Friday 16 October 2009


This appears to be the product of a remarkable movement in which religious orthodoxy and religious faith is challenged by the assertion of an essential human spirituality which resides in the oneness of each human being with every other human being, animal, plant, and element within the firmament; we are as Carl Sagan might have said: “star stuff harvesting star light’.

Well, yes, this is a reasonable observation. However, it is part of the film and the Zeigeist Movement’s conceit that this observation will enable a transformation of consciousness, which will, in turn, permit us to take “Actions for Social Transformation”. These actions it turns out are remarkably modest:

  1. We should move our bank accounts and mortgages from big corrupt banks to smaller ones.
  2. Turn off the network news and rely instead on the Internet.
  3. Refuse to join the military and encourage others to avoid military service.
  4. Leave the national power grid by installing solar and wind devices to our houses and apartments.
  5. Buy smaller hybrid cars
  6. Refuse to vote or participate in the political system.

These limited goals are, however, merely preliminary to the struggle to revolutionise our consciousness by signalling our oneness with all other people, things, and phenomena. Although, Zeitgeist is novel in advocating this rather baggy spirituality in opposition to religious faith, it is also novel, or at least unusual in today’s climate, in advocating technology as the solution to all our problems, because “our problems are technical and not political.”

This rejection of the “political”, and indeed of the “social”, is based upon a technical critique of the nature of the money supply and the banking system. In order to do this, Zeitgeist luminary, Peter Joseph, describes the creation of money and debt without any discussion of their relationship with productive activity and the fact that credit is, in fact, advanced in anticipation of future production. Joseph’s mangled and extraordinarily partial account of how a modern capitalist economy functions owes much more to the fears and suspicions of John Adams and Andrew Jackson than it does to any serious attempt to either understand or present a coherent picture of modern capitalist relations.

The system is described as a “scam” which is “designed to conceal” its real nature from the great masses of wage slaves who are compelled to work because of their indebtedness. Indebtedness is also arraigned as the manner in which the “corporatocracy” proliferates dependence, not simply among individual wage slaves, but also amongst the poorer countries of the earth. “Economic Hitmen” are sent out encourage rulers to take on unrepayable loans, if this fails, “the Jackals are sent in” to murder incorruptible leaders and overthrow uncooperative governments; finally, if all else fails, “the military are sent in to do the job.” “This”, says Peter Joseph, “ is Globalisation”. It is a “scam” which aims to build the empire and control the world through “leverage”.

Joseph does not discuss the relationship between money and debt and production. This relationship is often defied or ignored by bankers and many engaged in financial services. The fact that it is ignored is revealed by the manner in which bankers have lent money to people and institutions on the strength of assets, which have turned out to be, not assets at all, but merely more debts. The current financial crisis is in fact a violent adjustment which is forcing bankers to realise what they should never have forgotten: loans must be advanced on the clear understanding that the borrowers will be able to repay, and if they can’t repay, they must have collateral assets which will more or less cover the cost of the original loan should the debtor default.

However, Peter Joseph and Zeitgeist do not want to discuss this or the manner in which loans and investment actually move around the world opening up new points of production, permitting the expansion of industrial and agricultural activity. Interestingly, by insisting that our problems are “technical” and not “political” or social, he is able to avoid the central problem within capitalist society which is that private property in the form of capital is employed, in the pursuit of self-interest, to create many goods and services, with the result that many things which people actually need are not produced, or at least not in the required quantity or at the necessary quality. These problems of the relationship between private capital, wage workers, and public authorities, remain untouched by an analysis which seems to rest upon assertions of conspiracy and evil intent which have little relationship to reality.

This presumably explains why, as a film maker, Joseph has resorted to intense black and white images, a shadowy world, in which black and white figures move through cityscapes and more intimate scenes which appear to be entirely drawn from mid-fifties America; they are spooky images of alienation set amidst office blocks, electric advertising signs, and the multi-finned automobiles of a vanished world. We do get some contemporary images of automated car production and of starving children, but that’s all. The plenitude and prosperity of much of the modern world is nowhere to be seen. For the purposes of this film the industrial revolution in China is not taking place, Brazil has not paid off vast debts to the IMF and yet continued to maintain substantial aid programmes for the very poor, and most of Latin America is not governed by freely elected governments. What is much more important for Zeitgeist is to focus on the coups and repression of yesteryear and to posit the existence of a conspiracy of bankers, a corporatocracy, determined to sustain an “invisible government”.

The world summoned up by Zeitgeist is one in which selfish evil forces plot against the oneness of things. Consequently, Zeitgeist adds little or nothing to our understanding of capitalism, and does little to enable us to think of ways of actually strengthening social solidarity.


  1. Peter is only interested in making movies and money.

  2. These in themselves are not disreputable motives surely?

  3. ZM forum moderators openly ask members to donate life savings for their projects. What a shame!

  4. Well, if this is true Bazooka, it is indeed outrageous.


    Its a movement that does not move just talks and keeps talking like Jacque and Peter. They are only good at talking. Period. Jacque has been talking for over forty years now with nothing concrete. A disgrace. Peter is no different.

    Jacque and Peter keep saying no money wtf. Why not get all hundred thousands of members to photocopy money and get it started?! Our sick government can try jailing hundred thousands of people.

    Very stupid movement with many stupid trolls at the forum.

  6. Very true. The moderators not only ask for money, they also ban you from posting if your opinions differ from theirs.

    Check this out, people. I can see why this guy is pissed off.

  7. It's very easy to find out if a movement walks the talk.

    Peter, Jacque and the forum moderators advocate self-sustenance but they themselves are not self-sufficient.

    Do we have to say more?

  8. The blind and stupid movement leading the blind and stupid followers. Why follow such leaders? Just do your projects and shut them up.

  9. this zm ... a lot of talking cock ... nothing gets done

  10. Euk, right on the dot. We must all continue photocopying money. Zm keeps giving excuse that they have no money to build the venus project. Thats lame excuse. Photocopy money illegal? To hell with corrupt government.

  11. expect nothing from leaders who talk cock for four decades and do nothing

  12. Human meat burger is tempting20 February 2010 at 05:25

    Exactly, if Peter and Jacque seriously wanted to build that Venus stuff, they would have already done it ages ago and not babble for half a century.

  13. science and technology in harmony
    but zm and tvp have no money
    yeah blaaa blaaa blaaa
    fcking no action talk only

  14. so the only "research" we know of going on is just fresco's drawings and paintings and miniature plastic models? So this dude gets donations from other people and from other for profit organizations simply by doing his hobby?

    Well shit, ladies and gentlemen welcome to the Roy Jones Project.

    Money is evil and send me yours.

  15. actually that silly old jacque has been babbling for 60 yrs about tvp

  16. Everybody Photocopy Money28 February 2010 at 15:47

    IMF chief asks Everybody to Photocopy Money

    Everybody Photocopy Money to fcuk Fed

    Everybody Photocopy Money to fcuk governments

    Everybody Photocopy Money to fcuk bankers

  17. Before posting anymore comments could you review the previous comments above to check if you have anything new or interesting to say. If not, please do not bother; any more repetitions and I will simply remove them. Cheers.

  18. Get off national power grid... wou I'm fine without electricity and internet. It's back to basics and nature, people.

  19. For anyone who's tired of the self-serving moderators in Zeitgeist forum, check out the RBOSE forums:

    The RBOSE forums are a safe environment where zeitgeist movement members can freely collaborate without perpetual interference by moderators.

    The RBOSE forums are de facto proof that moderators are a solution looking for a problem. RBOSE has no moderators, and as a consequence there is no harassment, intimidation, bans, exclusions, animosity or hostility.

  20. Zeitgeist Moron5 April 2010 at 08:07

    yoohoohoo zeitgeist moron moderator bans former zeitgeist moderator