Oct 7, 2009

MOVIE REVIEW: Michael Moore’s “Capitalism: A Love Story”

Michael Moore’s “Capitalism: A Love Story” GPA 3.6

Left: Who's Driving?

Somehow I had the impression that Michael Moore's new documentary would be a disappointment, but I liked it at least as well as his other work. As usual, Moore makes little attempt to be objective, but the clips he provides often cannot be challenged on the grounds of a misleading context. Most of their targets would be damned in any context.

Of course those targets are trees in a Michael Moore forest, and I’m not ready to abandon capitalism because he says so, or because of his sometimes incompletely argued examples, or because capitalism is cruel (of course it is--what system isn't?). The first twenty minutes of the movie are a particularly insubstantial, emotional preparation for more compelling points or suggestions to come.

However, I give Moore credit for reminding me of, and frightening me about, some recent cases of abuse and corruption in our free market system. And he forces us to ask: How free is the system if one or four or eight banks are the de facto owners and operators, within and just outside the White House and Congress?

As always, a problem with this Michael Moore film is that he’s preaching to the choir. How does one persuade conservatives to observe, listen—really listen—and offer point by point rebuttals to what Moore claims to be exposing? I had to listen to W. and SuperDickOfCurlySmirk for eight years—fractured English, fractured logic and fractured morality. The least my conservative acquaintances and relatives can do is listen to the goofy, entertaining, childlike, yet oddly persuasive Michael Moore for two hours, after which I’ll listen to them as they try to challenge him. I offer them the chance for a line-item veto of any point Moore makes or implies. Maybe I could hire a team of experts from the Left and the Right to analyze their complaints and their bile. Exactly why is the Right so enraged?

But these people won’t even listen to President Obama, who is a negotiating pragmatist compared to Michael Moore. And here's their charge in a nutshell: "He's an _____ist."

Is The Right listening to Ken Burns as he hits another home run in his series on the National Parks? Is Ken Burns another thinker to be dismissed (as a Commie-Atheist, Animal-Loving, Tree Hugger)?

And therefore Teddy Roosevelt? I bet Teddy Roosevelt could beat up your great great great grandpa. And you know, free enterprise hates losing more than it hates being wrong or doing wrong--if it cares at all.

* *

No comments:

Lovers' Lane