Reefer Madness by Eric Schlosser - review by Dennis Sewell

Dennis Sewell

Learning From The Mob

Reefer Madness


Allen Lane The Penguin Press 304pp £10.99 order from our bookshop

THE ATLANTIC MONTHLY reporter Eric Schlosser's previous book, Fast Food Nation, was subtitled 'The Dark Side of the All American Meal'. In Reefer Madness he goes underground to explore the dark side of America's economy. His best estimate of the size of the illegal contribution to the United States's GDP is $650 billion, more than three times what the Federal Government spends on Medicare.

Schlosser is a Michael Moore without the bluster, the beer belly or the super-sized ego. While Moore plays it slapstick, Schlosser is ironic. While Moore is irritatingly ideological, Schlosser more effectively subverts unregulated free markets by making them seem decidedly un-American.

His new book consists of what are essentially three separate

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

East of the Wardrobe

Follow Literary Review on Twitter