Noam Chomsky - The Alternative to Capitalism



first of all we should we should bear in mind that we don't have a capitalist system a no capitalist system has ever survived it would self-destruct in five minutes so what we have is a kind of state capitalist system with the state playing a substantial role in American history of very substantial role in economic development in production and research and development a lot of other times in bailouts lots of other devices to keep the private sector viable so it's a kind of a state capitalist system like others that they vary a little on how they do it so is there an alternative to this of course for example the alternative that was taken for granted by nineteenth-century workers before it was sort of beaten out of people's heads by massive propaganda they go back to the early Industrial Revolution which was right around here eastern Massachusetts I was the period probably the freest press ever in the United States there were lots and lots of newspapers representing different ethnic groups class workers all sorts of people and they were there was a lot of participation in direct participation a very lively press widely read and so on and if you look at the working-class press they were expressing the common view of working people namely that the fruit those who work in the mills should own them and run them yeah that's very natural and as I say we've come close to that a number of times terrifying to private owners they also held that wage labour is basically no different from chattel slavery except that it's temporary and that was such a popular idea that it was a slip it was a position of the Republican Party that Abraham Lincoln espoused it and it makes sense I mean there's nothing holy about wage labor you renting yourself which is not very different from being a slave except that maybe lens in time okay so those are alternatives self-management the democratic control of institutions whether their communities or workplaces or any others alliances among them federal arrangements these are all perfectly feasible alternatives there's no economic or political theory that tells us is anything wrong with them they conflict with the structure of existing power systems and therefore the educational and cultural system tries to drive them out of your minds and make them seem and saying or crazy or unthinkable but there's nothing unthinkable about them and you can move towards realizing them in fact even in the United States you know major discussion of these things there are probably thousands of self-managed enterprises not huge ones lots of them and they're growing and they could as I mentioned they could reach the scale of say producing the green technology high-speed rail and so on that the country badly needs it's not a law of nature that we have to import solar technology from China you know poor developing country or that we have to get high-speed rail facilities from Spain those aren't laws of nature those are political decisions social economic and political decisions that can be made differently if they're made differently enough we'll be moving towards a kind of an anarchist type society




Comments
  1. First off, we have a mixed system but its lasted this long because it has more capitalist ideals. Second no socialist country survives long, you got it twisted. It's not a hard concept socialism: Everyone deserves equal pay for all jobs, food rations, school rations, house rations. This socialism leaves a lot of room for high officials distributing rations out to be in total control of all money and taking it… as it always has. pfft saying capitalism wages are like slave labor, if anything socialism sounds a lot damn closer to slaves.

  2. Here is something I don't understand. Hopefully someone can explain. Mr. Chomsky makes the claim that if you "work at the mill" then the workers should privately own the mill. Essentially what does is usurps the ownership of the mill from its actually owners that privately invested in it. There is a huge problem in terms of property rights and fairness there. If a business owner can easily have their hard work taken away from them what is the motivation to start the business in the first place? If a person wants to own their own mill then they just start their own mill/business right? Nothing in Capitalism is preventing ownership of a business. Every business owner is afforded the same rights. In fact, in the United States we are encouraged to start small businesses but many people I guess find it to be daunting and never pursue it or opt for the simpler solution of working for someone else. It's not as if people don't have a choice. You have two choices basically: 1) Work for someone else or 2) Start your own business and work for yourself. Ultimately, corporations are private citizens that at one point in time were also workers that started a small business. The complaint that everyone seems to be making is that when private citizens are free to choose we often do not like their choices because their self interest is often in conflict with ours. Does Mr. Chomsky have a solution for that problem? I do not know of one. I don't think there is a political solution to this problem.

  3. If Noam can explain how 'workers' establish the factories, etc., collectively raise the capital to purchase tooling, resources, etc.. Where has this ever happened on a large scale? 97% of all start up businesses fail. How do the workers, attempting to establish their enterprise, deal with this very real fact? It's one thing to call gainful employment "wage slavery" but I now see this as, more or less of a socialist slogan. The intellectual may decry wage slavery but isn't that exactly he or she does? This is the difference between the independent scientist and that of the institutional intellectual or scientist. True many could not accomplish their work without the backing, financial and otherwise, of an academic institution but the same could be said of industry, that is, without certain critical workers production would not be possible. A Canadian intellectual. Christopher Lasch, was offered a prestigious positions at various universities had refused the offers. He hadn't the desire to work at a university declaring that even 'professorship' positions were that of "bureaucratic civil servants". Sounds like he rejected becoming an intellectual wage slave.

  4. I can hear people shouting communism already. Is the difference that this isn’t government mandated but organized by grass roots economic activity or unionized pressure? Or is this a form of democratic socialism?

  5. Lols this guy is a joke.
    "Wage labour is essentially slavery?'-Suck out mate its voluntary.
    " those who work in the mill should own the mill"- No, those who made the initial investment into the mill should own it and be able to offer work to any who want to.

    Those

  6. "A capitalist system wouldn't last five minutes"

    Goes onto say we don't have capitalism now, and but makes the claim that something we don't have would fail.

    eyes roll

  7. Winston  Churchill Quote:. Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.  It also killed over 50 million people

  8. Federal "arrangements"???? …."democratic control of institutions"????…Gets quite vague when it comes to solutions….its a lot easier to just attack the current system….does he have a specific plan that is superior? It seems to get quite vague.

  9. Interesting that manufacturing in Germany of all places, the richest country in Europe also providing the longest vacations, actually has such systems already in place, where both workers and management have an equal say in policy… instead of always being an 'adversarial' relationship, as it is in the supposed "Free Market" in the U.S.

  10. Maybe in America need posters with Noam Chomsky on the Streets and Graffity with Him as President 🙂 because more than 50% of USA citizens Doesn't Even Know Who is He … You Americans pLeaSe START 2 advertising Him in Every Possible Way even Graffity and some posters Will Help All Humanity 2 Stop be Like animal !!! Love and Re5pect with Peace 2U

  11. Why we can't always keep applying an economic capitalism. because this planet have a capacity to take human consumeristic needs, excessive consumerism will caused damage on earth.sure,you can extract all of the oil on earth. But when it's dry out,what will you do to powered your fossil car? Even if human have to colonize and terraform mars to be second earth,would we do the same mistakes as we did to original earth.second most of the third world nations has enough by 'dog eat dog' and 'survival of the fittest' competition by superpower or rich countries. When poor countries have nothing but only cheap labours, abundant resources but with poor human resources. rich countries make them a 'debt slaves' by offering them a loan and establish a 'natural resource extractions' companies and make them work for it but most of the case benefiting the rich countries.third if this thing continually happen,just don't think there will be civil disobedience,dissatisification,complaints of the world Vox Populi or even worse,world war can will be happen anytime.

    Well,we can't change anything instantly right,and one of it are world economics that we are currently run. so sat on your tv and and just see the world burn.

  12. Hey Ben, I'm not affiliated with any group or organization, I like it that way , Not Guilty By Association . So you asked a question about taxation. Well I'm one of those people who really doesn't have a problem paying taxes. It's the way it's being done I have a problem with. Civil Society needs a large pool of money to operate, some states don't have personal income tax like Nevada. They seem to get along fine. They tax Commerce, in other words they tax what people do with money! A national sales tax makes a lot more sense in a free Society. Think about it do you want everybody to pay their fair share of taxes Rich to poor? But you have to admit that taxing a person directly, kind of seems like slavery doesn't it?

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