I call Debord a reactionary. He said a lot about revolution, but what he fought for were the last bits of old Europe that survived the wars. The criminals and poets of the middle ages were his models of freedom. (His affection for the criminal world is a reactionary affectation. All crime today is connected to the drug trade.)
Now he drinks with Walter Benjamin in the forest of suicides. You can overhear him if you listen:
Benjamin muses, “If sleep is the apogee of physical relaxation, boredom is the apogee of mental relaxation. Boredom is the dream bird that hatches the egg of experience.”
Debord replies, “Boredom is always counter-revolutionary. Always.”
There is a pause, then Benjamin responds, as if he had not heard Guy at all. “And boredom is the grating before which the courtesan teases death.”
The two suicides sit. There is nowhere to go but the table and its never-finished glasses.
Debord offers a final, glum remark for the night, “It can be confidently affirmed that no real opposition can be carried out by individuals who become even slightly more socially elevated through manifesting such opposition than they would have been otherwise.” And, after a long, long pause, “We missed the mark then, didn’t we?”
I was delighted to see Debord’s now been taken up by Mario Vargas Llosa and the young reactionaries. They’ll do better things with his work than anything anarchists could do.
(Regarding my last letter, stay away from Vaneigem’s history of surrealism. It’s terrible.)