Ricardo Miranda Zúñiga

Structural Patterns

Reflections on Art, Technology and Society

Archive for January 17th, 2023

Reading: The Making of the Indebted Man (note 4)

without comments

From The Making of the Indebted Man by Maurizio Lazzarato. The following are all quotes from the book:

The Subprime Crisis

No direct or indirect wage hikes (pensions); instead, consumer credit and the push for stock market investment (pension funds, private insurance). No right to housing; instead, real estate loans. No right to tuition; instead, university loans. No risk mutualization (unemployment, health, retirement, etc.); instead investment in private insurance.
The wage-earner and the beneficiary of public programs must earn and spend as little as possible in order to reduce labor costs and the costs of public services, whereas the consumer must spend as much as possible in order to use up production. But in modern-day capitalism, the worker, the beneficiary, and the consumer are all one and the same.
Pg. 110

Christian Marazzi argues, we have moved from public deficit spending to private deficit spending in order to prop up the global demand for goods and services.
Pg. 112

The Sovereign Debt Crisis

Banks were saved through the use of the “public” money to nationalize their losses. The State injected a money flow into society – which is, as Deleuze has shown us, a flow of power – in order to reestablish and reinforce the power relation between creditors and debtors.
Pg. 115

Society is not the space in which a certain distance or a certain autonomy is created with respect to the State; rather, it is the correlate of governmental techniques. Society is not a primary and immediate reality but part of the modern technology of government, its product.
Pg. 125

Reestablishing the “relation of man to man” spoken of by Marx, reveals itself instead as the source and height of the cynicism and hypocrisy of our “financialized” society. Continuous cynicism and hypocrisy not only in relations between bankers and costumers, but also in relations between the State and the users of social services.
Pg. 136

Debt operates not only in the manipulation of enormous quantities of money, in sophisticated financial and monetary policies; it informs and configures techniques for the control and production of users’ existence, without which the economy would not have a hold on subjectivity.
Pg. 137

Etymologically, autonomy means to make one’s own law. At the unemployment and welfare agencies, employment, competition, and the market are the law. Autonomy means being able to find one’s own bearings. At the unemployment office, everything always points to employment, the market, and competition.

Becoming “human capital” and being an entrepreneur of the self are the new standards of employability.
Pg. 145

Written by ricardo

January 17th, 2023 at 9:07 pm