Her seminal work "The Shock Doctrine — The Rise of Disaster Capitalism" is, in essence, the redefinition of fascism for our time. The premise that crisis (in most cases, but not always, a manufactured one) triggers a shock to the political system, as Ms Klein said, is an old idea. Hitler's final putsch, after years building a strong ideologically extreme and fanatically loyal Nazi movement, was the Reichstag fire. It was used as a pretext to eliminate the remaining roadblocks and opponents to the minority Nazi Party and Hitler's rise to power. The 9/11 terror attacks were a traumatic shock to the American system which led to the subordination of our individual freedoms to the national security state.
Klein's thesis holds that politicians are taking advantage of real and created crises to ram through unpopular privatization schemes to transfer wealth from the people to the corporations. Call it what you will — corporatism, crony capitalism — still it traces its lineage directly to Mussolini and Hitler and the Nazis. They were 20th century. We're 21st. The difference for our times is that charismatic leaders have been replaced by richly rewarded and more manageable right wing bureaucrats, functionaries, and yes men ... like Wisconsin's Scott Walker and Michigan's Rick Snyder. The similarity is that their coups and crisis-advantage power grabs are as old school democracy-squashing fascism as they have ever been.