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Thread: Noam Chomsky

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    Noam Chomsky

    Here's a thread to discuss the ideas and writings of Noam Chomsky. I'll add more of his articles, and some Youtube interviews later, if this thread gets going. The mainstream press ostracizes him, but millions read him. He's one of my intellectual heroes.

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    You and Butterflyer have something common then.

    I've never read any of his books.

    I've just heard him speak on NPR and wasn't very impressed.

    If I was to read one of his books which would you recommend?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Earl View Post
    You and Butterflyer have something common then.

    I've never read any of his books.

    I've just heard him speak on NPR and wasn't very impressed.

    If I was to read one of his books which would you recommend?
    I would recommend Understanding Power, first.

    It's a collection of his writing and discussions on a variety of topics. Many, many, different topics.

    This way, people can get an overview of his thoughts about many topics.


    Agreeing with him is not important, IMO. His value is in his critical thinking. He's helped me think more critically.

    Also, Manufacturing Consent is one of his most famous, and I'm looking at my copy now on my bookshelf.
    ............

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    I hope this thread carries on, I'll post some of my thoughts later when I have more time - I'm particularly interested in his linguistic work and I've attended a few of his lectures in Europe. Just one question for now, in Europe I've noticed that the mainstream non-tabloid press tends to idolise Chomsky, MM when you say he is ostracized by the press are you talking about the US press?

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    The single most important author from the other side of the pond at present, well, at least that I have heard of...
    He has his place amongst European critical thinkers, not sure about the mainstream media.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stroller View Post
    The single most important author from the other side of the pond at present, well, at least that I have heard of...
    He has his place amongst European critical thinkers, not sure about the mainstream media.
    Chomsky, recently voted the world's top living intellectual, is virtually banned by the American mass media. Despite his vast knowledge of political issues and his great speaking ability, he is never seen on the numerous television talk shows. Those time slots are reserved for such mental giants as Ann Coulter and Bill O'Reilly. Many Americans haven't even heard of Noam Chomsky.

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    For what it is worth, here is my 2 cents. I hate venturing into the issues...

    My masters in the university was in ESL. That is how Chomsky made his mark. One of my profs studied under Noam.

    I soon noticed that with ESL work the teacher (Chomsky) was excellent. But as time continued more and more of his works held social beliefs.

    The classroom discussions were often lively.

    *now running out of the arena...*

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    Quote Originally Posted by floorpotato
    Chomsky, recently voted the world's top living intellectual...
    The beauty is that he's easy to read, some German intellectuals bore me to sleep - literally.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrB0b View Post
    ....MM when you say he is ostracized by the press are you talking about the US press?
    Yes,

    The US press, mass media, and all forms of info. dissemination have basically banned Chomsky.

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    Quote Originally Posted by floorpotato View Post
    Many Americans haven't even heard of Noam Chomsky.
    Never fear, we've heard of him too well.
    Reason he's not on the talk shows is he's basically a Marxist who loathes his own country. He's too much for even CNN or Oberman on MSNBC.

    p.s. this thread should engender some lively 'conversation', Milkman!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boon Mee View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by floorpotato View Post
    Many Americans haven't even heard of Noam Chomsky.
    Never fear, we've heard of him too well.
    Reason he's not on the talk shows is he's basically a Marxist who loathes his own country. He's too much for even CNN or Oberman on MSNBC.

    p.s. this thread should engender some lively 'conversation', Milkman!
    You state he's a Marxist.

    Please cite your sources. I've never read nor him say this.

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    "Libertarian Socialist" is what he calls himself.

    This is a deja vue! I am sure we had the same talk about him being Marxist and no he isn't before!

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    Well, Chomsky must be one of the most demented men in America and while he calls himself a Libertarian Socialist - let's call a duck a duck, eh.

    For example: "Chomsky told a forum in New York in December, 1967 that in China “one finds many things that are really quite admirable.” He believed the Chinese had gone some way to empowering the masses along lines endorsed by his own libertarian socialist principles: He

    "China is an important example of a new society in which very interesting and positive things happened at the local level, in which a good deal of the collectivization and communization was really based on mass participation and took place after a level of understanding had been reached in the peasantry that led to this next step."

    How about his comments on Pol Pot's lovely genocide, eh?

    "the deaths in Cambodia were not the result of systematic slaughter and starvation organized by the state but rather attributable in large measure to peasant revenge, undisciplined military units out of government control, starvation and disease that are direct consequences of the US war, or other such factors."

    This guy is beyond the pale. Some fuzzy-headed college student might be enamored with him but once outside the ivy-covered walls of acadamia and out in the real world, Chomsky is just plain dangerous...

    Link

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    I don't agree with all of his viewpoints, of course.

    But many of them, I do.

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    His early views on the Khmer Rouge were bonkers.

    But Marxist - no.
    As I said before, I think you are not too well informed about what Marxism entails, Booner. Of course he is influenced by Marxist thoughts, I would expect him to be familiar with it, that's a common feature of "the Left", specially his economic theories - no way around that, but I don't think he believes in dialectic materialism nor in a united working class revolution, in fact he has been very critical of Leninism - it's not empowering the people but replacing one structure of authority with another.

    You'll get a better understanding of this if you look at the early 20th century and the dynamic between communists and anarchists. But that's moving away from Chomsky, just a sidenote...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boon Mee View Post
    This guy is beyond the pale.

    No, he's not. Some of the things he says are crazy, agreed, but that doesn't mean that everything he says is crazy. Use your powers of discrimination rather than just rejecting everything because you don't like some part of it.

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    "The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum."
    - Noam Chomsky



    Chomsky thinks debate should be strictly limited, [within his limits of course]

    "That's an internet theory and it's hopelessly implausible. Hopelessly implausible. So hopelessly implausible I don't see any point in talking about it."

    - Noam Chomsky, at a FAIR event at New York's Town Hall, 22 January 2002, in response to a question from the audience about US government foreknowledge of 9/11. At that time, 9/11 investigators had already presented substantial documented evidence for: prior warnings, Air Force stand-down, anomalous insider trading connected to CIA, cover-up of the domestic anthrax attacks, inconsistencies in identities & timelines of "hijackers", US connections to al Qaeda in Balkans, a Pak ISI-al Qaeda funding connection, etc etc etc.

    Chomsky thinks 9/11 as a USreali operation is "hopelessly implausible." So much so that he won't even talk about it.

    Professor Noam Chomsky, one of the country's most famous dissidents, says that Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone gunman in Dallas. Anyone who still supports the Warren Commission hoax after forty years of countering proofs is either ill-informed, dumb, gullible, afraid to speak truths to power or a disinformation agent.

    Chomsky thinks Oswald was the lone gunman in the JFK assassination.

    Chomsky is an intellectual.

    Where Noam will not roam - Chomsky's limited dissent on 9/11 and JFK

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    Kerux being against him is pretty much proof that chomsky is on the side of the angels. By the way kerux, it's considered good form to point out when you're cutting and pasting from somebody else's writing - your post above was copied directly from questionsquestions without any acknowledgment. Actually looks like oilempires plagiarised it from there before you plagiarised it from them. Stealing makes Baby Jesus cry! Don't you have any opinions of your own or are you just a palimpsest?


    Noam Chomsky, at a FAIR event at New York's Town Hall, 22 January 2002, in response to a question from the audience about US government foreknowledge of 9/11. At that time, 9/11 investigators had already presented substantial documented evidence for: prior warnings, Air Force stand-down, anomalous insider trading connected to CIA, cover-up of the domestic anthrax attacks, inconsistencies in identities & timelines of "hijackers", US connections to al Qaeda in Balkans, a Pak ISI-al Qaeda funding connection, etc etc etc. http://www.questionsquestions.net/to...tekeepers.htmL
    Last edited by DrB0b; 02-07-2007 at 09:32 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrB0b
    By the way kerux, it's considered good form to point out when you're cutting and pasting from somebody else's writing
    More than that, it is a requirement for Issues, as kerux well knows.
    Thank Dr.BOb for adding a source and saving the post from deletion.

    Quote Originally Posted by kerux
    Chomsky thinks debate should be strictly limited, [within his limits of course]
    No, he doesn't. The quote is of Chomsky exposing the tactics of the authorities and the mass media.
    Pity you are not intelligent enough to realise he's actually supporting your take on the mass media with this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kerux View Post
    Professor Noam Chomsky, one of the country's most famous dissidents, says that Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone gunman in Dallas. Anyone who still supports the Warren Commission hoax after forty years of countering proofs is either ill-informed, dumb, gullible, afraid to speak truths to power or a disinformation agent.
    That's about the only thing he's been right about in his entire 'career'.
    Oswald was the only gunman whether you conspiracy nutjobs believe it or not...

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    ^So tell us how Chomsky got everything wrong in his career. You do know he's primarily a linguist, don't you? Looking forward to your analysis of Chomsky's linguistic errors. Here's something to start you off with, it's nothing to do with Oswald so it must be wrong. Tell us where Chomsky's screwed up here;

    "Chomsky's system...has attracted the most attention and has received the most extensive exemplification and further development. As outlined in Syntactic Structures (1957), it comprised three sections, or components: the phrase-structure component, the transformational component, and the morphophonemic component. Each of these components consisted of a set of rules operating upon a certain "input" to yield a certain "output." The notion of phrase structure may be dealt with independently of its incorporation in the larger system. In the following system of rules, S stands for Sentence, NP for Noun Phrase, VP for Verb Phrase, Det for Determiner, Aux for Auxiliary (verb), N for Noun, and V for Verb stem.
    This is a simple phrase-structure grammar. It generates and thereby defines as grammatical such sentences as "The man will hit the ball," and it assigns to each sentence that it generates a structural description. The kind of structural description assigned by a phrase-structure grammar is, in fact, a constituent structure analysis of the sentence." Linguistics: Methods of synchronic linguistic analysis: TRANSFORMATIONAL-GENERATIVE GRAMMAR: Chomsky's grammar.



    Aside from the fact that you don't appear to know anything about Chomsky outside the political sphere I think you're right. He appears to be suffering form the "Bono effect". This effect states that anybody who's famed in one sphere must automatically know everything about everything, it's also known as the "celebrities talking crap syndrome".

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrB0b
    Looking forward to your analysis of Chomsky's linguistic errors.
    Don't hold your breath...

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    ^Damn! There's a big debate in the linguistic community at the moment about the errors in Chomsky's transformational grammars. I can't understand a word of it. I was hoping Booner could explain it to me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrB0b View Post
    ^Damn! There's a big debate in the linguistic community at the moment about the errors in Chomsky's transformational grammars. I can't understand a word of it. I was hoping Booner could explain it to me.
    There always was and always will be debate in the linguistic community about this and that.

    And Chomsky's linguistic work, while heuristic, is outdated.

    But linguistics ain't the topic. If you want a linguistic forum PM me.

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