Wednesday, September 3, 2008

One Year After the Publication of The Shock Doctrine, A Response to the Attacks

by Naomi Klein

Exactly one year ago, I set off on a book tour to promote The Shock Doctrine. The plan was for it to last three months, quite long by publishing standards. Twelve months later, it is still going. But this has been no ordinary book tour. Everywhere I have traveled- from Calgary, Alberta to Cochabamba, Bolivia - I have heard more stories about how shock strategies have been used to impose unwanted pro-corporate policies. I have also been part of stimulating debates and discussions about how the current round of crises - oil, food, financial markets, heavy weather -- can be transformed into opportunities for progressive change.

And there have been other kinds of responses too. The Shock Doctrine is a direct attack on the intellectuals and institutions that have disseminated corporatist ideology around the world. When I wrote the book, I fully expected to get hit back. Yet for eight months following publication, there was an eerie silence from the "free-market" ideologues. Sure, a few dismissive reviews appeared in the business press. But not a word from the Washington think tanks that I name in the book. Nothing from the University of Chicago economics department. Even The Economist magazine, which used to attack me gleefully and with great regularity, never mentioned the book in print. An American television producer, who was trying to find an opponent to debate me on-air, confided that she had never been turned down so consistently. "They seem to think if they ignore you, you'll go away."

Read on...

This is an important book given the state of the world economy right now. The police activity at the U.S. conventions is all part of the shock doctrine. The book is available in our library. Ask for it at the circulation desk. Tom

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