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Walking into the local anarchist collective shop, I decided to check out the video section.  To my surprise, Michael Moore's movie Capitalism: A Love Story stuck out like a sore thumb, not to mention other pro-government and policy enforcing films including Food, Inc.

While Moore's film may point out some of the many flaws of state capitalism, but it fails to do a number of things.  First, the term capitalism has been destroyed thoroughly, becoming muddled with corporatism and government intervention, but is still technically defined as a free market.   Moore fails to point out any differentiation, and while many anarchists argue against the term and/or the idea of capitalism, it would still be beneficial to clear up any confusion over regulated markets and free and voluntary trade.   Secondly, the film depicts utter worshipping the state, showing examples of other government systems being "better" than that of America.  For example, it points out that the socialist policies of France allow people to live happily and comfortably and that high taxes are generally beneficial to society.

In other documentaries, such as the mentioned Food, Inc., they tend to be pretty informative about the evils of a variety subjects, and in this example, the food industry is exposed.  All of the puzzle pieces are present, government regulations causing mistreatment of both farmers and animals, the corporatism theme, and even government protected patents.   However, by the end of the film, you are presented with an urgency to lobby, protect and consult your politicians on these problems.  The pieces simply do not fit together for a more anti-government theme, but more of a push to work within the system, the problem itself.

These documentaries, obviously ripe with pro-government sentiment, should have any anarchist angry, but why do so many continue to support them?  It seems that just the simple theme of corruption, anti-establishment and government problems seems to pull in supporters enough that they are so excited to see these topics hit the mainstream that they have little consideration about the overall theme being pro-government.  Also, many left leaning anarchists tend to become caught up with large youth-based social change groups that tend to espouse at least some of their beliefs and highly support these films.  These groups tend to neglect a consistent approach of their beliefs, which can lead to a number of discrepancies with anarchist philosophy.

Sticking to your principles  in a well thought out and developed approach beats picking and choosing certain battles.  As the saying goes, "There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root," and that root is the government.  Slacking on your beliefs and approving of a pro-government film sends the wrong message to the movement.  While it certainly would be nice for an anti-government film to become mainstream, in the meantime we can work on that being a possibility and put our efforts towards that goal rather than backtracking by supporting these pro-state concoctions.