Film Analysis: Life And Debt

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This week’s lecture and viewing of the film Life and Debt opened my eyes to an inequality I had not really considered, global inequality. Whenever I considered the idea of inequality I thought about how certain people in a community had more access to resources than others. I had never really contemplated how certain governments were systematically oppressing other governments and therefore the people of those nations. Life and Debt’s focus on Jamaica shows just how vast of an impact this idea of global inequality can have on an entire nation.
A major focus of the film was how the loans that Jamaica accepted from the International Monetary Fund ended up causing more harm than good. The IMF charged them steep interest rates and forced them to invest in short term development. They restricted the Jamaican government from using the money for building up infrastructures like education and healthcare. These projects could have led to the long term growth of their nation, but the IMF knew exactly what it was doing. In the movie they explained that 80 percent of the vote is required to change the policy of the IMF, and major economies like the United States and China control most of that vote. This leads their policies favoring the few “elite” countries and
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Professor brought up how the Battle of Seattle was a perfect example of this. People saw how terrible the policies of these trade agreements were and decided to protest a meeting of the World Trade Organization. The protest was so successful that the oppressed nations like Jamaica used them as leverage to prove how unfair these deals were. This protest goes to show that in the future by taking action real change can be made. By protesting, petitioning, and expressing your opinion you can start movements that will lead to not only awareness but real

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