Seize the Day, Canada

From an interview with Naomi Klein at rabble:

Kim Elliott: As you outline so well in your book and in various interviews in the U.S. media, the current financial crisis holds the possibility of being one of those moments when the shock doctrine can best be applied. Can you comment on both the Harper government’s economic and fiscal statement introduced last week, and on the Opposition’s response to that – that is, the formation of a coalition – in the context of the shock doctrine?

Naomi Klein: Yes, absolutely. What I think we are seeing is a clear example of the shock doctrine in the way the Harper government has used the economic crisis to push through a much more radical agenda than they won a mandate to do.

At the same time we are seeing an example of what I call in the book a “shock resistance,” where this tactic has been so overused around the world and also in Canada that we are becoming more resistant to the tactic – we are on to them – and Harper is not getting away with it.

What I think is really amazing about this moment is whatever happens next – whether we end up with this coalition or not, we will have an extremely chastened Harper. So the attempted shock doctrine has failed. I think we can say that decisively.

Just to be clear, what I mean by the shock doctrine, as you know, is the use of crisis to push through unpopular pro-corporate policies. This bundling of a whole package of policies: denying the right of public sector workers to strike, the attack on public financing of political parties, with the economic program – that is what failed, and people were offended by the opportunism of it.

This is what so many of us were worried about during the election – the context of a Tory victory in an economic crisis, because we know that there is this pattern of using an economic crisis to push through policies that were nowhere during the campaign.

Read the rest of the interview here

Watch the new rabble/coalition page

See the Newbie’s guide to prorogation at The Tyee‘s new political blog, The Hook and the article by Michael Byers, “The Case for the Coaltion” at The Tyee

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