Doubt Is a Loaded Weapon of the Future
La temible trilogía del poder y el discreto mundo de la duda - Segunda parte.
Certainties secure the comfort of being nobody, convictions delimit deep aspirations and are the first step on the road that leads to our own execution. On the sands of time and on the rugged surface of the truth, only doubt is a loaded weapon loaded of the future.
Persuasion in disguise
Interposed between Badiou’s particular “passion for the real” and Žižek’s inexorable “desert of the real”, we parade along the tightrope of uncertainty. We are torn between the bland intimacy of the isolated room and the insubstantial sociality of virtual environments.
Moreover, we deny belonging to the noisy street, and in impertinence there is no reaffirmation. We are figurative freedoms in computer universes, which so often are nothing but worlds reflecting the particular noisy street that surrounds us. In the best of cases.
In the best of cases, a vicious circle, where we always return to the starting point. Perhaps, seen with the special appearance that, at each turn, is given by our own more worn out eyes, or by instruction or experience, which each time make us believe that we are wiser and better. But this is not so. Boris Vian (1950) put it in four words: “To struggle does not mean to advance”. On the contrary, trivial struggle, juxtaposed with growing humors, deepens the gap of dullness.
From the global collective to the local collective, freedom wanders premeditated. Intelligence is excessively correct; imagination as another imagery of common sense. In the convergence of uniform concerns, reality is sanded down and achieves a lustrous finish that dazzles and, simultaneously, disorients.
The contents disguise the intense persuasion. Arguments overflow with inaccurate figures and biased data, misquotations, incorrect allusions, deliberate discrediting. Once there were spaces with a particular identity and defined genres: the newscast contained news. The debate was the controversy; the soap opera was the melodrama.
From Lumière, Flaherty or Dziga Vértov to Chris Marker, Agnès Varda or Santiago Álvarez, the documentary gravitated with certain integrity around what the camera’s eye could see. At least, more than on the non-existent. Even this formality is no longer required.
The documentary is staged and the fiction is misleading with testimonial scenes, some reportage, the occasional documentary sequence. They are not serious, not even series, the series turned into another insatiable contemporary addiction. The big streaming platforms tempt us, and we finish the marathon exhausted to get into the next one.
It is not a degenerate purist nostalgia for genres. It is simply a matter of understanding how much the mixture confuses us and in what way time is subtracted from the small pocketbook that is life. And the modest contribution of each individual, of course, is not irrelevant.
Because the lack of time for reflection, the excess of confusion that distances the critical capacity, the urgencies for the useless and the vain gloating with the immutable would not be much without that beautiful word that hurts us so much: acquiescence.
Our consent is what the law enacted by the elites’ employees to protect us is after. The powerful corporations put their forearm to help us cross the avenue along which they at the same time travel without brakes: unbridled. By clicking we authorize the help. By clicking twice we ratify that it is so: we agree to be crushed.
The iron script
Entertainment arouses attachments. It attracts us with its drawer canons.. The first novels of soap operas activate the social suggestion that seems to them. Value judgments abound without rhyme or reason. The verisimilitude of the discourse is adjusted and rationed for an audience predisposed to admit it without a squeak since kindergarten.
Not to embrace it would imply that provocative form of courage that is critical thinking. “Even an opinion is a kind of action” (Greene, 1955), reflects the narrator character of The Impassive American, a journalist by the way.
To manifest oneself, which is to resist and refute, that is, to act, which is to confront. It hurts to fall from the delirium thought as Paradise: the comfort of the disengaged put in trouble by the turmoil of knowing, that is to say, of asking, and, in the violent profile, of doubting.
Something that does not fit in with the residual aesthetics of show business in which we subsist. The heroes, evil; only the anti-hero will perhaps redeem us. All as part of a staging that does not end, where the script of the events to occur is iron.
Other voices, other rooms
That is why the emergence of other possibilities, the different views from new vantage points, is both appropriate and valuable. To contrast the monochromatic view, to counteract the divided vision..
It is not only about the false meaning or the exposure without context, the altered image or the voice that someone has distorted. In reality, it has to do with the decomposed everyday life itself, which is assumed, superficially, as authentic, and, essentially and more dangerously, as unquestionable..
It is not only the false meaning or the exposure without context, the altered image or the voice that someone has distorted, but the decomposed everyday life itself, which is assumed, superficially, as authentic, and, essentially and more dangerously, as unquestionable.
We are talking about a mediocre, mean subsistence. Even more serious: assumed willingly, or with resignation or indifference, by the injured societies and by the individuals who will be immolated. When this happens, and it happens more than we think, the history told by the victors is not revised, the thesis lacks antithesis, the prominent criminals conform to the law. Speculation is conclusive; evidence, circumstantial.
A communication lying in the sun
Let’s forget about the independence of independent media. They cannot be independent if they sensibly aim at confronting the hegemonic discourse. They are dependent on atypical but elementary postulates called equity, justice, honesty. Never from their simulated environments.
We disbelieve in objectivity, that phlegmatically Anglo-Saxon urban myth that American journalism turned into a mathematical obsession; universities, a nonsense, and the local media, another hypocrisy. The splendid artifice that now is just one more piece of the trap.
Let’s leave aside the idea that alternative media are the alternative media. They differ from and are alternative to the mainstream media, which, moreover, are crude and irrelevant in their fabrications.
The mainstream media lie because they need to: they are subordinated to underlying logics of control and manipulation.
Substantially powerful communication lies lying in the sun in the slums, the communities, the villages, with their jargons, powers and daring. That is why it is so feared; that is why it is denied, fragmented: incommunicado..
The media at the service of elite supremacies, although underpinned by advanced technologies and undeniable penetration capabilities, are aware of their fragility. And in their main asset lies their greatest shortcoming: the fallacy.
The mainstream media lie because they need to. They are not the instruments of communication they claim to be, nor do they have the social purpose that, according to deluded jurisprudence, they should have. They demand lies because they are the flank of influential interests. Excessiveness encloses an advertisement; a serenity intensifies propaganda.
They are engaged in financial, monetary, commercial, strategic and geostrategic, political and geopolitical wheeling and dealing, and are subservient to underlying logics of control and manipulation. They are one more compartment of the system’s decaying framework..
Dissecting the narratives of power
Neither the pretended seriousness nor the malleable ethics of Power are faced with tricks that resemble them. Neither is the story of objectivity with third party deceptions. The impostor’s impartiality is not counteracted by fervent preaching or allegations.
Truth is of no use in the face of any of these tricks. Not only because truth, like any affirmation, carries an implicit negative, but also because truth is a scaffold erected quickly and easily. Few things in life are as inaccurate as the truth. And few of such elementary elaboration as its evidence..
It takes advantage, perhaps, of the capacity of people and societies to dissect with a scalpel the peculiar stories of power and to identify without a magnifying glass the codes of each political and media narrative..
Hope without mystification
It is necessary to interpret what happens and the background: the character, the props and ties of the event. Then, the disposition (the attitudes) to transform it will emerge. Marx’s warnings cannot be set aside.
Economy, politics and media: the most fearsome trilogy of power. Three hollow beatitudes and only one true evil: the order that disrupts the perimeters it hierarchizes. The doctrine that makes everything it touches spurious..
Economy, politics and media: the most fearsome trilogy of power. Three hollow beatitudes and only one true evil: the order that disrupts the perimeters it hierarchizes. The doctrine that makes what it touches spurious.
Between the remedied equanimity and the coherence in patches, words free of corporate pennants become essential. The communication without banners of hitching. Dialogue on restriction and free of conditioning. Freedom from agendas; freedom without fences..
It is a collective and popular expression, contrary and contending, seasoned to distrust the certainty that is reiterated, but ready to face hope without mystifications.
Because Doubt Is a Loaded Weapon of the Future
A strange world in which fairies do not enchant, but doubts; misgivings about what is heard and seen, professed and learned. Another transparent region, not as defined as the high metaphysical valley of Anáhuac that Alfonso Reyes asked about (Biblioteca Virtual de Polígrafos, Obra Completa).
Well, after all, Carlos Fuentes (1958), his compatriot and proselyte, answered it in time: “It was our turn. What can we do. In the most transparent region of the air”. Another one in the midst of the insufficient ones that resist imperial ambitions, colonial burdens, U.S. depredation, etc..
Where the villages with mirror-walled houses once dreamed of by José Arcadio Buendía are still feasible. Those sketched for the future, as a technological obsession, by the North. The same ones that we have long inhabited as delirium in the supernatural resonance of the South.
- Fuentes, Carlos. (1958). La región más transparente. (1998). Alfaguara: Madrid.
- Greene, Graham. (1955). El americano impasible. (1980). Editorial Alianza: Madrid.
- Reyes, Alfonso. (1995). Obras Completas. Visión de Anáhuac. Vol. II. Fondo de Cultura Económica: México, D.F.