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Noam Chomsky Has ‘Never Seen Anything Like This’

Posted on Apr 19, 2010
AP / Hussein Malla

By Chris Hedges

Noam Chomsky is America’s greatest intellectual. His massive body of work, which includes nearly 100 books, has for decades deflated and exposed the lies of the power elite and the myths they perpetrate. Chomsky has done this despite being blacklisted by the commercial media, turned into a pariah by the academy and, by his own admission, being a pedantic and at times slightly boring speaker. He combines moral autonomy with rigorous scholarship, a remarkable grasp of detail and a searing intellect. He curtly dismisses our two-party system as a mirage orchestrated by the corporate state, excoriates the liberal intelligentsia for being fops and courtiers and describes the drivel of the commercial media as a form of “brainwashing.” And as our nation’s most prescient critic of unregulated capitalism, globalization and the poison of empire, he enters his 81st year warning us that we have little time left to save our anemic democracy.

“It is very similar to late Weimar Germany,” Chomsky told me when I called him at his office in Cambridge, Mass. “The parallels are striking. There was also tremendous disillusionment with the parliamentary system. The most striking fact about Weimar was not that the Nazis managed to destroy the Social Democrats and the Communists but that the traditional parties, the Conservative and Liberal parties, were hated and disappeared. It left a vacuum which the Nazis very cleverly and intelligently managed to take over.”

“The United States is extremely lucky that no honest, charismatic figure has arisen,” Chomsky went on. “Every charismatic figure is such an obvious crook that he destroys himself, like McCarthy or Nixon or the evangelist preachers. If somebody comes along who is charismatic and honest this country is in real trouble because of the frustration, disillusionment, the justified anger and the absence of any coherent response. What are people supposed to think if someone says ‘I have got an answer, we have an enemy’? There it was the Jews. Here it will be the illegal immigrants and the blacks. We will be told that white males are a persecuted minority. We will be told we have to defend ourselves and the honor of the nation. Military force will be exalted. People will be beaten up. This could become an overwhelming force. And if it happens it will be more dangerous than Germany. The United States is the world power. Germany was powerful but had more powerful antagonists. I don’t think all this is very far away. If the polls are accurate it is not the Republicans but the right-wing Republicans, the crazed Republicans, who will sweep the next election.”

“I have never seen anything like this in my lifetime,” Chomsky added. “I am old enough to remember the 1930s. My whole family was unemployed. There were far more desperate conditions than today. But it was hopeful. People had hope. The CIO was organizing. No one wants to say it anymore but the Communist Party was the spearhead for labor and civil rights organizing. Even things like giving my unemployed seamstress aunt a week in the country. It was a life. There is nothing like that now. The mood of the country is frightening. The level of anger, frustration and hatred of institutions is not organized in a constructive way. It is going off into self-destructive fantasies.”

“I listen to talk radio,” Chomsky said. “I don’t want to hear Rush Limbaugh. I want to hear the people calling in. They are like [suicide pilot] Joe Stack. What is happening to me? I have done all the right things. I am a God-fearing Christian. I work hard for my family. I have a gun. I believe in the values of the country and my life is collapsing.”

Chomsky has, more than any other American intellectual, charted the downward spiral of the American political and economic system, in works such as “On Power and Ideology: The Managua Lectures,” “Rethinking Camelot: JFK, the Vietnam War, and US Political Culture,” “A New Generation Draws the Line: Kosovo, East Timor and the Standards of the West,” “Understanding Power: The Indispensable Chomsky,” “Manufacturing Consent” and “Letters From Lexington: Reflections on Propaganda.” He reminds us that genuine intellectual inquiry is always subversive. It challenges cultural and political assumptions. It critiques structures. It is relentlessly self-critical. It implodes the self-indulgent myths and stereotypes we use to elevate ourselves and ignore our complicity in acts of violence and oppression. And it makes the powerful, as well as their liberal apologists, deeply uncomfortable.

Chomsky reserves his fiercest venom for the liberal elite in the press, the universities and the political system who serve as a smoke screen for the cruelty of unchecked capitalism and imperial war. He exposes their moral and intellectual posturing as a fraud. And this is why Chomsky is hated, and perhaps feared, more among liberal elites than among the right wing he also excoriates. When Christopher Hitchens decided to become a windup doll for the Bush administration after the attacks of 9/11, one of the first things he did was write a vicious article attacking Chomsky. Hitchens, unlike most of those he served, knew which intellectual in America mattered. [Editor’s note: To see some of the articles in the 2001 exchanges between Hitchens and Chomsky, click here, here, here and here.]

“I don’t bother writing about Fox News,” Chomsky said. “It is too easy. What I talk about are the liberal intellectuals, the ones who portray themselves and perceive themselves as challenging power, as courageous, as standing up for truth and justice. They are basically the guardians of the faith. They set the limits. They tell us how far we can go. They say, ‘Look how courageous I am.’ But do not go one millimeter beyond that. At least for the educated sectors, they are the most dangerous in supporting power.”


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By elisalouisa, April 22, 2010 at 1:46 pm Link to this comment

Nemesis, there is no way we can put away our past for it is embossed in our souls. As to Gandhi, please see below.
Auf Wiedersehen
Part I
‘Africa and Gandhi’s Expanding Humanism’ from ‘Race and History’ News &
Views - Posted by Anil Nauriya
The generations in England, India and South Africa which were witness to Gandhi’s struggles by and large understood the complexities of the circumstances under which he lived and worked in the three countries.
To have such a “feel” for the times is what may be called a sense of history. It is part of the essential equipment of a historian who would understand the period. That is why it is unfortunate that there should be a controversy over Gandhi’s statue in South Africa in October 2003. The controversy is based primarily on Gandhi’s earlier somewhat dismissive and casual remarks which
could be considered derogatory towards a section of the local people, regardless of what Gandhi’s intention may have been. However such remarks were, with extended experience, not made after 1908. There was a definite widening in Gandhi’s outlook and growth in his understanding. It is that widening that is implicitly celebrated when Gandhi is celebrated.
The second aspect of the controversy relates to the criticism that Gandhi did not draw in Blacks into his movements in South Africa.
The laws governing Blacks and Indians in South Africa were different. The provocations for protest were therefore often different. Nevertheless, Gandhi
had given thought to the question of mixing the African struggle with the Indian. At the time he considered the matter – in the infant years of the 20th Century—, the issue was not as though the Africans had started a struggleand Indians had to decide whether to join them The position was the reverse.
Indians in South Africa had started a struggle and had to decide whether to involve Africans in their travails. Gandhi decided against doing so not out of a lack of sympathy for the Africans but precisely because of his concern for them. Indians had another country – India – to fall back to. Africans did not.
The consequences of the struggle could be different for Africans and Indians.
As the one leading the struggle, he had to consider these. If the former came into the struggle and violence was resorted to there might be repression of which the Africans could have to bear the brunt. We saw later what happened in
South Africa in roughly the second half of the twentieth century once the organised African struggle began. That experience appears to have vindicated Gandhi’s early decision.
In 1936 Gandhi was asked by an American Black delegation: “Did the South
African Negro take any part in your movement?” Gandhi replied: “No, I purposely did not invite them. It would have endangered their cause.” (CWMG, Volume 62, p.199). ?He told the Press on July 8, 1939: “Bantus can only damage
and complicate their cause by mixing it up with the Indian” (CWMG, Vol 69, p.
408). He advised against a non-European front. ?However he added in the same
article that his advice “should not deter the Indians from forming a non-
European front if they are sure thereby of winning their freedom.” ?He was in
touch with Dr Yusuf Dadoo and Dr Naicker who sought in the 1940s to build a
joint struggle of Indians, Africans the coloured and the liberal-minded whites.
This was with Gandhi’s support. With the changed situation in South Africa,
Gandhi did not oppose a joint struggle. However he did maintain that it ought
to be non-violent. (See E S Reddy, Gandhiji’s Vision of a Free South Africa,
Sanchar Publishing House, New Delhi, 1995, pp 55-61).

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By Shingo, April 22, 2010 at 12:34 pm Link to this comment

“Some special people will never forgive Noam for his statement reported in
several publications and excerpted below:”

Who cares? Hitchens was even more condemning of Wiesel.

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By cann4ing, April 22, 2010 at 12:14 pm Link to this comment

I’m surprised that you would disparage my respectful comment as a “rant.”  But then perhaps you’ve remained for too long mired in the TD format of personal attack amongst those who comment on these threads, which is why I long ago stepped away from the comment section of this site. 

In pointing to Cuba, etc., I believe you have confused authoritarian political systems with the essence of an economy based on socialist principles, which, at their core, can be found in democratic principles and in a value system that elevates the needs of community over the selfish and destructive path (both economic and ecological) of a corporate security state which, in many respects, has taken on the trappings of a feudal order of 21st century billionaire masters and serfs.

“Direct” democracy may have ended with ancient Greece, but “representative democracy” aka a republic, very much form the essence of our own constitutional system, which has been distorted by the increasing gap between rich and poor brought on by unrestrained capitalist greed.

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By pygmy, April 22, 2010 at 11:25 am Link to this comment

Too bad Chomsky is a coward on 9/11.  He said if a peer reviewed
journal publishds an article on demolition of the towers he would
consider it.  Well there have been articles published, and 1000
architects and engineers are now questioning how the towers fell.
Funny? Weird? Not an economic analysis? It is widely understood
that the Reichstag fire that started the persecution of communists
in Germany was hoaxed, as were the “border raids” by Poles that
precipitated public support for war with Poland.  If Chomsky can
see that far…

The great I.F. Stone said the Warren Commision of the Kennedy
assassination was good enough for him before he even read it!

They aren’t just after poor folk!  they want it all!

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By nemesis2010, April 22, 2010 at 11:22 am Link to this comment

@ Tony Wicher:

9/11 isn’t a myth; we have overwhelming evidence that it did happen.

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By nemesis2010, April 22, 2010 at 11:20 am Link to this comment

@ Inherit The Wind:

I’ll tell you what is sickening; it’s your tawdry peevishness, narcissism, and penchant for labeling others then running off to hide when challenged to produce evidence of your mostly erroneous and baboonish claims.

I haven’t attacked anyone. If you can prove anything I said to be in error then produce the evidence. You are the one that attacks—usually other commenters—especially if they’ve anything but a glowing opinion of the Jews.

Power looks at people like you and laughs contemptuously. And while you believe this makes you some kind of messiah or martyr to be idolized by the people, Power keeps you prostrate at its feet. There is no such thing as a nonviolent movement that wins anything worthwhile from Power. Violence always erupts; it’s the way Homo sapiens are wired. Your not accepting the truth does not negate it.

Where’s the evidence of the 20% unemployment rate in the U.S.? Is it not true that South Africa’s unemployment rate has seen improvement from the construction due to the World Cup? Has it not been around 30% before all that construction? Why don’t you tell the people of the great employment opportunities for women in South Africa? Is it not true that it is mostly domestic work or prostitution?

How are the race relations going these days ITW? Does the name Eugene Terre’Blanche mean anything to you?

Why would Winnie Mandela say: “Economically, we are still on the outside. The economy is very much ‘white.’ It has a few token blacks, but so many who gave their life in the struggle have died unrewarded.”? Gave their lives in the struggle? I thought the Mandela movement was all about “nonviolence”? Unrewarded? So even with people of color in control there is economic inequality? Could it be that skin color and race have nothing to do with oppression by Power and that it’s more about the evolutionary make up of Homo sapiens?

Why do you not have the courage to answer the question to whom does South Africa belong; the blacks, the Afrikaners, or both? Could it be that you fear your answer will expose your hypocrisy with regards to your position on the rogue state of Israel?

Tell us all about the violent actions that have dispossessed Palestinians from their lands since 1948. You sanction many of those actions; doesn’t that make you a hypocrite, a racist, a condoner of violence when it suits your purpose, and complicit?

Hitler never fired a single round that we know of in WWII; but he damn sure was guilty of genocide, wasn’t he?

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By nemesis2010, April 22, 2010 at 11:09 am Link to this comment

@ elisalouisa:

”Gandhi carried no weapons and did not encourage violence. One would conclude from your post Nemesis that India had no poverty under British rule.  People want home rule Nemesis. That’s the bottom line. As to the bloodiest conflict of the 21st century, excuse me but aren’t we in the 21st century now?”

21st is a typo and should have been 20th. If you can manage to read with your mental faculties instead of your emotions you’ll see that I clearly wrote: ” …was, arguably, one of the bloodiest and most violent conflicts of the…” What you seem to have totally ignored is that the bloodiest part of all that mess came when it was primarily people of color fighting people of color (your description) for control of power. It’s still a mess there today! Those facts do not make me anti-home rule; as a matter of fact the conditions and treatment of the lower castes simply provide me with more evidence about our species.

To conclude from my post that India had no poverty under British rule, one would not only be jumping to bizarro world conclusions, reading with emotions instead of reason, but also is probably more than a little unstable.

”We believe as much in the purity of race as we think they do, only we believe that they would best serve these interests, which are as dear to us as to them, by advocating the purity of all races, and not one alone. We believe also that the white race of South Africa should be the predominating race.” –M. Gandhi  

If you were hoping to rattle me with the article on Hitchens, you’ve really wasted the effort. I don’t idolize any man –unlike many here. You have to come to terms with the fact that no man is perfect; not even your precious Gandhi. Hitchens also imbibes much, did you know that? Do you really believe that Hitchens would get favorable press from Christians? Hedges giving Hitchens’ book an unfavorable review does not prove what he said wrong. I’m in disagreement with Hedges on that matter (his opinion of the book and Hitchens) and think it’s way beyond time for humanity to leave behind its infantile beginnings and move into the 21st century unencumbered by its mythological past.

Just do a search on “the Gandhi myth” and start reading. If you aren’t interested in the truth it’s your problem not mine.

” The degree of one’s emotion varies inversely with one’s knowledge of the facts—the less you know the hotter you get.”—Bertrand Russell


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By Leefeller, April 22, 2010 at 10:48 am Link to this comment

Cann4ing, rant reply, set in sand!

Real democracy died with the Ancient Greeks. Our so called representative (using representative loosely here) Republic seems inequitable to me, I was not addressing what you seem to think I was addressing?

For what it is worth,  I would like to see a return of the Albatross necktie for corporations, but with the recent Surprise Court ruling this will not likely happen.  One may find the game of Monopoly, a perfect indicator of reality.  From what I understand the Japanese work environment of limiting corporate CEO’s pay by a percent of lowest paid worker on the payroll seems most moral, but not reality with good old American opportunists seeking power. 

Full bore Socialism, is not for me, maybe someone can make a good argument why it should be, sounds like a large commune?

My brother wants to open a business which may make him wealthy, but probably as what usually happens he will loose his ass like most small businesses.  What of socialism,  what of capital if it is not used for business?  My stereotype of Socialism is one of a bureaucracy exceeding what we endure now? I believe in social programs, just not Socialism unleashed! My experience has been our country has an exceedingly large number of half wits and morons making it impossible for anything social to work worth a damn.

Capitalism for the wealthy could include having them paying taxes until it hurts. Capital could be used for social projects to make life better for everyone…....... I would go for that!  (not stupid wars)

Socialism like Capitalism probably works in the beginning.  But then the power posturing begins,  the bickering gets going and Socialist Pork barrels get rolling and of course the pay offs,  then the ever present cronies and whatever else those in power can glean as opportunists and lovers of power.  Looking forward to Socialist deciding what I should or should not be allowed to do, think or express, so here I am back were I started, maybe even worse? 

Just doubt unleashed Socialism would work, call me the skeptic.

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By gerard, April 22, 2010 at 10:40 am Link to this comment

Sounds like we all need to cut each other some slack at this point.  Capitalism? Socialism? Communism? Conservatism? Liberalism? Radicalism?
  We tend to forget that they are all words that attempt to define ideas and to express in some limited way what we “think” or “mean.”  We forget the limitations of words, especially when we try to defend “our” ideas against “others’” ideas.
  All too soon the battlefield lies strewn with bleeding body-parts, confusion rules, and we try to find our way “home” again. 
  In this way humans become both pathetic and more than a little crazed—more interested in “winning” an argument than in seeking the “truth” wherever it is—or was, or might be.
  “—ism” words tend to be more illusory than words like “table” or “chair” and so tend to contain emotional overtones.  For that reason they are more radically able to divide people or to bring them together.
  We all know these things about words, yet they are our main tools for trying to “understand” each other—inefficient as they are.  The only thing that will save us from madness is to remember that we are all a bit crazed by words from the age of (let’s say) ten or twelve, and that words are therefore as dangerous as they are helpful. Words cannot clarify themselves.
  They can only be clarifed by us, as we use them, all the while cutting each other the slack of generosity and remembering that reality is unified and words are a (mostly vain) attempt to pull reality apart. As new ideas are formed, new realities will appear.  Words formerly thought to be mutually exclusive will merge in new, more inclusive images, aspirations and actions. And, if we are really lucky, some fresh concepts will sprout in the mind of some far-seeing Chomsky or other now still in his/her teens.
  That is, if we don’t kill him/her off by mistake!

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By omop, April 22, 2010 at 10:04 am Link to this comment

Some special people will never forgive Noam for his statement reported in
several publications and excerpted below:

        Wiesel is simply “a terrible fraud.” 

    —Noam Chomsky

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By amunaor, April 22, 2010 at 9:31 am Link to this comment

((RE: cann4ing, April 22 at 1:52 pm >>
…real democracy is not possible without some level of economic equality entailed in democratic socialism in which the needs of the many outweigh the greed of the few.))


((21st Century capitalism is a prescription for a totalitarian society.))

Again, precisely!

And, the totalitarian society you speak of is that of the neo-Capitalist model; born and bred in the U.S. of A, but built in China. How long before it tires of its non paying debtors before in brings in the tow-truck?

Peace, Best Wishes and Hope

WikiLeaks—Collateral Murder:

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By cann4ing, April 22, 2010 at 8:52 am Link to this comment

I think one point you thoroughly miss, Leefeller, is that real democracy is not possible without some level of economic equality entailed in democratic socialism in which the needs of the many outweigh the greed of the few.

Anyone who extols capitalism as a virtue is ignoring the reality of corporate tyranny made possible by a vast level of economic disparity.

As Kevin Phillips observed in “Wealth & Democracy,” by 1999 the net worth of just three individuals, Bill Gates, Paul Allen and Warren Buffett, exceeded “the combined GDP of the world’s 41 poorest nations and their 550 million people.”

Exxon-Mobil’s 2005 year-ending profit exceeded $36 billion—a sum larger than the economies of 135 countries.  Exxon-Mobil’s 2007 year-ending profit swelled to $40.6 billion. 

Phillips, quoting Samuel Huntington, observed:

“’Money becomes evil not when it is used to buy goods but when it is used to buy power….economic inequalities become evil when they are translated into political inequalities.’  Political inequalities, in turn, lead to more dangerous economic inequalities.”

Real democracy becomes impossible within a state in which 95% of what people see, hear and read is under the control of a handful of giant media conglomerates.

I am truly surprised, Leefeller, that you would buy into the myth that so-called “free markets” make us free; that you would fall for the ideological mantra to the effect that government, especially government programs that would place the interests of public health, safety and equality above the profits and power of those who already have too much of both, threatens our liberties.

As Chomsky observed in “Failed States,” the political counterpart to a corporation is a totalitarian state.  21st Century capitalism is a prescription for a totalitarian society.

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By bogi666, April 22, 2010 at 8:49 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

omop, hoot, hoot, hoot, hoot!

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By Tennessee-Socialist, April 22, 2010 at 8:45 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie: My comrade, my brother, we socialists should be united and should wage a cyber-guerilla war of socialist information against the pro-capitalism people in the internet, who still think that capitalism is good and socialism is evil.  Oh by the way go to my blogger:

We will destroy the capitalist system for ever and ever !! 



AMEN !!!


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By omop, April 22, 2010 at 8:03 am Link to this comment

Who really, really gives a hoot as to who is America’s.“greatest intellectual”
when all those barefooted and cave dwelling Jihadists are killing American
soldiers in Aghanistan at the rate of 24/26 a day….oops thats US drones that
are actually doing the killings of afghan men, women and children.

In the words of Alfred E. Newman, “what me worry” not when Dr.Kass is in
charge. Born, raised, and educated in Israel.  She has a PhD in Russian studies
and is fluent in Russian and Hebrew in addition to English. Lina Kass reportedly
reached the rank of major in the Israeli air force before moving to the United
States and working her way up through the US defense establishment.  She holds both US and Israeli citizenship and is still a major in the IDF. She currently the most senior civilian adviser to Air Force Chief of Staff Norton Schwartz.

Under the leadership of Dr. Kass we all can rest easy that America is indeed in
good hands and will over come what Mr. Chomsky “has never seen before

By the way Dr. Kass is on record as stating that “We can beat the living daylights as well as mullags out of Iran but is America willing to pay the price?”

A portrait of Dr. Kass @

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By Anarcissie, April 22, 2010 at 7:38 am Link to this comment

’... Socialism, offers a good example of what? Cuba, China, Russia, countries in South America?  Even a benevolent Castro offers little I want….’

The problem is that we live in a highly social industrial system and if we do not control our means of production (the socialist model) then someone else will (the capitalist or fascist models) and the controllers are likely to do so in ways contrary to our interests or desires.

It is difficult to discuss this problem because the essential idea of socialism, autonomy, has been almost completely obscured by propaganda, not only by the big, bad capitalist media, but by pretend-socialists as well.  Even in such an enlightened realm as Truthdig, the majority cheerfully play along.  People who want to have control or at least some influence over their labor are regarded as cranks or even libertarians.

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By cann4ing, April 22, 2010 at 7:26 am Link to this comment

Why all the debate on who is or who is not America’s “greatest intellectual?”  It reminds me of a bunch of college students holding up their index finger and shouting, “We’re number one!”

The importance of a Noam Chomsky, or a Norman Finkelstein, or a host of others, is to be found in the body of their academic work and in the manner in which it helps to expose the harsh reality of our increasingly authoritarian, greed-driven, society, especially as it relates to the impact of class and racial disparity.

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By Leefeller, April 22, 2010 at 7:17 am Link to this comment

Searching for a cause must be worse than having one?

All the causes floating around seem to be against something created to generate causes.  What seems to me, is causes are there as smoke and mirrors to take focus off the real problems or issues of the nation. We have the bale out, the war, a unworthy nationalized medical plan, and always opportunists chipping away at Social Security, and Medicare, for their is money in those there pots.

For instance, the Tea Baggers seem bankrolled to make flack, (in my estimation) and just to make flack. Steer that pot, otherwise it will boil over!  Steering sponsored by your neighborhood Plutocracy. Always some made up crap for morons with pitch forks to vent their frustrations on. The sky is falling, the gays are coming, the Mexicans are taking over, and what about that White House? Not even an American nor a white one at that! It goes on!

What affects my life is what matters to me, I shouldn’t have to care what women have the right to do with their bodies. If Gay people are people too as for the Mexicans if they are illegal or not! Do I care if the Pope is making the world safe for Pedophiles? I support some ideas and things, but they are not causes for me. It seems many things bother me and I may disagree with even more than those that bother me!  But do they affect my life? Causes to me seem to be for those feeling disenfranchised or feeling sorry for their own failures and disillusioned to believe things will change and of course some people need a cause to feel self worth. 

For those out their who need a cause, go find one, just don’t expect me to believe in it because you do!
Power and opportunism are the end road of causes with, basically the same crony crap that started the cause in the first place.

Socialism, offers a good example of what? Cuba, China, Russia, countries in South America?  Even a benevolent Castro offers little I want, and I am not crazy of having either a capitalist or socialist pontiff anyway. We had what seemed a close taste to one for eight years with Bush, so what did that do for me?

Feeling Disenfranchised bunky, find a cause any cause will do!

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By elisalouisa, April 22, 2010 at 5:34 am Link to this comment

Tennessee-Socialist: In the natural scheme of things people shall always differ. The human element makes it such that any organization will lead to disappointment when hopes are high. Carefully check out any group you may wish to join and also check out the countries they are linked to. Advance knowledge may go a long way toward making your journey a success for you personally and for the organization you are part of. It’s not good enough to just bring food and medical services although it’s a start. One must provide the tools to help a country have an economy that works. This has not been the intent of our country as to South America. We have made certain that our puppets are dictators and if leaders do not cooperate with our way of doing
things we use every trick in the book to get those leaders out. That is really what is behind all the attacks on Chavez.  But of course, I am sure you know that. Good luck in your quest.

Added Note: I would also suggest that you watch
“Special: Apology of an Economic Hitman” on LINK TV if it is aired again.
A brief description of this program:

Poverty, War / Violent Conflict In this Link TV special presentation of the documentary Apology of an Economic Hitman, we learn about a kind of government persuasion that
doesn’t involve the CIA. Author John Perkins is an economic hitman, whose job it is to get new foreign leaders to yield to U.S. interests—using debt as a weapon.??In front of an angry audience somewhere in Latin America, Perkins describes his personal journey: he is an American who decided to tell the truth, regardless of the risks for his family and his life. He worked for a secret network that used loans from the World Bank, payoffs, extortion, sex, military coups and political assassinations to create the American empire.??But an
unexpected crowd storms the theater demanding answers about the country’s suffering. Among the people gathered is the daughter of an assassinated president. Perkins doesn’t know if he will be accepted or lynched…??Based on rare propaganda material, film-noir-style reconstructed sequences and the exclusive filmed confessions of best-selling writer John Perkins, this documentary sheds new light on the international economic and political
influences in recent American history, from the Second World War to Latin America, to the invasion and looting of Iraq.
Joining this special presentation with commentary on the film is investigative
journalist and New York Times best-selling author Greg Palast.

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By ofersince72, April 22, 2010 at 5:24 am Link to this comment

Hey Chomsky, me neither !!!! never!

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By Shingo, April 22, 2010 at 5:20 am Link to this comment


That TV station supported the failed coup against Chavez in 2002.  The same thing would happen here.


Wow, the currency in Venezuela is being reduced for the firwt time since 2005.  I wish we had that luxuty.  Our’s has been taking since 2007.

“I’m sure the Western European Democracies would be surprised to learn they are “Socialist”.”

Not at all.  They stand behind it and are happy with it.  All provide comprehensive and free health care to their popualation, in addition to very generous welfare benefits.  It’s practiclaly impossible to fire employees in France, Germany and Italy.

“I’m amazed: You don’t remember Yeltsin standing on a tank?  Alzheimer’s set in early didn’t it?”

Oh yes, how can anyone forget?  Those great free market reforms that he brought Russia, sending the country to it’s knees in the 90’s, much like the prescrition we gave to Chile, Brazil, Argentina, Ecuador etc. 

Weren’t they all success stories? I;‘m sure they really appreciated ur recipe for success.  Now China is doing business with Venezuela, and Russia with Brazil and none of those states want to be seen in the same room with the great bastion of capitalism.

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By Inherit The Wind, April 22, 2010 at 4:57 am Link to this comment

I can find all the links you want.  Here are just two.

I’m sure the Western European Democracies would be surprised to learn they are “Socialist”.  Even the teeny-tiny Scandinavian nations are capitalist, just with large Government welfare systems.  Of course New York City is 60% bigger than ANY of the Scandinavian nations—it has 8 million and they each have no more than 5 million.

Naturally, you are proposing expanding it 60 times to a nation of 300 million.  That’s sure to work.

I’m amazed: You don’t remember Yeltsin standing on a tank?  Alzheimer’s set in early didn’t it?

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By Shingo, April 22, 2010 at 4:52 am Link to this comment

“People were imprisoned because they were thought to be
murderous terrorists, and The American People were grateful.”

Get a grip Shen. Bush created policies that allowed him to grab anyone he wanted off the street and delare them a terrorist.  No evidenc needed.  No trial.  No rights to a loweyer.

The American people, the most ignroant in the Western world, lapped up what the government told them, evben tough the government was lying.  The American people were also grateful that they were being protected from Iraq’s WMD’s until it turned out there weren’t any.

And now, it’s been revealed the same BS applied to the war on terror.

Bush ‘knew Gitmo prisoners innocent’

It was a publicity stunt and what’s worse, is that Obama has contiuned those same policies.

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By Shingo, April 22, 2010 at 4:45 am Link to this comment

‘”In Venezuela, despite the propaganda, Chavez has been”

1) Destroying liberty
Evidence?  Of course, Liberty has been just so overwhelming here hasn’t it?

2) arresting the opposition
Evidence? Name one.

3) Trying to arrange to be “President-For-Life” (that means “Dictator” in plain English).
False.  He conducted a referendum.  He lost.  He accepted the outcome.

4) Totally corrupt
And what do you call Congress?

5) Favoring family members
Yeah, I’m sure Bush and Cheney didn’t give their family any backhanders.  Liz Cheney’s seat on the board of Lockheed was just one happy coincidence right?  And no bid contracts to Bush cronies?

6) Totally DESTROYED the Venezuelan economy
Destroyed? Really?  How so? The last time I checked, Venezuela owned no one a dime and was lending money to it’s neighbours. The last time I checked, the US was so paranoid about this guy’s popularity and influence that they arming Colombia and still have military bases dotted throughout the region.

Venezuela’s economy grew by 10.3 percent in 2006 and about 8.4 percent in 2007.  It has fallen in 2008 because of recession,  so what?

How well was Venezuela’s economy doing before Chavez came to power? And how well has ours been doing this last decade?

Dude, do you ever take a look in the mirror?

7) Has rampant unemployment DESPITE oil revenues.

False:  Oil revenues are down because oil prices have fallen dramatically.

“On the other hand, please explain how our system has NOT survived, albeit bloody and scarred.”

What socialist system has not survived?  Maybe I missed Europe and Sweden tanking. 

“ We haven’t had a violent revolution.”

Neither did the USSR, but it ended.  In any case, we’re nto out fo the woods by any stretch.

“During the WORST of the financial crisis we had a peaceful election and a peaceful transfer of power.”

Do you seriously believe the worst of the crisis is behind us?  Our government has such trillions into stipulating the economy and bank bailout and it hasn’t make a scratch on unemployment.

When Timothy Geitner gave a speech to University students in China proclaiming the strength of the US economy, they laughed at him.

The US has become a laughing stock. The United States government is effectively bankrupt. We haven’t even come to terms with how we are going to pay for Social Security with the baby boomers retiring (if they can even afford to).

This countries current net liabilities exceed Americans’ net worth.  Yet the debt-to-GDP ratio continues to rise and could eventually hit World War II levels. Net interest is expected to more than quadruple to $840 billion annually by 2020 and worst fo all, our daollr is in freefall, so that number will spiral upwards.

Just think about that and the impications.  We owe more money that we can possily make. Dude, the bovine excrement is going to hit the fan so hard, your fillings are going to fall out.

“ I’m trying to figure out how Shingo imagines we have NOT survived.”

I’m trying to figure out what socialist system hasn’t.

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By Anarcissie, April 22, 2010 at 4:35 am Link to this comment

Shenonymous, April 22 at 2:13 am:
<i>’”What the heck is happening to this website, why are so many
deffenders of capitalism in this site.“  Yayyyy!  That is a first.  Could
it be that capitalism is the right course and socialism is the real evil?
Yup. 5 Yups.’

I trust you are aware that capitalism does entail certain intrinsic structural problems, like the class system and the strategies necessary to maintain it?  It seems a little complicated for yups.

As for socialism, “the ownership or control of the means of production by the workers,” I can’t see it as a “real evil”.  Millions of people own and control their means of production without any special ill effect.

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By Shenonymous, April 22, 2010 at 3:58 am Link to this comment

re you being oppressed Shingo?  In what way are you being oppressed? 
Free speech?  The teabagger can say any ugly thing they want and get
away with it.  Who’s speech is being stifled, exactly what speech has
been stifled?  Times do change, but are you being imprisoned
because you are a terrorist bent on murdering Americans?  Isn’t your
outrage because you vehemently disagree with the policies of this
nation state?  People were imprisoned because they were thought to be
murderous terrorists, and The American People were grateful.  But of
course sympathizers would not be grateful. It is trying times and not
much experience on what to do with people whose only intent is to
murder Americans by the score.  Go ahead, sympathize with them. 
Speak what you want unless you break the law:  Hate speech and
sedition and obscenity is forbidden by the law.  Anything that presents
a clear and present danger is against the law.  Defamation of character
is against the law.  And if you want to rescind that law, try to do it in
the courts.  The law is tested every day unlike many other countries
where violators would be executed summarily.

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By ofersince72, April 22, 2010 at 2:44 am Link to this comment

Truth Diggers

Please go watch the video that TD just posted
of Cris Hedges, Poverty in America….

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By Inherit The Wind, April 22, 2010 at 2:39 am Link to this comment

So…Socialism is “working” in South America?

I sure hope it never starts “working” like that here!

In Honduras, there was a coup—and folks here are defending that as “liberty”—taking away Hondurans right to vote.

In Venezuela, despite the propaganda, Chavez has been
1) Destroying liberty,
2) arresting the opposition
3) Trying to arrange to be “President-For-Life” (that means “Dictator” in plain English).
4) Totally corrupt
5) Favoring family menbers
6) Totally DESTROYED the Venezuelan economy
7) Has rampant unemployment DESPITE oil revenues.
8) Fooled imbecilic “Norte Americanos” by illiciting sympathy due to the sick assertions of a crazy “Christian” fanatical fundamentalist.

So…please explain what “working” means, other than saying “Yanqui go home”?

On the other hand, please explain how our system has NOT survived, albeit bloody and scarred.  We haven’t had a violent revolution. Our government hasn’t collapsed.  During the WORST of the financial crisis we had a peaceful election and a peaceful transfer of power.

I’m not saying we thrived. I’m saying we survived and since we aren’t living under “Skynet”, in “2012” or “The Day After Tomorrow” or “I am Legend”, nor have we seen what the USSR saw (dissolution), I’m trying to figure out how Shingo imagines we have NOT survived.

Must be that “Newspeak” stuff Orwell feared. Similar to Carrol’s Jabberwocky.

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By ofersince72, April 22, 2010 at 2:04 am Link to this comment

Hey Tennesee,

Good Luck !!!!  I believe that is a smart thing to do
if you are able.

  If you run into Hugo, Evo, or Daniel,  tell them
this ole hippie wishes them the best of luck and to duck
those CIA bullets.

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By JDmysticDJ, April 22, 2010 at 1:26 am Link to this comment

It strikes me as odd that Hedges quotes Chomsky as saying he fears today’s political realities are similar to the political realities experienced by the Weimar Republic, and then commences to contribute to the kind of confusion that characterized the Weimar Republic.

I’ll suggest that to get an understanding of the Weimar government one only needs to imagine the people on this thread trying to come together to form a functioning government.

The Weimar government is worthy of condemnation because the Weimar government failed to prevent the rise of the worst form of fascism.

This thread includes the comment,


“Saying it even once makes one an intellectual, especially if one pronounces it anywhere near correctly.

In fact, I’d say it is the ‘acid test’ for intellectual status.”

The “Electric Kool-Aid ‘Acid Test’” was interesting, and psychic in nature, but it lacked real profundity, and in reality, it only induced chaos, and pseudo intellectual mysticism, much like the art of Brecht, and the expounding of the German philosophers. Personally, I prefer the work of Frank Capra, and others of that era who expressed a qualified optimism. That optimism actually proved to be prescient for a time, but unfortunately, I have to agree with Chomsky when he says we may be experiencing our own version of a Weimar like collapse. Of course there are differences, the Weimar Republic was not engaged in squandering its resources on a quest for global hegemony, (That quest for global hegemony would come later,) but the similarities are many. The one characteristic that stands out, and is most obvious to me, is moral decadence.

I’d like to believe there is hope, but that would require an immense amount of audacity. Can we succeed where, the Weimar Republic failed? Believing so seems to be audacious in the extreme, at the present time.

Social democracy, as espoused by our hypocritical founding fathers, seems to me to be the only way out of our current malaise. The old saying, “Do like I (We) say and not like I (We) do” seems to apply to the teachings of our founding fathers.

Simply stated, the goals of classical liberalism (i.e. democracy, social justice, true egalitarianism, religious freedom,  protecting the rights of minorities, people’s populism,) in conjunction with societal moral turpitude, strikes me as being the only way to fulfill the dream. Fulfilling the dream will require “progressively” pursuing the dream. It’s been a work in progress, but that progress has been in decline for some time now.

Noam Chomsky has been the chronicler of that decline. Hedges states definitively that, “Noam Chomsky is Americas greatest intellectual,” The truth of that statement is arguable, but Noam Chomsky is a Pulitzer prize winning author in the field of linguistics, which is an intellectual pursuit, and he is the author of 100 books, enumerable essays and criticisms. I value him as a social commentator who has functioned as the intellectual conscience of America.

It’s true that Chomsky has not offered any solutions, (Although I did hear him once offer a half-hearted endorsement of anarcho-syndicalism, which he quickly disavowed as being unworkable,) but his lack of solutions does not diminish from his role as intellectual conscience. Hopefully he won’t be remembered by history as another one of the great minds whose teachings were unheeded by a society mindlessly following a course of self destruction.

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By Dr. O. P. Sudrania, April 22, 2010 at 12:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Capitalism or communism, fascism or nazism, pelfism or pauperism, humanism or animalism, autism or altruism, pain or pleasure complex, and as many more you can discover to express exaltingly; there can not be a substitute for “Love”. Hate can not be ground for any amount of intellectual exercise. Study of human behavior is easy if we want to understand it. That is, “Shun hate and accept Love”. This is the only royal road to “Peace, Brotherhood, Coexistence, lasting survival” of everything. Ego for domineering behaviour brings all its antecedent evils of doom and destruction.

Religion is another entity today, being (mis)used to advance the vested self interests.

All these need a critical appraisal. Late President Abraham Lincoln so aptly said, “I can not be a Slave, so I can not be a Master”. More than a century
has passed but who cares including the current US President Obama, who still says in terms of a world military superpower, you like it or not.

The words, has to be matched with the actions. But what we are doing is “we think one thing, talk another and our actions are totally different”. We think that all others are fools. I am the only one smart.

This is, at best a self deception, good for destruction and annihilation only.

Think, think and think, what you are upto?
Dr. O. P. Sudrania

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By mcthorogood, April 21, 2010 at 10:14 pm Link to this comment

@Tennessee Socialist
I was raised in the north and have been in TN for 6 years now.  Frankly, I was surprised that any Socialist could survive in bible-thumping-redneck country.  You must be a closet-socialist.

I sense that a majority of TD’ers are humanists with a deep concern for “truth and justice”, rather than “power and privilege”.  I visited your site and quite frankly was repulsed, although I do support what Chavez has done in Venezuela and Mel Zelaya in Honduras.

I refuse to allow any person to assign a label to my beliefs.  I didn’t support what Dubya did on his watch, and I certainly don’t support much of what Obama is doing now. I supported Ron Paul’s Tea Party, but no longer support the astroturf Tea Baggers.

After re-educating myself, I feel that the two most important issues are the lame fourth-estate, and public funded elections.  Not much can be done to reduce the corporate and government (CIA) influence of the press, but if enough citizens could remove the influence of money in the election process, perhaps, one day everyone’s voice can be heard in the halls of Congress.

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By prgill, April 21, 2010 at 10:09 pm Link to this comment

Tea baggers are like schooling fish. Where there is safety in numbers, to ensure one’s survival it is statistically sufficient to simply maintain awareness of one’s immediate surroundings.

Schooling behaviour is itself “neo-post-modern”...

Do the sheer number of comments posted to sites like TruthDig or HuffPost reflect the general availability of the population and hence, our general boredom and hence our availability for schooling?

Perhaps it is all simply a matter of superfluity, or, as my mother used to say, of “having too much time on (our) hands”. If that were the case, the problem of modernity would be simply one of “inventing significance”.

To hell with tea baggers. I have never heard or seen such a band of ignoramuses.

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By Shingo, April 21, 2010 at 9:44 pm Link to this comment

“In what way, seriously Shingo, do you think America has become oppressive?”

There was a time when wiretaps and invasions our privacy would have been an outrage. 

There was a time when eminent domain was considered unconstitutional.

There was a time when free speech was a right anywhere and any time. Now we have free speech zones.

We have a president who reserves the right to imprison us without trial or even without charging us. Once in custody, the government is not obliged to tell your family where you are or if they even have you.

The government can seize you off the street and render you to Egypt to be tortured.

The government can declare you an enemy combatant and throw you into Gitmo, where you have no rights to a trial.

The government can and does use national security at the drop of a hat to avoid accountability.

Now one might argue that these haven’t been obvious in your own day to day existence, but you can’t claim that we are becoming a freer country.

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By amunaor, April 21, 2010 at 9:15 pm Link to this comment

Ignorance is certainly BLISS!

Peace, Best Wishes and Hope

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By Shenonymous, April 21, 2010 at 9:13 pm Link to this comment

” What the heck is happening to this website, why are so many
deffenders of capitalism in this site.“
  Yayyyy!  That is a first.  Could
it be that capitalism is the right course and socialism is the real evil? 
Yup. 5 Yups. 

How absurd.  I, a teabagger! Hahahahaha I’m LMAO.  Tennessee-
Socialist will stoop to saying anything stupid.  Believe anything you
want.  I believe communists have infiltrated this website and will say
and do anything to try to fool the fools.  More laughs.  You can say
Stalin and Lenin were good except to those poor sappy Russians who
were slaughtered by the communists.  Have you noticed that
communism does not exist in Russia today?  It even took back its
country’s name and the USSR has gone down the proverbial toilet along
with its executive committee.  Get a grip Tennessee.  You cannot
transform this country into a cheesy USSR.  You are so theatrical.

Seriously Shin – Straight face is a talent of my whole family.  Yup, best
poker-faces in Pennsylvania.  As I said, nothing is perfect, and you are
expecting perfection out of capitalism and imperfect humans who fall
heir to the same corruptions that socialism give harbor to.  In what way,
seriously Shingo, do you think America has become oppressive? I’ve
asked that question before and no one has answered.  How come? 
Please spell out your accusations precisely. Stop being the preacher. 
What exactly do you expound anyway?  All you have done is criticize. 
Are you a socialist?  Are you pushing for a welfare state?

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By Tennessee-Socialist, April 21, 2010 at 9:13 pm Link to this comment

The more I see how divided the leftist movements are, the more that I think America is doomed! If the people who disagree with the SAME power structures, BUT FOR DIFFERENT REASONS, don’t see the problem in being divided then we’re simply gonna continue to be conquered and dominated by the powers that be. My life is ending one minute at a time and I don’t see the value in joining a political activist group that is divided and powerless (regardless of the learning experience I may get) I simply just don’t want to be a flea on an elephants back. Now, that doesn’t go without saying that I could easily change my mind in the future if a united leftist front started that went beyond petty differences.

Since I don’t see personal value in political activism at this time because of the divisions, I have decided to find a way to make a difference in the world that has nothing to do with American political activism. My first step is a trip that I am planning this fall to go down to a South American country (which one is undecided, but I’m leaning towards a socialist one) to volunteer my service to the poor by either helping build something, educating or volunteering for a medical group (the goal and the date is set in stone, but the details are still working themselves out). I feel that this is the best thing I can do for the world at this moment. And, YES, I am aware that I could do this for the poor in the US as well… I am simply seeking to learn about new cultures as well as giving my service to the poor. Maybe some day in the future I may come back to the idea of joining a political activist movement, but probably not until I see more solidarity within the movements.


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By Shenonymous, April 21, 2010 at 9:11 pm Link to this comment

Comparatives to historical figures such as Gandhi are just zazzy.  As
are quotes.  We could both provide pages and pages of pithy quotes. 
Aye, but there is capitalism in the United States, you just refuse to
recognize it.  Your bias I believe prevents your vision.  Contrary to what
you describe, capitalism is not based on destroying competition, it
engenders it.  Twisting facts is what you are doing.  The United States
at it highest and best economic high in the 50s was because we
advance as humans on a capitalistic system.  Under socialism, people
wither. Capitalism is defined as a social system based on the
recognition of individual rights, contrary to socialism where the
individual is buried among “the masses” and is lost to the state.  You
never counter that, just moan about the iniquities that happen.  They
happen in socialism as well. But you do not show how people thrive
under socialism.

Capitalism is defined as having property rights, in which all property is
privately owned.  I own my own home.  Do you own your own home? 
Be honest.  Do you own a car?  It isn’t a company car is it?  I have
already acknowledged that capitalism has good and bad effects and
affects the population both ways.  But the masses cannot prosper under
a socialistic system.  Show me one big nation state that is surviving on
socialism.  Not one big nation in the contemporary world that was
socialists has survived.  Russia, China, even North Vietnam is reflects
the desire for a capitalistic base society.  Prosperity can be attained
through wealth creation.  It allows individuals to strive for their own
dreams through any lawful manner.  And since the laws are constructed
by the people through a democratic government, they are obeying their
own laws. 

Achieving monopolies are not really the essential purpose in capitalism.
Where did you get that flimsy notion?  You must be thinking of Marxist
state monopoly capitalism such as found in Mexico?  Monopolies may
be a natural product of vertical or horizontal mergers.  Mergers are
natural actions but it is not a factor that determines capitalism. 

Free enterprise means to engage in enterprises freely.  Capitalism has
been the means of ending slavery as it is through a capitalistic system
where a caste system is not tolerated.  Of course there is racism and
economic strata but the law says all men are free and are free to do
commerce.  It is another matter if discrimination occurs, that is not a
matter of economic policy, it is a matter of prejudice and bigotry which
is found in socialistic systems as well, it is a dark side of human nature. 
The more enlightened attempts to remove that negative nature through
enforceable civil rights, through laws. 

Speaking ideally of course, competition is the fundamental basis for a
capitalistic democratic state.  Capitalism encourages competition
completely not as you say, that it inhibits competitiveness. 

The final point I would make for this evening is that whenever anyone
in the world has the chance to dramatically change their lives, they
come to America.  American has the highest immigration ratio than any
other country in the world.  The reason is because it is our system of
capitalism and democracy that attracts them and they know they have
at least the chance to do well if they work for it.  This again is the ideal
and the reality is not as it should be, but the potential is there where it
is conspicuously missing under Socialism.

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By amunaor, April 21, 2010 at 8:57 pm Link to this comment

Well stated Shingo

Capitalism is Socialism for the Oligarchy at the top! Who, let me add, privatize their winnings at the Wall-Street, gambling tables, but as soon as the excrement hits the proverbial, circulating receptacle, they bail; Socializing their losses. What a grand scheme!

The preamble to the Constitution implies a family structure: of, for and by the people. Consider the fact that this Instrument was written long before the term – Socialism – became horribly stigmatized by the bloody events of WWII, successfully propagandized by the Capitalists who succeeded in driving the concept into the ground.

The law on Wall Street is that of the wild west horse thief; which ethics have matured into fancy corporate banking algorithms, designed to fleece. Free-Markets & Speculating-Bankers are simply a euphemistic façade for the Con-Artist to lurk from behind; all are predators seeking to snare the unsuspecting passerby.

How about Republican god, Capitalist, Ronny Regan, who sent his Friedman Free Marketeers into Pinochet territory so as to help Pinochet ‘disappear ‘members of labor organizations. The Freidman economists taught their students to look upon the population as a psychiatric patient, requiring ‘Shock Treatment’ in effort to cleanse it of its ‘collective’ cancer, simply because it - the population mindset - didn’t fit Friedman’s free-market model. Democracy had been inhospitable to the Freidman Boys in Chile; dictatorship would prove an easier fit.

The same predatory Capitalist ‘Shock-n-Awe’ is continuing, unabated in the Middle East. How anyone can support this predation is beyond me!

Whose motto is:
Kill they neighbor,
Steal his property,
Rape his wife,
And , destroy his land.

WikiLeaks—Collateral Murder:

Peace, Best Wishes and …Sweet American Dreams

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By Tennessee-Socialist, April 21, 2010 at 8:55 pm Link to this comment



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By Tennessee-Socialist, April 21, 2010 at 8:49 pm Link to this comment

As a young person who is trying to find an outlet to actually DO SOMETHING - instead of just venting on political forums - I can’t seem to find an activist organization I want to join. I get so frustrated with the activist movements because they all are so divided. I only have so much time and energy and I don’t want to waste it by joining an organization that is the equivalent of a flee on an elephant’s back. Don’t get me wrong… I commend and admire the people in small activists organizations standing up for their beliefs, but I would rather be part of a movement that was more akin to a tiger forcing the elephant to stand down or die. (Sorry for the half-assed analogy) I am perplexed as to why all of these different “leftist movements” (anti-war, anti-corporate, anti-capitalist, anti-free trade, anti-central banks, gay rights activists, etc.) can’t find a common bond and join forces.

Are they not all revolting against the same powers structures, but just for different reasons? Why don’t the leaders of these various different organizations get together to create a common bond and a common theory for revolting?

I sent an email to Cindy Sheehan last summer (I admire her courage as an anti-war activist) and in the email I asked the same question. Why can’t all of the various anti-war movements join together as one organization? I figured her new found voice and national recognition may be a starting point and that maybe she could use this national recognition and influence to help organize all of the different anti-war movements into one movement. How much more powerful would that be? I never heard back from her (I figured she was too busy trying to beat the two-faced Pelosi in the last election.)

Anyway… hopefully some day in the near future somebody will arise to the occasion to create solidarity between the various different activists movements to create ONE MOVEMENT. If they can… my God, the powers to be will tremble with fear and then maybe We the People will be able to replace this evil capitalist hell with socialism.


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By Shingo, April 21, 2010 at 8:43 pm Link to this comment

“Here’s the difference between our pseudo-capitalist society and the failed pseudo-socialist societies.”

You’re way off the mark ITW.  The reason we pretend to survive it, especially this last disaster, is because our banks are considered too big to fail.

The reality is that our government has racked up a debt is has no chance in hell of ever repaying.  We know it, and the our creditors know it.  The problem is that not only can we not afford to repay it, soon will be unable to service it, but the sums are so absurd that there isn’t enough money in existence to sustain it.

China and Japan are shitting bricks, but are stuck between a rock and a hard place.  We are guarantee to default on the debt, but the creditors can’t afford to call that debt in, because that will set off a catastrophic run on whatever remains.

We’ve been deluding ourselves abotu socialism being dead, when in fact, socialism has not only returned with a bang in Latin America, but socialism is what saved the say on Wall Street, at least for the time being.

We haven’t recognized our way out of this problem, we’ve just put the printing presses on overdrive.  All we’ve done is upped the credit limit on our maxed out credit card, and maxed in out again.

There’s a saying in finance.  If I owe you $10,000, then I’m in trouble.  If I owe you 10 million, then you are.

We haven’t survived by any stretch of the imagination.  Each disaster was simply covered up with clever accounting tricks and sustained by the act that our dollar was the defacto world currency.

Since the 70’s, we’ve been writing blank cheques, expecting no one to cash them in, and then convinced ourselves that it was economic ingenuity that got us back into the black.

Those days are over and socialist states will still be inching along long after we are a basket case.

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By Inherit The Wind, April 21, 2010 at 8:19 pm Link to this comment

Tennessee-Socialist, April 22 at 12:55 am #

Shingo: The other day i read that Conservatives are infiltrating progressive websites. So shen might be a Mccain or Tea Bagger shill.

Now THAT is “Chutzpah”!  Tennessee-Socialist whose been here, what? 3 months or 4, accusing Shenonymous, whose been here for a few YEARS already of being a shill!

Do you have ANY idea how idiotic you look making that absurd accusation?  She was here LONG before Shingo was, and far, FAR longer than you have been here!

If anyone is the “shill” or a troll, it’s YOU, babe!

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By Tennessee-Socialist, April 21, 2010 at 8:10 pm Link to this comment


For socialism to work in the USA, we need a socialist workers party to rise to government, because if we left the implementation of socialism to the Demoks, they would maintain a socialist facade and under that class hierarchy as usual. The people would remain dumbed down, and dependent on elites who continue to control most of the production, rather through state enterprises, so Wallmart would still have low low prices strangling all the mom n pops, Hillary would still be on its board, Monsanto would still be strangling all the farmers, and the MIC would still be strangling the Middle East and Central Asia. Education, healthcare, transport, etc would remain the worst value in the industrialized world. Cuba would remain far ahead.

If we put the implementation of socialism in the hands of the far left, the people will have meaninful occupations, knowing that their work is truly beneficial to the society, which many cannot say today. The people will earn their living on 15 hour work weeks, and have 15 hours left for their civic duty, and ongoing education. The truth will prevail, high quality info, free. Healthcare value will triple. Transport value more than quadruple. MIC budget slashed by five. All production that was lost overseas we gain back, into the hands of the people. The banksters and Detroit shuttered and ownership of production distributed to ten man-power enterprises all over the country. Closed production cycles and full costs in retail prices. End of fossil consumption, advertising/marketing, and wars.

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By Snick1984, April 21, 2010 at 8:02 pm Link to this comment

Shingo wrote: “capitalism is nothign more than socialism for the wealthy.” Couldn’t have said it better myself, so true.

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By Tennessee-Socialist, April 21, 2010 at 7:55 pm Link to this comment

Shingo: The other day i read that Conservatives are infiltrating progressive websites. So shen might be a Mccain or Tea Bagger shill. Who knows, but i don’t care, they can say Hitler was good and it wouldn’t change any facts about the satanic evil nature of capitalism and socialism the only solution for the cancer of capitalism

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By Inherit The Wind, April 21, 2010 at 7:48 pm Link to this comment

Here’s the difference between our pseudo-capitalist society and the failed pseudo-socialist societies.

When there is a HUGE bank corruption scandal that rocks the economy, we manage to survive it, bloodied and chagrined but still going.  They don’t. They don’t have the mechanisms to recognize it, publicize it, or compensate for it.  They don’t have the means to survive it.  We do.

They failed, we survived. Socialism is dead. It’s been replaced by crackpot fundamentalists of various religions—pick any one of them.

It is a simple as that: who survives and who becomes extinct.

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By Tennessee-Socialist, April 21, 2010 at 7:36 pm Link to this comment


What the heck is happening to this website, why are so many deffenders of capitalism in this site.  I thought that this site was like which is mostly in favor of socialism. Or are these people Conservatives infiltrated in Truthdig?

I became a member of Truthdig because most of its writters are in favor of socialism and hate capitalism. And i know this is a site that respects freedom of speech. But my instincts tell me that there are some conservative far-right wingers infiltrated in Truthdig.

I don’t care what they say though, they can say what ever they want it makes no difference to the fact that capitalism really evil.  They can say Obama and Bush are saints and it wouldnt change reality and facts.

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By Shingo, April 21, 2010 at 7:18 pm Link to this comment

Seriously Shen, you seem oblivious to the irony in your own statements.

“It is only by a romantic idealism that it gets any adhesion, because it contains no means within
itself to correct corruption.”

I mean, come on.  In the wake of the waves of scandal rocking Wall Street, can you honestly say this with a straight face?

“It has shown inevitably, when applied to a
large nation state, to lead to a loss of freedom for its people, and an increasingly oppressive government, completely contrary to the advertisements on the pages of the Socialist site Tennessee-Socialist linked us to.”

Again Shen, do you believe that our government has become more or less oppressive?  Has it never occurred to you that those who most loudly profess their support for capitalism and small government, are the worst offenders when it comes to undermining both ideals?

When I think of Capitalism, I think of Gandi’s answer to the question, “what do you think of Western Civilization”.  As Gandi said, it would be a very good idea.

There is no capitalism, because capitalism in practice, is based on the agenda of destroying competition and achieving monopolies.  Worse than that, capitalism is nothign more than socialism for the wealthy.

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By Shenonymous, April 21, 2010 at 7:01 pm Link to this comment

Since there was a recommended reading about the virtues of socialism
and the defects in capitalist America, I will recommend a book, “The
Virtues of Capitalism, The Collected Works of Arthur Seldon, Volume 1. 
Then after you finish that, you can read the next six volumes.  Early in
2009, there was an announcement by The London Telegraph that a
moral case for capitalism must be re-vocalized, and many economists
declared that unbridled markets were feeling their death throes.  Well,
folks, sorry to disappoint you, things are looking up.  The sine wave is
on the upside once again but the activity has not yet risen up it full
length, it is a long hill to climb but it will climb make no mistake, in
spite of your hopes that it won’t.  No one is saying, and especially me
who is relatively speaking unfamiliar with the mechanics of economics,
not having made any scholarly study of the subject, but not totally
ignorant (but that doesn’t disqualify me any more than anyone else
who is uttering criticisms on this forum), that capitalism does not have
its faults nor its need for rectification.  Nothing comes into this world
in a perfect state.  And capitalism is not exempt.  However, capitalism
is amendable, mainly because it has inherent adaptive devices,
automatic corrective instruments that as detected and will enforce its
controls.  That is essentially what is happening now.  Socialism, on the
other hand, is chronically irredeemable.  It is only by a romantic
idealism that it gets any adhesion, because it contains no means within
itself to correct corruption.  It has shown inevitably, when applied to a
large nation state, to lead to a loss of freedom for its people, and an
increasingly oppressive government, completely contrary to the
advertisements on the pages of the Socialist site Tennessee-Socialist
linked us to.

It doesn’t take x-ray vision to see its apparent deficiencies and aside
from Seldon’s magnum opus in economics and I think he was prescient,
but there is a another good argument, that economics additionally is
basically a moral issue, free markets are for the most part the solution
to financial disaster and not the cause.  The reason is because whether
I like it or not, and whether Christopher Hitchens likes it or not, and
while I might agree more with him than Christopher Hedges, this
country is essentially a Judeo/Christian nation and being such
capitalism can sustain that politico/religious character better than any
Socialist system.  That is the reality.  And since I like owning my own
property, and I like spending the money I earn the way I want, and I
don’t mind paying taxes to pay for the kind of country I want, I agree
with the capitalist point of economic view.  And I believe The American
People feel exactly the same way.

But that notwithstanding, I visited the Socialist site and read the article. 
Short of replacing most Americans with beings from elsewhere, I don’t
see how any plan from the socialist sector has a chance of success.  It
is a miscalculation of The American people.  Not noticing the real
demographics of what exactly “The American People” are.  Now for
myself, I do not want to change society, nor do I think Americans are
oppressed.  The reason why I do not want to change society is because
it is not changeable and it would be pissing in the wind to try to do any
comprehensive political transmutation short of killing most of them.

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By Shenonymous, April 21, 2010 at 6:57 pm Link to this comment

It is a pie-eyed presumption that The American People can be
persuaded to give up their capitalistic-based society.  The final stage of
capitalism has been predicted for over half a century.  It is wishful
thinking of the socialist mentality.  The Socialists simply are not going
to bring down what they call the Ruling Class.  The ruling class
mentality exists in most of The American People’s mind.  They all think
they belong to the Ruling Class and hope to be one day.  The call for
revolution is a futile exercise in self-delusion.  The working class is
completely unorganized.  The Unions are impotent ghosts of what they
once were in the early to mid 20th century.  They are relics. 

Democrats shows some regeneration today in their legislation on
financial reform.  That in itself will pump up the Democratic
constituency.  They have shown on a very important issue that they still
have some strength of will. 

The Road to Freedom as envisioned by Socialist is a delusion.  There is
no such thing as freedom under socialism.  Socialism is antithetical to
freedom.  No one is free under Socialism. All is prostrate before the
state.  And The American People know that in spades. 

I am willing to argue these points with anyone willing to engage in civil
discussion, who will rationally, calmly and articulately show the errors
in my thinking, otherwise all comments will be idly self-defeating. 

Two-dimensions is better than being the one-dimension you are
Shingo.  Shall we start the lame name-calling bickering again?

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By camnai, April 21, 2010 at 6:41 pm Link to this comment

‘There is 360 years of pent up angry running through the veins of people like me’

Thank you, Diana T. Brooks. That was hilarious.

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By ofersince72, April 21, 2010 at 6:38 pm Link to this comment

Leefeller ,  Your funnier that ITW.

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By Robert, April 21, 2010 at 6:28 pm Link to this comment

Wilkerson Discloses Hundreds of Innocents Jailed
The Guantanamo Deception


“Colonel Lawrence B. Wilkerson, Chief of Staff to U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, provided shocking new testimony from inside the Bush Administration that hundreds of the men jailed at Guantanamo were innocent, the top people in the Bush Administration knew full well they were innocent, and that information was kept from the public.

Wilkerson said President Bush, Vice President Cheney and Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld “indefinitely detained the innocent for political reasons” and many in the administration knew it.  The wrongfully held prisoners were not released because of political maneuverings aimed in part to cover up the mistakes of the administration.

Colonel Wilkerson, who served in the U.S. Army for over thirty years, signed a sworn declaration for an Oregon federal court case stating that he found out in August 2002 that the US knew that many of the prisoners at Guantanamo were not enemy combatants.  Wilkerson also discussed this in a revealing and critical article on Guantanamo for the Washington Note.

How did Colonel Wilkerson first learn about the innocents in Guantanamo?  In August 2002, Wilkerson, who had been working closely with Colin Powell for years, was appointed Chief of Staff to the Secretary of State.  In that position, Wilkerson started attending daily classified briefings involving 50 or more senior State Department officials where Guantanamo was often discussed.

It soon became clear to him and other State Department personnel “that many of the prisoners detained at Guantanamo had been taken into custody without regard to whether they were truly enemy combatants, or in fact whether many of them were enemies at all.”

How was it possible that hundreds of Guantanamo prisoners were innocent?  Wilkerson said it all started at the beginning, mostly because U.S. forces did not capture most of the people who were sent to Guantanamo.  The people who ended up in Guantanamo, said Wilkerson, were mostly turned over to the US by Afghan warlords and others who received bounties of up to $5000 per head for each person they turned in.  The majority of the 742 detainees “had never seen a U.S. soldier in the process of their initial detention.”

Military officers told Wilkerson that “many detainees were turned over for the wrong reasons, particularly for bounties and other incentives.”  The U.S. knew “that the likelihood was high that some of the Guantanamo detainees had been turned in to U.S. forces in order to settle local scores, for tribal reasons, or just as a method of making money.””

Click on link for the rest:

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By Shingo, April 21, 2010 at 6:18 pm Link to this comment

“Tennessee-Socialist - you are very wrong, capitalism is good and
socialism is evil.”

Seriously Shen, are you that 2 dimensional and absolute?  how would you know?  You have never lived in a society that could be described as either of them.

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By Inherit The Wind, April 21, 2010 at 6:15 pm Link to this comment

It’s clear from your attacks on Gandhi and South Africa that you don’t believe in peaceful change, only violent change.

I find that sickening.

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By Inherit The Wind, April 21, 2010 at 6:13 pm Link to this comment

I find CH’s claim that Chomsky is America’s Greatest Intellectual is about as meaningful as the owners of the Dallas Cowboys telling us they are “America’s Team”.

Oh yeah?  Does that make me un-American for wanting to see the ‘Boys be ground into the mud every single game?

Besides, I believe humor is the highest form of intelligence, therefore LeeFeller is America’s Greatest Intellectual (because he’s definitely funnier than me, the bum!)

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By Inherit The Wind, April 21, 2010 at 6:08 pm Link to this comment

And I thought omop was a neo-nazi nut!  Clearly nfamous is a recruiter for the American Nazi Party.  Another “88"er!

But this one got reported.

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By elisalouisa, April 21, 2010 at 5:55 pm Link to this comment

I assume you did not read the first sentence of my post Leefeller. It was addressed to Nemesis, the point being that Nemesis quoted from Hitchen’s book ‘God is not Great’ concerning Gandhi in an earlier post. In my view, Hitchens could never understand one such as Gandhi. I found a Hedges review of ‘God is not Great’ and posted it as my response to Nemesis. I appreciate the fact that you
inquired as to why I did post Hedges’ review.

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By Shenonymous, April 21, 2010 at 5:40 pm Link to this comment

Tennessee-Socialist - you are very wrong, capitalism is good and
socialism is evil.

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By OzarkMichael, April 21, 2010 at 5:28 pm Link to this comment

T.S said:

Identifying our real friends and our real enemies is a first step towards building a united front against monopoly capitalism.

oooh, its like a dodgeball game. We need to pick our team and then pick our targets.

I want Shenonymous on our team since she has a wicked pitch that knocks her opponents off their feet.

I say we should all target Lenin since he was the most evil person in the world.

What do you think, TS?

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By Leefeller, April 21, 2010 at 5:23 pm Link to this comment


Demonizing Htichens by calling him a demon, shows such brilliance . Demonizing most effective for that stuck in the craw feeling, a food way to support a point without merit.

Hedges obviously was turning the other cheeks, all four of them at the time, as he wrote this article for the Kansas City Star or why else would Hedges have held back his punches?

If one does not agree with many things Hedges writes and some things Hitchens writes, does that mean one should demonize?

By the way elisalouisa, what was your point?

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By OzarkMichael, April 21, 2010 at 5:12 pm Link to this comment

omop said:

The core values and ethos of Judaism are markedly unlike those of Christianity, Islam, and the other faiths.

But every religion is unique, and yet it is also true every religion (after the very first ones) borrows or is linked to the others.

more omop; But that’s not the message of Judaism. Its teachings are not meant for all people. Its morality is not universal.

Why are you complaining about that? Not only is Judaism not universal, but most aspects of the Old Testament do not even apply to Jews today, because it was a direct command to those Jews in that time and place and circumstance.

That is a very honest and reasonable sort of religion to deal with if you arent Jewish.

I mean, the Jews heard a word from God, and the Jews understood it was meant for them alone, and didnt decide the rest of us had to live by that word forever and ever. Which is extremely easy on us non-believers. Arent you glad of it? One would think that for you this uniqueness of Judaism is the best part about it. It does not force itself on everyone else. Yes it is peculiar, but in a way that non-Jews should appreciate.

And may i add that even the best heroes in the Old Testament were spoken of in such a way that the reader of the Old Testament realizes that even the heroes had faults and made mistakes, so that a certain need for humility is inculcated in the reader.

By contrast, Christianity takes Judaism and via a single individual makes a claim to both perfection of the ‘hero’ and the right to apply itself to every single person on the planet. You are confronted with the Gospel and you must decide: Did Christ die on the cross for me? do i live my life for Christ Jesus or do i reject him?

I answer yes to both questions. And since you seem to think the universality of Christianity is a good thing, preferable to the narrow application of Judaism, I will insist that you be placed on the spot. Answer the universal call since you depise Judaism. omop, you must answer,

Since Jesus loved you, do you love Him in return?
Are you saved by the Blood of the Lamb?

If you wont admit that the uniquely Jewish way is better, then you must answer my questions.

But really omop, you dont believe Christianity is the truth. And since you dont, omop, dont you find it boorish of Christianity to be like that? Isnt the Jewish way better?

You are angling for something else for some hidden reasons. You need to explain them. Or do you want to answer my questions?

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By Tennessee-Socialist, April 21, 2010 at 5:05 pm Link to this comment


Read this article or print it if you want and share it with your family and friends who are beating the bullets economically and are confused about the solution. read this long article, it’s about who our friends are and who are our real enemies in this world-crisis against the global-elites, New World Order or Imperialist capitalist rulers (However u wanna call it), it’s a real great weapon for our anti-global elites revolution

Class in the U.S. and Our Strategy for Revolution

(The following document is a portion of the political program of Freedom Road Socialist Organization. It was adopted at our 5th Congress. Other parts of the program are still in the process of development.)

To change society and end oppression, we need a plan to get from where we are now to liberation - a strategy that will work. Any successful revolutionary strategy must address the fundamental issue of who are our friends and who are our enemies and explain how we will go about uniting all who can be united to end the existing order of things.

We live in an era where capitalism has reached its final stage: monopoly capitalism, also known as imperialism. Monopoly capitalism is a doomed system whose continued existence stands in the way of all social progress. Huge corporations and financial institutions are headed by a wealthy oligarchy that dominates the political and economic life of this country, blocking the path to prosperity for the vast majority. U.S. companies are closing down factories here and exporting capital around the globe, to the detriment of all but themselves.

Our ruling class (the big capitalists and their hangers-on) has built an empire that spans the earth. Like vampires, they stand at the apex of a parasitic system that makes its home on Wall Street and sucks the blood of the Main Streets in the cities of the U.S. and villages of the developing world. They live on the labor, land and natural resources of others. Neither distance nor decency is a barrier to their drive to achieve the highest possible rate of profit. The world has been divided up between the big capitalist powers, which will stop at nothing to expand their spheres of influence and control.

Within our borders the monopoly capitalists have accumulated untold wealth based on the exploitation of the multinational working class and the systematic discrimination and robbery that is visited upon the oppressed nationalities.

We need to turn things upside down. This means revolution, a radical break that advances the cause of the exploited, that employs, in the words of Malcolm X, any means necessary. Working and oppressed peoples need political power. This power is the means to reorganize society in our own interests and dictate our terms to all who stand in the way. The seizure of power by the working class and its allies is the beginning of a great change, a transformation that continues until the end of all classes and all oppression.

United Front Against Monopoly Capitalism

Our basic strategy for revolution and socialism is building a united front against the monopoly capitalist class, under the leadership of the working class and its political party, with a strategic alliance between the multinational working class and the oppressed nationalities at the core of this united front.

Identifying our real friends and our real enemies is a first step towards building a united front against monopoly capitalism. To carry out this analysis we need to understand the different classes, nationalities and social groups in U.S. society, identify those forces whose interests are in the main opposed to the monopoly capitalists, and take a look a the specific features of our society.


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By amunaor, April 21, 2010 at 4:17 pm Link to this comment

In the early sixteenth century, Pope Leo X is on record as declaring: “It has served us well, this myth of Christ.”

The ‘dying god myth’ which has been handed down to us, is straight out of Egypt; better known in its original form as ‘Isis and Osiris’. But, it has roots even more ancient.

Rome is the crossroads, on which the dying god myth metamorphosed into the current psychodrama; unfortunately, solely to satisfy the expediencies of political power.

The term ‘God’ is simply an anthropomorphic projection of self, onto the forces presented to our external senses.

Peace, Best Wishes and Hope

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By Tennessee-Socialist, April 21, 2010 at 4:11 pm Link to this comment

Shenonymous: you are very wrong, capitalism is evil, and socialism is good

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By omop, April 21, 2010 at 3:58 pm Link to this comment

Of myths and truths.

Most people tend to beleive in myths to unpleasant truths, and prefer to
believe what is most comfortable and agreeable. That’s one reason why so
many of us like to think that all religions share common humanistic core
values, and are all striving, each in its own way, toward the same ultimate

But [and this has been articulated by a number of Jewish scholars…so can it
with the Antisem stuff] Judaism is not just “another religion.”

It’s unique among the world’s major religions. The core values and ethos of
Judaism are markedly unlike those of Christianity, Islam, and the other faiths.

Christians believe that Jesus suffered and died for all people, and Christians
are called upon to spread the Christian message to humanity. In the same way,
Muslims believe that the message of the Koran is meant for all humanity, and
they are called upon to bring everyone to Islam.

But that’s not the message of Judaism. Its teachings are not meant for all
people. Its morality is not universal. Judaism is a religion for one particular

The Jewish religion is based not on a relationship between God and humanity,
but rather on a “covenant,” or contract, between God and a “chosen” people—
the community known as the Jews, the Jewish People, the Israelites, the
Hebrews, or the “People of Israel.”

As le grand Seinfeld pontificated,” not that there is anything wrong with that or
is that like elitism?

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By cann4ing, April 21, 2010 at 3:44 pm Link to this comment

Chomsky’s parallels between the last days of the Weimar Republic and the current malaise in the 21st Century U.S. are frighteningly astute and accurate.

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By elisalouisa, April 21, 2010 at 3:22 pm Link to this comment

Gandhi carried no weapons and did not encourage violence. One would conclude from your post Nemesis that India had no poverty under British rule.  People want home rule Nemesis. That’s the bottom line. As to the bloodiest conflict of the 21st century, excuse me but aren’t we in the 21st century now?

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By elisalouisa, April 21, 2010 at 3:05 pm Link to this comment

Here’s a little something for you Nemesis.

The hitch in Hitchens’ thinking
by Chris Hedges, Kansas City Star
Thanks to Linda Ward Selbie for the link.

Reposted from:

“Christopher Hitchens in his book God Is Not Great has confused religion with
religious institutions and beliefs with dogma.

He has used the irrational ravings of fundamentalists against science and
dispassionate intellectual inquiry to insist that reason alone is our salvation.

Unencumbered by serious theological or biblical knowledge, Hitchens taunts
religion with the same bigotry and ignorance that fundamentalists use to de-
legitimize those who do not submit to their rigid belief system.

The charlatans and demagogues who today dominate Christian radio and
television stations, the James Dobsons and Pat Robertsons, continue a long and
sordid tradition of claiming divine sanction to justify personal enrichment and
empowerment. Piety, like blind patriotism, is an effective cover for the corrupt
and the venal.

There is a case, of course, to be made against institutional religion. But there
are great theologians from Paul Tillich to Ernst Kasemann to William
Stringfellow who skewer institutional religion, indeed brand it as a dangerous
form of idolatry. They write with a deftness, nuance and erudition that shame
the tired clichés that pad out this book.

Hitchens ignores the deep religious urges and moments of transcendence that
make up human existence. These forces are not products of reason. They
humbled great philosophers and thinkers from Plato to Sigmund Freud, who
each acknowledged the unfathomable mystery and power of love — hardly a
rational force. Hitchens, to sidestep this difficult discussion, conflates the
irrational with the nonrational.

He refuses to concede — and here one wants to hand him Freud for Dummies
— that we are all driven and profoundly affected by an array of mysterious
nonrational forces such as beauty, grief, love, the yearning for meaning,
alienation and the specter of our own mortality.

These forces do not lend themselves to rational deduction. Religion, the
religious impulse, is an attempt to grapple with these spiritual truths, not
explain a scientific fact.
Hitchens, when he runs up against the authentic religious life, withers. He tries
vainly to deny its existence, since its recognition punctures his pronouncement
that “religion teaches people to be extremely self-centered and conceited.”
He writes of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. that “in no real as opposed to
nominal sense, then, was he a Christian.” He disparages the faith of Abraham
Lincoln and insists that Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the Lutheran pastor put to death
by the Nazis for resistance, was the product of a religious belief that had
“mutated into an admirable but nebulous humanism.”
God is a human concept. Religion is a way we attempt, always imperfectly, to
wrestle with the mystery and meaning of existence. It acknowledges the dark
impulses and urges that can overpower us.
The question is not whether God exists. The question is whether we concern
ourselves with, or are utterly indifferent to, the sanctity and ultimate
transcendence of human existence. God is that mysterious force that works
upon us and through us to seek and achieve truth, beauty and goodness. God is
a verb. God is a process accomplishing itself, not an asserted existence. And
God is inescapable.
Hitchens’ simplistic assault is itself a dangerous kind of fundamentalism. He
externalizes evil, something he shares with the religious fundamentalists he

His blind embrace of American imperialism and disregard for the rule of law
makes him no better than the apologists for radical Islam and Christianity he
seeks to discredit. His moral certitude and arrogance are no different. The
consequences are as dangerous.”

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By Tony Wicher, April 21, 2010 at 2:43 pm Link to this comment


Ah, but speaking of myths, what about the myth of
9/11? What about the myth of Osama bin Laden and Al Qaeda? Do you believe that one? Just curious.

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By Tony Wicher, April 21, 2010 at 2:38 pm Link to this comment

Re nemesis2010, April 21 at 3:03 pm #

@ Tony Wicher:

Pilate didn’t crucify the truth. Jesus is a myth. The truth is that the Jesus of the Bible never existed; it’s all made up. Truth is not a living breathing entity; it just is.


Sure Jesus is a myth, but it is a very meaningful myth. It may be a story, but in the story, Jesus does represent the truth, and Pilate represents the same kind of sleazy politicians that fill our congress today.

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By amunaor, April 21, 2010 at 2:02 pm Link to this comment

……In other words, our ring-bearer, whom we bore on the backs of our shoulders; carried to the top of the mountain, to do that which we could not do alone, has become mesmerized by his own image and the opulence his new position of power has bestowed on him, while at the same time all have abandoned him!

Peace, Best Wishes and Hope

WikiLeaks—Collateral Murder:

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By doublestandards/glasshouses, April 21, 2010 at 1:38 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Rational people always leave the grassy knolls of history behind and move on.  To live in the past is neurotic.

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By amunaor, April 21, 2010 at 1:36 pm Link to this comment

RE: Larry Pinkney at The Black Commentator, April 21 at 6:06 pm

Thank you for your comment and link; perfect:

Some folks, here and there, will always remain content, to the exclusion of all others; adulating and carressing an effigy of themselves.

Peace, Best Wishes and Hope

WikiLeaks—Collateral Murder:

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By Larry Pinkney at The Black Commentator, April 21, 2010 at 1:06 pm Link to this comment

April 21, 2010

The observations made by Noam Chomsky, in this Chris Hedges article are essentially correct, but it should be noted that many of them had in fact, already been delineated, back in October of 2009, in THE BLACK COMMENTATOR article titled, ‘Obama, Fascism, and the Color Line,’ which was republished in the Online Journal, and elsewhere.[]

There are no political or intellectual gurus in the people’s struggle.

Larry Pinkney
Editorial Board Member & Columnist

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By John w, April 21, 2010 at 12:50 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I am glad we have Chomsky and Hedges actively writing and speaking out on the events and issues of the day. Sometimes I think Hedges is a little
over the top in his rhetoric, but they are both very intelligent and thoughtful men. They are right to not embrace 911 truth.

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By Leefeller, April 21, 2010 at 12:40 pm Link to this comment

When realty becomes sarcasm and sarcasm becomes reality, one concludes; nfamious sss is an imbiber of words, who king of morons and imbeciles, representing possibly the majority of the intelligent liberal left and most of the slower conservative right, will set for the record (in his minds only) everyman straight?

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By Shenonymous, April 21, 2010 at 12:17 pm Link to this comment

Would you say the Jews invented Hinduism too, nfamous? How about
Kemetism? or Zoroastriainism?

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By Anarcissie, April 21, 2010 at 11:04 am Link to this comment

Tony Wicher, April 21 at 12:55 pm:

At least I’m trying to do something. My effort is to forge 9/11 truth into a weapon against the war machine. I think we might be making progress. What are you doing, other than sitting around pissing yourself?’

I don’t see any weapon against the war machine.  We—those who are opposed to war and empire—can’t even get a good-sized demonstration going any more.  I suppose this is because so many major Left groups, like UFPJ, have been infiltrated by Democrats.  (Recently I read an account by a member of the Green Party of how he went to a big UFPJ meeting last winter in an effort to arouse interest in some action this spring, and he said it was obvious after awhile that no activity that could conceivably embarrass Mr. O was going to be permitted.)
There’s a real conspiracy for you to expose.

Anyway, it’s obvious that if George W. Bush, or anyone else like that, had the power, expertise and courage to pull off 9/11, your chance of getting that fact out would be just about nil.  And if you did get the fact out, you’d simply be disappeared.

So what’s the function of “9/11 truth” besides starting futile, vacuous arguments?

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By Leefeller, April 21, 2010 at 10:57 am Link to this comment

Time to sing the old Mac Needleman song again!  A Zionist here a Zinoist there, ...... well anytime people don’t sing along with me they must surly be
fill in the blanks:

Those damn missing socks are stolen by those damn; (      )
Where the hell are my keys, those damn;
(      ).

My garbage can was knocked over by those Damn;
(    ).

The grassy knoll, 911 and those anal probes were really done by (            ).

nfamous sss comments seem so deluded he must be a damn(    ).

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By gerard, April 21, 2010 at 10:43 am Link to this comment

Apologies for misspelling Paul Krugman.

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By Shenonymous, April 21, 2010 at 10:40 am Link to this comment

“And that the USA won’t be socialist in our lifetime.”
And I hope not in my children’s nor grandchildren’s lifetime.  I don’t
see it ever in the US actually and I think that is the beautiful truth.

Well Cat Stevens is a Muslim, and tells the world he is.  So I don’t know
what that means, I like his singing too.  But I am a Bobby Dylan fan and
I know what that means.

“Today I’m of the opinion that South Africa and India serve as models
of “nonviolent” revolutionary success. “
  Well as you note,
nemisis2010, after a tremendous amount of bloodshed, yeah,
nonviolence did triumph.  But don’t you think it was because all the
blood ran out?  Well…just about.  Meaning, the people just got bloody
tired of it.  I agree they are the models.  But then, you know I’m sure,
humans do not learn from history, they just record it.  They only learn
by experience, they have to go through Hades before they realize how
utterly futile and utterly wasteful of human life any other way is.  I
sometimes wonder, heretically speaking, if the earth doesn’t just
happily abide the way humankind winnows out the herd. It doesn’t care
which humans come or which ones go.  Humans are simply just
another thing it has to suffer.  The theory that the earth will take care
of itself over time does seem to have some traction.  The thing is, all
wars end…non-violently, that is the meaning of no more war. 
Nonviolent revolution means dialogue among rational humans to solve
differences.  Do you really think in spite of the excellent models of
India and South Africa, and the horrible models of atomic-bombed
Japan, all of WWII and WWI, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Darfur, the Sudan,
and the 1300+ in Gaza, not to mention all the other slaughters that
have happened in Bosnia, Armenia, Italy, Greece, ad nauseum
throughout history, recorded history from the Trojans to Afghanistan
and then some…humans can evolve to behave that way? The history of
war is much longer and wider and deeper than the history of peace.

Now Menken, over and above Chomsky, was on to something.

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By BobZ, April 21, 2010 at 10:34 am Link to this comment

Chomsky is correct that Fox News is too easy to criticize but that doesn’t make
them any less dangerous. Hitler was also too easy to criticize as was George W.
Bush. Sometimes evil is right there in front of us and we don’t need to look for
intellectual subtlety to discern the evil. The MSM has long been useless and too
much dependent on corporate benefactors to be of much intellectual benefit.
With the decline in advertising the MSM can’t even afford the very few
intellectuals it had. The cable networks are pretty abysmal even MSNBC,
although Maddow attempts to elevate the discourse. But American’s don’t really
like subtlety - they like black and white, good guys and bad guys, and can be
easily manipulated because they are too lazy to really think issues through. The
tea bag movement is the perfect example of intellectual laziness, where the
organizers create age old slogans and pass them off as fresh ideas. Polls about
lack of faith in our government get responses like government has a negative
effect on their daily lives but can’t cite a single example of that actually
occuring. They pay the lowest tax rates in our history but complain about high
taxes. They complain about deficits not realizing we had higher deficits in
World War II and paid them off. They whine about the bailouts not even
bothering to connect the dots that the economy is recovery because of TARP
and the stimulas package. What is bothersome is that most of the discontent is
coming from Southern rural areas that are still ground zero for racism in the
U.S. Obama’s election far from bringing about a post racial society has caused
a circling of the wagons by racist America and the massive pushback against
the election results. The tea bag movement is just a morphing of the
McCain/Palin backers who became so agitated at the end of the 2008
campaign when it dawned on them their man and woman were going down.
What is sad is that the Republican leadership is so lacking in moral principles
they are giving massive cover to this acting out of racism. McCain has cut and
run and caved in and Palin was with the dumb and dumber set from the
beginning. Hopefully a recovering economy will give the reactionaries much
less heartburn and they will retreat to just calling in to talk radio.

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By Night-Gaunt, April 21, 2010 at 10:22 am Link to this comment

jakiner it is coal plants that are coming on line every week not nuclear.

So Dr. Chomsky is human too, has feet of clay. So we use it and understand it and go on. He doesn’t have too many blind spots though another is conspiracy which is very mainstream and quite common. To him they can only work together if they are working in parallel because they are of the same mind but consciously? No. Not going to happen in Chomsky‘s mind.

It is obvious to me that the US & Israel are more like similar states with the lesser being the benefactor of the greater for similar reasons. [They scratch each others backs.] But when it comes down to it Israel will act in its own national interest. That is why AIPAC is small but has under influence. The USA does have that money, diplomatic and military aid it gives as a bit of leverage but when do they use it? Not so far so Israel is safe to do what it wants. They are just as guilty as the USA for helping make it easier for Israel to do their atrocities. Just as guilty.

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By nemesis2010, April 21, 2010 at 10:03 am Link to this comment

@ Tony Wicher:

Pilate didn’t crucify the truth. Jesus is a myth. The truth is that the Jesus of the Bible never existed; it’s all made up. Truth is not a living breathing entity; it just is.

”The most curious social convention of the great age in which we live is the one to the effect that religious opinions should be respected.” –H.L. Mencken

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By nemesis2010, April 21, 2010 at 10:01 am Link to this comment

@ OzarkMichael:

Amen brother! Preach on preacher man!

” Only Nancy Pelosi, Barack Obama, and Chomsky lovers would be ignorant enough to lump them all together.”

You are so right. Only dem frickin libaruls wood do dat. Because when the teabaggers all have signs that call president Obama a socialist, communist, fascist, antichrist, and a Nazi they are… well, they are… ummm… what are they OzarkMichael? Obese, Cheetos dusted, dumbass crackers perhaps? 

” To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead.” –Thomas Paine

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By nemesis2010, April 21, 2010 at 9:59 am Link to this comment

@ ITW:

I’ll answer (your question as to whether or not the U.S. is a shithole) as soon as you’ve replied to the following which you were asked last night.

Tell us ITW, to whom does South Africa belong? Does it belong to the blacks or the Afrikaners or both? Oh, and please explain your position whatever it might be.

And before I answer would you please provide evidence that the unemployment rate in the U.S. is really 20%.

I hadn’t realized that you were an authority on South Africa until yesterday afternoon. I’m glad to have found that out because I wanted to ask you if there is any truth to the rumor that their normal unemployment rate is about 30% and that the numbers have improved lately due to the construction for the World Cup. What percentage of the population lives in extreme poverty ITW? Since you’ve been there would you be so kind as to describe some of the conditions in which the poor live? If your memory doesn’t serve you well today, I’ve some photos from which I can describe the conditions to the people here at TD.

”...there’s a great difference between acknowledging Jewish oppression and using that as a cover for the oppression of another people.”—Edward Wadie Saïd (Palestinian American literary theorist, cultural critic)

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By amunaor, April 21, 2010 at 9:56 am Link to this comment


All—Psychological—‘States’ that pander to and feed the base instincts of the beast within; without any checks and balances, result in catastrophic misery to others.

Peace, Best Wishes and Hope

WikiLeaks—Collateral Murder:

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By nemesis2010, April 21, 2010 at 9:56 am Link to this comment

@ elisalouisa:

Oh! So now it’s a matter of semantics. I’ll have to cede elisalouisa; you win!

Today I’m of the opinion that South Africa and India serve as models of “nonviolent” revolutionary success. We’ll just not mention that India’s struggle for independence—especially the aftermath when it was all “people of color” struggling for domination—was, arguably, one of the bloodiest and most violent conflicts of the 21st century; because as we all know, putting our heads in the sand of denial always best serves humanity. 

We should all want to emulate them; with vast majorities of their populations steeped in a poverty that no American can even imagine unless he’s actually been there and seen it. One can only wonder why there are so many Indians that have forsaken all that “non-violent” revolutionary success and migrated to England and the States to live. Probably sacrificing their lives to come here and show us where we went wrong. It touches my heart and brings a tear to my one good eye.

Here’s a little something for you Elisa:

“After the critical weakening of the British Empire by the First World War, and most particularly after the notorious massacre of Indian protestors at the city of Amritsar in April 1919, it became apparent even to the then controllers of the subcontinent that rule from London would come to an end sooner rather than later. It was no longer a matter of “if” but of “when.” Had this not been the case, a campaign of peaceful disobedience would have stood no chance. Thus Mohandas K. Gandhi (sometimes known as “the Mahatma” in respect for his standing as a Hindu elder) was in a sense pushing at an open door. There is no dishonor in that, but it is exactly his religious convictions that make his legacy a dubious rather than a saintly one. To state the matter shortly: he wanted India to revert to a village-dominated and primitive “spiritual” society, he made power-sharing with Muslims much harder, and he was quite prepared to make hypocritical use of violence when he thought it might suit him…” 

“…One wishes every day that Martin Luther King had lived on and continued to lend his presence and his wisdom to American politics. For “the Mahatma,” who was murdered by members of a fanatical Hindu sect for not being devout enough, one wishes that he could have lived if only to see what damage he had wrought (and is relieved that he did not live to implement his ludicrous spinning-wheel program).”  —Chritopher Hitchens, “God is not Great”

There’s more. Read chapter 13 of the book if you’ve the courage.

”The urge to save humanity is almost always only a false-face for the urge to rule it.” 
—H.L. Mencken

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By thebeerdoctor, April 21, 2010 at 9:46 am Link to this comment

Thanks to thecrow for quoting Chomsky on the JFK assassination.
“I mean, I don’t know who assassinated him and I don’t care, but what difference does it make? Its not an issue of any general public interest.”

What a revealing explanation as to why Professor Chomsky refuses even to consider what actually happened on Sept. 11, 2001. Remarkable that someone who often recalls state sponsored assassinations in foreign lands important, does not think that the assassination of the first Irish-American catholic President, is “not an issue of any general public interest.”
Mind you, I am in no way a JFK fan, but the remarkably stupid callousness of Chomsky’s assertions, reveal an intellectual character flaw worth examining. Also, I do not buy into the Oliver Stone crackerjack box theories either. My main hunch (and that’s all it is) is that JFK and RFK were terminated with extreme prejudice because they double-crossed the Mob.

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By Leefeller, April 21, 2010 at 9:42 am Link to this comment


Jim Morrison…. said that!... “In America there is a category and label for every thing.”  I did not know he said that, I say the same thing all the time, this is so profound, especially coming after 4/20, wow man, get real man!

By the way, I am not a Doors fan,  I prefer Credence and am now waiting with bated breath, for the second coming of Sarah Palins musical talent in her new CD;..... (Call me bitch again and I will gut you like a Moose) though I never ever heard Sarah Palin sing, I know it would be preferred to the Doors!

Yeah, I love to make political decisions from celebrities or so called celebrities. Well,... I liked Cat Stevens so what does that mean? 

One thing, Socialism as promoted and portrayed from my point of view does not seem much different than the Tribal societies of the desert.  For some reason I doubt Socialism (Communism)  are up to speed for the world of today? For what it is worth;..... I agree with Shester on this issue for the we of US.

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By amunaor, April 21, 2010 at 9:42 am Link to this comment

RE: TS April 21 at 2:35 pm

As I stated elsewhere…

Have you ever heard of ‘Kingdom Towing’? Its analogous to Guido; from the lending institute, coming to your home in the middle of the night, with a tow truck, to repossess the vehicle for which your payments have lapsed; but in this case the repossession process; the tow truck would be the War Machine.

The ‘Made in the U.S.A.’ neoChinese Capitalists would look back at the nest in which they were born and shat in, as a liability and let rip.

Peace, Best Wishes and Hope

WikiLeaks—Collateral Murder:

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By Tennessee-Socialist, April 21, 2010 at 9:35 am Link to this comment

AND THE UGLY TRUTH IS that US citizens will have to deal with the American Oligarchic Capitalist system in their lifetimes.  We have to accept the painful truth that America will continue on its path to police corporate oligarchic fascism for many more years to come. And that the USA won’t be socialist in our lifetime. American citizens are too political-apathetic and socialism won’t come in political-apathetic societies. so if i were you i would tell your children to study a lot, to try to get them into a college so that they won’t have economic limitations and depressions in their adult lives

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By gerard, April 21, 2010 at 9:17 am Link to this comment

Nemesis2010:  The thing I always like about “socialists” is their cheerful and tolerant disposition. Thanks for your reply.
Please see Webster’s Collegiate:  nemesis:  4. an opponent whom a person cannot best
  I also lean toward socialism though so far in my 96 years I have not lived under a socialist government and what I have read about sociaism in practice so far has had a few flaws here and there. The problem being greed for power plus the human tendency to screw up.
  Protests are one thing, but not enough. They point to what is wrong, according to the protesters, and are effective occasionally when they succeed in cohereing around ideas whose “time has come”—that is, other factors such as unity, and articulation for a cause recognized by larger numbers of people than merely themselves. (I could say much more here, but you probably can gather what I mean.)
  Beyond protest there has to be ongoing organization functioning democratically at many levels together, from neighborhood to capitol. A high degree of cooperation, mutual understanding, lack of violence or threat and persistent attempts to speak clearly and openly. Without media cooperation this would require funding from like-minded individuals—a huge problem but not, I think, impossible.
  Some of the post-Seattle-type organization, for example, held over for a while, here and there, and might still serve as a core of experience.  (I don’t know, as I wasns’t there personally.  My limited experience comes out of the late 50s, the 60s and 70s,)
  As to “having no real clue as to what you will replace (the economic system) with”:  My instincts are screaming at me that certainly I am not alone in this quandary.  I suspect that this blind ignorance goes all the way up to the top by this time, and Paul Klugman and I are more or less in the same boat along with 50,000 Frenchmen.  It will have to be worked out over time (democratically, one would hope) but again, with unified nonviolent intentions it might “come to pass” as they say.  Magic, seemingly, like a lot of innovations.
  There’s much, much more, but suffice it to say that my aspirations are not so vaunted as you think.
My main point is that constant preaching about how bad things are, and getting worse, is no more than political Armageddon and helps people do nothing because of fear or reliance on a “higher power.” If people are to take responsibility for change, they need vision, and encouragement plus level-headed reasoning, plus as much knowledge as possible about strategy and tactics most likely to work for them without bloodshed or imprisonment.
  It’s a tall order, especially for spoiled, lazy Americans—but then again, “.. divided we fall.”

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By Shenonymous, April 21, 2010 at 9:00 am Link to this comment

I wasn’t able to browse the Fury website for more than a couple of lines
because it was so nuts.  There is criticism and then there is bonkers. 
It’s one thing to beware of insanity and to do something rational about
it if it manifests into harm and 9/11 was certainly that.  Then always
there are those whose imagination takes them to Alpha Centauri as well
whose thinking gets on overload without much to go on except their
wild emotion devises all kinds of bizarre theories to account for
heinous acts.  There are ways to deal with catastrophes, and ranting
and raving is one way but inefficient backwards wheeling on a tricycle
only gets one squinty-eyed looks.

That is your reason for truth Tony Wicher? It is vague and indistinct,
therefore useless.  And your prophesy is about as good as a yodel
meter.  Look at all the various “truths” that have already shown up on
this forum.  And if there is absolute truth, who really knows it?  Can it
be known or is it simply a synthetic idea that the human mind has
invented as a hypothetical model to that all the various truths each
thinks they have might have something against which to measure.  Let’s
not really talk about truth for that is a hot button item that will get you
nowhere.  Or,... we could turn this Chomsky forum into a debate about
truth that would surely go over the 1000 comment mark and befuddle
Leefeller, again.  Heck I don’t mind.  What shall it be? 

By the way Leefeller, that seasoning you spoke of going on in the
United States, would that be baharat or kosher? 

And I am a damn American Democrat capitalist who thinks certain
social programs are necessary for a huge economically diverse
population, like health, education, food and housing, and that is about
it.  So whose truth is the right truth? 

And is Jim Morrison the measure of truth now?  Holey moley!  Where’d I
set down my Eric Hoffer book about true believers?

balkas, please name a more lawful society than the US.  Seriously, do
you honestly think anyone is taking you seriously?

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By amunaor, April 21, 2010 at 8:48 am Link to this comment

***Tennessee-Socialist, April 20 at 8:43 pm

US ORIGINS In Genocide/Extermination.  Starting in 1600s:

…It was the colonists’ expressed desire that the Indians be exterminated, rooted ‘out from being longer a people upon the face of the Earth.’

Long before Thomas Jefferson’s desire to “exterminate” the Indians, and George Washington had said that Indians were “wolves and beasts” who deserved nothing from the whites but total ruin, the MASSACHUSETTS BAY COLONY in 1630 made it illegal to “shoot off a gun in any unnecessary occasion, or at any game EXCEPT an Indian or a wolf.”***


RE: TS – Thanks for the links to real U.S. ‘history’, for here, there is only ‘their-story’ e.g. George Washington cutting down the cherry tree; never telling a lie while casting a silver piece across a river.

Even the weather maps here stop at the border; there is no weather beyond it; as there are no people besides themselves.

Such is the result from that apathy and anti-people behavior caused by self-hatred Nietzsche spoke of.

Peace, Best Wishes and Hope

WikiLeaks—Collateral Murder:

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By balkas, April 21, 2010 at 8:44 am Link to this comment

To simplify it: in a lawless or ‘lawful’ society like in US, expect more lawlesnes or ‘lawfulness’.

If i were an american i wld vote for a tennessee’s socialist party. I am advocating set up of an idyllic society and a timocratic rule everywhere. tnx

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By Tony Wicher, April 21, 2010 at 8:35 am Link to this comment


I also understand by “socialism” something good, namely the highest development of democracy, a society where democratic principles are applied to the economy to reign in the totalitarian power of capital so that it serves the interests of everyone in society and not just an elite ownership class.
I call sociopolitical change in that direction “progress”.

As to the unprecedented distrust of government that Chomsky correctly observes, my own view is that we have been living a historical lie since Sept. 11, 2001, and after almost nine years this has created a form of neurotic anxiety in American society that can only be cured by an honest official investigation into the events of 9/11 that will establish the historical record of what really happened that day. The longer we go on living this lie, the worse the distrust of the government will get.

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By Tennessee-Socialist, April 21, 2010 at 8:32 am Link to this comment

Leefeeler: Do you think that the fear of many US citizens in the 1960s and 1970s toward revolutionary changes is what made Jim Morrison who was a revolutionary-socialist from The Doors move to France?  I saw in his biographical movie by Val Kilmer saying that “In America there is a category and label for every thing.”.  Meaning that the USA was a dictatorship of labels, categories and no possibility for art to suceed.

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