Apocalypse Now

Science fiction has always been an outlet for our greatest anxieties. How the genre is exploring the reality of climate change. Plus: new words to describe the indescribable.


‘I get censored four or five times a year’: Paul McCarthy, art’s virtuoso of vile

From inflatable excrement to a porn James Dean, McCarthy has delved into America’s dark side. But has reality finally overtaken his ketchup-smeared visions of corruption?



“Something as fluid as enjoying art has demonstrable and measurable effects on how our mind works.”

STARING INTO THE SOOTHING LINES OF AN IMAGE THAT YOU CAN’T QUITE DESCRIBE is one of the joys of looking at abstract art. It turns out that it’s also one of the style’s major benefits. New research suggests that abstract art has qualities that can literally change our mindsets, and prompt us to let the minutia of day-to-day life fall away.


A Five-Point Strategy to Oppose Russian Narrative Warfare

We don’t give a damn about the politics of all this Russian hand waving, we rather, present this as a learning opportunity regarding Narrative Warfare Tactics. 

This paper is intentionally written in narrative form rather than the usual linear strategy format. We are after all, talking about narrative warfare. It is also written as plain-spoken as possible so that everyone from policy-makers and national security strategy professionals through well-informed citizens can follow the discussion.



Emergent Threat Posed by Super-Empowered Individuals

“… in calling Moriarty a criminal you are uttering libel in the eyes of the law, and there lies the glory and the wonder of it! The greatest schemer of all time, the organizer of every devilry, the controlling brain of the underworld — a brain which might have made or marred the destiny of nations. That’s the man!” Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes, describing his arch nemesis, Professor James Moriarty, in The Valley of Fear, published in 1914.

In Professor Moriarty, Conan Doyle created the prototypical Super-Empowered Individual (SEI). Today’s SEIs — far from being fictional characters crafted to entertain readers from a gentler era — are real world, non-state actors that have been empowered by the on-going digital revolution, and are able to target and adversely affect the lives of millions around the globe. Mad Scientists addressed the threat posed by SEIs at the Visualizing Multi Domain Battle 2030-2050 Conference, Georgetown University, 25-26 July 2017.


For our fallen brother

The Psycho Path ally and Atassa publisher has stepped over to the other side.

We’ll always be grateful for his strength and perseverance in the face of massive push back, ad hominem attacks, personal physical attacks, thefts, and even a book burning of the little tome we contributed to, Atassa 2.

I hope his Little black Cart continues to roll in his absence.

You’ll always have our respect and admiration, Aragorn!

Much of the ire regarding Little Black Cart was directed at their publication of Atassa: Readings in Eco-ExtremismAtassa was a terrifying and dangerous project and, in a world without Aragorn!, would never have happened.

Atassa was a journal collecting some of the most problematic ideas around violence as a response to environmental collapse, inspired by the Mexican illegalist post-anarchist group ITS (Individuals Tending Towards the Savage [Wild]). ITS has claimed to kill scientists, industrialists, and even fellow anarchists in the name of the Wild, not to “save” the planet for anyone but really just to embody its profound vengeance.

Atassa should never have been published, which is why I’m grateful it was published. It shouldn’t have been published because of all its problematic ideas, its dismissal of our modern distaste for indiscriminate violence, its utter ignoring of the value of our identities within modern capitalist societies (created in part because capitalist stole our other identities from us), and, well, the very problematic cover of its second issue that depicts a mesoamerican sunwheel:


What on earth did Aragorn! think he was doing, publishing such problematic material? According to lots of his detractors, he was a crypto-fascist trying to sneak Nazi propaganda into anarchist book fairs. According to others he was just trolling anarchists. And according to most who (thought they) understood his work, he was trying to get us to stop being so damn stupid.

Because of course that’s not a Nazi swastika, and a cursory glance at the myriad of ancient cultures that predate the Nazis reveals that the sunwheel was a common indigenous art trope around the world. But Aragorn! knew that not everyone would know that (or care), and he didn’t care for your ignorance or opinion about that matter.