“Inside Job” documentary: a must see

If you haven’t seen Inside Job yet, it’s a must see. I’ve watched it on DVD three times over the past week. It’s one of the most powerful documentaries I’ve ever encountered (and I’m a longtime follower of documentaries). Liberal or conservative, you’ll leave your viewing of it spitting with rage.

Below is the director, Charles Ferguson, being interviewed by Charlie Rose about his extraordinary film:


And here’s the film on DVD at Amazon.

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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4 Responses to “Inside Job” documentary: a must see

  1. We watched Inside Job just last week.

    Overall, I think I agree with the thrust of his argument. At least, I want to as it accords with my pinko-lefty ideals.

    I did find it annoying as a documentary, there were several points where he asks a question and then doesn’t let the interviewee finish, or makes a statement of fact as part of an interview and then leaves it as though that’s the answer. He needed to allow his people to speak with their own voice a little more. It’s also too fast-paced at times for someone like me who doesn’t have a good grasp of economic theory or banking.

    Those are my gripes. That said, I plan to watch it again as I’m predisposed to agree with him.

    It did clarify exactly which banks were bailed out – those 5 huge investment banks, rather than (as I understood) the smaller conventional banks. I wondered when the bailout happened a) Why those banks are allowed to continue to trade? I thought their debts should be paid but transferred to another bank, and the failed bank closed. Surely no-one’s going to learn anything if they all get to keep their jobs. It’s not the state’s job to shore up a bad business – basic capitalism, right? The market spoke, and it said those banks failed. Let ’em fail (but pay out the small mortgage-holder).

    And secondly, b) how come those debts weren’t required to be paid back by these profit-making organisations? (The bailout may be a loan, but I haven’t heard that it is.)

    It stinks to high heaven that huge bonuses and extravagant salaries continue to be paid out in these organisations. Haven’t they just received tax dollars to keep trading? It seems morally wrong.

    Does anyone know if there’s a movement to keep these people accountable, and perhaps make criminal charges if necessary? Very little of this information was new, or even hidden, and I’m astounded that it seems to be business as usual in such a short time.

    • santitafarella says:


      I’ll look at the film again for some of the weaknesses you noticed.

      The documentary’s spotlight on injustice made it powerful to me. And the cozy relationship between academic economists and the industry (and the revolving doors) are infuriating. And Obama’s asleep-at-the-wheel chumminess with the culprits after the fact was quite disorienting for me.

      It confirms the obvious: our once Jeffersonian democracy has transmographied, over time, into a grotesque facade of a democracy (and into a plutocracy). American democracy’s encounter with the evolution of mass media, marketing, and large corporate and industrial interests (entities too big to fail) over the past century has not gone well.

      I used to read a lot of Chomsky when I was in my early 20s. I feel like I need to dig into my garage for all his old books. All that stuff he wrote about elites “manufacturing the consent” of the governed etc was right.

      I do hope people see this film. It’s important.


      • My gripes are about the style and editing of the documentary rather than the content.

        I too think it’s important and hope (US) people watch it. Over here in the antipodes most are barely aware of the bailout, and we largely can’t do much except watch the backwash of the US economy float across our tides.

  2. Pingback: Atheism’s Real Problem Going Forward: Universal Humanism vs. Johann Gottfried Herder, Niccolo Machiavelli, and Friedrich Nietzsche | Prometheus Unbound

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