âLucid, deeply informed, and enlivened with striking illustrations, this penetrating study could be entitled âEconomics in the Real World.â Chang reveals the yawning gap between standard doctrines concerning economic development and what really has taken place from the origins of the industrial revolution until today. His incisive analysis shows how, and why, prescriptions based on reigning doctrines have caused severe harm, particularly to the most vulnerable and defenseless, and are likely to continue to do so.ââNoam Chomsky
Using irreverent wit, an engagingly personal style, and a battery of examples, Chang blasts holes in the âWorld I s Flatâ orthodoxy of T homas Friedman and other liberal economists who argue that only unfettered capitalism and wide-open international trade can lift struggling nations out of poverty. On the contrary, Chang shows, todayâs economic superpowersâfrom the U .S. to Britain to his native Koreaâall attained prosperity by shameless protectionism and government intervention in industry. We have conveniently forgotten this fact, telling ourselves a fairy tale about the magic of free trade andâvia our proxies such as the World Bank, I nternational Monetary Fund, and World T rade Organizationâramming policies that suit ourselves down the throat of the developing world.