"Capitalism is evil," says new Michael Moore film
By Harel B at Sep 09, 2009
Excepts from Review of Moore's latest film, below. Some very strong words. A few thoughts:
1. Without defending "capitalism" as it existed in Adam Smith's time, as being a good system either, we have to be clear that what we are calling "capitalism" today is very different (by the way check out wikiquote on Adam Smith and Wikipedia on Wealth of Nations where I and others have added to what Chomsky quotes, even more shockingly sane quotes from Smith) We have to be clear on that.
2. Despite Moore's very strong word like "you can't regulate evil..you have to replace it" does he actually, in fact, envision something like Sweden (as it existed a few decades ago) as his alterantive to "capitalism"? Because that was capitalist too
3. Activism opportunity: Raising these points and more is possible at screenings. There were many single payer advocates and others handing out leaflets at screenings of Sicko. And anti-war activists handing out flyers at showings of Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11. Shouldn't we have activists raise the above issues and many more, like what alternatives might really look like (there is no mention of whether worker-owned factories like in Argentina made it into Moore's film, nor Mondragon, nor Parecon, nor www.thefec.org type communes, nor local currencies in which at least part of monetary policy can at least begin to be made more democratically (even while recognizing that step alone isn't enough) etc....)all could be flyers for people waiting in line or coming back out from the film. WHO IS ORGANIZING THAT?
VENICE (Reuters) - Capitalism is evil. That is the conclusion U.S. documentary maker Michael Moore comes to in his latest movie "Capitalism: A Love Story," which premieres at the Venice film festival Sunday.
Blending his trademark humor with tragic individual stories, archive footage and publicity stunts, the 55-year-old launches an all out attack on the capitalist system, arguing that it benefits the rich and condemns millions to poverty.
"Capitalism is an evil, and you cannot regulate evil," the two-hour movie concludes.
"You have to eliminate it and replace it with something that is good for all people and that something is democracy."
The bad guys in Moore's mind are big banks and hedge funds which "gambled" investors' money in complex derivatives that few, if any, really understood and which belonged in the casino.
Meanwhile, large companies have been prepared to lay off thousands of staff despite boasting record profits.
The filmmaker also sees an uncomfortably close relationship between banks, politicians and U.S. Treasury officials,..[and] says that by encouraging Americans to borrow against the value of their homes, businesses created the conditions that led to the crisis, and with it homelessness and unemployment.
Moore even features priests who say capitalism is anti-Christian by failing to protect the poor.
"Essentially we have a law which says gambling is illegal but we've allowed Wall Street to do this and they've played with people's money and taken it into these crazy areas of derivatives," Moore told an audience in Venice.
"They need more than just regulation. We need to structure ourselves differently in order to create finance and money, support for jobs, businesses, etc."
..."Democracy is not a spectator sport, it's a participatory event," he told a news conference. "If we don't participate in it, it ceases to be a democracy. So Obama will rise or fall based not so much on what he does but on what we do to support him."
..The film follows factory workers who stage a sit-in at a Chicago glass factory when they are sacked with little warning and no pay and who eventually prevail over the bank.
And a group of citizens occupies a home that has been repossessed and boarded up by the lending company, forcing the police who come to evict them to back down.
[Unfortunately the system forces you to select a "geographic region" and does not allow "World" so I was essentially forced to pick "U.S."]