Posted 10 months ago on Oct. 4, 2013, 5:48 a.m. EST by OccupyWallSt (1) from Plainfield, NJ
Hindsight may be 20/20, but luckily for filmmaker Jim Bruce, so was his foresight into the financial crisis of 2008. Prior to the collapse of the housing market, Bruce was a film editor for movies like "X-Men: The Last Stand" and "The Incredible Hulk." But Bruce also had been reading up on financial news and recognized that many of the biggest banks were over-leveraged and at risk of failing.
"I was writing an email newsletter to family and friends starting in late 2006 saying 'watch out'," he recalls. "You didn't have to be a rocket scientist to see how bad the mortgages being given out were." Bruce recognized that a small increase in foreclosures would wipe out the over-extended lenders. So while millions of Americans invested in new homes, Bruce was investing in their implosion.
"All I did was short home builders and banks," he explains. His short bets paid off big, as Countrywide tumbled and AIG collapsed, doubling his investment. Now what to do with all that money? The answer: Make a down payment on a documentary about the Federal Reserve, which Bruce believed had not been held accountable for its role in creating the financial crash that made him a bundle.
The product of Bruce's back-handed thank-you is "Money for Nothing," a sometimes harsh, sometimes cautious critique of the Fed and its 100-year history. The film includes many candid interviews with current and former members of this immensely powerful financial institution, including active regional governors and current vice chair Janet Yellen (who many suspect will replace current chairman Ben Bernanke to become the first woman to lead the central bank).