Hello and welcome to our analysis of the documentary IOUSA. I am Amanda and these are my teammates Nikko and MuLLady. First we would like to invite you to grab a cupcake as they are being passed around and secondly we would like you to begin to think about money. Our movie was IOUSA and it is about our national debt. This movie was made in part by the Peter G Peterson foundation and features members of the Concord Coalition.
This movie was based on a book entitled Empire of Debt by Bill Bonner.
Since this movie is about our national debt we wanted to ask if anyone knows how much that debt is? Well, let us show you a national debt clock created by Oddhammer.com.
. I don’t know about you but when I look at numbers that big they seem abstract, so allow us to show you a short animation done by the Danse Group illustrating just how large that amount is. (Danse Clip) If that doesn’t set it in stone let me share with you something Dr. Nofsinger said to me in intro to philosophy. “If your heart beats one time a second you will be 32 when your heart hits it 1 billionth beat and when it hits 1 trillion you would be over 31,000 years old.” That is a long time, a very long time. So when you watch IOUSA, I said when and not if because you should see this movie, or you are listening to campaign speeches where politicians toss around words like billions and trillions think about what those numbers really mean.IOUSA is a non-partisan movie which presents the point of view of the groups it features; it does not however offer a counter point. Later in the presentation we will offer some of these counter points. So let me introduce Nikko who is going to explain our movie from a technical standpoint.
I.O.U.S.A comes across first as an honest documentary movie, which is free of sensational elements. No starving mothers or babies are included in the picture to play out our pathos; however, it manipulates our mind just as much as an emotionally charged documentary would send us into our room grabbing our pillows crying. The movie caters to our senses convincing us about it truthfulness. It uses great animations, camera angles, and archive footages to bias our mind. It is not ashamed to mend the story line to prove its right. As you just watched in the opening clip of IOUSA different presidents are used with newspaper headlines shown with a tunnel vision effect to add to the drama and panic: “Debt Crisis,” “Inflation,” “Anxiety.” (I/2.34) Behold! A serious movie is coming! Thankfully, these kind of cheap sensational effects stop, and the director uses more subtle ways to influence us. Although, the beginning blows the audience away with the statement, “Fiscal irresponsibility possesses a greater threat to this country than terrorists hiding in the caves of Afghanistan.” This statement was made years before we got Osama Bin Laden.( this should be cited, great place for a verbal signal phrase)
As you can see in the clips they sit at messy desks covered by thick books and papers; they must know their things! (I/3.25 David Walker, I/5.32 Robert Bixby, III/3.18 Henry Zeeve, III/ Robert Rubin) Bixby of the Concord Coalition shows the 1988 budget, specifically how small it was in the past; the 2007 budget shown in movie, comparatively, has grown. In 1988, the budget was comprised of numbers and a short description. Now the budget is professionally done with glossy pictures, but not as many numbers and short descriptions. A comment made in the clip that this was a metaphor on what has occurred with the federal government. What I think he meant by that was the government is now flashy, and slick but lacks real measurable substance.(this part is great make sure to say because it covers the rubric point about your interpretation) Dean Baker and David Rosnick, economists for the Center for Economic and policy Research, state in an Analysis of the movie I.O.U.S.A that the reason the budgets look so different is simply because people like Bixby have requested a more detailed description of budgetary programs. ( this gives a verbal signal phrase and a
As the storyteller, the editor is responsible for the flow of the story. As such, he makes the decision of what part of the interview should be included or left out manipulating with our mind. A perfect example is the set of clips I am going to show you, notice the difference between the first one which was shown in the movie and the second one which is unedited. The first clip portrayed Ron Paul as a hero, the second clip is downloadable on YouTube and shows Greenspan actually talking himself out of whamzy.
Throughout the movie they used patriotic music at pivotal points. The camera was hand-held and stationary. Clips were reality type with hand held, and at other times stationary which gave a professional look. They added in C-span type footage of Congressional Committees. They shot this mostly during the day, except one point they were working at night and pointed it out to show how hard they are working. Also to make a point they had these sections where they show rapid clips with music to pound how the message. Now I am going to pass the torch to MuLLady and he is going to explain to you the economic aspects of our movie.If you hear people talking about our national debt or have conversations about this issue, I encourage you to educate yourself by watching this movie. At minimum you will sound knowledgeable at cocktail parties.Throughout the movie, the primary message is, “Our National Debt is not sustainable, we are living it up now, ultimately leaving our unborn relatives with the bill.” (this is also our thesis statement and we are in agreement that something has to be done about the national debt) In the film a young woman is explains our debt by saying it is life her parents running up their credit card debt and they assume she will be willing to handle the debt. In other words, we are degrading their quality of life before their birth, and giving them no control over the factors that structure their environment. Senator Judd Gregg says, “The debt absolutely guarantees that our children will have a worse quality of life then we do.”
A concerned group of young Americans come together to discuss how I.O.U.S.A. clearly, dramatically, and concisely tells the frightening story of the US National Debt. They are giving figures that are showing that the debt is growing. They also call alarm since these figures are not including the ongoing economic recovery and the war in the Middle East. They discuss the movement to wake people aware of this mounting debt. They do enjoy the movie, which shows if we are to teach, we must also entertain.
Pete Peterson has been given a billion dollars to get the message out about the US Debt ((Holm)).Bob Jensen(maybe add his title to show why his opinion matters) of Trinity University acknowledges that David Walker is leading a bipartisan effort to save the US from economic disaster. Bill Clinton appointed David Walker US Comptroller General and he retained the same position with the Bush administration. While David was in this position he became weak in the knees when realized how significant this pending doom was for the US.
He is attempting to guide the US government around entitlement bankruptcy. Both David and the author Bob seem to think the national health care system will help with the deficit long-term. The key focus here is not the debt by it self but the future entitlements that some believe will bankrupt the country. By 2016, the interest on our national debt will be the largest single line item in our budget. He goes on to write that most issues can be handled, except Medicare, drastic steps must be taken to handle this frightening issue. As the Federal Debt question is broken down onto four different elements, Budget Deficit, Savings Deficit, Trade Deficit and Leadership Deficit, ( I/8.16)Walker, Bixby and other experts are returning components when they try to answer questions related to the four deficits.(I think we should explain what these deficits are because it would meet a rubric point)David Walker, the top accountant, has added up our income, liabilities, and future obligations which has lead him to conclude that the current America’s lifestyle is not sustainable. He is the head of the Government Accounting Office (GAO), they seek to create more transparency for the budget.
Mr. Walker leads the “Fiscal Wake Up” tour; the key players in this tour are the Concord Coalition, the Brookings Institution, the Heritage Foundation, and the GOA.In the film back in 2007 the debt was at 8.7 trillions, with them discussing that the situation will get much worse. To back up their prediction here in 2011 we are at 14.2 trillions. Back then we were at a Debt-to-GDP ration of 64%; in 2010 the ratio was at 93.25% ((Chantrill))Peter G. Peterson Secretary of Commerce 1972- 1973 in reference to the debt status, “You ain’t seen nothing yet”We have only had budget surpluses in five years in the 20th and 21st century. Each year we have used Social Security surpluses to pay down our budget deficits and what we don’t pay down goes to our national debt. The challenge as the baby boomers start to claim their social security there is not enough. Social Security will add to the deficit not subtract. The film mentions that the US has the largest trade deficit, we are the largest economy, but that does not give us license to keep running deficits up.According to Jim Riley PhD(verbal signal but should add his creditials), the budget is just smoke and mirrors. He is saying that we need to keep our eyes on the target, which is the national debt. The main focus should be on the debt not just balancing the budget. Discussed is the concern over China’s investment in US Treasury bonds and the possibility of pulling out their support. One source says, “What matters is that China is investing in U.S. financial assets, not that they are investing in U.S. Treasury bonds. While it is unlikely that China would maliciously sell its dollar holdings, it would cause the United States economy just as much trouble if China suddenly sold $1.5 trillion of stock as if its sold $1.5 trillion of government bonds ((Baker and Rosnick make sure to do the verbal phrase pointing out that it is a counter point)).” I must disagree with this position that it is unlikely that China would maliciously sell its dollar holdings. Obviously this person has never studied warfare. Any weakness that can be exploited at some point most likely will. And if they sold shares only from one company they would be sending a message about the weakness of the company. In other words, if China sold $1.5 trillion of US government bonds, they would be communicating that the US dollar was too weak to depend on. This would create a devastating ripple effect that other economies would most likely follow.
Americans are addicted to debt; a cancer exists, if we do nothing this debt has nuclear capability, meaning total destruction. Basically we are running up debt that our grandchildren’s children will inherit, this can easily turn into a real catastrophe. Now I will pass it back to Amanda.(or you could finish up while I pass out the bills)I hope you enjoyed our presentation and your snack but as my grandfather always loved to remind me, there is no such thing as a free lunch or snack in our case, so please take the bill now being handed out, in it you will see your share of the national debt and the amount you would need to chip in for the programs you choose to stay afloat in the future.( not sure about how to end presentation but we need to have a defined end to meet a rubric standard)
IOUSA is based on Empire of Debt by Bill Bonner<br />
Works Cited:<br />Anti-Debt Group Founded at PA to Bring "I.O.U.S.A." to Campus for Screening on Oct. 23." Andover Phillips Academy. Phillips Academy, 08 October 2008. Web. 20 April 2011.<br />Baker, Dean, and Rosnik. "IOUSA Not OK: An Analysis of the Deficit Disaster Story in the Film IOUSA." CEPR. Center for Economic and Policy Research, October 2008. Web. 22 April 2011. <br />Chantrill, Christopher. "Budgeted US Federal Debt." US Government Spending. Christopher Chantrill, February 2010. Web. 20 April 2011.<br />Danse Multimedia Group, Dir. What 1 Trillion Dollars Looks Like . The Danse<br /> Multimedia Group: 2010, Film.<br />IOUSA. Dir. Creadon Patrick." Roadside Attractions: 2008, Film.<br />Jensen, Bob. "Video on IOUSA Bipartisan Solutions to Saving the USA." Political Tidbits. Trinity University, 05 October 2010. Web. 20 April 2011.<br />"National Debt Clocks." Oddhammer. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 May 2011.<br />Riley PhD, Riley. "The Debt of the United States." Regis University, Web. 22 April 2011. <The Debt of the United States>.<br />"Ron Paul Questions Alan Greenspan at Monetary Policy Hearing (2000)." YouTube. Web. 9 May 2011. <br />"University of Iowa News Release." University of Iowa News Service. University of Iowa, 12 April 2011. Web. 22 April 2011. <br />Image and Video Credits<br /> IOUSA<br /> http://blogs.furman.edu/com221sp10a/2010/04/<br /> http://www.openmarket.org/2010/11/10/the-washington-version-of-spending-cuts/<br />