There’s no story line. The citizen’s arrest of a corporation was clever 20 years ago when Moore did Roger and Me but timeworn and predictable now. The economic problems here did not start with Reagan or end with the election of Obama. But most importantly, Moore slams capitalism but offers no solution and doesn’t appear to have even pondered what it could be. That’s what journalist Marc Cooper finds clumsy and muddled about the movie.
If you are going to go to the trouble of making a movie, however clumsily denouncing capitalism per se, it seems to me that you have a responsibility to say what you would like to see in its place. The 800 lb gorilla sitting in every movie theater, naturally, even if unsaid, is the specter of socialism or communism which are assumed by most to be the antithesis of capitalism. Few Americans know the difference between one or another let alone any degrees of shading within the categories. But it’s fair to say that both notion –rightly and wrongly– have a pretty negative connotation amongst most Americans and Moore does himself no good by not addressing that issue head on (I say that as a socialist by the way).
So after getting us all stroked and stoked, what’s Moore’s payoff? How does he answer his own self-posed question as to what capitalism should be replaced by?
“Democracy” is his answer.
It sort of begs the question on behalf of any thinking person if Moore is using that word as a euphemism for some sort of socialism or is he just plain copping out? Hell if I know!
In a word. Muddled. If you’re going to skewer capitalism, then explain what some of the other economic systems are, whether it be the European-style capitalism-socialism mix, actual socialism. or even some of the flavors of anarchism (worker’s council, no State). Also, discuss how what we call capitalism now isn’t anything like what Adam Smith envisioned it as being. Give people an idea what the possibilities are. Don’t just leave them hanging.