petej + negri   78

Capitalism’s New Clothes | Evgeny Morozov
Zuboff’s Copernican revolution is much easier to explain by its debt to Chandler than Foucault. Chandler’s own prescriptions were usually limited to demanding that managers be more responsible. Zuboff transcends such defeatism. But her double movement will not win before both managerial capitalism and surveillance capitalism are theorized as “capitalism”—a complex set of historical and social relationships between capital and labor, the state and the monetary system, the metropole and the periphery—and not just as an aggregate of individual firms responding to imperatives of technological and social change. That the latter, miniaturized account of competitive enterprise is the working definition of “capitalism” in American business schools is no reason to impoverish the broader discussion of the system’s rationales and shortcomings.
surveillanceCapitalism  ZuboffShoshana  surveillance  Facebook  Google  businessModels  economics  capitalism  SiliconValley  power  control  ChandlerAlfred  HarvardBusinessSchool  managerialism  ParsonsTalcott  data  predictions  behaviour  Apple  Negri  autonomism  Italy  socialFactory  multitude  post-industrialism  Blairism  Taylorism  extractivism  advertising  Amazon  Uber  dctagged  dc:creator=MorozovEvgeny 
8 weeks ago by petej
Suffering With a Smile | The Occupied Times
Being exploited is no longer enough. The nature of labour now is such that almost anyone, no matter how menial their position, is required to be seen (over)investing in their work. What we are forced into is not merely work, in the old sense of undertaking an activity we don’t want to perform; no, now we are forced to act as if we want to work. Even if we want to work in a burger franchise, we have to prove that, like reality TV contestants, we really want it. The notorious shift towards affective labour in the Global North means that it is no longer possible to just turn up at work and be miserable. Your misery has to be concealed – who wants to listen to a depressed call centre worker, to be served by a sad waiter, or be taught by an unhappy lecturer?

Yet that’s not quite right. The subjugatory libidinal forces that draw enjoyment from the current cult of work don’t want us to entirely conceal our misery. For what enjoyment is there to be had from exploiting a worker who actually delights in their work? In his sequel to Blade Runner, The Edge of Human, K W Jeter provides an insight into the libidinal economics of work and suffering. One of the novel’s characters answers the question of why, in Blade Runner‘s future world, the Tyrell Corporation bothered developing replicants (androids constructed so that only experts can distinguish them from humans). “Why should the off-world colonists want troublesome, humanlike slaves rather than nice, efficient machines? It’s simple. Machines don’t suffer. They aren’t capable of it. A machine doesn’t know when it’s being raped. There’s no power relationship between you and a machine. … For the replicant to suffer, to give its owners that whole master-slave energy, it has to have emotions. … . The replicant’s emotions aren’t a design flaw. The Tyrell Corporation put them there. Because that’s what our customers wanted.”

The reason that it’s so easy to whip up loathing for “benefit scroungers” is that – in the reactionary fantasy – they have escaped the suffering to which those in work have to submit. This fantasy tells its own story: the hatred for benefits claimants is really about how much people hate their own work. Others should suffer as we do: the slogan of a negative solidarity that cannot imagine any escape from the immiseration of work.
capitalism  work  labour  postFordism  communicativeCapitalism  Negri  subjectivity  emotionalLabour  suffering  dctagged  dc:creator=FisherMark 
february 2017 by petej
William Davies: The Political Economy of Unhappiness. New Left Review 71, September-October 2011.
"Depression is just sheer incapacity, a distinctly neo-liberal form of psychological deficiency, representing the flipside of an ethos that implores individuals to act, enjoy, perform, create, achieve and maximize. In an economy based in large part on services, enthusiasm, dynamism and optimism are vital workplace resources. The depressed employee is stricken by a chronic deflation of these psycho-economic capacities, which can lead him or her to feel economically useless, and consequently more depressed. The workplace therefore acquires a therapeutic function, for if people can somehow be persuaded to remain in work despite mental or physical illness, then their self-esteem will be prevented from falling too low, and their bio-psycho-economic potential might be rescued."
health  wellbeing  mentalHealth  depression  productivity  work  labour  immaterialLabour  Negri  Keynesianism  neoliberalism  happiness  capitalism  dctagged  dc:creator=DaviesWill  NLR 
september 2016 by petej
Why revolution is no longer possible | openDemocracy
"Today, no collaborative, networked multitude exists that might rise up in a global mass of protest and revolution. Instead, the prevailing mode of production is based on lonesome and isolated self-entrepreneurs, who are also estranged from themselves. Companies used to compete with each other. Within each enterprise, however, solidarity could occur. Today, everyone is competing against everyone else — and within the same enterprise, too. Even though such competition heightens productivity by leaps and bounds, it destroys solidarity and communal spirit. No revolutionary mass can arise from exhausted, depressive, and isolated individuals.

Neoliberalism cannot be explained in Marxist terms. The famous “alienation” of labor does not even occur. Today, we dive eagerly into work — until we burn out. The first stage of burnout syndrome, after all, is euphoria. Burnout and revolution are mutually exclusive. Accordingly, it is mistaken to believe that the Multitude will cast off the parasitic Empire to inaugurate a communist society."
neoliberalism  Negri  multitude  individualism  entrepreneurialism  overwork  competition  capitalism  sharingEconomy  commodification  communism  revolution  gigEconomy  community  RifkinJeremy  exploitation  surveillance  disclosure  burnout  mentalHealth 
september 2016 by petej
Postcapitalism | Review by Frederick H Pitts -
"As Virno suggests (1996), flexibility and free time has locked workers ever closer into the rhythms of value, in and out of work. Rather than undermining capitalist valorisation, ICTs and social media create new methods of capture. The same knowledge and freedom eulogised in the Fragment is recouped by the existing system. The blurring of work and leisure that Mason celebrates (287) is not the signal of a new settlement. It is the stabilisation of an old one. Open source is just the exploitation and valorisation of free time facilitated by the wage. The latter is paid out, as Mason notes (209), for the workers sheer existence rather than their nine-to-five. But, as with so much of what Mason calls new or novel, it was ever thus: the wage has always been a payment merely to exist. Wages do not relate to actual working time. They relate to capitalist control over time. They relate to the necessity of the worker being always ready for work in a moral and physical sense. This has no temporal specificity."
post-capitalism  postCapitalism  MasonPaul  economics  politics  Grundrisse  Marx  informationTechnology  work  labour  value  technology  fragmentOnMachines  Negri  HeinrichMichael  VirnoPaolo  utopianism 
september 2015 by petej
Economism « The Pinocchio Theory
"Hardt/Negri then make a sort of rhetorical slide when they move from the (correct) claim that capital is increasingly exploiting the entire life-world of the multitude, to the (highly dubious) claim that, therefore: “rather than an organ functioning within the capitalist body, biopolitical labor-power is becoming more and more autonomous, with capital simply hovering over it parasitically with its disciplinary regimes, apparatuses of capture, mechanisms of expropriation, financial networks, and the like” (142). The problem here is that capital has always been “parasitic” in this sense. Industrial production was/is no more “organic” than the current regime of immaterial production. (That is, unless you get rid of the old-fashioned, idealistic notion of what is “organic”, and understand that the relationship of parasite to host is itself entirely something “organic”). It is not as if workers in call centers and workers hired through temp agencies somehow have more autonomous control over what they are doing than workers on a factory assembly line. What we are still seeing is the expropriation of relative surplus-value."
Hardt  Negri  Empire  affectiveLabour  postFordism  subsumption  Multitude  theory  politics 
march 2014 by petej

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