Subject: Re: fear in a handful of dust Date: Fri, 14 Feb 2003 10:39:35 +0800 This is a multi-part message in MIME format. Steve, You wrote: I was referring to any and all peoples - presumably you think that a US/Australian human subject might think that scrutinising a package left unattended in a public place and phoning the police immediately is a significant change in behaviour? I don't having lived through such events - it's a phone call that's all... Like Pavlovian dogs you'll soon get used to reaching for your mobile phone... I was thinking on more of the level of banality. That fear (or the 'threat of insecurity') is impinging on the everyday lives of people so that it is tending to more of a US-style 'atmosfear'. Like Pavlov's dog perhaps, but I was thinking more about the actualisation of the anticipation of reaching for the mobile phone (or in the US, the gun), than the act of reaching for the phone. Fear then becomes woven into the everyday fabric, it becomes an expectation, not a calculation of the risks involved. Plus the flip side is that their is an expectation that you are secure, with 'others' beckoning the threat of insecurity. I guess I am arguing that we are all heading towards the position of the elderly (to make a gross generalisation) of constantly anticipating fear, with the State/terrorist/media assemblage shouting a collective "Hey you" so that everyone turns. Even the neo-colonialist responses that govenments are producing are hardly different than previous generations responses. The 'state' fear you are referring to is hardly new or significant, indeed the state responses to anti-colonial violence have not changed since the 19th C. >From Gunboats up the Yangtse to protect the British Opium trade, to the concentration camps in Kenya in the 1950s supposedly to protect the colonialists from the Mau-Mau... the history is the same. The colonialist states ALWAYS murder more people than the terrorists and anti-colonialists. IN this sense I agree that there may be a seeming increase in the amount of international political capital but the reality is that it's just a change of direction. Take a look at Tariq Ali's article in the New Left review 'Janissary Pakistan...' as an eaxmple. I whole heartedly agree with what you have written regarding neo/colonialist powers. I recently read Tarik Ali's "Clash of the Fundamentalisms" which was more of a critical history of Islam/Islamic States than an exploration of the clash between Western and Islamic dogma. I don't know if his book covers any ground from the mentioned article? What do you mean by a change in direction? Another example is that RMIT was meant to hold a conference on West Papua, but it was vetoed by Indonesia as the conference would "only present one view" of course that is because the representatives from Indonesia refused to participate and present a case for their untenable side to the argument (the US interests that own the biggest gold mine in the world wouldn't have a bar of it either). Indonesia has the power of veto due to most of the international (full fee paying) students harking from Indo. How is the pro-refugee campaign going in Australia ? Ha! The government has suggested that Australia can take some Iraq refugees if there is a war... Glen.
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