American Winter, with Special Guests from Issaquah Community Services

PRESENTED BY: Meaningful Movies of Issaquah
7:00 PM, Wednesday, August 26, 2015 PST
Location: Issaquah Highlands, WA (click for map)

Documentary feature film that follows the personal stories of families struggling in the aftermath of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. Filmed over the course of one winter in one American city, the film presents an intimate snapshot of the state of the nation’s economy as it is playing out in millions of American families, and highlights the human consequences of the decline of the middle class and the fracturing of the American Dream.

Special Guests: Representatives from Issaquah Community Services (

Release Year: 2013

Running Time: 90 min

Director: Joe Gantz

2 Comments so far

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  1. Gerd
    #1 Gerd 27 August, 2015, 07:53

    Enjoyed the movie and discussion yesterday evening. The solution to maintaining a strong middle class are difficult. Here are some thoughts based on the movie and discussion.

    1) The wealthy and upper income individuals should pay more taxes.
    2) Greater emphasis needs to be placed on savings. Non-mortgage related consumer debt is growing far too fast. One family was forced to move in with other family members. As soon as employment was obtained they moved out although debt payments were still difficult. I say consider living together until debt is paid off and some savings are obtained. Saving is a habit.
    3) Government policy needs to promote savings. Low or negative interest rates, if inflation is taken into consideration, is terrible. Quantative easing, particularly on today’s scale will have consequences since it ultimately causes a transfer of wealth from those who save to those who do not.
    4) Several examples of individuals abusing the system were pointed out during the discussion. As a society we cannot accept cheating. Cheating is effectively accepted in schools, youth sports, on resumes and business. Society depends on cooperation. Cooperation depends on trust. Society will disintegrate if dishonesty becomes too prevalent.
    5) Be careful with increasing minimum wages. Jobs are always lost when this is done.
    6) The true challenge with social programs is preventing dependence while providing opportunity to establish independence.

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    • Jack
      Jack 3 September, 2015, 06:51

      Discussion was good. However to focus on the very few who cheat serves only to avoid discussion of the systemic problems that cause poverty which are not rooted in the individuals for whom our system cannot make room.In the US, real wealth transfer occurs from the bottom to the top, not the other way around.

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