21C is back with new material, plus archival material by or about Hakim Bey, William S. Burroughs, Erik Davis, Philip K. Dick, Ashley Crawford, Mark Dery, Verner Vinge, William Gibson, Rudy Rucker, Jack Parsons, Richard Metzger, Genesis P. Orridge, Kath Acker, JG Ballard, John Shirley, Robert Anton Wilson, Iain Sinclair, Terrence McKenna, Buckminster Fuller, R.U. Sirius, Timothy Leary, Bruce Sterling and more.
Sadly, in 1999, the company went bust, somewhat ironic given that 21•C in that form never made it into the Century after which it was named – the 21st. 21•C stalwart Mark Dery and I made some attempt to resuscitate the title early in the new millennium to no avail.
Yet many of the ideas and issues raised in the original magazine continued to arise, and with them perpetual queries as to how to get copies of the original articles, a nigh impossible task. With the prompting of two other 21•C stalwarts, Darren Tofts and Murray McKeich, it was decided to resurrect a core selection of articles in an archival on-line format. With Mick Stylianou’s wizard like help this was fairly painless. It didn’t take long to decide to add new material and it is hoped that new issues will be posted at semi-regular intervals.
This inaugural on-line issue takes as its theme Apocalypse Noir – the trend toward the apocalyptic, or at the least extremely dark – in contemporary writing. If earlier 21•C’s tended toward the darker aspects of cyberpunk, then the newer crop of writers have given up any pretense of a happy ending. Good luck!
According to a letter from Leary published in Mondo 2000 # 6 in 1992, this was Leary’s platform:
1. The basic function of government is to protect individuals against organized gangs and groups.
2. Decentralization: California secedes from the USSA.
3. Another basic function of govt. is to entertain/educate.
4. The government makes a profit. Instead of paying taxes, the citizen received dividends.
5. The profits derived from licensing pleasures: Marijuana license like an auto license/registration, hard liquor, gambling; prostitutes were professionals like dentists or lawyers; LSD, etc., used in state parks or theme parks; Entry taxes – California would be like an amusement park – entrance fees and daily residence fees; Education – California specializes in education – non-Californians paid substantial fees.
The only other info I could find about the platform:
Revealing part of his guber-natorial platform for the first time, Leary pledged solutions to California’s 10 major political problems.
He leaked out only a few of those solutions, but what did emerge was unique — to say the least.
“I’m going to legalize marijuana and charge a $1,000 a year permit fee for those who want to make it,” he said.
“Given the size of California population, that will generate a huge amount of additional revenue each year.
“Then I’ll turn that money over to the police and the forces of the right wing to keep them happy and off people’s backs,” Leary explained.
Wouldn’t that be discriminating against the poor who can’t afford $1,000 a year for the privilege of turning on? he was asked.
“That’s not really a problem,” he explained, “because it’s only a short-term situation — in five years I’ll eliminate all money from Californian society and return to a barter system.”
Alessandra asked me how I drove, and not really thinking about it mimiced a space cadet and then I realized there was another circuit to the Leary Model: Internal vs External
I would say that it is woven between the first 3. The idea is thus: While all people view the world through the screens of World View (however THAT is shaped), people tend to favor either noticing the world through their eyes (External) or watching the world through their mental television sets (Internal).
I suppose it’s worth noting that the Times has an article about Byron Gysin’s Dream Machine:
Ms. Chapman thought it might be helpful if my body were more relaxed, so I lay down on a sofa, and she put on soothing music. She flicked the machine back on as I shut my eyes. A moment later there they were, the same flashing patterns as before. After a while I became bored and my mind began to drift.
That’s when it happened. I didn’t “see” as much as I strongly imagined a campfire in a clearing in a dense forest at night. My boyfriend Jim was sitting to my left, laughing. Later I seemed to find myself in a large empty auditorium, walking toward some chairs arranged in the middle of the room. In one creepy moment I was in a basement hallway, following closely behind someone walking ahead of me, whose face I couldn’t see.
My favorite review of the new Matrix movie comes from Wiliam Blaze:
The Matrix Reloaded is out to shatter that trope and its far more effective at calling attention to the structures of power. Remember those hippie “Question Reality” bumper stickers? Well the Matrix is getting people to question reality on a scale that Timothy Leary couldn’t even dream of when high off his premium LSD + bullshit blend. The left has been content to release memes into their own marginal subcultures for far to long. The Matrix unleashes memes into the heart of pop culture. “Choice is an illusion created by those with power to control those without”, says the Merovingian and the Architect adds in: “nearly 99.9% of all test subjects accepted the program, as long as they were given a choice, even if they were only aware of the choice at a near unconscious level.”
And the cynical comments attached are just as interesting and insightful. “Here in the real world, the main result of The Matrix series will be a two billion dollar funds transfer from movie-goers (some who tend to be pretentious) to the AOL/Time-Warner Corporation. Nothing particularly left-wing or subversive in that.”