How fitting is it that during a week of premieres for Michael Moore's new film, Capitalism: A Love Story, the "group of twenty" nations (G20), which together account for about 85 percent of the world's economy, were in town to revitalize global free market policies and even renew the people of the world's faith in capitalism?
Just as Michael Moore was about to begin his premiere in Chicago, in Pittsburgh thousands of students (effectively or ineffectively) were acting upon what they know about capitalism and were being criminalized and suppressed by a security presence that was effectively imposing martial law on the city of Pittsburgh so that the G20 summit could happen without a din going on in the background.
At the premiere in Chicago, about 50-100 people from the general public who were allowed in to the premiere. The other couple hundred seats were for press, local politicians, union workers, and workers from the Republic Windows factory, which had staged a sit-in in December 2008 when the workers found out the factory they worked in would be shut down and they would not be getting owed vacation and severance pay.
The screening was an event. Moore came before the audience to introduce the film saying he was honored to be here. He would be going on Bill Maher's show, and afterward, a Q&A would take place.
In two hours, Moore along with his great crew and archival team weaved a tableau that connected a series of events and personal stories which had occurred in the past few years.
A montage of bank robberies with Iggy Pop singing a rendition of "Louie, Louie" opens the movie. A masterfully edited sequence comparing America and the history of Rome before its empire fell takes place followed. Then, Americans are seen being "robbed" by banks or having their homes foreclosed on.
A foreclosure happens once every 7.5 seconds. Rep. Marcy Kaptur is featured in the film advocating for open rebellion as she says from the House floor to Americans, "don't leave your home" unless the bank foreclosing on you can physically produce your mortgage.
A harrowing portion of the film provides Americans a glimpse into the dark side of capitalism through "dead peasant policies," a practice that involves businesses or corporations taking out life insurance policies on people who they think will die and make them money. The practice symbolizes all that it is evil about capitalism.