Freedom For Sale

How We Made Money and Lost Our Liberty

John Kampfner

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Why is it that so many people around the world appear willing to give up freedoms in return for either security or prosperity? For the past 60 years it had been assumed that capitalism was intertwined with liberal democracy, that the two not just thrived together but needed each other to survive. But what happens when both are undermined?

Governments around the world -- whether they fall into the authoritarian or the democratic camp -- have drawn up a new pact with their peoples. These are its terms: repression is selective, confined to those who openly challenge the status quo, who publicly go out of their way to 'cause trouble'. The number of people who fall into that category is actually very few. The rest of the population can enjoy freedom to travel, to live more or less as they wish, and to make and spend their money. This is the difference between public freedoms and privatefreedoms. We choose different freedoms we are prepared to cede. We all do it.

Freedom for Sale will set a new agenda. Mixing narrative from different countries around the world, it breaks new ground in revealing the extent to which the old assumptions and securities have died. It will crucially ask why so many intelligent and ambitious citizens around the world, particularly among the young, seemed prepared to sacrifice freedom of the press and freedom of speech in their quest for wealth.

A new world order may well be upon us, and in this gripping and devastating book John Kampfner reveals how it may just be too late to stop it.

John Kampfner is the author of three previous books including a biography of Robin Cook and the acclaimed BLAIR'S WARS, a devastating survey of the Prime Minister's foreign policy. He lives in London.

'Kampfner's book is original, persuasive and disquieting, and fills a gap in our understanding of the post-cold-war world' The Sunday Times 6/9 'Our civil liberties are in jeopardy and we are to blame. We have reduced democracy to the right to make and spend money, writes John Kampfner' The Times 7/9 'Somehow, as the last millennium began to turn up its toes, Winston Churchill's "least worst" system of government became a quasi-religion for those who worshipped shining cities on hills. Democracy, loosely defined, had slain the red dragon of Marxism. Henceforth, St George Bush could launch with his crusades against the infidel (waging more wars to end wars). Ballot boxes possessed the supposed power to deliver peace, harmony and full partnership in global growth. They magically separated the good guys from the bad guys. But now, much assisted by John Kampfner's acidulous essays in autocratic reality, we can all wake up' Observer 13/9 'Kampfner does well not to accept, even implicitly, that democracy is good and autocracy bad. His inclusion of Italy, with its particular flawed democracy, and of the US and UK, with their anti-terrorism measures, supplies useful perspective' Independent 11/9 'Our choice of the best recent books' 'Why the good life poses a serious threat to democracy' The Sunday Times 13/9 In what [Kampfner] calls 'the pact', he traces how economic prosperity has bribed populations around the world, lulling them with material goods and promises of national security to reduce resistance while people's rights are stripped away. The sections on most of these countries, including Singapore and India, are engrossing' Metro 9/9 'John Kampfner is chief executive of Index on Censorship. His new book, Freedom For Sale, is published by Simon and Schuster' Interview, My Media, Guardian 21/9 'His rule has been dogged by fraud, bribery and sexual scandal, yet Italy's playboy prime minister stands firm. Silvio Berlusconi's success epitomises a new political pact, where the electorate trades public freedoms for an easy life, says John Kampfner' Feature, GQ Magazine October issue 'The GQ Contributing Editor's incisive, globe-spanning investigation into how governments compromise personal freedom' GQ October issue 'It is no longer a startling observation that the more western governments have spoken about freedom and democracy in the struggle against their enemies, the more the freedom part, at least, has been curtailed. In Britain, the Thatcher government tightened the screws on freedom of expression. The Blair government went further in curtailing historical rights such as habeas corpus and free speech. In my view, the most profound study of this process in its historical context is Ben Wilson's What Price Liberty? John Kampfner's Freedom for Sale, on the other hand, makes up in breadth what it lacks in depth. While Wilson was mainly concerned with Britain, with a few glances across the Atlantic, Kampfner, a British political journalist, includes the US, Italy, Russia, Singapore, China, India and the Arab Emirates, and in nearly all he discovers similar erosion' Financial Times 31/10 'A timely and penetrating audit of authoritarianism around the world ... While highly critical of the trajectory of the present government, he does not level the lazy charge made by some that we already live in "a police state"' Andrew Rawnsley, Observer Books of the Year 22/11 'Impressed by how John Kampfner's Freedom For Sale: How We Made Money and Lost Our Liberty identified the attractions of sovereign autocracies which deliver prosperity and individual self-expression while dispensing with public freedoms. The bargain accepted by increasing numbers of people around the world is reminiscent of the deal Mephistopheles put before Faust' Michael Burleigh, Evening Standard Books of the Year 19/11 'As the great and the good of the Chilcot inquiry began their earnest deliberations yesterday, one conclusion could be drawn before a single person had said a single word: Tony Blair will get away with it. Again' Commentary, Daily Mail 25/11 'Author/broadcaster John Kampfner chooses his favourite books...' The Week 15/5 'It is a pungent thesis, argued with verve and an abundance of detail' Observer 6/6 'Democratic assemblies are the heart of representative democracy; if they have lost their purpose, then we are in serious trouble. Kampfner's Orwell prize-short listed book is original, persuasive and disquieting' The Sunday Times 13/6 'How citizens around the world, from Singapore to London, are giving up hard-won liberties in return for security or prosperity -- a persuasive and disquieting analysis' Summer Reading choice, Sunday Times 20/6


Format ePUB i
Kopierschutz Ja i
Family Sharing Nein i
Text-to-Speech Ja i
Seitenzahl 320 (Printausgabe)
Erscheinungsdatum 03.09.2009
Sprache Englisch
EAN 9781847378187
Verlag Simon + Schuster
Dateigröße 440 KB


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