Dir. Josh Fox
(2010, Not Rated, 107 min)
★ ★ ★ ½

Trying to think of something to say with regard to GasLand, that title was the first thing that came to mind. Sometimes it just needs to be said.

This will be a relatively short review, which will tell you how well made GasLand is, how director Josh Fox, in a grassroots effort to uncover the truth about hydraulic fracturing, uses humor, compassion, and intimate autobiographical details to describe the national campaign of energy companies to drill for natural gas, promote it as clean alternative energy, and pretend it doesn’t pollute everything it touches, particularly the air and water of the people living nearby. And the problem is already so widespread that some of the people affected would have trouble finding somewhere that isn’t nearby to gas-drilling operations.

Director Josh Fox

The film’s evidence is clear enough; says one title card, “It doesn’t take a genius.” Environmental agencies are asleep at the wheel, or in some cases have a vested interest in looking the other way, according to one whistle-blower from the EPA. The companies themselves claim there are no adverse affects to drinking water, but when presented with the water they claim is unaffected, none of them will drink it. They know better.

Environmentalists are often written off as anti-progress, anti-jobs, anti-economy, caring more about trees and bunnies than about people. Can we agree, please, that caring about the environment has more to do with caring about the people who breathe the air and drink the water and live off the land, who might contribute to the economy were it not for the chronic pain, asthma, and life-threatening diseases caused by the pollutants being pumped into the ecosystem by energy companies? Below are links to other reviews I’ve written in recent years about industries and institutions that don’t give a fuck about you or me. Don’t worry so much about reading the reviews. Watch the films, and think about them whenever someone tries to tell you that corporate regulation is some kind of socialist job-killer. Corporations don’t like regulations; anything that protects you from harm slows down the flow of money.

How the credit card industry doesn’t give a fuck about you or me: Maxed Out

How the food industry doesn’t give a fuck about you or me: Food Inc.

How the energy industry really doesn’t give a fuck about you or me: If God is Willing and Da Creek Don’t Rise, Crude

I did not publish my review of Sicko, and I have yet to see Inside Job, but no, the health care industry and the financial industry don’t particularly give a fuck about you or me either.

The documentary Casino Jack and the United States of Money is about how such interests, and others, aggressively lobby Congress to pass laws that let them continue not giving a fuck about you or me. Democracy works if you can afford it.

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