Democracy in America

The religionists are the enemies of liberty, and the friends of liberty attack religion; the high- minded and the noble advocate subjection, and the meanest and most servile minds preach independence; honest and enlightened citizens are opposed to all progress, whilst men without patriotism and without principles are the apostles of civilization and of intelligence. Has such been the fate of the centuries which have preceded our own? and has man always inhabited a world like the present, where nothing is linked together, where virtue is without genius, and genius without honor; where the love of order is confounded with a taste for oppression, and the holy rites of freedom with a contempt of law; where the light thrown by conscience on human actions is dim, and where nothing seems to be any longer forbidden or allowed, honorable or shameful, false or true?

– Alexis de Tocqueville

The Thought Police

His eyes re-focused on the page. He discovered that while he sat helplessly musing he had also been writing, as though by automatic action. And it was no longer the same cramped, awkward handwriting as before. His pen had slid voluptuously over the smooth paper, printing in large neat capitals –

DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER

DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER

DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER

DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER

DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER

over and over again, filling half a page.

He could not help feeling a twinge of panic. It was absurd, since the writing of those particular words was not more dangerous than the initial act of opening the diary, but for a moment he was tempted to tear out the spoiled pages and abandon the enterprise altogether.

He did not do so, however, because he knew that it was useless. Whether he wrote DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER, or whether he refrained from writing it, made no difference. Whether he went on with the diary, or whether he did not go on with it, made no difference. The Thought Police would get him just the same. He had committed — would still have committed, even if he had never set pen to paper — the essential crime that contained all others in itself. Thoughtcrime, they called it. Thoughtcrime was not a thing that could be concealed for ever. You might dodge successfully for a while, even for years, but sooner or later they were bound to get you.

It was always at night — the arrests invariably happened at night. The sudden jerk out of sleep, the rough hand shaking your shoulder, the lights glaring in your eyes, the ring of hard faces round the bed. In the vast majority of cases there was no trial, no report of the arrest. People simply disappeared, always during the night. Your name was removed from the registers, every record of everything you had ever done was wiped out, your one-time existence was denied and then forgotten. You were abolished, annihilated: vaporized was the usual word.

George Orwell’s 1984

THE GREAT APES

The great apes, Human, Chimpanzee, Bonobos, Orangutan, and Gorilla; together and separately we find a the same problems of speciesism as we find in racism. Regardless of what trait, physically, behaviorally, or genetically for which we originally select, all subsequent correlations work to undermine our original prejudice.

It is foolish to speak exclusively of “the selfish gene” or “the cooperative gene” in any species. It is equally foolish to support holism, fascism, and socialism. Every living being exists in a balance of self-preservation, exchange, and community. Every threatened tribe, even ants and bees, within its own species, practices war and murder. All of the great apes do the same. Chimpanzees are a male-dominated, violent society. Bonobos are a female-dominated, erotic society. Gorillas, who are indeed vegan, are so drastic in their sexual dimorphism, that a single male leads a harem of females.

The great apes descend from a common ancestor. The truth is that we, like any of them, are complex. We emerge from concerns that are holistic until they are selfish in some; and selfish until holistic in others — if taken statistically. In reality we are all harmonizing any narrative we may orchestrate. Simultaneously rational in our cooperative self-interest and irrationally self-interested in our cooperation.

It is not that we must fight and compete more or less; nor that we must entreaty and cooperate more or less: neither as individuals nor collectives.

We must recognize our complexity.

Division of labor, works.

Technology – technique, tool, apparatus, machine, automation – works.

Respect and compassion; born of a cognitive empathy equally well-suited to murderous and egalitarian notions – defines our lineage. We understand, predict, and accelerate.

The individual is social, but the social emerges from individuals. This is the complexity of, appropriately, complex forms-of-life. Empathize, as an intelligent, cooperative, and personally-interested member of your individual vision, or your family, tribe, or trade.

Automation and the Hype Cycle

Automation, which is at once the most advanced sector of modern industry and the epitome of its practice, confronts the world of the commodity with a contradiction that it must somehow resolve: the same technical infrastructure that is capable of abolishing labor must at the same time preserve labor as a commodity ­­ and indeed as the sole generator of commodities. If automation, or for that matter any mechanisms, even less radical ones, that can increase productivity, are to be prevented from reducing socially necessary labor-­time to an unacceptably low level, new forms of employment have to be created. A happy solution presents itself in the growth of the tertiary or service sector in response to the immense strain on the supply lines of the army responsible for distributing and hyping the commodities of the moment. The coincidence is neat: on the one hand, the system is faced with the necessity of reintegrating newly redundant labor; on the other, the very factitiousness of the needs associated with the commodities on offer calls out a whole battery of reserve forces.

– Guy Debord, Society of the Spectacle

Predicate Disintegration

The change in power structures that occur in developed society once the image and the sign gain primacy over the real and the signified emerge from the decoherence of subject and object. This becomes predicate disintegration in the postmodern mindset; refusing to privilege a subject or alienate an object, postmodernism instead reviews assemblages of a perpetual flux of concatenated disjunctive predicates. Predicates without an object, predicates without a subject. This makes for difficult psychotherapy and philosophy alike, but this also creates the perfect phase-space for blurring any line between resentment and seduction, that is, alienated life and artistic revaluation. This mindset evolves organically from the influence of Feuerbach and Nietzsche, their critique of society waking up from early modern Christianity. Postmodernism secularizes the disintegration of reality in the wake of industrialized civilization, globalization, and the loss of faith in classical liberalism and technology. Not only is the sacred-in-itself dead, as Nietzsche claimed, the real-in-itself is dead, lacking certainty of former subject-object relations. The signified divorced from its referent extends into all language, science, and culture, due to the work of Kant and Hume.

“But certainly for the present age, which prefers the sign to the thing signified, the copy to the original, representation to reality, the appearance to the essence… illusion only is sacred, truth profane. Nay, sacredness is held to be enhanced in proportion as truth decreases and illusion increases, so that the highest degree of illusion comes to be the highest degree of sacredness.”

– Feuerbach, Preface to the second edition of The Essence of Christianity

as quoted in Society of the Spectacle

While Nietzsche held a principal place in Heidegger’s existentialism, Deleuze & Guattari combine the lineages of the school of suspicion, committing themselves entirely to rhizomatic diffusion; depersonalization, dehumanization, and decoherence are the only paths to total collectivism, as any amount of egoism breaks apart the flux. Predicate disintegration is the overarching goal in Anti-Oedipus and A Thousand Plateaus: the only way to cure the overproduction maladies of psychosis and capitalism is though the simultaneous removal of the subject and object. Private property, as objects, cease to exist automatically in a flux of collective predicates. Capitalist subjection ends when society relinquishes the subject. While this seems like a radical conclusion, it is a natural paradigmatic evolution from the pluralistic existentialism. If the State apparatus not only entraps labor, but the entire social body and the full body of the Earth within its capitalistic bureaucratic machine, it becomes impossible to choose between accelerating the process or attempting the communist revolution. The flux of assemblages, stratified and mechanize, enclose subjected machines within a state autocracy.

In the opening of Anti-Oedipus, we find an elucidation of mechanized enclosure that occurs in capitalist psychodynamic alienation. The social totality, once comprised of free organisms that flow libidinal value without restriction, become a series of machines that break this flow. Breaking apart this flow means we do not “live nature as nature, but as a process of production” because the capitalistic dichotomy of consumer and producer splits every libidinal flow into a network of exchanges. To the human, everything is technological, and a world of desiring machines interrupt libidinal nature, confiscating its power. The odd mix of Freud with Marx interprets libidinal desiring machines as the interruption and redirection of flows for the sake of organization. Once the social body, human body, and cosmic body all become fully rationalized, all energy is a production process that is inescapable. Against this totalitarian enclosure, only one escape is possible, to cease any organization, distinction, or identity. Thus, when the State apparatus fully utilizes both production and anti-production, external as well as internal deterrence, through an image of the State and the subject that couples itself to the power of the War Machine, the only way to break out is in the body without an image, without organization, without fetishism of capital, sex, or identity, without any interpretation or intention.

The Body Without Organs is thereby a self-similar reproduction of capital itself. Because the fetishism of commodities and the multiplication of capital produces its own relative emptiness, the machine with an image, organization without life, is the essence of capitalism itself. From their psychodynamic-Marxist perspective, this is the origin of paranoia and psychosis. Yet this echo of “God is dead,” which became, “Capitalism is dead,” reveal the same emptiness, certainly. However, it is not the emptiness of the religious believer, but of the institutions attempting a secular reproduction of Protestant egalitarianism; it is not the emptiness of the capitalist, laborer, or consumer, but of the intellectual institutions expecting political economy to reproduce the meaning and significance of mystic natural chaos in the primitive milieu. For those of us who never expected the State apparatus to provide meaning, significance, or identity, the death of God (the French theocratic monarchy) and the death of Capital (the French socialist republic) are not only empty sentiments, but also foolish ones.

Freedom of speech, militia, assembly, religion, and property invest no personal identity. Capital has no identity, no goal, no vision. To Deleuze & Guattari, the machines of socialization and political economy all orchestrate their identities around the power of capital, but capital is a non-entity, it is a representation of potential future exchange. Thus, the hollowed-out ego and the hollowed-out capital are two identical dilemmas faced only by those who place their “bad faith” in the security of a centralizing, predetermined identity for both economy and self.

Finding that Capital-in-itself is the perfect complement to libido-in-itself, in the absence of meaning or significance, leaves one with the Body Without Organs. The paradox of a body without organs, however, is an intrinsic false consciousness resulting from a spectacular deception; the belief that the collective forms an independent bodily organism with volition and purpose of its own makes the “mind” and the “economy” something they are not, and were never meant to become. While D&G go to great lengths to intertwine Freud’s writings on Schizophrenia to the social unconscious of capitalism, we can regain our objectivity easily with a walk through a forest: walking along we find a “tree” with immense growth of fungi running up its trunk, we look up and behold its branches long gone, the upper bark gone, the wood beneath bleached by the sun. This is not a “tree” in the living botanical sense, but we would not call it a “corpse” or a “fungal apparatus” either. The body, which we predicated as a tree-subject turns out full of life not its own; the tree contains not tree-organs but is full of insect machines and fungal machines.

Seen this way, the Body Without Organs implies, not a machination, but a misunderstanding. We were simply wrong to ascribe the subject identity, there is nothing unheimlich about a tree that is full of life, but life no longer its own. Capital, like an Observer, is a perfectly empty vessel that contains none of the interrelated and decentralized value streams that make it possible. Precisely because of this, it works as socioeconomic construct that makes the interaction of networks of value streams possible.

Rather than finding existential “thrown-ness” liberating at the individual level, the Marxist intelligentsia treats the absence of predetermined meaning as a crisis at the social level. Capital taken as a universal, the fetishized social-in-itself miraculated to causa prima, becomes a Body Without Organs; the bureaucratic expansion of socialist rationalization brings about the replacement of organic sub-systems with disciplinary automation and mechanization. By tying Oedipus to Capital as the miraculated first-mover of generalized labor, they ascribe the disease of bloated economic enslavement to the wrong monetary power. Presenting Freud and Marx as a single critical voice anchors the anti-fascist pessimistic virtualization paradigm, but trading Oedipal fascism for adolescent narcissism appears the only distinction of the system. Following the chain, throughout the network, telling the narrative as energy diffuses into socio-libidinal fabric; these are excellent strategies of negative critical analysis. In fact, this strategy has no partisan leaning on its own. Anywhere a group isolates distorted evidence from statistical analysis, ignoring the dynamic interactions of the concrete entities underlying the population, seeing patterns where none exist because it fits their ideology, a rhizomatic analysis of real entities is the best path to refute the false hypothesis.

Combining Freud and Marx without a meaningful functionalism to replace the criticized system merely latches onto the bad faith of each domain, the psychodynamic and the capitalistic, to write philosophical poetry. The labor theory of surplus value, applied to a network of psychodynamic subconscious, gives mysticism and collectivism total license to invent fictional machinations.

The labor theory of value says the exchange value of commodities emerge from the average socially necessary production time for the aggregate supply, which does not account for the subjective or inter-subjective marginal utility basis of pricing. The Austrian school likewise applied the latter to currency itself to better account for inflation, recession, and other element of the business cycle. If we treat money as a commodity, then price represents the information between supply and demand regarding the marginal utility of the product and the marginal utility of the currency. The tentative “price” as an expression of utility and the actual currency exchanged as an actualization of trade blur into one entity for Marx.

However, the mystery of a generalized surplus value of labor disappears when we treat currency, loans, and capital as stockpiled commodities subject to marginal utility. The capitalist manages the marginal utility of credit, risk, assets, debt, and cash as much as investments, salaries, and liabilities. Even if we apply the ecological economics concept of energy expended over time, the capitalists commoditize their accumulated virtuosity as a reputation mortgaged through monetization.

To extend the productive capacity to libidinal exchange within the social body, libidinal energy must generalize to represent all valuation; including thoughts, promises, sex, and vague sentiments of culture. The same problem arises for each movement of the Freudo-Marxian refrain: libidinal exchanges not represented in actions of psychodynamic energy-time and social exchanges not represented in actions of labor energy-time become treated as repressions rather than admitting they did not exist. This diminution of particularized actions on behalf of a generalized subconscious asserts a universal that bears no similarity to reality. Mysticism is the only means by which a prophecy of hidden inter-subjective machinations will gain expression. The only real duplicity, in each case, lies in the partisan ascension that occurs on the foundation of such universals. Whether the universalization of castration anxiety or the universalization of class or racial plurality, the duplicity is the willingness to deny evidence based exclusively upon fictitious re-territorialization boundaries.

It is precisely the Oedipal mythology, Leninist mysticism, and Nazi occultism that reveals the ineffectiveness of bureaucratic machination. As Ludwig von Mises predicted in his treatise Human Action, no minority can maintain the subjection of the majority indefinitely. Nor likewise government expansion of “public” debt remain sustainable forever. The point is equally true of both Oedipal superego and fascist communism: the ego will not endure the “bad faith” of an artificial totalitarian all-father for long without madness or suicide as consequence. Viewed through the schizoanalysis proposed by Anti-Oedipus, The Body Without Organs is the final stage of bureaucratic socialism (or “late” capitalism) is the State apparatus no longer living as an organism, but as an autonomous machine, entrapping all organisms as its expendable, reproducible, automated cogs; desiring-machines that produce not only consumables, but also produce desire itself. Taken at its extreme, the only escape is insanity, revolution, or near-incomprehensible philosophy.

Phenomenology of Stockpiles

Before we stare into the postmodern abyss, we should complete our analysis of technology and its essence; that is, its existential conceptual universalization. For this, we must turn to Martin Heidegger, who claimed that the machination of technological progress and its accompanying mechanization of life turns every living being into stockpiled resources, mechanical means to an uncertain end. The speciesism implicit in humanistic ideology left philosophy at a loss once animal and slave labor no longer played a role in the most effective economies of the world. For Heidegger, this reveals the insufficient expression of will-to-power across human form-of-life. The essence of being will never emerge from humanistic existential self-negation.

Heidegger saw in Germany the progression of technology into bureaucracy, disenchantment, and fascism. In response to the removal of meaning and significance, the need to generate subjective meaning independent of society and the State became the imperative of human life. Autocratic regimes performing genocide of arbitrary scapegoats is the consistent result of socialistic centralization. Reliance on a higher power, whether for objectivity or purpose, creates its own subjection. Losing their will to self-responsibility, socialization of meaning results in moral insolvency of individuals, then moral bankruptcy. Whether political subjection, spiritual asceticism, or conformity to THEY, through consumerism and spectacle, the intelligent being who fails to generate meaning out of their own experience of becoming-in-the-world inevitably falls into inauthenticity and suicide.

The mechanization of dualism was the same movement as the development of totalitarian idealism. Descartes escaped from the moral responsibility unending war and brutality by separating mind from body, leaving the use of each body permissible – responsibility for slavery, carnism, and war avoids recognition through stoic detachment. Kant escaped from the moral responsibility of choices that carry consequences by crystalizing this dualism even further. The realm of the thing-in-itself required a duty of egalitarianism at the expense of the entire phenomenal plane. Space, time, and bodies are all illusions; choice, consequences, and individual merit are productions of the mind. Kant’s moral bankruptcy results in a total loss of objectivity; just another system of inequalities, based on the comprehensive negation of life and meaning, again results in depravity, corruption, bureaucracy, carnism, slavery, and war. The last step in this progression spawns Hegel, who loses any pretense of objectivity or concern for life, again anointing idealistic hierarchy and war instead of freedom, value, and significance.

This placed philosophy in a terrible position. To regain objectivity necessitated an increasing belief in mechanical determinism and materialist history. To regain meaning necessitated an increasing romanticism of our sentimental, subjective, perceptual flux and emotional chaos. Once determinism, forgiven of any moral responsibility by Descartes and Kant, moved into rationalized sciences, philosophical materialism narrowed its attention to the interplay of historical forces, diminishing further the importance of any life or the Earth; when war is the only mechanism of progress, individual freedom, choice, value, and significance depreciate. Meanwhile, increasing romanticism results in further emotional rebellion; continuous movement without objective action. Philosophies of meaning progressively abandoned the attempt to take meaningful action, leaving positivism, structuralism, and pragmatism to their own pluralistic, pervasive doubt of knowledge, communication, or causal agency. We cannot feel surprised by the insanity that results from the fantasies of FreudoMarxian depersonalization. The “perpetual flux of stratified assemblages, ordered by the Body Without Organs” inspires rational revolt. This sad reaction to the absurd abyss at which we realize our total responsibility becomes a circus of values in its escape; we have the epistemology we deserve.

For Heidegger, the essence of a semiotic sign is more than its rhizomatic tracing through pluralistic matrices. Essence is the universality of the sign as a form, an aspect of being that transcends time and experience. Technology remains lost between mechanization and machination; its pervasive influence continues to spread and entrap the individual through technique, tools, means, and ends:

“To posit ends and procure and utilize the means to them is a human activity. The manufacture and utilization of equipment, tools, and machines, the manufactured and used things themselves, and the needs and ends that they serve, all belong to what technology is. The whole complex of these contrivances is technology. Technology itself is a contrivance—in Latin, an instrumentum.”

– Heidegger, The Question Concerning Technology

Mechanization paradigms generate systems of inequality through principles, anchoring technological acceleration in favor of partisan gradations of value. Technology, if an independent partisan entity, is a contrivance that reinvents everything by a standard of instrumentalism. Because technology and technique are fundamentally human endeavors, this becomes tautological. To say that the utility of utility proves itself in its increase of utility says nothing new, only that acceleration, growth, and expansion are core elements of human success, precisely because these are emergent power-laws of anything that gains material complexity to survive against entropy and chaos. Growth rationalizes the intended consequences of inequality, which is to raise the virtuosity of capital rather than the worker. Technology provides equalization of process independent of human volition by means of an aggregation of generalized systemic liquidity. However, the socioeconomic systems that produce this technology constantly degrade technological validity through collective action. Impatient with the pace of progress for the baseline standards of living, socialism attempt to correct the emergent inequality of equal rights, preferring centralized control of unequal treatment. Because the idealist visions of an ordered and orchestrated society are incompatible, mechanization of economy becomes mechanization of sociopolitical panopticism. Out of this duplicity, more machination paradigms emerge, generating their system of values as a rejection of those with power at the time, pointing to aggregate unintended consequences. Because the mechanization paradigm never purifies itself and the machination paradigm attacks the symptom rather than the disease, the system falls into learned helplessness; bureaucracy, stagnation, and entropy result.

Just as early modern metaphysics failed to reveal the truth of being, life, and consciousness, its artificial prioritization of human, male, race, and class caused epistemology to fail in understanding instrumentalism. For Heidegger, the system of inequalities creates a paradigm that cannot reveal the truth of technology. Namely, that the essence of technology is the enframing and stockpiling of energy, forced from the Earth, held for a future purpose. Workers and resources become “stockpiled” as a means to a later end, but this purpose remains unknown, continuously displaced. Instrumentalism turns all beings into instruments of becoming. Unless someone argues that technology itself has a purpose of its own, a purpose to which we remain woefully ignorant, our progress will continue to leave us alienated as stockpiled instruments of future beings.

Of course, this is precisely what adults do through socioeconomic behavior; we stockpile time, energy, and resources in any form we can for the support of our own future, the future of our children, and for those with the wealth to do so, as many generations of human civilization that we can afford to improve. Indeed, we must take up moral responsibility for the end goal of this stockpiling, establishing it upon a system of meaning, or we will displace the guilt and anxiety of machination indefinitely. The danger begins when we miraculate our anxiety toward our own teleological stockpiling into a causa prima for religious, political, or social mechanization.

“The coming to presence of technology threatens revealing, threatens it with the possibility that all revealing will be consumed in ordering and that everything will present itself only in the hiddenness of standing-reserve. Human activity can never directly counter this danger. Human achievement alone can never banish it.” – Ibid

Heidegger’s analysis of instrumental machination shows that that mechanization is a method of enframing, we entrap meaning within an ordered framework out of anxiety toward our own finitude of orchestration. Technology reveals the potential of nature by means of capital, society, and science that relies upon system builders orchestrating the majority. The natural energy impossible to the individual is then entrapped within an artificial order of stock-piled energy. When this instrumentalism is miraculated as first-cause, this energy revelation expands to include the rationalization of every living being, in accordance with a destiny; unfortunately, it is a destiny no one yet realizes. The greatest danger of technology is that our increased certainty of probable outcomes exhausts the possibility of meaning, while hiding the essence of being in a stockpiled network of means without an end.

Heidegger later made a claim that philosophy as practiced is dead because THEY (the rabble, the spectacle) aligned existentialism too much with humanism rather than being-in-itself as an expression of will-to-power. As our analysis will show, the clear answer to claims of machination and the moral bankruptcy of mechanization requires a restoration of equality, objectivity, and responsibility. To avoid the depravity of instrumentalist systems of inequality, we must build our paradigm without the foolish speciesism that brings about the Biopolitics of fascism and communism. This means that our duality is on the side of life as it balances and conquers entropy. A morality of will-to-power ought to treat animal, alien, and machine life as an intelligent end, wherein minimum viable resilience is our means.

Life-process versus entropy; this will indeed anchor our valuations, though philosophers have taken this exposure to the equality of “bare” life with extremes of hope and desperation. We draw this line, between the life-process as an open system and the the entropy of its material hardware; entropy as the gravity that life is struggling to overcome. Looking to Heidegger’s predecessors, will find this life-against-entropy dualism has partisan affects; a clear division arises between the pessimistic virtualization of Schopenhauer and the affirmative nihilism of Nietzsche. This partisan separation continues into the French post-structuralists and contemporary American pragmatism, though each repeatedly lose themselves in Marxist ideology. Dividing reality into will-in-itself versus perpetual flux continues to result in mystic subjectivism or violence romanticism, yet each are integrally pessimistic.

Postmodern Decoherence

“Great men, great nations, have not been boasters and buffoons, but perceivers of the terror of life, and have manned themselves to face it.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Expansive mechanization and automation of any system pursues progressive acceleration as a teleonomic goal, increasing efficiency of predictably effective patterns of behavior through reproducibility. Acceleration of proven virtuosity through mechanization and automation also increases the rate at which opportunities for new experiments will occur. Technological progress thereby necessarily implies that some of those workers most proud of their struggle to attain virtuosity will find offense in their mechanical replacement. It also implies that some changes will only become imaginable once new generations arise with an utterly revolutionary system of values, allowing a paradigmatic shift to occur. We cannot, however, claim that there is no standard by which we may judge the perpetual flux of information across subjective, pluralistic systems of values. As Thomas Sowell elucidates in his several works, the emergent migration of peoples, practices, and beliefs reveal a macroeconomic standard of value that is quite consistent; humanity pursues freedom, mobility, security, and wealth through cooperative self-interest and self-interested cooperation. Only the philosopher that isolates their theories from the reality of human existence can ignore that peoples do everything in their power to adopt any tool, apparatus, machine, or practice that improves the efficiency and effectiveness of securing the necessities of human survival. This method of expanding reduction of anxiety defies any bureaucratic measures put in place to stop it, even when people must undermine the national ideology of must break the law to do so, as in Lenin’s soviet Russia.

Acceleration has exponentially increased human populations and improved the average standard of living. It is irrational sentimentalism when a philosopher like Berardi opposes technology, acceleration, or wealth “for its own sake” because these are never the purpose of progressive economic mechanization. Certainly, there are unintended consequences when aggregated historically, tempting the spectator to judge the merits of rhizomatic narratives ad post hoc. However, the “quest for cosmic justice” inspired by any deontological approach exacerbates irrational sentiment into an accumulation of insanity.

From Kant to Rawls, a forced sense of altruism and envy replace aggregate self-interested cultivation, to the detriment of freedom, value, and significance. Placing equal laws in response to third-party effects, pollution, safety, transportation or communication infrastructure, and military is very different from inventing a plethora of bureaucratic institutions that enforce speculative despotism.

The enclosure of the socialist autocracy as an internal deterrence machine is at the heart of French postmodern decoherence. In its entire approach, it requires a metaphysic of pessimistic virtualization. Deleuze, Guattari, Foucault, and Baudrillard each employ the tools of suspicion originating with Nietzsche, Marx, and Freud, to reveal the machination of automated State mechanization. Unfortunately, due to the lack of constitutional sovereignty and equality before the law in their own nations, each of these quasi-communist authors found the libertarian acceleration of capitalist technology utterly inseparable from the bureaucratic machine of their own bloated government in France. In the process, a loss of objectivity leaves the post-structuralist outlook entirely nihilistic. To import and misapply these ideas in America shows how little some of our intellectuals understand of our libertarian constitution.

Death

“Someone who has given up the idea of living life will surely never be able to embrace death.”

– Guy Dubord, Society of the Spectacle

Machination Paradigms

The current mood in post-classical standard liberalism has broken America’s machinic virtualization morality along a partisan bipolarity. We are sprinting down Hayek’s Road to Serfdom, demonstrated in egalitarian-socialist economics, consumerist-egoism culture, and republican techno-bureaucratic democracy. The concretized gravity of a mechanization paradigm leaves behind many rhizomes. In tracing these, philosophers generate a negative system of values in reaction. In the acceleration and rationalization of mechanization, invention in aggregation often entails generalized unintended consequences. While mechanization accelerates the technological development of political economy, the choice between increasing liberty, energy, and action, or the cowardice of the opposite through bureaucracy, impediment, and empty movement, is independent from the velocity of economic production.

The socialist trend was thoroughly underway due to Eastern Europe’s jealousy of Western Europe, long before Marx forced socialist sentimentalism into a false choice between communist or fascist fulfillment. The end of mysticism, sexism, and slavery had begun through rise of industrial capitalism and global trade, but the lingering taste of the schizoid moralities created by Descartes, Kant, and Hegel were far more difficult to cleanse from the palate. In reaction to their generalized mechanization arose several theories of machination. Human cognitive psychology shows that performance of complex logic tests triples when we are catching a cheater. An identical logic problem, enframed within a narrative that allows the performers to catch a cheater, they far more easily solve than its abstract, formal equivalent. Grasping the abstractions of economic liberty become easily overpowered by conspiracy theories because our brain wires itself in favor of suspicion and unveiling.

Nietzsche showed in religious cultures the division of self-actualized, powerful, master morality, contrasted against reactive, vindictive, slave morality. Within our current phase, we may trace a secular polarity as well. There we find mechanization systems of value and machination systems of value. When the Judge-Priest turns upon the Magician-King, we must move not only beyond good and evil, but also beyond mechanization and machination. Heidegger’s assessment of technology, the search for its being-there or essence, represents the pragmatic ramifications of phenomenological mechanization:

“The jet aircraft and the high-frequency apparatus are means to ends […] Yet an airliner that stands on the runway is surely an object. Certainly. We can represent the machine so. But then it conceals itself as to what and how it is.”

The Question Concerning Technology

This belief in concealment, of an invention remaining unseen as well as unintended, a trojan horse lurking in our midst; this is the essence of machination paradigm. This rise in suspicion and the disenchantment that followed create temporal stratifications, evidenced in the rhizomes. Modern philosophy through Descartes, Hume, Hegel, Adam Smith, and Freud reveals a belief in separation of “man” with a soul and “nature” as a machine; throughout these authors, we find belief in scientific progress, wealth through mechanization, and egoistic individualism. The new middle-class academics were profiting because of industrialism, economic liberalism, and democratic republics were accelerating the wealth and domination of Europe. However, many of them were profiting from violence and exploitation as well. Once the spread of mechanization paradigm imposed the presence of machines upon everyone, the mood began to change.

Karl Marx showed with precision that production machines within the factory represent alienate laborers from their products. This alienation was not only individual and concrete in each worker, but also systemic, abstract, and universal. The latter is essential, as Marxist materialism is Kant and Hegel’s mystic dualism combined with large-scale determinism. For Marx, when we conceptually aggregate production machines into a unity, the capitalist system contrives an exploitative machination. Production Machines and Abstract Machines are self-similar duplicitous inventions by which capitalism, as an invasive ideology, steals the surplus labor value and virtuosity of generalized craftsmanship. This alienation splits authentic concretized meaning into several fractals, none of which the craftsman could reclaim within the paradigm of capitalistic political economy.

The production machine increases efficiency, standardizes factory labor-time, and improves consistency of quality. This consistency embeds within the machine itself the virtuosity that once differentiated the hierarchy of craft guilds. Through technology, the machine is virtuous, while the laborer becomes little more than an observer.

“Once adopted into the production process of capital, the means of labour passes through different metamorphoses, whose culmination is the machine, or rather, an automatic system of machinery […] set in motion by an automaton, a moving power that moves itself; this automaton consisting of numerous mechanical and intellectual organs, so that the workers themselves are cast merely as its conscious linkages.”

– Karl Marx, Grundrisse – Fragment on Machines

The increased production capacity of industrial capitalism requires the reliance on currency as an abstract machine so that the over-abundant goods no longer travel to destinations for exchange. This instead occurs on the financial market. Whereas the production machine contains the surplus value of the general intellect, the currency machine contains the surplus value of product circulation: “The real costs of circulation are themselves objectified labour time – machinery for the purpose of abbreviating the original costs of circulation.” The universe of labor has virtuosity and opportunity under the control of machines, both material and abstract. Virtuosity itself, as acceleration and liquidity, becomes multiple abstract machines as well, through interplay of factory automation and financial automation.

                The mechanized industrial factory removes the opportunity of expression for any skillful labor with an increasingly powerful machination of rationalized separation, dividing labor and treating the factory as the concretized unit of labor processes. The factory-machine generates flow from one production machine to another, with human labor little more than fuel and oil to keep the machine running. Once the production process becomes automated, the factory is a machine that only works when it breaks down; that is, from the humanist perspective, until the factory breaks down there is automation, no human work arises unless the machinist labors to restore the automaton.

The financial machine develops when bankers, merchants, and capitalists recognize that the circulation of coins with intrinsic value is too inefficient relative to the production capacity of the factories, especially at the scale of investment already underway in the mechanization process. Thus, two financial machines become increasingly powerful, the bank note (representing a potentially infinite quantity of currency without the need for concrete circulation) and the finance loan (accelerating the availability of capital for investment).

Marx’s conception of the machine generalizes the forms of invention that divide the laboring class. Generalized mechanization benefits the bourgeoisie while exploiting the surplus value of labor. Whether symbolic, intellectual, or industrial, mechanization produces inventions that enclose the technique and virtuosity of organic systems within an artificial, inorganic construct. This generalization creates the basis for a negative machination paradigm, according to which any decision that accelerates or expands political economy necessarily does so at the expense of the proud and virtuous laborers. In the primitive commune, the baker with extra bread may trade or eat it. In the industrial factory, the wage-earner takes home currency possessed of no intrinsic value and cannot afford either the products of labor or the essentials of life.

However, the concretized alienation of particularized workers had its axiomatization ahead of time, from Bentham, Ricardo, and Smith, anchoring the system of inequalities found within utilitarian capitalism. The end justifies the means in such political economy. Small pockets of precarious workers are an insufficient argument against an irrational paradigm. Marx bases arguments in the generalization of material idealism to fight the utilitarianism driving the alienation of capitalism. The machination sentiment glorifies older forms of destitution against new forms.

Machination paradigms aggregate the unintended consequences of mechanization, elucidating the essence of the precarious system of inequalities already in progress. This machination, once fully recognized, will inevitably lead to revolution. The rise of abstract machines of finance represents a machination against potential laborers driven by the capitalist. The bank note allows the capitalist or merchant to move without notice or unnecessary risk, or circulate currency simply by sending it by messenger or post. The acceleration of capital liquidity through the finance loan removes the necessity of laboring against raw materials prior to trade. The availability of financing makes colonialism and industrialism an attractive replacement for local labor, because an economic system may far more easily circulate currency and bank notes than populations of skilled workers.

The generalized alienation of labor, divorcing the class from its value creation, results not only from the enclosure of the virtuosity of skilled work within the machine and the factory, but also from the enclosure of the worker within the factory and industrial society. Marx has a specific machination paradigm based on the displacement of blue collar jobs, skilled workers who can no longer connect their identity with the value they create.

“The worker’s activity, reduced to a mere abstraction of activity, is determined and regulated on all sides by the movement of the machinery, and not the opposite. The science which compels the inanimate limbs of the machinery, by their construction, to act purposefully, as an automaton, does not exist in the worker’s consciousness, but rather acts upon him through the machine as an alien power, as the power of the machine itself.”

– Karl Marx, Grundrisse – Fragment on Machines

Marx finds the machination implied in mechanization as that which entire virtuosity of the craftsman within the machine, generalized and reproduced as simulacra. Each new machine further divides labor and alienates the skilled class of society, creating a vicious cycle. The original virtuosity of a wooden furniture carpenter, for example, becomes replaced by an entire chair factory in which no skill or creativity gains expression from the worker. The extensive job specialization required to continue the expansion of capital creates the capacity for managers, engineers, and scientists to improve upon the machines and factories, who then also become exploited. mechanization becomes a cycle that perpetuates itself until the general intellect and virtuosity of craft completely diverge. The workers earn a wage to operate machines that no longer enclose their virtuosity, but invalidate it as inferior. The knowledge production systems of the general intellect likewise receive salary but no share in the capitalist application. Engineers apply the general intellect, selling their craft to the capitalist who will reproduce the machine ad infinitum. This becomes overproduction, so that the State displaces the surplus value produced into additional general science, engineering, and technology, including education and research grants, uses tax incentives to push consumer confidence, or displaces the industrial into the military, allowing surplus productive capacity to generate self-destructive products (weapons, death of the working-class soldier).

Max Weber saw machination in the bureaucratic machine of capitalist rationalization. Although the division of labor increases freedom and wealth, it diminishes the possibility of meaningful work and certainty of social standing. Because bureaucratic capitalism divides labor into narrowly-defined roles, the values of societal rationalization lie at the level of the system, not the practitioner. While the majority will gain a higher standard of living, the intended utilitarian consequence of mechanization, the individual becomes a producer-consumer.

Alienated and disenchanted, the only meaning available lay within consumerism, which further encloses the individual:

“The idea of a man’s duty to his possessions, to which he subordinates himself as an obedient steward, or even as an acquisitive machine, bears with chilling weight on his life. “

The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism

The factory production system, bureaucratic machine, and acquisition ideology all place the individual in a position stripped of value, meaning, or significance. Once destined upon a path, there is no escape. The intended consequence of industrial capitalism was to harness individual rational self-interest in aggregate, so that the economy will produce generalized economic welfare. For Weber, the social machine concealed a greater machination than the system of inequality pushing capital into the hands of finance and speculation.

It was precisely because the self-representative state reveals its own lack of an intrinsic motivation that efficiency of the mechanism becomes harnessed by the whim of the plutocracy. It is the political economy machine that continues itself, with an intrinsic origination and purpose long forgotten, that becomes susceptible to self-destruction. This quickly expands in a vicious cycle, as governance displaces progressively more representative sovereignty into bureaucratic regimes of planning centralization. The engine of socialism replaces libertarian democratic representation with comprehensive diffusion of responsibility.

At scale, the aggregated ordering of bureaucracy promotes moves an economic system further toward rationalization and ascetic vocationalism. Weber saw in Marx a short-sighted and narrow view of political economy, because bureaucracy is an invasive ideology that is irreversible. Enclosure of technique applies technological improvement to tools, apparatus, and machines:

“Tools” are those aids to labor, the design of which is adapted to the physiological and psychological conditions of manual labor. “Apparatus” is something which is “tended” by the worker. “Machines” are mechanized apparatus.

– Weber, Economy and Society

Weber looks more broadly, applying each form of acceleration. The worker desires better hammers and the soldier better swords, but only the state apparatus can harness the war machine to create a permanent, centrally planned, political economy. These three methods of technological development place the worker in a distinct relationship, but this relationship also repeats in fractal patterns at any level of observation. The improvement of the tool centers upon the practitioners and their virtuosity and effectiveness. The apparatus mechanizes the virtuosity and accelerates the efficiency of the process, displacing the skilled worker in favor of cheap labor that the capitalist can exploit. Finally, more complex, and more powerful, systems of machines attain automation, combining to displace even the precarious wage-earner, leaving a handful of janitors and engineers to passively monitor the machines.

This process repeats in the bureaucratic machine of the government and the economic system as well. Currency and taxation introduce acceleration of debt, centered on the needs of those with wealth. These were the original tools of commerce, communication, and power between the monarch and the landed aristocracy. The rise of a merchant and industrial bourgeoise (a “new money” upper middle class) de-regulates the value of currency and the State apparatus now gains center stage. Acceleration of capital liquidity and the policing of inequality arise to preserve the system of inequalities. As Hayek would later note, the essential problem of bureaucracy is the passage of laws without legislative consensus. The democratic representatives create governmental decision-making groups they have displaced powers beyond democratic oversight. The State apparatus thereby produces its own vicious cycle of parasitic growth rather than equality before the law, outside the control of the electorate. Generating an ever-increasing diffusion of responsibility, the impossibility of equal rights before the universal applicability of legislative justice forces attention onto the inequality of outcomes instead.

Finally, the automation of the rationalizing capitalist system results in the social machine that entraps every member as cogs within its bureaucracy:

“Bureaucracy is the means of transforming social action into rationally organized action […] superior to every kind of collective behavior and also any social action opposing it. Where administration has been completely bureaucratized, the resulting system of domination is practically indestructible.”

Max Weber, Economy and Society

Note the contrast between the mechanization paradigm that divides life along arbitrary lines of inequality. The machine had no soul, so entrapping a woman in a marriage with any rights, appropriating resources from colonial control over “savage” natives, completing scientific experimentation on the poor, vivisection, eating any animal desired, slave-labor, and the destruction of ecological systems were all justified. Western “Man” had a bourgeois mind-soul that ruled over his machine, everyone else more closely approached an instrument. Once society progress toward democratic socialism, only machinations become meaningful. The collective organism loses all objectivity. Rather than dealing with concretized forms-of-life, the state apparatus becomes a social machine that concerns itself only with itself. The law is no longer for its people, but for the lawyers, bureaucrats, and social workers.

At this stage, the machine is no longer a mere tool, it gains a crucial point of reference. There is no other contender, because reliance on slaves, animals, and skilled workers for labor proves inefficient by comparison. The system of inequalities given by early modern philosophy now shifts upward, toward the State apparatus. Where the law and rationalization once emerged as a tool of the social contract, aristocracy, or monarch, population density drives rationalization of the codes. Moving from government as a tool, wielded by those with axiomatized power, it transitions to an apparatus that is powerful but needs representatives to “tend to” its functions rather than making laws; this is a critical step in the emergence of bureaucracy and national death.

The apparatus of the mechanized State requires humans to “push its pedals” at the right time, like an early industrial loom, but the virtuosity of governance becomes increasingly automated, placing humans in a passive role before bureaucratic machine. This requires an immense source of mechanical power; power that remains external but contains no purpose or identity of its own. Deteriorating the energy of the social body, the State apparatus seeks new forces of acceleration and couples itself to the energy of the War Machine. As Deleuze & Guattari describe, the State appropriates the War Machine in the form of generalized terror, generalized brutality, the police state, and the army, but the War Machine exists prior to and outside of the State.

We can take Hobbes and Karl von Clausewitz quite literally if we provide an internal limit to their claims: once bureaucratic mechanization becomes automated, the State is only comprehensible as an interruption and a temporary suspension of the universal flow of absolute war, the war of all against all. Through the disenchantment of the people and the diffusion of responsibility throughout the representatives, the only way to prevent anarchy is to appropriate its energy. The State apparatus does not prevent the War Machine from tearing down the socioeconomic scaffolding of society, but internalizes it. The warriors, rebels, barbarians, and criminals are axiomatized into automation of its bureaucratic fabric. Before turning to outright dictatorship, the State remains an apparatus that still requires “tending to” by means of the War Machine. The State needs police brutality, military deployment, and terrifying incarceration as the appropriation of a remainder, balancing the equation of order, orchestration, security, and organization. This displacement and re-territorialization provides the energy for additional bureaucratic, not economic, growth.

Three problems emerge along with the generalized threat of the War Machine, which the State apparatus employs to convince society that any disruption of progressive bureaucratic rationalization will totally unravel the nationalist political economy. First is dehumanization; mechanical rationalization requires that individuals re-program their natural rhythms to meet the standardized cadence of mechanized synchronization. Second is mobilization; the State apparatus drives collusion and sponsored monopoly, assisting protected capitalists in the militarizing of rationalization. Third is disenchantment, because the State apparatus progressively strips the both the social body and the body of Earth of its natural liberty, resources, and power, survival and information increase at the expense of meaning and beauty.

Dehumanization

The first problem that emerges with the State’s generalized threat of the War Machine is the dehumanization of the social body and the individual body, re-territorializing all values within the centralized schedule of political economy. Rationalization requires that individuals re-program their natural rhythms to meet the standardized cadence of mechanical synchronization. In a populist effort to protect favored laborer groups from the acceleration of technological evolution and displacement of jobs, democratic socialism takes control of both the capitalist and the laborer. Rather than loosening the restrictions on work or increasing the generalized well-being of those in transition, bureaucratic rationalization appropriates both the increased industrial effectiveness from the capitalist and the dehumanization of the worker, turning an increasingly ordered and orchestrated social body toward nationalistic goals.

Dehumanization is not an inherent property of capitalism, but an intrinsic attribute of the State apparatus once bureaucratic rationalization begins socializing both capital liquidity and labor liquidity for its own ends. Because the State apparatus centralizes the cadence of synchronization, it must orchestrate the flows of artificial codes of political economy through an ever-larger government of specialized bureaus. This increasingly establishes its codes based on the continuous performance of the machines of finance, industry, politics, and war. Human life and every other form-of-life play a diminishing role, entrapping all energy within the machine of the establishment. The capitalist no longer dehumanizes workers with direct technological demands. As described by Hayek, the State apparatus formalizes the inhumane into law through positive diffusion of responsibility to negatively arbitrary bureaucratic machines, making every depravity constitutional and legal, in the largest and most precise sense of these terms. This has immense implications for the entire ecological order that gave rise to the progress of society:

“The psycho-physical apparatus of man is completely adjusted to the demands of the outer world, the tools, the machines — in short, it is functionalized, and the individual is shorn of his natural rhythm as determined by his organism; in line with the demands of the work procedure, he is attuned to a new rhythm[…] in the factory as elsewhere, and especially in the bureaucratic state machine, [rationalization] parallels the centralization of the material implements of organization in the hands of the master.”

– Max Weber, Economy and Society

The biorhythms of intelligent primates that evolved for one context become entrapped within fixed cycle of light, work, and food that attempts erasure of the variations of daylight, seasons, and ecology. Rivers become redirected, swamps drained, lakes created by damns, rampant deforestation, insects, soil, and wildlife destroyed; every additional control mechanism added generated unintended consequences that require additional controls in response. The vicious cycle creates its own crises and thrives on the power-grab each crisis, especially war, allows.

Mobilization

The second problem that emerges with the State’s generalized threat of the War Machine is the mobilization of the entire economy according to war-time distributions of values. This is quite separate from a strong standing national military, which remains distinct from the decentralized decisions of the peace-time economy. Mobilization uses tariffs, special taxes, bureaucratic committees, centralized planning, nationalistic subsidies, and other incentives to remove the distinction between war-time control of the economic system and peace-time economic freedom. The State apparatus bribes the capitalists in this mechanization, militarizing bureaucratic rationalization. The soldier and slave, in the dual systems of military and slavery, are the two modes of organization best suited to political economy fully subjected to the State. In the mobilization-socialist phase-space of hyperactive industrial centralization, all the brilliance, creativity, and charisma that gave rise to the invention of better tools, apparatuses, and machines now serves the universal deterrence plan of the State apparatus. Deterrence is necessary externally and internally, because it relies heavily on the spread of polemical envy.

As Thomas Sowell wrote in The Quest for Cosmic Justice, “One of the ways in which the dogma of equal performance is a threat to freedom is in its need to find villains and sinister machinations to explain why the real world is so different from the world of its vision. […] Paranoia and freedom are an unlikely and unstable combination.” The State apparatus thrives on mobilization of war-time bureaucratic control through the increase of paranoia, envy, and machination paradigms. The great Nietzschean irony is that the glorification of socialist eternal war is that it requires a pervasive slave morality.

The inventions of capitalism under conditions of decentralized acceleration makes average labor-time lower, increasing the average standard of living. The waking time available to the worker for parenting, education, hobbies, and entrepreneurship should increase; but the pace of changes becomes a source of envy. The younger worker has the privilege of energy, ambition, and less engrained habits and opinions, while the older worker may become marginalized if they cannot adapt to the rapidly changing society. Rather than more effectively spreading time across the multiple requirements of life, adapting to the new demands of an accelerated society, the working class demands their demagogue peers protect them at the expense of economic progress. Bureaucracy grows exponentially, erodes the culture of creativity, then kills the possibility invention. Once the State apparatus fully rationalizes political economy in accordance with a cohesive paradigm, the social body stagnates.

The only way ensure centralized rationalization is to entrap every living being in a tangled mobilization of false wars, enslavement to the “war” on drugs, terror, etc. The nationalist socialism dictatorships known as communism and fascism are the ultimate outcome. The War Machine and the automated State machine are fully unified, a final centralization and enslavement that kills any additional progress. Even a minor return, along the way, to economic liberalism must fight against the sludge of bureaucratic friction that remains intact. Each new idea for improvement becomes increasingly impossible to actualize, and after a few generations the population emerges fully trained for their State mechanical enslavement.

Through indoctrination, socialization, and deterrence, the individuals within social body no longer possesses any values of its own. The energy created from youthful hope, courageous risk, and innovative ideas dwindles, causing the economy and emergence of culture to entropy. The same process of rationalization that ensured the growth of mechanization also prevents its additional development by isolating knowledge in fragmented specialization, increasing bureaucracy around the actualization of disruptive ideas, and universal interference against innovation, through tariffs, heavy taxation, and restricted immigration.

Disenchantment

The third problem that emerges with the State’s generalized threat of the War Machine is disenchantment. The increasingly large and bureaucratic State apparatus progressively removes any meaning or significance from the natural pursuit of the intelligent primate’s struggle for life. Certainty of survival increases, but centralization puts this security in place through deterrence rather than growth and deliberation; information, advertising, and propaganda become intertwined, at the expense of wonder, personal values, and mystery:

“As intellectualism suppresses belief in magic, the world’s processes become disenchanted, lose their magical significance, and henceforth simply ‘are’ and ‘happen’ but no longer signify anything.”

– Max Weber, Economy and Society

Note that suppression of magic, wonder, and mysticism does not increase the capacity for intelligent consensus of the social body, but restricts all meaning, enclosing significance within the controls of the State apparatus. There remains an immense amount transcendental dualism, but it becomes centralized for the purposes of subjection. This centralization of meaning puts the State in the position of providing its own axiomatic justification.

Through medical bureaucracy, not only the danger but also the magic of childbirth becomes rationalized but disenchanted. Through industrial-economic bureaucracy, not only the danger but also the magic of agriculture and metallurgy becomes rationalized but disenchanted. Through juridico-political bureaucracy, justice and morality become increasingly codified and clarified, but also the magic of spiritual retribution and moral vindication becomes rationalized and disenchanted. This last element turns the State apparatus into a purveyor of cosmic justice at the hands of demagogues rather than the legal justice that predicated its constitution. Once a tool of the people, representative democracy displaces the responsibility of legislation further into socialist bureaucracy and further away from legitimacy, accountability, or significance.

At each step, the State apparatus must harness additional power from the War Machine, because it is taxing the power of the economy out of existence. This requires extensive centralization of control because the War Machine that the State apparatus appropriates is the negation of control. The War Machine is the nihilism of cultural entropy, the barbarous rejection of civilization. To channel this into the purposes of the State apparatus, wars, terror, and civil unrest must remain constant.

We should again take note that the military of a free society, external to the economic conditions of its people, preserves the national defense through external deterrence. The external aggregation of a War Machine in this form is consistent with equality before the law, constitutional sovereignty, and the preservation of a democratic republic. When mobilization and disenchantment combine to turn the War Machine inward, forcing private economic activity toward permanent internal deterrence and centralization, the State is no longer a distinct tool and the culture no longer recognizes the War Machine for what it truly represents. The State becomes an apparatus of enslavement, enclosing the War Machine within the society itself. What ought to remain outside the State and the People, as a tool for the deterrence of external chaos becomes enmeshed for the deterrence of internal freedoms.

“There is a growing demand that the world and the total pattern of life be subject to an order that is significant and meaningful.”

– Max Weber, Economy and Society

The machination of the State apparatus arises as an unintended consequence of rationalization and disenchantment when visions of universals become backpropagated from the intelligentsia into the political system. The more that mechanization increases efficiency and smooths the flow of economic development, the larger the intelligentsia demands the bureaucracy become. When the bureaucracy gains prevalence over the mechanization, the energies of the social body congeal; slowing, glycating, and diminishing, which requires the State to continue escalation of centralized control especially over cultural signification. It creates holidays, times of remembrance, propaganda, political publicity, thematic policies, and finally war of international conquest in its effort to generate the significance continuously diminished by its own methods.

In this evolution, the State apparatus moves increasingly into panopticism as it automates the sociopolitical machine. The apparatus achieves aggregate internal deterrence in the spectacle of generalized voluntary surveillance. The machination of State mechanization, distinct from the private economic mechanization that it parasitized, emerges into a Socializing Machine. Arising from the disenchantment of the fully rationalized apparatus, the phase-space of the Socializing Machine enclose the political body by automating the flows of rationalized internal deterrence. The transitional phase first requires panopticism and spectacle, then turns to hegemonic simulation and simulacra. Two types of totalitarian mechanization may emerge: the weaponizing Machine, automating the techno-bureaucratic regime within nationalist socialism (fascism); or the fantasy Machine, automating the terror-determent regime through repressed internalization (communism). Each rely on the vision of a system of inequalities to anchor their cosmic justifications of cruelty, murder, rape, and slavery.

Mechanization Paradigms

The original mechanization paradigm developed during early modern philosophy, hoping to justify Protestantism, revolution, slavery, colonialism, and industrialism. Initially, this marks an externalization of the permanent schism inherent in Christianity; stoicism toward the world and its bodies, ascetic investment in the realm of the spirit. However, the separation of the pure mind-soul from the impure matter-body creates an Oedipalization of moral valuation-signification. By placing the system of values permanently out of reach, away from any human objectivity, the death of Platonic idealism results in a mechanization increasingly toward nihilism.

Rene Descartes begins the modern era of philosophy with the justification of systems of machines and their intrinsic moral inequalities built in:

“[Witness] the variety of movements performed by the different automata, or moving machines fabricated by human industry, and that with help of but few pieces compared with the great multitude of bones, muscles, nerves, arteries, veins, and other parts that are found in the body of each animal.”

These machines fabricated by human industry are twofold. On the one hand, the mechanization of economic production and on the other, its machination into specialists capable of secular innovation, including dissection and live vivisection, both animal and human. After this we see an increasing prevalence of philosophers who redefine the mind/body dualism in subtle ways based on the discoveries of science and the advances of technology, until today quantum mechanics, general relativity, super-intelligent computers, and network theory all become incorporated. To say that the materialism of Democritus, or the Idealism of Orphic Plato, represents receives vindication and victory in contemporary science, from the holographic to the simulation hypothesis, this belies a nonsensical attribution to past thought.

The inherent praise of complexity and intention throughout all systems of inequality, which may have some pragmatic merit when desperate for human species population growth, loses much of its objectivity once we feel we risk over-population. Religious systems have frequently dogmatized the best advice for health, sanitation, and political stability available to them, but their dedication to outdated information constantly puts them at odds with the needs of the time. In either case, we will find very few philosophers admitting that their system of inequalities is strategic rather than evident.

However, we find a hard delineation rather than admission of a continuous gradation in philosophers like Descartes and Kant. Saying that a human is an organized system makes it a machine designed with a soul. If soul, from the Greek psyche, were simply “the virtualization of speculative reality by the brain” we might return to a more gradual spectrum between the highly intelligent and the lowest intelligence. Instead, this frequently becomes combined with mysticism, bigotry, and religious violence. In resistance to the religious implications, others described this self-determination as nature, privileging the “natural” superiority of civilized man over the machines, animals, brutes, savages, etc. Again, if nature meant “the genetic code inherited to build the minimum viable reproduction of an organism” we might treat dogs, cats, and pigs very differently, as their stewards; the long-running prevalence of claims that God or Nature justify rape, castration, vivisection, enslavement, imprisonment, colonialism, and murder shows how the Cartesian invasive ideology brings us to disgrace.

Soul is the favored word of weakness and bureaucracy, always losing itself in dogmatic foolishness, while Nature is  the confused word that implies fatalist destiny. In either case, the words conceal moral uncertainty and every utopian sentiment results in unintended consequences.

“Such persons will look upon this body as a machine made by the hands of God, which is incomparably better arranged, and adequate to movements more admirable than is any machine of human invention”

– Rene DeCartes

Descartes is content to ascribe the superiority of the European man to his Cristian God, blessing these inequalities with divine designation. After centuries of anti-Semitism and crusades against Islamic territories, which left Western civilization in a dull superstitious stupor, it took many more centuries for philosophy to recover fully from Christianity’s influence. The machines as they rose certainly help this progression.

Thomas Hobbes, for his part, believed that the State needed the same level of stability as the human body, but his belief in centralization reflected premature notions of the mind’s physiological control of the body. In our own era of democratic nationalism, we might draw a better analogy by saying that consciousness presides over the execution of some elements of the body’s political economy, but we frequently change this president without changing the character of the role. Since Hobbes was afraid of democratic overthrow of his monarchy, he wrote against this systemization. The history of democracy was not promising for political stability, in his defense. More importantly, Hobbes was searching for a moral refutation of the capacity for moral indictment of monarchical injustice. This is a crucial step in the separation of justice, morality, and religious ideology in philosophy.

Hobbes argues a nation-state could only maintain its order against the chaos of natural anarchy with the agency of a monarch. Without a state we will suffer through continuous civil war, a war of all against all. This conception of egoism will arise repeatedly. The body politic, to end this continuous civil war, establishes the social machine. Individuals give away their power to the social machine and enclose themselves within its protection. The body politic is the product of the social machine in Leviathan, analogous to an organism. Hobbes treats all men as equal in their natural state, because death equalizes the danger represented by others:

Nature hath made men so equall, in the faculties of body, and mind; […] as to the strength of body, the weakest has strength enough to kill the strongest, either by secret machination, or by confederacy with others, that are in the same danger with himselfe.

The secret machination justifies the mechanization of any armed force necessary to protect the stability of the State. Rather than any emphasis on machines, Hobbes concerns himself only with imagination, and the inventions of men. While these arguments come after the enlightenment, the industrial revolution has not begun the slow evolution of conceptualization we will see in reaction to the rise of machines.

Rousseau, in defense of his theory of democracy and individualism, allows the lines of traditional society to blur, giving us the literary archetype of the “noble savage” and a more optimistic view of the state of nature, but he again privileges the freedom of intelligent human dominion over others:

“I see nothing in any animal but an ingenious machine, to which nature hath given senses to wind itself up, and to guard itself, to a certain degree, against anything that might tend to disorder or destroy it. I perceive exactly the same things in the human machine, with this difference, that in the operations of the brute, nature is the sole agent, whereas man has some share in his own operations, in his character as a free agent.”

– Jean Jacque Rousseau, On the origin of inequality

With Rousseau, the justification of differences of rights lies in the capacity of the machine to resist its rules. Again, we see there is an immense gulf between the concept of a designed machine and a free will; only centuries of technological progress provide us with evidence that order can arise from chaos and chaos can arise from local rule-based order. It is an important theme throughout morality however, and Rousseau give it succinct expression for the first time. Morality is the capacity to ignore the rules of short-run patterns of behavior in favor of long-run accomplishment. Extrinsic payoff does not drive this exclusively, like objectivism’s rational self-interest, because compassion and holistic sentiment belies our self-narrative.

In contemporary retrospective, when we built more complex machines, especially computers, we finally saw how overly simplistic we were in the supposition of simple determinism by nature versus free will of consciousness to directly override nature. To anyone knowledgeable of contemporary science, the last century has continued to remove fatalism from nature, destroying the grounds for materialism and racism simultaneously. Education, environment, motivation, nutrition, and some genetic traits all contribute to the superior virtuosity of a charismatic leader, cello player, or physicist. Language, expectation, and privilege play a vital role. Complexity of ideas and the security felt toward uncertainty are issues of nurture, not nature. Stability, language, complexity, and specialization in political economy allow these “higher” elements to arise today. Wealth was the only sign of security in early modern political philosophy.

Consider for instance what an “invention” it was in Hobbes’ conception of the political body, and the recognition that specialization allows the nation-state to divide labor, increase efficiency, and manage trade. The invention of machines is central to the progress of division of labor, which becomes later articulated by Adam Smith at the beginning of the industrial revolution:

“The invention of all those machines by which labour is so much facilitated and abridged, seems to have been originally owing to the division of labour.”

The Wealth of Nations

The social contract philosophers lay the groundwork for a comprehensive mechanization paradigm. Rousseau held a superficial view of intelligence, but criticizes Hobbes for holding the strict egoist view of human motivation. It is in the elucidation of compassion as a moral virtue, that we find it in more than one species, that begins our look outward to children, foreigners, and other mammals for guidance on the injustice of tyrannical government. It is striking that he took the steps of equalizing all mammals in death, mourning, anxiety, and empathy, but leaves this mammalian morality secondary to the self-conscious intelligence that allows humans the machination against their own short-run interests.

“There is another principle which has escaped Hobbes; which, […] tempers the ardour with which he pursues his own welfare, by an innate repugnance at seeing a fellow-creature suffer. […] One animal never passes by the dead body of another of its species: there are even some which give their fellows a sort of burial; while the mournful lowings of the cattle when they enter the slaughter-house show the impressions made on them by the horrible spectacle which meets them.”

On the origin of inequality…

However, Rousseau’s analysis never extends beyond equality among European men, because he only wants moral justification of democratic revolution and the legitimacy of warfare and murder to secure equality. We should note that the text has inspired two lines of thought that remains in contemporary political criticism. On the one hand, Rousseau’s arguments for the capacity of citizens to apply rational morality in judgement against the state’s system of justice gave inspiration to the evolution of classical liberalism that followed. On the other hand, his sentiments combine with Marxism in France in a more anarchist manner that we will find significant in post-structuralism.

“All the inequality which now prevails owes its strength and growth to the development of our faculties and the advance of the human mind, and becomes at last permanent and legitimate by the establishment of property and laws. […] it is plainly contrary to the law of nature, however defined, that children should command old men, fools wise men, and that the privileged few should gorge themselves with superfluities, while the starving multitude are in want of the bare necessities of life.” Ibid

We see a continuation of support for inequality of aliens, animals, and slaves in John Locke. Women likewise, while receiving natural rights, do so secondary to the rights of men. The treatment or moral inequalities in Second Treatise of Government remains in contemporary governance, as the 15th amendment leaves involuntary servitude permissible in our current system of incarceration. This is a triumph over the rampant hereditary servitude perpetuated in Western history for more than 10,000 years.

However, in the context of a rampant African slave trade and colonialism, Locke’s arguments aided the arguments for enslavement based on race for centuries to come. He later expresses in Some Thoughts Concerning Education that animals possess emotional awareness but he makes certain that avoidance of cruelty on behalf of animals, but only indirectly. Harming property harms the owner’s pursuit of happiness.

                It is in the works of Hume that we finally see the machine taking hold of philosophical conceptualization. Hume possesses an extreme skepticism, but between the lines we find his honesty toward uncertainty and pragmatism for what to do about uncertainty itself. Likewise, the ramifications of methodological naturalism, early modern science, and the predominance of the machine in industrialized society come to fruition. Unfortunately, Hume was too polarizing for most to embrace then and gained notoriety primarily through Kant.

The ramifications of a machine that behaves according the rules of deterministic physical reality at one “level” but somehow produces self-conscious reflection and free choice at another remains difficult to grasp. To do so, we end up in the qubit code in which space-time has no bearing. However, each escape we allow, any denial and simplification, prevents understanding machinic virtualization and agency. This in turn produces a morally repugnant allowance of inequalities under false pretenses. The dogmatic separation of animal, machine, and human intelligence in science and philosophy is meaningless sophistry to Hume.

Hume attempts to give us as the highest good the libertarian stoic, who is a creative scientist, free thinker, and system builder. Rational citizens democratically and rightfully follow the critical leadership of the System Builder, becoming machines for the mechanization of the system. So long as the followers complete their subjection to a leader base on the merit and vision of the person and the system, Hume feels satisfied that the inequality of conduct has justification. Virtuosity should be the justification of inequalities, rather than money, religion, or lineage:

“Like many subordinate artists, employed to form the several wheels and springs of a machine: Such are those who excel in all the particular arts of life. He is the master workman who puts those several parts together; moves them according to just harmony and proportion; and produces true felicity as the result of their conspiring order.”

– The Stoic 6, Mil 149

This leaves open the larger problem of how far a system builder ought to feel privileged in mechanizing, though he handles this elsewhere. The functional harmony of specialized, divided, organized machines has its own beauty to Hume. In this conceptualization of leadership, Hume becomes the perfect model of arborescence in every topic he touches. Describing the ability of the emotions to distort the clarity of understanding in the mind:

“The least exterior hindrance to such small springs, or the least internal disorder, disturbs their motion, and confounds the operation of the whole machine.”

– Of the Standard of Taste

Order is beauty, while disorder is disruptive. Freedom of representational democracy must have in its means and ends a level of social stability, or else society has no justification. Skepticism toward metaphysical ideals of injustice, combined with scientific approach to a logically ordered system, lead him to speak frequently of the “political machine” that receives orderly conduct through continuous self-maintenance against mysticism, corruption, and despotism:

“Rust may grow to the springs of the most accurate political machine, and disorder its motions.”

– Idea of a perfect commonwealth

Hume makes a clear distinction between the systems of representation and the machines that display order. This is both materially and politically self-similar for him. In general, he considers anything behaving in accordance with apparent causality and physicality, a machine. He considers any disorder a breakdown of the machine. Loss of functionalism becomes thereby our criterion for judgement of patterns of behavior.

The perpetual flux of perception contains objects that we sense in an uninterrupted succession. Why this virtualization feels so complete remains unknowable; “the power or force, which actuates the whole machine” is one we will never perceive, because lies outside the boundaries of perception. Hume’s statement expresses hard agnosticism that does not fit with the rest of his optimistic methodological naturalism.

When tackling this metaphysical element of cosmology, Hume again returns to probability and emergence, as the cosmos is a machine of machines of machines behaving according to rules:

“You will find [the cosmos] to be nothing but one great machine, subdivided into an infinite number of lesser machines, which again admit of subdivisions, to a degree beyond what human senses and faculties can trace and explain.”

– Hume Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion

In general, Hume’s employment of the machine as a metaphor gives it a glorified status, whereby events that interrelate predictably and with high probability are mechanical, and therefore beautiful. We may paraphrase and elaborate his expression. The cosmic machine emerges from galaxy machines, which emerge from astronomical machines, which emerge from molecular machines, which emerge from atomic machines, which emerge from quantum machines. This is the contemporary suspension of disbelief we maintain in methodological naturalism. Humanity is a complex biological machine at both individual and species level, witnessing the perpetual flux between the molar and molecular. The axiomatization of machinic theory is therefore essential to the sciences. Through purposeful uncertainty of conclusions, we have in the past two centuries taken immense steps forward in predictions of probability, at levels of observation Hume might barely have imagined.

As a system of inequalities, Hume best summarizes the ethics of moral machines unintentionally, in a footnote: “That the lighter machine yield to the heavier, and, in machines of the same kind, that the empty yield to the loaded; this rule is founded on convenience.” Convenience of machinic size and weight, rules that produce yielding to superior gravity, energy, and complexity to produce flow, this becomes the first honest analysis of hierarchy; because, “societies of men are absolutely requisite for the subsistence of the species; and the public convenience, which regulates morals, is inviolably established in the nature of man and of the world, in which he lives.”

Found in An Inquiry Concerning Human Understanding, these statements provide a groundwork for a morality of acceleration, expansion, and growth. This is the height of Mechanization paradigm an idealistic statement, but the logic underlying it was too far-fetched without the scientific discoveries that have since vindicated it. Combined with scientific advances, capitalism, and the digital age, this prioritization of flow feels comfortable to a contemporary technologist. The question that remains, if we accept the preservation of the human species through the ordering of Earth, we must develop the ethics by which we judge the unintended consequences of mechanization. A true science of ethical ideal is necessary, not based on consensus, but based on vision for a better future for all life. When technology alienates, and production destroys, we must analyze the boundary at which short-run mechanization re-territorializes into long-run machination. Miraculating the symbolic, capital, is not the answer.

For now, we may continue the philosophical evolution of the moral machines produced by the social machines. Based on our distinction, consciousness recognizing itself as causal agent results in the moral creativity of the System Builder. The System Builder is feel the system of representations leave consciousness liberated to machinic agency in the development of new systems of representation. In contrast, consciousness recognizing itself as machinic effect of another system of representation entraps itself. The System Builder employs the symbolic order to gain Quantum Liberty, even without proof of freedom. Those who are subjected, even when free of dominated objectification, are machines who self-enslave without proof of power over them. The system that liberates itself to build new systems of values places the power of purpose intrinsic to its own system, the machine enslaves itself through belief in its enslavement to other machines producing it; social, ideological, biological, and metaphysical.

This distinction provides a new addition to the definition of morality; the essence of morality is the will to adhere to a symbolic rule that prioritize long-run realization of the system of values over the short-run desires of the machines. We will find that the problem remains discursive. When John Locke and Adam Smith combine the System Builder with utilitarianism, this anchors a moral justification for the inequalities of economic liberalism and constitutional democracy. When Nietzsche combines the System Builder with aristocratic egoism and evolutionary racism, this anchors a moral justification for the inequalities of fascism and nationalistic socialism. When Marx combines the System Builder with the virtuosity of fraternal craftsmanship, this anchors a moral justification for the inequalities of dictatorial communism. In a Theocracy, God is the only System Builder, nominally. From Xenofeminism, we find prophecy of total upheaval by an artificial superintelligence aligned the feminine mystique. In each of these cases, we see that, while political economic, ethics, and science are part of a feedback loop with personal morality, the moral systems of individuals anchor new feedback loops for the evolution of the social machine.