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You Must Go See Documentary “Inside Job” says reviewer Ron Wells

December 5, 2010

LA Times reviewer Kenneth Turan says Inside Job will leave you thunderstruck. Why? Read guest blogger Ron Wells review and see for yourself. Or just see the movie. Please.

“It’s a Wall Street Government.” from Inside Job

Charles Ferguson’s powerful and extremely important documentary, “Inside Job,” dissects the financial industry which led to the collapse in 2007-2008 of the economic system of the United States and many countries around the world.

Narrated by Matt Damon, Ferguson documents how this was not something that occurred overnight. Rather, it was years in the making and he is able to point to the multitude of players who gamed the system to their advantage while destroying the savings and livelihoods of millions of people in America and around the world.

This is a terrifying and infuriating film, for it shows that a cancer has been injected into the entire body of that which we call America, and this cancer has spread everywhere and is continuing to spread due to men, and some women, who have no conscience, no morals, no God, except for the God of unfettered millions of dollars which they pray to on a daily basis.


Many of the names will be recognizable to you. Allen Greenspan, Tim Geithner, Larry Summers, Phil Gramm, Henry Paulson, Ben Bernanke. Then are others that you may not have heard of, but you’ll know them now: Scott Talbot, a PR man for the financial industry, Martin Feldstein, a Harvard economics professor, and Glenn Hubbard, the Dean of the Columbia School of Business. All of these people working tirelessly to enrich themselves and their partners to a degree that  too much is never, ever enough, and how they get this money is inconsequential.

Talbot says at one point: “Mistakes happen.”

Senator Phil Gramm who once notably said, “There is no evidence whatsoever that the subprime mortgage crisis was caused by allowing banks and security companies and insurance companies to compete against each other,’  and kept credit default swaps from being regulated, left the Senate and is now a Vice-President of UBS AG.” His wife was formerly associated with Enron.

Henry Paulson worked as CEO of Goldman Sachs and then became United States Treasury Secretary. He is now associated with Johns Hopkins University.

And the list goes on and on. Revolving doors of “expertise,” some might say corruption, opening each and every day. You get the picture. And the documentary makes every dishonest, exploitive, twist and turn completely understandable.
These people take home paychecks in the hundreds of millions of dollars, and yet they are not satisfied. They always want more. Not matter what the cost. A psychiatrist in the movie points out that the need for more money is motivated by the same part of the brain that needs more and more cocaine once it has been introduced into the system. 

Ferguson even gets people to talk on camera about how, indeed, these men spend untold amounts of money on cocaine and high end prostitutes and then write it off as a “business expense.”


In the meantime, he documents how industries fail, retirees lose their pensions, and everyday people lose their homes.
And yet those who rule this financial empire, care nothing about that. Some of them even talk to Ferguson, and arrogant doesn’t begin to describe their attitude as to what they do, how they do it, and whom they harm in the process. “Let them eat cake,” doesn’t begin to express their attitude of unspoken disdain for the millions of Americans who are unemployed or who have lost everything of value in their lives.

This cancer is systemic and it has not been removed from the the body, even after this last meltdown which we are still trying to recover from. Quite the contrary, it is alive, well, and spreading more rapidly than ever, for what the filmmaker shows in startling detail is that these same men who work for banks and institutions such as Goldman Sachs, and Bank of America among others, then take their “talents” to the government were virtually every president since 1980 has placed them in positions of power where these financiers can insure that no regulations will ever stop them or their brethren from manipulating the system, even to the point of destroying their country. Please see the opening of the film and what happened to Iceland.

Furthermore, some of these men and women hold the highest positions in our academic institutions, teaching their students, especially the children of the rich, the ropes so that they too can join the upper 1% of this country’s elite. While they do this, they simultaneously sit on boards of the same banks and investment films that are decimating society in order to enrich themselves and those who are their friends in the financial institutions.

Yes, the cancer is spreading daily in the banking and investing institutions, the best colleges in the country, and the government which is supposed to protect the populace from these predators.

George Carlin once did a routine where he went to listen to people talking about “business ethics”, and when he got there all he heard was silence. That’s just the jumping off point in this documentary.

Woody Gutherie once wrote that some “will rob you with a six gun, some with a fountain pen.” None of the people involved with the financial collapse have been prosecuted for the part they played in this destruction. On the other hand, the guy who robbed a 7-11 is doing hard time in prison.

For those that think this has to do with Republicans or Democrats—think again. Both sides are guilty. This is about allowing greed and corruption to rule the day and doing nothing about it.

For example, Citibank took $100 million in drug money from Mexico and nobody thinks twice about it.

Are there any heroes? Anyone trying to fight these people? Absolutley: Brooksley Born; Raghuram Rajan; Nouriel Roubini; among others. They sounded the alarms  and understood completley what was going on.

Go see “Inside Job” immediately. Ferguson has made a complex system especially easy to understand, using charts, graphs and interviews with insiders to explain exactly how the economic collapse occurred and how it will probably occur again unless everyday people do something about it. As is pointed out in the film,  we “now have a Wall Street government.”

We are told daily that Al-Qaeda is the enemy, but they have nothing on the people shown in the documentary Inside Job.

Rome did not fall from outside forces. It fell from within. That is exactly where the United States is headed if the financial institutions have their say. Of course, the 1% who will bring it down don’t need to worry; they’ll just take their hundreds of millions or billions of dollars and move somewhere else where they can rape and pillage.
Learn more about Inside Job.
8 Comments leave one →
  1. December 6, 2010 1:15 am

    Oh No!

    Some more Docu-fear. Don’t you know what’s good for “Wall Street” is great for Thomas Frank and that “The Road To Serfdom” dude.

    I’ll see it. Many will see it. But what difference will the viewing make.

    I’m ready for my 2012 close-up now …says Sarah Palin… or Huckabee ..or odds on Senator Thune.



  2. December 6, 2010 3:52 am

    After you see it, please stop back by Doug, and share what you think! And thank you for leaving a comment!

    Personally, I find it useful to learn and I think more people should take the time to try to understand what’s going on.

  3. December 6, 2010 12:44 pm

    The same pattern repeated over and over again in nation after nation.

  4. December 6, 2010 4:01 pm

    The same pattern of greed, Brian? Of fraud? Of government inability to manage business? (or all of the above?) Have either of you seen the film yet?

  5. December 6, 2010 8:07 pm

    All of the above and more. I haven’t seen the film.

  6. December 9, 2010 12:53 am

    @ Gwendolyn… It wasn’t really my intent to be flippant or dismissive of the film, and certainly not the reviewer. Well, maybe flippant a bit about the subject matter. I’ve read so much about this stuff..from Sorkin, to Lewis to Paulson… and it’s all overwhelming… and the people who will see the film have most likely informed themselves of the events. The problem is the audience will be small, and people who should see the film, lets say, the whole damn country, won’t.

    I think, unfortunately, the oligarchs have won.


  7. March 13, 2011 6:04 pm

    When reviewing a film like this I think it’s fair to make a distinction between the subject matter and the actual merits of the film-making itself.
    For most of it, manages to keep it all simple and gripping at the same time without dumbing it down too much.
    As a piece of film, “Inside Job” is less interesting. Its pace is very uneven. Not everything hits home as it probably should and not everything is as clear as it should be. After a while one million begins to sound a lot like 10 millions or 100 millions or even a billion… it’s just a whole lot of money which we’ll never see anyway… It gets slightly repetitive.
    The real skill here seems to be more in the writing than the actual film-making. That’s by no means a criticism. This isn’t a film by Micheal Moore… at least on the surface.
    Check my review on my blog:


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