Nature is not natural and can never be naturalized — Graham Harman

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Come to Notte Lusoria Tonight and I'll Read Tarot for You

At the Palais de Tokyo. 5pm to midnight. In the basement of dreams. Alex Cecchetti's Notte Lusoria.

Piano, whales, glass harmonica, choir, tarot readings, a bar where a centaur will hear your love stories as payment for cocktails, and ever so much more.




Sunday, February 19, 2017

12 Year Old Kids Exposed to Fascist Disinhibition and What I'm Doing about It

Dear Ms. ***, 

Thank you for your apology. 

As for the explanation, you know what? No. This isn’t about free speech. 

This is about fascist violence invading social space. 

This is about a disinhibited atmosphere in the country at large. At *** School boys now think it’s okay to yell “Male supremacy!” and “White power!” in front of my daughter. 

“Free speech” isn’t speech at all if it’s being used without listening, attention or care. 

Or perhaps I should demand that I do a PowerPoint in your class insisting that ***'s dad is a ********* (insert suitable very bad words here). Free speech, right? 

This is the same atmosphere that since November 9 2016 (the election of Donald Trump) has caused quiet, introverted kids at my job (Rice U) to wear swastikas, daub them on statues, and deface a piece of the Berlin Wall with “Trump 2016” and “aloha” (aka “good riddance Obama”). 

*** 

I’m going to start by reporting this incident and that involving her best friend, *** (see below) to my friends at the Houston Chronicle, Houstonia Magazine and Huffington Post. 

Then when the New Yorker phones me up for a scheduled interview on Thursday, I’m going to report it to them too. 

I will not stop until you, Principal *** and the school at large have joined me in doing everything in our power to end this outpouring of obscenity in social space. 

Yours sincerely,
Timothy Morton





On Feb 19, 2017, at 10:19 AM, ***  wrote:

I apologize to you and most especially to your daughter. 
As I think you know, parents coming to lecture is encouraged in our *** class with community building in mind.
We had a presentation from an attorney who chose to speak on free speech. Mr. *** reviewed the concept in context of several examples. He made it very clear that hate speech is never legal or acceptable in school or any institutional setting. 
I was surprised when students clapped and thought it was due to politeness, definitely not prompted by me.
Thank you.

_____

(February 18)

Thank you for brining to my attention.  Let me meet with Ms. *** and get all the details.  I will follow-up with you.  Please provide a number you can be reached at.

***
_____

(February 17)

Thank you ***. How did it go? 

I'm afraid I have something else to report. 

It's about Miss ***'s *** class. 

Today there was a PowerPoint by ***' dad. 

It said that the KKK and the Nazi party are exercising their freedom of speech by using swastikas etc. 

It also said that the women's marches, by excluding pro life women, "are tearing our country apart." (His actual words in quotation marks.)

They were all made to clap at the end. 

What are we going to do about this?

I'm considering reporting it to the Houston Chronicle. 

With best wishes,
Tim

____
 (January 30)

We will follow-up.

***

_____

(January 30)

Dear Ms. ***, 

I'm deeply concerned about hate speech against ***, the daughter of a Muslim. Many things have happened to her recently, but perhaps the worst happened today, where students said "she should be killed before she bombs the school," 

This is absolutely unacceptable as I'm sure you know. 

The disinhibiting effect of the current president's speech has resulted in students at my job (Rice U), who are normally very shy and introverted, doing things such as wearing swastikas in the library. 

I understand from my daughter, who is *** best friend, that students have drawn swastikas on the dividers of students who attend classes that *** attends. 

When stuff happens at my school I tell the president to make a statement--he usually doesn't do it, for whatever reason--but I just couldn't hear what I have been hearing without writing to you to share. 

Yours sincerely, 
Timothy Morton

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Another Incident

I'm afraid I have something else to report. 

It's about Ms. ****'s Model UN class. 

Today there was a PowerPoint by ****' dad. 
It said that the KKK and the Nazi party are exercising their freedom of speech by using swastikas etc. 

It also said that the women's marches, by excluding pro life women, "are tearing our country apart." (His actual words in quotation marks.)

They were all made to clap at the end. 

What are we going to do about this?

I'm considering reporting it to the Houston Chronicle. 

Monday, February 13, 2017

You're So Gonna Hate This

The only problems are

--It's correct.
--Are you ready to diss the vast majority of African Americans, southern women in particular, who voted for Clinton?
--If you voted for (I can't write it) out of spite or actually believing him, are you happy now?

“Donald Trump, ever ready to pounce on the gullible and disenchanted, chimed in to confirm the pet fear of the far left, convincing many on the fence that the primary was rigged. Supported by legions of Putin operatives, Trump trolls infiltrated online groups to pick up the hammer to do further damage to Hillary Clinton — all the while propping up Bernie Sanders, the weaker candidate. It was classic ratfucking, a reliable scheme employed by the GOP since the Nixon era.

[By the way, my friend Danae, a massage therapist who voted for Sanders, knows several Sanders supporters who ended up voting for Trump.]

...

“Not only did he never invest the time and money to woo non-white southern voters, he shrugged them off as too ill-informed to be worth the effort — his supporters continue the ugly lie that only racist whites voted for Hillary in the South, discount the majority of votes she did have: women of color.”--Sasha Stone

Monday, January 30, 2017

Letter to the Principal

Dear Ms. Adams, 

I'm deeply concerned about hate speech against Amelie Panai, the daughter of a Muslim. Many things have happened to her recently, but perhaps the worst happened today, where students said "she should be killed before she bombs the school," 

This is absolutely unacceptable as I'm sure you know. 

The disinhibiting effect of the current president's speech has resulted in students at my job (Rice U), who are normally very shy and introverted, doing things such as wearing swastikas in the library. 

I understand from my daughter, who is Amelie's best friend, that students have drawn swastikas on the dividers of students who attend classes that Amelie attends. 

When stuff happens at my school I tell the president to make a statement--he usually doesn't do it, for whatever reason--but I just couldn't hear what I have been hearing without writing to you to share. 

Yours sincerely, 
Timothy Morton

You Happy Now?

At my daughter's middle school, 12 year old children are drawing swastikas on the dividers of kids in classes where her best friend is, who is the daughter of a Muslim from Indonesia.

Those of you who voted for him out of spite or out of actually naively believing he was talking and therefore was going act like Sanders: you happy now? Yeah? Happy now?

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Go Naomi

“Our task is to find … the common thread that connects our movements. That means, first and foremost, dropping this nonsense of pitting class against so-called identity politics and economic justice”  --Naomi Klein

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Friday, January 20, 2017

On Derek Parfit

This is a very nice piece about the lately departed anti-utilitarian utilitarian.

Monday, January 16, 2017

And On the Subject of Humankind

It turns out (thank Ingrid!) that Tristan Garcia, French OO philosopher and novelist and etc., is putting a book together about solidarity between humans and nonhumans too, addressing Marxism! So this topic is in the air. I really hope one day we can talk about it in public together.

Such a good job, because the books that are currently out there are disturbingly teleological, anthropocentric and even transhumanist (which might be the most insulting adjective I use in the academy lol).

Lecture in Dresden Next Week

On January 28th in the morning, at a theater and performance conference! I'll be detailing a theory of action I've been working out for my book for Verso, Humankind.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Evaporation

The fantasy support of an entire geopolitical and geophysical entity, in a deep sense going back to Puritan ideas of Adamic languages and Providence, has completely evaporated. 

The well, shucks, I guess I found myself sitting atop a gigantic lake of oil idea.

The dignified marble Sam the American Eagle and the lumpen gold plated all you can eat fantasy are revealed (as I argued in my book on spice) to be not just related but the same thing, just as Bill Bailey deconstructs The Edge's majestic wilderness guitar into “She'll be Coming Round the Mountain.” And revealed to the users of the different modes and versions of such concepts themselves. 

The lumpen fantasy has evaporated, the official version has evaporated. Not even the lumpen enjoyment means anything at all. 

By the time you realize you're in a game, you have already lost

The fantasy tablecloth has been whisked out. Sure all the “resources,” the waves of golden corn etc, are still in place--but the reason for them has gone. 

The ecology without nature part of me (like, all of it) is--come on in the water's lovely--really glad this is happening. Despite the local horrors and tragedies and the specifics of the particular actors who got magnetized to read lines that didn't have to be perfectly scripted. And despite whatever intentions the scriptwriters had, conscious or not.  

America has been turned on a shoestring into a gigantic piece of conceptual art. It can no longer think, in any mode at all, in any part of itself, that it coincides with reality. 

Discuss. I'm pretty sure you'll be able to figure out what and whom I'm talking about, which is evidence of the brilliance of the big picture as written by some historian 200 years from now. Some historian of the decadent twilight of post-Cold War USA stuff. (It was amazing arriving in the US in the 90s--more on that soon maybe).