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Noam Chomsky: 'If you don't push the lever for the Dems, you are helping Trump'


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I'm glad he finally said it. The progressives who think Biden is the same as Trump simply because he isn't everything they want piss me off even more than the fucking Trumpists do. The Trumpists are simply deluded... there are genuine sadists among them, but largely they're just ignorant dupes who think they're doing the right thing. The progressives who refuse to vote for Biden are like spoiled children... and not only are they not going to get what they want, they are going to ruin it for people who would have been supportive of at least SOME of what they want. It makes me want to hit them.

 

https://www.salon.com/2020/10/17/noam-chomsky-if-you-dont-push-the-lever-for-the-democrats-you-are-assisting-trump/

 

Quote

My position is to vote against Trump. In our two-party system, there is a technical fact that if you want to vote against Trump, you have to push the lever for the Democrats. If you don't push the lever for the Democrats, you are assisting Trump. We can argue about a lot of things, but not arithmetic. You have a choice on Nov. 3. Do I vote against Trump or help Trump?

It is a simple choice. He's the worst malignancy ever to appear in our political system. He is extremely dangerous.

All of this for the left shouldn't even be discussed. It takes a few minutes. Politics means constant activism. An election comes along every once in awhile, and you have to decide if it is worth participating. Sometimes not — there were cases when I didn't even bother voting. There were cases when I voted Republican, because the Republican congressional candidate in my district was slightly better. It should take roughly a few minutes to decide, then you go back to activism, which is real politics.

There is a new phenomenon on the left. I had never even heard of it before 2016, which is to focus, laser-like, on elections. That's where you get these crazy ideas like condemnation of "lesser-evil voting." Of course, you vote against someone dangerous if it is necessary, but that is not serious political activity. Serious political activity comes out of commitment to educational and organizational work. 

Somehow parts of the left within the past few years have unconsciously accepted establishment propaganda. The establishment view of politics is that the public are spectators, not participants in action. Your function is to show up every few years, push a lever, go back home, leave the rest to us. You shouldn't have "democratic dogmatisms about people judging what's in their best interest" — I'm quoting Harold Lasswell, one of the founders of political science. The establishment view is that we have to provide people with, to quote Reinhold Niebuhr, "necessary illusions" and "emotionally potent simplifications." We'll handle the real work.   

To see the left buy into this is astonishing. If you don't buy into the establishment picture, you don't talk about "lesser-evil voting." You talk about activism and strategy. Every once in awhile, you decide whether or not it is worth the effort to push a lever. Sometimes it is so obvious, as it is now, that it shouldn't take two minutes to decide.  

 

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5 hours ago, Toldya said:

I'm glad he finally said it. The progressives who think Biden is the same as Trump simply because he isn't everything they want piss me off even more than the fucking Trumpists do. The Trumpists are simply deluded... there are genuine sadists among them, but largely they're just ignorant dupes who think they're doing the right thing. The progressives who refuse to vote for Biden are like spoiled children... and not only are they not going to get what they want, they are going to ruin it for people who would have been supportive of at least SOME of what they want. It makes me want to hit them.

 

https://www.salon.com/2020/10/17/noam-chomsky-if-you-dont-push-the-lever-for-the-democrats-you-are-assisting-trump/

 

 

 

I'm glad a Left Winger as prestigious as Chomsky came out and said the obvious.  Never in a presidential election has the choice been more clear ....  Ignorance, division and decay - vs - progress, solidarity and common sense.  Our Nation, as we know it, may not survive four more years of madness.

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Chomsky has said many times in the past that those who sat out the election and refused to vote Democratic made a "“bad mistake.”

 

Yet those who made that “bad mistake" never seem to own up to what they did.

 

Trump is the president today due to that “bad mistake.”

 

The far-left Bernie-or-busters/Our Revolution screwed this country.

 

Without remorse or apology.

 

Chomsky has it right. Bad mistake!

 

Bill

 

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Chomsky is right, you have to vote Democrat to oppose Trump. 
 

I’d quibble with his statement that Trump is the worst malignancy ever to appear in our political system. I think McConnell is equally malignant. That’s why it is also important to vote for Democratic senators. 

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8 hours ago, Toldya said:

The progressives who think Biden is the same as Trump simply because he isn't everything they want piss me off even more than the fucking Trumpists do.

 

Common ground. Except such folks are not in any measure "progressives." 

 

The same thing was true in 2016. These people piss me off even more than the fucking Trumpists do.

 

With you brother!

 

Bill

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2 hours ago, bludog said:

 

I'm glad a Left Winger as prestigious as Chomsky came out and said the obvious.  Never in a presidential election has the choice been more clear ....  Ignorance, division and decay - vs - progress, solidarity and common sense.  Our Nation, as we know it, may not survive four more years of madness.

 

The choice was equally clear 4 years ago.

 

We did not have to endure this horrific brush with American fascism.

 

Everyone understood what Trump was about.

 

There have been no surprises here.

 

Bill

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10 minutes ago, SpyCar said:

 

The choice was equally clear 4 years ago.

 

We did not have to endure this horrific brush with American fascism.

 

Everyone understood what Trump was about.

 

There have been no surprises here.

 

Bill

 

This is exactly why I voted for Hillary four years ago.  The thought of Trump as president was unacceptable to me.  The same is still true now, except, a lot of damage has already been done in the last four years.  

 

I think, this time around,  the vast majority of Dems who did not anticipate the havoc Trump would wreak, are now sufficiently alarmed that they will not make the same mistake again.

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54 minutes ago, bludog said:

 

This is exactly why I voted for Hillary four years ago.  The thought of Trump as president was unacceptable to me.  The same is still true now, except, a lot of damage has already been done in the last four years.  

 

I think, this time around,  the vast majority of Dems who did not anticipate the havoc Trump would wreak, are now sufficiently alarmed that they will not make the same mistake again.

 

Let's hope so. But who didn't see the havoc coming?

 

People like Susan Sarandon said the far-left should embrace the havoc as Trump would "help bring on the revolution."

 

I don't this this was a failure of understanding what Trump promised to bring, but a very bad mistake of embracing the destruction--thinking it was the far-left's route to power.

 

If someone made a bad a mistake of underestimating the damage of non-voting, don't you think those persons would apologise for their mistakes? 

 

But have we seen any such apologies? I have not.

 

Bill

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3 hours ago, SpyCar said:

Let's hope so. But who didn't see the havoc coming?

 

People like Susan Sarandon said the far-left should embrace the havoc as Trump would "help bring on the revolution."

 

I don't this this was a failure of understanding what Trump promised to bring, but a very bad mistake of embracing the destruction--thinking it was the far-left's route to power.

 

If someone made a bad a mistake of underestimating the damage of non-voting, don't you think those persons would apologise for their mistakes? 

 

But have we seen any such apologies? I have not.

 

Bill

 

The fact that so many who didn't vote for Hillary in 2016 are now voting for Biden in 2020 is evidence that most of these people did not appreciate the danger of a Trump presidency back then.  Evidently the past four years have been a sobering reality check for them.

 

It appears Susan Sarandon is no different:

Quote

 

Susan Sarandon has said she will vote for Joe Biden in the forthcoming US presidential election, despite being a vocal critic of the Democratic candidate.

- snip -

 

https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/films/news/susan-sarandon-joe-biden-vote-democrat-nominee-election-trump-2020-b421380.html

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35 minutes ago, bludog said:

 

The fact that so many who didn't vote for Hillary in 2016 are now voting for Biden in 2020 is evidence that most of these people did not appreciate the danger of a Trump presidency back then.  Evidently the past four years have been a sobering reality check for them.

 

It appears Susan Sarandon is no different:

https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/films/news/susan-sarandon-joe-biden-vote-democrat-nominee-election-trump-2020-b421380.html

 

Too little. Too late.

 

The threat Trump posed was crystal clear. Nothing Trump's done is a surprise. 

 

Susan Sarandon has not apologized for her actions. She calls calling for an apology "vote shaming."

 

She's learned nothing, as we can see when she promises to do "everything in her power" to create a new third party (the "People's Party") that will help permanently undermine the electoral prospects of the Democratic Party by siphoning off votes.

 

WTF? Sarandon is a snake in the grass.

 

She's a Trump-enabler of the worst kind.

 

Bill

 

 

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23 hours ago, SpyCar said:

 

Too little. Too late.

 

The threat Trump posed was crystal clear. Nothing Trump's done is a surprise. 

 

Susan Sarandon has not apologized for her actions. She calls calling for an apology "vote shaming."

 

She's learned nothing, as we can see when she promises to do "everything in her power" to create a new third party (the "People's Party") that will help permanently undermine the electoral prospects of the Democratic Party by siphoning off votes.

 

WTF? Sarandon is a snake in the grass.

 

She's a Trump-enabler of the worst kind.

 

Bill

 

 


Susan Sarandon is right when she says callIng for an apology Is vote shaming. 
 

Her third party effort is what concerns me. Democrats are a massive tent but carving that tent up into smaller and smaller chunks will split the progressive vote and hand perpetual power to the extremist Republican minority.

 

 

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5 minutes ago, Olivaw said:


Susan Sarandon is right when she says callIng for an apology Is vote shaming. 
 

Her third party effort is what concerns me. Democrats are a massive tent but carving that tent up into smaller and smaller chunks will split the progressive vote and hand perpetual power to the extremist Republican minority.

 

 

 

We need to disagree on the issue of so-called "vote shaming." 

 

Sarandon owes the world an apology. No if-ands-or-buts about that in my mind.

 

I agree that her third party moves are even more concerning. I could not hold this person in greater contempt.

 

Sarandon thinks the path to far-left power comes from destroying liberalism, installing the far-right, creating havok, and having the far-left seem like the only alternative.

 

That's the same plan that was embraced by the German communists in the 1930s and we see how that turned out.

 

Bill

 

 

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On 10/19/2020 at 4:12 AM, SpyCar said:

People like Susan Sarandon said the far-left should embrace the havoc as Trump would "help bring on the revolution."

 

I'm not even sure if it isn't already too late.

 

Even if Trump loses, the election is fair, he is forced to concede and all of his allies abandon him, Trumpism will almost definitely survive this election, and his win has given it a legitimacy that it wouldn't have otherwise had. He still has over 40% approval during a massive crisis with a pandemic and a recession and various allies looking on in horror at the sewer the US is turning into... that's not something that can just be forgotten.

 

If they win, Biden and the Dems will be dealing with all of the fallout (increased violence/civil unrest, domestic  terrorism, covid, the inevitable havoc from the new SCOTUS) and there's no guarantee they'll be able to fix it OR deflect the blame, and meanwhile Trump is still at least somewhat associated with the post-Obama prosperity of the pre-covid years. There is nothing to stop another fascist from rising up in the GOP... perhaps someone more polished than Trump, who is able to more convincingly wrap himself in the flag and hold up the Bible and make people feel better about supporting his total destruction of democracy and imprisonment of all political opposition.

 

If Biden and the Dems don't bring about real, positive change in the next 4 years (assuming they win), then 2024 could be just as bad. The best time to stop Trumpism was 2016... and nobody took him seriously. He should have been a terrible joke that didn't go anywhere, that everyone would look back on and ridicule, and that historians would argue about in terms of the threat he could have posed. Now we're basically stuck with it... and it's all because of the progressives who thought 2016 was a 'safe' time to get angry at how un-leftist the Dems were and vote for a third party. 

 

Even this tenative 'just this one time' attitude the progs have makes me uneasy... they still think the Dems are their true enemy. Seriously... WTF? What we all need to do is vote Dem and keep voting Dem until we see signs of change IN THE GOP... if they keep losing, they WILL need to move to the left. And if we pull the GOP to the left, then the Dems will need to shift leftwards as well. The LONG GAME MATTERS... we would never have gotten to Trump without W, or Reagan. And meanwhile the best the left can do is Obama... who wasn't even truly left, or really even centrist. 

 

For over 40 years America has been pulled to the right by a party that should now be obsolete and a weak left-wing party that is trying to compromise and play fair and be nice. The GOP needs to be made completely irrelevant forever... and this won't be accomplished if they keep winning because people don't vote for the Dems. Every time they win, it means they grow stronger, more people see them as legit, and they continue to seem like a valid choice. They are not.

 

A strong left (or hell-- it could even be called a strong center at this point) will emerge via a complete, permanent, and hugely aggressive rejection of the right. We can't afford to get complacent about this or write it off as psychological manipulation, even if it is. America will never experience the kind of sudden shift that the progs want... but if we all bide our time and keep pushing everything in the right direction, we'll win in the end.

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14 minutes ago, Toldya said:

 

I'm not even sure if it isn't already too late.

 

Even if Trump loses, the election is fair, he is forced to concede and all of his allies abandon him, Trumpism will almost definitely survive this election, and his win has given it a legitimacy that it wouldn't have otherwise had. He still has over 40% approval during a massive crisis with a pandemic and a recession and various allies looking on in horror at the sewer the US is turning into... that's not something that can just be forgotten.

 

If they win, Biden and the Dems will be dealing with all of the fallout (increased violence/civil unrest, domestic  terrorism, covid, the inevitable havoc from the new SCOTUS) and there's no guarantee they'll be able to fix it OR deflect the blame, and meanwhile Trump is still at least somewhat associated with the post-Obama prosperity of the pre-covid years. There is nothing to stop another fascist from rising up in the GOP... perhaps someone more polished than Trump, who is able to more convincingly wrap himself in the flag and hold up the Bible and make people feel better about supporting his total destruction of democracy and imprisonment of all political opposition.

 

If Biden and the Dems don't bring about real, positive change in the next 4 years (assuming they win), then 2024 could be just as bad. The best time to stop Trumpism was 2016... and nobody took him seriously. He should have been a terrible joke that didn't go anywhere, that everyone would look back on and ridicule, and that historians would argue about in terms of the threat he could have posed. Now we're basically stuck with it... and it's all because of the progressives who thought 2016 was a 'safe' time to get angry at how un-leftist the Dems were and vote for a third party. 

 

Even this tenative 'just this one time' attitude the progs have makes me uneasy... they still think the Dems are their true enemy. Seriously... WTF? What we all need to do is vote Dem and keep voting Dem until we see signs of change IN THE GOP... if they keep losing, they WILL need to move to the left. And if we pull the GOP to the left, then the Dems will need to shift leftwards as well. The LONG GAME MATTERS... we would never have gotten to Trump without W, or Reagan. And meanwhile the best the left can do is Obama... who wasn't even truly left, or really even centrist. 

 

For over 40 years America has been pulled to the right by a party that should now be obsolete and a weak left-wing party that is trying to compromise and play fair and be nice. The GOP needs to be made completely irrelevant forever... and this won't be accomplished if they keep winning because people don't vote for the Dems. Every time they win, it means they grow stronger, more people see them as legit, and they continue to seem like a valid choice. They are not.

 

A strong left (or hell-- it could even be called a strong center at this point) will emerge via a complete, permanent, and hugely aggressive rejection of the right. We can't afford to get complacent about this or write it off as psychological manipulation, even if it is. America will never experience the kind of sudden shift that the progs want... but if we all bide our time and keep pushing everything in the right direction, we'll win in the end.

 

I think we need a strong liberal party. And not a left-wing analogue of the Trumpist populist party.

 

Hopefully this election is a rout and we have a Democratic majority and the WH and we provide sane leadership that puts the country back on track. I do think Trump and the GOP will lose badly.

 

And the 2022 Senate races look bad for the GOP.

 

Defeating Trumpism and having a moderate conservative GOP instead of the far-right freak show would be a plus for the country. Republicans will rightfully be punished if they remain an insane far-right populist party that builds on a foundation of racism and bigotry. That party has no future.

 

We need to the offer the American people real change. Improve lives. Make healthcare more secure and affordable. Deal with this pandemic in a smart way, get the economy rebounding, actually build infrastructure, expand justice, address policing issues, restore our alliances, and pull people together here at home.

 

To be a "progressive" requires actually making progress.

 

What we can't do is to become a populist party. That would be catastrophic.

 

Bill

 

 

 

 

 

 

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