Since 1980, unions have been busted, taxes have been cut for the very wealthy, and banks were deregulated. All of these policies have worked together to bring what we have now – stagnant wages, high unemployment, people losing their homes, and an overall sense that the rich are getting richer and the rest of us are getting the shaft. …
This essay will look critically at this documentary.
First of all, it's obvious that Michael Moore is very critical of supply side economics, which refers to the economic policy invented by Ronald Reagan in the early 1980s. Bartlett (2009) states that, even though he was in the Reagan administration, and helped to usher in the tax cuts in the 1980s, it was obvious that these tax cuts did not work for the long term. He felt that John Maynard Keynes was the economist who thought most deeply about the problems that were facing the economy, and Keynes' prescription for the economy is the opposite of what Reagan prescribed. He felt that Keynes understood the monetary origins of the Great Depression from day one, but that Keynes could not make the policy makers go through with his recommendations. The simple idea behind Keynsian economics is that budget deficits stimulate growth and inflation is caused by low unemployment. Therefore, Keynes would say that we should not reduce taxes and spending, but that we should spend more. Ronald Reagan instituted a directly opposite policy of this policy, as he instituted not just tax cuts, but also cuts in spending and deregulation (Jacob, 1985). And, as Robert Reich (2009) explained, the tax cuts did a lot of the people at the top of the ladder, as their wealth grew exponentially since 1980. However, unfortunately, everybody else's wealth either stagnated or actually suffered a reduction. This was one of the central themes of the movie. The basic theme is that the rich got richer, and the poor got the shaft. He shows this, time and again, in scene after scene, the effect of this. He begins the documentary by showing a family that is about to be kicked out of their home by the sheriff. Then he remembers the days when he was young, and there were good jobs to be had, and middle class prosperity, and the cars that were being made in Detroit powered the economy. He did mention that one of the reasons why there were such good jobs in Detroit is because Germany and Japan were in shambles, but the main thing that he was trying to get across is that our economy doesn't work when the wealth is concentrated at the very top. Another point that he made was that the blacks had a more difficult time existing in today's economy than did whites. This was a subtle point that he made, as he didn't come right out and say this, as he might have. But many of the people that he showed who were struggling were African-American. These were the people, by and large, who were left behind in Katrina, and these were the people who were shown trying to get by on meager wages. Gradin (2010) states that African Americans in America are at more of a disadvantage than are whites, because they are suffering from having gone to bad schools and they also tend to have more children than whites. Their wages are lower, as they are more likely to work in a service industry, where the wages are extremely low. Gradin (2010) further states that one of the reasons why blacks have lower socioeconomic statuses than do whites is because of the decline of unionism over the years. This is another major point that Michael Moore touched upon – he stated that unions used to be the backbone of the country, and he blamed the lack of unionism for the decline of the car industry. He states that Japan and Germany, who have strong unions and, at least in the case of Germany, the workers have so much power that they have the ability ...
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(Capitalism: A Love Story (dir. Michael Moore, 2010) Movie Review)
“Capitalism: A Love Story (dir. Michael Moore, 2010) Movie Review”, n.d. https://studentshare.net/visual-arts-film-studies/106809-capitalism-a-love-story-dir-michael-moore.
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