Chomsky on Energy (and lemmings)

On this morning’s broadcast of the same radio program from which the previous post was excerpted, I had another opportunity to ask Noam Chomsky a question. Although I sort of take issue with his estimation that Ivan Illich’s observations concerning Energy and Equity take a back seat to the “suicide pact” of capitalism, or “lemmings walking off a cliff” as Chomsky puts it, he’s probably right in a certain empirical sense. (I wonder if he does parties?) Still, I think a thorough understanding of Illich’s observations of the sociological impacts of energy policy and use merit a wider audience, particularly among those obligated to further study these complex issues as stakeholders in our future (read: everyone).

ChomskyEnergy.mp3

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Noam Chomsky on Education

This morning I had the opportunity to talk to Noam Chomsky on the telephone. Professor Chomsky was the guest on Bob McChesney’s fine radio program Media Matters on WILL-AM580, located on the campus of the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.

I much appreciate the efforts of these two gentlemen regarding their respective observations and calls for greater equity in the various institutions of our society. Nonetheless, what I often find irksome is the fact that people feeding at the trough of higher education are often reticent to speak to the current state of higher education; specifically, how higher education’s machinations might engender greater or lesser equity. Well, today I had the chance to pose that question to one of America’s more outspoken critics. I gotta say that Noam Chomsky didn’t disappoint. Whereas many academically tethered analysts — speaking to issues of inequity — will sidestep around what is increasingly coming to resemble a particularly mendacious elephant in the room, Prof. Chomsky addressed the issue in a way that…well, that’s why he’s Noam Chomsky.

Also, the two documents that Chomsky mentions: The Crisis of Democracy and The Powell Memorandum are well worth taking a look at; that is if you sometimes wonder how we got to where we are.

chomskyoneducation.mp3

Noam Chomsky on education (15 mins, 10mb)