[iDC] musing on humanities and other jails

Janet Hawtin lucychili at gmail.com
Wed Jul 13 04:17:34 UTC 2011

On Tue, Jul 12, 2011 at 11:59 PM, John Sobol <soboltalk at gmail.com> wrote:
> first of all, I love this...
> On Sat, Jul 9, 2011 at 9:37 PM, Janet Hawtin <lucychili at gmail.com> wrote:
>> room to live sustainably in a coherent ecology. that the continuation
>> of biological diversity was a foundation goal for each local area and
>> the planet as a whole. plan that space. mean it.

This started for me here:

It is a science project an ecology project which is interdependent on
making the local human community sustainable and happy. This is an
integrated systemic approach, participative governance at a human
scale, respect for the music which brings people together, planning
for the agricultural and cottage industry crafts, community choices as
a part of ecological management. A small farming community but an
interesting precedent/proof of concept?

It was a strong contrast to this:


This is a science project which takes as a given the existing economic
and political context and works to make a product to fit that context.
The science might be brilliant, but it feels defined by its congruence
with subjective competitive thinking. The assumption that human
population growth is an unending given the marginal reference to an
ethics process, ecological interaction is out of frame, the focus on
the probable investors and on signing one's name in a life form.

Tragedy of the commons thinking is related to game theory as a means
of selecting predictable outcomes. Which was used to select
competitive people and deselect people who were motivated by ideas
like public service. In this movie they talk about self interest as a
rational objective approach
because it was thought to produce predictable outcomes.

by Adam Curtis The Trap: Fuck you buddy (6/6)
The Trap: The Lonely Robot (1/6)

They are deliberately provocative programs but raise some interesting
questions. A review of the program:

It feels related to Patrick Crogan's experiences:

"This year my UK univ is (aside from rounds of voluntary and soon
compulsory redundancies, demotions, etc) rolling out its new 'workload
model' that quantifies what we do in units known as 'bundles',
resulting in me slated to teach across 5 modules instead of 3 last
year (can't believe how inadequate my productivity has been!); we also
have an online assessment submission and processing system being
rolled out (after a 'consultation' process after the decision had been
made) that virtually compels staff to read and provide feedback online
(the time required and departtmental stationary budgets will preclude
printing out student papers).

Major benefits: students have even less need to actually come to
university; management gets a whole new set of surveillance metadata
on staff 'productivity'."

Gardner Campbell's post about testing and quantitative analysis:
and this concept about the impacts of specific incentives.
and back to Howard Rheingold on cooperative literacies.
where what is rational for an individual is irrational for a community.


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