Sunday, 17 January 2010

QotD, the insidious nature of Noam Chomsky edition

Oliver Kamm on his frequent nemesis:

I don’t, as it happens, regard Chomsky as an apologist for the Khmer Rouge or for other appalling regimes. I regard him as a sophist possessed of reflexive anti-Americanism. It’s because his position is an article of faith that he’s so unreliable when it comes to describing the actual sins of omission and commission in American foreign policy. In his position, factual accuracy is secondary (his writings on the Balkans, for example, are an intellectual disgrace). His method is, as I’ve referred to, sarcasm and insinuation. He is different from his associate Edward Herman, who is best known these days as a crude denier of Serb war crimes, notably the genocide at Srebrenica.

Thursday, 1 November 2007

Fellow travellers

David Weigel at Hit and Run isn’t quite sure why Ron Paul attracts a lot of young supporters. Perhaps there’s a giant red flag here:

Jacob Bofferding, a student at Iowa State University, said he decided to work for Paul after seeing him on a televised debate.

“For Ron Paul to stand up there and say, ‘people hate us because we intervene in their lives’ and for (Rudy) Giuliani to say ‘that’s ridiculous,’ that blew my mind,” said Bofferding.

“Our imperialistic foreign policy is the biggest threat to this country, not groups of terrorists that have no state sponsor,” Bofferding said. “The first thing you have to do is stop subsidizing oppressive regimes in the Middle East.”

This is Noam Chomsky 101, and Chomsky has rock-star status among the perpetually-aggrieved college student community, despite being one of those people over 30 they’re not supposed to trust. That Paul (or Kucinich or Gravel on the left) would have a similar appeal saying the exact same things shouldn’t be much of a surprise.