Noam Chomsky

Brad De Long delong at econ.Berkeley.EDU
Thu Oct 29 10:21:24 PST 1998

>Your "reading of Chomsky-on-Pol-Pot" is about as faithful to what he
>your reading of De Cecco's position
>on hot capital outflows and the Marshall Plan: that is to say, it is
>entirely wrong.

I still don't get de Cecco on this issue. On one page he's saying that capital flight generated 1/4 of western Europe's balance-of-payments deficit. On the next page he's saying that "most" of U.S. aid funded capital flight. 1/4--which I think I would believe--is not most. But in general de Cecco is certainly smart, thoughtful, worth listening to...

>Note: This is a collection of speeches and interviews, not quite as
>heavily footnoted or detailed as many of his other widely available

Ah! So there is an approved list of texts totally exempt from Hegelian influence. I begin to recognize this intellectual influence...

>Brad's view of the Cold War is entirely conventional: the US wished
>merely to protect itself against the aggressive commies. Brad
>declines to go beyond this for reasons best known to himself, but the
>"Trumanesque confrontation" so coyly referred to is quite important,
>based on economic interests rather than a simply irascibility or fear

Based on irascibility, fear, *and* economic interests, please...

>Also note Brad's entirely conventional (and wrong) summary of the
>Korean War ("Stalin took off the leash and Kim Il Sung began the Korean
>War"). As Rakesh has pointed out, Bruce Cumings two volume history of
>the Korean War should be consulted before so easily swallowing this

You are... badly out of date. Interesting things have been emerging from the Soviet archives that undermine Bruce Cumings' assessment.

>>What I object to is that Chomsky tears up the trail markers that might lead
>>to conclusions different from his. He makes it next to impossible for
>>people unversed in the issues to understand what the live and much-debated
>>points of contention might be. He clear-cuts the historical landscape.
>You mean the same historical landscape that so often directs the
>powerful to turn to a Neue Ordnung to solve their problems?


Brad DeLong

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