Review: Life Inc.

By » Sat, December 31 2011

lifeinc Review: Life Inc.

Douglas Rushkoff’s Life Inc runs with the tagline: “How Corporatism Conquered the World, and How We Can Take It Back”. The book itself spends lots of time on the former, and only a little on the latter. But you don’t have to read any of it, because there’s a video:

But there’s Die < Less stuff, too!

I especially liked this bit (from the intro) on how “safe” gentrified neighborhoods aren’t really safe:

The detectives who took my report drove the point home. One of them drew a circle on a map of Brooklyn. “Inside this circle is where the rich white people from Manhattan are moving. That’s the target area. Hunting ground. Think about it from your mugger’s point of view: quiet, tree-lined streets of row houses, each worth a million or two, and inhabited by the rich people who displaced your family. Now, you live in or around the projects just outside the circle. Where would you go to mug someone?”

Even the cops play the mugging game.

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3 Responses

  1. Paracelse January 1 2012 @ 5:28am

    It fairly easy to criticize corporatism, creating a viable option to get away with it is another question. Do we have to live in the remote areas to avoid it? Is going backwards the solution? What about healthcare? Communications? Who will run the internet we all use to communicate? Is communism the solution? Why then communism resemble highly to “Idiocracy”? Why communism brings everyone to the lowest common denominator? What is the solution? “Utopia”? Thomas More lost his head over it.

  2. Eric Jusino January 1 2012 @ 3:58pm

    I don’t think Rushkoff did a very good job with that part of his book. His answers were very vague and didn’t really account for much. If I recall correctly, his ideas boil down to: be aware of corporatist tendencies, think/be/live local, develop/use alternative currencies.

    It’s a little heavy on “all we need is love.” Which is nice and all, and even a little thought provoking, but doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.

    What he does do pretty well is to describe how deeply ingrained corporatism is in our ways of life. Once again, we’re left to come up with our own solutions.

  3. Paracelse January 6 2012 @ 4:41am

    Working on it. Although there might be some conspiracy theorist nut case who might say that all the doomsday scenarios in books and movies are there to prepare us to a large population elimination, which would help a return to a more rational way of life.