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New York Times Bestseller National Book Award Longlist Publishers Weekly Best Books of 2017 “This is one attempt to uncover how we got to this surreal political moment. It is also an attempt to predict how, under cover of shocks and crises, it could get a lot worse. And it’s a plan for how, if we keep our heads, we might just be able to flip the script and arrive at a New York Times Bestseller National Book Award Longlist Publishers Weekly Best Books of 2017 “This is one attempt to uncover how we got to this surreal political moment. It is also an attempt to predict how, under cover of shocks and crises, it could get a lot worse. And it’s a plan for how, if we keep our heads, we might just be able to flip the script and arrive at a radically better future.” –From the Introduction Donald Trump’s takeover of the White House is a dangerous escalation in a world of cascading crises. His reckless agenda—including a corporate coup in government, aggressive scapegoating and warmongering, and sweeping aside climate science to set off a fossil fuel frenzy—will generate waves of disasters and shocks to the economy, national security, and the environment. Acclaimed journalist, activist, and bestselling author Naomi Klein has spent two decades studying political shocks, climate change, and “brand bullies.” From this unique perspective, she argues that Trump is not an aberration but a logical extension of the worst, most dangerous trends of the past half-century—the very conditions that have unleashed a rising tide of white nationalism the world over. It is not enough, she tells us, to merely resist, to say “no.” Our historical moment demands more: a credible and inspiring “yes,” a roadmap to reclaiming the populist ground from those who would divide us—one that sets a bold course for winning the fair and caring world we want and need. This timely, urgent book from one of our most influential thinkers offers a bracing positive shock of its own, helping us understand just how we got here, and how we can, collectively, come together and heal.


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New York Times Bestseller National Book Award Longlist Publishers Weekly Best Books of 2017 “This is one attempt to uncover how we got to this surreal political moment. It is also an attempt to predict how, under cover of shocks and crises, it could get a lot worse. And it’s a plan for how, if we keep our heads, we might just be able to flip the script and arrive at a New York Times Bestseller National Book Award Longlist Publishers Weekly Best Books of 2017 “This is one attempt to uncover how we got to this surreal political moment. It is also an attempt to predict how, under cover of shocks and crises, it could get a lot worse. And it’s a plan for how, if we keep our heads, we might just be able to flip the script and arrive at a radically better future.” –From the Introduction Donald Trump’s takeover of the White House is a dangerous escalation in a world of cascading crises. His reckless agenda—including a corporate coup in government, aggressive scapegoating and warmongering, and sweeping aside climate science to set off a fossil fuel frenzy—will generate waves of disasters and shocks to the economy, national security, and the environment. Acclaimed journalist, activist, and bestselling author Naomi Klein has spent two decades studying political shocks, climate change, and “brand bullies.” From this unique perspective, she argues that Trump is not an aberration but a logical extension of the worst, most dangerous trends of the past half-century—the very conditions that have unleashed a rising tide of white nationalism the world over. It is not enough, she tells us, to merely resist, to say “no.” Our historical moment demands more: a credible and inspiring “yes,” a roadmap to reclaiming the populist ground from those who would divide us—one that sets a bold course for winning the fair and caring world we want and need. This timely, urgent book from one of our most influential thinkers offers a bracing positive shock of its own, helping us understand just how we got here, and how we can, collectively, come together and heal.

30 review for No Is Not Enough: Resisting Trump’s Shock Politics and Winning the World We Need

  1. 5 out of 5

    Michael

    Emphatic and urgent, No Is Not Enough imagines how America’s emerging progressive supermajority might reclaim electoral power and build a greater society. Klein’s thesis is lucid: Trump’s not an aberration in national politics but the logical endpoint of neoliberal rule, personifying everything from corporate greed to unapologetic white supremacy and male entitlement. Condensing the concepts of the author’s first three works, the book analyzes the far-right’s all-out assault on civil liberties Emphatic and urgent, No Is Not Enough imagines how America’s emerging progressive supermajority might reclaim electoral power and build a greater society. Klein’s thesis is lucid: Trump’s not an aberration in national politics but the logical endpoint of neoliberal rule, personifying everything from corporate greed to unapologetic white supremacy and male entitlement. Condensing the concepts of the author’s first three works, the book analyzes the far-right’s all-out assault on civil liberties and the environment, and offers a succinct assessment of the 2016 election; the final section sketches the history of the resurgence of mass social movements, envisioning how these might further cooperate and leap toward a sustainable, just future. Well worth checking out or revisiting ahead of the first round of primary debates.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Malcolm

    Naomi Klein, sometime in the early 2000s, became widely seen as a voice for the movement of movements, the anti-corporate globalisation movement that demonstrated such power in confronting the WTO and other institutions of global capitalism in the late 1990s and early 2000s. As so often happens in these kinds of cases, it was hard not to get the impression that as a journalist and analyst she was expected also to provide solutions – of the here’s your ten-point programme for the revolution kind Naomi Klein, sometime in the early 2000s, became widely seen as a voice for the movement of movements, the anti-corporate globalisation movement that demonstrated such power in confronting the WTO and other institutions of global capitalism in the late 1990s and early 2000s. As so often happens in these kinds of cases, it was hard not to get the impression that as a journalist and analyst she was expected also to provide solutions – of the here’s your ten-point programme for the revolution kind of solutions. We could see it in corporate media interviews and discussions of her work; we could also hear it in her occasional rejection of that role, where she seemed to say ‘I’m an analyst and writer, not a leader of the movement’. Amidst other things, in rejecting this role she seemed to also be rejecting the cult of personality often attached to these kinds of political debates. Well, now she’s gone and done it – in this sharp, engaging, eloquent call to get beyond saying No! or, rather, only saying No! The case she’s making is clear and straightforward: it is fairly easy to say No!, but more challenging to say ‘no, we don’t want that’ at the same time as saying ‘yes, we want that instead’. In recent years the Left has shied off Yes! We’ve been side-tracked by the destruction of imagination resulting from the neo-liberal hegemony, and scared off by the collapse of states following programmes associated with socialism, unsettled by the dangers of speaking for others (although the recent rise of a much more mature discussion of intersectionality has shifted that dynamic, and yet we so often seem scared to surrender power by standing aside to let others speak for themselves), and distracted by process and an obsession with individualised discourses around horizontality when we should have been looking at how alliances can work towards a common goal. There is a sense that at the heart of all of this there is a loss of vision, a decline of utopia. This notion of utopia is a challenge in current climate, in part as a result of one stand of post-modernism’s rejection of grand narratives linked to a view of the 20th century as dominated by failed but excessive utopias (Marxist and fascist), a view that underpins the dominance of neo-liberal outlooks as technical and pragmatic (when any reasonable look at neo-liberalism makes clear its utopian fantasy). In the final section of this book Klein returns to the influence of utopia, citing Oscar Wilde in The Soul of Man Under Socialism: A map of the world that does not include Utopia is not worth even glancing at, for it leaves out the one country at which Humanity is always landing. And when Humanity lands there, it looks out, and, seeing a better country, sets sail. Progress is the realisation of Utopias. More simply, without some dream idea of where we might be going, progressive change is unrealisable; it is not surprising that we’ve seen a rise in utopian studies and writing in recent years, even when over-prescriptive views of where we might be going hinder progress. Alongside this advocacy of a vision about which we can say yes is a sense of how we might get there. Here Klein cautions against a reliance on electoral approaches, citing a slogan from the Argentinian people movement of the late 1990s: “Our dreams don’t fit on your ballot”. And yet, Klein refuses to develop a programme – except that she has a strategic vision, one developed by a coalition of Canadian people’s organisations in 2015, The Leap Manifesto . But I’ve started at the end. The argument has four stages. Starting with the Trump election she explores where we are, arguing that we are mistaken if we read and interpret Trump through a lens provided by conventional analyses of politics; instead, she says, we need to look at the Trump presidency and family as a brand, a superbrand but a brand no less. Branding theory of the kind she analysed in No Logo provides with the tools to understand how Trump operates, and equally how to weaken his cultural and political power: undermine the brand’s commercial success. She moves on to explore the current dynamics of (in)equality. Running through this section are dynamics and divisions built around climate, gender, race/ethnicity and class including a call to better engage with economics. Of the many, many things that emerge from this part of the case two, I think, stand out: first, defending what we had/have and nostalgia are major errors – Trump, Brexit, Le Pen, Orban, Wilders and their kind are symptoms, not the cause, and as such is a product of the toxic past/now so we need to advocate for something different, and; second, reliance on others is false hope – neither philanthrocapitalists nor any other knights can get us out of this predicament: it is up to us. For me, this resonates with the failure to provide a detailed view of where we’re going – that only emerges from the struggle, from cooperative and collective work towards a sense of what might be (The Leap Manifesto lacks detail I suspect for precisely that reason). This opens up the third aspect of the analysis: the role of the current US political leadership in disaster capitalism. She builds on this by highlighting the fronts on which the battle is currently being fought and how and where these fronts might develop. Whether she’s right about this is less important than the key point that assault will continue on multiple fronts and with a degree of fluidity that is, in part, designed to keep resistance unsettled and wrong-footed. It is here that collective, intersectional struggle is the key: not resistance alone on many fronts, but resistance together on those fronts. These three stages then bring us back to where this review (essay?) started: utopia, vision, collectivist, cooperativist, mutually supportive struggle, with learning in field, which Klein invokes through the example of the camp at Standing Rock to oppose the Dakota Access Pipeline. It’s a powerful, compelling argument. Reading this a few days after the UK’s 2017 snap election that saw the Labour Party claw back a gap of over 20% in the polls to a deficit of less than 5%, saw it win more than 30 seats and the Tories lose their parliamentary majority and be forced into a minority government with support from Northern Ireland’s most despicable, socially reactionary party that is in effect the political wing of a unionist paramilitary (read: ‘terrorist’) group has given the case she is making a particular resonance. Labour did well in part because the Tories’ campaign was abysmal but more because they were dynamic and had a profoundly optimistic manifesto that not only encouraged new voters into the fold, but inspired and brought back lapsed voters. Here was a parliamentary campaign that looked a lot like a broad, democratic social movement that spoke a language of hope and optimism. It is almost as if they did exactly what Klein is arguing for: No! to neo-liberal, inward looking xenophobic little Britainism (OK, it’s not that simple) and Yes! to an inclusive, democratic, supportive politics of care and compassion (with the promises clear and costed). It is, of course, much more complex than that but we cannot under-estimate the influence of vision and hope in this spectacular campaign. Klein’s is not the only voice making this case. In the UK we have groups such as Momentum and Red Pepper that are in similar places. The Leap Manifesto may not be the answer – that is likely to emerge from the movement as it develops its vision of the future – but it is a good start, and the ideas have been picked up in many other settings, being developed to local ends. She’s clear about where the Manifesto came from; long, difficult, challenging discussions and equally distributed compromise in the interests of a shared approach: for many of us it is this compromise that is the most difficult, and that difficulty is often a sign that out envisaged utopia is not all that inclusive, just as Thomas More’s relied on slavery, the oppression of the indigenous and the employment of mercenary armies many of our visions of the future lack empathy for our ‘Others’. She is also right on point: No is not enough. Her Yes! might not be the right one, but without actively working collectively for what that yes might be our struggles and our resistance will do little than alleviate some current symptoms, if they even do that. This is a compelling and invigorating analysis and call to action – and what’s more, in building her case around The Leap Manifesto Klein continues to avoid the cult of personality, act as a fine journalist and analyst and suggest important ways our movement for change can build a more inclusive world. As such, it is essential reading.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Trevor

    This book does a lot to confirm my biases. For instance, I’ve decided that both sides of American politics have abandoned any real belief in democracy, the only difference being that the Democrats still talk as if they believed the democratic project was ongoing, even while they hand over whatever is important in the public sphere to the free market – Obama’s disgraceful support for Charter Schools, being merely one ignoble instance in 8 years crowded with his support for corporate greed over This book does a lot to confirm my biases. For instance, I’ve decided that both sides of American politics have abandoned any real belief in democracy, the only difference being that the Democrats still talk as if they believed the democratic project was ongoing, even while they hand over whatever is important in the public sphere to the free market – Obama’s disgraceful support for Charter Schools, being merely one ignoble instance in 8 years crowded with his support for corporate greed over public need. The Republicans have given up even this semblance of support for democracy, doing all they can to undermine the right to vote, the right to citizenship, the right to a voice other than as a customer. Of course, this has been a long time coming – dating back to at least Reagan and his nine most terrifying words (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xhYJS...) – or Thatcher’s TINA (There Is No Alternative) which is, of course, the very opposite of what a democratic deliberation would be, which is, by definition, that there are alternatives, and that is why there is a need for a deliberation in the first place. The handing over of the public sphere to the corporate free market, the commodification of everything, and the culture of dissatisfaction that this is premised on (where growth is the only virtue, and growth requires the endless production of new needs, and new needs require the production of desires we never had before, and these desires can only be desires if they produce in us the feeling of being dissatisfied with whatever we have – even as we replace what we have for things so little different from them that it makes a mockery of the changeover). The rejection of democracy as a social good by those who rule de facto, if not de jure, goes so far against the desire and experience of the rest of society that it cannot be implemented without the manufacture of ‘shocks’ – either as in natural calamities or as economic collapses that have been equally manipulated to enforce the handover of wealth from the poor to the mega-rich – follow the cash after 2008. In the case of natural catastrophes, such as with Hurricane Katrina, what had been downgraded to a tropical storm caused excessive havoc, not because of the potency of the storm itself, but because of the degradation of the facilities that ought to be prevented it. And this was because it was meant to – the people impacted by the storm had become Bauman’s human waste, the failed citizens who had become waste and surplus to requirements because they had become failed consumers. Their fates – like those of so many since in the US – remain of little interest other than for whatever money corporations can make in servicing the relief efforts even where the private firms paid to enact this relief often has zero experience in anything other than in emptying the public purse. Klein’s point here is summed up in the title, where – no is not enough. That is, too often the left has become ‘reactionary’ in the sense that it merely reacts to the shocks imposed upon it by the right. This is a difficult thing to avoid – particularly when you have a president like the current one, who, one would be forgiven for thinking, spends his entire time thinking up new ways to outrage and disgust anyone with even a semblance of moral feeling. The overwhelming need to say, “Not one step back” is hardly surprising in such circumstances, but, as Klein makes all too clear, it simply isn’t enough. This relates to ideas I’ve been reading from other writers on the left – such as Lakoff – that we need to reframe the narrative, not only to undermine the current ‘truth’ – that the rich are wealth creators, that giving them more is the only path to society having more, that giving anything to the poor only rewards laziness. That is, we need to create a vision of a future that is more appealing than that proposed by the selfish and the greedy – which, when you think about it, shouldn’t really be all that difficult. A large chunk of this book is spent discussing ways in which people are reclaiming democracy and the public sphere. I think that grassroots democratic action is probably the best argument against the corporate aristocracy that both sides of politics in the US, and here in Australia, have been heading towards for decades. The other important theme in this book is that we have no time. We can’t wait any longer – change needs to happen now or the consequences will be unspeakable. And what is interesting in her vision is that the changes that need to happen are not simple – not in any sense, not as in being easy and nor in being singular – but the changes we need to bring into being have to simultaneously address a wide range of issues: from the provision of health care, to improved food quality and supply, to rights for refugees, to an end of the slaughter that causes refugees, to black lives matter, to stopping environmental destruction, to the crisis of systemic sexism, to removing the threat of nuclear war, and on and on and on. It is the endlessness of this list of that which needs to be urgently addressed that too often fills us with despair, except, we really don’t have time to despair. So, what can we do? As I said at the start of this review, politics has become riddled with the idea that democracy is a failed project. In a world where those in power push this as the case, any act of community building that you can engage in is, by definition, a revolutionary act. We are social animals, our individual lives only make sense because there is a ‘thou’. Any act that brings people together to enact a common cause, to bring into being a common dream brings us that one step closer to being truly human and it therefore undermines the selfishness that the privatisation project gripping our politics since the 1970s seeks to redefine the human by.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Leo Robertson

    I will normally only allow myself to be depressed by a Naomi Klein book with about the frequency that she writes them, but seems like this half-decade's getting a double whammy!! #HopeIDontKillMyself

  5. 5 out of 5

    Bettie

    Description: "Trump is extreme but he's not a Martian. He is the logical conclusion of many of the most dangerous trends of the past half-century. He is the personification of the merger of humans and corporations--a one-man megabrand, with wife and children as spin-off brands. This book is to help understand how we arrived at this surreal political moment, how to keep it from getting a lot worse, and how, if we keep our heads, we can flip the script and seize the opportunity to make things a Description: "Trump is extreme but he's not a Martian. He is the logical conclusion of many of the most dangerous trends of the past half-century. He is the personification of the merger of humans and corporations--a one-man megabrand, with wife and children as spin-off brands. This book is to help understand how we arrived at this surreal political moment, how to keep it from getting a lot worse, and how, if we keep our heads, we can flip the script and seize the opportunity to make things a whole lot better in a time of urgent need. A tool-kit for shock-resistance." --from the Introduction The election of Donald Trump produced a frightening escalation in a world of cascading crises. The Trump Administration's vision--the deconstruction of the welfare and regulatory state, the unleashing of a fossil fuel frenzy (which requires the sweeping aside of climate science) and an all-out attack on vulnerable communities under the guise of a war on crime and terrorism--will generate wave after wave of crises and shocks around the world, to the economy, to national security, to the environment. In No Is Not Enough, Naomi Klein embraces a lively conversation with the reader to expose the forces behind Trump's success and explain why he is not an aberration but the product of our time--Reality TV branding, celebrity obsession and CEO-worship, Vegas and Guantanamo, fake news and vulture bankers all rolled into one. And she shares a bold vision, a clear-eyed perspective on how to break the spell of his shock tactics, counter the rising chaos and divisiveness at home and abroad, and win the world we need. Full Interview: Naomi Klein on "No Is Not Enough: Resisting Trump's Shock Politics" HOW WE GOT HERE: Rise of the Superbrands WHERE WE ARE NOW: Climate of Inequality HOW IT COULD GET WORSE: The Shocks to Come HOW THINGS COULD GET BETTER THE CARING MAJORITY WITHIN REACH Accessible language, scary subject, excruciatingly summed up when Klein shows that the only sure way to up the price of oil is to have a war. Geared to public rather than scholarly readers, this is a must read to aid understanding this age. 4* Shock Doctrine 4* No Is Not Enough

  6. 4 out of 5

    Science (Fiction) Nerd Mario

    I am not going to overthrow the American government; corporations have already done that!" John Trudell Please note that I put the original German text at the end of this review. Just if you might be interested. There have been a few bizarre US presidents and governments. One could almost speak of the intention to reduce the political interest by the offices are increasingly ridiculed. This easily generated disenchantment with politics reveals many benefits. When nobody cares and gets involved, I am not going to overthrow the American government; corporations have already done that!" John Trudell Please note that I put the original German text at the end of this review. Just if you might be interested. There have been a few bizarre US presidents and governments. One could almost speak of the intention to reduce the political interest by the offices are increasingly ridiculed. This easily generated disenchantment with politics reveals many benefits. When nobody cares and gets involved, the leadership can do whatever it wants. Those who sleep in democracy wake up in a surveillance state. The economic and social development behind the problem is already known from Klein's other books. Alternatively, from the works of Jean Ziegler, John Perkins, Colin Crouch, etc. Nevertheless, a few aspects, or better newly identified relationships, should not be missing. The still-rising star of the shock doctrine. Since Reagan and Thatcher, much effort has been made to professionalize the process. Be it the tsunami in Southeast Asia or the last Iraq war. The blows must be quick and disorienting for the population so that there is no time for coordinated resistance. As one has seen with hurricane Katrina, one does not shrink from the own society. The trade alliances. The cooperation of WTO, IMF, World Bank and governments. Alternatively, let´s just say world government, that is shorter and easier to remind. All covenants serve only the legitimate purposes of those who ratify them. With them, the political development can be explicitly manipulated in the interests of their own goals. For example, if one needs poverty, refugee flows or political instability over civil war up to the bonfire with the participation of several states. A few numbers or clauses changed, and a few million more or less are fleeing and dying. The disaster capitalism: Keep the population in a state of permanent fear. Against North Korea, from rampage, from emancipation, from pandemics, from communists, from terrorist attacks, from minorities, from tax cuts, from Obamacare, from unchecked immigration, from same-sex marriage, from secularization, from ... While these artificially exaggerated problems flow into people's consciousness, one question remains. How many of the employee rights have not eroded yet? The term wage slavery best defines the current conditions. Moreover, the employers' mentality towards the workers is similar to that of the oppressors towards the oppressed of all eras before. Klein has a few catastrophic scenarios in store. For example, one more terrorist attack, Trump might be tempted to manipulate the Constitution. To acquire more executive power. With a partner like Eric Prince, who uses his private army of Blackwater mercenaries to mess up all sorts of potential usurpers. A perfidious cycle is that of collateral damage or voluntary poverty in developing countries. This has immense advantages for the Elite. On the one hand the guarantee of the cheapest labor. Where the leached states compete with each other for the lowest dumping prices with the worst conditions for workers. Pollution, environmental degradation, wars and "normal" or ecological disasters caused by climate change are forcing millions to move north. To participate a little in the wealth that they enable with their sweat, blood, and loss of health. Trump causes this poverty and draws the populism on which his electoral success based. He benefits twice from the suffering. By making a dignified, secure life impossible for people in their homeland and representing the desperate refugees as the most significant threat to the state. The increasingly impoverished homeland population likes to swallow this bait. He portrays himself as a savior and, as a slippery and bigot businessman, can manipulate people's emotions. It is convenient to have both the problem and the solution of the problem in personal union. When you sell the disease and the cure. Double profit. Often Trump is "only" referred to as a symptom, but this should be too euphemizing and trivializing. This argument can be well used to distract from the totality of the problem. Because it is easier to directly point to a culprit instead of dealing with the whole, unpleasant problem. He, or the gray Eminence in the background in the form of his spin doctors, are more than perfidious. One might suspect that the seeming incompetence only aims to lull the opponents to safety. The concentrated economic interests behind the Trump system are the same as in many governments before. Only so deliberately clumsy, unvarnished and apparently they have never been revealed. Each economic enemy is deprived of the basis for discussion in the sense of preventive crime prevention. Global warming and climate change are negligible because of oil's need for America's prosperity. Tax increases for wealthy or even a machine tax would lead to economic ruin and destroy competitiveness. The keyboard of the media has rarely been instrumentalized so perfectly. As a Twitter president, he has such instant and quick access to millions of people and their opinions as no one else before. He also knows how to play off the weaknesses of his competitors. The economic values are placed above the fundamental democratic rights. The fear of economic decline is exaggerated, and the concerns of constitutionalists regarding fascist tendencies played down or ridiculed. Deportations and travel bans are small beginnings. With the NSA, the Patriot Act and the CIA backing up in the background, you can do much more than accomplishing that. Although there are countermovements, these are vanishingly small and barely known by an underrepresentation in the system media of the general public. So it is good that they are dying. As a positive example, Klein calls the Standing Rock Sioux. These protest peacefully and cannot be deterred by violent attacks by the police and private security companies. They are an example of an alternative, better social model that coexists in sustainable harmony with nature. The scientist's march, indivisible.org, Klein's writing Leap Manifesto, women's journey and other civilian movements also raise hopes. Their demands are the cornerstones of a post-capitalist, future social order. Klein emphasizes that she only wants to give impulses and does not want to be misunderstood as a prophet. The only point of criticism Klein is to chalk that she saves with criticism of Hilary Clinton and Barack Obama. The demonstration of their interdependencies and mistakes would undoubtedly have done well for the objectivity of the work. Above all, it is water on the mills of the critics. If, for example, Clinton's toleration and involvement in the events in Libya and Iraq, including violations of international law, are not mentioned. Alternatively, Obama's legalization of the drone war and the associated targeted killings. Also, worst, the fact that conditions have not improved under democratic governments speaks for itself. If the presidents are powerless marionettes, the goodness of their intentions makes no matter, and no change can be achieved. It would be fun if it was not so tragic and the consequences not so far-reaching. Trump has always been aware of the importance of self-marketing to increase sales. He has been running this game for decades and has perfected it. You can take his bizarre business ideas and creations to heart in various clips. The fact that he continues to act so as president makes it a real-life satire. A family business as the head of the government. With widely branched connections and narcissistic tendencies. Like any for-profit corporation, Trump will beat as much profit as possible from the advantages of his position. Be it job checkers, government contracts or the famous revolving door. The self-service shop, once called representative democracy, is open to everyone out of the public. No, wait, I mean just for certain people of course. Game characters for each character and a "White House Monopoly" could undoubtedly market well. Moreover, for the time you are president, you hold the marketing rights to it. The positive thing is that decadence and degeneration always begin to take revenge. Megalomaniac systems with omnipotence claim destroy themselves at the climax of their power. The Latin American civilizations sacrificed so much of the population that they weakened themselves. The Khmer empire only gave up the maintenance of the infrastructure because it preferred to build temples and thus provoked famine. Because the ingenious irrigation systems and reservoirs were no longer maintained. The Chinese just shut themselves off from the rest of the world. The Romans paid homage to erasures and corruption. The Catholic Church cost human development a millennium of scientific stagnation and retardation. The medieval noble families operated incest. Until far above the degree of "only distantly related." How many millennials further we could be without that constant backlashes. Pure conservatism will destroy the current, outmoded corporatocracy. Without external enemies or political or religious delusion, the ignorance does not suffice to adapt to the new times to seal their downfall. Toward the end, declining empires always become a caricature of themselves. Without realizing it. On the contrary, they take themselves very seriously and indulge in pure concepts of black and white, for and against, friend and foe. "Ich habe nicht vor, die amerikanische Regierung zu stürzen. Das haben die Konzerne schon erledigt!" John Trudell Es hat schon einige an skurrilen US Präsidenten und Regierungen gegeben. Man könnte fast von der Absicht sprechen, das Politikinteresse zu reduzieren, indem die Ämter immer mehr der Lächerlichkeit preisgegeben werden. Durch diese leicht erzeugte Politikverdrossenheit lassen sich viele Vorteile erkennen. Wenn sich niemand mehr interessiert und engagiert, kann die Führungsriege tun, was sie will. Wer in der Demokratie schläft, wacht in einem Überwachungsstaat auf. Die wirtschaftliche und gesellschaftliche Entwicklung hinter der Problematik kennt man bereits aus Kleins anderen Büchern. Oder aus den Werken von Jean Zieglers, John Perkins, Colin Crouchs, etc. Ein paar Aspekte, oder besser neu aufgezeigte Zusammenhänge, sollten trotzdem nicht fehlen. Der noch immer im Steigen begriffene Stern der Schockdoktrin. Seit Reagan und Thatcher hat sich einiges in den Bemühungen getan, das Vorgehen zu professionalisieren. Sei es bei dem Tsunami in Südostasien oder beim letzten Irakkrieg. Die Schläge müssen schnell und möglichst desorientierend für die Bevölkerung sein, damit ihr keine Zeit für eine koordinierte Gegenwehr bleibt. Wie man bei Hurrikane Kathrina gesehen hat, wird auch vor der eigenen Bevölkerung nicht zurück geschreckt. Die Handelsbündnisse. Die Kooperation von WTO, IWF, World Bank und den Regierungen. Oder sagen wir einfach Weltregierung, das ist kürzer und leichter zu merken. Sämtliche Bündnisse dienen nur den logischen Zwecken derer, die sie ratifizieren. Mit ihnen lässt sich die politische Entwicklung gezielt im Sinne der eigenen Interessen manipulieren. Etwa wenn man Armut, Flüchtlingsströme oder politische Instabilität über Bürgerkrieg bis hin zum Flächenbrand mitsamt Beteiligung mehrerer Staaten braucht. Ein paar Zahlen oder Vertragsklauseln geändert, flugs sterben oder flüchten ein paar Millionen mehr oder weniger. Der Katastrophenkapitalismus: Man halte die Bevölkerung in einem Zustand permanenter Angst. Vor Nordkorea, vor Amokläufen, vor Emanzipation, vor Pandemien, vor Kommunisten, vor Terroranschlägen, vor Minderheiten, vor Steuersenkungen, vor Obamacare, vor ungebremster Immigration, vor gleichgeschlechtlicher Ehe, vor Säkularisierung, vor… Während diese künstlich aufgebauschten Probleme in die Bewusstseine der Menschen fließen, bleibt eine Frage offen. Wie viele der Arbeitnehmerrechte sind noch nicht erodiert? Der Begriff Lohnsklaverei definiert die aktuellen Zustände am ehesten. Und auch die Mentalität der Arbeitgeber gegenüber den Arbeitnehmern entspricht denen der Unterdrücker gegenüber den Unterdrückten aller Zeitalter zuvor. Klein hat ein paar Katastrophenszenarios in petto. Etwa dass, noch einem großen Terroranschlag, Trump versucht sein könnte die Verfassung zu manipulieren. Um sich mehr Exekutivgewalt anzueignen. Mit einem Kompagnon wie Eric Prince, der mit seiner Privatarmee aus Blackwater Söldnern mit allen Arten von potentiellen Usurpatoren den Boden aufwischt. Ein perfider Kreislauf ist die als Kollateralschaden oder absichtlich erzeugte Armut in den Entwicklungsländern. Das hat für die Elite 2 immense Vorteile. Einerseits die Garantie billigster Arbeitskräfte. Wobei die ausgelaugten Staaten noch untereinander um die billigsten Dumpingpreise mit den schlechtesten Bedingungen für Arbeiter konkurrieren. Die Umweltverschmutzung, Umweltzerstörung, Kriege und "normale" oder durch den Klimawandel verursachte Umweltkatastrophen zwingen Millionen, nach Norden zu ziehen. Um ein wenig am Reichtum, den sie mit ihrem Blut, Schweiß und Gesundheitsschäden ermöglichen, zu partizipieren. Trump verursacht diese Armut und schöpft den Populismus ab, auf dem sein Wahlerfolg begründet war. Er profitiert doppelt vom Leid. Indem er den Menschen in ihrer Heimat ein würdiges, sicheres Leben unmöglich macht und die verzweifelten Flüchtlinge als größte Gefahr für den Staat darstellt. Die immer mehr verarmende Bevölkerung schluckt diesen Köder gerne. Er stellt sich selbst als Heilsbringer dar und kann als aalglatter und bigotter Geschäftsmann gezielt die Emotionen der Menschen manipuliert. Es ist praktisch, wenn man sowohl das Problem als auch Lösung des Problems in Personalunion ist. Wenn man die Krankheit und die Heilung verkauft. Doppelter Profit. Oft wird Trump "nur" als Symptom bezeichnet, was aber zu beschönigend und verharmlosend sein dürfte. Dieses Argument kann gut genutzt werden, um von der Gesamtheit der Problematik abzulenken. Weil es leichter fällt, schlicht auf einen Schuldigen zu zeigen anstatt sich mit der gesamten, unangenehmen Problematik auseinander zu setzen. Er, oder die graue Eminenz im Hintergrund in Form seiner Spin Doktoren, sind mehr als perfide. Man könnte vermuten, dass die scheinbare Unbedarftheit nur darauf abzielt, die Gegner in Sicherheit zu wiegen. Die geballten Wirtschaftsinteressen hinter dem System Trump sind die gleichen wie in vielen Regierungen davor. Jedem Wirtschaftsfeind wird im Sinne vorbeugender Verbrechensbekämpfung vorab die Diskussionsgrundlage entzogen. Die Erderwärmung und der Klimawandel sind unwesentlich, weil das Öl für den Wohlstand Amerikas fließen muss. Steuererhöhnungen für Reiche oder gar eine Maschinensteuer würden in den wirtschaftlichen Ruin führen und die Wettbewerbsfähigkeit zerstören. Die Klaviatur der Medien wurde selten so perfekt instrumentalisiert. Als Twitter Präsident hat er einen so unmittelbaren und schnellen Zugriff auf Millionen Menschen und deren Meinungen wie keiner zuvor. Auch versteht er es, die Schwächen seiner Mitbewerber auszuspielen. Die ökonomischen Werte werden über die demokratischen Grundrechte gestellt. Die Angst vor wirtschaftlichen Abstieg wird übertrieben und die Sorgen von Verfassungsrechtlern hinsichtlich faschistischer Tendenzen herab gespielt oder lächerlich gemacht. Deportationen und Reiseverbote sind kleine Anfänge. Mit der NSA, dem Patriot Act und der CIA als Rückendeckung im Hintergrund kann man viel mehr als nur das umsetzen. Es gibt zwar Gegenbewegungen, aber diese sind verschwindend gering und durch eine Unterrepräsentation in den Systemmedien der Allgemeinheit kaum bekannt. Da ist es gut, dass diese im Sterben begriffen sind. Als positive Beispiele nennt Klein etwa die Standing Rock Sioux. Diese protestieren friedlich und lassen sich auch durch gewaltsame Übergriffe der Polizei und privater Sicherheitsfirmen nicht von ihren Vorhaben abbringen. Sie sind ein Beispiel für ein alternatives, besseres Gesellschaftsmodell, das in nachhaltigem Einklang mit der Natur koexistiert. Auch der scientists march, indivisible.org, das von Klein verfasst Leap Manifesto, women´s march und weitere Zivilbewegungen wecken Hoffnungen. Ihre Forderungen sind die Ecksteine einer postkapitalistischen, zukünftigen Gesellschaftsordnung. Wobei Klein betont, nur Impulse zu geben und sich nicht als Prophetin missverstanden sehen möchte. Als einziger Kritikpunkt ist Klein anzukreiden, dass sie mit Kritik gegenüber Hilary Clinton und Barack Obama spart. Das Aufzeigen von deren Verflechtungen und Fehler hätten der Objektivität des Werkes sicher gut getan. Vor allem ist es Wasser auf die Mühlen der Kritiker. Wenn etwa Clintons Duldung und Beteiligung an den Geschehnissen in Libyen und im Irak samt Völkerrechtsverletzungen nicht erwähnt wird. Oder Obamas Legalisierung des Drohnenkrieges und der damit einhergehenden gezielten Tötungen. Auch dass sich unter den demokratischen Regierungen die Bedingungen nicht verbessert haben, spricht für sich. Wenn die Präsidenten machtlose Marionetten sind, machen ihre gut gemeinten Intentionen keinen Unterschied und können keine Veränderung bewirken. Es wäre lustige, wäre es nicht so tragisch und die Folgen nicht so weitreichend. Trump war sich immer schon der Wichtigkeit von Selbstvermarktung zur Umsatzsteigerung bewusst. Er betreibt dieses Spiel seit Jahrzehnten und hat es perfektioniert. Man kann sich seine bizarrsten Geschäftsideen und Kreationen in diversen Clips zu Gemüte führen. Dass er als Präsident so weiter agiert wie bisher, macht es endgültig zur Realsatire. Ein Familienunternehmen als Kopf der Regierung. Mit weit verzweigten Verflechtungen und narzisstischen Tendenzen. Wie jeder gewinnorientierte Konzern wird Trump aus den Vorteilen seiner Position soviel Gewinn wie möglich schlagen. Sei es durch Postenschacherei, Vergabe von Regierungsaufträgen oder die berühmte Drehtür. Der Selbstbedienungsladen, der einmal repräsentative Demokratie hieß, steht sperrangelweit offen. Spielfiguren für die einzelnen Charaktere und ein "White House Monopoly" ließen sich sicher gut vermarkten. Und für die Zeit, die man Präsident ist, hält man die Vermarktungsrechte daran. Das positive ist, dass sich Dekadenz und Degeneration immer irgendwann zu rächen beginnen. Die lateinamerikanischen Hochkulturen opferten so große Teile der Bevölkerung weg, dass sie sich selbst dadurch schwächten. Das Khmerreich verzichtete schlicht auf die Wartung der Infrastruktur, weil es lieber Tempel baute und provozierte dadurch Hungernöte. Weil die Bewässerungsanlagen nicht mehr gewartet wurden. Die Chinesen schotteten sich schlicht vom Rest der Welt ab. Die Römer huldigten Vomatorien und Korruption. Die katholische Kirche kostete die menschliche Entwicklung ein Jahrtausend der Stagnation und Retardation. Die mittelalterlichen Adelsgeschlechter betrieben Inzest. Bis weit über den Grad von "nur entfernt verwandt." Und die aktuelle, überholte Korporokratie wird sich durch Konservatismus zu Grunde richten. Ohne äußere Feinde oder politischen oder religiösen Wahn reicht dafür die Ignoranz sich nicht den neuen Zeiten anpassen zu wollen, um den eigenen Untergang zu besiegeln. Dekadente Imperien werden gegen Ende immer zu einer Karikatur ihrer selbst. Ohne es zu merken. Sie nehmen sich im Gegenteil selbst sehr ernst und schwelgen in schlichten Konzepten von schwarz und weiß, dafür und dagegen, Freund und Feind.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    What I liked: the section about superbrands, and their role in politics. - the idea of 'shock politics' and exploiting moments of crisis to roll back democratic rights was interesting, although I'd have appreciated more in-depth exploring of this happening in various case examples (Chile in the 70s, Russia in the 90s, etc.) - 'culture jamming' was a new term to me and I can see how it could be an effective mode of non-violent resistance. - the book is very current (for example, she writes about What I liked: the section about superbrands, and their role in politics. - the idea of 'shock politics' and exploiting moments of crisis to roll back democratic rights was interesting, although I'd have appreciated more in-depth exploring of this happening in various case examples (Chile in the 70s, Russia in the 90s, etc.) - 'culture jamming' was a new term to me and I can see how it could be an effective mode of non-violent resistance. - the book is very current (for example, she writes about how culture jamming Fox News helped lead to Bill O'Reilly's downfall)...BUT this could make the book dated or even irrelevant VERY quickly, especially considering how crazy fast the news coming out of Washington these days is. What I didn't like: - a lot of insertion of the author into the book (her reaction to certain world events, her son's experience snorkelling the Great Barrier Reef, etc.) Found it distracting and ultimately pulled focus from the book's overall message. - not a lot of hard facts or data to back up arguments - the book felt rushed in its writing (it was written in a matter of months, as opposed to the five or six years of research and writing Klein normally takes with her books) - the book is marketed as a blueprint for resistance, but I didn't really come away from it feeling like there were clear ideas for citizens to resist policies and politics they don't agree with. For example, "confronting our inner Trumps" is an amorphous, vague piece of advice and I'm not sure it really results in any kind of tangible change beyond a shift maybe in your own personal outlook on life. I guess what I'm saying is that it didn't seem like radical advice, or a manifesto that was terribly new or unique.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Tom Quinn

    Another in the march of books hoping to explain the rise of Donald Trump. I already agreed with most of what she outlines here so I was able to skim the early chapters. How bemusing to realize: this stuff is CURRENT EVENTS. For all the ink spilled over Trump, Trumpism, corporate encroachment into US politics, and so on, one might think this was some long-past history being analyzed with the benefit of hindsight. But no, this is the here and now and we're all scrambling to keep up. 3 stars out of Another in the march of books hoping to explain the rise of Donald Trump. I already agreed with most of what she outlines here so I was able to skim the early chapters. How bemusing to realize: this stuff is CURRENT EVENTS. For all the ink spilled over Trump, Trumpism, corporate encroachment into US politics, and so on, one might think this was some long-past history being analyzed with the benefit of hindsight. But no, this is the here and now and we're all scrambling to keep up. 3 stars out of 5. This is not the type of book I generally read. It's got a "limited time only" relevance built into it by definition. Trump won't be president forever, and so her message that the system and conditions which bred him will carry on loses some impact from tying this work so inextricably to him. In the end picking this up was was mostly just to get a little echo chamber reassurance for myself. It was nice to hear from someone else who also loathes Trump and big business, but sadly very little is delivered in the way of "resisting...and winning the world we need" when all is said and done. Organize, protest, and boycott Trump brands is the most practical direction she gives.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Peter (Pete) Mcloughlin

    I haven't read Naomi Klein before but her ideas around branding and disaster capitalism and the shock doctrine are key to understanding what is happening to us. Especially how all the forces that have been dragging down democracy for the past fifty years have culminated in the person of Donald J. Trump. He is the naked embodiment of every bad political trend and instinct of the right in one man. Klein doesn't merely leave depressed and bewildered by the ugly forces arrayed against ordinary I haven't read Naomi Klein before but her ideas around branding and disaster capitalism and the shock doctrine are key to understanding what is happening to us. Especially how all the forces that have been dragging down democracy for the past fifty years have culminated in the person of Donald J. Trump. He is the naked embodiment of every bad political trend and instinct of the right in one man. Klein doesn't merely leave depressed and bewildered by the ugly forces arrayed against ordinary people she starts presenting strategies and a vision for a way out. I found a new favorite author today.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Vivian

    My Key Takeaway: Advocate what you are for, not what you're against. Voice it. This is such a contentious issue that I don't think most people will read it. I was a bit hesitant, but I have to say that while this is a progressive, left-leaning book, Klein does an excellent job supporting her position, whether you agree with it or not. This is more interested in framing the problems that led to where the US, and the world, stands in regards to governance. The decisions we make as populations by our My Key Takeaway: Advocate what you are for, not what you're against. Voice it. This is such a contentious issue that I don't think most people will read it. I was a bit hesitant, but I have to say that while this is a progressive, left-leaning book, Klein does an excellent job supporting her position, whether you agree with it or not. This is more interested in framing the problems that led to where the US, and the world, stands in regards to governance. The decisions we make as populations by our choice of leadership and the consequences. And Klein proposes a radical counterstrategy, don't try to regain just what's been lost, go for it all. Trump is a symptom of a huge problem. A really ugly symptom, like a an oozing pus-filled wound, but he's not the origin. He merely took advantage of it and now he's actively deconstructing the government, gutting it, to benefit profiteers. He's running a really loud show. It's drowning out EVERYTHING but him. Worst part? Only through intersectionality will we overcome the challenges--yeah, I'm not that optimistic. We are so fucked. This book is not me. I am a centrist. According to Klein, I'm part of the problem. That's fine. I prefer chipping away and rebuilding to the violence of upheaval--others may feel differently. Little ad lib: One of the best things I ever learned regarding customer service complaints, and government is customer service, is that you have to state the problem and tell the company/government/service provider what they can do to resolve the situation to your satisfaction. It has to be something realistically possible. I have always been either satisfied with a company's response or taken my business elsewhere, but engaging with the other party to seek resolution is a key component.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Lucy Dacus

    This took me two years to read because I had to set it down whenever I felt my heart rate rise. It is deeply frustrating to learn more facts about Trump, his past, and his current administration. But what I love about the book is exactly what the title poses- saying "no" to it is not as useful as saying "yes" to possible solutions and futures. Klein, along with wise cultural leaders that she works with and credits, has many concrete ideas and requests for anyone to opt into, which feels This took me two years to read because I had to set it down whenever I felt my heart rate rise. It is deeply frustrating to learn more facts about Trump, his past, and his current administration. But what I love about the book is exactly what the title poses- saying "no" to it is not as useful as saying "yes" to possible solutions and futures. Klein, along with wise cultural leaders that she works with and credits, has many concrete ideas and requests for anyone to opt into, which feels unfortunately rare and personally helpful.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    I received an ARC of this book from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. Klein's book is a timely look at what Donald Trump has done in the presidential office in just a few months, as well as in previous years, and how we might be able to triumph over his policies. She analyzes his use of branding, his obsession with winning and wealth, and his approach to wars and fossil fuels; most are connected to one another and are likely to exacerbate the problems throughout the world, such as I received an ARC of this book from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. Klein's book is a timely look at what Donald Trump has done in the presidential office in just a few months, as well as in previous years, and how we might be able to triumph over his policies. She analyzes his use of branding, his obsession with winning and wealth, and his approach to wars and fossil fuels; most are connected to one another and are likely to exacerbate the problems throughout the world, such as refugee movement, the destruction of black lives, and the decay of the environment. Klein proposes that the tempestuous nature of Trump's personality can lead to easy ego strikes that could result in him leaving the presidency, or at least failing to complete some of his stated goals due to trying to do too much at once. The main thread running through the book is the idea that Klein's previous book topics (branding in No Logo, the use of shock therapy in The Shock Doctrine, and climate change in This Changes Everything) can be tied together to understand Trump. She's able to sufficiently explain the topics at hand so people who haven't read all of them can understand the subject, while also being able to read the older titles for more information. This book is a great choice for people who read Hope in the Dark by Rebecca Solnit and Necessary Trouble by Sarah Jaffe, particularly if they read those titles in November and are searching for a new bounce of optimism and information as time goes by. My only hope is that there will be soon be a book encompassing all these movements written by a representative of #blacklivesmatter or Indigenous people; those topics deserve their own focus but I think these titles that encompass multiple movements have more reach, so I think a similar title by a POC would reach a different group of people.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Auntie Terror

    The theoretical parts are clever, the anecdotes I could have done without. [Prtf]

  14. 4 out of 5

    Rhys

    No Is Not Enough reads like an expanded magazine article. Naomi Klein is a gifted writer who is able to convey issues that span the particular to the universal. She studiously avoids jargon, which works for her writing. This book places Trumpismo as a natural outcome of four decades of neoliberalism, resulting in gross economic inequality, resource wars, de-democratization, and climate disruption culminating in much greater precariousness in the lives of average citizens. Klein deconstructs Trump No Is Not Enough reads like an expanded magazine article. Naomi Klein is a gifted writer who is able to convey issues that span the particular to the universal. She studiously avoids jargon, which works for her writing. This book places Trumpismo as a natural outcome of four decades of neoliberalism, resulting in gross economic inequality, resource wars, de-democratization, and climate disruption culminating in much greater precariousness in the lives of average citizens. Klein deconstructs Trump and his pack of wealthy advisers and shows a business-as-usual type of leadership without the necessity for them to don the mask of civility or caring: the Emperor has no clothes but, in this allegory, no longer cares. As such, Klein suggests that deleterious trends (economy, war-mongering, climate disruption, deregulation, stealing common wealth, etc.) are expected to continue unabated. More concerning, per Klein’s Shock Doctrine, is that these plutocrats are waiting for their own crisis so as to be given the excuse and the power to ram through their pet projects, from privatizing education and eradicating public services to lowering taxes for the uber-rich. What to do? Klein offers The Leap Manifesto as a flexible template providing the values required to reclaim democracy, social institutions, and the economy to benefit everybody. These are the values that would underlie future policy. This is not a gradualist Manifesto, or one trying to return to the good ol’ days – but, rather, a progressive and radical ‘leap’ in a new direction. As an inspirational document, as a manifesto, it is great. The problem, as is typical of manifestos, is that it is long on values and short on action. Transforming society is a big project. And we should remember that a third or more of the citizenry think they are still ‘winning’ in the game and support power & order, mass surveillance, oppression of the ‘other’. And we should remember that militarized police and private security personnel relish the idea of ‘kicking-some-[‘other’]-ass’; the ‘other’ covering a wide swath of race, religion, gender, as well as rights- and issue-protestors. Transforming society is not only a big project – it is a revolution. I don’t sense that No Is Not Enough considers this adequately: ‘Citizens want a revolution without a revolution’, Robespierre once lamented. No Is Not Enough is a worthwhile read – it is smart, it is clear, and it represents the values we require as a society to avoid ruin (democratic, economic, and environmental). Unfortunately, like This Changes Everything which identified capitalism as a source of our ills without discussing capitalism, this book provides a foundation for revolution without discussing revolution. But this is understandable, given the intention of influencing as wide an audience as possible.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Clifford

    I will almost certainly never read another book by Naomi Klein. She is infuriating, pompous, condescending, opinionated (a very bad trait in someone who calls herself a journalist), and self-aggrandizing. I expected this book to be mostly a re-hash of all the horrible things we know about Trump, and it was. But Klein's gratuitous swipes at Hillary Clinton were pointless. She whines that people like her have been blamed for Clinton's loss, and well they should be. Sure Sanders had some good ideas I will almost certainly never read another book by Naomi Klein. She is infuriating, pompous, condescending, opinionated (a very bad trait in someone who calls herself a journalist), and self-aggrandizing. I expected this book to be mostly a re-hash of all the horrible things we know about Trump, and it was. But Klein's gratuitous swipes at Hillary Clinton were pointless. She whines that people like her have been blamed for Clinton's loss, and well they should be. Sure Sanders had some good ideas and aired some important issues, but he was essentially a one-dimensional candidate, just as Klein is a one-dimensional writer. Capitalism is evil. End of story for her. Except, no it isn't, and her recipe to fix it won't work. It is also infuriating when certain labels are co-opted. Progressives good, Pragmatists bad. And then she defines neo-liberal one way and then applies the label another. Why can she--and other purists--not understand that no candidate is all one thing or another. Sanders wasn't all progressive (his position on guns and women's rights were weak, as was his position on the environment, firm belief in climate change notwithstanding). And Clinton may be a Pragmatist, but on issue after issue she was actually to the left of Sanders. Even Trump isn't all conservative or all Republican. The labels are sloppy. Enough. No more Naomi Klein, please.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Frances

    Naomi Klein writes books that I will drop everything to read and 'No' is no exception. First she breaks down why everything is awful and then builds you back up with why it doesn't *have* to be awful. Wonderful

  17. 4 out of 5

    Grady

    This book is maddening. I have read articles by Naomi Klein before, but not her books, and thought I should. Her message is pretty direct: (1) Donald Trump is not an aberration, but the culmination of trends she has described in her previous books, including the rise of branding, the triumph of neoliberalism, and neoliberalism's use of shock tactics to advance bad laws and policies that democracy normally blocks; (2) It's going to get worse under Trump before it gets better; (3) We're in this This book is maddening. I have read articles by Naomi Klein before, but not her books, and thought I should. Her message is pretty direct: (1) Donald Trump is not an aberration, but the culmination of trends she has described in her previous books, including the rise of branding, the triumph of neoliberalism, and neoliberalism's use of shock tactics to advance bad laws and policies that democracy normally blocks; (2) It's going to get worse under Trump before it gets better; (3) We're in this mess because progressives/radicals/everyone failed to be sufficiently utopian when Obama was elected in 2008 (and, because Democrats chose Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders in 2016); (4) To succeed, resistance to Trump must be not just positive but 'utopian', though what that means is somewhat ambiguous. Frustratingly, the book presents a narrative, almost a mythology, rather than an argument. Repeatedly, Klein strings a bunch of facts together - this has recently happened, that is happening now - and then pastes on a story about how it reflects disaster capitalism and the shock doctrine. If you already believe this is how the world works, or if you're looking for a (somewhat selective) narrative to make sense of current events, this book will serve. But it doesn't really even try to prove its case, and Klein mostly ignores Trump's narcissism and the sheer incompetence of his administration. Instead, Klein constantly imputes intent; key figures in Trump's cabinet and Congress come across as James Bond-esque super villains, only they don't have to explain their fiendish plots in long soliloquies because Klein will do it for them. In my experience, that's not how the world works. Sure, there are some selfish, greedy people pushing bad policies and corrupt decisions to make money for themselves. But a lot more bad things happen as an emergent property of a different human failing: a lack of self-skepticism, a short-sightedness about the implications of one's decisions, a willingness to self-delude. For example, people who should know better genuinely believe that supply side economics will lead to greater economic growth or broader opportunity; or that it's unclear what we should do about climate change. This is an important distinction because the failure to really challenge oneself can affect people across the political spectrum, right, left, and center. I'm not offering a moral equivalence between policies on the left and right, or between the powerful and the disenfranchised, but I am arguing that utopians looking for systems change are traditionally particularly vulnerable to self-delusion. The word 'utopian' is Klien's: "Here is one theory: The interplay between lofty dreams and earthly victories has always been at the heart of moments of deep transformation. The breakthroughs...[in American history] were responses to crises that unfolded in times when people dared to dream big, out loud, in public—explosions of utopian imagination." (62%) But, actually, as Klein presents it, this involves three different concepts - major policy initiatives, a systems change in social and political institutions, and a moral reformation (part caring for one another, part 'confronting our inner Trump' (74%)). As for what should be in the vision, Klein doesn't offer a lot of specifics. There is a passage that mentions "free college tuition, double the minimum wage, 100 percent renewable energy as quickly as technology allows, demilitarize the police, prisons are no place for young people, refugees are welcome here, war makes us all less safe." Note that this transitions rapidly from actual policies to rhetorical postures that could imply but are not themselves policies. But Klein's real vision is expressed in the Leap Manifesto provided as an appendix to the book, and the process of intersectional discussions from which it emerged. Put together by a congress of Canadian progressives, the document includes specific policy ideas built around the idea of caring for one another and the earth. That's a value I can get behind, at least. Whether it requires 'systems change' depends on how broken you think our systems are. Our political institutions have been strained by the twin bad influences of campaign finance and gerrymandering, but before that, were designed to resist systems change in favor of incremental evolution under the rule of law. In fact, it's a mark of how strongly our institutions were designed that it has taken so much money and so much gerrymandering for ideologues on the right to import so much of their agenda, and the fight isn't over yet. Klein appears to believe that Sanders could have won in 2016 (I don't). But even Sanders was working very much within the framework of electoral politics, not a mass movement like the Arab Spring or the citizen uprising that Klein cites in Argentina. With reference to the Leap Manifesto, Klein says, "[w]e chose leap because it raises a defiant middle finger to centrist incrementalism." (71%) But Klein never explains how the moral reformation and policy agenda she favors is supposed to make the transition from outside pressure to inside implementation. Without that, the movement she'd like to see will either spin its wheels in lots of visioning sessions, or - via the two party system - will help elect Democrats, shifting control incrementally back from the far right, but not bringing about the system change she wants. As a pragmatist who likes many of the same policy goals but believes our institutions are worth salvaging and improving, that's fine by me - but I have to think it would leave Klein and many of her readers dissatisfied once again.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Anna

    Written with impressive speed after Trump won the US presidency, ‘No is Not Enough’ surprised me by being the most encouraging thing I’ve yet read on the subject. Fittingly, I read it during the weekend, when I have a policy of completely avoiding the news. Regular breaks from the endless slew of Trump and Brexit horrors are essential for basic wellbeing, in my view. In the first section, Klein basically synthesises a thousand thinkpieces I’ve read over the past year, to conclude that Trump’s Written with impressive speed after Trump won the US presidency, ‘No is Not Enough’ surprised me by being the most encouraging thing I’ve yet read on the subject. Fittingly, I read it during the weekend, when I have a policy of completely avoiding the news. Regular breaks from the endless slew of Trump and Brexit horrors are essential for basic wellbeing, in my view. In the first section, Klein basically synthesises a thousand thinkpieces I’ve read over the past year, to conclude that Trump’s victory resulted from a confluence of various factors rather than being solely the fault of one. Moreover, she points out that he represents a continuation of neoliberal disaster capitalism and global branding, both of which have been growing more powerful and damaging over the past decades. These initial chapters recount all the ways in which the Trumpogarchy is terrible for people and the planet, which of course makes for very depressing reading. She then considers why progressive forces failed to take advantage of previous opportunities, notably the 2008 financial crisis, thus not preventing the current wave of neofascism. You and I have read this all before in the aforementioned stack of thinkpieces, however it is definitely worth reading again because Klein states things in such a clear and compelling manner: Around the world, far-right forces are gaining ground by harnessing the power of nostalgic nationalism and anger directed at remote economic bureaucracies - whether Washington, NAFTA, the WTO, or the EU - and mixing it with racism and xenophobia, offering an illusion of control through bashing immigrants, vilifying Muslims, and degrading women. It’s a toxic combination, and it was an avoidable one. Confronting the cruelties of a system designed by and for the wealthiest interests on earth is terrain that rightly belongs to the Left. But the hard truth is that after September 11, large parts of the progressive side of the political spectrum got spooked, and that left the economic-populist space open to abuse. Politics hate a vacuum; if it isn’t filled with hope, someone will fill it with fear. I have an innate preference for book length explanations, which have space to go into nuance, over articles, which do not. As an example, Klein supported Bernie Saunders but acknowledges his weaknesses. Her tone is generally measured and hopeful, which makes the latter chapters genuinely uplifting and encouraging at a very dark and depressing time for current affairs. While she warns that things will get worse, as sudden crises enable even more terrible policy developments, she also suggests a blueprint for solidarity and resistance based on the Leap Manifesto, which I hadn’t heard of before. This document was produced through discussion by a wide range of progressive groups and individuals in Canada, who gathered in recognition that their specific campaign themes required linked solutions. This is the crux of the book’s argument; that to fight neoliberal disaster capitalism, we must recognise it serves only the wealthiest minority of the world. The rest of us are left with economic insecurity, racism, sexism, and environmental disaster. So unions, environmentalists, feminists, LGBTQ campaigners, and other progressive groups must all collaborate. Tackling climate change can and should also reduce inequality, insecurity, and prejudice, and vice versa. Klein’s conviction, based on wide experience, is an uplifting antidote to endless news stories about whatever stupid shit Trump tweeted today. It gives the reader breathing space from 24/7 news and a blueprint of what might be worth hoping for, beyond a different US president. It also urges us to remember that there are far more of us than of the extremely wealthy, and that a left-wing billionaire won’t save the world. (The latter hope was a weakness of Client Earth, I thought.) What we need is world without billionaires. I hope that Klein has captured a genuine zeitgeist of widening resistance to right wing tyranny. She certainly lifted my hopes and I will recommend ‘No is Not Enough’ as widely as I can. It would also be complemented by reading 24/7: Late Capitalism and the Ends of Sleep, for the theory of how neoliberalism disorientates us.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Mehrsa

    This was one of the better post-Trump books that I've read. Klein has been at this for a while and she connects several of her earlier theories to the current climate--the shock doctrine, neoliberalism, climate change etc. But I've never been able to fully connect with her vision and at the end of the book I figured out why. She believes in utopia and she wants to govern accordingly. She was a big Sanders supporter. I was a tepid Clinton supporter. I understand the problems with neoliberalism, This was one of the better post-Trump books that I've read. Klein has been at this for a while and she connects several of her earlier theories to the current climate--the shock doctrine, neoliberalism, climate change etc. But I've never been able to fully connect with her vision and at the end of the book I figured out why. She believes in utopia and she wants to govern accordingly. She was a big Sanders supporter. I was a tepid Clinton supporter. I understand the problems with neoliberalism, but I do not believe in utopia. I think it can be naive or dangerous thinking. But I am with her on what needs to happen in the interim so I guess it doesn't matter.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Charlene

    While every other book focuses on the shocking behavior we have all witnessed since trump took office, Klein focused on how Trump uses shock to preform a magic trick of sorts. While we are looking at the reality show playing out before our eyes, Trump is slipping policy right past us. No author is better at describing this process than Klein. She makes important connections that most other authors fail to detect. Reading this resulted in the satisfying experience of watching someone pull back While every other book focuses on the shocking behavior we have all witnessed since trump took office, Klein focused on how Trump uses shock to preform a magic trick of sorts. While we are looking at the reality show playing out before our eyes, Trump is slipping policy right past us. No author is better at describing this process than Klein. She makes important connections that most other authors fail to detect. Reading this resulted in the satisfying experience of watching someone pull back the curtain to expose deep reality. I didn’t love Klein’s book on climate change because her thinking was too myopic for my taste. Her critical thinking skills needed a little sharpening. See examples below of my critiques of Klein's This Changes Everything.*** This book is an entirely different creature. Every page was jam packed with razor sharp arguments that arise from Klein’s incredible grasp of local and global politics, as well as the immediate outcomes of political action and the resulting long term effects of those actions. When writing about politics, Klein is definitely in her element. Klein has produced an extraordinary book that captures the problems humans now face with Trump as our leader. This book, I have to say, is probably the most worthwhile book you can invest your time reading if you want to think deeply about how Trump's presidency can effect our society both in the short term and for long after trump leaves office. I highly recommend this book. ***For example, she cannot seem to entertain that scientists can both look at solutions to immediate climate change problems (e.g. too many greenhouse gases raise the global temperature, making it difficult for species to continue to exist; thus we need to lower our emission rate of of these gases to the atmosphere) and long term solutions (e.g. the Earth will continue to get closer to the sun and we will need to hop planets and hop solar systems if we hope to survive in the long run). Klein could only entertain short term solutions, which are critical to be sure, but actually chastised those working on "Plan B," long term solutions because she perceived them to be pulling the focus from these short term critical solutions. The earth is not going to stay still. The sun won't either. Solar systems and galaxies move. That is what they do and you have to account for that and start working on solutions. I do not think there is a single scientist who is working on long term solutions that opposes short term measures that help care for the earth. They all support policies that promote protecting our atmosphere for as long as possible. But cultivating life on Mars and elsewhere is a necessary because Mars will take the position of Earth as both Earth and Mars move closer to the sun. She treated the earth as if it would stay in place forever. It won't and some of our solutions to the problem of our species eventual extinction has to reflect that understanding.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

    Naomi Klein has remarkable staying power -- for 20 years she has been the go-to for lefty North American youth, who continue to give her the sort of reverence normally reserved for YASS QUEEN screenshots of tweets. This was fine. Nothing new to be gained for me, but I'm on the fuck-you socialist left, and I have nothing but contempt for the sort of bourgeois #resist types who care more about civility than, you know, an organized and politically powerful working class. So Naomi Klein and I are Naomi Klein has remarkable staying power -- for 20 years she has been the go-to for lefty North American youth, who continue to give her the sort of reverence normally reserved for YASS QUEEN screenshots of tweets. This was fine. Nothing new to be gained for me, but I'm on the fuck-you socialist left, and I have nothing but contempt for the sort of bourgeois #resist types who care more about civility than, you know, an organized and politically powerful working class. So Naomi Klein and I are bound to get along, even when she uses annoying words like "heal" to describe her end goals.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Joachim Stoop

    Naomi Klein delivers one or two books per decade that are quintessential in facing the state of the world and the stride against injustice against people and our planet. She is always so well documented, nuanced, pugnacious. And she writes in a very clear, understandable manner. Read her books, because they are the most important and urgent ones around.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Radiantflux

    66th book for 2017. I have had a mixed feelings about Klein's books, but I really enjoyed this one. Her analysis of Trumpism seems spot on, and very much like that her arguments that any counter-resistance has to offer a positive vision, and not just be anti-Trump. Will probably mostly appeal to those on the progressive-side of the Democratic Party.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Arielle Walker

    Naomi Klein is so effortlessly readable - surprisingly so, with the intensity of the topics she covers. This books manages to stoke even more fury at where the world is heading, before leaving you with hope: it's not over yet.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Kevin

    Klein keeps getting better… Preamble on Klein: --From her earlier works No Logo: Taking Aim at the Brand Bullies and The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, I characterized Klein’s greatest strength as opening the door to critiques of capitalism for center-liberal/young/casual consumers in Western countries. --After all, “the Rise of Disaster Capitalism” (describing neoliberalism) seems a tad melodramatic given the global history of capitalism, a history that required smashing Klein keeps getting better… Preamble on Klein: --From her earlier works No Logo: Taking Aim at the Brand Bullies and The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, I characterized Klein’s greatest strength as opening the door to critiques of capitalism for center-liberal/young/casual consumers in Western countries. --After all, “the Rise of Disaster Capitalism” (describing neoliberalism) seems a tad melodramatic given the global history of capitalism, a history that required smashing superior Indian and Chinese markets into colonized wastelands through violent conquest in order to secure market dominance (instead of “free market” competition), and preserving market dominance by protecting domestic markets while forcing open foreign markets. And it is difficult to submerge into consumerist culture to investigate “brand bullies” without the contamination of vapidity. The Good: --However, the trajectory has been positive (and someone has to do the dirty work of analyzing the inferno of mass consumer media) --This book starts with her trademark (pun intended) analysis of: 1) Western mass consumer culture that led to the Trump presidency, with lucid storytelling of branding, reality TV spectatorship, and the neoliberal Democrat “trickle-down identity politics”. 2) Comparing the history of shock-and-awe reactionary tactics with the Trump agenda, including: Trump & NYC financial crisis, Pence & post-Katrina privatization. --Several topics stand out: 1) Rejecting centrism + reviving utopian forward-thinking, as "least-worst" tactics + only-resistance to reactionary onslaughts result in a slide to depravity. 2) The LEAP manifesto, particularly its economics, i.e. how do you pay for utopia? i) End subsidies to fossil fuels ii) Tax parasitic activities, starting with bankers: financial transactions tax iii) Increase royalties on fossil fuel extraction iv) Progressive carbon tax v) Raise income tax on the top margins vi) Cut military expenditure vii) Go after tax havens 3) The successes of the global justice movement (so-called “anti-globalization” by the media, but obviously pro-international solidarity and just against corporate globalization), and how 9/11 shock doctrine dispelled this movement. 4) Obama’s historic opportunity to transform the landscape that evaporated (restructuring too-big-too-fail-yet-bankrupt banks into public banking instead of bailing them out to reinstate business-as-usual, restructuring bankrupt auto industry to become a green energy industry). The Missing: --5/5 for accessibility. For those already familiar with imperialism: as Klein sheds her Social Democrat cocoon, I’m on the lookout for more nuanced analysis of foreign relations/state power/ways to deal with the pillars of violence, as well as the global division of labor from a global south perspective. This will separate her work further from Social Dem works like this: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

  26. 5 out of 5

    Roman Clodia

    'The left-wing almost-wins of the past two years are not defeats. They are the first tremors of a profound ideological realignment from which a progressive majority could well emerge - just as geopolitically significant as the rise of authoritarianism and neo-fascism on the right side of the spectrum.' Although this has been driven locally by Trump's election, Klein's analysis has global relevance outside of the US. While much of the book is a depressing analysis of how neoliberalism has fostered 'The left-wing almost-wins of the past two years are not defeats. They are the first tremors of a profound ideological realignment from which a progressive majority could well emerge - just as geopolitically significant as the rise of authoritarianism and neo-fascism on the right side of the spectrum.' Although this has been driven locally by Trump's election, Klein's analysis has global relevance outside of the US. While much of the book is a depressing analysis of how neoliberalism has fostered greed, division, hatred, exploitation and the privatisation of the state leading almost inevitably to a Trump (who Klein wonderfully describes as 'dystopian fiction come to life'), the point of her polemic is far more optimistic than this: 'It's becoming possible to see a genuine path forward - new political formations that, from their inception, will marry the fight for economic fairness with a deep analysis of how racism and misogyny are used as potent tools to enforce a system that further enriches the already obscenely wealthy on the backs of both people and the planet'. Ultimately, what Klein is advocating (and she's been involved in establishing a groundwork for this to happen) is a progressive alliance that brings together activists whose aims might not necessarily immediately seem to be linked (green activists, campaigners for increased minimum wages, anti-racist and gender/sexuality rights groups, as a few examples) but which, as she shows, all struggle with the manifestations of a dominant and institutionalised system. Klein, as usual, is loud and angry (and rightfully so) but she channels her rage into something positive. She's also put her finger on something in the zeitgeist: the book was written after the Brexit vote but before the June 2017 General Election and so there's something very prescient in her statement: 'What for decades was unsayable is now being said out loud by candidates who win millions of votes: free college tuition, double the minimum wage, 100 percent renewable energy as quickly as technology allows, demilitarise the police, prisons are no place for young people, refugees are welcome here, war makes us all less safe.' What I like about this book is that it moves on from resistance to positive action. As usual, it'll probably be preaching to the converted but the blueprint for a united, progressive alliance is surely the optimistic direction that we need to take, together. Thanks to Penguin for an ARC via NetGalley.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kris

    "No one movement can win on its own." "When they come for one, they come for us all." "Because shock tactics rely on the public becoming disoriented by fast-moving events, they tend to backfire most spectacularly in places where there is a strong collective memory of previous instances when fear and trauma were exploited to undermine democracy. Those memories serve as a kind of shock absorber, providing populations with shared reference points that allow them to name what's happening and fight "No one movement can win on its own." "When they come for one, they come for us all." "Because shock tactics rely on the public becoming disoriented by fast-moving events, they tend to backfire most spectacularly in places where there is a strong collective memory of previous instances when fear and trauma were exploited to undermine democracy. Those memories serve as a kind of shock absorber, providing populations with shared reference points that allow them to name what's happening and fight back." "Fear of "the other" may be an animating force for many supporters of far-right parties, but "inclusion" of the other within an inherently unjust system will not be powerful enough to defeat those forces." James Baldwin: "I imagine that one of the reasons people cling to their hates so stubbornly is because they sense, once hate is gone, that they will be forced to deal with pain." "A state of shock is produced when a story is ruptured, when we have no idea what's going on. But in so many ways explored in these pages, Trump is not a rupture at all, but rather the culmination - the logical end point - of a great many dangerous stories our culture has been telling for a very long time. That greed is good. That the market rules. That money is what matters in life. That white men are better than the rest. That the natural world is there for us to pillage. That the vulnerable deserve their fate and the one percent deserve their golden towers. That anything public or commonly held is sinister and not worth protecting. That we are surrounded by danger and should only look after our own. That there is no alternative to any of this." "The refugee flows we're seeing now are just a glimpse of what's to come. Climate change and migration are intimately linked, and we're going to see massive displacement of people caused by sea-level rise and extreme weather in the decades to come, all around the world. So there's a question facing all of us: are we all in this together? We think most people, given the opportunity, believe we are. You see it over and over in times of crisis, when people step up for others in their communities, but also for complete strangers. But we need our immigration, border and social support systems to catch up with this idea. The Leap is about speaking to our better selves."

  28. 5 out of 5

    Karla

    OK re-cap of her Shock Doctrine research and the run-up to the 2016 election. I do take issue with her repeated use of the term "Trumpism," which IMO linguistically absolves the Republican party from the decaying shitshow it's been ever since the Southern Strategy. Too many liberals seem to truly believe that if Trump goes away, things will go back to normal. "Normal" was rotten to begin with. Anyway, it was a fine enough polemic on the neoliberal order, but it was a tough slog on audio because OK re-cap of her Shock Doctrine research and the run-up to the 2016 election. I do take issue with her repeated use of the term "Trumpism," which IMO linguistically absolves the Republican party from the decaying shitshow it's been ever since the Southern Strategy. Too many liberals seem to truly believe that if Trump goes away, things will go back to normal. "Normal" was rotten to begin with. Anyway, it was a fine enough polemic on the neoliberal order, but it was a tough slog on audio because the narrator had a persistent case of the vocal fry. Arrgh.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Philippa

    A compelling read. I did find it a little preachy in places which, although I tend to agree with what she says, makes me feel uncomfortable. I don't think there is one single answer or one root cause to the problems in the world today but I think the general change Klein is promoting sounds really sensible and plausible. Definitely worth a read.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Louise

    Naomi Klein does not deliver the agenda that the book’s title implies. She covers material you will already know if you follow the news and/or her previous writing. There is plenty on how Trump did not come from nowhere. She shows his genesis in Ronald Reagan nurturing anti-government attitudes and Democrats, dominated by corporate interests, offering very little for the people to vote for. Klein draws on her earlier work to show how Trump epitomizes the "shock doctrine:" His election, policies, Naomi Klein does not deliver the agenda that the book’s title implies. She covers material you will already know if you follow the news and/or her previous writing. There is plenty on how Trump did not come from nowhere. She shows his genesis in Ronald Reagan nurturing anti-government attitudes and Democrats, dominated by corporate interests, offering very little for the people to vote for. Klein draws on her earlier work to show how Trump epitomizes the "shock doctrine:" His election, policies, appointments and approach are so shocking he can capitalize on the disorientation that follows. She shows that like all brands the Trump (brand) experience is more important to consumers (voters) than the product. The best parts of the book, for me, were slices of her life. She described the policy conference in Australia when the news of the Trump victory hit. Excitement and enthusiasm immediately left the room as the talk was no longer pro-active, but defensive – a good example of the paralysis that follows a shocking event. She spoke of showing her son the Great Barrier Reef, but going alone to see the the remains of the once living parts of the reef resulting from climate change. She showed the conversion of the modern issues of climate change and corporate goals and the longstanding poor treatment of indigenous and other non-while communities in the Standing Rock pipeline protest along with personal observations on the people involved and their commitment. To show how quickly things change in the Trump administration, Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State is given a good bit of ink and Klein speculates that Steve Bannon, who has had too much media attention for Trump, would leave. There is almost nothing on the Russian interference in the election (although it was an issue then). Muller is never mentioned. Gorsuch and Kavenaugh are in the future. As to the title-implied agenda: what can be done besides “no”, there are examples of people movements and encouragement for the “resisters”. Since its writing protests have been far beyond anything here in endurance and scope. A plethora of issues from making Black Lives Matter to keeping Rosenstein in his job, to the children in cages continue to be matched by large scale demonstrations and evermore creative protest. There has been incredible journalism and people at all levels (including professional legal and psychological groups) are writing open letters. More people are running for office at every level. There are dedicated sign painters erecting highway overhead signs faster than they can be taken down. There are holograms flashing on Trump buildings. The White House sidewalk has a street theater: Kremlin-Annex. Cell phone documentaries of police overreach, immigrant intimidation, etc. have replaced “seen at Walmart” on social media. I’m not sure who would benefit from reading this book. While it is not on the title topic, it is a good report… but those who will read Naomi Klein will know most of what written and that the response (besides “no”) that she merely outlines has been incredibly eclipsed.

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