The End of Poverty?

Poverty is not an accident. 1492 marks the birth of modern times when the conquistadors violently extracted gold and other natural resources. Colonialism was followed by neo-colonialism and now by globalization. Throughout , our economic system has been financed by the poor by forcing them to give up their land and access to natural resources, then through unfair trade, debt repayment and unjust taxes on labor and consumption. This system was carefully built and maintained by the free market policies, resource monopolies and structural adjustment programs of the World Bank and the IMF.

The End of Poverty?” skillfully interweaves all the disparate issues that go into shaping the activist agenda, not just the extreme, irreparable poverty of the Third World, but also the extreme, burgeoning wealth of the United States and Western Europe, the wars and assassinations that secure that wealth, and the destruction of the environment that accompanies it. It effectively answers the question “Why are the people living in the richest countries in terms of resources always the poorest people in the world?” It explains why throwing money (and volunteerism) at the problem is never going to change anything and has, in fact, been making the problem progressively worse. Those who want to keep throwing crumbs to the poor while the rest of us dine on cake should just ignore this message and keep doing what you’re already doing.

The End of Poverty? 2008 104 min.


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