Today’s Flashback Friday is from episode 357 published last January 9, 2014.
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Join Jason Hartman as he visits with Noam Chomsky, one of the best known philosophical voices of our time. The left-leaning Chomsky aligns himself ideologically with the anarcho-syndicalism and libertarian-socialism movements. Often referred to as the “Father of Modern Linguistics,” Mr. Chomsky is the author of more than 100 books and has spent most of his career at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he is currently Professor Emeritus. In a 2005 poll he was voted the “World’s Top Public Intellectual.”
If you’re wondering exactly what those high-falutin’ words mean about Mr. Chomsky’s beliefs, here are the short versions:
Anarcho-syndicalism: The end goal of anarcho-syndicalism is to abolish the wage system, regarding it as a form of slavery. With a focus on the labour movement, this ideological philosophy advocates direct action rather than intervention of third parties like politicians, bureaucrats, and arbitrators. Adherents to this belief regard the state as a profoundly anti-worker institution, but also don’t believe there can ever be any kind of workers’ state because power always corrupts. If this sounds like an anarchist’s way of thinking, it is.
Libertarian-socialism: Chomsky’s basic belief in anarchism is further found in the libertarian-socialism ideal that it is necessary to abolish the authoritarian institutions that control the means of production, thus subordinating the majority to the will of the owning class or political or economic elite. The ultimate goal here is a decentralized form of direct democracy of the kind found in citizens’ assemblies, trade unions, or workers’ councils.
Whether you agree or disagree with the man’s point of view is beside the point. A conversation with Noam Chomsky is enlightening and disturbing at the same time. What cannot be denied is the man’s global influence over the past six decades. Ladies and gentleman, you’re in for a treat. Pull up a chair, grab a beverage, and lend your ear to one of the true philosophical giants of our time.
Noam Chomsky’s Website Chomsky.info
Noam Chomsky’s Wikipedia entry
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