October 21, 2008

Maximum acceleration

The real of the financial crisis is real estate, according to Badiou:

    "[T]his only seems to be a zero-sum game: the speculator loses his wager and the buyers their homes, from which they are politely evicted. But the real of this zero-sum game is as always on the side of the collective, of ordinary life: in the end, everything stems from the fact that there exist millions of people whose wages, or absence thereof, means that they are absolutely unable to house themselves. The real essence of the financial crisis is a housing crisis. And those who canít find a home are by no means the bankers."

if the current crisis proves anything it's that, although trickledown of wealth in a boom is an utterly discredited theory, there is nevertheless a cascading down of ill fortune in a downturn.

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Owen has now weighed in on accelerationism. A few further thoughts of my own: part of the problem with Splitting Bone Ashes' argument as I see it is the assumption that the state inhibits acceleration. It would be better to say that the state is one for the conditions for capitalist acceleration. As the current crisis establishes, without the state, capitalism wouldn't reach escape velocity, it would disintegrate, more likely retrenching into what Andrew Kliman on the Marx And The Financial Crisis of 2008 blog calls "chaos or fascism or warlordism" than dissolving into some post-capitalist inhuman network. By inhibiting capitalism, the state enables it to go as fast as is (inhumanly) possible.

Posted by mark at October 21, 2008 11:51 AM | TrackBack