[NOTE: Wherever a reader disagrees with or doubts an allegation that is made in the following, the evidence behind that allegation can immediately be found by merely clicking onto the link where the given allegation is being stated.]
Noam Chomsky, who in a 2005 global poll was voted as the “world’s top public intellectual”, told Qatar’s Al Jazeera television, in a November 24th interview, that Hillary Clinton’s “positions are much better than Trump’s on every issue that I can think of”, so that Americans who didn’t vote for her to become the next President were “making a bad mistake.”
One of those issues (on which he preferred her “position”) was whether to go to war against Russia — an issue on which her statements were remarkably consistent (unlike her positions on most other issues) — namely, that we should engage in a hot war against Russia, and that as the U.S. President she would do so. Trump was opposed to her position that supported each one of the three ways in which she argued for hot war between Russia and the United States (1: establishing a no-fly zone in Syria; 2: responding by physical warfare means — including bombs — against any Russian espionage that entails ‘cyber’ elements which harm U.S. interests or affect a U.S. federal election; and, 3: forcing Russia to restore Crimea to Ukraine). Trump opposed her on each of those three “issues”: he stood against her on each one of those three pathways toward a war against Russia; he opposed each one of the three paths. This was one of the clearest differences between him and her.
Huffington Post, as part of its continuing campaign for Hillary Clinton against Donald Trump, headlined the next day about this AJ interview, “Noam Chomsky: People Who Didn’t Vote For Clinton To Block Trump Made A ‘Bad Mistake’,” and linked there also to a 20 May 2016 interview of Chomsky by Britain’s Guardian, “Noam Chomsky on Donald Trump: ‘Almost a death knell for the human species’,” in which Chomsky alleged that Trump was unacceptable especially because of the effect he would have on climate-change:
“What effect would electing Donald Trump have? It’s hard to say because we don’t really know what he thinks. And I’m not sure he knows what he thinks. He’s perfectly capable of saying contradictory things at the same time. 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.”
On October 2nd, I provided evidence that whereas Hillary Clinton has never verbally denied the reality of global warming, her actual record as a public official (and also the sources of her political funding — both of those factors) point consistently to her being at least as much of a threat against the survivability of this planet’s atmosphere and environment as Trump is. Chomsky pays attention only to words not deeds, and so ignored all of that evidence, which I provided under the sub-head: “5: Sanders has been consistently opposed to fossil fuels. Hillary has aggressively supported them.”
That issue, of global warming, seems to have been #1 for Chomsky, whereas for me it was #2, after the issue of whether or not the U.S. should engage in a hot war against Russia, either in Syria, or in Ukraine, or in Russia itself (which surely would mean a nuclear war).
However, my main disagreement with Chomsky regarding the U.S. Presidential contest is that whereas he implicitly trusted the honesty of — and based his views and made his selection of the candidate to prefer, upon — the merely verbal statements that were made by the candidates, I rely always as much as possible (which in Clinton’s case was 100%) upon the given candidate’s actions not words. Whereas Chomsky invites liars to persuade him, I simply do not; only the choices that a candidate has actually made in his or her official capacity — actions not words — affect my electoral preferences.
One might therefore say that my basic disagreement with Chomsky is epistemological: He arrives at his opinions on the basis of people’s words, whereas I arrive at my opinions on the basis of people’s actions and decisions — not what they say, but what they actually do in the context of the circumstances in which they do it. I do not invite liars to persuade me, whereas he does — and that’s the difference.
But, in any case, Hillary’s consistent — in both her actions and her words — support of the U.S. government imposing a no-fire zone in Syria (or any other country whose government is being actively protected by Russian military forces) was the overwhelming reason why I considered her to be presenting the greatest threat to the continuance of life on Earth of anyone in history, and why I was therefore greatly relieved to learn that she won’t be the U.S. President. The difference between myself and Chomsky on this goes deeper than to political issues, and it reaches to epistemological issues, which is the bedrock of all beliefs.
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.