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Old 01-18-2002, 11:22 PM   #1
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Noam Chomsky & 9/11

If you haven't read the booklet, I'd recommend it. Anyway, as a conservative (kinda) American, I'm highly disturbed by what I've read from Mr. Chomsky.

I'm patriotic, red-white-and-blue, but I believe in truth. America the Beautiful has done some really horrid things, seemingly without batting an eye or flinching.

Does anyone know exactly what we were doing in Central America in the 80's? (esp. Nicaragua). I'm aware of the violence that occured, but why were we there as reported by the media? Just curious. I don't understand how we could've been so underhanded with popular public support.

If HALF of the things we've done as reported by Mr. Chomsky are true, then I'm quite saddened and disappointed in our leaders....from Reagan through Clinton & GW. I'm just now learning this stuff, as I was a kid when it was occuring.
Somebody enlighten me further.

thanx
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Old 01-18-2002, 11:41 PM   #2
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Dissapointed ? Not as the three-quarters of the rest of the world.

But if you are interested in "others" point of views, I highly recommend you another sociologist author wich "another" point of view (read : differs from the New Economical Order point of view) : Michel Chossudovski. He was a member of the International Monetary Fund and he's now.. a dissident.

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Old 01-18-2002, 11:42 PM   #3
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its all true. It's just that when America does it to someone else its 'freedom fighting' and when its done to American's its 'Terrorism'. Some extra cages should be constructed in Cuba for these American terrorists and Kissinger should be in a cell next to Slobodan Miloso.

Worst of all is when American shrug it off and say 'oh we have made some mistakes in the past' when it has resulted in the death of thousands but when thousands of American die its an attack on 'freedom', 'democracy', 'the free world', 'civilization' etc...Its the end of the world
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Old 01-19-2002, 12:07 AM   #4
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By the way, what's the title of the booklet, cos there's tons of booklets from Noam ? Maybe I know it already..

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Old 01-19-2002, 12:08 AM   #5
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I appreciate any and all input. Trying to understand more of what Bruce Cockburn and U2 were complaining about during the 80's. I was just too young at the time to grasp it all.

Anyway, I don't look at it as "we've made some mistakes" in the past....ho, hum. I don't think most Americans would look at it that way, were the facts to be made highly-publicized, i.e., Peter Jennings doing a documentary or something. This kind of thing sickens the average American, I can assure you.

It is no more tragic when an American is slaughtered than when a Nicaraguan, an Indonesian, a Sudanese(?), or a Columbian is slaughtered.

However, it is more tragic when such slaughter is hidden, justified, carried-out, and/or financed by a powerful, wealthy, and masquerading-as-'just' (to her own people) government.

If even half of Mr. Chomsky's accusations are correct...it's atrocious. totally disgusting. Not just a few "mistakes" we've made.

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Old 01-19-2002, 12:12 AM   #6
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Oh, it is actually a collection of interviews with Mr. Chomsky. (I gave the impression he was author..sorry)

It is called "noam CHOMSKY: 9-11", and it is published by Seven Stories Press (www.sevenstories.com)
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Old 01-19-2002, 12:50 AM   #7
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Those slogans "freedom" "democracy" "freeworld" were used to comfort Americans as much as convince anyone of our actions. Bono said that America is an island and our mentality is such partially because we get very little international news in the media, and what we do get is packaged. This is referred to as "the dumbing down of America." People have relied on the TV for information (before the internet) but the media is influenced by corporate advertisers (insert banana republic co. of choice) and a government that keeps a careful eye.

Really, Americans have "take(n) the quiet life" to quote Radiohead and not bothered to look into the details of our global doings, if such information was easy to find. I'll mention that liberals have had an inkling of all this underhanded dealings--propping up sympathetic dictators et. al.-- and want it stopped but also run into the power politics and are exasperated.

So back to the original question, do I know anything exactly about what happened in Central America in the 80s? Only what you do (I was in college, not the real world), and what U2 has been railing about with Bullet.

Americans are used to being critical of themselves, not so used to coming clean on bad policies. A good discussion is a start, though.

P.S. At least part of that speech is on the Radiohead site, you have to hunt around for it though .


[This message has been edited by DebbieSG (edited 01-18-2002).]
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Old 01-19-2002, 01:31 AM   #8
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bonofnattic (or anyone else, for that matter) please, please, if you have a few dollars (like $8) to spend, spend it on this book. It's one of Chomsky's best work, and really opens your eyes, and will give anyone here who goes "WTF is wrong with Dr. Gonzo?" a stunning new level of understanding. It greatly expands on what you've become interested in.
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Old 01-19-2002, 03:12 AM   #9
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There are partisans and there are extremists; conservatives have thier reactionaries, liberals have Noam Chomsky.

I be ridiculed (perhaps not unjustly) were I to suggest taking seriously and on face value someone as extreme as, say, Pat Robertson. As far as Robertson swings to the right, I think Chomsky swings at least as far to the left - and perhaps further.

In fact, I know of no one MORE extreme than Chomsky, and I suggest being very careful in accepting anything he says.
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Old 01-19-2002, 05:26 AM   #10
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There's a book by Noam Chomsky called 'Deterring Democracy' which is available to read online. http://www.zmag.org/chomsky/dd/dd-contents.html

Also, if you look at www.zmag.org you'll find several articles written by Chomsky as well as many other excellent authors.

And bonofnattic, I just wanted to say that I think you have absolutely the right attitude in that you can be patriotic but you also recognise that America, especially in terms of American foreign policy, hasn't always acted "appropriately."
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Old 01-19-2002, 09:46 AM   #11
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i'm a little surprised more of our resident conservatives haven't offered their distaste for chomsky yet...

chomsky is a very interesting read. 'media control: the spectacular achievements of the human mind' and the aforementioned 'what uncle sam really wants' are the two most interesting of his works i have encountered.

he made a video in the early 90's that was more or less footage of him lecturing that was quite interesting. it was accompanied with a book called 'manufacturing consent'.

is the book you are referring to, bonofnattic, a book he has specifically written in response to the events of the year past?

bubba he is an extremist but he is widely respected throughout academia for the most part. obviously he has pissed off a lot of people but his work is definitely worth a read.
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Old 01-19-2002, 10:13 AM   #12
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Chomsky is not taken seriously by political scientists in American academia, because of his credentials (or lack thereof--by training he's a linguist, not a poli sci guy). This is unfortunate, because what he says deserves to be taken seriously and criticized. Whenever he's interviewed, it's usually by a yes-man.

For an example of criticism of Chomsky, take a look at

http://www.j-bradford-delong.net/Politics/chomsky.html Brad DeLong is an economist at Cal-Berkeley.

(And in case anyone is curious, I have read Chomsky's Deterring Democracy and 9/11.)

[This message has been edited by speedracer (edited 01-19-2002).]
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Old 01-19-2002, 11:36 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by Achtung Bubba:
There are partisans and there are extremists; conservatives have thier reactionaries, liberals have Noam Chomsky.

I be ridiculed (perhaps not unjustly) were I to suggest taking seriously and on face value someone as extreme as, say, Pat Robertson. As far as Robertson swings to the right, I think Chomsky swings at least as far to the left - and perhaps further.

In fact, I know of no one MORE extreme than Chomsky, and I suggest being very careful in accepting anything he says.

You don't know anything more extreme than Chomsky ? Mmmmm. Well, maybe it'll dissapoint you, but I know seriously more extremist than Chomsky and Chomsky is not a radical primitive communist (communism being the extreme of the left, if you don't count the anarcho-socialists-communists). Being a leftie guy (I hate those terms.. right/left), I know really more extreme than Chomsky and let me tell you... Chomsky is so gentle compared to others. And I'm not speaking of Che Guevara or Lenin. I'm speaking of ordinary people. And the fact is that they are "so" extremist, but what they say really stands up.

I'd like to believe that the USA represents the ultimate freedom and honesty, seriously don't get me wrong. But I can't. There is no clean country anyways in the world. But, I'll come with a quotation : "Let us be realistic : let us build the impossible". Serve your ideals, let not other people tell you what they should be.


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Old 01-19-2002, 01:19 PM   #14
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Chomsky is exceptionally bright and valuable in that he is willing to pull the rug out from under American complacency. But like any ideologue, liberal or conservative, he overdoses on rhetoric, argues out of context (by which I mean he ignores salient facts) and is a little too impressed with himself. It's ironic that a man who has spent so many years excoriating the American people for not "digging deeper" and finding the "real" truth tends towards such myopic points of view in his own writings.
For a brief time I was really enamored of Chomsky but after taking his advice and actually educating myself better I was crushed to learn that Chomsky was really just an ideological foil for extreme right wing Americans. He was no more inclined to examine issues objectively and in context than the Christian Coalition was.
Still I'm glad that he's still writing and lecturing. Reminding Americans of the ugly truths we don't want to acknowledge and challenging us to do something about them. Oh, and galling conservatives. It's fun baiting right- wingers with their most hated epithat: CHOMSKY! My niece has recently fallen in love with Chomsky and I'm pleased but I did give her one piece of advice: There are two types of fools, those who dismiss Chomsky out of hand and those who take his writings as gospel. They're both idiots.

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Old 01-19-2002, 01:35 PM   #15
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Noam Chomsky is one of my heroes. I look forward to reading this collection.
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