Thursday, November 29, 2007

Love, Insanity & Hope on the Internet

How many personalities does this guy have?

George Partington: Where do you get your faith in the public and in democracy?

Chris Locke: I'm a little wary of invoking democracy maybe, but I guess that's what it is. I think that through this medium more than anything else has enabled me to connect with people. As I was saying a few minutes ago, here's EGR, this zine where I am screaming and yelling and being as nuts as I can and people are sharing with me stuff about children dying and divorces and heartbreak and joy and elation. I've had more connection with people at a human level through this medium. I just wouldn't have connected to the world in the same way. You bang around your hometown, you run into people, it's all kind of anonymous.

Something else gets surfaced in a certain kind of exchange over networks. You can look at the American public from one point of view and say, "God, they are so stupid. All these people, they're fucking sheep." And then something happens like 9-11 and some amazing heart and intelligence surfaces out of that same group of people. I think it is suppressed by broadcast. I think broadcast has been a self-fulfilling prophecy of people are sheep, if you don't tell them what to do they are not gonna....In other words, the experiment of democracy, which is few hundred years old, is still very much an experiment and it wasn't fully trusted by the founders which is why we have an electoral college for instance. It is largely not trusted. We are so far from democracy in this country. It is run by focus groups and lobbyists.

GP: That's how I feel. It would be nice if it (democracy) were tried.

CL: It would be nice if somebody tried it. And it is dangerous because... ya know power and control and command and all those things would be up for grabs. I understand the terror. On the other hand, what we've got is an oligarchy where nobody knows who is making what decisions for what reasons, and it's all in the background in closed rooms with money changing hands. I think people are capable of incredible stupidity, but at the same time there is intelligence, there's heart, there's something in people that longs for expression and connection.

GP: Well if you're honest with yourself, you know you can be pretty stupid too. You have potential for everything in there.

CL: Right. Yeah. But I think on both sides of the spectrum...we can see incredible evil from people, which we've seen recently. But there is something else. That good thing, the potential that human beings have for interest and caring and love and connection and enthusiasm. All those kinds of human qualities are not valued by corporations that value the world in terms of how much profit can we make off it.

And because they have had, up until now, control of the passes, control of what Marx called the means of communication, they could make human values appear to be trivial or non-existent. And the network is resurfacing those values in a way that corporations and the financial world cannot control. And it represents a huge challenge because, well how are we going to lock that back in and leverage that to the betterment to the brand. Well I think it is increasingly obvious to the market that that kind of manipulation is not only cynical but it is approaching...there are companies now saying now that we've all wept over terrorist events...your way of fighting terrorism is to buy a Taurus. Well that is beyond cynical. And it might have been missed in previous times. It is not gonna be missed this time around. I think people talk about that stuff and say, "Jesus Christ, this is really beyond sleazy."

Excerpted from an interview with Chris Locke, AKA "Rageboy." Said author is presently engaged in grinding out a caustic blog/book/screed attempting to get a grip on the present sad state of American culture and thought control at his entertaining, enlightening and frequently infuriating blog, Mystic Bourgeoisie.

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