Read Chomsky

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mmphosis
Read Chomsky

Noam Chomsky (en.wikipedia.org)

mmphosis
knownothing knownothing's picture

Noam Chomsky steps in on behalf of Needs

"Needs was surprised to hear back from the plant, which said it needed “expressed written consent” to use the sample. Though Needs considered dropping the bit, Orr opted to email both the broadcaster and Chomsky. While he didn’t hear from the CBC, Chomsky gave the act his blessing. He didn’t, however, take up Orr’s offer to send an MP3, writing: “Thanks for the offer to send the song. No use. Never have time to listen to or watch anything.”

http://www.straight.com/music/377376/noam-chomsky-steps-behalf-needs

mmphosis
knownothing knownothing's picture
mmphosis

Noam Chomsky on being watched (cbc.ca)

Quote:
Following last week's revelation that the CIA had apparently been keeping tabs on Noam Chomsky, guest host Kevin Sylvester speaks to the outspoken author, philosopher and MIT emeritus professor about government surveillance, then and now.

mmphosis

While Syria descends into suicide, Israel and the US are enjoying the spectacle (ceasefiremagazine.co.uk)

Noam Chomsky talks to Frank Barat about the current situation in the Middle East, notably the crisis in Syria, the peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, and the role of US power in the region.

 

mmphosis
mmphosis
mmphosis
infracaninophile infracaninophile's picture

 

Wow, great! I am downloading that and will listen to it in the car tomorrow. I was unfamiliar with Glenn Greenwald (is he any relation to Robert Greenwald, the filmmaker who has produced some great exposes like Outfoxed and Walmart: the High Cost of Low Price?) until a few weeks ago when I caught his participation on CBC Ideas Munk Debates. See here:

http://www.cbc.ca/ideas/episodes/2014/05/08/state-surveillance-the-munk-...

They were discussing the surveillance state and Greenwald and reddit's Ohanian argued against it, with the NSA director and -- of all people! --Alan Dershowitz as proponents of Big Brother. A brilliant debate (Dershowitz came across badly IMO) which you can listen to on the site or download as a podcast.

 I've got my name on the list for his new book. Very smart and articulate guy, a pleasure to listen to.

 

Slumberjack

Chomsky’s views on 'post-structuralism' are wrought with scarcely concealed political bias, to such an extent that his statements in that respect lends credence to several 'post-structural' theories, the substance of which he’s often claimed an inability to grasp.  This would appear to be fully supported by his statements were it not for the fact that he is such an acclaimed intellectual.

Chomsky rounding on "French" Intellectual Culture

Would you like freedom fries with that?  It doesn't put him in a very good light quite frankly.

mmphosis
voice of the damned

Slumberjack wrote:

Chomsky’s views on 'post-structuralism' are wrought with scarcely concealed political bias, to such an extent that his statements in that respect lends credence to several 'post-structural' theories, the substance of which he’s often claimed an inability to grasp.  This would appear to be fully supported by his statements were it not for the fact that he is such an acclaimed intellectual.

Chomsky rounding on "French" Intellectual Culture

Would you like freedom fries with that?  It doesn't put him in a very good light quite frankly.

I don't know if I would compare a critique of the French intelligensia and their academic schools with the neo-con freedom-fries brigade, who were considerably less informed about France than Chomsky is, and were just latching onto any rhetoric in order to whip up war frenzy.

If somebody were to say "I really don't think much of the Amercian Pragmatists and their influence on American philosophy and politics", and provide his reasons for thinking this, I would hardly say it's equivalent to the type of anti-Americanism expressed here(possibly NSFW)...

http://tinyurl.com/ojmd6l9

Plus, Chomsky is equally critical of his own country's intellectuals, albeit for different reasons. So it's not like he's just some loud-mouthed legionnaire mouthing off against France simply because it's foreign. And, given what I know about Chomsky's overall outlook, I believe he'd be a fan of Descartes and the later Englightenment thinkers. His comments in that video were confined to the post-1945 situation, it seems to me.   

 

 

 

 

voice of the damned

One more thing...

Given his comments on Darwinism, one might get the impression he thinks France is a nation of creationists. But, going by what I've read, it's specifically Lamarckianism that maintained its hold over French scientific thought, long after Darwin had been accepted(among scientists anyway) in the anglosphere. I don't know all the details there, but it's something I recall reading somewhere.

 

Slumberjack

voice of the damned wrote:
I don't know if I would compare a critique of the French intelligensia and their academic schools with the neo-con freedom-fries brigade, who were considerably less informed about France than Chomsky is, and were just latching onto any rhetoric in order to whip up war frenzy.

He has gone to some lengths to say that he doesn't understand most, if not all of it, which seems to have been the main thrust of his critique over the years.  It should be readily admitted by anyone who has ever appreciated Chomsky's insights and work that a lack of comprehension as the critical reason provided is a little suspect on his part.  But it appears less so in terms of not having to engage in a substantive criticism of the material in question.  In other words, the throw-away line that it's impenetrable gibberish which is being referred to neatly tucks away the need to extend one-self.  If the critique were simply left at that, as a lack of time or interest with which to dedicate to the task of extracting whatever sense the complexity of the material may contain, then there's little to be said about that because it would likely be derived from stylistic preferences.  On the other hand, critique takes on a different character altogether when it's prefaced by comments that appear to indicate country of origin stereotyping.  The term ‘surrender monkeys’ accomplished the same thing in another context, particularly when the warmongering establishment in Washington DC was upset at Dominique de Villepin and his performance at the UN in 2003.  Why is that even necessary for Chomsky?  When it’s accompanied by little else in this regard perhaps?

Slumberjack

Chalk another one up for Chomsky here though, in an account of how the scales were finally lifted for one journalist.

Quote:
In reality, neither the MA nor my early years in Nazareth helped. In fact, the better educated I became on the Middle East the more alienated I felt from my colleagues and their coverage. Further, in refutation of De Botton’s analysis, the better I became at presenting the news, making it more interesting and informative, the less likely – at least, if it related to Israel – I usually was in getting it published in mainstream media.

What I started to suspect was that the fault was not mine, or related to my presentational skills, but with the media itself.

I stayed in a state of journalistic bewilderment until I stumbled across a book by Noam Chomsky, Understanding Power. Then, my confusion started to lift. With a framework for understanding how the interests of economic and political power were pursued through western state policy, I could make sense both of the events taking place around the world and the media’s failure to cover them meaningfully.

mmphosis

The End of History? (inthesetimes.com)

Quote:
The likely end of the era of civilization is foreshadowed in a new draft report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the generally conservative monitor of what is happening to the physical world.

mmphosis

Quote:
While the International Criminal Court investigates and sentences African dictators, any of the crimes the US commits like the invasion of Iraq, which has destabilized an entire region, go unpunished, philosopher Noam Chomsky tells RT.

Chomsky: 'International law cannot be enforced against great powers’ FULL INTERVIEW (rt.com)

Hearing: Confronting Russia’s Weaponization of Information (foreignaffairs.house.gov)

Why the Ukraine Crisis Is the West’s Fault (2014) (foreignaffairs.com)

Quote:
There’s also another opinion on the matter. Namely, the world’s opinion, and we know what that is because there are polls taken by the leading US polling agencies. The Gallup organization has international polls. And they ask the question, “Which country is the greatest threat to world peace?” The United States is way ahead of anyone else. No other country is even close. But Americans are protected from that. The US media simply refused to print it. This major poll, I think it was December 2013, it was reported by BBC. But not a single word in the major American media. So if the world thinks that, so much for the world. We say Iran is the greatest threat to world peace, therefore that is true. We can repeat it over and over.

Happy new year? The world's getting slowly more cheerful (2013) (bbc.com)

Military and Paramilitary Activities in and against Nicaragua (Nicaragua v. United States of America) (1986) (icj-cij.org)

Obstacles to social mobility weaken equal opportunities and economic growth, says OECD study (2010) (oecd.org)

NDPP

Noam Chomsky: Popular Movements Needed To 'Reverse the Mad Rush Toward Destruction'

http://readersupportednews.org/opinion2/265-34/31914-noam-chomsky-popula...

Noam Chomsky interviewed by David Barsamian

"...There is a Yanomami shaman leader named Davi Kopinawa. He says, 'The white people want to kill everything. They will soil the rivers and lakes and take what is left. Their thoughts are constantly attached to their merchandise. They relentlessly and always desire new goods. They do not think that they are spoiling the earth and the sky and that they will never be able to recreate new ones.'

mmphosis
monty1

NObody knows it and tells it like Chomsky. If only his outstanding intelligence, knowledge, and ability was appreciated for what it really is. 

And no two-bit journalist with a bone in his mouth is ever going to demonize him in the eyes of people of decency. 

mmphosis

Noam Chomsky, Edward Snowden and Glenn Greenwald

A Conversation on Privacy (theintercept.com)

The balance between national security and government intrusion on the rights of private citizens will be the topic of a panel discussion featuring renowned linguist and MIT professor Noam Chomsky, NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, and Intercept co-founding editor Glenn Greenwald. Nuala O’Connor, president and CEO of the Center for Democracy and Technology, will act as moderator.

Chomsky and Greenwald will appear in person at the event, hosted in Tucson by the University of Arizona College of Behavioral Sciences, while Snowden will appear via videoconference.

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Mobo2000

Here's some essays on the common criticisms of Chomsky's thought.   Useful overview of what's been said about him and how it relates to what he says.

General criticisms, the "faurisson affair", "anti-americanism"":

http://flagrancy.net/chomsky.html

And on his "support for the Khmer Rouge":

http://flagrancy.net/khmerchomsky.html

 

 

 

 

 

mmphosis

https://player.megaphone.fm/FLM9599965059

Deconstructed Special: The Noam Chomsky Interview (theintercept.com)

NC: Well, what does anarchism mean? And it’s the whole long tradition actually going back to classical liberalism. It fundamentally means opposition to structures of authority and domination unless they can justify themselves. Illegitimate structures of domination and hierarchy ranging from paternalistic family to business which is a tyranny in which people rent themselves as slaves, to international affairs. Anywhere across this domain if you find illegitimate authority, it should be eliminated. I suspect most people believe that. Of course, that means lots of consequences. It means they should be opposed to private tyrannies. People who are called libertarians in the United States, strange notion, very anti-libertarian, are fundamentally calling for rule by unaccountable private tyrannies. I don’t see anything libertarian about that.

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

This is a good interview. I highly recommend listenting to it.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Mobo2000 wrote:

Here's some essays on the common criticisms of Chomsky's thought.   Useful overview of what's been said about him and how it relates to what he says.

General criticisms, the "faurisson affair", "anti-americanism"":

http://flagrancy.net/chomsky.html

And on his "support for the Khmer Rouge":

http://flagrancy.net/khmerchomsky.html

 

 

 

 

 

Those aren't essays-they are incoherent rants filled with utterly unsupported declarations...Chomsky never claimed to have originated the ideas his thinking incorporates, and it doesn't matter if he originated or not.  And what does the phrase "For my general audience the obvious looniness of having workers manage work is hereby objectivley noted"- that's the "author"s spelling of "objectively" in that quote, for whatever it's worth-even mean?  In what universe is that an objective statement?

Also, Chomsky never came anywhere close to supporting the Khmer Rouge-all he did was to question whether they actually killed as many people as the U.S. government claimed they did.  Why does it matter that Chomsky estimated that their body count was one million rather than two million-isn't 1 million dead atrocity enough?  It's not as if the 2 million figure is an unchallengeable fact, and it's not as if people should have to agree that it was two million just to prove they didn't support the group doing the killing?  It's not as if he was justifying what the Khmer Rouge did or in any way supporting their regime.  He was just arguing against needless exaggeration of the death toll.

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

Ken Burch wrote:

Also, Chomsky never came anywhere close to supporting the Khmer Rouge-all he did was to question whether they actually killed as many people as the U.S. government claimed they did.  Why does it matter that Chomsky estimated that their body count was one million rather than two million-isn't 1 million dead atrocity enough?  It's not as if the 2 million figure is an unchallengeable fact, and it's not as if people should have to agree that it was two million just to prove they didn't support the group doing the killing?  It's not as if he was justifying what the Khmer Rouge did or in any way supporting their regime.  He was just arguing against needless exaggeration of the death toll.

If I recall correctly, the statements in question were part of Chomsky's critique of the msm ignoring the atrocities going on in East Timor at the same time as they wailed over Pol Pot, because Indonesia was supporting the U.S. empire, while Cambodia was not.

Mobo2000

The links I posted at #28 were intended to be, by the writer, a defense of Chomsky against some of the most common criticisms of his writing, activism or public statements.   Not terribly readable, true, though I enjoy the style.    Ken I think you are missing some of the intended sarcasm.    The "obvious loonieness" line was meant sarcastically, the writer used to host a site I quite enjoyed that had lots of labour /socialist resources and is pro-union, anti-US empire.

Re: the Khmer Rouge, the common criticism of him is that he was an "apologist" and denied their atrocities.   Michael's got it right.  From the links I posted above:

"These debates are typical. For comparison purposes consider the similarly wide range (1 to 3 million) in numbers murdered by the Pakistani government over the course of 9 months in East Pakistan in 1971. Note the caution with which reports of atrocities are treated by serious researchers, in this case the International Commission of Jurists. These aren't really debates about factual analysis so much as they're debates about politics, a debate in which Chomsky was involved at the time only to note the side on which the media was playing. From the perspective of 1978 the question of whether Pol Pot was a mass murderer or instead a genocidal maniac was up in the air - and this seems to be the question over which he is called an 'apologist' - such confusion hardly sums to denial and apologia for said crimes.

Given that the monster of the Cambodian genocide was supported by my government after the major crimes were discovered in full and during the continued campaign of terror against Cambodians for a decade afterwards, and the monster of the Pakistani genocide was ("secretly", much like the bombing of Cambodia) supported by my government before, during, and after the crimes, it just makes me a little sad all around. It is, howeverly, painfully obvious to any upright citizen that the real problem here is Chomsky, to whom we will now return."

The painful obvious line is meant as sarcasm.

Unrelated:   Chomsky did a recent interview on Youtube that was quite good.  He was fairly energetic and articulate, not as many pauses and "ums".   Was somewhat disappointed the interviewers repeatedly asked him about Jordan Peterson though -- He's probably not long left on the earth, and he's not easy to book to interview, maybe ask him about something important?

Really great to see him still at it after all these years, though.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XeWWz4y1coU

 

bekayne

Michael Moriarity wrote:

Ken Burch wrote:

Also, Chomsky never came anywhere close to supporting the Khmer Rouge-all he did was to question whether they actually killed as many people as the U.S. government claimed they did.  Why does it matter that Chomsky estimated that their body count was one million rather than two million-isn't 1 million dead atrocity enough?  It's not as if the 2 million figure is an unchallengeable fact, and it's not as if people should have to agree that it was two million just to prove they didn't support the group doing the killing?  It's not as if he was justifying what the Khmer Rouge did or in any way supporting their regime.  He was just arguing against needless exaggeration of the death toll.

If I recall correctly, the statements in question were part of Chomsky's critique of the msm ignoring the atrocities going on in East Timor at the same time as they wailed over Pol Pot, because Indonesia was supporting the U.S. empire, while Cambodia was not.

He co-wrote a book about it (with Edward Hermann) The Political Economy Of Human Rights

NDPP

Noam Chomsky: Trump-Russia Collusion Claims 'A Bad Joke'

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2019/04/01/noam_chomsky_trump-ru...

"I think it is so farcical that I barely even read the reports. It's a joke."

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Michael Moriarity wrote:

Ken Burch wrote:

Also, Chomsky never came anywhere close to supporting the Khmer Rouge-all he did was to question whether they actually killed as many people as the U.S. government claimed they did.  Why does it matter that Chomsky estimated that their body count was one million rather than two million-isn't 1 million dead atrocity enough?  It's not as if the 2 million figure is an unchallengeable fact, and it's not as if people should have to agree that it was two million just to prove they didn't support the group doing the killing?  It's not as if he was justifying what the Khmer Rouge did or in any way supporting their regime.  He was just arguing against needless exaggeration of the death toll.

If I recall correctly, the statements in question were part of Chomsky's critique of the msm ignoring the atrocities going on in East Timor at the same time as they wailed over Pol Pot, because Indonesia was supporting the U.S. empire, while Cambodia was not.

That is true.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Mobo2000 wrote:

The links I posted at #28 were intended to be, by the writer, a defense of Chomsky against some of the most common criticisms of his writing, activism or public statements.   Not terribly readable, true, though I enjoy the style.    Ken I think you are missing some of the intended sarcasm.    The "obvious loonieness" line was meant sarcastically, the writer used to host a site I quite enjoyed that had lots of labour /socialist resources and is pro-union, anti-US empire.

Re: the Khmer Rouge, the common criticism of him is that he was an "apologist" and denied their atrocities.   Michael's got it right.  From the links I posted above:

"These debates are typical. For comparison purposes consider the similarly wide range (1 to 3 million) in numbers murdered by the Pakistani government over the course of 9 months in East Pakistan in 1971. Note the caution with which reports of atrocities are treated by serious researchers, in this case the International Commission of Jurists. These aren't really debates about factual analysis so much as they're debates about politics, a debate in which Chomsky was involved at the time only to note the side on which the media was playing. From the perspective of 1978 the question of whether Pol Pot was a mass murderer or instead a genocidal maniac was up in the air - and this seems to be the question over which he is called an 'apologist' - such confusion hardly sums to denial and apologia for said crimes.

Given that the monster of the Cambodian genocide was supported by my government after the major crimes were discovered in full and during the continued campaign of terror against Cambodians for a decade afterwards, and the monster of the Pakistani genocide was ("secretly", much like the bombing of Cambodia) supported by my government before, during, and after the crimes, it just makes me a little sad all around. It is, howeverly, painfully obvious to any upright citizen that the real problem here is Chomsky, to whom we will now return."

The painful obvious line is meant as sarcasm.

Unrelated:   Chomsky did a recent interview on Youtube that was quite good.  He was fairly energetic and articulate, not as many pauses and "ums".   Was somewhat disappointed the interviewers repeatedly asked him about Jordan Peterson though -- He's probably not long left on the earth, and he's not easy to book to interview, maybe ask him about something important?

Really great to see him still at it after all these years, though.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XeWWz4y1coU

 

Thanks for the clIt warification on the writer's intent.  It was hard to tell where the writer was going with all of that.

mmphosis

Anyone find the long 500-page environmental assessment from the National Transportation Administration?

I found this 500-page Draft Environmental Impact Statement (July 2018) Docket No. NHTSA-2017-0069 on the US Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration web site:

https://www.nhtsa.gov/sites/nhtsa.dot.gov/files/documents/ld_cafe_my2021...

Noam Chomsky: The current moment, not just political, is the most grim moment in human history. We are now in a situation where this generation, in fact, in the next few years, is going to have to make a decision of cosmic significance which has never arisen before: Will organized human society survive? And there are two enormous threats. The threat of environmental catastrophe, which at least is getting some attention, not enough. The other is the threat of nuclear war, which is increasing sharply by the Trump administration, in fact. These have to be dealt with quickly. Otherwise, there’s nothing to talk about.

And notice that the wrecking ball in the White House just doesn’t give a damn. He’s having fun. He’s serving his rich constituency. So what the hell, let’s destroy the world. And it’s not that they don’t know it. Some months ago, maybe a year ago by now, one of the Trump bureaucracies the National Transportation Administration came out with what I think is the most astonishing document in the entire history of the human species. It got almost no attention. It was a long 500-page environmental assessment in which they tried to determine what the environment would be like at the end of the century. And they concluded, by the end of the century, temperatures will have risen seven degrees Fahrenheit, that’s about twice the level that scientists regard as feasible for organized human life. The World Bank describes it as cataclysmic. So what’s their conclusion? Conclusion is we should have no more constraints on automotive emissions. The reasoning is very solid. We’re going off the cliff anyway. So why not have fun? Has anything like that ever appeared in human history? There’s nothing like it.