An Act of Collective Madness”
Heartfelt Films, Produced by PATREA PATRICK & BRIAN JAMEISON, Directed by PATREA PATRICK, Written by PATREA PATRICK & JASON TUCKER, (2012, 98 min)
WHEN: Sunday October 12, 2014 1:15pm
WHERE: Community Church NY, Gallery Room, 28 East 35th St. btwn Park & Madison Aves.
ADMISSION: Free, donations appreciated
Director Oliver Stone has called AMERICAN EMPIRE a "provocative" production that "makes you think." If it does nothing more than that, it is worth watching. A sprawling, ambitious, at times alarmist film, it is an indictment as well as a warning that the country that has nurtured us is now perhaps destroying us and the rest of the world as well. It pulls together all the major issues of the day from the Federal Reserve System to political and corporate malfeasance, genetically altered foods, the rampant use of insecticides, the contamination of water supplies, our doomed reliance on oil, corruption in health care, secrecy in government and the erosion of democracy among many other things and tries to give it all an underlying unified theory to explain it - The United States has become an empire that the Founding Fathers would have abhorred.
The film’s central thesis, one that will surely be embraced by followers of Ron Paul, is that many of the problems stem from the formation of the Federal Reserve, devised in 1910 by Senator Nelson Aldrich and six banking titans who met privately on Jekyll Island. There they designed a system to regulate the American economy in a way that would better serve corporate interests, resulting in an economy controlled by a system of debt and inflation. The Federal Reserve was later signed into law by President Woodrow Wilson.
America has now become an economic empire that is destroying our planet and all its natural resources driven by a relentless need to amass money and power. The film makes a point that there quite simply are not enough resources remaining for the country to continue down its current path. Also, the filmmakers say, the country's "resources are being turned into commodities." Experts interviewed by filmmaker Patrea Patrick, who also narrates the film, charge that both debt and inflation are being manipulated by Wall Street. The film details how agribusiness wiped the small farmer off the map, instituted widespread use of pesticides and persists with a policy of monoculture that leads to the erosion of top soil and creation of dust bowls.
“How can we let this happen!” the film asks, “How can we as a people, allow these so called officials get away with it? Their actions have affected our food, our health, and our very freedom! We have become both the enablers and sadly, the victims!”
"Why do we give them that power?" asks John Robbins, the only son of the founder of the Baskin-Robbins ice cream corporation who has become widely recognized as one of the world's leading experts on the dietary link with the environment and health. "Wall Street, WTO (World Trade Organization), the World Bank and the industrial military complex rule. 'We the people' are silenced."
Buttressing the impassioned arguments are interviews with a wide range of historians, academics, authors and environmentalists including Tariq Ali, David Korten, G. Edward Griffin, Peter Koenig, Vandana Shiva, Jeffrey Smith, Francis Moore Lappe, John Robbins, Maude Barlow, and many more.