Monday, October 05, 2009

Michael Moore's Capitalism - a review

Boy talk about talent.
Only Pete could take the ugliest white man in the world
and make him look this cute.
I usually get mad at Michael Moore's movies, not because I disagree with everything he says, but that he isn't ever sure of what his message really is. He just is mad about something and wants you to get mad with him. This time he actually encourages us to start a full blown revolution- but doesn't tell us specifically what to revolt against or how to go about doing it. I guess he just wants us to get shot in the streets.

"Capitalism - A Love Story" definitely made me mad, more with him than at him this time, but he's still pretty vague about what the problems really are and even more so on what the solution to the problems are.
He succeeds in making you hate Wall Street Corporate snakes and crooked politicians - both liberal and conservative, but did we really need a movie to convince us of what most of us already knew anyway?

Vague Message - Did Capitalism Ever Work?

Like in all his movies he implies that he believes in 2 opposite propositions. This time he suggests that Capitalism worked great under F.D.R. He shows clips of America during its most happy and prosperous times- the 1950s and early 60s, the age of the luxurious middle-class (which I actually experienced.)

But then, from the other side of his mouth he explains that this period of American prosperity was only possible because we went around starting unjust wars with the rest of the world and blew up all their factories. That killed all competition from kindly Nazis and other wonderful cultures and allowed us to be the world's greatest manufacturers and exporters, and therefore rich and happy in every class.

I thought this was extremely simplistic and dishonest.
He left out the fact that we used to make innovative and quality products that people naturally liked and then after the Hippies we stopped doing that.

College Loans

He, like many uber-liberals seems to think it's a crime that every kid can't afford to go to college and that the loaning companies charge exorbitant interest to the poor kids who just want a decent education.

This assumes that we all agree that every kid needs college, and worse that every college actually provides you with a practical education. No one ever questions these unproven assumptions, which I find astonishing.

Why does nobody do a documentary about how colleges are dishonest, charge way too much tuition and don't teach you anything useful?

I'm not talking about every college. There surely must be some practical ones - trade schools that teach plumbing, electricity or carpentry. Universities that teach math, science, medicine and technology. You can't learn those things on your own. You need experts from their fields to share their knowledge with you.

But do we really need kids to spend 4 years learning such subjective vagaries as "humanities" and "Liberal arts". Think of all the money wasted on this stuff, and all the time being stolen from the kids and the economy. This is a time when the average person has the most energy and optimism and could be spending their time doing and learning something productive. Instead they are sitting asleep at their desks learning about how the white man is the most evil of all races and that all knowledge is vague and subjective, and that you should spend all your time arguing against the man, but never accomplish anything tangible.

At least those colleges call their courses "liberal arts" which is somewhat honest, but now this "liberal arts" vagueness and political propaganda has migrated to what used to be honest trade schools and that's even more scary.

I can speak here from direct experience. I went to a trade school to learn animation, and they barely taught anything practical. The teachers themselves couldn't do it and could not draw as well as half the students- and it's gotten worse since then. They sure didn't teach you to be humorous.

Cal Arts Graduate On His First Day At Spumco Getting His Supplies

Students have to come to work for me, hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt with student loans. Is that the fault of the banks who loaned them the money? Or the fault of the schools who just charged too much? This is never ever mentioned in any liberal argument that assumes we all want our kids to go to school and it's OK to pay way too much for it.

It's bad enough that the kids, their parents and the economy all have to suffer for these crazy expenses - but what did the students (and the country) really get for all this money changing?

As far as I can tell, practically nothing. Just about every student who has ever come to me with a diploma and a portfolio of 5 second life drawings has to be retrained - to just be able to barely function on a cheesy TV cartoon!

They have to unlearn their school style. This is very hard and very expensive - to me- because the kids don't even know they have a school style.

I've hired talented kids who taught themselves to animate at school by trial and error - but they couldn't read exposure sheets! This meant I couldn't direct them right away because they couldn't read my directions. So I had to teach them how to read the sheets.

They also would not learn how to clean up their own drawings because that was frowned upon by the school. In the real world, someone has to clean up an animator's drawings - but no one is being taught how to do it. The schools don't seem to regard the problems of the real world as being important.

The students also have real trouble breaking out of formula because they have not been exposed to a lot of different cartoon styles. They usually can only draw a handful of repetitive over-used "animation expressions" from bland 80s Disney cartoons.

I have yet to find a modern art, cartoon or animation school that spends their 4 years with practical useful teaching of real world skills and techniques.

I always end up doing the job of the schools for them after the students graduate with a useless degree (the degrees are to impress the parents we producers don't care a whit about them. We just want you to be able to do your job well)- only I don't get grants from the banks to teach people.

I can only imagine that this goes on not just in my own profession but across the country in many other trades that used to be highly skilled.

While all these millions of kids are going to vague colleges and piling up huge debt, the jobs they are seeking are all being sent overseas to 3rd world countries who do it more efficiently - and a lot cheaper. No one wants the few crappy goods we make anymore. Except rap music of course. I bet there are even rap colleges now. Learn to be an self-loving idiot for $150,000.

That tells me that hundreds of billions of dollars are just being thrown away in our "education" system and that the system itself needs to be revolutionized. Instead we have liberals crying that we need to take more tax-payer money to throw away on these criminal schools who already charge ridiculous tuition and give nothing useful in return.

Why is no one going after the schools? If anyone should be regulated it should be these criminal institutions, not just the banks who feed the loans to the poor kids who spend 4 years learning to be vague.

Corporate Management - no one mentions this

Everyone hates the CEOs, but what about all the levels of middle-management? Tons and tons of people came into their business sideways, who have no idea how to make the products that the company is supposed to produce and use hippie-wiccan theories to spend the company's money telling those who actually do know how to make the products to do it wrong.

Think of our much money is wasted in front of your very ideas on doing nothing? ...before you ever get to see a dime to actually make a cartoon.

No One Should Be allowed To Get Rich?

Moore suggests this, but of course as even Larry King points out, Michael is pretty rich himself. Moore has only a stuttering answer for this. It was as if he never even expected the question to be asked.

He also suggess that the workplace should be democratic, which I think is insane, but have no time right now to get into that.

Shouldn't people who actually create a product and make it well and hire lots of people to help him have the incentive to make money from their inventions? (like Henry Ford or Walt Disney?) I think so, but the system is now completely against it and that is never mentioned in anybody's arguments for or against capitalism.

He Used Jesus To Appeal To Stupid People Who Usually are Republicans and Therefore Side With The Republicans

He uses the same trick that Republicans do. he finds the dumbest white trash folks and uses Jesus against them, only this time to get them to switch from Republican to Socialist beliefs - which is what they should believe in the first place, considering their condition and the treatment they get from corporations and government.

Honestly, I half agree with him here. I myself have always wondered how Republicans - who favor the rich and blatantly oppress the poor, yet the poor white folks are the ones that support this oppression the most fervently. They want to get their guns out and go kill the dirty colored man who is trying to help them (not that I agree in how he is trying to).

to be continued...