Requiem for the American Dream

Synopsis: REQUIEM FOR THE AMERICAN DREAM is the definitive discourse with Noam Chomsky, on the defining characteristic of our time - the deliberate concentration of wealth and power in the hands of a select few. Through interviews filmed over four years, Chomsky unpacks the principles that have brought us to the crossroads of historically unprecedented inequality - tracing a half century of policies designed to favor the most wealthy at the expense of the majority - while also looking back on his own life of activism and political participation. Profoundly personal and thought provoking, Chomsky provides penetrating insight into what may well be the lasting legacy of our time - the death of the middle class, and swan song of functioning democracy. A potent reminder that power ultimately rests in the hands of the governed, REQUIEM is required viewing for all who maintain hope in a shared stake in the future.
Actors: Noam Chomsky
Production: PF Pictures
  1 nomination.
Rotten Tomatoes:
73 min

much what you'd expect.

Right through American history,

there's been an ongoing clash...

Between pressure for more

freedom and democracy coming

from below,

and efforts at elite control

and domination coming from


It goes back to

the founding of the country.

James Madison, the main framer,

who was as much of a believer

in democracy as anybody

in the world in that day,

nevertheless felt that

the United States system

should be designed,

and indeed with his

initiative was designed,

so that power should be

in the hands of the wealthy...

Because the wealthy

are the more responsible

set of men.

And, therefore,

the structure of the formal

constitutional system

placed most power

in the hands of the senate.

Remember, the senate was

not elected in those days.

It was selected

from the wealthy.

Men, as Madison put it,

"had sympathy for property

owners and their rights."

If you read the debates

at the constitutional


Madison said, "the major concern

of the society has to be

to protect the minority

of the opulent against

the majority."

And he had arguments.

Suppose everyone

had a vote freely.

He said, "well, the majority

of the poor would get together

and they would organize

to take away the property

of the rich."

And, he said, "that would obviously be unjust,

so you can't have that."

So, therefore the constitutional

system has to be set up

to prevent democracy.

It's of some interest that this

debate has a hoary tradition.

Goes back to the first major

book on political systems,

Aristotle's "Politics."

He says, "of all of them,

the best is democracy,"

but then he points out

exactly the flaw that

Madison pointed out.

If Athens were a democracy

for free men,

the poor would get together

and take away the property

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"Requiem for the American Dream" STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 24 Jan. 2020. <>.

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