Welcome to Bookmarker!

This is a personal project by @dellsystem. I built this to help me retain information from the books I'm reading. Currently can only be used by a single user (myself), but I plan to extend it to support multiple users eventually.

Source code on GitHub (MIT license).

7

The original Luddites are similarly misunderstood. As Marxist historian Eric Hobsbawm wrote in a 1952 article, machine breaking was a common tactic of labor resistance during the Industrial Revolution. Rather than directing their anger at technology per se, workers broke machines “as a means of coercing their employers into granting them concessions with regard to wages and other matters.” Such sabotage “was directed not only against machines, but also against raw material, finished goods, and even the private property of employers.”

The modern figure of the Luddite is valuable to capitalists and their ideologues for primarily rhetorical reasons: if workers can be portrayed as hostile to some method or device that has manifestly positive qualities, they can be dismissed as selfish or irrational. Never mind that in many cases, the problem is that useful and potentially emancipatory technologies are trapped within a capitalist integument, optimized to maximize private profit rather than social wealth.

Ours to Master (6) by Jacobin 10 months ago

The original Luddites are similarly misunderstood. As Marxist historian Eric Hobsbawm wrote in a 1952 article, machine breaking was a common tactic of labor resistance during the Industrial Revolution. Rather than directing their anger at technology per se, workers broke machines “as a means of coercing their employers into granting them concessions with regard to wages and other matters.” Such sabotage “was directed not only against machines, but also against raw material, finished goods, and even the private property of employers.”

The modern figure of the Luddite is valuable to capitalists and their ideologues for primarily rhetorical reasons: if workers can be portrayed as hostile to some method or device that has manifestly positive qualities, they can be dismissed as selfish or irrational. Never mind that in many cases, the problem is that useful and potentially emancipatory technologies are trapped within a capitalist integument, optimized to maximize private profit rather than social wealth.

—p.7 Ours to Master (6) by Jacobin 10 months ago
9

[...] Winning a share of the fruits of automation for the rest of us requires victory at the level of the state rather than the individual workplace.

This could be done through a universal basic income, a minimum payment guaranteed to all citizens completely independent of work. If pushed by progressive forces, the UBI would be a non-reformist reform that would also quicken automation by making machines more competitive against workers better positioned to reject low wages. It would also facilitate labor organization by acting as a kind of strike fund and cushion against the threat of joblessness.

A universal basic income could defend workers and realize the potential of a highly developed, post-scarcity economy; it could break the false choice between well-paid workers or labor-saving machines, strong unions or technological advancement.

not sure how I feel about this ... seems like it could easily lead to a local maximum (suboptimal equilibrium)

Ours to Master (6) by Jacobin 10 months ago

[...] Winning a share of the fruits of automation for the rest of us requires victory at the level of the state rather than the individual workplace.

This could be done through a universal basic income, a minimum payment guaranteed to all citizens completely independent of work. If pushed by progressive forces, the UBI would be a non-reformist reform that would also quicken automation by making machines more competitive against workers better positioned to reject low wages. It would also facilitate labor organization by acting as a kind of strike fund and cushion against the threat of joblessness.

A universal basic income could defend workers and realize the potential of a highly developed, post-scarcity economy; it could break the false choice between well-paid workers or labor-saving machines, strong unions or technological advancement.

not sure how I feel about this ... seems like it could easily lead to a local maximum (suboptimal equilibrium)

—p.9 Ours to Master (6) by Jacobin 10 months ago
14

This kind of gamification promises solutions to inequality that will come faster and more efficiently than governments can deliver them by “channelizing user agency.” Inequality? There’s an app for that!

Technophobia might seem to be the only response from the Left. For every injustice, we are presented with a purportedly politically neutral tech-based solution, which promises to solve the problems of the dispossessed without ever disturbing the privileges of the powerful. In such a depoliticized climate, it is no surprise that some radicals have come to be suspicious of technology, to see social relations of domination inscribed in the forces of production themselves.

Such an attitude, however justified, does an injustice to the legacy of socialist thinking on technology. From the beginning of the modern workers’ movement, concerns about the place of technological progress in the attempts to confront “the social problem” have been central to socialist theory. If we examine some of the positions that shaped socialist thinking on technology, we can use them to reconstruct a role for those who refused to let what Brecht called “the new bad things” rest in the hands of gamifiers and disruptors.

Technology and Socialist Strategy (13) by Paul Heideman 10 months ago

This kind of gamification promises solutions to inequality that will come faster and more efficiently than governments can deliver them by “channelizing user agency.” Inequality? There’s an app for that!

Technophobia might seem to be the only response from the Left. For every injustice, we are presented with a purportedly politically neutral tech-based solution, which promises to solve the problems of the dispossessed without ever disturbing the privileges of the powerful. In such a depoliticized climate, it is no surprise that some radicals have come to be suspicious of technology, to see social relations of domination inscribed in the forces of production themselves.

Such an attitude, however justified, does an injustice to the legacy of socialist thinking on technology. From the beginning of the modern workers’ movement, concerns about the place of technological progress in the attempts to confront “the social problem” have been central to socialist theory. If we examine some of the positions that shaped socialist thinking on technology, we can use them to reconstruct a role for those who refused to let what Brecht called “the new bad things” rest in the hands of gamifiers and disruptors.

—p.14 Technology and Socialist Strategy (13) by Paul Heideman 10 months ago
21

With these three principles, Braverman restored Marx’s emphasis on the class implications of technology in capitalist society. Scientific management was no neutral technique for improving efficiency, but a scheme for controlling labor in its struggle with capital. The failure to appreciate this point is clear in Lenin and Gramsci’s discussions of Taylorism and Fordism, and leads quite directly to the one-sided conclusions they reached about the applicability of Taylorist techniques in post-capitalist society.

Braverman defines three principles of Taylorism:

  1. dissociation of labour process from skills of workers (deskilling them to reduce their power)
  2. separating conception from execution (instead of allowing workers to design their own processes, which again gives them too much power)
  3. scientific management, where management redesigns the production process for maximum profit
Technology and Socialist Strategy (13) by Paul Heideman 10 months ago

With these three principles, Braverman restored Marx’s emphasis on the class implications of technology in capitalist society. Scientific management was no neutral technique for improving efficiency, but a scheme for controlling labor in its struggle with capital. The failure to appreciate this point is clear in Lenin and Gramsci’s discussions of Taylorism and Fordism, and leads quite directly to the one-sided conclusions they reached about the applicability of Taylorist techniques in post-capitalist society.

Braverman defines three principles of Taylorism:

  1. dissociation of labour process from skills of workers (deskilling them to reduce their power)
  2. separating conception from execution (instead of allowing workers to design their own processes, which again gives them too much power)
  3. scientific management, where management redesigns the production process for maximum profit
—p.21 Technology and Socialist Strategy (13) by Paul Heideman 10 months ago
28

Extreme travel firm Space Adventures began offering occasional private trips to the International Space Station in 2001. Ticket prices reached $30 million.

not a bad way of getting rid of rich people tbh

Democratize the Universe (25) by Nick Levine 10 months ago

Extreme travel firm Space Adventures began offering occasional private trips to the International Space Station in 2001. Ticket prices reached $30 million.

not a bad way of getting rid of rich people tbh

—p.28 Democratize the Universe (25) by Nick Levine 10 months ago
29

The Brazilian delegate to the committee summarized the group’s position: “It does not seem justifiable ... that space activities ... should evolve in a climate of total laissez-faire, which would conceal under the cloak of rationality new ways for an abusive exercise of power by those who exert control over technology.” Despite opposition from both the Soviet Union and the United States, the final draft of this new outer space agreement included a version of the “common heritage of mankind” doctrine.

the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, 1973

ofc the US did not agree

Democratize the Universe (25) by Nick Levine 10 months ago

The Brazilian delegate to the committee summarized the group’s position: “It does not seem justifiable ... that space activities ... should evolve in a climate of total laissez-faire, which would conceal under the cloak of rationality new ways for an abusive exercise of power by those who exert control over technology.” Despite opposition from both the Soviet Union and the United States, the final draft of this new outer space agreement included a version of the “common heritage of mankind” doctrine.

the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, 1973

ofc the US did not agree

—p.29 Democratize the Universe (25) by Nick Levine 10 months ago
40

However, discussions of the peddling of digital selves by gray-market data companies and Silicon Valley giants are usually separate from conversations about increasingly exploitative working conditions or the burgeoning market for precarious, degrading work. But these are not separate phenomena — they are intricately linked, all pieces in the puzzle of modern capitalism.

[...]

But the degradation of work is not a given. Increasing exploitation and immiseration are tendencies, not fixed outcomes ordained by the rules of capitalism. They are the result of battles lost by workers and won by capitalists. The ubiquitous use of smartphones to extend the workday and expand the market for shit jobs is a result of the weakness of both workers and working-class movements. The compulsion and willingness of increasing numbers of workers to engage with their employers through their phones normalizes and justifies the use of smartphones as a tool of exploitation, and solidifies constant availability as a requirement for earning a wage.

[...]

The smartphone is central to this process. It provides a physical mechanism to allow constant access to our digital selves and opens a nearly uncharted frontier of commodification.

Individuals don’t get paid in wages for creating and maintaining digital selves — they get paid in the satisfaction of participating in rituals, and the control afforded them over their social interactions. They get paid in the feeling of floating in the vast virtual connectivity, even as their hand machines mediate social bonds, helping people imagine togetherness while keeping them separate as distinct productive entities. The voluntary nature of these new rituals does not make them any less important, or less profitable for capital.

"they are intricately linked, all pieces in the puzzle of modern capitalism" similar to what I say in my tech dev for the many piece

The Smartphone Society (35) by Nicole Aschoff 10 months ago

However, discussions of the peddling of digital selves by gray-market data companies and Silicon Valley giants are usually separate from conversations about increasingly exploitative working conditions or the burgeoning market for precarious, degrading work. But these are not separate phenomena — they are intricately linked, all pieces in the puzzle of modern capitalism.

[...]

But the degradation of work is not a given. Increasing exploitation and immiseration are tendencies, not fixed outcomes ordained by the rules of capitalism. They are the result of battles lost by workers and won by capitalists. The ubiquitous use of smartphones to extend the workday and expand the market for shit jobs is a result of the weakness of both workers and working-class movements. The compulsion and willingness of increasing numbers of workers to engage with their employers through their phones normalizes and justifies the use of smartphones as a tool of exploitation, and solidifies constant availability as a requirement for earning a wage.

[...]

The smartphone is central to this process. It provides a physical mechanism to allow constant access to our digital selves and opens a nearly uncharted frontier of commodification.

Individuals don’t get paid in wages for creating and maintaining digital selves — they get paid in the satisfaction of participating in rituals, and the control afforded them over their social interactions. They get paid in the feeling of floating in the vast virtual connectivity, even as their hand machines mediate social bonds, helping people imagine togetherness while keeping them separate as distinct productive entities. The voluntary nature of these new rituals does not make them any less important, or less profitable for capital.

"they are intricately linked, all pieces in the puzzle of modern capitalism" similar to what I say in my tech dev for the many piece

—p.40 The Smartphone Society (35) by Nicole Aschoff 10 months ago
78

The destructive effects examined above are not necessary features of technological change; they are necessary features of technological change in capitalism. Overcoming them requires overcoming capitalism, even if we only have a provisional sense of what that might mean.

The pernicious tendencies associated with technological change in capitalist workplaces are rooted in a structure where managers are agents of the owners of the firm’s assets, with a fiduciary duty to further their private interests. But a society’s means of production are not goods for personal consumption, like a toothbrush. The material reproduction of society is an inherently public matter, as the technological development of capitalism itself, resting on public funds, confirms. Capital markets, where private claims to productive resources are bought and sold, treat public power as if it were just another item for personal use. They can, and should, be totally done away with.

basically my dissertation lol

Red Innovation (75) by Tony Smith 10 months ago

The destructive effects examined above are not necessary features of technological change; they are necessary features of technological change in capitalism. Overcoming them requires overcoming capitalism, even if we only have a provisional sense of what that might mean.

The pernicious tendencies associated with technological change in capitalist workplaces are rooted in a structure where managers are agents of the owners of the firm’s assets, with a fiduciary duty to further their private interests. But a society’s means of production are not goods for personal consumption, like a toothbrush. The material reproduction of society is an inherently public matter, as the technological development of capitalism itself, resting on public funds, confirms. Capital markets, where private claims to productive resources are bought and sold, treat public power as if it were just another item for personal use. They can, and should, be totally done away with.

basically my dissertation lol

—p.78 Red Innovation (75) by Tony Smith 10 months ago