Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Failed States

Failed States
By Noam Chomsky

The Abuse of Power and the Assault on Democracy

Of all of the heavy intellectual books I have read recently, this one stands alone in its complexity and overall content. As a life long patriot I found much in this book disagreeable and not at all in tune with the beliefs I have nurtured over my lifetime. I cannot say I recommend you to read it but perhaps it should be read by those who hope as I do for a better world for all mankind and nature.
Actually what he writes is not much different from other authors but he does it in a harsher manner that made me cringe. It is hard to be told of the actions taken by our government over the decades since WWII including fostering violent overthrows of democratically elected governments such as Iran, Chili, Nicaragua, Guatemala and our ever increasing dependency on military force to get other nations to comply with our dictates. The current administration only differs from previous ones in the audacity with which it projects its power. Previous administrations were more subtle but nonetheless effective in achieving their purposes.
He takes us around the world but in the last chapter concentrates on what is happening in our own country. He points out, as most of us who pay attention already know, that the electorate is manipulated into voting based on sound bites which are intended to persuade voters to reject candidates’ based on emotion and not on fact. The other proven technique is to scare the voter with threats from evil groups around the world. The two party systems that used to be are no longer discernable. The main reason of course is the amount of money needed to win office. He states that there are now 34,750 registered lobbyists living and working in Washington. Can you imagine what a day in the life of a politician is like with an army this size descending on them and their staffs as they try to get legislation to aid their respective causes none of which are for our benefit?
He discusses poll after poll which confirms the issues most important to the majority of thinking voters. They want to vote for someone who supports these ideas, but in the end confused and persuaded, they vote hoping for change but it never happens and in my opinion will never happen until or unless we as citizens force it by whatever means is possible to us.
Jack B. Walters
3961 N. Hillwood Circle
Tucson, AZ 85750
(520) 722-2958
October 15, 2007

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