Ether 19 Capital and Millennium

That the and telecom busts occurred in the first year of the new millennium is no accident. Those who participated and invested in these busts acted irrationally, but not without reason. Like the followers of the Heaven’s Gate cult and those who hoped that the year 2000, or better yet, a Kubrick-esque 2001 would mark the end of all things, they were just desperate to believe that the end was near. The process of investing in was a matter of giving oneself up. Borrowing on margin to invest not only the entirety of one’s pension in Akamai or Worldcom but to generate a life-crushing debt as a byproduct as well was as a form of voluntary slavery.

The pundits were mistaken: it was not that we all hoped to get out of the boom before it failed, it was that we wanted to be part of its failure and to feel its destruction. The greatest disappointment of the crash of 2000 was its failure to bring about the promise of the era: the end of all things.

Today, Rem Koolhaas and other members of the post-avant-garde maintain that architecture should do nothing more than embody the flows of capital. Instead of enslaving itself to capital, as it does now, and instead of fulfilling the master-slave dialectic to become capital’s master, as it always wished to be under modernism, architecture now decides to end the game and achieve oneness with capital.