13 November 2010: In$ide Job
Please notice how the dollar sign replaces the "s" in my spelling of "Inside Job" and how the "$" is inside the word. Clever beginning of an unconventional review of a typical documentary, filled with white men in suits, most of them evil, talking.
There is an element of comedy in their inane answers to questions that nail them each time. Renowned experts, caught up in the biggest easy-money scam in history, answer with "uh" or silence or not-so-clever dismissiveness.
And they don't even care.
Because if there's anything In$ide Job has to say, it's that the bad guys won. The "nailed" Ivy League suits just swim away from the camera lens through oceans of money, lots of it worth less than the paper it's printed on, part of the bubble that made them obscenely rich.
Money does that. The need to own ten houses all over the world while those whose guts you have sucked dry are sprawled on sidewalks, leaning against storefronts in seedy neighborhoods, not wearing suits.
Seems to me that back in the sixties when I was in college, the worst nightmare was to be caught without a smug, seemingly knowledgeable and intimidating answer that made the questioner feel like a fool rather than answered his question. Because the one questioned, usually a white man in a suit, knew everything and was never to be struck dumb.
But that's just not a sign of these times. It's in to be ignorant, a quality deified by Sarah Palin.
But she's not what the movie's about. She claims to buy all of her clothing in consignment stores.
These guys don't.
The narrator, Matt Damon, who in Good Will Hunting made fools out of the sixties academic clowns I described above, even accuses today's evil suits of altering economics textbooks to launder their massacre of the economy.
Was it Sarah Palin or George Bush 43 who made it okay not to have a quick, witty answer to every question the way that JFK did at his delightful press conferences?
Since when are Harvard guys clueless, laughing all the way to the banks, the ones refinanced by what's left of the middle class after these guys had blown up such a big balloon that we all were smacked by its hot air?
You know the drill. First Iceland's economy tanks after someone decides to deregulate it, in a place Damon says had been a posthistorical Nirvana. It becomes the pebble that collapses the fortified castle way up on a hill. Is that the worldwide economy? No, it's ethics, in the U.S. of A. anyway. Overseas in Europe, where the problem spread, they take better care of their people.
The economy should serve us, after all, one of the Europeans says. Novel concept here, despite Bar's whimpers that add up to more humanitarian legislation than even FDR ever passed. If you don't believe me, visit his website. Even Hillary's Senate record is filled with benevolent legislation.
So these rich guys put on nice faces and persuade poor people that the American dream is at their fingertips. All they have to do is take out a subprime, adjustable-rate mortgage that amounts to about 90 percent of the property's worth at the time of purchase, when the interest rate is low. But when it rose, POW!!!