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What Corbyn and his followers want.The following extract from an interview with Noam Chomsky will give you a clear understanding of what MPs like Jeremy Corbyn and their millions of followers, voters and backers are fighting for - what it is that they wish to change about our society. The BBC, Independent, Guardian, Telegraph, Times, Channel 4, etc will not tell you ANYTHING about what Corbyn and his millions of supporters actually want.
<< Chomsky: first of all we should bear in mind that capitalism is a bit of a myth. We don't really have capitalist societies. We have state capitalist societies and the state has always played an essential central role in development and extension of the capitalist system, so that goes back to England in the 17th century and all the way through the history of development.
But let's just take the recent period, so take today's high-tech economy. Take your iPhone. If you take your iPhone and you take the technology - take it apart and it turns out that almost everything comes from the state sector. The GPS was developed by the Navy, the electronics was developed in military labs. You know: everything. The computer that's in front of you. The computers began to be developed in the 1950s, actually in a large part in the lab where I happened to be working. It wasn't until 1977 that Apple was able to produce a computer that could be marketed for profit - that's after about 30 years of research and development in the state sector.
Now suppose we had capitalist societies, one of the principles of capitalism is supposed to be that if you invest in something, especially if you invest to make a risky costly investment over say 30 years, and there's some profit that comes out, it's supposed to go back to you.
But our system doesn't work like that: it goes to Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos. The public pays the costs through various devices, the university labs and so on and then after many years something is handed over to the private corporations and they make the profit. Same with the internet. The beginnings of the internet were in the late 1950s actually in same lab where I was working at MIT that began thinking about the internet and it developed over decades within the government system, meaning taxpayer support. Finally around 1995 the public made a gift simply a gift to private corporations to say ok you guys can have the internet that we developed. Now we have the half a dozen huge mega corporations which run the Internet. It's a public gift, you know.
And in fact across the board that's the way it is: it's the same if you go back to the 19th century when what was called the American system of production developed and kind of amazed the world. You know: mass production, quality control, interchangeable parts. Most of it was developed in government armouries. That's where you can do experimentation you can you can make investments for the long term. Private corporations don't do that, they want to make profit tomorrow not invest for what might happen in 30 years, and that's in fact the entire history of development of what we call capitalism and its current function.
If you look at the present: take the people who are saying we have to have a small government and devote ourselves to the market, just look at how they live. There are huge public subsidies, government subsidies, to every major sector of the economy: agribusiness, energy, finance - they're all heavily publicly subsidised. That's okay. That's a "proper function" of the government just not pensions and security and health and "irrelevant" things like that.
So that's what's called capitalism but it's a very specifically shaped and designed form of capitalism. So can that survive? Well it certainly shouldn't survive and I think that can be changed. In fact the public wants it to be changed. >>