Insurance companies were so spooked that not a single one of the big firms would insure investors for “political risk,” that high-stakes area of insurance law that protects companies against foreign governments turning nationalist or socialist and expropriating their investments.I'm somewhat amazed that there is such insurance, but only for a second until I realize that it's not so strange if you (a) know that such risks are real and (b) want to hedge against absolutely all uncertainties you can think of. No more, no less strange than the “terrorism risk insurance” also mentioned in the article.
The conclusion the author is broadly making, that
...in trying to design the best place in the world to do business, the neocons have managed to create the worst [is] the most eloquent indictment yet of the guiding logic behind deregulated free markets...seems a little hasty. It's hardly a controlled experiment. Indeed, the "look at Iraq, plan X failed there!" seems parallel to the "look at the USSR, plan Y failed there!". We don't know of any set of economic values such that merely having them in mind guarantees utopiafication no matter who is implementing them or how. Socializing everything doesn't seem to work out so well, neither privatizing everything. Who knows where the right balance is, for any particular country, at any particular time? I sure don't. How the fuck do people do politics? It scares me.