Poor ideology

April 19th, 2013

‘Nothing of note was to be inherited by her loved ones, and nor was anything ever expected to be. She was put to rest with exactly the same title as the one with which she was born. She never ruined anyone’s life and never once considered a career in the deliberate, violent immiseration of her fellow citizens.’

One measures a circle, beginning anywhere’ – From Hell

‘Easily the current century’s first landmark work of fantasy and ranking amongst the best pieces ever written in that genre, with The Vorrh we are presented with a sprawling immaterial organism which leaves the reader filthy with its seeds and spores’

‘I would say, that if you’re talking about a line of progress, if it can be called progress, that runs from Berthold Brecht’s Threepenny Opera, to Donald Cammell’s Performance, to Harry Potter, I don’t think you can really see that as anything but a decline… and also I would say that if you’ve got the Avengers movie as one of the most eagerly attended recent movies, and if most of those attendees were adults, which I believe they were, then if you’ve got a huge number of contemporary adults going to watch a film containing characters and storylines that were meant for the entertainment of eleven year old boys fifty years ago, then…’

‘We shall attack, we continue to wait… This gesture, which can never be fully grounded in reasons, is that of a Master. It is for the experts to present the situation in its complexity, and it is for the Master to simplify it into a point of decision. … The Master is needed especially in situations of deep crisis.’


6 Responses to “Poor ideology”

  1. bobsy Says:

    (Where inclusion of certain quotes alongside others should not be taken to indicate equivalence, obvs.)

  2. Ken Quichey Says:


  3. bobsy Says:


  4. igmus Says:

    I agree with what Moore’s saying there. I personally don’t think it’s evil or totally wrong to care about The Avengers, but to trump it up as something of a rallying point for your life and the epitome of recent artistic or even HUMAN progress, as so many people have effectively done in the last year, is totally pathetic to me. I’ve listened to podcasts in which people talked about it as if it was the entire justification for their lives up to that point, seeing the Avengers together on screen.

    It isn’t that I’m a misanthrope, and I don’t think Moore is either, but it’s sad to be constantly dismayed by how grown-up people’s tastes keep running so far and so headlong into childish nostalgia.

    The Avengers and other fun silly things (Batman, commerce, health food, Obama, academia, cars) certainly have their good points, and they are capable of saying something cool about humanity — but surely any mature person must be able to recognize the vast swaths of these cultural items that are malignant and distasteful. Why would any sane person want to wear these things as badges on their bodies? Isn’t it easy to see that their drawbacks are enough to give one some hesitation before throwing himself in, like a cliche teenager supporting everything there is about their new favorite rock band? It’s a little like saying “I know these things have their drawbacks, for they actively cause the dumbing-down if not death of mass humanity, but… ah… they’re better than any other media-supported alternative, so I’ll vote/consume for them anyway.”

    I mean, I wore a CCCP baseball cap when I was younger, too. But then I grew up. There’s a certain self-brainwashing goes on, when people lose themselves in a logo which they want to associate themselves with. “Whatever the criticisms might be, if I throw myself into it headlong, I just feel ‘teh awesome’ of it all. Disney is an evil corporate entity? Doesn’t matter when I’m in that movie theater, bro!”

    Likewise, I dream of the day when I can check out the Silence! Podcast linear notes again and not see a ton of Big Two superhero titles. I know you get most of them free or whatever, but in some way that’s even worse. Please stop throwing yourselves into them so headlong, for your own sake.

    I support Zizek but it’s really too bad we live in a world where media itself is so addicting that someone of his caliber has had to waste so much of his time trying to deal with and decipher films which are really little more than crass thoughtless disposable artifacts. I think most of these narratives and logos should just simply be dismissed at first glance, and then we can get on with the business of actually living more like human beings, rather than as pretentious consumers of physical products and, worse, of pandering ideologies.

    But isn’t that a redundant term? Isn’t every ideology pandering? Certainly I’ve never come across an ideology which wasn’t “poor” in the sense that it wanted to suck up people’s money, time and energy. But as long as people are going to be so addicted to media, they are going to have to find and justify some alcove of it that makes them feel like a thoughtful individual.

  5. igmus Says:

    I should amend that. It’s unfair to say that people addicted to media can’t be “thoughtful individuals”. They can. What they’re thinking about may not be very worthwhile or useful, but they are certainly thinking, coming up with all sorts of impressive and twisting theories. I’m not sure if the presence of media-addiction allows for “genuine/authentic individuals”, though. Certainly every time I’ve been consumed by a movie or an ideology, no matter how trendy or unpopular, I’ve lost a bit of authenticity. And I’ve noticed that other people lose it as well, whenever they begin to fanatically champion any given comic book or any given cause.

  6. KR Says:

    I don’t know. The idea of expecting of expecting so much from its fantasy strikes me as the complaint of an incredibly privileged few. On the other hand, that fact that the most information-rich people in history can parse so little from the glut is very discouraging. I just don’t know.

    I would like to see more of these, however.

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