Warren Buffett will participate in a live Omaha "town hall" event to be seen in hundreds of movie theaters across the nation, following the screening of a documentary movie that argues the U.S. is going broke.
Its backers, notably Pete Peterson's foundation, hope the film I.O.U.S.A. (tag line: "One Nation. Under Stress. In Debt.") will focus public opinion on America's federal budget deficits and national debt the way Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truthenergized the "green" movement.
Buffett also appears as a "talking head" in the film itself.
According to a news release about the live event, I.O.U.S.A "presents a vivid, alarming profile of America's current financial status" by telling "the story of America's four key deficits - budget, savings, balance of payments and leadership." It also promises to offer "suggestions for how best to recreate a fiscally sound nation for future generations."
The film, directed by Patrick Creadon, was shown at the Sundance Film Festival this year. It opens Friday, August 22 in 10 big cities around the country. The night before, it will be shown in several hundred theaters, followed immediately by an HD telecast of a panel discussion featuring Buffett and including Peterson; the CEO of his foundation and former U.S. Comptroller General, Dave Walker; CATO's William Niskanen; and the AARP's Bill Novelli.
While Buffett is the headliner of the after-film event and appears in the movie itself, he has complained much more vocally about the U.S. current account deficit than its budget deficits. He blames the continued weakness in the U.S. dollar on the "force-feeding" of $2 billion a day to the rest of the world.
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