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Noam Chomsky: Transfer Real Sovereignty

Occupying armies have responsibilities, not rights. Their primary responsibility is to withdraw as quickly and expeditiously as possible, in a manner determined by the occupied population. It follows that the orders issued by Proconsul Bremer are illegitimate and should be rescinded, including those designed to place the economy effectively in the hands of western (mostly Read more…

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Noam Chomsky: Rwanda and Abu Ghraib

The past month was the 10th anniversary of the massacres in Rwanda, and there was much soul-searching about our failure to do anything about them. So headlines read “To Say `Never Again’ and Mean it; the 1994 Rwandan genocide should have taught us about the consequences of doing nothing” (Richard Holbrooke, Washington Post); “Learn from Read more…

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Noam Chomsky: The Occupation

The occupation of Iraq has been an astonishing failure. It should have been one of the easiest in history. The more serious correspondents there are well aware of that. Patrick Cockburn recently wrote that “It has been one of the most extraordinary failures in history.” He’s quite right. Why? The best explanation I’ve heard was Read more…

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Michael Albert: Left Academics

This weekend I had the unusual and rather mixed pleasure of speaking at an academic gathering. I actually thought it was going to be my usual type of audience — students, activists, interested folks, etc. But instead, much to my surprise, it was about 140 academics. The event was a meeting of what hopes to Read more…

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Michael Albert: My Shoes…and Dylan

Bob Dylan meant and means a lot to me — so you can perhaps imagine my mood on seeing him advertising Victoria’s Secret. I don’t know which is sadder. That he did it. Or that reports indicate there is a huge sales bump as a result. In any event, I can assure you, it wasn’t Read more…

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Michael Albert: Ehrenreich Interviews Albert, Last

Ehrenreich: In the book Parecon, you make no mention, that I can find anyway, of remuneration for the work of “caring” in the home – child raising, caring for the elderly, etc. This is a big issue with feminists: how do you address it? Albert: I talk about this in various places, but perhaps at Read more…

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Michael Albert: Ehrenreich Interviews Albert Q/A 11

Ehrenreich: Why don’t you call yourself a socialist? It seems to me Parecon is well within the socialist tradition. Are you uncomfortable with being associated with that tradition? Is the socialist tradition about fighting against domination and hierarchy in pursuit of classlessness and self management? Or is the socialist tradition about crushing grassroots direct involvement Read more…

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Michael Albert: Ehrenreich Interviews Albert Q/A 10

Ehrenreich: You say your notion of parecon was influenced by your experiences with real “alternative” organizations like South End Press. Can you tell us something about these experiences and how they shaped your thinking? Parecon emerged conceptually from examining the experiences of many post capitalist economies and efforts, of course. And very central to that Read more…

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Michael Albert: Ehrenreich Interviews Albert Q/A 9

Ehrenreich: Singer also asked, what do you do when changed conditions, say a natural disaster, require instant decision-making? How do you answer this question? Albert: The question about responding to changes in people’s preferences or in material conditions, whether modest or major, is very important, of course. Any economy needs to be flexible or it Read more…

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Michael Albert: Ehrenreich Interviews Albert Q/A 8

Ehrenreich: OK, let’s forget about the slackers v. the nerds and approach the time issue in a more socially serious way. On a panel you organized at the 2003 World Social Forum, a former mayor of Porto Alegre described a real-life experiment in something like parecon — the city’s “participatory budget,” introduced by the Workers’ Read more…

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