This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.
AMY GOODMAN: Naomi, we wanted to turn right now to your major piece in The Intercept. You talk about the “pandemic shock doctrine” beginning to emerge, as we turn to your new report that looks at how this crisis is more high-tech than previous disasters and how the future we’re being rushed into could transform our lives into a, quote, “living laboratory for a permanent — and highly profitable — no-touch future.”
This future was on display a week ago during New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s daily coronavirus briefing, when he welcomed a video visit from former Google CEO Eric Schmidt and announced Schmidt will be heading up a blue-ribbon commission to reimagine New York state’s post-COVID reality.
ERIC SCHMIDT: The public-private partnerships that are possible with the intelligence of the New Yorkers is extraordinary. It needs to be unleashed.
GOV. ANDREW CUOMO: Well, great. You are the person to help us do that. We are all ready. We’re all in. We are New Yorkers, so we’re aggressive about it and we’re ambitious about it. And I think we get it, Eric. You know, we went through this period, and we realize that change is not only imminent, but it can actually be a friend, if done the right way.
AMY GOODMAN: This comes as Eric Schmidt has also been selling his services to the military-industrial complex. The New York Times reported on Schmidt’s, quote, “Pentagon offensive.”
Well, Naomi Klein, I want to ask if you can comment on all of this, and particularly lay out your piece in The Intercept, called “Screen New Deal: Under Cover of Mass Death, Andrew Cuomo Calls in the Billionaires to Build a High-Tech Dystopia.” Lay out your thesis.
NAOMI KLEIN: Sure. Well, the billionaires I was referring to is, he didn’t just announce that partnership with Eric Schmidt, who will be chairing this blue-ribbon commission to, quote-unquote, “reopen” New York state with an emphasis on telehealth, remote learning, working from home, increased broadband. That’s what they announced during that briefing. He also announced that he would be kind of outsourcing the tracing of the virus to Michael Bloomberg,