The two main criminals are France and the United States. They owe Haiti enormous reparations because of actions going back hundreds of years. If we could ever get to the stage where somebody could say, ‘We’re sorry we did it,’ that would be nice. But if that just assuages guilt, it’s just another crime. To become minimally civilized, we would have to say, ‘We carried out and benefited from vicious crimes. A large part of the wealth of France comes from the crimes we committed against Haiti, and the United States gained as well. Therefore we are going to pay reparations to the Haitian people.’ Then you will see the beginnings of civilization.
More quotes by Noam Chomsky
Nation-state systems basically arose in Europe in their modern sense, and they’re extremely unnatural social organizations. They had to be imposed on the populations by violence, extreme violence.
Our ignorance can be divided into problems and mysteries. When we face a problem, we may not know its solution, but we have insight, increasing knowledge, and an inkling of what we are looking for. When we face a mystery, however, we can only stare in wonder and bewilderment, not knowing what an explanation would even look like.
Poor people are basically superfluous for wealth production, and therefore the wealthy want to get rid of them. The rich also frighten everyone else, because if you’re afraid of these people, then you submit to state authority.
…I try to keep in mind the principle that one should not try to persuade; rather, to lay out the territory as best one can so that others can use their own intellectual powers to determine for themselves what they think is taking place and what is right or wrong.
Optimism is a strategy for making a better future. Because unless you believe that the future can be better, you are unlikely to step up and take responsibility for making it so.
More quotes about Politics
The worst thing for a politician is to try and cling to power by every possible means, and focus only on that.
I would say to the House, as I said to those who have joined this Government: I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat. You ask, what is our aim? I can answer in one word: It is victory, victory at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory, however long and hard the road may be; for without victory, there is no survival.
The masses go into a revolution not with a prepared plan of social reconstruction, but with a sharp feeling that they cannot endure the old regime. Only the guiding layers of a class have a political program, and even this still requires the test of events and the approval of the masses.
Imagine a country that flies into space, launches Sputniks, creates such a defense system, and it can’t resolve the problem of women’s pantyhose. There’s no toothpaste, no soap powder, not the basic necessities of life. It was incredible and humiliating to work in such a government.
Africa shares with Asia a common background of colonialism, of exploitation, of discrimination, of oppression. At Bandung, African and Asian States dedicated themselves to the liberation of their two continents from foreign domination and affirmed the right of all nations to develop in their own way, free of any external interference.
It is unacceptable that many women and girls adapt their daily lives in order to avoid being harassed on the street, public transport, and in other public places from the park to the supermarket.
Lebanon was under Israeli occupation, up to its capital, but we did not consider that a disaster. Why? Because it was very clear that there are ways to resist.
Major military operations, particularly involving Russian armed forces, have ended. There isn’t even a need for them anymore.
I’m not sure if Donald Trump is the answer, but I do think that the departure from traditional politicians may be the answer. I’m not sure if he is, but I like the idea of getting away from career politicians.