15 April 2012: The Power of the Poor with Hernando de Soto

Presented with the support of FilmStudyGroup.org.

At our next session of the Sydney Film Study Group, we will present the acclaimed documentary The Power of the Poor, featuring the influential Peruvian economist Hernando de Soto.

Date: Sunday, 15 April 2012

When: 4.30pm (doors open). Session: 5.00pm—7.00pm  (Note different day and times)

Where: 19 Whiting Street, Artarmon, Sydney

RSVP is required to David Prichard by email or SMS 0411 527 612.

The evening will follow the Film Study Group format, with a moderated discussion after the documentary screening.

About the Documentary

The Power of the Poor is a story animated by ideas. How could a small group of economists and researchers help defeat home-grown terrorists in Peru?

How could they pressure the government to make legal reforms that would lift millions out of poverty? And how could they avoid being the target of bombings and assassination attempts? It takes both courage and ideas that work.

The Power of the Poor is a compelling look at the surprising and vital role of inclusive lawand titled property in establishing peace and prosperity. It is also the story of real people with real struggles—all of whom share a commitment to entrepreneurship.

Filmed on location in HD and hosted by renowned Peruvian economist and author Hernando de Soto, this insightful program tells how corruption, bureaucracy and a lack of simple legal rules have locked two-thirds of the world’s population out of the global economy. Forced to operate outside the rule of law, they have created their own parallel, but limited, commercial systems. “It’s time to let them in,” says de Soto.

De Soto and his team have proven that, even hobbled by great obstacles, the world’s hard-working poor entrepreneurs have created far more wealth than anyone had ever imagined possible—even with the absence of the legal frameworks people in the rich north take for granted. Prosperity is possible, if only we simplify the rules of the game. That means giving the poor titled property and the legal business tools we in the West enjoy. Such will enable them to harness the power of their considerable assets, as these stories illustrate.

Peruvian history proves de Soto right. Facing the growing violence of the Sendero Luminoso, the “Shining Path,” de Soto and his team were able to pass numerous legal reforms that helped lead to the defeat of the Shining Path and set the stage for Peru’s economic resurgence. To unlock The Power of the Poor is to change the world. If we fail, the world’s ‘humble people’ will turn against capitalism as they have turned against other failed economic systems. Such could make for a very difficult and violent age. But with policies of legal inclusion, there is hope.

Events are open to members and their guests, including guests that the President may sign in at the door. Guests are welcome! The membership fee for calendar 2012 is a nominal $10 to cover the entire calendar year. Members are not required to attend any minimum number of events. Members and their guests may bring their own (strictly non-alcoholic) drinks and noise-free eats. Non-members are welcome to attend as a guest of a member for the first of such attendances. Members will take responsibility for their guests and all participants must treat the venue and other members with courtesy.