you can consume "politics" (all the endless, impossibly intricate analysis, the parsing and discussion of the "optics") in this addictive, stim-buzz-snacking, distracted-drifting, more-more-gimme-more way that is nothing like actual politics as activity (which involves quite a lot of boredom, tedious graft, endless meetings, or, if it's activist, involves the physical endurance of protest)... and that conversely is extremely like the way one engages with music/popculture on the web (flitting and skimming, tldr, dl-ing-but-never-getting-round-to-listening, half a YouTube here, half a streamed track there). so "politics" does become just another option in the array of passivities, all the time-kills available to you in this wonderful webbed infosphere... only difference is that "keeping up" and "staying informed" seems vaguely more worthwhile and virtuous than obsessively downloading the latest djmix
at any rate, whether or not he meant spectacle as in "spectacular commodity society" and "the society of the ____", this fellow's thoughts made me think that:
a/ the Situationist critique of our civilisation in terms of boredom / isolation / "the poverty of everyday life" has never been more pertinent ... what with the internet, social networking, and other surrogates-for-true-fulfilment/community... digimodernism has created a whole new array of pseudo-activities, pseudo-participations.... digimodernism is Spectacle 2.0
b/ the Situationist critique is one of the best explanations for rock/pop/etc available ... as an explanation of why it came into existence in the first place, and of why it ultimately fails (ie. its rebellion against boredom/isolation/disenchantment is alway recuperated, turned into something that just reinforces boredom/isolation/disenchantment)
Friday, January 21, 2011
Politics as "another option in the array of passivities:"