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The Big Answer


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How the World Works

a book by Noam Chomsky

(our site's book review)

Read This Book: It Will “Make the Powerful, as Well as Their Liberal Apologists, Deeply Uncomfortable”

The Amazon blurb says that According to The New York Times, Noam Chomsky is “arguably the most important intellectual alive.” But he isn’t easy to read . . . or at least he wasn’t until these books came along. Made up of intensively edited speeches and interviews, they offer something not found anywhere else: pure Chomsky, with every dazzling idea and penetrating insight intact, delivered in clear, accessible, reader-friendly prose.

Published as four short books in the famous Real Story series—What Uncle Sam Really Wants; The Prosperous Few and the Restless Many; Secrets, Lies and Democracy; and The Common Good—they’ve collectively sold almost 600,000 copies and now they are in one volume: How the World Works.

And they—singly or in this collection in one book—continue to sell year after year after year because Chomsky’s ideas become, if anything, more relevant as time goes by. For example, twenty years ago he pointed out that “in 1970, about 90% of international capital was used for trade and long-term investment—more or less productive things—and 10% for speculation. By 1990, those figures had reversed.” As we know, speculation continued to increase exponentially. We’re paying the price now for not heeding him them.

Chris Hedges says Chomsky is “America’s greatest intellectual” who “makes the powerful, as well as their liberal apologists, deeply uncomfortable.” (He must be doing something right!)


Politicians Cannot and Will Not Help Us—We Must Organize, Resist and Protest

The savior that rides in on a white horse to save us will NOT look like this; in fact NO ONE can save us but OURSELVES, as Chomsky explains
The savior that rides in on a white horse to save us will NOT look like this; in fact NO ONE can save us but OURSELVES, as Chomsky explains


Resist Elites' Killing of Rights and Democracy
Resist Elites' Killing of Rights and Democracy

Chomsky says that people need organizations and movements to gravitate to. E.g., unions, the Occupy movement, citizens. groups, civic groups, resistance groups, activist groups, and the MC Movement whose novel is here: The Forest Through The Trees, which can de-atomize people quickly and easily, among many other things.

We need to quit looking to social engineering superheroes and rely on local community efforts instead
We need to quit looking to social engineering superheroes and rely on local community efforts instead

Chomsky tells us to avoid waiting for a leader to fix things and instead rely on popular, grassroots action and movements. We are our answer, not some superhero. He writes and speaks because the prerequisite to effective actions, organizing, and activism is understanding. (Which is true of our website as well—it spreads knowledge and wisdom to promote effective actions.)

The last section of this book, What You Can Do, points us in the activist direction. You can't wait for a savior. Do what the elites want you NOT to do more than anything else—organize! Start getting ready for a steady stream of corporate shill politicians, who are about to unravel the last 100 years of progress. (The other things the elites DON'T want you to do besides organize is stop believing their media propaganda, protest all the nation wrecking things they are doing, and stop supporting their fraudulent "war on terror" and "war on drugs" that are just poor, transparent excuses for warmongering neocon empire building.)

Get ready for a steady stream of corporate shill politicians, who are about to unravel the last 100 years of progress, says Chomsky
Get ready for a steady stream of corporate shill politicians, who are about to unravel the last 100 years of progress, says Chomsky (Trump is doing this unravelling currently, with Koch's help—see Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right)


Elites Pretend to Support Democracy while Behind the Scenes They Are Undercutting It

The elites wish to control our thinking so it doesn't stray into forbidden areas like organizing, protesting, unionizing, boycotting, marches on Washington, or otherwise exercising our democratic and Constitutional rights
The elites wish to control our thinking so it doesn't stray into forbidden areas like organizing, protesting, unionizing, boycotting, marches on Washington, or otherwise exercising our democratic and Constitutional rights


Elites undermine democracy with the barrage of propaganda they stuff down our throats constantly—we are all guzzling the Kool-Aid
Elites undermine democracy with the barrage of propaganda they stuff down our throats constantly—we are all guzzling the Kool-Aid

The book presents all the ways the elites pretend to support democracy and give it lip service while behind the scenes undercutting it in all ways possible so no democracy exists here or elsewhere. They don't do this because they hate our country but because they see it as a plum ripe for picking. Democracy is a barrier to getting the maximum profits in their corporatocracy so they keep cutting taxes and loopholing regulations so it becomes only a wisp of a barrier. The other way they undermine democracy is with the barrage of propaganda they stuff down our throats constantly. They wish to control our thinking so it doesn't stray into forbidden areas like organizing, protesting, unionizing, boycotting, marches on Washington, or otherwise exercising our democratic and Constitutional rights. "How the world works" is exactly what you learn by reading this book.

The Constitution
The Constitution


If 'the bewildered herd' of average American citizens would read this book, they'd stampede
If 'the bewildered herd' of average American citizens would read this book, they'd stampede


When the corporatocracy prevails, democracy takes it on the chin
When the corporatocracy prevails, democracy takes it on the chin

Google Has Apparently Decided to Help the Elites Undercut Democracy

If "the bewildered herd" of average American citizens would read this book, they'd stampede. The last thing the elites want is for the herd to get upset and organized and to learn the truth. But Chomsky's 100+ books are the very truth they fear will be learned. The mainstream media won't let Chomsky in—they just pretend he doesn't exist. Unfortunately, it is not just the mainstream media. The mainstream search engine—Google—wants the truth to go away as well. So they de-indexed the majority of pages of many of the best sources of truth, such as Alternet.org. They pretend that it is about dumping "fake news." But the shocking truth is that Alternet.org and many other alternative sites tell much more truth than the mainstream media. The mainstream media reports propaganda—the very definition of fake news—while alternate sites do not. So Google's campaign of truth censorship in the name of fake news prevention is the ultimate hypocrisy. Those of us who understand the media and propaganda are waiting with baited breath to see if Google will come to their senses! See The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires and Editorial: Google's Threat to Democracy Continues to Hit AlterNet Hard, But We Are Pushing Back: To fight the Goliath Google, we need a very good slingshot..

The mainstream media reports propaganda—the very definition of fake news—while alternate sites do not. So Google's campaign of truth censorship in the name of fake news prevention is the ultimate hypocrisy
The mainstream media reports propaganda—the very definition of fake news—while alternate sites do not. So Google's campaign of truth censorship in the name of fake news prevention is the ultimate hypocrisy

The smartest, wisest, most famous, most read intellectual on the planet—Chomsky—says the mainstream media is full of propaganda (fake news) and progressive sites are not, yet Google—with no one on the payroll who understands any of this—is calling him and all progressive sites on the internet liars. Is this the first step of fascism and tyranny? Censorship of truth tellers and featuring the liars and propagandists and fake new distributers is not just hypocritical. It is truly ignorant—like the leaders of Google are—except for search engine knowledge—a bunch a drooling morons.

De-indexing progressive websites is truly ignorant—like the leaders of Google are—except for search engine knowledge—a bunch a drooling morons
De-indexing progressive websites is truly ignorant—like the leaders of Google are—except for search engine knowledge—a bunch a drooling morons

Will Trump Stage a False Flag Event?

Chomsky told AlterNet: "In order to maintain his popularity, the Trump administration will have to try to find some means of rallying the support and changing the discourse from the policies that they are carrying out, which are basically a wrecking ball, to something else. Maybe scapegoating, saying, 'Well, I'm sorry, I can't bring your jobs back because these bad people are preventing it.' And the typical scapegoating goes to vulnerable people, immigrants, terrorists, Muslims and elitists, whoever it may be. We shouldn't put aside the possibility that there would be some kind of staged or alleged terrorist act, which can change the country instantly." Yes, such false flag attacks are part of how the world works.

Look! More terrorist events! Let's go attack someone!
Look! More terrorist events! Let's go attack someone! (actually, we doubt the Orange Oligarch would try this—his administration is full of loose lips and he knows it)

The American Empire's Imperialism and Exploitation Was Planned During WWII!

Chomsky says "During World War II, study groups of the State Department and Council on Foreign Relations developed [secret] plans for the postwar world in terms of what they called the 'Grand Area,' which was to be subordinated to the needs of the American economy. . . . The Third World was to 'fulfill its major function as a source of raw materials and a market' for the industrial capitalist societies, as a 1949 State Department memo put it. It was to be 'exploited.' . . . it was crucial that these societies reconstruct in a very specific way. The traditional, right-wing order had to be restored, with business dominant, labor split and weakened, and the burden of reconstruction placed squarely on the shoulders of the working classes and the poor. . . . The major thing that stood in the way of this was the antifascist resistance, so we suppressed it all over the world, often installing fascists and Nazi collaborators in its place. Sometimes that required extreme violence, but other times it was done by softer measures, like subverting elections and withholding desperately needed food."

Former Nazis were employed by the U.S. planners to teach torture techniques devised by the Gestapo to various fascist countries around the world—or countries we forced into fascism. Note they had tried to be democratic—of and by and for the people. But the U.S. stopped these people centered movements around the world, corrupting and terrorizing elections so that fascist dictators that favored the U.S. corporatocracy got power. If people centered candidates won, they met with accidents and we engineered coups. JFK would have been expected to fight all this evilness and greed, but he did nothing of the sort. He at least—to his credit—refused to go all in about the Vietnam fraud, for which he got a free dirt nap.

Former Nazis were employed by the U.S. planners to teach torture techniques devised by the Gestapo to various fascist countries around the world—or countries we forced into fascism
Former Nazis were employed by the U.S. planners to teach torture techniques devised by the Gestapo to various fascist countries around the world—or countries we forced into fascism (pictured: Abu-Ghrai Prison was one of many places our torture knowledge came in handy)

Elites Learned It Was Easy to Use Propaganda to Lie to the Citizens and Create Thought Control

Elites Learned it was easy to use propaganda to lie to the citizens and create thought control
Elites Learned it was easy to use propaganda to lie to the citizens and create thought control

The U.S. has consistently opposed democracies if its results cannot be controlled. Whenever democracies tried to see to the needs of the people rather than the U.S. corporatocracy, violence, torture, coups, assassinations, subversions occur and at first the world failed to understand that it was the U.S. that was behind the fascist dictators that kept popping up around the globe. See Hegemony or Survival: America's Quest for Global Dominance. The irony is that we stopped the Third Reich not because they were evil, but because their greedy murderousness was so successful that we realized we could do the same thing, only with better success, more subtlety, more pretense, and without our thought-controlled U.S. citizens even learning what was going on, so we stopped the Third Reich so they wouldn't interfere with our American Empire plans.

It turned out that like Hitler, the U.S. elites found out it was easy to use propaganda to lie to the citizens and create thought control, so the media was bought and they spewed CW only (parroting the party line)
It turned out that like Hitler, the U.S. elites found out it was easy to use propaganda to lie to the citizens and create thought control, so the media was bought and they spewed CW only (parroting the party line)


It was more than the propaganda to lie to the citizens and create thought control, it was also the censoring of any unwanted news or reports, or at least spinning it. Note: spin journalism is news and information that is manipulated or slanted to affect its interpretation and influence public opinion
It was more than the propaganda to lie to the citizens and create thought control, it was also the censoring of any unwanted news or reports, or at least spinning it. Note: spin journalism is news and information that is manipulated or slanted to affect its interpretation and influence public opinion

We'd simply engineer consent, in order to create thought control. Propaganda was very successful in our post-WWII corporatocracy-pleasing campaign of exploitation and terror. But we were not copying Hitler. Ironically, we were copying ourselves! Entering WWI had been an idea rejected by our citizens until Wilson engineered a huge propaganda campaign. From 1917 on, the U.S. democracy's freedom of the press became progressively compromised by censorship from the powers-that-be like J.P. Morgan and the corporatocracy, and later by the the OSS (1942-1947) and then the CIA (1947-now), which gets its directions from the shadow government, which used propaganda to control the sheep-citizens.

Like Hitler, the U.S. used propaganda to lie to the citizens and create thought control
Like Hitler, the U.S. used propaganda to lie to the citizens and create thought control


J.P. Morgan and his rich buddies took control of U.S. mainstream media a century ago, and, for important news stories we've gotten propaganda rather than truth ever since, and we're guzzling the Kool-Aid
J.P. Morgan and his rich buddies took control of U.S. mainstream media a century ago, and, for important news stories we've gotten propaganda rather than truth ever since, and we're guzzling the Kool-Aid

"The mass media serve as a system for communicating messages and symbols to the general populace. It is their function to amuse, entertain, and inform, and to inculcate individuals with the values, beliefs, and codes of behavior that will integrate them into the institutional structures of the larger society. In a world of concentrated wealth and major conflicts of class interest, to fulfill this role requires systematic propaganda."—Noam Chomsky, Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media

Noam Chomsky says a democratic communications system would be one that involves large-scale citizen participation, and said system should reflect both public interests and real values like truth, integrity and discovery. What we actually have, of course, is a corporatocracy owned and controlled propaganda system used to control people's thoughts and ideas and act as a coverup system to hide the evil elite activities of genocide, exploitation, nation wrecking, democracy wrecking, and torture perpetrated by the neocons in charge, the CIA, hired mercenaries, economic hitmen, and the shadow government in charge. Their values are greed, imperialism, and empire building at ANY cost, including ghastly horrors visited upon innocent peasants to control their thoughts and actions.

The only reason these greedy neocons do not pull that stuff on U.S. citizens—besides the fact that there is a third of a billion of us and most of us own firearms and know how to use them—is that it is not necessary and it would be too messy and hard to cover up. The propaganda system in this country is so vast and effective that elites can get the bewildered herd to believe anything, and they know it, so harsher measures of thought control are simply not on the table.

Politicians are like hookers. You can't be one unless you can pretend to like people while you're screwing them
Politicians are like hookers. You can't be one unless you can pretend to like people while you're screwing them

Politicians are like hookers. You can't be one unless you can pretend to like people while you're screwing them.—Justin Halpern

The way the U.S. relates to other countries is best illustrated by this image of a pickpocket who picks the guy's pocket as he shakes his hand
The way the U.S. relates to other countries is best illustrated by this image of a pickpocket who picks the guy's pocket as he shakes his hand

The U.S. media do not function in the manner of the propaganda system of a totalitarian state. Rather, they permit—indeed, encourage—spirited debate, criticism, and dissent, as long as these remain faithfully within the system of presuppositions and principles that constitute an elite consensus, a system so powerful as to be internalized largely without awareness, says Chomsky.


Elites Pushed the Domino Theory Lie to Cover Evil Imperialistic Actions

Parliamentary governments were prevented or overthrown, with U.S. support and sometimes direct intervention, e.g., in Iran in 1953, in Guatemala in 1954, and in 1963 when not-so-heroic and not-so-democratic John F. Kennedy backed a military coup to prevent the threat of a return to democracy in the Dominican Republic in 1963, and LBJ did it in Brazil in 1964, and Nixon did it in Chile in 1973.

To the elites, the weaker and poorer a country is, the bigger a danger they are as an example. So the U.S. made sure no Central or South American or African country can succeed in bringing about a better life for its people, because then some other place that has more resources will ask, “Why not us?” The U.S. has become the Evil Empire it says the U.S.S.R. is, with no actual interest in human rights and democratization, in spite of the lip service paid to these values by politicians. Of course, the domino theory the U.S. public hears is only about the danger of countries going communist, although the real worry for elites isn't about communism but about countries that achieve peace and freedom or become a democracy or start meeting the needs of its people. Everyone would reject the U.S. neocons' imperialistic empire building model if democracies were allowed to persist.

The domino theory says that if one country goes commie or achieves peace and freedom or becomes a democracy or starts meeting the needs of its people, it will infect other countries who will do the same
The domino theory says that if one country goes commie or achieves peace and freedom or becomes a democracy or starts meeting the needs of its people, it will infect other countries who will do the same. Of course, the bewildered herd of citizens only hears the commie threat stuff, but the elites warn each other of the dangers of democracies breeding other democracies wherein our imperialistic corporatocracy gets told to buzz off.

Chomsky assures us that the current U.S. habit of killing democracy and those who support it around the world (while bragging how much we support it) and blocking countries from achieving peace and freedom and becoming democratic or meeting the needs of their people is not hopelessly unchangeable. We don't have to look at the world's countries as victims to rob and exploit for the benefit of U.S. corporatocracy. We could change these evil ways. But such a thing would require very significant cultural, social and institutional changes, including democratic structures that go far beyond periodic selection of representatives of the business world to manage domestic and international affairs. The purpose of the constant propaganda and misinformation we are exposed to is to make sure the bewildered herd doesn't learn the truth, so the elites can continue their exploitations undisturbed. If this herd were to learn the truth, they'd surely stampede. (Google is working in harmony with elites' coverups and fake news, by de-indexing many of the pages of progressive websites that dare to tell the truth. NOTE TO Google: We desperately need no censorship of alternative ideas if democracy has the chance of surviving!)

The purpose of the propaganda we are exposed to is to make sure the herd doesn't learn the truth—if this herd were to learn the truth, they'd surely stampede
The purpose of the propaganda we are exposed to is to make sure the herd doesn't learn the truth—if this herd were to learn the truth, they'd surely stampede


U.S. citizens are choking on misinformation used to cover up the reality of the elites' illicit activities—if only they learned the truth!
U.S. citizens are choking on misinformation used to cover up the reality of the elites' illicit activities—if only they learned the truth!

The U.S. did everything it could to prolong the Cold War, so they could use "the Evil Empire's communist takeover of the world" as an excuse to invade and exploit various countries around the world. Each superpower controlled its population with the fear of attack from the other, using various crimes of the other as realities to fear.


The Fraudulent War on Terror Has Been the Replacement for Cold War Fear-Mongering

New enemies have had to be invented now that the Cold War has ended. Terrorists and the fraudulent War on Terror have been the replacement, and this scenario was easily manufactured by attacking Iraq, then Afghanistan and Libya. In fact, the U.S. has a regular terrorist factory going—kill one terrorist, create 10 more terrorists that are mad relatives swearing vengeance.

The U.S. has a regular terrorist factory going—kill one terrorist, create 10 more terrorists that are mad relatives swearing vengeance
The U.S. has a regular terrorist factory going—kill one terrorist, create 10 more terrorists that are mad relatives swearing vengeance


Millions of people around the world believe U.S. neocons were behind 9/11
Millions of people around the world believe U.S. neocons were behind 9/11

Millions of people around the world believe U.S. neocons were behind 9/11 because the way the buildings collapsed was clearly not related to the planes that hit these buildings near their tops, even though the fires were related to the planes. But whether the U.S. neocons were culpable or not, using 9/11 as an excuse to invade Iraq was transparent to most people on this planet—we wanted oil and war. War lined the pockets of corporatocracy darlings like Halliburton and this warmongering against innocent Islamic citizens had the desired response—an eternal fight against terrorism. We'd never again run out of enemies to fear and kill or countries to exploit. Our corporatocracy trembled with pleasure—their future was secure!

By 2006, the amount of money Americans spend on illegal drugs reached 100 billion dollars a year
By 2006, the amount of money Americans spend on illegal drugs reached 100 billion dollars a year

The War on Drugs was the next big excuse for intervention and exploitation, when terrorism wasn't present somewhere. There are drug pushers everywhere, and U.S. propaganda about how drugs were ruining this country gave elites the cover they needed to continue to have a huge military budget for empire building. It also gave the elites the excuses they needed to attack civil liberties, distract the public, and increase repression in the inner cities—much of which came in the form of jailing citizens for minor drug offences. Tobacco deaths from cigarettes were 400,000 a year if you count secondary smoke deaths, while illegal drugs killed 12,990 a year. Perhaps they need to do the math and redirect their efforts. And opioid overdose deaths were at 20,000 in 2015—still only 1/20th of the cigarette related deaths. Alcohol kiled 30,000 and heroin overdose deaths killed 12,990.


Like in 1984, Our Leaders Talk in Doulespeak

In the topsy-turvy world of U.S. "peace negotiations," the phrase peace negotiations means to block international efforts to seek peace. War is too profitable for the U.S. We are the world's biggest arms dealers, and Halliburton rakes in billions of bucks rebuilding the countries we destroy. But we continue to talk peace to fool the rubes who just don't understand how the world works. Doublethink and newspeak are both Orwellian terms and when combined, they add up to Doublespeak, which is what our leaders use on us, along with truthiness. See Shadow Elite: How the World's New Power Brokers Undermine Democracy, Government, and the Free Market and Orwell's 1984: Donald Speak is Double Speak.

We are the world's biggest arms dealers, and Halliburton rakes in billions of bucks rebuilding the countries we destroy
We are the world's biggest arms dealers, and Halliburton rakes in billions of bucks rebuilding the countries we destroy

To make sense of political discourse, it’s necessary to give a running translation into English, decoding the 1984 doublespeak of the media, neocons, politicians, and talking heads, many of whom have truthiness down to a fine art. In the groundbreaking exposé in her book Shadow Elite: How the World's New Power Brokers Undermine Democracy, Government, and the Free Market, she introduces a term Stephen Colbert coined: “truthiness,” which scientists like her would ordinarily avoid since it was spontaneously brainstormed in a comedy stand-up routine. But she couldn't resist it: it fit so poignantly and perfectly in describing disingenuous conning, faking, bluffing, feigning, dissembling mendacity presented as fact or information that is "to the best of my knowledge." It differs from truth. It means presenting events and ideas in the way we'd prefer them to be, but not necessarily in the way they really are. Following through, she says that what appears in the mainstream media and in the words of celebrities is “truthiness.”

Why can't the media, neocons, politicians, and talking heads tell the truth and demonstrate integrity—a necessity for a democracy to function well? Simple: the truth would cause the population to rise up against the government to protest all the corruption and lies and thought control in the propaganda we are continuously exposed to. And protests can be very effective. See Media Control, Second Edition: The Spectacular Achievements of Propaganda and Lies, Incorporated: The World of Post-Truth Politics.

Bundesarchiv Bild 183-1989-1106-405, Plauen, Demonstration vor dem Rathaus
Demonstrations in East Germany helped to bring down the Berlin Wall

Elites Want to Dumb Us Down So We Never Think or Organize

As the author says, the struggle for freedom is never over—it persists. The people of the Third World need our compassionate understanding and, what's more, they need our help. And we can provide them with a boost to their survival by the internal disruption we do in the United States, not to be annoying or difficult, but to get organized and protest, boycott, unionize, and march on Washington en masse. Whether the people of the Third World can succeed against the kind of brutality our neocon elites impose on them depends mostly on what happens here in the USA. The courage they show is quite amazing, given the horrors our corrupt elites visit upon them. The Occupy Wall Street protests—here in the U.S.—were a good start, but we need to keep the energy going. Elites cannot stand it when the bewildered herd gets together, organizing for collective power. They want us atomized, alone, depressed, but above all distracted so we will not begin to think. Elites want to dumb us down so we consider it amusing to be chasing shiny objects.

Elites want us distracted so we will not begin to think. Elites want to dumb us down so we consider it amusing to be chasing shiny objects
Elites want us distracted so we will not begin to think. Elites want to dumb us down so we consider it amusing to be chasing shiny objects


Wall Street Protest: Occupy Wall Street—Copyright © 2011 by Louis Lanzano
Wall Street Protest: Occupy Wall Street—Copyright © 2011 by Louis Lanzano

How many of us Americans supported the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision which lets corporations buy elections? None. The decision renders input from the PEOPLE moot, useless, and N.A., therefore the U.S. is now a fullfledged corporatocracy and oligarchy. Your votes are about as meaningful as a bag of crap—if that, since the crap can be used for fertilizer, but any future voting you do is worth less than even that.

Your votes are about as meaningful as a bag of this stuff
Your votes are about as meaningful as a bag of this stuff

What changed after the heartfelt, sincere Occupy Wall Street protests where we were telling the powers-that-be that their transference of wealth from the 99% to the 1% was getting sickeningly unfair? Nothing. Who listened? Only others of us 99%ers. Not a single 1%er even bothered to glance in the protesters direction.

'You know, Archibald, my bladder is a tad too full—do these windows open? I'd like to send my regards to those pesky OWS protesters'
'You know, Archibald, my bladder is a tad too full—do these windows open? I'd like to send my regards to those pesky OWS protesters'


The transference of wealth from the 99% to the 1% has resulted in a breathtaking income gap between rich and poor
The transference of wealth from the 99% to the 1% has resulted in a breathtaking income gap between rich and poor


The ladder of class mobility has been rigged so the nonrich have no way to advance—the rich prefer to keep all the wealth for themselves!
The ladder of class mobility has been rigged so the nonrich have no way to advance—the rich prefer to keep all the wealth for themselves! See Requiem for the American Dream: The 10 Principles of Concentration of Wealth & Power, the best book of the 21st century.

To Protect the Rich from the Poor, Which: Reduce Democracy or Reduce Poverty?

Aristotle made the point that in a democratic society where there are a few rich and a lot of poor, the poor will use their democratic rights to take property from the rich, which is unjust. He proposed two possible solutions for this problem: reduce democracy or reduce poverty. Aristotle favored the latter. James Madison preferred to reduce democracy as the solution. He believed the main goal of government is to protect the rich from the poor. Madison wanted real power to come from a “more capable set of men” who were supposed to be “enlightened statesmen” and “benevolent philosophers,” which is a great concept but in truth it's pie-in-the-sky idealism, building castles in air.

Madison wanted real power to come from a 'more capable set of men' who were supposed to be 'enlightened statesmen' and 'benevolent philosophers,' which is a great concept but really just wishful thinking: building castles in air
Madison wanted real power to come from a 'more capable set of men' who were supposed to be 'enlightened statesmen' and 'benevolent philosophers,' which is a great concept but really just wishful thinking: building castles in air


James Madison, the fourth President of the United States from 1809 to 1817, was hailed as the 'Father of the Constitution' for his pivotal role in drafting and promoting the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights
James Madison, the fourth President of the United States from 1809 to 1817, was hailed as the 'Father of the Constitution' for his pivotal role in drafting and promoting the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights

But power quickly transferred from the hands of the people to investors and corporate executives trying to maximize their own wealth at the expense of other people, making Madison appalled and making Aristotle turn over in his grave. The naive Madison plan of putting power in elite hands backfired. It meant making democracy nonfunctional, since power in a democracy should be the people's, not the elite's. Or as Lincoln said in his Gettysburg Address, ". . . that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth."

When greedy oligarchs gained the power in the U.S., Aristotle turned over in his grave, as did all the Founders that were dead
When greedy oligarchs gained the power in the U.S., Aristotle turned over in his grave, as did all the Founders that were dead

Madison wanted non-elite people to get marginalized and factionalized in various ways so they would be powerless and disorganized—a bewildered herd. Aristotle, on the other hand, wanted to limit poverty by ensuring there's a middle class, which the U.S.'s entrepreneurial spirit and progressive taxes used to ensure. But recent elite greed has started reducing the size of the middle class, putting more and more of their wealth into the pockets of the elites. The rich are shaking down the nonrich. Historically, in the U.S., political power has mostly been in elite hands, not the people's hands, notes Chomsky.

Recent elite greed has started reducing the size of the middle class, putting more and more of their wealth into the pockets of the elites—the rich are shaking down the nonrich
Recent elite greed has started reducing the size of the middle class, putting more and more of their wealth into the pockets of the elites—the rich are shaking down the nonrich

Chomsky Says Oligarchal Dominance Happened Far beyond the Founders' Worst Nightmares

Jefferson and de Tocqueville and many others feared that if manufacturing oligarchs ever got power, we'd be in deep doodoo. Their fears were realized—this oligarchal dominance "happened far beyond their worst nightmares," says Chomsky. The U.S. is an oligarchy and democracy is a distant memory, as is a free press. Lincoln said the U.S. was dedicated to bringing true equality to all of its citizens. Some may have felt this way, but greedy elites have generated more greedy elites historically, until in 2017 the elites' greed is bordering on the pathological. Madison's dream (of non-elite people getting marginalized and factionalized in various ways so they would be powerless and disorganized—a bewildered herd) has been realized, but, again, he assumed elites would act maturely, responsibly, wisely, and fairly. In actual fact, they did none of these. From the start greed ran the show, and in the 20th century it degenerated into ravenous, murderous, genocidal, evil greed.

The moral of the Little Red Hen story is that those who make no contribution to producing a product do not deserve to enjoy the product; nothing ventured, nothing gained; the American dream is if you work hard you'll be rewarded
The moral of the Little Red Hen story is that those who make no contribution to producing a product do not deserve to enjoy the product; nothing ventured, nothing gained; the American dream is if you work hard you'll be rewarded. This dream is no longer realistic for the vast majority of Amerians. See Requiem for the American Dream: The 10 Principles of Concentration of Wealth & Power.

The author says that equality of opportunity is what should exist in this country, but we don't have it, nor equality of outcome. We say equality of opportunity is good for society but equality of outcome is not good for society since it decreases motivation necessary for humans to achieve great things, such as new inventions, intellectual discoveries, and artistic breakthroughs. According to this view, economic wealth and social status are rewards needed to spur such activity. Ideal, perfect humans would not need this behaviorism-based, reward and punishment context to be creative and ambitious. But the majority of our citizens are brought up in this reward and punishment context and if the reward of equality of outcome came their way regardless of the efforts or lack of efforts they invested, they would indubitably lose motivation and develop laziness, irresponsibility, and apathy. See Flat-gradient Nurturance versus Steep-gradient Nurturance for an in-depth look at these issues. Unconditional Parenting looks into motivation as well, as does Beyond Discipline and Discipline That Works.


Corporations Use Governments to Protect Them

Classical capitalism was characterized by free market ideology, which holds that the market should be left to sort itself out without intervention from governments. But today corporations insist on powerful governments to protect them from market discipline, utilizing such strategies as deregulatiion, offshoring, tax havens, and government subsidies. 20th century consumersm-based Keynesian capitalism used state intervention to protect national industries from overseas competition. Then Keynesian, "New Deal" capitalism changed to the neoliberal and global model that exists today. Globalization is an elimination of barriers to trade (including dumping many national regulations), communication, and cultural exchange. The theory behind globalization is that worldwide openness will promote the inherent wealth of all nations. But the wealth went to the wealthy. That's why globalization is most clearly conceptualized as an attempt by rich elites to increase their economic gains at the expense on the majority of the world’s population. "Free trade" and open trade were cover stories, covering the barbaric events, bullying, and war crimes that went on behind the scenes.

Internationally, we employ the value that might makes right, but, unfortunately, we end up proving that might makes stupid
Internationally, we employ the value that might makes right, but, unfortunately, we end up proving that might makes stupid

The ugliest way in which corporations insist on powerful governments to protect them from market discipline is the various aspects of empire building, which involves assassinations, coups, explotation, intervention, torture, genocidal destruction of subpopulations not cooperating with being exploited by our corporatocracy, propaganda, mind control, proxy wars and mercenary utilization. In order to get cheap resources for our corporatocracy, we destroy democracies, install dictators friendly to our multinational corporations, wreck environments, and bully others mercilessly. This getting of cheap resources by extreme cheating and atrocious moral values allows us to compete in markets by evil deeds. Internationally, we employ the value that might makes right, but, unfortunately, we end up proving that might makes stupid.

Mausoleum of assassinated President Omar Torrijos of Panama was an ugly testament to the fates of  the Central American leaders who wouldn't play ball with our corporatocracy
Mausoleum of assassinated President Omar Torrijos of Panama was an ugly testament to the fates of the Central American leaders who wouldn't play ball with our corporatocracy

60's Progress Scared Elites, So They Employed Omnipresent Propaganda to Achieve Thought Control

For the most part, our U.S.-exploited neighbors to the south threw out the U.S.-backed tyrants in the late 20th century. This happened because of courage and struggle on their part, not because of mercy or benevolence on the part of the corrupt U.S. corporatocracy. Chomsky notes the significant progress in this country since the 1960s—because of courage and struggle on the part of women, minorities, environmentalists, etc. There were exceptions and reversals. "But the overall change is toward greater humanity," he says. The main thing that has worsened is control by the corporate oligarchy. What happened is that the elites saw what happened in the 60s and 70s, and viewed with disapproval when the citizens used their democratic rights to gain freedoms in reality that they were already supposed to have anyway, according to the Constitution.

They elites ramped up their propaganda and put together a plan to start diminishing civil rights so collective power would be defanged and citizens would be too distracted and entertained to organize. As the Internet, and hundreds of cable channels on TVs arrived, and news turned into 24/7 infotainment, the elites exploited these media for their own purposes of propaganda. And as 2003 arrived, Dubya used 9/11 as a lame excuse to propagandize and lie and paint Saddam as a madman out to destroy our country, which led to the phony unprovoked wars on Iraq and Afghanistan, which led to the Patriot Act and massive surveillance on U.S. citizens "for our own protection." The elites had the technology they needed to begin a 1984 Big Brother campaign against the citizens. Good-bye rights and privacy. And "for our security" protests were made nonexistent by a colluding media, in addition to protesters being maced and assaulted and shuffled off to parks or other areas where no one would hear them or see them. Freedom of assembly and expressing grievances—in the Constitution—were rendered impotent. The coup against freedom, privacy, and rights was complete. We now have these things on paper but not in reality. And the Supreme Court rubber-stamped our transition from democracy to oligarchy with a decision that let big corporatocracy entities buy elections, rendering public participation a pathetic act of useless, meaningless, symbolism.

The elite effectively buried democracy six feet under—they'd never liked it—it just lowered their profits with its taxes and regulations: goodbye and good riddance!
The elite effectively buried democracy six feet under—they'd never liked it—it just lowered their profits with its taxes and regulations: goodbye and good riddance!

The bewildered herd didn't get the memo, therefore rising up against their deceivers. Instead, they kept doing what the elites wanted: texting and YouTube-ing and Facebook-ing and video-gaming and arguing over fake news and . . . they were too distracted by shiny objects to think or organize. So why did this death of democracy and total thought control of the bewildered herd go unreported? Why did the most important thing ever get ignored? Because media were too busy dutifully spewing elite propaganda that everything was just fine, and the herd made the fatal mistake of trusting these sellouts. Which kept them bewildered. So why would the elites do this horrible thing to the United States of America? Greed. Fanatic, all-consuming, obsessive, infinite greed. Thanks for all your warnings, Noam Chomsky! SOME of us were actually listening. Proof: read these.