Blood Diamond is a 2006 American-German political war thriller film co-produced and directed by Edward Zwick, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Connelly and Djimon Hounsou. The title refers to blood diamonds, which are diamonds mined in African war zones and sold to finance conflicts, and thereby profit warlords and diamond companies across the world.
Set during the Sierra Leone Civil War in 1996–2001, the film depicts a country torn apart by the struggle between government loyalists and insurgent forces. It also portrays many of the atrocities of that war, including the rebels’ amputation of people’s hands to discourage them from voting in upcoming elections.
The film’s ending, in which a conference is held concerning blood diamonds, refers to an historic meeting that took place in Kimberley, South Africa in 2000. [excerpted from Wikipedia]
Directed by Edward Zwick — USA — 2006 — 143 minutes
Bob Jene will examine the American Monetary Institute’s American Monetary Act, a proposed amendment to the Constitution, and compare it with Henry George’s ideas on money. Steve Zarlenga’s speech in which he shows George’s ideas on money coincide with AMI’s will also be examined and discussed. It will boil down to which is more important, Henry George’s proposed fiscal reform or Zarlenga’s monetary reform.
Presented by American political economist, author, professor, and former federal official Robert Reich, this film premiered in the 2013 Sundance Film Festival in the Documentary Competition section, and won a U S Documentary Special Jury Award for Achievement in Filmmaking. Reich distills the story through the lens of widening income inequality—currently at historic highs—and explores the effects this increasing gap has not on not only the U. S. economy but American democracy itself. At the heart of the film is a simple proposition: What is a good society and what roles does the widening income gap play in the deterioration of the nation’s economic health?
Director: Jacob Kornbluh — USA — 2013 — 113 minutes. Refreshments and discussion following.
An evening with Bob Jene to compare the Georgist fiscal reform to the TARP bailout, “Fair Tax,” Flat Tax, Bush tax cuts and government money creation. A gist of each proposed or attempted solution to the “great recession” will be given including QE I, QE II and QE III. Attendees will rank the proposed remedies on a scale of 1 to 10 based on 8 criteria.
Political Economy Book Club discusses Uncle Tom’s Cabin, “the book that inspired the abolitionist movement.” It may have been based on the real-life slave Josiah Henson, who escaped slavery and started the community Dawn in Canada which became a destination of many slaves on the underground railroad. The event is free and everyone is welcome, but RSVP is requested to 312 450 2906 or email@example.com.
Originating as a field trip for students completing our Progress & Poverty course, this stroll thru downtown Chicago examines some of the ways that average people, and the community as a whole, are deprived of their just earnings. Among other things we’ll see who benefits from the expensive infrastructure and “economic development” projects, how Thomas Jefferson wanted Chicago to fund its public schools, what happens when a well-located building burns down, and how land speculators get their taxes paid by productive workers. Hardcopy sourced notes will be provided. Expect to walk about 2 km; maybe we’ll stop for snacks (individual settlement) along the way.
A $10 donation is requested from those who are not recent or current HGS students or donors, but nobody will be excluded due to lack of funds. If you have a paypal account, you can make your donation by credit card using the link below, or better yet bring cash or a check.
This is a special presentation for students at DePaul, Loyola, and Dominican Universities. If you meet this requirement and you’re interested in solving the problem of poverty, you’ll get $20 (or a free course voucher if you prefer) by attending this program. RSVP is essential. Others may attend on space-available basis.
Our Curious Georgists go to the Movies series continues with a film based on Theodore Dreiser’s novel Sister Carrie (1900), but with the first word removed so American and British audiences wouldn’t expect a film about a nun or a nurse. Set in Chicago just after Henry George’s time, the book had been entitled The Flesh and the Spirit, but was renamed before publication.
Sister Carrie went against social and moral norms of the time, as Dreiser presented his characters without judging them. Dreiser fought against censorship of Sister Carrie, brought about because Carrie engaged in affairs and other “illicit sexual relationships” without suffering any consequences. [Wikipedia]
This 1952 film version was directed by William Wyler, and stars Jennifer Jones and Laurence Olivier. Carrie received two Academy Award nominations: Costume Design (Edith Head), and Best Art Direction (Hal Pereira, Roland Anderson, Emile Kuri). Additionally, Laurence Olivier received a BAFTA nomination for his performance. It was screened as part of the 13th Venice Film Festival official program.
Carrie is completely unrelated to subsequent films of the same name released in 1976, 2002, and 2013.
Directed by William Wyler–USA–1952–118 minutes
As is our custom, the showing is free and will include light refreshments and subsequent discussion.
Would Rube Goldberg have been able to design a less straightforward system of funding government than the U S Federal income tax? In this presentation, HGS instructor Bob Jene looks at what it costs to collect this revenue. The direct cost to the government of operating the Internal Revenue Service is only a small part, as the burden put on the taxpayer, and the diversion of effort from productive uses, should also be considered.
Bring your own bicycle (or rent a “shared” one from Divvy) and join HGS Instructor Bob Jene for a leisurely roll thru the near south area, including Grant Park, Museum Campus, Central Station, Prairie Avenue, and South Michigan Avenue. Taxpayers spent hundreds of millions for infrastructure and amenities serving these areas, resulting in redevelopment but also higher costs for housing, commercial and even parking spaces. Bob will discuss these effects, who benefits and who pays, and how equity might be improved.