Friday, May 30, 2014

WHY RIOT? — by Phil A. Neel / Ultra magazine

Two years ago in Seattle, on May 1st, 2012, roughly four to five hundred people engaged in the largest riot the city had seen in more than a decade. Hundreds of thousands of dollars of property were destroyed[i], a minor state of emergency was declared, and the next day’s headlines were filled with horror stories of crazy, “out-of-town” anarchists run amok.

This event, occurring on the tail end of the Occupy movement, also quickly became the post-facto excuse for extensive federal, state and municipal investigation, surveillance and ongoing repression of political dissent. Several anarchists in the Pacific Northwest were put in prison without charge in the fall of that year, only to be released months later, still with no charges filed. Houses were raided in search of anarchist literature and black hoodies. Up to a year later, people were still being followed.

I was one of the five people originally charged for crimes on May Day 2012[ii]. I’ve since pled guilty to slightly lesser charges, in order to avoid going to trial on two felonies[iii]. I pled in the fall of 2013 and completed the bulk of the sentence in the winter, spending three months in King County’s Work-Education Release (WER) Unit. Technically an “alternative to confinement,” living in WER effectively means that you are imprisoned at all times that you are not allowed out for work, school or treatment (for mental health or drug offenses).

This puts me in a unique position. Since I am one of the few people who has pled guilty to certain crimes from May 1st, 2012, including Riot, I do not necessarily face the same risks in talking about—and defending—the riot as a tactic or the impulses behind it. This by no means makes what I say below an exhaustive or fully representative account of why others may have engaged in that same riot. They mostly got away—a good thing in and of itself, though federal charges may still be pending for one window that was smashed in an empty courthouse. But this also means that they cannot speak of or defend their participation without risking repression.

To be clear: I’m not speaking on behalf of any groups who wound up engaged in the riot that occurred on May Day 2012. To my knowledge, the riot was by no means planned ahead of time, and the anti-capitalist march that the riot grew out of, technically an Occupy Seattle event, was itself planned in public meetings. I’m not even speaking on behalf of this specific riot, but instead on behalf of rioting as such, in the abstract. The question “Why Riot” is not simply: why did you engage in this riot, but, instead, why riot at all? And the perspective given here is that of a rioter.

So I’m writing here for simple reasons: to defend the riot as a general tactic and to explain why one might engage in a riot. By this I mean to defend and explain not just the window breaking, not just “non-injurious violence,” and certainly not just the media spectacle it generates, but the riot itself—that dangerous, ugly word that sounds so basically criminal and which often takes (as in London in 2011) a form so fundamentally unpalatable for civil society that it can only be understood as purely irrational, without any logic, and without possible defense.

I aim, nonetheless, to defend and explain the riot, because we live in a new era of riots. Riots have been increasing in absolute number globally for the past thirty years. They are our immediate future, and this future will spare Seattle no less than Athens or London, Guangzhou or Cairo.

Who am I?

I am a member of the poorest generation since those who came of age during the Great Depression. Born to the “end of history,” we watched the ecstatic growth of the Clinton years morph seamlessly into the New Normal of Bush and Obama.

We have no hope of doing better than our parents did, by almost any measure. We have inherited an economy in secular stagnation, a ruined environment on the verge of collapse, a political system created by and for the wealthy, skyrocketing inequality, and an emotionally devastating, hyper-atomized culture of pyrrhic consumption.

The most recent economic collapse has hit us the hardest. According to a study by the Pew Research Center, the median net worth of people under 35 fell 55 percent between 2005 and 2009, while those over 65 lost only a fraction as much, around 6 percent[iv]. The result is that if you calculate debt alongside income, wealth inequality is today increasingly generational. Those over 65 hold a median net worth of $170,494, an increase from 1984 of 42 percent. Meanwhile, the median net worth of those under 35 has fallen 68 percent over the same period, leaving young people today with a median worth of only $3,662[v].

Despite cultural narratives of laziness and entitlement, this differential is not due to lack of effort or education (my generation is the most educated, as well, and works some of the longest hours for the least pay). The same Pew Study notes that older white Americans have simply been the beneficiaries of good timing. They were raised in an era of cheap housing and education, massive state welfare and unprecedented economic ascent following the creative destruction of two world wars and a depression—wars and crises that they themselves didn’t have to live through.

And the jobs that older Americans hold are not being passed down to us, though their debt is. When they retire, the few remaining secure, living wage and often unionized positions will be eliminated, their components dispersed into three or four different unskilled functions performed by part-time service workers. The entirety of the job growth that has come since the “recovery” began has been in low-wage, temporary or highly precarious jobs, which exist alongside a permanently heightened unemployment rate.

In the long term, this means that, after having been roundly robbed in almost every respect by our parents’ generation, our own future holds nothing more than the hope that we might be employed in two or three separate part-time, no-promotion positions in the few growth sectors, such as healthcare, where we can have the privilege of being paid minimum wage to wipe the asses of the generation that robbed us.
It is no coincidence, then, that every time we hear a fucking baby boomer explain how we’re so entitled, and how they worked summers to pay for college, we contemplate whether or not disemboweling them and selling their organs on the booming black market might be the only way to pay back our student loans.
Where did I come from?

Meanwhile, this economic overhaul has led not only to a global reordering of where things are made, and by whom, but also to a spatial concentration of economic activity in the US.[vi] Those metropolitan regions that were capable of becoming network hubs for global logistics systems fared best, with their amalgamation of hi-tech industries and producer services. These became the urban palaces, with concentrations of “cultural capital” and redesigned downtown cores (lightly cleansed of “undesirable” populations) built to appeal to tourists and foreign dignitaries.
Beyond this, large swaths of the country were simply abandoned as wastelands, where resource extraction was either hyper-mechanized or too expensive, agricultural goods were produced under heavy government subsidy, and small urban centers were forced to compete for the most undesirable jobs in industrial farming, food processing, waste management, warehousing or the growing private prison industry. In many areas, the informal economy expanded enormously—consistent with global trends, most visible in the worldwide growth of slums.

I am from one of these wastelands where the majority of work is informal, the majority of formal industries are dirty or miserable, and where rates of poverty, unemployment, chronic disease, illiteracy, and mental illness are often two to three times the national average. Raised in a trailer several miles off a reservation in one of the poorest counties on the west coast, all of the structural shifts mentioned above were for me not academic abstractions, but living reality. I come from that part of America—the majority of it—where weed is the biggest cash crop, where kids eat Special K like it’s cereal, and where the only “revitalization” we’ve ever seen is when the abandoned factory down the street was converted into a meth lab.
And I was, due mostly to dumb luck, one of the few who was able to earn enough to pay the exit fee. Upon arrival in Seattle, despite having a degree I was fed into the lowest tiers of the labor market. Rather than being some “out-of-town” suburban youth using Seattle as a “playground,” as commentators would claim of the rioters, I was, in fact, one of the multitude of invisible workers that the city depended on—whether hauling goods to and from the port, working in the south county warehouses, cleaning downtown’s sprawling office towers, or, as in my case, working behind the kitchen door.
At the time of the riot, I was working for ten cents more than minimum wage in a wholesale kitchen in South Seattle, where we produced tens of thousands of pre-packaged sandwiches and salads for consumption in upscale city cafés and office buildings. It is not an exaggeration to say that my full-time work schedule (for the duration of Occupy Seattle, which I attended every day after morning shifts at work) amounted to me feeding hundreds of thousands of Seattleites over the several months that Occupy was a present force in the city. It’s likely, then, that those hysteric KIRO-TV commentators claiming that I was part of some “outsider” gang come from the heart of chaos (or Portland, maybe?) to fuck up Seattle have themselves regularly eaten the food that I was paid poverty wages to make.
Despite the language of post-industrial, guilt-free success common to many wealthy Seattleites’ image of themselves, the fact is that Seattle, like any other global city, relies on what is called a dual labor market[vii]. Higher tiers of skilled labor, cultural production, finance and producer services exist atop a secondary tier of less skilled, minimally compensated work in high-turnover jobs with little chance of promotion.
This creates a fundamental spatial problem within capitalism: despite the outsourcing of the dirtiest, most dangerous jobs in manufacturing and resource extraction, the rich can never entirely get away from the poor. The extension of surveillance, incarceration and deportation, the militarization of the police, and the softer counter-insurgency of philanthropy foundations[viii], social justice NGOs, conservative unions and various other poverty pimps are all methods to manage different dimensions of this problem. The riot is what happens when all these mediations fail. And in an era of crisis and austerity, such mediation becomes more and more difficult to maintain.
So in all the media’s talk of “outsiders,” “anarchists” and other terms meant to make the rioting subject opaque to those not immediately engaged in the riot, the one fact that was consistently distorted was the simplest: the thieves in the palace were, in fact, the servants.
I, the terrifying, irrational rioter, am you.

Why don’t I engage in more productive forms of protest?
The other common theme was, of course, the morality play between the “good protestor” and the “bad protestor.” The rioters somehow “infiltrated” the march. They distracted from the “real” issues. They turned “normal” people away from the day’s events, ultimately hurting attempts at reform that were already underway.
There is in this an implicit assumption that there exist “better” forms of protest, and that we rioters do not also do these things. This produces a few small ironies, as when the local alt-weekly, The Stranger, contrasted the negotiated arrest of fast food protestors, who showed their courage by standing their ground and “demanding arrest,” with the May Day rioters, who did nothing but “hide behind bandanas while hurling rocks.” The irony here was that I was myself one of those rioters and one of those fast food workers—having been involved in the fast food campaign from its inauguration, leading a walkout at my workplace in the first strike, planning segments of the intermediate actions (including the wage theft protest, though my pending riot case prevented me from being arrested there), and then briefly taking a paid position with Working Washington for two weeks leading up to the second strike.
Beyond the irony, though, there is the troublesome presumption that this highly negotiated, thoroughly controlled and largely non-threatening activism is somehow more productive in the long term. When I did engage in the fast food strikes, I did so initially as a fast food worker, and the short-term goal there was to build power among food workers in the city. Despite this, no amount of organizing for (often much-needed) reforms can get over the basic problems of reform itself, which is today equivalent to trying to take a step uphill during an avalanche—you may well complete that step, but the ground itself is moving the opposite direction.
What would have been easily achievable, relatively minor reforms in the boom era of fifty or sixty years ago, such as raising the minimum wage to match inflation, enforcing laws against wage theft, and coming up with an equitable tax system, today require herculean effort and mass mobilization, even when ninety percent of the original demand is usually sacrificed simply to show “good faith” at the negotiating table.
Why don’t I like capitalism?

There is plenty more to talk about here—which you can explore if you please. But the basic problem, cut to the size of a tweet, is that the economy is the name for a hostage situation in which the vast majority of the population is made dependent on a small minority through implicit threat of violence.
If we challenge the system’s capacity to infinitely accumulate more at a compounding rate, it goes into crisis—this is basic definition of crisis: when profitable growth slows, stops, or, god forbid, reverses. Whenever this accumulation is challenged, whether by contingent factors such as poor location, or intentional ones, such as a resistant populace, those who hold the power (the wealthy) will start killing hostages.
This is precisely what has been happening over the last fifty years of economic restructuring. Any regions that show significant resistance to the lowering of wages, the dismantling of social services, the export or mechanization of jobs, or the privatization of public property can easily be sacrificed. The American landscape, circa 2014, is littered with just such dead hostages: Detroit and Flint, MI, Camden, NJ, Athens, OH, Jackson, MS, the mining towns of West Virginia or northern Nevada.
The handful of cities (such as New York and Seattle) that were able to escape this fate today pride themselves on being such good hostages. The only reason they were able to survive this rigged game of neoliberal roulette was because of a mixture of sheer geographic luck (often as port cities or pre-existing financial centers) and their absolute openness to do whatever the rich wanted. Public goods were sold off at bargain basement prices, downtown cores were redesigned according to the whims of a few large interests in retail, finance and real estate, and tax money, paired with future tax exemptions, was simply handed out as bribes to big players like Nordstrom and Boeing.[ix]
If we then zoom out to the global scale, it is abundantly obvious that the currently existing economic system—which we call capitalism—is a failed one. If it ever had any grudging utility in raising general livelihoods after its mass sacrifices in war and colonization, that time has unequivocally passed. Aside from the numerous examples cited above, there are a few especially appalling illustrations. Slavery is growing worldwide at a rate higher than at any other time in recent history. Mechanization is set to push massive swaths of workers out of the production process entirely, even while the gains of this increase in productivity are themselves concentrated almost exclusively in the hands of the wealthy. The central role of finance and speculation in the global economy has resulted in massive spikes in global food prices, causing famines and food riots, as well as a situation in which the majority of grain in the world, to take one example, is controlled by just four companies.

Meanwhile, the bulk of the globe’s basic goods production is increasingly concentrated—both in the producer services of high-GDP metropoles like London, New York and Tokyo and in the “world’s factory” of South and Southeast Asia. The production of these goods is not only dominated by vast, low-wage retailers like Wal-Mart and Amazon, but also increasingly dictated by massive contract manufacturers like Foxconn or Yue Yuen, which concentrate their production in factory cities where the lives of migrant workers are surveilled and managed in a quasi-military fashion.
The concentration of the production process coincides with the concentration of the wealth generated by that process. Even within the old “first world,” poverty and unemployment have been on the rise since long before the most recent crisis. Greece and Spain are only the most visible signs of this trend. In the US, especially, the trend splits along racial lines. Cities and schools are resegregating, though the patterns of segregation are more complex than the redlining of the Jim Crow era. One dimension of this resegregation has been the growth of the US prison system into one of the largest the world has ever seen. Even if calculated as a percentage of population, rather than absolute number, the US today imprisons roughly the same fraction of its population as the USSR did at the height of the gulag system—and our prison population is still on the rise.
Curable diseases are returning en masse, while new viruses are being developed at record rates in the evolutionary pressure-cooker of industrial agriculture. Each economic crisis is larger than the one preceding it, and these crises are not just “business cycles.” Or, more accurately: the so-called business cycle is simply a sine wave oscillating around a trajectory of absolute decline. And this decline, like the last major ones in the global economic system, will only be reversible through an unimaginably massive bout of creative destruction.
In the face of a collapsing environment, a hyper-volatile economic system and skyrocketing global inequality, it is simply utopian to believe that the present system can be perpetuated indefinitely without great violence. Opposition to capitalism has become an eminently practical endeavor.
But… Why riot?

Despite all of this, the riot itself may still seem an enigma. On the surface, riots appear to produce little in terms of concrete results and, when you add up the numbers, often do less actual economic damage to large business interests than, for example, blockading the port. They produce a certain spectacle, but so does Jay-Z.
In one sense, there is often a practical side to many riots, which can be far better at winning demands than negotiated attempts at reform. Despite the fact that reform itself is designed to treat symptoms rather than the disease, it’s also evident that riots are a useful tool even in reform efforts. Riots, accompanying illegal blockades, occupations and wildcat strikes, have proliferated in China’s Pearl River Delta over the past several years, and the result has been that workers there have seen an unprecedented rise in manufacturing wages, which more than doubled between 2004 and 2009. Some scholars have called the phenomenon “collective bargaining by riot.”
Similarly, more and more historical work has been emerging showing that riots and other forms of armed organizing were very much the meat of movements like the civil rights struggle in the US, despite the common perception that these things were somehow “non-violent.” It is, in fact, difficult to find any example of a successful, significant sequence of reforms that did not utilize the riot at one point or another. As Paul Gilje, the pre-eminent historian of the US riot, has argued: “Riots have been important mechanisms for change,” and, in fact, “the United States of America was born amid a wave of rioting.” The tactic, then, should by no means be seen as in and of itself exceptional.
And it’s also not a sufficient tactic unto itself. The function of the riot is less about a religious or petulant obsession with the act of breaking shit and also not entirely about winning any given demand. This was apparent in examples like Occupy, which had no coherent, agreed-upon demands, aside from a general rejection of those in power. This demandlessness was a feature not only of Occupy, however, but of nearly every one of the mass movements that began in 2011, starting with the Arab Spring. In each instance, the only thing that was agreed upon was that the system was fundamentally fucked, and it was this aspect alone that transformed the riots from mere attempts at reform into truly historical procedures.
My generation was not only born into the ecstatic “end of history” of the 1990s, but is also the global generation—of slum-dwelling youth and “graduates with no future”—who are inducing the first pangs of history’s rebirth. And this rebirth has taken the figure of the hooded rioter, as has been evidenced by the increasingly frequent transformation of mass riots into occupations of public squares, which themselves evolved into new forms of rioting and, ultimately, the first major insurrection of the 21st century—which took place in Egypt and has since been largely crushed by the Supreme Council of Armed Forces.
The riot is most important, then, not in its traditional ability to win demands that progressives can only drool over, but instead when it takes on a demandless character. This absence of demands in the riot and occupation implies two things: First, it implies a rejection of existing mediations. We do not intend to vote for fundamentally corrupt political parties or play the rigged game of activism. Though it may be important in particular instances to fight for and win certain demands, such as the demand for $15 an hour, these reforms in and of themselves contribute nothing to the ultimate goal of winning a better world. They can contribute to this project only in very particular contexts, and only when superseded by forms adequate to that true project, as when the growing spate of strikes in Egypt in the years leading up to 2011 was suddenly superseded by a mass insurrection.
Second, it implies the question of power. The riot affirms our power in a profoundly direct way. By “our” power I mean, first, the power of those who have been and are continually fucked-over by the world as it presently is, though these groups by no means all experience this in the same way and to the same degree—the low-wage service workers, the prisoners, the migrant laborers, the indebted, unemployed graduates, the suicidal paper-pushers, the 农民工on the assembly line, the child slaves of Nestle cocoa plantations, my childhood friends who never got out of the trailer or off the rez. But I also mean the power of our generation: the millenials, a label that already implies the apocalyptic ambiance of our era. Or, more colloquially: Generation Fucked, because, well, obviously.
The question of power, though, isn’t simply a question of the devolution of power to the majority of people, though this is the ultimate goal. At the immediate level it is a struggle over power between shrinking fractions of the population dedicated to maintaining the complete shit-show that is the status quo, and growing fractions of the population dedicated to destroying that shit-show as thoroughly as humanly possible, while in the process collectively constructing a system in which poverty becomes impossible, no one is illegal, power itself is not concentrated in the hands of a minority of the population, our metabolism with the natural world bears less and less resemblance to the metabolism of a meth-head scouring the medicine cabinet, and the collective material wealth and accumulated intelligence of the human species is made freely accessible to all members of that species, rather than being reserved as party-swag for half-naked Russian oligarchs.
Pretending that power does not exist directly serves those who presently hold it. And the riot overturns such pretense by exerting our own power against theirs. It is a mechanism whereby we both scare the rich and attract people to a project that goes far beyond the reform of a collapsing world. In this particular instance, it has worked. Many of the fast food workers with whom I organized in the year following the riot understood its portent perfectly well. By May Day 2013, the riot had taken on a life of its own.
The riot, then, is not a hindrance to “real” struggle or a well-intentioned accident where people’s “understandable” anger gets “out of control.” Getting out of control is the point, which is precisely why the riot is the foundation from which any future worth the name must be built.
And we will be the ones to build it. Our generation: the millenials, generation fucked, or, as we’ve taken to calling it: Generation Zero. Zero because we’ve got nothing left except debt—but also nothing to lose. And zero because, like the riot, it all starts here.
In the end, then, you can lose the economics, you can lose the spectacle and the moralizing and the god-awful appeals to cute and fuzzy “social/racial/environmental justice.” Throw all of this in the alembic of the riot, and it boils down to the simplest of propositions:
Our future’s already been looted. It’s time to loot back.
Phil A. Neel
[i] Note that left-wing political riots primarily target property and, secondarily, engage in defensive violence against the protectors of that property, namely police, security officers, or vigilantes. This has been referred to as “non-injurious” violence, since there is an implicit agreement that rioters not cause harm to innocent bystanders, and since persons are not the primary target of the violence. By contrast, right-wing riots exhibit an opposite aspect, where persons, and particularly the least powerful in a situation, are generally the primary target of the violence, with property destruction being the ancillary. This is a well-documented phenomenon. See, for example: Gilje, Paul A. Rioting in America, Indiana University Press, 1996.
[ii] Of these five cases, one has been dropped after significant expense on the part of the city achieved only a hung jury. Out of all five, there have been only two guilty pleas, mine included.
[iii] It’s worth noting here that striking a police officer in the United States is a felony—which also means that, if you hit a cop and are found guilty of the crime, you lose the right to vote (usually for the duration of your multi-year probation, though in some states, such as Kentucky, you are disenfranchised for the rest of your life).
[iv] Ages 35-44 lost 49%, 45-54 lost 28% and 55-64 lost 14%.
[v] If you calculate the same data for Generation X and the younger Baby Boomers, with the same age brackets used in 1984, you see ages 35-44 losing 44% of their median income, though still holding roughly ten times the wealth ($39,601) as millenials. Ages 45-54 losing 10%, holding a median of $101,651, and ages 55-64 gaining 10%, growing to $162,065. Similarly, since 1967, poverty among the 35-and-under age group has increased from 12% to 22%, while, for those 65 and older, it has actually dropped from 33% to 11%.
[vi] For a more detailed academic account of this process, see Saskia Sassen, The Global City: New York, London, Tokyo. Princeton University Press, 1991.
[vii] See Michael Piore, Birds of Passage: Migrant Labor and Industrial Societies. Cambridge University Press, 1979
[viii] The philanthropic endeavors of the wealthy are similar to the actions of a burglar who, after robbing a neighborhood, returns to that neighborhood to return half of one percent of the loot as gifts—or, in the case of much international philanthropy, in the form of gift cards that you can only use at the burglar’s own department store, as when the Gates family gives loans earmarked to be used only for the purchase of pharmaceuticals from companies in which the Gates family owns a significant share.
[ix] For a detailed account of this process in Seattle, see: Timothy A. Gibson, Securing the Spectacular City: The Politics of Revitalization and Homelessness in Downtown Seattle. Lexington Books, 2003.


Monday, May 26, 2014

"Capitalism: A Very Special Delirium" by Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari

QUESTION: When you describe capitalism, you say: "There isn't the slightest operation, the slightest industrial or financial mechanism that does not reveal the dementia of the capitalist machine and the pathological character of its rationality (not at all a false rationality, but a true rationality of *this* pathology, of *this madness*, for the machine does work, be sure of it). There is no danger of this machine going mad, it has been mad from the beginning and that's where its rationality comes from. Does this mean that after this "abnormal" society, or outside of it, there can be a "normal" society?

GILLES DELEUZE: We do not use the terms "normal" or "abnormal". All societies are rational and irrational at the same time. They are perforce rational in their mechanisms, their cogs and wheels, their connecting systems, and even by the place they assign to the irrational. Yet all this presupposes codes or axioms which are not the products of chance, but which are not intrinsically rational either. It's like theology: everything about it is rational if you accept sin, immaculate conception, incarnation. Reason is always a region cut out of the irrational -- not sheltered from the irrational at all, but a region traversed by the irrational and defined only by a certain type of relation between irrational factors. Underneath all reason lies delirium, drift. Everything is rational in capitalism, except capital or capitalism itself. The stock market is certainly rational; one can understand it, study it, the capitalists know how to use it, and yet it is completely delirious, it's mad. It is in this sense that we say: the rational is always the rationality of an irrational. Something that hasn't been adequately discussed about Marx's *Capital* is the extent to which he is fascinated by capitalists mechanisms, precisely because the system is demented, yet works very well at the same time. So what is rational in a society? It is -- the interests being defined in the framework of this society -- the way people pursue those interests, their realisation. But down below, there are desires, investments of desire that cannot be confused with the investments of interest, and on which interests depend in their determination and distribution: an enormous flux, all kinds of libidinal-unconscious flows that make up the delirium of this society. The true story is the history of desire. A capitalist, or today's technocrat, does not desire in the same way as a slave merchant or official of the ancient Chinese empire would. That people in a society desire repression, both for others and *for themselves*, that there are always people who want to bug others and who have the opportunity to do so, the "right" to do so, it is this that reveals the problem of a deep link between libidinal desire and the social domain. A "disinterested" love for the oppressive machine: Nietzsche said some beautiful things about this permanent triumph of slaves, on how the embittered, the depressed and the weak, impose their mode of life upon us all.

Q: So what is specific to capitalism in all this?

GD: Are delirium and interest, or rather desire and reason, distributed in a completely new, particularly "abnormal" way in capitalism? I believe so. Capital, or money, is at such a level of insanity that psychiatry has but one clinical equivalent: the terminal stage. It is too complicated to describe here, but one detail should be mentioned. In other societies, there is exploitation, there are also scandals and secrets, but that is part of the "code", there are even explicitly secret codes. With capitalism, it is very different: nothing is secret, at least in principle and according to the code (this is why capitalism is "democratic" and can "publicize" itself, even in a juridical sense). And yet nothing is admissible. Legality itself is inadmissible. By contrast to other societies, it is a regime born of the public *and* the admissible. A very special delirium inherent to the regime of money. Take what are called scandals today: newspapers talk a lot about them, some people pretend to defend themselves, others go on the attack, yet it would be hard to find anything illegal in terms of the capitalist regime. The prime minister's tax returns, real estate deals, pressure groups, and more generally the economical and financial mechanisms of capital -- in sum, everything is legal, except for little blunders, what is more, everything is public, yet nothing is admissible. If the left was "reasonable," it would content itself with vulgarizing economic and financial mechanisms. There's no need to publicize what is private, just make sure that what is already public is being admitted publicly. One would find oneself in a state of dementia without equivalent in the hospitals.

Instead, one talks of "ideology". But ideology has no importance whatsoever: what matters is not ideology, not even the "economic-ideological" distinction or opposition, but the *organisation of power*. Because organization of power-- that is, the manner in which desire is already in the economic, in which libido invests the economic -- haunts the economic and nourishes political forms of repression.

Q: So is ideology a trompe l'oeil?

GD: Not at all. To say "ideology is a trompe l'oeil, " that's still the traditional thesis. One puts the infrastructure on one side-- the economic, the serious-- and on the other, the superstructure, of which ideology is a part, thus rejecting the phenomena of desire in ideology. It's a perfect way to ignore how desire works within the infrastructure, how it invests in it, how it takes part in it, how, in this respect, it organizes power and the repressive system. We do not say: ideology is a trompe l'oeil (or a concept that refers to certain illusions) We say: there is no ideology, it is an illusion. That's why it suits orthodox Marxism and the Communist Party so well. Marxism has put so much emphasis on the theme of ideology to better conceal what was happening in the USSR: a new organization of repressive power. There is no ideology, there are only organizations of power once it is admitted that the organization of power is the unity of desire and the economic infrastructure. Take two examples. Education: in May 1968 the leftists lost a lot of time insisting that professors engage in public self-criticism as agents of bourgeois ideology. It's stupid, and simply fuels the masochistic impulses of academics. The struggle against the competitive examination was abandoned for the benefit of the controversy, or the great anti-ideological public confession. In the meantime, the more conservative professors had no difficulty reorganizing their power. The problem of education is not an ideological problem, but a problem of the organization of power: it is the specificity of educational power that makes it appear to be an ideology, but it's pure illusion. Power in the primary schools, that means something, it affects all children. Second example: Christianity. The church is perfectly pleased to be treated as an ideology. This can be argued; it feeds ecumenism. But Christianity has never been an ideology; it's a very specific organization of power that has assumed diverse forms since the Roman Empire and the Middle Ages, and which was able to invent the idea of international power. It's far more important than ideology.

FELIX GUATTARI: It's the same thing in traditional political structures. One finds the old trick being played everywhere again and again: a big ideological debate in the general assembly and questions of organization reserved for special commissions. These questions appear secondary, determined by political options. While on the contrary, the real problems are those of organization, never specified or rationalized, but projected afterwards in ideological terms. There the real divisions show up: a treatment of desire and power, of investments, of group Oedipus, of group "superegos", of perverse phenomena, etc. And then political oppositions are built up: the individual takes such a position against another one, because in the scheme of organization of power, he has already chosen and hates his adversary.

Q: Your analysis is convincing in the case of the Soviet Union and of capitalism. But in the particulars? If all ideological oppositions mask, by definition, the conflicts of desire, how would you analyze, for example, the divergences of three Trotskyite groupuscules? Of what conflict of desire can this be the result? Despite the political quarrels, each group seems to fulfill the same function vis-a-vis its militants: a reassuring hierarchy, the reconstitution of a small social milieu, a final explanation of the world... I don't see the difference.

FG: Because any resemblance to existing groups is merely fortuitous, one can well imagine one of these groups defining itself first by its fidelity to hardened positions of the communist left after the creation of the Third International. It's a whole axiomatic, down to the phonological level -- the way of articulating certain words, the gesture that accompanies them -- and then the structures of organization, the conception of what sort of relationships to maintain with the allies, the centrists, the adversaries... This may correspond to a certain figure of Oedipalization, a reassuring, intangible universe like that of the obsessive who loses his sense of security if one shifts the position of a single, familiar object. It's a question of reaching, through this kind of identification with recurrent figures and images, a certain type of efficiency that characterized Stalinism--except for its ideology, precisely. In other respects, one keeps the general framework of the method, but adapts oneself to it very carefully: "The enemy is the same, comrades, but the conditions have changed." Then one has a more open groupuscule. It's a compromise: one has crossed out the first image, whilst maintaining it, and injected other notions. One multiplies meetings and training sessions, but also the external interventions. For the desiring will, there is --- as Zaire says-- a certain way of bugging students and militants, among others.

In the final analysis, all these groupuscules say basically the same thing. But they are radically opposed in their *style*: the definition of the leader, of propaganda, a conception of discipline, loyalty, modesty, and the asceticism of the militant. How does one account for these polarities without rummaging in the economy of desire of the social machine? >From anarchists to Maoists the spread is very wide, politically as much as analytically. Without even considering the mass of people, outside the limited range of the groupuscules, who do not quite know how to distinguish between the leftist elan, the appeal of union action, revolt, hesitation of indifference.

One must explain the role of these machines. these goupuscules and their work of stacking and sifting--in crashing desire. It's a dilemma: to be broken by the social system of to be integrated in the pre-established structure of these little churches. In a way, May 1968 was an astonishing revelation. The desiring power became so accelerated that it broke up the groupuscules. These later pulled themselves together; they participated in the reordering business with the other repressive forces, the CGT [Communist worker's union], the PC, the CRS [riot police]. I don't say this to be provocative. Of course, the militants courageously fought the police. But if one leaves the sphere of struggle to consider the function of desire, one must recognize that certain groupuscules approached the youth in a spirit of repression: to contain liberated desire in order to re-channel it.

Q: What is liberated desire? I certainly see how this can be translated at the level of an individual or small group: an artistic creation, or breaking windows, burning things, or even simply an orgy or letting things go to hell through laziness or vegetating. But then what? What could a collectively liberated desire be at the level of a social group? And what does this signify in relation to t"the totality of society", if you do not reject this term as Michel Foucault does.

FG: We have taken desire in one of its most critical, most acute stages: that of the schizophrenic--and the schizo that can produce something within or beyond the scope of the confined schizo, battered down with drugs and social repression. It appears to us that certain schizophrenics directly express a free deciphering of desire. But now does one conceive a collective form of the economy of desire? Certainly not at the local level. I would have a lot of difficulty imagining a small, liberated community maintaining itself against the flows of a repressive society, like the addition of individuals emancipated one by one. If, on the contrary, desire constitutes the very texture of society in its entirety, including in its mechanisms of reproduction, a movement of liberation can "crystallize" in the whole of society. In May 1968, from the first sparks to local clashes, the shake-up was brutally transmitted to the whole of society, in some groups that had nothing remotely to do with the revolutionary movement--doctors, lawyers, grocers. Yet it was vested interests that carried the day, but only after a month of burning. We are moving toward explosions of this type, yet more profound.

Q: Might there have already been a vigorous and durable liberation of desire in hostpry, apart from brief periods. a celebration, carnage, war, or revolutionary upheavals? Or do you really believe in an end of history. after millennia of alienation, social evolution will suddenly turn around in a final revolution that will liberate desire forever?

FG: Neither the one nor the other. Neither a final end to history, nor provisional excess. All civilizations, all periods have known ends of history--this is not necessarily convincing and not necessarily liberating. As for excess, or moments of celebration, this is no more reassuring. There are militant revolutionaries who feel a sense of responsibility and say: Yes excess "at the first stage of revolution," serious thing s... Or desire is not liberated in simple moments of celebration. See the discussion between Victor and Foucault in the issue of *Les Temps Moderns* on the Maoists. Victor consents to excess, but at the "first stage". As for the rest, as for the real thing, Victor calls for a new apparatus of state, new norms, a popular justice with a tribunal, a legal process external to the masses, a third party capable of resolving contradictions among the masses. One always finds the old schema: the detachment of a pseudo capable of bringing about syntheses, of forming a party as an embryo of state apparatus, of drawing out a well brought up, well educated working class; and the rest is a residue, a lumpen-proletariat one should always mistrust (the same old condemnation of desire). But these distinctions themselves are another way of trapping desire for the advantage of a bureaucratic caste. Foucault reacts by denouncing the third party, saying that if there is popular justice, it does not issue from a tribunal. He shows very well that the distinction "avant-garde-lumpen-proletariat" is first of all a distinction introduced by the bourgeoisie to the masses, and therefore serves to crush the phenomena of desire, to *marginalize* desire. The whole question is that of state apparatus. It would be strange to rely on a party or state apparatus for the liberation of desire. To want better justice is like wanting better judges, better cops, better bosses, a cleaner France, etc. And then we are told: how would you unify isolated struggles without a party? How do you make the machine work without a state apparatus? It is evident that a revolution requires a war machine, out this is not a state apparatus, it is also certain that it requires an instance of analysis, an analysis of the desires of the masses, yet this is not an apparatus external to the synthesis. Liberated desire means that desire escapes the impasse of private fantasy: it is not a question of adapting it, socializing it, disciplining it, but of plugging it in in such a way that its process not be interrupted in the social body, and that its expression be collective. What counts is not the authoritarian unification, but rather a sort of infinite spreading: desire in the schools, the factories, the neighborhoods, the nursery schools, the prisons, etc. It is not a question of directing, of totalising, but of plugging into the same plan of oscillation. As long as one alternates between the impotent spontaneity of anarchy and the bureaucratic and hierarchic coding of a party organization, there is no liberation of desire.

Q: In the beginning, was capitalism able to assume the social desires?

GD: Of course, capitalism was and remains a formidable desiring machine. The monary flux, the means of production, of manpower, of new markets, all that is the flow of desire. It's enough to consider the sum of contingencies at the origin of capitalism to see to what degree it has been a crossroads of desires, and that its infrastructure, even its economy, was inseparable from the phenomena of desire. And fascism too--one must say that it has "assumed the social desires", including the desires of repression and death. People got hard-ons for Hitler, for the beautiful fascist machine. But if your question means: was capitalism revolutionary in its beginnings, has the industrial revolution ever coincided with a social revolution? No, I don't thing so. Capitalism has been tied from its birth to a savage repressiveness; it had it's organization of power and its state apparatus from the start. Did capitalism imply a dissolution of the previous social codes and powers? Certainly. But it had already established its wheels of power, including its power of state, in the fissures of previous regimes. It is always like that: things are not so progressive; even before a social formation is established, its instruments of exploitation and repression are already there, still turning in the vacuum, but ready to work at full capacity. The first capitalists are like waiting birds of prey. They wait for their meeting with the worker, the one who drops through the cracks of the preceding system. It is even, in every sense, what one calls primitive accumulation.

Q: On the contrary, I think that the rising bourgeoisie imagined and prepared its revolution throughout the Enlightenment. From its point of view, it was a revolutionary class "to the bitter end", since it had shaken up the *ancien regime* and swept into power. Whatever parallel movements took place among the peasantry and in the suburbs, the bourgeois revolution is a revolution made by the bourgeoisie terms are hardly distinguishable--and to judge it in the name of 19th or 20th century socialist utopias introduces, by anachronism, a category that did not exist.

GD: Here again, what you say fits a certain Marxist schema. At one point in history, the bourgeoisie was revolutionary, it was even necessary--necessary to pass through a stage of capitalism, through a bourgeois revolutionary stage. It'S a Stalinist point of view, but you can't take that seriously. When a social formation exhausts itself, draining out of every gap, all sorts of things decode themselves, all sorts of uncontrolled flows start pouring out, like the peasant migrations in feudal Europe, the phenomena of "deterritorialisation." The bourgoisie imposes a new code, both economic and political, so that one can believe it was a revolution. Not at all. Daniel Guerin has said some profound things about the revolution of 1789. The bourgoisie never had illusions about who its real enemy was. Its real enemy was not the previous system, but what escaped the previous systems's control, and what the bourgoisie strove to master in its turn. It too owed its power to the ruin of the old system, but this power could only be exerciced insofar as it opposed everything else that was in rebellion against the old system. The bourgoiseie has never been revolutionary. It simply made sure others pulled of the revolution for it. It manipulated, channeled, and repressed an enormous surge of popular desire. The people were finally beaten down at Valmy.

Q: They were certainly beaten down at Verdun.

FG: Exactly. And that's what interests us. Where do these eruptions, these uprisings, these enthusiasms come from that cannot be explained by a social rationality and that are diverted, captured by the power at the moment they are born? One cannot account for a revolutionary situation by a simple analysis of the interests of the time. In 1903 the Russian Social Democratic Party debated the alliances and organization of the proletariat, and the role of the avant-garde. While pretending to prepare for the revolution, it was suddenly shaken up by the events of 1095 and had to jump on board a moving train. There was a crystallization of desire on board a wide social scale created by a yet incomprehensible situation. Same thing in 1917. And there too, the politicians climbed on board a moving train, finally getting control of it. Yet no revolutionary tendency was able or willing to assume the need for a soviet-style organization that could permit the masses to take real charge of their interests and their desire. Instead, one put machines in circulation, so-called political organizations, that functioned on the model elaborated by Dimitrov at the Seventh International Congress--alternating between popular fronts and sectarian retractions--and that always led to the same repressive results. We saw it in 1936, in 1945, in 1968. By their very axiomatic, these mass machines refuse to liberate revolutionary energy. It is, in an underhanded way, a politics comparable to that of the President of the Republic or of the clergy, but with red flag in hand. And we think that this corresponds to a certain position vis-a-vis desire, a profound way of envisioning the ego, the individual, the family. This raises a simple dilemma: either one finds a new type of structure that finally moves toward the fusion of collective desire and revolutionary organization: or one continues on the present path and, going from repression to repression, heads for a new fascism that makes Hitler and Mussolini look like a joke.

Q: But then what is the nature of this profound, fundamental desire which one sees as beeing constitutive of man and social man, but which is constantly betrayed? Why does it always invest itself in antinomic machines of the dominant machine, and yet remain so similar to it? Could this mean that desire is condemned to a pure explosion without consequence or to perpetual betrayal? I have to insist: can there ever be, one fine day in history, a collective and during expression of liberated desire, and how?

GD: If one knew, one wouldn't talk about it, one would do it. Anyway, Felx just said it: revolutionary organization must be that of the war machine and not of state apparatus, of an analyzer of desire and not an external systhesis. In every social system, there have always been lines of escape, and then also a rigidification to block off escape, or certainly (which is not the same thing) embryonic apparatuses that integrate them, that deflect or arrest them in a new system in preparation. The crusades should be analysed from this point of view. But in every respect, capitalism has a very particular character: its lines of escape are not just difficulties that arise, they are the conditions of its own operation. it is constituted by a generalized decoding of all flux, fluctuations of wealth, fluctuations of language, fluctuations of art, etc. It did not create any code, it has set up a sort of accountability, an axiomatic of decoded fluxes as the basis of its economy. It ligatures the points of escape and leaps itself having to seal new leaks at every limit. It doesn't resolve any of its fundamental problems, it can't even forsee the monetary increase in a country over a single year. It never stops crossing its own limits which keep reapperaing farther away. It puts itself in alarming situations with respect to its won production, its social life, its demographics, its borders with the Third World, its internal regions, etc. Its gaps are everwhere, forever giving rise to the displaced limits of capitalism. And doubtless, the revolutionary way out (the active escape of which Jackson spoke when he said: " I don't stop running, but while running, I look for weapons") is not at all the same thing as other kinds of esacpe, the schizo-escape, the drug-escape. But it is certainly the problem of the marginalized: to plug all these lines of escape into a revolutionary plateau. In capitalism, then, these lines of escape take on a new character, a new type of revolutionary potential. You see, there is hope.

Q: You spoke just now of the crusades. For you, this is one of the first manifestations of collective shizohrenia in the West.

FG: This was, in fact, an extraordinary schizophrenic movement. Basically, in an already schismatic and troubled world, thousands and thousands of people got fed up with the life they led, makeshift preachers rose up, people deserted entire villages. It's only later that the shocked papacy tried to give direction to the movement by leading it off to the Holy Land. A double advantage: to be rid of errant bands and to reinforce Christian outposts in the Near East thretened by the Turks. This didn't always work: the Venetian Crusade wound up in Constantinople, the Childrens Crusade veered off toward the South of France and very quickly lost all sympathy: there were entire villages taken and burned by these "crosses" children, who the regular armies finally had to round up. They were killed or sold into slavery.

Q: Can one find parallels with contemporary movements: communities and by-roads to escape the factory and the office? NAd would there be any pope to co-opt them? A Jesus Revolution?

FG: A recuperation by Christianity is not inconceivable. It is, up to a certain point, a reality in the United States, but much less so in Europe or in France. But there is already a latent return to it in the form of a Naturist tendency, the idea that one can retire from production and reconstruct a little society at a remove, as if one were not branded and hemmed in by the capitalist system.

Q: What role can still be attributed to the church in a country like ours? The church was at the center of power in Western civilization until the 18th Century, the bond and structure of the social machine until the emergence of the nation-state. Today, deproved by the technocracy of this essential function, it seems to have gone adrift, without a point of anchorage, and to have split up. One can only wonder if the church, pressured by the currents of Catholic progressivism, might not become less confessional than certain political organizations.

FG: And ecumenism? In't it a way of falling back on one's feet? THe church has never been stronger. There us bi reasiob ti oppose church and technocracy, there is a technocracy of the church. Historically, Christianity and positivism have always been good partners. The development of positive sciences has a Christian motor. One cannot say that the psychiatrist has replaced the priest. Nor can one say the cop has replaced the priest. There is always a use for everyone in repression. What has aged about Christianity is its ideology, not its organization of power.

Q: Let's get to this other aspect of yopur book: the critique of psychiatry. Can one say that France is already covered by the psychiatry of *Sectuer*--and how far does this influence spread?

FG: The structure of psychiatric hospitals essentially depends on the state and the psychiatrists are mere functionaries. For a long time the state was content to practice a politics of coercion and didn't do anything for almost a century. One had to wait fot the Liberation for any signs of anxiety to appear: the first psychiatric revolution, the opening of the hospitals, the free services, instituional psychotherapy. All that has led to the great utopian politics of "Sectorization," which consisted in limiting the number of internments and of sending teams of psychiatrists out into the population like missionaries in the bush. Due to lack of credit and will, the reform got bogged down: a few model services for official visits, and here or there a hospital in the most underdeveloped regions. We are now moving toward a major crisis, comparable in size to the university crisis, a disaster at all levels: facilities, training of personnel, therapy, etc.

The instituional charting of childhood is, on the contrary, undertaken with better results. In this case, the initiative has escaped the state framework and its financing to return to all sorts of associations--childhood protection or parental associations.... The establishments have proliferated, subsidized by Social Security. The child is immediately taken charge of by a network of psychologists, tagged at the age of three, and followed for life. One can expect to see solutions of this type for adult psychiatry. In the face of the present impasse, the state will try to de-nationalize institutions in favor of other institutions ruled by the law of 1901 and most certainly manipulated by political powers and reactionary family groups. We are moving toward a psychiatric surveillance of France, if the present scrises fail to liberate its revolutionary potentialities. Everywhere, the most conservative ideology is in bloom, a flat transposition of the concepts of Oedipalism. In the childrens's wards, one calls the director "uncle," the nurse, "mother." I have even heard distinctions like the following: group games obey a maternal principle, the workshops, a paternal one. The psychiatry of *Secteur* semms progressive because it opens the hospital. But if this means imposing a grid over the neighborhood, we will soon regret the loss of the closed asylums of yesterday. It's like psychoanalysis, it functions openly, so it is all the worse, much more dangerous as a repressive force.

GD: Here's a case. A woman arrives at a consultation. She explains that she takes tranquilizers. She asks for a glass of water. Then she speaks: "You understand I have a certain amount of culture. I have studied, i love to read, and there you have it. Now I spend all my time crying. I can't bear the subway. And the minute I read something, I start to cry. I watch television; I see images of Vietnam: I can't stand it ..." The doctor doesn't say much. The woman continues: "I was in the Resistance... a bit. I was a go-between." The doctor asks her to explain. "Well, yes, don't you understand, doctor? I went to a cafe and I asked, for example, is there something for Rene?" I would be given a letter to pass on." The doctor hears "Rene"; he wakes up: "Why do you say "Rene"? It's the first time he asks a question. Up to that point, she was speaking about the metro, Hiroshima, Vietnam, of the effect all that had on her body, the need to cry about it. But the doctor only asks: "Wait, wait, 'Rene' ... what dies 'Rene' mean to you?" Rene--someone who is reborn [re-n'e]? The Renaissance, this fits into a universal schema, the archetype: "You want to be reborn." The doctor gets his bearings: at last he's on track. And he gets her to talk about her mother and her father.

It's an essential aspect of our book, and it's very concrete. The psychiatrists and psychoanalysts have never paid any attentiaon to delirium. It'S enough just to listen to someone who is delirious: it's the Russians that worry him, the Chinese; my mouth is dry; somebody buggered me in the metro; there are germs and spermatozoa swimming everywhere; it's Franco's fault, the Jews, the Maoists: all a delirium of the social field. Why shouldn't this concern the sexuality of the subject--the relations it has with the Chinese, the whites, the blacks? Whith civilization, the crusades, the metro? Psychiatrists and psychoanalysts hear nothing of this, on the defensive as much as they are indefensible. They crush the contents of the unsoncious under prefab statements: "You speak to me of the Chinese, but what about your father? No, he isn't Chinese? THen , do you have a Chinese lover?" It's atz the same level of repressive work as the judge in the Angela Davis case who affirmed: "Her behavior can only be explained by her beeing in love." ANd what if, on the contrary, Angela Davis's libido was a social, revolutionary libido? What if she were in love because she was a revolutionary?

That is what we want to say to psychiatrists and psychoanalysts: yopu don't know what delirium is; you haven't understood anything. If our bnook has a meaning, it is that we have reached a stage where many people feel the psychoanalytif machine no longer works, where a whole generation is getting fed up with all-purpose schemas--oedipus and castration, imaginary and symbolic--which systematically efface the social, political, and cultural contents of any psychic disturbance.

Q: You associate schizophrenia with capitalism; it is the very foundation of your book. Are there cases of schizophrenia in other societies?

FG: Schizophrenia is indissocialble from the capitalist system, itself conceived as primary leakage (fuite): and exclusive malady. In other societies, escape and marginalization take on other aspects. The asocial individual of so-called primitive societies is not locked up. The prison and the asylum are resent notions. One chases him, he is exiled at the edge of the village and dies of it, unless he is integrated to a neighboring village. Besides, each system has its paricular sickness: the hysteric of so-called primitive societies, the manic-depressive paranoiacs of the great empires... The capitalist economy preoceeds by decoding and de-territorialization: it has its exterme cases, i.e., schzophrenics who decode and de-territorialize themselves to the limit; but also it has its extreme consequences--revolutionaries.

by Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari 


Monday, May 5, 2014

S.O.S Greek coastline is destroyed by private interests and Greek government. The paradigm of the destruction of Spain's coastline / Η Καταστροφή της Ισπανικής ακτογραμμής παράδειγμα για το μέλλον των Ελληνικών ακτών!

As the far-right government in Greece is preparing a new law that allows the destruction of Greek coast-line by private interests and all kinds of capitalist's investments we publish here a serial of photos from Spain where anyone can see clear the destructive effects of capitalistic development in Mediterranean environment. We are asking all people of Europe to fight for the defense of Greek coast-line and the paradesiac Greek beaches from destructive Greek government and private interests.

To understand what they try to do in Greece you can see the total destruction of coast-line in Spain.

Καθώς η ακροδεξιά κυβέρνηση στην Ελλάδα ετοιμάζει νόμους που θα επιτρέψουν την καταστροφή της Ελληνικής ακτογραμμής από ιδιωτικά συμφέροντα και κάθε λογής καπιταλιστικές επενδύσεις δημοσιέυουμε εδώ μια σειρά από φωτος από την Ισπανία έτσι ώστε να γίνει ξεκάθαρο στον καθένα το απόλυτα καταστροφικό αποτέλεσμα της καπιταλιστικής ανάπτυξης στο περιβάλλον της Μεσογείου. Ζητάμε από τους ανθρώπους όλης της Ευρώπης να υπερασπιστούν τις παραδείσιες Ελληνικές παραλίες από την καταστροφική Ελληνική Κυβέρνηση και τα ιδιωτικά συμφέροντα.

The destruction of Spain's coastline / Η Καταστροφή της Ισπανικής ακτογραμμής

In the past two decades the once-beautiful Spanish coastline has been ravaged by the construction of hotels, apartment blocks and second homes. Here are some of the worst examples.

Τα τελευταία 20 χρόνια αυτό που κάποτε ήταν οι πανέμορφες Ισπανικές παραλίες και ακτές έχει κακοποιηθεί από την κατασκευή ξενοδοχειακών μονάδων, συγκροτημάτων διαμερισμάτων και εξοχικών. Εδώ μπορείτε να δείτε κάποια χαρακτηριστικά παραδείγματα:

2005: The Azata del Sol complex on the Algarrobico beach in the Cabo de Gata park in Almeria, southern Spain

2005: Το οικοδομικό συγκρότημα Azata Del Sol στην παραλία Algarrobico στην Νότια Ισπανία

 2007: Scores of Greepeace activists disembark in front of the hotel Azata del Sol, Algarrobico, which has been built on the first coastal line of Carboneras, Almeria. The activists painted 'Illegal Hotel' on the front of the hotel
2007: Aκτιβιδτές της Greenpeace γράφουν μπροστά από το ξενοδοχείο Azata del Sol που έχει χτιστεί μπροστά στην θάλασσα του Algarrobico "Παράνομο Ξενοδοχείο".   

 2007: New holiday homes being built in Altea on Spain's Costa Blanca. According to Greenpeace Spain is failing to stop the overbuilding which is destroying its Mediterranean coastline [Caption amended 5 June 2009] 
2007: Nέες κατοικίες διακοπών στην περιοχή Altea της Ισπανικής Costa Blanca. Σύμφωνα με την Greenpeace η Ισπανική κυβέρνηση αποτυγχάνει να σταματήσει την υπερδόμηση που καταστρέφει την Ισπανική ακτογραμμή.

Benidorm as it was in 1960
Το Benidorm όπως ήταν το 1960

 Towers in Benidorm on the Costa del Sol, as it is now
Ουρανοξύστες στο Benidorm της Costa del Sol όπως είναι σήμερα

2007: A packed beach in Benidorm
2007: Η παραλία του Benidorm

  Torremolinos, Costa Del Sol, as it was in 1959
  Η παραλία Torremolinos στην Costa Del Sol, όπως ήταν το 1959

  Torremolinos, Malaga, as it is now
  Η παραλία Torremolinos όπως είναι σήμερα

2009: A view of a building at the beach of Torremolinos, near Malagá
2009  Θέα από την  παραλία Torremolinos

2006: Construction work close to the Mediteranean sea in Calpe, near Valencia
2006: Κατασκευαστικές εργασίες στην Μεσόγειο θάλασσα στο  
Calpe, κοντά στην Valencia
  2009: Buildings line up at the beach of Cullera near Valencia. The European Parliament has said that Spain is not doing enough to protect individuals and the environment from abuse by developers, construction firm and local government involved in its property sector

2009: Οικοδομικά συγκροτήματα στην  παραλία  Cullera κοντα στην Valencia. Το Ευρωπαϊκό Κοινοβούλιο δήλωσε πως η Ισπανική κυβέρνηση δεν κάνει αρκετά ώστε να προστατέψει τους κατοίκους της χώρας και το περιβάλλον από τα καταστροφικά σχέδια των επενδυτών "ανάπτυξης", τις κατασκευαστικές εταιρίες και τις τοπικές αρχές που κερδοσκοπούν σε κάθε ένα από αυτά τα σχέδια

  2008: A bulldozer demolishes a house at Cho Vito village in Tenerife. Civil guard officers started the planned eviction of 23 families from their houses following orders to demolish them due to an infringement on the coastal housing law which prohibits constructions from being closer than 50 metres from the shoreline. 

Τhen the doors of development are wide open

2008: Μπουλντόζα διαλύει σπίτια στο παραλιακό χωριό Cho Vito village στην Tenerife. Η τοπική αστυνομία ακολουθόντας διαταγές βασισμένες στο νόμο που απαγορεύει κατοικίες 50μ. απόσταση από την ακτή γκρεμίζει τα σπίτια του παραθαλάσσιου χωριού για να ανοίξει τις πόρτες στην "ανάπτυξη".