Last Chapter

On to the last chapter, chapter 8, with the final pre-submit edit.

Chapter 7 was a bit of a worry in terms of structure, but I realised the biggest problem was that I had not explained why the examples I provided of the shifting composition of automotive technologies were important in the rise of the imports and a shift away from street machining culture (rotaries, ‘hi tech’ engine swaps, actual import cars, “plug ‘n’ play” styles of modification, and lastly ‘retrotech’). I am very happy with the chapter now! The argument is very clear.

I am off to the gym for a break. My sister and her b/f arrive tonight! Very excited!

Accelerate!

bullshit

From the editorial of The Australian:

History will look kindly on John Howard’s political career, including most of his prime ministership. He repaired the financial ravages Labor left in the middle 1990s. He did a great deal to smother the fire of race hate lit by Pauline Hanson. Above all, he supervised the long boom and made sure that all Australians had a chance to share in the prosperity.

John Howard capitalised on reforms made by Labor in the 1980s and early 1990s. He tapped into the vein of reactionary nationalism and thus increased cultural division in Australia. He favoured certain population segments over others (indicated by the selective funding and welfare arrangements) and did nothing to make sure everyone had an equal opportunity to prosper.

UPDATE: From the UK Guardian is this opinion piece that puts paid to ideas that John Howard was a good Prime Minister.

Worthy

Either ethics makes no sense at all, or this is what it means and has nothing else to say: not to be unworthy of what happens to us.
— Deleuze, The Logic of Sense, p149

I have been thinking about worthiness a lot today. To get an appreciation of the active forces in our respective lives, the positive dimension of life that increases our capacity to act and to live, means letting our souls vibrate with the sick humanity of reactive forces. From the perspective of sickness do we get a perspective on health (or how awesome cold and flu tablets are). We then need to be worthy of the reactive forces that seize us so as to be worthy of the active forces that inflame our capacity to affirm the world.

Is this simply a pedagogy of sorrow? A dramatic way of stating, “We should learn from our mistakes?” No, at least, from what I can figure out, I don’t think so. The mistake is not an error, a disruption in what we think should have happened, but part of the infrastructure of our selves. I am a sum total of my mistakes. A sum total of everything I have done wrong. This is not a moral question, however.

The moral question would be to ask how these ‘wrongs’ contravened the ‘rights’, and what am I going to do about it. It is a reactionary science organised around deciphering the past, to find out finally — once and for all — who did what to who when and for what purpose. Justice can then be served on a transcendental plate.

If one is not aware of how the reactive forces of mistakes seize one’s soul then there is a desparate and somewhat paranoid pursuit to legislate the future without ever having questioned whether one is worthy or not. Expel the wrongs and somehow that leaves what is right? It leaves nothing but an exhausted anger.

The ethical question would be to ask how do my mistakes, and those other mistakes within which am implicated, feed who I am now and are explicated through me. Am I worthy of my mistakes?

I live with my mistakes, they are not in the past, but in the present. Although the outcome of a mistake is bad, the mistake itself, what I have dissolved into the surface of my body, is not bad. It gives me a strength of will; an enigmatic, almost impossible strength that is incalculable. My mistakes are an infrastructure for an always partial perspective on the complex interplay of events I help shape and through which I am shaped. Mistakes are a positive, an ontological resource, for a perspective on the good.

Another way of phrasing Deleuze’s famous line above is to ask, how to take care of the events that allow the good of life to circulate? (All other events are frankly irrelevant.) From the infrastructural perspective of the reactive forces of mistakes, to be worthy of the events within which we are implicated and through which the world is explicated; events of love and friendship, of work opportunities and fun nights out, of the hustling bustle of preoccupation and the silent moments in the day when the cosmos seems to breathe through you.

Sober, sensible, professional are survival tactics

Interesting take on young professional workers and students by Lisa Pryor that deserves noting amongst all the Federal election hoopla.

The reams of copy written about the conservatism of my generation may need to be revised. Material changes to the way the country works, rather than embracing right-wing ideology, explains why university students these days appear so sober, sensible, professional. They embrace casual work not necessarily because they embrace the casualisation of the labour force but because that is the work that is available and that is what is necessary to support yourself through study now.
[…]
Describing us as conservative only paints half a picture. We are not a conservative generation. We are a generation that has come of age in conservative times. We have done what the times demand. If the times ever change, so will we.

after everything is said and done

So mostly finished the third chapter, five to go.

There shall be a minor, unofficial celebration at the Clare Hotel, over the road from UTS, on Friday 30 November. All friends are welcome!! I have designed and ordered a new t-shirt to mark the occassion of submitting the dissertation. I got the idea after marking 83 essays on Donnie Darko.

By the way, it may be minor and unofficial but I intend to blow off a lot of steam, so if you want to keep pace with this masculine suburban-bogan-cum-bourgie intellectualist, then be prepared for a fucking massive night…

I have discovered that I know when everything is said and done when filled with the feeling of relief; I am starting to get that feeling.