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South of the Border

2009, Politics  -   74 Comments
Ratings: 7.22/10 from 9 users.

South of the BorderSouth of the Border is a 2009 documentary film directed by Oliver Stone.

The documentary premiered at the 2009 Venice Film Festival. Writer for the project Tariq Ali calls the documentary a political road movie.

Stone stated that he hopes the film will help people better understand a leader who is wrongly ridiculed as a strongman, as a buffoon, as a clown.

The film has Stone and his crew travel from the Caribbean down the spine of the Andes in an attempt to explain the phenomenon of Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez, and account for the continent's pink tide leftward tilt.

A key feature is also Venezuela's recent Bolivarian revolution and Latin America's political progress in the 21st century.

In addition to Chávez, Stone sought to flesh out several other Latin American presidents whose policies and personalities generally get limited, or according to Stone, biased media attention in the United States and Europe, notably: Evo Morales of Bolivia; Cristina Kirchner and former president Nestor Kirchner of Argentina; Rafael Correa of Ecuador; Raúl Castro of Cuba; Fernando Lugo of Paraguay; and Lula da Silva of Brazil.

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74 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Xavier

    Ecuador: The poor like Correa.
    The naive teenage drinkers hate him for approving a sort of alcohol ban on weekends and during elections.
    Some of the rich hate him, I have no clue why (don't know the full story)
    The middleclass: depends in which part of the country they live.
    Lower middle class(recently got above the poverty line): like him because they received goverment aid.
    Rest of society: could care less, their holdings in the economy is so insignificant that they dont get hit as much during drastic balance changes. They just care about having something to eat for that day.

    The congress or house of politicians is a joke. The are former soccer players, models, reporters, signers, and more people who are lucky if they even know what the current currency exchange is at, that have applied and are currently running for office. Besides the seemenly good progress in the past eight quaters, the move by these economic ignorants is the subject of laughter by many of the locals. They went as far as creating their own "popular political party" and assigned a donkey as the head(running for office).
    We see a return of the previously toppled Lucio Gutierrez (literally manage to scape in one piece out of the Carondelet Palace back in april of 2005)
    The banana plantation magnate Alvaro Novoa (who has devoted vast amounts of his money to invest in winning elections) who looks to save some millions by avoiding taxation
    and then Correa who looks for a third term as president.

  2. Dmitriy Synkov

    Very interesting but short documentary on Latin American politicans (although I wish Stone would have alloted equal interview time for each president rather than focusing primarly on Chavez). The Chavez segment became a bit sensationalist towards the half hour mark, but the more politically charged interviews that followed made up for it.

  3. Janine

    masterpiece.... another good one by Stone

  4. Chris

    Very nicely made. Makes me want to go on a road trip there instead. I wish I knew Spanish!

    What impressed me was the simple friendship between the presidents without any ostentation. I'm sure there are differences. I'm sure there are people who won't like them. its impossible not to have counter opinion. Well, they have tried out a new way of doing things and it seems to be working for the people, especially liked the part where they pay off the IMF debt. Very inspiring stuff.

  5. Leonardo

    @ Waldo

    what was that comment you made said(i think it was deleted), when you mentioned that you were raised in church and had a grandfather minister and a degree in theology, and you mentioned something about evil being intrinsic and that was the deal breaker. I thought it was very articulate and want to learn about it, I searched everywhere for similar comments by you and could not find it as you worded.


  6. Waldo

    P>S> I knew the question was rhetorical, I just wanted to show you a different take on the whole situation. I guess we should both look at it from the othes point of view. I promise to imageine how others that took it your way would feel, if you'll do the same about my senario.

  7. Waldo

    @ Lazra

    That's just it, when I say it their is no deeper darker meaning to it. Its purely in a sporting friendly manner that I think it is positive. I have said often on this site that I try not to believe in anything, as it leads to a closed mind and being stuck in a belief system that filters reality. Look, if you want to attatch certain preconcieved ideas to people having pride in their country you are going to conjure up those ideas of arrogance or insult every time you hear someone bragg on thier country or people. i don't hear that, i hear a friendly challenge amongst equals. I don't think the vast majority of the world would disagree to say, pride doesn't necessarily imply insult or judgment on another. It can be a healthy thing, and I think we should never become so politically correct that we stop having pride in our performance, jobs, country, relationships, and selves. We should never become so politically correct that we stop striving for moral correctness and making judgments of right and wrong, when possiblle.

    As far as you saying this is my arena, what? This is a public forum I have no control nor say so in it, I am just another person with my opinion. I only got upset because I felt you were saying you thought I was conceded or some kind of elitist, which I am not. Peace.

  8. Lazra

    @ Waldo

    That was a rhetorical question. My point is the statement of "My country is the best" when stated by the majority of Americans shows definite signs of a superiority complex...

    I can go on and on, but maybe another day. I understand this is your arena, and it may have been offensive(or silly) to you by my coming to it with a different opinion of your own but hey this is what topdocs is all about.

    BTW I am here, was born and raised here, though I have lived and traveled outside of the US, and am currently in my 3rd year of school(University) here. I come across those of the same likeness as yourself very often. I was hoping to get you to think about that statement for a moment. It says more than the surface value of it. "My country is the best". Why? and why do you say that(try to look beyond the surface)? Ponder it for a moment. (please dont defeat the purpose)

    Logging off. Maybe we'll cross paths later on a better note;-)

  9. Leonardo


    Regarding a point made in your laste reply to Lazra:

    Hugo likely has information that puts a lot of big NGOs in the blacklist because they function as financers of US led operations in Venezuela.

    I suggest that the country would not have the money to finance a bureau of investigations for NGOs, and the processes that exist in place to manage all transactions between NGOs and the government are weak and riddled with corruption already.

    In Brazil, about 2 years ago, there was a major scandal when the government approved laws regarding NGO funding. What happened?There was no legislation saying that NGOs needed to report their doings....... billions of dollars were stolen and nobody is in jail.

  10. Rose

    At last: a few normal presidents. :-)

  11. Henry A.

    An interesting documentary, but the continuous buffering makes it unwatchable.

  12. waldo

    @ Lazra

    O.k., you sound really silly at this point. But, I will play along. If we were nations and you really expressed to me concerns about our national pride I would bring you here to our universities and small communities that compete openly in the spirit of fun to give their people an example of perceived perfection. Something to reach for, even though it is never attainable. I would offer to help you build programs in your country to get your people to do the same, all the while explaining this is an inclusive pride that requires the outside stimulus of another respected entity that we can compete with but openly embrace in friendship, as well as agreement ahead of time that all the fruits of this competition will ultimately be shared and that the peoples civil rights must remain unchanged by this agreement. You also would have to insist both nations had the same regulations on the processes being involved in the competition to insure fair competition and the peoples safety.

    People do this everyday and no one gets hurt- in fact everyone involved benefits. Like you said cooperation is in our best interest, and this doesn't have to kill that cooperation at all. But, if we could also compete on a sane level using moderation and compassion as well as common sense it would improve things for everyone. Competition and pride are necessary to have anything of value to offer to the world. It is why man does such splendid art, he has a talent and he wants to let it express itself freely which can only be done if he believes in himself or has pride. Of course this is a positive pride very moderate and open minded or it will defeat its own purpose. I admit it is rare that this kind of pride is reality, but we shouldn't give up on man. We are capable of rising above the base desires and flaws and becoming divine at times.

  13. Hambone Littletail

    As a proud and flag-waving member of the "bad left," myself, I want to make it clear that I heartily agree with the opinions of all these politicians' view of American (particularly W's) policies in South America, which is just one reason I am planning to flee this country and move to Ecuador in the near future. That disclaimer out of the way...

    To me, this documentary, like so many others that skirt around the issue, is just one more "the-sky-is-blue-news-story" that the oil companies and the big development banks own this planet. While I generally applaud all of these anti-U.S. lefties' goals of kicking the IMF and the (American) oil companies out of South America, please do not jump to the knee-jerk liberal conclusion (as I did before living in South America for the past two years) that ANY of these guys (especially that two-faced snake in the grass, Rafael Correa of Ecuador) is any kind of "environmentalist president." From a purely environmentalist viewpoint (and I admit I am a "single-issue" viewer of things), every one of these guys that Oliver Stone puts on a pedestal is waging nothing short of all-out WAR against the respective ecosystems of their countries, including the indigenous people they profess to "protect" -- and nowhere is this truer than in the Amazon rainforest. Make no mistake about it: it is business as usual for the Planet Eaters in the Amazon and the Andes since the political climate turned to the left -- from oil exploration to gold mining to hydroelectric schemes -- whether or not the flags flying off the Caterpillars are Old Glory or the blood-red flag of China. And make no mistake about this, either, folks: for every Planet-eating American banker or businessman that is kicked out of South America, there are a dozen Chinese Planet Eaters to take their place. And now you know the rest of this story.

    P.S.: I guess since this documentary is two years old, Oliver Stone had no way of knowing that Hugo Chavez would pass a law in late 2010 making it illegal for human rights groups operating in Venezuela to accept donations from foreign NGOs. Hmmm... now THERE is a man of the people.

  14. .308

    Great doc! Good to see the leaders of south america keep their values from globalisations crimes against humanity.

    Q: If you were to move to south america.. where would you go and why?

    Thanks V!

  15. Lazra

    Hey, hey, hey buddy. No need to get worked up. I sense a tinge of anger in your reply. No judgement, just opinion. I was/am attempting to do what 'South of the Border' is doing (as well as many other excellent docs Vlatko has so kindly shared with us). That is make some aware of something they may not be aware of(including you).

    We all know what is meant by "My country is the best"(well maybe not all of us). There is an undertone to that statement, no? Its interesting how you have reacted to someone with an opinion different from yours. Somewhat aggressive and "sick" I believe you stated. Sound familiar?

    I wonder what you would do next if you and I were nations"

  16. Leonardo


    I said that the US does what it has always done, even when its efforts were concentrated within its territory in the 18th century. Back then the stakes were just as high: it is the needs that changed and escalated to new heights. Today, the US has a project... and because it has many more mouths to feed and many bigger needs and pockets to fill... it has to exercise its most tyrannical path.... which includes making lots of evil things... like trying to exercise a modern kind os slavery... financial slavery.

    So, I am pretty sure we are in agreement here, pal....for nothing I said fits your description of me... are you American?

  17. dano603

    it's interesting that mexico didn't showed up in the whole doc. We had a left wing candidate in 2001 but he was defeated by Felipe Calderon only by small small percentage (we were afraid that He could become a chavez). Actual president is rigth wing, pro american, and well.. since it was a hard victory, he decided to run this drug war to put the army in our streets and avoid any possible rebellion/revolution. Now Mexico is a mess. We used to be the big brother for Latin America... but not anymore.
    We have a said in Mexico.... poor Mexico!!! too far of god and to close to the US!!! We have just made a loan to FMI some months ago so, we are still the old way... just doing what US wants.
    It's just not rigth to have 40 million of poor people (40%) of the population with less than 2 dollars per day, and host the richest man world wide.... yep, He's a mexican. I think Mexico will join these left wing close to 2012 or there migth be another revolution... I don't know.
    I think we should turn and look to the south instead of the north.

  18. BlackBull

    I am Venezuelan and live in Venezuela :D

  19. BlackBull

    @Jack1952 "The problem is that he has reduced the freedom of the press and restricted human rights"
    Absolutely not true, just as a little example, the opposing media in my country said, five months ago, that the internet connection will be nationalized and therefore lost, and here I am typing this and proving then wrong. The media only wants to mislead the very few that hear them.

  20. Pav the skid

    On that premise the Chinese and Indians would have taken over the world already. Its called immigration law.

  21. jay


    what you call "moderm ways" is tragedy towards poor countries. How hypocrite you are.

  22. Johnny Ruse

    This Doc Rocks.. Laughed so hard when Chavez busted that kids bike, riding it and was like OOPS now i gotta pay for it..
    thx Topdoc..

  23. Reasons Voice

    How do I envision the future of the US in my dreams? Well first and foremost a self imposed isolationism, For a term or indefinate. The isolationism would Recall all global troops to the US. Whether they be stationed at a base in a friendly nation or involved in hostilities no matter. They all come home. We decline to engage in any more global hall monitor B.S. no matter who asks. Since we will only come out looking like the bad guy anyway. We with hold our massive monitary donations for relief efforts as well. Hate us or not when a disaster strikes any nation the US invariably donates far more resources and money to these causes than any other nation. Our nationally based corporations would be subject to heavy taxation for outsourcing work to cut their overhead and buffer their profit margins. Some would argue that I am sure, however (IMHO) since the US is the worlds larges consumer it behooves those companies to follow along or loose it's most proffitable market. If a corporation would rather move over-seas in response so be it but they will then have to deal with the import taxes etc.
    Our foreign relations will amount to one message. "This is what you have been asking for so enjoy"
    By isolating and restricting outsourcing etc. we can start rebuilding the production side of our economy, break the back of this unemployment rate, and start to invest here at home.
    There is much more on the domestic front but since this is a doc about forign issues I'll skip that. What some on here may be thinking to themselves is "That sounds an awfull lot like Chavez's policy" And you would be right. Chavez seems to have the interest of his own nation forefront of his priorities and we should be doing the same. Only with fewer exumations of long dead founders.

  24. Leonardo

    @ Reasons Voice

    So the US was a land of mighty hearts and fairness up until WWI. Ok then, I see 2 things to consider: the law of unintended consequences, or as I call it, the law of pretend aloofness or the law of Idontgiveashirtness, and the need for the escalatation of efforts in order to achieve similar results with a ever growing population. It means that despite we looking into the past and seeing how the good old days seemed more fair, I say that it is more of the same. The US has to continue its modern ways of doing politics in order to achieve the same results and now with China and others wanting to share the pie.... there is just no way to keep it up within the current system... Am I wrong here?

    Anyways, how do you envision the USA of the future, in your dreams, based on this idea of going back to the ways of the past?

    1. Vlatko

      Several comments deleted/moderated here. Jesus and Jim Morrison have nothing to do with this documentary.

  25. johannesfaust

    thanks for posting it Vlatko

  26. jack1952

    @ Jay

    If there is a South American union, I doubt the U.S. will go to war with them. It would be a military disaster. Hitler demonstrated what the result would be if you take on too many enemies. Fighting Muslim terror(?), controlling North Korea and a military conflict in South America is fighting on too many fronts. To add to this the American public would strongly object, especially those of Spanish descent which is the fastest growing minority in the United States.

  27. "reasons voice"???

    Thanks for finishing that up empirical brother.

  28. Jay

    I think if Lula's (brazilian president) dreams come true, the south America will united just like EU did. From that point on, the only option for US it's gonna be war (as Chaves predicts). South America hold almost all natural resources left in the world (coz everybody else destroyed it already) plus, Brazil it's a country where new energy resources and technologies are supported by the government (unlike the US oil policy). Brazil uses ethanol, bio diesel, hydrogen (yes, you can extract combustive from water!), vegetal oils to power machines and the list goes on.
    Now imagine a continent independent of oil, producing cheap energy which dominates renewable energy technology and applies it in large scale? What do YOU think US will do?
    I hope Obama do a better job making "friends" instead of making "enemies" because my guest is that the majority of South Americans don't appreciate US policy.

  29. Pav the skid

    An excellent doc out of America (I do believe it to be American) to offer another perspective to contrast the mainstream media. Although it is just that: a contrast of extreme perspectives from the American view point. All these scenes of how Chavez is greeting his people in the streets, all the banter about how predatory the IMF is, not only fails to address the corruption and authoritarian tendencies in his rule regarding the suppression of media and business but simply demonizes them as US puppets. The documentary might be as biased as say fox news, but it is brave in that it is swimming against the current.

    As a Canadian Anarchist I resent the American presence in their respective countries and detest the IMF model of foreign investment control schemes. Its actually quite sickening. These men might not resemble he the heros of the first world, harkening an age of enlightenment and democracy, in fact they are far from it. These men are products of their nations, surrounded by neocolonial practices and rampant domestic corruption. Any sort of improvement is welcome, although it might be unrecognizable to the western common man not used to those surrounding.

  30. louiseiiid

    Thanks so much for these documentaries - they are sometimes (often) truly life-changing for me.

    I think if I were young, I would take my skills to South America - it is the most politically honest place in the world these days.

    Thank goodness there is still something to challenge the rampant greed that always festers in unrestricted capitalism.

    How amazing would it be if the socialism of the Southern American continent ultimately trumps the Northern Neo Cons.

  31. Farren

    One of the reasons many find it so hard to believe that the US has done many terrible acts that are almost never mentioned in their media is...because they are almost never mentioned in their media!

    Growing up in the US, I always heard other countries did propaganda. It was such a dirty word...just like in the beginning of this doc, the FauxNews people were saying Chavez is what amounts to an evil dictator drug addict, just like his buddy, another dictator in a neighboring South American country giving him coca leaves, which the natives have used medicinally for centuries before cocaine started to be processed unnaturally.

    it's a big shock to many people, especially those from the US, just how big a bully it has been. they want to vehemently deny all of it, and say it is just other people who hate america and want to make it look bad. but the facts speak for themselves. George Bush Jr. represents many in the US when he said something like "facts don't matter" when it comes to his policies.

  32. Nigel from New Zealand

    @Reasons Voice, you're dead right, New Zealand is a great place to live & I consider myself extremely lucky that in 1974 at the age of 11 (I'm 48 now) my parents decided to leave England (I was born in Manchester) & give us a new life. We are quite remote down here & blessed with a stunningly clean environment & laid back way of life, though not all together untouched by the powers that be. They just recently slammed our government with a totally out of the blue credit downgrade coz we won't agree to adapt more of their aggresive pro privatisation policies, so it seems that no matter where you go they still get yah!.

    As for America I used to love everything your once proud nation stood for & I like many others (probably millions of others) hope it is not too late for America to stand fast & rise up coz i honestly believe that if Americans do the rest of the world will follow.

    And no! I'm not interested in chastising you, you are very wise & your opinion is your opinion even though I may not agree with all of what you say it is obvious we are both reading from the same book just on different pages.

    Love the "Good on yah Mate!" that's a good Kiwi accent you got there brother. Until we meet again.

  33. Tris

    excellent doc
    my admiration for all of the leaders

  34. pipo

    Oliver Stone is awesome!

  35. Imightberiding

    Excellent! Thank you Top Docs. Very interesting & informative film. This is one of many docs that makes this a favorite destination on the net.

  36. Waldo

    @ Lazra

    Are you for real, give it a break man. I never said we should compete and saying your nation is the best does not mean we are competing. EVERY nations people say their country is the best, as well they should. Its called having pride. I in no way support the wars we are involved in nor American exceptionalism in the sense that we should treat others as if we are better simply because we are American. Have you ever watched the olympics, great example of the type of pride am referring to. Every nation carries their flag proudly and proclaims themselves to be the greatest, all in fun and no one gets all p1ssy like you guys are trying to. You guys try to make a mountain out of a mole hill. Can you say valium? You seriously need to chill out.

    This is what I get sick of on this site. People like you come along and having never met someone nor heard more than a few words, you make a judgment based on your own issues. I do believe all peoples are born with equal rights, and my actions and life prove this. Maybe you should practice what you preach and not start making judgments over such a simple and harmless statement. If we are all equal in your eyes prove it and give people the benefit of the doubt instead of jumping up on your soap box and insinuating things about someone you do not know. As far as I can see most of the people on here that harp on and on about equality really mean everyone but Americans are equal, if you are from America they instantly assume you are prejudice and think you are better than others. I could return the sentiment and judge others on the atrocities their governments have perpetrated, but i don't believe that to be right. Living in a nation doesn't necessarily mean you support everything that nation has done.

  37. Henry

    @Reasons Voice

    Hugo Chavez has never said he is Bolivar's reincarnation. I looked it up and all I found was many articles describing how he is obsessed with Simon Bolivar and that he may think he is Bolivar Reincarnated, a claim that Hugo Chavez publicly denied.

    I also looked up an article about Hugo exhuming Simon Bolivar's body, that part is true but Hugo claims he was trying to prove that Simon was murdered. I did not find your story of an empty grave, or Hugo publicly claiming he is Simon Bolivar reincarnated.

    And even if the media sources you mentioned did document such claims (without proof) they obviously can't be trusted. I would expect a person like you (who seems to spend much time surfing the web) would realize the mainstream media only tells you one side of the story.

  38. Lazra

    @ Waldo

    I must address this statement:

    'As far as you saying we are arrogant because we say we are the best country, I can’t agree with that. No country or business or ball team is going to go around saying “We are equal to all others!!"'

    A business' highest priority is to make profits, as much as possible in most circmstances. This means beating out the competition. A ball team's only objective is to win (meaning beat the other teams in competition). Nations on the other hand would benefit in great measures by cooperating instead of competing(or winning or whatever you want to call it). What exactly is the game nations are playing?! and who is benefiting from their competition/s?

    No one!!! It is of an ignorant and arrogant mind state to claim your country as though it is a ball team or business (and the best for that matter). You have proven Farren's original point.

    Oh yeah, I wonder what type of actions are commited by a nation(or person) that doesnt go around saying "We are equal to all others!!" Ponder that for a moment.

    Excellent Doc! A Must See!!!

  39. Uke

    Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Ecuador, Bolivia - they are ALL wrong and the US knows whats best for them? Really.

  40. Reasons Voice

    It is late for me and I have rambled a bit tonight but I wanted to post one last thought. People in today's world find it so fashionable and so easy to pin American nationalism as some how wrong or supportive of the imperialistic facade that the world sees today. To me though American Nationalism is based on the Founding principals not the current status quot. If you know Early American governmental policy, take the time to compare it to today's America. The founders pictured a nation who kept to it's self. Who stood above others not through might or through arrogant bluster, but through an excellence that arouse from the will of it's people. To compete with the world by the sweat and blood of it's own. A place where will and determination could turn a pauper to a prince. And whether you like it or not we once had that nation. Up until about WWI. WE were not a land of decadence or arrogance. But of strength of character. That is the America I support. Many of the everyday Americans I know are those Americans and I will fight for them and defend them. That's all.
    PS I have actually traveled through south America. Chile, Argentina, and Peru. Wonderful people, and wonderful countries. I wish them the best and have no interest in taking what is theirs. So if they want to kick the powers that be here in the US in the bag, I say go to it. Those Princeton Lawyers don't represent me or anyone I know anyway.
    Good night and god bless beer.


    LOL @ OINK.You guys are a little to serious which leads me into interest. I will have to watch this now.~ Better be worth my time or im coming back. EERRRRRR

  42. waldo

    @ Farren

    No, you misunderstood me. I am not judging you as a person, I don't know you. I was just making the point that the media may suspect the truth of the situation, and at times when they are on the ground and see what happens they may know the truth. But, I don't think they are in on the planning or anything. Still they should report the truth in the cases when they have witnessed something contrary to what the official story line from the government is, and they should ask the right questions and play an active role in exposing things when they just suspicion the truth. Their mandate is to be investigative reporters that get to the truth and report it to the people. But, as with most things, once the need to make a profit is introduced it becomes the primary motivating goal and all else is thrown to the side. As far as you saying we are arrogant because we say we are the best country, I can't agree with that. No country or business or ball team is going to go around saying "We are equal to all others!!"" It just doesn't work that way and people should know that and not take offense to Americans or Venezuelans or Iranians saying they have the best country. It simple national pride and as long as when it comes time for serious negotiations or foreign policy it is played down in order to get positive results I have no issues with it. That said I am not judging you at all, everyone has a right to their opinion, just as everyone else has a right to respectfully disagree. No hard feelings on my end brother, none at all.

  43. Reasons Voice

    @Nigel again; Honestly I would love to live where you do. All the beauty of America minus the BS, must be a dream. Glad to see you commenting again feel free to slam me or praise me it matters not both are wonderful. Praise can make me confident and conflict makes me learn. I have read much of the changes in NZ as far as government and down scaling and it looks so amazing. Good on ya Mate!

  44. Reasons Voice

    @Nigel; You have me pretty well on. Yes I do believe that there is a higher level cabal of sorts. Yet I also believe that as a cabal they have the ability to throw us off in every possible direction. That is we hate the US they gain from that as well. I am an American and yer I am patriotic I do believe in the system we set up in the founding of this country, but that is very far from what we have now. I have no issue with countries being against US economic colonization as I am an Isolationist.

    I believe that no nation can be global that is insane. It is hard enough to get a family of 5 to agree to a vacation let alone to get the world to agree that one ideal suits best. I am anti American communism yet Pro Chinese communism since the ideals of the average Chinese citizen lends it's self more toward that form of governance. It is far easier for a communal based village to accept communist governance than it is for a nation of homesteaders. I am not fli8p flopping I actually live in the middle.

    I think actually given world populace and more locally US populace calls for division. In my country many are pro socialist and that is fine for them and many are pro capitalist and that is fine but to live together is insane. Take it from a US citizen that is actually sickened by the materialistic superficial nature of a large percentage of those he meets; The US has got to tend it's own yard. This country is going to hell fast.

    The division is so extreme now I see nothing that can turn it around but fracturing into new nations. The original ideal would work in that states would rule not federal but that is so far gone... Bottom line is I love my country and the founders of this ideal. Anyone who reads the ideals of Franklin and Adams and Washington can see the logic and beauty of it. But we are no longer that nation. We became successful on a huge scale. We became the one global super power. And for those in charge it went to our heads. For those not in charge it made us pampered and weak. My issue with many is the hatred.

    Our nation is not our government, it was never meant to be. For the people by the people means the every-man. Just look at our elections we go left then right then left again because neither represents us, we the people. They are for their own ends not ours and I have no answers. If I had my way this country would isolate. It would recall its corporations to give jobs here. It would stop selling oil rights to foreign nations while manipulating other nations for their oil. And it would prosper not in global domination nor in global protection, but as it's own sovereign nation united in one ideal. I will not likely live to see this so what I have is hope and a life to live. I work each day to make my life for me that is all.

    to the other me; Just stop. If you love Chavez so much just go there and help him make his world. More power to ya and best of luck. If you want to discount every bit of info available against him you must have your reasons and god bless. I truly do not care. The way I see it is that world trade is essential but one world in agreement is not.

  45. Melinda

    Top Documentaries is a most valuable site and I thank the moderators for all the information available. It gives one many chances to consider new viewpoints from which to formulate new questions. Without which one might as well admit to being stagnant mentally and too lazy to grow.

    Whether one agrees or disagrees all views make for greater understanding of the world around us. Especially to those as I who are not as well traveled as others.

    The discussions after each new Doc is as informative as the Docs themselves.

    Once again, Thank you.

  46. Melinda

    @ Farren,
    "in the emotion of all the people in so many countries who have felt so betrayed and attacked by the US and the major, rich, powerful media and lying politicians."

    I am a simple American Mother. Perhaps I may be much more simple than I realize in that I can hardly claim to speak for all other American mothers, but please sir, how is it you speak for All the other people in so many other countries?

    I take it that you as an individual also take responsibility for every action ever taken by your own government in whatever countries in with you reside? As I take it you wish me to do as an American citizen? May I ask to which country you claim allegiance?

  47. kittybrat

    Thanks for this doc. I have been watching this happen and it is difficult to cut through the absolute vitrol reporting from the major media. I'm sharing. Keep it up!

  48. HHV

    @Mad He was making a joke in very poor taste - the factory was a corn processing plant, he was saying they were making atomic bombs for Iran in jest.

  49. Mad

    Hold up, DID HE JUST SAY ATOMIC BOMB? Or was that mistranslation? @ 34:42

    Somebody please clear this up, I support Mr. Chavez and nuclear power used for peaceful means but I strongly detest nuclear weapons to be used in warfare even DU.

  50. Farren

    waldo, i know much of the media are naive and just report what is handed to them (or else, they get fired, especially on sensitive topics). it was just an impassioned comment i made, in the emotion of all the people in so many countries who have felt so betrayed and attacked by the US and the major, rich, powerful media and lying politicians

    much of the national pride i've seen is very arrogant. it's like "we're the best, f*** everyone else"

    if you want to judge me for saying that, you can do that, but it's true. no one wants to hear someone constantly praise themself, especially while that person is walking over everyone else beneath them

  51. waldo

    @ Farren

    I agree with you, but you go too far, which has become the global past time of late. Those networks do lie and mislead, but I very seriously doubt they were "in" on 9/11 or anything else. Why would the government tell them anything but the lies and propaganda they want them to spread and take the chance of them telling the truth for whatever reason? The truth is they want to have access to the white house and pentagon and they know if they ask the wrong questions or report the wrong facts that access will be jerked out from under them. No, they are not out to promote democracy or truth, they are out to make a profit through advertising and can only do so if they have the important interviews and fashionable people that attract viewers. If you have proof that they were in on these things anty up and I will apologize and believe you, and I don't mean conspiracy theory nuts making baseless accusations I mean proof positive.

    Also, to attack people for having national pride is ridiculous. Every nation says it is the greatest, just like every ball team or university says they are the best. I agree that many US citizens are blind to the fact that we have double standards in that we do things we attack other nations for. I also agree that American exceptionalism goes too far most of the time, but calling people arrogant because they say they live in the greatest country in the world is like attacking people for saying their football team is the best in the world- its going too far and being overly dramatic.

  52. Farren

    It's really sickening to know just how dam* hypocritical the "greatest nation on earth" (as many of its citizens arrogantly like to refer to themselves) is.

    It's like everything we've been taught from when we were babies is wrong. Our parents were immersed in this same lying media and didn't know better. It's like being in the matrix. Until you are out of it, you never know you're stuck in it.

    The mainstream medias including CNN, Foxnews, ABC, NBC, BBC, and others that the western world regularly sees are not out there for free press and truth and democracy and all of the other bs lies we are force-fed. They were in on 9/11, on this, on 7/7/2005, on so many other things in the past like Vietnam and the other killings that our secret CIA and other groups did to force other poor small nations to do what the US wanted.

    such a bully. such a lying arrogant bully. the worst dictator there has been in decades.

  53. "reasons voice"???

    @reasons voice
    You are making claims about his character with no evidence. You seem to be committing a logical fallacy (appealing to authority/appealing to the masses). Pointing to wild speculation that has been written down over and over isn't exactly sourcing.
    You have not been able to provide any video or anything from Chavez indicating any truth to your outlandish claims. It shouldn't be that difficult if Chavez endorsed some big television special as you claim. By the way, you couldn't call me a liberal for demanding actual evidence. Moreover your appeal to emotion is so below logic it is basically meaningless.

  54. Nigel from New Zealand

    @ Reasons Voice
    so we meet again Mr Reasons Voice!
    You are a living paradox my friend, I've noticed a common thread on all your posts, & I see you popping up all over the place. Almost without exception your posts agree with the overall premise that a corrupt, criminal global cabal is at work. Yet on the other hand! your posts always want to discredit the very people who demonstrate such an entity exists. Can't have it both ways me ole matey! Which will it be? the blue pill or the red pill? Regards & Happy New Year from your old friend Nigel :-)

  55. Bjurne

    Beautiful. Watch it!

  56. Reasons Voice

    Ok for one I actually support his policy toward the US as far as trade etc. Also am very aware that the US has major issues to resolve of it's own. I was not commenting on the mans foreign policy or his domestic policy. It is his nation to run as he pleases as long as his people are happy I could care less. I was commenting on his eccentricity of character. Regardless if the other with the same screen name (plus punctuation) wants to actually read the dozens of articles and sources readily available on the net. It is quite easy to find quotes and articles provided by sources known to be either left or right wing about the man. So go ahead and pretend that ignorance is a disease that liberals are somehow immune to. That's the best way to let it fester.

  57. "reasons voice"???

    @reasons voice, your search gave me nothing but opinion articles and absolutely nothing of proof. Send me a link to him actually doing and saying such things. Even a link to the television incident you speak of? Consider relearning the difference between evidence and empty words.

  58. Leonardo

    I have dozens of friends from Venezuela and it is all the same: the rich ones are the opposition and talk smack about Chavez just like the protesters on the movie itself scream in disgust. By rich I mean, in contrast to the majority of the much poorer sector of the population that is the majority.

    Talk to them and you will realize that none of them kwnows smack about anything political, despite them being lawyers, businessmen or doctors or what have you. All they know is the American propaganda since they have CNN themselves via sattelite and pride on being superior because they watch American TV.

    The poor people don't have cable or sattelite.... and because they don't have the money to pretend to be free when they ride the plane to disney in vacation, they still believe in freedom and love and family and their land.

  59. jack1952

    If the United States continues with its economic policies of unconditional support for multinational corporations there may well come a day where a populist figure, resembling Chavez, could well emerge. Corporate bailouts of companies whose CEOs make decisions that line their own pockets without consideration for the health of the corporation or the American economy will eventually try the patience of the average citizen to the breaking point. The United States has become a nation where corporate rights supersede human rights. Big business has routinely positioned their own people into government positions so they can establish policies that favor the ability of these executives to make unlimited profits and limit the viability of smaller businesses.

    Chavez has tried to impose some much needed reform in his country. The problem is that he has reduced the freedom of the press and restricted human rights. We would hope that any leader who does take over the American presidency doesn't feel it necessary to restrict human rights in order to help the more unfortunate of American society. Recent administrations have already been eroding human rights in that country. The American electorate must insist on regaining the rights it lost because of 9/11 and press for reform in the way large corporations are allowed to do business.

  60. Dr. Dunkleosteus

    Another netflix doc! Kudos again, V. I enjoyed watching this one, although I can't determine which way I feel on the subject. Perhaps it's the language barrier, but I can't make any sense of South American politics.

  61. Alek

    It is an eye-opening story. I am too young to engage in advocation of either side, but I can now see where my college professors were coming from when they warned us about living in the cave. The media is so overwhelmingly non transparent, and thus not allowing people to look far beyond what is happening around them. We have been and still(for the most part) live inside the cave, where information gets served a la carte, but nobody knows what's happening behind the kitchen doors.

  62. ungovernable

    thought fox news was a comedy show

  63. watch it first

    Watch it first, and then make a comment

  64. oink

    @"Just because you may agree with his attitude toward the US does not mean the guy isn’t nuttier than squirrel dung."

    i don't think being nuts in politics has borders, we all have our fair share

  65. Dave

    Fox news... give e a break. Worst of them all.

  66. Jay

    @Reasons Voice
    yeah, sure! bring wars and destroying the ppl of any country who don't obey US is alright...

  67. Jay

    awsome stuff! you should see it.

  68. Reasons Voice

    Ok actually rather than plague Vlatko with having to approove a comment full of cut and pastes and urls just friggin google Hugo Chaves + Somon Bolivar you can read any one of the 124,000 results from sorces ranging from Time magazine and the washington post to the BBC and global news. Just because you may agree with his attitude toward the US does not mean the guy isn't nuttier than squirrel dung.

  69. Reasons Voice

    Ohh alright I'll go look up source. Sheesh should have known I'd get jumped on that one. Ya know ya could just go look it up yerself before getting all crazed at the western devil.

  70. Reasons Voice

    Havn't watched this yet but I am wondering how mr Stone plans to play down Hugo Chavezs' obsession with Simon Bolivar. Or that Hugo insists that he is the reincarnation of Bolivar. And how he had Bolivars remains dug up and deposited in his home, then staged an event where he dug up the (surpirse) empty grave of Bolivar on TV to proove that he is Bolivar resurrected? hmmm yep that dude is totally misunderstood.