A Dark History of Neoliberalism

Neoliberalism- Corporations

The Neoliberal Coup d’état, which took place in the late 70’s and early 80’s, has solidified corporate power in the world to an extent beyond imagining

In my upcoming piece about the 1994 Zapatista Uprising in Mexico, I had made, as part of the essay, an attempt to explain the economic ideology that was responsible for sparking of this rebellion.

The ideology is a brutal, austere doctrine that often involves the use of torture and propaganda to coerce populations to accept it’s disastrous programs, which more often than not deal a death-knell to the poor. I soon realized, however, that a few skimming paragraphs wouldn’t do justice to understand the immense power this ideology wields. The only way for people to understand this monster- which is called Neoliberalism- would be to dedicate an entire piece to it.

Neoliberalism- Friedrich Hayek

Friedrich Hayek- considered by many to be the Grandfather of Neoliberalism. His ideas were later transmuted to American Economist Milton Friedman, who won a Nobel Prize for his work.

Originally a fringe intellectual movement that could hardly get enough steam to garner
mainstream academic notoriety, the political doctrine of Neoliberalism was founded by German economist Friedrich Hayek in the steaming wreck of post-war, 1940’s Europe.

Centered around the deregulation of all corporate laws (which were then, as they often are now, perceived as corrupt remnants of FDR’s New Deal interventionism), Neoliberalism views the whims of the market, even with its rollercoaster-like fluctuations, as the highest aspiration of the human spirit. Nothing could interfere with the rhythms of the free market, Hayek argued- not even, or perhaps especially– the government. Continue reading