The Concept of Solitary Confinement
(Der Begriff Einzelhaft)

By Frontpatient Wolfgang Huber

Four years detention in solitary confinement, almost on the very day. Without all those who pay, with joint forces and obediently, their direct and indirect taxes – really a thing that is quite impossible.
There is nobody who is not part of it.

Presupposing this, it’s possible to judge the judges. They consider – based on the experience of centuries and the basics of their so-called philosophy of law – that a three-years’ imprisonment is exactly the right measure to "break the personality". And in this, mark you!, solitary confinement is not even mentioned.

But the clean conscience of it, free-floating above taxpayers and the judiciary, is the medical profession, all the auxiliary disciplines included, namely each sort of hygiene up to parapsychology (is there any other psychology? – as well known, each one is going wrong [bekanntlich geht jede daneben]).
That which for the "general public", i.e. the ruling minority, is their clean conscience, namely in only "taking away one’s liberty" (but certainly with the accent put on on "taking away"?!) but, besides that, to "treat the prisoner with dignity as a human being" (see for this exorbitant tricky artefact [Kunststueck] the introductory commentaries to the Code of Criminal Procedure, etc.), that is to say the medicine which repairs all damages where it cannot turn them away, that is in reality the most perfect magic hat and jester’s cap of the executive power, hovering above all and everything, especially in times of crisis, when, exceeding the measure of its own lawless laws, it is about to break that pure distillate of capitalistic illness: the personality, a conglomerate of egoisms and neuroticisms, stock market and market value, and beneath of it – if one takes a closer look – nothing but symptoms.

Provided that the medical profession put their veto upon it – according to law they are "at the service of the people" – in addition to the so-called detainment in custody, which is measured from several weeks up to a maximum of a few months, there would not be even a single day of solitary confinement, not any kind of so-called severe punishment, in brief: not any kind of deprivation of life in the context of what has been labelled  as ‘withdrawal of liberty’ by the ideology of the bourgeois right; because the medical profession, as it is known, protects the life of anybody without regarding his or her personality (incl. property, age, social stand, etc. ...); and to the protection of their own life, for instance against one single patient in prison, they are flanked by the executive power in portions of up to a dozen of hefty [schlagkraeftige] warders, when it is about to shield "public health" in form of the consultation hours against an irksome questioner operated on his stomach, or to extract cerebrospinal fluid from a clinically inconspicuous [klinisch unauffaellig] "object" of forensic examination (more genteel: to perform a lumbar puncture for diagnostic purpose).

And they prefer to shut prisoners up by stuffing neuroleptics and psychopharmaca into their mouths until poisoning them, instead of opening their own mouth only slightly when, after having carried out blood-pressure tests on them, they have ascertained series of pre-collapse states in the prisoners’ circulatory conditions, and, having excluded with the meticulous precision they have been conditioned to any defect of their measuring devices, they can no longer look away and ignore [vorbeischielen], though trying as hard as they can [krampfhaft], the defect of the Apparatus (the machinery, the System, German: der Apparat) of which the mainly responsible part are they themselves.

The main responsibility of the medicine as a self-organized coercive body of the system (cf. medical corporation) in the concentrated and focused, denaturalized heteronomy that is passing through all the structures and functions of the organism without resistance – because of its being "executive power" not impeded by any (penal) executive [vollzugstechnisch], juridical or legislative barrier -, it’s in this framework of the main responsibility of the Medicine of the Capital that these four years of solitary detention are to be viewed, all the other contents inclusive, such as isolation torture and deportations, blinding and gassing measured out in doses (keyword: security cell), deprivation without replacement of anything and all over months and years, about which we have to report in the following.

What these four years are about is but a minuscule fraction of a worldwide civil war in which it is the Capital that is the Medicine, that means: remedy, in fact an alienated remedy in favour of the Apparatus [Apparat], but a deadly poison for the others. Many are being captured, under which pretense whatsoever, because they have fallen into the trap [auf den Leim gegangen]* of the Capital, as the remedy for a minority, which is the ruling minority.

The initiative of the medicine to take in* the revolutionary patients having come apart*, taking them in by the use of all means of violence, yes, literally, by all means of violence, from culture to bullets, is now going in its seventh year, has abdicated again and again, without retiring though. But where to? Their last fart is called "cost explosion of the Health System". And once again it's the wage-dependants under the determination of illness who have to pay it as if it were these who have caused it [urheberrechtlich und kostenpflichtig uebernehmen]. Surely in exchange and as a consolation for "life-quality", "increasing health conscience on their own responsibility", and - within 4 years - an official ‘sui’cide-rate shot up from 16,000 to 20,000 per year in exchange for less madhouse techniques, but more capital-intense ones while the "demand" has rapidly risen?

*Note of the translator:
All these expressions refer to the double sense of the German expression: Haftbefehl (warrant) (see in the text below). The noun "Haft",  also the verb "haften", means literally to stick to and also: to be-bound-by-contract-to-somebody. In the paragraph above it refers to the connotations of "to stick", the connotations of "to be-bound-by-contract-to-somebody" are referred to in paragraphs that follow.
The expression “to fall into the trap of the Capital”, in German: "dem Kapital auf den Leim gehen", means in its literal translation “to be glued to the Capital”, or “to be tied together with the Capital by a sticky substance”.
The expression "to take in", in German: "leimen" means in its literal translation: "to lime", "to glue".
The expression "having come apart", in German: "aus dem Leim gefallen” means in its literal translation: "to have fallen out of the glue (of the System)".

Contradictions within the cultural sphere are resolved by the experiment. At first go [auf Anhieb], there’s probably no one who believes that solitary confinement bears any relation to culture at all. And no one who has learned to count at least up to two will believe that detention in solitary confinement, totally isolated and refraining from everything and everybody, is already a contradiction. Thinking of culture – even at the risk of having read Freud – he will think of something somehow nice, comfortable, expensive; in any case, however, of supreme values, and not of such a stale [abgestandene] solitary confinement all the time over. And who does not know that any contradiction involves at least two (moments, sides, persons, or whatsoever). And even so – what is being taught through the before said experiment in a stringent and irrefutable way is precisely this:

  1. Detention in solitary confinement is culture, and precisely culture in its purest distillate [Kultur in Reinkultur].
  2. Detention in solitary confinement is straight ahead and without any mediation the most original kind [urig, double sense: original, odd] of community, is thus the counterpart of itself, and, when added up, that comes to: contradiction.


The core element of any experiment, if halfway put on a scientific base, are its conditions. If all of them are met, it always works [klappt's immer]. The always-right result in all that work to succeed [bei all diesem Klappen], however, can be expected only by the one who has carefully eliminated all the casual conditions which, otherwise, would alternate the result, or even falsify it. In the case of solitary confinement, the latter is easier than you might think.

And that not only because, amongst other things, its use consists in converting the thinking into thankfulness, which, if it is not wrong on top of everything, is surely of secondary importance, is psychology. Solitary confinement is rather something that is conditioning itself on its own [sich selbst bedingendes Ding]; in other words and as mentioned above, and here, where we intend to refrain from all the circumstances and thus also from the medical and juridical ones, it has to be determined more precisely as some-thing that is impossible, as a thing of impossibility [Ding der Unmoeglichkeit]; and that under all circumstances, which, since it is undoubtedly happening and coming to life again [stattfindet und urstaendet], can only be and mean nothing else but realization of the impossible[Verwirklichung des Unmoeglichen]. After having now lasted for more than four years, as to any "alleviation" in the single case these details are about, I don’t give - if you will pardon - a shit. What matters here is the concept, the responsibility and the liquidation without any replacement of that institution. All the rest is complicity.
The theorem (conclusion, unproved but founded on experience) according to which it is normally always the impossible that is being realized comes from the metaphysics of illness (pathosophy). With that nothing has been proved yet, but the assertion that solitary confinement is connected with culture gains ground and probability, and that precisely because of that explicit impossibility.

If one follows the recommendation of conceiving culture as a reflection of the base, solitary confinement becomes the prototype of culture in general: it is rooted in contract and medication [Verarztung], said in one word: archiatry. And to stick to the picture, the whole thing is but a submarine marsh plant, wrapped in its base, its breeding ground, which, in the serfdom and reification [Verdingung] in the relationship of recompensation (wage) and punishment [Lohn-Strafverhaeltnis], is mediating itself with its equal via illness as something, not to say as a super-thing - namely the solitary confinement - that is conditioning itself on its own [in der Verdingung im Lohn-Strafverhaeltnis sich ueber Krankheit als sich selbst be-ding-endes, um nicht zu sagen Ueberding, - die Einzelhaft naemlich - mit gleichem vermittelnd]. Thus, solitary confinement is straight ahead community, a community negating all the metaphysical and bad mediums, tricks and mediations, culture in its purest distillate, the most original [urig: original, odd] community resulting out of the common spirit of violence and archiatry, the artful and artificial reproduction of the outside, including in abbreviation the Before and the After [kunstreiche Reproduktion des Aussen samt Vorher und Nachher in Abbreviatur].

Who has got the least idea of these connections, and be it only half-way, but gives his signature to the Apparatus, fills in wish lists and forms of report [Wunsch- und Rapportzettel], enters petitions and applies with ‘yours faithfully’, accepts any written stuff from the authorities, even replying it, instead of tearing it to pieces immediately without looking at it and throwing it outside the door, or at least addressing it back to the sender’s address whenever there is the possibility to do so, but mainly the one who, out of solitary confinement, wants to become the object of a doctor-patient-relationship, can bequeath himself straight away to anatomy for the purpose of vivisection. And that all the more so as nowadays and thanks to anesthesia he can rely on the fact that there he will be more protected in any case from pains, doubts, functional and other defects than in the slave-drivingly, blame-worthy and trashy laboratories of the medically established violence, no matter behind which mask whatsoever and whomsoever the latter is hiding.

In any case, however, that violence is defining and discovering itself as a community, as the quintessence of culture, if you confront it in the experimental situation described, in an enduring and persistent enough manner [rueckt man ihr ... lange und hartnaeckig genug zu Leibe]. In its letters to the lawyers, the Apparatus never tires of characterizing itself in its relation to the one concerned as a community from which it were the prisoner, who is kept in solitary confinement by the Apparatus, that would be excluding himself on his own: indeed, straight ahead community in the purest distillate of culture, the solitary confinement! No "grey area within our constitutional state founded on the rule of law". It is rather some kind of - to say it with Goethe -"supreme culture within the culture".

The sole label 'Einzelhaft' ('solitary confinement’)* is telltale enough. Haft (detention) is relation, relationship, contract, and therefore it is not the concern of the single one as far as he continues to remain the unbroken and active subject and not the object of the break [soweit er ungebrochen Subjekt des Bruchs bleibt]. But it is the concern of all those who participate materially and ideologically in the continuation of that institution, and the single one, prototypically the one who is kept in solitary confinement, being objectively a thing [objektiv Ding], a monad without windows, is precisely by this typical characteristic of reification, and even by this alone, not separated from anything and anybody. By consequence, he can delimit and separate himself from all that what is imposed on him  – more precisely: passes right through him – as "community" in the long run only by an extremely negativistic behaviour, more negativistic than "schizophrenic", so to speak, because of its being selectively negativistic. Contacts to other prisoners, namely, as far as they take place at all (thanks to the "community"), are being evaluated and sanctioned by the Apparatus as "exclusion from the community", even so between those who are politically unsuspicious, otherwhise as "conspiracy" and the Apparatus attempts by all means and harassments to destroy this connection [diesen Zusammenhang]. To be good friends with each prisoner is therefore, in the interest of that experimental negativism, from the point of view of the solitary confinement at least as important as the active boycott and sabotage of getting along with any form of deals, contracts and medication [des sich Vertragens (to get along with; to contract) und der Verarztung]*.

*Note of the translator:
The noun 'Haft' (detention) in German (see footnote above) refers to the verb 'haften' (to be legally liable for something or responsible for somebody) and to the noun 'Haftung' (liability, responsibility), both, by law or by contract, compare: to-be-bound-by-contract-to-somebody.

Already the mere signature after "the warrant of arrest has been announced" does not simply mean to have heard it, perceived it and understood it, but its real significance is synonymous with being a serf, a bondsman, who now belongs to them, and as to deportation, plundering, feeding [Abfuetterung] , solitary this and that, deprivation of this and that; that follows, that they can do totally without any signature and they even provide proof of that without any inhibition [stellen sie sogar unbefangen unter Beweis] ("Surely, surely, it’s just like that, this society is repressive!", literal quotation of a pig during a forced deportation against passive resistance – pretext: examination (failed) as a witness in summer ’72 – while I was dragged on arms and feet along the corridors of the jail of Rastatt).

In an analogue manner the medical treatment. That, too, is totally executed on the basis of violence on one side, and on the other side: thing [auf der Basis Gewalt auf der einen, Ding auf der anderen Seite]. That means that the role of the prisoner in relation to the Law which, for instance during his "detention in custody", concedes the right of free choice of the medical doctor, thus, if one is a medical doctor oneself, the right of self-treatment, as well as the doctor-patient-relationship – on all that the one branded by solitary confinement needs not even reflect about. Medical prescriptions issued for one’s own use (ad. us. prop.) are simply cancelled and destroyed without any comment and replacement (September, ’72), but in return for it, consequently to a denunciation – and that of course without any external inspection, not to mention an examination –, is prescribed and ordered "solitary bath by force". Yes, really and truly, solitary confinement is the pure distillate of culture and the most original and oddest [urigste] form of community, since you are continually being encircled by the lurking archiatry (officially: "On the medical sector, we are doing whatever we can", how truly, how modestly!). And it can only be right to entice that "community" of its latency wherever that is possible, however never by the use of bell-buttons, verbal contacts, little slips of paper as currency [Zettelchenwaehrung] (contradictions within the cultural space are resolved by the experiment). Otherwise, under the condition of solitary confinement, how can one continue to "be fully consciously orientated towards space, time, or person" as it is being postulated for any psychiatrically unobtrusive state?

Solitary confinement has been compared to quarantine. But in solitary confinement, quarantine breaks out and is spreading as an endemic plague; and that is declared [erklaertermassen] and occurs only when the medicine is forced to enter a virulent stage because, amongst other things, the solitary confinement practiced up to that moment only for two years and a half has not yet succeeded in turning the one who has been subject to it into a clinically tangible case. So, in January ’74, a clink doctor named Pfahler brought in the fruits for the prisoner’s deliberately used negativism, this Pfahler ignoring strategically the epidemic-hygienically negative result of two years and a half of what might be called crypto-quarantine, and that by decreeing from outside the prison cell and behind strong police protection that therein had to take place quarantine at once. The door always [grundsaetzlich] kept locked up, the feeding administered through the feeding flap [Futterklappe] in the door, particularly small crockery so that it can be passed through the flap, not any book, periodical and such like from the circulating library etc. That was to become a three-month lasting quarantine – and a sort of: scraps, laundry as well as other clothes carried away by the same persons, touched by them with their bare hands, inspected, and recycled or passed on and handed over, and that by the same persons who prepare the food and deal it to all the prisoners in the surrounding area.

Experimental result: the "community" wherever it is at work [wo immer sie wirkt] – is a totally lousy [beknackter] Apparatus, its (the community's) culture is as pure as capitalistically corrupt; the contradiction to be resolved as solitary confinement is only the proton pseudos, a piece of hard core in midst the putrefying manure.

It has to be added that the break with contract and medication [Vertrag und Verarztung], with the Archiatry in form of psychiatry, has left tangible results in form of a few documents, passages of which can be read in Kursbuch 32, which show that this supporting column of capitalistic culture has initiated this politics of torture, in the single case here regarded, in collaboration with the top crime experts of the Ministry of Justice. The friendly and ready offer of a padded cell in the loony-bin of Emmendingen, subsequently made to this end, has failed only because of the career-interests of a judge of the Special Court for State-security [eines Sonderrichters fuer Staatsschutz].

That which characterizes this solitary confinement unambiguously for its being criminal justice is firstly the fact that – with the duration of four years – it has broken the maximum limit established by law, which limits its duration to three years, it has thus broken a law. It is known that the distinction between a crime and an offence depends on the decision whether "the offence" is being "threatened" with more or less than one year, and thus it is neither a mistake nor an offence, but a crime and therefore criminal justice, that is to say the essence in its appearance [das Wesen als Erscheinung].

That this was in no way just a matter of a "mistake" results from the simple fact that, since the reaching of the maximum limit, other prisoners have applied repeatedly for being joined together with me in one cell for at least an hour or two for private tutoring and such like, applications that have always had the same negative result, and in this, so in Bruchsal as well as in Ludwigsburg, – and that’s important – it was continuously called upon a decision of the Ministry of Justice which no one has ever seen. (Here it has to be added that the solitary confinement has been practiced since December ’74 even in a special "security cell". More than one, as already said, is one too much for the "community"). This circumstance characterizes that justice also as a political one. Its criminality is political criminality; since the solitary-confinement-characteristic has constituted the only constant, the organ point in the many-voiced fugue of escape activities in the concert of the righteous on duty from the warder up to the constitutional judge and executioner [Verfassungs(hin)richter], the whole thing could have happened quite as well in a slightly enlarged loo of a barracks, loony-bin or monastery. So far as to the atmospheric. The rest, which is the reality, in plain English: "the whole stuff" ["das ganze Sach' "], is but a mixture made of swindle of labels, insidiousness and crippled torturer’s trade [verkrueppeltem Folterhandwerk], each of them to changing and varying proportions each time.

To this something brand new (dewy since 3-12-’74):

The security-cell:

Ca. 5 x 3 x 3 paces. Accessible by a narrow footbridge, width: ca. 1 m, iron railings, behind them: jumping nets [Sprungnetze].

The door: outside wooden, lock, safety lock, bolt, bolt (when closed: knnnack, knack-knack – rratch, ratch). Inside iron steel, studded with arabesques of rivets with their heads being of the size of walnuts and hazelnuts. And the hinges: elephantastic. On the middle, upper part of the door there’s a dent: ca. 10 x 10 cm. In the middle of it a hole: ca. 1.5 cm: the glass spy-hole. Its outside flap, however, closed by welding [zugeschweisst]. Oho, what for? Are they probably ashamed? No, not at all: The spy-hole could possibly be destroyed by force from the inside, the glass could be squeezed out of its frame, and in that way there could emerge a hole in the system, and "unauthorized contacts" might be undertaken. Therefore, there is also a real spy-hole. You can find it going diagonally further up, above the before said, tiny, it’s easy to miss, but it’s hardly to crack without special tools. Even for "unauthorized contacts" it can hardly be cracked.

The "window":

Fixed at a height of 1.80 m, about 1 x 1 m, ‘wings’ can be opened to the stop. But it’s of little use, no more as to destroy it either. The whole thing is but a dummy. Because behind there’s:

  1. A wire-netting grid (which is possible to pass through for a medium-sized thin middle finger).
  2. Steel bars [Stahlgitter].
  3. Another steel bars, slightly staggered against the steel bars mentioned before (2.) on the horizontal line.
  4. An empty space [Totraum] of ca. 30 cm.
  5. A ground-glass pane (Plexiglas with fly grid melted into it). It exceeds the overall internal width of the total opening for about 20 cm on each side.

Behind it, probably, somewhere start fresh air (enriched by malt coffee aroma [Kathreiner], factory chimney at ca. 200 m as the crow flies [Luftlinie]), light, earth and similar.

Against fresh air the security cell protects "insufficiently" only on especially stormy days. Then, in the area right under the vaulted ceiling of the cell close to the window, something starts to move. But on the whole – and thanks to the higher density and gravity of nitrogen, nitrogen oxides, CO, carbon dioxide, plus various kinds of noble gases – the unspecific wide spreading gas-chamber effect is being maintained: the micro metabolism and the fermentation activities of all the cells in the security cell could give proof of that in vitro (e.g. Warburg apparatus), again and again. A downright case of dynamite Nobel award, which would be due, if not.

Light is being provided by the synthetic neon tube ("radon and krypton"), and in this procedure only 2% of the total energy is visible light. The rest passes into the eye [geht in's Auge: To pass into the eye; to go wrong], as it is known. And most of it does not remain there. As more or less harmless skin cancer and atrophy opticus (shrinking optic nerve) it is expected to celebrate resurrection after years [nach Jahr und Tag] to the particular joy of radiologists and ophthalmologists, so the opinion of science (the first relative sight defects become manifest within a few weeks, the maximum defects and stage of gradually loss of sight [allmaehliche Erblindung] after about four years. That’s the standard).

As lousy [beknackt] as the spy-hole matter is the one that regards the switch. The one at the neon tube is in effect only for turning off. The other one beyond the security door is the turn-on switch of the turn-off/on switch inside the cell. If you turn it on, it is off; but if it is turned on, then it turns into turned off [dann wird draus aus]. Anything you read or write becomes thus a crossword puzzle in permanence.

All the rest in the security cell, e.g. the things you need, let’s say, to guide yourself to the aim – not everyone considers diversion as some kind of admissible complicity – falls under the universal security-freedom to be taken away at any time, and therefore there really is no need at all to be obtained; as to anything else in the security cell – WC, sink, etc., see "noble gases".

Always secure and certain in the security cell is only the life basis as a gas and blinding chamber. From here, the one who desires that can take up his career to become a prosthesis-god: glasses, dentures, toupee, catheter, by-pass, …. everything is somehow taken care of in the social welfare state founded on law (and tending to the right) [im sozialen Wohl- und Rechtsfahrtstaat (instead of: Wohlfahrts- und Rechtstaat)]. The medical doctor on duty ("You ought to know that I’m doing all this only for sheer idealism") were disposed, especially from one "colleague to the other", to have a heart [seinem Herzen jeden nur moeglichen Stoss geben] and do anything – provided that it does not interfere with his "health", of course – and turn two blind eyes [beide Augen zudruecken; also: to close a dead person's eyes], for which, after all, the "community" is keeping him anyway.

The earth and the air in the prison yard, they are then already "privileges" [Verguenstigungen]. The prison yard - and you have to know that - is the yard of the "community" ["der Gemeinschaft ihr Hof"], the common yard ["Gemeinschaftshof"]. It’s not that you need a ration card [Bezugsschein, written permission], a so-called wish list or form of report [Wunsch- und Rapportzettel] already for that. Rather to the contrary. To the one who does not prepare himself from the outset to cut the "community" dead even on this sector as extensively as ever possible, prefering the security of the gas and blinding chamber non-stop and all around the clock and for weeks to that "community", every three months the wards wallpaper the prison cell door outside with their poster supply of giant letters on red background. And there is written: withdrawal of all privileges. And experience shows, that this lasts pretty well for almost four weeks on the very day. Even afterwards, surely, there are not, all of a sudden, "privileges". Of course not [I wo]: only those pretty posters are removed [kommen weg].

The affair with the posters is forbidden, of course, because of discrimination and so. As to the prison yard exercise [Hofgang], there exists even a regulation according to which it is "the prisoner’s duty in the interest of his health", or similar. And that regulation, so I have been told, from time to time had even got a chance to become applied [soll ab und an mal zum Zug gekommen sein]. And that exactly, when the boss of the wards (the chief of the prison) told to one of those many prisoners who still continue to report to him: "You have got to stay in the cell", and that prisoner replied: "Then I let the doctor know that I’m sick". If in such a case the medical doctor (the archiater) was not disposed to attest via tele-diagnosis and at sight a sufficient state of "health" for staying in the cell – thus had a heart, as said before [seinem Herzen besagten Stoss gab], for which … - then even the boss of the wards had to backtrack and concede conjointly the solitary walk in the prison yard [Einzelhof], which is said to be by far more easily digestible, and which, too, is the yard of the "community", of course. Provided the veto of the medical profession, etc., see above.

Yet a little bit more complicated is the affair with the weekly television [das mit dem woechentlichen Fernsehen]. That, too, is provided without a ratio card (except from the prison yard, it is the last thing that is still provided without a ratio card, and anyway), but only prisoners are there. Therefore no privilege, something that’s certain, where you can access, although the goggle-box is roaring incessantly for five hours and remains the only one in the fifteen-men-on-one-heap-company that doesn’t explode at some time or other? Wrong! It’s enough that a prisoner tells the overseer of the wards (block administrator) that I too would like to access the weekly television. "That is out of the question, the relative decision of the chief of prison [Beschluss des Anstaltsleiters] has got to be close at hand already!" This came to pass on July 10. "Decision of the chief of prison?" Missing until today without any excuse. However, he would certainly not be embarrassed and in need of that "decision", if it depended on that. That’s because it is the same overseer of the wards (named Schweizerhof?) who has made sure that any "written correspondence" with my lawyer has been elevated to the rank of a privilege since May ’75 by blocking it actively and totally. And at that regard he has had the relative "Decision of the chief of prison " handy so slowly that it became suspicious. It’s the very same overseer of the wards, if I’m not wrong (however, it is verifiable in principle) who - at that time still deputy -, while taking delivery of me for the purpose of my deportation from Bruchsal on 3-12-74, deprived me of my doctorate

(looking at the outside of the prison cell door, he addressed the wards of Bruchsal: "What do I read there, Doctor, is that really possible, that must stop at once!" – according to civil right, the title is as well as the Christian name a part of the name; therefore, according to criminal law, that applies twice! (Reintegration!!) Since they do not succeed in putting an end to the revolutionary identity, they try it with the bourgeois one; too late, for at least 15 years.),

thus eventually succeeding in something where the Special Court, the University and the Medical Profession’s Corporate Body have probably definitively failed, after the illegality of my dismissal from the university and from the civil servant relation has meanwhile been confirmed by a court’s verdict, taking thus away also the Christian name – on each other cell door there are at least the Christian and the family name – by the way, a difference my attention was called upon by other prisoners, though I could not miss that, since letters addressed to prisoners of the same name had been delivered to me from time to time again; he’s also the one who continues to the very day sabotaging any phone call with my lawyer, the one who transformed postal items containing books in privileges to be delivered only on ratio card, and the one who has taken care for the fact that I was moved into this security cell with nothing else but with what I was wearing on my skin. And it has been kept that way, would have been kept that way or the other, even if I had filled in report forms – given that predatory mentality characteristic of these pigs! After the last visit of my lawyer he was the one who caught me up in front of the prison cell door: "We have to carry out a body search – order of my superior". And since his hope that I would help him in this was completely dashed, he said: "You, too, are a human, aren’t you".

A little bit too much absolute power [Machtvollkommenheit] for just a single shabby servant of the Police, isn’t it? Not so fast, not so fast! [Gemach, gemach!] His palm is likely to have been greased by the Ministry of Justice (by the way, each deportation has been carried out, so far, in the presence of several pigs of the Criminal Investigation Department of the Land [LKA-Bullen]; only during the last one there was no such presence, or probably there was, but better camouflaged). And then, it was his superior who has confirmed it long since in writing that all his own doings were limited to the bumph [Papierkram], while everything else regarding my case would come directly from the Ministry of Justice, that is to say, in plain text, from the pigs of the Criminal Investigation Department of the Land [LKA], the same ones who, in conjunction with the university medicine and the various medical specialties, have negotiated the whole swindle that has been going on in the early seventies and that is still going on. Systematized madness for my part? Who is of that opinion should look up the details in the files of the year dot kept by the pigs, especially by those dressed in white coats. The condition that he for his part knows six years psychiatry and neurology inside out, that condition I will not even expect of him.

What is taking place here, if considered under psychopathological aspects, is neither a "re-physiognomization ["Umphysiognomierung"]" nor a "thought withdrawal" ["Gedankenentzug"] or "trema" ["Trema"], is neither a "perception with maniac interpretation" ["Wahnwahrnahmung"] nor an "onset of mania/paranoia" ["Wahneinfall"] or an "oneiroid" ["Oneiroid"], is no "vital inhibition" ["Vitale Hemmung"] and are in no way particular susceptibilities to "remote mind control and heteronomy" ["Fernsteuerung und Fremdbestimmung"]. If the latter were the case, I, following "influencing thoughts" and "imperative voices", would obediently communicate with the Apparatus, collaborate in form of labor within the cell or would let it censor
my correspondence, visits, etc., because: "By his participation in the work process and through his integration into the "community" the prisoner confirms that he has accepted his verdict, has taken the way to expiation and that he wants to compensate the wrong he has done society [Unrecht wiedergutmachen]" [announcement of the so-called Minister of Justice, broadcasted by him in persona after the CDU (Christian Democratic Union) had taken office in '72].

What has happened before?:

15 months of solitary confinement torture in Rastatt (screen which impedes the sight to the outside[Sichtblende], opaque glass bricks, steel door with rubber sealing, thus acoustic and optical sensory deprivation, July '71 until November '72 – compared to that practiced in prisons in Northern Ireland, where the duration of one phase does never exceed 90 days: more than excessive). Suspended by the Special Court for State Security only for reasons of ‘cosmetics’ concerning the public trial. Lasting that way until March '73, "of course" ["natuerlich"] with continuation of the solitary confinement.

Then, everything was repealed by the Special Court’s Judge: ‘Special yard’ (Stammheim, until January '74: ‘exercise yard’ in the concrete roof cage, solitary or together with two or three "chosen" prisoners, but no purposive sensory deprivation, in spite of the wire mesh; in exchange for that, however, the first inspection and plundering harassments, and sabotage of any telephonic talks with my lawyers – thus Stammheim can be clearly distinguished from Rastatt, though the same detention in custody, by appearance).

Hungerstrikes: Rastatt, from June to November '72: starting with 12 days in continuation, and then with interruptions of 2-3 days each time.
Stammheim, 49 days en bloc (no medical interventions each time). Censorship-boycott since November '73 (since then no visits and no letters whatsoever).
So called penalty detention [Strafhaft] since December '73 (that means every time the same, plus intensified controls, a kind of paradoxical detention in custody).
Bruchsal (January '74): 3 months of isolation torture (cf. "quarantine"), body searches with it at each step outside the cell door, for instance after each visit of the lawyer (among other things: laid down on the prison floor for the purpose of the control of the shoe-contents).
Plundering without replacement, with the exception of washing things, stamps, one pen and 50 sheets of writing-paper, thus still a differentiation with respect to the total plundering without replacement in Ludwigsburg (typewriter, books, tobacco products, and all possible equipment taken away, and the transistor radio left in inoperative state, while the radio license fees continued to be deduced). With exception of those sent as letters, books were not handed over.

Since January '74, block on purchases (pretext: refusal of doing forced labor, with unemployment though – which is common in jail – no change, thus blackmailing), from 9 parcels sent to me on feast-days, as received by every prisoner, only one was received by direct handing over (mother). All the others Return to sender with the remark: "Refusal of acceptance"! ["Annahme verweigert"!] Instead of: "Refusal of signature"! ["Unterschrift verweigert"!] (With other postal items it worked without signature). At least 2 parcels were "lost", the one of them carrying me as sender, it ought to have been delivered therefore without signature in any case.

Deportations by force: Heidelberg clink, clink Karlsruhe – Rastatt. Rastatt – Karlsruhe, Karlsruhe – Rastatt. Rastatt – Karlsruhe – Rastatt – Stammheim – Bruchsal – Ludwigsburg. Deportations by force within the same clink: once in Stammheim, once in Bruchsal. So-called internal disciplinary punishments [Hausstrafen]: Ludwigsburg, 4 weeks "block on visits because of spitting" at pigs (boycott of censorship!). Two times 4 weeks of solitary confinement torture – the last at Whitsun (reason – pretext, see previous note).

With respect to the colonial field, the psychiatrist Frantz Fanon ("The Wretched of the Earth") identifies in his analysis the one who, "without any mediation, by his direct and permanent intervention, maintains the contact to the colonized": "The agent (referring to the constable and the soldier) does not alleviate oppression and does not mask dominion. He exhibits them; he manifests them with the clear conscience of the forces of order. The agent carries violence into the homes and the brains of the colonized".

If Fanon had analyzed the conditions in the metropolises, he hardly would have missed emphasizing pointedly [zugespitzt] the medical doctor as being the carrier of the violence that is invading permanently and without any mediation the homes and the brains while exhibiting violence blatantly as the clear conscience of the forces of order, thus positioning the medical doctor even ahead and above the constable and the soldier.

Thus, however, his observation that, during the first stage of rebellion, the only reason why the people do not "strike dead", together with others, also many medical doctors is due to the simple fact that they are always on the road [ueber Land] in the very moment when there is really need for them, remains a casual observation, an apercu.

The metropolis-doctor Gaglio ("Medicine and Profit") has noticed at any rate that, independently from being brought into action or not, Medicine in its effects gets under one’s skin, is unleashed, immediate, and precisely for these characteristics a unique violence in the system of capitalistically structured violence, a quality which raises it at the same time at the strategic focus of revolutionary processes.
To this it should be added that the latter is the case only if that archiatry (medical power) is forced into defense under the attacks of a permanent offensive deployed against it.

W. Huber, Ludwigsburg, 1975

Why the refusal to any medical examination?

The medical examination is as "examination" the overlooking and the missing of the principal matters, and is as "medical" arché the first and ultimate resort of power-related archaisms; both together: trap [Fallgrube].

Refusing it rigorously and permanently means only that, being itself a negation that nevertheless takes place against the grain ("quarantine" etc.), it is being negated and by this refusal put on to the right track of the negation of the negation. The negation of the negation is the leap into the new quality, is an examination result becoming progressively more concrete, something different from and therefore more than examination: this is the means – reaching far beyond suspicion, unmasking and banning of the medicine with all that goes with it – that helps the originally by the medical doctors [urspruenglich aerztlich] institutionalized isolation and quality of torture to get to their reality-adequate and wild-growing expression; and it’s precisely this that matters (to me). In this way, after almost four years, the examination becomes, firstly, an examination at all, and secondly, an eminently medical one: there is no single result that would speak in favour of and not against the medical doctors, and against the capitalistically constituted medicine in general.

What? The medical doctor were only, wanted only, were doing only … . Yes, of course, and the bomber-pilot at the targeting device, too, is only a private soldier (GI) [Schuetze Arsch, literally: an ass of a shot]. Stating this, however, one is likely to forget that it is his command, to which even the pilot has to subordinate (just as the surgeon is subordinated to the anaesthesician), that guides the bomb on the smoothest and surest way right on the target – or it does not indeed, provided that he vetoes it, for which it is said that there are reasons, and not so bad ones. I cannot remember anyone who did not go beyond playing his part in this game during these four years, not anyone of these secret masters of torture, "colleagues", "idealists" alias this and that.

But is there anyone who is surprised by that? It is but a few four thousand years that this guild [Zunft] has had its great joy in each law-breaker that they were allowed to vivisectionize (codex Hamurabi). The military side of the imperialistic warfare depends more and more on nothing else but precisely on that basis-and-super-commodity: medicine, the failure of which is at its beginning, and it is the medecine which is continuing it as politics-by-other-means wherever nothing is opposing resistance. It’s therefore the medical doctors who lay bare the field of fire, who guide the bomb on the target wherever there is weed, with the intention to take it in their care immediately after its medicalization [Verarztung], after its archaization has been carried out (compare: to bomb them back into stone age).

In the equally "inconspicuous" [unauffaellig] context of solitary confinement, that looks like this:

If already at the stage of isolation torture no one can doubt about the extent of the responsibility on part of the medical doctors in causing it, so, in the case of quarantine (Bruchsal, January – May '74) the iatrogenetics (= the medical doctor as the cause) of it has become obvious [liegt klar auf der Hand]. In this case the isolation torture under the absolutely unjustified pretext of being a substitute of the medical visit – 2 ½ years of solitary confinement were being acted on the stage of torture in the various clinks and not one piece of epidemic whatsoever had become notorious! – this isolation torture has been acted through [durchgespielt] exclusively as a medical measure for more than 3 months, while the "Mr. Colleague" did not even shrink from decreeing spiritual starving out [geistige Aushungerung] through exclusion from the "loan service for reading matter", a probably unique and additional measure in that context. Even for the temporarily last stage of isolation torture (Ludwigsburg, beginning: 15-5-75) – as known, it is particularly efficient if practiced alternately [wechselbadweise, compare: to blow hot and cold with somebody] – the medical carte blanche was already at hand without trouble. During the isolation torture that carte blanche was due at the latest, when the "internal disciplinary punishment [Hausstrafe] = exclusion from all ‘privileges’ and 'solitary yard' [Einzelhof]", had become in total 6 weeks of gassing and blinding chamber nonstop all around the clock. Carte blanche, because, from part of the medical doctor, at the latest within two weeks there must be attested anew the state of good health that is welcome to this end, and which simply would have to be denied after the failure of the medical examination, as 3 years of solitary confinement, without all the other extras, are considered being enough, even by the court’s and hangmen’s gang [Scharf- und Richterclique], for total break and destruction, because every additional year of "regular execution of the penalty" [Normalvollzug], then, counts at least twice as much!

Pure terror was also the medical request, which failed only thanks to its refusal, to execute ‘solitary baths’ in the condition of hunger strike by using "direct force" ["unmittelbarer Zwang] (Rastatt, ‘72). The medical examination in all its mendacity, however, is the autopsy [for a lesson from the hunger strike in Stammheim, in May/June ’73, after 49 days of hunger strike, compare this: "Let him kick the bucket, then have him opened [Verrecken lassen, dann aufmachen], the communist pig", so the comment of a first-aid attendant immediately after the failure of the medical visit (extra muros ante portas – literally meaning: outside the walls, in front of the door, that is after they believed to be out of the hearing range)]. Thus, the medical visit in its truth is but vivisection (compare: Hamurabi).

Part of the examination results is, finally, also those activities that came explicitly from the medical doctors’ coercive corporative body as a whole. In this, the latter had not only been ahead of the executive power for several years, but it also gave proof of its capability to raise, at any time, as undivided power up to the highest levels over the lowly spheres [Niederungen] of any mystification of the division of powers and alike: Block on purchases by compulsory expropriation of compulsory subscription fees (summer ’71, Rastatt), but in exchange for that not a single piece of information matter of that coercive corporative body from the very first day of detention in custody, but smear and hate campaigns instead, in which the medical board deplored, among others, not to have used battle-tanks against the patients (e.g. "Aerzteblatt", the doctors’ journal of the board).

When all those will drop the tomatoes from their eyes, who maintain, being right to do so, that the one who had hatched the conditions of detention, if it was to die a wretched death [wenn es um's Verrecken gegangen ist], was the political pig on charge –. Who were, then, in all cases, his executioners and advisors?!

On the question: Why not any signature?
Counterquestion: Why signing at all?

  1. Signatures are useless against plundering [Auspluenderung].
  2. Signatures turn the state of need into the state of need, that one is continually threatened by new plunderings.
  3. Signatures are perverting the one who is being plundered into the protector [Schutzmann] of the plunderers (revers).

For those who want to know it for certain:

Firstly, and on principle: any signature is but a value-fetish, just like otherwise money is. Only that this value-fetish, as a consequence of the plundering, is lacking any kind of coverage, while money and all the means of exchange that derive from money are receiving their coverage uniquely and exclusively from plundering. It’s therefore a hollow-fetish, worth less than the paper, on which the signature should be put, or, if you like, it’s a kind of white mouse on the snow, capitalistic realism. This has been verified by and through the applications submitted by other prisoners on my behalf.

The truth of the contradiction between money-currency and prison-slips’-currency [Knastzettelwaehrung] is therefore falling into its essence, into the plundering, which is, in the case of money, essentially coverage, and, in the case of prison-slips, likewise essentially a fiction not covered by anything and anybody – an "as if" -, and by this a fait accompli anyway, and permanently ready to leap [auf dem Sprung] to reproduce the madness of the system and to materialize it - all together with the forgery out of which it results - by virtue of brain and hand [kraft Hirn und Hand zu materialisieren], becoming thus flesh and blood and a habit, and leaving illness on its own [Krankheit Krankheit sein lassen]. Valid also elsewhere. To this, and only for explanation, a long quotation: "In the field of thinking, man may claim to be the brain of the world, but on the plane of concrete life, where any intervention is affecting the physical and mental being, it is the world that is always the brain of man, because it is on that plane that the totalising action of the forces and the thinking units are being performed, it is there that the dynamic forces of development and perfection become efficient, it is there that the fusion of energies is carried out, and it is there that the total of human’s intellectual values is being imprinted (and memorized)". (Frantz Fanon)

Secondly, and according to its function, the signature is a means of blackmailing.

The comrade patient who is refusing it, is depriving the plunderers of more than they are ever capable of giving to him: the respect [die Achtung].

The one, who still thinks, after having read the previous part on principle, that it would however be unwise to be stingy with counterfeit money, is dead right [goldrichtig] in accordance with the delusions and deceptions of the capitalistic culture business. Only that he has not got the faintest idea of the fundaments of a future society consisting thoroughly of humans and that has to be anticipated by doing [tunlichst] in any possible way already now. Once all the values (and there are hardly other fetishes anyway) that "hold together" the present society have died out – and it is nothing else that they are programmed to, thanks to the advancing automation of production, then it will be precisely this respect that will have become likewise automatically the exclusive contents of all relations. Up to then, it is - as offending as illness [kraenkend wie Krankheit] - a weapon, that means: cryptogenic being human and human kind (cryptogenic: cf. crypta = tomb, grave; genic = to generate, to resurrect).

The one who has still a fairly notion of his Hegel [hat man den Hegel noch so halbwegs drauf] will look through it also anamnestically. Because with Hegel animals are practicing idealists. They are immune [gefeit] to respect. They take, eat, plunder and destroy their objects after both reality and matter, just as they come to them. They have got their immediate, non-flected needs [un-flektiertes Beduerfnis]. But already the primeval humans are practising materialists and realists. Their need of respect is an insatiable predator to them, to whom any satisfaction, from homicide (killing of his same kind) to suicide (killing himself) and via the whole jungle of all the alienation-specific desire-fetishes, has got the human being to its unique reality and matter: the human being as the unique resource of raw materials for something like respect. There will never be another one. With Fanon, that reads as follows: "And it’s precisely that annihilating silence … , that silence that is annihilating the torturer! We encounter here, I say, a very old law that forbids any part to remain unconcerned … when man simultaneously claims and defends his unlimited humanity."

Thirdly, that what is hiding behind the complex of signatures is nothing else but the process of differentiated euthanasia by force (see, "differential euthanasia" in "Turn Illness into a Weapon", appendix), and to have fought it and fighting it without any compromise was and remains one of the most decisive [massgeblichsten] roots of the origin and the development of the Patients’ Front.

UW Huber, 1975/76

Collective Translation:

Kurd Ch. Schager, Dipl.-Angl., M.A.soc.ling. , PF/SPK MFE

Final editing:



Power, Iatrarchy / Illness, Violence
Iatrocracy on a World-wide Scale