It is always the same: once you are liberated, you are forced to ask who you are.
What you have to do is enter the fiction of America, enter America as fiction. It is, indeed, on this fictive basis that it dominates the world.
The war was won on both sides: by the Vietnamese on the ground, by the Americans in the electronic mental space. And if the one side won an ideological and political victory, the other made Apocalypse Now and that has gone right around the world.
Americans may have no identity, but they do have wonderful teeth.
Contact with men who wield power and authority still leaves an intangible sense of repulsion. It’s very like being in close proximity to faecal matter, the faecal embodiment of something unmentionable, and you wonder what it is made of and when it acquired its historically sacred character.
Depression moods lead, almost invariably, to accidents. But, when they occur, our mood changes again, since the accident shows we can draw the world in our wake, and that we still retain some degree of power even when our spirits are low. A series of accidents creates a positively light-hearted state, out of consideration for this strange power.
Politicians—power itself—are abject because they merely embody the profound contempt people have for their own lives.... One should be grateful to the politicians for accepting the abjectness of power, and ridding others of its burden. This inevitably kills them but they get their revenge by passing onto others the corpse of power.
If everything is perfect, language is useless. This is true for animals. If animals don’t speak, it’s because everything’s perfect for them. If one day they start to speak, it will be because the world has lost a certain sort of perfection.
In the same way that we need statesmen to spare us the abjection of exercising power, we need scholars to spare us the abjection of learning.
We are all hostages, and we are all terrorists. This circuit has replaced that other one of masters and slaves, the dominating and the dominated, the exploiters and the exploited.... It is worse than the one it replaces, but at least it liberates us from liberal nostalgia and the ruses of history.
The very definition of the real becomes: that of which it is possible to give an equivalent reproduction.... The real is not only what can be reproduced, but that which is always already reproduced. The hyperreal.
Driving is a spectacular form of amnesia. Everything is to be discovered, everything to be obliterated.
Deep down, the US, with its space, its technological refinement, its bluff good conscience, even in those spaces which it opens up for simulation, is the only remaining primitive society.
No profanes - sacred