Re: Foucault and 'tsm'

Jerry wrote:

> However, lest this lead to
> arguments against expressions of support, perhaps one might consider,
> say, the support of international lawyers in the International Court
> of Justice, who may be using discursive tokens, but who nonetheless
> may have some influence on the ultimate treatment of those whose
> rights are so terminally violated.

You have already said that this is a bad example, but I want to
add that it has to do with support by an _institution_ rather than
by an individual person. My difficulties, however, are
restricted to support by individuals.

> The second has to do with the notion of someone else 'paying' for
> the 'pleasures' of one's endorsement - are others really that
> responsible for what I do? This seems to imply again a closer/more
> direct relationship between my actions and the suffering of others
> than perhaps really exists.

No, I don't mean this "payment" in any causal sense. Again, I am
talking exclusively about the internal mechanics of individual
"support" -- what it means for me internally, within my internal
landscape, to make decisions about distant causes. In doing so,
I am definitely not relating to the participants in the conflict
as individuals, or to their suffering as individual suffering.
I am, within my own theater of operations, a decision-maker,
a button-pusher, a representative of an institution of judgement
and power. These, it seems to me, are the conditions of
possibility for my "support" of one side or the other.

I want to stress that my argument has nothing to do with externals.
This is why I didn't address Tristan's proposals about the shady
ramifications of everyday actions. I agree that we are always
implicated in one way or another. But what interests me in this
case is, so to speak, the internal politics of impotence -- where
in fact one do _not_ have the power to perform any significant
actions, and yet feels called upon to declare "support".

- malgosia

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