Smiling Chomsky


Noam Avram Chomsky (1928 - ). Professor of linguistics. An anarchist and libertarian socialist, he is one of America's most prominent political dissidents.

"You say you're an anarchist. Maybe you shouldn't take any benefits from the state?"

"That view is published, repeatedly. For example, I remember a book by Norman Podhoretz, some right-wing columnist, in which he accused academics in the peace movement of being ingrates because we were working against the government, but we were getting grants from the government. That reflects an extremely interesting conception of the state, in fact a fascist conception of the state. It says the state is your master, and if the state does something for you, you have to be nice to them. That's the underlying principle. So the state runs you, you're its slave... Notice how exactly opposite that is to democratic theory. According to democratic theory, you're the master, the state is your servant. The state doesn't give you a grant, the population is giving you a grant. The state's just an instrument. But the concept of democracy is so remote from our conception that we very often tend to fall into straight fascist ideas like that, that the state is some kind of benevolent uncle, ... it's not your representative, and of course it's true, but it's not supposed to be; and therefore if your benevolent uncle happens to give you a piece of candy, it's not nice not to be nice to him back. But it's a strictly fascist conception. That's one of the reasons why fascism would be so easy to institute in the United States. It's deeply rooted in everybody's mind already."

Noam Chomsky (interview on 1/28/88, printed in Language and Politics, pp. 747-8)

Articles and Interviews in the site:

ZNET interviews with Chomsky - In depth discussion on Israel/Palestine ; Interview, April 2, 2002.

Reaction to USA-UK attacks on Afghanistan; Article, October 8, 2001.

Chomsky answers Michael Albert; Interview, October 4, 2001.

Chomsky chats on; Chat transcripts, October 2, 2001.

A quick reaction to the attack on America; Article from Chomsky about attacks on America. September 2001.

Terrorist attacks on America; Interview, September 2001.

Prospects for peace in Middle East; Lecture, March 2001.