Thursday, August 21, 2008

Tim G. and I went to the theatre tonight for the premiere of "I.O.U.S.A.," a documentary about the ballooning federal deficit and its likely impact on the country.

The screening was a one-night affair, with simultaneous viewing in theatres across the country, followed by a simulcast panel discussion featuring Warren Buffett, former head of the General Accounting Office Somebody Whatsisname, and three other Old White Men.

Make that (in all likelihood) Rich Old White Men.

Which leads to the movie's biggest fault: it's full of ROWMs. They are all bemoaning the state of the federal budget, but none of them looks as though they would suffer if worse came to worst. The movie is part of a campaign to sound an alarm about the federal debt, but there is no sign at all that the producers want to sound the alarm among anyone but ROWMs.

An exponentially-growing national debt is not a whiteguy problem; it's an American problem. They should be sounding the alarm among every segment of the population, white, black, asian, hispanic, native, young, old, male, female, upper-middle-under class, and their movie should have represented every segment of the population.

The ethnic, gender and class homogeneity of the authoritative voices in the movie is straight from the Industrial Age, and is downright offensive.

Second problem: the movie makes its point within the first five or ten minutes. Then it continues for...two hours? if not that long, it sure felt like it. It's punishing, like an overgrown PowerPoint presentation.

I'm falling asleep just trying to write about it.
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