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Hopes and Prospects [Copertina rigida]

Noam Chomsky


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Amazon.com: 4.5 su 5 stelle  40 recensioni
227 di 239 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle Ignore Chomsky's Hopes and Prospects At Your Peril 18 maggio 2010
Di Fred Branfman - Pubblicato su Amazon.com
Formato:Copertina flessibile
As not only American foreign policy but its domestic economy accelerates its decline to a point that only the blind or obtuse can ignore, people who have dismissed Noam Chomsky in the past as "too radical" may now want to read Hopes and Prospects in order to understand what is really going on. The term "hopes" is an ironic reference to President Obama's "politics of hope", a politics that has disappointed millions who worked for his election and have since dropped out, as the right has openly declared class war. Chomsky's new book includes material on Obama's first year in office, and makes it clear that the powerful corporations and their intellectual apologists, who control both U.S. foreign and domestic policy, remain as powerful as ever in protecting their own interests - at the mounting expense of both the American people and hundreds of millions of others around the world.Chomsky goes far beyond exploding the incredible fact that Tea Partiers and others could remain blind to the fact that it is CORPORATIONS, NOT GOVERNMENT which caused the financial crisis, the oil spill, and a disastrous U.S. foreign policy, and that a government truly representing the American people is the only hope for Tea Partiers and everyone else. Mass media and "manufactured consent" explanations are inadequate to explain America's financial crisis and why it is likely to occur again, why America continues to torture and illegally imprison, despite Obama's promise to end it, why the U.S. empire continues to dramatically weaken, and why today it harms the interests of the vast majority of Americans not to mention those suffering under it abroad, and why the situation in the Middle East - not only Israel/Palestine but Iran, Iraq and Afghanistan - will continue to deteriorate as long as national security planners and corporations are able to continue manipulating public opinion and pursuing their own career and economic interests at the expense of everyone else. You may not agree with everything Chomsky says, but the power of his overall analysis and framework is undeniable. His observations on elite behavior explain far more about the deepening climate, financial, Mideast and domestic social crisis facing America than anything you're likely to read in the mainstream media. You owe it to yourself to read this book, whether or not you agree with it all, if you want to have at least a fighting chance to understand the world around you. By all means, take Chomsky on .Argue with this or that point if you will, explain how he leaves out such and such if you must, but disregard his overall framework at your peril. For if you do you will continue to remain blind about the key issues that will determine not only how, but whether, you, your children and your grandchildren will live.
55 di 59 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle Thought-provoking, measured, and grounded in rationality 13 giugno 2010
Di Midwest Book Review - Pubblicato su Amazon.com
Formato:Copertina flessibile
For forty years, Noam Chomsky's erudite insights into politics and language have proved to be an invaluable contribution to ongoing social reflection. Hopes and Prospects is Chomsky's latest work, warning readers about the latest risks and challenges facing America and humankind during the early twenty-first century. Chapters address the growing divide between America's North and South, American exceptionalism (which still has a strong hold in the era of President Barack Obama), the morass of problems (to put it lightly) with Iraq and Afghanistan, U.S.-Israeli aggression toward Gaza, the controversial governmental bailouts - and suggestions to improve the future, as well as reflections on positive developments such as democratic movements in Latin America and global solidarity efforts. Thought-provoking, measured, and grounded in rationality, Hopes and Prospects is strongly recommended as a vital nexus for social debate over vitally pressing national and global issues.
84 di 96 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle About Hopes and Prospects 23 maggio 2010
Di Lilly Pad - Pubblicato su Amazon.com
Formato:Copertina flessibile|Acquisto verificato
This book is a compilation of essays that Chomsky also updated just before its release here in May 2010. Each essay has a topic of focus; Chomsky weaves in and out of different subject material throughout each, highlighting moral principles and hypocrisies of the United States, and the West in general. The issues are grotesque and in need of addressing by us - the public.

Contents:

PREFACE ..... VII

PART I: LATIN AMERICA
01. Year 514: Globalization for Whom? ..... 3
02. Latin America and US Foreign Policy ..... 39
03. Democracy and Development: Their Enemies, Their Hopes ..... 75
04. Latin America and Caribbean Unity ..... 103

PART II: NORTH AMERICA
05. "Good News," Iraq and Beyond ..... 121
06. Free Elections, Good News and Bad ..... 143
07. Century's Challenges ..... 165
08. Turning Point? ..... 177
09. Elections 2008: Hope Confronts the Real World ..... 207
10. Obama on Israel-Palestine ..... 251
11. The Torture Memos ..... 259
12. 1989 and Beyond ..... 269

Notes ..... 281
Index ..... 315
18 di 19 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle Chomsky yet again tells us far more about our world than our media ever do 20 luglio 2010
Di William Podmore - Pubblicato su Amazon.com
Formato:Copertina flessibile
Noam Chomsky yet again tells us far more about our world than our media ever do.

He writes, "A well-documented conclusion is that sovereignty, hence ability to control internal economic development and to enter international market systems on one's own terms, is a crucial prerequisite to economic development." 25 years of economic sovereignty, backed by exchange controls and managed currencies, did better than the succeeding 25 years of Thatcherism. Protectionism brings growth; imposed liberalisation harms growth.

In 1985 the World Bank said that in its standard `development' strategy, domestic consumption should be `markedly restrained', support for education `minimized' and `less emphasis should be placed on social objectives'.

The US National Intelligence Council's Global Trends 2015 (2000) said globalisation will lead to `a widening economic divide' and `deepening economic stagnation, political instability, and cultural alienation'. In law, predictable consequences are evidence of intent. Amnesty International's Secretary-General says that poverty is the worst of all the world's many human rights abuses.

In Latin America, Obama plays the usual US role. In June 2009, the largely US-controlled IMF at once gave a $150 million loan to the coup regime in Honduras. The IMF had earlier withdrawn loans from the elected government because it opposed that government's policies. In 2002, during the (failed) coup against Venezuela's elected government, the IMF had at once offered aid to the coup regime. France and the USA backed the 2004 coup in Haiti, which overthrew the elected government, causing 8,000 violent deaths in the next two years.

By contrast, Chomsky praises Cuba's `remarkable record of genuine internationalism over many years', especially its Operation Milagro, which has restored sight to more than a million people.

He denounces Israel's vicious and illegal siege of Gaza. Israel, with the USA, is destroying any viable Palestinian state. The USA and the EU voted against the International Atomic Energy Agency resolution calling on Israel to join the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and to open its nuclear facilities to inspection.

In the recent US election, the best-funded candidate won 9 out of 10 contests, and Obama was the presidential candidate with most Wall Street funding. This January, the US Supreme Court voted to allow corporations to spend shareholder money directly in future elections.
16 di 17 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle Chomsky's latest 24 luglio 2010
Di Chris - Pubblicato su Amazon.com
Formato:Copertina flessibile
e book is full of the traditional themes of Chomsky's work, such as US support for terrorism, dictators, war crimes, Islamic fundamentalists, nuclear proliferation, human rights violations,etc. Citing Ahmed Rashid, he notes Reagan's support for the fundamentalist Pakistani dictator Zia Al Haq, whose rule laid the groundwork for the maladies that afflict Pakistan today. He notes that Gullubdin Heckmatyar, the favorite Afghan fundamentalist terrorist of Reagan, is now at the forefront of the political process in Afghanistan. He cites new evidence from the Spanish press about the murder of the 6 Jesuit priests, their cook and her daughter by the US trained Altacatl Battalion in November 1989. He quotes Michael Kinsley's and Time Magazine's positive portrayal of the attacks on civilian targets by the Contras in Nicaragua that terrorized the Nicaraguan people into voting out the Sandinistas in 1990. The Contra war was all part of the effort by the Reagan administration, backed by the Vatican, to restore the poor majority of Central Americans to misery and passivity. He notes that Bernard Fall, the right wing military historian described Vietnam in the 1960's being threatened with extinction "as a cultural and historic entity" as the Vietnamese countryside "literally dies" under massive US bombing.

Chomsky has a great deal to say in this book about Israel, Obama's continuation of Bush's policies toward its settlement building, extreme violations of the Geneva Conventions and the context of Israel's attack on Gaza in December 2008 and its economic strangulation of Gaza. Chomsky has always stressed that Israel's main goal is not security but stealing all the best land and resources from the territories. He quotes Moshe Dayan from the early days of the occupation as saying privately that Israel should make Palestinians live "like dogs" and invite them to leave the territories if they didn't like it. He also has a few words about the BDS. He suggests that the boycott movement against South Africa wasn't exactly the rousing success that some BDS advocates assume it was.

There are other subjects discussed in this book. Chomsky notes Obama's continuation of Bush style militarism and the terrible toll on civilians of Obama's drone strikes on Pakistan and air strikes in Afghanistan. He points out the important ways the Obama administration supported the coup in Honduras. He describes the horrendous toll of Haiti's January 2010 earthquake as rooted in the economic policies the US has forced on Haiti. He quotes a number of mainstream strategic analysts, including former weapons inspector David Kay and the neoconservative Reuel Marc Gerecht, that Iran has very rational reasons for building up its nuclear capacity as a deterrent. Chomsky explores the possibility for a peaceful settlement in Afghanistan. He quotes with admiration Malalai Joya, the feminist human rights activist now in hiding from the misogynist fundamentalist Northern Alliance warlord gangsters Rumsfeld re-installed in power. He quotes an observation made by the last British ambassador to the Soviet Union, that from the ambassador's conversations with pro-Western Afghans, these Afghans greatly prefer life under the Soviet backed regime, when women achieved significant gains and the country seemed to be modernizing.

. Chomsky writes that financial industry interests are clearly reflected in the policies of the Obama administration. He notes that the financial industry has taken up a disproportionate share of our economic life. Economic growth during the Bush years relied on an 8 trillion dollar housing bubble whose extreme danger Alan Greenspan, Ben Bernanke, and other official geniuses did not fathom. Meanwhile, American manufacturing capacity has declined significantly in recent decades. The real wages of most American workers have declined since the late 70's, except for a spike during the Clinton tech stock boom of the late 90's, Chomsky notes. One of the quotes Chomsky often uses in his works (as he does in this book) is taken from Alan Greenspan's senate testimony from 1997 about the stagnating wages and "greater worker insecurity" fueling American economic growth. Chomsky cites an interesting story from the Wall Street Journal relating to Obama's stimulus and the decline of American manufacturing. On the health care bill, the Obama administration made a deal with the pharmaceutical industry whereby the health care reform bill would contain no mandate for the government to negotiate drug prices downward or demand rebates. Chomsky cites a Business Week article of August 2009 which said the health care industry had "already won" the health care debate. Health care industry lobbyists worked intensively behind the scenes to make sure the bill didn't seriously threaten their interests. Chomsky quotes the chairman of the Business Roundtable as saying that the bill that came out of Max Baucus's committee was closely aligned to his group's own vision for a proper reform bill. The Business Week article predicted that the health care industry would come out of the reform process more profitable than ever.

Chomsky also discusses one of my favorite topics: how the most successful economies in the world, including the United States, have routinely violated free market principles in order to become successful. He points out that Chile's following of the principles of Milton Friedman under Pinochet led to complete disaster by 1982. Since then, he notes, Chile has achieved some economic success by placing controls on capital flow and relying on its copper export industry, the largest company in which is the government run CODELCO.

I do wish Chomsky would go into more depth on health care. In his works, he often likes to cite polls showing that a majority of Americans have views that are often significantly more left wing than the Democrats. In this book, for example, he cites polls on Obama's health care plan, including polling relating to the election of Scott Brown in Massachusetts. These polls show that many Americans opposed to Obama-care base their opposition not on Republican style arguments but on the feeling that the legislation does not go far enough.

Chomsky is a nice relief from the insanity and imbecility of mainstream political discourse.

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