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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A SYSTEM DOWNED
Technology, religion, language, time - these are mere "systems of control," systems that keep you chained to your desk, imprisoned in your tiny cubicle, turning the wheels of the machine like an Egyptian serf. "The humiliation of having to follow someone else's rules, of having to sell your life away by the hour in order to purchase survival, of seeing your usurped...
Published on September 30, 2004 by J.W.K

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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Days I Wasted My Time
Nothing too deep in regards to philosophy here. Although I am not a voracious book reader, I read this with an open mind. I felt that the little twist on the implied assumption from the writer to the reader was a rather lame trick and was not very surprising and really did nothing for the story in itself. As for the technological idea used to disrupt the world or...
Published on August 21, 2007 by Gene A. Vesperman


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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A SYSTEM DOWNED, September 30, 2004
By 
J.W.K (Nagano, Japan) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Day Philosophy Dies (Paperback)
Technology, religion, language, time - these are mere "systems of control," systems that keep you chained to your desk, imprisoned in your tiny cubicle, turning the wheels of the machine like an Egyptian serf. "The humiliation of having to follow someone else's rules, of having to sell your life away by the hour in order to purchase survival, of seeing your usurped desires transformed into digital images used to sell you commodities, this should fill you with rage...." But it usually doesn't.

Instead we schlep along, "all-day-every-day...struggling in every way, doing things we hate, things we wish we did not have to do," without giving heed to the fact that everything has gone utterly wrong. It is not easy waking up to the generalized failures of our culture. "The first commandment for the great Western Civilization: Thou shalt pretend everything is OK."

Headline: Cancers Rates Up. Genocide. War. Extinction. Nuclear Storage in Backyard, etc.

"You have to admit that you are frustrated with empty promises, empty calories, false beliefs, lies, while you break your back just to keep your place in line.... You have to admit to the pain it causes you. The ulcers. The insomnia, cancer, depression, loneliness, fear, alienation." You have to admit there is a problem. And not a little problem, that requires some tweaking, but a big problem. A fundamental problem with our culture.

As enumerated in The Big Black Book of Recovery: Twelve Steps to Recovery from Addiction to Western Civilization, "Step one is to recognize there is a problem." Step two? Ask "Why?" Step three? Sorry, you are going to have to read the book and figure that one out on your own.

In urgent, pressing, liquid metallic prose, author Casey Maddox cuts through the physical, legal and psychological systems we have built over the last 6,000 years - systems that imprison us - and ruthlessly sets about "deprogramming" our addiction to civilization. While dragging you, perhaps kicking and screaming, through a plot that will leave you feeling confused, frightened and yet vitally energized at every turn, Maddox effortlessly deconstructs your most internalized beliefs, and forces you to recognize the only option remaining: namely, action. Not next year, next week, or even tomorrow - but now.

Were the book less an instrument of détournement and more of, well, an ordinary book, I would not hesitate calling it a literary masterpiece. Because it is. But The Day Philosophy Dies is not meant or destined for the shelf. It reads like a fast-paced, firsthand, cyberpunk documentary of the Last Apocalypse - the end of civilization - and sits in the palm of ones hand like a warm revolver. After reading it, I felt kind of dirty for sitting so long in one place, having done nothing.

"Talk is cheap. This is an era of pontificating intellectual cowards, philosophers, and when the words get old they no longer take the next logical step...."

ACTION!
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fight Club written by Quentin Tarantino, June 6, 2004
This review is from: The Day Philosophy Dies (Paperback)
This is an amazing book, and you'll get banged up just as much as the main character along the crazy ride of rewinds and fast forwards. Prepare for a rollercoaster of emotions. This book made me stop and ponder, laugh out loud like I rarely do reading a book, stare at the pages in total disbelief, and madly leaf back to try to connect the dots. There is absolutely no way you can guess what the next page, or even paragraph, is going to say.
Maybe because it's his first novel, the author has, in my opinion, tended to very slightly overrely on sex appeal and surprise. It would have been good without so much of it, although it doesn't really get in the way either.
If you love Derrick Jensen's work, if you deeply despise western civilization and are ready to do something about it, you will absolutely love this book. In the end, I hope to see you at the beach. I'll be there.
(...)
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9 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book will hold you to the end!, September 17, 2004
By 
This review is from: The Day Philosophy Dies (Paperback)
The Day Philosophy Dies was passed on to me by a friend who said that I would read it in a day. Well, it took me about two days. And the friend that I passed it on to read it in one day. Absolutely stunning.

I recommend this book to anybody who has recognized there is a problem with this way of life. But, be careful, it will move you to action!

Check it out at [...]

P.S. Keep in mind that the author is a prisoner at Pelican Bay State Prison, so he does have some insight on the way the world works.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Recognizing there is a problem., June 16, 2004
By 
Huby7 "Curt" (Springbrook, Wi United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Day Philosophy Dies (Paperback)
Before I read most novels I usually read about the author first. After I got done reading about Casey Maddox, who is only in his late twenties, is a prisoner at Pelican Bay State Prison, and spent time in a classroom where author/activist/philosopher Derrick Jensen was his teacher. I knew there was going to be some insight passed on to me that is damn hard to come across in our daily lives.
The first step the main character in this novel had to take in the twelve step recovery to Western Civilization was to recognize there was a problem. If you, like the character, have recognized there is a problem with this way of life this book will blow you away.
After the first ten pages I was definately ready to take this crazy journey the main character takes, and I'm glad I did. Through out the novel there was always something holding me there, and while Casey was holding me there he was passing on some very wise lessons and altering my perceptions. By the time you get to the end of this story you will by shaking your head with smirk on your face with a understanding why there is a problem.
I was comforted by the fact that more people than I will get to take this journey. I actually passed this book on to a friend of mine and he read in one day. You just might do the same.
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Days I Wasted My Time, August 21, 2007
This review is from: The Day Philosophy Dies (Paperback)
Nothing too deep in regards to philosophy here. Although I am not a voracious book reader, I read this with an open mind. I felt that the little twist on the implied assumption from the writer to the reader was a rather lame trick and was not very surprising and really did nothing for the story in itself. As for the technological idea used to disrupt the world or society - another lame, unrealistic, and uncreative idea that could be easily imagined by someone who is reasonably up-to-date on military technology or a techno-geek. Upon putting this book down after I had finished reading it, I felt there was nothing very deep or very entertaining about the story that stimulated my mind or caused me to recommend this book to others. The only concept I found interesting was the use of "rewind" or "fast forward", etc. with each chapter... however, these terms are being used less as we no longer use recording tape and use digital media such as CD's and DVD's and the like. If you are not much of a techno-geek or never thought about our "advanced" society as a whole, you may find this story interesting. Otherwise, save your time and money.
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4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Read Glamorama and Fight Club..., July 16, 2006
This review is from: The Day Philosophy Dies (Paperback)
and don't bother with this. It's a blatant (and much less involving) ripoff of those excellent books. It is also complete propaganda- it's only reason for existing is to change people's minds. I happen to agree with a lot of the ideas it promotes, but that doesn't make propaganda acceptable, and it certainly doesn't make propaganda good art. Come to think of it, read Fight Club and Glamorama to see where the story and style come from, and read Jacques Ellul's The Technological Society and maybe Morris Berman's Wandering God for the philosophical/political/spiritual ideas.
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2 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars uh...., September 27, 2005
This review is from: The Day Philosophy Dies (Paperback)
Part of me wonders if the previous reviewers read (and comprehended) the last fifty pages or so of the book. I liked it, but don't buy the simple/direct thesis that others (see above) seem to. I view the thesis and plot as more self-referential and contradictory. Not really possible to explain further without spoilers.

I wish Maddox had written a memoir instead, though maybe this is more memoir than I know. Also, it fails to live up to the promise of the title. I wonder how much Maddox is just parroting -- satirically possibly -- Derrick Jensen's deep ecological ideas (which I think are kinda BS). I suppose it's a good book in that it makes me want to talk with the author and publisher, I just can't endorse it in the abstract because of the way others seem to perceive it. This would be a fantastic book club book.

And another part of me wonders just what Casey Maddox did to end up in a SuperMax, because they don't send you up there for stealing a loaf of bread.
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The Day Philosophy Dies
The Day Philosophy Dies by Casey Maddox (Paperback - May 2004)
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