LISTSERV mailing list manager LISTSERV 16.5

Help for SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE Archives


SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE Archives

SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE Archives


SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE@LIST.UVM.EDU


View:

Message:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Topic:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Author:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

Font:

Proportional Font

LISTSERV Archives

LISTSERV Archives

SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE Home

SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE Home

SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE  July 2007

SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE July 2007

Subject:

Chomsky generalises rather well about the USA

From:

Robt Mann <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Science for the People Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Mon, 2 Jul 2007 21:37:40 +1200

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (122 lines)

	Of those who are willing to read something I sent in  -  not 
the delicate flowers who can't stand to see my name  -  I expect most 
will welcome this item.

RM


From: 	Robert Rodvik <[log in to unmask]>

Chomsky on Progressive Strategy

by Wolfgang Brauner
Published on Friday, June 29, 2007
by CommonDreams.org
http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/06/29/2181/

Noam Chomsky is one of the key figures on the American
and global left.  He is said to be one of the most
widely quoted intellectuals in the world. In 2005,
readers of AlterNet voted him MVP (Most Valuable
Progressive).  And he remains very close to many
activists.

For all these reasons, we were very excited when we
finally had the opportunity in late May to interview
Chomsky for 25 minutes about his thinking on
progressive grand strategy for building political power
on the American left.  More specifically, and in keeping
with the main interest of our Progressive Strategy
Studies Project, we asked him whether he finds it
useful to think about how to build power in strategic
terms.

Glancing at the list of individuals and organizations
that we included in our first report, "Finding
Strategy: A Survey of Contemporary Contributions to
Progressive Strategy," he noted that there was more
"extensive and far-reaching" thinking on progressive
strategy than what was reflected in our report.

Throughout the interview, he mainly referred to the
work of Gar Alperovitz, Michael Albert and Robin
Hahnel, and Joel Rogers (the latter is included in our
report)[One should add Ed Herman and David Peterson],
on how to democratize the economy and the
workplace through worker self-management, cooperatives,
etc.  In particular, he referred to Alperovitz' latest
book, America Beyond Capitalism: Reclaiming our Wealth,
Our Liberty, and Our Democracy (2004), and a number of
books by Michael Albert and Robin Hahnel on
participatory economics and broader sociopolitical
issues.  Chomsky considers their work to be very
important, particularly for activists.

He started out by emphasizing that the US is "a one-party
state with two wings, Democrat and Republican,"
and claimed that both were "way to the right of the
majority of Americans" on many crucial issues.
According to Chomsky, social scientists like C. Wright
Mills, Thomas Ferguson, and Bill Domhoff (who also is
included in our report) are pretty much right:
Corporations dominate the power structure and hence US
politics.  In the US this is even more so the case than
in other countries because of the much more brutal
suppression of labor.  Quoting Dewey, Chomsky noted that
in the absence of economic democracy, "politics is the
shadow cast on society by big business."

Since the state, having become so thoroughly co-opted
by corporate interests, is part of the problem, it is
difficult to significantly change it from within
through elections or public policy reforms.  While
short-term, pragmatic change remains possible and
desirable, systemic change would require a
transformation of power relations within society
through a democratization of economic decision-making.

Criticizing the recent health care reform in
Massachusetts as overly complicated precisely because
it has to respond to too many corporate interests,
Chomsky noted that, even though a large majority of the
population favors straightforward changes, the US can't
even achieve a real health care reform.  While pragmatic
change is better than nothing, it pales in comparison
to the kind of change a country like Bolivia has been
able to achieve, "something the US and other Western
societies can only dream of."

Serious progress towards a truly functioning democracy
requires democratizing the economy.  Traditionally,
labor has been the main agent of change, but today it
is, as Chomsky put it, "smashed," and struggles to
survive.  Who can fill the huge gap that labor has left
behind?  Chomsky admits that other actors, such as
churches and universities, are weak, if not marginal,
though there has been impressive growth of popular
movements, many of them quite new and promising.  They
offer considerable promise and opportunity for those
willing to keep working hard at "building the cells of
a future society."

Wolfgang Brauner is the Project Manager and Principal
Researcher of the Progressive Strategy Studies Project
at the Commonwealth Institute in Cambridge, Mass.
  ( http://www.comw.org/pssp/index.html).
You can reach him at [log in to unmask]
  The report, "Finding Strategy: A Survey of Contemporary 
Contributions to Progressive
Strategy," can be found here:
http://www.comw.org/pssp/fulltext/0611psspreport1.pdf.
These icons link to social bookmarking sites where
readers can share and discover new web pages.


***************************
Robert S. Rodvik
Author/media analyst

"Everything faded into mist.  The past was erased, the erasure was 
forgotten, the lie became the truth."
  George Orwell - 1984

Top of Message | Previous Page | Permalink

Advanced Options


Options

Log In

Log In

Get Password

Get Password


Search Archives

Search Archives


Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Subscribe or Unsubscribe


Archives

April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
May 2004
April 2004
March 2004
February 2004
January 2004
December 2003
November 2003
October 2003
September 2003
August 2003
July 2003
June 2003
May 2003
April 2003
March 2003
February 2003
January 2003
December 2002
November 2002
October 2002
September 2002
August 2002
July 2002
June 2002
May 2002
April 2002
March 2002
February 2002
January 2002
December 2001
November 2001
October 2001
September 2001
August 2001
May 2001
March 2001
February 2001
January 2001
December 2000
November 2000
October 2000
September 2000
August 2000
July 2000
May 2000
April 2000
March 2000
February 2000
January 2000
December 1999
November 1999
October 1999
September 1999
August 1999
July 1999
June 1999
May 1999
April 1999
March 1999
February 1999
January 1999
December 1998
November 1998
September 1998
August 1998
July 1998
June 1998
May 1998

ATOM RSS1 RSS2



LIST.UVM.EDU

CataList Email List Search Powered by the LISTSERV Email List Manager