Iraq for Sale and The Big Buy

There is an excellent call for screenings of Iraq for Sale on October 14th across the country. Even Senator John Kerry has joined this effort and plans to “join [producer Robert]Greenwald on a live conference call to discuss the implications of the film.” A few weeks ago I had sent for this DVD and another called The Big Buy by Mark Birnbaum and Jim Schermbeck (also produced by Greenwald). Having received Kerry’s email and read about it here , I decided to bag some of the ‘to do’ list and watch Iraq for Sale . The minute it was over, I opened The Big Buy and watched it to the end, going late to a dinner meeting.

The message I have to put out is that Iraq for Sale IS important for this election, and the effect will be much stronger if The Big Buy is screened ahead of it. The second one is about the whole story of the Tom Delay reign and the Hammer’s history in politics. (None too distinguished in the Texas State House)

The contents of both documentaries will stir memories in many people. What they both do is put all the memories and partial stories into cohesive whole pictures of the icebergs we only had the tips of. The Delay film is important because of how much planning and time was involved in Delay’s campaign to force the Texas Legislature to redistrict the state Congressional districts – for an unprecedented second time after the 2000 Census. (It was eventually struck down by a Court as violating the Voting Rights Act, but there was no follow up) The final critical role in what may have seemed to be a marginal accomplishment of gaining 5 House seats for the GOP conservatives: major Congressional legislation that was defeated by fewer than 5 votes.

The two films together will take a fair amount of time, the impact will be much higher. The lack of Congressional oversight and the defeat of the many attempts to amend bills to address the Iraq contract problems will be much more powerful after finding out how Delay manuevered his plan into a takeover of the US House of Representatives. The corporate profits and the link to lobbying by people who had been in influential government positions is not limited to Dick and Halliburton.

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