociality illuminated by the norm. A universe purged of all threat of meaning. Because if the law. is the function of the space program. toward a limit that one believed would be explosive (revolution). every finality. and escalation is only a puerile game given over to the military. of the launching of satellites if not the institution of a model of universal gravitation. fascinates. psychology. of satellization of which the lunar module is the perfect embryo? Programmed microcosm. everywhere the notion of security becomes omnipotent. but which for the moment is translated by an inverse. Vertigo of the model. of accident. calculation. Their truth is to be the models of simulation. There lies the true nuclear fallout: the meticulous operation of technology serves as a model for the meticulous operation of the social. and makes every imaginary involute. rupture. And the progressive satellization of the whole planet through this hypermodel of security. which began centuries ago. this is the total universe of the norm-the Law no longer exists. social. only simulacra of conflicts and carefully circumscribed stakes remain. every confrontation contract in proportion to this blackmail that interrupts. irreversible process: the generalized deterrence of chance. freezes them all. physiology. No longer can any revolt. rather. One no longer fantasizes about the minutiae of a program. Trajectory. if order. with its aura of transgression. of transversality. nor military and strategic superiority. which unites with the model of death. in a state of asepsis and weightlessness-it is this very perfection that is fascinating. doomed to the descriptive transparency of mechanisms of information. The exaltation of the crowds was not a response to the event of landing on the moon or of sending a man into space (this would be. everywhere where the norm replaces the old arsenal of laws and violence (including war). No strategy is possible any longer.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Nuclear Hyperreality <<Baudrillard 81 continued>> that has ever existed.where where irreversible apparatuses of control are elaborated. Pacification does not distinguish between the civil and the military: every. Fascination with the maximal norm and the mastery of probability. but which has now entered its accelerated phase. Now. the norm fixes. where nothing can be left to chance.COM 15 . rather. the spatial and nuclear models do not have their own ends: neither the discovery of the moon.powers of this scenario are not free-the whole world is satellized). still taps a perverse imaginary. environment-nothing can be left to contingencies. The vertigo of a world without flaws. nothing will be left to chance. stupefies.folding of events. with its aura of violence. A gigantic involution that makes every conflict. moreover this is the essence of socialization. The "space race" played exactly the same role as nuclear escalation. we are dumb-founded by the perfection of the programming and the technical manipulation. it is the same model of programmatic infallibility." Because what. neutralizes. ultimately. The political stake is dead. Just watching it produces vertigo. the fulfillment of an earlier dream). The same goes for peaceful nuclear power stations. it is the system of deterrence that grows. This is why the space program was so easily able to replace it in the 1960s (Kennedy/Khrushchev). by the immanent wonder of the programmed un. of the conquest of the moon. DEBATENEXUS. energy. Here as well. and around it grows the historical.

COM 16 .Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ DEBATENEXUS.

So. but in the fear and mental destruction that fear of them demands. the essence of the film is not in any respect the Watergate' effect in the person of Jane Fonda. Because unhappiness is when there is no nuclear spectacle. of the explosive kind (without changing the course of things: did Hiroshima perceptibly delay. “Simulacra and Simulation” p. What else do the media dream of besides creating the event simply by their presence? Everyone decries it. during the visit offered to the journalists by the EDF (French Electric Company). What will happen will never again be the explosion. Parousia of catastrophe: substantial food for our messianic libido. the unions discovered fissures in the reactors. it is that they were preceded by the model. Alas. DEBATENEXUS. but it is just as inexorable. in the film as in Harrisburg. the universal process of deterrence?). Baudrillard in 81 [Jean. it is our hope: note how much. A real catastrophe would delay things. to repeat on this occasion the accident linked to the magic eye. Miracle of contagions. her image is juxtaposed with what will inexorably follow it and efface it on the screen: a commercial of some kind. That the "heart" of the reactor at last reveals its hot power of destruction. being at the same time that of revolution-but the cold energy of the simulacrum and of its distillation in homeopathic doses in the cold systems of information.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Nuclear Hyperreality B. The simulation of nuclear catastrophe is the strategic result of this generic and universal undertaking of deterrence: accustoming the people to the ideology and the discipline of absolute security-to the metaphysics of fission and fissure. but everyone is secretly fascinated by this eventuality. Such is the logic of simulacra. it is that of the precession of models. never the real. miracle of analogic chain reactions. And on the other hand yes! so powerful is the logic of simulacra: a week after. albeit catastrophic. that is to say not into the nuclear threat. but on the contrary TV as the twin orbit and twin chain reaction of the nuclear one. And it is because of this that events no longer have meaning: it is not that they are insignificant in themselves. from this panic of deterrence that it exercises in the invisible form of the nuclear. we need to embrace its simulation and break the mental chains of deterrence.COM 17 . Thus it would have been marvelous to repeat the script for The China Syndrome at Fessenheim. it would constitute a retrograde incident. Thus. for destruction to announce itself and remove us from this unnameable panic. The Network effect goes far beyond the Watergate effect and spreads mysteriously into the Harrisburg effect. The true damage of nuclear weapons is not the war that could result. with which their processes only coincided. it is simulation that is effective. which had so much charm. No more energy in its spectacular and pathetic form-all the romanticism of the explosion. but the implosion. and it is for that reason that it is rejected-it would be perfectly accepted if it lent itself to spectacle as previous forms of energy did. to the provocative presence of the media. that it reassures us about the presence of energy. and bestows its spectacle on us. but into the simulation of nuclear catastrophe. But that is precisely what will never happen. 55-57] Because an explosion is always a promise. the whole world waits for something to blow up. not in any respect TV as a means of exposing nuclear vices. deter. it is no longer that of divine predestination. just at the end-and there the film is unrelenting in regard to its own argument-when Jane Fonda makes the truth explode directly (maximum Watergate effect). Instead of trying to avoid the catastrophe. no spectacle of nuclear energy in itself (Hiroshima is over). Besides. nothing happened. To this end the fissure must be a fiction.

the power of catastrophe must.COM 18 . because it means returning things to their pure event. a mental destructuration through a mental strategy of catastrophe. If one looks carefully. in the continuous reservoirs of information. Therein lies the true contamination: never biological and radioactive. real fusion would be a bad argument: the film would regress to the level of a disaster movie-weak by definition. to produce or to reproduce a real catastrophe. Closer to us. molecular doses. but.Baudrillard <<continued>> Page ____ of ____ Nuclear Hyperreality <<Baudrillard 81 continued>> In the film. this is what terrorism is occupied with as well: making real. therein lies terrorism's ambiguity. The equilibrium of terror rests on the eternal deferral of the atomic clash. It teaches us (once again without meaning to) that nuclear catastrophe does not occur. in the distillation of the nuclear specter through the omnipresent hertzian relays of information. it is God who through his cataclysms unknots the equilibrium of terror in which humans are imprisoned. also. rather. The atom and the nuclear are made to be disseminated for deterrent ends. in the real either. To which Nature is at times given: in its inspired moments. is not meant to happen. any more than the atomic clash was at the dawning of the cold war. and in going further. itself. Besides. be disseminated in homeopathic. the film introduces us to this mental strategy. it even delivers a lesson diametrically opposed to that of Watergate: if every strategy today is that of mental terror and of deterrence tied to the suspension and the eternal simulation of catastrophe. then the only means of mitigating this scenario would be to make the catastrophe arrive. DEBATENEXUS. instead of stupidly exploding. The China Syndrome. finds its strength in filtering catastrophe. palpable violence surface in opposition to the invisible violence of security.

Instead. and laugh at nuclear war to delegitimize the systems that make it possible. because anything can be justified in order to avoid the atomic clash. which means their plan will always be rejected in the real world. An empirical example of this is North Korea – Bush identifies them as the axis of evil and tells us we need to be afraid of their nuclear weapons. we must embrace the simulation of nuclear annihilation. Here’s the argument. systemic violence of the deterrence system is the only true impact of nuclear weapons. The constant. Nuclear war is and always will be an act of the imagination. The effects of nuclear weapons are instead seen on the social plane. because deterrence prevents escalation from occurring in the real world. The images of nuclear war they create are part of the problem: as long as people keep imagining nuclear scenarios and threats and being afraid of them. through the imagination of their use. DEBATENEXUS. Allow their harms to occur as a way to break the chains of mental deterrence. The only way to break this cycle is to stop fearing the bomb – trying to delay nuclear war allows the systems that justify it to keep working. Note that this doesn’t mean we advocate nuclear war occurring in the real world. and uses this to justify violations of civil liberties. this state-sponsored security and deterrence system can continue forever. and ends up causing North Korea to become a nuclear threat when they weren’t in the first place. bring the noise. acts of war against other states. you should treat the threat of nuclear war not as something to be afraid of.COM 19 . It places people in a constant mindset of fear and devalues human life. but something with liberating potential from the mindset of nuclear freeze and deterrence. so all their harms are inevitable. just like debaters always try to link the case to a nuclear war scenario and cause it to be rejected. The constant nuclear threat is used to freeze social action. and hug the bomb. which we all know has no relation to reality. because elites will be able to prevent change by claiming it will always risk nuclear war.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Nuclear Hyperreality 2NC Overview Extend our two cards from Baudrillard 81. and systems of nuclear lockdown and control will always proceed faster than their explosive potential. but in the simulated plane of fiat.

COM 20 .Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ DEBATENEXUS.

images and fear of nuclear war that they present have negative effects: states use the population’s fear of nuclear war to freeze the social and deny change. Second. the only way out is to allow the simulation of their harms to occur in the debate round – even though what we do in this round has no impact on the real world. because deterrence works. Third. which will prevent the plan from actually being passed. because it’s manipulated by politicians to justify bad things. refusing to be swayed by fear of nuclear war into giving them the ballot helps break the mindset of deterrence that justifies all these bad things. like debaters outweighing everything with an absurd scenario and a Schell card. DEBATENEXUS. nuclear war won’t happen.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Nuclear Hyperreality 2NR Overview Extend our A and B cards from Baudrillard in 81.COM 21 . Fourth. which turns their impacts. and systems of control always proceed faster than the explosive use of the weapons. They miss some key points in the last overview. like Bush did by demonizing North Korea and creating a self-fulfilling prophecy. so extend: First. That means their harms will never be true in the real world. Embrace the explosion and challenge the system with a ballot for our side. fear of nuclear war devalues human life and makes their impacts inevitable. turning their solvency.

Baudrillard in 81 [Jean. all of those who have acquired it since will be deterred from using it by the very fact of possessing it). they deter themselves. DEBATENEXUS. The nuclear is at once the culminating point of available energy and the maximization of energy control systems. believing that they are buying their independent striking force. control.COM 22 . Responsibility. what power. In this sense. Thus the very possibility of paralyzing a whole country by flicking a switch makes it so that the electrical engineers will never use this weapon: the whole myth of the total and revolutionary strike crumbles at the very moment when the means are available-but alas precisely because those means are available. all risk of explosion. Energies freeze in their own fire. Entry into the atomic club. that is to say in the sense of a reversion of the whole cycle toward a minimal point. the nuclear everywhere inaugurates an accelerated process of implosion. so prettily named. now neutralized. The "little" powers. will buy the virus of deterrence. weapons. Control by threat will be replaced by the more effective strategy of pacification through the bomb and through the possession of the bomb. “Simulacra and Simulation” p. very quickly effaces (as unionization does in the working world) any inclination toward violent intervention. Therein lies the whole process of deterrence. It is thus perfectly probable that one day we will see nuclear powers export atomic reactors. unintelligible. One can no longer imagine what project. of their own deterrence. what subject could exist behind this enclosure. this vast saturation of a system by its own forces. The same goes for the atomic reactors that we have already sent them: so many neutron bombs knocking out all historical virulence. nonexplosive-except for the possibility of an explosion toward the cente1.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Proliferation Stops War Possession of nuclear weapons freezes societies and makes war impossible. what strategy. This was already the aporia of the modem revolution. "real" use of it (as the Americans did in Hiroshima-but precisely only they had a right to this "use value" of the bomb. Lockdown and control increase in direct proportion to (and undoubtedly even faster than) liberating potentialities. of a reversion of energies toward a minimal threshold). and bombs to every latitude. It is still the absolute paradox of the nuclear. 39-40] This is why nuclear proliferation does not increase the risk of either an atomic clash or an accident-save in the interval when the "young" powers could be tempted to make a nondeterrent. censure. self-deterrence always grow more rapidly than the forces or the weapons at our disposal: this is the secret of the social order. it absorbs all living energy. unusable. it freezes everything around it. of an implosion where all these energies would be abolished in a catastrophic process (in the literal sense.

if we were to give nuclear weapons to every country in the world. due to international norms and deterrence theory. Here’s how.COM 23 . in fact.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Proliferation Stops War Overview Extend Baudrillard 81. the more power it has over its people and its weapons. DEBATENEXUS. which guarantees a war will never occur. No state is exempt from this. it could prevent war forever. proliferation stops war. The more nuclear armaments a country has. they are given a sense of power and responsibility which leads to a reciprocal increase in restraint when using those weapons. As soon as countries acquire nuclear weapons.

we are back in the pure and simple reality of political ignominy.COM 24 . apart from that marvellous miscarriage. at least. The amnesia about it is. in the end. the media. care was taken not to go that far: Saddam. There was no exulting after the Gulf War either (and yet. If you take one-thousandth of what you see on the TV news to heart. you're done for. the simulation of an orgy. deep down. An atomic war without the atom. etc. just made credible by the calculated threat of the balance of terror. loss of consciousness and mystification. in a miniature war-game where the possibility of annihilating the enemy could be checked out. . they do not judge the event itself. wasn't it?). Once past the dilemma of the reality/unreality of the war. perhaps because. even in surgical terms: its labours produced nothing. <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. a flight into amnesia and hypocrisy. the game of deterrence. symptomatically. Built-in obsolescence. with military action just as an afterthought. where they draw all the oxygen out of public opinion. A botched operation. non-confrontation and convulsive effect. It was a war without results. The first strike is the last. as a substitute for a Third World War which did not take place. So is this the zero degree of communication? Certainly. underexposed to memory. as with any consumer article. A German word sums all this up very well: Schwindel. we must oppose its simulation – to give it authority through images is to make it real. Its effect and its images self-destruct in the mind. the most fervent defenders of the war's reality end up conceding that perhaps nothing has in fact happened. CNN.as they fought on the battlefield. just as obsolescence is built into the object in the profusion of useless accessories. who will. It was just a second-hand scenario. Its immunizing. They used the same 'fuel air' explosives in the media. rather. But television protects us from this. Baudrillard in 94 [Jean. but not without an aftermath. Overexposed to the media. The Americans fought the same war in respect of world opinion -via the media. Which shows them to be just as much engaged in Realpolitik as anyone else. which means both giddiness and swindle. have been nothing but that fairground dummy you shoot at from point-blank range. is how the nuclear shoot-out was supposed to be. Here. prophylactic use protects us from an unbearable responsibility. had to be saved. in the most odious Realpolitik: the Shi'ites. instantaneousness. ultimately. But they prejudge this from the absence of an outcome. and so on. was a scenario. When the prospect of an atomic clash disappeared once and for all. . the calculated survival of Saddam . “The Illusion of the End” p. in itself. . it is: people fear communication like the plague. the Kurds. it was a victory. So this military 'orgy' wasn't an orgy at all. a confirmation of the unreality of this war.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Illusion of War War in the modern era exists more in the image of it being fought than in reality. the New World Order. censorship. when it got lost in space with Star Wars. even the two hundred thousand dead produced nothing. 62-65] America conducted the Gulf War as though it were a nuclear conflict. but neither of the two adversaries ever risked it.. Forgetting is built into the event itself in the profusion of information and details. There was. wars are conducted via public opinion polls. and thus. It was an orgy of simulation.. they neither of them believed in it. but analogous in its impact. That. The nuclear shoot-out. But. To avoid war. it had to be tested in simulated form.

Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ DEBATENEXUS.COM 25 .

the book has fallen .here against the manifest reality of this war. If the Helen of the Trojan War was a simulacrum. Orestes. All this is as it should have been since it dealt with something which did not take place. Like Borges' chronicling of cultures which never existed. rather than become an accesssory to its false reality. Anyhow. right in the thick of things. The Greek victory was won at great cost to the victors. Analysis must not be sacrificed to the expression of anger. seven months for the Gulf War) and the final phase was very rapid in both cases. with a little imagination.somewhere other than in the 'real time' of news where it simply peters out. when the confusion of the real is at its height. stuck in realist abjection. The incubation period of the war was very long (seven years in the case of Troy. Before the expedition. It has to be directed in its entirety against reality. This difference leaves the Americans some hope. The Egyptian priests had held on to the original (we do not know what became of it) when she set out again with Paris for Troy. but whether one is for or against the reality of war. it will be possible to read La guerre du Golfe n'a pas eu lieu * as a science-fiction novel. Every universal form is a simulacrum. what was the Gulf War's Helen? Where was there simulacrum here. Clytaemnestra. Helen was in any case merely a simulacrum.something it is impossible for any real being to be. But. against manifestness . as we get some distance from it. The Stoics contest the very self-evidence of pain.COM 26 .something into which it will surely be turned later. Here. except in the simulacrum of war itself? DEBATENEXUS. we must contest the very self-evidence of war. You give force to the illusion of war. since it is the simultaneous equivalent of all the others . It was a successful non-event. the gods having no real cause to avenge themselves. this time the war did not take place.). It's too late afterwards: you're stuck with the 'acts of violence'. We must hit out at the weak point of reality. By making transparent the non-event of the war. as the anticipation. you give it force in the imagination . etc. What will be the fate of the 'victors' of the Gulf War? Admittedly. In a little time. since the universal form of beauty is as unreal as gold.into the same black hole as the war. whom the gods punished relentlessly (the murder of Agamemnon. or even now.quite logically . like appearing on television. the universal form of all commodities. just as Bush did with all the nations of the 'free world'. of the event as a fictional scenario . Menelaus called all the warriors of the Greek world to arms. even without the magic of the priests. There are many analogies between the Trojan and Gulf wars.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Illusion of War <<Baudrillard 94 continued>> The question is not whether one is for or against war. It was the simulacrum of Helen that was at the heart of the Trojan War. when the body's confusion is at its height. like the Agency. It has faded as quickly as the event whose absence it denounced.

aids the recreation of war in the real world. which may or may not be true. so enough public opinion can be generated for war’s reality to proceed. DEBATENEXUS. and these points from the last overview – First. They accept war as real through the authority of its image.COM 27 . War in the modern era is fought in the arena of representation before it becomes reality – for war to occur. Here’s the argument. images of war are what allows actual war to occur. governments depend on public recognition of its existence.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Illusion of War Overview Extend Baudrillard 94. Their scenario makes it more likely an actual war could be carried out. so vote for us to help solve all their impacts in the real world. because political actors looking to justify a policy of war need the public to recognize the images in order to justify them. their disadvantage is a simulation of reality based on images of war. which gives the illusion of war. Second. The scenario they present is a description of real world events. Challenging the representations of war make it less likely an actual war will be carried out. which turns all their impacts. Their scenario. refusing to buy into their illusion of war helps escape the system. so all their scenario claims are inherently unreliable and there’s only a slight chance they’ll occur. 2ND Overview Extend the Baudrillard 94 card. Third. a simulation of reality. Refusing to buy their image of war helps prevent it from actually happening outside the round. so don’t aid their representations of war with the support of your ballot.

Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ DEBATENEXUS.COM 28 .

. vitrified beneath their experimental bubble. but this is of no importance. in Arizona.the first zoological gardens of the species. which paradoxically removes the value of life itself. far better adapted race. “The Illusion of the End” p. Everything here is designed with a brain-like abstraction. both that of nature and that of the species with equal rigour. . where eight human beings (four men and four women. a thousand years. a sphere in which human life must be preserved eternally. We need the accident and randomness of the natural world to smash their simplified construction in order to escape. the air. as once they went to watch apes copulate. in order . who knows? . the automatic purification of the water. The most amazing thing is that they have reconstituted a fragment of artificial desert right in the middle of the natural desert (a bit like reconstituting Hollywood in Disneyworld).ecological. right in the middle of the desert. of which we still dream. A minimal representation of the species in an experimental situation.since we are not able to change our lives . leaving it no chance.it forms a pendant to the Desert Museum some sixty miles away. In the true spirit of Disneyland's attractions.to explore the conditions for our survival. Only in this artificial desert there are neither scorpions nor Indians to be exterminated. gives meaning to a project which has none. this desert. a geodesic glass and metal structure accommodating all the planet's climates in miniature.but what? Difficult to say. except the mad desire for a miniaturization of the human species.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Biosphere 2 A. a person of the same sex is substituted). to which human beings come to watch themselves survive. millions. The elimination of all sexual reproduction: it is forbidden to reproduce in Biosphere 2. Baudrillard in 94 [Jean. . but of an unpredictable future . Outside Tucson. in a closed circuit.COM 29 . micro-cosmic and biogenetic . They treat the natural world as an experiment to be managed. in a kind of spaceship allegory. absolute space inspires engineers. As a museum mock-up of the future. The whole humanist ideology .is summed up here. Sexual difference functions only as a formal. Such a very American hallucination this ocean. even contamination from life [Ie vivant] is dangerous.of the relics of the past for the Desert Museum. the nourishing agriculture DEBATENEXUS. if anyone drops out. with a view perhaps to a future race and its emergence. As ever. the virgin forest lobe. The point of convergence between the two being the idea of the conservation and optimal management of residues . which retraces the geological and animal history of two hundred million years. climatic. of course) are to live self-sufficiently. 85-88] The finest example of what the human species is capable of inflicting upon itself is Biosphere 2 .not to mention the magical desert site which allows the problem of survival to be examined. statistical variable (the same number of women as men.a century hence. there are only extraterrestrials trained to survive in the very place where they destroyed another. for two years. Biosphere 2 is not an experiment. sexuality may spoil the experiment. this savannah. the anticipated relics of the future for Biosphere 2 . this virgin forest reconstituted in miniature. Only the sidereal. the physical atmosphere (and the mental atmosphere too. viruses. transparent form of the edifice means anything . Biosphere 2 is to Biosphere 1 (the whole of our planet and the cosmos) what the brain is to the human being in general: the synthesis in miniature of all its possible functions and operations: the desert lobe. . The artificial promiscuity of climates has its counterpart in the artificial immunity of the space: the elimination of all spontaneous generation (of germs. but an experimental attraction. purified by science). microbes).

a failure to die that man is assured of survival. But. take the view that this experiment.in real time and out in the open . do we have to build this prophylactic one? What. artificial immunity. has the right to disappear (or might there be a paradoxical limit to human rights?). The real planet. according to the analytical imperative. It is generally thought that the obsession with survival is a logical consequence of life and the right to life. air-conditioned clone (have no fear. Just as the whole of America is built in the image of Disneyland. of sex). From the perspective of survival. controlled abstinence. At least in present conditions. like any attempt to achieve artificial survival or artificial paradise. Life is not a question of rights. or experimental. but DEBATENEXUS. and you sense this when you return from Biosphere 2 to 'real' America. by virtue of its artificial intelligence? Is there a species destined to escape natural selection. in the glass coffin of Biosphere 2. then. We may.this latter setting its seal on the ending of natural selection. This micro-universe seeks to exorcize catastrophe by making an artificial synthesis of all the elements of catastrophe. ecological balancing. but also social ones. after all. the reversible sequencing of all its operations. then. which surely. In fact.and not just plant and animal species.logical counterpart of the remarkable good fortune of having appeared? There is a kind of aberration in the attempt to eternalize the species . In days gone by it was the dead who were embalmed for eternity. it is the living we embalm alive in a state of survival. which the Biosphere principle perpetuates. not from any technical shortcomings. all the earth's climates are airconditioned here) which is designed to vanquish death by total simulation. just as Disneyland is only falsely imaginary. The recycling of all substances. is illusory.COM 30 .Baudrillard <<continued>> Page ____ of ____ Biosphere 2 <<Baudrillard 94 continued>> lobe. of stabilization and metastabilization.the same experiment as Biosphere 2 which is therefore only falsely experimental. of recycling and feedback. beneath its futuristic exterior. also. the integration of flows and circuits. biologically. which is artificial. a failure to take pleasure. today. restrained jouissance but. most of the time.in a word.not to transcend itself by virtue of its natural intelligence.its plasticity. but to eternalize it in this face-lifted coma. a gigantic hypothetical error. a fierce idealization doomed to failure. is sacrificed in advance to its miniaturized. the two things are contradictory. There is. all carefully distinct and placed side by side. the elements of life are sacrificed to those of survival (elimination of germs. of evil. the residential lobe. model is in no way different from the real functioning of this society. but death. Must this be our hope? Having lost our metaphysical utopias. It is only by paying the price of a failure to live. behind this archaic model.not to immortalize it in its actions. non-pollution. All categories formally brought under the one umbrella of the law . the 'truth' of the operation lies elsewhere. natural disappearance . but to survive physically. nonetheless. death? What cosmic cussedness might give rise to such a turnabout? What vital reaction might produce the idea of survival at any cost? What metaphysical anomaly might grant the right not to disappear . Real life. the right of all species to survival and conservation . All of this in reality entirely outdated with respect to what we now know about the brain . its elasticity. is sacrificed to artificial survival. so the whole of American society is carrying on . and what follows on from life is not survival. presumed condemned. as you do when you emerge from Disneyland into real life: the fact is that the imaginary. is this species endowed with the insane pretension to survive .

COM 31 . In spite of itself. Let us hope that the random universe outside smashes this glass coffin. DEBATENEXUS. it is threatened by the same accidents as real life. Fortunately. Any accident will do if it rescues us from a scientific euphoria sustained by drip-feed.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ in its very principle.

The affirmative is an example of human action based on Biosphere. Additionally. not as a unique process of its own. This is the argument – Biosphere 2 is the second version of the world. which is the reality. so that to live one must not live naturally. described and controlled by scientific processes. This makes human life meaningless and dehumanized to scientific processes. The discourse we use in the debate round is more important and should be considered first. people must be constantly monitored by science. as opposed to Biosphere 1. DEBATENEXUS. which is the natural world as we know it wild.COM 32 . which turns case. their focus on human survival within this perfectly managed experiment displays a mindset that in order to survive. does not relate at all to the experimental world of the plan. The alternative is to allow their harms to occur within the simulated fiat world of the debate round. This scientific mindset will inevitably fail – Biosphere 1. Everything there is logical and coherent. Natural chaos and chance occurrences will cause their simplified view of the world to fail when it is applied. What we do here does not correspond with what happens in the real world. Their harms and solvency evidence display nature as a machine to be fixed. Vote negative and let nature to smash the glass coffin of their experimental project.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Biosphere 2(NC) Overview Extend the Baudrillard 94 evidence. so they can’t claim any impact from their imagined case. which is the greatest impact.

their effort to preserve the existence of human life displays a mindset of scientific examination of human life in order to preserve it. turning case. which has no relation to reality but is the perfect forum to oppose this destructive mindset.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Biosphere 2(NR) Overview Extend our Baudrillard 94 evidence. scientific abstractions of nature fail.COM 33 . the way out is to allow the simulation of their harms to occur within the context of the debate round. That’s one link. their plan depends on a scientific and artificial vision of the natural world that can be acted upon like an experiment with their plan. where every action is controlled by the operation of the experiment. Second. Fourth. so extend these points: First. like living in the Truman Show. That mindset destroys the value of human life and must be on-face rejected. They miss some key analysis from the last overview. Third. Allowing their harms to occur breaks nature out of the scientific prison. DEBATENEXUS. That means their solvency will inevitably fail. because the randomness of the natural world is never fully accounted for by the theories of their plan.

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Maleficent Ecology
Granting subjectivity and rights to nature is handing it a poisoned chalice, entering it into a competition it can never effectively play, which inevitably results in disaster, and the more we are reconciled with nature, the less we can be reconciled with ourselves, resulting in mass extermination through nuclear or biological means. Baudrillard in 94 [Jean, “The Illusion of the End” p. 80-84]
Hence the recent proposal, following this same logic, from the moment it achieved the status of virtual waste-product, to accord nature international recognition of its rights, to elevate it to the status of a subject in law. Thus the 'contrat nature/"" amounts to a definitive recognition of nature as waste. Just as, in bygone days, the recognition of the rights of the unfortunate meant not their emancipation as citizens, but their liberation as the unfortunate. It is always the same with rights: the right to water, the right to air, the right to existence, etc. It is when all these fine things have disappeared that the law arrives to grant their disappearance official recognition. The law is like religious faith. If God exists, there is no need to believe in Him. If people do believe in Him, this is because the selfevidence of his existence has passed away. Thus, when people obtain the right to life, the fact is that they are no longer able to live. When nature is recognized as a subject in law, as it is by Michel Serres, we have objectified it to death, and this ecological cover merely asserts our right to go on doing so. All this has been brought about by the highly dubious way in which the concept of nature has evolved. What was initially matter became energy. The modern discovery of nature consists in its liberation as energy and in a mechanical transformation of the world. After having first been matter, and then energy, nature is today becoming an interactive subject. It is ceasing to be an object, but this is bringing it all the more surely into the circuit of subjection. A dramatic paradox, and one which also affects human beings: we are much more compromised when we cease to be objects and become subjects. This is a trick that was pulled on us long ago, in the name of absolute liberation. Let's not pull the same one on nature. For the ultimate danger is that, in an interactivity built up into a total system of communication, there is no other; there are only subjects - and, very soon, only subjects without objects. All our problems today as civilized beings originate here: not in an excess of alienation, but a disappearance of alienation in favour of a maximum transparency between subjects. An unbearable situation, all the more so for the fact that, in foisting on nature the status of a subject in law, we are also foisting on it all the vices of subjectivity, decking it out, in our own image, with a bad conscience, with nostalgia (for a lost object which, in this case, can only be us), with a range of drives - in particular, an impulse for revenge. The 'balance' we hear so much of in ecology ('out of balance') is not so much that of planetary resources and their exploitation as the metaphysical one between subject and object. Now, that metaphysical subject object balance is being upset and the subject, armed as he is with all the technologies of advanced communication (technologies on whose horizon the object has disappeared), is the beneficiary.
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Once that balance is disrupted, it inevitably sparks violent reactions on the part of the object. Just as individuals counter the transparency and virtual responsibility inflicted on them as subjects with unexplainable acts, acts of resistance, failure, delinquency and collective disorder, so nature counters this enforced promotion, this consensual, communicational blackmail, with various forms of behaviour that are radically other, such as catastrophes, upheavals, earthquakes and chaos. It would seem that nature does not really feel a sense of responsibility for itself, nor does it react to our efforts to give it one. We are, admittedly, indulging in" a (bad) ecological conscience and attempting, by this moral violence, to stave off possible violence on nature's part. But if, by offering it the status of subject, we are handing it the same poisoned chalice as we gave to the decolonized nations, we ought not to be surprised if it behaves irrationally merely so as to assert itself as such. Contrary to the underlying Rousseauist ideology, which argues that the profound nature of the liberated subject can only be good and that nature itself, once emancipated, cannot but be endowed with natural equilibrium and all the ecological virtues, there is nothing more ambiguous or perverse than a subject. Now, nature is also germs, viruses, chaos, bacteria and scorpions, significantly eliminated from Biosphere 2 as though they were not meant to exist. Where are the deadly little scorpions, so beautiful and so translucent, which one sees in the Desert Museum not far away, scorpions whose magical sting certainly performs a higher, invisible – but necessary - function within our Biosphere 1: the incarnation of evil, of the venomous evil of chance, the mortal innocence of desire (the desire for death) in the equilibrium of living beings? What they have forgotten is that what binds living beings together is something other than an ecological, biospherical solidarity, something other than the homeostatic equilibrium of a system: it is the cycle of metamorphoses. Man is also a scorpion, just as the Bororo are araras and, left to himself in an expurgated universe, he becomes, himself, a scorpion. In short, it is not by expurgating evil that we liberate good. Worse, by liberating good, we also liberate evil. And this is only right: it is the rule of the symbolic game. It is the inseparability of good and evil which constitutes our true equilibrium, our true balance. We ought not to entertain the illusion that we might separate the two, that we might cultivate good and happiness in a pure state and expel evil and sorrow as wastes. That is the terroristic dream of the transparency of good, which very quickly ends in its opposite, the transparency of evil. We must not reconcile ourselves with nature. It seems that the more the human race reconciles itself with nature, the less it is reconciled with itself. Above and beyond the violence it inflicts on others, there is a violence specific to the human race in general, a violence of the species against itself in which it treats itself as a residue, as a survivor - even in the present - of a coming catastrophe. As if it too were ready to repent of an evolution which has brought it such privileges and carried it to such extremes. This is the same conjuncture as the one to which Canetti refers, in which we stepped out of history, except that here we have not stepped out of history, but have passed a point beyond which nothing is either human or inhuman any longer and what is at stake, which is even more immense, is the tottering of the species into the void. It is quite possible that, in this process, the species itself is commencing its own
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disappearance, either by disenchantment with - or ressentiment towards - itself, or out of a deliberate inclination which leads it here and now to manage that disappearance as its destiny. Surreptitiously, in spite of our superiority (or perhaps because of it), we are carrying over on to our own species the treatment we mete out to the others, all of which are virtually dying out. In an animal milieu which has reached saturation point, species are spontaneously dissuaded from living. The effects produced by the finite nature of the earth, for the first time contrasting violently with the infinity of our development, are such that our species is automatically switching over to collective suicide. Whether by external (nuclear) violence or internal (biological) virulence. We are subjecting ourselves as a human species to the same experimental pressure as the animal species in our laboratories. Man is without prejudice: he is using himself as a guinea-pig, just as he is using the rest of the world, animate or inanimate. He is cheerfully gambling with the destiny of his own species as he is with that of all the others. In his blind desire to know more, he is programming his own destruction with the same ease and ferocity as the destruction of the others. He cannot be accused of a superior egoism. He is sacrificing himself, as a species, to an unknown experimental fate, unknown at least as yet to other species, who have experienced only natural fates. And, whereas it seemed that, linked to that natural fate, there was something like an instinct of self-preservation - long the mainstay of a natural philosophy of individuals and groups - this experimental fate to which the human species is condemning itself by unprecedented, artificial means, this scientific prefiguring of its own disappearance, sweeps away all ideas of a self-preservation instinct. The idea is, indeed, no longer discussed in the human sciences (where the focus of attention would seem, rather, to be on the death drive) and this disappearance from the field of thought signals that, beneath a frenzy for ecological conservation which is really more to do with nostalgia and remose, a wholly different tendency has already won out, the sacrificing of the species to boundless experimentation.

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Granting rights to nature is an excuse to further exploit it. once nature becomes a subject random acts become reasons to take revenge upon it. nature is worse off as a subject than an object. their project to deify nature results in the production of humanity as waste and its complete extermination and mass death through nuclear or biological means. we need to treat nature with disregard and indifference. Also. for example. treating it like an individual we can respect and awe. DEBATENEXUS. it forces violent reactions by the object to maintain the balance – in English. This puts nature into a rigged game. because granting it awe and respect only makes it that much easier to destroy it. Additionally.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Maleficent Ecology 2NC Overview Extend the Baudrillard 94 card. more understanding of nature trades of with understanding for ourselves. This also turns nature into a subject. the more we pretend to respect nature. Instead of awe. because when the subject’s power is increased. which turns their arguments. Here’s the argument. the more it will be necessary to destroy it to preserve our dominance. If there is a natural disaster. because the concern trades off. where it is asked to play by rules it cannot follow. Covering up the small problems allows the larger problems to keep occurring. Just like the Nazis were all for protecting the environment at the expense of humans. because the rights are only necessary once destruction is already complete. Claiming to respect nature is just a mask to guarantee its further exploitation. and we destroy it for noncompliance. However. which is a reason to on-face reject their discourse. nature can be blamed and retribution can be taken because subjects are assumed to be responsible for all their actions.COM 37 .

the more we understand nature the less we understand humans. which is a reason to reject their mindset. Fourth. we can go cut down a rain forest to get even (which is just an example. instead of treating nature with awe and respect.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Maleficent Ecology 2NR Overview Extend our Baudrillard 94 evidence. Second. but displays the harm of the mindset).COM 38 . DEBATENEXUS. treating nature as a subject that can be respected upsets the balance and creates violent reaction by the object to restore it. culminating in genocide and mass death. which solves all the harms created by calling nature a subject. Respecting nature requires the production of humanity as a waste product to be exterminated. so vengeance can be sought from nature for harm done to humans – if there’s a hurricane. Third. subject’s are assumed to be responsible for their actions. further entrenching nature’s destruction. Fifth. which turns their arguments. we should display indifference. because rights are always granted after its too late for them to be useful. and this analysis from the last overview: First. respecting nature is a mask for its continued exploitation.

That’s best for debate because it requires them to defend all the justifications to their arguments so we can have deeper and more informed clash. Finally. they can’t take back what they say. and also demands human retribution for natural occurrences. Also. it provides a mask for more domination. kicking it now won’t get them out of it – our argument is not just against their advocacy. it’s against the discourse and images they use to support it. they lose the round. more understanding of nature trades off with respect for our own species.COM 39 . This causes more violence against nature. which justifies any atrocity and is an on-face reason to reject the critique.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Maleficent v. His argument is that when they grant rights and respect to nature. Even if they drop the advocacy. Deep Ecology 1AR Extend Baudrillard 94. so the critique can never solve. which treats nature with indifference instead of awe. solves the impacts of their critique and allows the case solvency as well. And. DEBATENEXUS. and only happens when it’s too late to prevent human influence. Our advocacy. treating nature as a subject increases our domination of it because it is seen as a subject to be controlled. That means that if they don’t answer this turn. which results in treating humanity as a waste that must be disposed of. putting nature into a rigged game and turning their alternative.

one that is secretly resolved in the living culture of men. who comes to liberate us from our culture. our sentimentality toward animals is a sure sign of the disdain in which we hold them. but only of experimentation and extermination like meat from the butchery. it must be said. of childhood. It is proportional to this disdain. sex (Foucault) speak. worse: that we have made of them a racially inferior world. Baudrillard in 81 [Jean. then of making the extinct species speak. through seduction. the dragon. children. Sentimentality is nothing but the infinitely degraded form of bestiality. no longer even worthy of our justice. in mythology. all humanity has gone over to the side of captive bestiality. today. and we are proud of it. and that is a form of alliance. except in a symbolic and ritual mode). “Simulacra and Simulation” p. we who are filled with horror at this practice.COM 40 . The convergence of processes of civilization is astounding.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Sentimentality to Animals Sentimentality towards animals degrades their status and places them even farther below humans. no longer worthy of punishment and of death. rich in every threat and every metamorphosis. In the end. as one has made the insane. in the heraldic bestiary. which is one of "intimacy" (Bataille). the progression that the beast followed is not different form that of madness and childhood. We take them for nothing. Making animals speak. object of terror and fascination. of reclusion. of sex or negritude. a logic of reversion. men. reversible violence that makes it so that all of society finally aligns itself on the axioms of madness. always ambivalent. and to the respective seduction of man and of beast. Kong dies for having renewed. and it is on this basis that we are "human" with them. It is the reabsorption of all violence in regard to them that today forms the monstrosity of beasts. in which we ridiculously cloak animals to the point of rendering them sentimental themselves. in sacrifice. Those who used to sacrifice animals did not take them for beasts. they lent importance). The violence of sacrifice. the cultural hero annihilated the beast. the monster-and from the spilt blood plants. the racist commiseration. and so many others. has been exchanged for a spectacular monstrosity: that of King Kong wrenched from his jungle and transformed into a music-hall star. from the very heart of their exclusion. of making them present the confession of their disappearance. but only of our affection and social charity. the human and the bestial. which condemned and punished them in due form. we no longer punish them. of the radical interrogation to which. which consists of liquidation. it is the beast King Kong who comes to sack our industrial metropolises. The profound seduction of the film comes from this inversion of meaning: all inhumanity has gone over to the side of men. this incestuous promiscuity between beasts and men (though one that is never realized. 134-136] In particular. of discrimination and necessarily. It is in proportion to being relegated to irresponsibility. this possibility of the metamorphosis of one reign into another. Animals. in return. but it is simply that we have domesticated them. A logic of exclusion. This is even deluded in DEBATENEXUS. culture were born. We no longer sacrifice them. a culture dead from having purged itself of all real monstrosity and from having broken its pact with it (which was expressed in the film by the primitive gift of the woman). of sexuality. was in this way much closer to them than we are. Monstrosity has changed in meaning. have followed this uninterrupted process of annexation through extermination. just as the child does in direct proportion to being relegated to a status of innocence and childishness. has been succeeded by the sentimental or experimental violence that is one of distance. like the dead. but never negative. And even the Middle Ages. and of inferior races (purged. justifying experimentation and destruction. that the animal becomes worthy of the human ritual of affection and protection. to the inhuman. They held them to be guilty: which was a way of honoring them. monstrous seduction of one order by the other. The original monstrosity of the beast. object of exchange also and of metaphor. and even in our dreams and our phantasms-this monstrosity. as not even deserving our respect. Formerly.

which turns their arguments. Sentimentality to Animals Overview Extend our Baudrillard 81 card.COM 41 . this reduces animals to merely the subjects of domestication and experimentation. resides in the fact that they do not speak.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ regard to animals. Their discourse treats animals as children that have to be protected by the wise humans. Treating animals with care and being sentimental about their feelings is a degradation of their status. Here’s the argument. Instead of being worthy of respect. and imparts sentimental feelings on them that are just an illusion. where they can be destroyed in our endless quest for knowledge. DEBATENEXUS. which they have caused to weigh on men since the rupture in their alliance with men. whose principle of uncertainty.

this is pornography. When the dynamic of the universal as transcendence. Today. information. We do not imagine for one moment that the universal might refer only to localised Western thought. March 16. it is a reduction or shall we say an elevation to a degree zero of value. is in the final analysis. which claims to bring all together actually fragments and destroys universal values like freedom and democracy in order to better assimilate the world. Baudrillard in 96 [Jean.COM 42 . The Xerox degree of value. Globalisation pertains to techniques. but which.. Any culture that makes itself universal loses its singularity and. Universality pertains to values. this is the anything goes promiscuity of the signifier and of values. tourism. a world war over global values. The difference is that the others have died of their singularity and that is a noble death whereas we are dying from the loss of all singularity. does not think of itself as relative and sees itself quite ingenuously as the ultimate transcendent goal of all the others. Universal Globalization. as something specifically Western. to a point of maximum entropy. At least in so far as it constitutes a system of values for Western modernity with no counterpart in any other culture. in its claim to be universal. and as utopia becomes a reality. paradoxically. Yet that is exactly how the Japanese see the universal. the universal perishes with globalisation. “The Global and the Universal”] Globalisation and universality are not equivalent terms. We think that the destiny of any single value is its elevation to the universal without taking heed of the mortal danger that this promotion represents. the promiscuity of exchange of anything and everything. Rather than an elevation. in fact they could be considered to mutually exclude one another. the market. as ideal. they expand according to the law of the lowest common denominator.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Global v. a product that is specific to the West. No word for a value system which claims to speak with a single voice for all cultures and their difference. for democracy. human rights. the perpetual movement of money. and that is not a noble death. What is globalised is first of all the market. and far from adopting this abstract concept. every bit as difficult to export as any other local product. At the time of the Enlightenment. in a curious reversal. original though it may be. universalisation was a top down affair. Globalisation seems to be irreversible. democracy. Culturally speaking. in a process of continuous advancement. the universal on the other hand appears to be almost an endangered species. gradually dies. This is the case for the cultures we have destroyed by assimilating them by force. The endless stream flooding the net with anything and everything. as utopia. etc. culture. make it relative and incorporate it into their own singularity. And so it is for human rights. It is the triumph of monothought over universal thought. pornography. The result of this process is a gigantic clash between the globalized world order and the fragments that emerge. it ceases to exist as transcendence. from the extermination of our values. freedoms. as ideal. No need for <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. it is bottom up and involves a neutralisation of values as a result of their proliferation and their endless dispersal. they take what for us is universal and. which. but it is also the case for our own. In fact. in other words. Any culture worthy of the name loses itself in the universal. The gobalisation of exchange puts an end to the universality of values.

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sexual indecency, the simple existence of this interactive copulation is all it takes. At theend of this process, there is no longer any difference between the global and the universal. The universal is itself globalised, democracy, human rights circulate in exactly the same way, through exactly the same channels as any global product: like oil or capital.
What happens with the passage from the universal to the global is at once a homogenisation and an infinite fragmenting of the system. The global interconnection of networks is doubled by a dislocation of the fragments moving further and further apart from each other - like a sky rocket that explodes and shatters at its highest point then scatters in a thousand fragments. What takes the place the central is not the local, it's the dis-located. What takes the place of the cencentric is not the de-centered but the offcenter. Disintegration of the universal. Virtual totalitarianism: "www:// ization of the world" and fragmentation.

Globalisation is both homogenisation and increasing discrimination. Marginalisation and exclusion, are no accident: they are in the very logic of globalisation which, unlike the universal, breaks apart the existing structures, all the better to assimilate them. On every level the gaps grow wider, become irreversible. A little like the universe where the galaxies are moving away from one another at such prodigious speeds. If this is the case, one might well ask whether the universal hasn't already succumbed under the weight of its own critical mass, whether it ever had any real existence other than in official discourse and moral codes. In any event, for us, the mirror of the universal is shattered (one could even see it as a kind of mirror stage of humanity). But this is perhaps a good thing because, in the fragments of this shattered mirror of the universal, all singularities reemerge. Those that we believed threatened are surviving; those we believed had disappeared are coming back to life. Japan, once again, is a remarkable case in point. Japan, better than any other country, has made a success of globalisation (technical, economic, financial) without going through the phase of the universal (the succession of middle-class ideologies and forms of political organisation) and without losing anything of its singularity, despite what is said to the contrary. One could even say that it is precisely because Japan was never lumbered with the concept of the universal that it succeeded so well technically and globally, by bringing together the singular (the power of tradition) and the global (the power of the virtual, that is, the internet revolution ). Behind the increasingly fierce resistance to globalisation, social and political resistance which can seem like an archaic refusal of modernity at all costs, one cannot but read a reaction against the domination of the universal, a kind of painful revisionism in respect to the achievements of modernity, and in respect to the idea of progress and of History, a rejection not only of the (in)famous global techno-structure, but of the underlying monoculturalism, the mental structure that places all cultures, from every continent under the one sign of the universal. This resurgence, or, one might even say, this "insurrection" of singularity can take on violent, anomalous, irrational forms from the perspective of (so-called) "enlightened" thought; ethnic, religious, linguistic, but also on an individual level, forms of neurosis and personality disorder. But it would be a monumental error (the same error which can be seen in the moralistic orchestration of political correctness common to all power structures and the majority of "intellectuals") to write off these movements of revolt as populist, archaic, or even terrorist. Every event that makes its mark in the world today, does so in <<continued>>

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Global v. Universal
<<Baudrillard 96 continued 3/3>> reaction to this abstract universality (including the antagonism of Islam towards Western values - it is because Islam is the most violent critic of this Western globalisation that Islam is public enemy number one today). If we refuse to understand this, we will exhaust ourselves in an endless contest between a universal thought sure of its power and sure of its rightness, and an ever increasing number of irreducible singularities. Even in our societies, which are thoroughly acculturated to the universal, it is clear that nothing that has been sacrificed to this concept has truly disappeared. It has simply gone underground. And what is being played out in reverse today is an entire history supposedly progressivist, an entire evolutionism cristallised around its ultimate end, which, moreover, has been completely lost sight of in the meantime. Today this utopia is dislocated, and its dislocation at the deepest levels is proceeding even faster than its imposition by force. What we are dealing with here is a complex three level process: the globalisation of exchange, the universality of values and the singularity of forms (languages, cultures, individuals, character types, but also chance, accident etc.- everything the universal is bound to reject as exception or anomaly). But, the situation is changing and is becoming more and more extreme as universal values lose their authority and legitimacy. As long as they were accepted as mediating values, they succeeded (more or less) in integrating singularities as differences within a universal culture of difference.

But today they are no longer able to do so because globalisation triumphant is razing to the ground every difference and every value, generating a perfectly indifferent (non)culture. And all that is left, once the universal is gone, is the all-mighty global techno-structure on the one hand and singularities abandoned to their own wild devices on the other. The universal has had its day in history. But today, caught between a monolithic global order, an unconditional globalisation, and the stubborn insurrection of singularities erratic, concepts of freedom, democracy and human rights pale into insignificance, mere ghosts of a lost universal. And it is difficult to imagine that they could be reborn from their ashes by the mere play of the political - which is caught up in the same process of deregulation and whose foundations are almost as flimsy as those of moral and intellectual authority.
But the die has not yet been cast, even if for universal values, all bets are definitely off The stakes have risen and globalisation is by no means a sure winner. Everywhere its dissolving and homogenising force is being challenged by emerging forces heterogeneous in nature, which are not only different but antagonistic and irreducible. What may emerge, out of the shattering of the global system, are singularities. Now, these singularities are neither negative nor positive. They are not an alternative to global order, they are on a different scale. They are not subject to value judgements; so they can be either the best or the worst. Their one absolute saving grace is to allow us to break out of the straitjacket of totality. They cannot be federated in a single historical move. They are the despair of every would-be dominant monothought. But they are not a monocounterthought. They invent their own rules of the game, and their most likely fate is the fate of heresies: to be eradicated by global orthodoxy.

This is what the Fourth World War will be about, and it will be the only truly world war, since its stakes are globalisation itself. Culture itself started off as a singularity. That is, an incomparable, irreducible, inexchangeable form. Then came the concept of universal culture. Then the current globalisation of a culture which had become a global product. I would like to

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talk a little more about this "fate of culture" which poses for each of us, within the context of the global, the problem of cultural identity.

Global v. Universal 2NC Overview
Extend Baudrillard 96. Here’s the argument. The affirmative attempts to expand values like democracy, human rights, etc. to a global level. However, any culture whose values are expanded loses its uniqueness and the values become useless – democracy and human rights are reduced to the lowest common denominator so they can be more easily expanded through the global market. In practical terms, this means the values they promote become tools of exploitation and never accomplish the goals they set for them. A perfect example: Iraq. Intended to be a watershed event in the democratic revolution, democracy and freedom in Iraq are no longer the great values they once were, but led to social fragmentation, instability and an explosion of porn and drugs. The commercialization of democracy has destroyed its human value; the expansion the plan supports will result in the same unintended consequences that ultimately make the values meaningless. At this point, no political action is sufficient to redeem democracy’s value, because it will have been infinite degraded by its spread. Additionally, in order to better expand values, existing cultures must be destroyed and assimilated so that our idea of democracy can be superimposed on them, and groups that disagree are excluded from the global order. The destruction of culture causes their most violent elements to re-form and oppose the global spread of values – we see this in the form of so-called terrorism, which will be a never-ending cycle of violence as long as the project continues. Finally, the elements cast out of the global democratic order will band together to oppose it, resulting in the next world war as a result of globalization of values.

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note that all their evidence about democracy being good is wrong. democratic principles that disagree with the rules of the global market will be cast aside. Democracy as it is spread is never as good as the original version and the more it is spread the less valuable it is. because it doesn’t assume the devalued form. This results in internal violence through what is labeled as terrorism. Third. DEBATENEXUS.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Global v. Fourth. where freedom has turned society over to porn. which turns their impacts. which is far worse than the small scale violence that occurs occasionally between isolated cultures. because they are permanently disfigured by the global spread. Universal 2NR Overview They miss key analysis in the last speech. drugs and instability.COM 46 . and eventually a clash between the global democratic society and the fragments that have been cast out in the next world war. like happened in Iraq. Second. the expansion of democracy over the globe requires that it be reduced to a lowest common denominator level so that it can be transmitted easily. Once this has happened. it’s irreversible. in order to expand our values other cultures have to be destroyed and assimilated. the devaluation of democracy makes it bad for societies that accept it. which means the spread of democracy they create will become a tool for further exploitation of cultures that accept it. and political efforts to revive these universal values after they have expanded are useless. and the parts that won’t be assimilated are excluded. so extend the Baudrillard 96 card and these points from the overview: First.

tourism. Any culture that becomes universal loses its singularity and dies. In fact. not localization. Any disagreement with democratic values is classified as a crime against the global order. But it is also true of our own culture. liberty. Dislocation. it is instead a downward trend toward a zero degree in all values. particularly of its relationship to the singular and the universal. globalization gives way to a promiscuity of signs and values. it is necessary to perform a brief genealogy of globalization. The passage from the universal to the global has given rise to a constant homogenization. Indeed. universalization exists by default and is expressed as a forward escape. or fanaticism. Universalization is vanishing because of globalization. and human rights circulate exactly like any other global product (oil or capital for example). and information. and justifies the forcible assimilation of all cultures into the global norm. to a form of pornography in fact. All you have is a global interactive copulation. universalization was viewed as unlimited growth and forward progress. Culturally. as a result of all this. the presence of <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. Far from being an uplifting move. which aims to reach the most minimally common value. despite its claim of being universally valid. has replaced centralization. Baudrillard in 2003 [Jean. And this is a much more ugly death. But we do not really assess the deadly danger that such a quest presents. Excentricism. This marks the triumph of a uniform thought over a universal one. the global spread of everything and nothing through networks is pornographic. globalization is about technology. by contrast. but also to an endless fragmentation. That's what happened to all those cultures we destroyed by forcefully assimilating them.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Globalization of Violence Globalization and the spread of Western values is like a virus – it requires constant expansion as part of its existence. not decentralization. This is precisely the fate of human rights. it appears to be retreating as a value system which developed in the context of Western modernity and was unmatched by any other culture. culture. and democracy. What is globalized is first and foremost the market. discrimination and exclusion are not just accidental consequences of globalization. We are dying because we are losing our own singularity and exterminating all our values. May 20. nihilism. And. The universal has become globalized. has taken over where concentration once stood. but rather globalization's own logical outcomes.COM 47 . No need for sexual obscenity anymore. Their expansion is in reality their weakest expression. The globalization of exchanges puts an end to the universalization of values. The only difference is that other cultures died because of their singularity. Globalization appears to be irreversible whereas universalization is likely to be on its way out. Similarly. which is a beautiful death. It is instead the contemporary partner of globalization. The analogy between the terms "global" [2]and "universal" is misleading. the perpetual flow of money. At least. This universalization of values creates terrorism as its own inescapable symptom. Universalization has to do with human rights. there is no longer any difference between the global and the universal. By contrast. the profusion of exchanges and of all sorts of products. We believe that the ideal purpose of any value is to become universal. “The Violence of the Global”] Today's terrorism is not the product of a traditional history of anarchism. democracy. In the Enlightenment. the market. and liberty today. Today. To identify its main features.

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which in fact produces a wide variety of inhuman metastases. Free from its former enemies. and the equivalence of all exchanges. But when it became realized in the global. total organization. Universalization used to promote a culture characterized by the concepts of transcendence. the violence of the global puts an end to the social role of the intellectual (an idea tied to the Enlightenment and universalization). It also makes us wonder whether universality and modernity ever existed outside of some official discourses or some popular moral sentiments. where is the critical point between the universal and the global? Have we reached the point of no return? What vertigo pushes the world to erase the Idea? And what is that other vertigo that. immanence. This new violence is characterized by the supremacy of technical efficiency and positivity. and representation. reality. By contrast. As universal values lose their authority and legitimacy. there was still room for a natural reference to the world. the mirror of our modern universalization has been broken. From the moment when the universal disappeared. or the past. But the expulsion of this critical negativity opened the door to another form of violence.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Globalization of Violence <<Baudrillard 2003 continued 2/4>> globalization makes us wonder whether universalization has not already been destroyed by its own critical mass. at the same time. But this techno-structure now has to confront new singularities that. Today though. In the fragments of this broken mirror. But this humanity no longer has any finality. There was a sort of dialectical tension or critical movement that found its materiality in historical and revolutionary violence. after taking over the place left by a dead God. faced with a global order without any alternative on the one hand and with drifting insurrectionary singularities on the other. an omnipotent global techno-structure has been left alone to dominate. integral circulation. globalization has given rise to a perfectly indifferent culture. the violence of the global. and those we thought were lost are revived. and a space-time continuum without any depth. democracy. it disappeared as an Idea. humanity now has to create enemies from within. DEBATENEXUS. In so doing.COM 49 . are able to freely and savagely expand. Is globalization fatal? Sometimes cultures other than ours were able to escape the fatality of the indifferent exchange. the concepts of liberty. Additionally. it committed suicide. it was fairly easy for such beliefs to incorporate singularities as modes of differentiation in a universal culture that claimed to champion difference. things become more radical. conceptualization. For us today. Those singularities we thought were endangered are surviving. But this may actually be an opportunity. subjectivity. all sorts of singularities reappear. and human rights look awful. the body. History gave universalization its chance. But they cannot do it anymore because the triumphant spread of globalization has eradicated all forms of differentiation and all the universal values that used to advocate difference. without the presence of universalization to cradle them. and it vanished as an end in itself. They remain as the ghosts of universalization past. the human has become the only mode of reference and it is sovereign. Today though. today's virtual global culture has replaced universal concepts with screens. seems to force people to unconditionally want to realize the Idea? The universal was an Idea. Since humanity is now its own immanence. When universal beliefs were introduced as the only possible culturally mediating values. numbers. In the universal. but also to the role of the activist whose fate used to be tied to the ideas of critical opposition and historical violence. networks.

but also of the mental system of globalization. It is the violence of a society where conflict is forbidden. We are really not talking about a "clash of civilizations" here. or cultural singularities are quite subtle. This movement's opposition is nothing more than an internal matter that the dominant system can easily keep under control. corporeal. They do not abide by value judgments or political realities. This reaction can take collective ethnic. From the perspective of global power (as fundamentalist in its beliefs as any religious orthodoxy). we find more than simply nostalgic expressions of negation. where death is not allowed. Not all singularities are violent. Who can defeat the global system? Certainly not the anti-globalization movement whose sole objective is to slow down global deregulation. It is a violence that. like terrorism. Better than a global violence. This form of violence is indeed viral. puts an end to violence itself. They cannot be "regularized" by means of a collective historical action. Behind the increasingly strong reactions to globalization. artistic. heterogeneous forces -. which assumes a principle of equivalence between all cultures. Some linguistic. It is the product of a system that tracks down any form of negativity and singularity. But it can also take the form of individual emotional outbursts or neuroses even. and this also includes Islam's own opposition to Western values (it is because Islam is the most forceful contestation of those values that it is today considered to be the West's number one enemy). Everything that has the quality of event these days is engaged against the abstract universality of the global. Yet they do not present themselves as a unique counter-thought. retains a quality of irreducible alterity. The singularity of terrorism avenges the singularities of those cultures that paid the price of the imposition of a unique global power with their own extinction. But its symbolic impact is worthless. we should call it a global virulence. But others. and irrational aspects. and strives to establish a world where anything related to the natural must disappear (whether it is in the body. in whatever domain. This kind of reaction can take some violent. Simply. abnormal. proceeds by chain reaction. they create their own game and impose their own rules. It moves by contagion. But the game is not over yet. They represent a different symbolic order. sex. Singularities are not alternatives. birth. and the social and political forms of resistance to the global. religious. but singularities that are neither positive nor negative can. Positive alternatives cannot defeat the dominant system. They defeat any uniquely dominant thought. or death). abnormal. They can be the best or the worst. a rejection not only of the global techno-structure. at least they can be perceived as violent. including of course death as the ultimate form of singularity. but instead about an almost anthropological confrontation between an undifferentiated universal culture and everything else that.are rising everywhere. We find instead a crushing revisionism vis-àvis modernity and progress. it would be a mistake to berate those reactions as simply populist.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Globalization of Violence <<Baudrillard 2003 continued 3/4>> This is precisely where the violence of the global comes from. Against such a dissolving and homogenizing power. Globalization has not completely won.COM 50 . and irrational from the perspective of our traditional enlightened ways of thinking. or even terrorist. archaic. <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. and little by little it destroys our immune systems and our capacities to resist. can be violent.not just different but clearly antagonistic ones -. In any case. in a sense. This movement's political impact may well be important. and linguistic forms.

since it lost its own values a long time ago) is to use all available means to subjugate every culture to the brutal principle of cultural equivalence. inside this country alone.were forbidden. The dominant characteristic of irrational events is that they can be imputed to anybody or given any motivation. Only an analysis that emphasizes the logic of symbolic obligation can make sense of this confrontation between the global and the singular. Once a culture has lost its values. These were acts of humiliation responding to another humiliation. It is the jealousy of an indifferent and low-definition culture against cultures with higher definition. perspectives must be reversed. Major technological accidents. To understand the hatred of the rest of the world against the West. According to this dominant system. From our point of view. Everything drives toward the failure of a system that claims to be infallible. And this is precisely the kind of hatred that explains the September 11 terrorist attacks. it can only seek revenge by attacking those of others. and the possibility that such a country could take the totally opposite path of what we call civilization (no matter what religious principles it invoked). but rather by humiliation. and of its unique way of thinking. and to colonize and domesticate any wild and resisting territory both geographically and mentally.COM 51 . In the 1923 Tokyo earthquake. caught as we are inside the rational and programmatic controls of this system. thousands of Koreans were killed because they were thought to be responsible for the disaster.) Look at Afghanistan. another technological accident. It is also a crime when the universality of our values and our practices are found suspect by some individuals who. are immediately pegged as fanatics. could also have been a terrorist act. The universal dimension of modernity cannot be refused.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Globalization of Violence <<Baudrillard 2003 continued 4/4>> any mode of difference and singularity is heresy. The fact that. anything we can think of can be criminal. The establishment of a global system is the result of an intense jealousy. were not acceptable for the "free" world. we could even think that the worst catastrophe is actually the infallibility of the system itself. DEBATENEXUS. The mission of the West (or rather the former West. of a disenchanted and de-intensified system against high intensity cultural environments. it is a crime not to perceive modernity as the obvious source of the Good or as the natural ideal of humankind. Singular forces only have the choice of joining the global system (by will or by force) or perishing. In an intensely integrated system like ours. (According to this logic we could even say that natural catastrophes are forms of terrorism too. This is not new.from music and television to the ability to see a woman's face -. This hatred is not caused by dispossession or exploitation. all recognized forms of "democratic" freedoms and expressions -. Any plane crash could be claimed by any terrorist group too. like Chernobyl. Beyond their political or economic objectives. of its consensual model. India. even a cold front or an earthquake. Rather. but were never allowed to give anything back. and of a de-sacralized society against sacrificial forms. everything can have a similar effect of destabilization. it is based on the fact that they received everything. any reactionary form is virtually terrorist. The goal is to get rid of any reactive zone. are both a terrorist act and a natural disaster. The hatred of non-Western people is not based on the fact that the West stole everything from them and never gave anything back. The toxic gas leak in Bhopal. wars such as the one in Afghanistan aim at normalizing savagery and aligning all the territories. To some extent. From the perspective of the West. when they reveal their doubts.

This effort to destroy violence in fact creates its own violence. This creates an area of exclusion within the supposedly allencompassing global order. There is an inherent contradiction between globalization and universal values like human rights. The impact is never-ending internal violence and death. the more the order is globalized the easier it is to attack from within. and all dissent is organized to bring down this new world order. globalization of values demands that they constantly expand. They think they are creating universal peace through the spread of democracy. Additionally. Globalization is about the expansion of capitalism. and anyone who does not agree with the global order must be destroyed. democracy and human rights stop being so good when they’re commercialized. while universal rights are oppressed by the capitalistic order. Here’s the argument.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Globalization of Violence Overview Extend our Baudrillard 2003 evidence.COM 52 . Additionally. Their attempts to expand democracy and human rights throughout the global system puts these universal values on the market like any other commodity in the capitalist order and destroys their universal value. even to cultures that do not want or need them. opposition is inevitable. resulting in what we call terrorism. Within this system. DEBATENEXUS. where those inside who dissent become the enemy instead of the one outside. where any moral opposition to the dominant order becomes a crime that demands a military response. because destruction of culture sparks violent responses. This leads to the destruction of all other cultures in the constant search for the ideal of globalization. when in fact they are ensuring the war will be internalized and permanent as a result of exclusion.

precisely because of their ideaticality. not even an Islamic one. Like the heretics of previous times. Without our profound complicity the event would not have reverberated so forcefully. then. because the game is ferocious. and the two towers of the World Trade Center were. “The Mind of Terrorism”] All the speeches and commentaries made since September 11 betray a gigantic post-traumatic abreaction both to the event itself and to the fascination that it exerts. and the visible fracture (and the hatred) that pits the exploited and underdeveloped nations of the world against the West masks the dominant system's internal fractures. If we do not take this fact into account. can explain. The moral condemnation anti the sacred union against terrorism are directly proportional to the prodigious jubilation felt at having seen this global superpower destroyed. individuals. because it was this insufferable superpower that gave rise both to the violence now spreading throughout the world and to the terrorist imagination that (without our knowing it) dwells within us all. like viruses. Countless disaster films have borne witness to these fantasies. It is a mistake. Terrorism is the act that restores an irreducible singularity to the heart of a generalized system of exchange. are everywhere. When the world has been so thoroughly monopolized. that nobody could help but dream the destruction of so powerful a hegemon-this fact is unacceptable to the moral conscience of the West. Baudrillard in 2003 [Jean. That the entire world without exception had dreamed of this event. The terrorists are not aiming simply to transform the world. the murderous phantasmagoria of a few fanatics that we need only repress. All those singularities (species. There is a fundamental antagonism at work. The allergy to absolute order. It goes well beyond Islam aria' America. it was they who did it but we who wished it. to characterize this as a clash of civilizations or of religions. And the new rules are ferocious. the stronger the urge to destroy it grows.COM 53 . In the end. the perfect incarnation of this absolute order. This is the clash of triumphant globalization at war with itself. Terror against terror-this is no longer an ideological notion.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Spirit of Terrorism Terrorism is not located in one particular country or group – its a consequence of the new global order. But we know well that such is not tie case. This malicious desire resides n the hearts of even those who've shared in the spoils. they aim to radicalize the world through sacrifice. Against this almost automatic from of resistance to its power. There is no longer a boundary that can hem terrorism in. It goes well beyond the hatred that the desolate and the exploited-those who ended up on the wrong side of the new world order-feel toward the dominant global power. It is as if every means of domination secreted its own antidote. Terrorists. what means of turning the tables remains besides terrorism? In dealing all the cards to itself. the vent loses all symbolic dimension. October. whereas the system aims to convert: it into money through force. the system forced the Other to change the rules of the game. and the universal appeal of the images shows just how close the fantasies always are to being acted out: the closer the entire system gets to perfection or to omnipotence. is universal. cultures) that have been sacrificed to the interests of a global system of commerce avenge themselves by turning the tables with terrorism. DEBATENEXUS. but it transcends the phantom of America (which is perhaps the epicenter though not the incarnation of globalization) as well as the phantom of Islam (which likewise is not the incarnation of terrorism). and yet it is a fact nonetheless. to absolute power. it becomes s a purely arbitrary act. no cause. when power has been so formidably consolidated by the technocratic machine and the dogma of globalization. on which one aright be tempted to concentrate in order to create the illusion of a confrontation resolvable by force. Their supposed solution plays into the mindset that justifies terrorist acts. Terrorism is the shock wave of this silent resistance. and in their strategic symbolism the terrorists knew they could count on this unconfessable complicity. it is at the heart of the very culture it's fighting with. a fact that resists the emotional violence of all the rhetoric conspiring to erase it. no ideology. We have gone well beyond ideology and politics. the system can do nothing. The energy that nourishes terror. which creates constant internal violence.

COM 54 .Baudrillard <<continued>> Page ____ of ____ DEBATENEXUS.

We tend to regard Evil. This balance was lost as soon as there was a total extrapolation of Good-the hegemony of the positive over every form of negativity. a sense of their adversary's immense fragility. increasing exponentially. It was then that a phantom enemy arose. technology. But it is asymmetrical terror. to the contrary. The globe itself is resistant to globalization. not only upon the brutal irruption of death live and in real time but upon the irruption of a death much more than real: a symbolic and sacrificial death-which is to say. The occurrence at the World Trade Center. In the end. for better or worse. percolating throughout the planet. This is a war of fractal complexity. based on a strategic intuition. These confrontations are so imperceptible that it is occasionally necessary to resuscitate the idea of war by staging spectacular scenes such as those in the Persian Gulf and now in Afghanistan. and inextricably linked. the second put an end to Nazism. democracy. which is now nearing its end. No one seems to have understood that Good and Evil increase in power at the same time -and in the same way. without being able to compete on the playing field of symbolic defiance and of death. everywhere grappling with hostile forces. Each one brought us progressively closer to the single world order of today. Hence. Good does not reduce Evil. mount a resistance in every cell. In the traditional universe. this symbolic act of defiance. Until now. that its ascendance in all domains (science. the absolute. The antagonism is everywhere. so if we hope to understand anything we will need to get beyond Good and Evil. the tension and equilibrium of the moral universe. since what's at stake is globalization itself. But Islam. The first put an end to European supremacy and to the era of colonialism. waged worldwide against rebellious singularities that. terrorism would rise up against Islam.000 deaths inflicted in one fell swoop against a system of zero losses. DEBATENEXUS. And all methods of deterrence and destruction can do nothing against an enemy who has already turned his death into a counteroffensive weapon. is merely the crystallized form of this antagonism. everywhere opposed. as an accidental smudge. We naively believe in the progress of Good. every negativity. (" Who cares about the American bombing! Our men are as eager to die as the Americans are eager to live!") Thus the imbalance of more than 3. But World War IV happens elsewhere too. and it is this asymmetry that leaves the absolute global power disarmed. It can do nothing but strike at its own rationale for the balance of power. having deleted that playing field from its own culture. terror against terror. all forms of hegemonic domination-if Islam were dominating the world. but this axiom is illusory. rising up through all the cracks in power. But the terrorists have started using their own deaths offensively and effectively. human rights) corresponds to the defeat of Evil. and Evil returned to an invisible autonomy. they are at once irreducible. the one and the other. metaphysically. this integrating power had succeeded in absorbing and reabsorbing every attack. this is a bit like what happened to the political order after Communism disappeared and neoliberal forces triumphed worldwide. in the manner of antibodies. which is itself immoral. We are therefore immoral ourselves. It haunts all expressions of world order. everything depends upon death. but it was in response to globalization. unappealable event. Good cannot vanquish Evil except by denying to be Good. ultimate. and the third to Communism. of the explosion that would erupt at the slightest spark. of the system's quasi-perfection. The triumph of one does not result in the obliteration of the ether. is immoral. since. From that moment. in monopolizing global power. The crucial point lies in precisely the opposite direction from the Enlightenment philosophy of Good and Evil. a dialectical relationship that guaranteed. Any system of zero losses is a zero-sum game. Here. Terrorism is immoral. and in doing so created a thoroughly hopeless situation (not only for the wretched o' the earth but also for the privileged and well-to-do in their radical comfort). it entails a backfire of proportional violence. They succeeded in turning their deaths into an ultimate weapon against a system devoted to the ideal of zero losses. it is accurate to speak of this as a world war-no: the third but the fourth-and the only one that is truly global. Islam.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Spirit of Terrorism <<Baudrillard 2003 continued>> In this sense. the equilibrium was broken. there remained a balance of Good and Evil. and it is in each of us.COM 55 . Relatively speaking. or vice versa.

Here’s the argument. the overarching power of a single country and its policies is what gives the motive to destroy it – whether or not they want to admit it. The plan asserts US influence to try to curb this violence. who we can deter and deal with as the world’s superpower.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Spirit of Terrorism Overview Extend Baudrillard 2003. That’s a turn. existing in some other country. as an inevitable sideeffect of advancing globalization. because the more the US stretches out to control the world the more the world will backlash against it. but ironically makes it more likely it will occur. DEBATENEXUS. everyone wants to see the American superpower humbled.COM 56 . Also. so they can never solve the impacts they claim. This vision is inaccurate – terrorism isn’t out there. Their arguments assume terrorists are a definite group of people. it is within the global order.

this theme is given striking illustration. opaque. Including Sakharov himself. but complicit with both. They have to die. obscure. If it were only that. the 'talkie' era kills them off. condemned on the one side. But has it. when they become both immanent and elusive from an excess of fluidity and luminosity. the Idea is finished. We have exorcized it. They whose strength was in silence (or censorship) are condemned to speak and be devoured by speech. there was still a transcendence of Evil and it could be held at a distance. in particular. liberated it. So long as Evil was opaque. to 'liberate' it. “The Illusion of the End” p. victorious. their reflection. the deeper form of maleficence is simultaneously being liberated. distance or resistance. The Western intellectuals who embodied that split. The point when the Wall comes down marks the end of their careers. What of Zinoviev? What of his cynical.COM 57 . It has now become immanent and interstitial (in the West. Some among the dissidents have analysed the ambiguity of this situation. as the West has not done. It is therefore a solution from after the catastrophe (whatever it may be.biological. They lived in the silent cinema of the political. ceased to be Evil? Not at all: it has become fluid. rather. but the virus of de-immunization. remains a mystery. no longer had any meaning. in Zinoviev's view. obscene. Dissidents cannot bear a thaw. That is the transparence of Evil. The organic consensus marks the dawning of post-modem societies. the Evil empire and the definitive solution because it has experienced the worst. but also all the other forms of virulence . For Evil is not simply the repressed. the forces that created the oppression do not go away. They spoke for others. media-based or electronic).Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Infection of Democracy As democracy spreads and repression is removed. 39-44] However this may be. as is being done everywhere (in particular in the East where the barrier of Evil has been broken down). while nonetheless one that is outdated at the level of the economy and history. He died. or else become president (Walesa. The collapse of the Wall is the visible outward manifestation of an invisible event which has affected all these societies for at least twenty years: the collapse of the division or split internal to each of them. the fine-spirited sympathizers. liquidated it. what is going to come of this transfusion of Good and Evil. a final solution to the survival of the species and thus an inevitable and definitive model. The more democracy spreads. interstitial. it is the end of modernity. merrily nihilistic and paradoxical line (Cioran: history is dying for want of paradoxes)? The paradox of communism. destabilized communism will pass into the veins of the West in metabolic. whether Third World War or something else). for all that. Will they now have the courage to shut up? They will not. marks their death as dissidents. feted on the other. are themselves fated to disappear like the silent movie actors. There is no longer any abominable Other (the communists).East and West carried on a kind of dialogue of the deaf throughout all the years of the armsrace. and has drawn the consequences from it. their mirror. viral. Evil was visible. In the East and the West. One of the consequences of this East-West transfusion is the elimination of the renegades who functioned as an umbilical cord between the two blocs. beyond the dusting off of liberties and the realignment of democratic facades. the form of terrorism as a filterable virus. to the Berlin Wall. and are already running off to the scene of the crime. liquid. non-conflictual and at one with themselves. that it shows though [transparait] in all things when they lose their image. for that was indeed the site of the crime and the sacrifice. It is not that it is transparent [est transparent] in the sense that you might see through it. no longer any adorable Other (the dissidents). in dismantling the visible Evil empire. what is to become of their solidarity? They too are condemned. at any event. Political terrorism. A communism which dissolves itself is a successful communism. sexual. that it easily outlasts all liberation and that. But Sakharov is dead. This will no longer be the violence of the Idea. As for those who were pro-dissident in the West. surreptitious form. This paradox is going to become highly charged when DEBATENEXUS. rather they infect the whole of democracy. Evil takes advantage of transparency (glasnost) and becomes the transparence of things themselves. significantly. of the conflictual structure which came about with the upheavals and revolutions of the modem era. With the events in Eastern Europe. and Evil is entering upon a phase of definitive dissemination. it is assuming. an end of history. when they no longer offer any substance. When the Eastern bloc societies catch up with their dissidents and absorb them. is that of being at one and the same time an outdated solution. as it is when Western society catches up with and absorbs its avant-gardes. the less value it has. Shattered. Havel) in a sort of bitter revenge which. oblique. But we are soon going to see that Evil is something different. their shadow. By way of dissidents – the political avant-garde of the Eastern bloc countries and refuge of the Western intellectual avant-garde . and destabilize it in its turn. It is. it would be sufficient merely to lift the repression weighing upon it. Baudrillard in 94 [Jean. localized in the territories of the East. when dissidence. that internal division of societies and minds.

moving back beyond democracy and falling into the hole of the past. of all contradiction is more than suspect (China has temporarily relapsed. totally ambiguous. There is something suspect about the sudden consensus. before the end of the century if possible (before Christmas for Eastern Europe so that everything can shine bright in a new Nativity). The disappearance. they have come to a stop in their hearts and their aims. the lorry falls into the hole.Baudrillard <<continued>> Page ____ of ____ Infection of Democracy <<Baudrillard 94 continued>> put to the test by the reunification of the two worlds. as stupendous as the tolerance which has reigned over it all so far. Not that there is any Machiavellian strategy going on. there will be seventy years of 'backwardness' to make up. as if by magic. man being taken in hand. moreover. there is only the transparency of democracy. Something tells us that what we have here is not a historical evolution.particularly if it destroys itself . statues scattered. which is not far away. a paradox of Western societies opposite and equivalent to that of communism: though they present all the signs of more developed and open societies. at the same time they have one eye on the past as though it were a void they have created behind them. indeed. First of all. while absorbing the future. and they might give us all of theirs (this is how contacts between dissimilar cultures or races go). but they are doing so out of inertia. streets and cities renamed. the transfusion of Good and Evil presents many dangers. They are riding the surf of their present. Democratic rewriting. reversing.in a kind of strategie du pire which would be imposed on everyone as the last immune defence. Throughout the modern age they were held dear and dearly bought. which might be said to have succeeded. Everyone equally committed to the liquidation! Eliminating the planet's black spots as one might eliminate traffic accident blackspots.COM 58 . and to Olympic performance levels. by a capillary or communicatingvessels effect. incapable of containing the radiation of Evil. problematic wealth. Even more ironic is the fact that we are not at all threatened by the totalitarian (Stalinist) rewriting of the past. The encounter between this type of society with maximum mobility but immobility in its heart and the Eastern bloc societies which are petrified on the outside but in no way inert in their inward core should be highly dramatic or. That is. There is a risk we shall pass all our germs on to them. Today. but the democratic rewriting of history: the very images of Stalin and Lenin swept away. to the point that our societies do not even know whether they are heading towards the future. Like blood transfusions today. why they are accelerating.not the last but. as ever. There is. he has not been mentioned of late. With a little imagination. an epidemic of democratic values . weighed down by the retrospective emptiness of our history. though the collapse of Big Brother ought to have been celebrated for the record. Yet another ruse of history . the best. as we might eliminate spots from a face: cosmetic surgery elevated to the level of the political. The scenario is off to a good start.in other words. Cuba could be joined up with Disneyworld. then they must have liquefied. It is a kind of gigantic snare of the social and the political spheres. soon none of all that will have existed. but it's too good to be true. It would be the opposite of Orwell's prediction (strangely. this great democratic rally is not believable for an instant. Beneath their apparent mobility and acceleration. Of course. if only for the irony of the date Orwell set for the onset of totalitarianism which turned out to be roughly that of its collapse). on a universal scale. even if it destroys itself . If democratic values spread so easily. they are being sold off at a discount and we are watching a Dutch auction of democratic values which looks very much like uncontrolled DEBATENEXUS. but are we so sure things are going to happen that way? Instead of the Eastern bloc countries accelerating towards modern democracy. On the opposite side. perhaps we are going to drift in the other direction. but when they hit a bump in the road the hole falls off and. Everyone is having a clear-out. they must now be worthless. For the human and ideological failure of communism by no means compromises its potency and virulence as an anthropological model. as part of a world heritage centre). It is like the story of the lorry and the hole: some workers dig a hole and load it on to a lorry. and what remains of world communism is merely a theme park. All the dictatorships are being wound up and sold off cheap. this is a viral effect. We are the lorry and the hole: we are weighed down by a hole in our memories. a triumphant effect of fashion. Splendid emulation. but an epidemic of consensus. to protect him from himself.

as might be the case with financial speculation.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ speculation.COM 59 . Which makes it highly probable that. DEBATENEXUS. these same values may crash.

as power. this "overgrowth" (and not growth) has kept our societies in a state of increasingly acute economic crisis . in its highly singular and original form. growth was giving way to excessive or "over-growth". on by wars and the economic recovery that destruction carries within it. from one film festival to another but their capacity or cultural labour is stretched to the limit. besides wars." That is what culture is. not due to lack or deprivation. Baudrillard in 96 [Jean. The other antidote to exponential growth. but to surplus and saturation.COM 60 . The same diagnosis could be made of culture. And ever since. “The Global and the Universal”] Culture is a form of glory . Already in 1929. Culture (understood as cultural production and consumption) is a mirror of material production. like instruments of violence: it exists only as act. has been in a state of overproduction. In fact. We could repeat what Hannah Arendt said of power: "What saps and ends up killing political communities". Identity is a poor value: there is always something vain and useless about demanding identity. that is. all of this being only cure for excess growth. and the other Crash threatening us is that of cultural overproduction. as appropriation. Finished. or in a state of threatening overproduction. March 16. since the 1929 Crash. In the cultural economy of the average citizen (if such a thing exists). It is like/just the same as at the supermarket.interrupted. she said. Culture is a symbolic pact. The powers that be would have us believe that in the cultural market place. unlike in the commodity marketplace. The average person no longer even has the time to consume his own cultural products. And so we get a guaranteed boom in all cultural "values or securities". this is not at all the case. "is the loss of power and ultimate powerlessness. The people supposedly have an insatiable hunger for cultural goods. In this <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. there is a noticeable surplus of supply over demand. is the Stock Market Crash (but the latter would appear to be less and less effective. It is an aftereffect of the colonisation of mental space and the failure of its decolonisation. leading a complete crash in all cultural signs and a destruction of what they try to protect. What results from this is an original form of cultural alienation. Once it solidifies as a heritage. as identity. let alone those of others. it is all over. Overproduction of culture goes beyond people’s ability to consume it. since it is now only virtual and involves only speculative capital. The public does its best: people run round from one exhibition to another. once it becomes signature. Let us now look at what it has become at the global level. But power (and culture) cannot be stockpiled and kept for emergencies. demand still exceeds supply and will continue to do so for a good while yet. We can say then that the fundamental catastrophe remains the excessive growth that globalisation continues to intensify. And material production. a material image of this power.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Culture Crash Culture is like the economic system.it implies notion of sovereignty. The illimited promotion of cultural products already far exceeds human capacity to absorb them. Power which does not become action disappears and history demonstrates with a host of examples that the greatest material riches cannot not make up for such a loss.

its institutions) comes close to the degree of voluntary submission in politics. Anyone can stage his or her own performance. Always more information. or with only a token superficial consent and in a certain sense this is unavoidable for how can these countless productions be adequately provided for? And if. it is like natural languages. but to adapt to the transience of the market. spiraling values and speculation. one can never have too much of it. and is not at all infinitely expandable (its promotion and its proliferation on the contrary signify its death). Well that is a colossal illusion and error of perspective. the stock market value of the cultural artifact. where it is actually obvious that culture is a political instrument) who will save us from cultural overproduction when this market. that is of being held hostage by culture (by its ads. But in the case of culture. priority of supply over demand. either culture is a singular language. For. forced advertising. And there could very easily be like Black Thursday on Wall Street in 1929. colours. the end of `natural' assumptions about an economy that had become speculative. they would not be languages. both open to an infinite internal complexity and strictly limited in their structure and constitutive elements . unfortunately in total indifference to the other. signs and meanings. The expansion of cultural production far surpasses the expansion of material production. accelerated recycling. And. is saturated? Perhaps we will have to undertake a massive destruction of cultural values to save the stock market value of the sign. DEBATENEXUS. Such is the fate of our cultural signs. we have managed to. they are part of the pure and simple discount of degradable products. in the open field of communication.COM 61 . The same is said about information too: one can never have too much of it.. not so as to express the ephemeral nature of life. Rather than decadent. or else it is what it has become: a market with all the effects of artificial shortage. what looms on the horizon is the same reversal as occurred in the 1929 crisis in material production: overproduction. The public supposedly wants even more of this culture. spontaneously and indefinitely in a kind of uninterrupted interchange. a Black Sunday of culture. ward off economic crisis by opening cultural markets (particularly in France. art is now degradable in line with the biodegradability of the physical world. Already most non-material goods are meeting the same fate as material goods: forced production.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Culture Crash <<Baudrillard 96 continued>> new context. the idiom of a particular group or society and in that case it has its own finality. and the result is cultural bottlenecks that are even more monstrous than blockages in the economy or our constantly paralysed traffic systems. to a certain extent. the situation is even more serious. anyone can produce gestures. either culture is a singularity of this kind. as soon as one tends to confuse these exponential market factors with irresistible cultural progress. Well. be the disinvested or of transvestite nature.if this were not so. the degree of cultural alienation. texts. its media. Always more transparency And we can see the effects that are as murderous as they are contradictory. virtual and completely cut off from real wealth and real economic requirements. in its turn. built-in obsolescence. Art becomes ephemeral. This is exactly what lies in wait for culture and a cultural market turned speculative. For. just as they once burned coffee in the furnaces of steam engine locomotives so as to to save the world price of coffee.

so extend the Baudrillard 96 evidence and these points from the overview: First. The collection of world cultures is like a giant economy. culture is like an economic product. because it lacks any value and people abandon culture entirely. Their effort to preserve a particular culture aids in this market saturation of culture. which turns their impacts. and everyone is already being overwhelmed with cultural artifacts and practices. its value drops. when something is in too great of supply. That’s bigger than anything they can claim to solve for. Second. DEBATENEXUS. as cultures become another minimum value commodity to be used and cast away. They protect culture. people stop having time to deal with all the different practices of culture out there. so all the good stuff they claim to save by protecting culture is no longer there. This means the destruction of everything they try to protect. and its already overproduced. a worldwide rejection of all cultural products as useless. this overproduction will result in a complete crash of all culture. Here’s the argument. limited amounts of it can be consumed. so not only the culture they protect is lost but all other ones too. because culture is no longer valued by people. Like any other market. this leads to the destruction of all culture. Also. and it stops having any real-life application – in practical terms. so there’s more of it and the value of it drops. and it operates on the same principles. and is a terminal impact that outweighs anything they can claim. Culture is already being overproduced. like the Great Depression of the 30s. People can only deal with so much culture.COM 62 . so the more culture there is. so they stop caring about any of them. the less people value it. 2ND Overview They drop some key analysis on this argument.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Culture Crash Overview Extend Baudrillard 96.

its crucial to allow some culture to be destroyed in order to save the whole – only by letting the supply drop so the value of it can increase will culture retain any meaning.COM 63 . Allow their impacts to happen to avoid the crash of culture. DEBATENEXUS.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Third.

The others. only had the right to phantom attempts. To seek new blood in its own death. an enigmatic reversal that brings desire "revolutionary in itself. therein lay his power. sex and work were fiercely opposed terms. by simulating death. Everything is metamorphosed into its opposite to perpetuate itself in its expurgated form. the proof of psychiatry through antipsychiatry.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Shadow-Boxing the System Radical opposition to the system affirms its existence. to escape their real death throes. the discourse of desire to that of power-today they exchange their signifiers and their scenarios. Today. and antipower: this is the only solution-alibi of every power. said Lyotard. a "vicious" curvature of a political space that is henceforth magnetized. Mobian compulsion. proving the system through crisis. Power can stage its own murder to rediscover a glimmer of existence and legitimacy Such was the case with some American presidents: the Kennedys were murdered because they still had a political dimension. Conjunction of desire and the law. the proof of pedagogy through antipedagogy. try to regenerate a moribund principle through simulated scandal. like Watergate. But it is lost. the king (also the god) had to die. 18-19] Conjunction of the system and of its extreme alternative like the two sides of a curved mirror. all the institutions speak of themselves through denial. he is miserably forced to feign death. to simulated murders. the proof of art through antiart. the whole system. of its already seen and of its already dead. which. a torsion that is like that of the evil spirit of commutation. phantasm. All the powers. Overwhelming versatility of desire in Deleuze. proving truth through scandal. in order to attempt. negativity. Formerly the discourse on history derived its power from violently opposing itself to that of nature. proving the law through transgression. of desire and capital. Formerly.COM 64 . in order to preserve the blessing of power. and capital through revolution. reversibilized from the right to the left. It is always a question of moving the real through the imaginary. to renew the cycle through the mirror of crisis. and as if involuntarily. wanting what it wants. DEBATENEXUS. Baudrillard in 81 [Jean." to desire its own repression and to invest in paranoid and fascist systems? A malign torsion that returns this revolution of desire to the same fundamental ambiguity as the other. Not so long ago. “Simulacra and Simulation” p. But this aura of an artificial menace was still necessary to conceal that they were no longer anything but the mannequins of power. etc. today both are dissolved in the same type of demand. before thinking that we now take pleasure in capital. proving work through striking. All the referentials combine their discourses in a circular. of every institution attempting to break the vicious circle of its irresponsibility and of its fundamental nonexistence. as it is elsewhere (the Tasaday) of proving ethnology through the dispossession of its objectwithout taking into account: the proof of theater through antitheater. Johnson. circularized. the final pleasure as the metamorphosis of the law (which is why it is so widely the order of the day): only capital takes pleasure. Nixon. Ford. and murder-a sort of hormonal treatment through negativity and crisis. the historical revolution. the infinity of capital folded back on its own surface: transfinite? And is it not the same for desire and the libidinal space? Conjunction of desire and value. It would take too long to traverse the entire range of the operational negativity of all those scenarios of deterrence. Opposing discourses allow the system to simulate its own death and delay its collapse.

Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ DEBATENEXUS.COM 65 .

When there is no DEBATENEXUS. Here’s the argument. No system can exist without it’s opposite. is gives us the warrant to all our impacts that turn their discourse. We couldn’t be Americans if there wasn’t a rest of the world that wasn’t American. Their transgression is an exception to the rule that proves the rule itself true. it’s impossible to know what it would be. we have to be passive within the system and allow its processes to implode and bring it down through our inaction. and deny it the enemy it needs to reconstruct itself. identity and ideology are defined by an other mindset that opposes it. because it’s impossible to know who we are without a reference to who we aren’t. their opposition to the system is like the exception that proves the rule – the little resistances only show that the structure is that much more dominant. because without a contrast. The other team thinks they are participating in radical opposition to the system by opposing it through their discourse. but their opposition to it only proves and reinforces the system. Second. The more the system is opposed. because if the system is no longer refreshed through new opposition. This is the most crucial point – once they’ve conceded this. a small violation from the norm that makes really escaping the system impossible. The crisis of opposition is what the system requires to sustain itself. it cannot continue to exist.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Shadow-Boxing Overview Extend Baudrillard 81. They concede some crucial arguments in our last overview. the more dominant its identity becomes. Third. because there is more of an “other” discourse to demonstrate what the dominant one isn’t. so extend these points: First. Opposition to the system merely proves the system.COM 66 . 2ND Overview Extend the Baudrillard 81 evidence. so rather than opposing. Mindsets and social systems are the same way – they require opposition and resistance to their world-views in order to give identity and meaning to their own existence. the only way out is to remain passive within the system.

COM 67 .Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ other. there is no centered identity either. Only by not acting against it is this possible. and the system disintegrates on its own. DEBATENEXUS.

deciding. and the constitution of a political subject are seen as valuable and subversive. Instead. This strategy (if one can still speak of strategy) prevails today. playing the game-a form of blackmail and ultimatum just as serious as the other. All the movements that only play on liberation. that is to say. emancipation. like a mirror. even more serious today. free and conscious. and to constitute them selves as submissive. Thus the strategic resistance is that of the refusal of meaning and of the spoken word-or of the hyperconformist simulation of the very mechanisms of the system. whose imperative today is precisely the overproduction and regeneration of meaning and of speech. exactly the opposite: childishness. responsible. because it was ushered in by that phase of the system which prevails. and to a contradictory demand he responds with a double strategy. inert. But this strategy is more reflective of the earlier phase of the system. Baudrillard in 81 [Jean. we need to engage the system through passive resistance. Children are simultaneously required to constitute themselves as autonomous subjects. DEBATENEXUS. and even if we are still confronted with it. of the renunciation of the subject position and of meaning-precisely the practices of the massesthat we bury under the derisory terms of alienation and passivity. of the word based on "consciousness raising. hyperconformism. producing. the maximum production of meaning. “Simulacra and Simulation” p. We are face to face with this system in a double situation and insoluble double bind – exactly like children faced with the demands of the adult world. do not see that they are going in the direction of the system. impact of all the object practices. The subject-resistance is today unilaterally valorized and viewed as positive-just as in the political sphere only the practices of freedom. not active opposition. that of constituting ourselves as subjects. on the resurrection of a subject of history. but they do not respond at all to the other demand. and without a doubt superior. To the demand of being an object he opposes all the practices of disobedience. of revolt. passivity. to the constant ultimatum we are given to constitute ourselves as pure objects. in short. The child resists on all levels. speaking. an object's resistance. To a system whose argument is oppression and repression. of emancipation. The liberating practices respond to one of the aspects of the system. of the group. conforming objects. which is a form of refusal and of non. To the demand of being a subject he opposes. total dependence. and efficaciously. emancipation. expression. idiocy: Neither strategy has more objective value than the other. it is no longer the strategic terrain: the current argument of the system is to maximize speech. because it is intended to maximize speech without creating change. participating. expressing ourselves at whatever cost. of liberating ourselves.COM 68 . just as obstinately. It is the strategy of the masses: it is equivalent to re-turning to the system its own logic by doubling it. a total claim to subjecthood. of voting.reception. But this is to ignore the equal.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Strategic Passivity Speaking out and raising awareness is playing into the hands of the system they criticize. the strategic resistance is the liberating claim of subjecthood." indeed a "raising of the unconscious" of subjects and of the masses. 84-86] With one caution. obedient. to reflecting meaning. without absorbing it. To choose the wrong strategy is a serious matter.

Theirs won’t make any difference. is more effectively political than theirs.COM 69 .Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Strategic Passivity Overview They think they’re resisting the system by speaking out against it. we need to embrace the opposite strategy. the correct strategy is strategic passivity. refuse to play at all. are not responsive. Also. they’re further granting the hegemony of the system that they criticize. Even if they disagree. raise consciousness and so on. which is passivity and indifference to the system. speaking out and engaging the system is supporting its call for participation and involvement. Second. because the system is already configured to absorb this type of protest – if speaking out could change the system it’d be illegal. because lots have spoken out before. They think they’re revolutionary. Their efforts to make their voices heard. refusing to engage in criticism outside the system and instead using its own object practices against it by not participating in it at all. instead of speaking out. our political project. Instead of speaking out. When it is no longer recognized. which is a turn because they make what they criticize more powerful. their speech act goes in the direction of the system. so extend the Baudrillard 81 evidence and this analysis from the overview: First. the system wouldn’t exist. it can no longer resist – ironically. 2Nd Overview They miss some key points to our argument. because it demands this form of engagement with it. their speech act is useless because the system absorbs protest without changing. which ignores what they critique. DEBATENEXUS. so they do nothing. Third. Don’t enter the rigged game – instead. but in fact. but extend Baudrillard 81 who says it just ain’t so. If speaking out worked. this disagreement keeps the dominant discourse on center stage and unconsciously recognizes its dominance.

COM 70 .Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ DEBATENEXUS.

which does not even have an opposing term. How much more. which even if it were to completely disappear and had no name except the social would nevertheless only be its remainder. when nothing remains. as only the lack of distinction between masculine and feminine. the disappearance of the fatidic and structural slash that isolated the rest of ? ? ? and that now permits each term to be the remainder of the other term characterizes a phase of reversibility during which there is "virtually" no more remainder: The two propositions are simultaneously "true" and are not mutually exclusive. . Baudrillard in 81 [Jean. like Peter Schlemihl after his shadow? The remainder is obscene.COM 71 . has become a wavering one. “Simulacra and Simulation” p. The same is true of the social. appear. is the reflection of the other? In this sense one can speak of the remainder as a mirror. collapsing the entire social realm. or this miseen-abyme: the masculine is not the feminine of the feminine. the right is not the left of the left. The residue can be completely at the level of the real. Sex and death are the great themes recognized for unleashing ambivalence and laughter. They are themselves reversible. As the social in its progression eliminates all the residue. It is that in both cases the line of structural demarcation. after its own double. Their attempt to bring the excluded into the center of society destroys the other and makes all of society the outsider. the normal is not the crazy of the crazy. more real than the real. Pockets to be reabsorbed. an always imminent structure of reversion. Designated as "residual" at the horizon of the social. DEBATENEXUS. 143-147] Thus the remainder refers to much more than a clear division in two localized terms. It is because the stake is always reversible between masculine and feminine. and the same obscenity as do discussions of sex or death. Another aspect as surprising as the absence of an opposing term: the remainder makes you laugh. Witness the "Society" column of Le Monde. because it is reversible and is exchanged for itself. But what happens when everything is sponged up. or if it is not the social itself that is the remainder. between life and death. women. in which paradoxically. at the remainder. delinquents. "social" cases analogous to pathological cases. and it is the whole social system that becomes residue. segments that the "social" isolates as it grows. and perhaps the only one. in which one never knows which is the remainder of the other: In no other structure can one create this reversion. of what else? Of a process. and runs infinitely after its own slash.everything that has not been socialized. the real or the image. Who can say if the remainder of the social is the residue of the nonsocialized. it itself becomes residual.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Infinite Remainder Society is defined by its outsiders – it’s impossible to have an identity without an other. the gigantic waste product. But the remainder is the third. It is for this remainder that the social machine is recharged and finds new energy. etc. There is no longer a respective position-the real disappearing to make room for an image. that one laughs at sex and death." the social designates itself as a remainder: The impossibility of determining what is the remainder of the other characterizes the phase of simulation and the death throes of distinctive systems. then. and sex and death are eminently reversible figures. a phase when everything becomes a remainder and a residual. It is obscene and makes one laugh. or of the mirror of the remainder. the lack of distinction between life and death makes one laugh. Perhaps only in the mirror can the question be posed: which. Any discussion on this theme unleashes the same language games. deeply laugh. .other according to a vector determined by the respective position of the terms) no longer exists. etc. it is that meaning (most literally: the possibility of going from one point to an. For why does one laugh? One only laughs at the reversibility of things. only immigrants. which by itself traverses the whole cycle. In designating residual categories as "Society. they enter its jurisdiction in this way and are destined to find their place in an enlarged sociality. and conversely-the remainder disappearing from the assigned location to resurface inside out. in what it was the remainder of. when one has added everything up. etc. the entire sum turns to the remainder and becomes the remainder. the line of the sharing of meaning. to a turning and reversible structure. the same ambiguity. the dynamic is reversed. Inversely. when everything is socialized? Then the machine stops. When a system has absorbed everything. the two others amounting to this as to the very figure of reversibility.

dreams. etc. as excess (but excess is not formally different from the remainder. and of what remains of it. and by playing with the slash. everything is inverted. and everything that is residual is destined to repeat itself indefinitely in phantasms. where the stockpiles of phantasms collapse. and in the linear infinity of accumulation and calculation. everything that is below the line of the infinite. What is surprising in this. will produce a new repression. It is on the stockpile of repressed affects and representations that our new alliance is based. The social itself is residual once it becomes a production of social relations. We are not far from this absolute point of repression where the stockpiles are themselves undone. Value is residual if it is not reibsorbed and volitalized in the cycle of exchanges.Baudrillard <<continued>> Page ____ of ____ Infinite Remainder <<Baudrillard 81 continued>> Today. of the not-said. what traverses a cycle is completely realized. The whole imaginary of the stockpile. it annuls itself as such. but that of an instability in every structure and every opposition that makes it so that there is no longer even a remainder. as with any stockpile. Accumulation is nothing but the remainder. Birth is residual if it is not symbolically revisited through initiation. compensates for the energy and value that used to be accomplished in the cycle of alliance. of the return of the repressed as a powerful moment. Today the remainder. whereas in the dimension of the infinite. in which the weak term played the role of the residual term. End of a certain logic of distinctive oppositions. all of that is nothing but the remainder. produced: it is the concept of energy itself that will be volatilized of its own accord. in the sense that it is a rupture of alliance. that represses it and "produces" it. the crazy. of excrement and waste in art. Psychoanalysis itself is the first great theorization of residues (lapses. the restitution and the conservation of remainders. comes to us from repression. given that energy itself is not conceived except in the movement that stockpiles and liberates it. which was nothing but its insignificant remainder. in all domains. It is on the remainder that a new intelligibility is founded. All normality sees itself today in the light of madness. but an economic politics of reproduction. Today. of recycling-ecology and pollution-a political economy of the remainder. It is insoluble in and of itself. When repression reaches a point of critical saturation where its presence is put in question. and the accumulation of remainders. then energy will no longer be available to be liberated. All new freed or spent energy will leave a new remainder. that is to say in the figure of the remainder and its double? DEBATENEXUS.COM 72 . of a higher order of meaning starting with the remainder. All desire. economized. of the return of the remainder as surplus of meaning. Now. Death is residual if it is not resolved in mourning. Sexuality is residual once it becomes the production of sexual relations. the remainder has become the weighty term. the feminine. The secret of all the "liberations" that play on the hidden energies on the other side of the slash. a rupture of alliances). below the line of eternity (this stockpile of time that itself is also. etc. It is no longer a political economy of production that directs us. But this is still nothing but a sort of inversion of the structure.). and repression is nothing but its inverse and asymmetrical form. is the crucial problem of humanity. Now we are faced with a much more original situation: not that of the pure and simple inversion and promotion of remainders. all libidinal energy. due to the fact that the remainder is everywhere. But when everything is repressed. nothing is anymore. of energy. nothing is left when things are unceasingly shifted and addition itself no longer has any meaning. and the problem of the squandering of excess in Bataille is not different from that of the reabsorption of remainders in a political economy of calculation and penury: only the philosophies are different). Privilege of all the remainders. rather. spent. It is not when one has taken everything away that nothing is left. the energies left us. All accumulation is nothing but a remainder. in the collective celebration of mourning. in the linear infinity of production." All of the real is residual. the marginal.

Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ DEBATENEXUS.COM 73 .

What is produced with the romantic turn. In order to escape the world as destiny. a star.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Feminist Plastic Surgery The move to reconcile the sexes seeks to destroy difference. we have entered an era of production of the Other. Distances are set. it is to a certain extent the femininity of men that is projected onto women and that shape them as ideal figures of likeness [ressemblance]. or as a "femme fatale". of inventing her. such a love fusion. which further entrenches patriarchal power structures and maintains a form of solipsist alienation far worse than simple gender oppression. None of this has any meaning [sens] whatsoever in seduction where it is not a question of desire but of a play [jeu] with desire. with it. the body as destiny. or in his irreducible singularity. Maybe it is because the Other. And otherness [alterite] is left untouched. “Plastic Surgery for the Other”] Starting with modernity. either as a realized utopia (an idealized woman). of facing him. of a change in sexual paradigms that once again must be reinserted in the more general and universal context of a change in the paradigms of otherness. During this hysterical phase. It is first of all a matter of producing the Other. one must produce the other as difference. at the turn of the 19th century. is on the contrary the putting into play of a masculine hysteria and. It is no longer a question of killing. of loving or hating the Other. has become dangerous or unbearable.COM 74 . we have to conjure up his seduction. and woman who takes her supernatural shape only as an ideal of the same). This is the very condition of this greater illusion. sex (and the other sex) as destiny. almost an incestuous form. and a utopia of sexual difference based on law and nature. Each sex has its own anatomical and psychological characteristics. otherness [alterite] is lacking and. of devouring or seducing the Other. that is to say destined to a pathos of ideal likeness [ressemblance] of <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. It is rather a matter of creating her from inside [de l'interieur]. The Other is no longer an object of passion but an object of production. In any case. an artifact from now on destined to love. of competing with him. Seduction is nothing less than hysterical. including an ideology of sex and desire. but in the absence of difference. between twin beings (woman as a projected resurrection of the same. its own desire with all the insoluble events that emerge from that. since we cannot experience otherness as destiny. And this is a concern just as much for the body as it is for sex. Or perhaps. in his radical otherness [alterite]. This is what happens with sexual difference. Romantic love is no longer about winning over a woman's heart. of this play with desire. more simply. but alterity/otherness [alterite] or complicity). the production of the other as difference is invented. or about seducing her. which is yet another hysterical and supernatural metaphor. November 22. since no sex projects its sexuality onto the other. or for social relationships. Baudrillard in 95 [Jean. and where it is not a question of equality between different sexes or of an alienation of one by the other since this play [jeu] implies a perfect reciprocity of each partner (not difference or alienation. otherness and dual relationships gradually disappear with the rise of individual values and with the destruction of the symbolic ones. This is the entire work of the romantic Eros: he is the one who has invented such an ideal harmony. And so. the other is reconstructed in the form of the self – women become reflections of men.

Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Feminist Plastic Surgery <<Baudrillard 95 continued 2/3>> beings and sexes. with modern erotism we are only dealing with a diverted form of incest. even if it is banalized (for it is no longer a question of a mythical or tragic incest. There is a sort of transcending justice in this process of sexual non-differentiation. men are above all different whereas there is some remnant of radical otherness within women. in this extrapolation process of the Same in the production of the Other. But the other is never more than the ephemeral form of a difference that draws me closer to the I [me rapproche de moi]. in the context of sexual difference. completely problematic since it is no longer able to project in an other its own image. with romantic love and all its current by-products. through the same invention. <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. in a paradoxical way. Finally. in the last analysis. They are useless since sexuality is no longer necessary to their reproduction. sexuality draws nearer to death: it is because sexuality is getting closer to incest and to its own destiny. In the final analysis [au fond]. that invests and alienates himself in the other. Of the same that eyes the other. a radical otherness of women which precedes the degraded status of [masculine] difference. there is a progressive assimilation of the sexes which goes from difference to a lesser difference. This is the era of Transsexualism where all the struggles linked to sexual Difference are perpetuated well after any real sexuality or any type of real otherness has disappeared. that of the projection of the same into the image of the other. any encounter with otherness [alterite] is made impossible (by the way. But. it is the invention of a femininity which renders women superfluous. at the same. a hysterical projection of their masculinity which follows exactly the hysterical projection by men of their femininity in the mythical image of a woman). that men are more different from women than actually women are from men. and from there to a visual inversion and non-differentiation of the sexes which. Auto-eroticism? Incest? No. In the cloning process. useless sexual beings will be reproduced. a pathetic confusion that replaces the dual otherness [alterite] of seduction. But there still remains a dissymmetry in this forced allocation to difference. The entire erotic machinery changes meaning/direction [sens] because the erotic attraction that once came from otherness [alterite]. it would be interesting to know whether there has ever been a hysterical counterpart to this phenomenon from the feminine side in the construction of virile and phallic mythologies. but rather a hypostasis of the Same. It is also the reason why. to the side of similarity and likeness [ressemblance]. it is because it reflects this very mode of libidinal cloning). a justice which drives both sexes to inexorably culminate in total non-differentiation where they lose their singularity and their otherness [alterite]. which is the same thing as a confusion and a corruption of all the images). In short. All this nonsense about the phallus and the sexual privilege of masculinity must also be reexamined. turns the sexual function into something totally useless. The real woman seems to disappear in that hysterical invention of femininity (but she has many more ways to resist that). This means that. the so-called masculine desire also becomes.COM 75 . and thus to become purely speculative. the invention of a difference which is nothing more than a diverted copulation with one's double. now shifts to the side of the Same. And this is why I was saying. from the strangeness of the Other. in this hysterical invention of the sexual other as a twin brother or sister (if the issue of twinning is so up-to-date. Feminism is in fact an example of hystericization of the masculine by women. in that invention of sexual difference whereby the masculine side is from the beginning the privileged pole and through which all the ideological and feminist struggles will be doomed to reconstruct either that very privilege or that unreconciled difference.

this is not because of an alienation. and of communication. that is to say to have to produce the other in his absence. in death. That surgery of the faces and bodies is only the symptom of a more radical one: that of otherness and destiny. We must not be reconciled with nature. which is a much worse fatality. our identity. identity is constantly "altered. and dual relationships (event violent ones). Once such a "natural" relationship is lost. and our desire). Everyone talks about alienation.. The body is invested as a fetish. Plastic surgery [la chirurgie esthetique] becomes universal. in illnesses. There is none to that foreclosing of evil and to that reconciliation around the Same and his proliferated expressions: incest. We must not be reconciled with our own bodies or with our selves. as an object of care. our look. strangeness. autism. for instance. This was more or less the case until the 18th century. none to such a fascination. of your image: plastic surgery all over the place. In fact. Many more things partake of that production of the Other. the more we know that a genetic theory of race is unfounded. of your look.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Feminist Plastic Surgery <<Baudrillard 95 continued 3/3>> This (successful?) merger of a masculinely projected hysteria onto femininity is renewed by every individual (man or woman) on their own bodies. DEBATENEXUS. As long as there is otherness [alterite]. and thus to be continuously referred back to oneself and to one's image. we then must reconcile to it. The secret to a strange attraction lies here. one enters an exponential relationship with an artificial Other. but is rather a locus of identification. but because of the end of alienation and because of the virtual disappearance of the other. If we are today condemned to our own image (condemned to cultivate our body. of suffering.. twinning. We must not be reconciled with the Other. cloning. there is none to this erotic movement of an entire culture. An autistic culture which takes the shape of a fake altruism. of desire. a dual relationship. And nothing in our culture allows racism to be curbed since our entire cultural movement goes in the same direction [sens] which is that of a frenzied differential construction of the Other and of a perpetual extrapolation of the Same through the Other. Everyone uses their body like man uses woman in the projective mode of identification described before." There is nothing you can do about it: that's destiny. But the worst alienation is not to be dispossessed by the other but to be dispossessed of the other.. What is the solution? Well. racism should have diminished thanks to Enlightenment's progress. make it an ideal object. We must not be reconciled with femininity (and that goes for women too). the more racism is reinforced. we must repair it. An identification and an appropriation of the body as if it was a projection of the self. But. But it is precisely that which must be exorcized at any cost through an identification with the body. with its development throughout modernity and with its current outbursts. We can only remember that seduction lies in not reconciling with the Other and in salvaging the strangeness of the Other. If the body is no longer a place of otherness [alterite]. there is properly speaking no such thing as racism. of denial of strangeness and negativity. and is used as a fetish in a desperate attempt at identifying oneself. This final short-circuiting of the other opens up an era of transparency. of your desire. Logically.COM 76 . neutral. perfect it. of a self no longer seen as otherness or destiny. And it is the likeness [ressemblance] of the body with its model which then becomes a source of eroticism and of "white" [fake. through an individual appropriation of the body. to such an abyss of denial of the other. In the facial traits.] selfseduction to the extent that this likeness virtually excludes the Other and is the best way to exclude a seduction which would emerge from somewhere else. of that hysterical and speculative production: like racism. as anthropological reports indicate. virgin. the paradoxical limit of alienation is to take oneself as a focal point [comme point de mire]. in sex. It is because racism is an artificial construction of the Other based on an erosion of cultural singularities (of their otherness between one another) and on an acceptance of a fetishistic system of difference. The body becomes the object of an autistic cult and of a quasi-incestuous manipulation.

COM 77 . DEBATENEXUS.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Feminist Plastic Surgery Overview Extend Baudrillard 95. Here’s the argument.

there also. but from its saturation and its retraction. It is a violence that is determined. Subversion. that of a liberated energy-the imaginary of radiation. like a system with too much feedback – the plan’s action is a step in this direction.) The city no longer revives. We were a culture of liberating violence (rationality). Whether it be that of capital. This violence is dialectical. of the conquered and colonized space including the universal-whether it be that of the revolution. this is its current mode of disappearance. liberating. The city does not repeat itself any longer according to a schema of reproduction still dependent on the general schema of production. of the liberation of productive forces. whether through slow or violent phases. Rather. the state. everything is foreseen. The same for institutions. DEBATENEXUS. Even the scenario of the underground city-the Chinese version of the burial of structures-is naive. of combinatory theory. analytical.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Implosion of the State The idea of the state vanishing through revolution and people refusing to accept it is just a pipe-dream – it doesn’t fit the modern era. revolutions. of the map coextensive with the territory and doubling it in its entirety: today the simulacrum no longer goes by way of the double and of duplication. which we no longer know how to analyze. A violence that follows an inordinate densification of the social. energetic. of the irreversible extension of the field of reason and of the field of value. Fire. of the whole space in an infinitesimal memory. as is the case for physical stellar systems. etc. irreversible order. Power implodes. cathartic. which anticipates the future forms of the social and of the energy of the social-the schema is the same: that of an expanding sphere. (That is how one still restored after the Second World War. and which belongs to no one. “Simulacra and Simulation” p. 70-72] Beaubourg cannot even burn. overdeveloped control circuits. or according to a schema of resemblance still dependent on a schema of representation. End of representation and implosion. the state will implode through overrregulation. What is produced in reality is that the institutions implode of themselves. by dint of ramifications. destruction are no longer the imaginary alternative to this type of building. Simulation of an immanent. of the negativity internal or external to the city. war. Fires. even deep down-it is remade starting from a sort of genetic code that makes it possible to repeat it indefinitely starting with an accumulated cybernetic memory. catastrophes: the whole problematic of the anticity. A whole other violence appears today. The violence that accompanies it is that of a wider world: it is that of production. Gone even the Borgesian utopia. The dream of seeing all that explode by dint of contradictions is precisely nothing but a dream. both cybernetic and combinatory.COM 78 . has some archaic relation to its true mode of annihilation. It is the one we have learned to analyze and that is familiar to us: that which traces the paths of the social and which leads to the saturation of the whole field of the social. Such is the case for the city. feedback. plague. one that is potentially saturated and that will never again witness the liberating explosion. violent destruction is what corresponds to a mode of production. which forgets nothing. criminal marginality. increasingly dense. Baudrillard in 81 [Jean. power. but by way of genetic miniaturization. It is implosion that is the form of abolishing the "quaternary" world. To a universe of networks. because it escapes the traditional schema of explosive violence: implosive violence that no longer results from the extension of a system. and of flow correspond reversal and implosion. explosion.

They translate the passage of defined systems of expansion to systems of production and expansion on all levels-in a star or in a rhizome. the last perhaps. power) that is overencumbered. a network (of knowledge. after a kind of maximum radiation (see Bataille's concepts of loss and expenditure in this sense. and of a hypertrophic control investing all the interstitial pathways. so that they become black holes where the world as we know it. and the solar myth of an inexhaustible radiation. in the fundamental energetic process of expanding systems. It is indecipherable because undetermined. This violence is unintelligible to us because our whole imaginary has as its axis the logic of expanding systems. is abolished.COM 79 . that of a saturation as far as the interstitial and the infinity of networks. information. on which he founds his sumptuary anthropology: it is the last explosive and radiating myth of our philosophy. Something else if we move from a millennial phase of the liberation and disconnection of energies to a phase of implosion. Perhaps it no longer even comes from the schema of indeterminacy. the last fire of artifice of a fundamentally general economy. DEBATENEXUS. of the irradiation of intensities and of the molecularization of desire go in the same direction. and become involutive systems. which absorb all the surrounding energies. The stellar systems also do not cease to exist once their radiating energy is dissipated: they implode according to a process that is at first slow. Because the aleatory models that have taken over from classical models of determination and causality are not fundamentally different. as radiation and indefinite energy potential. it doesn't matter-all the philosophies of the release of energy. but this no longer has any meaning for us). to a phase of the reversion of the social-gigantic reversion of a field once the point of saturation is reached. The difference from the molar to the molecular is only a modulation.Baudrillard <<continued>> Page ____ of ____ Implosion of the State <<Baudrillard 81 continued>> the state of an overregulated system. and then progressively accelerates-they contract at a fabulous speed.

This is where the transparence of Evil begins. that was long considered residual. since there. slackness. when faced with the dazzling success of the other. The drip-feeding of Western values behind the Iron Curtain gives way today to the percolation. “The Illusion of the End” p. who will be first to destabilize the other. technological. We have a good idea who is going to suck the other's blood once their glass coffins are broken open. the multiple forms of disaffection. has no other territory than the one it destabilizes from within. business-like countries or those trained by Marxism in abulia and corruption? Slackness or efficiency? Fatal apathy or high performance levels? The captive hell of paradise or the captive paradise of hell? The two worlds now stand opposed not with weapons or ideas. once all the conditions for order are fulfilled. It is in Germany that these two worlds are telescoped together. they must have drawn from this a lesson of non-labour and collective irresponsibility. in all innocence.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Imperialism as Anti-Imperialism The West thinks it is assimilating and dominating other cultures. how irresistible is Evil. in all perversity. The historical failure of the one. it will certainly not be easy to convert them to the liberal cult of performance. the end of all democratic illusions. it is from reunification that the antagonism arises. but also by the osmosis of an Eastern European world which is decomposing. is a tendency to shoot at decoys. What is moving in the other direction is more subtle and more deadly: the virus of weakness. it is that of Labour they have seen collapse.COM 80 . we know that one of the characteristics of the West. backward. under-developed and which is rising up today as a fully fledged protagonist. This is how the reversal of Western values begins. Against all theoretical predictions. Not merely by the infiltration into the metropolitan heartland of a Fourth World which. It is Dracula against Snow White (the Dracula myth is gathering strength all around as the Faustian and Promethean myths fade). a politique du pire. with Berlin as the epicentre. but mentally in the artificial promiscuity of the New World Order. paradoxically. how it circulates in the same arterial system as Good and feeds off it. out of the two opposed worlds of Capital and Labour.graphic ill-will of another world". the rich. may turn to defiance. Baudrillard in 94 [Jean. when in fact the inclusion of those cultures is what makes their destruction impossible. an equal protagonist and perhaps even a superior one to the extent that its <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. nothing is decided and no one can say who will win. how irresistible is disorder. However this may be. Now. the surreptitious infiltration of the impotence. In short. It is not the confrontation but the rapprochement of two worlds which produces violence and the clash of mentalities. and ultimately leads to the death of the West’s dominance through internal collapse. But what flows from West to East is chiefly the illusion of victory. economic and demo. represented to perfection by the Americans in the recent Gulf War. the people of Eastern Europe have certainly acquired an opinion on history and its perverse effects. once all the conditions for Good are fulfilled. and those very people who eyed the wealth enviously when it was still forbidden may very well turn their backs entirely on the Western model merely to remain consistent with themselves. and making of that decomposition if not a strategy then at least a trap. In the course of their misfortunes. This is where we shall see. Logically. a decoy. 47-49] It might seem that the flow of wealth and abundance moving from West to East wins out over the opposite flow. unlike the Third.

They can be wiped out physically and morally. in the void of history. what these refractory. In the order of power and wealth. contrary to the apparent facts which suggest that all cultures are penetrable by the West . who will suck us into their empty space. The attraction of the void is irresistible.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Imperialism as Anti-Imperialism <<Baudrillard 94 continued>> potential of impotence is superior to our potential of potency. By contrast. But even when the 'others' seem to be demanding their share of the cake. in any case. The West. believes it is resented for its power and wealth and. as once it discovered the survivors of the concentration camps. law and morality into the empty space and impotent memory of extermination. and anyone can just walk right in. by contrast. corruptible by the universal . Now. But.shattered by catastrophe. one desires the death of the other so as to take his place. weak and drained. The danger is to feed them too quickly. DEBATENEXUS. for its part. They will never come back into ours. The logic of this challenge is alien to that of the economic and liberal New World Order.it is the West which is eminently penetrable. The other cultures (including those of Eastern Europe). we shall do all we can to wipe this past from their memories. even at the risk of dying themselves. even more naively. what they demand.that is. just as the dead and the survivors of the camps have sucked our last vague desires for culture. in fact remain impenetrable behind the mask of prostitution. The West. It is they.COM 81 . believes in the compatibility of all cultures. is alien to itself. But in vain. this is still an allegorical way of desiring its death. is not to take the place but to see the death of the West. incompatible cultures want. they live in another space . since this kills them. of prostituting themselves to material goods or Western ideologies. The 'victory' of the West is not unlike a depressurizing of the West in the void of communism. naive as ever. but not penetrated. The West is discovering the Eastern bloc countries. This alienness is linked to their complicity with themselves. even when they give the impression of selling themselves. Certainly. whether or not they are saved.

its weakness. an impossible scenario: orbital bombs are virtual. like the fully realized utopia. Integral. Up to that point. unpredictable strategy even for the protagonists themselves. “The Illusion of the End” p. the consequences of communism's sudden selfdissolution are perhaps even more incalculable than those of its appearance at the dawn of this century. It was the Eastern bloc that exploded that bomb in its own heart and it was that bomb which. After Chernobyl. they do not explode. The combination of communism and capital gains the benefits of both and ultimately achieves the goal of the communist revolution. with its inverted acting out. it becomes capable of passing through its own wall and infecting the whole world. but brilliant strategic inversion which has destabilized the very concept of relations of force. and at the same time passes the whole lot over to the West. violent destructuring. in the form of the first atomic cloud. the fully realized communism. an accidental acting-out. since perfect communism. it is exerting an influence over the world which it could never muster by arms or by thought.or implodes .a strategy of weakness. By the suicidal accident of Chernobyl. the unconditional acting out of capitulation. hardware and brains of the former USSR going to turn up allover the world. it had opened up a monolithic. too. The East will have victoriously countered capital with capitulation. Symbolically. For not only are the weapons.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Viral Communism Communism’s collapse has caused it to integrate into the West and infect it with its own values. prevented the event of atomic war from coming about. which presides over the political. Baudrillard in 94 [Jean. the Berlin Wall no longer exists.on the spot. Everything culminated in Star Wars. Deterrence by self-dissolution. not by ideology or by its model of functioning. In that sense. auto-destabilization which completely destabilizes the opponent . but of the imbalance of terror. the former USSR both admits its impotence. more effective than a thousand atom bombs. things were frozen: no military. inaugurating the fusion between the two worlds by radioactive infiltration. Not through ideology. transpolitical confusion of the blocs. dissemination. is the one which has disappeared. by superfusion: Chernobyl. It is Chernobyl that will turn out to have been the real starting point in this involuntary. creating out of this a strategy of relations of weakness and completely changing the rules of the game. an unexpected. and the contamination has passed from East to West. it might be said that it is triumphant. 44-47] It is clear that the ultimate deterrence has come from the East -no longer that of the balance of terror. unilateral disarmament. but through the auto-da-fe of its own principles. which prevents the confrontation itself from coming about. totalitarian communism could be sealed up and neutralized. an influence over the whole world by the event of its disappearance. crossed the Wall and frontiers without encountering any opposition. Disintegrated communism becomes viral. So the initial explosion of the New World Order will indeed have come from the East. it opens up the path of dislocation for all structures and empires. but all the more effective for that. dispersion. In that sense. it is therefore nuclear fusion. but the model of disintegration is going to radiate out also. The only true bomb explodes . A strategy of disappearance. after all. demolition. which. offensive acting-out was possible. contamination. virulence by fragmentation. Certainly. de-escalation. In terms of ideas. for forty years. we might ask whether this is still communism? Whatever the answer.COM 82 . totalitarian path. obliging it to DEBATENEXUS. but by its model of dysfunctioning and of sudden.

it seems in fact that networks transmit viruses even faster than information). a New World Disorder which combines the filterable viruses of communism with the discreet charm of the rights of man and nature? DEBATENEXUS. of course. and hell always submerges heaven. puritanical order of deterrence and the balance of terror. in dialogue. is right and Sakharov wrong.' The dream of plurality is indeed precisely this: differences are to be exchanged as positive qualities. So Solzhenitsyn. And in this case. <<continued>> Viral Communism <<Baudrillard 94 continued>> the world of capital itself. but soon. subtly. But we have nothing against vice and immorality. Whereas what always wins out in the exchange of differences. We have an example of this today with AIDS and the fatal potentiality threatening every sexual encounter.contact into contamination.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ manage the collapse. That of communism to begin with. The captive hell of communism found itself liberated. communism had sought out the weakest link in the capitalist chain. Solzhenitsyn writes (against Sakharov and his idea of having the two hostile blocs converge so as to unite their mutual qualities): 'What can come of two societies afflicted with such redhibitory vices when they come closer together and are transformed by the contact between them? A society twice as immoral. Suddenly. for his part objecting to this immoral confusion. From this point on. is the exchange and addition of negative qualities. it discovered that it was the weakest link and. the barrier separating hell from heaven is liquidated. all in all. than the austere. Genetic confusion runs in this same direction. If they have to be increased in the confusion of the two worlds. contaminated its defences. Why not a world society which is entirely corrupt. by destroying itself. to manage a whole world gone bankrupt. by cracking up almost accidentally. Fusion always turns into confusion . then perhaps that is better. exported its own economic and political suicide. It is one of the aspects of the principle of Evil that it always proceeds more quickly than Good. Up to now.COM 83 . the liquefaction is general. forced it to deny itself as enemy. But the same goes for computers: maximum interconnectedness brings maximum vulnerability of all networks (the trend now is towards stand-alone computers. it sent the other world hurtling to its doom. a single empire which is the empire of confusion.

“Simulacra and Simulation” p. Today when the danger comes at it from simulation (that of being dissolved in the play of signs). we will logically be under the total hallucination of power-a haunting memory that is already in evidence everywhere. What every society looks for in continuing to produce. When it has totally disappeared. the whole discourse of traditional production. that of values and commodities. is to restore the real that escapes it. 22-23] As long as the historical threat came at it from the real. That is why today this "material" production is that of the hyperreal itself. And at the same time. The whole world adheres to it more or less in terror of the collapse of the political. it seeks even harder to reaffirm its existence and delay its death – this overfascination with power in societies that are losing it results in fascism. And in the end the game of power becomes nothing but the critical obsession with power-obsession with its death. disintegrating all the contradictions by dint of producing equivalent signs. it is a question of life and death. It retains all the features. but it is no longer anything but its scaled-down refraction (thus hyperrealists fix a real from which all meaning and charm. economic. The other production.COM 84 . For power. plays at remanufacturing artificial. Whence the characteristic hysteria of our times: that of the production and reproduction of the real. which increases as it disappears. expressing at once the compulsion to get rid of it (no one wants it anymore. everyone unloads it on everyone else) and the panicked nostalgia over its loss. But it is too late. Baudrillard in 81 [Jean. Thus everywhere the hyperrealism of simulation is translated by the hallucinatory resemblance of the real to itself. obsession with its survival. that overdose of a strong referential in a society that cannot terminate its mourning. Power itself has for a long time produced nothing but the signs of its resemblance. has for a long time had no specific meaning. and political stakes. that of the belle epoque of political economy. another figure of power comes into play: that of a collective demand for signs of power-a holy union that is reconstructed around its disappearance. The melancholy of societies without power: this has already stirred up fascism. power plays at the real.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Power Lashing Out As power is criticized and disappears. power played at deterrence and simulation. plays at crisis. all depth and energy of representation have vanished in a hallucinatory resemblance). and to overproduce. DEBATENEXUS. social.

Also. and their actions are already coopted by the system. which turns all their impacts. by granting the fear of its collapse that requires its continued existence. He argues that their criticism causes more problems than it solves – they try to resist power influencing our lives. Their resistance is coproductive with the structures they try to criticize. so it will never solve anything. but this is the exact cycle power requires in order to exist.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Power Lash Out Overview Extend Baudrillard 81. as the grip of power is weakened. leading to fascism. DEBATENEXUS. it responds by tightening its grip.COM 85 .

A similar thing takes place with nuclear weapons whose global capacity is much bigger than what is needed to destroy the entire planet. the missing money is beyond counting [au-dela de toute comptabilite]. That's exactly what it is: the debt circulates on its own orbit. It is simple enough to enter an exponential or virtual mode to become free of any responsibility. In fact. just as accomplices are tied by their crime. one day.S. Everyone is certain to exist for the other in the shadow of an unamendable and insolvable debt for. The Times Square initiative is designed to make the state feel guilty about the way it runs the country. The speed of liberation of the debt is just like one of earth's satellites. Since there is no likely settlement date. it can be bought over at a bargain price to later be placed back on a debt market (public debt. That's why no debt will ever be paid. this is nothing more than a gigantic advertising campaign and. no meaning in the classical terms of stock or credit. with only a very faint probability that. No debt will ever be paid.. debt has entered the realm of the virtual. At least. and intended to warn the citizens about the imminent collapse of the financial and public spheres. of the proliferation and the promise of infinity created by the debt. since there is no reference anymore. There will be no judgment day for this virtual bankruptcy. Baudrillard in 96 [Jean. it might rejoin ours. with its own trajectory made up of capital. one has the impression that the debt takes off to reach the stratosphere. Clearing the debt. It is not even an orbital universe: it is rather ex-orbital. If time is counted [si le temps nous est compte].. The disappearance of the referential universe is a brand new phenomenon. it remains as a way of uniting all of humankind to a same destiny marked by threat and deterrence.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ The Debt The U. People are tied to each other (this goes for the banks too) by means of their virtual bankruptcy. as of today. Don't even think about it! We only live because of this unbalance. national debt.. ex-centered. But. from now on. with its flying figures. which would bring the world of signs crashing down around us. nations are attached to one another by default. The debt will never be paid. it is easier now to understand why the Americans are so eager to advertise their domestic debt in such a spectacular manner. the debt no longer has any meaning but to unite all civilized beings to a same destiny served on credit. November 16. it also serves as our only guarantee against time. the debt will never be paid. As long as it hangs like that over our heads with no reference whatsoever. no referential world to serve as a measuring norm. At most. the exorbitant figure deprives the billboard of any meaning (even figures have lost their credit line). ex-centric. the total amount of the global debt is much larger than the total amount of available capital. cancelling the payments by the Third World. Unlike the countdown which signifies the end of time. The United States is already virtually unable to pay. absent any real signifier. a symbolic credit system whereby people. of course. but this will have no consequence whatsoever. the debt has an incalculable [inestimable] value. Thus.COM 86 . This is simply the figure in light years of a galaxy that vanishes in the cosmos. "Global Debt and Parallel Universe"] In fact. by the way. which. value and utility). this is why the neon "billboard" is made to look like a triumphant stock exchange quotation that has gone over the <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. global debt) where it will have become a currency of exchange. is free of any economic contingency and moves about in a parallel universe (the acceleration of capital has exonerated money of its involvements with the everyday universe of production. The global or planetary debt has. settling the accounts. But it acts as our true collective credit line. Yet. and the only danger is from allowing it to reenter the real. an indefinitely deferred debt is the guarantee that even time is inexhaustible. of course. The final counts will never take place. And we really need a virtual time insurance since our future is about to dissipate in real time.. When one looks at the billboard on Broadway. corporations.

no doubt. It is clear that if a small dose of information reduces ignorance. Reason would probably insist that we include these worlds into our homogeneous universe: nuclear weapons would have a peaceful use. the least noticeable encounter between their orbits and ours. This would (or will) be the same with the total liberation of information. but it is also true of the debt and capital flows. they have found their true place. as an ersatz of transcendence. It is more obvious with nuclear weapons. they are in fact ours. DEBATENEXUS. The worst thing that can happen to an individual is to know too much and. and the nuclear loads that circle around the earth in an orbital dance. people rarely look at the numerical time clock at Beaubourg to witness the gradual ending of this century). fascinated by the spectacle of a world performance (in the meantime. in real time. People are collectively in the same situation as that Russian test pilot who. We are the ones who created them and placed them beyond our reach. This is. Information is just as insolvable as the debt and we'll never be able to get rid of it. it has no other meaning but that of binding humankind to a destiny of cerebral automation and mental underdevelopment. Information's immense potential will never be redeemed and it will never be able to achieve its finality. since proliferating information is larger than the needs and capacities of any individual. until the very last second. It's just like the debt. the irresistible growth (or outgrowth perhaps) of information could be measured there. or nuclear stockpiles: it is that of the orbit. with numbers representing the millions of people and the billions of operations that they cover. For. We are the ones who placed them on their orbits as some sort of catastrophic imaginaries. where they rise and set like artificial suns. Some of the most recent of these exponentially developing parallel worlds are the Internet and the many worldwide webs of information.COM 87 .Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ The Debt <<Baudrillard 96 continued>> top. Let these worlds remain parallel to ours. And here too. Information now expands to such an extent that it no longer has anything to do with gaining knowledge. with a sidereal velocity and an instantaneous capacity of reversal. It now exists because of a catastrophic imaginary. all the debts would be erased. As pure artifacts. a massive dose of artificial intelligence can only reinforce the belief that our natural intelligence is deficient. no matter how parallel and ex-centric they may be. and of the human species in general. and information would contribute to knowledge. only demonstrates our real impotence and drives us to panic and resentment. far from exalting some sort of collective solidarity. to fall beyond knowledge. suffering. all the flows of capital would be reinvested in terms of social well-being. banks. And people stare at it. or vice versa? Does virtual reality live on after the catastrophe of the real world? Our true artificial satellites are the global debt. It is exactly the same thing with responsibility and emotional capacity. would immediately disrupt the fragile equilibrium of our exchanges and economies. the flows of capital. accumulating and transporting information all over the world are the same thing as compiling an unpayable debt. Did he have the ultimate reflex to look at the image before dying? He could have imagined his last living moments in virtual reality. The smallest intrusion of these worlds into ours. a dangerous utopia. Did the image survive the pilot. And it is perhaps better this way. Our society was once solidified by a utopia of progress. thus. and catastrophe. even for a tenth of a second. which could transform us into free radicals desperately searching for our molecules in a scanty cyberspace. Caught in their autonomous and exponential logic. The perpetual intimation of the media in terms of violence. Each day. let their threats hang up in the air: their ex-centricity is what protects us. Collecting data. This place is even more extraordinary than the Stock Exchange. all these parallel worlds are like time bombs. was able to see his airplane drop and crash on the video system of his Tupolev jet.

DEBATENEXUS. turning their whole scenario. and it ties all the people and countries in the world together through their mutual debt.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Debt Overview Extend the Baudrillard 96 card. it’s just a really big hypothetical number that is already impossible to repay. separate and above the world we actually live in. When they treat the debt as something real that we need to worry about. The debt exists in a parallel universe. it pushes everyone apart as repayment is demanded. As long as the threat hangs in the air. it unbalances all the forms of exchange based on it.COM 88 . That’s what causes their impact evidence to come true. not an excessive amount of money owed by the government. He says that the US deficit doesn’t matter anymore – it has no relation to reality. Their disad scenario is what makes the debt dangerous. it draws us to together – once it’s drawn back down. In this formulation is harmless.

The postmodern events are like secondary products. The war in Bosnia gave us a dramatic example of such a condition. the images create the events. Rather than the events creating the images of them. the real movement of history. Traders and <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. He is like a parody. the current era could indeed be called "postmodern. just as capital takes over to produce labor." It is "postmodern" in the sense that its condition is that of a simulation or spectrality of events whose only stage is the news media. an artificial gravity is restored. As transpolitical events. September 23. As such. the event produced by the media no longer has any historical significance. The event becomes virtual. Virtual and speculative economic transactions mark the end of any form of political economy.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Simulation of Politics The media creates the political world and actors in an abstract world of hyperreality with no relation to actual reality. in which actors are nothing more than extras. Or. the 'truth' in the news media is nothing more than the postsynchronizing. It was no longer an event. The only resolution that is left is the visual resolution of the media. It was a stasis. It is the same thing as what happens in making a movie. This is a paradoxical reversal of all our classical perspectives. Baudrillard in 98 [Jean. the events can now be rebroadcast on the transpolitical stage of the news media. the dubbing. they are lost in a vacuum of information. to put it differently. the very act of working loses its meaning (and the chance it may have had to upset capital's order). According to this new configuration. a "strike of events. At this point." as Macedonio Fernandez put it. It would be the domain which emerges after classical economics is lost in the empty vortex of stock exchange vacillations (just as history is lost in the vortex of information). a degraded incident compared with the original. as a grotesque duplicate of the first Napoleon. The current period offers multiple examples of this degraded and exhausted duplication of the first events of modernity. The media have to take over and make the event. What does the metaphor of the "strike of events" mean? It means that history's workforce has been forced out of work. Everywhere. after all the events have been emptied of their substance. And we could add: Farce reproducing itself becomes history. when labor is the product of capital. They are the events of a history which can no longer renew itself. and the events are sent back into orbit where they can be seen in real time. after losing their historical vitality. The informational domain is a space where. and the sub-titling of the film.COM 89 . if it still meant anything at all. It is a domain where events no longer take place in reality because of their own production and deployment in 'real time. an unreal history. It was rather the symbol of history's own impotence. But it also means that a work of mourning begins. If history is a movie (which indeed it has become through its immediate retro-projection). History reproducing itself becomes farce. we enter the domain of the transpolitical or the transhistorical. It no longer conveys any form of political resolution. virtuality (the mediatic hyper-space with its multiple interfaces) eradicates what we could call.' They can simply be captured transpolitically. Similarly. "In the Shadow of the Millennium"] We know the analysis that Marx gave of Napoleon III. and often that the work of the news media takes over. the "smaller" Napoleon. We could also talk about the transeconomic domain. History uses this technique of the duplicate to go forward whereas in fact it is going backward.

Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ DEBATENEXUS.COM 90 .

then. When he starts to analyze power. Something else is at stake: 'real-time' economics. the instantaneous fluidity of capital.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Simulation of Politics <<Baudrillard 98 continued>> Golden Boys no longer have anything to do with the logic of production. unlike what Marx said. But wasn't it already like this in Marx's time? The emergence of the notions of class and struggle. at dusk. it transcends real economics and goes through reality from one end to the other similar to the nuclear reactor in over-drive of China Syndrome which was able to go through the globe from end to end. would only pose insolvable questions. just as history's fate is to fall for its own trap? DEBATENEXUS. Our jump into the virtual world unsettles all the material conditions that Marx was talking about. and will never be? Who would re-problematize all the already discovered solutions and. the virtual is history's final solution and the end result of real conflicts. this means that humankind (or those who think on its behalf) only comes up with problems when they have already been solved.. a paradoxical thought. We notice that a problem arises when the material conditions of its solution already exist or. As Apollinaire used to say. They have been virtually surpassed. it means that it has already vanished. like the Owl of Minerva. history's own cave). which. Circulating around itself at an increasingly fast speed. capitalist profit. History does not serve second courses. isn't it already the sign that power no longer has any political meaning. Marx states that "mankind only poses problems that it can solve. at least. Today. the orbital dance of money. when they are about to exist. are like Kafka's messiah: they always arrive too late. for another thought. Analysis itself is part of the process of disappearance.COM 91 . money becomes a strangely magnetic agent. or the system has displaced them by absorbing their occurrence. that it has lost its object? When ethnology looks at primitive societies. Isn't the risky destiny of thought to finally become the victim of its own prophecy. reminiscent of Plato's figurines and their shadows on the back wall ( a wall of events) in the cave (here. Critical consciousness is nothing more than a retrospective prophecy. after the fact. Only analysis does. definitely insolvable problems? Is there a thought whose material conditions of resolution are not already present. the market. Critical consciousness. it means that they have already disappeared. In a sense. Is there room. and perhaps thought in general. when people talk about time. As an uncontrollable chain reaction.. and deprives historical conditions of any dialectical solution. would keep the world in an enigmatic suspense? Nobody knows. In A Critique of Political Economy. in so doing. the birth of a historical conscience: aren't these indicative of the moment when humankind ceased to be violent and irreducible? This is reminiscent of Foucault and his analysis of power." But it is not like this anymore.

Immense energies are deployed to hold this simulacrum at bay. participation at every level. but one must guard against thinking that people believe in it: this is the trap of critical DEBATENEXUS. there is none." A sort of inverse simulation in the masses. Rather than creating communication.COM 92 . to shortcircuit in advance any possibility of communication (precession of the model that calls an end to the real). it exhausts itself in the act of staging communication. Belief. etc. It devours communication and the social. the anti theater of communication. opens onto an excess of wealth and social purpose. it exhausts itself in the staging of meaning. that of the hyperreal. the opposite occurs. A gigantic process of simulation that is very familiar. Information is thought to create communication. you are the event. But one can believe that this belief is as ambiguous as that which was attached to myths in ancient societies. More real than the real. Everywhere information is thought to produce an accelerated circulation of meaning. this homeopathic grafting. the integrated circuit of the negative.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Media Information Sucks Increasing information through the media is a destructive process – the images devour the real content and create ambivalence and alienation from actual events. Thus not only communication but the social functions in a closed circuit. Myth exists. in each one of us. is never anything but the recycling in the negative of the traditional institution. despite its dysfunctions and irrationalities. as one knows. Well. listeners who call in. To this tautology of the system the masses respond with ambivalence. which. Baudrillard in 81 [Jean. and for this very reason: because where we think that information produces meaning. there be an excess of meaning. It is useless to ask if it is the loss of communication that produces this escalation in the simulacrum. Rather than producing meaning. A circular arrangement through which one stages the desire of the audience. I. One both believes and doesn't. Useless to ask which is the first term. but still. that is how the real is abolished. as a whole. Whoever is underexposed to the media is desocialized or virtually asocial. or whether it is the simulacrum that is there first for dissuasive ends.mail through speech: "You are concerned. and even if the waste is enormous. The hyperreality of communication and of meaning. without which the credibility of our social organization would collapse. One does not ask oneself. this awakening dream of communication. or with an always enigmatic belief. “Simulacra and Simulation” p. the fact is that it is collapsing. speech. And for two reasons. Information devours its own content. which is redistributed in all the interstices of the social-just as consensus would have it that material production. We are all complicitous in this myth. It is the alpha and omega of our modernity. a general consensus would have it that nevertheless. to deterrence they respond with disaffection. black." More and more information is invaded by this kind of phantom content. corresponds to this simulation of meaning and of communication in which this system encloses us. 80-81] The third hypothesis is the most interesting but flies in the face of every commonly held opinion. faith in information attach themselves to this tautological proof that the system gives of itself by doubling the signs of an unlocatable reality. as a lure-to which the force of myth is attached. to avoid the brutal desimulation that-would confront us in the face of the obvious reality of a radical loss of meaning. a plus value of meaning homologous to the economic one that results from the accelerated rotation of capital. "I know very well. Everywhere socialization is measured by the exposure to media messages. it is a circular processthat of simulation. The nondirective interview.

DEBATENEXUS.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ thinking that can only be exercised if it presupposes the naivete and stupidity of the masses.COM 93 .

the only political discourse today in France is that of Le Pen's Front National. It has become a purely moralistic law-making structure. Le Pen has been able to take over all of the political. It now acts as a jurisdiction which asks everyone to act responsibly while still granting itself the right to remain irresponsible. the benefits which come with being the only one on the side of evil. the more legitimacy and political authority it gains. of what is the worst part of us. whenever the traditional right decided to implement an ideology of morality and order. having given himself to evil and immorality. Suddenly responsible for the defense of moral order. May 7. The political illusion of the left (which had remained frozen during twenty years of opposition) turned into a platform of historical morality (and not of historical direction) once it came to power. teachers' lessons and lecturers' tirades.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Banishing the Right Fear and demonization of the “new right” is what gives it its power – the more the right is opposed and scapegoated. has become an act of faith. for example. Simply. Instead of fighting for ideology. the principle of reality. you could always count on the left.COM 94 . always attempting to antagonize those so-called moral values in the name of political claims. As such. Conversely. the more he enjoys the benefits of political immorality. Since then. and you immediately become a betrayer of moral law. the left has no choice but to witness the slippage of abandoned political energies toward political forces which do not hesitate to antagonize its newly created order. and nationalist (everyone's fate) viruses. With the left and the traditional right both deprived of political substance. and good conscience. the left is experiencing the same condition that once characterized the traditional right. the left keeps on reactivating the source of evil by continuing to embody the rule of virtue. Try to question the reality of war. managers' rhetoric and programmers' jargon. the lowest point of the genealogy of morals. we would have to invent him! Indeed. by contrast. it has moved to the far right. we would be abandoned to the murderous negativity of society. a sacred holder of the reign of Virtue. the remnant of what has been abandoned or voluntarily rejected by a political ideology of Good deeds and Enlightenment values. where has the political gone to? Well. however. having thus reached a zero degree on the political scale and. It then became the holder of a morality of truthfulness. It is as such that we can curse Le Pen. As Bruno Latour so accurately noted the other day in Le Monde. “A Conjuration of Imbeciles”] There has been a shattering reformulation. used to represent an antagonistic mode of historical and political exigency. But today. sexist. just as every <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. and an incarnation of antiquated values such as Good or Truth. we need to realize that the line between right and left is meaningless and unhelpful. In the past. If he were to disappear. Baudrillard in 97 [Jean. a representative of universal values. All the rest is moral and pedagogic discourse. undoubtedly. simply. The more he is antagonized by a moral coalition (a sign of political impotence). basic rights. Le Pen is the perfect mirror of the political class which uses him to conjure up its own evils. which of course is nothing more than the rule of supreme hypocrisy. If Le Pen did not exist. Its moralization of all values marked its historical failure (and the failure of thinking in general). it is thanks to him that we can get rid of our evil share. The right used to embody moral values and the left. By contrast. we would be left begging for pity! We would be left struggling with our own racist. even reality. But today the left is deprived of its political energy.

Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ DEBATENEXUS.COM 95 .

trying to purify society and moralize public life. indeed. By incarcerating Le Pen in a ghetto.COM 96 . We are all both responsible and victim at the same time of this inextricable and complex process of exclusion. And. But this is just a drop in an ocean of social exclusion that has overwhelmed all of society (recently. their negative doubles. Le Pen has an incredible freedom of language and can deploy an unmatched arrogance of judgement. were all excluded by the decree signed by the President of the Republic to dissolve the National Assembly). of denial of evil. he can enjoy the consequences of both legality and illegality. but rather from a subtle treatment which turns evil against itself. blatantly reveal their own impotence and idiocy and glaringly demonstrate how absurd it is to antagonize him face to face. They simply have not understood the rules of evil that his game of musical chairs follow. A victim of ostracism. and of hypocrisy that his opponents constantly throw at him in the course of their battle for the defense of law or the defense of a good cause. the fact that the left remains trapped in a discourse of denunciation whereas Le Pen maintains a privilege of enunciation? What pushes one to gain all the profits from the crime while the other suffers the negative effects of recrimination? What causes one to "get off" [s'eclatant] with evil when the other gets lost with the victim? Well. Le Pen can no longer be dislodged. of course. But what drives such a perverse effect. Le Pen is blamed for the sentiment of rejection and exclusion of immigrants in France. No doubt! But he is above all the symptom of his opponents' stupidity. Opting for a mode of unilateral denunciation. All this shows us that Le Pen may be the embodiment of worthlessness and idiocy. of the way politics itself operates. anti-Le Pen supporters have left him with a monopolistic control over the evil share. something that the left has deprived itself of. Le Pen simply has to pick up and recycle the discourse of ambivalence. by denouncing him. It becomes exiled within its own obsession and automatically grants a privilege of justice to what it demonizes. exclusion itself. Let's give an example of such a magical thought that today stands in for political thought.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Banishing the Right <<Baudrillard 97 continued 2/3>> individual uses the political class to cast away any form of corruption inherent to society (both are similar types of corrupt and cathartic functions). the imbeciles give life to their own ghosts. Thus. trying to eradicate what claims to embody evil is a complete misunderstanding of the way evil operates. But it is above all on the imaginary but very pregnant figure of the rebel and persecuted soul that he establishes his prestige. they simply transform his mistakes into (his own) victories. This shows. the political class simply offers him a most comfortable situation. Le Pen never misses an opportunity to claim republican legality and fairness on his behalf. Le Pen's enemies provide him with the energy he needs. They do not see that good never comes from a purification of evil (evil always retaliates in a forceful way). and ignoring the very principle of reversibility of evil. By demonizing him in the name of virtue. it is in fact the democratic left which becomes incarcerated and which affirms itself as a discriminatory power. Having thus been cast away. There is something typically magical in the <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. Trying to put an end to this. The imbeciles are those who. it's quite simple. as well as the "social breakdown" that politicians like to mention. a terrifying lack of lucidity on their part. By continuing to antagonize him. Too eager to discredit him.

as polar opposites. he is the spectacular projection of the virus. intellectuals no longer analyze. But they already have been recycled by a good and responsible humanitarian thought. The fact that he is placed on the far right is merely the sad result of the fact that analysts are no longer to be found on the left or the far left. of a subtle encirclement of evil whose rational intelligence is never suspected. it is no surprise if resentment has moved to the level of racial inequality. and a demand for liberty into "democratic despotism. Le Pen is the only savage analyst in today's society. This is. in fact. To remain within the political. institution. in fact. Le Pen simply recuperates a de facto situation that the political class refuses to confront (it even uses elections to deny it). Le Pen is simply the visible transcription of such a viral condition. The failure of the social explains the success of the racial (and of all the other fatal strategies).Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Banishing the Right <<Baudrillard 97 continued 3/3>> need to conjure up this virus. If. which. of a silent inertia caused by forced integration and systematic exclusion. But the harsh criticism of this conventional distinction which was unleashed in the 1960s (and culminated in 1968) has unfortunately disappeared from the political scene today. hallucinatory figuration of a latent state. they will have to take into account the radical abolition of the antiquated and artificial distinction between right and left. political will. could become analysts too. Le Pen is a metastasis. one day. It is as if we were faced with a tumor in need of extraction whereas. Global society is dying of inertia and immune deficiency. Our democratic society is a stasis. no matter who or what they are. and which only holds today through some sort of complicit corruption on both sides. is constantly reaffirmed. has been largely damaged and compromised over the past decades. we do not pay attention to this mode of analysis when it comes to the social body. an erasure by default. mutates positivity into negativity. Judges. Thus. as if everyone else had already agreed to destroy what's left of democracy. This happens in dreams too. Not to mention that this process of magical projection of the Front National takes place along the same lines as this party's own process of demonization of immigrants. but whose extreme consequences will be felt some day. it is a question of reversibility. As such. Le Pen is a burlesque.COM 97 . the metastases have already expanded everywhere. in fact. it has already infected the entire body. and political demand hope to rebound. which is everywhere to be found (it is a direct function of our social and technical "progress")." As usual. Le Pen is the only one who operates a radical erasure of the so-called distinction between right and left. Since the hope of finally curing social inequalities has truly disappeared (by and large). This distinction is dead in practice but. DEBATENEXUS. Only the immigrants perhaps. The Front National simply follows the course of the social metastases. or organization. a ruse which. by means of an incurable revisionism. Le Pen is the only one who makes up the new political scene. While modern pathology tells us a lot about the physical body. no doubt. and in the desire to exorcise the curse of exclusion (and our impotence by the same token) through the figure of a hated man. perhaps to produce the retrospective illusion that it actually used to mean something. One must always be suspicious of the ruse of contamination. and is all the more virulent since people think that they have eradicated the disease when. we must step away from ideology and look at things through the lens of social physics. political imagination. by means of the transparency of evil.

the organizers go claim their freedom of speech has been violated. The left also demands the existence of a right. DEBATENEXUS. The classical left-wing of politics has become useless – it tries to defend classical morality. Their arguments perpetuate the same problem. if an Aryan parade is shut down. Reject the artificial distinction they draw in order to solve the impacts they claim. Here’s the argument. the more power the right gains. Scapegoating the right gives it more power.COM 98 . Their effort to avoid the rise of the new right ends up just giving it more power and ensuring it will continue to dominate. because it can use its immoral status to gain a sort of demonic appeal. However. and so get people who otherwise would disagree with their ideology to support them. and portrays the right as immoral. a reversal of their classical roles. For example. because it can utilize it’s outsider status to generate concern and support.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Banishing the Right Overview Extend the Baudrillard 97 evidence. and if the right were ever destroyed we would have to recreate it to avoid facing our own political demons. the more the left says the right is immoral. so that we can cast all our fears and social concerns onto it to purge ourselves of them and feel pure and moral in ourselves. The way out is to recognize that the division between left and right has become fundamentally meaningless and impairs our understanding politics.

has entered the virtual reality of death. We saw Benetton with his commercial campaigns. we enter live spectrality whereas Disney. a simulacrum to the second power. If this operation can be so successful in creating a universal fascination with only a tint of moral disapproval. the grand initiator of the imaginary as virtual reality. with its frenzy of cloning has already been transformed into an interactive performance. is already being resequenced. as a sort of historical attraction to the second degree. where the real has become a spectacle. and everything is recyclable in the polymorphous universe of virtuality. plug in our sensorial captors. Disney could easily revisit the Gulf War as a worldwide show. is now in the process of capturing all the real world to integrate it into its synthetic universe. in CNN's instantaneous mode. we are the spectacle.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Disney World The real is being replaced by the hyperreal. But Disney is not alone in this mode of cannibalistic attraction. where the real becomes a theme park. Baudrillard in 96 [Jean.both the imaginary and the real . <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. waiting for some kind of resurrection in the real world. The transfusion of the real is like a blood transfusion. by the way. but instead of being outside looking in. Everything is possible. they would cryogenize the entire planet. from the bottom of his nitrogen solution he continues to colonize the world . Bosnia.COM 99 . in the form of a vast "reality show" where reality itself becomes a spectacle [vient se donner en spectacle]. the genial anticipator. knowledge. Everything can be bought over. All this is likely to be cloned and resurrected in a juvenile museum of Imagination or a virtual museum of Information. he'll no doubt have the biggest surprise of his life. technologies. except that here it is a transfusion of real blood into the exsanguine universe of virtuality. Meanwhile. death. "Disneyworld Company"] But the Disney enterprise goes beyond the imaginary. In the end [au fond]. where images replace reality and become eternal and infinitely repeating in the virtual universe. in a pret-a-porter (ready-towear) fashion. inside which we all have become extras [figurants]. some kind of Lunapark for ideologies. and even destruction. But there is no real world anymore. just like Walt Disney himself who decided to be cryogenized in a nitrogen solution. The virtual takes over the real as it appears. trying to recuperate the human drama of the news (AIDS. which. to turn it into a genetic show. it is because reality itself. If one day he wakes up. The difference is that when we put on our digital suits. At Disney World in Orlando. Today. The Red Army choirs have already celebrated Christmas at Euro Disney. not even for Walt Disney. the precursor. because it took place in real time. they are even building an identical replica of the Los Angeles Disneyland. a giant metaphorical Disney World. constant participants in a reality show of violence.in the spectral universe of virtual reality. The New World Order is in a Disney mode. or press the keys of our virtual reality arcade. the world itself. works. It is the same thing that CNN did with the Gulf War: a prototypical event which did not take place. poverty. and then replicates it without any modification [le recrache tel quel]. There is no reason why Disney would not take over the human genome. here is now the hallucination of the real in its ideal and simplified version. apartheid) by transfusing reality into a New Mediatic Figuration (a place where suffering and commiseration end in a mode of interactive resonance). After the prostitution of the imaginary. March 4. Disney.

. gladiator movies will be watched as if they were authentic Roman movies. Information itself has become viral. will be confused. Being an extra [figurant] in virtual reality is no longer being an actor or a spectator. not in the imaginary but in a viral and virtual mode.C. Disneyland still belonged to the order of the spectacle and of folklore. but it also seeks to erase time by synchronizing all the periods. Disney World and its tentacular extension is a generalized metastasis. a pastiche of a Pompeian villa. to imagine a virtual universe or the fourth dimension [la quatrieme dimension]. But it is already ours. It is to be out of the scene [hors-scene].COM 100 . such as it is. in a century or in a millennium. which is also without depth. far from adding to the others. in a single traveling motion. no past. but a corpuscular logic of transfusion and transubstantiation of all our cells. as real documentaries on Ancient Rome. Disney wins at yet another level.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Disney World <<Baudrillard 96 continued>> Similarly. Fra Angelico. by juxtaposing them in a single scenario. punctual and unidimensional time. of real time. with its effects of entertainment [distraction] and distanciation [distance]. or three-dimensional space. We are no longer alienated and passive spectators but interactive extras [figurants interactifs]. DEBATENEXUS. History. No present. It is not only interested in erasing the real by turning it into a three-dimensional virtual image with no depth. everything confused in a single crush of time). It is the dimension of the virtual. we are the meek lyophilized members of this huge "reality show. erases them all. a dimension which. dating back to the era of the Roman empire." as Guy Debord would say. and by inexorably mixing all the sequences as they would or will appear to a different civilization than ours." It is no longer a spectacular logic of alienation but a spectral logic of disincarnation. to be obscene. the depth of time. a cloning of the world and of our mental universe. But we are no longer in a society of spectacle. just as before it was difficult. but much more powerful through its numerical propagation. that in the John Paul Getty Museum in Malibu. no longer a fantastic logic of diversion. It is no longer the contagion of spectacle that alters reality. but rather the contagion of virtuality that erases the spectacle. And so it has been said that. from our real world perspective. it marks the beginning of real. which itself has become a spectacular concept. that the celebration of the French Revolution in Los Angeles in 1989 will retrospectively be confused with the real revolutionary event. And so it does not take much work for Disney to scoop up reality. with a villa of the third century B. It is more and more difficult for us to imagine the real. an enterprise of radical deterrence of the world from the inside and no longer from outside. Lapse or collapse of time: that's properly speaking what the fourth dimension [la quatrieme dimension] is about. in an anachronistic manner. perhaps not sexually transmissible yet. Disney realizes de facto such an atemporal utopia by producing all the events. on simultaneous screens. it is useless to keep searching for computer viruses since we are all caught in a viral chain of networks anyway. no future. all the cultures. (including the pieces inside from Rembrandt. past or future. but an immediate synchronism of all the places and all the periods in a single atemporal virtuality. "Spectacular Inc. similar to the quasinostalgic universe of capitalistic reality today. Thus.

"Radical Thought"] Our point is not to defend radical thought.not despair with the world. exactly what poetic language does with words. There will never be a solution to the contradiction of ideas. Critics. never takes into account writing. it is better to have a despairing analysis in a happy language than an optimistic analysis in despairingly boring and demoralizingly plain language. and despair. even more than they need. can justify writing. ironic. the poetic. But we have to fight against charges of unreality. while they are totally unable to transfigure their own language. is the secret sign of despair for this thought . the play with meaning. Any idea that does not sustain its own defense deserves to perish. obsessed by a political finality of discourse. A moralizing and ideological critique. April 19. even when it designates a world with no illusion. but despair toward its own discourse. So the loneliness and sadness in Edward Hopper's paintings are transfigured by the timeless quality of light. the resolution of the misfortune of meaning operated through the good fortune of language. This is where the real depressing thought emerges. The formal boredom that is secreted by an idealist thought on values. lack of responsibility. Which is too often the case. it should be used to further distance from the real. Baudrillard in 95 [Jean. As for meaning. the act of writing. It emerges with those people who only talk about a transcendence or a transformation of the world. Radical thought does not decipher. and allusive form of language. it is always unfortunate. language and writing on the contrary are always a matter of illusion. Language and writing are the living illusion of meaning. They do not see that if discourse always tends to produce meaning. in the formal materiality of an expression. Not a miserable critical objectivity of ideas. in the form itself. Any idea that can be defended is presumed guilty. This critique does not see that the resolution of meaning is right here. Through its reversible chaining. But language on the contrary is fortunate (happy).Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Radical Thought Alternative The criticism is its own meaning – language will never be a reference to the real. always being unfortunate (unhappy) in their nature. Only this witz. choose the realm of ideas as their battle field. What matters is the poetic singularity of analysis. Everyone has ideas. Analysis is by its very definition unfortunate since it is born out of a critical disillusion. Hopper says: "I do not paint sadness or loneliness. in the energy and fortune (happiness) of language. Radical thought is in no way different from radical usage of language. a light which comes from some place else and gives to the whole picture a totally non-figurative meaning. It anathematizes and "anagramatizes" concepts and ideas. with no hope. it simultaneously gives an account of <<continued>> DEBATENEXUS. obsessed by meaning and content. except inside language itself. I only seek to paint light on this wall." In any case. Radical thought is never depressing. and return it more disjointed and confused than it is now. This is the only political or transpolitical act that a writer can accomplish. this spirituality of language. an intensity which renders loneliness unreal. This would be a complete misunderstanding. This would in fact be here the very definition of radical thought: an intelligence without hope. This thought is therefore alien to any resolution of the world which would take the direction of an objective reality and of its deciphering. Instead. or by a goal-oriented thought on culture.COM 101 . but a fortunate and happy form. nihilism.

as an ellipse and a source of pleasure. The world does not seek to have more existence. because it always starts from itself. Stealing the "reality file" to erase its conclusions. Too bad for the apodicticians or the apodidacticians! This is how language is. not as a divine punishment but as a gift from God. Through thought. Whenever it appears to be able to designate things. not deciphering. As for "speaking the language" of the real. will have appeared. to spread the germs or viruses of a radical illusion. thought. which corrupts meaning. that of communication. No matter what. and ironic paths. is to return what you received. the internal feeling that all this affair . even unconsciously. Operating illusions. Even the confusion of languages in the Tower of Babel. A viral and deleterious thought. as a stealing away of all mental capacities. that is to say operating a radical disillusion of the real. a powerful mechanism of illusion for the human race. Hence. as a seduction of the mind. Being illusion to be event. On the contrary. While being a transporter of meaning. a passion for illusion. if language wants to "speak the language" of illusion. A little bit more enigmatic. DEBATENEXUS. it calls for the spiritual imagination of sounds and rhythms. Working all the events to make them unintelligible. and language . its own denial. Rendering unreadable the event itself. a source of noncommunication and an end to the possibility of a universal language. that of symbolic exchange. The absolute rule of thought is to return the world as we received it: unintelligible. It is also a joy (jouissance) to render transparent the imposture of the world. in fact. but always more.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Radical Thought Alternative <<Baudrillard 95 continued>> meaning and of its fundamental illusion. Turning into an enigma what is clear. Never less. it must become a seduction. Language is only signification's unintentional accomplice. to return it a little bit more unintelligible. Objectivity and truth are metaphoric in language. and its mystification which supposedly is its secret. the world is looking for what could lead to its own loss. similar to the role of the muscles in dance. And it only disappears when language is used for a limited finality. is the same thing as the seductive joy (jouissance) to undo a too perfect constellation of meaning. Accentuating the fake transparency of the world to spread a terroristic confusion. the carrier of radical thought. in the spiritual game of writing. as a trait d'esprit vis-avis the world. And if it is possible. finally. But. its most common usage perhaps. Language gives an account of the very illusion of language as a definite stratagem and through that notes the illusion of the world as an infinite trap. This passion "wins" in the free and spiritual usage of language. Such a passion for the artificial. By its very force. nor does it seek to persist in its existence. The absolute rule.COM 102 . that is to say the enigmatic function of the world. similar to the role of reproduction in erotic games. it would not know how to do it (properly speaking) because language is never real. it is reality itself which foments its own contradiction. Doing this while perhaps rendering its imposture transparent: deceiving rather than validating meaning. Erasing in oneself any remaining trace of the intellectual plot. for the dispersion of meaning in the event of language. Making unintelligible what is far too intelligible. it is looking for the most spiritual way to escape reality. it actually does so by following unreal. language is at the same time a supra-conductor of illusion and of the absence of meaning.has emerged from some place else and could disappear as if by magic. elliptic.the world. its own loss through our lack of reality. and is the accomplice of an erotic perception of reality's trouble. Ciphering.

Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Our Framework We realize debate is a game designed to foster argument and education. Nayar in 99 [Jayan. School of Law. it’s more important to consider how we’re playing the game than who is winning within it – the imaginary impacts of their case don’t matter until they justify the rhetoric used to justify it. The "total" view that is the take-off point for discourses on preferred "world-order" futures risks deflection as the abstracted projections it provokes might entail little consequence for the faces and the names of the humanity on whose behalf we might speak. and charged to reflect upon the grand questions of worldorder and the human condition as the third Christian Millennium dawns. That’s best for debate because: First. a necessary revitalization of critical and creative energies to check the complacencies of the state of things as they are. Third. The burden of proof is on them to show that this is uniquely good for debate.--does carry with it a risk. like politics disadvantages and the race to the most nuclear war impacts. University of Warwick Transnational Law & Contemporary Problems “Orders of Inhumanity”] Located within a site of privilege. which is like attacking the warrant behind a claim. where the most deep and educational clash lies. the plan won’t be passed at the end of the round regardless of which way you vote." "the family of humankind. Second. we make teams responsible for their discourse. which have nothing to do with the real world and detracts from focus on the affirmative case.COM 103 . They can’t say the claim will be true or outweigh until they justify the warrant for it by refuting our criticism. what do we do? Fourth." etc. n1 However. speaking in abstraction about what form the world should take through fiat ignores and marginalizes all the people who would be affected. Fall. fiat-centered debate encourages ridiculous and antieducational strategies. our criticism is an attack on the justifications for their fiat impacts. it’s realistic." and "how should we organize" our "humanity." "the global village. imagining [*601] possibilities of abstractions--"world-order. However." Perhaps such contemplations are a necessary antidote to cynicism and skepticism regarding any possibility of human betterment. So. Fifth." "international society. we are tempted to turn the mind to the task of abstract imaginings of "what could be" of our "world. there’d be no way to criticize teams for DEBATENEXUS. If fiat impacts could outweigh. Fiat doesn’t really exist.

As members of the debate community. DEBATENEXUS.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ using sexist.COM 104 . or otherwise offensive language because they could claim their nuclear war impacts are more important. we have an obligation to be sure our activity isn’t used to marginalize others. racist. which is what fiat allows.

8).g. so their arguments aren’t offense unless they justify why fiat should be at the same level as the discourse. When such barriers reach insurmountable dimensions. Lastly. Vol. with students practicing critical thinking and advocacy skills in strictly hypothetical thought-spaces.COM 105 . Murchland categorizes cultivation of this "spectator" mentality as one of the most politically debilitating failures of contemporary education: "Educational institutions have failed even more grievously to provide the kind of civic forums we need. p41-60] While an isolated academic space that affords students an opportunity to learn in a protected environment has significant pedagogical value (see e. For example. To the extent that the academic space begins to take on characteristics of a laboratory. which is politically and intellectually unhelpful. fiat encourages a spectator mentality where real events become tools in our game of academic debate. the barriers demarcating such a space from other spheres of deliberation beyond the school grow taller and less permeable. 1998). Rather. Instead of focusing on the visceral negative responses to news accounts of human death and misery. p. The sense of detachment associated with the spectator posture is highlighted during episodes of alienation in which debaters cheer news of human suffering or misfortune. argumentation in the academic setting unfolds on a purely simulated plane. “PEDAGOGICAL POSSIBILITIES FOR ARGUMENTATIVE AGENCY IN ACADEMIC DEBATE” Argumentation & Advocacy. p. students witness argumentation beyond the walls of the academy as spectators. In fact. news reports of mass starvation might tidy up the "uniqueness of a disadvantage" or bolster the "inherency of an affirmative case" (in the technical parlance of debate-speak). 35 Issue 2. 89). when the metaphor is extended to its limit. with little or no apparent recourse to directly participate or alter the course of events (see Mitchell 1995. in this approach.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Our Framework Sixth. the notion of the academic debate tournament as a sterile laboratory carries with it some disturbing implications. debaters overcome with the competitive zeal of contest round competition show a tendency to concentrate on the meanings that such evidence might hold for the strength of their academic debate arguments. DEBATENEXUS.. Mitchell in 98 [Gordon R. Associate Professor. they just need to be evaluated after we discuss the discursive level. one could easily conclude that the principle purposes of our schools is to deprive successor generations of their civic voice. note that our argument is not that fiat impacts shouldn’t be in debate. Coverstone 1995. University of Pittsburgh. to turn them into mute and uncomprehending spectators in the drama of political life" (1991. Although they may research and track public argument as it unfolds outside the confines of the laboratory for research purposes.

If there’s any doubt in your mind. which creates political apathy in debaters and destroys any real value to the activity. and where tragic events become just another tool in a debate round instead of a reason to go do something about them. That means the burden of proof is on them to show that it’s a helpful practice for debate.COM 106 . like they do with fiat. so we never talk or learn about the case. Our collective enjoyment of this suffering guarantees we’ll never do anything to resolve it in their framework. teams can use terrible rhetoric and claim it doesn’t matter because their case has big impacts. our evidenced arguments are more important than any theoretical whines they have – fairness ceases to be an issue when we show that their framework is destructive to the activity and the real world. Mitchell says that fiat creates a spectator mentality where we observe events in the real world without considering our ability to change them. which specifically talks about debate and fiat. Extend #5: if fiat is weighed on the same level as discourse. Mitchell 98. which is like attacking the warrant to the claim on an argument. and is irresponsible to the rest of the world. just like the case is no longer a reason to vote aff. Extend our #2. once the warrant is removed. Their theory issues are irrelevant to this. Also. err negative because our interpretation is more intuitive and applicable. Extend the #1: fiat isn’t real. Our #4 is game over – our critique is an attack on the mindset and images they use to justify their policy impacts. they don’t see the people who are being harmed now. where the resolution is actually focused. which is a reason to reject it. Now for the theoretical issues. Extend our #6. the claim is no longer an argument.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Framework Overview Here are the key points on the framework debate. Extend our #3. the Nayar 99 card. Because their focus is on a distant worldview. Of course their case will seem like a good idea if you grant them all the justifications they provide for it. because it doesn’t matter how good fiat is for debate if they can’t defend the mindset that justifies their case. because fiat encourages debaters to cheer bad things happening to others for our simulated disads and case arguments. However. He says that creating the image of an ideal world we can act on. which marginalizes any contribution those people might have to the political world. DEBATENEXUS. That’s terrible for debate because it encourages an elitist worldview where only the opinions of people in our academic game matter. fiat requires stupid and annoying strategies like politics where everything ends in nuclear war. Also. which justifies horrible racist or sexist language that excludes people from the activity. ignores the people around us and those who will be impacted by the case. this accesses our Baudrillard impacts.

it just comes after the discourse. DEBATENEXUS. You can still get all the benefits of fiat in debate through our framework.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Finally. extend the #7.COM 107 . so none of their offense applies and they lose on our critique.

For example. It’s consistent with other debate practice – the only rule of debate is that there are no rules. and a plan to throw all the minorities into the ocean to prevent the fish from starving. They’re unpredictable for the negative – we don’t know what framework they’ll use and which of our arguments will apply until part way through the 1AC. DEBATENEXUS. Their interpretation destroys negative ground – affs could just specify their framework to get out of negative arguments they know their case is vulnerable to (like they just did). neither do they.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Aff Doesn’t Get to Pick Framework Our interpretation is that the affirmative may present a framework. which destroys legitimate debate over whether it’s the best policy. The inherent vagueness of frameworks makes this abuse effectively infinite – what exactly is a framework? I don’t know. The framework would prevent us from making our best arguments against the plan. 5. this constant questioning gives the best depth of argumentation and education. 3. teams can argue over whether certain arguments are theoretically legitimate and so on. We increase clash – there’s argument on the framework too. 4. an aff could run a framework saying whites are the master race.COM 108 . That means teams could reinterpret the framework in new ways every round to dodge arguments if we can’t challenge it. That’s best for debate because: 1. 2. Teams should be able to argue over what framework is used as well. it’s hard to define. hence more possible clash and education. which makes pre-round prep and disclosure useless. but then they must defend it. so we can never be prepared.

that is what they are supposed to mean: "the real is the real. like tectonic plates." But.signification to the world. radical thought bets on the illusion of the world. they slide on one another. wants to be built on the preservative notion of an objective and decipherable world. And it is on a restitution of this fundamental illusion of the world and language that thought must work. Reality. in general. without however taking language in its literality.COM 109 . Any fusion of the thought (of writing. the two orders of thought are irreconcilable. where the messenger is mistaken for the message. non. the death of what it represents. that which gives the photograph its intensity. that the real is uncertain.a perfect amphiboly. which bets on the fact that there is something (some meaning) rather than nothing. tracking down this nothingness which runs under the apparent continuation of meaning. but never fuses with the objective state of things. of truth and nontruth. Claiming they go together is a dangerous illusion that destroys both. be it the writing of a fiction or the writing of a theoretical fiction. that certain events do not "take place"). in their miserable reality. At least. and formulating the reverse hypothesis that there may be nothing rather than something. the news that all our values are null. This thought wants to be illusion. in the last analysis. that it carries this continuation of emptiness or nothingness at the very core of what it says. and they are always only what they are . by this very fact (so to speak). of an illusion of the factual. which still today consists in killing the messenger who always brings the bad news (for example. an underlying nothingness.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ A2: Perm The perm is literally impossible – radical thought and belief in the illusion of the real cannot be combined with an objective interpretation of the world. and that it is in all its materiality a deconstruction of what it signifies. DEBATENEXUS. In contrast to the discourse of reality and rationality.is hallucinatory.in all meanings: they are never more than what they are. Fatality is always at the crossing point of these two lines. what gives intensity to writing. is precisely that they are only what they are. restituting non-veracity to the facts. an ironic dimension of language. Just as the photograph (the image) connotes an erasure. and which. The radical prediction is always that of a non-reality of the facts. April 19. radical thought is at the violent crossing point of sense and non-sense. It merely starts with the foreboding of this illusion. of the continuation of the world and the continuation of nothingness. of language) with the real . which is corollary to an ironic dimension of the facts themselves. which are never what they are . At best. is too evident to be true. They each follow their own path without blending into one another. is emptiness. "Radical Thought"] In any case. Any fusion of this type would be similar to mistaking a messenger for his message. Similarly. an illusion of meaning. and thus already sacrificed. The irony of the facts. Baudrillard in 95 [Jean. they are necessarily beyond [truth] because factual existence is impossible: nothing is totally evidentiary without becoming an enigma. of the fact that language is an illusion in its very movement.a so-called "faithfulness of the real" with a thought that has made the real emerge in all of its configurations . It is this ironic transfiguration through language which constitutes the event of language. and from time to time their collision or their subduction creates fault lines inside which reality is engulfed. It is moreover the result of a total misinterpretation of language.

from now on. we are lagging behind the events. So. Not that it has been pillaged. They show an extraordinary mimetic capacity. only those who are reality fanatics react negatively. that is to say. It is terrifying to see a hypothesis be realized like this. Whenever any risky idea. In any case. the events have in a sense swallowed their own interpretation. The effect of reality has disappeared behind the acceleration of things . simulacra guarantee the continuation of the real. A realized hypothesis is no longer a hypothesis. The simulated disorder of things has gone faster than us. We have lost the advance that ideas had on the world. reality also gets its revenge from those who challenge it by. This is the agony of the concept. they have passed over us for a long time. "Radical Thought"] More subtly. secretly. Interpretation is then merely a retro figure for an unpredictable event. that they are not what they should be.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ A2: Perm Any critical argument that is combined with reality is immediately robbed of its critical potential – the events are infinitely adaptable. It is terrifying to suddenly see the idea coincide with reality. They adapt to the most fantastic hypotheses like natural species and viruses adapt to the most hostile environments. proving that they are right. Baudrillard in 95 [Jean. You are fooled and disarmed.an anamorphosis of speed. but because simulacra have been absorbed by reality which has swallowed them and which. never too late for their occurrence. but the fact that there is none. To be effective. Your arguments are lamentably confirmed by a reality without scruples. and by the same token flies away from any criticism. be exceptional. the criticism must remain on the margin. the part of those who once were called the fanatics of the Apocalypse. that distance that makes an idea stay an idea. Thought must anticipate. is clad with all the rhetoric of simulation. today. you may posit the idea of a simulacrum. they mystify us because a theory that realizes itself is no longer a theory. hoping that the real will avenge itself. There has been a reversal here too: it is no longer theories that have to adapt to events. They may sometimes give the impression that they regress. They are what they are. Consequently. The theory is then not necessarily convinced of its own validity. but always beyond their meaning. The idea of simulacrum was a conceptual weapon against reality. but events that adapt to theories. deprived of any direction. In fact. simulacra have become reality! Today. This is the very paradox of any thought that reveals the falsehood of the real: when reality steals your concept and realizes (fulfills) it. so to speak. The simulacrum now hides. Reality today is nothing more than the apocalypse of simulation. The epiphany of the real is the twilight of the concept. What is late rather is the interpretation of things. but it has been stolen. which destroys the effectiveness of the theory. they are like black holes and can no longer reflect. the reality supporters (who defend reality as if it was a moral value or a virtue) play. Things have been cleansed of their own meaning. steal any possible meaning. not believe in it. any cynical or critical hypothesis proves to be right. DEBATENEXUS. far from it: all simulacra wander freely. not the truth.COM 110 . the continuation of Nothingness. vulgarized. And consequently. Unfortunately. and cynically morph to support any theory that might challenge them. or has become common-place(which is true but has no consequence). And to cap it all.the projected shadow of the future events. and in the margin . What happens to the heterogeneity of thought in a world that has been converted to the craziest hypotheses and to an artificial delirium? In their accelerated occurrence. Reality does not seem to be willing to deny itself. paradoxically. April 19. Yet. Events. it in fact turns out to be a dirty trick. and yet.

which is still being discovered). this thought appears to be coming from somewhere else. pushed toward its extraneity. It is an "ex-centering" of the real world and. Ours.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ A2: Perm A world in which thought and the real can be happily combined no longer exists – in the world of hyperreality.in a delirious perspective. just as critical thought once stayed away (in the name of the real!) from religious superstition. the material and immanent illusion of this so-called "real" world . just like America was discovered. Thinkers. That thought disappeared under the pressure of a gigantic simulation. the ideal and almost necessary relationship between concept and reality would in any case have been destroyed today. the real has become an extreme phenomenon. similar in a sense to the singularity of the world through which it is made into an event. in the shadow of the Enlightenment and of modernity. This is also a polarity. we no longer can think of it as real. on the contrary. And even if that thought had survived its catastrophic secularization in all the political systems of the 20th century. It is unthinkable. is ex-centric from the real. Nor does it stem from an ideal transcendence. The other thought. The objectivity of this world was discovered. But that thought. It starts with the hypothesis that there is a real reference to an idea and that there is a possible "ideation" of reality. or ideological . one day.motu propio . Not an "alternation. To some extent." not an alternative either: only an "alterity" keeps them under pressure. in the heroic ages of critical thought. It is an illusion. So. it is alien to a dialectic which always plays on adversarial poles. just like metaphor is a "game" played with truth. So. there is no necessary or natural transition. non-dialectical thought. different from ours. religious. Baudrillard in 95 [Jean. the notion of a real world existing among all other possible worlds is unimaginable. the singularity of being a singular event. more or less at the same period.is substantially over. That's how reality was discovered. This is no doubt a comforting perspective. this Enlightenment vision is outdated. Between thought and the real. give it another try! DEBATENEXUS. But we can think of it as "ex-orbitated. consequently. and of a simultaneous autonomy of the real that today functions for and by itself . "Radical Thought"] All this defines the insoluble relationship between thought and the real. It is even alien to critical thought which always refers to an ideal of the real. from its own principle. and is still created (or the alternate version: this is how reality was created. was discovered. Expelled. similar to that used by ready-made dialectical and philosophical solutions. But what was discovered can never be created again. that is to say a "game" played with desire (which this thought puts "into play"). In any case.COM 111 . One may dream of a happy conjunction of idea and reality. from its own frame. under the pressure of a precession of models to the benefit of an autonomy of the virtual. infinitely self-referential. there is an incompatibility between thought and the real. except perhaps as a dangerous superstition. from now on liberated from the real." as if it was seen from another world . one which is based on meaning and deciphering. which operated against a form of illusion superstitious. Why wouldn't there be as many real worlds as there are imaginary ones? Why would there be only one real world? Why such a mode of exception? In reality. distance and alienation safeguard the singularity of this thought. A certain type of thought is an accomplice of the real. Things probably did not always happen this way. April 19.as an illusion then. a technical and mental one. We must stay away from that. so to speak.it is a non-critical. It is the "putting into play" of this world. this thought is not even a denial of the concept of reality. Let's ponder over what could be a stupefying experience: the discovery of another real world. Only fracture. This radical thought comes neither from a philosophical doubt nor from a utopian transference (which always supposes an ideal transformation of the real).

Even if postmodernism as a principle is bad. discounting such postmodern responses. he just presents a way to look at life in a postmodern world. putting them in a double bind. Postmodernism. Fourth. might reply that the postmodern emphasis on the antifoundationalist and anti-essentialist play of signifiers inevitably leads to a "slippery slope of "totalizing critique. is a cultural era or tradition that includes or manifests itself in certain types of theory.COM 112 . it doesn’t make the plan a good idea. It’s impossible to reject postmodernism.' " n268 which leaves no standard for criticizing oppression and domination. one reason we now question the ability of subjects to choose and pursue normative goals is that different voice scholars have helped reveal that the very concept of the "choosing subject" represents a manifestation of a dominant majority's exercise of power. in response to this attack. postmodernism is a response to the current era. which is a postmodern idea about the impact of discourse. so they’re equally postmodern if their argument has any impact. they have to engage our critique. but that doesn’t increase postmodernism in any way. n271 [*1105] Fifth. some critics of postmodernism. Second. Third. might insist that they neither colonize nor depoliticize different voice scholarship. not the other way around. that doesn’t refute any of the arguments we make. not a defect that somehow justifies the impossible (rejecting the postmodern). n269 but postmodernism is not merely some grand theory that we can choose to reject because of some serious weakness. Rejecting his views is like rejecting a path that helps guide us because we don’t like where we are now – their argument is DEBATENEXUS. Baudrillard doesn’t say postmodernism is good. Professor of Law. Of course. at a minimum. the problem of critique becomes a challenge that must be confronted. SPRING. their argument is irrelevant unless they claim our discourse has impacts outside of the round. Feldman in 94 [Stephen M.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ A2: Postmodernism is Bad They’re missing a link – how exactly are we postmodern? We say to reject them. n270 With this recognition. the problem of justifying critique looms as a crucial difficulty for postmodernists. Indeed (possibly speaking for Schlag). University of Tulsa DIAGNOSING POWER: POSTMODERNISM IN LEGAL SCHOLARSHIP AND JUDICIAL PRACTICE Northwestern University Law Review] Postmodernists. rather (as already discussed) postmodern theory both builds upon and supports such scholarship. To be sure.

Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ more counter-productive than postmodernism itself could ever be. DEBATENEXUS.COM 113 .

Of course if we assume their representations are correct.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ A2: We Still Solve! We have to examine the representations behind their arguments first – the images are used to justify their political cause. we’ll come to the conclusion that their cause is a good idea.COM 114 . Ignoring the images means you’re dodging the most crucial question. that’s why they chose the images they did. DEBATENEXUS.

so all their offense still applies. so there’s no way we can give a simple textual alternative. c. which is all they need. here’s the textual alternative – don’t vote aff. They don’t give a text to their assumptions. Debate centered on assumptions rather than wording of the plan is better because: Focuses on intent. rather than the 5 second sound bite they call the plan. because they should know what their authors are saying and what people say in response. Third. Second. which gives better understanding and more education. there’s no ground loss – any evidence they’ll have against our criticism will be focused on our assumptions. not semantic details – we focus on what the debaters are actually saying. which gives tons of ground to both teams. Our alternative is effectively a set of counterassumptions that refute the affirmative. just like we did to find theirs. which preserves the value of all the other stuff they say in their speeches. not just the plan. we require debaters to examine all the warrants and basis for their author’s arguments.COM 115 . because they’re found in the evidence. a. they can read our evidence. More depth to debate.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ A2: Need a Textual Alternative That’s ridiculous. because instead of focusing on the superficial points. it’s their fault if they didn’t ask us to clarify what we meant. Don’t buy any moving target arguments until you see one in the round. and if they want to know about our assumptions. We’ll defend their advocacy is a bad idea throughout the entire round. Gives more ground – we can argue about all the assumptions presented. They get all the ground for trying to show that it’s a good idea. Our argument is a criticism of the assumptions and images behind the affirmative’s presentation of their case. which is also very predictable. DEBATENEXUS. b. and cross-x will always check back abuse.

who take on themselves the responsibility for that wearisome function. every word. The finest revenge over this new arrogant power. Television and the media would render reality [Ie reel] dissuasive. a hijacking of fantasies. It is simply the (immoral) truth of news. all the same. fostering detachment that is crucial to life in the modern age. Never again shall we be able to look at a television picture in good faith. And this represents an absolute advance in the consciousness . the banality . While. the spectacle. every commentary? Television inculcates indifference. the very excess of media illusion plays a vital disillusioning role. news could be said to undo its own spell by its effects and the violence of information to be avenged by the repudiation and indifference it engenders. DEBATENEXUS. but also to undeceive us about the real. for the simple reason that the media themselves hold the key to the judicial enquiry. the secret purpose [destination] of which is to deceive us about the real. the confusion of ideologies. nonetheless. at the same time. of our having been drawn so far into the 'liberation' of the medium and the image that the question of freedom cannot even be posed.COM 116 . The Gulf War merely accentuated the disastrous impression of our having been drawn so far into simulation that the question of truth and reality cannot even be posed. One might ask whether the Romanians. Who can say what responsibility attaches to the televisual production of a false massacre (Timisoara). have been a kind of verdict in this Romanian affair. this power to blackmail by events. together with a surge of adrenalin which induces total disillusionment. if the media image has put an end to the credibility of the event. the whole ambiguity of mass culture. nor even anything scandalous in the 'Timisoara syndrome'. But can news and the media really be put on trial now? Absolutely not. so we should be grateful to the media for existing and taking on themselves the triumphant illusionism of the world of communications. and the artificial heaps of corpses will have been of some use. 60-61] Here. by the very excessiveness of this staged event and the simulacrum of their revolution. the guiding principle itself is never questioned. scepticism and unconditional apathy. were it not already so. And yet there will.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ A2: Disaster Porn Obvious manipulation of the images demystifies news and catastrophe reporting. Through the world's becoming-image. affects and the credulity of hundreds of millions of people by means of television. There can be no contesting their innocence since 'disinformation' is always imputed to an accident of news-gathering [information]. For. in its turn. Just as we should be unreservedly thankful for the existence of politicians. Baudrillard in 94 [Jean. hoist with its own petard. have not served as demystifiers of news and its guiding principle. and this is the finest collective demystification we have ever known. then. distance. There is no worse mistake than taking the real for the real and.a crime of blackmail and simulation. constituting a permanent test of intelligence. in that sense. provokes a sickened abstraction. In this way. is the international consciousness foiled by its own ideal. the event will. have put an end to the credibility of the image. as compared with the perpetrating of a true massacre? This is another kind of crime against humanity.or the cynical unconscious .of our age.soaking up all these things in their operation. for where better than on television can one learn to question every picture. it anaesthetizes the imagination. “The Illusion of the End” p. What penalty is laid down for such a hijacking? There is no way to rectify this situation and we must have no illusions: there is no perverse effect. the stereotypes.

where from the beginning no one is represented nor representative of anything any more. only a pataphysics of simulacra can DEBATENEXUS. just as the phantom of religion floats over a world now long desacralized. without distance. unrecognizable. power without origin. through which it maintains us in life by having liquidated through absorption all possible negativity. sacred space without pathways. This supreme ruse of the system. of seduction. this very challenge must be raised to an insanely higher level. surpasses by far that of the commodity described by the situationists. representation itself has also turned in on itself. and of death toward this universe that is no longer one. in which work buries work. violently resist. The challenge capital directs at us in its delirium-liquidating without shame the law of profit. “Simulacra and Simulation” p. out of despair. Through I don't know what Mobius effect. hope is a weak value. A universe that is still incomprehensible. This spectacle. that all student conflicts (as is the case.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Must Engage System Even though the system is one of pure simulation. only a superior ruse can stop. against the staging by capital of its own death. to occupy the forefront of the stage. Baudrillard in 81 [Jean. of wandering and simulating animals that capital. which for us has all the disquieting strangeness of the desert and of the simulacrum. We will live in this world. To leave it the initiative of its own death. we are much more disarmed and impotent than when surrounded by the law of value and of the commodity. and finding at the end of its process the profound immorality (but also the seduction) of primitive rituals of destruction. structures of power. but in a political one. with all the veracity of living phantoms. This spectacle is our essential force. Surrounded by the simulacrum of value and by the phantom of capital and of power. on the level of global society) around the representation. we still need to engage and act within it to avoid the paralytic fascination it forces on our lives. for the same reason. where all that is accumulated is deaccumulated at the same time. more broadly.COM 117 . of all axiology. like value. productive finalities. and thus of the stake of our own life. ineluctable. but disengaged from the mechanical illusion of value. where even the axiological. that of the simulacrum of its death. is irresponsible. surplus value. 152-154] Attacking representation no longer has much meaning either. where only the wind watches over the sand. and salvageable phantasm of power has disappeared. if even fighting has any meaning anymore. We are simulators. ceding its place to a transfinite universe of simulation. is to leave it all the privileges of revolution. What can one make of all this in the political order? Very little. One senses quite clearly. a universe with a malefic curve that our mental coordinates. but in defiance and fascination. to us. continuous as Bataille wished it. where only the wind lifts the sand. when we are really the ones in our final hours. the delegation of power are no longer anything but phantom vicissitudes that yet still manage. politics included. Challenge or imaginary science. But we also have to fight against the profound fascination exerted on us by the death throes of capital. precisely because all axiality that escapes it. We are no longer in a relation toward capital of uncertain or victorious forces. Only to value is capital capable of offering a fantastic spectacle of its decomposition only the phantom of value still floats over the desert of the classical structures of capital. we are concave mirrors radiated by the social. which are orthogonal and prepared for the infinite linearity of criticism and history. just as the phantom of knowledge floats over the university. which is at once that of the death throes and the apogee of capital. that is the phantasm of revolution. It is up to us to again become the nomads of this desen. that the death of capital has made of us-because the desert of cities is equal to the desert of sand-the jungle of signs is equal to that of the forests-the vertigo of simulacra is equal to that of nature-only the vertiginous seduction of a dying system remains. Capital. since the system has revealed itself capable of integrating its own death and since we are relieved of the responsibility for this death. irreversible. a radiation without a light source. directive. and it is in this tactical universe of the simulacrum that one will need to fight-without hope. Yet it is there that one must fight. of all axes of value. and the whole logical universe of the political is dissolved at the same time. We are in a relation of defiance. we are simulacra (not in the classical sense of "appearance"). in which value buries value-leaving a virgin. Because one must not refuse the in tense fascination that emanates from this liquefaction of all power.

COM 118 .Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ remove us from the system’s strategy of simulation and the impasse of death in which it imprisons us. DEBATENEXUS.

The challenge. There is no longer a stage. this radical trait of derision and of violence. Everywhere. And this is the victory of the other nihilism. including what denies it. they. the boat people. In this system. not politically. appearances. The more hegemonic the system. only terrorism can do. just as a single flash of denial in a slave effaces all the power and pleasure of the master. And without a doubt this is a good thing: meaning is mortal.Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ Alternative Fails Radical destruction of meaning is already useless – the system is already configured to where the resistance they advocate does nothing. exalt the molecular drift or even defend cooking. even infinitesimal. if there were still a radicality-as it would be nice to be a terrorist. still had meaning. But such a sentiment is utopian. true and false. always. on which to represent itself. This is where seduction begins. not even the minimal illusion that makes events capable of adopting the force of reality-no more stage either of mental or political solidarity: what do Chile. It is the trait of reversion that effaces the remainder. that is. Because it would be beautiful to be a nihilist. We are in the era of events without consequences (and of theories without consequences). “Simulacra and Simulation” p. Theoretical violence. are immortal. The system is itself also nihilistic. Once the hope of balancing good and evil. invulnerable to the nihilism of meaning or of non-meaning itself. to the unbearable limit of hegemonic systems. (The Bologna train station. this challenge that the system is summoned to answer through its own death. the system is too strong: hegemonic. the nihilism of neutralization. once the more general hope of a relation of forces and a stake has vanished. DEBATENEXUS. indeed of confronting some values of the same order. the more the imagination is struck by the smallest of its reversals. Against this hegemony of the system. what it hoped to liquidate in order to impose the reign of the Enlightenment. then I am terrorist and nihilist in theory as the others are with their weapons. the Oktoberfest in Munich: the dead are annulled by indifference. Biafra.) Death no longer has a stage. into indifference. on the nihilistic and disaffected stage of the political. the system opposes its own. or Poland matter? All of that comes to be annihilated on the television screen. Only it mobilizes the imaginary. that is where terrorism is the involuntary accomplice of the whole system. practice revolutionary micrology of the quotidian. including that of the terrorist. Bologna. Baudrillard in 81 [Jean. in the sense that it has the power to pour everything. is the only resource left us. This does not resolve the imperious necessity of checking the system in broad daylight. that of the system. neither phantasmatic nor political. one can exalt the ruses of desire. not truth. is the image of a chain failure. Because to this active nihilism of radicality. just as a single ironic smile effaces a whole discourse. either a ceremonial or a violent one. death itself shines by virtue of its absence. Only this reversibility without a counterpart is an event today. of the other terrorism. but in the accelerated form of indifference that it contributes to imposing. This. if death. If being a nihilist. There is no more hope for meaning. is carrying.COM 119 . But it is at this point that things become insoluble. But that on which it has imposed its ephemeral reign. 162-164] Melancholia is the brutal disaffection that characterizes our saturated systems. to play itself out.

Baudrillard Page ____ of ____ DEBATENEXUS.COM 120 .