graeber man with stick law
the threat of that man w the stick permeates our world at every moment – david graeber
found everywhere.. but adding page while re re reading fragments of an anarchist anthropology p 72-73:
4\ power/ignorance, or power/stupidity – academics love foucault’s argument that id’s knowledge/power and insists that brute force is no longer a major factor in social control.. they love it because it flatters them: the perfect formula for people who like to think of selves as political radicals even though all they do is write essays likely to be read by a few dozen.. in an institutional environ.. of course if any of these academics were to walking to their uni library to consult some volume of foucault w/o having remembered to bring a valid id.. they would discover that brute force is really not so far away as they like to imagine..
the threat of that man w the stick permeates our world at every moment; most of us have give up even thinking of crossing the innumerable lines/barriers he creates,
anarchists.. have always delighted in reminding us of him (man w stick).. opens way to a theory of relation of power not w knowledge but w ignorance/stupidity.. because violence, particularly structural violence, where a power is on one side, creates ignorance..
if you have the power to hit people over the head whenever you want, you don’t have to trouble yourself too much figuring out what they think is going on , and therefore, generally speaking, you don’t.. hence the sure fire way to simplify social arrangements, to ignore the incredibly complex play of perspectives, passions, insights, desires, and mutual understandings that human life is really made of, is to make a rule and threaten to attack anyone who breaks it.. this is why violence has always been the favored recourse of the stupid: it is the one form of stupidity to which it is almost impossible to come up w an intelligent response.. it is also of course the basis of the state..
contrary to popular belief, bureaucracies do not create stupidity. they are ways of managing situations that are already inherently stupid because they are ultimately, based on the arbitrariness of force..
why is it that the folks on the bottom (victims of structural violence) are always imagining what it must be like for the folks on top (the beneficiaries of structural violence) but it almost never occurs to the folks on top; to wonder what it might be like to be on the bottom.. human beings being the sympathetic creatures that they are this tends to become one of the main bastions of any system of ineq.. the downtrodden actually care about their oppressors at least, far more than their oppressors care about them.. – but this seems itself to be an effect of structural violence