Friday Movie Night - Bowling for Columbine

grieving angelWith the latest mass shooting tragedy dominating the news, we thought it might be time to re-watch Michael Moore's award winning documentary, Bowling for Columbine.

There have been 63 mass shootings in the United States since 1982 and it seems in 2012 there is an epidemic of horror and violence. We know extreme poverty increases violence as does general economic stress. The loss of a job, a threat to career can tip the scales towards tragedy. Workplace abuses have increased as jobs became scarce.

Some will blame guns, some will think the answer is even more guns to shoot the other people with guns.

Could it be the real problem is our me first, f*@k you society? Think about it. If one is mentally ill, they will probably be fighting just to survive, never mind be in any sort of environment where that person would be accepted, with all of their limitations. We have more people in prison than any other industrialized nation. We have homeless kids and homeless people, an entire invisible world of American poverty out there, served platitudes with nothing to stop the downward spiral and slide.

Almost all violence requires the perpetrator to view the victim as the other, the perceived enemy, real or imagined. There is no compassion or empathy for the victims. American society these days is one big hyper competitive the other. Everyday, from layoffs to foreclosures to sickness, the hidden message is clear, . America is a dog eat dog society and stepping over the bodies is praised as executive mentality. America as a society has become so sociopathic, we're now a breeding ground for the Machiavellian executive class and a petri dish for psychopaths with guns. With that, we give you Michael Moore's film on the Columbine tragedy.


Bowling for Columbine




Why this is on an economics site

Normally we don't cover events outside finance, labor and the economy. Yet we see tragedy almost daily and economic rampage very often turns into violent rampages. Moore's documentary covers tragedy in Flint, where Welfare to Work bussed poor people to work at food stands at a rich area Mall, 50 miles away for wages that could not pay rent. These people have children and to get support, they had to take jobs which would never allow them to dig themselves out and be away from their children most of the time.

Generally a huge percentage of single mothers are in poverty, facing similar conditions and these children grow up.


How could it not be on an economics site? What tremendous costs and sapping of the human potential, beyond the tears.

America "shut down" with this tragedy

Well, economics and the messages to society on how worthless everyday Americans are generally is only part of the story. All of America stopped when this happened and is talking about nothing else and hope to stop the insanity. Pushing people into poverty and this never ending "survivor game" mentality of America, very selfish as described above, probably contributes to it. Honestly I sure don't have the real answers on how to stop this for it appears to be mainly sociological, of which economics only plays a part. I don't think we should single out America. This kind of horror just happened in Norway and has happened around the globe.

No answers and I don't think Michael Moore's film really says he has all of the answers, more he describes some of the conditions, which in large part are economic related.

On the other hand, what is it that makes people kill others like they are in a video game or a bad slasher movie? I have no idea, although clearly psychosis and acute schizophrenia and guns don't mix. Our mental health system is pathetic, with no economic, social support really, just court orders to take medications.

On a personal note, I had to turn off the news for there is nothing more horrific than extreme violence against little kids.

Consider this thread the place to talk about it and other "non-economic" related comments.