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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  August 4, 2013 10:00pm-12:01am EDT

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>> thank you to the forum for hosting us and all you for coming in all. i am the editor and we are the prod publishers of vijay new book "the poorer nations" i will briefly introduce him he will talk about his book for a bit. then we have q&a i will kick off with a few questions and we will turn over to you. we're hoping to wait for the microphone to get you since it will play on booktv on the c-span in the future. i get the feeling that a lot of people here know vijay but for those who don't just tell little bio of 39.
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he is a chair at the american university of beirut and formally for a long time that george did martha tear of south asian studies and the director of international studies at the kennedy college in connecticut. are you going back to trinity? the author of more than one dozen but long dash books if you count those the only available in india. this year he published two books one we will not talk about but it is worth checking out called uncle swami called. >> it is about of south asia is a good book. we will talk about his new book just published a called
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"the poorer nations"r many vijay is unquestionably the leading historian of the global self today. not only in the sense this book and its pre-quell the darker nations and in their sad not that they so thoroughly cover the rise of the political movements of the global south but they turn the history of the 20th century upside-down hence our. they do it tells the story of the era of the cold war of the point of view of the third world so it is a really unusual paradigm shifting of history.
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then "the poorer nations" i will not talk about a much but it covers the period of the rise of what we now call the global south rather rise and fall of the global south from the play to view of the global south the erev of neo liberalism. so they really are books that turn the intellectual political history of the 20th century in the present upside-down. if you have not read them, they are mind blowers i highly recommend them. of all the books that i have been lucky to work on as an editor and i worked on both of these, these two are by far, by far i am most blessed to have worked on the ones that i learned the most from and i am proudest of and i am proud to say -- to see vijay ideas out there
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to make impact he just the back to give the keynote address to the un conference on trade and development which she writes about quite a bit in "the poorer nations" and to see him standing in front of this international body of experts and development types to deliver the radical analysis was an amazing sight. that is actually available on you to with his address and the questions that come afterwards i urge you to check it out i just wish they would pay in the audience seated see the ball the assembly of important figures listen to you. so now the great vijay prashad. [applause] >> the tories say anything about andrew hsiao i agree
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to be here in the forum. all of my books have had any event here and the most exciting for me is when the book released in 2000 that was held up the old forum. catholicism's the better one. that was an amazing even for me because i have written the book essentially as an antidote to the fact nobody wanted to publish. i was rejected by seven presses and i was extremely despondent so i sat down to write this book that my friend said it is but then i was amazed it was a pact all these people were interested of the south asian political dynamic in america. that was my first event at
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the forum. and those it is right feel most at home here in new york in drew is modest because these books and we have done together starting over one decade ago when we will talk about why the meeting of the world social forum it was a world conference against racism and intolerance and discrimination so why was there such chaos come on the stage of the left? there never seems to be a coherent agenda. we have so many different issues in there and able to fight a united horizon. not a single horizon but
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some kind of unity but the first time we talk about this i said i would write a book about it be over 100 pages because of durbin was in danger of being forgotten. faugh five all that work that went to put together this major conference was in danger of the loss. i remember we matt and i said i cannot publish his book because it is a book of defeat it does not recognize there is no future for the movement. it is a swan song that never came together. said then went back where is
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the dynamic? what about in the venues like when you go to these meetings there are activist coming from the movement in brazil and coming for apartheid and also from south africa feinstein against at the time the south african in the regime. these people have a history that precludes them. we all have a set of issues. we were to go back to look at history and its positivity to demonstrate around the world to create a new vision people did not
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like this colonial part sale bust look back now those are all the histories that suggest looking at mexico. it is a failed state. and when they were all fighting the battles in the early 1900 s there are not saying let's fight these battles so we can produce a state that is collapsing under terrorism or ordinary street danger and unemployment that was not the vision. surely they had a vision. it was to excavate that vision not for one nation. that is someone available what we didn't have was a
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sense of the great broad minded this. many of these people were not just interested in their dander territory they had another territory or agenda they could dream about world's they could make different kinds of connections and in some cases they knew each other they had met perhaps all of the formation of the u.n.. pretty and if they did not physically beat each other in millions did not. those millions fighting against the british in india had not met the millions of people in egypt to overthrow the british mandates there but yet they knew of each other they knew for instance of gandhi.
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is an incredible story the egyptian assassin a collaborator in egypt he assassinated the collaborator was seeking that who assess major british official in london because there is that connection so these people understood something that was much larger than the confinement of their territory. so there was a much larger can't -- canvas i thought the history of the nation state not only is the history of defeat but if you remember by the 1980's and 90's when the nation states were coming under the crisis and other things they would
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say nationalism is a failure but in fact, if you go back the story is much more complicated not only by writing about the national dreams the in a much broader horizon so my next project was to right that dynamic the emergence of those dreams and the contradictions because after all i am not capable of great seeing only the dreams of the nationalist. one of the tragedies of being a marxist you are confronted with the contradictions always. sometimes you have to suspend your contradictions to make politics and otherwise everything looks like a bad decision. to join organizations as if
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there are no contradictions but in general it is driven by contradictions that even the dreams of the third world projects are filled with contradictions so those have contradictions as well and lastly when put together it was about the demolition of those dreams and the argument there the dream was demolished by the crisis of the 1980's so much said nationalism is bad it was a reflection of the reality of that type. it is where the history that i wrote ended of the third row project was basically funded by the 1980's as a consequence of the debt crisis of the only thing
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available was totalitarianism in many cases. because of that nationalism was getting a bad name so first we to recover the story. how we get to the point when the national project had collapsed? when i wrote that book the ending was very gloomy maybe it is true or not some people say it is exaggerated but history should be written with some life in them. [laughter] if it does not have life it will not appeal to anybody. i am not saying it is propaganda it is simply in broad strokes what you imagine how people have these approaches the world i
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wrote the ending not fully. but then i deflated it. in other words, we return the conscripts' of maternity. it is over for these parts of the world but of course, i already started work on the second volume because it could not have been part of the first book because it was about the third world project in the ashes of the third world projects rose something new that said history is driven by the contradictions. people are not capable of being defeated they simply lose for the moment that there might begin to start up again. it is very difficult for the masses of people to suffer
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catastrophic defeat for ever. you beefy to one dash defeat the generation or two generations but then they will rise against you. they think once you declare the american century history has ended for everybody forever. and day except that but it is more complicated already. but there was another story as well. on the one hand and said his story challenge -- the history challenge the big project of the south. the other things i was working against i use the word contradiction 10 or 12 times already. [laughter] but the following narratives what happens in development
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theory? in the indoctrination i had written about at the time mainstream develop the thinkers completely forgotten after the 1980's when i say forgotten i mean development studies but others had a unique approach to understanding development they were interested in the issues construction of a population of the basic needs come out of that theory. but by the 1980's when the historical imagination collapses at the same time the other studies collapse to say we are sorry all these years we talk about
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status a in subsidy regime as we are sorry we talk about improving the well-being of the population but for now one we talk about the influence of the market. so those development studies from the left became totally involved in a market-driven development a public-private partnership improving market access that kind of thinking entered development studies. second the theory of the new liberalism and important theory that we utilized as an instrument to get the sections of social life previously through social democracy through the third
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row project it was held in the public trust to produce social goods such as education and other word health care and one more transportation. that these somehow would be held in the public trust in order to provide services to the population but that was long ago in its place to come if you increase the private sector involvement services would improve that is the theory. the new liberalism started to suggest something happened in england and in the united states or maybe new york enter world history and no -- now liberalism comes somehow these domestic
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policies in london the house of commons in washington and d.c. the treasury department engineered liberalism exported to the world so what happens to the event -- development study? the idea that once again all good things are exploited to the rest of the world. that is a pretty mainstream approach to things like that. the third thing to right against was somehow rich people had emerged in india and on the course of africa to rich people all of the world so the world has become a flat. the geography now is simply
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a flat world whether thomas freedom -- thomas friedman on one side or the role of the other "the world is flat" in those contradictions dominate so there is no real geography of imperialism they no longer operate like the use to. so now to talk about the issue is also a mainstream approach thomas friedman also in the left with a very strong approach somehow there is a flattening that there is that he leaked in china also india there has not been one there since when they build those things or whatever they are. [laughter] the existence of the elite is evidence of a flat world there is the leader in every
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society so how to do that? that is the problem the book does in a couple of different ways. i was interested in how 1970 there is a concerted effort by the group of seven countries formed in 1974 if they tell the story of the formation of the group of seven in 1974. why did they form? they formed largely for two reasons there were internal problems in the united states in europe there was serious labor issues particularly northern europe and they reemerging in the united states. they needed to figure out how to coordinate policy with the industrial countries they wanted to
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protect capital against mutual international flights through the policy in iran will not go into this in detail because it is in the book but in the early '70s united states it's the old standards and of the greenback comes forward what you may call the dollar bill or so there was the danger always the french with the enter capitalist rivalries of the group of seven is formed for that one reason that the second reason is equally important when it is rarely talked about they want to come together to fight against the new economic order develop by the third world project with the general assembly 1973
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the use of oil the conventional narrative but if you read the actual discussion it was not just that but they're very angry at the fact this is a new dollar bill had screwed up commodity prices so now we have to import things for -- from u.s. taxes are going up but to their mind it was unnaturally low. this pressure from the third world was the second reason the g-7 was born this story and wanted to tell with how this g-7 group being also the organization of economic cooperation and development europe and america secretary discuss how to deal with the commodity debate and
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basically stabilizing commodity prices to make sure that produce get a feared the -- the fair deal not entirely manipulated not just the company's buying the cocoa and selling it back to the countries that would produce the cocoa. so the g-7 not only get that countries to fight against the national economic order but also to clean up the institution. they clean up the ims and the world bank and i tell how the indians were thrown out of these institutions an entirely new crop of people many american minted people from the economics department brought into the imf year-old bank when they
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say 50 years is enough with the actually say things down with the '70s oil bank because interestingly the imf before this period was an interesting organization i tell the story of the man who ran the imf who had a theory that some of this oil profit should be collected in a fund and used as a recycling mechanism. i know it sounds like jordan that is the danger with economic link which they never understand all this but it is what the west for the north likes to do with it is in trouble so when the financial crisis occurred in 2007 in northwestern china to say we would like some of your surplus to we put into the stabilization fund to
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stabilize us but when the south goes into the debt crisis then you have to be responsible or great -- or with greece the third world country you have to do with your own problems. if we have a problem than the chinese can bail us out you may remember in the '80s japan bail out the u.s. winter twice since then they revalue their currencies to the plaza agreement to be sure the japanese surplus came back to the united states. thank so the imf was willing to create a global one to create stability so before the '70s it was interesting organization that had to be cleaned up and brought into line so the argument that i try to suggest here is on two fronts. one is the emergence of liberalism is not just the
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in good financial crisis but punishing of the new world project i quote from the g-7 founding meeting it is a brilliant documented it is available where some state department official was tossed with keeping notes anti-the reveals amazing discussions for instance a social democrat a socialist says the japanese and others by emigrate friend of the head we're going to have to let that go we cannot have that success in the lumber in germany and it is scandalous thing is the talk about quite openly so it is not a conspiracy theory.
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i am not manufacturing stuff they collude with each other even the managers of the globe so they will fix certain problems in those meetings they talk a lot in the way to sort it out is the dynamic developing in the third world had to we sidelined with a simple dynamic the most successful commodity cocktail coming out of the cartel for cocoa and aluminum that is why jamaica has been destroyed to make it is one of the leading producers and they were trying to create the aluminum cartel and the castilians led to crash that
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cartel of commodities because they would raise the prices of the goods so this discussion of the g-7 was how to kill this process of the third world project. in other words, the north-south divide was going to continue so that is one street and the story unbeknownst to a lot of intellectuals of the collision it may be true a little bit there is a great deal of collusion from the global north to the rest of the world. that is one dynamic. and that i have a lot of fun with the evidence. thank god the united states
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why is this the greatest country in the world? and a number you have seen the tv show newsroom. any way. he says it is not the greatest country in the world. but it is because the documents are kept in the archives. [laughter] and they are incriminating. [laughter] and they're really incriminating. it is quite scandalous. the second dynamic that the second chapter tells is of the self commission and a story that is totally forgotten. one of the sad things of this self commission the final report was in caracas caracas, venezuela august august 2nd, 1980. that does not mean anything to you unless you are iraqi or kuwaiti but that was when they were invading kuwait. it has the faith of the
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world conference of racism and ended in bad times the crow . because of the intellectuals trying to figure out how to deal with their general agreement of trade and tariffs. but then to make a couple of revisions of global trade that will be catastrophic. i will tell you about one of them, the most important. in the background the intellectual property trade intellectual property.
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alexander wrote this book. sandy has a very nice timex watch. and i a take photographs of how it is laid out but i would have a completely different process. but the currier and intellectual property regimes was a process. >> but to get to that but to change intellectual property rules so the product was patented.
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it anywhere in the world even if they manufacture it themselves in other words, another rate to re-read seeking on their products and what happens in america where you could have gross but no jobs. because no a small section of the american population cannot invent things like the medicine or the drugs he don't have to hire people to make it any more. you can make it in malaysia and sell it anywhere in the world. it was crucial to globalization. so in the self commission
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these politicians gathered to discuss how do we survived that very cleverly with dynamism and racism and daniel patrick moynihan with said that as an ambassador in essentially to destroy the united asian and spur growth a discussion between
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the kissinger a and nicks in. not the black community. but to create that sort of argument developed the un the great liberal senator from new york his mission was to move more important business to the security council. but the general assembly as the main body now the security council is part of the agenda. so it is committed to politics.
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and with that un reform but the second discussion was economics at is how you deal with intellectual property rights and the question of debt? because they decided the north and would no longer finance development it was interested in so-called restructuring the state of the celtic policy the imf --
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but the self was its own locomotives. in with those discussions to start to see the tinkling of the new strategy ordeal liberalism emerges from the south. so a number of them may have the policy but they were not identical. not that they are good but they're not identical essayed polycentric emergence in another issue i'll briefly touch on an important issue we
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understand globalization and the firm's breakup so nike was the best example. it makes nothing is a brand company. it just makes the brand it designs shoes. they are made by some contractors to malaysia and the designs come from oregon if you go out there used to the final product said arco they build a giant shoe factory in a natural link up. a hint whether the major what they had in the
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previous era was nationalization. so to nationalize the factory we could control the manufacture of issues. in what the hell are you going to do with the factory that produces 59 yen per year? and now making a factory in haiti. and then to we removed from the arsenal of the government. with intellectual property rights with the enormous implication and never understand why the people say "the world is flat."
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but in this global trend continues. with this global imagination to have a high growth rate. it is stupid to imply that you would employ them darr. and then to sit in the back pocket there is no incentive to produce jobs and economic terms. said that to we set aside they discuss the politics out of that comes the idea for the smaller set of countries of what the commission said to create locomotives of the south. to release some countries to grow in the anchor of the rest of the world.
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and goldman sachs killeen's the phrase brics. they have the side agenda but finally what does this have to do with what the story begins with? there are still social forums. bet with the assessment of what was the possibility of international is some. the argument that i idiot's costs is a premature idea it
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was a central material idea in the 30's but toas a central a in the 30's but today, they have been regional test -- regionalist at to take:five economic power of to create for themselves the means of moving a new history forward. when that starts off on the international stage with a regional understanding with the regional politics said move from latin america to
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asia. and then at the social forum is more a necessary but to play the important role it never acknowledges it with the arab spring because activists would meet each other. and based on trust if you can trust the police cannot build power together. how they do not trust each other sufficiently. if there in the streets in bahrain, who are you?
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maybe you are an agent with the emotional link summit was interesting how attacks on one stage but of the importance the argument is the internationalism to my mind of the past and of the future to understand world events that sometimes even that agenda that courage agenda in my opinion to move regional agenda is ford to change those to commit the force of the future. that is basically how the book ends with the to say before i and there's not
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another volume. [laughter] somebody will have to right.. [laughter] so with that, thank you. [applause] >> that was great as always. one thing that i am sure people will want to talk about is the view of the global solidarity that is controversial at best at the end of it. it is better? one thing i was thinking about with these two books is in the darker nations you dare rip the story of the
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rise of the internationalist, radical, r emarkable convergence of people of ideas and movement into a global platform which you were suggesting is cobbled together but what you we're doing is suggesting there was an incredibly powerful program put together so with the conference that drew world leaders that produce all of these ideas in these programs with a single country initiatives, a global audience, and then it got assassinated. with "the poorer nations" and begins with the assassination of the g-7 that gets together is gunned down on the third world projects that what occurred to me one of the reasons i
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thank you think the darker nations is a depressed same book it does narrate the decline of the idea of the entire colonial movement that starts off as very egalitarian and experimental and flexible in their into the national authoritarian regimes of the way they are organized lends itself to basically the bush ozzie of each country claiming that mantle with the anti-collude movements so by the end of the book it is a case of assisted suicide more than the assassination by the north but poured nation begins to the assumption
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that the global north is experiencing the rise of this political movement sometimes epitomized by single countries or the global alliances or sometimes a military situation and other times in economic situation with zero fact so they fight back but what is missing from 50 levitt is a sense of where and why is the 70 leapt -- southern e. lee to that it is a fascinating and story fell most of us have heard of or remember and to the global collection of people to get together to come up with a new agenda in it in the wake
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of the third world countries but the report they produce it is a disappointment. it is boring. and the politics are completely neutered that was not just the doing of the fight back of the g-7 of political might did all instruments of the wto that was happening prior. >> that is a good question. with is the reason why i wanted to go to the south commission archive to see the debate because it is in to play could be put it this way, they're furious but the people who fought on this side of let's go along with the dynamic of history history, let's adopt the public-private ideas most argued that case from the
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standpoint of the old and the rain forest in malaysia. also in indonesia. some of them were people like that. but others felt the game was so bad they lost that if you're going to be realistic you have to engage with the terms of the north. the argument is we cannot go back to the time. there was a key but at the table he was arguing a very strong wind this is how we should go it is terrible there was an indian woman the great third world feminist network arguing the case and everyone said to them it is interesting when you are saying.
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this is the reaction of reality the final report you are right that has to be a consensus report to a little of this in a little of that which is more interesting is the debate. is a just hit even those who argued for collusion are arguing for pollution the honest all idea of to except this reality of the future but had to remove our agenda for word? so for instance on the question of debt, one of the most interesting interventions is against the idea is the indebted countries should go one by one to the london group and the commercial lenders to negotiate one by one. why should you stand in i'll line to go into the room with the lenders?
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it is not a fair argument. you never get a good deal. so to deal with the debt crisis the countries of africa should join together in the countries of asia should we negotiate together you cannot read negotiate so to understand it wasn't like down and adopt the reality but even the ones with the most illusionist it was the realities of how do we deal with it? with the cuban view was don't pay the debt a and walk away from it all. castro said we will all go one dash strike whiid we will ao one dash strike which to me sounds like a perfect -- perfectly reasonable idea must 170 countries to if they're only three of you, you will die. look at the pressure put on ecuador over the snowden
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issue if is it okay if we take him? they say sorry we will make the economy scream that is the phrase of these for chile in 1971. we will make the economy scream. soda to collude to have a much more sophisticated industry ending so that you of the intellectual property is we cannot find a way to fight this indictment that was very interesting what that led me to imagine because many of the people in the room because the heads of government and i do an assessment said india and south africa and brazil and what happens with the domestic policy to understand itself. then the new liberal policies are not identical to the united states because they also deal with questions of how to fight
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the trade war. so with the protectionist items in the north the ways in which we cannot use the market real lead them to enter our markets in these ways but there was a sophisticated view of what it was up against it was hard to say like ronald reagan with a turban. he has a different approach but to me many times greater seeing this book i wanted to write a book such writers several years to interview that is another interesting story but i wanted to ask one question you gave the speech in great civic in
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december what happened between that in july 1991 review with back to except the imf deal for india? what happened? that is the question that motivated because what is this level of collusion? they're thinking is different his argument is the money will not come from the north it is vastly overpriced and not what we need. so we need financing through other means through private investment but the chinese said only if you allow the technology transfer.
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the indians foliate insist on that that is the chinese fighting back. if you reverse engineer then that is fine. tell us how to do that. give us a license. that is why the french are curious the chinese have stolen our technology they have a case against them but they will never win it. so the assisted suicide is too strong. it is more of the jujitsu that was occurring. [laughter] i got a little better to respect a little more these strategies even though i do not agree with the thrust i no longer feel you can simply dismiss them now i industry and that yes your
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policies are very bad. i do not agree with the growth driven policy because you created equality but my critique does not come from that they were simply following the dictates from washington d.c. >> here is another way to ask that question. i am alluding to the idea that a lot of these countries with the leadership has installed neo-liberalism with a southern characteristics. the analysis you give is one of what the self and commission think a smart and interesting analysis to articulate the position what you want? it is reality the north exist said if that is so
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then why is it latin america takes a different route? why is it it seems to me what you don't explain is why is it these legacies of the third world projects including the leading countries like indonesia go in this direction? . .
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big fiber in organization like the use to be. platinum in dhaka has i tell a little bit of the story as the emergence. there's an advantage in having a dictatorship. for political reasons and other words a lot of people know that it is intent but also solidarities of their emotional kind growth across different political viewpoints. it is another good example of you would ask the question why doesn't he walk away from the alliance more what is the
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movement in terror, what are they doing with their party today? why haven't they just walked away and completely? but we have to understand that for decades they grew an alliance with each other fighting against something. so there is a deep understanding of what people are attempting to do. there's a greater latitude to create a project during the long period of struggle to get their. that is what happens at the colonial period. but for generations people from the 1800's fought together, liberal, left-wing, even right wing, they fought together with left-wing radicals. they fought in similar movements and produced the possibility after the independence. for of least 20 years or so of
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combined work together towards politics. the movements were shattered. in other words they may have been strong but they have no way of for minting together so that is one important things that people are underestimating that they were working together. second, history has an amazing way of observing itself. so my last chapter for good reason begins in '89 and there's an of people. it's not the so-called right. there have been riots across africa and the cities lost state control for days. in egypt there was a bread riot
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in the 70's. there was again a brad rye yet in the 80's. the price had been legions but it was special. not only was the main city lost to the administration, but it shocked the military. i will put it to the parallel. why were there 52 in egypt? the one reason for the two and 52 is when the army went to war in 48 it was a humiliation for the military and the humiliation was understood by the military and the following way they said that this blood e. king has used the defense budget to enrich his family and friends. they were never able to trade. that humiliation was important in the military coup of 52.
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the troops are telling him we don't want to shoot at our people any more. and then this challenge comes from the of rural poverty and understands that his allegiances are. they have a way of asserting itself. the conjunction is very important. in a small country that is a special conjunction that occurred in venezuela where they had the ability to use the high
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oil prices and leverage that politically. it enabled it to take a different historical root. there are major fights in kenya for instance. the battle over the election results and the major cataclysmic fights of the generation were radicalized. but the conjuncture didn't provide it to go forward. so history gives us what it gives us. you have to produce a narrative to make sense of it. but the historical breaks are not because it has some defined legacy. some people's histories are cut because of the mass killings of the population. some histories are produced because and venezuela the new movement had the creativity to understand that they are going to play a crucial role in the political powers. so just to put this back in that new economic development, when
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the unions are destroyed in the crisis i'm not going to go into dtv tells -- into the details. it was a way to cut the union down. when they are destroyed from many places on the left, the principal base of organizing is lost, the factory, the industrial concern etc. what has begun to happen after that period is that most struggles are no longer struggles of the point of production that they begin true that point of conjunction, water collections, the gas price in bolivia, etc. to get so what they are creative about, the utilized point of the struggles and that meant in islam. in a sense you could say that they were able to start a new. some people say that model should be taken over the world. that is a nightmare.
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again, everybody is able to produce. you know, if you tell each actions needed for the textile industry and just go and organize in the slums of cairo but by the way one of the leading sources are fighting to resuscitate something from the solution. the tax employees in the municipal unions they play a very important role although you never read about them in "the new york times" anywhere to play a very major role. they were able to produced. it wouldn't have gone forward. >> let's bring it back to the
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present day. the idea of the international some have a global solidarity movement not in the world social form and so forth, but of the very idea. the capital's international list and the forces were raised against and are increasingly multinational but why shouldn't we be organizing in ways that are near to that? >> there is no question that the problems of international.
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you want to attack the money lender you can take that amount. under capitalism there is no -- you can stand outside of the goldman sachs building and you can do whatever. but capitalism there is a kind of structural domination that doesn't allow for this kind of easy politics to be written off. how do we build a power, not how is it organized but how do you build people's power? in that sense, organizations that have attempted to build power internationally -- i've looked at many and talked to many activists. what i'm going to say might sound a little demeaning but i don't mean it to be demeaning at all. some of them play a very important role. if you look at the workers'
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movement, one of the interesting things they do is they will take some organizers to tell south africa and introduce them to south africa. so that task is an important in building for the organizers both in bombay and south africa. it is an opportunity to travel to another country and see how different people are fighting. okay. so in that sense it broadens the horizon of activism. that is essential. but the struggle is and barkley going to be related the struggles in south africa and will rise simultaneously. in other words the can't create a common agenda because the issues are totally different, the power structures they are dealing with are totally different, the power they are building is based on a different foundation. so in south africa, because you
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have maybe the union of nearby, then you have an ally. in bombay the trade unions have been even as read it so there are no opportunities to have the trade union support. there used to be massive trade unions in the textile industry. when the car globalized out of bombay, you don't have that union so that means the ground in which people have to fight is delivered so they are meeting south africans and it's actually not helping them build power. what it's doing is allowing them broaden their horizons. so i have no problem with people going to different places and understanding how the struggles are linked together, etc.. but helpless troubles are linked as a separate struggle on how to build power where we are treated and that shouldn't be taken as a politics of populism. if you are not building power where you are, you cannot fight against those invisible structural dominant forces that we all have to come back
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together. so yes, the south americans, latin americans, it's very important because it is from that experience, that progressive that when the bank was being formed, you know, there was pressure. they played the least creative role in the discussion. but there was pressure from the south american country to rethink the rating agencies. a breakthrough rating agency. why should we follow moody's and standard and poor's? that is an interesting theory that there should be no rating agency -- they will be worse than moody's and standards and poor's. why don't you have a popular rating agencies where, you know, you have some kind of people's charter on how to read the countries, whatever. but yes, those struggles on the
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ground have international implications that is because of the power. that's because every time there is an election in venezuela they are able to fight and win. so, if you don't build the regional power, local power, you can never confront the social domination. and that is the danger of them falling for the global surge and we can all reliance. we have to build power. even though we are building power against the global. >> i think we should take some questions from folks in the audience. there is a hand up back there. >> we are going to take three or four more questions and please we've for the microphone to get to you and i will try to hand it on through the masses and then we will take a few questions and
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-- okay. i have one in the back over there, one in the back over there. another one? okay. all right. why don't we start with you. and then let me -- >> on the question of international struggle, i was wondering what you thought about and palestine, specifically cents there's been a call for the investment sanctions those of the largely international and the u.s. and palestinians have been calling for that, and since it is so hard to build power on the ground just because of the structures of the occupation, when you thought of that as far as international.
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>> the next person in the middle over there. >> i wanted to ask you to talk a little more about something you briefly mentioned which is the impact of all of this launch of stagnation and wage stagnation in this country i was very struck by your marking that the g-7 was created in 74 because that was right when the gdp growth and wage growth separated in this country historically. >> as someone that went on the peace cararvan last year, being aware of the fact that there is
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a big debate over marijuana legalization in uruguay, the president of guatemala and others are calling for a debate on drug soft walls. since prohibition always equals black market profit the underground economy, how is the effort towards the drug law particularly in south america going to affect the flow of capital and i guess the friction that you've described it in the global north and the global south? >> okay. great question. in palestine -- i mean, at the service i will agree with you it is an international struggle. but actually, i think the palestinian struggle is also a struggle with different countries. i mean, in the united states, the struggle for solidarity with the palestinians is actually a struggle to stop.
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it's actually an american struggle. you know, it's important for americans to go and break etc but because the danger the americans become the story. how many people remember how many palestinians who were killed but we remember the names of americans. there is something wrong with that. so their lives are precious and a sacrifice immeasurably. that's important, but that is not the only struggle. palestinians are very capable as we know of fighting their battles. there can be few examples in fighting against military might that they have demonstrated. but the problem for america is the american government. so, what the campaign in america has to fight for in my opinion is to transform american imagination in the middle east to get that is also a struggle.
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it's the same in india. india buys half of the israeli arms export demand and in my opinion, therefore underwrites the occupation of palestinians. now, in the movement is very clear that the struggle is about india. it's not that we need to go and help the palestinians. they're very capable of carrying their own as we know for several thousand years. okay? they can do it. they don't need us. what they need us to do is get this off their next, and it is not only idea soldiers, is the idea made by an american company in malaysia were is the indian government buying arms and have the ability to help more and more soldiers? so in that sense it is not only an international campaign, it is a campaign of how countries
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around the world are complicity with this kind barbara some. and it's not just solidarity but it's palestinians. with people all over the world where there is the complicity of one government and the oppression of others. it is a responsibility for us to fight. therefore, for instance, the movement in solidarity with colombian workers was never about let's go and when the revolution in colombia to the about fighting because they are colluding against the colombian union activists. in in that sense this is also about us trying to build power where we are and trying to change the role of the places we lived in. in in that sense i would say it is internationalism but not really. it's also this other thing. they need solidarity. and solidarity often is misunderstood.
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what solidarity should mean that is how we should understand solidarity. and i think even in the global movement that was misunderstood. people helped the workers in bangladesh. my god, the rate of housing will go up. the workers will have to commute to these neighborhoods. we need to fight to build a new. that's the way i would see that. the question you asked about the gap, i write something slightly crazy in the end of this book where i make the argument that american wages are maybe too high. and the argument isn't to say -- it says what it's done is it's
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society is to privatize all the costs to be so as you privatize everything, insurance, health care coming you know, schooling, so many things that privatized, the families and workers of people is increased. so they cannot survive unless they demand higher wages. but if so much of the expense is socialized for example high quality schools, etc., and if you then remove the pensions, for instance, from the responsibility, can you nationalize them if we are all in the pool together? then you can bring down the individual wages and bring of your competitors. there are ways for a left-wing person to articulate this without being a heartless person. you know, what happens on the left is we don't want to engage on the facts that unless -- because globalization has been
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made such a central feature of the profit-taking where they are higher, very quickly it is taking advantage of that to be there is no way that you can create the solidarity of american workers with the chinese workers just by the appeal. the anti-japanese sentiment is a natural settlement. you have to confront it politically. but it requires a push for the greater social wage and america. unless there is a greater demand to remove some coming you know, commercial like to become so much of a social life, we will never have in this country the ability to recreate massive jobs that are meaningful to people. it sounds like a slightly crazy argument that i can't defend the argument. drugs are not all drugs. marijuana, they are all different things.
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one of the things and i think bolivia, a very important claim is the intellectual property regime should have made it easy for them to say we make this great toothpaste, we can meet hair concoction better than rogain. intellectual property right is only okay if you are controlling the drugs. so, somehow these drugs committees and high anxiety drugs, those can be patented in the north but if you produce these leaves probably better than xanax, that is illegal. so the issue of drugs they have
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reduced some of these crops to a nightmare scenario to become a drug addict. actually many of them are capable of producing madison or everyday products that are simply not able to enter the markets, not because of the agenda necessarily the there is a global -- that is one way to understand the drug thing. second come in the united states it is a different story where, you know, my argument is once you produce a dispensation where the masses of people aren't going to be deployed meaningfully, then you get bill clinton because bill clinton was the ideal manager of the transformation of the american contact. so do then say no social welfare. you have to go out and find a job. okay, we give you some training. at the same time there are less
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and less of jobs at that level that are going to be provided and then you militarize the city's and the presence of the salles flash population isn't attracted to the gated community. so in the sense, the prison expansion is a logical extension of the contradiction. you can't make the presence that they should end. prisons are a structural necessity for an advanced society which isn't capable of completing its citizens. so its story is different from the latin american drug story which is not about keeping the population is incarcerated, but it's about producing products out of your comparative advantage. so i would say that is how we understand the drug issues, there are multiple various ways in which the drug story has to be understood they are saying it
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is in order to decriminalizing drug use in america. it is a completely different narrative triet >> let's do one more round and take for questions. i've got christi over here, to over year. many folks on this side? number four, over there. sorry, maybe we will try to squeeze you in. all right. >> of the people feel comfortable standing at -- >> succumbing to talk a bit about you are very resistant to this narrative about something that begins exclusively and then fall and especially from the questions that have been about the militarization of the drug trade and palestine and
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globally. what does the military militarization in the north. i was wondering if you could talk a little bit about the forms of the militarism the new liberalism and the characteristics i know you've written about in the's relationship with israel and i was wondering if you could give a few more examples. >> the use of history and i guess that you would understand that. your role as a historian and your decision to write these stories and what that means politically because as you've told them, and in these two books they are not sort of easy narratives of triumphed from below that take a sort of easy lesson and can move on politically. you describe the contradictions
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and the sort of subject positions of these actors within the global south, that sort of thing. so i am wondering as you approach this project started in the beginning and a decade ago maybe coming to you at the end of this account you understood your role in presenting this history from a political perspective and what it's meant to show this kind of complicated story of the story that has a lot of failures were contradictions to sort of political conclusions that you have come to? >> i actually wanted to bring you back to the question we were talking about before on the solidarity movement. i guess i want to ask a question in terms of who do you think -- what organizations or what kind of project the you think in
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terms of international work or solidarity were to for good projects people should continue? the reason i ask is i completely agree with all the things you said about basing the work locally. but at the same time things like the media movement is taking the kind of leadership from the people on the ground there. and as much as it is talking out it we want to base it on each local area and how we can talk about the money that is being spent on the military and things like that but at the same time, how do we understand that they are not just about money but they're also about the lives to bring that conversation and. i'm part of the resistance group campaign against tear-gas that has a group of people affected by a tear-gas usage and that includes people from quebec and who are in the prison systems here that are affected by pepper
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spray, for example. so i believe that is an important kind of movement to pursue and take forward. what do you think about that and other examples like that that we should continue because we are based here and we need think about that as well. what do we do? >> okay, so i will take that last. >> one question was about the soviet union and with the implosion of the soviet bloc that represents for the third world as it is called the loss of an alternative to the western domination, and second, you
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wrote a very fine book on the arab spring and the doctrine of responsibility to protest. this can out of the u.s., so to devastate in my opinion the whole society. doesn't that represented their renewed version? >> we will take a final one over year. a great question. >> thank you so much for the talk. >> all of your book in the dark nation about the assassination of the social wage. in some ways it's been assassinated but in other ways took about its unfinished business so i wonder if you can talk about the relationship between the struggle for the
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central wage building power scale and the fight against the neoliberalism. >> great question. amazing questions. >> militarization is of the kind of criminalization of people in america in a way. there is a similarity in the logic if you who read the work she suggests that there are certain cycles the empires have and it's an interesting book in beijing but before that, they suggest that you look at the lengths of time that have been in dominance and how gemini and the size of the container and
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its influence and it shows that as time goes forward, the container has increased, but the length of dominance is increased and he is essentially using the signs of autumn in america are visible and it is coming up in a sense although he argues i don't support it has a whole different kind of capitalism. it's actually adams left. and american capitalism, anyway leave that aside. the real thing is there is a developed argument about the decline of america and the emergence of the new centers of power. to my mind, and in this book i argued, there will be no china. what we are looking at and coming to the militarization what we are looking at is the emergence to some extent and this is where i am hopeful of
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the polycentric will that the new regional centers are developing and the chinese are interesting because even though they are making investments in africa and investments in the rest of etc, they openly say and the models suggest they are not interested in the global hegemony fax and the one way in which that evidence is likely is that they got involved in the bricks. the samore understanding of managing global problems. if we can manage them multilaterally that's better. so they have put a lot of their economic power into the experiment. now the reaction from the global more than the same period from the early 70's and onwards it has become clear that it's
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militarization on a global scale. so not just criminalization of the population and america but the attempt to use military power and they look to go against you. so for instance, at the same time it is happening it's time to put into asia and therefore a certain kind of -- i'm not going to save and dramatically, the reason circling of china is occurring and you can see that there are lots of blogs you can see the maps of the return to the philippines, okay the government had to fall in japan said that the american base remains. i don't know if you follow that the government can to power saying now we will be close. that government has to fall. you need to fall so they come back and the bases are secure. this is all happening at the
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same time if the oppression is coming on china in the plaza. the argument is the united states is suffering not because of this neo liberalization of the country but because the exchange rates. you may have followed their rates. they are in a sense the have to many jokers in the back. they have joker's up their sleeve and the need to come clean. meanwhile we have a military presence around it. the chinese are not fully able to match that military presence. so, for instance in libya when the two and a resolution of 1973 was part and the chinese and russians decided not to veto it, the assumption is a would be a no-fly zone. technically the no-fly zone had been the following. the aircraft flies over and if
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there is any aircraft that takes up and looks threatening, it would be shut down. but in 2011, the nato alliance decided to breach the no-fly zone as we would destroy your airport, we could bomb your telecommunications and destroy your power, the company would destroy all of your infrastructure. when they started to doing that, you may not remember that the head of the arab league said we didn't support this. then he had to be brought with ban ki-moon and he said i didn't mean to say what i said a few hours ago. i support is which is one of the reasons nobody took him seriously in the election. second, the chinese and russians straight forward and they said we will never allow anything like a no-fly zone under
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article 5 of the u.n. charter, never allow it again because the militaristic approach to resolving the contradictions on behalf of the north has gone too far. so to them if they say okay look if they are responsible for the killings and syria i want you to think of it from this other point of view they are looking at it in terms of are we going to allow military domination to be utilized to settle the questions and they are not prepared to do that. i don't believe if the chinese and russians veto that it prevented the west from an armed operation and syria because they had an operation in yugoslavia. i have argued for over a year that the united states is hiding behind the russians and the chinese because the israelis don't want the regime to fall.
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they prefer to bleed them or another 100,000 will die, rather than allow, you know, the others to take power. it's a more cynical strategy. and you may have watched some and the powers in front of congress the author power from hell and the way to the incident the question martin dempsey went before congress and said we are not going to intervene. the costs are too high. but it's useful to hide behind the russians and say it's their fault. i'm suggesting the militarization is occurring and not just from the north. they are using military power and the will but there is no comparison. nobody else -- the general assembly also says alba member states can act -- all member states cannot act.
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the african union doesn't have the ability to enforce a no-fly zone. the government doesn't have the ability to enforce a no-fly zone. only nato can. nato should act, etc.. militarization is occurring inside societies because the mccaul please rise in brazil, etc.. the heightened militarization just in the united states the there's a global militarization and that is telling would see that. the question of transmission of politics, give me a list of the 15 -- i don't validate -- keys symbol of teargassed is related in some ways to me to the palestinian issue and its related to an earlier campaign i remember being involved income.
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i don't know if you remember 89 that explore horizontally with hundreds of people. now you have a hundred people without legs they are alive. the most terrible mine it was made in louisiana, exporter of the world, used all over the place, different countries. in a sense of these struggles will always return to where you are if you are interested in them. so what is the point of saying somebody joining the antitear gas movement? tear gas is extensively used. they would join the movement to end the revolution to ban teargassed. that is the legitimate international policy. but the politics you're thinking
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of that your guess is needed america, brazil -- i read the reports. it's in a handful of places and those are the places they have to assert themselves but that doesn't mean they are going to stop manufacturing teargas in the opportunity to the americans have band it and at the same time there has to be a cushion the global forum to have an international convention against teargassed here's the thing, there are conventions against most of these things. one has to fight -- i'm going to say this, it sounds idiotic but forgive me, we have to fight for the right of the international law and the importance of the international institution. that in america they are white in america and it's won the battle in saying that we are, you know, don't tread on me. so on the racism front don't
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tread on the national rights of the international front. you can take the a human rights violator to the criminal court. so the right of the international law that is a big struggle in america that has to be daring liberals. we are more apologetic and a little more forthright in the defense of international law despite the fact that bin laden was whoever he was, that there was so little thought america about the judicial assassination and the sovereign countries just because the pakistani government didn't launch a major protest to expose the ambassador doesn't mean that americans should sit back and say sometimes the means or okay if the end is good.
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my question is was the end of good? is assassination evergood and i think there is too much latitude that has to be confronted people don't come front liberals in america that's related to drones which is another issue you talk about. that isn't about yemen and afghanistan. that is an american story that an american people have said it's a clean way to conduct the war. that means american liberalism is dead. it no longer exists. there is no liberalism. it's a democratic party politics. it's not liberal was on. so their needs to be the liberal imagination. that is how i would say that. again, the national struggles. they would be happy if there was a change of whom view in america. but why bring them to america to try to convince americans that drones are bad? lenni to be bringing the
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struggles here. that's how we would see it. it's important to give face to the victim. that's why it's important when the team is it very important that that is for the workers to come here and see and talk to people and get a sense of the rest of the world. it's not like they are on display. they are here to learn and grow and sometimes that is forgotten. let's proceed then another and they say they lost their child, it's terrible. they are an activist. talk to them, let them understand your struggles. why are you always bringing them to these places? why not bring them to places and tell them about detroit and about trayvon martin. tel dan about america. but it's in the future. it's not now. obviously it was a major bulwark triet for this book, they took
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the private archive and there was a terrific conversation in the archives where his leadership is sitting around in 1991 and january and they are saying they are not going to bomb us. one of the smartest advisers says we are the soviets. so we are falling at. why aren't they going along with it? that is a very interesting insight because actually forget 91. by the 80's the soviet union have actually become less for the popular struggles around the world because it had fallen into a deep crisis. so it was the other set of documents i don't quote enough of them is that your discussions around afghanistan which are available at the national center
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the archives in washington, d.c.. those are fascinating because there you have the senior leadership. at one point they say they cannot go into afghanistan because their friends would be angry. they recognize it does not exist. but we just can't confront americans and this is not 1979. this is important for us to understand. it would be severely dangerous and i think that needs to be appreciated. one of the ways they were able to succeed is the soviets from this per belfield to produce and articulate any kind of alternative on the scene. that is a big issue that needs to be confronted. and i think that that should not be put down to the condemnation of their own projects but by
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experience would be greatly weakened. this wouldn't have been a position into the 70's when they would have confronted. after all, she has provided the most colorful speech when he took his shoes off and he was beating the lectern and the general assembly you have to watch this video of this and then of course he comes in and says there is a smell of sulfur. then he showed the book which is great. that's how i would understand the soviet question. i mean, i've already talked about a little bit of a responsibility to protect. the responsibility to protect which doesn't often get red and that is the literature of defense coming from many countries including by the way i haven't said three good things about and get that proud to say that even this last ambassador to the u.n. many points in the
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security council say that we need to reassess because the spurs on somebody to protect is used at the discretion of the permanent members of the security council. they pick and choose you cannot have the responsibility to protect which countries you are going to protect and which you will not. therefore meanwhile president obama was visiting with the leaders that arguably has the characters exchanging both the greetings so there is cherry picking involved and you cannot have an international principle which becomes the sort of defending population and then you pick which populations are defendant. there's not much debate on this, public debate. i hope with samantha become
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worse -- powers now that it is political easy to write books saying you are going to protect people. i don't know if you watch who was asked about some statements that were made saying i love the united states is the greatest country in the world. america is the greatest country in the world. once you get into the seat of power, you basically lose your mind. finally, the use of history. what is the social late? it is a great liberal concept. it's not a radical, it is a liberal concept that has disappeared. it's what i was talking about earlier. let this in two ways.
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everybody works in the society whether you are on a wage or not you volunteer in the library, and you are raising children, everybody is working. people who have a job earn a salary. some part of the sun every is collected before the wages and it goes into a fund. it's a form of the deferred wages. i would blame them in a different way. those who do not monetize the volunteer with a sing songs in the streets, they are not monitor rising, they are providing money into the social wage. in a positively that there is no money going in there. they are deferring 100% of their wages saying i will do this beautiful thing for society and there will make thousands of people smile at me and then they will go back home or go to work
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and they will be happy for it. i've contributed to the domestic product. i haven't given a hundred% of my rage somebody says i raise children, never mom and pious but i give 100% of my rage after the society. and it's not at the defect of the government to decide how to use. in other words, the collective taxes now we have to write down the debt and we have to move goldman sachs. these are not decisions the government can make. if you understand it then there is an obligation to enhance people's lives because they have deferred the wages to receive something else backed. we have deferred wages. that is the ideal social wage
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and it has to be understood in a broad way that only 5% is deferred but somebody that has 100% is the third. everybody contributes and that contribution must go to enhancing our life. we need to bring that idea back but if it doesn't come back then wheelan at 100.0 already. the only way to make it less scary to people is the social wage of barbara's some, the social wages. it's actually a little idea that it's forgotten. people have claimed and therefore george bush could say don't pay into it, simply give each person the fund and they
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can invest on their pension. if you monetize your deferred compensation, that is a terrible idea. it further damages the devotee of people to have social and there is a link to having a social wage is that it dramatically is important for the society because then people start to see of objectively the interest is united. one of the great tracks to american history is rather than to countercyclical spending through the social expenditure, it is always been done through the military spending. you spend militarily through bringing the economy back to life. that was the whole post world war golden age etc we've so in that sense one has to confront this idea because it is easy to do the spending on the military because it is already a hari article society in the military and encampment that the more you begin to feel objectively or ties with other people are there
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you might be able to create a political movement where people subjectively then relate to the common agenda and i think because we don't have any objective basis for the commonality one would expect people subjectively to have the linked we should all be united in the community. why? we have no objective community why should we have a subjective one cracks finally it uses a restraint. succumb obviously history has its own logic. one does not write history in order to convey certain politics alone. there are multiple ways in which you going to project skivvy my interest in the first part was recovery, the recovery of the forgotten history, not that these individual countries are forgotten but the combined agenda was forgotten and i thought that itself was important, it was a legitimate practice in the historical profession to go back and say
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there was a great strike and in that sense that is a completely normal thing. this book is called a possible history come subtitle, which many people were not sure what people would make of the strange subtitle. why not -- with their history as another story we won't get into the possible history isn't a different approach to history, and other words i feel like if you are writing the history of a contemporary era, it hasn't flown. all of these dynamics are still alive. it is a story of recovery. i think you have to be able to his story to provide oxygen to the movements we have. what do i mean by that? if you understand the movements that are in the d contextualized
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way than you might not ever reflect on the strategy that you are promoting. and if left movements from about 100 years, every three or four years the parties and organizations have a conference. at the congress leadership needs to prevent the history of the last four years, not the party program that the political organizational reports. and then the party people what the date. that history is not correct. this should be added in. they didn't d date that as historians today debated that to give them a better handle of the dynamics in which they were embroiled. and i feel flat often people in the activist community don't have the energy and the time to contextualize in a broad way the work that they are doing and because we don't and in many parts of the world have political organization that to this kind of work, which is
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actually work the parties did in many parts of the world, because we don't have that at a massive level, we are organizers of all different tendencies are giving over contemporary history. we don't have the ability to sharpen the analysis of the present. so, the way that i went into this, this was my submission as the draft political organizational report of the last 30 years before my friends who are involved in the different movements. and i am hoping very much that they will read it and say this is wrong and fleece reflect on our contemporary history in order to think through the strategy. if there's no point having a strategy that isn't working and then pursue that strategy. the would be basically defeat. one thing to have a constant rethinking its strategy of not based on what you are doing, but
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on the dynamics in which you are involved. the part of the story is what we are doing in the dynamics and very much looking for to people trashing this book because only then what i know that it is helpful in some way. thanks a lot. [applause] ..


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