The lesson of "Collapse" is that societies, as often as not, aren't murdered. They commit suicide: they slit their wrists and then, in the course of many decades, stand by passively and watch themselves bleed to death.If I were the type to make new year's resolutions, one might be to try to get back into the habit of reading more.1 Books like this would certainly provide incentive, since it seemed like so many of the important nonfiction of 2004 was about how goddamn crappy and corrupt the government is. To some extent, maybe Collapse might be like that, but in a way that I'm willing to face.
[New Yorker, 03 January 2005, pp 70-73]
(1) I'm already trying! I'm about halfway through Cloud Atlas.