The book that is filled with faults and myths. This is an attempt to promte the incidious nature of Shariah, by defaming the policy of the USA. Shame on her. Read the review by USA today which breaks down the attempts of this book to push Shariah on the West.
By Russ Juskalian, Special for USA TODAY
The fall of the Berlin Wall, and capitalism’s subsequent defeat of communism, was a good thing.
It opened foreign markets, gave new freedoms to those previously under the heavy hand of authoritarian governments and set the world on a path, sometimes bumpy, toward modernization.
That, at least, is what most of us tend to think. But what if we’re wrong? What if the events of the past two decades have instead unleashed dark economic forces characterized as “rogue economics” in Loretta Napoleoni’s new book?
The Italian economist, terrorism expert and journalist believes the American way of doing business is destined to decline. Unchecked capitalism, she says, will eventually give way to an ascendant China and a financial system built on sharia, or Islamic law.
It’s difficult to think of Rogue Economics as a single book. It feels more like a collection of esoteric essays linking all the world’s woes to the spread of democracy and capitalism.
Napoleoni touches on a number of subjects: Chinese history, illegal fishing, pirated products, soccer hooligans, the degradation of the environment and organized crime syndicates such as the Italian N’drangheta, the Bulgarian Nomenklatura and the U.S. and Central American Mara Salvatrucha.
The book starts with a discussion of how the fall of the Soviet Union preceded a wave of prostitution and sexual slavery that moved westward from Eastern Europe.
Her logic can be hard to follow. It goes something like this: Communism gave way to capitalism with the fall of the Soviet Union. Economic forces moved faster and with more power than governmental or social forces. Next, organized crime and greedy businesses stepped in to create a world that looks “normal” but is actually based on corruption and misconduct — for instance, the average American doesn’t see contemporary slavery behind the products he consumes. The upshot: The future will see the emergence of a new social contract dictated by the rising powers of China, India and the Middle East.
It’s not hard to imagine American dominance waning. America’s economic afflictions have been dealt with in countless books, including John Bowe’s Nobodies: Modern American Slave Labor and the Dark Side of the New Global Economy.
Napoleoni makes some good points about the frailties of capitalism, but her attempt to create a narrative to explain how the world moves from communism to capitalism to a sharia finance model is far-fetched. And some of Napoleoni’s assertions are simply over the top, such as when she writes that:
•Western movies such as Risky Business and Pretty Woman have a significant influence in convincing Slavic women that prostitution is a glamorous career path.
•Gang members “look at life in a fashion similar to Chinese culture: Nothing is permanent and everything is immediate, the present is the only existential dimension of the individual.”
•”Globalization radicalized (soccer) fans and spread hooliganism, which in the 1990s became a universal phenomenon.”
Undoubtedly, globalization and the unifying effect of the Internet have spawned problems. But Napoleoni’s conspiracy-theory-like approach to these issues — such as constantly using the hit movie The Matrix as an analogy for how the world works — puts her at risk of losing the credulity of her readers.
Instead of a useful survey of the negative forces operating in the world’s economy, Napoleoni tries to convince us that the natural progression of economics is away from Western capitalism toward an Islamic system of capitalism, which she doesn’t adequately explain.
This is akin to the Marxist mantra that communism is the inevitable final state of all social and economic systems.
Russ Juskalian is a freelance writer based in New York
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