American Linguist and pronounced leftist Noam Chomsky did not parse words on his disgust concerning the European policy of austerity last week. In a sit down interview with Bubble TV, Chomsky noted that European society are “like lemmings” and are “committing suicide” by adopting measures to cut back on spending and reigning in on tax and services fraud.
Chomsky sounded slightly conspiratorial in his remarks, proclaiming that “the designers of the policy” made sure that everyone had a “harsher life” but themselves. He used the term “failure by design” to describe the discrepancy between the outcomes of the “banks and Wall Street” and the common European man at the mercy of their austerity.
His remarks were made on the record after receiving his honorary degree from the University of Scotland.
Watch the edited version of Chomsky’s response here:
Key Chomsky quotes:
- “Europe is kinda like lemmings walking off a cliff. The society is committing suicide. Which is,it’s a little misleaded [sic]. The designers of the policies are under– I think, understand what they’re doing.”
- “And it may significantly harm the society, but it’ll benefit the interests that they serve. So the basic policies of austerity during recession, or stagnation, are suicidal for the society”
- “These policies are, can’t work, in some respects. On the other hand they can work for other purposes. They’ll dismantle the social contract, they’ll dismantle the welfare state, they’ll weaken labor, strengthen concentrated private power. Well, from another point of view that’s a success.”
- “Why should we accept workers rights, or rights of the poor, and so on? There’s something comparable in the U.S.”
- “What they point is, yes, it’s a fail–the policies they’ve followed are a failure, for maybe, you know, 90% of the population. But it’s a class-based failure. There’s a sector of the population, not coincidentally the designers of the policy, for whom it’s an enormous success. So it’s, and it’s designed because there always has been alternative policies and there still are. So it’s failure by design. And I think something like that’s pretty much true in Europe. Except Europe, they really do itself in severely if these policies continue.”