The seven most important things Noam Chomsky said about Donald Trump

Joe Vesey-Byrne
Wednesday 16 November 2016 11:15
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Noam Chomsky blames mainstream media for the unpopularity of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn(KHALIL MAZRAAWI/AFP/Getty Images)

On Monday Noam Chomsky gave an interview in which he gave his views on president-elect Donald Trump.

In conversation with his interviewer C.J. Polychroniou, Chomsky said Trump's environmental policy would accelerate humanity's 'race to disaster'.

The philosopher, public speaker, and author of several popular books had some other choice words for Trump.

And his words carry weight, if not for the quality then their ubiquity.

According to a study by MIT, Chomsky once held the title of most cited living person in academic papers, and the eighth most cited person ever.

Here are seven of his important quotes on Trump from his interview with Truth Out, and from before the election was called for Trump on 9 November.

Climate Change

The winning candidate, now the president-elect, calls for rapid increase in use of fossil fuels, including coal; dismantling of regulations; rejection of help to developing countries that are seeking to move to sustainable energy; and in general, racing to the cliff as fast as possible.

Chomsky had previously criticised Trump in May, in an interview with the Guardian

But there are some pretty stable elements of his ideology, if you can even grant him that concept. One of them is: “Climate change is not taking place.” As he puts it: “Forget it.” And that’s almost a death knell for the species – not tomorrow, but the decisions we take now are going to affect things in a couple of decades, and in a couple of generations it could be catastrophic

Trump is what the GOP gets for building a coalition of extremists

[Republicans] have turned to mobilizing sectors of the population that have always been there, but not as an organized coalitional political force: evangelicals, nativists, racists and the victims of the forms of globalization...Every candidate that has emerged from the base -- such as [Michele] Bachmann, [Herman] Cain or [Rick] Santorum -- has been so extreme that the Republican establishment had to use its ample resources to beat them down. The difference in 2016 is that the establishment failed, much to its chagrin, as we have seen.

Helping the American middle class

These are just samples of the real lives of Trump supporters, who are led to believe that Trump will do something to remedy their plight, though the merest look at his fiscal and other proposals demonstrates the opposite -- posing a task for activists who hope to fend off the worst and to advance desperately needed changes.

Mimicking Obama

One positive development might be the infrastructure program that Trump has promised while (along with much reporting and commentary) concealing the fact that it is essentially the Obama stimulus program that would have been of great benefit to the economy and to the society generally, but was killed by the Republican Congress on the pretext that it would explode the deficit.

'Friendly Fascism'

For many years, I have been writing and speaking about the danger of the rise of an honest and charismatic ideologue in the United States, someone who could exploit the fear and anger that has long been boiling in much of the society, and who could direct it away from the actual agents of malaise to vulnerable targets. That could indeed lead to what sociologist Bertram Gross called 'friendly fascism' in a perceptive study 35 years ago.

The ideology of 'Me'

But that ['friendly Fascism'] requires an honest ideologue, a Hitler type, not someone whose only detectable ideology is Me.

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