Ddi 12 ss disabilities Neg Dartmouth 2012 Andrew 1 ddi 12 ss disabilities Neg Strategy Sheet



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2NC Impact Wall
Even if they win their impact framing arguments, rejecting capitalism is the only ethical priority

Slavoj Zizek and Glyn Daly, Senior Lecturer in Politics in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at University College, Northampton, 2004, Conversations With Zizek, p. 14-16


For Zizek it is imperative that we cut through this Gord­ian knot of postmodern protocol and recognize that our ethico-political responsibility is to confront the constitutive violence of today’s global capitalism and its obscene naturalization/anonymization of the millions who are subju­gated by it throughout the world. Against the standardized positions of postmodern culture — with all its pieties con­cerning ‘multiculturalist’ etiquette — Zizek is arguing for a politics that might be called ‘radically incorrect’ in the sense that it breaks with these types of positions and focuses instead on the very organizing principles of today’s social reality: the principles of global liberal capitalism. This requires some care and subtlety. For far too long, Marxism has been bedevilled by an almost fetishistic economism that has tended towards political mor­bidity. With the likes of Hilferding and Gramsci, and more recently Laclau and Mouffe, crucial theoretical advances have been made that enable the transcendence of all forms of economism. In this new context, however, Zizek argues that the problem that now presents itself is almost that of the opposite fetish. That is to say, the prohibitive anxieties surrounding the taboo of economism can function as a way of not engaging with economic reality and as a way of im­plicitly accepting the latter as a basic horizon of existence. In an ironic Freudian-Lacanian twist, the fear of economism can end up reinforcing a de facto economic necessity in respect of contemporary capitalism (i.e. the initial prohibi­tion conjures up the very thing it fears). This is not to endorse any kind of retrograde return to economism. Zizek’s point is rather that in rejecting economism we should not lose sight of the systemic power of capital in shaping the lives and destinies of humanity and our very sense of the possible. In particular we should not overlook Marx’s central insight that in order to create a uni­versal global system the forces of capitalism seek to conceal the politico-discursive violence of its construction through a kind of gentrification of that system. What is persistently denied by neo-liberals such as Rorty (1989) and Fukuyama (1992) is that the gentrification of global liberal capitalism is one whose ‘universalism’ fundamentally reproduces and depends upon a disavowed violence that excludes vast sectors of the world’s population. In this way, neo-liberal ideology attempts to naturalize capitalism by presenting its out­comes of winning and losing as if they were simply a matter of chance and sound judgement in a neutral marketplace. Capitalism does indeed create a space for a certain diver­sity, at least for the central capitalist regions, but it is neither neutral nor ideal and its price in terms of social exclusion is exorbitant. That is to say, the human cost in terms of inherent global poverty and degraded ‘life-chances’ cannot be calculated within the existing economic rationale and, in consequence, social exclusion remains mystified and name­less (viz, the patronizing reference to the ‘developing world’. And Zizek’s point is that this mystification is mag­nified through capitalism’s profound capacity to ingest its own excesses and negativity: to redirect (or misdirect) social antagonisms and to absorb them within a culture of differ­ential affirmation. Instead of Bolshevism, the tendency today is towards a kind of political boutiquism that is readily sus­tained by postmodern forms of consumerism and lifestyle. Against this Zizek argues for a new universalism whose primary ethical directive is to confront the fact that our forms of social existence are founded on exclusion on a global scale. While it is perfectly true that universalism can never become Universal (it will always require a hegemonic-par­ticular embodiment in order to have any meaning), what is novel about Zizek’s universalism is that it would not attempt to conceal this fact or to reduce the status of the abject Other to that of a ‘glitch’ in an otherwise sound matrix.

We should not focus on the medical model in reforming disability policies – breaking down the socio-political issues of capitalism is the only way to solve the ROOT CAUSE of disability oppression

Ravi Malhotra, Harvard Law and Canadian disability rights activist, Summer 2001, “The Politics of the Disability Rights Movements”, http://nova.wpunj.edu/newpolitics/issue31/malhot31.htm; AB


At their very root, contemporary disability rights movements have as their goal the empowerment of disabled people. This is hardly a surprise as disabled people today remain among the most marginal of citizens in the United States, as well as in other leading Western industrialized countries. By every statistical measure known to sociologists, whether it is poverty levels, unemployment rates or levels of education, disabled people score very poorly. Even after years of a boom economy, disabled people remain disproportionately unemployed and impoverished. This goal of empowerment, however, is undermined by the fact that disablement is still widely perceived, even on the left, as a personal problem fundamentally caused by the individual's medical impairment. The medical impairment is seen as the primary cause for the disabled individual's lack of success. The disability rights movements, however, are predicated on the notion that it is the structural and attitudinal barriers in capitalist society that are the fundamental cause for the discrimination and oppression faced by disabled people. In this framework, disabled people are handicapped by the systemic lack of wheelchair access to public services, the failure of educational institutions and employers to make materials available in alternative formats for blind and visually impaired people, and the intricate bureaucracy that disabled people must navigate in order to get essential services such as income support and medical services. Hence, attention needs to be redirected from the medical impairment or medical model of disablement to the social-political issues that underpin disability oppression. In other words, the first step in the liberation of disabled people is a fundamental paradigm shift.



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