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All things controversial

Posted on Tuesday Jun 12, 2012

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While on the boat we see a lot of documentaries which helps keep us informed on the bigger issues going on in the world and the US. We've seen some good PBS programs as well and they are all viewable on-line. So I thought I would post a "collage of controversies" that contain the most thought provoking material out of the many hours we've seen. They run the full spectrum of all things you don't talk about at dinner parties: politics, taxes, religion, and now health care.


Wiki Leaks Decrypted Video (April 2010) In 2007 when a Reuter's photographer's camera is mistaken for an RPG, the military responded in a cold video game like fashion killing 11 people (including 2 journalists). If the initial attack wasn't bad enough, a family on their way to school saw an injured man and tried to help him into the car to take him to the hospital when the helicopters opened fire on them as well injuring 2 young girls in the car. This video is hard to watch for multiple reasons and frustrating because of all the cover-up lies told by the military prior to this video being leaked to the public in 2010 that showed how the event really unfolded. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5rXPrfnU3G0
As a side video, Frontline's 2011 episode, Kill/Capture http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/kill-capture/ explores America's duality of winning them over vs killing and capturing. Warning: The cultural barriers in this video are stomach turning.
The Warning (Oct. 20, 2009) Long before the crisis of 2008, one woman in the CFTC fought to warn and stop the secret over-the-counter derivatives practices that broke our economy. Her efforts ruined her career and the CFTC was legally barred from regulating derivatives by the millionaires & billionaires pulling the strings. Her story and the players involved are fascinating (follow up this documentary with the movie Inside Job). http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/warning/view/
Sick Around America (March 31, 2009) The number one cause of bankruptcy in the US is from medical costs and over 50% of those filing for bankruptcy were insured. This program looks at health care issues around the US. As people who are disqualified from insurance in the US due to pre-existing conditions we get it, but many people who have never had to deal with the cracks in the system this might help you understand: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/sickaroundamerica/view/
Sick Around the World (April 15, 2008) Lean about the health care systems of England, Germany, Japan and Tawian in comparison to the US Health Care systems. A must watch for those who don't like the latest attempts at health care reform. Some of the earlier ideas in the health plan were taken from these countries (like the proposed National Health Card ala Tawain). http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/sickaroundtheworld/view/
The Mormons (April 30, 2007) With Mitt Romney in the spotlight there's no time like the present to learn about one of the richest and fastest growing religions in the world. With 14 million takers, they equal the number of Jews in the world and are establishing them as the 4th Abrahamic Religion and are referred to in religious scholarly circles as the “American Religion”. http://www.pbs.org/mormons/view/
Private Warriors (2005) America is moving more and more towards hired guns. Spending well over $11 billion (2002-2005) on private companies who don't have to follow the rules of war or lawful oversight. This growing industry of outsourced killing with little or no accountability is a disturbing trend. But learn about the situation and decide for yourself from the people involved: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/warriors/view/
Is WalMart Good for America? (Nov. 16, 2004) Job loss or job creation? Small business destroyer or improving quality of life for poor? An in depth look at the largest employer in the world might give you some food for thought. http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/walmart/view/
The Secret History of the Credit Card (Nov. 13, 2004) Thought you knew all you needed to know about the plastic in your pocket? Think again. http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/credit/view/