Ali’s blog

Mostly quant stuff with occasional digressions

Chomsky quote

Posted by alifinmath on October 17, 2008

I found this Chomsky quote:

The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum.” (Found at

The truth in this statement had me laughing, though of course every thinking person in any of today’s Western “democracies” knows this full well. Most issues are simply beyond the pale and TV talk show hosts, politicians, and newspapers will go out of their way to avoid them or — if pressed and questioned specifically — deflect the discussion to safer waters or engage in misdirection. Thus, for example, Chris Matthews (host of the American Hardball) talks loudly and aggressively — about nothing at all, red herrings, non sequiturs).

In the USA, the nature of the class system, the possibility of inherent race differences, and the close relationship between the USA and Israel are all taboo. What is allowed is ear-splitting debate on whether, for example, homosexuals should be allowed in the US army.


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