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Foolishness on Film (Or, Wiping the Sheen Off of Silliness)

Tyler Cowen hits a home run with his review of Phillipe Diaz's movie The End of Poverty.  Here's one especially nice selection:

I can only report that The End of Poverty,
narrated throughout by Martin Sheen, puts Ayn Rand back on the map as
an accurate and indeed insightful cultural commentator. If you were to
take the most overdone and most caricatured cocktail-party scenes from Atlas Shrugged,
if you were to put the content of Rand’s “whiners” on the screen, mixed
in with at least halfway competent production values, you would get
something resembling The End of Poverty. If you ever thought
that Rand’s nemeses were pure caricature, this film will show you that
they are not (if the stalking presence of Naomi Klein has not already
done so). If you are looking to benchmark this judgment, consider this:
I would not say anything similar even about the movies of Michael

In this movie, the causes of poverty are oppression and
oppression alone. There is no recognition that poverty is the natural
or default state of mankind and that a special set of conditions must
come together for wealth to be produced. There is no discussion of what
this formula for wealth might be. There is no recognition that the
wealth of the West lies upon any foundations other than those of theft,
exploitation and the oppression of literal or virtual colonies.

Or as I recall Peter Bauer's way of putting the matter: "poverty has no causes; wealth has causes."


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