Void Manufacturing

“Turning and turning in a cell, like a fly that doesn’t know where to die.”

Archive for the ‘The City’ Category

What makes a biopolitical space? A discussion with Toni Negri

Posted by voidmanufacturing on December 10, 2008

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Toni Negri discusses the significance of urban space for new forms of opposition. The city, he says, is where the “political diagonal” intersects the “biopolitical diagram” – where people’s relation to power is most pronounced. Negri’s interlocutors are involved in exploring “soft” forms of activism, urban projects that create collectivities on micro, neighbourhood levels. Negri is critical of “soft” forms, however, preferring rupture and revolution over accumulation and gradual change. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Communism, The City | Leave a Comment »

Mike Davis on Obama’s future economic challenges

Posted by voidmanufacturing on November 21, 2008

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Why Obama’s Futurama Can Wait

Schools and Hospitals Should Come First in Any Stimulus Package

By Mike Davis

 

America’s “Futurama” is defunct. The famous walk-through diorama of a car-and-suburb world, imagineered by Norman Bel Geddes for General Motors at the 1939 New York World’s Fair, has weathered into a dreary emblem of our national backwardness. While GM bleeds to death on a Detroit street corner, the steel-and-concrete Interstate landscape built in the 1950s and 1960s is rapidly decaying into this century’s equivalent of Victorian rubble. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Dystopia, Obama, The Americans, The City | 3 Comments »

Building Dwelling Thinking by Martin Heidegger

Posted by voidmanufacturing on October 1, 2008

 

Building Dwelling Thinking by Martin Heidegger

  

 

Building Dwelling Thinking by Martin Heidegger

In what follows we shall try to think about dwelling and building. This thinking about building does not presume to discover architectural ideas, let alone to give rules for building. This venture in thought does not view building as an art or as a technique of construction; rather it traces building back into that domain to which everything that is belongs. We ask:
1. What is it to dwell?
2. How does building belong to dwelling? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Brain, Ecology, Poverty, The City | 2 Comments »

Mike Davis: Welcome to the Anthropocene

Posted by voidmanufacturing on September 20, 2008

 

Living on the Ice Shelf

Humanity’s Meltdown
By Mike Davis

 

1. Farewell to the Holocene

Our world, our old world that we have inhabited for the last 12,000 years, has ended, even if no newspaper in North America or Europe has yet printed its scientific obituary.

This February, while cranes were hoisting cladding to the 141st floor of the Burj Dubai tower (which will soon be twice the height of the Empire State Building), the Stratigraphy Commission of the Geological Society of London was adding the newest and highest story to the geological column. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Buzzkill, Dystopia, The Americans, The City, The End | 2 Comments »

GUY DEBORD

Posted by voidmanufacturing on September 13, 2008

 

A remembrance of the author’s friendship with Guy Debord in the late 1950s and early 60s – with some theoretical reflections.

Debord, in the Resounding Cataract of Time
(David Blanchard, 1995)

There are moments in one’s existence that stand out, as if of a more solid texture, drawn in stronger lines contrasting with the uzziness and fathomless ambiguity of the rest of life. And they really are charged with objective meaning, imparted by the movement of a sort of historic overdetermination. Often that special quality only reveals itself retrospectively, but sometimes, too, it is perceived immediately. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Alcohol, Communism, punk, Spectacle, The City, The French | 1 Comment »

“Resisting, Subverting and Destroying the Apparatus of Surveillance and Control”: An Interview with Mike Davis

Posted by voidmanufacturing on August 27, 2008

 

“Resisting, Subverting and Destroying the Apparatus of Surveillance and Control”: An Interview with Mike Davis

Mike Davis is professor of history at the University of California, Irvine, and the author of, amongst others, “City of Quartz: Excavating the Future in Los Angeles” (1990), “Dead Cities, And Other Tales” (2003) and most recently, “Buda’s Wagon: A Brief History of the Car Bomb” (2007). Following is a short excerpt from the interview he kindly gave to Voices on the 23d of February in London.

 

You often draw lines of comparison between different tendencies of urban control across the globe. Could you compare the situation in Los Angeles, the repression and surveillance happening there when you were writing City of Quartz with the situation in London today?

There is nothing comparable at all in the U.S. to the apparatus of surveillance that exists in London. Even CCTV cameras are only recently becoming an issue in the U.S. Total surveillance of down town areas of American cities is something I wrote about in the early nineties but only applied to tiny areas, a few acres in down town Los Angeles for example. If Giuliani does become president we will get closer to the idea of having total surveillance and control in the city centre but London is at least one if not two generations ahead of the United States. Having said that, the foundations in the U.S. exist: the freeways now have surveillance systems that monitor gridlock. But I find London really shocking in many ways. I had no idea for instance until I came here about the fact that subway passes are used to monitor and accumulate data. In the United States things have gone in a different direction. Obviously, in every economic transaction you have and particularly on the internet, data is being transferred or sold for marketing purposes. I think the American political system might be the most advanced in the world in this sense – using marketing data to target people and pass political messages across to them. Also, there is a much larger budget and much bigger research effort going on in the U.S. To give you an example of how this works: The Bush Administration wants guest programmes to satisfy the labour needs of crucial industries like agribusiness. Alas it has been blindsided by a revolt in the republican grassroots against democrats. One of the things they are calling for is building a wall the entire length of the Mexican border and the Congress has actually authorised part of that, although people who actually work on border control and surveillance laugh at it since these walls would be totally ineffective: 12-foot high sheets of metal that anyone could climb. They are working on something completely different: a virtual border, more like the virtual control that now exists around the city of London. They had to feed red meat to the conservatives in the suburbs who wanted a Berlin-like physical wall since only that gives them the reassurance of border control. Real control over people’s movement however does not so much require these walls as it requires the technology. This is the one sphere where I think the U.S. is more advanced in creating a society of total surveillance. Perry, the Governor of Texas, has authorised putting cameras up on areas of the border that people commonly cross and plugged them in to the internet. So it has created virtual vigilantes. Anybody who wants can waste their time looking at a desert, and if you see a Mexican coming across it you can call a number to some department of the Texas state which will alert the border control.

So the internet gets to threaten freedom because of the way in which we can all surveil, oppress and jail each other: we are all prison guards now, watching each others’ movements. This is a frightening idea and the right-wing loves it, having some role to play in the policing of immigration and society. Everyone wants to wear a badge in some sense. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Anarchy, Cops Suck, Ecology, The City | 2 Comments »

Catastrophic Global Warming Provides Amazing New Design Challenges For Architects …Or… Wingnut Makes Drawings Of Floating Concentration Camps

Posted by voidmanufacturing on August 17, 2008

 

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 A Floating Ecopolis for Ecological Refugees    

 

It’s common knowledge that the planet is warming, ice caps are melting, and water levels are rising. The international scientific community predicts that a temperature elevation of 1°C will lead to a water rise of 1 meter, resulting in massive land loss and the displacement of millions of people world wide. Vincent Callebaut, a visionary Belgian architect, is responding to this inevitability with his proposal LILYPAD, A Floating Ecopolis for Ecological Refugees. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Drugs, Hell, Insanity, Nightmare, The City | 151 Comments »

Navigating Movements: an interview with Brian Massumi, Delueze scholar and expert in forms of social control

Posted by voidmanufacturing on August 16, 2008

NAVIGATING MOVEMENTS 

When you walk, each step is the body’s movement against falling — each 

movement is felt in our potential for freedom as we move with the earth’s 

gravitational pull. When we navigate our way through the world, there are 

different pulls, constraints and freedoms that move us forward and propel us 

into life. But in the changing face of capitalism, media information and 

technologies — which circulate the globe in more virtual and less obvious ways 

— how do the constraints on freedom involve our affective and embodied 

dimensions of experience? That is, how do we come to feel and respond to 

life and reality itself when new virtualised forms of power mark our every 

step, when the media and political activity continually feed on our 

insecurities — for instance, when a political leader can deploy overseas troops 

to make a country feel safe and secure in the face of ‘terror’. Our beliefs and 

hopes can be galvanised for this ‘good’, and as a tool for orchestrating attacks 

on ‘evil’ and threats to national security. Against this framework of despair 

that enact our relations to the world — violence, terror and the virtual lines 

of capital flow — what are the hopes for political intervention? 

Philosopher Brian Massumi explores the hopes that lie across these fields of 

movement; the potentials for freedom, and the power relations that operate 

in the new ‘societies of control’. These are all ethical issues — about the 

reality of living, the faith and belief in the world that makes us care for our 

belonging to it. Massumi’s diverse writings and philosophical perspectives 

radicalise ideas of affect — the experiences and dimensions of living — that 

are the force of individual and political reality. His writings are concerned 

with the practice of everyday life, and the relations of experience that 

engage us in the world, and our ethical practices. He is based in Montreal. 

Movements — hope, feeling, affect Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Deleuze, Enemy, Poverty, Punk Rock, The City | Leave a Comment »

Visionary Urban Planning For The Future Of Humanity

Posted by voidmanufacturing on August 15, 2008

“Architecture is the will of an epoch translated into space.” – Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe 

The cities will be part of the country; I shall live thirty miles from my office in one direction, under a pine tree; my secretary will live thirty miles away from it too, in the other direction, under another pine tree. We shall both have our own car.

We shall use up tires, wear out road surfaces and gears, consume oil and gasoline. All of which will necessitate a great deal of work…

enough for all.

                  -Le Corbusier, The Radiant City (1967)

 

 

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Hell, The City | Leave a Comment »

Construction Workers Drinking On Job

Posted by voidmanufacturing on June 26, 2008

CBS 2 HD Investigation Catches Employees On Camera Guzzling Booze, Lying To Their Bosses, And Having A Kick-Ass Time.

 Reporting

Kirstin Cole

NEW YORK (CBS) ― Construction accidents have claimed the lives of 20 in New York this year alone and as federal safety watchdogs kick off a two-week crackdown on high-risk building sites, CBS 2 HD found it wasn’t hard to find workers having a liquid lunch then heading back to work, where they may be putting everyone around them in a good mood. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Alcohol, Beer, Bourbon, Love, The City | Leave a Comment »

Void Manufacturing finds itself in an insane set of circumstances -OR- Cult organization becomes trapped in a political nightmare brought about by spectral alien force committed to mind control (all taking place in a disastrously organized urban space seemingly created to induce lunacy).

Posted by voidmanufacturing on June 23, 2008

 …It seems that a sub class of humans, known as “Ruling Elites” have legalized a set of advantageous strategic positions referred to commonly as “national values.” Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Enemy, Evil, Hell, Insanity, Nightmare, The City | 1 Comment »