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The UnFuturist Manifesto

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[One for the five readers in the IOPS necropolis. Salud. Peter]


With face smeared in toxic gunk from the cars and factories, bruised, souls wrecked and decimated by wage labour, powerlessness and the total commodification of life, but undaunted, we declare our intentions to all living beings on Earth:

1.      We intend to celebrate the love of relationship, the custom of interdependence, solidarity and mutual aid that still, despite capitalism, informs most people’s daily lives, AND the strength of daring, spontaneity and wisdom found in the wild

2.      The essential elements of our poetry will be courage, audacity, civil disobedience, non-violent revolt and patient attention to the filigree details of the present moment

3.      Theory having until now often glorified insurrection, soldierly militancy and other macho antics, we wish to exalt the revolution of the slow, the wise, listening, the conflictual dialogue of give and take among peers with a wink and twinkle in their eyes

4.      We declare that the splendour of the world cannot be enriched, that the human is also natural, that our technologies must be wise rather than smart, must be organically embedded in the great cycles, seasons and self-regulating limits of planetary wisdom

5.      We will sing the praises of the countless invisible humans and non-humans that support and sustain the lives of all and we will sing them into visibility and participation

6.      We say the poet and artist must today be a revolutionary of slowness, a seditious Trickster of dissonance and dissent to speed, self-marketing and busy fakeness, of ambiguity and paradox among the sirens of false harmony, distraction and bullshit sung by the old powers that be and the smart powers that want to be

7.      We maintain there is no beauty and truth except in the radical non-action of struggle, a passionate, disinterested struggle for the transformation of transformation itself, for the courage to be, for autonomy and total democracy, i.e. self-management, in all social domains

8.      We wish to throw this mind bomb into the busy cogs of the distraction machines: speed means to necessarily ignore, speed is ignorance, smart stupidity, a digital overwhelm and quantitative info tsunami that deadens feeling and suits the masters

9.      We proclaim that to understand is to slow down, pay attention to qualities, relate, to connect the dots of information into meaning, and that this is analogue, an embodied qualitative process that cannot do without the free association of the six senses, triune brain and gut brain 

10.   Beyond bread and roses for all, we demand everyone’s right to the new subversive four S: slowness, solitude, silence, self-activity

11.   We feel we are on the extreme cusp of the Eternal Now, as always, AND at an evolutionary bifurcation point or singularity: another flap of the invisible butterfly’s wings and we shall either enter a new Dark Age or else recover ourselves into wholeness, sanity, the common sense of the Commons and conscious interdependence, of freedom and self-organisation

12.   We will glorify peace, the true utopian state of humanity, by making our means the same as our ends: non-violent dialogue, autonomy, self-management, mutual aid, solidarity, humour

13.   We will end the commodification of life, wage labour, economic and political heteronomy and our own voluntary slavery; when we, not elites, finally call the shots, we will end hunger, war, all discrimination and ecocide, we will finally be free to listen to the silence of the stars

14.   We will model the autonomy of our participatory society on nature: unity through the horizontal and decentralised self-organising of maximum diversity in free association

15.   We will sing the great planetary web of interdependence, the soaring eagle and the slow snail, the invisible dark energy of bacteria that underpins forest, soil, ocean and makes up 90% of our own bodies, the billions of common men and women slaving away, caring, being helpful and decent to each other, wanting their children to be happy, sensing but not yet seeing the horizon of another possible world they themselves potentially are…

It is on this planet Earth that we proclaim this declaration informed by earth and fire, wind and water, and with which we today found UnFuturism, for we will free the planet of an un-future further ruled by commodification and botoxed bullshit, by the focus-grouped soundbite and obscene luxuries, by heteronomy and hunger, by total surveillance and war, by inequality, emptiness, despair and Fakebook.

Your objections? Enough! We know them.

Rather, think of this. You are a rational mystery. You are made of black holes and bacteria, supernovae and star stuff. All living beings on earth share a single-celled Last Common Ancestor and all humans derive from one woman living in Africa 100,000 to 200,000 years ago. Only 10% of our cells are actually human, the rest are bacterial cells. We are super-organisms like the planet itself, and diversely One, in every sense, on every level.

Survival, the continuation of civilisation, now means seeing this. And acting on it, radically.

Be realistic, demand the impossible. One world, or none.

(Note: this manifesto is based on an un-reading of Marinetti’s famous Futurist Manifesto of 1909 which iconoclastically glorified speed, industrial technology, violence and war and prepared the intellectual way for Mussolini’s fascism.)

Discussion 20 Comments

  • Kristi Doyne-Bailey 15th May 2015

    i’m thinkin’ there's much to be said for a transition/transformation, without hitting people over the head with our alternatives to capitalism, no matter how logical they may be...slow and wise...like nature...poetry and art...non-threatening but relentless...the trickster in all her/his many forms/incarnations...

  • Peter Lach-Newinsky 15th May 2015

    yep, i'm looking for those symbols, images, metaphors, gut brain truths & archetypes that might help draw out, e-ducare, the basic wisdom/utopia in all of us at deepest levels beyond the socialised persona bullshit...logic seldom goes anywhere but around and around and around the mulberrybush (nothin wrong with that either of course, do it myself quite a bit but...)...gotta theory everyone's waiting for inspiration, in-breath, to be filled with more than yourself and dailyness...so i don't go for 'strategy' and 'tactics' and all that military mechanical leverage stuff when we're all breathing expanses of wideness when we get out of our way for once or twice or ever.. spring in florida, wots it like i wonder

  • LedSuit ' 15th May 2015

    See, when people appear I can rest. I can talk, slowly even. When people communicate, even in cyberspace, I feel less alone. This place was a way into a space of likemindedness for me. Without it, everything is just six days on, one off, perpetually. Insular life, music, some friends but no extra connection with thoughts like those expressed above. Just a lot of thinking and talking to myself. Going crazy actually. Going fucking mad.

    Some of the more "rational", more "logical", more "mentally organised", neat and well mannered thinkers, particularly who communicate and write elsewhere as if this place doesn't matter anymore, as if fuckers like me don't matter anymore, because it's all about theory, vision and strategy, serious organising, would do well to read the above.

    I read it and it's fucking good. And I do agree with you Peter about the Futurists.

    • Peter Lach-Newinsky 17th May 2015

      fuckin thanx camerado. weren't for me books and trees and animals and wife and grandsons and music and the odd poem or blog written, be stark ravin bonkers meself.

  • Dave Jones 15th May 2015

    "A change in the structure of experience" as another poet (name escapes me) put it. Which is also what modernity is, so in a sense we are joining its list of discontents. "Acceleration become the mark not of "progress' but of the paradoxical temporality of a "frenetic standstill'. History frozen through activity!

    Anyway, one point stands out here; eco-socialists, utopiasts and poets talk a lot about "nature" (Joel Kovel The End of Nature, etc) but we often think of nature in the idyllic, a benevolent, slowly unfolding harmony and such.
    Yet we also know about the raw, violent food chain, prey and predator, grisle and bones and quivering tendons kind of nature, archetypes smeared with blood and Ahab peering into the depths. Much of my 60's counter-cultural experience had a "remember Nature" theme but it seems to me now that it lacked the political dimension including strategy and tactics of any sort.

    Just a mention, if you IOPS refugees are looking for a new camp, there is a Next System Project.org being launched by Gar Alperowitz and friends and it takes a discursive approach, hoping to synthesize all the various "alternative models" and come up with a way to move forward. He goes into some depth highlighting the work behind Participatory Society and Parecon so I think if Lambert and Christi and James and Peter got in on the conversation you could help it out.This place is a bit eery.
    Maybe see ya over there.


    • LedSuit ' 15th May 2015

      You're right about the eeriness!

    • Lambert Meertens 15th May 2015

      URL: thenextsystem.org.

    • Lambert Meertens 15th May 2015

      It's strictly a US thing; so much so that they tacitly assume that the reader is a USAmerican, like "the Statement" refers in its first sentence to "our troubled country" without mentioning which of the about 200 troubled countries of the world is meant.

    • LedSuit ' 16th May 2015

      It's doesn't look interactive at all. Not much chance to get involved in any conversation. Just follow (whatever that is) and updates.

    • Peter Lach-Newinsky 17th May 2015

      dave i'm not in the rousseau hippy box nor is the above
      dave i'm not in the anti-rational box nor is the above

      read again and report to principal for a spot of detention

      bit weary of round and round the mulberry bush
      of defending what i'm not saying

      is wot it is

      happy summer trouting

  • Kristi Doyne-Bailey 16th May 2015

    yeah lambert...i thot the same...
    i suppose it’s a good thing in that more americans might hop on the alternatives bandwagon and dare to question the unquestionable...
    a means to an end kind of thing...where everyone can experiment with their own personal versions of what an alternative to capitalism is...process the viability...and then, if they can actually stay with it...not get overwhelmed or bored...do something about it...

  • Dave Jones 16th May 2015

    Wait a second, you mean not everyone is American? WTF? Get on a boat, we are looking for huddled masses.
    Seriously, I think there is an upcoming webinar launch kinda thing but I didn't men to hijack Peter's Manifesto thread.

    To wit, I'm all for transcendental experience but logic is another aspect of our human subjectivity. Why separate out and discard? Rationality is just another tool if used correctly.

    • LedSuit ' 16th May 2015

      Hogwash. There is not, nor aught there be, nothing so exalted on the face of gods great earth, than that prince of thoughts, Erroneous.

    • LedSuit ' 16th May 2015


  • Peter Lach-Newinsky 17th May 2015

    eerie, ought and erroneous
    together went a walkin
    said weary to thelonius
    we better stop the squawkin

    it's bad it's fucked it's hilarious
    it's 50 shades of contrarious
    my teeth hurt my tongue's dry
    why oh why oh(wearily)why

  • Kristi Doyne-Bailey 17th May 2015

    that’s great peter...whyohwhyohwhyoh...
    i’m afearin’ there are no answers...just eventual reactions to the coming calamities...hang on !!!

  • Dave Jones 18th May 2015

    Sorry if I misread, mistook, misunderstood, Missoula, any or all of your meaning, intention,essence, Peter. We'll never get the clarity we need in this format but it's worth trying (?)

    C'mon Kristi, everything under Heaven is chaos, we've got em right where we want em (to paraphrase Mao).

  • Kristi Doyne-Bailey 19th May 2015

    oh wonderful dave...since that went right over my head, i suppose now i gotta read mao too...!?

    • LedSuit ' 19th May 2015

      I'd hold the Mao, Kristi, if I was you.

  • Kristi Doyne-Bailey 19th May 2015

    oh you did not just tell me to hold the mao....o: