20190411

Democracy in Hungary – The Alliance of State Autocracy and Neoliberal Capitalism (2019) Attila Antal. A welcomed analysis of the contemporary Hungarian (political) condition. The text identifies German big-business and EU economics as a factors in the rise of Hungarian autocracy. Centers of political power benefit from disruptions in the fringe.

Democracy in Hungary is being undermined not just by the authoritarian state, but by authoritarian neoliberal capitalism. In my view, the most important challenge of our time is that of preserving democracy under the pressure of this multi-faceted (state and market) autocracy.

Experimenting with tt-rss. Inoreader has changed its policy and using it for my +500 feeds would require a yearly 20€ payment. This is a bad blow for many small scale organizations and non-facebook users who are relying on rss-feeds for news. tt-rss seems to work ok and it even has an android front-end. There is also an option for multiple users which could prove convenient  in the future. OPML import/export seems to work well but I can’t yet confirm that it finds the feeds from the backup Inoreader generated. Some of the feeds are dead and managing the data might proof difficult. So far, so good.

Mineral water compositions around the world mineralwaters.geo.uu.nl. Service maintained by Dr. Marcel van der Perk.

20190317

I have a strong urge to assemble a Elektrosluch. It is a “open-source device for electromagnetic listening”. The design is by Lom audio, which seems like a very fine organization. I’d like to attempt to develop a binaural unit and to experiment listening to the electromagnetic properties of water (when it is electrified in some way) to confirm that different batches of Faux San Pelligriano have the same consistency. I attempted to make an electromagnetic microphone last night (and to listen to it with my new Lm071 preamp) but the loose 3,5mm jack picked up more noise then the coil.

I’m feeling empowered by my new electronics skills but I lack a clear focus. I’m get inspired by everything. I’m trying to keep grounded and set my bearings by listening to still & stretched: a mute tumult of memories (2017) by Heather B. Frasch. Her gig at Control last autumn set a trajectory for my current sound work. Perhaps I should take my eurorack and other loose projects to Jesse’s smithy and attempt to formalize something in relation to the Sound of Work series. There is also the possibility to develop something with Kristian (kettlebells?) or to possibly drone out at Kontula Electronic.

I skipped the Zodiak “men’s advanced dance course” this fall. I have some plans for bodybuilding and holistic kettlebell moves. Here are some inspirational videos.

20190316

Made my first batch of Faux San Pelligriano. 1,5l water is added with ~2g of salts and minerals (10l has 0,92g Table salt, 5,7g Epsom-salt, 4,8g Plaster of Paris, 1,5g Chalk). Digesting Plaster of Paris aka. Burned Gypsum feels weird but I’m confident because Gypsum is also used in the production of tofu. Epsom salt aka. Magnesium sulfate is a spooky material too but it is used also as a laxative and it’s health benefits are well documented. Chalk and salt feel more safe to use.

Spotted Too Many Zoos online. The baritone saxophonist is called Leo Pelligriano. I want to drink Faux San Pelligriano while playing techno as Faux Leo Pelligriano.

Build an acoustic piezo preamp using a tl071. Used the toner transfer method to etch a pcb following this design (some traces came off a bit weak). The same circuit can also be found as a vero board design. Works well, sounds very clean and even amplifies the signal enough to trigger Bastl Skis. I’ll possibly make a lm386 audio amp as it’s companion, so that I can boost the signal further. I’m also planning to run the lm386 independently so that I can use it to trigger the second Skis channel. Drum triggers in the works! I designed how the two circuits would be linked while attending the Frame Epistemic Hospitality event.

Meritocracy is a myth invented by the rich (2019) Nathan Robinson.

It’s no secret that wealthy people will do nearly anything to get their kids into good schools. But this scandal only begins to reveal the lies that sustain the American idea of meritocracy.

[…] equal opportunity would require a radical re-engineering of society from top to bottom. As long as there are large wealth inequalities, there will be colossal differences in the opportunities that children have. No matter what admissions criteria are set, wealthy children will have the advantage.

20190123

Busy two weeks. Applied funding from: AVEK (Didn’t get 3000€ funding), SKR – Uudenmaan maakuntarahasto (Didn’t get funding), Taike (Didn’t get 6 month grant) and send proposals for HAM gallery (Didn’t get a show) and Place Publique (Got positive feedback but no residency).

Also preparing a teaching gig for Kankaanpää Art School. This time we’ll be reading (Communism for Kids by Bini Adamczak, 2014), writing, moving (I’m still on Kettlebells) and voting.

Up next… Updates to my portfolio and electronics (I have a nifty set of eurorack kits in the works). I build a DIY liquid carbonation system and I can now manufacture sparkling water and sodas (currently I have a batch of Ginger-beer in the works). During the weekend I converted white wine to sparkling wine! I plan to manufacture sparkling mineral waters from regional fountains (which can be found using the brilliant loydalahde.com service) and to clone famous mineral waters (such as San Pelligriano) following guides found on the khymos.org blogpost from 2012.

A 10l batch of San Pelligriano clone would require:

Kenen ajalla elät? [On Who’s Time?] (2019) Kimmo Modig. Part 1 of 5. A thoughtful text which investigates the lived experience of people who have to sacrifice their time and to constantly change their pace, to accommodate the falsified idea that contemporary capitalism makes everything available.

Perinnön vaalimista täystuhon äärellä [Protecting Cultural Legacies in the Face of Annihilation] (2018) Anna Jensen. A bright text questioning the motives of cultural preservation. I agree with Jensen but I have to argue that not all narratives need dismantling (previous post) and putting things in the museum (or defining them as UNESCO World Heritage things) is a good strategy for positioning the things to the past, offering them for the gaze of the public (for critical re-evaluation) and nullifying their mythological force (which is the case of the Swastika symbol is a good thing).

The gilets jaunes: Giving colour to suffering (2019) Benoit Bohy-Bunel. The text starts as a rant which is difficult to follow. I only read the chapter 4 titled “Brief remarks on the ‘yellow vests’ movement”, which offers a reading to the reported right-wing elements of the movement: Some parts of the moment are racist, because the nation-state subjectivity (the crisis of which Gilets Jaunes manifests) is rooted on racism.

[…] The racist, homophobic acts present in certain demonstrations, the nationalist, populist, sexist, ableist, anti-migrant and anti-social-assistance speeches, which have met with some success in certain parts of this movement, reflect the crisis of this subject-form and the rise of crisis ideologies.

There are many testimonies of suffering or social anger in this movement. These testimonies directly question the existence of the State and capitalism, with all that they imply (racism, patriarchy, ecological destruction, ableism, ageism). But the translation of this suffering, which is made against the backdrop of the crisis of the subject-form and the diffusion of populist ideologies of crisis, is not systematically emancipatory. What would be properly subversive would be to grasp, collectively and individually, the root of this lived suffering, and the radicality that it designates, so as to counteract the reactive and identity responses to the suffering. Such a capacity is not the privilege of ideologues, even “critical” ones, who would have to “educate” the “people”. Such a capacity eventually develops in the praxis of struggle, which can induce new encounters, new awareness, and new forms of life.