I sat down with Naomi Klein to talk about her new book, The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism. This revelatory work belongs in that rarefied air with A People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn and Witness to a Century by George Seldes.
"Naomi Klein is an investigative reporter like no other. She roams the continents with eyes wide open and her brain operating at full speed, finding connections we never thought of, and patterns which eluded us. She shows us, in clear and elegant language, how catastrophes -- natural ones like Katrina, unnatural ones like war -- become opportunities for a savage capitalism, calling itself 'the free market,' to privatize everything in sight, bringing huge profits to some, misery for others. To ensure the safety of such a system, it becomes necessary to constrict freedom, to assault human rights. The torture chambers for some then match the torturing of the larger society. This is a brilliant book, one of the most important I have read in a long time." -- Howard Zinn, author of A People's History of the United States.
"Naomi Klein is one of the most important new voices in American journalism today, as this book make clear. She has turned globalism inside out, and in so doing given all of us a new way of looking at our seemingly unending disaster in Iraq, and a new way of understanding why we got there. And she does it in a lucid, reader-friendly style that almost makes it fun to read." -- Seymour Hersh, Pulitzer prize winning investigative journalist
"Naomi Klein has written a brilliant, brave and terrifying book. It's nothing less than the secret history of what we call the 'Free Market..' It should be compulsory reading." -- Arundhati Roy, author of The God of Small Things
And this was my take on the book:
"This masterful book is a measured but furious call to arms. Naomi Klein is Antigone before the King, the antidote to the feeling of inevitability that says that we must accept murder as a legitimate economic policy. She has the audacity and the courage to chronicle the human costs of an ideology in which worshiping the markets is not enough; you must actually kill to feed them. Klein is the vanguard, the fire, the resistance and she challenges us not to join the suicide club that enables corporate cannibalism. A spectacular triumph."
So, what to do? Arundhati Roy points us home:
"Our strategy should be not only to confront empire, but to lay siege to it. To deprive it of oxygen. To shame it. To mock it. With our art, our music, our literature, our stubbornness, our joy, our brilliance, our sheer relentlessness - and our ability to tell our own stories. Stories that are different from the ones we're being brainwashed to believe. The corporate revolution will collapse if we refuse to buy what they are selling - their ideas, their version of history, their wars, their weapons, their notion of inevitability. Remember this: We be many and they be few. They need us more than we need them."
To read Arianna's take on Naomi's book, click here.
To see an exclusive clip from my upcoming film, War Inc., click here
To see the trailer for War Inc, click here.