Brian Holmes, Future Map, 2007
The titel How the cyborgs learned to stop worrying and love surveillance refers to Kubrik’s film Dr. Strangelove and how I stopped worrying and love the bomb. Holmes text starts with an introduction about the mathematics and founder from the cybernetics 1947 Norbert Wiener and his questioning if a creature can play with his own creator and if machines have the capacity to reproduce themselves. It is about feedback loop and neuro-engeneering. Wiener was an anti militarist and in opposition with John von Neumann, who was member of the atomic energy commission and developed two-people game and its possible moves. It was figure of Neumann who served as a model for Kubrik’s Dr. Strangelove. Wiener aspired a policy of continous error-correction and he was concerned by decision–making game-theoretical robots which ended up in an amok, like he described in his book God and Golem. In 1940 he developed a closed loop information system named “antiaircraft predictor” and underlined the necessity of the human being having to be involved. It is an uncanny identity of humanlike machines which fired and piloted at the same time. This unity of man and machine helps to understand the surveillance, the inspection of personal data, the neromarketing etc. We are like the figure Golem in Wiener's book, cyborgs in computerized democracies, where every form is now decoded. As Wiener asked the question, can we play with cybernetic society that has created us? The collection of date serves to track and analyse human beings. Holmes write that Big Brother in Orwell’s totalitarian state and the Panopticum are dated images. What we have now is a surveillance regime in which the mobile individuals can be channelded and controlled. Foucault distances in 1978 from his previous ideas and introduced the notion of “security devices”, which are regulatory mechanism for optimization and against disorder. They should not intervention on the player but on the rules of the game, they should produce and organize freedom, without limiting anothers and threatening the whole. In this huge complexity of the architecture of surveillance, Foucaults introduces the notion “counter-behavior”. The title Future Map comes from Future Markets Applied to Prediction out of the Total Information Awarness program from Admiral John Polindexter. The financials bet on civil, economic and military trends in the Middle East. There is investement in cybernetic transformatio including again sovereign and disciplinary power. The Total Information Awarness program serves a self regulating closed-loop system for preemption, national security warning and national security making. It is a “security device” which serves to optimize the economic development, the financial speculation and produce information within human acts like servomechanism. This Total Information Awarness system has the aim to realize Wiener’s predictor including the sleep of reason under informatic surveillance. Two consequences are to organize the consumer environment by eliminating desires, creating zombie like human beings and to remove those who make trouble. Holmes sum up with the questions how to engage a counter-behavior to be able to subvert the effects of cybernetic governance and that there must be more precise images of neoliberal art of government and a largely heighten awarness.