Tag Archives: Documentaries

Capital in the 21st Century – film documentary

Yesterday Kim Hill of Radio NZ interviewed New Zealand film director Justin Pemberton about his latest film documentary – Capital in the Twenty-First Century. It is based on the best-selling book of the same name by acclaimed French economist Thomas Piketty. You can listen to the interview here.

The film looks at the French Revolution, two world wars and the impact of technology. It exposes fraud and growing inequalities instead of the assumption that the accumulation of capital benefits all. It features some leading writers and thinkers – Gillian Tett, Rana Foroohar, Paul Mason, Joseph Stiglitz, Maiza Shaheen. Below is the official trailer. Well worth a look.

Inequality – 'The Price We Pay'

Below is a trailer to the documentary ‘The Price We Pay’. The present-day reality of big-business tax avoidance has been extremely prevalent in the news. Multinationals have been depriving governments of trillions of dollars in tax revenues by hiding profits in offshore havens. Tax havens, originally created by London bankers in the 50s, today put over half the world’s stock of money beyond reach of  public treasuries. Tax avoidance by big corporations and the wealthy are leading to historic levels of inequality and placing the tax burden on the middle class and the poor.

Inside Job – The Official Teacher’s Guide

Just purchased the Inside Job DVD and it is excellent viewing for economics students. It covers both the historical roots of the crisis and the central flaws of global financial regulation. The film draws heavily on intereviews with academics, politicians, journalists, financial insiders. A study guide has been put together and it includes 4 lesson plans with teacher notes and student handouts. The 4 lessons are:

1. “It’s utterly mad” – Allan Sloan, senior editor of Fortune magazine, describing the Goldman Sachs deal in which home buyers borrowed 99.3% of the price of their houses, and yet two-thirds of the deal backed by those loans was rated AAA, as safe as government securities.

2. “It was clear he was stuck with his ideology” – Alan Greenspan appears throughout Inside Job. The film describes how Greenspan, as Federal Reserve chairman, led the deregulation and consolidation of the financial sector, beginning in the 1980s.

3. “Sure, I’d make that bet” – Nothing motivates students to talk like money. Ask them what they would be willing to do for $10 million a year. Would they make secret bets that might lead their firms to collapse?

4. “It’s a Wall Street government” – In Inside Job, Robert Gnaizda calls President Barack Obama’s administration “a Wall Street government.” This activity asks students to describe the key players in the administration and to list the positions they held before and after the 2008 election.

Click the link below to download the study guide.

The Offical Teacher’s Guide – Inside Job

Below is an interview with the Director of the film Charles Ferguson. It seems that the mainstream media are either not resourced well enough to provide this level of in-depth analysis or don’t want to report it.