“Rightwing believers in the crucial importance of free markets, such as Friedrich von Hayek and Milton Friedman, approved of Pinochet’s rule, which ended political freedom and freedom of thought, but worked undeviatingly for corporate interests and rights. But it took only one decade of the Chicago Boys’ privatizations and other “reforms” for Chile’s economy and financial system to collapse. In the harsh depression that ensued, the banks were re-nationalized and their foreign creditors bailed-out in a process sometimes called the ‘Chicago Road to Socialism,’ but then shortly thereafter they were re-privatized all over again, at bargain-basement prices.”
— This quote refers to the free market experiment in Chile beginning in 1974, but sounds awfully familiar. It comes from an exhaustive and lengthy review/take down of Steven Pinker’s The Better Angels of Our Nature, in which Pinker argues that violence is in decline. The review demonstrates the great and frequently dishonest lengths Pinker goes to make his point, and convincingly illuminates him as an ardent and disingenuous apologist for Western imperialism.Why should a book-length book review from 2012 matter to you? Because it pretty much spells out point by point the tripe that Americans are still eating today, using Pinker as a handy whipping post. He certainly set himself up as candidate. I hope you will take the time to read it.