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m0nk3ee

New Adam Curtis Documentary: Hypernormalisation

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14 hours ago, m0nk3ee said:

Might be worth a watch, released today: Adam Curtis, HyperNormalisation: www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/p04b183c 

from the creator of Bitter Lake.

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Got thirty seconds in and decided this might just be the usual BBC progressive biased tosh when it equated BREXIT to Islamaphobia, terrorism and Putin. If someone else watches the whole thing and has a different view...let us know.

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59 minutes ago, HovelinHove said:

Got thirty seconds in and decided this might just be the usual BBC progressive biased tosh when it equated BREXIT to Islamaphobia, terrorism and Putin. If someone else watches the whole thing and has a different view...let us know.

Equal in the sense that they're all things we're told to fear?

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Bit too much to digest in a single sitting, and the arguments are all very familiar from Curtis's previous work. My worry is that he's begun to get lost in the Upside Down rather than illuminate it. It was the comprehensive failure of Keynesian economists on the Left to explain and meliorate the stagflation of the 1970s which gave the Neoclassicals/Monetarists their opportunity a decade later. The unexpected collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989 served to reinforce the free market/deregulatory grip on the popular imagination and public policy when these ideas would have been subject to mounting critical scrutiny otherwise (re. Reagan's colossal deficits, the stock market crash of 1987, and the UK's expulsion from the ERM). The creeping failure of the Neoclassical model from 1997 onwards is obvious in hindsight, though globalisation and the 'Maestro' Alan Greenspan threw a heavy smokescreen over the underlying trend until 2004-5, or thereabouts.

Edited by zugzwang

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8 hours ago, HovelinHove said:

Got thirty seconds in and decided this might just be the usual BBC progressive biased tosh when it equated BREXIT to Islamaphobia, terrorism and Putin. If someone else watches the whole thing and has a different view...let us know.

Don't have time to go in depth, but basically Brexit is because of that stuff. Postmodern propaganda if I had to sum it up in 2 words.

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Seems that suicide bombing meant we all got scared and voted for Brexit and Trump.

Trump got a couple of shoehorned mentions, but nothing on Hillary whilst discussing Assad and Syria at length.

Apparently no-one knows what Russia's agenda is in Syria. WTF are you talking about Curtis? I could give you several reasons and l am a complete pleb.

I think there's some weird conflation he makes between cause and effect. i.e. Politicians provide simplified version of reality because they can't manage the real world with it's complexities. Then people see that what they are being told doesn't match reality at all and lose faith (hence Brexit and Trump would be my next logical step) but no apparently this is the new reality we are being presented with.

It's like Curtis is asserting that the public can't really change anything themselves, they just consume something that someone else gives them to keep them happy and stable - so even mainstream surprises like Brexit somehow get co-opted into the master plan people have for us even though he discusses throughout how complexity and unforseen circumstances and blowback cuases all sorts of unexpected end results.

I wouldn't mind someone pitching in on this. Kind of left me feeling like Curtis is missing the point or has a world view that consists of a hammer and everything that happens is a nail.

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I may be doing the man a disservice here, but it sound to me (I haven't watched it) like Curtis is a mainstream approved David Icke/Max Keiser lite.

When Icke or Keiser says something, many people are horrified and poo pooh it (well, with Icke there is the lizard stuff I suppose) ....and then a toned down version that leaves out the nuance/graphic detail eventually makes its way into the mainstream - if it's on the beeb it's now sacrosanct of course - via Curtis and his ilk and people nod sagely and make these people out to be prescient.

It's like the oft trotted out line 'no-one could have forseen the banking crisis' ....except for anyone with a brain. 

What very few predicted was the lengths that the sociopaths in power would go to to keep their little system afloat. But the world is becoming much more cynical now and I guess that's why docco's like this can get an airing.

 

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I thought the central premise that reality is becoming more 'fungible' in politics was an interesting notion- but he kind of missed the more obvious aspects of both Trump and Brexit- that both are expressions not of false reality but of the all too real failure of the rising tide of neo liberal globalisation to lift all boats.

The reason that people are apparently more willing to buy into the 'cartoon' versions of reality offered by Trump and Brexit is not because they have been brainwashed by an echo chamber internet but because they have a bigger fish to fry- which is to attack the establishment via it's only vulnerable point- the ballot box.

Curtis seems to be stuck in an echo chamber of his own here- in his cartoon reality everyone who voted Brexit or supports Trump is a racist thug- the non cartoon reality is a little more complex than that.

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41 minutes ago, wonderpup said:

I thought the central premise that reality is becoming more 'fungible' in politics was an interesting notion- but he kind of missed the more obvious aspects of both Trump and Brexit- that both are expressions not of false reality but of the all too real failure of the rising tide of neo liberal globalisation to lift all boats.

The reason that people are apparently more willing to buy into the 'cartoon' versions of reality offered by Trump and Brexit is not because they have been brainwashed by an echo chamber internet but because they have a bigger fish to fry- which is to attack the establishment via it's only vulnerable point- the ballot box.

Curtis seems to be stuck in an echo chamber of his own here- in his cartoon reality everyone who voted Brexit or supports Trump is a racist thug- the non cartoon reality is a little more complex than 

Yeah, and the feeling that he is locked into his own simplified version of reality (the 2 minutes that covered the topic of Brexit, represented by, after a clip of Trump claiming the US is being invaded by muslims, Farage saying we need to accept that some muslims in this country represent a threat and then the end scene from Carrie where it all goes terribly pear shaped and she burns everyone alive) was the reason I called it postmodern.

Because either he's totally unaware that he has grossly simplified a complex issue while making a documentary about gross simplifications of issues, or he's taking liberties by assuming we won't notice that he is doing what he describes, or he's trying to be clever by cloaking his gross simplification by diverting our attention to other gross simplications.

I can't tell if he's taking the piss or not.

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Like all things, you have to take the information and use it with other information and come to your own conclusions.

It is way to long, and not very coherent. He does raise some links which in hindsight I didn't realise was going on at the time.

In summary, the banks have all the power, everything else is noise so that dodgy geezers can get elected and make a quick buck.

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2 hours ago, wonderpup said:

I thought the central premise that reality is becoming more 'fungible' in politics was an interesting notion- but he kind of missed the more obvious aspects of both Trump and Brexit- that both are expressions not of false reality but of the all too real failure of the rising tide of neo liberal globalisation to lift all boats.

The reason that people are apparently more willing to buy into the 'cartoon' versions of reality offered by Trump and Brexit is not because they have been brainwashed by an echo chamber internet but because they have a bigger fish to fry- which is to attack the establishment via it's only vulnerable point- the ballot box.

Curtis seems to be stuck in an echo chamber of his own here- in his cartoon reality everyone who voted Brexit or supports Trump is a racist thug- the non cartoon reality is a little more complex than that.

So I don't need to watch it then. Pretty much what I expected from watching the first minute. 

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Because either he's totally unaware that he has grossly simplified a complex issue while making a documentary about gross simplifications of issues, or he's taking liberties by assuming we won't notice that he is doing what he describes, or he's trying to be clever by cloaking his gross simplification by diverting our attention to other gross simplications.

I can't tell if he's taking the piss or not.

Sadly I suspect Curtis is being sincerely myopic here- which is quite elegant in a way- his own film perfectly embodies the very type of cognitive bias it explicates. So he's kind of made his point twice.

I watched it on the Iplayer- it was fun see just just below on the screen that the Iplayer was telling me that it had chosen some 'related content' based on my current pick- so a documentary critiquing 'echo chamber' feedback was itself generating echo chamber feedback- nice.:D

 

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14 hours ago, wonderpup said:

I thought the central premise that reality is becoming more 'fungible' in politics was an interesting notion- but he kind of missed the more obvious aspects of both Trump and Brexit- that both are expressions not of false reality but of the all too real failure of the rising tide of neo liberal globalisation to lift all boats.

The reason that people are apparently more willing to buy into the 'cartoon' versions of reality offered by Trump and Brexit is not because they have been brainwashed by an echo chamber internet but because they have a bigger fish to fry- which is to attack the establishment via it's only vulnerable point- the ballot box.

Curtis seems to be stuck in an echo chamber of his own here- in his cartoon reality everyone who voted Brexit or supports Trump is a racist thug- the non cartoon reality is a little more complex than that.

 

To be fair, most of the public who actually voted for Brexit almost certainly did not do so out of considering the issues and deciding that they didn't want to be controlled by an increasingly unaccountable super-state run by unelected committees, crooked politicians and bureaucrats - deciding instead to go for a more locally based democracy that would look after their interests.  Instead, they basically saw (literally) hundreds of thousands of people from Islamic countries flooding the borders of Europe against a backdrop of ever more gory Islamic terrorist outrages in Europe.

 

On top of that they'd had more than a decade of eastern European immigrants quite legally flooding their areas and being told that they were bigotted racists if they ever questioned it.   Then there was the previous decades of non-stop media blaming of Europe for anything that the establishment wanted to impose but knew would be very unpopular with the plebs, that backfired bigtime in the end.

 

Hardly surprising that when the chance finally came to vote directly for something that the establishment clearly didn't want, they did so.  IMO the decision was correct but very few of the people voting for it had actually thought it out and voted for those reasons.

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17 hours ago, Digsby said:

Because either he's totally unaware that he has grossly simplified a complex issue while making a documentary about gross simplifications of issues, or he's taking liberties by assuming we won't notice that he is doing what he describes, or he's trying to be clever by cloaking his gross simplification by diverting our attention to other gross simplications.

I can't tell if he's taking the piss or not.

Some critiques of Curtis' documentaries that I found interesting and fairly convincing:

http://www.jonathan-cook.net/blog/2016-10-19/adam-curtis-another-manager-of-perceptions/

http://medialens.org/index.php/alerts/alert-archive/2002/191-the-bbcs-the-century-of-the-self.html

http://medialens.org/index.php/alerts/alert-archive/2002/194-the-bbcs-the-century-of-the-self-sp-89086145.html

http://www.medialens.org/index.php/alerts/alert-archive/2004/365-the-power-of-nightmares-and-the-real-politics-of-fear-part-1.html

http://www.medialens.org/index.php/alerts/alert-archive/2004/370-the-power-of-nightmares-adam-curtis-responds.html

As mentioned above, I think he is a media approved voice of modern discontent, but he largely fails to properly demystify these events and leaves us feeling disempowered, not knowing who or where the real 'enemy' is.

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To be fair, most of the public who actually voted for Brexit almost certainly did not do so out of considering the issues and deciding that they didn't want to be controlled by an increasingly unaccountable super-state run by unelected committees, crooked politicians and bureaucrats - deciding instead to go for a more locally based democracy that would look after their interests.  Instead, they basically saw (literally) hundreds of thousands of people from Islamic countries flooding the borders of Europe against a backdrop of ever more gory Islamic terrorist outrages in Europe.

 

On top of that they'd had more than a decade of eastern European immigrants quite legally flooding their areas and being told that they were bigotted racists if they ever questioned it.   Then there was the previous decades of non-stop media blaming of Europe for anything that the establishment wanted to impose but knew would be very unpopular with the plebs, that backfired bigtime in the end.

 

Hardly surprising that when the chance finally came to vote directly for something that the establishment clearly didn't want, they did so.  IMO the decision was correct but very few of the people voting for it had actually thought it out and voted for those reasons.

Agreed that many Brexit voters might not have articulated their concerns in exactly the way you describe- but what they did respond to was the slogan 'take back control'-so on some level the vote was about the issue of who it is that makes the big decisions that affect their lives.

When you think about it it's really quite extraordinary that at no time was the public ever asked to endorse a policy of completely open borders with the EU- and had they been asked they would most likely have said no- Which is why, of course, they were never asked.

Maybe if the EU actually put into practice the democratic principles it claims to represent it might not be in the mess it's in now, where the governeing elites dare not give their own people a say because they are terrified of the answers they might get.

 

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On 18/10/2016 at 0:32 PM, DabHand said:

Seems that suicide bombing meant we all got scared and voted for Brexit and Trump.

Trump got a couple of shoehorned mentions, but nothing on Hillary whilst discussing Assad and Syria at length.

Apparently no-one knows what Russia's agenda is in Syria. WTF are you talking about Curtis?

Curtis appears to be ignorant.

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