To Noam is to Love 'Im

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Food for thought from the most important intellectual alive, Noam Chomsky:
What's Wrong With Us? Can We Fix It in Time to Survive?
by Mickey Z.
Bono calls Noam Chomsky a "rebel without a pause" and the "Elvis of academia." The New York Times goes just a tad further by labeling the MIT professor "arguably the most important intellectual alive."
 
Despite such high praise, Chomsky can always be counted on to present his radical thoughts in a simple, accessible manner, e.g "We shouldn't be looking for heroes, we should be looking for good ideas."

Yep, to Noam is to love him...


 

In the book, Confronting Empire, the late Pakistani dissident, Eqbal Ahmad says of Chomsky: "He has never wavered ... There is a consistency of substance, of posture, of outlook in his work. Consistency, of course, means repetition. Over the last twenty years, Chomsky has repeated himself a lot...the truth has to be repeated. It doesn't become stale just because it has been told once."

Repetition--if not always truth--is precisely how Corporate America does it...the same messages pounded into our brains until we submit. Such indoctrination is not easily challenged and it often requires the same brand of replication to do so. Thus, the Chomsky-inspired message for the green movement:

Speak the truth. Speak it loudly. Speak it often.

"All over the place," he explains, "from the popular culture to the propaganda system, there is constant pressure to make people feel that they are helpless, that the only role they can have is to ratify decisions and to consume."

The green movement is here to create a constant counter-pressure (so to speak) to stop all this acquiescing to political power and corporate marketing. Leading by example, we each can demonstrate how much power we have and how urgent it is that we think for ourselves and exert this influence...now.

Whether he meant to or not, Chomsky summed up the impetus for a green revolution in a single paragraph:

"Modern industrial civilization has developed within a certain system of convenient myths. The driving force of modern industrial civilization has been individual material gain. Now it's long been understood--very well--that a society that is based on this principle will destroy itself in time. It can only persist--with whatever suffering and injustice it entails--as long as it's possible to pretend that the destructive forces that humans create are limited, that the world is an infinite resource, and that the world is an infinite garbage can. At this stage of history, either the general population will take control of its own destiny and will concern itself with community issues guided by values of solidarity and sympathy and concern for others or--alternatively--there will be no destiny for anyone to control."

As Professor Chomsky sez:

"We are responsible for the predictable consequences of our actions."  
 
 
 
 

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