"Iran has a record of aggression. too. In the last several hundred years, it has invaded and conquered a couple of Arab islands. Now that was under the Shah, U.S.-imposed dictator with U.S. support. That’s actually the only case in several hundred years."
— Noam Chomsky (via noam-chomsky)
(Source: democracynow.org, via noam-chomsky)
"“Students who acquire large debts putting themselves through school are unlikely to think about changing society. When you trap people in a system of debt they can’t afford the time to think. Tuition fee increases are a “disciplinary technique,” and, by the time students graduate, they are not only loaded with debt, but have also internalized the “disciplinarian culture.”"
— Noam Chomsky (via hastea)
Private power doesn’t like public education, for many reasons. One is the principle on which it’s based, which is threatening to power. Public education is based on a principle of solidarity. So, for example, I had my children fifty years ago. Nevertheless, I feel and I’m supposed to feel that I should pay taxes so that the kids across the street can go to school. That’s counter to the doctrine that you should just look after yourself and let everyone else fall by the wayside, a basic principle of business rule. Public education is a threat to that belief system because it builds up a sense of solidarity, community, mutual support.
The same is true of Social Security. That’s one of the reasons that there is such a passionate attempt to destroy Social Security, even though there are no economic reasons to do so, none of any significance at least. But public education and Social Security are residues of a dangerous conception that we’re all in this together and we have to work together to create a better life and a better future. If you’re trying to maximize profit or maximize consumption, then working together is the wrong idea. It has to be beaten out of people’s heads.
Solidarity makes it hard to control people and prevents them from being passive objects of private power. So you have a propaganda system that overcomes any deviations from the principle of subjugation to power systems.
— Noam Chomsky. Power Systems: Conversations on Global Democratic Uprisings and the New Challenges to U.S. Empire. (via getweirdtonight)
"Along with democracy, markets are under attack. Even putting aside massive state intervention, increasing economic concentration and market control offers endless devices to evade and undermine market discipline, a long story that there is no time to go into here; to mention only one aspect, some 40 per cent of ‘world trade’ is intrafirm, over 50 per cent for the US and Japan. This is not ‘trade’ in any meaningful sense; rather, operations internal to corporations, centrally managed by a highly visible hand, with all sorts of mechanisms for undermining markets in the interest of profit and power."
— Power and Prospects - Noam Chomsky (via noam-chomsky)
"Well, law is a bit like a printing press—it’s kind of neutral, you can make it do anything. I mean, what lawyers are taught in law school is chicanery: how to convert words on paper into instruments of power. And depending where the power is, the law will mean different things."
— Noam Chomsky (via noam-chomsky)
(Source: en.wikiquote.org, via noam-chomsky)
"Few detect a problem when a well-known journalist writes in the New York Times: ‘As every schoolchild must know, a free press—which means a press free of government—is essential to a democratic system’ (David Shipler). In contrast, a press free of Murdoch or Berlusconi, or huge corporations, is not essential."
— Noam Chomsky - Powers and Prospects (via noam-chomsky)
They all say (I’m partly quoting), the general population is “ignorant and meddlesome outsiders.” We have to keep them out of the public arena because they are too stupid and if they get involved they will just make trouble. Their job is to be “spectators,” not “participants.”
They are allowed to vote every once in a while, pick out one of us smart guys. But then they are supposed to go home and do something else like watch football or whatever it may be. But the “ignorant and meddlesome outsiders” have to be observers not participants. The participants are what are called the “responsible men” and, of course, the writer is always one of them. You never ask the question, why am I a “responsible man” and somebody else is in jail? The answer is pretty obvious. It’s because you are obedient and subordinate to power and that other person may be independent, and so on. But you don’t ask, of course. So there are the smart guys who are supposed to run the show and the rest of them are supposed to be out, and we should not succumb to (I’m quoting from an academic article) “democratic dogmatisms about men being the best judges of their own interest.” They are not. They are terrible judges of their own interests so we have do it for them for their own benefit.
— Noam Chomsky, What Makes Mainstream Media Mainstream (via nec-plus-ultra)
"It also led to the rise of the public relations industry. It’s interesting to look at the thinking in the 1920s, when it got started. This was the period of Taylorism in industry, when workers were being trained to become robots, every motion controlled. It created highly efficient industry, with human beings turned into automata. The Bolsheviks were very impressed with it, too. They tried to duplicate it. In fact, they tried throughout the world.But the thought-control experts realized that you could not only have what was called on-job control but also off-job control. It’s their phrase. Control them off job by inducing a philosophy of futility, focusing people on the superficial things of life, like fashionable consumption, and basically get them out of our hair. Let the people who are supposed to run the show do it without any interference from the mass of the population, who have no business in the public arena. From that come enormous industries, ranging from advertising to universities, all committed very consciously to the conception that you must control attitudes and opinions because the people are just too dangerous."
— Noam Chomsky (via noam-chomsky)
(Source: chomsky.info, via noam-chomsky)
"Control of thought is more important for governments that are free and popular than for despotic and military states. The logic is straightforward: a despotic state can control its domestic enemies by force, but as the state loses this weapon, other devices are required to prevent the ignorant masses from interfering with public affairs, which are none of their business…the public are to be observers, not participants, consumers of ideology as well as products."
— lovely quote on democracy and coercion, from Chomsky’s Containing The Threat Of Democracy (via tipsforradicals)