Shocking Bestseller: The original version of this astonishing tell-all book spent 73 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list, has sold more than 1.25 million copies, and has been translated into 32 languages. New Revelations: Featuring 15 explosive new chapters, this expanded edition of Perkins's classic bestseller brings the story of economic hit men (EHMs) up to date and, chillingly, home to the US. Over 40 percent of the book is new, including chapters identifying today's EHMs and a detailed chronology extensively documenting EHM activity since the first edition was published in 2004.
Former economic hit man John Perkins shares new details about the ways he and others cheated countries around the globe out of trillions of dollars. Then he reveals how the deadly EHM cancer he helped create has spread far more widely and deeply than ever in the US and everywhere else—to become the dominant system of business, government, and society today. Finally, he gives an insider view of what we each can do to change it.
Economic hit men are the shock troops of what Perkins calls the corporatocracy, a vast network of corporations, banks, colluding governments, and the rich and powerful people tied to them. If the EHMs can't maintain the corrupt status quo through nonviolent coercion, the jackal assassins swoop in. The heart of this book is a completely new section, over 100 pages long, that exposes the fact that all the EHM and jackal tools—false economics, false promises, threats, bribes, extortion, debt, deception, coups, assassinations, unbridled military power—are used around the world today exponentially more than during the era Perkins exposed over a decade ago.
The material in this new section ranges from the Seychelles, Honduras, Ecuador, and Libya to Turkey, Western Europe, Vietnam, China, and, in perhaps the most unexpected and sinister development, the United States, where the new EHMs—bankers, lobbyists, corporate executives, and others—“con governments and the public into submitting to policies that make the rich richer and the poor poorer.”
But as dark as the story gets, this reformed EHM also provides hope. Perkins offers a detailed list of specific actions each of us can take to transform what he calls a failing Death Economy into a Life Economy that provides sustainable abundance for all.
Conspiracy buffs are most likely to enjoy this updated version of a memoir that was a surprise bestseller in 2004; others, even those who believe that American economic policies have not been an unmitigated good for the developing world, will find Perkins's allegations unpersuasive. In 1971, Perkins, a business school graduate who had served in the Peace Corps, was approached by a mysterious recruiter assigned to "mold" him into a so-called economic hit man (EHM). EHMs were charged with encouraging world leaders to "become part of a vast network that promotes U.S. commercial interests," ensnaring those leaders "in a web of debt." This revised version, he states, was written to answer the thousands of emails he received from readers interested in what they could do to resist. But while Perkins devotes an entire chapter to the topic, even admirers who believe Perkins's unsubstantiated accounts of U.S. involvement in the assassination of Central American leaders will scratch their heads at his advice. Having created a list of ways to spread social justice, Perkins prefaces it with the incongruous injunction to "Enjoy the process. Follow your bliss. Make it fun."
Customer ReviewsSee All
Absolutely loved it. Addicting read. The author tells his story in great detail. It's just fascinating to see the world economy from a different angle.
This was a terrific book! I highly recommend it!