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Confessions of an Economic Hit Man

February 7, 2005

(broadcast stream ) (.wma download)
Guest: John Perkins, author of the best-selling “Confessions of an Economic Hit Man.”
“Economic Hit Men,” Perkins writes, “are highly paid professionals who cheat countries around the globe out of trillions of dollars. Their tools include fraudulent financial reports, rigged elections, payoffs, extortion, sex, and murder. They play a game as old as Empire but one that has taken on terrifying dimensions during this time of globalization.”
Perkins knows well of what he speaks. He used to be an “Economic Hit Man” himself!
His book is No. 16 on the New York Times Non-Fiction Best-Seller List and No. 4 on
Want THE INSIDE SCOOP on the dirty tricks our Government and its corporate allies play on Third World Countries to control their resources? Don’t miss this interview!

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  • Sheryl Zettner February 11, 2005 3:25 am

    That does sound like it would make an intesting followup interview. 🙂 Thanks for the tip.

  • Skip February 8, 2005 2:00 pm

    Your blog entry reminded me of the new book:
    Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed, by Jared Diamond
    Maybe an interview with Mr Diamond would be a good follow on to the Perkins interview.

  • Sheryl Zettner February 8, 2005 7:08 am

    The interview with Mr. Perkins reminded me of a conference I watched last June by the United Nations Economic and Social Council, so I wish I had heard the program live so I could have emailed and asked him what he thought about that portion of the UN.
    Last June I watched their Conference On Trade and Development and was very impressed with statements by Rubens Ricupero. (
    The reason I would have liked to hear Mr. Perkins feedback was that Mr. Ricupero was suggesting some very specific policies for LDCs, which had little to do with undermining any sort of corporate anything, but which in fact seemed quite logical to me at the time.
    The impression I got was that he felt that these LDCs were being encouraged to make the wrong kinds of investments. That what they really needed were industries that would make them more self sufficient. For example, he was promoting self sufficiency in agricultural production as a first step to eliminating poverty.
    A friend of mine once said to me that the reason that Americans survived the Great Depression was that most people lived in the countryside at the time, whereas now people live in cities and would all starve to death if our economy collapsed. And I have heard it argued before that the reason that some economies have thrived whereas others failed was that they evolved from an agricultural base and were therefore self sufficient. Whereas I believe Madagascar, for example, was seriously damaged when vanillin came out because they were almost solely supported through their vanilla export, so in a sense, specialization is very dangerous to LDCs.
    So I wish I could have asked your guest this. I think I will copy these comments and trying emailing his website. 🙂
    Interesting things to think about, even there is some padding to his story.

  • Skip February 7, 2005 7:59 pm

    Why should the CIA worry about this book? No one but us geeks and a few more people in small bookstores will ever hear about it. Several ex CIA officials came out and said that the reasons presented by this administration for the Iraq war was a total scam in the movie “Uncovered, the WAR in Iraq”. Did that make the daily news? Not in this day and age. It was quickly buried by the ever obedient media noise machine, as David Brock likes to call it. Then again the CIA could pull off one of its pre-internet stunts like buying all the books up and sending them to some remote region like the Yukon. There are probably many more ways of buring a story I haven’t heard of yet.

  • Nathan February 7, 2005 5:52 pm

    Mark (Not Levine),
    I doubt the CIA would do much to stop him from writing this book, even if it is true. When you start killing everyone you set off more flags than allowing the book to publish. The CIA knows that 90% of America will either write it off as a conspiracy theory or simply not care. And since it spans many administrations through different party’s leadership, it won’t affect much on the political spectrum today.
    If I were you I’d go ahead and buy the book, I have already read it, and even if you don’t swallow everything he says, it’s still an interesting read.
    Good questions about his $$$ though!