I'm not sure quite where to start my rant on this public art project in Times Square by Steve Lambert (http://gothamist.com/2013/09/12/talk_about_capitalism_in_the_heart.php), given that it perturbs me on so many levels. The artist might respond, "That's the point!" And certainly I'd like to respond, "You're right!" Instead, my first disgruntlement with this piece it that it only appears to perturb, and so cleverly.
Miguel Amorós argues that the traditional mechanisms of social control and integration (parties and trade unions) have been undermined by capitalist development itself; that “the real crisis is the one that derives from the radical incompatibility of capitalism with life on Earth”, the crisis of the “external limits” of capitalism; that the “social question” thus assumes the form of the “defense of territory”, of “a different way of life”, and “the rural world” against the depredations of “sustainable development”; and that, “for real protest, the institutionalized opposition is the problem, the enemy and the main threat”.
The text of a 2011 lecture that proclaims that it is too late for reforming capitalism, even with “green” neo-Keynesian policies, and invokes peak oil and global warming as just two more signs that a threshold has been crossed, on the other side of which lies the end of urban civilization as we know it and a return to a rural and agricultural existence, which will most likely take the form of a horrible B movie apocalypse unless “free and autonomous communities capable of resisting the post-urban depredation” can counteract the deep-seated attachment to urban lifestyles and ideologies that prevails among both urban and rural populations.