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Zeitgeist Addendum (2008)

Addendum begins and ends with excerpts from a speech by Jiddu Krishnamurti. The remainder of the film is narrated by Peter Joseph and divided into four parts, each prefaced by an on-screen quotation from a notable scholar: Krishnamurti, John Adams, Bernard Lietaer, and Thomas Paine, respectively.

Part I Money is seen as the most corrosive societal tradition. An attempt is made to understand the monetary system and its policies in the United States through the fractional reserve banking system as illustrated in the pamphlet, "Modern Money Mechanics". The process of money creation is fundamentally described as an exchange between the government and the central bank (Federal Reserve in the U.S.). At the inception of money creation, the Federal Reserve loans the government money in exchange for treasury notes. Therefore, money is created out of debt through loans. In other words, Money is debt. The government places the monies it receives from the Fed in a commercial account they control. The monies are then circulated through commercial banks that are part of the Federal Reserve System. Loans are based on reserve requirements, currently there must be $1 in reserve for every $9 loaned out by a commercial bank. However, banks do not need to loan out money from their reserves; instead they can create the loan money at a 9:1 loan/reserve ratio. This is commonly referred to as the money multiplier. The fractional reserve banking system in the U.S. has maintained this reserve ratio since 1992. The money multiplier increases the money supply resulting in a devaluation of the money (as long as there is no proportional increase in the amount of goods and services). Since Richard Nixon closed the gold window in 1971, the dollar has lost 80% of its value. Since the Federal Reserve was chartered in 1914, there has been 96% devaluation of the money supply. Inflation is shown as inherent in the monetary system because all the money in circulation (which came into existence by loans) only constitutes the principle. The interest to pay the money borrowed does not exist and must be constantly created in order to service the debt, further devaluing the currency. Furthermore, loans made by commercial banks are shown to be fraudulent due to legal consideration. Consideration states that lenders must have a legitimate form of capital in order to make the loan. The loan money is seen as fraudulent because the money did not exist until the loan agreement is signed. In these ways, interest rates are seen as an absurd abstraction and the money system constitutes slavery due to perpetual debt bondage.

Part II An interview with John Perkins, author of Confessions of an Economic Hitman explains his role in facilitating the subjugation of Latin American economies by multinational corporations. The steps to conquer the target nation are three fold. First, arrange loans to host countries for infrastructure or other projects. The loans are impossible to repay, eventually leading to default. Second, the IMF or World Bank force the host nation to renegotiate the debt by Conditionality Agreements resulting in: currency devaluation, allowing resources to be made available at a low cost, selling of public services to foreign corporations, support in foreign conflicts, etc. When these steps fail, the second mesaure taken is to overthrow the government, this is done primarly by CIA-sponsored jackals. Assassinations, staged protests, bribery are all means to overthrow. As a last resort, the military is sent to topple regimes when the economic hitmen fail. Iraq is shown as one of these cases. The history of the Shaa in Iran, Guatemala, Ecuador, Panama and Venezuela are other claimed examples of economic hitman operating. For example, in 1953, the democratically elected government of Mosaddegh was overthrown by the U.S. backed Shaa.

Part III Jacque Fresco and the Venus Project are introduced. A need to move away from the current socioeconomic paradigm is made clear. According to Fresco, the free market enterprise does not promote efficiency, abundance or human progress. Instead it incentivizes scarcity in order to maximize profits, prefers suboptimal technological development in order to maintain cyclical consumption, puts the interest of people second to monetary gain, and engages in the production of pollution, as well as other forms of environmental degradation to lower operating cost. Most importantly, capitalism is not seen as supporting societal progress because problems are only solved if there is money to be made and if more money can be made by propagating the problem rather than solving it, the problem will be propagated. One example is the cancer industry. Other equally toxic attributes seen in capitalism are the gap between the rich and the poor which breeds violence due to stratification. The concept of a Resource- Based Economy is shown as the solution to these societal problems caused by distortions of inequality in the monetary system and the profit motive. In this economy there is no need for employment, money, political parties, or military. This is done through the use of advanced automated technology which facilitates the mass production of goods, making them so cheap that there is no need to use money to purchase them. Technologies for transportation discussed include: Evacuated Vacuum Tube Maglev trains for long range transportation, electric cars that get over 100 mpg. Technologies for energy production discussed include: highly efficient solar power, wind, solar, wave and tidal power, and geothermal power. Other technologies not discussed in detail include, nanotechnology, advanced robotics, artificial intelligence.
Part IV explores the idea that all major social problems are ultimately the result of wide-scale ignorance concerning the two concepts of emergence and symbiosis—an ignorance maintained by the political, monetary, and religious institutions. The film maintains a cosmopolitan attitude, stating that human societies are part of an interdependent universe. Several means of social change are finally suggested in order to oppose rigid social institutions, largely via non-violent boycotting and educating. The film concludes in a sequence depicting actors as members of the fast-paced modern world suddenly stopping in their everyday activities and letting go of various symbolic items of corporate, religious, and materialistic significance.

Duration: 02:03:07
Language: EN
CC available: AF, AR, BG, ZH, HR, DA, NL, EN, ET, FI, FR, DE, EL, IW, HI, IT, LV, NO, RO, ES, SV, TR
Resolution max: 360p
Video Source: YouTube
Provided by: TZMOfficialChannel
Published on: 2011-02-04
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