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Thursday, 21 July 2016

Benefit sanctions, social cleansing, the Shock Doctrine and loss of social security

Considering an apparent disinterest in the Conservative & Unionist Party Government toward benefit sanctions deaths — leading the DWP to cover up the benefit sanctions deaths enquiry results as best they can and continue to extend the sanctions regime to include low-waged people via Universal Credit conditionality sanctions — I thought of benefit sanctions as being in line with the torture element of what Naomi Klein exposed in her 2007 publication: The Shock Doctrine: The rise of disaster capitalism.(1) (2) (3)

So after looking up what outlining reviews I know of that book, I went to a Naomi Klein interview headed Naomi Klein: Climate Change "Not just about things getting hotter.... It's about things getting meaner". That interview was first published at Common Dreams website, and later republished on the London Green Left blog.(4) (5) It was there that I came across this extract:
Q: .... what brought you to this point? How did you become this articulate advocate of this cause? What changed you? When you say, this changes everything, what changed Naomi Klein?

A: I think my wake-up call was definitely [Hurricane] Katrina. And I was writing the book that I wrote before this, I was writing The Shock Doctrine. And I was in New Orleans during Katrina while it was still underwater and doing reporting. I was there when all the lobbyists were descending on Baton Rouge with their wish lists: Close down public housing. Privatize the school system. And New Orleans, it was just such a horrifying thing to witness first hand. To me, it’s one of those events that actually becomes more shocking with time. With some things you kind of get used to them, but I think actually what happened in New Orleans, it was so shocking that we couldn’t actually believe it or metabolize it, in particular the fact that African-American residents were given one-way tickets out of their city, forcibly relocated, at gunpoint, people were loaded onto buses. And there was no plan to bring them back. And while they were gone, their homes were bulldozed. I mean this is, to me, the more I think about it, the more shocking it becomes and there was so much happening in that moment that I actually think that we could not fully understand that this was — local residents were calling it genocide and I think they had every right to call it that.

I shall leave my readers to investigate further and draw their own metaphors and conclusions for what is really going on under this Government.

Dude Swheatie of Kwug

Link addresses

  1. http://www.disabilitynewsservice.com/ministers-breach-foi-laws-by-delaying-release-of-fresh-benefit-deaths-reviews/
  2. http://www.disabilitynewsservice.com/how-a-single-word-shows-dwp-has-finally-owned-up-on-benefit-deaths/
  3. https://scottishunemployedworkers.net/2016/07/15/sharing-knowledge-in-the-face-of-further-attacks/
  4. http://www.commondreams.org/views/2016/02/03/naomi-klein-climate-change-not-just-about-things-getting-hotter-its-about-things
  5. http://londongreenleft.blogspot.co.uk/2016/02/naomi-klein-interview-climate-change.html

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