From Publishers Weekly
The anti-globalization movement may have a reputation for traffic-blocking obstructionism devoid of a positive program, but this smart and stimulating manifesto aims to change that. Monbiot (Amazon Watershed; Captive State) is uncompromising in his attack on what he says is an international order run by and for wealthy elites and powerful corporations. But he is equally critical of what he sees as the left’s infatuation with localism and anarchism, its knee-jerk opposition to trade and its preoccupation with feel-good palliatives like "mindful consumption." What he offers instead is a utopian vision of a global democratic order that transcends the obsolete nation-state, based on a real world program for concrete institutions to supplant the undemocratic power centers of the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the World Trade Organization. His most substantive ideas concern world trade, which he feels should be restructured to open advanced countries to Third World exports while allowing backward economies to develop behind protectionist barriers. He calls for a Fair Trade Organization to set mandatory standards for international corporations, and resurrects Keynes’s proposal for an International Clearing Union that would automatically rectify trade imbalances and prevent poor countries from getting trapped in debt. Less thought out are proposals for a revitalized United Nations General Assembly that would abolish the Security Council, and a directly elected World Parliament, initially vested only with "moral authority." Monbiot’s ideas will find their critics, but his often scintillating analyses of the inequities of the world economy and his preference for constructive action over dogma make the book a good place to start for readers in search of solutions.
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About the Author
George Monbiot has been persona non grata in seven countries, was sentenced in absentia to life imprisonment in Indonesia, has been shot at, beaten up by military police, shipwrecked, and stung into a coma during seven years of investigative journeys across Africa, Asia, and the Americas. He is the author of five books, including, most recently, Captive State and Amazon Watershed.
Check out George's Blog at: http://www.monbiot.com/