Public intellectual and left-wing activist Noam Chomsky gave measured praise to Sarah Palin in a Monday interview with DemocracyNow, saying she was right to criticize President Barack Obama’s substanceless campaigning.
“I don’t usually admire Sarah Palin, but when she was making fun of this ‘hopey-changey’ stuff, she was right,” Chomsky said. “There was nothing there. And it was understood by the people who run the political system.”
Chomsky, author of over 100 books and trenchant critic of mass mainstream media, said that the presidency is a prize awarded to the best campaigner.
“It’s no great secret that the U.S. electoral system is mainly a public relations extravaganza to keep away from issues,” Chomsky continued. “It’s sort of a marketing affair. And the people who run it are the advertisers. … They had their national convention right after the 2008 election and revealed that they understood perfectly what was going on. And they gave Obama the award for best marketing campaign of the year.”
The author dismissed Obama from the beginning — he never expected anything but “smoke and mirrors” from his administration, he said, and has stridently criticized the president’s positions on civil liberties. Back in June, Chomsky said Obama’s drone strike policy terrorized civilians and turned them against the U.S.
“Obama is running the biggest terrorist operation that exists, maybe in history: the drone assassination campaigns, which are just part of it. … All of these operations, they are terror operations,” he said in an interview with GRITtv. “You are generating more terrorist operations.”