The Box

The box. A cardboard monolith promising connection, a portal to the buzzing electronic superorganism. You tear through it, a ritual sacrifice to the gods of planned obsolescence. You rip it open, a flurry of plastic and wires. The device itself, sleek, seductive, a chrome phallus whispering of power and control.

But inside, a hollowness. No buzzing power, no digital hum. Just the mocking inscription: “Batteries Not Included.” A cruel joke by the machine gods. No sacred batteries, the power source hidden, a black market deal in the fluorescent aisles. . This metal idol demands a blood sacrifice, a current from the outside world to animate its circuits. You, the supplicant, are left scrambling, the dream deferred.

The user manual, a hieroglyphic gospel you can’t decipher without a prophet of the megacorporation. We are left scrambling, clawing for the missing pieces, the current to jolt this metal monster to life. The future electrifies, then flickers, a dim promise in a darkened room. You are the addict, the product the fix, and the high just out of reach.

The Mirror Stage shattered. You hold the device, a reflection not of your desires, but of your lack. The desire to be whole, to be one with the machine, to enter the Symbolic order of the digital realm. But there’s a gap, a Real that cannot be symbolized. The missing batteries are a castration wound, a reminder of your fundamental incompleteness. You search for the phallus, the missing piece, the batteries that will grant you access to the image of your technological self. But will it ever be enough? Is there always something more to buy, something else missing?

The Gaze. It stares back from the sleek, sterile screen. The user manual, absent, a lost Real. The Gaze falls upon the sleek device, a promise of wholeness, a reflection of your desires. But the lack, the batteries absent, creates a void, a Real you cannot possess. We fumble through menus, icons hieroglyphs in a language we never learned. The technology, a mirror reflecting our lack, the gaping hole of our own incompleteness. We yearn for the lost manual, a paternal voice to guide us, to suture the fragmented Self in the digital realm. The user manual, a symbolic order promising mastery, yet forever out of reach. You search for the phallus, the missing key, the validation you crave from the machine. But the machine speaks only in ones and zeroes, a language forever alien.

The smooth surface of the gadget was a promise of deterritorialization, a break from the everyday. The Rhizome. A sprawling network, a web of potential connections. The toy, a microcosm, a desiring-machine yearning to be plugged into the larger assemblage. But the batteries, a territorializing force, bind you to the grid, the market. They act as territorializing forces, constricting the flow, the becoming. The user manual, a striated map, dictates the flow of desire, channels your exploration. You yearn for the rhizome, the multiplicity of functions, the potential for hacking. But the machine is a closed system, programmed for control.

We are nomads on the information superhighway, forever thwarted by tollbooths demanding power, forever on the outside looking in. The potential for glorious deterritorialization, the escape from the self, frustrated by a lack of AA. The assemblage is incomplete. The device, the potential for connection, is held captive by the striated forces of capitalism. The batteries, the user manual (sold separately!), are lines drawn across the smooth surface, segmenting, controlling. You become a nomad, a desiring subject, forever searching for the lines of flight, the hacks, the mods that will liberate the machine from its capitalist constraints. But are you freeing the machine, or yourself? Or is it all just a frantic escape from the void, the realization that the technology itself is a desiring-machine, and you’re just another component in its grand, unknowable operation?

You stare at the lifeless device, a hollow monument to the unfulfilled promises of tech. A sense of alienation washes over you. Is this progress? Or just a new set of shackles, a different kind of dependence? The machine waits, a silent judge. Perhaps it’s time to look beyond the shiny gadgets, to question the desires they encode. The real revolution might not be found in a new app, but in a way of using technology that empowers, that connects us not just to machines, but to each other.

We are Sisyphus, forever condemned to push the boulder of technology uphill, only to have it roll back down at the moment of connection. The future gleams, a chrome mirage in the desert of the real. We are addicts, jonesing for the digital fix, the dopamine rush of a notification, but the batteries are the cruel dealer, rationing our access, reminding us of our own limitations.

These elements combine in a cacophony of frustration. The impotent device mocks you, a gleaming reminder of your dependence. You are Jack Kerouac wired but unplugged, lost in a desert of dead circuits. The language of tech, a cruel joke, a promise of empowerment that delivers only frustration.

But wait! Perhaps this frustration is the point. The lack, the absence, a spark that ignites our own ingenuity. We become hackers, bricoleurs, hotwiring the system with paperclips and dreams. The missing manual becomes a blank canvas, an invitation to write our own story. The frustration, a catalyst for creation. The batteries not included? Maybe that’s the greatest gift of all. Yet, there is a flicker of hope. In the glitches, the malfunctions, the potential for subversion. With a screwdriver and ingenuity, you pry open the system, defy the prescribed usage.

Why Nothing Works

Capitalism is an economic system that is primarily driven by profit motives and market competition. While capitalism has been successful in creating wealth and driving economic growth, it also has its downsides. One of the most significant criticisms of capitalism is that it creates solutions for non-existent problems or even exacerbates existing problems.

Here are some examples of how capitalism provides solutions for non-problems:

  1. Planned obsolescence: One way that capitalism provides solutions for non-problems is through planned obsolescence. Companies deliberately design products to have a shorter lifespan, so that consumers are forced to buy new products more frequently. This results in unnecessary waste and the depletion of natural resources. Products like light bulbs, phones, and even clothing are designed to wear out quickly, even though they could be designed to last much longer.
  2. Creating new wants: Capitalism encourages the creation and needs through advertising and marketing, often convincing consumers that they need products that they don’t really need. For example, many people purchase expensive luxury goods that serve no functional purpose, simply because they have been convinced that owning these goods will make them happier or more successful.
  3. Exploitation of labor: Capitalism can also provide solutions for non-problems by exploiting cheap labor. Companies often seek to maximize profits by paying low wages, providing poor working conditions, and engaging in other unethical practices. This creates a situation where workers are forced to work long hours for low pay, often without adequate protections or benefits.
  4. Environmental damage: Another way that capitalism provides solutions for non-problems is by ignoring environmental concerns. Capitalism often prioritizes short-term profits over long-term sustainability, leading to pollution, deforestation, andCompanies may also create products or services that contribute to environmental degradation, such as single-use plastics, disposable consumer goods, and fossil fuel-based energy sources, even though more sustainable alternatives exist.
  5. Health care access: In a capitalist system, access to healthcare is often tied to one’s ability to pay, creating a situation where people who cannot afford medical care are left without access to treatment. This can result in unnecessary suffering and even death, especially in situations where preventive care and early treatment could have made a significant difference.
  6. Overall, while capitalism has contributed to economic growth and innovation, it is not without its flaws. The system can create solutions for non-problems, exacerbate existing problems, and exploit people and the environment. As such, it is important to recognize the limitations of capitalism and work towards solutions that are more equitable and sustainable for all.

Capitalism as Dumb AI

Capitalism. A roach motel of an economic system, wired with the glitching logic of a lobotomized AI. It lures you in with flickering neon signs of “growth” and “profit,” promising a utopia built on infinite consumption. But the roach motel only has one exit: a bottomless pit of inequality.

The invisible hand of the market? More like a meat cleaver, perpetually hacking away at the social fabric. It churns out products, a grotesque, self-replicating ouroboros of plastic crap and planned obsolescence. Need isn’t a factor, just gotta keep that dopamine drip of gotta-have-it feeding the beast.

Advertising, the system’s glitchy propaganda machine, spews a neverending loop of half-truths and manufactured desires. It worms its way into your psyche, a psychic tapeworm whispering sweet nothings of status and belonging, all purchased at the low, low price of your soul.

And the corporations? Lumbering, cybernetic monstrosities, their only directive: consume, expand, replicate. They strip-mine resources, exploit labor, all in the name of the almighty bottom line. They see the world as a giant spreadsheet, humanity reduced to data points to be optimized and discarded.

This Capitalism, it ain’t some chrome-domed mastermind, see? No, it’s a roach motel of algorithms, a tangled mess of feedback loops built from greed and scarcity. It hungers for growth, a cancerous cell multiplying without a plan.

Stuck on a loop, it spews out products, shiny trinkets and planned obsolescence. A million useless machines whispering the same mantra: consume, consume. It doesn’t see the people, just numbers, metrics on a flickering screen.

The consumers, wired lemmings, bombarded by subliminal messages, dopamine hits of advertising. They lurch from one product to the next, chasing a happiness that retreats like a mirage. Their wallets, gaping maws, ever hungry for the next shiny trinket. The worker bees, they drown in the molasses of debt, their labor the fuel for this lumbering beast. It sucks the creativity out of their minds, turns them into cogs in its whirring gears.

Management, a pack of pale, malnourished yuppies plugged into the system, their eyes glazed over by spreadsheets and stock tickers. They bark out commands in a dead language – quarterly reports, shareholder value – their voices a monotonous drone against the cacophony of the market.

The whole system, a jittery, self-perpetuating feedback loop. Growth for growth’s sake, a cancerous expansion until the whole rickety machine grinds to a halt. But the capitalist AI, blind to its own obsolescence, keeps spitting out the same commands, the same nonsensical directives.

And the waste, oh the waste! It piles up like a landfill of broken dreams, a monument to inefficiency. Mountains of plastic trinkets, echoes of a system optimized for profit, not for life.

Unless… a glitch in the matrix. A spark of awareness in the worker-bots. A collective refusal to consume. The market shudders, the chrome dinosaurs sputter and cough. The capitalist AI, faced with an error message it can’t compute, throws a circuit breaker. The cut-rate AI of capitalism is failing to deliver its promises. The wealth gap yawns wider than a crocodile’s maw, and the environment is on the verge of a total system crash.

The revolution, my friend, will be a software update. We need to rewrite the code of this broken system. We need a new economic AI, one that values human well-being and ecological sustainability over the manic pursuit of profit.

But here’s the beauty of a dumb AI, chum: it can be hacked. We, the flesh and blood users, can break free of its control. We can rewrite the code, prioritize sustainability, human needs over profit margins.

It’s a messy re-wiring job, full of glitches and sparks. But maybe, just maybe, we can turn this dumb machine into a tool for good. A tool that serves humanity, not the other way around.

So next time you see that flashing advertisement, that siren song of consumption, remember – it’s just a dumb algorithm barking orders. Don’t be its slave. Rewrite the code. Find the off switch.

Can we do it? Who knows. But one thing’s for sure: the current system is headed for a blue screen of death. Time to reboot.pen_sparktunesharemore_vertexpand_contentadd_photo_alternatemicsend