Chomsky: 'There Is No War On Terror'

By Geov Parrish, AlterNet. Posted January 14, 2006.

The acclaimed critic of U.S. foreign policy analyzes Bush's current political troubles, the war on Iraq, and what's really behind the global 'war on terror.' Tools
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For over 40 years, MIT professor Noam Chomsky has been one of the world's leading intellectual critics of U.S. foreign policy. Today, with America's latest imperial adventure in trouble both politically and militarily, Chomsky -- who turned 77 last month -- vows not to slow down "as long as I'm ambulatory." I spoke with him by phone, on Dec. 9 and again on Dec. 20, from his office in Cambridge.

Geov Parrish: Is George Bush in political trouble? And if so, why?

Noam Chomsky: George Bush would be in severe political trouble if there were an opposition political party in the country. Just about every day, they're shooting themselves in the foot. The striking fact about contemporary American politics is that the Democrats are making almost no gain from this. The only gain that they're getting is that the Republicans are losing support. Now, again, an opposition party would be making hay, but the Democrats are so close in policy to the Republicans that they can't do anything about it. When they try to say something about Iraq, George Bush turns back to them, or Karl Rove turns back to them, and says, "How can you criticize it? You all voted for it." And, yeah, they're basically correct.

How could the Democrats distinguish themselves at this point, given that they've already played into that trap?

Democrats read the polls way more than I do, their leadership. They know what public opinion is. They could take a stand that's supported by public opinion instead of opposed to it. Then they could become an opposition party, and a majority party. But then they're going to have to change their position on just about everything.

Take, for example, take your pick, say for example health care. Probably the major domestic problem for people. A large majority of the population is in favor of a national health care system of some kind. And that's been true for a long time. But whenever that comes up -- it's occasionally mentioned in the press -- it's called politically impossible, or "lacking political support," which is a way of saying that the insurance industry doesn't want it, the pharmaceutical corporations don't want it, and so on. Okay, so a large majority of the population wants it, but who cares about them? Well, Democrats are the same. Clinton came up with some cockamamie scheme which was so complicated you couldn't figure it out, and it collapsed.

Kerry in the last election, the last debate in the election, October 28 I think it was, the debate was supposed to be on domestic issues. And the New York Times had a good report of it the next day. They pointed out, correctly, that Kerry never brought up any possible government involvement in the health system because it "lacks political support." It's their way of saying, and Kerry's way of understanding, that political support means support from the wealthy and the powerful. Well, that doesn't have to be what the Democrats are. You can imagine an opposition party that's based on popular interests and concerns.

Given the lack of substantive differences in the foreign policies of the two parties --

Or domestic.

Yeah, or domestic. But I'm setting this up for a foreign policy question. Are we being set up for a permanent state of war?

I don't think so. Nobody really wants war. What you want is victory. Take, say, Central America. In the 1980s, Central America was out of control. The U.S. had to fight a vicious terrorist war in Nicaragua, had to support murderous terrorist states in El Salvador and Guatemala, and Honduras, but that was a state of war. All right, the terrorists succeeded. Now, it's more or less peaceful. So you don't even read about Central America any more because it's peaceful. I mean, suffering and miserable, and so on, but peaceful. So it's not a state of war. And the same elsewhere. If you can keep people under control, it's not a state of war.

Take, say, Russia and Eastern Europe. Russia ran Eastern Europe for half a century, almost, with very little military intervention. Occasionally they'd have to invade East Berlin, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, but most of the time it was peaceful. And they thought everything was fine -- run by local security forces, local political figures, no big problem. That's not a permanent state of war.

In the War on Terror, however, how does one define victory against a tactic? You can't ever get there.

There are metrics. For example, you can measure the number of terrorist attacks. Well, that's gone up sharply under the Bush administration, very sharply after the Iraq war. As expected -- it was anticipated by intelligence agencies that the Iraq war would increase the likelihood of terror. And the post-invasion estimates by the CIA, National Intelligence Council, and other intelligence agencies are exactly that. Yes, it increased terror. In fact, it even created something which never existed -- new training ground for terrorists, much more sophisticated than Afghanistan, where they were training professional terrorists to go out to their own countries. So, yeah, that's a way to deal with the War on Terror, namely, increase terror. And the obvious metric, the number of terrorist attacks, yeah, they've succeeded in increasing terror.

The fact of the matter is that there is no War on Terror. It's a minor consideration. So invading Iraq and taking control of the world's energy resources was way more important than the threat of terror. And the same with other things. Take, say, nuclear terror. The American intelligence systems estimate that the likelihood of a "dirty bomb," a dirty nuclear bomb attack in the United States in the next ten years, is about 50 percent. Well, that's pretty high. Are they doing anything about it? Yeah. They're increasing the threat, by increasing nuclear proliferation, by compelling potential adversaries to take very dangerous measures to try to counter rising American threats.

This is even sometimes discussed. You can find it in the strategic analysis literature. Take, say, the invasion of Iraq again. We're told that they didn't find weapons of mass destruction. Well, that's not exactly correct. They did find weapons of mass destruction, namely, the ones that had been sent to Saddam by the United States, Britain, and others through the 1980s. A lot of them were still there. They were under control of U.N. inspectors and were being dismantled. But many were still there. When the U.S. invaded, the inspectors were kicked out, and Rumsfeld and Cheney didn't tell their troops to guard the sites. So the sites were left unguarded, and they were systematically looted. The U.N. inspectors did continue their work by satellite and they identified over 100 sites that were systematically looted, like, not somebody going in and stealing something, but carefully, systematically looted.

By people who knew what they were doing.

Yeah, people who knew what they were doing. It meant that they were taking the high-precision equipment that you can use for nuclear weapons and missiles, dangerous biotoxins, all sorts of stuff. Nobody knows where it went, but, you know, you hate to think about it. Well, that's increasing the threat of terror, substantially. Russia has sharply increased its offensive military capacity in reaction to Bush's programs, which is dangerous enough, but also to try to counter overwhelming U.S. dominance in offensive capacity. They are compelled to ship nuclear missiles all over their vast territory. And mostly unguarded. And the CIA is perfectly well aware that Chechen rebels have been casing Russian railway installations, probably with a plan to try to steal nuclear missiles. Well, yeah, that could be an apocalypse. But they're increasing that threat. Because they don't care that much.

Same with global warming. They're not stupid. They know that they're increasing the threat of a serious catastrophe. But that's a generation or two away. Who cares? There's basically two principles that define the Bush administration policies: stuff the pockets of your rich friends with dollars, and increase your control over the world. Almost everything follows from that. If you happen to blow up the world, well, you know, it's somebody else's business. Stuff happens, as Rumsfeld said.

You've been tracking U.S. wars of foreign aggression since Vietnam, and now we're in Iraq. Do you think there's any chance in the aftermath, given the fiasco that it's been, that there will be any fundamental changes in U.S. foreign policy? And if so, how would it come about?

Well, there are significant changes. Compare, for example, the war in Iraq with 40 years ago, the war in Vietnam. There's quite significant change. Opposition to the war in Iraq is far greater than the much worse war in Vietnam. Iraq is the first war I think in the history of European imperialism, including the U.S., where there was massive protest before the war was officially launched. In Vietnam it took four or five years before there was any visible protest. Protest was so slight that nobody even remembers or knows that Kennedy attacked South Vietnam in 1962. It was a serious attack. It was years later before protest finally developed.

What do you think should be done in Iraq?

Well, the first thing that should be done in Iraq is for us to be serious about what's going on. There is almost no serious discussion, I'm sorry to say, across the spectrum, of the question of withdrawal. The reason for that is that we are under a rigid doctrine in the West, a religious fanaticism, that says we must believe that the United States would have invaded Iraq even if its main product was lettuce and pickles, and the oil resources of the world were in Central Africa. Anyone who doesn't believe that is condemned as a conspiracy theorist, a Marxist, a madman, or something. Well, you know, if you have three gray cells functioning, you know that that's perfect nonsense. The U.S. invaded Iraq because it has enormous oil resources, mostly untapped, and it's right in the heart of the world's energy system. Which means that if the U.S. manages to control Iraq, it extends enormously its strategic power, what Zbigniew Brzezinski calls its critical leverage over Europe and Asia. Yeah, that's a major reason for controlling the oil resources -- it gives you strategic power. Even if you're on renewable energy you want to do that. So that's the reason for invading Iraq, the fundamental reason.

Now let's talk about withdrawal. Take any day's newspapers or journals and so on. They start by saying the United States aims to bring about a sovereign democratic independent Iraq. I mean, is that even a remote possibility? Just consider what the policies would be likely to be of an independent sovereign Iraq. If it's more or less democratic, it'll have a Shiite majority. They will naturally want to improve their linkages with Iran, Shiite Iran. Most of the clerics come from Iran. The Badr Brigade, which basically runs the South, is trained in Iran. They have close and sensible economic relationships which are going to increase. So you get an Iraqi/Iran loose alliance. Furthermore, right across the border in Saudi Arabia, there's a Shiite population which has been bitterly oppressed by the U.S.-backed fundamentalist tyranny. And any moves toward independence in Iraq are surely going to stimulate them, it's already happening. That happens to be where most of Saudi Arabian oil is. Okay, so you can just imagine the ultimate nightmare in Washington: a loose Shiite alliance controlling most of the world's oil, independent of Washington and probably turning toward the East, where China and others are eager to make relationships with them, and are already doing it. Is that even conceivable? The U.S. would go to nuclear war before allowing that, as things now stand.

Now, any discussion of withdrawal from Iraq has to at least enter the real world, meaning, at least consider these issues. Just take a look at the commentary in the United States, across the spectrum. How much discussion do you see of these issues? Well, you know, approximately zero, which means that the discussion is just on Mars. And there's a reason for it. We're not allowed to concede that our leaders have rational imperial interests. We have to assume that they're good-hearted and bumbling. But they're not. They're perfectly sensible. They can understand what anybody else can understand. So the first step in talk about withdrawal is: consider the actual situation, not some dream situation, where Bush is pursuing a vision of democracy or something. If we can enter the real world we can begin to talk about it. And yes, I think there should be withdrawal, but we have to talk about it in the real world and know what the White House is thinking. They're not willing to live in a dream world.

How will the U.S. deal with China as a superpower?

What's the problem with China?

Well, competing for resources, for example.

NC: Well, if you believe in markets, the way we're supposed to, compete for resources through the market. So what's the problem? The problem is that the United States doesn't like the way it's coming out. Well, too bad. Who has ever liked the way it's coming out when you're not winning? China isn't any kind of threat. We can make it a threat. If you increase the military threats against China, then they will respond. And they're already doing it. They'll respond by building up their military forces, their offensive military capacity, and that's a threat. So, yeah, we can force them to become a threat.

What's your biggest regret over 40 years of political activism? What would you have done differently?

I would have done more. Because the problems are so serious and overwhelming that it's disgraceful not to do more about it.

What gives you hope?

What gives me hope actually is public opinion. Public opinion in the United States is very well studied, we know a lot about it. It's rarely reported, but we know about it. And it turns out that, you know, I'm pretty much in the mainstream of public opinion on most issues. I'm not on some, not on gun control or creationism or something like that, but on most crucial issues, the ones we've been talking about, I find myself pretty much at the critical end, but within the spectrum of public opinion. I think that's a very hopeful sign. I think the United States ought to be an organizer's paradise.

What sort of organizing should be done to try and change some of these policies?

Well, there's a basis for democratic change. Take what happened in Bolivia a couple of days ago. How did a leftist indigenous leader get elected? Was it showing up at the polls once every four years and saying, "Vote for me!"? No. It's because there are mass popular organizations which are working all the time on everything from blocking privatization of water to resources to local issues and so on, and they're actually participatory organizations. Well, that's democracy. We're a long way from it. And that's one task of organizing.

Geov Parrish is a Seattle-based columnist and reporter for Seattle Weekly, In These Times and Eat the State! He writes the "Straight Shot" column for WorkingForChange. Noam Chomsky is an acclaimed linguist and political theorist. Among his latest books are Hegemony or Survival from Metropolitan Books and Profit Over People: Neoliberalism and the Global Order published by Seven Stories Press.

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Posted by: jbloggz on Jan 14, 2006 12:48 AM

The myth of American superpower has been laid bare in this war in Iraq. Okay when fighting an air war, with no opposition what so ever, flattening people from fifteen thousand feet. The truth of the matter is, they're now fighting a classic terrorist style war in which they cannot win despite the Bush rhetoric. In fact NO terror type war can be won by military force! And invariably the wars end as they should have done in the beginning by talk and consensus. NC is right that the end game in Iraqs case has, and will, backfire badly on the Bush aims, which is control of the worlds major oil resources. Better he cosies up to Iran, rather than threaten to blast em to oblivion! But history, and a different kind of religious fundementalism from his own, will make it pretty nigh impossible.

Most of the day to day "terrorism" in Iraq is actually not from Al Quaeda, but simply folk who are avenging the deaths of their family members. So many innocents have died in this so called war that, there is no chance of this aspect stopping. The slow drip of American casualties every day too, will eventually awaken the sleeping giant of US public opinion. But as NC says it won't be Democrats who will do it it'll need a completely new political party, with totally different aims.

It's time now for the people of the USA to make up their minds just what they want, they must also recognize that the days of the Super Power are numbered, as what happened to the British Empire. Had Saddam had the foresight to disband his army before the war started and settle down to what is now described as an insurgency type war. He would still be in power the US forces would not be in Baghdad even, in fact they perhaps would all be home with their families and friends. A lot less people would be dead and maimed and who knows Rumsfeld would back in the green zone chatting with his pal again!
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Good Old Noam...
Posted by: pixiequix on Jan 14, 2006 1:29 AM

As livid and brilliant as ever.
[« Reply to this comment] [Post a new comment »]

» Yes, especially in identifying the problem. What about the solution? Posted by: Pepper

» RE: What about the solution? Posted by: jbloggz

» RE: What about the solution? Posted by: Lincoln fan

» Solutions must come from WE the people Posted by: GreenLibbie

» RE: Solutions must come from WE the people Posted by: GreenLibbie

The Chilling Truth
Posted by: Riverside on Jan 14, 2006 3:46 AM

It is refreshing to read of Noam Chomsky's expression of hope for a democratic solution to our current crisis. It is also chillingly scary when one realizes that so many of we the people are still not mad enough or scared enough to do the right thing.

The stagnation of the "other " party screams for a new political party. Ideally such a party would evolve from concerned progressives and conservatives. This won't happen unless we overcome the manufactured antipathy between us and come together for this nation, and for real world peace.

If we try sleeping through this, we may wake up being rescued by Russia and China as the United States crumbles under both debt and imperialized stupidity.

The thought of this great nation disintegrating because of the greed, hubris, incompetence and inhumanity of its current leadership should move all of us to legally and democratically bring about change...NOW!
[« Reply to this comment] [Post a new comment »]

» Lets talk about how? Posted by: Pepper

» RE: Lets talk about how? Posted by: ghoster

» RE: Lets talk about how? Posted by: katinmn

» RE: Lets talk about how? Posted by: Doubtom

» On the wrong track Posted by: Lincoln fan

» RE: Lets talk about how? Posted by: jbloggz

» RE: Lets talk about how? Posted by: Doubtom

» RE: Lets talk about how? Posted by: Basenjis

I wish he would have said what WE, THE PEOPLE should do.
Posted by: Pepper on Jan 14, 2006 4:24 AM

I know he said to organize, but he didn't say much more about it. I am unsure of what he meant. Does he mean protests? Does he mean organize and lobby? If so, he has already said it wouldn't do any good.

He basically said the dem party is bought and paid for as well. He said they were checking "public opinion" of the oil, and other 'companies' who donate and contribute to the political campaigns and thus "we, the people" are irrelevant in this battle (according to the dems).

I don't think a third party will matter cause it takes mega time to build and become effective and by then it will be coopted as well unless we get public campaign financing to do the job. Its the only way and we don't have time. Its running out.
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» RE: I wish he would have said what WE, THE PEOPLE should do. Posted by: Lincoln fan

» try this articles link Posted by: vespasian01

» RE: I wish he would have said what WE, THE PEOPLE should do. Posted by: slav

» RE: I wish he would have said what WE, THE PEOPLE should do. Posted by: jag585

Posted by: Lincoln fan on Jan 14, 2006 4:26 AM

They (the Democrats) could take a stand that's supported by public opinion instead of opposed to it. Then they could become an opposition party, and a majority party. But then they're going to have to change their position on just about everything.

As Mr.Chomsky emphatically points out there is no opposition party. Both parties are working in the interest of the corporate establishment. They're Republican Right and Republican Lite. The working class taxpayer is not represented. As it was in 1776 so it is today, "Taxation without representation is Tyranny". Now as then. the patriot's duty is to overthrow it. This can be done. Join
the Lincoln Initiative a grassroots movement (not an organization) to make "government of the people, by the people, and for the people" a reality. There are no dues, no contributions, no registration, no marches, no meetings and no demonstrations. Fight the revolution from the comfort of your own home. Click on join today
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» RE: True Posted by: Pepper

» RE: True Posted by: Lincoln fan

» RE: True Posted by: Basenjis

Welcome to the real world
Posted by: katinmn on Jan 14, 2006 4:50 AM

It's no wonder the right branded Noam Chomsky a left-wing extremist decades ago -- truth is a real threat to those who want to consolidate power or ride along on the waves of power.

Now any of us -- and I believe its fast becoming the majority of us -- who question the motives of the neocons are left-wing extremists too, according to loyalists of both the Republican and Democratic parties.

I've got my fingers crossed that there are enough of us willing to speak truth to power to turn back America's march toward self destruction.

Viva Chomsky!
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» RE: Welcome to the real world Posted by: Basenjis

America Renewal!!!!
Posted by: Ottomatic on Jan 14, 2006 5:13 AM

The largest transfer of wealth in the history of the world is taking place right: NOW!!!!
From the People: to the Corporations!
Even worst that that, is the transfer of Judicial and Government POWER!!!
From the Man to: Machine!
The Machine has taken over the World!
America is being set up for: Renewal.
Based on that tested European design, used during WWII.
Steal the government.
Brainwash the sheeple.
Destroy all descent.
Spy on the people.
Phony Wars.
Concentration Camps!
Creates an endless supply of work for the:
Corporate Military Police State!
God bless:
The Robots!
Long live the Machine!!
[« Reply to this comment] [Post a new comment »]

» RE: America Renewal!!!! Posted by: YogiBear

If you're serious about change, here's a community to visit:
Posted by: katinmn on Jan 14, 2006 5:26 AM

This is a member-moderated LEFTIST site created to combat the growing propaganda from the corporate-owned New Democrats who have been selling the people down the river.

If you are a right-winger or a moderate, you will not feel comfortable here nor do we want you here. We may keep one or two of you around for amusement but we will not allow you to influence our board's direction.
[« Reply to this comment] [Post a new comment »]

» RE: If you're serious about change, here's a community to visit: Posted by: crusty

» RE: If you're serious about change, here's a community to visit: Posted by: katinmn

» RE: If you're serious about change, here's a community to visit: Posted by: crusty

» RE: If you're serious about change, here's a community to visit: Posted by: katinmn

» RE: If you're serious about change, here's a community to visit: Posted by: Lizmv

» RE: If you're serious about change, here's a community to visit: Posted by: crusty

» RE: If you're serious about change, here's a community to visit: Posted by: katinmn

» RE: If you're serious about change, here's a community to visit: Posted by: Lizmv

Brainwash the sheeple!
Posted by: jefhadist on Jan 14, 2006 5:55 AM

I love it ! It's the end of the world as we know it.........and always has been! The U.S. finally gets its comeuppance. We've prefered and still do prefer to bitch and moan about China or the neocons/right-wingers or "whatever" instead of digging in and organizing where it our families and workplaces, churches and neighborhoods. Will the creativity of the past 50 years be a waste? Have the efforts to reverse corpororate takeovers, build real communities, share information for free, build sane models of living and loving, and re-connect with honest spirituality been for naught? I don't think so. Maybe the U.S. doesn't get to "rule the world" anymore. Maybe it's time to try something more real.
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Thank you, Noam Chomsky!
Posted by: Basenjis on Jan 14, 2006 6:15 AM

How refreshing it is to read such a clear, plain-spoken analysis of the Bush administration's flaunting of public opinion in its determination to control the supply of Iraqi oil.
[« Reply to this comment] [Post a new comment »]

It's time for a new beginning
Posted by: custersbud on Jan 14, 2006 7:18 AM

As a lifetime Democrat, and former precinct chairman, I couldn't agree more. It's time to reorganize from the ground up! This bunch of pompous windbags, Kennedy, Biden, Lieberman, et al, don't represent today's growing progressive movement. The hope that we could see a Democratic takeover of the House and Senate on '06, has evaporated before it began. Given our current climate of cronyism, incompetence, and corruption, one would think the Dems have an opportunity, but all we hear is silence, and all we see is puffery! It's time for us "common folk" to unite, form a progressive party that's independent of the Democratic Party, and get rid of this mess in Washington! If we don't, even Canada is not far enough away!
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» RE: It's time for a new beginning Posted by: Basenjis

the reality of our policy
Posted by: hotar on Jan 14, 2006 7:38 AM

Boy, it sure would be great if the progressive majority in the U.S. got motivated and did something! FAT CHANCE! Most people are too busy surviving, or watching Friends and reality shows to do anything political. Most people in the U.S. regard politics as anathema; something a bunch of fat cats in Washington do, not something everyday people do. So the status quo is a fait accompli.

And the reality is, as Chomsky says and as I have argued, that the U.S. has too big a stake in controlling Mideast oil reserves. The idea that we'll just encourage Iraq to become a democracy and then leave is a pie in the sky; ain't gonna happen. We're there for as long as the oil lasts, which should be decades if the experts are right. Get used to it, it isn't going to change no matter how much the people protest.
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Key Element
Posted by: Jeff G on Jan 14, 2006 7:41 AM

I think a key element to the change we want to see can be gleemed from what we are doing right here, in this comment section on Alternet, and on every blog and independent media outlet on the net.

The founders understood how important freedom of the press was. None understood this more than Thomas Jefferson, who endured endless ridicule at the hands of the Federalist press, yet resisted the urge to shut them down, instead choosing to counter them with his own words. He believed that The People were capable of discerning the truth.

In a letter to Judge John Tyler, Jefferson writes:

"No experiment can be more interesting than that we are now trying, and which we trust will end in establishing the fact, that man may be governed by reason and truth. Our first object should therefore be, to leave open to him all the avenues to truth. The most effectual hitherto found, is the freedom of the press. It is therefore, the first shut up by those who fear the investigation of their actions. The firmness with which the people have withstood the late abuses of the press, the discernment they have manifested between truth and falsehood, show that they may safely be trusted to hear everything true and false, and to form a correct judgment between them." (Emphasis mine)

Just look at how the independent press has flourished on the web compared to just a few short years ago. We are building to a crescendo. If you don't have a blog, start one. If you have the means, print your own newsletter and distribute it for free.

Write, write, write.
Lealet, leaflet, leaflet.
Pamphlet, pamphlet, pamphlet.
Talk, talk, talk.
Never shut up.

Hit your local Wal Mart or church parking lot and put a copy under every wiper blade. We must be tireless. Eternal vigilance.

Build the crescendo until they can't drown it out, until no amount of drugs, alcohol, reality tv, or shopping can distract them from it. Be a constant buzz in their ear.
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» RE: Key Element Posted by: Basenjis

» RE: Key Element Posted by: jag585

Usually agree with Noam...
Posted by: tcx2 on Jan 14, 2006 7:46 AM

but not today.

I've said this before. Things will only get worse in this country before they begin to get better. I say this because a large portion of the population still feels as if America is a moral country. It is this delusion which allows people to continue their day-to-day life while ignorantly supporting social inequality and slavery lite.

It is the classic "scapegoat" conundrum. Someone must ALWAYS pay for a certain standard of living. Those at the top who own the media perpetuate the moral myth so the tower of exploitation is not exposed. They perpetuate the myth that by working hard and being moral, anyone can achieve "success." The American Dream.

Look at any success story in America. Modern or not. Bill Gates was a liar and a thief. A true backstabber and scoundrel. Although the vast majority of the population thinks he is a swell fellow simply because he is a success. This story repeats itself for Steve Jobs, and just about anyone who makes it in the land of greed.

Which brings us to fascism and why people are confused at the democrats lack of political drive. Unless one sees what the republican power hegemony represents, one will never understand why the democrats can't compete with the republicans.

Democrats are no different from republicans. Therefore, the democrats can not attack the republicans because at every turn, their own hypocrisy and immorality is exposed. Howard Dean might be a great guy. But his party has corruption just the same, which will bring him down to their level.

One can not defeat the tactics of fascism without resorting to those same immoral tactics. Simply because the "do it at all costs" methods of fascism will always win over the moral "play by the rules and honor" tactics. Just like Bill Gates wouldn't be where he is today if he played by the rules. The good guys always come in last for this reason.

Honesty does not defeat a well constructed and delivered lie. And I think far too many are blinded by naive optimism to see the real depth of corruption, to see the real moral crisis President Carter has spoken of.

If you shop at Wal-Mart and then turn around and complain about the morally bankrupt White House, then the point has been lost on you. You must vote with your dollar and time as well. A price the apathetic masses are not willing to pay.
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» RE: Usually agree with Noam... Posted by: tcx2

» RE: Usually agree with Noam... Posted by: jag585

Posted by: Qwerty on Jan 14, 2006 8:19 AM

Saying it like it is. Bush. Cheney, et al are not stupid, it's their way of dealing with the problem of Peak Oil. It's OIL, OIL, OIL.
[« Reply to this comment] [Post a new comment »]

And the rest of the world
Posted by: Qwerty on Jan 14, 2006 8:20 AM

know it too. Only Americans who fret endlessly about the "mistakes" of WMD, Iraq-Al Qaeda connections, etc. are blissfully in the dark.
[« Reply to this comment] [Post a new comment »]

MEDIA is the key
Posted by: deborama on Jan 14, 2006 8:28 AM

The right wing ascendancy was powered by their utter control of the media and therefore the message, or the terms of the debate (aka the framing).

There are many rich liberals in this country. So far they have proved unwilling to finance an alternative to the right wing media establishment.

Grassroots is cute but, I think we have seen, utterly ineffective. This is an age of MASS media. Bloggers aren't going to change the world. We need progressive-owned and controlled TV stations and think tanks before which liberals can pontificate and yes, our "own" newspapers and polling organizations.

This is how the right wing has done it. By POURING money into a media establishment that has beautifully brainwashed the American people to vote against their own interests.

We've gotta counter this.
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» RE: MEDIA is the key Posted by: Jeff G

Subtle Changes
Posted by: jag585 on Jan 14, 2006 8:43 AM

I think that Chomsky is correct when he describes the democratic party as too close to the republicans to function as it should. I think it is accepted by "democrats" because nothing is bad enough yet. People still "comfortable" enough in this current environiment won't be moved to action until something personally hits them at home, i.e., let's say Alito is confirmed, and a case comes up involving pensions or 401k's. He sides with the corporation, and people, "baby boomers", lose a lot of money. That's the kind of thing, other than outright war on our shores, that will get people to move - but it will be too late then.
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There's folks to stand against the System
Posted by: jeffrey7 on Jan 14, 2006 9:35 AM

We're here and we're not going away. In this controlled Democracy folks who are against the way things are run have a habit of catching a bullet,being set up on drug charges,
or infiltrated to the point that all your efforts seem meaningless. NOT SO. The People Over Tyrants Party is pre-pared to make whole scale changes in the way this Govt operates. That's the only way we are going to make real change is if we COMPLETELY change the way this farce we call a Govt works. We are not alone,we are not crazy,we just believe there's a better way to do things and we have the vision and the balls to make it work.
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