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Disaster Capitalism: Making a Killing Out of…
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Disaster Capitalism: Making a Killing Out of Catastrophe

by Antony Loewenstein

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was excited to receive this book as an advance copy from NetGalley. After a long career in law enforcement and corrections, I have my own opinions about the recent move to "for-profit" correctional agencies. The preview of the book indicated that the author would address this phenomenon. I was sadly disappointed. Instead of addressing the issue in a fair, balanced manner, the author instead decided to do a hack job, filled with biased personal opinions. He laid bare his disapproval of capitalism. In the chapter regarding the state of corrections in the United States, he chose to call names and disparage people. For example, his observations of correctional professionals as "many of the participants were overweight", and "filled with mostly white men with substantial bellies". I wonder how it would come across if he had instead stated, "many of the women were ugly", or "filled with mostly scary black men"? I thought calling people names based on physical characteristics was frowned upon? Also his observations that the "state deliberately placed these facilities in remote areas where poor health and conditions were inevitable", as well as "competent legal representation was rare, and many immigrants appeared before the court without any knowledge of their legal rights". And his statement that President Obama was giving business to "corporations that ignored federal laws and abused human rights". Finally, his assertion that the ACA (American Correctional Association) was a bogus organization that really served only itself. Anyone who has been through an ACA audit (and I have been through more than a dozen of them) can only come away with a sense of awe at how thorough and professional they are conducted.
I found the rest of the book to be filled with more of the same wild speculations and opinions.
No, Mr. Loewenstein cannot claim that his book builds on the best-selling 2007 book "The Shock Doctrine" by Naomi Klein. Far from it. I would not be surprised if Ms. Klein is trying to distance herself from this pile of garbage.
Would not recommend to anyone! ( )
  1Randal | Aug 1, 2015 |
This is a reporter's investigative account of corruption, government indifference or cooperation in fostering "Disaster Capitalism" that rewards the elite at the expense of human rights in Afghanistan, Pakistan,Greece, Haiti, Papua New Guinea, USA prisons for profit and UK and Australia Detention policies and facilities. A dour piece of documentation providing transparency to matters that those in control would rather be kept secret. Lowenstein appears to have penetrated the PR curtain designed to hide very blatant abuses of the human capital generating high profit for those at the top and little or no trickle down to those supplying the energy. Accountability and change are our responsibility. ( )
  mcdenis | Jul 30, 2015 |
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"Crisis? What crisis? How powerful corporations make a killing out of disaster Award-winning journalist Antony Loewenstein travels across the US, Britain, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Haiti, Papua New Guinea and Australia to witness the reality of Disaster Capitalism--the hidden world of privatized detention centers and militarized private security, formed to protect corporations as they profit from war zones. He visits Britain's immigration detention centers, tours the prison system in the United States, and digs into the underbelly of the companies making a fortune from them. Loewenstein reveals the dark history of how large multinational corporations have become more powerful than governments, supported by media and political elites"--… (more)

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