A landmark book which argues neoliberal free market policies have arisen as a deliberate strategy of ‘shock therapy’, exploiting national crises to enact questionable policies while citizens are too distracted to resist effectively.
We, representatives of 45 indigenous peoples in Brazil, more than 600 participants, were summoned by chief Raoni to meet between January 14 and 18, 2020 in the village Piaraçu (Terra Indígena Capoto Jarina), with the objective of bringing together our forces and denounce that a political project of the Brazilian government of genocide, ethnocide and ecocide is underway.
At first sight it’s incomprehensible. Why risk everything for a no-deal Brexit? Breaking up their own party, losing their parliamentary majority, dismantling the UK, trashing the economy, triggering shortages of food and medicine: how could any objective, for the Conservative and Unionist party, be worth this? What good does it do them?
Although Turchin’s piece is full of comparisons between the UK and the US, which he sees as fellow travellers, certainly when compared to France, there are significant differences between Trumpism and Brexit.
There is another story taking place; one based on altruism, solidarity, and social responsibility — and when we look closely, we can see it happening all around us. This is the story of disaster collectivism.
Before Irma’s and María’s devastating pit stops in the Archipelago, Puerto Rico was (and still is, even more so now) undergoing one of the most detrimental financial and socio-political crises of its contemporary history. With an unaudited $74 billion debt under its belt, and $49 billion in pension obligations, with decades of illegal bond issuances and trades and an overly-advertised tax haven, Puerto Rico was/is almost literally drowning.
The reason I am highlighting Puerto Rico is because the situation is so urgent. But also because it’s a microcosm of a much larger global crisis, one that contains many of the same overlapping elements: accelerating climate chaos; militarism; histories of colonialism; a weak and neglected public sphere; a totally dysfunctional democracy; and overlaying it all, the seemingly bottomless capacity to discount the lives of huge numbers of black and brown people.
At a speaking event in New York City this week, award-winning journalist and author Naomi Klein discussed why the reconstruction from Superstorm Sandy is actually a great place to usher in progressive change.
•Superstorm Sandy—a People’s Shock? •Building a new environmentalism •Reasons why climate change disasters might not increase concern about climate change