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Class War: The Attack on Working People

Program #CHON115. Recorded in Cambridge, MA on May 09, 1995.

The notion of class is usually associated with England. The term is rarely applied to the U.S., where traditional lore has one big middle class with a few rich and poor on either end. Well, that conventional formula is dramatically changing. Powerful interests are waging a relentless class war that is eroding the middle class. A Twentieth Century Fund study reports that income inequality in the U.S. is worse than in any other industrialized country, surpassing even Britain. Corporate profits are zooming, but working people are suffering. A significant factor contributing to the current economic situation is the virtual disappearance of unions. Without them, workers lack leverage in dealings with corporate managers. They're told to make concessions or the company will hire temps or move the factory to the Third World.

Speaker(s):

Noam Chomsky

Noam Chomsky, by any measure, has led a most extraordinary life. In one index he is ranked as the eighth most cited person in history, right up there with Aristotle, Shakespeare, Marx, Plato and Freud. The legendary MIT professor practically invented modern linguistics. In addition to his pioneering work in that field he has been a leading voice for peace and social justice for many decades. Chris Hedges says he is “America’s greatest intellectual” who “makes the powerful, as well as their liberal apologists, deeply uncomfortable.” At 87, he still gives lectures all over the world. He is the author of scores of books, including Propaganda & the Public Mind, How the World Works, and Power Systems with David Barsamian.

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