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August 10, 2010


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Robert Allen

Yes. Your last posts lead up to this directly, but I want to focus on that notion you have of being last in a species- political theorist. I've made a career out of being the last whatever unionized worker-- last of the "gandy dancers", railroad spike driving track worker, last of the land line telephone repair call takers, last of this, last of that. For me, it is important to remember that when we fight over jobs and technology-that-replaces jobs we are fighting against our own throw -away commodification, not, as the ruling class would have it, trying to hold on to inefficiencies and being reluctant to change.

Jodi Dean

Thanks, Bob. I'm glad you noticed the connection between the posts. Your point as the last union worker is powerful, particularly as something vital to hold onto. I've been doing home repair this summer, depending on knowledge from the paint store guy (the workers at the superstores don't have this knowledge), on the skills of an old local plumber (he says that the new guys aren't taught how to deal with all the hold kinds of pipe), etc. I feel jobs and knowledge and ways of life slipping away. On the faculty front: the new generation doesn't think much about our position as a collective; they tend to be individualistic and identified with management; they almost seem resentful of older faculty who think that we need to protect our working conditions and benefits.


"All the lies that make the world go 'round have one purpose: obscuring the communist horizon, drowning our faith that collectively we can clean the environment, educate ourselves, feed ourselves, take care of our health, learn about the planet and the universe, create and preserve beauty." I really like this! It is written very well.
I really like your way of seeing communism as a horizon.
I agree with you, we are all communist at heart and we are all bent toward that horizon as if we were plants hoping to be nourished. Part of the problem, I think, is that this passivity, waiting for Godot or whatever, waiting for the second coming... We elected Obama because he appeared to be this Godot.
Now, nowhere in the media is this great disappointment being dealt with. I think it is a great opportunity.

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