Cornel West: We are Calling for Fundamental Transformation of U.S. Capitalist Society (Must-see)

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Cornel West at Calvin College 5

Image by James Stewart via Flickr

strugglevideomedia on May 30, 2014

Full remarks of Cornel West at the Left Forum 5/30/2014. Cornel West is an American philosopher, academic, activist, author, public intellectual, and prominent member of the Democratic Socialists of America. He has taught at Harvard and Princeton and teaches at the Union Theological Seminary.


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17 thoughts on “Cornel West: We are Calling for Fundamental Transformation of U.S. Capitalist Society (Must-see)

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  7. Gotta love Cornell West! I could handle a lot more of that java. Truth and justice? yessir, but what if truth is not exactly what we want (or expect) to hear and justice is too hard to imagine?

    To live the truth means being prepared to change our minds, and face the consequences of our own prejudices; our unchallenged beliefs, inadequacies, errors and assumptions.

    Honest questioning (that Socrates is said to have excelled at) may be the beginning of wisdom, but learning to listen carefully may be even more important; for ultimately the only coherent answer is the silence that is our own understanding.

        • I’m not about to quibble over semantics Lo, but I’m not sure hope will do much for us in the event of a US nuclear offensive!

          As for optimism generally, I rather subscribe to Robert Anton Wilson’s quirky notion ~ better not to get too depressed by pessimistic thoughts, but merely disappointed if things don’t work out quite the way you’d like.

          We’re all destined to slip this mortal coil, I’d just like to see the world’s species survive and thrive whether I’m around or not, but then ~ maybe we never leave only get absorbed back into the matrix of the cosmic web.

          Regrettably, that does not seem to be a pre-emptive vision that is shared by the solipsistic egotists, who console themselves by clustering in moral confusion behind the glamorous corporate “shield” that is the US flag ~ all the while plotting death and destruction for those who do not bow to the “inevitable” triumph of a constitutionally bankrupt republic.

          It’s all getting a bit too smugly suffocating and monochromatic back there, for any sane human’s comfort.

        • David , to me optimism and pessimism are the same thing because they come from the same source: the self will that thinks by wishing it can change things.

          a good analogy is baseball fans , in to which i am one of them . it does not matter how optimistic those Cubs fans are , they have not won a world series since 1908. in other words their self will projection sort of white magic does not change the outcome of a game . it is the players that win games and change things in the sport .

          there are many pessimistic fans who leave a game ( so as to not fight the traffic ) , when their team is loosing by say 10 runs , only to hear on he radio later that the team had a late rally and ended up winning . Again , the fans , no matter what do not determine the outcome o a game .

          the reason why i wrote my article on optimism being the enemy of hope is because it really is . Hope acted out as an extention of authentic faith does not fall into the duality of the optimistic/pessimistic cycle . Why , because it is lived out lived out , and not wish thinking or projection from the mind and will . That is the faith that moves mountains . and faith without works is dead.

        • This a reply to Rocket (June 3 @ 5:16..)

          Good to hear from you Mr K; interesting thoughts. I like the baseball analogy.

          I guess what you are alluding to is religious certainty rather than mere wishful desire.

          I don’t think one needs to be a believer to get this right, because it may be that one’s intention or real purpose in life is not motivated by religious convictions or a contractual sense of faith, but could be understood more as a theurgical impulse or aspiration to exercise one’s legitimate powers of ethical consciousness.

          I would say this though, that it is more often a question of deeply experienced coherent feelings than just an emotive expression of reasoned intellection.

          This is why I find dialogue and conversation so valuable, because it is a reciprocal thing, a shared, living and dynamic experience, a community of mind ~ not just a didactic discourse about one’s own knowledge, to reinforce one’s sense of self-importance or camouflage one’s insecurity..

          I suspect that depression and pessimism are closely linked to issues of isolation, emotional starvation and social neglect, Dr Gabor Maté’s work (about the hungry ghosts) is particular telling in that respect.

          I know for sure that weather affects me profoundly, so I wonder just what the controversies about climate change are actually playing upon. It could be that none of us want to hear the real forecast, so the optimists tend to focus obsessively on hypothetical solutions while the pessimists can only resort to blinkered denial.

          Then there’s the religious response ~ it’s all in the lap of the gods (or goddesses, perhaps?)

  8. Mr.West thinks like me, Chris Hedges and millions of others. Roll out the guillotines !

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