Tag Archives: Object Ontology

Problematizing Whiteness; Correlation and the Two Routes.

In my very early and preliminary reflections on whiteness and being white it seems obvious to me that two issues are present in the philosophical reckoning.

1) The theoretical postmodern maxim of discursive reality.


2) The fact that no human Being is actually white. At best, even an albino is not truly white.

If there is a reduction or a larger meaning between these two aspects then it must fall into one of those categories. While it is not properly truthful to say that they are mutually exclusive, it is, so far, sensible to see that any argument that would be made would have to get its footing in one of these choices, ie either the argument is making a point about discursive reality and the manifestation of power, or, it is not making an argument.

Not making an argument? How can that be? You say.

There is no tension. Rather, the tension is come upon when both statements are understood within a methodological axiom where they occur in equal stature, both in the same existential space to be or as a question, both equally allowable and accessible to questioning. For example, each term of both phrases can be looked into to find its specific meaning, and at each step of inquiry, the results themselves are allowed to be questioned. This is usually what is meant by philosophy; this standard method has brought about a historical-traditional liturgy of reductionary theory and philosophical systems put forth by various free thinking and inspired people.

Yet when there is no tension, then the statements are seen to be describing what is obvious: 1) the post modern condition has to do with the organization of discursive structures and the corresponding belief that these structures reflect essences and or basic and operative realities ; 2) no living human being has ever been truly the colour white.

The sensible question should be what is the purpose of asking into these statements. For (1), the method is implicit: In bringing out Postmodern there is a invitation into discussing and debating what the statement means and whether it is true. (2) is not implicit; questioning into this statement would be more like a philosophical exercise , yet one that would seem to point out how the philosophical method can sometimes be taken too far, or be used for merely pondering and wondering; like the speculation that our universe could be but a speck of dust under the fingernail of a inconceivably large giant creature.

But again, the distinction of these into categories like I easily explained above, has shown us how argument falls into one of the categories themselves: Either it is relative or it is true; the discussion that takes place in the category that contains all humans, within the common category of human mental ability, has therefore already fallen into the meaning of the first statement, which, due to this seemingly automatic motion, can be come to be seen as a kind of religious dogma. It can be understood as areligious dogma because the plain fact of the two statements have already been tested. We have already found out that they are true beyond what argumentative proposals might confront them: The arguments necessarily fall back into the meaning of those statements unless we adhere to a special condition of the first statement, a condition that we automatically understand as obvious, a meaning that usurps as it calls all meaning to itself to thereby negate any other possibility situation. Hence we have located and identified a true aspect about the human being, and have begun along a different road in the effort to discover what the human being is. The question that informs this finding is “why are we still arguing whether or not the results are true when the same result has arisen through multiple testings of the same experiment?” This is how Philosophy retains its religious privilege of failing to become a science: Such a privilege is imposed as it is asserted. Religion allows for the human being to be infinitely creative in avoiding its determination and thus control — especially once it has established its power to control.


What I mean by this is the same or very similar to what we mean when we point to the near impossibility of getting outside or beyond capitalist ideology. Discourse is understood as communication of identity, which always involves a processual excess (transcendence) which when communicated “properly”is called progress (communion), and capitalism is the exploitation of this excess, again progress in evidence (“God’s Plan”). Because at this point, this moment in which this post for example is being read, anyone that has any higher sort of education at all will very soon come upon the reality that the argument about there being no skin colour that is naturally actually white in colour is an assertion of a discursive reality; shortly there after with a little bit of reflective thought people will inevitably stumble upon the fact that there is a sort of power that is being implemented in the use of the word “white” to describe human groups, social and cultural and economic positions and systems, in various sectors and for various reasons.

And yet there is indeed a certain factual basis that tells us in an obvious fashion that there is no human being that is white in colour. The next statement that would depart from relative discursive realities is the one that would say that the fact of there being no actual white person is true beyond what the discourse might reroute into a discursive reality, that is, to be argued and negotiated.

The involvement with the philosophical arguments around this issue thus becomes the issue, the issue that falls outside of a certain self-evident scheme of ideas.

But not everything is of ideas, you say.

The point then, the usual point, is that there is no argument to be made about whether or not being white is a discursive reality: The argument to be made must have to do with power relations and so is automatically reflective of this real situation of postmodern multivocal realities. In other words, there is no argument that can be made in the ethical region of common humanity that can argue that arguments about the problemitzation of whiteness should not be discussed; Even as we might be able to describe a situation where the discussion about race, power, and privilege becomes a secondary concern, we cannot, in good faith, dismiss the discussion as merely some sort of Idealistic fashion.

The only real way to get back to the things themselves is thus to create or establish or, even more, recognize that there is a partition that must occur. Some will cry “foul”, though, seeing this partition as another means to install a justification for segregation. But such a reaction is not comprehending the issue, nor the statement. Integral to this partition must be the fact that there are not separate species of human beings (we know that race is not a description of genetic fact), that ultimately whiteness as an indication of a particular group of people as well as a particular power structure of systems which is ultimately an ideology, and that this ideology a particular type of scheme of ideas that is been placed there necessarily. Nevertheless, this necessity is uncomfortable and tends to rely upon arguments that only make sense unto the ideology they support. Hence if we are to get around the contradiction that arises of the bare fact and the ethics that sees the necessity as incorrect, then we need to be able to theorize about the nature of Being that gets outside what necessarily has been given us for such Being. We find the placement of the postmodern as a rejection of this necessity. The problematization of whiteness is a pushback of ideas based in a universal ideal of proper human treatment. The idea struggles with itself.

We then must acknowledge that we are not allowed to acknowledge that we are dealing only with ideas: ethics demands that we are dealing with something that arises outside of discourse. And this is because of the insistence and near impossibility of getting outside what is present of discourse and it’s meaning, as an identity in itself. We must adhere to what is ethical to the common idea of humanity and no longer argue about what is real and what is Ideal, or what is actual compared to what is merely an idea. All such arguments are hopelessly caught in what philosophers Have termed lately “correlational”.

The very idea that we can formulate some sort of discourse that is able to get beyond what is correlational is itself based in a real idea founded in what is correlational, which is to say, discursive. The philosophical efforts that attempt to give to us some sort of argument to get us outside the correlational cycle is then, ultimately, based in the ideal that discourse is capable of identifying another way of getting to some actual situation of reality, an actual discourse that will lead, through its linking, to what is outside of discourse. Hence the continuation of the postmodern idea: correlation.

I’m not sure how many more ways I need to say it: If the problem is not understood by now then we have just realized an actual situation that occurs outside of what is correlational.

We’ll let that sit in a minute….


Once this situation has taken hold, and is no longer an effort of building on quicksand, then we can begin to understand why identity has become the valued thing that founds real ability of human interaction with the world. We have to admit that what is real, while a discursive formulation, functions more akin to a religious institution on one hand, and a thing in-itself to notice and have on the other to thereby be able to use and discuss without worrying about whether what is correlational will suck it back into relativity and conventional philosophical speculation.

This means that we are able then to problematize whiteness without asserting or attempting to impose again a hierarchical racist structure. The issue will level out to become an issue of the human being because of the religious effect of a common humanity.


Everywhere is War…

Power and other Unfashionable Philosophical Questions.

Due to the question of philosophy’s Being moved to the margin for the sake of human necessity, some questions arise, likewise, necessarily.


In the determination of Being, what is Being left out?

Is the knowledge of things determinable?

Is there an obligation in the knowledge of Being?

Does history convey a requirement in the designation of Being?

Does a correct history equate to true Being?

Is doing universal, or momentary? Primary or subsequent?

Is knowledge of doing possible?

Can one speak to the future? the past? without a present comprehension?

Must power be recognized?

Does ethics demand a question of power?

If power is not recognized, is a condemnation of Being in order?

Is the questioning of authority, under its authority, possible?

How can the righteousness of doing be ascertained?

At certain times, is it moral to allow authority to remain unquestioned?

Is nothing part of knowledge?

or a place holder for knowledge?

Must I acquiesce to every condition?

under what condition?

Am I responsible?

We Can See That We Are Blind; Forensic Philosophy.

I was re-pondering my  recent post “Principle of sufficient discourse. “.

The example given there of the native peoples of the Western Hemisphere not seeing Spanish ships caused me pause. It had not before today. This illustration is supposed to speak to the power of discourse to establish worlds, and I have always viewed it within a certain paradigm that up till this point, I think I was blind to. Interesting that a post I myself wrote would be the occasion for a rethinking, and occasion which was embedded in the post itself without my fore knowledge.

The point I am making in that post is that people cannot see what they do not already know of, what they do not have a context for, and that all knowledge, indeed all that may exist does so by virtue of the context that is implicit in the understanding of world. By extension of this facet of being human, we are able to attach our ‘Beings’, our sense of self and world, to a lineage of thought that we may call traditional. We can understand this in the context of a common human sort such that then both the natives and the Spanish are/were both human beings. The significance of my post is found when we see that we indeed are all human beings subject to the same capacities as well as limitations.

What I do not elaborate upon, though, what I did not see, nor explicitly indicated, is that we, upon enlightenment, understand this situation usually and commonly as a directional imposition, of the ‘enlightened and intelligent’ Spanish upon the ‘in darkness and ignorant’ natives. In short, this anthropological situation is most often taken to mean that these uncivilized and primitive people are the ones who are subject to the limit of discursive context but the Spanish are not, that the natives could not see the Real Truth that was the Spanish ships.

This last situation is what I call religious, requiring of faith. It indicates what I mean by ‘faith makes true’ because when we look at history, and indeed the possibility of this encounter of “old and new” worlds, we are inevitably convinced, prior to our consideration of the situation, by the occurrence of the subsequent and actual dominance of the Europeans upon the aborigines, that progress in the sense of “The Good” has occurred, and this sense of goodness can only be expressed apart from the limitation of context in the context of the progress of history, led by the Europeans, in this instance. In other words, no matter how we slice it, “God”, by any other name, including the name “No God”, is the reason why we have ended up where we have, the history the way it did. Even if we say “rationality”, or “contingency” or “random” or “luck”, in the context of how it was that we are able to not be included in the limitation that we have placed upon the ‘uncivilized’, ‘primitive’, etc.. people, which is to say, that we are not human in the sense that we know what we speak or imply what is common of being human.

This is what we call Colonialization. And it doesn’t matter if we say its bad, or what reparations we attempt to enact because of some “colonial era” atrocities, because everyone has already been colonized, and everyone has just gotten used to it.

For, when we turn the situation upon the common human sort, then we have to ask if both parties were having the same limitation being placed upon their respective ability to have a view. Then we can ask:

What did the Spanish see? Primitives? Uncivilized people? People living in the Antipodes? Potential Converts?

Why is it we never ask ourselves why it is not the Spanish who were not seeing what was really there in the natives?

The problem we find then is that such an analysis places both parties on equal grounds, and yet this ground that we find is based in the actuality of the Spanish Europeans imposing their sense of truth upon the natives, for such a ground was not present in the lived situation of that period; it is a ground that only exists in our reflection upon it, which again is a reflection that is gained through the already having been colonized natives. We then come to the meaning of (eastern/Hindu/Islamic) Indian Post-Colonial critiques that discover that the only way that the colonized have to express their identity is in the terms of the colonizer.

Yet then question that remains suspended in this post-colonial condition is how it is that the oppressed (colonized) are able to draw from any cultural purity or essence if the manner that they are able to frame such native experience is through a non-native discourse? How is it possible to even frame reparations to the abused?

These paradoxes thus reveal how capitalism functions, its manner of self-perpetuation, as well as indicating a feature possibility that is not included in the ideal of capitalism itself:

If we are able to understand a past where a particular cultural-ideology becomes dominant such that through this imposition all contexts are structured, then it is possible that capitalism is not to blame, but that capitalism is merely the manner by which we identify the world within a contextual scaffolding, or sorts. We might begin to see that the view that we presume whereby we gain all sorts of analyses of social relations and power formations is not unique to capitalism, but that the category itself (as a founding term) organizes meaning in such a way so that it becomes paramount and ubiquitous to sense, and such that all other political-economic systems are likewise sub-ordered. We may see then that every moment is thus organized in the same fashion to thus yield the possibility of an analysis of individual objects as indeed developing relations which do not sway under a tendency for temporally designated political fashions in the unitive context (objects withdraw from view; all objects exhibit certain relations between them). This is to say that a transition would be in play; by the mere fact of an inability to isolate and identify the unitive principle, or at least one that does not fray and disintegrate under the eye of its own perspective (capitalism, for a term), a perspective that requires an extra-conscious force by which to hold it together (the transcendent and its concordant inspiration and effective faith), we should say that our efforts to find such a unitive principle through assertive agency and philosophical argument is contradiction in action. This can be the definition of transition, so much as we might need to find a solution to this ideological problem. For the solution for such a state is the solution found, which is, the functioning itself of such a state, whereas capitalism is founded in excess, that is, a functioning in suspension, of Being not found. Here is one arm of Slavoj Zizek’s disaster..

It is thus that capitalism may indeed not define a segment or period of empirical time except in as much as such a definition must be ‘forced’ into play (eternal order imposed upon a chaotic situation –just as “chaos” is likewise imposed by the order); we find similar capitalistic subsystems in the likes of all the philosophical turns, such as the ‘linguistic’ turn, or postmodern, structural, etc…; all these juggled in a semantic circus where what is Modern precipitates out at times to give a baring, only to pop out of view again to let us talk about the various political, epistemological or ideological historical states.

But this is all nonsense, really, because such a condition cannot be reconciled with the currents of capitalistic identities. But we know what this is: We find analogies in computer science; namely, there is no segue between the expression and the language of expression, for example, Windows and the code by which Windows operates. We like to think that there is a segue in the Being of human, and indeed we activate a segue as part of the regular operation of consciousness; I call this activity reality. But, at the end of historical analysis, any attempt to reduce one to the other yields a crashed system (I think Three Pound Brain had an idea about a crash space); either the code must contradict itself through being its expression, or the expression must fall apart in the reduction to its language. At any time, each behaves as a proxy for the other, and never do the two meet except in, as above, what we must call, real space. What we may be finding in our transition is that we in philosophy (what Im calling ‘conventional’, just to begin) are hanging onto the expression; we are only looking at the Window, through the Window and coming to all sorts of truth about what is ‘underneath’ through the view allowed by the Window. This orientation is so prevalent and insistent in its assertions that in some instances the ‘experts’ argue that there is no ‘deeper’, that it is all a plane, all occurring on a horizon; this is the same argument that says its all political. Sure: Its all political when you are involved with maintaining a certain fixity of context, but then most of these political reverends would totally miss what Im saying here to overdetermine it and proscribe some collapse of civilization if we were to turn to such a nihilistic ideal. Did I mention how the two routes do not reconcile to one another?

They indeed may be true for real determinations, but the problem is compounded where capitalistic-political identity maintains a contextual hold over the occurrence of the horizon, as though it is always the same non-contextual horizon, the non-transitional horizon that is always with us, in this case, as a mythological ground, or exchangeable (with modern, and capital) founding term. the example, here, might be found in the situational analogy: Is there a True Object over which terms move, or do terms identify particular and individual, and potentially temporal, objects.

In any case, we inevitably come to that which necessitates a forensics of being human, over a conventional philosophy. Maybe I should call it “Forensic Philosophy”? And then we should remember that when one does an autopsy on a person, all human beings do not suddenly die or cease to function, so likewise a forensic investigation on philosophy, while indeed requiring the state of the particular body to be deceased, does not destroy all philosophical states; indeed, it requires that philosophy does not reconcile all things unto itself. But we are speaking of what offends here aren’t we? (Did I say religion?)

At least its some food for thought by the Philosophical Hack.


Weird…The argument {for-against} Graham Harman that has any weight he could admit (if he would ever know of it).

Weirdness. (more notes for The Second Moment coming own 2017:

I think about some towns that have a certain motto like where I lived for a bit, Hollywood California, and then for some time, Santa Cruz California, but also another town that likes that motto that I spent some time in many years ago, Boulder Colorado, but then also a town that Ive never been to, Portland  Oregon, which I heard has the same motto. In fact, there are more than a few towns that I’ve heard that have the same  (unofficial) motto: “Keep _____ Weird”.

It is funny to me that the same towns that were weird back in – whatever day that I might call – ‘the day’, that indeed felt weird not only because those are the towns I think I tended to gravitate towards, but probably moreso in that I was quite weird myself, are the very same towns in their wanting to stay weird, as their matured populations are most likely the population that enjoyed the weirdness in their youth, have often (seems) developed into a town that definitely don’t want the weirdness in their towns anymore even as they have signs and stickers that say keep such and such town weird. They do not want to have to deal with what is really weird, they merely want to entertain the notion of weirdness through the vehicle of the idea that lay behind the promotion of their town being weird. They want to be identified with what is weird through the consideration of what is truly weird, namely (and this is what I liked about the seedy and weird towns ‘back in the day’) all the people who do not confirm to normative social standards of living, the eccentric, the artists, the crazy people on the street, the drug doers, the hippies, punks, and general strange people. In other words, they want to be crazy vicariously through a kind of twice removed association. The problem is that the weird is really weird and you can’t control or keep the weirdness confined in conceptual space; thats whats weird and enjoyable about a city that is weird, but what inevitably happen (-ed, -s) is that what is once weird becomes actually dangerous in a life effecting manner; it actually becomes depressing (in a really bad way; not despairing in oddity, but only sad and pitiful). If you have children and care about them and their happiness, you pretty much don’t want to raise them in what occurs once the weirdness wanders from the quaint considerations.

Now if anyone knows what I’m talking about, if anyone has noticed the same strangeness about keeping things weird that really are no longer weird, then you might also be able to understand my point of this funny thing that seems to be involving philosophical weirdness. And this I mean in reference to my previous post; i’m just gonna put it out there to let it sink in: That last post is fucking weird.

I’m sure someone will say that it is hardly weird but that it is just stupid or it is some other descriptive or falls into some other category that really explains the reason why someone would not want to read it more than it actually describes the piece itself.

The point I suppose I’m trying to make is that the meaning of the previous post to me is weird. And I mean this within the same sense that I can notice these towns liking to say ‘keep such and such a town weird’. Because the philosophers and authors that like to talk about weird things in a philosophical way, while I do understand their weirdnesses, like Stephen Kings ‘It’ , or Lovecraft’s strange interjections are weird, or Rob Zombie’s creations, to me it doesn’t seem so weird in a true sense; often enough those things seem to me weird in a fictional way, as if we’re entertaining some weird things. For me, when I think philosophically and when I use philosophy to talk about things or to describe what I’m doing as philosophy, I am not merely playing some word game, solving some intellectual puzzle, or working out my ‘consideration’ brain muscle; I do not sit in my ‘thinker’ chair and view things before me as pieces for my mind to put together in (redundantly) interesting ways. I don’t think the entertaining of weird things is really weird; I find it rather conventional. For me, I find it difficult to remove myself from the act, behavior or otherwise involvement of philosophy and so am repeatedly come upon by my own situation doing the situation: This is weird. I find myself often enough in a situation where I am incapable of removing myself sufficiently enough from the process of my thinking to be able to ‘work out intellectual puzzles’. But, I am capable of understanding how people are able to Be in that manner.

So it is that this duality inherent in the simplicity of consideration of things allows me to notice that philosophically what is weird is like the example of the previous post. What is weird is the juxtaposition of a highly improbable situation to the consideration of it; yet in fact, it is so unlikely that it is offensive such that it is understood to be wiser and more common sensible (!) to merely consider it. As well, for someone to argue or even propose some sort of truth of the matter in the manner proposed in the previous post with little or no apology hanging in the wings, as, indeed, a matter of fact: To me, that is weird.


Consider Graham Harman and his OOO. The sticking point that everyone seems unsettled by is the notion “Objects withdraw from view”. We should consider further what this means with reference to this weirdness I am attempting to show through my analogy coupled by the fact that I just wrote that post that I am saying is weird: The weirdness is found in the idea that the meaning of the post is not accessible to everyone. That is weird. And I don’t mean this with reference to a common human potential located of range and proximity; access is not automatically granted within some common educational arena. This is how education becomes problematized because in this context, education thus dismisses itself from mere set of skills and the method to build marketable social identity. This situation I am talking about is so odd, so strange, that we have to account then for those who will not be able to understand the meaning of it: I reference these individuals by including myself in the possibility of those who do not understand it.

What I mean by this seemingly aggravating strangeness is exactly that I can (am capable) of understanding how this situation is odd. In fact, if I could not encounter the meaning of the proposal as odd then I would not have been able to propose such strange situation because I would thereby be proposing a situation within a quite not strange situation wherein and whereby I would be granting myself to the possibility of appropriation through the position of proposing a strange situation of really, in effect, being not so strange; I would be proposing it within a continuum, within an arena of a common human sort where what may have been proposed as strange had lost its strangeness by virtue of everyone having access to the meaning of the situation. But more; the issue I treat in this weirdness is that such a route is taken by most who then see their comprehension of the situation as evidencing the weirdness as though the not-weird situation of their meaningful appropriation of the description of the weird situation has thereby granted them access to what is weird of the situation.For indeed I am suggesting that the access they have found has not gained access; as I say, it does not function in its capacity for verification. The route by which they have come to understand this weirdness of which I speak has not gained for them the weirdness of which I speak but instead has gained for them only a certain intellectual sense that functions to stand in for the weirdness itself, and thereby de facto only grants them a false sense of the situation. The issue is in the situation of this false sense, what I have called ‘subsequent’, being taken for what is ‘originary’ of the experience itself, the former which is then a proxy, but actually a patsy, that is used in place of the primary meaning as the primary offering. We can call this analysis thus a factual historical analysis, but also we can discover how this situation only occurs when we have understood that the situation occurs only through the object that has withdrawn from view, as we can now say, by the recognition of the subsequent route.

Nevertheless; while I agree in principle with the underlayings of his OOO, and even (in my second book “The Moment of Decisive Significance”) discuss how Harman’s represents albeit a particularly ideological and political apology, as evidenced by his Object Ontology; in contrast, as opposed to Harman, I do not say that this route by which things become weird is ‘real’; I reverse his positivism of transcendental agency (Harman is an advocate of essential agency) and say distinctly say that it is not real, for the reasons and purposes that conform negatively to the possibility of a common human sort.