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Old 01-01-2004, 03:21 AM   #1
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Noam Chomsky

[QUOTEQUOTE]"You say you're an anarchist. Maybe you shouldn't take any benefits from the state?" That view is published, repeatedly. For example, I remember a book by Norman Podhoretz, some right-wing columnist, in which he accused academics in the peace movement of being ingrates because we were working against the gov- ernment, but we were getting grants from the government. That reflects an ex- tremely interesting conception of the state, in fact a fascist conception of the state. It says the state is your master, and if the state does something for you, you have to be nice to them. That's the underlying principle. So the state runs you, you're its slave... Notice how exactly opposite that is to democratic theory. According to democratic theory, you're the master, the state is your servant. The state doesn't give you a grant, the population is giving you a grant. The state's just an instrument. But the concept of democ- racy is so remote from our conception that we very often tend to fall into straight fascist ideas like that, that the state is some kind of benevolent uncle, ... it's not your representative, and of course it's true, but it's not supposed to be; and therefore if your benevolent uncle happens to give you a piece of candy, it's not nice not to be nice to him back. But it's a strictly fascist conception. That's one of the reasons why fascism would be so easy to institute in the United States. It's deeply rooted in everybody's mind al- ready. But I am a citizen of the US, and therefore share responsibility for US government policies, and assume that one of the duties of citizenship is to live up to that responsibility -- by criticizing policies one thinks are wrong, for example.The emphasis here is on the role of the intellectual to hold those in power to the fire. That most western intellectuals igonore this resposnsiblity .I wonder to though if not a global citizen then what kind of citizen do you expect you deserve to be at all if you can not see beyond your own borders. The fact that people in western civilization all be it not all of them, can not see past their own back yards scares the hell out of me and I worry for our childrens future- Noam Chomsky[/QUOTE]
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