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 Baudrillard on Failure of this Technological System

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PostSubject: Baudrillard on Failure of this Technological System   Wed 17 Mar 2010, 4:32 pm

In an interview with Jean Baudrillard, he argues (quoted below) that as the system reaches its goals and becomes more perfect, it becomes more vulnerable to total collapse. Further, he concludes that seduction between humanity and nature is too strong, and any alternatives that cloud that reality will eventually fail, for humanity cannot be kept from it.

Baudrillard: "That is exactly what makes our times so oppressive. The system produces a negativity in trompe-l’oeil [a reference to illusion painting], which is integrated into products of the spectacle just as obsolescence is built into industrial products. It is the most efficient way of incorporating all genuine alternatives. There are no longer external Omega points or any antagonistic means available in order to analyze the world; there is nothing more than a fascinated adhesion. One must understand, however, that the more a system nears perfection, the more it approaches the total accident. It is a form of objective irony stipulating that nothing ever happened. September 11th participated in this. Terrorism is not an alternative power, it is nothing except the metaphor of this almost suicidal return of Western power on itself. That is what I said at the time, and it was not widely accepted. But it is not about being nihilistic or pessimistic in the face of all that. The system, the virtual, the matrix – all of these will perhaps return to the dustbin of history. For reversibility, challenge and seduction are indestructible."

The challenge that we face now is what Baudrillard refers to as the 'trick of the eye,' where all images presented to the public are co-opted in order to support the system, even images that include critiques of the system itself (this is the role that cointel actors play). Therefore, there is limited ways to combat the system, as all alternatives are absorbed by it. It's a borg-like assimilation of everything and anything that might attack it or grab the publics attention as an alternative.

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