Synopsis by Mark Deming
Carlos Menem was the president of Argentina between 1989 and 1999; under his administration, many of the nation's public works were privatized, and the nation's peso was linked to the value of the American dollar. When the nation quickly fell into debt, the International Monetary Fund stepped in to give the nation massive loans -- a tactic that only sent Argentina deeper into the hole, as the government struggled to pay the interest on their notes. The results were little short of disastrous, sending the economy into a tailspin and forcing much of Argentina's industry to shut down. In 2001, following the example of other out-of-work laborers, the former employees of an Argentinean auto plant walked into the abandoned factory where they once worked and announced their plans to take it over and run the business as a cooperative. The auto company's owners soon stepped in to claim what they said was theirs, while labor advocates argued that since the company had been floated by IMF-backed loans before it closed, the true ownership of the shop was an open question. The Take is a documentary by activist filmmakers Avi Lewis and Naomi Klein that chronicles the standoff between the displaced laborers occupying their former workplace and the private and public forces who united against them.
Argentina, collapse, democracy, dignity, economic-problems, factory-worker, globalization, middle-class, unemployment