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Sat Aug 6, 2016, 05:45 AM

 

Shocker: It's backhanded and wordy to the point of absurdity, but Chomsky just endorsed HRC

if you live in a swing state. There are enough ifs and buts thrown in to fill a dump truck, but here's the essence of it:

<snip>

2) The exclusive consequence of the act of voting in 2016 will be (if in a contested “swing state”) to marginally increase or decrease the chance of one of the major party candidates winning.

3) One of these candidates, Trump, denies the existence of global warming, calls for increasing use of fossil fuels, dismantling of environmental regulations and refuses assistance to India and other developing nations as called for in the Paris agreement, the combination of which could, in four years, take us to a catastrophic tipping point. Trump has also pledged to deport 11 million Mexican immigrants, offered to provide for the defense of supporters who have assaulted African American protestors at his rallies, stated his “openness to using nuclear weapons”, supports a ban on Muslims entering the U.S. and regards “the police in this country as absolutely mistreated and misunderstood” while having “done an unbelievable job of keeping law and order.” Trump has also pledged to increase military spending while cutting taxes on the rich, hence shredding what remains of the social welfare “safety net” despite pretenses.

4) The suffering which these and other similarly extremist policies and attitudes will impose on marginalized and already oppressed populations has a high probability of being significantly greater than that which will result from a Clinton presidency.

5) 4) should constitute sufficient basis to voting for Clinton where a vote is potentially consequential-namely, in a contested, “swing” state.

<snip>

read:http://www.alternet.org/election-2016/noam-chomskys-8-point-rationale-voting-lesser-evil-presidential-candidate

40 replies, 2117 views

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Arrow 40 replies Author Time Post
Reply Shocker: It's backhanded and wordy to the point of absurdity, but Chomsky just endorsed HRC (Original post)
cali Aug 2016 OP
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #1
cali Aug 2016 #3
MBS Aug 2016 #4
cali Aug 2016 #6
MBS Aug 2016 #8
cali Aug 2016 #10
MBS Aug 2016 #20
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #13
cali Aug 2016 #17
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #22
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #12
emulatorloo Aug 2016 #27
rjsquirrel Aug 2016 #2
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #15
auntpurl Aug 2016 #5
cali Aug 2016 #7
Demsrule86 Aug 2016 #9
Buckeye_Democrat Aug 2016 #11
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #14
cali Aug 2016 #18
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #23
MineralMan Aug 2016 #16
cali Aug 2016 #19
MineralMan Aug 2016 #21
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #24
MineralMan Aug 2016 #25
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #35
MineralMan Aug 2016 #39
Ken Burch Aug 2016 #30
MineralMan Aug 2016 #33
Ken Burch Aug 2016 #34
Ken Burch Aug 2016 #31
MineralMan Aug 2016 #32
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #36
MineralMan Aug 2016 #38
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #40
still_one Aug 2016 #26
Warren Stupidity Aug 2016 #28
Ken Burch Aug 2016 #29
SheriffBob Aug 2016 #37

Response to cali (Original post)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 05:59 AM

1. chomsky is brillant

I respect him.

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Response to SheriffBob (Reply #1)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 06:11 AM

3. Yes, he's brilliant, but he could take some advice from Orwell:

 

George Orwell, "Politics and the English Language," 1946

Most people who bother with the matter at all would admit that the English language is in a bad way, but it is generally assumed that we cannot by conscious action do anything about it. Our civilization is decadent and our language -- so the argument runs -- must inevitably share in the general collapse. It follows that any struggle against the abuse of language is a sentimental archaism, like preferring candles to electric light or hansom cabs to aeroplanes. Underneath this lies the half-conscious belief that language is a natural growth and not an instrument which we shape for our own purposes.

Now, it is clear that the decline of a language must ultimately have political and economic causes: it is not due simply to the bad influence of this or that individual writer. But an effect can become a cause, reinforcing the original cause and producing the same effect in an intensified form, and so on indefinitely. A man may take to drink because he feels himself to be a failure, and then fail all the more completely because he drinks. It is rather the same thing that is happening to the English language. It becomes ugly and inaccurate because our thoughts are foolish, but the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts. The point is that the process is reversible. Modern English, especially written English, is full of bad habits which spread by imitation and which can be avoided if one is willing to take the necessary trouble. If one gets rid of these habits one can think more clearly, and to think clearly is a necessary first step toward political regeneration: so that the fight against bad English is not frivolous and is not the exclusive concern of professional writers. I will come back to this presently, and I hope that by that time the meaning of what I have said here will have become clearer. Meanwhile, here are five specimens of the English language as it is now habitually written.

These five passages have not been picked out because they are especially bad -- I could have quoted far worse if I had chosen -- but because they illustrate various of the mental vices from which we now suffer. They are a little below the average, but are fairly representative examples. I number them so that I can refer back to them when necessary:

1. I am not, indeed, sure whether it is not true to say that the Milton who once seemed not unlike a seventeenth-century Shelley had not become, out of an experience ever more bitter in each year, more alien [sic] to the founder of that Jesuit sect which nothing could induce him to tolerate.

Professor Harold Laski (Essay in Freedom of Expression)

2. Above all, we cannot play ducks and drakes with a native battery of idioms which prescribes egregious collocations of vocables as the Basic put up with for tolerate, or put at a loss for bewilder .

Professor Lancelot Hogben (Interglossa)

<snip>

To begin with it has nothing to do with archaism, with the salvaging of obsolete words and turns of speech, or with the setting up of a "standard English" which must never be departed from. On the contrary, it is especially concerned with the scrapping of every word or idiom which has outworn its usefulness. It has nothing to do with correct grammar and syntax, which are of no importance so long as one makes one's meaning clear, or with the avoidance of Americanisms, or with having what is called a "good prose style." On the other hand, it is not concerned with fake simplicity and the attempt to make written English colloquial. Nor does it even imply in every case preferring the Saxon word to the Latin one, though it does imply using the fewest and shortest words that will cover one's meaning. What is above all needed is to let the meaning choose the word, and not the other way around. In prose, the worst thing one can do with words is surrender to them. When you think of a concrete object, you think wordlessly, and then, if you want to describe the thing you have been visualizing you probably hunt about until you find the exact words that seem to fit it. When you think of something abstract you are more inclined to use words from the start, and unless you make a conscious effort to prevent it, the existing dialect will come rushing in and do the job for you, at the expense of blurring or even changing your meaning. Probably it is better to put off using words as long as possible and get one's meaning as clear as one can through pictures and sensations. Afterward one can choose -- not simply accept -- the phrases that will best cover the meaning, and then switch round and decide what impressions one's words are likely to make on another person. This last effort of the mind cuts out all stale or mixed images, all prefabricated phrases, needless repetitions, and humbug and vagueness generally. But one can often be in doubt about the effect of a word or a phrase, and one needs rules that one can rely on when instinct fails. I think the following rules will cover most cases:

(i) Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print.

(ii) Never use a long word where a short one will do.

(iii) If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out.

(iv) Never use the passive where you can use the active.

(v) Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word, or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent.

(vi) Break any of these rules sooner than say anything outright barbarous.


<snip>

https://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/orwell46.htm

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Response to cali (Reply #3)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 06:15 AM

4. A classic essay

and great advice.

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Response to MBS (Reply #4)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 06:19 AM

6. the rules alone should be required reading in high school.

 

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Response to cali (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 07:49 AM

8. and beyond.

Actually, my son's high school English teacher assigned it to his class! That's in fact how I learned about the essay myself.



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Response to MBS (Reply #8)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 07:51 AM

10. What a great teacher. And, yes, beyond as well.

 

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Response to cali (Reply #10)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:36 AM

20. He was.

And, luckily, my son understood that he was lucky.
I made a huge professional and personal sacrifice so that my son could stay in that school. You can maybe see why.

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Response to cali (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:08 AM

13. Who is he to make the rules?

The grammar god?

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Response to SheriffBob (Reply #13)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:27 AM

17. um, no. it's not about grammar. And it's some of the wisest advice about

 

writing clearly that's ever been offered. It has nothing to do with making rules. It's about teaching kids how to write well. (and adults too).

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Response to cali (Reply #17)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:52 AM

22. i am really confused

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Response to cali (Reply #3)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:05 AM

12. I could not understand what he is saying

It's much too prolix.

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Response to cali (Reply #3)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 10:57 AM

27. Terrific! Thanks for the reminder.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 06:01 AM

2. Well that will really help

 

with about 50 voters in Cambridge.

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Response to rjsquirrel (Reply #2)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:14 AM

15. yep

Pardon my piss ant smillie.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 06:16 AM

5. That'll...do, I suppose?

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Response to auntpurl (Reply #5)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 06:36 AM

7. Better than nothing. He actually has some degree of influence.

 

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 07:51 AM

9. No one knows where the opportunities for Dems are this year

Thus vote for Hillary in every state because really there is not point for voting for the Green traitors or racist libertarians (want to end civil rights). Neither can win.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 08:17 AM

11. Chomsky always replies to my e-mails.

Always.

I personally think he's a bit short on viable solutions, but his criticisms of our system are well-argued and supported.

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Response to Buckeye_Democrat (Reply #11)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:12 AM

14. I agree

Like Tom Paine, he writes for the common man.

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Response to SheriffBob (Reply #14)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:28 AM

18. that he does not. He writes in academic form.

 

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Response to cali (Reply #18)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:56 AM

23. then why do I comprehend him?

I am only a high school graduate.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:25 AM

16. Chomsky has spent far too many years in academia.

His writing style represents the very worst of the academic style, and he spends far too many words saying very little. In any case, he influences very few actual voters. Perhaps that's why.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #16)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:34 AM

19. It's definitely not the worst- and I don't think it has much to do with the number of years he's

 

spent in academia (that suggests that a lifetime career in academia is not a good thing), but he doesn't write in a persuasive manner and yeah, he uses too many words to say what he's trying to convey.

His academic work may well be another matter all together, but I've read only snippets of his works on linguistics- finding it very difficult to slog through. Perhaps that's just my problem.

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Response to cali (Reply #19)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:40 AM

21. I've been reading Chomsky's academic writings since the

1960s. They're always a slog, really. His writings on linguistics, however, contain some important insights. I can't say as much for his thinking on philosophy or politics. He comes of as erudite, but not insightful, in my opinion, when he strays from his academic specialty.

In any case, his influence on politics is small, really. While he is the darling of a certain set, that set is not a large one.

I'm glad he has endorsed Clinton, but what choice did he have, really? Of the choices available who have a possibility of winning the presidential election, she's the only one who makes any sense at all. So, he has spent far too much time and used too much space to say what is obvious to anyone with a functioning brain.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #21)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 09:59 AM

24. I believe

you are underestimating his influence on a lot of his followers.

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Response to SheriffBob (Reply #24)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 10:23 AM

25. You use the term "a lot."

How large is that "lot?" Any group of any size can be called "a lot." Without actual numbers, "a lot" is meaningless. I guess you mean "many" when you use that term, but "many" is also useless without some actual numbers. 100 people is "many" people, if you're talking about a small group of people. if you're talking about the voting population, even 100,000 is an insignificant number.

So, if I'm underestimating, show me the numbers that make up your "lot."

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #25)

Thu Aug 11, 2016, 05:04 PM

35. I don't care

to indulge in your sophistic semantic game.





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Response to SheriffBob (Reply #35)

Thu Aug 11, 2016, 06:56 PM

39. Oh, OK...

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #21)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 07:55 PM

30. Chomsky has shaped the thinking of a generation on the US relationship with the world.

 

He's right that much of that relationship, even under Democratic presidents, has essentially been exploitative and imperialist, and that we need to change that.

Why would you speak so dismissively of one of the great voices of conscience in the English-speaking world?

Do you actually disagree with anything he says about who wields power in this country and about who our foreign policy really serves?

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #30)

Sun Aug 7, 2016, 09:11 AM

33. His writings on linguistics are important.

That is his field of expertise.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #33)

Sun Aug 7, 2016, 03:30 PM

34. Why is it so important for you to declare him politically irrelevant, though?

 

It's not as though he's actually been wrong about anything on politics and foreign policy.

He's right to point out that our relationship to most of the rest of the world has pretty much been solely about the interests of large corporations(at least in the post-1945 period)and to be skeptical of the concept of "humanitarian interventions" and the motives of.

And he's endorsing your preferred candidate, so your insistence on minimizing his political importance is baffling.

What, in terms of politics, do you actually disagree with Chomsky about?

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #16)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 08:00 PM

31. What's the point of dissing Chomsky?

 

Are you mad that he didn't passionately embrace Bill Clinton or Al Gore? He couldn't have done so and remained a progressive and an anti-imperialist.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #31)

Sun Aug 7, 2016, 09:10 AM

32. I have a high regard for Chomsky's contributions to

the study of linguistics.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #32)

Thu Aug 11, 2016, 05:07 PM

36. My,my

Aren't you special?

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Response to SheriffBob (Reply #36)

Thu Aug 11, 2016, 06:53 PM

38. How would you know that?

You know nothing about me at all.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #38)

Fri Aug 12, 2016, 07:23 AM

40. I know you by what you post,

unless you are lying.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 10:50 AM

26. For those in conflict on who to vote for, I can sum it up in three words, The Supreme Court

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 07:23 PM

28. He said this months ago.

 

It's bloody obvious that if you are living in a contested state you have to vote to defeat Trumo and in our system that means voting for Clinton.

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Response to cali (Original post)

Sat Aug 6, 2016, 07:46 PM

29. It's enought that he endorsed her. No reason to carp about the particulars.

 

Chomsky has high standards. He has every reason to detest HRC's record on foreign policy.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #29)

Thu Aug 11, 2016, 05:09 PM

37. roger that

He speaks the truth.

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