Re: spitting, hissing, desperate disagreement

From Aimee <>
Date Mon, 6 Sep 1999 17:54:20 -0900 (PDT)
In-reply-to <>

[: hacktivism :]

I am starting to wonder if this list is doomed.  It seems 
we are coalesced around (unagreed) means for action--on a 
computer and on the internet--and that this is not enough 
of a basis to hold us together.  The range of politics 
seems to be really large.  The following comment from 
Parsifal (sorry it seems you have made yourself whipping 
boy/girl but that's what happens when you hijack a list) 
drove this home:

> Ideas, like economic market, deals with supply and demand.

Neither ideas nor markets work by supply and demand as 
far as I am concerned.  This is the height of rightist 
neoliberalism.  Parsifal's comments are right-wing 
libertarian neoliberalism.  This is an impasse.  Parsifal is 
obviously not persuaded 
(or even listening) to others' opinions and I am 
certainly not going to suddenly become a neoliberalist. 
I've heard this all before.  It's the mainstream 
discourse throughout the world.  I grew up around this 

> Unfortunately, it seems that an average hacker is more skilled for 
> computers than for psychology/sociology....

> should be interested to know how old are this list's subscribers.
> Am I speaking with teenagers ?

This is the impasse I am talking about.  And the total 
lack of respect and listening.  I am tempted to divulge 
my occupation as a sociology doctoral student in order to 
assert some 
credibility.  (I suppose I just have.)  But that seems a 
pretty lame rejoinder to Parsifal.  

Parsifal, there are a 
range of educated opinions on these issues and yours is 
but one.  You need to stop imposing your views as if they 
are universally applicable and correct.  Just because the 
neoliberalist discourse is the mainstream one doesn't 
mean it is right.  Infact, for me, it's a pretty clear 
indicator that it is wrong.  It's the discourse that 
supports/creates the current exploitative world system.

I don't see how the discussion is getting anywhere.  I am 
not interested in hearing more neoliberalism.  Parsifal 
is not interested in hearing any radicalism.  Where is 
there to go?

I also want to say that I think an approach to politics 
needs to be grounded in the particular situation, the 
context and particularly the power relations, and the 
historical specificity of the situation.  Coming up with 
universal principles like neoliberalism don't work (for 
me).  I would not hesitate to use the tactics Parsifal 
advocates when the situation is justified.  In fact, this 
was a lot of my undergraduate student activism.  A 
university is a great setting for educating yourself and 
others around issues.  But I also didn't hesitate in 
using more radical means that Parsifal rejects at the 
same university when the situated demanded it.

There just seems to be something wrong in imposing a 
definition of what proper hactivism is.  This is its own 
form of "totalitarianism."  It closes off rather than 
opens up.  It creates universalities which don't account 
for context.



[: hacktivism :]
[: for unsubscribe instructions or list info consult the list FAQ :]
[: :]