[iDC] activism now and

Ricardo Dominguez rdom at thing.net
Thu Dec 8 13:26:05 EST 2005

Hola all,

A very very old text...but I thought that it might still have some elements
worth re-playing in these post-contemporary times and somewhat tracing out
again the questions that are bouncing around this thread...the question of
hotbodies and cold media...of resistance and disturbance...of the lost and found
communities between flashing swarms...refreshing the reload...reloading the
ante-chamber of the 4th World World that happened a long long time ago...yet
once more...now that we find ourselves facing the temporal cold war(s)
today...yet again.


The Ante-Chamber of Revolution

A Prelude to a Theory of Resistance and Maps

Ricardo Dominguez

Ours is not the house of pain and misery.

That is how he who robs
and deceives us has painted us.
Ours is not the land of death and anguish.
Ours is not the treason nor does our way have room for the
Ours is not the empty ground and the hollow sky.
Ours is the house of light and joy.
That is how we created it, that is how
we struggle for it, that is how we nurture it.
Ours is the land of life and hope.
Ours is the path of peace
which is planted with dignity and harvested
with justice and liberty.

- Fifth Declaration Of The Lacandon Jungle

The Ante-Chamber of Revolution

Zapatismo is not bound by the limits of interconnectivity or the raw violence of
neo-liberalism. It is a network of hope embedded deep in the heart of a
community which opposes the loss of voice in its own home. A community which
walks with the ghost of history and the ghost of exchange. Zapatismo haunts the
big MASK with small masks that walk between code. They have sent us notes about
this virtual condition, sometimes they ask that we pass the notes on, and
sometimes they ask us to sing a tender song. They say they became an
intergalactic protocol by slipping under the electronic fabric one drunken
night. They say that the man they woke up next to screamed he had been tricked,
then later came back screaming that this was his bed, his home, and his kitchen
- but the man is wrong, very wrong - this was our home, a home for the homeless.

The Book of Mirrors, The Hybrid, and the MESH (a short essay)

Late Capital is caught by its own reflection, it wants to be both original and
copy, soft and hard, top and bottom, speed and inertia. The Rand Corporation
calls for hybrid hierarchies and networks, with both Top Sight Command and
Distributed Network Teams that function as an interconnected MESH of total
command and total autonomy, for power only. The Hybrid MESH now has many names:
flat power, soft power, liquid power, power ad infinitum. Late Capital agrees
with Mao on what this power must do: centralize strategically, but decentralize

The Zapatistas say:
Ya basta! Break the Mirror! Do you really need Maps!*

*Maps (A Long Footnote)

Several different maps of information have been put on the block for our
inspection: frontier, castle, real estate, rhizome, hive, matrix, virus,
network, plug-in your own, etc., Each map creates a different line of flight, a
different form of security, and a different pocket of resistance.

A digiscape full of drifters, free roaming data cowboys, mail tribes, code
ranchers and bandwidth barons. ISP justice decides the laws for their
community. Those that go beyond the local enclave's limit are on their own in a
lawless infinity. On the frontier the only security one has is that of a few
trusted URL's, one's faithful machine, and keeping the VirusScan loaded and
close by at all times. On the Frontier: It's every link for itself and
Microsoft against all.

Resistance on the Frontier: Banditos! We don't need no Stinkin' Badges!

This is a space of bunkers and transcendental hierarchies, with moats, high
walls, and drawbridges. Movement between these bunkers is done by Knights,
bearing the latest war gear, protecting the flow of messages and goods. The
most important defense of A Castle is the amount of "Air" between the outside
and the castle's core. For Castles it is the roads between them they fear.
Anything could be lurking in the dark woods.

Resistance between Castles: Robin Hood! Steal from the Rich and Give to the

Real Estate
This is similar to where you are now, as you read or hear these words. Space is
owned or rented by individual transnational-companies, and anything in-between.
Lots of big signs selling things, gentrification of homes for senior citizens,
the endless streams of the homeless. Everyone wants laws to protect the welfare
of exchange under the sign of social control. They say they want to protect the
children. In this space, only the commodity is protected.

Resistance under the For Sale Sign: Squat the Future! Burn the sign down!

Here Bodies without Organs schizflux between roots, pop-up flora, holes and
machinic desire. Endless tendrils criss-cross space, some spaces become hard
and never move again, some spaces become smooth and never crack, nothing
escapes the virtual struggle between The State and The War Machine. Here,
endless interconnectivity rules all possibility as an either/or line of
flight-territorialize or de-territorialize, you have no choice.

Resistance at the root: Become a body with organs and smell the flowers.

The Hive
A wave-system so tightly bound that no difference resides among each segment of
the wave. Each segment is part of a wave-mass, A SWARM. The Hive is able to
absorb any change both within or without the SWARM. Each segment-wave functions
as a SWARM, alone or apart from the other segments. Each element of a SWARM
functions locally in parallel interdependence with the rest of the wave mass.
The Hive and the SWARM act as one, but only in one direction. Each shift in the
SWARM becomes a part of the HIVE at the same moment. Each segment of the SWARM
is a part of the HIVE, but the HIVE is not a part of the SWARM. Each segment of
SWARM needs the HIVE to be a part of a SWARM, but the HIVE does not need any
specific segment of the wave-mass to be a SWARM.

Resistance among the SWARM: Use the SWAT! Act Alone.

Weaving symbionts creating, moving, offering the permanent revolution of
Pandora's code. The Matrix is disequilibrium as invention, aphanisis as
informatic-quanta, soft accidents, and action as care. An alien politics of the
body as hope. Still the Matrix is sweating in the labor pools of speed
production. The matrices are held hostage as the base materialism of Late
Captial. Wetware for the endless multi-tasking of chaotics. The Matrix is still

Resistance in The Matrix: Have a Party! Go on Strike!

Bio-agents flow between complexity and containment, diversity and control, self
and other. Cellular circuits know the difference between antigens and
antibodies. Viral coagulation filters for non-self types in the Host in order
to assemble possible defensive patterns. Bioagents fail the Host when it meets
its other as self. It has no defense against itself, or what mimics its own
messages. Bioinformatics understand the self and not the other as self.

Resistance within the cell: Make a Vaccine! Stick a needle in a meme!

Borderless operables, hyper-redundancy, massive aggregate throughput built on
endless backplanes bring bottlenecks down to 0. Decentralized bottom up
architectures, mega-gigabit ethernets, and active response firewalls are the
multiple nexus of this space. Intelligent infrastructures allow the emergence
of total networks, micro-networks, and weak links. Network security is being
exploited by the demand for open transnational e-commerce and intercontinental
exchange routes. Exploit scripts scan vulnerabilities, replacement files wrap
packet filters, stealth sniffers generate new holes: linsniff.c, sunkill.c, and
latierra.c. Network gaps created by military-intelligence systems,
trans-corporate movement, software developers, end users, providers, and the
lack of centralized management clog the possibility of an effective and total
security solution.

Resistance on the Network: Disconnect! Take the Streets!

Mayan Hackers/The Inappropriate/d Resistance without Nostalgia (A Note)

A note was hand delivered to me during a gathering of Radical Media groups in
New York City at The Thing (a critical community server) by a network that has
been doing advance work on Zapatismo, digital activism, and html democracies.

It was a note from the Lizard Queen:

 (Message 445-Ixil /encrypted in the usual manner-con amor.c)

 hola cyber/compadre,

 Fox is showing reruns of "V", that old Sci-Fi flick, again. We
 all sit in the cantina (and watch the only TV in the community:
 the women, the children, the men, and the drunks).

 The Lizard agents are trying to control the world and a few
 small groups form a global resistance movement. The movie
 shows the conflicts and tensions between the cells, the danger
 of staying aboveground, the endless struggle against the growing
 technoforce of the Lizard-Power structure. The Lizards are also
 harvesting the humans for snacks. This is not a movie says one
 of the kids - plenty of Lizards around here.

 The children spend their mornings, after helping with work at
 home, here at the Center for Mayan Code. Right now they are
 hacking the past/future binary that has infected the system.
 Cracking mega_mythologies has become the latest fun run
 around here.

 Each day the children are recovering more pages from the
 "stolen book." The cracked Past/Future binary is being
 woven between tzotzil songs about the Man who "stole the book."
 The book was produced from the coupling between Mayan and
 a dog. A Man came and stole the written word, the symbolic
 support of knowledge for the community. As a consequence
 of this theft, the Mayans are called ignorant, and the community
 of the Man proclaim themselves to be "men of reason."
 The Children laugh and hit the return button.

 Each day the imagined community of promised monsters
 grows, phantoms mix code up, reprogram the impossible,
 then train others. The problem of temporal fragmentation is
 getting smaller. A Shared sense of time is our priority now,
 space is no longer the tool it once was. We must continue to
 build networks of shared time. The Virtual Class expects
 Mayan codes to stay in one place and attack from behind a tree,
 they don't suspect the question of time to be used against them.
 Who can know what grows in the seeds of time. How goes it
 in your time?

 I finally read that essay you sent about the new military theory
 (Magen), they seem to have finally read the French. Fractal
 infrastructures, holistic kill ratios, fatal strategies and the call
 for a RMA (Revolution in Military Affairs). Question compadre:
 why is it that only the military and the big companies are allowed
 to speak of Revolution? While all we can hope for is a disturbance?
 Perhaps it is time to speak of Zapatismo as a Revolution of Hope.
 Or Perhaps we should do as the FBI suggested in Computerworld
 magazine On their "Back Page" section (page 114) of their April 20

        A group allied with Mexico's Zapatista National Liberation
        Army is seeking worldwide electronic insurrection on May 10,
        the FBI said last week. The group urges those sympathetic
        with the revolutionaries to swamp government and bank computer
        systems in the U.S. and Mexico via the Internet on that day.

 World Wide Electronic Insurrection should be our next goal! All
 we need to do is set a date. Ask all those hackers with a heart if
 they can help. Can you also get people to fill the streets
 of the world? A HUELGA across the arc of realities! Remember
 to call for a world that makes all worlds possible.

 Well that is all. Make sure that you read this note backwards, it will
 make more sense then.

 con amor y rabia (From the mountains of the Mexican southeast),

 The Lizard Queen

 P.S. It is clear that in the arena of political action, only
 he who puts the candle where the wind is blowing will triumph;
 never the one who pretends the wind is blowing where he puts
 the candle. Juan de Mairena wrote that bit.

 P.S.S. 1998. Mexico. While the supreme government stays on
 track towards war and tries desperately to join the winds from
 Wall Street in order to push the heavy sails of the ship of death,
 these Mexican Mayan, who add the name of Emiliano Zapata to
 their history, prepare in silence the justice and the dignity that
 will have to arrive in spite of their death (or perhaps because
 of it).

 In silence, the indigenous watch the skies and the ground to
 predict the winds from below which run through the fields of Mexico
 and of the world, through the dusty streets of tiny villages and
 ranches, through the messy disorder of the popular neighborhoods,
 through the places of the honest unions, through the offices of the
 committed political parties, through the theatres-movies-auditoriums
 -salons-of shows-art galleries, through digital laboratories and
 centers of scientific investigation, through the university cubicles,
 classrooms and halls, through meetings and assemblies of political
 and social organizations, through the churches of the poor,
 through the international solidarity committees, through the national
 and foreign non-governmental organizations, through the highways,
 through the roads, through the neighborhood streets, through the
 breaches, navigating the rivers, in the lakes and in the seas of
 this country, today awash in wet, and of this world awakening, late
 certainly, but awakening.

 In silence the Zapatistas see and are seen.

 The old nose and pipe wrote this bit. A very good bit. But the
 children always want more stories about seahorses, mirrors, and lions
 who eat themselves.

 P.P.S. Just got an email from one of our friends across the sea.
 He says we must let the world know that Digital Zapatismo is a
 Myth. That no one in Chiapas has a T1 line, not one Autonomous
 Community has a working LAN, or even a good ISP connection.
 OK. The Zapatistas entered your Networks without any modems.
 Sometimes we don't even have electricity. As Homer Simpson
 said, "We now live in a society where technology makes war
 as easy as opening a can of Duff beer."

 I hope this helps.

 P.P.P.S. (The kids say-Hehe-another mega_mythology cracked! ;-)

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