The following is a transcript of a recent public interview at the
University of Arizona with linguist and political commentator Noam
Chomsky by Dr. David N. Gibbs.
David Gibbs: The main issue on everyone’s minds is the
inauguration of Donald Trump as president. The Bulletin of the Atomic
Scientists has emphasized the extreme danger that Trump poses, due to
the augmented risk of nuclear war and uncontrolled climate change. After
inauguration, the Bulletin’s metaphoric clock has been repositioned at
two and a half minutes to midnight, with “midnight” signifying
catastrophe. Do you agree with the Bulletin regarding the alleged
dangers posed by the Trump presidency?
Noam Chomsky: One of the dangers is unquestionable. Of the two
existential threats – the threats to the termination of the species
basically and most other species – one of them, climate change, on that I
think there’s no basis for discussion. Trump has been very inconsistent
on many things; on Twitter he’s been all over the place, but some of it
is very consistent. That is: Do nothing about climate change except
make it worse. And he’s not just speaking for himself, but for the whole
Republican Party, the whole leadership. It’s already had impact, it
will have worse impact. We’ll talk about this next week, but if there
are ways out of this, it’s going to be not easy.