Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Mentioned previously. Henry Farrell reposts the entire thing, re-titling it The Lies of the Creative Class. The original is here:
“the only way to keep your job nowadays is to constantly re-invent it”

This rather sad article in the New York Times about long-term, middle class unemployment got me thinking…

Got me thinking about the cartoon above, in fact.

Any long-time blogger knows this: The only way to keep people reading your blog is by “Constant Re-Invention”. Keep on finding new things to talk about. Keep on DOING and CREATING new things worth talking about.

i.e. Creativity. Yes. That. Exactly.

And what has always been true for bloggers is now true for anyone hoping to live above the basic subsistence level.

The only way to keep your job nowadays is to constantly re-invent it.

Again, Creativity.

And that’s your responsibility, not your boss’. If your boss won’t let you do that, then quit. Right now. Do something else. It’s your move. Nobody else’s. Sorry.

It isn’t rocket science. But sadly, it’s something far too few of us ever think really hard about.
We've been through this before, here and elsewhere. Read the comments on Henry's post to see what a piss-poor job defenders of intellectual monoculture do defending the values of free social life against the imperatives of production. See also the "research imperative" discussed below. The same logic applies: if you can't do the job, get out of the way.

Civilization and social life mitigate against the cruelties of simple Darwinism by creating a multiplicity of interlocking and overlapping roles in daily life. Instrumentalist utilitarianism and productivism narrow those roles. Individuality is the product of multiplicity, individualism fosters homogeneity.

The author of the post above, like Grant McCracken and his friends at MIT define creativity as inventive functionalism: the point of the trip is to get where you're going, the point of the game is to win. "The blood of those who will die if biomedical research is not pursued will be upon the hands of those who don't do it." [The research imperative] As I said, it doesn’t matter if the product is a cure for cancer or a landing on Mars, productivism, the military model of social life, is anti-democratic and anti-social. It's war-communism, crisis as timeless truth: it's fascism.

I'll repeat again: MIT's "Convergence Culture" of optimism and design gives us Grand Theft Auto, while the observational model of art give us The Wire. The former is a drug or its equivalent, the latter a depiction of the lives of those affected. It's almost pathetic that people who would call themselves intellectuals can't see the difference.

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