Wednesday, March 22, 2006

“chaos always defeats order because it is better organized”

'V for Vendetta' by Butler Shaffer:
"Any kind of resistance to tyranny is bound to strike terror into the hearts of members of the established order. Thus were the American colonials and Mohandas Gandhi “terrorists” to the British; the Warsaw ghetto uprisings and the French underground movements “terrorist” actions to the German government; and the organized resistance of Algerians acts of “terrorism” to the French. Even today, the Iraqi resistance to the destruction and domination of their country is regarded as “terrorism” by the invading American state!

...“V” reminds us, early on, of the social application of Newton’s Third Law of Motion: for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. In a political context, it is as childish to posit the violence engaged in by one group as “peacekeeping” and the opposing group as “terrorism,” as it is to regard one side as “good” and the other as “evil.” It is the interdependent violence inherent in all political systems that is made evident in this film.

There is one poignant scene in this movie in which thousands of unarmed, peaceful individuals confront the well-armed military forces of the state. This scene, more than any other, may provide insight into how society might evolve in a world in which vertically-structured institutions are collapsing. The transformations of thinking that are arising from the study of “chaos,” or “complexity,” are producing changes in social behavior that make state systems obsolete. The predictability the statists imagine inheres in their structured apparatuses has been rendered illusory. Terry Pratchett’s observation that “chaos always defeats order because it is better organized,” reflects a world in flux. Perhaps a film such a V for Vendetta will provide us an opportunity to begin exploring the orderly nature of anarchistic systems."

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