Thursday, March 27, 2014

Monday, March 24, 2014

One Vision




Laibachkunst Covenant
1.
LAIBACH works as a team (the collective spirit), according to the model of industrial production and totalitarianism, which means that the individual does not speak; the organization does. Our work is industrial, our language political.

2.
LAIBACH analyzes the relation between ideology and culture in a late phase, presented through art. LAIBACH sublimates the tension between them and the existing disharmonies (social unrest, individual frustrations, and ideological oppositions) and thus eliminates direct ideological and systemic discursiveness of all kinds. The name itself and the emblem are visible materializations of the idea on the level of a cognitive symbol. The name LAIBACH is a suggestion of the actual possibility of establishing a politicized ideological (system) art because of the influence of politics and ideology.

3.
All art is subject to political manipulation (indirectly – consciousness; directly), except for that which speaks the language of this same manipulation. To speak in political terms means to reveal and acknowledge the omnipresence of politics. The role of the most humane form of politics is the bridging of the gap between reality and the mobilizing spirit. Ideology takes the place of authentic forms of social consciousness. The subject in modern society assumes the role of the politicized subject by acknowledging these facts. LAIBACH reveals and expresses the linkage of politics and ideology with industrial production and the unbridgeable gaps between this link and the spirit.

4.
The triumph of anonymity and facelessness has been intensified to the absolute through a technological process. All individual differences of the authors are annulled, every trace of individuality erased. The technological process is a method of programming function. It represents development; i.e., purposeful change. To isolate a particle of this process and form it statically, means to reveal man’s negation of any kind of evolution which is foreign to and inadequate for his biological evolution.

LAIBACH adopts the organizational system of industrial production and the identification with ideology as its work method. In accordance with this, each member personally rejects his individuality, thereby expressing the relationship between the particular form of production system and ideology and the individual. The form of social production appears in the manner of production of LAIBACH music itself and the relations within the group. The group functions operationally according to the principle of rational transformation, and its (hierarchical) structure is coherent.

5.
The internal structure functions on the directive principle and symbolizes the relation of ideology towards the individual. The idea is concentrated in one (and the same) person, who is prevented from any kind of deviation. The quadruple principle acts by the same key (EBER-SALIGER-KELLER-DACHAUER), which – predestined – conceals in itself an arbitrary number of sub-objects (depending on the needs).

The flexibility and anonymity of the members prevents possible individual deviations and allows a permanent revitalization of the internal juices of life. A subject who can identify himself with the extreme position of contemporary industrial production automatically becomes a LAIBACH member (and is simultaneously condemned for his objectivism).

6.
The basis of LAIBACH’s activity lies in its concept of unity, which expresses itself in each media according to appropriate laws (art, music, film…).

The material of LAIBACH manipulation: Taylorism, bruitism, Nazi Kunst, disco…

The principle of work is totally constructed and the compositional process is a dictated “ready-made:” Industrial production is rationally developmental, but if we extract from this process the element of the moment and emphasize it, we also assign to it the mystical dimension of alienation, which reveals the magical component of the industrial process. Repression over the industrial ritual is transformed into a compositional dictate and the politicization of sound can become absolute sonority.

7.
LAIBACH excludes any evolution of the original idea; the original concept is not evolutionary but entelechical, and the presentation is only a link between this static and the changing determinant unit. We take the same stand towards the direct influence of the development of music on the LAIBACH concept; of course, this influence is a material necessity but it is of secondary importance and appears only as a historical musical foundation of the moment which, in its choice is unlimited. LAIBACH expresses its timelessness with the artefacts of the present and it is thus necessary that at the intersection of politics and industrial production (the culture of art, ideology, and consciousness) it encounters the elements of both, although it wants to be both. This wide range allows LAIBACH to oscillate, creating the illusion of movement (development).

8.
LAIBACH practices provocation on the revolted state of the alienated consciousness (which must necessarily find itself an enemy) and unites warriors and opponents into an expression of a static totalitarian scream.

It acts as a creative illusion of strict institutionalism, as a social theatre of popular culture, and communicates only through non-communication.

9.
Besides LAIBACH, which concerns itself with the manner of industrial production in totalitarianism, there also exist two other groups in the concept of LAIBACH KUNST aesthetics: GERMANIA studies the emotional side of existence, which is outlined in relations to the general ways of emotional, erotic and family life, lauding the foundations of the state functioning of emotions on the old classicist form of new social ideologies.

DREIHUNDERT TAUSEND VERSCHIEDENE KRAWALLE is a retrospective futuristic negative utopia (the era of peace has ended).

10.
LAIBACH is the knowledge of the universality of the moment. It is the revelation of the absence of balance between sex and work, between servitude and activity. It uses all expressions of history to mark this imbalance. This work is without limit; God has one face, the devil infinitely many. LAIBACH is the return of action on behalf of the idea.

Trbovlje, 1982

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Unwritten Rules...

...that turn a "house" into a "home".
To know a society is not only to know its explicit rules -- one needs also to know how to apply these rules: when to use or not use them: when to violate them: when to decline a choice which has been offered: when we are effectively obliged to do something, but have to pretend that we are doing it as a free choice. This is the paradox of the offer-meant-to-be-refused: it is customary to refuse such an offer, and anyone who accepts it commits a vulgar blunder. When I am invited to an expensive restaurant by a rich uncle, we both know that he will cover the bill, but nonetheless I have to insist a little bit that we share it -- imagine my surprise if he were simply to say: "OK then, you pay it!" A similar misunderstanding happened when, during the 1980s, South Korea was hit by a series of natural disasters, and North Korea offered a large quantity of grain as humanitarian aid. Although there were no food shortages in South Korea, it accepted the offer in order not to appear to be rejecting the North's outstretched hand. The North, however, did lack food, and had made the offer as a "gesture to be rejected," but now had to act upon it -- a country which was itself suffering from shortages thus shipped grain to a country with abundant food reserves; a nice case of politeness going astray.

The problem during the post-Soviet years of Yeltsin's rule in Russia could also be located at this level: although the legal rules were known (and were largely the same as those in the Soviet Union), what disintegrated was the complex network of implicit unwritten rules which has sustained the entire social edifice. In the former regime, if, say, you wanted to get better hospital treatment, or a new apartment, if you had a complaint against authorities, or were summoned into a court, if you wanted your child to be accepted by a top school, or if a factory manager needed raw materials not delivered on time by state-contractors, and so on and so forth, everyone knew what to do, who to address, who to bribe, what you could do and what you couldn't. With the collapse of Soviet power, one of the most frustrating aspects of daily existence was that these unwritten rules became blurred: people simply did not know what to do, how to react, how they were to relate to explicit legal regulations, what they could ignore, where bribery worked. (One of the functions of the rise in organized crime was to provide a kind of ersatz-legality: if you owned a small business and a customer owed you money, you turned to your mafia-proector who dealt with the problem, since the state legal system was inefficient) The stabilization under Putin's regime mostly amounted to restoring the transparency of such unwritten rules: now, again, people more or less know how to react in the complex web of social interactions.
- Slavoj Zizek, "Living in the End Times"

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Metamorphosis

When one has once accepted and absorbed Evil, it no longer demands to be believed.
- Kafka

This is what happens in developed capitalism, and especially today: "Evil" becomes our daily practice, so, instead of believing in it, we can believe in Good, engaging in charitable acts and the like.
- Slavoj Zizek, "Living in the End Times"

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Lynchean Worlds

In contrast to prevailing readings of Lynch’s films as obscurantist New Age allusions to a peaceful spiritual rapture underlying irrational forces, or as a convoluted post-modern pastiche of cliches, Zizek insists on taking Lynch seriously. This means, for Zizek, reading him through Lacan. Zizek’s Lacan is not the Lacan of post-structuralism, the theorist of the floating signifier, but the Lacan of the Real, the first category in the famous Lacanian triad of the Real, the Imaginary, and the Symbolic. The most under-represented of the Lacanian categories, the Real is also the most unfathomable because it is fundamentally impenetrable and cannot be assimilated to the symbolic order of language and communication (the fabric of daily life); nor does it belong to the Imaginary, the domain of images with which we identify and which capture our attention. According to Lacan, fantasy is the ultimate support of our “sense of reality.“ The Real is the hidden ”traumatic underside of our existence or sense of reality, whose disturbing effects are felt in strange and unexpected places: the Lacanian Sublime. Lynch’s films attest to the fact that the fantasmatic support of reality functions as a defense against the Real, which often intrudes into the lives of the protagonists in the form of extreme situations, through violence or sexual excesses, in disturbing behavior that is both horrific and enjoyable, or in the uncanny effects of close-ups or details. The unfathomable, traumatic nature of the situations Lynch creates also makes them sublime.
- Marek Wieczorek, "The Ridiculous, Sublime Art of Slavoj Zizek"

Friday, March 7, 2014

Not Regretting Lost Moments...

“Out of love,
No regrets--
Though the goodness
Be wasted forever.

Out of love,
No regrets--
Though the return
Be never.”
― Langston Hughes

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Smashing the Radar Screens

The problem with today's superego injunction to enjoy is that, in contrast to previous modes of ideological interpellation, it opens up no "world" proper - it just refers to an obscure Unnameable. Even Nazi anti-Semitism opened up a world: by way of describing the present critical situation, naming the enemy ("Jewish conspiracy"), the goal and the means to achieve it, Nazism disclosed reality in a way which allowed its subjects to acquire a global "cognitive mapping," including the space for their meaningful engagement. Perhaps, it is here that one should locate the "danger" of capitalism: although it is global, encompassing the whole worlds, it sustains a stricto sensu "worldless' ideological constellation, depriving the large majority of people of any meaningful "cognitive mapping."

In what, more precisely, does this "worldlessness" consist? As Lacan points out in his Seminar XX, Encore, jouissance involves a logic strictly homologous to that of the ontological proof for the existence of God. In the classic version of this proof, my awareness of myself as a finite, limited being immediately gives birth to the notion of an infinite, perfect being, and since this being is perfect, its very notion contains its existence; in the same way, our experience of jouissance accessible to us as finite, located, partial, "castrated," immediately gives birth to the notion of a full, achieved, unlimited jouissance whose existence is necessarily presupposed by the subject who imputes it to another subject, his/her "subject supposed to enjoy."
-Slavoj Zizek, "The Politics of Jouissance"

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Irrevocable Acts


Primal Scream - Can't Go Back by PrimalScream-Official
...true love is an irrevocable act - you can only give your heart away once - after that, you give as much as you have left ...
― John Geddes, "A Familiar Rain"

or in the immortal words of Tim Curry/ Dr. Frank N. Furter, "You've got to be careful how you pick your friends!"

Saturday, March 1, 2014

...and so the conversation turned

The fascination of what's difficult
Has dried the sap out of my veins, and rent
Spontaneous joy and natural content
Out of my heart. There's something ails our colt
That must, as if it had not holy blood
Nor on Olympus leaped from cloud to cloud,
Shiver under the lash, strain, sweat and jolt
As though it dragged road-metal. My curse on plays
That have to be set up in fifty ways,
On the day's war with every knave and dolt,
Theatre business, management of men.
I swear before the dawn comes round again
I'll find the stable and pull out the bolt.
-William Butler Yeats