Greedy Lying Bastards

Greedy Lying Bastards theatrical poster 202x300 - Greedy Lying BastardsGreedy Lying Bastards is a documentary by Craig Rosebraugh looking at global warming, its causes and consequences, and the enormous oil industry funding of the climate change deniers. The film contends that the fossil fuel corporations, and the Koch Brothers in particular, are spending tens of millions of dollars to make sure that there is no government policy that affects their profits, even if the long-term health of the planet is at stake. It is a sobering look at the state of money in politics, though if you are an environmentalist or a political news junkie, most of what Rosebraugh is showing is not really shocking, just disgusting.

The film opens with shots of the crazy weather we seem to be experiencing more and more — Super storms, floods, droughts, fires — and brings a human element into the story through interviews with the residents of a neighborhood in Colorado that was ravaged by wildfire, farmers in Kansas who are living through record heat and drought, an Alaskan community that is going to be relocated because of loss of sea ice, and even people from the island nation of Tuvalu, which may soon be underwater. All are victims of global warming. Some cool graphics explain why it is real and what it looks like, and interviews with several prominent scientists bring a sense of objectivity. An interesting point made in the film is that many of the most familiar talking heads for the denial side of the argument aren’t scientists at all. What Greedy Lying Bastards does best is to draw the lines between the money, the power brokers, and the particular people pulling the strings. Bush, Cheney, Clarence Thomas, the Koch Brothers and several members of Congress who take large donations from them, as well as other fossil fuel industry shills are called out, and their cozy relationships exposed.

Of course the point of the film is that despite overwhelming scientific consensus that climate change is real and man-made and dire, big oil money has bought and paid for Congress, as well as other governments around the globe, so very little progress is being made to reverse our dangerous course. The doc ends with a series of suggestions for viewers to become activists to fight the powers. It is an earnest film with environmentalist Daryl Hannah as its Executive Producer. But after An Inconvenient Truth, I don’t know if this is a wake up call. However, if there are people who have not heard of or are somehow on the fence about the subject, Greedy Lying Bastards could be a good catalyst to get them mad. I am not sure whether seeing it in a theater is key. It seems like one of those films that should be seen in a group and discussed, preferably with your Uncle Bob who keeps saying that climate change is a hoax. But it should be seen.

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