Naomi Klein is an unabashed liberal. She has several interesting things to say about the current economy--here is an interview with her:
Ms. Klein loses credibility when she uses George Bush II as evidence that Milton Friedman's policies don't work. George Bush II created a bigger government, not a smaller one. In addition, no policy--whether "Democrat" or "Republican"--will work without integrity. The current U.S. administration lacks integrity, and that has nothing to do with Milton Friedman.
I have to give credit, however, to Ms. Klein's ability to advocate her position: she says, "The Cato Institute [a conservative thinktank], essentially, they are Friedmanite Trotskyites." Ms. Klein is definitely an original.
I agree governments scare their citizens in order to further government objectives. The level of pessimism in the U.S. is high, but that feeling is rational. Under George Bush II, the government has lied to us; allowed the torture of people to become legitimate government policy (don't forget to thank Dershowitz and Yoo for this); locked up old men and teenagers in offshore prisons like Guantanamo without due process; and can't seem to figure out how to become friends with Iran, whose citizens generally like America and held candlelight vigils post-9-11. In a consumer-based economy with voluminous exports, the last thing the American government should be doing is ticking off the rest of the world--which happens to be 95% of worldwide population (Americans are currently only 5% of the world's population).