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Michael Moore vs Noam Chomsky
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Awww mn



Joined: 03 Jul 2002
Posts: 2511
Location: barbary coast
Michael Moore vs Noam Chomsky  Reply with quote  

VS


Ok, so I like both of them. the thing is that the left is divided; it really bothers me how people on the left bitch about people on the left and thats mainly why I feel the left has no center and gets things done slowly. Chomsky fans say that Moore's methods are manipulative and self-serving, he's heavy-handed, he has celebrity status as this hero of the working man, and he contradicts himself (NRA member, eating at McDonalds). Moore fans think Chomsky fans are pedantic intellectual snobs, and more concerned with theory than direct action.

I watched the Chomsky documentary "Manufacturing Consent" last night and it was incredible. I have not ever seen anyone break down the inherant flaws of the american system so analytically, extensively and precisely. I had no idea about the genocide in East Timor and the American media cover-up and frankly this movie shook up my views on politicians I already thought were 80% alright (like Jimmy Carter).

I saw Bowling for Columbine a couple of weeks ago. And I liked it for the most part even though it had its flaws and moments where I felt I was being coerced really hard to see everything the way Michael Moore wanted me to (cue ironic "What a Wonderful World" to the dead bodies montage). Yes, Michael Moore is heavy handed and he turns tragedy into a sort of caustic satire-edutainment, but as I was leaving the movie house I overheard many soccer moms milling over the movie, and was relieved to know that his ideas had stuck had got to some "sleepers". And I do appreciate how accessible he is, because he gets to people that Chomsky wouldn't due to his exposure and celebrity status (Oprah, Donahue, People, Mag, etc). And everyone knows that corporate media is afraid of giving Chomsky too much airtime becuase he is THAT good at making his case.

So everyone here has probably seen Bowling for Columbine and probably liked it. I urge everyone to see Manufacturing Consent, too. There is something very comforting about Chomsky when he speaks. He's very gentle and soft-spoken and it's amazing to me what a skilled debater he is and how he can be attacked ruthlessly and keep his cool and leave his opponent confounded and win with pure logic and knowledge of facts, while his opponents will resort to name calling when they feel their argument is weak.

I have only read a few of his "dumbed down" readers. Can anyone recommend a good Chomsky book or article? He's so fucking prolific (i think he has something like 300 publications & essays).


Last edited by Awww mn on Mon Dec 09, 2002 11:30 am; edited 1 time in total
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 11:23 am
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Dee



Joined: 19 Jul 2002
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This does interest me...where is it available?
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 11:30 am
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Awww mn



Joined: 03 Jul 2002
Posts: 2511
Location: barbary coast
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http://www.zeitgeistfilms.com/catalogue/manufacturingconsent/manuconsent.html
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 11:33 am
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Petrouchka Rasputin



Joined: 30 Jun 2002
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I see their approaches as working in tandem, not in opposition. Moore gets people worked up and interested in what he discusses, while Chomsky offers a more reasonable, more sound, more objective (but also more dry) perspective that most people will probably only pay attention to once they've been attracted to the issues by Moore.
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 11:41 am
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Dee



Joined: 19 Jul 2002
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Broad strokes are what the "populace" will accept (and I hate to sound like I'm the "intelligentsia" but I think you know what I mean). Broad strokes, while they may be glazing over important issues, are still the easiest to jump on the bandwagon with. Or something.
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 11:48 am
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mr.oblivious



Joined: 16 Oct 2002
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like petrouchka said. i think they're both very good for the world and i see no reason for anyone to choose between them.
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 1:24 pm
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Awww mn



Joined: 03 Jul 2002
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Location: barbary coast
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uhh..oblivious, i'm not saying pick one or the other if ya read, i merely pointed out the different styles of conveying similiar messages.

yeah rasputin, i agree that this is the way to look at the two. but their is some bitterness between the two followers, not the two propagandists persay.

and Manufacuring Consent wasn't very dry surprisingly. it was almost 3 hours long but was enagaing all the way through.
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 1:42 pm
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mr self distrukt



Joined: 01 Jul 2002
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i really like'em both and their sometimes conflicting approaches.
i see it as a benefit, but it so often stifles the progress tha left wants to acheive with alkl the in-fighting. i feel awww on that one.
zinn's coo' too.

but this is my guy:
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 1:59 pm
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Petrouchka Rasputin



Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 852
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I think I'll do some Chomsky reading myself, over the next few weeks, now that I've finished my exams.

I read the start of The Fateful Triangle last year, but didn't get very far into it. I was just reading it while on break from the job I had at the local public library, and never borrowed it, per se. It's a little dated, but probably still worth reading if you're interested in learning about US-Israel relations up until the early '80s.

Anyway - I know little of Chomsky's writings. I'd like some recommendations too, if anyone has some.
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 2:07 pm
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sandman00000



Joined: 13 Jul 2002
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Cornel West is da man.

Is 'Manufacturing Consent' available to rent?
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 2:20 pm
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SergOne



Joined: 30 Jun 2002
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yeah audrey you should check http://monkeyfist.com/ they have a bunch of chomsky interviews and articles on the site...good reading
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 2:23 pm
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MessiahCarey



Joined: 01 Jul 2002
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Wow.

Just yesterday I was explaining my position on exactly this topic.

They both have a lot to offer, but hinder themselves by being too much of what they are...Michael Moore sometimes obscures important facts with an overabundance of personality and Chomsky will often lack any personality whatsoever and replace it instead with heavy intellectualism - which hurts the points he's trying to make.

And I would, beleive it or not, debate Chomsky being on the "left" to begin with...he's clearly an anarchist (even has said it himself). Further left than most, but he's in staunch opposition to the neo-liberalism that has become pervasive in the U.S. and around the world.

Peace,
Shane
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 2:32 pm
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mr.oblivious



Joined: 16 Oct 2002
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awww damn wrote:
uhh..oblivious, i'm not saying pick one or the other if ya read, i merely pointed out the different styles of conveying similiar messages.


the topic's title is "michael moore vs noam chomsky" and your initial post discussed ways in which fans of one are detractors of the other. that's what i was responding to; i didn't accuse you of 'saying pick one or the other', if ya read.
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 2:37 pm
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mr.oblivious



Joined: 16 Oct 2002
Posts: 100
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MessiahCarey wrote:
Wow.

Just yesterday I was explaining my position on exactly this topic.

They both have a lot to offer, but hinder themselves by being too much of what they are...Michael Moore sometimes obscures important facts with an overabundance of personality and Chomsky will often lack any personality whatsoever and replace it instead with heavy intellectualism - which hurts the points he's trying to make.

And I would, beleive it or not, debate Chomsky being on the "left" to begin with...he's clearly an anarchist (even has said it himself). Further left than most, but he's in staunch opposition to the neo-liberalism that has become pervasive in the U.S. and around the world.

Peace,
Shane


how's that? if you're equating so-called "free trade" and globalization policies and agendas with anything truly liberal you're very misguided. chomsky is definitely left, and anarchists traditionally are decidedly far-left. the far-right, pro-corporation "libertarian party", anarcho-capitalists, etc. have nothing to do with anarchism in any historically accurate sense of the word and have simply co-opted the terms "libertarian" and "anarcho-" and plastered them onto agendas that run absolutely counter to the ideas of seminal and modern anarchists like goldman, bakunin, kropotkin and of course chomsky. chomsky himself has written and spoken about this. excuse me if i made an incorrect assumption about what you meant, but you definitely implied that anarchists are not on the left, and i'd have to argue that historically anarchism has been extremely far left.

sorry if this is jumbled. no sleep lately.
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 2:52 pm
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Awww mn



Joined: 03 Jul 2002
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Location: barbary coast
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yeah i apologize if that came off as condescending. for me VS has many functions and I meant to use it in the ol "Compare and Contrast" way, not boxing "Winner and Loser".

Serg, thanks for that link! it seems really comprehensive.

and Rasputin i was looking around for the more "popular" chomsky readers and this one seems to be of a definitive nature

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1565847032/qid=1039467058/sr=5-1/ref=cm_lm_asin/102-8376665-7407321?v=glance
Post Mon Dec 09, 2002 2:54 pm
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