Freedom for Sale by John Kampfner
Why the World Is Trading Democracy for Security

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Synopsis

Democratic liberalism v. authoritarianism – the ideological divide that defined the twentieth century. But when the cold war ended, “the end of history” was proclaimed. Soon the fire of freedom would burn worldwide, the experts said. And where markets were freed, human rights would inevitably follow.

Or not. In the last twenty years, nations including India, Russia, China and the United Arab Emirates have disproved the idea that capitalism and democracy are inextricably linked. Emerging middle classes have proven themselves all too willing to sacrifice certain democratic rights – including free speech, an open media, and free elections – in exchange for prosperity. But they are not alone. We are all doing it. Alarmingly, Western democracy has adopted some of the attributes of that authoritarianism.

Combining boots on the ground reporting with incisive analysis, award-winning journalist John Kampfner describes this alarming trend – one which has only been exacerbated by the global economic meltdown – and what citizens must do to counter it.
 

About John Kampfner

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As Editor of the New Statesman magazine from 2005-2008, John Kampfner won a number of awards, including Current Affairs Magazine Editor of the Year. He is the author of Blair's Wars, selected as a book of the year in 2003 by the Times, Sunday Times and Observer. For nearly a decade Kampfner was correspondent for Reuters and the Daily Telegraph in Moscow and Berlin, before becoming political correspondent and commentator for the Financial Times and the BBC. He lives in London.
 
Published January 26, 2010 by Basic Books. 304 pages
Genres: Business & Economics, Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference, Law & Philosophy, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Freedom for Sale

Kirkus Reviews

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Most alarming, perhaps, is the author’s report from Britain and America, where in the wake of 9/11 citizens have permitted a diminution of civil liberties in exchange for promises of security.

Feb 01 2010 | Read Full Review of Freedom for Sale: Why the Wor...

The Guardian

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Kampfner, political journalist turned human rights campaigner, addresses the anaesthetised freedom of the city state of his birth, Singapore, and the insidious spread of Lee Kuan Yew's model democracy to ask whetheryou can have economic success without political freedom.

Jun 06 2010 | Read Full Review of Freedom for Sale: Why the Wor...

The Guardian

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And Kampfner's habit of parading his travel schedules in the present tense – like Alan Whicker playing John Pilger – gets irritating.

Sep 13 2009 | Read Full Review of Freedom for Sale: Why the Wor...

Bookmarks Magazine

Emerging middle classes have proven themselves all too willing to sacrifice certain democratic rights – including free speech, an open media, and free elections – in exchange for prosperity.

May 02 2010 | Read Full Review of Freedom for Sale: Why the Wor...

Socialist Review

John Kampfner, the former editor of the New Statesman and now the head of Index on Censorship, is deeply troubled by the dramatic rise of what he dubs "the surveillance state" under New Labour.

| Read Full Review of Freedom for Sale: Why the Wor...

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