Sunday, June 27, 2004

Fahrenheit 9/11: My thoughts

After hearing about Fahrenheit 9/11 I was eager to see it, and now after watching it for the first time, I was NOT disappointed. While comparisons to Bowling for Columbine differ among my friends, the movie serves up a thoughtful and aggressive critique of Things Bush, even politics in general these days.

The movie did an excellent job showing how the current government--all of its parts: the judicial, the legislative, the executive branches of government--is complicit in ruling by fear in a hierarhical society powered by difference in education, social class, position--especially in the current prolonged panic to the threat of terrorism on U.S. territory.

In my opinion, I could have stood for an even more exploratory approach to the theaters of conflict at home and abroad, but alas there is only so much time. While not completely absent, there could have been a few more interviews with some even tougher questions (though I'd have to do some work to make specific suggestions). Nonetheless, the film makes its points: the war on terror is rife with contradictions not only in the policies directing government action, but also contradictions with the foundations of American political life.

My hope, of course, is that the film maker's standing as a member of the Independent Party enables both Republicans and Democrats to see the movie and consider its contribution to an empoverished political discourse.

Let the freedom of the First Amendment ring, ring in the cinema, in print and electronic media, in places of worship, in education and the arts, in the voting booths, and above all in the hallowed halls of government where our leaders struggle in a system torked and bent by fiercely conflicting social forces. Perhaps the great American experiment has not fallen prey to a sanitized public discourse. Let the election games begin!

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