- Politics and Social Issues
What is Tappage ?
Tappage is a process engaged in by the Tappers. The Tappers are a group of performance artists / strategists / tacticians / subversives who hold the view that building enormous Engines of Confrontation to deal with the enormous Engines of Exploitation which currently manage the plundering and destruction of the planet Earth can, as amply and repeatedly demonstrated by recent (the last 3000 years) human history, have only two outcomes.
1) The battle between these Engines will inevitably cause maximum consumption of planetary resources, maximum profits to existing controllers of planetary wealth, maximum damage to the planetary eco-system, and maximum suffering to humans without the slightest direct interest in the battle itself.
2) One of the enormous Engines (either the existing or the confrontational) will eventually win and will then set about further entrenching itself through greater abuses of its control of planetary wealth and further suffering visited upon humans without the slightest direct interest in the Engine itself. Such will the process of its entrenchment be that, within a surprisingly short period of time, whichever Engine wins, yet another Engine of Exploitation will be in place, requiring yet another Engine of Confrontation to be built in yet another misguided hope that yet another cycle can or will be broken.
Instead, the Tappers reckon that the way to dismantle the grotesque Engines of Exploitation is to "tap" at the rock face of human institutional indifference in the random hope of striking a "fault line". Selective, targeted "tapping" is undertaken in the hope not of building up a confrontational Engine to oppose, but of accidentally hitting, at the rock face of the target Engine of Exploitation, a natural "fault line" which will, from the merest "tap", cause the Engine of Exploitation to split through its heart and shatter into a thousand pieces.
Tappage has the following features:
- Tapping can endeavour to be precise, but, in fact, actually hitting a fault line is much more a case of luck than judgement. In this sense, tapping can be said to be happening in whatever activity a Tapper may be undertaking. The only difference between a Tapper and a non-Tapper is, effectively, the conscious underlying purpose of the activity. A Tapper will always be attuned to the possibility of hitting a fault line in whatever activity she or he happens to be engaged at any time of day or night.
- Tapping is, by and large, an informational tool. The fault lines exist (as indeed do the Engines) in the minds of humans. Tappers therefore tend to know a thing or two about information. They understand its inherent instability; its dependency on context; its liability to misinterpretation.
- Tapping seeks to trigger Exponentially Proliferating Thought or EPT. As proliferating thought cascades into non-proliferating thought, it has the knock-on effect of generating further proliferation. One speaks of EPT as having "half-life" insofar as it "decays" or loses impetus in much the same way as radioactivity does - by halving itself infinitely.
- Tapping acknowledges the importance of "attention" in human affairs. Attention is the lever with which we gain access to each other's minds. Attention is the almost tangible commodity which each human has the facility to confer upon every other. It's tangibility is most notable when, for example, one human is totally deprived of other human attention for a sustained period of time. It is a very physical sensation of discomfort and disorientation. Our need for it may be more biological than we care to admit. Attention is something with which, normally, we caress each other. We groom each other with it in much the same way as other species do it, more directly, with limbs or tentacles. It is a gift requiring the free willingness of one human fully to observe another.
Tappers do not offer or request Attention lightly.
Tappers tend to think that our obligations as humans with regard to Attention are twofold:
1) On the one hand, we should notice when we're giving it and where it is taking us and not give it too cheaply.
2) On the other, we should not seek it frivolously, self-indulgently. We should not waste those precious moments when others are freely caressing us.
- Tapping can, for the most part, take place anywhere, at any time. In conversation, in correspondence, in shouted messages in crowded venues. In internet mass-mailings.
Targeted Tapping usually requires two concurrent processes.
First, every effort must be made to disengage from the target Engine of Exploitation. It is pointless trying to undermine something to whose stability and expansion you are also contributing. Local populations must look to strategies which make them self reliant and independent, for the most part, of any but local produce, services, or currency. They must look to disinvesting in every manner possible.
· Tappage itself
Once as many strategies for disengagement as conceivable are as in place as feasible, tapping itself should be undertaken. Information should be sought, digested, and distributed in as coherent a manner as possible. Well selected quanta of information will seek out the fault lines of the target Engine of Exploitation and, hopefully, trigger EPT explosions.
In general, Tappers acknowledge the importance of humour in all undertakings. Humour does two things. It demonstrates that Tappers do not, in the context of the enormity of the universe, take themselves or their offered solutions too seriously which, in turn, affords them the latitude to occasionally relax and enjoy some of the quirkier sides of reality to the full. Secondly, it lowers the guards of potential recipients.
So here follows a list of some of the Tools at the Tapper's disposal.
As touched upon above, Tappers are trying to achieve "Exponentially Proliferating Thought", or EPT, in the same way that modern physicists try to trigger particulate chain reactions. Tappers do not have particle accelerators, but there are a number of tools at their disposal. These include:
This is the crudest tool and is the one most frequently relied upon by western corporate myth-makers. It is as popular among corporate Engine PR departments as among political Engine PR departments. However, the former, having more disposable income, is the most prolific user of this tool. By comparison, Tappers are able to use this tool only in a very modest way.
2. Sound bite
Another popular tool among established PR departments, this one usually holds greater favour among political Engines because, again, it is simple, but also because it is a much cheaper way of utilising mass media. This is because it addresses, directly, mass media's main appetite - the hunger for easily digestible nuggets of "information" not requiring too much rewriting or rereading. It also tends to have a fairly long half-life.
Often a simple, well constructed question can trigger EPT. Presenting answers often terminates thought. Questions are much more interactive and more effective if they are left hanging, open ended.
As amply demonstrated by J Christ, this can indeed be a very powerful tool. The bulk of the world's population is non-academically inclined (they have enough problems in reality, why seek more in the abstract), and appreciate both a good story and a comparison to something with which they are already familiar.
Everybody already knows this one. The power of suggestion is an indisputably versatile tool, and it is very easily deployed.
6. Logic Bomb
This is potentially the most powerful communications tool available to humankind. Logic bombs are ideally suited to Tapping because they usually require elements of both intelligence and at least contextual truth both in their design and in their comprehension. Self-evidently, these elements are not frequently at the disposal of political or economic Engines of Exploitation. In addition, Logic Bombs are highly suited to current non-passive communications technologies such as the internet and can have exceptionally long half-lives.
This is perhaps the simplest tool, but asks most of the recipient. Sometimes a Tapper can simply refer someone to a particularly relevant book or article or internet posting. If you have created enough interest and, better still, have the text to hand, the recipient may go off and become a changed person.
8. Novel concept
Sometimes a new way of looking at things can have a tapping effect. These are not always easy to hit upon, but Tappers are always looking for them.
9. Penultimate connect
This is in fact the essence of telling a good joke. The "punch line" is the ultimate connect, the last piece to the complex multi-dimensional puzzle being created. The artistry resides in the crafting of everything up to and including the pen-ultimate connect. Everything needs to be neatly in place; the penultimate connect delivered; a suspenseful pause created; the pause drawn out; …..before the last connect is dropped in.
10. Cube conversion
Tappers will be familiar with the old 3 dimensional line drawing of a cube which at one moment looks as though it is projecting outwards in one direction, and then, in an instant, for no other reason than a change in attitude on the part of the observer, it flips and projects outward in another direction. Intellectual concepts can often be much the same. Tappers can often cause them to "flip" and have another meaning altogether.
11. Mis/dis information
This is a highly dangerous tool because it is double-edged in the fullest sense. It may cause as much confusion among fellow Tappers as among target Engines. Essentially, we recommend not using this tool. If you must use it, it should, of course, be reserved exclusively for corporate targets and it should always have a "release key". That is to say, any deployed item should always have a reliable source available to any reasonably dedicated researcher which, from the very outset, points out that this is indeed a mis/dis information item.
12. Lecture dinner
Social occasions can be a Tapper's delight. All humans are sociable and enjoy simple pleasures such as eating together. Why not introduce the idea of a short lecture or presentation before dinner to give people something in common to discuss apart from the weather?
13. Rapid response
A key feature of informational campaigns of any kind is the capacity for a quick riposte to any counter points being offered up anywhere in any format through any medium. Good Rapid Response should really appear in the same location, format, and medium as the original counter point.
© 2013 Deacon Martin