Sunday, April 30, 2006

Can’t think of a title


You know when you read something and think, “I wish I’d written that’?

This is from the introduction to the latest (2004) documentary by the brilliant Adam Curtis. His last film was about how both Islamicists and Neo-cons (and liberals too, I would argue) play the fear card by forming their constituencies through the creation of mythical bogeymen.

In The Power of Nightmares, he says:

“In the past politicians promised to create a better world. They had different ways of achieving this but their power came from the optimistic visions they offered their people.

Those dreams failed and today people have lost faith in ideologies. Increasingly politicians are seen as managers of public life.

But now, they have discovered a new role that restores their power and authority. Instead of delivering dreams, politicians now promise to deliver us from nightmares…”

(spotted on the Against War on Terror blog)

7 comments:

Warsaw Crow said...

Huh? His latest? But 'Nightmares' came out in 2004.

There's a fun Q&A with him about the series (and on why it will probably never come out on DVD):

http://www.bbc.co.uk/nightmares

It IS a must-see series.

beatroot said...

I did say it was 2004. It's his latest because I don't think he has made another one yet.

or maybe he did?

Warsaw Crow said...

No, it was just the 'the latest' closely followed by the 'His last' that foxed me. And I missed the 2004 completely. Duh!

Renegade Eye said...

I believe in the blog Annotated Life, Edith wrote a three part article about this documentary.

beatroot said...

Mr Crow...should I have said 'most recent'? Maybe that would have been better.

He's still a good film maker...and much better than Michael 'three bellies' Moore, who is the perfent example of what I meant by a liberals playing the fear game.

beatroot said...

Renegade: It puts the Curtis film in the liberal camp. It says that in the Power of Nightmares we see ‘the attitude of liberals, and the state of liberal democracy. It not only taints the film but consumes it top to bottom.’

It castigates Curtis for not paying enough attention to how Neoconservatives came out of the collapse of US Trotskyism….and ‘{It} denies the potential of ideologies, particularly political movements which promise--or threaten--to reshape the world.’

I think that misses several points in a couple of sentences.

Ignoring the over-estimation of Trotsky on American politics (no western country on earth has been less affected by that kind of politics) it misses the point about liberalism…

Curtis is not a liberal.

The soft left-Liberalism that dominates the political world (certainly in the Anglo-Saxon countries) is itself the product of a failure of socialism and the demise of conservatism. These are the anti-ideological post-modern relativists, the humanitarian interventionists, and the most fearful of the fearful. These are those who believe in nothing (apart from a backward environmentalism). They certainly don’t believe in social progress – because that would privilege one sort of culture over another…at which they scream ‘racist!”

Annotated Life also ignores that fact that Trotskyism failed. It failed. It’s no good trying to blame everything else and avoid its own pathetic failure to engage the masses.

Trots in the UK have now sunk so low that they are making alliances with dubious and backward religious groups in the name of (yet another, yawn…) ‘united front’.

I think Annotated Life would be better starting their analysis by looking, hard, in the mirror.

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