”Neo-liberal democracy. Instead of citizens, it produces consumers, it produces shopping malls. The net result is an atomized society of disengaged individuals who feel demoralized and socially powerless.”
I think the program was Newsnight. The grand man of philosophy and social comment, at the age of 85, had to bear, the jaunty and rather unusual attack on his theories, by Evan Davis, in a really slightly contrived situation. The members of public when asked about whether they felt (disenfranchised from the politics of our time, did they feel powerless, he might just as well also said ineffectual). The quotes from Chomsky’s writing were being used to ‘show him up’, well, if you take a thing so abstractly to pieces and out of the context of intellectual conversation…then, it could sound a bit insulting perhaps. However, if the questions had been do you agree with bedroom tax, do you agree with banks charging huge fees for minimal borrowing, do you agree with warring against nations that have not declared war against ours. And then if you had examined the same questions of feeling powerless. Wouldn’t half of us said well, yes! If the interviewer had pointed to chemtrails in the sky, and said David Cameron does not admit the chemtrails are real, or happening. Would the lady have said what she did say. The interviewer spoke only to the well clad. No homeless person was asked a question about Chomsky. Amazingly there seemed little respect for this man shown by the BBC, so why did they do this interview at all? And why so lopsided in the opinion expressed that perhaps Chomsky was ‘out of touch’. It was a boob by the BBC, in my opinion. If Chomsky had been allowed a share experience of views with other authors, and maybe someone like Glenda Jackson around a coffee table then, perhaps fans of Chomsky might have gleaned some wonderful wisdom.
The question above, Why Do We Put Up with Spin, came from reading about the Iraq war scenario, the very loose reason for the invasion of Iraq, based on threat. And, because of the death of a weapons inspector, because of the upset, the death of this man caused, the government under Tony Blair, had done everything it could using the press, to impress on the nations conscience, that they should accept the decision for war. We, if you remember, did not all agree with Tony Blair. Not In My Name, hit the headlines as millions of people filled London streets with banners angry, at the decision. The reality, the angry masses were ignored, and we definitely felt powerless, and frustrated, and ineffectual. I wonder, if any one in the cabinet has a conscience now? Surely the disgusting situation with ISIS is now proof of the need for reflection, and thought about the interference in these rather antique cultures.
‘The more you increase fear of drugs, crime, welfare issues, single mothers, aliens and migrants....’ Chomsky
Ah ha. Funnily enough, just lately we have seen plenty of this fear-mongering, with police powers increased to deal with any rioting, and possible looting. Where has Evan Davis been for the last decade. Well, this last month saw the march of Anonymous against the surveillance state, and also against the austerity measures of our government. But, also, where in the world is Evan Davis, when clearly the Spanish also near rioted against austerity a few times over, the Greeks too, and certainly a very big riot against the building of a shopping mall occurred in Turkey, with deaths, injuries, and a lot of frustration being pounded out on the streets. Uh huh?! Evan Davis must live in Wonderland. But, just maybe he is in his safely guarded million dollar apartment way far above the streets of our fair city. Yes um…think that might be nearer the truth. Well done Chomsky for keeping your cool. Wow where’s the book signing?