Why I wrote a fake Hakim Bey book 2/3

Robert (101607.2566@CompuServe.COM)
14 Aug 96 03:36:06 EDT


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From: Luther Blissett, INTERNET:nav0243@iperbole.bologna.it
To: (unbekannt), INTERNET:INVISIBLE-COLLEGE@JEFFERSON.VILLAGE.VIRGINIA.EDU
CC: (unbekannt), INTERNET:AUT-OP-SY@JEFFERSON.VILLAGE.VIRGINIA.EDU
(unbekannt), INTERNET:AVANT-GARDE@JEFFERSON.VILLAGE.VIRGINIA.EDU
Date: 13.08.1996 19:39

Subject:Why I wrote a fake Hakim Bey book 2/3

A few weeks later, Angelo Quattrocchi fell in the pseudo-Bey ambush.=
Quattrocchi [his surname means "4 eyes"] is a boring old guy who can't help=
yearning for May '68, and boasts of having taken supper with Guy Debord (as=
if this was a honour). This dotard wrote some useless anti-media pamphlets=
such as Come e perche' difendersi dalla televisione [How And Why We Defend=
Ourselves From TV] (1988) and Dai...Stacca la spina! [Come On, Take The=
Plug Off!] (1996); he's proud of not having a TV set, a fax or an Internet=
access, and yet this disinformed moron writes articles on "counterculture"=
on "Liberazione", the organ of the PRC [Re-founded Communist Party, that is=
a powerful trotsko-stalinist monster]. On May 29th, Quattrocchi wrote this=
meaningless and ungrammatical review: =20

SONS OF SITUATIONISM DEMOLISH EACH OTHER
Hakim Bey, "A Ruota Libera", Castelvecchi, lire 14.000
Hakim Bey, Sufi master or bastard nephew of Vaneigem, the father of=
Situationism, is still a lovely theoretician-antitheoretician of=
libertarian radicalism thought and lived in this age. TAZ was published in=
Italian by Shake in 1993, then they published "Via Radio: Saggi=
sull'Immediatismo" [Radio Sermonettes/Immediatism]. Now another collection=
of Bey's writings, A Ruota Libera, is out thanks to quick and=
multi-coloured Castelvecchi. O, it's a funny, brilliant, delicious book,=
though there are some style drops! As to radical thought, it takes us on=
the same time wave of the US, which is where Bey writes, and Germany, where=
Bey is as famous as in Italy. The book has an incredible appendix, a 3-page=
mycrocosm in which John Zorzan [sic], another brilliant writer of the same=
school, demolishes our Bey by describing him as perfect mega-trendy=
blah-blah poseur, a sort of post-modern anarchist. Zorzan [sic] has=
published for Nautilus another lovely text, "Apprezzare il tempo" [Time And=
Its Discontents]. Who's right? Zorzan [sic] or Hakim Bey? Both. They both=
foam with a critical intelligence that leaves all the other "libertarians"=
amidst the ruins of an ideological wall which they haven't yet removed.=
Zorzan [sic] and Bey are both bastard sons of gran pere Vaneigem, the=
Situationist philosopher whose "Treatise..." throws light on this fin de=
siecle since 1968. This end of the century sees anarchy and utopia rising=
again from the ashes of ideologies. They [Bey and Zorzan] talk about=
temporary autonomous zones, that is a conquest of space (squats) and time=
(raves? Altered states of consciousness?), which subjectivities want to=
take over. This is the only weapon left against the omnipotence and=
omnipresence of capital, it is worth reading and living. Again, ce n'est=
qu'un debut.

A storm of turd. It's piteous to see how a life without TV can reduce an=
educated man. Vaneigem is NOT "the father of Situationism": the=
Situationist International was founded in 1957, Vaneigem joined it in 1961=
and left it in 1970, two years before its official dissolution. Likewise,=
the Trait=E9 du savoir vivre =E0 l'usage des jeunes generations was NOT=
published in 1968, but in 1966. Actually "Zorzan"'s surname is Zerzan, and=
the Italian title of Time And Its Discontents is Ammazzare il tempo=
[Killing Time], not "Apprezzare il tempo" [Appreciating Time]. Again,=
Zerzan is not "of the same school" of Bey: the former is one of the=
"primitivists" which Bey charges with absolutism. Zerzan DOESN'T talk about=
temporary autonomous zones, and anyone who says that they both are right is=
an obnubilated person.=20
At best, Vecchi and Quattrocchi superficially read the book. At worst, they=
can't tell a libertarian discourse from a mere reactionary delirium.
In the meanwhile, A Ruota Libera was cited on several zines and influenced=
the whole debeyte...Even professor Georges Lapassade, the prestigious=
anthropologist, was sighted waving a copy of the book during a conference!=
=20

Before I cover how the media reacted to the scam and some idiots in the=
radical scene freaked out, I want to state that this prank doesn't need a=
"political" concluding postscript. This operation was an attempt to forge=
the passage between theory and practice. There are too many charlatans all=
around, guys who try to sell miraculous remedies for the "crisis of the end=
of the millennium". Humanity will not be happy 'til the last "layc=
intellectual" will be hanged with the guts of the last hezbollah. What? I'm=
running the risk of making enemies? But what "me" are you talking about?=
The name of Luther Blissett may be adopted even to bash my face in, and=
anyone can use it. Humans understand themselves in the process of psychic=
warfare. Forwards to a world without poseurs! =20

C. Terror in the underground

Let the throbbing flyers become impatient, we'll calmly bring them back to=
the ground, back at the humble level at which we ourselves may ascend. We=
are unsuitable to any heroism and prefer irony to lyricism. We feel forced=
to warn the most impetuous ones: don't play Phaeton!
=09
Amadeo Bordiga, 1952

By chance, the A Ruota Libera prank clashed with other events pivoting on=
the circulation of Bey's books in Italy. Milan-based ShaKe Edizioni, often=
described as the "official" pushers of Bey's dope in the "bel paese", began=
indulging in the most trivial conspiracy paranoia. Therefore a=
light-hearted and playful prank has been perceived as a base assault. But=
my prank was not a character assassination of Gomma and Raf Valvola nor had=
it a "fratricidal" purpose. I don't believe in the stalinist pedagogics of=
"false friends", and what's more I don't imagine I can aim at such an easy=
target (just a few months ago I kicked the shit out of Mondadori, the most=
corporate of Italian publishers. Two weeks after the prank I'm describing,=
I've attacked the Bologna District Attorney, the local ecclesiastic=
authorities and a rightwing paper by a scam on Satanic cults and black=
masses). I don't intend to bear the blame of Gomma's behaviour: ShaKe did=
all they could to fall into ridicule.
Is it my fault if I found out that the ShaKe edition of Radio Sermonettes=
(Via Radio, 1995) had been censored? They cut out a sentence against Che=
Guevara ("...that Rodolfo Valentino of red fascism") which is both in the=
original text and in the competing (i.e. better) edition by Salerno-based=
Edizioni Ripostes (Immediatismo, 1995). It appears that ShaKe didn't want=
to piss off the average leftist reader. When the matter came to light,=
ShaKe said that Bey had given them leave to cut out the passage. If this=
was true, the author would cut an extremely sorry figure, having complied=
with leftist moralism and created a gaudy discrepancy between the different=
versions - for abstract reasons of political time-serving.
Is it my fault if those champions and "experts" of anti-copyright, as well=
as Bey himself, threatened to apply to the bourgeois legal system in order=
to prevent an "unauthorized" publication of Bey's Pirate Utopias by=
Ripostes? While they were attacking Castelvecchi and "Belletati" for having=
copyrighted free texts, they threatened Ugo Scoppetta Adelfio, Ripostes'=
translator of Pirate Utopias, and Alessandro Tesauro, the owner of that=
small publishing house.=20
ShaKe used to say: "WE are in the 'Movement', THOSE PEOPLE aren't", which=
was fucking absurd: first of all, there's no such thing as a "movement"=
pedigree, nay, there's no such thing as a "movement"! Secondly, if it's a=
matter of "street credibility" (...and it isn't), Adelfio is a notorious=
anarchic prankster, friend of Canadian neoists like Gordon W., involved in=
the Luther Blissett project. Likewise, if one is really against copyright=
and the private property of ideas, he won't claim any "patent". O boy, I=
can't help fully exposing this storm in a teacup!

To be continued... 2/3

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*MicrosMegma*, disvela l'IPOcalisse
Emergence della Wo/Men Gemeinwesen

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