16 August 2020

Strategic focus

 Well, first off, simple.

Second off, material results.

I have gone on and on and on at other times about scale of feelings (appropriately personal, not policy), how it's a system with feedback, how the objective has to be cohesive (every action is constrained to not make any part of the objective worse off [1]), and the impossibility of retaining the status quo amid these several apocalypses.  None of that seems to convey much, so I'm going to try a different idea.

If you're responsive, you lose.  Responsive protest is an agreement to get shipped to the incinerator.

If you make the other party react to you, you might win; you might be able to constrain the outcome to one that you actually want, as distinct from slowing the rate at which bad things happen to you.


Observation 1; the GOP has gone full mammonite.  There is only one rule; that rule can be expressed as "I always win" or "I get all the money" but it's the same rule.  It's a very, very simple rule, and thus a huge advantage in sub-generational scales.  (It will totally break the economy, but if you've got a seat when the big game of musical chairs stops, you might prefer that.  No more threatening innovation that could diminish your status.)

Observation 2; if you're trying to follow a different, complex set of rules, you're going to lose.  It's exactly like trying to negotiate with a toddler.  It can't work; the capacity for negotiation is not present in the other party.  You may express the rules to a two year old in better or worse ways, but the rules are the rules; the point of the rules is to get to some place in later years where you can negotiate with the entire person who has slowly accreted around the toddler.  But when they're two, there's nobody there capable of negotiation.  Same with a convinced mammonite.  There isn't enough complexity in their system to negotiate anything but prices.

Observation 3; wait, isn't that dehumanising?

No.  That's recognising that their political point is to remove everybody who isn't them from political life.  "I always win" is the position of profound weakness, because it's acknowledging that if they have to compete fair they're going to lose.  They act like it; you can't sensibly pretend that's not what they're doing while they're doing it.

"What future?" is a terrifying question.  "What future?" _starts_ at "the coastal cities are going to drown" and "agriculture breaks" if you have any will to facts in you whatsoever.  The next century defines all human history, by either ending it or not ending it, and we didn't need to do this to ourselves.  Mammonites did this for their immediate profit.

It's still the question; what future?

The GOP answer, the mammonite answer, to that question says anyone who isn't rich can suffer and die; they shall have luxury, and they shall have no accountability to anyone, because they always win.  Bronze Age collapse pirate band, smutting the throne-room frescoes with the sputtering grease of stolen mutton.

Other answers?

You're not special.

Everyone or no one.

Profit's a legitimate measure; it's an illegitimate goal.

That means, well, ethnogenesis; time not merely to stop being white but to be something else entirely. Can't stop being easily sunburned but long past time to acknowledge that "we're better and smarter so we can steal everything" has ended in failure. The Anthropocene is a vast disaster; it was in no way required, it was a choice, and it was a white supremacy choice as much as it was a mammonite choice. It's a failure so vast that it will certainly produce at least this much change; mere ethnogenesis would be limiting the damage.

That means, find the people who have emerged from the chiefly disadvantaged and put them in charge, armoured brigades, launch codes, power to tax, power to execute, in charge.  You only get a generation before the answer changes and the answer OUGHT to change to "we don't have that group anymore", but today the answer in the US is black women.

(Indigenous women in Canada.)

Scary?  Sure.  Your feels do not matter even a little; this is a survival situation on the scale of policy.  How you feel about it is a vast quantity of no never-mind.

Everyone or no one, well, we're not in a good place with a lot of stuff.  Agriculture collapses this century, even if you go by the IPCC's optimistic projections.  But let's start with collective action, the collapse of legitimacy, and the collapse of the idea of the rule of law.

"Rule of law" needs replacing; it's pretty much entirely crippled as an advocacy by the carceral state, whose advocates -- slavers and torturers -- have called that the rule of law.

Let's go for _uniform justice_, a system constructed so that your social standing is carefully, thoroughly, entirely removed from questions of law.  Let's start _that_ by recognising that it needs to be created by collective action in a context where the slavers and the torturers are going full authoritarian and getting set to wholesale murder anyone who says they're bad people.

The choices here are do whatever suffices to get them to stop -- to reduce them to a condition of obedience to the public authority -- or to go to the incinerator.  There's no middle ground in the structure of the politics or the present time of angry weather.

So the goal of collective action isn't protest; it's victory.  Make double-damned sure that it's a materially defined -- for reals, not as a rationalising cheat -- systemic victory.  (The French Revolution failed hard by not changing institutions, just who happened to control them.)

That last one?  The naked mammonite heresy about how the profit motive is destructive?  that's factual; it's NOT just that lots of things ought not to be done a for-profit basis at all (because no single entity's optimal corresponds to systemic optimal, or even encourages it), it's that making profit a goal destroys value.  (Value is the ratio of benefit to cost; if you're trying to increase profit, you have to reduce the benefit or increase the cost.)  This is entirely the wrong time to be destroying value, though the systemic cost is always eventually crippling if you permit the feedback.

It's also a hint; there is one and only one meaningful feedback to mammonites, and that's "how much money do I have?"; costing them money isn't really effective (they'll come up with reasons to suppose they will turn the situation to advantage and make more money), but making them poor is.  Structurally, systemically, permanently poor; last in every line and dependent on the kindness of strangers to get out of the rain.

[1] in former days one might encounter keep-the-good conservative Americans who would espouse the four-box theory of political involvement to maintain liberty.  The boxes are soap, ballot, jury, and cartridge, with a big USE IN THAT ORDER warning sticker.  Any time you attempt to act collectively, you had better make sure the collective's all at the same general place on the box continuum.

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