18 May 2012

Scholium (2)

Nothing in this shocks us; nothing catches us una-
wares or radically alters our feeling towards life. We
were born inside the catastrophe and with it we
have drawn up a strange and peaceable relation of

Almost an intimacy. For as long as we can remem-
ber we have received no news other than that of
the world civil war.
We have been raised as survivors, as surviving ma-
chines. We have been raised with the idea that life
consisted in walking; walking until you collapse
among other bodies that walk identically, stum-

ble, and then collapse in turn in indifference. Ul-
timately the only novelty of the present times is
that none of this can be hidden anymore, that in
a sense everyone knows it. Hence the most recent
hardening of the system: its inner workings are
plain, it would be useless to try and conjure them

Many wonder how no part of the left or far-left,
that none of the known political forces, is capable
of opposing this course of events. "But we live in
a democracy, right?" They can go on wondering
as long as they like: nothing that is expressed in
the framework of politics will ever be able to limit
the advance of the desert, because politics is part
of the desert.

We do not say this in order to advocate some ex-
tra-parliamentary politics as an antidote to liberal
democracy. The popular manifesto "We are the
Left", signed a couple of years ago by all the citi-
zen collectives and "social movements" to be found
in France, expresses well enough the logic that has
for thirty years driven extra-parliamentary poli-
tics: we do not want to seize power, overthrow the
state, etc.; so we want it to recognize us as valid

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