Paul Krugman’s New York Times column for Friday, “Shock Doctrine, U.S.A.,” used for both headline and text fodder a book of far-left paranoid propaganda by Naomi Klein to push Krugman’s pet idea: That Wisconsin’s Republican Gov. Scott Walker is trying to make a “power grab” in order “to destroy the last major counterweight to the political power of corporations and the wealthy.”
Here’s a thought: maybe Madison, Wis., isn’t Cairo after all. Maybe it’s Baghdad -- specifically, Baghdad in 2003, when the Bush administration put Iraq under the rule of officials chosen for loyalty and political reliability rather than experience and competence.
The story of the privatization-obsessed Coalition Provisional Authority was the centerpiece of Naomi Klein’s best-selling book “The Shock Doctrine,” which argued that it was part of a broader pattern. From Chile in the 1970s onward, she suggested, right-wing ideologues have exploited crises to push through an agenda that has nothing to do with resolving those crises, and everything to do with imposing their vision of a harsher, more unequal, less democratic society.
Which brings us to Wisconsin 2011, where the shock doctrine is on full display.
If you needed any more evidence as to how frightened liberals are of Sarah Palin, you got it during Friday's "Real Time" on HBO.
In fact, the panel discussion featuring The Atlantic's Andrew Sullivan, author Naomi Klein, and hip hop singer Will.I.Am was potentially the finest example of Palin Derangement Syndrome seen on television since she was first announced as John McCain's running mate three weeks ago.
From Sullivan calling her "a farce" and her nomination "the most irresponsible act any candidate has ever made," to Klein saying "she's basically Bush in drag," and Maher calling her "not very bright and not very knowledgable," this was the mother of all pound Palin sessions (video available here courtesy our friend MsUnderestimated):