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Profit Over People: Neoliberalism and Global Order [Kindle Edition]

Noam Chomsky
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (100 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Why is the Atlantic slowly filling with crude petroleum, threatening a millions-of-years-old ecological balance? Why did traders at prominent banks take high-risk gambles with the money entrusted to them by hundreds of thousands of clients around the world, expanding and leveraging their investments to the point that failure led to a global financial crisis that left millions of people jobless and hundreds of cities economically devastated? Why would the world’s most powerful military spend ten years fighting an enemy that presents no direct threat to secure resources for corporations? The culprit in all cases is neoliberal ideology—the belief in the supremacy of "free" markets to drive and govern human affairs. And in the years since the initial publication of Noam Chomsky’s Profit Over People: Neoliberalism and Global Order, the bitter vines of neoliberalism have only twisted themselves further into the world economy, obliterating the public’s voice in public affairs and substituting the bottom line in place of people’s basic obligation to care for one another as ends in themselves. In Profit Over People, Chomsky reveals the roots of the present crisis, tracing the history of neoliberalism through an incisive analysis of free trade agreements of the 1990s, the World Trade Organization, and the International Monetary Fund—and describes the movements of resistance to the increasing interference by the private sector in global affairs. In the years since the initial publication of Profit Over People, the stakes have only risen. Now more than ever, Profit Over People is one of the key texts explaining how the crisis facing us operates—and how, through Chomsky’s analysis of resistance, we may find an escape from the closing net.

Editorial Reviews


• "Profit Over People is Noam Chomsky at his best. His critique of our political and economic system is brilliant and devastating. This is a powerful rush of facts and ideas. Don’t stand too close." --Howard Zinn

About the Author

NOAM CHOMSKY is known throughout the world for his political and philosophical writings as well as for his groundbreaking linguistics work. He has taught at Massachusetts Institute of Technology since 1955 and remains one of America's most uncompromising voices of dissent.

Product Details

  • File Size: 2432 KB
  • Print Length: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Seven Stories Press (September 6, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004J4X74Y
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #38,562 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
298 of 304 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pay Attention or Pay the Price March 10, 2002
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Edit of 20 Jun 09 to add links (feature not available back then)

This book begins with a very fine introduction by Robert McChesney, who defines neoliberalism as an economic paradigm that leaves a small number of private parties in control and able to maximize their profit (at the expense of the people). He goes on to note that a distracted or apathetic or depoliticized public essentially "goes along" with this, resulting in the loss of community and the rise of consumerism.

Chomsky himself, over the course of 167 pages, points out the damages of neo-liberalism (public abdicating power to corporations), not just to underdeveloped nations and their peoples, but to the American people themselves, who are suffering, today, from a fifteen year decline in education, health, and increased inequality between the richest and the poorest.

Over the course of several chapters, he discusses various U.S. policies, including the U.S. policy of using "security" as a pretext for subsidizing the transfer of taxpayer funds to major arms dealers. The declaration of Cuba as a threat to U.S. national security is one that Mexico could not support--as one of their diplomats explained at the time: "if we publicly declare that Cuba is a threat to our security, forty million Mexicans will die laughing."

At the end of it all, Chomsky comes down to the simple matter of protecting both civilization and the civilians from their own governments in cahoots with corporations. His observations on the deaths by disease, starvation, and so on, at the same time that billions are being spent on arms which perpetuate the cycles of violence, are relevant.
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57 of 59 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It'll make you think and it'll make you act July 14, 1999
By A Customer
This isn't the type of reporting you want to hear, but it is the type of reporting you must hear if you believe in the democratic ideals this country was founded upon. Some might find something wrong with whistleblowing, but if you don't and you're not afraid to confront some disturbing truths, then grab this book and read it and think about how you can change this world. There must be something seriously disturbing in Chomsky's writing to the right wing to provoke such truth twisting and distortion in order to attempt to discredit Chomsky. If you want to know what they're afraid of, read this book (or any of Dr. Chomsky's other books, for that matter!
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105 of 117 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Chomsky's damning disection of global capitalism February 18, 2000
Chomsky's "Profit over People" is a careful and thought provoking (not to mention exhaustive) examination of the ultimate goals of the world of private business: profit, power, and the maintance of the status quo and the class system at any cost. If that cost is to be paid in human lives and soles, (as in East Timor and elsewhere); so be it. Of particular interest in this work by Chomsky are the sections in which he examines the recent changes from 'real' business, viz., business linked to production etc., to modern 'speculative' business, i.e, gamblers buying and selling foreign currencies etc., and the effect this has had (and will continue to have) on a global economy obsessed with nothing but profit, profit, and more profit.
Do yourself a favour and read this book. Forget Clancy, Archer, etc. That's released on to the market simply to distract the peasants of society (i.e. non-millionaires). Read instead Chomsky, Herman, Orwell, Wells, Said, Huxley, et al. Gain an insight into how much harm we, as citizens of democratic societies, are inflicting on the Third World. In addition, ponder on why you have not seen this (or any other) book by Chomsky reviewed in the main stream press. If Professor Chomsky's observations and views are as easy to dismiss as his critics would have us believe, why don't they?
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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Neo-Liberalism In Every Aspect Of Our Lives June 14, 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
"Profit Over People" is very sobering work by McChesney and Chomsky about a topic that exists in virtually all aspects of our lives. However, it's rarely defined nor even mentioned in the American mainstream media. There are reasons for this. A lack of interest for details by the public and a mainstream media that doesn't cover the topic. In addition, the US was founded by and for the elitist oligarch minority that still runs the USA today. One powerful - yet peaceful - buffer to maintain power today, is by controlling of the mainstream media.

In the beginning stages of the United States as a nation-state, Madison wrote and voiced concerns over the masses participating in decision-making. He feared for interests of the small minority of aristocratic land-owners and wealth holders. This belief system and governmental structure continues to dominate, and is still reinforced by the mainstream media 235+ years later. The message is the same, but the medium of dissemination is different.

During the height of the Cold War, Secretary of State John Foster Dulles commented that the US is "hopelessly far far behind the Soviet Union in developing controls of the minds and emotions of unsophisticated peoples" (page 48). There are those who study media and propaganda who disagree with this statement. The US propaganda during the Cold War was very effective and comprehensive. But Foster's statement reveals how propaganda and manipulating "belief" is so important to the maintenance, growth, and utter survival of a nation-state. Especially if it's ideologically competing with a rival or enemy.

Today, Neo-Liberalism is a concept and contemporary policy composed of left, right, and center.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars His ability to explain things in detail of how our society became so...
Chomsky is one of the most thoughtful and important voices we have remaining in this country. He is reviled by the 1% and thier unhinged Right Wing minions in the media and the... Read more
Published 8 days ago by Dr H S.Thompson
5.0 out of 5 stars Unravels the theft of Democracy and the government apparatus by ...
Unravels the theft of Democracy and the government apparatus by the oligarchy to govern itself, the one percent, the corporate state. Read more
Published 29 days ago by Vaughn Wehr
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Interesting reading.
Published 1 month ago by Rosa Moore
5.0 out of 5 stars This will slap you in the face
Great book, truly one of the best books Chomsky has written.
Published 1 month ago by ZI
5.0 out of 5 stars Is there an end to the US world?
It is difficult to compose a review of Chomsky books I have read. His writing is optimally concise while, at the same time, including only those fundamental facts required to... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Phillip J. Hanson
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 stars.
Neoliberalism, neocolonialism and class warfare.
Published 1 month ago by Megan M Blankenship
5.0 out of 5 stars Must read
WOW! that is all i could said after i finished reading it. It is an amazing book which explains the power of evil of cooperate businesses and how us public is impoverished for the... Read more
Published 1 month ago by CW
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent book (a lit bit complex, but it really opens your eyes) and the quality excellent as well
Published 1 month ago by Michelle
5.0 out of 5 stars I wish I had read this in my teens!
Frighteningly prescient, brilliant-and frightening.
Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Very well written. Quite informative
Published 2 months ago by C. Katsogiannos
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More About the Author

Noam Chomsky is Institute Professor in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston. A member of the American Academy of Science, he has published widely in both linguistics and current affairs. His books include At War with Asia, Towards a New Cold War, Fateful Triangle: The U. S., Israel and the Palestinians, Necessary Illusions, Hegemony or Survival, Deterring Democracy, Failed States: The Abuse of Power and the Assault on Democracy and Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media.

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