luka

Well-known member
This sort of thing completely eliminates any sense of mystery about the world and suffocates the imagination. Everything has to be pulled apart and diagnosed, sanitised and packaged in horrible, antiseptic language.
its entirely the fault of Americans. one American specifically. Leo, to be precise.
 

Leo

Well-known member
not so much the pulled apart and diagnosed part. but the eliminating of mystery and suffocating of imagination, guilty as charged.
 

Leo

Well-known member

there's one guy I work with who does this all the time. he's also a bit of a blowhard, loves the sound of his own voice and writing lengthy emails that no one reads entirely. you'll find yourself 20-minutes into a conversation about what we might possibly do if someone does X or says Y, when in reality the odds of those things happening are very remote and not worth spending time on.
 

Leo

Well-known member
in business, one skill of a good manager is the ability to quickly sort out legitimate issues from those that "could potentially be problematic" and focus resources accordingly. that skill can also be applied in personal life.
 

william_kent

Well-known member
from the OSS manual of "sabotage in the workplace"

Organizations and Conferences

Insist on doing everything through "channels." Never permit short-cuts to be taken in order to expedite decisions.
Make "speeches." Talk as frequently as possible and at great length. Illustrate your "points" by long anecdotes and accounts of personal experiences.
When possible, refer all matters to committees, for "further study and consideration." Attempt to make the committee as large as possible — never less than five.
Bring up irrelevant issues as frequently as possible.
Haggle over precise wordings of communications, minutes, resolutions.
Refer back to matters decided upon at the last meeting and attempt to re-open the question of the advisability of that decision.
Advocate "caution." Be "reasonable" and urge your fellow-conferees to be "reasonable"and avoid haste which might result in embarrassments or difficulties later on.

Managers

In making work assignments, always sign out the unimportant jobs first. See that important jobs are assigned to inefficient workers.
Insist on perfect work in relatively unimportant products; send back for refinishing those which have the least flaw.
To lower morale and with it, production, be pleasant to inefficient workers; give them undeserved promotions.
Hold conferences when there is more critical work to be done.
Multiply the procedures and clearances involved in issuing instructions, pay checks, and so on. See that three people have to approve everything where one would do.

Employees

Work slowly.
Contrive as many interruptions to your work as you can.
Do your work poorly and blame it on bad tools, machinery, or equipment. Complain that these things are preventing you from doing your job right.
Never pass on your skill and experience to a new or less skillful worker.
 

version

Well-known member
from the OSS manual of "sabotage in the workplace"

Organizations and Conferences

Insist on doing everything through "channels." Never permit short-cuts to be taken in order to expedite decisions.
Make "speeches." Talk as frequently as possible and at great length. Illustrate your "points" by long anecdotes and accounts of personal experiences.
When possible, refer all matters to committees, for "further study and consideration." Attempt to make the committee as large as possible — never less than five.
Bring up irrelevant issues as frequently as possible.
Haggle over precise wordings of communications, minutes, resolutions.
Refer back to matters decided upon at the last meeting and attempt to re-open the question of the advisability of that decision.
Advocate "caution." Be "reasonable" and urge your fellow-conferees to be "reasonable"and avoid haste which might result in embarrassments or difficulties later on.

Managers

In making work assignments, always sign out the unimportant jobs first. See that important jobs are assigned to inefficient workers.
Insist on perfect work in relatively unimportant products; send back for refinishing those which have the least flaw.
To lower morale and with it, production, be pleasant to inefficient workers; give them undeserved promotions.
Hold conferences when there is more critical work to be done.
Multiply the procedures and clearances involved in issuing instructions, pay checks, and so on. See that three people have to approve everything where one would do.

Employees

Work slowly.
Contrive as many interruptions to your work as you can.
Do your work poorly and blame it on bad tools, machinery, or equipment. Complain that these things are preventing you from doing your job right.
Never pass on your skill and experience to a new or less skillful worker.
Reminds me of Sir Humphrey on regional government,

0:55

 

Leo

Well-known member
from the OSS manual of "sabotage in the workplace"

Organizations and Conferences

Insist on doing everything through "channels." Never permit short-cuts to be taken in order to expedite decisions.
Make "speeches." Talk as frequently as possible and at great length. Illustrate your "points" by long anecdotes and accounts of personal experiences.
When possible, refer all matters to committees, for "further study and consideration." Attempt to make the committee as large as possible — never less than five.
Bring up irrelevant issues as frequently as possible.
Haggle over precise wordings of communications, minutes, resolutions.
Refer back to matters decided upon at the last meeting and attempt to re-open the question of the advisability of that decision.
Advocate "caution." Be "reasonable" and urge your fellow-conferees to be "reasonable"and avoid haste which might result in embarrassments or difficulties later on.

Managers

In making work assignments, always sign out the unimportant jobs first. See that important jobs are assigned to inefficient workers.
Insist on perfect work in relatively unimportant products; send back for refinishing those which have the least flaw.
To lower morale and with it, production, be pleasant to inefficient workers; give them undeserved promotions.
Hold conferences when there is more critical work to be done.
Multiply the procedures and clearances involved in issuing instructions, pay checks, and so on. See that three people have to approve everything where one would do.

Employees

Work slowly.
Contrive as many interruptions to your work as you can.
Do your work poorly and blame it on bad tools, machinery, or equipment. Complain that these things are preventing you from doing your job right.
Never pass on your skill and experience to a new or less skillful worker.

do you have a spy cam in my client's office? you have no idea how on-the-money this is for a couple of people there.
 

william_kent

Well-known member
do you have a spy cam in my client's office? you have no idea how on-the-money this is for a couple of people there.
to be honest this applies to pretty much everywhere I've ever worked

edit: not quite true, when I've worked for criminals then it's possible to get shit done without filling in 20 forms beforehand...
 
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version

Well-known member
I couldn't be arsed to read the whole thing, but someone recently wrote a piece for Gawker criticising True Crime stuff and this leapt out at me,

"I think, somewhat horrifyingly, of what the internet sleuths would find on my own Instagram if I hadn’t survived my attack. Would my story have been the kind that was featured on a podcast, two bantering hosts dissecting my life and my book choices in between plugging ads for affordable furniture? I think I would rather get stabbed again than have TikTok users descend like vultures on my social media, zooming in on pictures of my messy bedroom to analyze the tedious minutia of my deeply average life."
 
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version

Well-known member
Some of the conspiracy threads on Twitter are a bit like that, but it's more acceptable when you're combing through the lives of the powerful.
 

catalog

Well-known member
I do understand wHt luke is saying with regard to this, we have been conditioned to question in an unthinking way.
 

catalog

Well-known member
I think this is actually the wrong thread, but nvm.

I think what you were saying about lefty politics ushering things in is true.

Years ago I was on this new Labour type special business course, to disrupt the economy etc, and we had all these lessons and workshops from various gurus. I remember one about maturana and varela. And there was one guy from a "service design" company called live | work who did this thing with us called "future evidencing" where you do a sort of write up of how your business might appear in eg an industry rag, or Internet news feed. Basically fake news before the term.

And I think that strategy, blue skying etc, has taken over people's minds to some extent.

It's all low level sigilisation, scruffy magic.

But it's being deployed, governed, used in a totally new and nefarious way.

You open up your imagination, but something scary creeps in, or is rather forced in.
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
I think this is actually the wrong thread, but nvm.

I think what you were saying about lefty politics ushering things in is true.

Years ago I was on this new Labour type special business course, to disrupt the economy etc, and we had all these lessons and workshops from various gurus. I remember one about maturana and varela. And there was one guy from a "service design" company called live | work who did this thing with us called "future evidencing" where you do a sort of write up of how your business might appear in eg an industry rag, or Internet news feed. Basically fake news before the term.

And I think that strategy, blue skying etc, has taken over people's minds to some extent.

It's all low level sigilisation, scruffy magic.

But it's being deployed, governed, used in a totally new and nefarious way.

You open up your imagination, but something scary creeps in, or is rather forced in.
Your mention of New Labour reminds me of some of the stuff Jonathon Meades was talking and writing about 10-15 years ago:

Museum without Walls has an entire section, ‘Vertical Sausaging Matrixes – Axialise an Iconic Art Hub’ on the practice and cant of regeneration, and Meades has fun with its lobotomised verbiage. All those buildings housing ‘the new, accessibly accessible, fun-style fun-arts which beacon integrated modernising lighthouse revitalisation for everyone ... Everyone can inclusivise re-energising ... Culture will springboard you into the happiness community.’ Most of this is taken from ‘On the Brandwagon’ (2008), which was possibly the first serious critique of the logic and aesthetics of Blairbuilding: ‘Block upon block of “luxury” flats which pleaded to be liked – in the early, needy manner of the Christian Bomber Blair. Block upon block ... decorated with strips of oiled wood, terracotta-coloured tiles, translucent bricks, riveted corten, titanium scales, random fenestration.’ Devoid of its own ideas, this ‘ghost-modernism’ plundered the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s, but drew the line at brutalism, which it replaced, reclad or had demolished.


(The article is by @craner's arch-nemesis Owen Hatherley, who coined the term "Blair hats" for the obnoxious pagoda-style roofs so often seen on buildings from around the turn of the millennium - once you've heard the phrase, you see them everywhere.)

So while Meades is lampooning regeneration-speak here, it's also a pretty good example of the convergence of marketing-, management- and media-speak with art-speak. And however hollow or ludicrous it may have seemed at the time, at the arse end of the Blair-Brown years, it also now seems almost like a lost golden age, as 2008 was probably the last year that large amounts of public cash were sloshing around for these kinds of grand projects that were at least intended to benefit ordinary people.
 
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luka

Well-known member
(The article is by Craner's bete noir Owen Hatherley, who coined the term "Blair hats" for the ludicrous pagoda-style roofs so often seen on buildings from around the turn of the millennium - once you've heard the phrase, you see them everywhere.)
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
I was going to say something like that, then couldn't be arsed, and am glad that you went ahead with it anyway.

Edit: fixed it now.
 
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catalog

Well-known member
Iain Sinclair in Orbital is also good on picking up on this. I've not got a copy in front of me, but there's a brilliant section where him and renchi are walking round a factory/warehouse/corporate office, it's got one of these generic meaningless names, let's say "Vantis" or something like that.

They can't work out what it is, what it produces, who works there etc. Classic ballardian place.

And it prompts sinclair to go into this diatribe about the new Labour project, I can't remember it all, but the killer line is something along thd lines of:

"produce nothing, never reveal the final objective, just keep it going"

Thatg sense of spin for the sake of it, chopping from project tto project, it has infected everything
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
"Vantis" is perfect, could easily be real. Remember when Royal Mail briefly became "Consignia", to universal derision?

I think that beyond a certain point, the mere perpetuation of The Project becomes The Project's final aim. I'm reminded of so-and-so's Iron Law of Bureaucracy, that Vim described here years ago, which says that in any large organization, there are two kinds of people: those dedicated to the stated aims of the organization, and those dedicated to the organization itself - its own bureaucracy, administration and command structure - and that, eventually, the latter group will attain ascendancy over the former.

I guess it was intended originally as a criticism of publicly funded organizations, since in a commercial company there is always the bottom line of the profit margin, but I'm sure it often applies all the same. Hence the common criticism of HR departments that they become "the tail that wags the dog", exerting influence and consuming resources way out of line with what they were originally created to do.
 
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