All Governments Lie: Documentary Brings New View to “Post-truth” Era

Photo: Screenshot from the trailer for All Governments Lie.

A film that made its initial release in Canada is proving itself to be a new must-watch in America, as Donald Trump closes in on his first 100 days of the U.S. presidency.

All Governments Lie made its Chicago premiere from April 7-April 13 at the Gene Siskel Film Center. Considering the bombardment of the phrases “post-truth” and “alternative facts” to describe American journalism under Trump, it’s a culture shock that the country’s third largest city hasn’t yet seen this documentary feature, released in the U.S. on Nov. 4, 2016.

Through the lens of what could arguably be considered mainstream media, All Governments Lie offers a criticism of mainstream media based on its corporate interests. How can someone be involved in government and tell the truth? They can’t.

To me, this makes a lot of sense. What doesn’t make sense is how little time I tend to spend thinking about it.

Matt Taibbi, Contributing Editor for Rolling Stone interviewed in the film, wrote an article about the end of facts in the Trump era. However, as this film reminds us, that’s nothing new in government. Independent media retains its credibility by remaining outside the sphere of corporate influence.

I often find myself in support of independent news media outlets, such as South Side Weekly funded by Experimental Station in Chicago, and their public newsrooms with City Bureau. I admire them in their passion for transparency. However, in order to do a proper job, one needs proper funding. As did this documentary.

In an Ottawa Citizen Q & A with producer Peter Raymont, Raymont says that there is already a “Trump-era sequel” to this film in the works. As a student, I’m entering the world of journalism in a tumultuous, terrifying and fascinating time. Sometimes I feel as if Chicago is watching my every move. To that I say: bring it on.

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Megan Stringer

Megan Stringer is a student at DePaul University in Chicago majoring in journalism with a minor in creative writing. Her hobbies include photography, making lists, reading The New Yorker, drinking too much coffee, curating her own Instagram, and dancing to LCD Soundsystem. She enjoys brunch and magazines, especially together. Megan hopes to one day make her home look like a bookstore, interspersed with a few good velvet sofas. While living in that bookstore-home, she would like to see her online magazine, Shredded, continue to flourish and strangers continue to meet each other.

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