File spoon-archives/lyotard.archive/lyotard_2003/lyotard.0302, message 19

Subject: RE: the latest in propaganda...
Date: Sun, 9 Feb 2003 10:19:30 -0600


It's funny you should mention Chomsky. Yesterday I went to see a new
documentary film on him entitled "Power and Terror" which was
interesting because it was filmed by a Japanese director and had a more
global than American feel to it. My main response to the film was a kind
of optimism.  While not minimizing the work that needs to be done,
Chomsky feels the situation has improved over the past four years,
precisely because of the movements that are emerging to resist the
institutions of Power and Empire.

To answer your question about oil, I guess my view is this. I do see the
reason why the current regime is pursuing a war in Iraq as strategic
from a geopolitical perspective. In other words, unlike Great Britain
which entered a country like India with an entire bureaucratic
apparatus, the goal of the United States seems more abstract with regard
to its brand of colonialism. In ways that are reminiscent of a
multinational corporation, the US tends to act as a kind of virtual
Empire, outsourcing the actual administration and governance to local
parties while maintaining ultimate control through monetary and trade
agreements, backed by imperial military power. It wants to run the world
in the same classic terms that were once used to run General Motors
under Sloan.

What has currently escalated the conflict is precisely not terrorism or
9/11, but the recognition that because of such events the region has
become more unstable and if the US does not act quickly, then its
destiny is imperiled because the dominance of the American Empire
depends upon the continued availability of cheap oil.  

As I said in a previous posting, there is a crisis today concerning
American power. What threatens it most is the specter of globalism, the
very thing it claimed to be advocating in the nineties.  In a
dialectical movement of the return of the repressed, globalism today has
become the worst American nightmare.  

We must contest the US not in the name of patriotism, but in the name of
internationalism.  Today we are no longer all American citizens.  We are
all world citizens.  



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