When Israel is on “good behavior,” more than two Palestinian children are killed every week, a pattern that goes back over 14 years. The underlying cause is the criminal occupation and the programs to reduce Palestinian life to bare survival in Gaza, while Palestinians are restricted to unviable cantons in the West Bank and Israel takes over what it wants, all in gross violation of international law and explicit Security Council resolutions, not to speak of minimal decency. And it will continue as long as it is supported by Washington and tolerated by Europe – to our everlasting shame.
—  Noam Chomsky
Slavery for example, or other forms of tyranny, are inherently monstrous but the individuals participating in them could be the nicest guys you can imagine – benevolent, friendly, nice to their children, even nice to their slaves… but in their institutional role they are monsters because the institution is monstrous.

Noam Chomsky

The same easily applies to cops, soldiers, politicians, and CEOs.

That’s the standard technique of privatization: defund, make sure things don’t work, people get angry, you hand it over to private capital.

Noam Chomsky, 

MIT claims to have found a “language universal” that ties all languages together
A language universal would bring evidence to Chomsky's controversial theories.

Click through for a recommended weekend read, especially for all y’all interested in the search for a language universal.

EDIT: Given the interest in this post, we want to point out one key aspect of this research, given the slightly click-baity headline on the linked article. As reader jamesw has pointed out in the comments, the researchers used 37 languages but they skew heavily towards the Indo-European, so they would probably already have related features. This evidence is just another piece of a very complex puzzle!

The Israeli decision to rain death and destruction on Gaza, to use lethal weapons of the modern battlefield on a largely defenseless civilian population, is the final phase in a decades-long campaign to ethnically-cleanse Palestinians.

Israel uses sophisticated attack jets and naval vessels to bomb densely-crowded refugee camps, schools, apartment blocks, mosques, and slums to attack a population that has no air force, no air defense, no navy, no heavy weapons, no artillery units, no mechanized armor, no command in control, no army… and calls it a war. It is not a war, it is murder.

When Israelis in the occupied territories now claim that they have to defend themselves, they are defending themselves in the sense that any military occupier has to defend itself against the population they are crushing. You can’t defend yourself when you’re militarily occupying someone else’s land. That’s not defense. Call it what you like, it’s not defense.

—  Noam Chomsky
'Twas the night before Linguistmas

‘Twas the night before Linguistmas and all the linguists were snug
Not a creature was stirring, not even a wug
The stockings were hung in the department with care
In hopes that Noam Chomsky soon would be there

The underlings were nestled all snug in their trees
With dreams that one day we would talk to monkeys
While the prof in her kerchief and I in my cap
Had just turned off the brain-scanner for a long winter’s nap

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