Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Another repeat, from 10 months ago. It's as true now as it was then, and it continues the same obvious point concerning "the irrationalism of others"

For me these photographs mark the difference between Iran and the occupation, between a community divided against itself and one subjugating another. That's a distinction that's lost on most Americans...

And to add to that the obvious fact, notwithstanding the sense of horrible intimacy watching the death of Neda Soltan: the level of violence in Iran bears no comparison.

All obvious if you pay more attention to the facts than to ideas. But we always begin with ideas, as preconceptions. So how do we counter preconceptions? By following how ideas change. By paying attention to patterns in history.
Follow the bouncing ball.

Following "ideas' alone, this:

becomes [fantasized as] this:

which = rule following and passivity.

But history [historical change] presents as this:

Which is commonly recognized if unacknowledged as this:

And as I said the last time I posted this the model of the arts is historically the model of the humanities, which replicated on a larger scale is the model of democracy.

It's simple. Too simple for American academics or the American press to understand: if technocracy is the rule of experts, democracy is the rule of amateurs.

It's a fact that we will always need others to point out how irrational we are or can be or have become. Most if not all of the works that will be remembered from our time will be recognized as trying to come to terms with, or struggling to avoid, the fact that our grandchildren will condescend to us in ways that we can not imagine (but which will have nothing to do with technological advancement).

Modernism was always a dream either of immortality or timelessness. The best works described the dreamer and the dream, not a new reality. The worst were, literally, crimes. The only future for modernism was failure, and those who defend that dream now are no more than fantasists of preadolescence. To understand just how slowly our changing consciousness has begun to assimilate the unchanging facts of Palestinian experience in the 20th century is to understand that we are an exception to nothing, that objectivity does not exist, that we are fundamentally irrational and that the struggle for rationality is only possible collectively: a collectivity of the present, of the past before we were born and of the future when we're gone. A mature politics begins with an acceptance of the necessity of others and the inevitability of death.

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