Primo Maggio

We'll send them off to go fuck themselves in the ass all of them and their shitty work.
To go north in order to develop it.  Because those up there they needed our underdevelopment to do it.  Who made the development of the north all the development of Italy and of Europe?  We did it we the laborers of the south.  As if they were a different thing the workers of the north and the laborers of the south.  Something other than subproletariat.  Because we are what the workers of the north are.  What's Torino if not a southern city?  Who works there?  Like Salerno like Reggio like Battipaglia.  Where you finally understand Corso Traino like you understand Battipaglia when you recognize that people can't stand it anymore.  With all these stories of work up or down that is or is not and it is always a swindle.  So you start to understand that the only thing to… Read More...

May the curse of labor be cursed, may the ineluctability of production become its sorrow

Productive life and quotidian life coincide in their misery.
Reggio Calabria A new text pulled from my ongoing project to translate, and hence make better sense of, the unique sequence of social war in the Italian Long '70s, especially in terms of an anti-work position.  I've become increasingly interested in what was called the critica radicale strand: a brief moment of dissident and illegalist councilism centered around Genova, Milan, and Turin, in a country that never had a substantial council communist tradition. The path that led to this is a particularly circuitous one that I'll detail at more length shortly, but in brief, the influences and echoes include: post-war Bordiga (increasing stress on communal forms, landscape, disaster, and critique of the party) -> French Bordigists (Camatte, Invariance) -> Gianni Collu (who wrote with Camatte) -> Giorgio Cesarano; the Italian S.I.; Informations Correspondances Ouvrières and Noirs et Rouges; and the… Read More...

A meeting of two different kinds of degeneracy on a dark rooftop

“The people I burgled got rich by greed and skulduggery. They indulged in the mechanics of ostentation — they deserved me and I deserved them.…
"The people I burgled got rich by greed and skulduggery. They indulged in the mechanics of ostentation — they deserved me and I deserved them. If I rob Ivana Trump, it is just a meeting of two different kinds of degeneracy on a dark rooftop." In all, by his own reckoning, Scott stole jewels, furs and artworks worth more than £30 million. He held none of his victims in great esteem (“upper-class prats chattering in monosyllables”). The roll-call of “marks” from whom he claimed to have stolen valuables included Zsa Zsa Gabor, Lauren Bacall, Elizabeth Taylor, Vivien Leigh, Sophia Loren, Maria Callas and the gambling club and zoo owner John Aspinall. “Robbing that bastard Aspinall was one of my favourites,” he recollected. “Sophia Loren got what she deserved too. Or, as Alonzo Emmerich puts it in The Asphalt Jungle:  "After… Read More...

The Day After Yesterday, Part 2: The Gathering Storm

In which weatherpersons, like bourgeois political apologists in months of May, are torn apart in the street to yawn vast and gutty.
[Part 1] --- Part 2. THE GATHERING STORM So, the gathering storm – during which the sky goes grey as thrice-skimmed milk and stays that way for so damned long that mainstream meteorologists – much like bourgeois political economists in the months prior to the Entartung, or perhaps ascension, of German Marks to wallpaper and inflammable but unpalatable calories in November of 1921 – who obstinately insisted upon the ultimately restricted duration of any, and they mean any, meteorological phenomenon and so continued to spread digitally toothsome suns-to-come over a field of long-gathering grey, as though it could be ungrunting touched by those whose blister-thick smiles do not so much as crack or twitch, cease to be trusted by the public and, like bourgeois political apologists in months of May, are torn apart in the street to yawn vast and… Read More...

There factory sirens begin, / infinitely long / droning, to yawn

  “The Dead Liebknecht” Rudolf Leonhard, Der tote Liebknecht, 1919   His corpse lies throughout the city, in every courtyard, on every street. Every room…
  "The Dead Liebknecht"   His corpse lies throughout the city, in every courtyard, on every street. Every room is matte from the flowing of his blood.   There factory sirens begin, infinitely long droning, to yawn, to echo hollowly throughout the city.   And with a gleam on bright rigid teeth his corpse begins to grin.   ---   Read More...

The Day After Yesterday, Part 1: The Bad Omen

In which an omen, like a dead bird or one that's totally faking it, is witnessed by Ben Affleck.
This is a film made of four images -  and four images only, taken successively during a snowstorm in a null zone of London - and a spoken narrative that concerns one forthcoming glacial tsunami, one or several Affleckish mammals, and an indistinct circulation of calories, rising and falling in the night.  Lacking the roughly $200 million it would take to make this as a film in the more normal sense of the word, especially given the sheer number of Afflecks we would burn through in the battle scenes, I have made it in this way for a substantially lower sum and with considerably more freedom as to the content, style, quantity of ghost gang members, and use of Gary Oldman than a large-scale studio production would usually allow, at least outside of the North Korean film industry. --- "Why… Read More...

An exemplary revolt

Because we don't defend - we attack - there's no need to ask for the disarming of the enemy, just weapons for comrades.
[New translation - although anonymously signed, this comes from the Ludd circle in Genova, a group of anti-state communists whose texts slipped between SI-inflected bits of rhetorical prankery, serious reflections on anti-work and illegality, and texts like the one that follows, a clear and fierce indictment of the idea that those rioting couldn't really mean to be that destructive, now could they? (For further proof of the occasional genius of the Ludd crew, consider this: i.e.  CALL TO THE INFANTILE PROLETARIAT AGAINST BOURGEOIS INFANTILISM) The occasion for this specific text, from April 11, 1969, was a mass uprising in Battipaglia, a southern Italian town in Campania, occuring just two days prior.  In the period leading up to this, the town faced the planned closures of two manufacturing plants, one for tobacco, one for sugar.  This would have crippled the town,… Read More...

The flayed compass, or ENJOY / THIS / STRIP / BABY

So that when a body throws itself onto the tracks / like a only a body would / it could be routed around / as only a body can
If I am to walk, as we did, directly south of the apartment where we are staying in Rome, although one cannot walk south as such because despite the oft-repeated efforts of certain fascists and their planners lines of sight do not radiate outwards like a flayed compass (almost like Littoria, that pestilential miraculum, which was in truth not mire drained but a martial pane of glass dropped from on high, from a bomber's metallo nethers onto the swamp below), and besides, even those were to have been crystallized or trenched nth degrees of the orthogonal rather than the kissing crux of the joist itself and anyway we are well to the southeast of the center's speckled cavities, useless as an adult handful of baby teeth they may be but still, still they crowd and cannot be discarded and although… Read More...