October 18, 2015

Living Space, Socialist Bloc (LARB) Mirela Ivanova: From potato to proletariat, Hristo’s life was very much the socialist story of a “country boy done good.” He seems to have taken his proletarianization with at least a certain sense of pride, if only for the modernization that it symbolized. He made sure to attend party meetings, participate in discussions, and still today, under the bed in my mother’s room, are dozens of copies of the party magazine, Rabotnichesko Delo (“Workers’ Deed”), dating back to the 1970s. Into his last years, Hristo’s daily routine of reading the papers and watching the eight o’clock news was as consistent an event as any prescribed by the laws of causality. Perhaps he never articulated it in these exact words, but he had internalized the significance of class consciousness (a term Marx himself rarely used). He sought to be informed about the society he lived in, to understand his position in it, and with that, albeit to a lesser extent, to understand its history. A few times, he even made it to the public boards posted in the city center to celebrate the achievements of model workers, good Socialists. He veered right with age, much like the rest of the country; the moment socialism ceased to offer the modernization it had glorified, he (much like the rest of the country) abandoned it. That is to say, precisely because he internalized the urban modernity that socialism preached, he had to abandon that ideology when modernity became NATO, the European Union, and consumerist...
what has to be left in the ground (from the Guardian) from here: Major fossil fuel companies face the risk that significant parts of their reserves will become worthless, with Anglo American, BHP Billiton and Exxaro owning huge coal reserves and Lukoil, Exxon Mobil, BP, Gazprom and Chevron owning massive oil and gas reserves. If the world’s nations keep their pledge to combat climate change, the analysis finds the prospects are bleakest for coal, the most polluting of all fossil fuels. Globally, 82% of today’s reserves must be left underground. In major coal producing nations like the US, Australia and Russia, more than 90% of coal reserves are unused in meeting the 2C pledge. In China and India, both heavy and growing coal users, 66% of reserves are unburnable. While the prospects for gas are better, the study still found 50% of global reserves must remain unburned. But there are stark regional variations, with the giant gas producers in the Middle East and Russia having to leave huge quantities underground, while the US and Europe can exploit 90% or more of their reserves to replace coal and provide local power to their large cities. Some fracking for shale gas is consistent with the 2C target, according to the study, but is dominated by the existing industry in the US, with China, India, Africa and the Middle East needing to leave 80% of their potential shale gas unburned. Oil has the lowest proportion of unburnable fuel, with a third left unused. However, the Middle East is still required to leave 260bn barrels...

Jodi Dean

Jodi Dean is a political theorist.

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