I saw Michael Moore’s Capitalism: A Love Story this evening. It was not my favorite Moore film in any way.
Michael Moore’s gift is his ability to see the comedy, and extract it out of, any tragedy. He was unable to do that with this movie. Or, as a reasonable alternate hypothesis, there is just nothing funny about our current national tragedy.
A touching moment of the film was when Michael and his dad visited the remains of the factory where the elder Moore worked. It was a nice reminiscing journey for both of them. Kinda felt like one of those “good moments” with one’s own family.
There was depressing scene after depressing scene of people being unfairly dislodged from their homes. Moore even found a U.S. Representative willing to encourage people to break the law by staying in the homes they can no longer afford.
I recommend the film not because of the light-hearted moments (there were none of those for me), but because of our duty to face what we have become as a Korporate-Kontrolled-Kapitalist nation.
4 responses to “Where was Michael Moore’s Gift?”
I plan on seeing it today, so I’ll hold off until I do.
I hope that like his others, this one will come out on DVD. This is SO not my week to see a movie.
I thought it was a pretty depressing experience overall. I will be interested in what others think.
Saw it yesterday and came away impressed with the depth it went to. However, I was unimpressed with his handling of Obama, and the lack of regulation he has imposed on the financial empire.
For instance: His reform calls for a tier 1 list firms “too big to fail.” Being on that list ensures that, regardless of any regulations imposed, they will continue business as usual, and we will be bailing them out again, just as we have over the last fifteen years.
As an example, Clinton extended a 20 billion dollar line of credit to bail out Goldman-Sachs when they invested in speculative, high-risk Mexican government bonds. The investors got their money back plus a healthy return, all at the expense of the taxpayer. And Obama’s continuing the business as usual atmosphere.
And just how brazen are these entities? San Diego Gas and Electric wants the rate payers to bear the cost of insurance for SDG&E’s failure to follow state fire and safety regulations, and, in fact, are trying to recoup expenses.
“Says Michael Shames, head of Utility Consumers’ Action Network, “SDG&E creates a fire that causes ratepayers damages and then tries to get the same ratepayers to pick up the cost. There is no accountability.”
The consumer group has filed protests against the utility’s attempt to recoup costs from victims. Utility Consumers’ Action Network also wrote the state insurance commissioner, complaining that “the state’s insurers are cutting availability and increasing costs for fire-related insurance.” The insurance companies are leaving the state “high and dry.”
Similarly, Ruth Hendricks, a customer of San Diego Gas and Electric, filed a protest. “SDG&E’s failure to comply with fire safety rules was systemic and was based upon an apparent business decision to operate its business at unsafe levels of risk,” says her filing. The utility’s “negligent, reckless and knowing conduct resulted in predictable massive losses.”
“The idea that SDG&E would go to the Public Utilities Commission and ask them to make ratepayers pay for the company’s negligent behavior shows how absurd this is,” says Mike Aguirre, Hendricks’s attorney. “The best way to get SDG&E to be more careful is for the commissioners to do something that affects the company’s bottom line.””
The bottom line is Moore is dead on when he says Capitalism is the antithesis of what a Democracy is all about, but, in my opinion, he failed to go far enough. He was also dead on when he said he was tired of making movies, and challenged the movie viewers to bombard every member of congress to stop this assault on the taxpayers of this great nation.
Blogs have become powerful forces, and they need to be used to force change a in Washington’s thinking. We need to take back this country from the 1% that now control it. To not do so amounts to continuing the servitude the upper crust considers the lower 99%.