Capital is Dead or is This Something Worse? w/ Mckenzie Wark

from The Institute For Post American Studies

The debut episode of "The Institute For Post American Studies," is with Mckenzie Wark on her new-ish book "Capital is Dead." We mostly discuss how the economy has changed under the guidance of silicon valley and exacerbated by the pandemic. We discuss a range of subjects from the book and some in depth analysis of the present.

Pick up the book now on Verso

There are 43 Comments

I never listened to Sole much because his aesthetic was grating. This new Sole is a pleasant change.

This book is the only one of Wark's that I've read so this discussion of it fleshed out the arguments for me. Butting up against the looming climate catastrophe her provocation that capital is dead seems both true and insufficient. Something different is being tried by those with the power to try, but most of us are already dead, in that we are expendable to the regime coming into existence.

Thanks for the feedback. Curious tho, what’s grating ? My art or prior podcasts ?

The podcasts, though to be fair, I haven't listened to many. And it's about the aesthetic not so much the content.

I like this new direction where you're just having a dialog. Look forward to more.

This is a largely trumped up projected existential emergency by model obsessed scientists who have no conception of non-linear dynamics when it comes to terrestrial imbalances. Here's a good video example from Bret Weinstein

Catastrophes tend to be cosmic. Cosmic factors are the only thing that will shut down the civilized order by non human force and potentially drive extinction. Outside of cosmic factors you don't have to worry about human extinction of the prospect of a big catastrophic collapse. You should also be VERY distrustful of the people driving this problem solution climate change agenda. They're not green anarchists or deep ecologists of cyberneering scientific managing technocrats. I am FAR more concerned about the civilization they will construct under the excuse of dealing with this existential coming 'catastrophe' then I am the actual fall out of AGW which will probably bend and even break some things on a local scale(Texas but worse) but will hardly end civilization or this species(lol).

what's going to come of global warming, one possibility is human extinction, another one could be a forced restructuring of a bottle-neck in human evolution [ie, everyone dies except a million people who are forced to survive without any of the infrastructure we depend on now adays].

All i see in your science posts are confusing configurations of really big words, i see zero references to empiracal data or anything i can use or make sense of.

I do agree that we shouldn't assume that global warming is going to doom human civilizations, since the people positing this are only speaking in terms of these flawed scientific models.

The odds are long Long LONG on extinction or near extinction even when considering collapsing co-factors such as energy decline complexity contraction and dark age. The grand problematique as Ozbekhan called it. The only thing that would drive THAT would be something cosmic on a younger dryas level and single/primary factor climate change is NOT that.

Where are the big words? I just presented you with a video of pretty hard emerging data of a hidden feedback loop(probably not the last to be accounted for in the century to come). AGW will be a downer for sure and will bring bout local existential challenges for the civilized human being but it will not drive EXTINCTION(Like that's something to even be afraid of anyway-let the grass grow as a nihilist saying goes).

I think what matters more is focusing on the everyday terror that humans do to each other including in the name of warding off the apocalyptic threat. This was Bob Black's point in 'Anti-Nuclear Terror' and this is my point on the issue of climate change. We should be inhibiting against cybernetic civilized world building and control and also prepping for what could be the beginnings of a dark age to come which I do put at a 50% chance of happening. These things are actually more profound to talk about and anticipate then secular scientific apocalyptic fear mongering. After all the ecologists and environmentalists have such a great predictive record(lol)

so you came here to say "but whatabout everyday terror?"

normally when radicals I have any regard for are talking about climate change, the whole reason is exactly because of the domino effects, like how mass migrations of climate refugees leads to the growth of reactionary movements, racist violence and so on.

isn't that the every day terror humans do to each other? as you say?

an accusation of "whataboutism", just to remind you, i have not seen that in any of SE's of posts so far. What-about-ism is a rhetorical trick, one example of which i've seen it used: "you think america is racist? What about all those homosexuals getting executed in the middle east!" SE is arguing that global warming will not do the things that the scientific community says its going to do, that's not "whataboutism", that's scientific theory, AND DISAGREEMENTS ABOUT SCIENTIFIC THEORY ARE AN INTEGRAL PART OF SCIENCE! You know, the kind that's based on theories and evidence, not head games about who is the right winger or an oil dupe or who isn't. Political theory != climate science. They're both useful, but not the same thing.

yeah, you're right. I'd say he's more strawmanning in this instance. but whatever, i'm just generally hostile to him for years now. also, i highly doubt he's even a real person. bad faith troll with a lot of very shady reactionary politics being inferred quite strongly, which appears to be on full display further down in the comments

so what about you? just lost or bad faith?

the things you have just posted make total sense to me, i just think its important when we talk about complex things we eloquence and simplicity.

"AGW will be a downer for sure and will bring bout local existential challenges for the civilized human being but it will not drive EXTINCTION(Like that's something to even be afraid of anyway-let the grass grow as a nihilist saying goes)."

No, i'm not afraid of extinction, but i'm still not seeing a whole lot of knowledge/evidence to support that position. Right now i'm using mobile hotspot data because my ISP fucking blows and i scheduled a service cancellation with them today, so i don't want to watch a you tube video at the moment, my cell phone provider is going to throttle my connection after a couple of minutes of doing that, and yes i do need the internet for my daily activities especially with all this covid shit.

The coasts will be irradiated if global warming continues as the scientists say. The nuclear power plants will need to be dismantled and moved in land if the oceans continue to rise and the issues involving of more extreme weather from the oceans warming and more!

You write in jargon like you're trying to impress people with your jargonese, sireinzige, but you just come off as sounding like an unknowledgeable autist.

Agreed also the area of radical biological pandemics in the future have the ideal petri dish of global tourism, highly variable vaccination targets and hyper-strain mutation within Africo-RNA messenger cell signalling invites an exponential increase in mortality in high density white and aged cultures.

That's one of the things emerging now where time is its own currency. I don't see this as the end of capital just and extra layering of mediation. What's missing from this discussion is any technological or surrogate activity analysis(I'd recommend checking Chad 'Chadafrican' Haag's stuff out which is pretty informative). I'm hearing to much of the structure of Marx(material this and that-what about spirit?) in this discussion which has been done to death. Let him die with the 20th century. Anarchist/Anarch epistemology is all that matters going forward into this coming neo-Roman Principate world society with its techno-machineological cybernetic networked noded power structure. Anarchist and anarch power diffusion(not building) and affinity(not organization) will matter more then ever in this coming 21st century Roman Principate equivalent world. I'm also hearing the same ideas that use to inform Processed World in terms of focusing on Tech workers. How 'bout just focusing of questions of technology and how we activate being on an everyday level please.

The 20th century was a mostly Marxist century. The good news out of this bad news to come is that anarchism and anarchy has the floor. Use it properly.

a lot of events that do result in something like the dark ages, not much of a way to prepare for it other than keeping your ear to the ground, challenging yourself, and enjoying what's left of the current era.

Making friends is important too...

In this case, what we got here some is very obvious ecofash nutjob who's an open promoter of Linkola, Evola, John M. Greer and even fucking Varg Vikernes (lol). How can it go wrong!

Of course you always show up in a corner just to shoot yourself in the foot, SE, and then whine about Antifa violence before withering away, only to come back later for the same performance.

is enough to explain the problem with this thing called anti-fa.

If this guy is objectionable, oppressive, etc., why are you posting a link to their patreon?

"Your support will enable him to continue writing rigorous philosophical critiques of monumental thinkers such as Kaczynski, Greer, Linkola, Evola, Zerzan, Ruppert etc. which the academic industry ignores for biased political reasons."

You see, it didn't take very long at all to find out where you got your information from. If you think it's some sort of evidence-against-the-enemy, you fucked up pretty big time, because i see zero evidence that he's either a racist or a nationalist. John Zerzan must also be a fascist....ROFLMFAO, it seems like you can't even read.

It's funny how some people live such empty and pathetic lives that they go around on the internet trying to come up with different ways to call somebody a nazi. The comment section of @news is a lot worse for this, it's beyond repair because the people who do this have been hanging out here for years. It's not even funny anymore, it's just incredibly boring and infuriating.

The guy's an obvious ecofascist autist whose books likely consist of the exact same literary bubble going for 500 pages that says what can be written in a sentence or two. The very fact he's presenting Greer, Evola and that neonazi clown Virkernes as "monumental thinkers" doesn't only make him an ecofash, but also a complete retard and possibly a racist bigot too. And no I'm not going to buy and parse through his drivel to feed you with more cascading comments on here, just for you to keep denying the obvious, coz you're already a terminally-retarded MAGA zombie from some White racist suburb.

Speaking of not buying his "books", who's gonna yell about him being "deplatformed", now!? Gotta thank Goodreads (Amazon) for being so supportive of neofascists, conspiracy theory shitlords and the rest of this ilk, just like they are with the O9A. Sooo much for "Democrat Antifa SJW call-out culture"!

Also... sooo much for "anti-tech" positions, as well!

MAGA-zombies?? I do live in a "white racist suburb" (and there are black people too!), i have stated that on here because I'm overall as honest as i can be about what i think. I don't vote. The most you can say about my "trump support" is there were maybe a couple things that he has said i sorta agreed with, but overall i just think he's a narcissistic bully-clown kinda like you.

So, i just want to inform you: it's possible to agree with certain parts of what a writer has said without agreeing with the other parts. Often times, gasp, writers don't even tell you everything they think. The fact that you angrily call out chada haag with associations instead of something he actually did or said tells me that your research is just crappy and sloppy. I actually watched around 15 minutes of one of his videos that SE posted a while back...he's against technology and civilization. I find his language usage to be overly incomprehensible and boring, so no i would never pay to support his youtube platform but i'm sure he's glad that you posted a link to his patreon page and used such intriguing and strong moral hyperbole to describe him. LOL!

A-news commenters are overall pretty trashy, but to me it always seems with this site in particular, it's always the leftists who are more aggressive and douschey about their hang-ups.

Oh, you just gave SE another reason to rant about how he hates leftist censorship! Cute! Your anti-fa campaign is going really well i see.

It doesn't occur to them that you can separate useful epistemic ontological language from their other world view which may be on the reactionary side.

any chance you could rephrase that for non-academics?

It's just another of SE's claptrap word salads du jour.

i got this, SE. the epistemic ontological is the microsoft excel spreadsheet of how an anarch-ego-anarchy species-being organises the world with maximum stirnerian vissicitudes.

Now I can take that as compliment as far as you aren't calling the same those you're defending here, as the description fits precisely with SE's behavior on this site for years. With the exception that I'd also add "fash enabler" and "anti-feminist shitbag".

And like I said, Chad the Hag is "anti-tech" as far as any tool profiting from Amazon makes Amazon profits from the fools buying their books. Anti-tech, like yeeeaaaaaa.... *tongue in cheek*.

11:44 here again...

so, people really suck and i get that. Chada haag i guess is a little bit of a "hypocrite" because his philosophical theories see technology as kinda spooky and dangerous like ted kaczinsky did, and btw, a lot of chada haag's philosophy is based around the parts of TK's manifesto that I actually strongly agree with.

However, to a degree i gotta give Chada haag the benefit of the doubt, because:

-i'm not interested enough in what he thinks to go making accusations. You don't really seem to be very interested either, so don't watch his videos.

-the internet is basically a totalitarian police-hijacked tool that everyone is obligated to use a little bit. If your problem is that he uses the internet and sells books on amazon, then why the hell are you didn't you center your critique around that? You just did what so many people on here do, you just called him a fascist in an indirect/sleezy/trolly way.

Overall i do not agree with everything SE says, and i think some of his word usage is a little lol. Like for example, why do you keep using "tard" to keep describing people on twitter? It doesn't clarify anything and just makes you sound like a autistic bully. I have argued with SE openly on anarchist news, but I'm not going to pick apart every single thing he says and push him against the wall. I also do prefer to have him on the internet, because I don't see other people saying the type of stuff that he does.

So there. We've all been having cold interactions online for so long that we can all revert to being narcissistic bully trolls at times.

Ad hominem attacks are bad form for the most part, this includes using 'autistic' as an insult. Particularly when autistic people are more often the target of bullying rather than instigators of bullying.

correct, i like the way you think. Overall, i don't like using "retard" as an insult because it's so typical of obtuse linear-western thinking (i'm so smart!). I was bullied so heavily in elementary school that i was calling myself an idiot by the fourth grade. so yeah i think your right about what i said :-(

i typically sypathize with SE a little more strongly than LT and the other (what, 1-3?) anons because SE is normally really nice and likes to explain things, whereas people like LT make me not want to use anarchist news, which i think is kinda the point. He wants to "eject the reactionary trash" but doesn't really seem to even understand the harm in his trolling methods.

the claim from small school that you're an idiot turned out to be true, and is revealed through your siding with bad-faith internet bullies like SE? 0_0

He doesn't look like a good alternative for "harm reduction" to me, for all the obsessive reactionary bile he's been throwing down here for years.

Exaggerating every single thing you read on the internet because it makes you feel important. Part of the reason I side with SE is a forum that better tolerates his "reactionary bile", and doesn't always default to some megalomaniacal leftist impulse as you do, is one that I prefer. You ain't nothin but a control freak.

know why he's "nice" now? the mods nuked him in to oblivion for years for all the hateful shit he used to spew. they trained him like a good little doggy not to be so casually vile as if he was still on 4chan. might want to be more careful how you pick and choose your sympathies so you don't harm yourself worse than a few snarky comments ever will.

The kind of definitions that only hairbrained leftists come up with. I have an edgy Bob Black posting style which is appropriate for the writing medium of the internet and ideas. He nor I am hateful or reactionary. Not liking Mike Brown and thinking he was an idiot death seeker does not make you 'hateful'. That's what most people think including many black folk. That's not to say there isn't a proper multi-structural analysis to be made of that event where you avoid demonization of people like that, but bad character is bad character.

Do you guys even know what reactionary is? Someone who has an edgy assholish posting style is not a reactionary. Someone like Bellamy would be someone who's gone down something of a reactionary path(I still like him though I like Rydra more) He tends to be turned off by things that might be called degenerate. I actually like those things. Hell I have another account on twitter where I like and retweet porn(and it's obviously adult retards). That's not what reactionaries do.

I'm also more or less the same as I have been since the early 10s. My posts do get yeeted for a reason you know.

I think you have a bunch of reactionary bullshit all woven throughout your thinking, yeah. There's a lot of different flavors of bullshit out there and it becomes pretty boring, pretty fast with all the hairsplitting you tend to do about it.

Bob Black by many accounts, is a pompous jackass who always tries to use rhetoric to exempt himself from the obvious conclusions a reasonable person would draw from his shitty opinions and actions too. If I put the two of you on an island together, I wonder how long it would take before you got on each other's last nerve? hmmm? maybe you ARE at least half as bad as people say? always a possibility, right? wouldn't want to ... ignore the possibility...

as for me, I'm like this all the time too. unpleasant to the unpleasant and just generally unpleasant :)

You? For diving in to defend the guy who called Mike Brown a "thug" just after his shooting and is constantly whining about Antifa and feminists? Or SE himself, for diving in to defend or promote a diverse range of internet neofascist scum, as well as pedophilia? Tell us more about "harm reduction".

This is here more work of perception management aiming to at legitimate ecofascists and in that sense, it is being aggressive, reckless "control freaks". It's as bad as what tankies were doing. If you think someone should have a waiver to pull off such horseshit on a public forum while the critics reacting to this are the "control freaks", you must have either some brain damage or suffer from a form of retardation.

And no, being an academic in the US no longer is an indicator of mental sanity or proficiency of some idiot like the guy referenced above. The US higher education system is broken, intoxicated by big money and ID pols, and the recent demonstration that 2 + 2 = 5 by an Harvard PhD, using ID pols as cover for the stupidest irrational argument I've seen in years coming from an academic, just shown how it's FUBAR. So I don't care through which university or how many books this guy has written, if he's taking abject ideologues such as Evola and that Vikernes clown as reliable theorists, not only him but his readers are demented fools.

Again, this is a public forum for anarchists and the anarcho-curious. You get flamed in the comment section for posting horseshit by authoritarian ideologues and demagogues?


but look at that at home studio set up he's got with the deliberately understated wood paneling? and his folksy relatable but expensive looking sun hat that a comfortably middle class boomer dad would wear, in his youtube profile pic!

it's 2021 and being a quasi-fashy-curious boomer can drive a tesla and smell tastefully of sandal wood while lecturing "those damned protestors" about how they're all just [insert sweeping generalization that defaults to status quo]

ideologues and demagogues, then you should probably stop sounding like one yourself. With all this arm flailing over se and some patreon philosopher (thanks for the link btw I donated to his account) you might hurt yourself.

My point... was the sole reason why an ecofash nutcase like Chag Da Hag is even known to the SE troll is due to Amazon (Goodreads) and Patreon allowing him for a platform, where likely no bookstore in pre-Amazon days would buy his garbage as this is the kind of stuff that's a toxic liability. Thus the paradox of having a pretend anti-tech author depending on big tech corporations to spread their drivel.

If you ever fished around the philosophical parts of YouTube you might come across him. I’ve known about him since 2014 or so. His most watched vid is on Homi Baba when he was of a different mindset.

What exactly is ‘toxic’ about his book? The t T word is just a PC leftist buzzword with no substantiation behind it. It’s just a blue church put down against discourses that are naughty and challenging certain progressive sacred cows. Part of how you judge a philosophical work is whether it has conceptual originality or freshness. While he’s no Heidegger he does deliver new conceptuality that I find useful. And no he’s not an eco fascist(lol)

You IQ room temperature retards just can't help it can you. It's like I-the player-just have to push some texts to get you assclowns going. You are aware that one can compartmentalize the good and the bad of a given thinker right...RIGHT? In Haag's case he's a reactionary ecologist who ultimately does not jibe with my sensibilities. However, he has some useful language in regards to technological analysis and onto-epistemic frameworks. I like his concepts of somatic ecological context and other terms like deep memes and sense/countersense. He's actually an interesting living philosopher who actually has updated the technology criticism of the mid-late 20th century in interesting conceptual ways.

This does not equal affinity or whole sale endorsement of his greater worldviews or sensibilities. I know you assclowns can't be this stupid can you? To the other poster, I don't so much find these people infuriating as I do amusing. It almost looks like I'm trolling them and pushing a text button to make them react a certain way. I'm not actually doing this but it looks so due to how stupid and institutionally leftist and blue churched these people are.

It's all a further reminder of why I will NEVER set foot into any meet space milieu. I'm convinced the maoist psychological rot is terminal at this point and the best thing that could happen to anarchism and anarchy going forward is for that milieu to just FUCKING DIE.

Nuance is especially lost these days when the internet has heightened the amount of fear the average person has been exposed to when shifting even further indoors. It gets harder to read what's noise, what's signal and who's a bad actor or simply a typical ideolgue.

I find myself taking breaks from all of this stuff. As I travel and go outside as much as possible people haven't changed much from pre-covid. The internet, however, feels like a bad trip.

You've got a lot of good points in this string of comments. Have you seen the most recent film series of Adam Curtis? He's too lefty for the both of us, and yet makes a lot of really interesting points entirely needing dissection and discussion (this will be hampered some time by the over 8 hour running time). To me (and I read stirner, lao tzu, and nietzsche as all saying the same things in different ways), the Western Mindset is at a spiritual dead end with its over-emphasis on rationalism and materialism. The human mind is clearly not the primary organizing influence. Even if there were one, hunan's don't have access to a Gods Eye View of reality. They're not in charge. Behind everything are interrelations. No-things. And reality is one continually unfolding now. Now is all we have.

So yeah, the sooner we can untether from the grip of marxism the better. I was never a good Christian, and I don't ever want to be one.

Dare we to play with making our own imaginations, meanings and relations beyond measure for once?

Who else remembers? These have not aged as gracefully as Wark.

"For these reasons, one can only be appalled by some self-avowed anarchists, who are happy to pretend to find Wark’s bullshit amusing and to join him in dismissing the “pro-situs” as out of date. Though “pro-situs” (they are actually post-situs, but this is like explaining Shakespeare to a monkey) may be irascible and quarrelsome, they still believe that revolution – not reformism – is the order of the day. The only conclusion one can derive from the behavior of smug hipsters such as Aragorn Bang (snickering about the “pro-situs” within the confines of Facebook and posting our declaration to website with the tag “LOL” and “drama”) is that they, too, are not revolutionaries. For them, “anarchism” is what “postmodernism” is for Wark: a way of showing that, at the very least, they are not pro-Obama social democrats. But they might as well be: they share with them the laughable conceit that the only way to “change” the system is to “work within it,” using digital technology, naturally." -

I have only contempt for this echo chamber upper cast of armchair anarchists. They are a breed that just kept reproducing, and make a bad name of people like Lucy Parsons, Novatore, Armand and Bonanno. Goodreads weaklings for whom thoughts are action while despising anything being done in the real world, as they live in the world of ideas. We've been having these fake anarcho tools for ages in NA, and what good did it do? If activism and "strugglismo" didn't change the social relationship, or tackle society, armchair anarchism didn't just do less than that, but also has just put the beautiful idea in a frame and hung it on a wall for their fartbong buddies to contemplate.

Got theories? Great. Just fucking DO SOMETHING with it. Quit preaching to the choir or re-vivisection the concepts for the 63th time since last year, and put them to the test of the real world!

what makes you think you know anything about what anews posters do when they're not here? what is your dossier, that anyone should listen to you?
what have you done to make the world a better place, and how do you define that?
but probably you're just a troll, riffing off of generations of trolls before you. IGD is over there --->

hey, I appreciate them giving my troll memes life! it's like greek immortality, so long as someone remembers the fartbong, it lives FOREVER MUAHAHA

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