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Fri Mar 6, 2015, 06:12 PM

Re-engineering Society in the interests of corporations...Naomi Klein & why she wrote Shock Doctrine



Published on Apr 23, 2012

Naomi Klein on the end of "El Modelo."

Question: Why did you write Shock Doctrine?
Naomi Klein:It came out of reporting that I was doing in Iraq after the invasion the first year of occupation. But I guess it dates back earlier than that. I happen to have been in Argentina making a documentary film when the war in Iraq began. And it was a really amazing time to be in Latin America. This was 2002, 2003. And this was, I guess, the beginning of what we now think of as this pink tide that has swept Latin America. But it was a moment in Latin American history -- certainly a moment in Argentinean history -- where the economic model that Latin Americans call neo-Liberalism, Americans call the free market. But these policies of privatization; free trade . . . the so-called free trade deregulation in the interest of corporations; deep cuts to social spending; healthcare and education cuts; things like that, in Argentina they actually just call this "el modelo" -- the model. Everybody knows what the model is. It's the so-called Washington Consensus. It's the policies that have been imposed on Latin America first through military dictatorships, then as conditions attached to loans that were needed during economic crises . . . the so-called "debt crisis" of the 1980s. When I was in Argentina the model was collapsing, and Argentineans overthrew five presidents in three weeks. So it was this moment of incredible tumult and political excitement because people were trying to figure out what would come next. But it went beyond Argentina. In Bolivia they hadn't yet elected Evo Morales, but they had these huge protests against water privatization. And Bechtel had just been thrown out of Bolivia. And in Brazil they had just elected Lula. And of course Chavez was already in power in Venezuela, but he had successfully overcome a coup attempt. He had been brought back to power. So there were all of these things going on in Latin America that were all connected in this rejection of this economic model. So to be in Latin America when the invasion of Iraq began was a really unique vantage point from which to watch the war. I'm very grateful to have had that experience to have been able to watch that through the eyes of my Latin American friends who saw the war so differently from . . . from the way it was seen, I think, by so many of us in North America. They saw a real connection between their rejection of these economic policies and the fact that the same economic program was being imposed in Iraq through tremendous violence. And you really saw and felt those connections in Latin America. You know Bechtel just thrown out of Bolivia suddenly shows up in Baghdad with the exclusive contract to rebuild their water system. And what it felt like was that . . . was that there was a change going on; that this model that had been imposed coercively though peacefully through the International Monetary Fund, through the World Bank, through the World Trade Organization -- that that wasn't working anymore. People were rejecting it that the legacy of these policies . . . the legacy of inequality was so dramatic that the sales pitch of "Just wait for the trickledown" wasn't working anymore. And so now there was this new phase. And it wasn't even asking, and it wasn't negotiating. It was just imposing through raw violence. And that's where I came up with the thesis for the book, which is we have entered this new phase that I'm calling "disaster capitalism"; or the Shock Doctrine using a shock -- in this case the shock and awe invasion of Iraq -- to impose what economists call "economic shock therapy". So I think it was . . . It was definitely that experience of seeing it from Latin America -- a continent in revolt against these policies -- that made it easier to identify this as a new phase. And once I identified that I started to see these patterns recurring. After the Asian tsunami there was a very similar push to use the shock of that natural disaster to push through, once again, these same policies. Water privatization, electricity privatization, labor market ..., displacing poor people on the coasts with hotel developers. So a sort of social re-engineering of societies in the interest of corporations, which I think is what we've been doing under the banner of free trade. But now it's under the banner of post-disaster reconstruction. More in vid.

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Reply Re-engineering Society in the interests of corporations...Naomi Klein & why she wrote Shock Doctrine (Original post)
mother earth Mar 2015 OP
DeSwiss Mar 2015 #1
uhnope Mar 2015 #3
Pharaoh Mar 2015 #12
uhnope Mar 2015 #18
Pharaoh Mar 2015 #11
djean111 Mar 2015 #2
RufusTFirefly Mar 2015 #4
LineReply ,
blkmusclmachine Mar 2015 #5
zeemike Mar 2015 #6
Auggie Mar 2015 #7
mother earth Mar 2015 #8
Hissyspit Mar 2015 #9
Auggie Mar 2015 #13
2naSalit Mar 2015 #10
LiberalLoner Mar 2015 #14
mother earth Mar 2015 #15
LineLineNew Reply !
DeSwiss Mar 2015 #19
rurallib Mar 2015 #16
ancianita Mar 2015 #17

Response to mother earth (Original post)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 06:22 PM

1. Capitalism is CANCER.

 

- Period.

K&R

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Response to DeSwiss (Reply #1)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 06:53 PM

3. What's the cure, doctor?

 

Please be specific & don't be shy. Tell us all about it.

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Response to uhnope (Reply #3)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 09:28 PM

12. A socialist captalist mix

 

is the right way to go.

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Response to Pharaoh (Reply #12)

Sat Mar 7, 2015, 01:06 PM

18. so half-cancer?

 

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Response to DeSwiss (Reply #1)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 09:27 PM

11. It is..........

 

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Response to mother earth (Original post)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 06:28 PM

2. Yes, this is exactly what horrors like the TPP and TTIP are doing -

 

So a sort of social re-engineering of societies in the interest of corporations, which I think is what we've been doing under the banner of free trade.

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Response to mother earth (Original post)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 06:56 PM

4. Always good for a rec when it's Naomi!

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Response to mother earth (Original post)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 07:00 PM

5. ,

 

,

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Response to mother earth (Original post)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 07:44 PM

6. K&R

As usual she nails it.
And I am sure the right would call her a communist, because communism is anything critical of corporatism...the real identity of Fascism.

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Response to mother earth (Original post)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 08:04 PM

7. Naomi Klein (and paragraphs) rock



Thanks for sharing

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Response to Auggie (Reply #7)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 08:13 PM

8. LOL, yeah, sorry on the paragraphs, I didn't do the beginning transcript & just didn't have time to

clean it up, copy & paste is quick, but not always good.

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Response to mother earth (Original post)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 08:13 PM

9. Such an important book.

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Response to Hissyspit (Reply #9)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 09:32 PM

13. The San Francisco Chronicle called it one of the books of the decade ...

that would be the 00s.

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Response to mother earth (Original post)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 08:47 PM

10. That woman

is one of my political heroes. I read The Shock Doctrine several years ago and it connected most of the dots for me. I knew about a lot of it but wasn't able to put it all together before I read that book. It also confirmed many of my suspicions.

Thanks for posting, this is very important for everyone to understand.

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Response to mother earth (Original post)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 09:46 PM

14. How do we fight back against this? Raising awareness is the first step, but then what?

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Response to LiberalLoner (Reply #14)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 10:19 PM

15. Rejecting debt-ocracy, employee owned worker cooperatives (see DemocracyAtWork.com)...

(Mondragon Corp., Spain is a good example.)
Occupy was an awakening for the US, revolt is in the air in Europe, and major rejection of austerity is mounting.

The understanding of what happens in one country, affects us all, is a major beginning to understanding the true picture of what the 99% really is up against. Multinat'l corporations mean more to our gov't's political process than its citizens, people are looking for solutions and one can look to Lawrence Lessig and Cenk Uygar for options. Of course, many will always say it can't be done.

The problem is that it's going to take a social movement, change won't happen at the hands of those in power.

Just like civil rights in this country. There was a social movement and the will on major display that drove change. It is truly the only thing that ever does.




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Response to LiberalLoner (Reply #14)

Sat Mar 7, 2015, 04:28 PM

19. !

 

The advice Mother Earth gives (above) is very good. But the answers for what YOU must do, you can only get from inside.......



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Response to mother earth (Original post)

Sat Mar 7, 2015, 10:28 AM

16. I regret that I have but one rec to give this

Thanks for the reminder of what an important book Shock Doctrine is. It really pulls together and makes sense of the agenda of right wing world.

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Response to mother earth (Original post)

Sat Mar 7, 2015, 12:29 PM

17. Thanks for this instructive history behind the current vote.

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