01 December 2008

Mumbai: the terrorist as troll

Mumbai could represent something rather different in the history of terrorism, and possibly something far more disturbing even than global jihad.

Perhaps we have come to the point where casually self-radicalised, sociopathic individuals can form a loose organisation, acquire sufficient weapons and equipment for a few thousand dollars, make a basic plan of action and indulge in a violent expression of their generalised disaffection and anomie.

It's an iron rule of behavioural science that providing incentives and means for a way of behaving will ensure that that way of behaving flourishes. Media-terrorism is of course the inevitable inverse of this great Society of the Spectacle. To quote Frank Zappa: "Do you love it? Do you hate it? There it is, the way you made it."