www.nettime.org
Nettime mailing list archives

Various Subjects
Ivo Skoric on Mon, 22 Jan 96 15:49 MET


[Date Prev] [Date Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Various Subjects


Hi there,

I have never subscribed to this group. Yet suddenly I started 
receiving various (rather longish) postings on various subjects. I 
thought should I be offended with this (like certain decent guy Peter 
who asked you to unsubscribe him just recently). I noted that there 
is no much discussion, just apodictic postings. Apodictic in a sense 
that everybody writes what she or he wants, and everybody else takes 
it for undisputable truth (because nobody really have the net-time to 
read those long diatribes). This is the ultimate end of all 
communication: everybody has access, everybody has net-time, but 
nobody really cares any more. Communication that is killed by the 
most formiddable means of fostering it. That's of course why I 
completely enjoy the NetTime. Of course, I don't really read the 
postings (I don't want to betray the cause). But I created a filter 
that separates things that come from nettime from other crap and put 
them in a separate mail folder for future generations. Since postings 
are mostly futuristic I guess guys in about 40-50 years should have a 
lot of fun reading them (given they have net-time to do it). 
Furthermore, I decided to join with a story of my own (don't bother 
reading it, or if you do and say - "ah? that's it?! just two pages?!" 
- don't be offended, I promise I can clog any newsgroup with lengthy 
articles).

Ivo Skoric


...




-------------- Enclosure number 1 ----------------
2020

The state is dead.  There is no government any more.  President is merely a figure as a
Queen of England once was.  Yet, the life we have can hardly be called an anarchy.  Since
rulers are everywhere and the world looks more Orwellian than Orwell ever thought it would
be possible.

Most people live in Managed Communities, which perverted Saint-Simon's ideas of Utopia,
trading their personal freedoms for organized and well maintained life.  Safety above all, as
the corporate slogans would proclaim.  This of course comes expensive.  And the money is 
earned by maintaining the system, that is there just to be maintained.  The minority, as media
would have it, lives, however, outside of the system, and they are free - there is not even a
police force to oppress them any more - but they have no means to exercise their peculiar
freedom.  They are not part of OUR world.

The world is split in two.  Not exactly geographically.  There are glimpses of the "First
World" everywhere, as there are swats of what was once called Third World and was confined
to the Southern hemisphere and "colored" continents.  They are mixed, and in some regions
(since there are no countries any more) there are enclaves of Third World in the First World
type of Managed Neighborhoods, while in some regions there are enclaves of First World in
the sea of Third World hopeless poverty.  What was once known as a Second World, was
defeated by Cold War which ended early in 1990s.  Now, it is mostly Third World with a few
enclaves of the First.

The power is impersonal.  Corporate directors and major stock-holders of the society earn
enormous sums.  But they do not really hold the power any more.  They became prisoners of
their own greed.  They can be replaced as easy as anybody else.  The system can actually work
without them.  Humans are just a burden to the system.  So, the system is letting more and
more of them go, setting them free, laying them off.  Power escaped the structure in which it
was built.  Workers are enslaved by their machines.  Of course, they still have the power to
destroy.  But they are too much seduced with the illusion of benefits provided by machines,
and too much frightened from the Outer Worlds.  Long ago they stopped scaring their children
with the boogie-man (even black teenagers got out of fashion as rapists as murderers), in favor
of the outcastes.

Then, there are renegades.  Those who voluntarily abandoned the obscene, obstructive
abundance of the First World, and moved to the Third World.  The webs of power are equally
accessible from any geographic point on the planet, given the proper technology and
bandwidth is available.  They stole technology and hacked the bandwidth.  Then, they digged
themselves into a shithole of police-less Outer Worlds, where Corporate Security Officers are
afraid of going to.  People there accepted them.  They are also known as Wizards.  Because of
their knowledge how to manipulate the levers of power from the outside.  Realms around their
secret sanctuaries cleaned up and prospered.  More people moved in.  A sort of twilight zone
was created, more spiritual world, like a  Second Foundation, was formed: a Second World -
something between the First and the Third.

People learned from the past about the horrors and devastation of war.  Yet, the will for
power did not rescind among them.  The system found impractical and too expensive to wage
war against the Second World, which it did see as a serious threat to its power.  Instead a
sophisticated blitzkrieg was engineered in virtual reality, which was supposed to kill all the
Wizards.  They, however, anticipated the attack, and sent their avatars to seize important posts
in the attack armies, substituting their autobots for attackers' autobots, and finally turning
formidable armies against their masters.  Microsoft Corporations were dismantled in the
backlash.  World lost its standards, its set of values, its religion.  The system tried to
reorganize to absorb the attack.  A great vacuum was created, ironically protected by firewalls,
as if the World didn't want to allow any outside ideas in, even when it lost all of its own ideas. 

The World was about to reboot, loosing all its memory about the present.  The system hoped
that would restore order, loading the default values.  System's main engineers were working
overtime on cleaning the net's drives from Wizards' viruses, before the reboot sequence was
initiated. The new system would be restricted, and the outsiders will not be able to use it. 
Unless of course they manage to interrupt the power supply to the system while it is rebooting
and set the system under their configuration.  History remembered the year 2020 as the great
crash of the system - pretty much like the great crash of the stock market hundred years ago:
then it marked the end of one way of life, liberal capitalism, and now the crash of Internet
marked the end of another - the corporate capitalism.  Monopolies dissolved.  And for the
moment everything seemed to be all right.

But humans were still there, to spoil everything.  The crime was on the rise, and a
monstrous neo-Luddist movement - New World Order - seized the moment to organize
impoverished and disenchanted masses to destroy machines.  They wanted to return to the
hunters and gatherers society.  Their environmentalist appeal was mixed with their
authoritarian, sexist and racist manners.  The idea is to form a society of ignorant,
brainwashed slaves which would heel to their commands. It was another challenge for the
Wizards.  Leaders of the New World Order exposed the Wizards as the remnants of the old,
the remnants that should be dealt with swiftly and assertively.  The Wizards were to be
eliminated.

Ivo Skoric
.