The derailment of a documentary on Hillary Clinton represents a lost opportunity to discuss some important aspects of the financial crisis.
CNN had assigned Charles Ferguson for a project on the former secretary of state and first lady. Ferguson has become one of the preeminent documentarians in the United States after his Oscar-nominated Iraq War expose "No End in Sight" and his must-see dissection of the financial crisis, the Oscar-winning "Inside Job."
Perhaps unaware of his hard-hitting work, the Republican Party was the first to object to the film, oddly thinking the documentary would be a puff piece. But it was Hillary and her cohorts that did the project in.
"When I approached people for interviews, I discovered that nobody, and I mean nobody, was interested in helping me make this film," Ferguson wrote for the Huffington Post. "Not Democrats, not Republicans -- and certainly nobody who works with the Clintons, wants access to the Clintons, or dreams of a position in a Hillary Clinton Administration."
It's too bad that the documentary will never be made, since Ferguson would have used his knowledge to focus in on how the Clinton Administration was complicit in the economic meltdown. Somehow, Ferguson got the ex-President to sit down for an interview, and then ripped him to pieces.
"I asked him about the financial crisis," Ferguson writes. "He paused and then became even more soulful, thoughtful, passionate, and articulate. And then he proceeded to tell me the most amazing lies I've heard in quite a while."
The Great Recession has been a special focus of Ferguson in the recent past. He has attempted to get to the root of things.
America really has changed a great deal in the last thirty years," he told The Progressive. "One aspect of that change has been this extraordinary growth in the power of the financial sector and also the growth of this ultrawealthy class. There's now an extraordinary concentration of wealth and financial power in a way that was not true thirty years ago. The financial crisis was in many ways a result of that change."
This class still remains in power -- unrepentant, and impervious to all the damage it has caused. The popular backlash about executive bonuses "was intended to stir public anger, to get everybody out there with their pitchforks and their hangman nooses, and all that -- sort of like what we did in the Deep South," AIG CEO Robert Benmosche recently told the Wall Street Journal, indicating the delusional world many of these folks live in.
Charles Ferguson's documentary on Hillary Clinton could have given us another glimpse into this world, and that's why I lament its demise.
Photo: SEIU International, Creative Commons licensed.
Amitabh Pal, the managing editor of The Progressive and co-editor of the Progressive Media Project, is the author of "Islam" Means Peace: Understanding the Muslim Principle of Nonviolence Today (Praeger).