[lbo-talk] neoliberal prosperity trickles down -- NOT

Julio Huato juliohuato at gmail.com
Mon Aug 8 12:34:06 PDT 2011

lbo83235 wrote:

> So (self-)conscious disregard of consequences *can* be mistaken
> for ignorance. I'll def take that into account. ;-)

Funny you say that. A Soviet philosopher (I can't remember the name now) once wrote (I'm paraphrasing from memory here) that the execution of high art had the feel of something *unintentionally* produced. The idea implied that, behind every grand artistic execution, there was much hard work preceding it. But indeed, high performance in any art (including political action) entails a mental state that *appears* to negate self-consciousness. The more reflective (or self-conscious) one is, the worse her performance. I guess that "empty-your-mind" mental state is what Zen Buddhists often refer to. Or dancers or actors or preachers. But, again, for a performer to go to the very surface of their sensory powers -- "outside" of their minds (as it were) -- and deliver, they have to precede that with so much hard work, rehearsals, detailed planning. This reminds me of Marx's frequent remark (a reference to Hegel) that an adequate presentation of ideas tends to appear as an a-priori construction: as if you knew the truth by revelation and you were just unfolding it before a reader or audience. Indeed, it seems so, but that's because the presentation is preceded by the very hard reflective work of figuring out the "internal connections." If communism will ever exist, I guess it will seem easy to the casual observer. However, that will be, not because people ignore those "internal connections," but rather because they have appropriated them mentally and (I'll add) bodily.

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