I just finished reading Noam Chomsky‘s [web.mit.edu] lectures and thoughts from the months after 9/11—Power and Terror [amazon.com]. It’s been a while sense I read any Chomsky. Every time you read him he shocks you. With the depth of his knowledge and the things he says.
I’ve heard Chomsky described as ‘un-American’ by quite a few people. Why? Because he uses the factual record—produced by our own government—to condemn American actions around the world. The atrocities committed in our name or under our patronage. I can think of little more American then voicing ones dissent from popular opinion and the government. While I don’t agree with all that Chomsky or Zinn have to say I think they are two of the most important intellectuals in the US today and that what they have to say should be read by all.
Hearing anyone described as un-American is almost enough to make me sick. Short of physical violence against the US and it’s citizens I don’t think anything can be called un-American. The basis of the whole country is dissent. It is every Americans constitutional right to say ‘I hate America.’ And that is what makes American great. A lot needs to be fixed. Many things have gotten confused over the past two hundred years, but we are in a better position to fix those things and any other country. Almost everything Tocqueville said made America great when he wrote Democracy in America [amazon.com] has been lost to special intrest, political correctness, greed and corruption. People like Zinn and Chomsky call attention to the effects. If more people listened then perhaps we could get a little back. And once again be, rightfully and correctly, called the greatest country on Earth and live up the the ideals in the Declaration of Independance [archives.gov], the Constitution [archives.gov] and in the Bill of Rights [archives.gov].