The Shock Doctrine
Catastrophes from Katrina to Iraq from Afghanistan to the Asian Tsunami clear the way for corporations to move in and operate in newly privatized zones, pushing local government overboard. Kind of like shock and awe economics. Privatize, privatize, privatize is intoned like a mantra by the economic high priests of neoliberalism. The belief in the so-called free market is almost akin religious dogma. Abuses, shoddy work and rampant profiteering rule with little or no oversight or accountability. Governments sub-contract and outsource their essential functions and services as jobs float downstream from the public sector into the private. Free market neoliberalism is synonymous with democracy and since everyone loves the latter what’s not to like about the former? But what it really is, is a get rich quick crusade.
Naomi Klein is a professor in the Department of Geography at the University of British Columbia, the founding co-director of UBC’s Centre for Climate Justice, and Honorary Professor of Media and Climate at Rutgers University. Her writing has appeared in leading publications around the world, and she is a columnist for The Guardian. The New York Times says, “She is that nearly extinct breed of activist: one who never stops questioning orthodoxies and interrogating her own beliefs.” She is the award-winning author of such bestsellers as This Changes Everything, The Shock Doctrine, No Logo, No Is Not Enough, and On Fire. Her latest book is the highly acclaimed Doppelganger.