The drones in Afghanistan kill scores, even hundreds of children every week today. The papers give it a line and the public, including me of course, are blase about it. And just now, I was just reading that apocryphal tale about a bomb being dropped on Laos every 8 minutes 24 hours a day for nine years by America on the Legacies of War website. This happened from 1964 to 1973. Apparently, the idea of Laos as a nation didn’t really exist and the ‘country’s’ only significant cash crop was opium. Most of the people being bombed had no allegiance to any party or cause other than keeping their families alive. No one really talks about that either. If the preceding fail to register then it’s hardly surprising nobody really talks about or cares about art.
What Groys said about the artist no longer being the emissary of God since God died really stuck with me. To that extent, secular life is bad for business. It makes artists open to the accusation that they are selling snake oil. There is a great market for what Science can produce. It doesn’t really matter if any of it is useful so long as it sells. A bit like Art then? Well, no. Art grabs the beholder with an experiential quality of shared refinement and exquisite execution. At best Art can be called an analogue recording of the will of God. At worst Art today is a desultory emptying of the subconscious that values ideas above experience.
The Conflict Trap effects most people living in the Bottom Billion. 73% of them have recently been through a civil war (Paul Collier wrote the edition I am reading well before the Arab Spring). Paul was inspired to investigate whether proneness to civil war was related to differences in growth (war stunts growth obviously).
It’s lighting tests for Backtrack, the feature film I am producing, so I’m going to have to leave it there tonight. Nice little session though. I enjoyed it.