The Comfort of Homogenous Conditioning

“Abstraction today is no longer that of the map, the double, the mirror or the concept. Simulation is no longer that of a territory, a referential being or a substance. It is the generation by models of a real without origin or reality: a hyperreal. The territory no longer precedes the map, nor survives it. Henceforth, it is the map that precedes the territory – precession of simulacra – it is the map that engenders the territory and if we were to revive the fable today, it would be the territory whose shreds are slowly rotting across the map. It is the real, and not the map, whose vestiges subsist here and there, in the deserts which are no longer those of the Empire, but our own. The desert of the real itself.” ~Baudrillard, “The Precession of Simulucra”, Simulucra and Simulation

Whatever_Happened_To_Baby_Jane_Doug_Bowman_flickrYou see, sameness works as a colloquial ideology, is synonymous to equality and fairness, and is upon which justice, comradery and companionship can be served. Upon which social roles/egos are constructed and adhered to, upon which identities are built and held dear. This is why uniqueness is wanting in the machine. Uniqueness means no more equal protection under the law, it means justice is not balanced, it means partners are not equal and the institution of marriage does not mean union. It means there is hatred in love and evil in good. Suddenly, things become very muddy. A system cannot function properly under true individuality as it cannot accommodate it. It can only pervert so that it resembles homogeneity closely enough that it can be assimilated, else the whole system grinds to a halt, and it falls apart.

Cyborg_Rising_Alain_Godineau_flickrA system has slots; a machine, gears. Moving parts, and all the moving parts have names and all the names must be true. No question for question brings pause, and in pause, there is no motion. When there is pause (or in another essay under another name could be called quiet when contrasted with the need, the compulsion for constant noise however stimulated and however delivered from the source) comes moments of breakdown. The machine if not perpetually moving (remember that motion is homogeneity) then decay begins immediately. That is to say the persistence of anti-homogeneity is a desperate will to self (the machine and its body of Worker Bs as self) preservation, elsewise death, a kind of nervous breakdown occurs, where a hold on a reality cannot be certain. Homogeneity and sameness promise known’s and certainty’s, easy living without mucking up the brain too much with incongruities.

For why do most people (the Worker Bs) abhor any who does not subscribe to their specific attributes or beliefs? Or perhaps why one is arrested if one’s house does not meet code, despite its obvious safety. Or perhaps why one is not served if one is not the same nationality with the same national beliefs. Who cares the similarities, who cares the original sources and how that applies to many so-called beliefs? Who cares the obvious evidence of certain delusions?

You see, ultimately, homogenous conditioning is comfortable. It’s easyPix_Jockey_3000_Roberto_Rizzato_flickr to comprehend. The questions do not run too deep.  The answers flow from the tongue in simple terms. Friendships are safe, and relationships pure and honest. The machine includes a contradiction, however. That of competition. In competition, there must be by definition a winner and a loser. Someone must be the better. Fret not, this is easily circumvented. The competition has rules, which all parties must follow, so that no one person has an advantage. Everyone comes from equal footing. Therefore, the win is a fair one. Again, homogeneity: fairness equality. I mean, it’s why cheating is not allowed. That is not a fair game. Sure; you can win by your own skill or merit, but you’ve got to be fair. You’re not allowed to profit, to gain an advantage from that skill or merit. That’s just not good sportsmanship.

Change is not good sportsmanship. Change means new rules and new rules mean old rules may no longer apply. Change means discomfort and grumbling ensues. No one likes to be inconvenienced, not in this age of [immediate] convenience. I mean, it is just a matter of people  not wanting to be disturbed? Or maybe it’s a subtle form of ‘Don’t tread on me’? Or maybe it’s the Peter Principle in full effect?

Cyborg_2.0_JD_Hancock_flickrI think it’s because of the nursery rhyme, Humpty Dumpty. People are afraid of the Great Fall (read: lose their identity) and they won’t be able to pull themselves back together again if things aren’t always and shall stay the same, in a world where every body is equal. I mean, traditional therapy is the idea that the self will be reconstituted. Conventional depression as the idea that the self (the connection to the machine and its comfortable [womb] homogenous conditioning) is in desperate need of rebuilding. To be resurrected as correct, to belong again to the popular consciousness, to be plugged back in. The self needs to be told that it does belong in the world (of homogeneity) and the world (the machine) accepts it. The self is approved above all reproach. An electronic baptism, clean in the eyes of god (god as the wholly machine). Righteousness appealed and delivered good. Sin-free, absolved of all sin and error.

Bureaucracy—an arm of the machine—includes this absolution. Cyborg_Madonna_Ian_FlickrWorker Bs are protected by the anonymity employed in the machine. Worker B is but a faceless, supposedly pleasant voice located miles away from the point of wrong (the actual error/problem in need of remedy). A general name as common as a raindrop. Total disconnect, neutral, neither friend nor foe. Worse than an adversary. What use is reason under such circumstances? There can be only might (read: smite from the apostle [AKA the boss] to find salvation).

A Worker B is only ‘WORKER B’, one of the many, a body corporate. A member of the corporation (read: corporeal; a pseudo-person, god’s image). Worker B only has meaning when understood as the corporation (another layer of inception. Do you see how I mean inception of the machine? Layers upon layers of cognitive engineering; a multi-dimensional, complex construct that exists only in abstraction, so doesn’t really exist at all, merely realized by the mind).

*Image credits (all work used under CC license)–
“Whatever Happened To Baby Jane” by Doug Bowman

“Cyborg Rising” by Alain Godineau

“Pix Jockey 3000” by Roberto Rizzato

Cyborg 2.0” by JD Hancock

“Cyborg Madonna” by Ian

HyperReality: The I In Me

“Why do my eyes hurt?”
“You’ve never used them before.”

The I In MeLest you question the possible existence of hyperreality, look then to the reappearance of Tupac Shakur.

Tupac Shakur the human being died in 1996; however, Tupac Shakur the Living Memory, the Rapper Simulacra appeared on stage April 16, 2012. . . as a hologram. The cut of his muscular body was evident in the hologram. More real than real itself. No one or thing need never die or disappear. The CGI and hyperreal Pixar animation so prevalent in films today, the seamlessness between actor and environment or actor and screen. In other words, an actor need not be physically present in his environment that can be inserted later with no visible lines. And an entire film (or video game to be even more precise) can be created without live actors, i.e. avatars, video games have already begun to employ this and getting more advanced and are advancing rapidly. With the progressive technology of resolution and frame rate (high definition and high speed filming), your household television, computer monitor, digital camera and video camera can deliver a picture more crisp than any digital photograph and possibly more than your own retinal signal processing, that is your sense of sight and its subsequent process in the brain for identification. Would you believe hyperreality over reality itself, as how could you really (that is sensationally) distinguish any difference between the virtual and the nonvirtual? You may even prefer hyperreality to reality as it is more improved now with more reality!

What of a generation raised on the Simulacra? Fed by inception and familiar with the supernatural as your current environment? Would such a child ever believe what its eyes saw? Suddenly, the dialogue in the Matrix uttered by a newly unplugged and awakened Neo has a whole new connotation. It seems the line between that reality and the literal reality is not far off.

Metaphorically speaking, we do not use our senses as they are becoming obsolete in the world of the hyped reality. What use is taste when flavor is synthesized and lab-created or added to an otherwise tasteless and bland chemical concoction? What use is hearing when surrounded by constant noise and frequent stimulation to the extent that the brain filters only that which is relevant and the rest to a comfortable static. So much so that this noise is preferred over a crushing, unstimulating silence. Or if brand jingles and ideological slogans are “heard” in the brain like a multimedia center? What use is touch/feel when feel and touch are blocked by screens and devices and personal space an engagement with gadgetry mostly? Or when feel has become synonymous as a concept with think, so that it is an intangible, not an action performed with the body. As unobtrusive as a physics abstraction. What good is smell when pheromones are lab-created and sprayed, rolled, or inked on? Cleanliness is meant to be after one bathes in a series of chemical containing unpronounceable ingredients. In effect, the sense is fooled; hyperreality creates these senses, creation ex nihilio. What use is sight when what is seen is only that which matches what one believes or has been told or when augmented reality streams through data directly to the brain? What does the machine look like now to you? Like a pod perhaps, as in Matrix? Or a 15 square foot space in the cubicle of the machine?

The machine has the face of Man.

 

*Image credit (all stock used with permission)–
“I, Internet” is a photomanipulation created by NIKOtheOrb using stock produced by:
Chris Moody, “Macro Iris”
Nick Fedele, “Alex’s Eye Macro”
Serial Killer Stock, “Circuit Board”