a.nihil

the smallest triviality can become the vision that wipes out the world.

Schools in our country have remained as, in essence, “middle-class” institutions, in the worst meaning of the word. Middle and secondary schools, which belong to the state, and therefore, are supported through people’s taxes, through taxes which are also paid by the working class, cannot be attended by anyone other than the young sons and daughters of the bourgeoisie, who enjoy the economic independence necessary to be able to carry out their studies to the highest standard.

A child from the working class, even if he is intelligent and in possession of all the abilities needed to become a knowledgeable person, is forced to waste his talent on other pursuits, to become a rebel, or to educate himself; that is to say (apart from some notable exceptions), he is forced to become a half person, a man who has not been able to give all he could have, if he had been completed by and made stronger through the discipline that school offers. Knowledge is a privilege. Schooling is a privilege. And we don’t want it to be that way. All young people should be equal in terms of knowledge.

The State shouldn’t be paying for the schooling of those who are just plain mediocre, merely because they are children of the wealthy; equally it shouldn’t be excluding those who are intelligent and more than capable, just because they're the children of the proletariat. Middle and secondary schools should be for those who have shown themselves to be worthy. If it is in general interest that they exist, even if they're supported and ruled by the State, it is also in general interest that all those who are intelligent enough should have access to them, whatever their economic background. The sacrifice of the collective is only justified if it is for the benefit of those who really deserve it. The sacrifice of the collective should be made so as to give economic independence to those who are talented, so that they can dedicate their time completely to study, so that they can study in earnest. This problem is dispensed off entirely if education is not under the purview of the State but private, for-profit entities, which will automatically pivot towards one form of meritocracy – money.

The working class are excluded from middle and secondary schools because of current societal conditions which mean that there is a division of labour among men, in a most unnatural manner; it is not based on individual ability and therefore, devastates and corrupts production. This class has to fall back on subsidiary schools; those of a technical and professional orientation. These technical schools were established on a democratic basis, yet, because of the antidemocratic provisions of the State budget, they have gone through a transformation which has destroyed their very essence. Now they have mostly become accessories to the classical schools, an innocent outlet for the petty-middle class obsession with finding a job. The admission fees which are constantly on the rise, and the practical possibilities which they offer for life, have made these schools too somewhat of a privilege. The majority of the working class is excluded from them, automatically, because of the uncertain, random life that the wage-earner is forced to lead; a life which does not go hand in hand with following a course of study.

The working class needs a school which is neutral. A school which gives children the possibility of educating themselves, of becoming men, of acquiring the general knowledge needed to develop their individual character. A humanistic school then, as the ancients and the most recent men of the Renaissance intended it. A school which doesn’t mortgage the child’s future or constrain his will, his intelligence, his conscience, so as to set him off on the road with a fixed destination. A school of liberty and free initiative and not a school of subjugation, where people are quasi-mechanized. Even the children of the proletariat should have the power of choosing from all the possibilities available, all areas should be free to them so they can fulfill their own individual purpose in the best way possible, and consequently in the most productive way possible, not only for themselves but for the rest of the society. Vocational schools should not become a breeding ground for monsters, dryly educated for a job, without being given broad ideas, broad knowledge, without any spirit at all; just an accurate eye and a steady hand. Through professional education too, men can be allowed to break out of their childhood; as long as this education is just that; educational, not merely informative, not just the study of manual procedures.

Certainly, for the harsh industrialists, it might be more useful to have worker-machines instead of worker-men. Yet the sacrifices which society makes in order for progress, in order for the best, most perfect men to fly from its nest, who themselves will help to improve things even further, should see a wealth of returns which benefit the whole of society, not just one type of person, or class.

It’s a problem of rights and of power. And the working class should be on alert, so it doesn’t suffer even more oppression, as it has suffered so much already.

— Antonio Gramsci, edited for easy digestion.

#education #workingclass #inequality

If you are thinking seriously of developing the social consciousness of the masses, if you believe that the middle class cannot come to power without the active participation of the illiterate and property-less majority of our people, then you should not dismiss the discontent of the workers and peasants as “simply economic”. No community is ever involved in any political movement unless urged on by economic motives. The patriotism of the “thinking portion” of our population originates in the clearly-defined consciousness which this class has of its own economic needs. If you want the masses to take an active part in the political movement, you will have to go down into the economics of their lives, find out their basic necessities, and arouse in them the consciousness of these necessities and how to go about winning them in the political struggle.

Why do the so-called “thinking” elements of our people take a more active part in the political movement than the “common” people? It is not because this class is specially created by God to monopolize the political destinies of the nation, but because as a class, it is more conscious of its own economic interests. And why? Not because of any natural superiority, but because they have more access to education. Some want industrial development, which will increase the amount of their profits; others want the doors to the higher government positions thrown open to them; still others want such a system of education as will enable them to earn more wages, etc. etc. Politics is based upon economic interests and necessities. Consequently, the political movement in which we want the masses of our people to take active part, must take into consideration the economic desires and necessities of the latter. That is all I have to say. If a party will be organized in India upon this principle, with an economic programme translated into political activities, backed up by direct action of the masses, there will be no further need to bother you with unwelcome heaps of literature.

A few concrete points. You seem to be very much concerned with the problem of Hindu-Muslim unity. This is the logical reaction of our old exclusively Hindu Nationalism, which was simply Pan-Hinduism when carried to its extreme conclusion, forming the antithesis of the aggressive Pan-Islamism. Now permit me to point out to you that, so long as you will endeavor to rear the structure of this much-needed Hindu-Muslim unity upon the thin surface of the “thinking portion” of our people exclusively, you may achieve mutual cordiality, but real unity will remain an unsolved problem. Here again, we must go down to the roots of things. It is upon the dynamics and not the statics of the question that we must base our calculations. The preachings and exhortations of well-meaning patriots have their subjective significance, but the main problem can be solved only by the development of objective forces. The unity of the various communities inhabiting India should not be regarded as a mere political exigency. This unity will be achieved only by a social readjustment taking place as a result of the growth of new economic forces.

The vertical divisions of our society can be eliminated only by the intensification of the horizontal division. That is to say, the divisions of caste, creed and religion will be replaced by class-cleavage, which divides society as a whole into two great, hostile camps, – that of the propertied exploiter and that of the expropriated and exploited working class. Such being the case, Hindu-Muslim and every other communal unity can and will be realized only through the gradual process of development of class-demarcation. There is no other way. You may hate it; you may try by all means to prevent it; but it will be in vain, since the natural and inevitable development of social forces cannot be set at nought by our desires. If you are courageous enough to get a firm grip on the economic foundations of our movement, the question of communal unity will not worry you so much; because then you will see how the pressure of economic forces is breaking down the ancient communal and religious prejudices and traditions.

A landlord is first of all a landlord, and a Hindu or Mussulman or anything else after that. He does not take any less rent from a tenant who is his co-religionist than from one who is not. The same holds true of employers of labour. Have you ever seen a Muslim or Hindu or Parsi employer paying. a higher scale of wages to his brothers in the faith? These are general laws of economics that hold good everywhere. One can take them a priori for granted, because they have been proved and are proven true wherever tested. One dare not say that they are applicable to some countries and inapplicable to others. We cannot seek to escape from the working of these economic laws by trying to believe that.

India is a special creation of Providence. Our communal unity will be realized through the economic development of the country, just as communal unity has been realized everywhere else. Sentimental propaganda is useless. Your “thinking portion of the people” will on the contrary, try to preserve our communal animosities, since by this way they can keep their hold on the situation. No my dear friend, we must determine our method of work, not according to the convenience and capability of our handful of intellectual aristocrats, but according to the economic interests of the overwhelming majority of our people. Just so long as we delude ourselves and others on the subject of superiority as measured by a university degree, just so long will we live in our heaven of intellectual isolation, happy perhaps, but condemned forever to our chains of slavery.

— M.N. Roy, 10.11.1922 (Source: Marxist Internet Archive)

#India #communalism #caste #religion

India's caste system is, of course, unique in the way all national institutions are unique. But it is far from the only caste system and it is not so different as is usually supposed. There were similar and contemporary systems in China, Korea, Japan, pre-Christian Igbo and Mande societies... And as for historical precedent, there are even more. Nor is India's system unique in surviving on a social level. If anything, it's unique because the government of India has taken such strident measures to counteract it in a democratic context. For example, Japan has a caste of untouchables and they are still discriminated against.

So the premise of your question is flawed. As is the idea that Islam, Christianity, and Sikhism couldn't affect the caste concept. While it didn't eliminate it completely, the way a Christian, Muslim, or Sikh experiences and conceives of the caste system is radically different than a Hindu. This is even true for Buddhists. And generally Sikhism and western Christianity is considered to have strong anti-caste sentiment and is attractive to certain castes as a result.

Why did it exist and with such elaboration? The British. (This is also why it's common even to religions that reject it: the British didn't exclude Christians or Muslims etc.)

The modern caste system was created by the British in 1881. Now, the British did not invent the concept of caste or that it was a system or invent any castes or ethnic groups. What they did do was conduct a census where every single person was categorized by caste, religion, and ethnicity. For the first time ever there was a coherent, India-wide system of castes with different ranks and laws applying to them. At least in British territory: the princely states could be more varied.

It's controversial if the British made any modifications to the census for political purposes or if they simply accurately reported what they were told. What is not controversial is that they prevented people from changing caste and created laws that applied by caste. This system, whereby there were different laws for different castes, persisted with modifications until 1948.

To transport it to an American context, imagine America is being colonized by Britain (again) except we're an alien people and they don't really understand us. (Okay, that's not so hard.) Now, you have racial, religious, work-based, and other conceptions of yourself. You may or may not believe you can leave some, all, or none of them. Their importance varies vastly depending on location and how they interplay. The system is complex and more than a little chaotic and it varies from state to state.

And the British don't understand it. So they send out a bunch of census takers. Alright, a census taker is knocking on your door. Now, what are you?

You're a mixed race Democrat living in Albany and working as a school teacher named Gloria van der Wafel? What races? White and black? Oh, well we've decided that if there's a mix you count as white. Also, from your name and the place you live you're obviously Dutch. And you're a member of the school teacher profession? Have you worked in it your entire life? Great, that makes things easier. Okay, I've got what I need. No, I don't need to know what your religion is: we've discovered there are no real differences among Americans due to religion. Silly you.

Anyway, here's what you are. Now, we've decided White Americans aren't very good at running things so you'll be forbidden from holding any kind of high office. However, you're a Dutch White American and we know the Dutch caste are really good at fighting so you can become a high ranking soldier if you join the army. Also, you and your children will put into the 'school teacher' class which will be allowed to teach school or do related work like being a secretary or coal mining. We've determined the skills and predilections of your profession make you ideally suited for that. And lastly, because you're a Democrat, you'll be paying a special Democrat tax. Also, you can't go to New York City anymore. But you can move to Buffalo or visit (but not move to) Boston.

Oh, and your neighbor has been determined to be of a criminal caste. Canadians, you know. Can't trust them. So we've arrested him and are currently rifling through his stuff to find evidence of his crimes. Don't worry, it won't happen to you. You're Dutch and the Dutch aren't predisposed to crime!

Toodles, spot of tea, what what. (And yes, they really did have things like that.)

Did the British invent the concepts like 'black' or 'white' or 'Dutch' or 'Canadian'? No. You would have articulated your own systems and rules before they showed up. Were there no laws or customs or beliefs about any of this before? No, there were. But despite that, the situation is rather different now, isn't it? And your place in society is now explicitly and entirely reliant on these classifications. Which are all unchangeable, by the way, and recorded in a very official looking office. And the rules are now made by the British, beyond your control. This was the effect of the British census and their use of it to rule India. And this was not particularly unusual, by the way. The British undertook similar measures in other societies. And more widely, the ossifying of social boundaries through censuses is a fairly common part of projects to make the population legible to central authority, even in non-colonial regimes.

So was there anything unique? Well, yes. Orientalism meant there was a far greater interest in the Indian caste system and the 'ancient wisdom' of their society. This made westerners far more aware of it than they are about caste in (say) Nigeria. But sociologically or in imperial terms? Not really, no.

From Society, and Politics in India from the 18th century to the Modern Age, the Making of the Raj, Castes of Mind: Colonialism and the Making of New India, The Peasant and the Raj, and Religion and Personal Law in India

u/Erusian

#India #caste #colonialism

Create a FB account, and then through that account, create a right-leaning FB page.

Through that page, set up your ads. FB ads allows you to target for things by interests, by certain political affiliation, and you can restrict your targeting down to the point of which city. So for example, if I wanted to target extremely conservative men ages 20-35 in Austin, Texas, I'd set my FB ads to something like this:

facebook ad datasets

Right away, FB tells me I have 24,000 potential people I can reach.

You could tweak and tune the FB ads as much as you like until you reach your desired audience. Want to include avid readers of Breitbart? No problem. Sean Hannity viewers? You betcha! Tomi Lahren fanboys? Of course!

Make sure you get people who run the page to constantly put up articles that reinforces what those pages stand for. It doesn't matter where the content comes from, so long as you get content up there that confirms your audience bias.

For each article you post, create an ad to an article. Maybe consider linking a Breitbart article about how muslim gangs are raping young girls.

Use divisive language in your ads, but nothing that directly calls anyone out so the ad can get approved, something like:

Texans! Keep your loved ones SAFE from terrorism!

Use pictures that invoke the “gotta protect OUR children” reaction. Something like a young white girl in a white dress holding a teddy bear?

Set your budget—$5 a day is a pretty good place to start to figure out your cheapest cost per click—and run that bad boy. You can get as low as 9 cents a click if your audience interact well to the ad (i.e. they click it, they LIKE it, they comment on it), so don't worry, those $5 will go a LONG way. Once you get a good audience, you turn up the budget to as high as you want to reach as many people as you can.

Facebook will deliver this ad to your aforementioned audience's newsfeed because those people have proved to FB that they are more likely to engage with this sort of content.

Ideally, you want to keep this going on for about six months to a year to ensure that you build a big enough audience group who will not only click on your link but who will also LIKE and FOLLOW your page.

After that is where the fun begins. This is when you create an event called “Keep Islam out of Texas” from that page.

Remember that audience you've been cultivating all these months? You can save it, expand it, and create what FB calls a lookalike audience—i.e. people who 'look' similar to your audience in their online behavior or could otherwise be brought into that audience.

You can use that to target up to 5% of the entire US population. Yeah, let that number sink in.

Do the same kind of ads, but this time drive people to this event. Since they've been blasted by your content for the past half to whole year, it should be a pretty easy sell.

TheDonald uses this EXACT SAME PROCESS to help get Trump elected, but through Reddit instead. It's literally EXACTLY. THE. SAME. See what I'm talking about:

Create a reddit account:

  • Go to r/The_Donald which aggregates all of these types of users for you already

  • Post content having to do with Mexicans, Muslims, Marxism, and whatever else conservatives have been trained to live in fear of, linking those post to an article on Breitbart or just use a funny meme video that appeals to their hate and fear driven biases

  • Once you've built up the hate and fear enough use it to manipulate users into attacking whatever makes Donald Trump look bad or threatens his power

  • Repeat, with hundreds of thousands of upvote accounts and thousands of posts

99% of our job is to convince people that something that is fucking them over is actually good for them. The whole concept of 'shills' has somehow became a conspiracy theory when in reality it's just PR workers who are paid by a company to defend their product/service. My last job was defending fracking.

Anytime a post containing keywords was submitted to a popular website we where notified and it was our job to just list off talking points and debate the most popular comments. Fracking was an easy one to defend because you could paint people as anti-science if they where against it. The science behind fracking is sound and if done properly is safe, so you just focus on this point. You willfully ignore the fact that fracking is done by people who almost never do it properly and are always looking to cut corners.

Your talking points usually contain branching arguments if people try to debate back. For example my next point would be to bring up that these companies are regulated so they couldn't cut corners or they would be fined, all the while knowing that these agencies are either underfunded or have been captured by the very industry they are trying to regulate.

The final talking point, if someone called you out on all your counterpoints, was to simply try to paint them as a wackjob. Suggest they are crazy for thinking agencies who are suppose to protect them have been bought and paid for. Bring up lizard people to muddy the waters. A lot of people will quickly distance themselves from something if it is accused of being a conspiracy theory, and a lot of them are stupid enough that you can convince them that believing businesses conspiring to break the law to gain profit is literally the same as believing in aliens and bigfoot.

u/insoucianc

#facebook #propoganda #fascism

Attacks on a indistinguished minority usually takes the rhetoric of a cockroach, pigs, rats and termites. These words show the status of this minority in the society and in the minds of the powerful who view them as sub-humans or even less, legitimizing violence against them. the Nazis used Untermensch while the killing fields of Rwanda saw “exterminate all cockroaches” radio broadcasted across the territory.

This tells us something about the oppressed and the fear and status they occupy in the oppressors head. Cockroaches, rats, termites and pigs are all scary and filthy beings. Most people do not want to have a contact with these organisms because of their irrational fear towards them. This means that these organisms hold a certain psychological power over the oppressors which can be used to their advantage.

Imagine a scenario where you are afraid of cockroaches. You hate them, deep inside your mind you want to exterminate them all. You think of nothing but the darkest thoughts for them but here's the catch, you do not see them that often. Your experience of the cockroach is built on slight interactions and group think. They are everywhere, but not around your eyes. You are seething with passive anger as you go with your day, there is no call for exterminating the cockroaches yet though the messaging is loud and clear — the world will be a better place only after all the cockroaches are killed. There is disease outside and crumbling infrastructure. Someone says that the infrastructure is decaying because the people are sick all the time. The causation is made. Then some more, it seeps around. Into politics, into education, into how people behave. Why? The infrastructure is corrupt, dead. It was always for whatever reasons. It can be institutional apathy but who wants to blame oneself for wrongs that can be attributed to someone else? The “infiltrators” start gaining more and more prominence and outcomes someone who connects the dots. It is the vile filth of the termites, cockroaches, pigs and rats that have contributed to this decay, look, we were a glorious civilization all the way back (we have no proofs because the vermin have digested them all!) until these “infiltrators” have come in caused us pain and disease.

These cockroaches are so because they cannot speak their needs. They are reduced in form and shape because they cannot assimilate in this society of humans because their needs are not legitimate in the human sense. When one speaks of these sub-humans (and accepts them), then the delegitimizing is complete. What powers do the cockroaches/vermin have, as the narrative is already prejudiced against them?

The psychological fear that they carry along with them is their biggest power. What they have in unity is what the people on the top fear the most, a tumbling mass of cockroaches and rats gnawing through. Their unision itself is a thing of horror as the narrative of infrastructural loss and disease cannot be forever harangued upon them. There will be repurcusions of course – a strong backlash coupled with violence, but how many of these insects have to be killed before one knows that it is too much? Other worlds start to take notice and the narrative falls flat on its face. The expelling of blood is a natural consequence but the narrative was the bigger enemy – to classify something one doesn't know as evil but one must recognize that they were part of the society very much so and they had particular functions that the people living on top cannot fathom.

This hate can seen through the lenses of poverty, generational discrimination and racism – the images of cockroaches and termites are not something that the cockroaches and termites have given themselves but it is in the eyes of the powerful who choose to disseminate these ideas against the general masses for escaping scrutiny and for their own good. The vilification once instituted cannot be satiated without direct confrontation but it is for every society to decide if such a narrative is necessary in the first place. This is a hierarchial system we all function in and the nature of hierarchy itself is to place things without power so that the powerful can amplify their own presence and give enough space for a mass to flex themselves. The consequence of multiple narratives are upon us but we choose not to learn either because of laziness or shortsightedness. Together, the underlings can constitute a larger terror to be fought against and creating enough doubt in going full on with the institutions of state power.

Changing these narratives would need an open mind. To welcome people inside without letting their terminology be the first filter. To not let politicians makes gambles on entire populace based on a single vote given by you. Knowing that all this has happened before and will happen after but your place in the world should not be on the basis of the same bigotry. Invite for a coffee, reach down and listen. All beings speak the same language as you do, drink some coffee or invite for a beer. One man's cockroach is another man's best friend, repeat not what the powerful say but know that choices are all of yours to make.

#racism #India

Read the first part in this series here

The media is self-referential and exists in its own bubble. It is not a scientific establishment where peer reviewing articles and sources is a thing. Scientific process is slow and cumbersome because of the consequences of putting an unfinished thought/product/theory into the world can have disastrous consequences. However, the media does not bear the same weight of scrutiny. The media has to be nimble and ever-changing because of the nature of our reality and information. Things have to move quick otherwise you lose your audience to another source. This means a piece of information once it gains attention in a legitimate, audience filled podium, it will be referenced over and over without thought being given to if the first fact is true or not. This is at least the case of the fast moving media anyway, longform articles and books might come after the media cycle has finished covering a particular topic but that does nothing as the dopamine charged media consumers have moved a thousand stories forward.

Considering that the media only exists within the framework of capitalism, it cannot produce any means of dissent against the existing system because that would mean suicide. And all modern nation-states also exist within the same ecosystem which makes the relationship symbiotic and self-serving. That is why it would make sense if the media works to preserve the status quo than to break it. Considering that the media produces only what the lowest factor in a society can understand since alienating the masses is not a good sign for a balance sheet, it makes content that appeals to this lowest factor in a democracy. This would mean simplistic renditions of events, the idea that truth has two sides and that one doesn't need to think but just believe.

That would be the only explanation why people who work in thankless jobs keep functioning in them and perpetuate their lives forward. It is not that they do not know that their existence is trivial but because they do not know of any other existence that would be any different from the one they are living. The media hands out to them that there are people elsewhere that your life is worth sacrificing for, say a soldier at the frontier or a farmer slaving his time in the field. The soldier and the farmer also receive programming that their work and actions have a greater meaning for these people in thankless jobs – they all work for this fictional entity called the Nation, but who does the Nation really belong to? The people? It does seem like the Nation belongs to the people on paper but the reality is far different – the soldier does not have a say whether he wants to fight or not, nor does the thankless worker or the farmer. They should just accept things as they are and make the country proud. Proud for whom? In India that would mean for the businesses that operate internationally, the tourists and the politicians seeking international legitimacy but these population subsets are miniscule compared to the whole of Indian population. The media works for this subset rather than the whole, pretending to be a part of the masses but a cleverly disguised medium manipulation in our midst.

Now whatsapp, facebook and youtube have completely taken over traditional forms of news where the choices become more and more limited as prescribed to a certain kind of news consumption – echo chambers out of which there is no certain escape. Neither should not following the news be an option because being informed is a critical process of participation and if one removes oneself from the information loop then one becomes zombie citizen who exists just to consume but exert no real change. The way the current system of media concentration can be challenged is to draft laws that no big businesses or politicians can hold media companies and existing media houses be nationalized under strict guidelines for what can and cannot be reported. This is again easier said than done because if the nation does not evoke any kind of confidence then neither does the nationalized entity.

Competing against deep pockets needs deeper pockets and in this case to dismantle the media mechanism is not an easy task as private capital would be hard to come by. Grassroots activism via blogs, websites and social media channels by alternative media is possible but the limits to their access to information will be minimal. The internet had a capacity to do what traditional media couldn't but with the centralization of the internet it has become the new norm. The breaking of this hegemony needs a crew of academics, thinkers, strategists and politicians who believe that a real change is possible. Change in this context is not a utopian ideal but the betterment of a deeply flawed society with no incentives to better itself.

There should be a secondary constitution written on which this group of thinkers operate, a legitimate ideology connecting the members. The constitution should involve the developed values of today along with a strong scientific backing and minimal religious or emotional value. This doctrine should become the locus of interaction rather than the loosely bound ideas of a Nation and this entity should also choose to function outside the commercial universe, relying on itself for its growth, no matter how small. Upon fostering for such a community for a period of time one can start negotiating for a better future from the inside out, giving no chance to the existing elements that rule our society.

#media #democracy #dissent

The protests happening around the implementation Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Register of Citizens pan-India are a joyous sight for Indians. The last six years the populace has remained largely complacent with the promises made by Modi and his cohorts but it looks like even the people are calling out B.S. on the openly anti-Muslim rhetoric pursued by the government in power.

The protests are being condemned because of the torching of public property and the pelting of stones against policemen, it is vital to remember that the mob has paid for the buses and policemen through their taxes and it is their right to exercise a protest in a form they deem fit. As for the policemen, it is an interesting development indeed that just a few weeks ago when the alleged rapist/murderers in the Disha case were “encountered” the police were elevated to the level of heroes. This shows the deficiencies in public memory and one must use it as a cause to vilify further against the Indian Police Force that remains corrupt and reliable as always. It is also worth to remember that the police are not there to propagate healthy protests but maintain the status quo as requested by whichever government that is in power.

The police do need some help in training themselves and is important that some stones get thrown at them. But the anger here is not towards the Government of India or its servants but towards the parent organization that fosters hate amongst people by dividing them along communal lines. The BJP is a relatively new entrant to the political field but the root of the problem is the RSS with its open “Hindu Rashtra” ideology that propels that BJP forward. Fighting against the BJP and the police will do little but pulling the mask off RSS is the need of the hour and the methods to do so are simple.

Order some ground beef and take along some cows. Gather all the people willing to eat a delicious beef biryani or beef fry and go the nearest RSS shakha, slaughter the cow and start cooking. If anyone comes close by attack with the raw beef and in more threatening times give the RSS a taste of its own medicine, Gaumutra and the eternal droppings of the Holy Cow. It is a joke that in modern India to stifle people one doesn't need guns or bombs but a simple cow and people hungry enough to slaughter it and eat.

The killing of the RSS must be done in a bottom-up fashion, inflaming the lower rungs and getting a response from the higher ranks and constant badgering at their ideals, their past and their plans for the future of the country. Their flags should be burned along with their books, their existence is both a grave threat to Hinduism and the other minority religions as they are a fascist organization hiding behind the iconography of the Hindu religion.

The chaddis need a good beating, team up and gang the next group you see. The only way to save the plurality of the Indian democracy is to remove the fascist and nepotistic elements and retain the essence that has been mandated in our constitution. The Congress is of no help either but that is a different question. Indians now have to fight for their freedom yet again, this time to be not fooled by organizations willing to exploit stagnant masculine anger diverted towards minority groups. The hydra has a thousand different heads and it is vital to rip its heart apart. Burn them down as you would burn your worst fears and protest till you go hungry, there is an abundance of cows for you to eat once the hydra is dead.

#CAAProtests #India #Hindutva #RSS

Our time and our attention and hopefully in the well oiled gearboxes of capitalism, our money.

I have a very short attention span when it comes to passively immersing myself into advertisements but sometimes, it is inevitable. I have all the blocks to keep myself from constant programming, I have de-googled and de-facebooked my life to a large extent, I have an employ of privacy features on my devices and I even pay for services that we have otherwise taken for granted but still, I am being advertised to and I am influenced by media propaganda just as much as anyone else.

I walk down the streets and see advertisements for hipster brands on bus stops and on buses, there advertisements for things I don't care about on walls, doors, hanging from supermarket ceilings and worse still, embedded into media pretending to be genuine content but nudging me to do something I do not want nonetheless. Though I have become insulated against this general messaging what I am not insulated against is in feeling one with the others, being a part of the herd even when I am not thinking the same things as the herd. I might hear about a stabbing on the London bridge or a rape in Hyderabad, I might or might not have feelings for these incidents but still, my mind is hijacked by these subjects in a way I do not have any control over them, or do I?

At what point does it become obvious that a particular news story is not worth my attention or when do I know that a certain subject needs my complete focus and thought, so that I can apply my knowledge and make the world 'a better place'? Making the world a better place is not why I think of things. I think of things because it is almost an ambient, natural response to events, my frame of reference to the things that happen around and inside me. In this sense there is no objective truth I am essentially pursuing even though I know that there are facts, but those facts exists because I understand them. Otherwise I could be a flat-earther talking about how vaccines are bad and how the Jews are the Illuminati and the Nazis are playing football on the moon.

Making the world a better place is not the objective but thinking about the world I live in is. Being human also puts me square in the hive mind of things, eventually I consume what all the others do, no matter how high and snooty I wish to be. In some analyst's computer right now I am a blip who has spent the same amount on average on a Coke product than the nose-picking Joe Guy sitting next to me on the Metro and I do not even know it. Saying which, does talking about an issue that is the center of focus of media attention mean that I am swayed by the media machine that demands my eye balls and my brain cells? Mass media tells me things without me even paying for them, social media is just like this essay, throwing words about topics I did not even subscribe to but being human I am held sway by what people talk and since I want to belong, I participate first by listening and then by talking. The in-between stages is by the meta-talking and meta-listening I do by injecting ideas in interpersonal conversations, which are again narratives over which I have no control over after the initial ignition.

This personal stages of opinion forming is what the media does for me, it is thinking outsourced to a well branded agency that I am told I must trust. The media talks about itself in a self-flagellating sense of entitlement, projecting itself as the upholder of value, virtue and the truth. The truth it is, as the media sees it or the people holding control of the cameras and the people holding control of the people holding the cameras. The media also has the responsibility to be relevant and keep its business model alive so each moment there is a new ping of information, bread crumbs for the wagging dog.

What the media does for reporting is what we do for our lives itself. We are confronted with a complex world where there are thousands of narratives building themselves around us in a single moment but we do not have the necessary brain power to process and make sense of what is unfolding in the immediate reality before us, so we have to satisfy ourselves with simplistic narratives that help us focus on other aspects of living – mainly work. This is also a deliberate function of a highly industrialized and capitalistic world where people are mere economic actors and their role in the political process is reduced to a number that votes to their particular smidgen of colour.

There was a time a decade ago with the nascency of the internet was taking over the world there was a talk of decentralized citizen journalists revolutionizing media itself. What these commentators in newspapers and other traditional media did not expect was social media and the subsequent boom. What they imagined as a decentralized reporting apparatus has instead become a walled garden of algorithms deciding who hears what without telling why such a conclusion has been made in the first place. This obfuscation of the rules underlying communication puts consumers in a space of not understanding the bias of the media they are consuming. As it happens, most media ownership is now controlled by a few handful of people across the planet and that is not a good sign, to have the future of the world shaped by the gentle nudge of a few.

The ultimate product of the media is not the content but us, it lulls us into comfortable anger, confuses us with information overload, distracts us and in the end makes us be what it intended in the first place, docile humans who will work and live, maintaining the status quo. The media makes us complacent in having voice, making sure that we have just the right amount, not more and not less. When we choose to vote with our eyeballs and keystrokes we are pandering to this opinion forming machine. So what does the media really want? In short, nothing less than your soul.

#media #democracy #dissent

All four of the rape/murder accused in the Hyderabad rape case have been killed and that too at the scene of the crime. Four uneducated lorry drivers/cleaners who thought burning a body will absolve them of the crime. CCTVs, phone records and police investigation are alien things for them, even the flimsy Telugu film media should have been out of their reach to not consider better ways to hide their crimes. Why is this important? Hiding a crime shows that the intent was deliberate and the guilt+consequence of getting caught. Their crude morality at least allowed for the hiding from their crimes whereas in the 'encounter', the police do not have that operation of defense. They could kill and they did, the law does not matter. Nothing matters at all because it is state-sponsored anarchy and it has its own rewards.

What is rape? Let us not look at the word itself, as with all its weight and historical baggage it loses its meaning, Rape is the forcible sexual penetration of a person. In this case the killers tooks turns in raping the victim and in the process she died and they burned her body to hide the evidence. All this is hypothesis, we do not know if it is the rapists who killed the veterinarian doctor, it could've been a simple case of framed killers. There have been an umpteen number of cases where the accused were convicted of sexual crimes they did not commit, like the Ayesha Miran or the the Ryan International cases. We will never know because here the accused were 'encountered' before the court of law could examine the minutiae of the case.

Is this justice in a modern, democratic nation aiming to conquer the world and then Mars? The reactions of the public show that the legislative, the executive and the judiciary were all afraid of the consequences. Baying for the blood of the rapists (whoever they are. After the death of the accused and with no official sentence, we will never know who the official perpetrators of the crime are, just assumed suspects) the people and consequently the media have applied pressure on the political, police and judicial frameworks, which must've led to the collective shitting of pants in the backstages. Note that the second-in-command in the Telangana State called for a swift action against the accused and the Chief Minister of the State and the Prime Minister of the country have both been silent on the issue.

reality is just too complicated for anyone to understand, let alone for politicians to control. In response, those who aspire to power create simple narratives for the populace to buy into, in order to make sense of the world, and make it easier to control. In the process of creating this new 'map' the narrative bears little, or no resemblance to what is actually going on. Lies are built on lies, which are built on more lies. The delusion becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy and the fakeness was accepted by everyone as real. This is Hypernormalisation.

Let us come to the issue of the Telangana Police. The man behind the press meet and hence the face of everything, Police Commissioner Sajjanar was previously also a part of an extrajudicial killing in 2008, for which he was hailed as a hero. And today, he's smiling before the media again, proud that he is getting away with it for the third time. And he will get away with it, he already escaped public scrutiny now, who cares about what the other institutions in the governmental framework think? The people have come out with flowers and appreciation all over crime scene and the social media. But it also shows the short-term thinking of the mob, they have already forgotten that the police apathy on the day of the veterinarian's kidnap where they assumed that she must have “eloped” with somebody. Before they woke up the deed has been done and in the posthumus responsibility towards their duty they shot dead the accused. This is a way of saving their skin but they have zero regard for the dead girl or the families of the rapists. The cops here are the worst killers as they show the duplicity of the people in power – their acts can do not go through the same scrutiny as the alleged criminal's and they get to roam around free in a society that is corrupt across various levels. Remember, the accused have been 'dealt' with quickly because they were poor, the rich live in their own universe.A question to consider is the number of politicians in the parliament accused of rape.

This mode of justice is appreciated by everyone, but it is also a quick fix. Opposing the judgement meted to them does not mean supporting the act of rape, the fact that this very argument was taken up says something about the people of this country. Though on one hand the attention that this act has put out on the general sexual violence that happens around the country it also shows that the people are ill equipped to handle such a moral dilemma. This deteriorating moral health can reflect upon other areas of living as well, such as the ossification of the discrimination against muslims as seen in the Citizenship Amendment Bill that has been tabled in the Parliament today. It seems like it is such a huge step between the rape of a woman, punishment and the ghettoization of a minority but the vision for us is here to see. We saw this happening several times over the past decade: where the quality of protests, the quality of debate we engaged in and the solutions we saught are are all the mistakes that have led us to this point.

As a nation we have not questioned all the little wrongs that have happened over the course of time. We raised our candles and black dots during the Nirbhaya rape case and demanded that the guilty be hanged, but we did not ask why these rapists committed that crime in the first place. We demand that Pakistan be blown to smithereens or that people should stand up for the national anthem before a leave-your-brain-at-home Bollywood movie titillates on screen. The discourse has become simplistic and we crave for solutions like they provide in the cinema. Our lives are too shallow to understand that as humans our lives are complex and issues have multiple dimensions which can only be understood in time. But no, shoot the culprit and move on. Tweet and sleep. This is what we have been reduced to, walled in our own echo chambers we have no way of escaping.

The government has escaped scrutiny, the judges need not deliver justice and the police have done their job. The biggest losers in all this is us, the people. We have been hoodwinked yet again and there is sadly no voice of reason amongst us. The need of the hour is focus on where this vacuity of morality comes from – which caused both the rape and the snap judgement. Giving the people a moral compass is an intagible effect that the State should work upon and so far its version of religion, ethics and propoganda do not seem to be working. This requires going back to the drawing board and working on the problems bottom-up, because in addresssing these problems lies the future of the country. Either for boom or for bust.

#rape #India #education #gender

These are the days of subscription campaigns. The editors and administrators of bourgeois newspapers tidy up their display windows, paint some varnish on their shop signs and appeal for the attention of the passer-by (that is, the readers) to their wares. Their wares are newspapers of four or six pages that go out every day or evening in order to inject in the mind of the reader ways of feeling and judging the facts of current politics appropriate for the producers and sellers of the press.

We would like to discuss, with the workers especially, the importance and seriousness of this apparently innocent act, which consists in choosing the newspaper you subscribe to. It is a choice full of snares and dangers which must be made consciously, applying criteria and after mature reflection.

Above all, the worker must resolutely reject any solidarity with a bourgeois newspaper. And he must always, always, always remember that the bourgeois newspaper (whatever its hue) is an instrument of struggle motivated by ideas and interests that are contrary to his. Everything that is published is influenced by one idea: that of serving the dominant class, and which is ineluctably translated into a fact: that of combating the laboring class. And in fact, from the first to the last line the bourgeois newspaper smells of and reveals this preoccupation.

But the beautiful – that is the ugly – thing is this: that instead of asking for money from the bourgeois class to support it in its pitiless work in its favor, the bourgeois newspapers manage to be paid by...the same laboring classes that they always combat. And the laboring class pays; punctually, generously.

Hundreds of thousands of workers regularly and daily give their pennies to the bourgeois newspapers, thus assisting in creating their power. Why? If you were to ask this of the first worker you were to see on the tram or the street with a bourgeois paper spread before him you would hear: “Because I need to hear about what is happening.” And it would never enter his head that the news and the ingredients with which it is cooked are exposed with an art that guides his ideas and influences his spirit in a given direction. And yet he knows that this newspaper is opportunist, and that one is for the rich, that the third, the fourth, the fifth is tied to political groups with interests diametrically opposed to his.

And so every day this same worker is able to personally see that the bourgeois newspapers tell even the simplest of facts in a way that favors the bourgeois class and damns the working class and its politics. Has a strike broken out? The workers are always wrong as far as the bourgeois newspapers are concerned. Is there a demonstration? The demonstrators are always wrong, solely because they are workers they are always hotheads, rioters, hoodlums. The government passes a law? It’s always good, useful and just, even if it’s...not. And if there’s an electoral, political or administrative struggle? The best programs and candidates are always those of the bourgeois parties.

And we’re aren’t even talking about all the facts that the bourgeois newspapers either keep quiet about, or travesty, or falsify in order to mislead, delude or maintain in ignorance the laboring public. Despite this, the culpable acquiescence of the worker to the bourgeois newspapers is limitless. We have to react against this and recall the worker to the correct evaluation of reality. We have to say and repeat that the pennies tossed there distractedly into the hands of the newsboy are projectiles granted to a bourgeois newspaper, which will hurl it, at the opportune moment, against the working masses.

If the workers were to be persuaded of this most elementary of truths they would learn to boycott the bourgeois press with the same unity and discipline that the bourgeoisie boycott the newspapers of the workers, that is, the Socialist press. Don’t give financial assistance to the bourgeois press, which is your adversary. This is what should be our battle cry in this moment that is characterized by the subscription campaigns of all the bourgeois newspapers. Boycott them, boycott them, boycott them!

— Antonio Gramsci, 1916

Replace subscription with advertising and data collection. You see that everything is the same about social media, modern new agencies and TV. So long ago but very little has changed. Switch off your phones, clear your heads, take a deep breath and think.

Shouting and burning doesn't change anything for the good. Think, not in group-think but see where your ideas come from, go to the origins and question yourself. Engage but not argue, receive but not with your eyes closed. Fight with not your fists, all that can bring change are your thoughts and your thoughts alone.

Source: Avanti! (Piedmont Edition) December 22, 1916; Translated: by Mitchell Abidor; CopyLeft: Creative Commons (Attribute & ShareAlike) marxists.org 2008. Proofread: by Andy Carloff, 2010.

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