What is that speeding blur of red, white, and blue? Has the famed superhero materialized in our world, to right a vast number of wrongs in America at the eleventh hour?
Well – perhaps. If you can consider Michael Moore and his symbolic planting of our flag in various foreign countries in his quest to steal their greatest military secrets (read: social/ political ideas and programs) so as to benefit the USA in its hour of greatest need to be equivalent with Superman's
impressive heroic adventures and rescues – then, yes, you can!
Setting himself up as the Military Ambassador, sent on a top mission from the Pentagon, Moore invades one country after another – all of them cultures which have the potential to teach us lessons, and basic human wisdom we are perversely adverse to adopting for the decisive betterment of all of our citizens – well, the ones who are not among the super-rich, in any event.
You will laugh with a sense of deep irony, as the values of these eight countries are paraded before your consciousness, and you weep within, since you know quite well, the history of our own grand republic and inimitable developing democracy. Moore may remind us a bit too clumsily, at moments, what this venerable record of ours has been (through the use of historical film footage from our own past trespasses), but this is but a minor criticism.
A sampling of his military discoveries includes these top-secret weapons:
In Italy, workers are encouraged to take lots of vacation time (is eight paid weeks per year possible?), so that they will come back to their jobs – relaxed and healed from their stress. The CEOs of the Lardini Company (Clothing) gave this one away. As one woman interviewed pronounced, after questioned why she did not wish to put in more working hours, "What's the point of being richer?" Italy, along with France, clearly also exults in placing high value in its sensual living – and that, folks, means lots of lovemaking and romance -- and in the instance of France, high cuisine for the public school students!
In Finland, the country currently retaining the prize for the highest level of educational success, teachers blatantly told Moore, 'We assign next to no homework. The important thing is that students have time for activities like reading, making music and art, and exploring relationships.' Even more stunning, is the fact that every public school must be up to an equal set of standards – so transferring students may move anywhere without any disconnection in their studies.
These military secrets are so fantastic, we can hardly hope to record many more, at such risk to our allies overseas. What use will our Armed Forces make of such incredible discoveries, apparently brought to light for the first time?
Germany boasts of its companies' supervisory boards, which consist of half workers, alongside the administrators, making significant contributions and decisions in all process of decision-making. And Great Caesar's Ghost! Employers are not allowed to contact workers when they are not at the work site – that's right!
No emails or calls when workers are home evenings, during weekends, or their vacations. This is a potentially greatly damaging revelation – who can conceive, in our beloved homeland, of not being at the beck and call of their employers, 24/7, and consider this to be living a perfectly normal life?
In Norway, when prisoners are greeted in the maximum security prisons, they are compelled to watch a video, produced by the guards (perhaps wardens, too), the content of which, you will not believe! Boy, are these rough thugs going to be straightened out by tough love, or what!? There is even a recording studio on the
premises for the musically creative bunch, to produce their own music on 'Criminal Records.' The basic principle in this system,is to rehabilitate the population. Punishment, in its rawest forms, as we have learned so very eloquently in the US – is a highly questionable deterrent to further involvement with heinous crimes.
We are certainly giving away much too much, but how can we not conclude with a few observations re: the incredible finds Moore unearthed in Iceland? On October 24, 1975, a nationwide women's strike virtually shut down all of the commercial activities of Iceland. In 1980, Vigdis Finnbogadottir became the first woman president of Iceland. (She served in this capacity for 16 years.) One of three notable CEOs who were women, observed: 'When you have three women on any
company's board, the entire conversation changes – as do the values being expressed and considered. Women think about what is good for the Whole – and men generally take the short-term, 'What's in it for me, alone?' approach.
Certainly, this film is highly recommended to all Americans. General Moore, in presenting the USA flag to various CEOs, presidents, and other worthy representatives of these nine foreign countries, is showing us just how many incredibly valuable top-military secrets there are to be had for a bit of invasion activity. Where did these society-transforming ideas originate? You will have to see "Where To Invade Next," in order to find out.
The blur of white, red, and blue, which Michael Moore leaves behind in his wake – may well recall to us the tracks of the superhero from Krypton. It is the eleventh hour. In fact, "It is later than you think."
A woman journalist in Tunisia asks this question: 'Why do Americans spend loads of time watching thoughtless TV shows, when they could be learning so much, especially about other cultures, and then visiting these foreign countries to learn about their people and ideas?'
[Your Excuse: _______]
Charles Kroll,Ph.D in Literature is a freelance review writer for the Brattleboro Reformer