A ‘Network’ Scene Classic: “There Is No Democracy” (Video)

Commenting on our site survey of the best conspiracy-minded films, regular disinfo.com commenter 5by5 suggested this scene from Network and offered these thoughts:

It’s corporatist arrogance on bold display, and this is before they REALLY got cooking. This is why they need to be taken down MULTIPLE pegs. They think themselves Gods, and they need a serious reminder that they most definitely AREN’T.

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  • honu

    The whole movie is just so good. I agree this scene is one of the best in the film and it spells out the corporatist mind set….and it's our reality today.

  • nsauber

    Has anyone here ever heard of the Zeitgeist Movie? It features dubious clips from this film and so much more, its the starting point if your ready to wake up.

  • justagirl

    alternately, there are no such things as money.

  • Raymond

    Best audition piece ever.

  • Anonymous

    Well to me it also brought to mind what Dave Chappelle said on the Actor’s Studio about how “When you get to a certain level, they pull the curtain back, and show you what’s really up,” and how it made him take a step back – a step back all the way to friggin’ Africa for like a year just to get his head together after seeing that crap.

    Chris Rock referring to this same type of corporatist personality joked about the difference between “wealthy” and “rich”, by saying “Shaq is rich. The white man who signs his check? Is wealthy.”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4m37JkkGjAY

    Another more rudimentary yet highly illuminating illustration of this is the L-Curve:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=woIkIph5xcU

    And that divide is going to kill this country, because democracies only do well with a large middle class (which produces future leaders), where there is also significant amounts of movement BETWEEN classes. Where you can rise quite high, but if you fall through the natural circumstances of life, you don’t crash & burn, because there is a real safety net that catches you, and you can climb back from there.

    If you can imagine a shape to describe this, it would be like an egg laid on it’s side, with the widest section being the middle incomes, and the poor OR the rich not making up too much of the population, or taking too much of the wealth.

    The distribution in the industrialized Second World tends to look more like a pyramid (or more accurately a pyramid scheme – Mexico would be an example of this). But the Third World (a country like Uganda or Venezuela before Chavez started reducing poverty) looks more like a giant block at the base with a very tall, very narrow rod sticking out of it terminating in a point at the top. A place where 99% of the people own squat, and 1% if that, own 99% of everything. And there is NO movement between those classes. That is a DIRECT cause of instability in the Third World, and THAT is the direction we’re going in if we let men like this douchey character in the “Network” video above are allowed to continue to manipulate things.

    The fact remains that these corporations exist at our pleasure. And BY LAW, we can revoke their incorporation if they get out of line, and threaten the country. Honestly, it’s about time we take those laws seriously, and begin USING them to defend ourselves.

    I know a lot of people don’t like big government, and I understand what that fear is about. But you at least have a VOICE in the conduct of your government in a Democracy. It may have been whittled down to next to nothing over the past 40 years, but you still have one, and people need to start taking that power back. I’m telling you, if I have to choose between a government where I have a voice, and a corporation where I have exactly ZERO voice? I’m picking the democratic government. I’m going to side with the one thing that makes this country great and brimming with possibility — our democracy.

    But that also means that we have to stop paying attention to party affiliation exclusively. Certainly if the vote yesterday to refuse to allow even TALKING about financial reform is any indication, the Republican Party as a WHOLE has gone completely off the cliff, 100% corporatist with the possible exception of Ron Paul (at least as far as the Federal Reserve goes). But you also have pseudo-Democrats like Ben Nelson voting right along with them, much to the consternation of the vast majority of the Democrats.

    That incident reminded me of another great movie, “1776”, where the proto-Republican Royalists of that time were blocking even debate over the question of independence (truly, there really is nothing new under the sun). And it came down to the grumpy old delegate from Rhode Island who got the swing vote, and said, “I’ve never seen, heard, nor SMELLED an issue that couldn’t be TALKED about. Hell yes, I’m for debating anything!”

    The problem we have today with this, is greater in the Senate than it is in the House, because the House isn’t burdened with these idiotic filibuster rules (Democrats voted 57 to the Republican 41 and still “lost” that vote — that’s INSANE), but still. When you vote, don’t just look to the D or the R after the candidate’s name. Make sure they’re going to D.C. to represent YOU, not a bunch of corporate hacks. And make sure they aren’t just paying lipservice to caring for the poor, strengthening the middle class, and helping SMALL business.

  • 5by5

    Well to me it also brought to mind what Dave Chappelle said on the Actor's Studio about how “When you get to a certain level, they pull the curtain back, and show you what's really up,” and how it made him take a step back – a step back all the way to friggin' Africa for like a year just to get his head together after seeing that crap.

    Chris Rock referring to this same type of corporatist personality joked about the difference between “wealthy” and “rich”, by saying “Shaq is rich. The white man who signs his check? Is wealthy.”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4m37JkkGjAY

    Another more rudimentary yet highly illuminating illustration of this is the L-Curve:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=woIkIph5xcU

    And that divide is going to kill this country, because democracies only do well with a large middle class (which produces future leaders), where there is also significant amounts of movement BETWEEN classes. Where you can rise quite high, but if you fall through the natural circumstances of life, you don't crash & burn, because there is a real safety net that catches you, and you can climb back from there.

    If you can imagine a shape to describe this, it would be like an egg laid on it's side, with the widest section being the middle incomes, and the poor OR the rich not making up too much of the population, or taking too much of the wealth.

    The distribution in the industrialized Second World tends to look more like a pyramid (or more accurately a pyramid scheme – Mexico would be an example of this). But the Third World (a country like Uganda or Venezuela before Chavez started reducing poverty) looks more like a giant block at the base with a very tall, very narrow rod sticking out of it terminating in a point at the top. A place where 99% of the people own squat, and 1% if that, own 99% of everything. And there is NO movement between those classes. That is a DIRECT cause of instability in the Third World, and THAT is the direction we're going in if we let men like this douchey character in the “Network” video above are allowed to continue to manipulate things.

    The fact remains that these corporations exist at our pleasure. And BY LAW, we can revoke their incorporation if they get out of line, and threaten the country. Honestly, it's about time we take those laws seriously, and begin USING them to defend ourselves.

    I know a lot of people don't like big government, and I understand what that fear is about. But you at least have a VOICE in the conduct of your government in a Democracy. It may have been whittled down to next to nothing over the past 40 years, but you still have one, and people need to start taking that power back. I'm telling you, if I have to choose between a government where I have a voice, and a corporation where I have exactly ZERO voice? I'm picking the democratic government. I'm going to side with the one thing that makes this country great and brimming with possibility — our democracy.

    But that also means that we have to stop paying attention to party affiliation exclusively. Certainly if the vote yesterday to refuse to allow even TALKING about financial reform is any indication, the Republican Party as a WHOLE has gone completely off the cliff, 100% corporatist with the possible exception of Ron Paul (at least as far as the Federal Reserve goes). But you also have pseudo-Democrats like Ben Nelson voting right along with them, much to the consternation of the vast majority of the Democrats.

    The problem we have today with this, is greater in the Senate than it is in the House, because the House isn't burdened with these idiotic filibuster rules (Democrats voted 57 to the Republican 41 and still “lost” that vote — that's INSANE), but still. When you vote, don't just look to the D or the R after the candidate's name. Make sure they're going to D.C. to represent YOU, not a bunch of corporate hacks. And make sure they aren't just paying lipservice to caring for the poor, strengthening the middle class, and helping SMALL business.
    That incident reminded me of another great movie, “1776”, where the proto-Republican Royalists of that time were blocking even debate over the question of independence (truly, there really is nothing new under the sun). And it came down to the grumpy old delegate from Rhode Island who got the swing vote, and said, “I've never seen, heard, nor SMELLED an issue that couldn't be TALKED about. Hell yes, I'm for debating anything!”

  • Butter Knife

    This video contains content from Warner Bros. Entertainment, who has blocked it on copyright grounds.

    Seems like a pretty good summary to me.

  • Butter Knife

    This video contains content from Warner Bros. Entertainment, who has blocked it on copyright grounds.

    Seems like a pretty good summary to me.

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