this is a term i'd like to use because a lot of people assume that the idea of "entertainment" is a positive thing. to me, i require a very specific definition of this term... "entertainment" is synonymous with passivity. once you interact in any way, you somehow "elevate" yourself above the notion of entertainment, and you become "interactive". the superficial elements of this latter term is currently relegated to mouse clicking on a web page, or pressing multiple choice buttons for certain "interactive" theaters...
entertainment is a time consumer. what it does it gives you something but doesn't let you give back in return. the entertainment "industry" is trying to take over the interactive network to try and dissuade you from making any choices, and carefully guiding you along those paved paths on the walkway through the garden, so that things are "safe". industry always tries to do this. it maximizes profitability. for the individual, entertainment seems satisfying in the short run, but the human experience requires both input and output - you can't get away from this idea. if you constantly take in whatever medium you choose (film buff, concert goer, clubber, record collector, etc.) you are basically hoarding the experience, thinking you are satisfied or ahead in some sort of race.
this is what consumerism wants you to feel. competition for your eyeballs, and attention (the new currency of the internet).
but in the end, you look back at your collection, your ticket stubs, your trail of your experiences, and what is it that you came away with? not much... a lot of bulky material.
the next step in this process is to "give back" to what you now realize was a passive venture. you want to produce. so you start a band, you go to film school, you buy records and you practice mixing skillz, you put on shows, you organize, you throw parties. each one of these requires a distasteful element known as "kissing someone's ass".
now all of a sudden you ARE the industry. then you expect payback for all your hard work. along with some ass kissing from those that are coming after you.
this is the consumerist cycle. - consume, be entertained, produce. repeat.
nothing wrong with it, if this is what you truly want. but is it? do you feel fulfilled? or is it your ego that's being fed? who is your audience? who are you trying to impress? is it really about a race and getting ahead, and competing over aesthetics? is capitalism that pervasive?
how i see it, is that your "output" is mostly relegated to "working" (i.e. laboring). this is why the 40 hours a week that most labor through, are way too tired to do anything else than vegetate in front of the tube, getting influenced by marketing, so that you can go back to work to make money to buy what was on that ad - oh yeah, and you had a sit com entertain you along the way.
this is why "full time artists" demand to be paid. the argument is that they can devote their energies towards creating art, and the only feedback obtained from this act is to sell out to the capitalist system. nothing wrong with selling a few records, making a buck, becoming a "star", but the system dilutes the effect of a fulfilling experience. so instead of artists siding with the new paradigm & the new economic system, by giving away their art (formerly known as "product"), they want to keep playing the game by the old rules. this is a valid choice, of course. but more and more people are recognizing that you can no longer hide intent. more and more people are smelling a rat. more and more people are getting skilled at recognizing what is a product, and what is art. the gauge? $$$. if it's sold, it's entertainment, and a product. if it's given away, then the value system is turned upside down. most people equate "free" with "faulty".
current trends in "open source everything" is showing that this outlook is designed to dissuade you from taking it up. 800 pound gorilla Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer called Linux a "disease" that infiltrates the software "business". some say the capitalist system is a "cancer". take your pick. my view is that the open source meme is very much an army of white blood cells counteracting a relatively new disease known as the "market" - a very formidable and organic presence infiltrating almost everything in our lives. but through the cracks of this system there will be pockets of nomadic interactivity.
i propose that we stop this endless cycle. i propose a new approach.
disentertainment requries no stages. there is nothing to watch. the strange attractor is no longer someone or something that was hyped to bring you there (push). the sole reason for going is for the people who show up. but there has to be a strange attractor to draw this in - until now.. let's cut the hype, cut the promotion. cut to the chase. the attractor is human interaction.
bars - consume legal
drugs, get high, meet partners, try to score. (actually a form of disentertainment)
clubs - consume legal/illegal drugs, get high, dance to music, scream into each other's ear because the music is too loud, try to score
shows - get drunk, feel like you are witnessing something cutting edge, visually support something you think is cool (i.e. band) by being there (as a fan or a groupie), scream into each other's ear because the music is too loud, try to score.
family events like city sponsored music, festivals, sports, etc. - already scored, got married, squeezed out some puppies, pass the time and have something to spend your disposable income on.
what is an example of disenteratinment?
role playing (in many forms - not just at a table with dice)
chat lines (in whatever form)
brotherhoods (and sisterhoods)
cults (the ones without "leaders")
disentertainment tries for the opposite. it is wide open. it requires attention, but also demands it.
disentertainment is a gathering of 50 people or more without reason (currently an illegal act w/o a "license" in the u.s. isn't this concept absurd?) we are not allowed to be near each other if there are more than 50 of us, because there is no opportunity for vendors to set up shop, sell the legal drug alcohol under controlled situations, then tax it.
sporting events throughout the world account for many injuries and even deaths, every single weekend. . the number of casualties for illegal gatherings, with illegal and non-taxable drugs consumed, is far less. yet the attention is drawn to the latter simply because of the law.
you start to wonder, exactly when did our basic right to gather become an illegal act?
precisely when the entertainment
industry was born.
One of the many lesser known facts about Timothy Leary is his invention of a whole-brain model for intelligence (_INFO-Psychology_; Falcon Press) which has since spawned two additional versions; one by myself (_ANGEL TECH_; Falcon.) and one by Robert Anton Wilson (_PROMETHEUS RISING_; Falcon.). Dr. Leary's "Eight-Circuit Brain" theory suggests that "intelligence" is fundamentally plural by definition; an interaction of intelligences, or brains, begets more intelligence. Eight interactive functions of intelligence are defined by Leary and, in the creative process of making them my own, redefined as: physical, emotional, conceptual, social, sensory, psychic, imaginative and spiritual intelligences (readers of ANGEL TECH may notice a change from "mythic" intelligence to the more psychological "imaginative" intelligence).
- Antero Alli - _World Entertainment War_
Q: You've said that you don't consider yourself a shaman just because shamans cure and you don't cure anyone. Also you write a lot about the re-emergence of the shamanic institution. What do you think of its re-emergence in the modern world - how can it's integrity be preserved, if at all, and how must it evolve?
TM: The music. And the trance-dance drug-taking situation is the establishment of a ritual space outside the conventions of ordinary society, that is the new shamanism. And that's again what makes it so suspect in the eyes of the establishment. They sense that this is something they can't get a handle on and control, or that it takes them some time to get a handle on - they have to figure out how to co-opt each generation in a new way. My generation was co-opted in a very crude way, with money. Your generation... The Establishment's not interested in that, they'd rather keep the money for themselves. I'm hoping that the new trance-dance culture has enough integrity to resist being folded into commercialism and ordinary mass cultural entertainment. But we shall see.
- Terence McKenna
Randolph Bourne's observation "war is the health of the state" is familiar to most critics of militarism, but few have delved into why this is so. Statism is dependent upon mass thinking which, in turn, is essential to the creation of a collective, herd-oriented society. Such pack-like behavior is reflected in the intellectual and spiritual passivity of people whose mindsets are wrapped up more in images and appearances than in concrete reality.
Such a collapse of the mind produces a society dominated by entertainment which places little burden on thinking rather than critical inquiry, which helps to explain why there has long been a symbiotic relationship between the entertainment industry and political systems. Entertainment fosters a passive consciousness, a willingness to "suspend our disbelief." Its purpose is to generate amusement, a word that is synonymous with "diversion," meaning "to distract the attention of." The common reference to movies as a form of "escape" from reality, reflects this function. Government officials know what every magician knows, namely, that to carry out their illusions, they must divert the audience's attention from their hidden purposes.
- _Politics and War As Entertainment_ by Butler Shaffer
I always tell people, music is a form of communication that predates language, straight up. It's been around forever. And it wasn't until about the turn of the century that they figured out a way to bottle the water, you know? Before that, music was a river. It was a river and everyone could sip from that river. But then someone came along with the idea that, "Hey, we can bottle this, and we can sell this water." And people were like, "Well, that's kind of cool, that's convenient, because I can take it home with me, or I can put it in my pocket and take it on a walk and have something to drink," which is fine. That's a reasonable industry, to go ahead and put some water in a bottle and sell it. That's fine. But the problem is when they start trying to discourage people from going to the river, or trying to close the river, or even worse, poison the river -- then it's not all right. Then it stinks.
And, for me, music is not an industry. Music is not even entertainment. Music is not just a soundtrack. Music is part of life. It is a straight-up form of communication, and it resides in every person in the world. And that's where I'm coming from in terms of music. That's exactly the world that I want to be… that's what I want to lean toward. It's sort of like clothes -- you live in a cold climate in a country that has these kinds of laws that you have to wear pants all the time, but basically, they're fairly artificial, they're a bizarre thing when you think about it. If you think about it, the whole deal is weird -- why does everyone have to wear clothes all the time? But that's the context in which I exist. I can appreciate [it] and I can go on with that. At the same time, when it comes to music, there are certain elements of what we do with music that are just distasteful. If people see music as just a living, they're just screwed. They're just gonna make something that's not music, in my opinion. But there are plenty of other people out there who are making incredible music who are not even thinking about money, and that's really where you're gonna find all the new ideas. It's always in the free space.
- Ian MacKaye - interview with Mike Watt of Minutemen/fIREHOSE
Chuck Dukowski from Black Flag said that he'd rather work a day job for the rest of his life than be dependent on his music for his living. That was in a _Damaged_ magazine article called "Apocalypse Now". That quote fucking blew me away. It hit me exactly where I lived.
- Ian MacKaye of Dischord Records, Fugazi and Minor Threat
Greg Ginn, guitarist for Black Flag and founder of SST Records: "We didn't turn down any free gigs, because those were the best. It'd cost us money, because we'd rent PAs, but I always liked free gigs because anybody can wander in. You could get different people at random, not pre-selected groups of people, and maybe they would get something out of it. That's how I got into music, through free stuff . . ."
release _Dementertainment_ compilation CDb
_Decentertainment_ compilation of illbient tracks
"decentertainment" is a term the group has coined to describe the type of event they prefer to stage, which is based on the idea of "decentering" the focus away from the performers and creating a "fully immersive omnisensorial environment."