Wednesday, February 15, 2006

LOOK, COULD WE HAVE A STRAIGHT ANSWER ON THIS?

1. Is the the Bush Gang telling the truth about 9/11?

2. If so, where's the evidence?

3. If not, why are we pissing about this way, four-and-a-half-years later?

Here's what everyone pretends to believe (because it costs nothing).

Is it credible, what we pretend to believe? Also: Is it efficaciously anti-war? Do the answers to these questions have any consequences? (The answer is yes; this is why the questions remain routinely unanswered. Nobody wants to be first.)

Straight answers from fellow-Qlipothians would be particularly welcome.

17 comments:

  1. hollowentry1:51 AM

    1. no.
    2. see 1.
    3. I honestly don't know.

    Sorry, those are some seriously lame answers. But thank you for posting this, and your other posts.

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  2. hollowentry1:58 AM

    ok, way too quick on the send button... the above seems like a really stupid reply, but seriously, thanks.

    Until I read your posts at Lenin's Tomb, I thought that 'conspiracy theory' was a doctrine by a sect of people who were not really committed to getting at the truth. Ironic sure, but mostly just pre-programmed automatic, and I would add managerial, thinking.

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  3. I think we underestimate the mutually reinforcing nature of the "9/11" action feature and PhiloIslamoscismophobia.

    I think there might be a dozen men born in Saudi Arabia every generation who might be willing to die to be on teeeveee, and famoos, or to jump start White House imperial policies, or go to heaven, or whatever the preferred motive the coincidence theorists bring forward. Seems like a lot, there aren't many saudis, but say its possible. There are meshuggeners. And say its possible that all of these meshuggeners manage to have lucrative careers with the intelligence services. Okay, its possible. But then that they should all somehow run into eachother, not in the course of their day jobs with the intelligence services but unbeknownst to them; that they should over time plot this complex plan involving suicide without ever once fretting that the plan is doomed without White House cooperation; that none of them should back out at the last minute...this is simply psychologically implausible. Unless you 'know the Arab mind' and realize they don't have to communicate because they are in contact via morphic resonances; that they are swarm like; that they are irrational zealots - 19 young men! not one with naything to gain! - and that there is an endless supply of such beings, so its not so weird 19 of them got to know one another well enough to do this, without a traitor in the ranks, or just a 'bungling' guy who would get caught. Compared to the US political class, we have a remarkably efficient and singleminded type of guy here, and a LOT of them, offered for suspension of disbelief.

    But the buying of the story rests entirely on this psychological portrait - psycho-physiological really - of 'Our Enemy.'

    Just imagine this plot with 19 guys with bgs like Tim MacVeigh. It is inconceivable that the public would not demand some evidence of their guilt; would not be interested in television interviews of their families and friends...would not find the story implausible and the evidence which has appeared indicative of a frame-up.

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  4. 1. I do not personally believe so, no.

    3. I honestly don't know. To me, at this point, it seems like a no-brainer. But there's something about this particular event that makes people bring down the shutters - people that ordinarily have no trouble routinely attributing to BushCo and predecessors all sorts of horrible shit. Lying to go to war, torture, abuse, chemical weapons, negligence in the wake of Katrina etc. - all of these are taken as read, with significantly less evidence available than is at hand when it comes to alternative 9/11 narratives - and yet the official story remains untouchable somehow.

    I'd be interested to hear any ideas about why that might be, but here's a few thoughts for starters:

    A. The "Conspiracy Theory" smear has crippled debate. Nobody wants to be a Conspiracy Theorist, plus it's only a matter of time before some smirking chucklehead brings up Elvis, Lord Lucan or Tin-Foil Hats.

    B. Some sort of emotional block which makes it impossible for people to even countenance that a government could be implicated in the death of thousands of its own people. Thousands of another nation's people, sure, no problem. But not that.

    C. Similar to the above, I think there's still a sort of vestigal belief in the essential goodness of Western governments. Jeff Wells at Rigorous Intuition has pointed out that were we to hear similar stories of pre-attack insider trading, government intelligence/terrorist links etc., coming from Eastern Europe or South America or any of those other places, we'd all have our tin-foil hats on in no time. The same sort of speculation is fully taboo when it comes to us, the Good Guys.

    D. I think for a lot of people 9/11 was their political Road to Damascus. Questioning that event would be too much like finding out you were adopted.

    Other than that, I guess I'm pretty fucking baffled.

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  5. http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-8260059923762628848&q

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  6. 1. No
    3. "There is no alternative."

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  7. Thanks for all the responses, and apologies for having so little to say in reply. I'm really pushed for time right now, but will try to add something to this over the weekend.

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  8. "C. Similar to the above, I think there's still a sort of vestigal belief in the essential goodness of Western governments. Jeff Wells at Rigorous Intuition has pointed out that were we to hear similar stories of pre-attack insider trading, government intelligence/terrorist links etc., coming from Eastern Europe or South America or any of those other places, we'd all have our tin-foil hats on in no time. The same sort of speculation is fully taboo when it comes to us, the Good Guys."

    also the belief in the transparency, in the existence of largel institutions with lots of civil servants with some probity...this no longer exists but the memory is fresh and the illusion persists. The depth and breadth of corruption and pressure was not suspected on 9/11 itself; when people imbibed the story and got entrenched in its assumptions; this depth and breadth is only slowly becoming known, the purging of dissent, the degree of real exposure of white house criminality, the connivance of the 'opposition' with major crimes and violations of the constitution. Part of the belief is 'they would have been exposed.' But we slowly discover a lot *was* exposed, but the concentrated media was obedient, and b, collaboration with very serious crimes, like the spying and the gulag, was widespread not only with the domestic 'opposition' but also in europe...

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  9. also the techniques of manipulation are superb. Dissent was very successfully steered toward the 'blowback' thing or kind of rooting for the perp, not questioning the bedrock frame, who was the perp. One was encouraged to argue about the motives of the perp - lashing out in 'understandable' anger at US policy or seeking virgins in heaven? So much evergy went into this frame for the discussion - we naturally imported the IMPORTANT argument about US policy into the neat little slot arranged for it (why do they hate us?) It was an irresistable invitation to treat the event as a fable as useful to true, correct, and righteous political argument as it was for fallacious right wing crap - in fact *better* as a demonstration of what's wrong with capitalist imperialism and US policy than as a fable for the right. One of the reasons - explicitly stated lately - the left doesn('t want to give it up - someone seems to be *fighting back*, US policy has gone wrong, has proven itself *untenable*, they have suffered* losses* and the world is out of their control. That seems to be what the left wanted to hear, wanted to see; much more discouraging is the proposition that this represents another success of the ruling class, the most significant of the last fifty years, and shows how totally in command of humanity they are. So people prefer to believe that there really is a *revolt* of a kind from 'Islam* - or anywhere - that is *causing difficulties* for capital;, even though it is as plain as day capital is facing fewer difficulties than ever before in history, with the slight exception of trend sin South America, but even there capital remains comfortable in control, despite not being able to succeed in as extreme and rapid accumulations/expropriations as it would like due to organized resistance.

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  10. Latelky you hear people say 'do you mean that if Mooozlim nitcases did pull of 9/11 without White House connivance, the war on terror would be justified?' It's weird, to invent this obviously absent implication. This is a line I think was invented on madison avenue; but the popularity of it immediately indicates how attached the left is to the usefulness of the official fable for its argument - it discursive usefulness: here is demonstrated the perilousness of US policy; how it is *counterproductive* for the US ruling clique itself...showing that this ruling class will destroy itself if simply left alone, and therefore allowing at once hope and an excuse to do little. The terrible thing about the 9/11 facts , increasingly difficult to ignore, is that it ends this hope that the US ruling class is self destructing, is dealing itself wounds and that some smarter part of the ruling elite will step in to change the direction. The truth is inescapably despair-inducing: MikeMolloy on airamerica radio recently was just talking about how 9/11 was obviously a white house job, and practically on tears saying 'i don't know what to do. there's nothing we can do.' Very different from the principled anitwar, anticapitalist stance you can take if you assume the US ruling class is making grave errors, and being 'beatn' and 'humiliated' in Iraq, and the Bush junta are being 'weakened' domestically because of that. None of this is true: they are batting 1000 on their agenda.

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  11. Colonel, your posts describe the process of "channeling dissent" more lucidly than anything I have ever read.

    I have been wasting time with timewasters at Lenin's Tomb and am also extremely busy offline but will try to get back to this topic soon and constructively.

    -w.

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  12. Thanks Qlipppy!

    This:
    "'do you mean that if Mooozlim nitcases did pull of 9/11 without White House connivance, the war on terror would be justified?' "

    It just hit me a few days ago that this is what's at stake for the left in the official story. The position is degraded in its political sophistication and its ability to illustrate ethics, etc., if 'al Qaeda' - an enemy 'fed up' with US imperialism and able to disrupt biz as usual and to frighten, threaten and 'humiliate' the oppressor - is removed from the story, if the thing is just a con. The left loses its distinctive leftness in what is increasingly obviously the real scenario - even the non-corrupt right will agree then that the war on terror is a fraud and a crime. The left 'needs' - narratively - the big terrorist attack to illustrate what it has been saying forever about US policy. The 'official' fable is a better story for the left; it is not about corruption and conspiring but about 'day to day normal capitalist policies' (the left wants to portray them as impersonal, as void of intentionality, in order to participated in the 'mature' arguments characterized by professional intellectual think tanks, to sound like authoritative and disapssionate economists and academics who say 'capitalism is bad because it "doesn't work", it is advertising itself falsely, not because it is murderous - murderous is okay if it "works" as a system understood as a mechanism, that is, if it can be indefinitely sustained') resulting in carnage *at home*. The official fable shows that business as usual in capitalism has spectacularly horrible effects which the economists and the academics have not accounted for; it shows that catastrophe does not require extraordinary crimes as understood within our system but the ordinary legal crimes of capital. (all of this is true;, but it isn't easily narrated and dramatized; the immiseration and suffering of the American working class it isn't a media event). It is more attractive as a narrative to illustrate the left's position. And it allows the left to use the Spectacular Disaster Scene of 9/11 as a kind of substitute for the absent images of the destructions of the populations of the aggressor nations, of the imperial center, which the left has such a hard time making dramatically present in its arguments. The left has always been able to show capitalism tortures the periphery. But with 9/11 it was handed a neat little short film: the ordinary policies of US capitalism result in carnage in 'our own' cities too, *inevitably,* increasing carnage.

    So the kind of technocratic left argument is served by the official fable, and the truth ruins everything because it requires the left to acknoaledge that 'capital' isn't just an abstract force but is something deployed by people and these people are so singlemindedly in pursuit of profit one can only, socially, describe them as malicious. Then the teevee savvy kewl kids of theory snicker and say 'oh you believe in an eeevil agent in control of *capitalism*' or *of the world* (when we are speaking of a self-conscious class in control of capital.) As if removing humanity from all analysis of our world is the first thing you have to do to prove *maturity.* So the official fable, which downplays the role of human agents organized as classes in history (capital is acting unconsciously; al qaeda is reacting instinctively, like a force of nature, to capital) allows for this abstract and 'mature' interpretation, a respectable kind of critique which blames no one (because the hijackers are taken as symbols only, representatives, all dead anyway) and illustrates two abstract forces in conflict, while the truth averts to class war in an historical and materialist sense, and illustrates clearly the particular 'antihumanity' and ruthless nature of the masters of capital.

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  13. also I think the masterful nature of the con shows the historical importance of the advances in the whole virtual sphere and the science of deploying it, including the American University Theory fashion of the 80s, which seemed so frivolous to many and as impractical as theoretical physics; this did have an impact, in that professionals in media and marketing and branding, who came out of Ivy League schools in the 80s, having studied Lacan and deMan and Derrida and looked at discourse newly and at tv ads and things newly, really understood all this much better than anyone had ever before. The methods of critique (resistance) are also a creative technology (assertion) in other hands, and the critical class of clerks of course is trained by capital to go to work for capital. You had all these people who did phds in comp lit or philosophy; the jobs in academia vanished and anyway they wanted money, they went into advertising, new media and old media, concocting new names for aspirin and creating discourses to naturalize the need for serotonin reuptake inhibitors and other 'new' diseases and syndromes, or working to create the illusion of value for dot com stocks, and they are more sophisticated than their predecessors; they are 'post-modern' and schooled in the deft deployment of intertextuality and the loosening of the strong force which holds the sign together, etc; they took all this to a higher level than propaganda had operated on before, created a technology of the spectacle and the virtual which had not existed before.

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  14. and this accomplishment accounts in part for the shift from the real, necessary secrecy this same clique - rumsfeld/cheney et al - observed in he Reagan era to the show-off secrecy, the oddly flagrant, boastful secrecy of the Bush regime, which puts up billboards and issues press releases which say "We are Torturing People And Keeping It Secret." "I am playing Tennis and Shopping for thousand dollar shoes while thousands drown in New Orleans. But Don't Tell." "I'm On Vacation, but Keep It Quiet."

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  15. Zizek represents the culmination of all this: he's a psychoanalytic critic who szays human beings have no psyches, or in any case it is irrelevant that they do. But abstractions - America - nd institutions - television netwrks -can only be understood as psyches and act according to Lacanian predictions of how psyches work. The position is utterly nonsensical. It really displays a kind of perfect insanity, entirely incoherent, fantastical, etc.. But it represents precisely the posture that has been encouraged in the spectators - to see positive articulations as less serious the more forcefully they are articulated. "America got what it fantasized about" in other words is *meaningful* only insofar as it is completely bullshit and useless, only insofar as it is untrue and without implications. That's what makes the statement valuable as 'theory' - that it is maximally nonsensical and useless. That it is "Junk." A Junk Thought. "al Qaeda" and "the clash of civilizations" are Junk Thoughts just like this. The conditions for the acceptance of and reverence for this were all constructed in the 8Os.

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