There are conspiracy theories… and then there’s NESARA. As far as conspiracy theories go, this one’s a doozie. I mean, this one’s so unbelievably outrageous, so supremely ridiculous, so absolutely f*****g crazy that even Pat Robertson, that perennial champion of rational discourse, would cringe at its lunacy. Never heard of NESARA? Consider yourself in the sane majority. Simply put, ha ha, NESARA (an acronym for National Economic Stabilization and Recovery Act) is supposedly a secret law passed under the Clinton administration that would radically reform the United States government, if ever put into practice. How radical is radical? Well, for your consideration: the elimination of the IRS, the purging of all personal debt, and the abolishment of Congress, the Senate, and, yes, even Mr. Bush. Smell ya later! Oh, but that’s only the tip of this idiotic iceberg. You see, NESARA lore is a veritable smorgasbord of popular (and original) delusions, fantasies, and outright paranoia. Behold the collective insanity of NESARA theorists: reptilian aliens, a UFO-cruising (and the next President of the U.S.) Jesus Christ, the Illuminati (of course), the mysterious Galactic Federation, the even more mysterious Dove of Oneness (still with me?), the C.I.A. (they’re also aliens, I think), Alan Greenspan (!), the Ascended Masters (they’re definitely aliens), the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the pervasive “they” (I believe “they” equals the media and apparently, “they” don’t always tell the truth, seriously!), the White Nights (humans, but with alien connections), a 300-year old Catholic saint (St. Germain), ummm, let’s see, reincarnation – check, resurrection – check, limitless personal wealth, and perhaps scariest of all, ex-Mormons (NOOOOOOO!!!!). Hell, even the venerable Pat Sajak is involved… somehow. I think he’s a White Night.
As a chronicle of the above madness, Zeb and Elisa Haradon’s “Waiting for NESARA” is mostly fascinating and sometimes maddening, but never dull. It’s somewhat akin to the experience of showing up late to a party and finding all your friends already drunk and/or stoned. Sober and irritated, you’re forced to bear witness to their half-baked philosophies on life or their improbable new “inventions” (knifoon, anyone?). Though far less trying, “Waiting for NESARA” is kind of like that experience, only with delusional ex-Mormons instead of your old college buddies. The film focuses on two particular ex-Mormons, Jim and his faithful wife/sidekick Marge, who fearlessly lead the Open Mind Forum, a group dedicated to the implementation of NESARA (what that actually entails is beyond me). They meet weekly in the back of a Salt Lake City KFC, or at least they did until the odor from the backed-up sewer line became too unbearable. Jim, who claims to get “insider” updates on NESARA from the mysterious Dove of Oneness (via the internet) and 300-year old St. Germain (don’t even ask), started the meetings only a few months after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. According to the theory, the attacks were secretly masterminded by the C.I.A. and George W. Bush, both secretly reptilian aliens, in order to pre-empt the announcement of NESARA, which was to happen later that day by Alan Greenspan. Naturally.
By humanizing the folks comprising the Open Mind Forum, Zeb Haradon, last seen (by me at least) stuck in elevator hell in the memorably odd indie “Elevator Movie” (which he also directed), proves himself a better man than I. He somehow manages to give ample screen time to Jim and Marge and their merry band of cultists without ever ridiculing them. Surely the multi-tasking filmmaker (along with producer wife Elisa) must’ve had himself a good laugh in the editing room, but as the human chronicler of straight-faced insanity, he’s all respectful business. What Haradon captures on film, the group’s earnestness and pathetic optimism and barely contained desperation, is truly fascinating and, in a way, kind of endearing. Sure these folks are on an entirely different wavelength from the rest of the planet (I’m being kind here), but to an atheist like myself, their beliefs kind of represent just an extreme example of the irrationality at the core of all religious faiths. Compared to say, Christians, they’re just slightly crazier, with less fashionable digs.
(Here’s my own theory: NESARA will soon be announced by the secret leader of the White Nights, Vanna White, naturally.)
Only in Utah.