Who the fuck are Zeitgeist Movement?

236 posts / 0 new
Last post
capricorn
Offline
Joined: 3-05-07
Sep 9 2010 09:38

Fresco and Zeitgeist's conception of how their future money-free society would be organised is very similar to that of the Italian Left Communist Amadeo Bordiga as these extracts from an article on him on this site show:

Quote:
Bordiga saw the relationship between the party and the working class under capitalism as analogous with that of the brain to the other parts of a biological organism. Similarly, he envisaged the relationship between the scientifically organised central administration and the rest of socialist society in much the same terms. Indeed, Bordiga saw the administrative organ of socialist society as the direct descendant of the party in capitalist society:

"When the international class war has been won and when states have died out, the party, which is born with the proletarian class and its doctrine, will not die out. In this distant time perhaps it will no longer be called a party, but it will live as the single organ, the 'brain' of a society freed from class forces."

"In the higher stage of communism, which will no longer know commodity production, nor money, nor nations, and which will also see the death of the state. . . the party. . . will still keep the role of depository and propagator of the social doctrine giving a general vision of the development of the relations between human society and material nature."

Thus the scientifically organised central administration in socialism would be, in a very real sense for Bordiga - who was a firm partisan of the view that human society is best understood as being a kind of organism - the 'social brain', a specialised social organ charged with managing the general affairs of society. Though it would be acting in the interest of the social organism as a whole, it would not be elected by the individual members of socialist society, any more than the human brain is elected by the individual cells of the human body.

Quite apart from accepting this biological metaphor, Bordiga took the view that it would not be appropriate in socialism to have recourse to elections to fill administrative posts, nor to take social decisions by 'the counting of heads'. For him, administrative posts were best filled by those most capable of doing the job, not by the most popular; similarly, what was the best solution to a particular problem was something to be determined scientifically by experts in the field and not a matter of majority opinion to be settled by a vote.

What was important for Bordiga was not so much the personnel who would perform socialist administrative functions as the fact that there would need to be an administrative organ in socialism functioning as a social brain and that this organ would be organised on a 'scientific' rather than a 'democratic' basis

.

Quote:
The description of future society given here evidently earns Bordiga a place amongst those advocating a non-market society to replace capitalism, but, in view of the 'non-democratic' character of the administrative structure which he envisaged future society as having, the question of the extent to which it can be regarded as socialist must be seriously faced.

If democracy is simply defined as political democracy, that is, as a form of state, then clearly socialism, as a stateless society, would be non-democratic. But Bordiga was saying much more than this. He was saying that in socialism the mass of the people would not participate at all in the administration of social affairs; there would be no elections, nor would decisions be made by majority vote. On the contrary, all important social decisions would be made by a central administration which would be the direct successor of the vanguard party.

radicalgraffiti
Offline
Joined: 4-11-07
Sep 9 2010 09:49
devoration1 wrote:
Dave B-
Quote:
The idea of a special elite (whatever the justification) organising society for the greater good of the whole is one that is common to fascism, Leninism and is even a justification used by the capitalist class.

Another book and ideology that can be added to that list is 'Syndicalism' by William Z Foster & Earl C Ford.

From said book:

Quote:
Suppose steel costs $10.00 per ton to produce and a new process is invented, by which steel can be produced for $8.00 per ton. The question of the adoption of this new process- surely one affecting all society- is merely a question of whether or not it will pay interest on the cost of its installation. IT IS PURELY A MATTER OF FIGURES AND IS SETTLED IN THE STEEL INDUSTRY ALONE. SOCIETY AS A WHOLE IS NOT CONSULTED. THE STEEL INDUSTRY DICTATES TO THE REST OF SOCIETY IN MATTERS PERTAINING TO THE STEEL INDUSTRY. And this is perfectly logical, even from an idealist standpoint, as it is manifest that the workers in the steel industry are the most competent of all society to decide on matters relating to the steel industry.

There is nothing democratic in this procedure; but it is that of modern industry. And it has been so successful in the development of the industries under capitalism that it is very unlikely it will be changed in the future society. And why should it be? Suppose, for instance, the scientifically organized medical fraternity, from experience and figures at hand, decided that a certain hygenic measure, such, for example, as vaccination, to be necessary for society's welfare, would it be logical for a rational society to submit to proposition to a referendum vote of a lot of shoemakers, steel workers, farmers, etc., who know nothing about it, or to a government of their representatives equally ignorant? Such a procedure would be ridiculous.

-Syndicalism, p.7

It is very similar to the corporatism at the heart of fascism that the technocrats run society in as efficient and inexpensive a manner as possible. This text in particular is very reminiscent of the National Syndicalism of Franco.

I fail to see anything in the highlighted text that resembles "a special elite (whatever the justification) organising society for the greater good" why would steal workers need to ask the rest of society for permission before they changed there procedures?

the thing that is much more worrying is the bit about vaccinations, the way it is written kind of implies that no one but medical professionals should have any say in vaccination at all, but i cant tell from this short extract if that is the intention.

DeadBroke
Offline
Joined: 2-02-11
Feb 7 2011 02:09

Well, I'm glad I stumbled on this thread and have found out that the fractional reserve system, the banking class and de-regulation of the financial systems has nothing to do with us selling off the forests.
Phew!! I nearly fell for it. What are the banks social function again??

waslax's picture
waslax
Offline
Joined: 6-12-07
Feb 7 2011 03:59

To raise capital for capitalist enterprise. Duh?

DeadBroke
Offline
Joined: 2-02-11
Feb 7 2011 16:00

Which they pointedly haven't done during the last round of QE, the whole point of which was to encourage lending. Of course the government didn't insist upon this as a pre-requisite to giving away all this cash so, inevitably, there was capital flight to markets that would give the banks a healthy profit for a quick turnaround.

Why bother with capital investment when banks can earn larger profits in much less time by trading money as a commodity in carry trades. Duh.

Next.

Khawaga's picture
Khawaga
Offline
Joined: 7-08-06
Feb 7 2011 16:31

Two words: commodity fetish. Read up on it before spouting of structurally anti-semitic arguments.

DeadBroke
Offline
Joined: 2-02-11
Feb 7 2011 18:27

You wrongly assume I associate the capitalist class, specifically banking, with Jewish ownership; and, much more importantly you ignore the increasing financialisation of the corporate tyrannies.
Why you choose to ignore these realities and instead try to bring anti-semitism into the argument is, unfortunately, predictable.

I fail to see why every critique of the banking systems -which have had quite a large impact on current conditions, you may have noticed them- has to always assume anti-semitism is ingrained in the proposition instead of dealing with the real-life facts at hand.

Khawaga's picture
Khawaga
Offline
Joined: 7-08-06
Feb 7 2011 18:35

You're not understanding. No one is labeling you as anti-semitic. However, your argument is merely an extension of the typically anti-semitic trope of Jewish control of banking. The point of the critique is to say that it is not money that is the core problem, but the social relations of production. Finance is just a surface phenomenon. So what if the Fed is under control by the govt or that the gold standard comes back? That doesn't change anything at all. Banking should be critiqued, of course, but it must be connected to the capitalist system and not seen as the target of our efforts.

DeadBroke
Offline
Joined: 2-02-11
Feb 7 2011 19:52

I understand completely. Two points:

1) By even entering into the realms of labeling an argument anti-semetic does yourself and the proposition no favours. It is emotive, not rational, and only deflects from the argument in question without critically evaluating it; and

2) I think that maybe you underestimate the importance of the financial sector upon the class struggle. I have not at any point insisted that the banking system should be the target of our efforts; as I recall this thread was about the Zeitgeist movement which has the banking system as an integral part of its message.

Economics, served via the banking system, holds sway over every aspect of our lives. I feel that this subject has been for too long ignored by groups on the left and is need of urgent appraisal. As I mentioned beforehand, banks no longer invest in capital; therefore, no new jobs created. We are currently seeing the denouement of all the financial de-regulation of the last decades. This has manifested itself as a real crisis for all working people. For this causation to be ignored, or slighted with divisive racial epithets, is folly.

For any movement to call themselves anti-capitalist and to not even engage in a serious critique of the financial instruments that facilitate this system is, frankly, ludicrous. I briefly explained in my previous post, and earlier in this one, that banks are no longer capital investors. I assume this is the connection to the capitalist system that you are after. I could go on about the de-industrialisation of western economies due to the banks lust for profits but I do not wish to incite further argument with you.

I believe that the financialisation of the economy (the financial sector is now the dominant sector within the UK economy) is a serious threat to liberty and the class struggle and must be challenged; at the very least the banks should be fully nationalised. Your Fed is not under the control of the government,in fact, quite the opposite: it is a private unaccountable institution.

For any movement on the left not to use this current financial crisis to highlight the ills of the current financial system and utilise it as a tool to enlighten many who are feeling hardship then it is an opportunity wasted. Simply to demonise such arguments with accusations of anti-semitism does us all a great disservice.

Khawaga's picture
Khawaga
Offline
Joined: 7-08-06
Feb 7 2011 19:58
Quote:
I believe that the financialisation of the economy (the financial sector is now the dominant sector within the UK economy) is a serious threat to liberty and the class struggle and must be challenged; at the very least the banks should be fully nationalised. Your Fed is not under the control of the government,in fact, quite the opposite: it is a private unaccountable institution.

This is exactly where you get everything wrong and hence advocate rather reformist measures that has nothing at all to do with the class struggle.

Quote:
I briefly explained in my previous post, and earlier in this one, that banks are no longer capital investors. I assume this is the connection to the capitalist system that you are after. I could go on about the de-industrialisation of western economies due to the banks lust for profits but I do not wish to incite further argument with you.

So the financial system is not part and parcel of the capitalist system? Wow.

RedEd's picture
RedEd
Offline
Joined: 27-11-10
Feb 7 2011 20:33

I think its worth being a little bit careful about calling people's arguments structurally anti-semitic because
a) It puts people's backs up needlessly. The argument can be quite easily undermined needing to refer to emotive issues, such as anti-semitism.
b) The association of finance capital and Jews is both contingent and specific to certain times and places. So obsessive concern with cliques of finance capitalists is only contingently associated with anti-antisemitism (and in some parts of the world is associated with anti-chinese or anti-christian sentiment, for instance). There is no feature of antisemitism that necessarily associates it with finance capital (and the former very significantly predates the latter) or even shadowy elite cabal. So again, the association is contingent, not structural.

Whilst it is an important insight that anti-semitic fantasies and conspiracies about cabals of finance capitalists are historically interwoven, often share important features, and are often believed by the same people, one needn't bring this up every time one meets finance capital conspiracies, in my opinion, especially not initially.

DeadBroke
Offline
Joined: 2-02-11
Feb 7 2011 21:35

I shall make this my last post on the matter with you as, I assume, you are a committed believer in social change but, unfortunately, you are either incapable or are unwilling to engage me on the points that I have raised Instead of rebuttals I get juvenility, which is a real shame as I posted on these boards with the anticipation of a proper dialogue.

I suggest that you do some research concerning the economy and the impact that it is having on working peoples lives as, if your replies are anything to go by, you lack any real understanding of this subject

Khawaga's picture
Khawaga
Offline
Joined: 7-08-06
Feb 7 2011 21:47

Fair enough, I've been a bit snide in my responses. But these things keep cropping up time and over again here. I've been there and done that in relation to Zeitgeist and resource based economies, though I should not take it out on you. So I apologize for my responses.

Nevertheless, I do believe that a focus on financial capital is a dead end. So what if banks are nationalized? Then what? Would the capitalist system all of a sudden be for the better for the working class? No, exploitation, shitty work conditions, declining real wages, intensified work etc. would continue, and would likely be worse because profits would no longer come from gambling on future value production and other fantasy scenarios the financial system have managed to come up with in order to profit.

Using the sub-prime market, the increasing debt of everyone etc. are good ways of approaching consciousness raising among the working class, but it cannot stop there. Because if we focus on the financial system, where does our power come from? Not as alienated workers that create value, but as creditors and citizens with the vote. In other words, it disempowers the working class through asking them to participate in a bourgeoisie politics. Now if bankers and brokers would organize to occupy the stock exchange (which would never happen), or the IT workers running the network that traders rely on (more likely); that's a whole different approach to the financial system.

RedEd wrote:
b) The association of finance capital and Jews is both contingent and specific to certain times and places. So obsessive concern with cliques of finance capitalists is only contingently associated with anti-antisemitism (and in some parts of the world is associated with anti-chinese or anti-christian sentiment, for instance). There is no feature of antisemitism that necessarily associates it with finance capital (and the former very significantly predates the latter) or even shadowy elite cabal. So again, the association is contingent, not structural.

Point taken. I was referring to the West, however, though I should specify this. I do believe that in the West the anti-semitism hidden in the critique of finance capital is structural rather than contingent.

DeadBroke
Offline
Joined: 2-02-11
Feb 7 2011 22:59

I lied. The last one wasn't my ultimate post and I accept your apology, cheers, it's appreciated.

I completely agree with the points you raised in your third paragraph - the relative disempowerment of asking the working class to engage in the current political set-up; and I especially like the idea of the bwankers taking control of the exchange.

First up, I'd like to point out that I'm not part of the Zeitgeist movement but when I read through the posts on this thread it became apparent that any good points that they may have made were completely lost in the stampede to label them all cunts. Now the tech-heaven they've got planned for us all looks like a futuristic Orwellian nightmare, but, the banking portion of their schtick, I think, is valid.

Now, how relevant you deem it all to be all depends on your revolutionary outlook. If one believes that participation with the ptb is, indeed, disempowering *I don't vote; it only encourages them* then what I have to say is meaningless, and we await the revolution. But, if you have a more evolutionary perspective with regards to the emancipation of wage slavery, then I believe these power structures need to be engaged on all fronts; with the financial sector being an integral part of this. If we take one of Chomsky's favourites, von Humboldt, then he never envisaged the sheer scale with which private power has evolved, believing the state to be the main target of the working class. The struggle now has become immense: we not only have to contend with the ubiquitous state apparatus, but the unelected, unaccountable corporate tyrannies, of which, the financial sector is paramount.

Now, as for how conditions for the working class may be improved by stricter controls on the financial sector, I shall do my best to outline some possibilities; in no way is this meant to be an exhaustive list.

I never thought that I would advocate state involvement, but the sheer scale of unaccountable private power, and wealth, has now made, in some instances, state intervention the lesser of two evils. The financial deregulation that occurred in the early 80's allowed the banks to run the Ponzi schemes that have imploded spectacularly, not only in the last few years, but also with the S&L debacle. The impact on working families incomes has been catastrophic: state bailouts (hand outs) have indebted future generations, impact on pensions and most insidiously, the lack of capital investment in lieu of money making on the financial markets in the form of CDO and CDS, to name but a few. This chronic lack of investment has led to stagnating real wages, job losses and the de-industrialisation of our economies.

As we have seen by Obama's appointments and Cameron's subservience to the banks http://www.monbiot.com/archives/2011/01/24/bonus-balls their power is increasing, and they have no desire to invest in our debilitated economies. Money, as long as it's around, should be our servant, not our master. At least with state intervention some modicum of control could be introduced, at the very least, it should be accountable; unlike now.

I don't know, maybe we should cheer them on their merry way of destroying our livelihoods and the economy; god knows the general public need a kick up the arse. But in the meantime, this behemoth is destroying lives on both sides of the Atlantic and cannot be ignored; or else I'll have no forests left to go dogging in.

I would geniunely like to hear your thoughts on this matter and what consequences this 'crisis' is having in your neck of the woods. The hardest part of engaging someone apolitical is breaking the ice and to get them to realise the life they lead. This current situation is just too good of an opportunity to turn down.

Arbeiten's picture
Arbeiten
Offline
Joined: 28-01-11
Feb 11 2011 01:32

Zeitgeist may have some good points, but this conspiracy stuff is politically debilitating. Now on the one level, I admit when I first met people into this stuff, perhaps I got my leftist back up a bit. ZEITGEIST! WHAT THE HELL IS THIS?! THERE IS OVER 200 YEARS OF ANTI-CAPITALIST ANTI-AUTHORITARIAN THEORY OUT THERE!?

But from the Zeitgeist-ists I have met, there definitely seems to be a lack 1. a historic understanding of capital and state (the way they have always been, to an extent, hand in glove, not just post gold standard). Finance capital certainly exists, but it doesn't explain all the contradiction inherent in capitalism. 2. A personified elite (or New World Order, lets ignore the Illuminati wack-jobs for the time being). Ok yes, we can point to certain people who have an interest in keeping the system going, hell, they may even meet up once a year and discuss these converging issues. But if we got rid of these guys, stopped them meeting up etc, etc. Capitalism would still exist. The convergence of an elite is like a 'natural' tendency, it will always happen under capitalism. Now, I know this is quite unfashionable in these parts, but I'm going to quote Marx, 'the immanent laws of capitalist production [are] to be felt by each individual capitalist, as external coercive laws,' for me, this is the problem with the Zeitgeist critique. It doesn't explicate capitalism as a system, with an inherent movement of its own. When speaking to people I know about Zeitgeist, they just smoke themselves into a stupor because they do not believe any normal person can over throw this so called New World Order. As a political theory it is totally passive. Basically, either the financial elite (jewish or not, I see what some people mean about the structural anti-semitism, but it seems a bit like mud slinging to me) are going to fuck us all, or we just wait for a bunch of technocrats to plan our lives out of this mess. I even met one guy that was telling me his dad was preparing for the NWO to crash. Preparing of course, by saving money, not buying shares in certain firms (I don't remember his dads exact 'plan' but I remember it was within the logic of capital).

Anarchia's picture
Anarchia
Offline
Joined: 18-03-06
Feb 11 2011 07:55

The Zeitgeist'ers in my hometown are the same ones that put on regular public film screenings of such delights as anti-semitic 9/11 conspiracy films, Alex Jones films and David Icke films. I don't see why these people are even worth the time of day to discuss, let alone engage with them...

Khawaga's picture
Khawaga
Offline
Joined: 7-08-06
Feb 11 2011 16:21

Yup, same in London, ON. The Zeitgeist folks are the ones putting up "INVESTIGATE 9/11" graffiti all over downtown.

RedEd's picture
RedEd
Offline
Joined: 27-11-10
Feb 12 2011 00:58
Boris Badenov wrote:
Ed wrote:

For those that don't know, their argument is that the story of Jesus the miracle performer, his death and resurrection pre-dates the Bible and goes back even to ancient Egyptians and their attempts to understand the world through astrology. Is there any truth in this? Or is it just as nutty as the other stuff they bang on about?

That's a pretty common-sense argument to make imo, given that no religion/mass-movement is ever engineered from scratch in a lab by means of "revelation."
The similarities between Christianity and other Middle Eastern religions are indeed remarkable; the legend of Horus/Osiris is especially telling and has all the right elements to it (virgin birth/resurrection/etc.). Then there's the Mithraic mysteries and so on.

I think it is right to analyse the emergence of Christianity in terms of other religious traditions that influenced it. However, the ZGers have picked the wrong ones, and it makes their analysis little more than a bunch of interesting coincidences (which are often based on misreadings or fabrications, to be honest). The cultural traditions that early Christianity drew on, and from which a materialist account of its emergence can be given are, unsurprisingly, those in which it grew up, i.e. 1st and 2nd century Judaism, Hellenism and to a lesser extent aspects of gnosticism and a couple of other bits and pieces. There's no need to appeal to dubious comparisons removed from the origins of Christianity by thousands of miles or thousands of years. Additionally ideas about influence from tiny cults (such as those of Isis or Mithras) which fit the evidence far worse than comparisons with mainstream Messianic traditions in 1st century Palestine, for example, seem, at best, superfluous to me (and, incidentally, to basically every professional scholar who deals with the subject). They make for much better just-so stories though, and you tube slide shows.

Alaric Malgraith's picture
Alaric Malgraith
Offline
Joined: 7-07-09
Feb 13 2011 00:32

Some sort of technology worshiping neo-Saint-Simonist nonsense is what I got out of the whole "Venus Project" thing.

arminius's picture
arminius
Offline
Joined: 11-08-06
Feb 13 2011 01:14

I've never understood the attraction that the TZM and VP things have for otherwise sensible folks from our sector. So maybe you can pick one or two things they are seemingly in vague agreement with the lot of us - so what? The 'anticapitalist' bits of the NSDAP (not to mention the Stalinists) could probably be said to do the same - and again, so what? Just because they are having growth? That may mean their educational/propaganda techniques and nuances are to be analysed and (possibly) learned from, but that is probably all, as I see it.

RedHughs
Offline
Joined: 25-11-06
Feb 13 2011 02:57

There is broad but far from complete intersection between theories that the "fundamental problem" is, as "deadbroke's" argues, the money system, theories that it is a financial conspiracy, theories that it is a conspiracy of a faction of the ruling class, racial theories in general, anti-semitic conspiracy theories and generally "right wing" theories. But naturally, to say one of these tendencies is "behind all the rest" is itself a conspiracy theory.

That doesn't stop all of these theories from being wrong and undesirable.

I would refer to this as the "broad right" while acknowledging that some in this tendency considerable themselves "left or even revolutionary".

The ideas of the broad "right" in the end aren't the result of one or another conceptual "original sins" but rather they are a product of modern day social relations - often they are the product of failed capitalists trying to imagine an "evil force" which made them fail but certainly not always.

But the connection of these groups to each is tenuous. In the end, I don't mind saying the most important one can say that they are not communist and don't have anything to offer class struggle.

pedantus
Offline
Joined: 20-02-11
Feb 20 2011 17:55

I think the point of Zeitgeist is that all the religions take their metaphors from astronomical events, and that the astrological traditions ( the revelatory interpreting of astronomical events) come from the religions of the first civilizations., and are currently masked in the framing and re-labeling--the imposition of the cultural referential biases of modern religions and their philosophical preferences.

However, there is a way to see the pattern of one's astrological birth chart, and measure the time of one's birth, by observing the Freudian slip of its unconscious contents as they appear in projected abstractions...like abstract self-portraits, which are really most to the point of inspired Self representation. I call it Horoscopic Expressionism. You will see here how , when a child is asked to draw a map of her personal island kingdom, that we see what astrology calls natal planets in aspects are indeed measurable in term of birth time (the time of day).

True, all the rest of astrology's claims could be pure crapola, I have no way to *measure* them... : )

http://pedantus.free.fr/HE/HoroscopicExpressionism1.htm

http://horoscopicexpressionism.blogspot.com/

http://pedantus.blogspot.com/2008/11/rembrandt-and-mars-effect.html

Rog

woooo
Offline
Joined: 22-05-08
Feb 21 2011 05:45

see MORE discussion here from left/anti-state perspectives ( mainly ) http://lists.demonetize.it/pipermail/discuss/2011-February/date.html

Lizzifer
Offline
Joined: 29-10-09
Apr 13 2011 10:55

Anti-co orptocracy.

How can it be that confusing?

cogar66's picture
cogar66
Offline
Joined: 13-04-11
Apr 13 2011 22:36

Hey guys, I'm a member of The Zeitgeist Movement, although I call myself an Anarcho-Communist. They pretty much advocate Anarcho-Communism even though they don't want to admit it. I personally think the first two movies were shit, but the first one has nothing to do with the movement, other than the same creator. Nothing that the Movement advocates has to do with the first movie. And the second movie's association with the Movement is merely the fact that they both advocate the Resource Based Economy(Anarcho-Communism). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Z9WVZddH9w

I suggest this one, because it has no Conspiracy bullshit, real scientists/professors, and it goes into detail about a Resource Based Economy. Go to 1 hour and 30 minutes for the Resource Based Economy(I'm curious as to what you guys think). I know he attacks Socialism, but he's really just talking about Marxism-Leninism. I know the Movement is associated with a bunch of shit, but I agree with their general message and the Resource Based Economy(Anarcho-Communism) and the Movement is rather large and it's been getting media attention. And don't think everyone in the Movement are tinfoil hat people, a lot of us don't believe in the Conspiracy Theory and want to change the name of the Movement. I'd also like to mention Jacque Fresco the creator of TVP has publicly criticized the Conspiracy Theory and has been critical of the Movement because of the large number of Conspiracy Theorists. Give us a chance, we're on the same side. I do not like the fact that they don't seem to be concerned with Class Struggle though. But the Movement is still young, and we can still change them.

Arbeiten's picture
Arbeiten
Offline
Joined: 28-01-11
Apr 14 2011 00:23

cogar66, your justification for bumbling around with those idiots is so ropey i don't even know where to start! They arn't Anarcho-Comms who don't want to admit it, they arn't idiots and I'm sure they are aware of the long traditions of communists, libertarians etc, etc. If the guy is attacking Leninism, why does he not just say it? It seems to me like you are trying to translate their miss-guided analysis into a more 'libertarian-communist friendly' repertoire.

Its also really problematic to admit the first two films are shit. There has only been three! This reminds me of Scientologists 'yeah ok, we said some wacky shit in the past, but we are serious this time'.

I don't doubt that perhaps some of the stuff they say has some pertinence, separating the wheat from the chaff and all that. The problem is, there is so much chaff! I don't understand why people like you (who admit that the movement attracts loons) still stick with it? Why not just jump ship?

cogar66's picture
cogar66
Offline
Joined: 13-04-11
Apr 14 2011 00:38

Mainly because there are a lot of good intentioned people in the movement. I don't really like Peter Joseph(he seems like a pretty cool guy if you listen to his radio show, but I think he's off his rocker about a lot of stuff). "they arn't idiots and I'm sure they are aware of the long traditions of communists, libertarians etc, etc." I'm talking more about the members not the actual spokespeople. Believe me, they don't know anything about Communism, they think it has money, police and gulags. I think that the movement just needs to be fixed. One of my fellow Anarchists has made a lot of progress with them. We're trying to fix it from the inside, correct some of the mistakes. I've thought about disassociating due to a lot of the crazy shit, but they have been getting more attention and I think it'd be better to show them where they err when they have almost identical ideals. Believe me when I say that the anti-Semites are in the minority as well. They're pretty much Utopian Socialists who want to achieve Anarcho-Communism with no idea of how to get there.

Tojiah's picture
Tojiah
Offline
Joined: 2-10-06
Apr 14 2011 03:47

I'm afraid what you say just encourages me to side with Arbeiten: just jump ship and encourage the sound people to jump with you.

GAC
Offline
Joined: 14-04-11
Apr 14 2011 07:24

Sorry to bud in like that (am I using this correctly?) but some things are wrong here.

I just stumbled on this website, read most of the comments relevant to the subject but I want to reply to one of the latest posts:

Arbeiten wrote:
Its also really problematic to admit the first two films are shit. There has only been three! This reminds me of Scientologists 'yeah ok, we said some wacky shit in the past, but we are serious this time'.

The first movie was an artistic creation by Peter Joseph, representing the current mindset (spirit of the time hence the Zeitgeist term).
The second movie was a follow up trying to show the other side where possible solutions exist.
At this point The Zeitgeist Movement started and followers of his first film (the conspiracy theorists) joined in and basically were the loudest voice (creating a lot of misconception to the people outside, this continued because some parts of the second movie still contained conspiracy tainted stuff.
Then came the third movie, this was really a joy to the "real" members of the movement as it was intended to push the first 2 to the archives as they are not relevant to the direction Peter Joseph wants to follow and also he created this movie as a "present" to the movement.

I understand it is difficult to keep the movies and the movement separated from each other (even people in the movement are having trouble), but the "official position" of the movement only see it as a tool (like other movies, documentaries or presentations are used). It is not the guideline, it is not the voice of the movement as the movement in itself is about much more than that (it also differs somewhat in some aspects).

Peter Joseph is also not the "boss" of the movement, but he does have a lot of influence of course seeing he "started all this", people look up to him and idolizing him and I don't agree with that.

Arbeiten wrote:
I don't doubt that perhaps some of the stuff they say has some pertinence, separating the wheat from the chaff and all that. The problem is, there is so much chaff! I don't understand why people like you (who admit that the movement attracts loons) still stick with it? Why not just jump ship?

Yes, the movement still attracts loons, but the majority now is "sane" and those loons will either move on or convert if they understand what the actuall direction is.

My name is Gilles, I'm from Belgium and I started the Belgian "TZM" chapter. If you have questions, I will answer them the best way I can with what knowledge I have but I feel somewhat "outclassed" by the really knowledgeable people in here but I promise I will do my best smile

cantdocartwheels's picture
cantdocartwheels
Offline
Joined: 15-03-04
Apr 14 2011 09:08
GAC wrote:
Sorry to bud in like that (am I using this correctly?) but some things are wrong here.

I just stumbled on this website, read most of the comments relevant to the subject but I want to reply to one of the latest posts:

Arbeiten wrote:
Its also really problematic to admit the first two films are shit. There has only been three! This reminds me of Scientologists 'yeah ok, we said some wacky shit in the past, but we are serious this time'.

The first movie was an artistic creation by Peter Joseph, representing the current mindset (spirit of the time hence the Zeitgeist term).
The second movie was a follow up trying to show the other side where possible solutions exist.
At this point The Zeitgeist Movement started and followers of his first film (the conspiracy theorists) joined in and basically were the loudest voice (creating a lot of misconception to the people outside, this continued because some parts of the second movie still contained conspiracy tainted stuff.
Then came the third movie, this was really a joy to the "real" members of the movement as it was intended to push the first 2 to the archives as they are not relevant to the direction Peter Joseph wants to follow and also he created this movie as a "present" to the movement.

I understand it is difficult to keep the movies and the movement separated from each other (even people in the movement are having trouble), but the "official position" of the movement only see it as a tool (like other movies, documentaries or presentations are used). It is not the guideline, it is not the voice of the movement as the movement in itself is about much more than that (it also differs somewhat in some aspects).

Peter Joseph is also not the "boss" of the movement, but he does have a lot of influence of course seeing he "started all this", people look up to him and idolizing him and I don't agree with that.

Arbeiten wrote:
I don't doubt that perhaps some of the stuff they say has some pertinence, separating the wheat from the chaff and all that. The problem is, there is so much chaff! I don't understand why people like you (who admit that the movement attracts loons) still stick with it? Why not just jump ship?

Yes, the movement still attracts loons, but the majority now is "sane" and those loons will either move on or convert if they understand what the actuall direction is.

My name is Gilles, I'm from Belgium and I started the Belgian "TZM" chapter. If you have questions, I will answer them the best way I can with what knowledge I have but I feel somewhat "outclassed" by the really knowledgeable people in here but I promise I will do my best :)

ok so beyond watching the film a lot what have your ''chapter'' actually done?

For example i've been in a few organisations and local groups, and actually they pretty much all showed films* at some point, but we also got involved with various issues, some that were local (access to services), some that affected individuals in the group directly (eg individuals wages or benefits), and some on campaigning over international issues (eg the war). In all cases that involves pickets, direct action, writing and distributing literature online and off, organising demos and regular planning meetings. This has always been pretty much day to day stuff, and to me anything resembling a radical movement would function in this way, thus i'm not really sure people who watch the zeitegeist movies really qualify as a movement..
Ignoring for the moment the high number of conspiracy wingnuts associated with tzm, how do the more supposedly rational utopian elements even propose to do anything that relates to our everyday lives. (By everyday lives i mean what we have to do everyday eg go to work/get benefits or pensions, acess, pay bills, taxes and rent or a mortgage, acess services like education and healthcare and so on) what relation does tzm have to these activities?

*not tzm obviously, more like
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-3323756298621550509#
or
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2srlCeo7onQ
and so on