Toronto Hots Docs: “The Corporate Coup D’État”

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Camden, New Jersey Foodbank

The premise of this documentary is that a coup d’état is occurring in America at a very fast rate. It was Canadian journalist and philosopher John Ralston Saul which mention that term in his 1995 “Unconscious Civilization”.

It is states that corporate elites in the United States are in the process of hijacking democracy. Frighteningly President Trump proudly hijacks a Mussolini phrase, “It’s better to be a lion for one day than a sheep for 100.”

A coup d’état is defined as a sudden forced and illegal takeover of a government by a small group which in this case is the corporate elite. Clinton and Obama it is argued facilitated the coup through attacks on welfare and the change in criminal laws that lead to a prison boom. It is stated that NAFTA was a severe blow to working America as it permitted America to outsource to Mexico where wages are miniscule and environmental protection non-existent.

Although we think of Clinton and Obama as caring Presidents they did nothing to stop this destructive outsourcing. Trump may be referred to as an idiot by one of the commentators but the political elite tolerates his buffoonery as he delivered on corporate tax cuts which facilitated corporate share buy backs and increased the value of shares hence increasing corporate executive compensation. He also managed to roll back big portions of the Dodd-Frank Act that imposed onerous obligations on banks so that the financial crisis of 2008 would not be repeated.

One commentator noted that Trump may be the end of corporatism and if civil unrest continues the chilling response may be fascism.

The downright desperation of Youngstown, Ohio and Camden New Jersey are investigated. Capitalism used them, sucked them dry and spat them out as foreign produced commodities are cheaper. This outsourcing is not restricted the blue-collar jobs but white-collar jobs as well.

The money earned by the corporate elite has spiralled upwards but wages for the working and middle classes have slowly drifted upwards.

This is one meaty documentary that leaves very little hope about the future of America. Perhaps the saddest realization of the film is that successive Democratic regimes failed to help the blue collars and desperation points to why Trump was elected. As one former steelworker said there will be no steel plants in America. The infrastructure costs are prohibitive.

You will be very well guided through the film by journalist Chris Peabody with insightful commentary by Saul.

Directed by Fred Peabody. This is a 90-minute 2018 Canadian film which shows 29/30 April and 3May. Good reading with our serialization of Ross Trenholm’s Novel “Life at Megacorp”.