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an international and interdisciplinary journal of postmodern cultural sound, text and image

Volume 17, Summer 2020, ISSN 1552-5112



American Democrathripsis, or Will You Love Her When She’s Old?



Nick Ruiz, Ph.D




An excerpt from the forthcoming book, Baudrillard’s Castle: Notes From the Hinterland.




American Democrathripsis: the double strand break where party politics and Americans are scrambled beyond legitimate recognition, as in the presidential fiasco between Donald Trump and Joe Biden, where the national historical (now virtual) reality disengages from the real once and for all. The fiction of human representation as a ballotable enterprise has been thoroughly revealed, even overexposed, in a panic of declarations of victory and malfeasance.

A winner can now never be determined, as sufficient doubt has been cast in all directions, forwarding all rational conclusions to the national dead letter office. Fate’s reversal: all scenarios have been rendered invalid; finality is postponed infinitely; the outcome is undeliverable.


Oh, dear Muses! Strife today in the age of humanity, the age of racial reason, the age of gender’s season in the year our riots 2020! 

America sighs, checks her look in the mirror. “A girl’s gotta’ make ends meet, even down on Jubilee Street,” sings Nick Cave and a rejoinder, “We will shave our legs, we will freeze our eggs – but will you love her when she’s old?” sings Nadine Shah.  And so America and Americans advance in parallel misunderstanding and exploitation of circumstances and one another, wherever possible, by accident or design, century after century, from the colonies to America in Absentia.


Yes, America continues to exist, in spite of itself, like the real, which proceeds in kind even after its disappearance through its shadows that remain. And yet, good news! Financial markets are now good as new! Right as rain! Losing a healthy bit of weight, only to regain it again. That’s the necrospective game.


Capital takes all in stride, because of its stealth, central to all players upon a stage. The miracle of divinity, Gabriel informs Mary: capital hides within you, that currency of the code within all: it divines a utilitous existence on the plane of replicative immanence. There will be no crash, because crashes have been forbidden, though God always reserves the right to change his mind, and often does so, by virtue and order of the metaphysics of capital. Even He must in the end obey the accounting of an integral reality; the ontology of service depends upon it.


The fantasy reappears that utopia is possible, always waiting there in silence, like the last dancer at the prom or patron at the bar in a Hopper painting, in the distance like smoke or fog, up close like mist on glass; the mirage allows definition. The fantasy overflows with false enthusiasm, technical solutions and hope for brokered trust and equity, “A stake for all! A part and a piece of Shakespeare’s dream!”; learnedness and spiritual ‘good-faith’ caress and abound, and yet still, a carefully massaged chaos continues, some of it with a da-rona mask of quaint political civility notwithstanding tiny piranha teeth in plain view, other chaos more transparently evil; however, the real remains loath to take seriously the hot air of moral authority and peculiar declarations of human law and order, and the real does not acquiesce.


Riotous operatives, shoe-gazers and hangmen embrace in a devil’s dance, hounded by diamond dogs, funded by fate’s four-legged banksters of common debt – all actors without verifiable explanation for neither the reality of social, political and economic usury or forgiveness that will never come. All keen to address reality ‘as it truly is,’ greeting and greeted by gallant decrees, power pageants, and royalist subterfuge, which more or less poorly exterminate the real with ministries of legal graffiti.


Alas, at last in every dwelling, late at night, America, and Mr. and Mrs. Cogito stare at faces in the mirror, as does the real in the world, too, looking and listening for sounds of life and love, law and order…




an international and interdisciplinary journal of postmodern cultural sound, text and image

 Volume 17, Summer 2020, ISSN 1552-5112