Socology

In: Social Issues

Submitted By abdi
Words 1235
Pages 5
Disaster Capitalism The best way to describe the opening stages of disaster capitalism is shock and awe and the inception of what she refers to as the shock doctrine. Throughout Naomi Klein’s The Shock Doctrine, she describes how cataclysmic events whether through wars, terrorism, military coups, market meltdowns or natural disasters open the doors to Friedmanite (named after Milton Friedman) economics (2007). Not only do these disastrous events make countries susceptible to increased exploitation from free market capitalists looking to profit from disaster, their radical economic policies and the massive privatization of public schools, utilities, health care and other public services, but also, as Klein describes in the book, it has led to some of the most atrocious and violent acts carried out by governments and their army and police forces throughout the world. Klein begins with describing the events that took place immediately after Louisiana was hit by Hurricane Katrina. She introduces us to Milton Friedman, author of Capitalism and Freedom and the one responsible for using “shock therapy” to implement Chicago School economics in other countries. Friedman’s goal was to recreate societies and return them to a pure capitalist state without any interruptions, government regulations, trade barriers and entrenched interests (Klein, 2007). In addition, he believed that the reformation to pure capitalism of these societies was not possible without the presence of a disaster or state of collective shock. When disaster strikes, societies have the “clean slate” that Friedman says is
Gaines 2 ideal grounds for introducing his policies. In 1982 Friedman famously wrote “only a crisis, real or perceived, produces real change.” Friedman states that at this point, the society needs painful shocks (bitter medicine), which in his case were new economic and government…...

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