Hurricane Sandy: Beware Of America's Disaster Capitalists
guardian.co.uk — Less than three days after Sandy made landfall on the east coast of the United States, Iain Murray of the Competitive Enterprise Institute blamed New Yorkers' resistance to Big Box stores for the misery they were about to endure. The same day, Frank Rapoport, a lawyer representing several billion-dollar construction and real estate contractors, jumped in to suggest that many of those public works projects shouldn't be public at all. The prize for shameless disaster capitalism, however, surely goes to rightwing economist Russell S Sobel, writing in a New York Times online forum. Sobel suggested that, in hard-hit areas, Federal Emergency Management Agency (Fema) should create "free-trade zones – in which all normal regulations, licensing and taxes [are] suspended". This corporate free-for-all would, apparently, "better provide the goods and services victims need".