Friday, December 05, 2008

Another kind of 'shock doctrine'

Larissa MacFarquhar's profile of Naomi Klein is worth the read. Klein's observations merit attention, of course, but should not get a free pass (and there are worse places to start than critiques by Mark Engler in Dissent and Stephen Holmes in the LRB).

The most virulent kind of 'shock doctrine' in the world today may actually be that of the government of Zimbabwe, which is not exactly Friedmanite (see, e.g., ICG, Amnesty).

[But in Zimbabwe, Mahmood Mamdani argues, Mugabe
has ruled not only by coercion but by consent, and his land reform measures, however harsh, have won him considerable popularity, not just in Zimbabwe but throughout southern Africa. In any case, the preoccupation with his character does little to illuminate the socio-historical issues involved.]

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