Corporate media pundits have characterized globalization as an irreversible force–much like gravity. They say we should accept it and get on with our lives. Powerful forces like the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank are main proponents of these globalization policies.
But critics point out that this formula of globalization is being enforced and propelled by transnational corporations largely unaccountable for their actions, aided by governments and institutions like the WTO.
This coming month, as ministers from all over the world gather in Seattle to discuss free trade at the World Trade Organization summit, thousands of labor, environmental and human rights activists will also converge in Seattle to protest the WTO’s pro-corporate policies and so-called globalization. Farmers from India and France, trade unionists from the US and from numerous other countries, advocates of the poor, AIDS coalitions and many others will hold a series of teach-ins, rallies and protests during the last week of November.
Few people have been as astute in decoding the realities of globalization as Professor Noam Chomsky, a renowned intellectual figure, political dissident and critic of US domestic and foreign policy. He was one of the first people to speak out against the Vietnam War and has been a symbol of resistance to tyranny and to private and state power. He is so in demand for public speaking that he is booked years in advance, and everywhere he speaks he draws huge overflowing crowds, as he did in this occasion in Boulder, Colorado, on May 10, 1998.
- Noam Chomsky, Professor of Linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and author of many books, including ??Manufacturing Consent, ??On Language and his latest, ??The New Military Humanism: Lessons from Kosovo, published by Common Courage Press.