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The Nature of Capitalism

Program #CHON244. Recorded in Cambridge, MA on September 22, 2015.


Chomsky talks about the economic system and corporate crime. He says it’s not just GM and Volkswagen. “It’s across the board. Johnson & Johnson, the huge pharmaceutical firm, is apparently facing billions of dollars of fines for mislabeling prescriptions. Financial institutions are paying billions of dollars in fines for basically robbery of the public. Just read the business pages. It’s constant. Because that’s the nature of capitalism: You try to steal as much as you can.”  

About Bernie Sanders: “I’m very supportive of his candidacy. His prospects are pretty limited in a system like ours of bought elections and what amounts to a plutocracy. The real hope, in my mind, of the Sanders campaign is that the popular movement that supports him will persist and grow and develop. That would be significant. If it’s just timed for the electoral extravaganzas, it’s kind of a waste. “


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.” He is Institute Professor (emeritus) in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy at MIT and Laureate Professor of Linguistics and Haury Chair in the Program in Environment and Social Justice at the University of Arizona. At 90, he still gives lectures all over the world. He is the author of scores of books, including Propaganda & the Public Mind, How the World WorksPower Systems and Global Discontents with David Barsamian.

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