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).

168

Oculus Grift

Capital as the cutting-edge AI app

by Anis Shivani

2
terms
3
notes

really weird and didn't always make sense but a cool concept

Shivani, A. (2017). Oculus Grift. The Baffler, 37, pp. 168-179

171

And thanks to this same networked mutually reinforcing matrix of digital age capital, the traditional lessons of punctured asset bubbles also failed to take hold in the wake of the mortgage sector’s implosion. Capital demanded austerity, even as every sane measure of a sustainable mass recovery called for deficit spending on an enormous scale. Even after the desperate bailout of the global financial sector, the degree of leverage that capital exercises today is so great—and so unprecedented in history—that capital is no longer simply a leading sector of economic activity, but the only sector that matters. Hedge fund assets have gone from $39 billion in 1990 to around $1.5 trillion in 2008 to $3 trillion in 2016. Nonfinancial institutions have become financialized—a process well under way throughout the globalized neoliberal regime—to the point that in the United States, institutional investors have gone from owning 47 percent of the top thousand companies in 1973 to owning 73 percent in 2014. The five biggest U.S. banks owned 45 percent of assets in 2015 (a total of $7 trillion), compared to 25 percent in 2008, even as 1,400 small banks disappeared.

—p.171 by Anis Shivani 1 year, 5 months ago

And thanks to this same networked mutually reinforcing matrix of digital age capital, the traditional lessons of punctured asset bubbles also failed to take hold in the wake of the mortgage sector’s implosion. Capital demanded austerity, even as every sane measure of a sustainable mass recovery called for deficit spending on an enormous scale. Even after the desperate bailout of the global financial sector, the degree of leverage that capital exercises today is so great—and so unprecedented in history—that capital is no longer simply a leading sector of economic activity, but the only sector that matters. Hedge fund assets have gone from $39 billion in 1990 to around $1.5 trillion in 2008 to $3 trillion in 2016. Nonfinancial institutions have become financialized—a process well under way throughout the globalized neoliberal regime—to the point that in the United States, institutional investors have gone from owning 47 percent of the top thousand companies in 1973 to owning 73 percent in 2014. The five biggest U.S. banks owned 45 percent of assets in 2015 (a total of $7 trillion), compared to 25 percent in 2008, even as 1,400 small banks disappeared.

—p.171 by Anis Shivani 1 year, 5 months ago

in semiotics and postmodernism: an inability of consciousness to distinguish reality from a simulation of reality, especially in technologically advanced postmodern societies

172

Jean Baudrillard termed hyperreality—a network of surface appearance so densely configured and mediated through the manipulation of images as to displace our sense of what’s real. What we think of as the financial system is something that resides only on the surface

—p.172 by Anis Shivani
notable
1 year, 5 months ago

Jean Baudrillard termed hyperreality—a network of surface appearance so densely configured and mediated through the manipulation of images as to displace our sense of what’s real. What we think of as the financial system is something that resides only on the surface

—p.172 by Anis Shivani
notable
1 year, 5 months ago
176

Can we imagine civilization functioning in any recognizable form if we pull the plug on capital? We have reached a point where, far from conceptualizing a mode of life not dependent on capital as AI, we cannot even imagine a situation where capital’s power can be regulated; no country on earth is currently succeeding in this venture, though some, particularly in Latin America, have recently tried.

Capital has become so autonomous (the mind-boggling numbers reflect the power that stems from this autonomy) that the state as we knew it has ceased to exist as a competing power. The state, to the extent that finance dominates every decision the state makes, has become absorbed in capital. The state is merely part of the external architecture capital has learned, very intelligently, to maneuver around, with the eventual aim of extinguishing it.

—p.176 by Anis Shivani 1 year, 5 months ago

Can we imagine civilization functioning in any recognizable form if we pull the plug on capital? We have reached a point where, far from conceptualizing a mode of life not dependent on capital as AI, we cannot even imagine a situation where capital’s power can be regulated; no country on earth is currently succeeding in this venture, though some, particularly in Latin America, have recently tried.

Capital has become so autonomous (the mind-boggling numbers reflect the power that stems from this autonomy) that the state as we knew it has ceased to exist as a competing power. The state, to the extent that finance dominates every decision the state makes, has become absorbed in capital. The state is merely part of the external architecture capital has learned, very intelligently, to maneuver around, with the eventual aim of extinguishing it.

—p.176 by Anis Shivani 1 year, 5 months ago

the theory and methodology of interpretation, especially the interpretation of biblical texts, wisdom literature, and philosophical texts

178

We can continue to think of the story of the last forty years as the rising global reach of neoliberalism, and this hermeneutic explains a lot—nearly everything, in fact.

—p.178 by Anis Shivani
notable
1 year, 5 months ago

We can continue to think of the story of the last forty years as the rising global reach of neoliberalism, and this hermeneutic explains a lot—nearly everything, in fact.

—p.178 by Anis Shivani
notable
1 year, 5 months ago
179

Governments all over the world are indulging in the same form of statistical imagination, as surpluses are directed away from public goods into handling debt—creating debt and paying it off—a never-ending cycle that has nothing to do with public policy as we have understood it. Time, space, and life—the future of the earth itself—are encoded as statistical probabilities where former conceptions of alienation and belonging have no meaning. All communication becomes encoded within the parameters of this abstract information-gathering which presents itself as the only available form of rationality.

Capital as AI is the paramount myth of our time. We are no longer in possession of any competing myths of space and time. Financial expertise has become a primary linguistic domain, the speed of circulation of virtual money makes all previous spheres of value irrelevant, and we succumb to the languages of data and explanation from within the fully functioning AI system that we know as capital. [...]

—p.179 by Anis Shivani 1 year, 5 months ago

Governments all over the world are indulging in the same form of statistical imagination, as surpluses are directed away from public goods into handling debt—creating debt and paying it off—a never-ending cycle that has nothing to do with public policy as we have understood it. Time, space, and life—the future of the earth itself—are encoded as statistical probabilities where former conceptions of alienation and belonging have no meaning. All communication becomes encoded within the parameters of this abstract information-gathering which presents itself as the only available form of rationality.

Capital as AI is the paramount myth of our time. We are no longer in possession of any competing myths of space and time. Financial expertise has become a primary linguistic domain, the speed of circulation of virtual money makes all previous spheres of value irrelevant, and we succumb to the languages of data and explanation from within the fully functioning AI system that we know as capital. [...]

—p.179 by Anis Shivani 1 year, 5 months ago