Deadline Hollywood Daily's Editor-In-Chief Nikki Finke has declared a Red State Alert over the news that documentary filmmaker and Oscar-winner Michael Moore has just been elected to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Board of Governors. She writes, Hollywood-hating conservatives are going to have a field day with this (And predictably the L.A. Times' Patrick Goldstein knee-jerks with this: You could hear the outcry in conservative quarters from a million miles away.)
If for no other reason than she saves me from having to spend money on a "Variety" subscription, I love Nikki, but this conservative has no problem whatsoever with Michael Moore being elected to the Academy's prestigious Board of Governors, because this conservative believes Michael Moore has earned it.
Yes, Michael Moore is a liar, a shameless propagandist and an anti-American leftist of the highest order. But he's also one helluva talented filmmaker and it would be wildly hypocritical for me to believe or argue that anyone should be blacklisted from AMPAS due to their political beliefs. And that's the only reason I could possibly use to argue against this appointment.
When Michael Moore starts getting panicked, you know times are getting tumultuous for the left and the Democratic Party.
The anti-corporation, sometimes conspiracy theorist documentary filmmaker aired his frustrations about the current health care reform predicament. Congressional Democrats have gotten themselves into a mess with time running out as the midterm election cycle fast approaches and Moore said he was worried. According to Moore, who appeared on MSNBC's March 10 "The Rachel Maddow Show," if the Democratic Party doesn't make strides in getting their liberal agenda passed - it's bleak times ahead for them.
"Well, we see what it's led us to, to the fact that one out of eight homes now in America is in foreclosure or delinquency," Moore said. "One out of eight home and, of course, the millions that don't have health care and everything else it's - how do you get yourself out of bed every morning to do this show with just the despair of how - the hope that we all had a year, year and a half ago. And now it's like, I just feel like the Democrats are - they're in for an ass-whooping of Biblical proportions in November if they don't get off the dime and do the job they were sent there to do. I mean that. I mean, it - don't they see that?"
But what does it mean, to replace capitalism with democracy? He sighs and tries to explain. In the old Soviet bloc, he says, communism was the political system and socialism the economic. But with capitalism, he complains, you get political and economic rolled in to one. Big business buys votes in Congress. Lobbyists write laws. The result is that the US political system is awash in capitalist money that has stripped the system of much of its democratic accountability.
Has it really come to this? Is MSNBC so in the tank for the Democratic Party that it takes far-left documentary filmmaker Michael Moore to bring up malfeasance by a leading Democrat?
Moore appeared on MSNBC's Sept. 29 "Hardball" to promote his new film "Capitalism: A Love Story." With exception of "The Ed Show" fill-in host Lawrence O'Donnell noting the Senate Ethics Committee had cleared Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., of wrongdoing and only reprimanded him verbally, over the last couple of months, MSNBC's prime time shows have ignored a deal Dodd got on a mortgage with Countrywide. That is, until Moore brought it up.
"Chris Dodd may have a problem after being in this movie, I think," Matthews said.
Millionaire Michael Moore says capitalism is evil and that the entire system should be thrown out for one that is "democratic" and "fair."
That's the overarching message of Moore's new documentary, "Capitalism: A Love Story," which will be widely released Oct. 2. The film won two prizes at the Venice Film Festival and was lauded by critics there and at the Toronto Film Festival. Now Moore is being warmly greeting in softball interviews by television anchors and reporters - particularly on ABC.
ABC's "Nightline" ran an 8-minute long segment Sept. 22 interviewing Moore and showing clips of his film, an it received an additional five minutes on "Good Morning America" Sept. 23. ABC didn't include a single critic of Moore in those 13 minutes, and neither segment rebuked Moore for past lies in his movies.
The film has generated uncritical buzz among many other news outlets including MSNBC, The New York Times, Associated Press and "The Jay Leno Show." He is also scheduled to be a guest of "Larry King Live," "The Situation Room," and "The View" Sept. 23 and 24. Four networks, a wire service and three out of five major newspapers will have covered the movie in the span of a week.
Whenever Oscar-winning filmmaker Michael Moore releases a new documentary the reaction in the press is typically jubilant. Rave reviews. Fawning interviews which rarely ask tough questions. Oscar buzz aplenty.
But this time could be different.
Moore’s last film, “Slacker Uprising,” didn’t go straight to DVD. It went straight to download. Now, Moore’s catching heat from Movieline.com, the online film magazine which routinely taunts conservative targets like Gov. Sarah Palin. The site’s new Moore-related post swats the filmmaker for a less than sharp attempt at marketing his upcoming film about the country’s economic collapse. The movie blogger sets up his critique here:
"Michael Moore, the filmmaker, is back and this time he was taking aim at Wall Street," Watson said on June 15. "[H]e did a very funny thing, Sarah, this weekend when you showed his documentary in some of the movie theatres. It was very interesting. He had ushers walk along, trying to take up money for CEOs and Wall Street banks."
On World News Saturday, during the show’s "A Closer Look" segment, ABC anchor David Muir gave attention to those who question whether CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta has sufficient qualifications to be Barack Obama’s surgeon general. Muir even played a clip of David Letterman poking fun at Gupta twice during the show: "The choice, it was between a Gupta, Dr. Phil, and a guy on Scrubbs. I don’t know what the hell-" He also recounted that Muir was forced to apologized to liberal filmmaker Michael Moore after making errors in a report fact-checking Moore’s film Sicko. As Muir gave voice to those in the pro-Gupta camp who believe it is important for the surgeon general to be well known to the public, the ABC anchor reminded viewers that Dr. C. Everett Coop talked about AIDS while President Reagan was "largely silent," and that President George W. Bush’s surgeon general resigned in protest in 2006 charging he had been "muzzled by the White House."
On CNN's American Morning today, White House correspondent Suzanne Malveaux reported on Barack Obama's campaigning in Virginia. Afterwards, anchor Kiran Chetry had a question:
CHETRY: All right. And Suzanne, what's on tap for the campaign today? And please tell me it's not lipstick again.
MALVEAUX: Let's hope not. He's going to be in Norfolk, Virginia. That is in southeast Virginia, and it's home to the world's largest Naval base. It's one of the most competitive areas that the Democrats and Republicans are fighting over. It's a critical piece of property, piece of land there with folks in Virginia, and they want those voters.
If you put controversial left-wing filmmaker Michael Moore and MSNBC "Countdown" anchor Keith Olbermann in the same setting - there's bound to be some sort of lunatic remark made. Their latest get-together, neither failed to disappoint.
"I was just thinking, this Gustav is proof that there is a God in heaven," Moore said, laughing. "To have it planned at the same time - that it would actually be on its way to New Orleans for day one of the Republican Convention, up in the Twin Cities - at the top of the Mississippi River."
If Michael Moore wins an Oscar Sunday for his controversial documentary "SiCKO," it seems certain Hollywoodans and the left will try to use the moment to advance universal healthcare in this country much as they did last year with Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth" and global warming.
Yet, as media gush over Moore and his socialist healthcare philosophies, will they point out how antagonistic he is to the two Democrat presidential candidates?
In particular, will they address a recent unfriendly exchange between Moore and Hillary Clinton reported by The Hill late Friday evening (h/t NBer Par for the Course, emphasis added throughout):
Gore managed to find time amidst celebration this past weekend to post a series of videos on his peer-to-peer video sharing site, Current.tv – including one calling for “government-funded” health care. He is chairman of Current.tv.
Looking more like a bored college student making a video in his dorm room or a clip from Saturday Night Live, Gore was shown proclaiming that health care in America “ought to be a matter of right,” addressing what he thinks to be an “immoral” health care situation.
Is Cuba threatening ABC News? Why won't the media report that ABC's John Stossel stated the Cuban government's Central Committee “called members of the ABC Cuban bureau in for questioning?” (emphasis mine throughout)
After Stossel challenged “Sicko” director Michael Moore's claims that Cuba's health care system is superior to America's, which resulted in a stammering Moore reversing years of crowing about the island's excellent “free” universal health care, Cuba showed its true totalitarian colors.
Anyone who follows the MSM knows that Cuba is a virtual paradise. A land of free health care, universal literacy and low infant-mortality rates where, as Andrea Mitchell has explained to us, kids don't care about freedom and the only big problems are those caused by the U.S. Yes, Cuba is the sort of place no one would ever want to leave. Certainly not to go to live in the United States, where, as everyone knows thanks to Michael Moore's "Sicko," health care is so bad that 9-11 heroes are forced to seek help from Havana.
Michael Moore claimed in his movie “SiCKO” that there are 50 million uninsured Americans, according to his own Web site. But he’s wrong.
He’s certainly not alone though. So were President Bush, Sens. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) and Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) as well as The Washington Post, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, CNN, CBS and ABC just to name a few.
“It’s really indefensible that we now have more than 45 million uninsured Americans, 9 million of whom are children, and the vast majority of whom are from working families,” said Sen. Hillary Clinton in a May 31 speech.
ABC medical expert Dr. Tim Johnson cited the incorrect data as he praised a "bold" and "politically brilliant" universal coverage plan on the April 26 “Good Morning America.”
The battle is over and the troops are withdrawing. No, I'm not talking about Iraq, but something much more entertaining: Michael Moore has decided to end the standoff between himself and CNN, saying he's willing to "move on." As you know, Moore had a live hissy fit with Wolf Blitzer on CNN's "The Situation Room," in response to a taped critique of his movie "Sicko" by CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta.
"I trust the intelligence of the American people," Moore told The Associated Press. "I don't think there's a whole lot more to do with this other than I and others are going to be a lot more skeptical with what I see on CNN."
Michael Moore is still waiting for an apology from CNN. On July 13, he released a letter that threatened to become the cable network’s “worst nightmare.”
“Think again. I'm about to become your worst nightmare. 'Cause I ain't ever going away. Not until you set the record straight, and apologize to your viewers. ‘The Most Trusted Name in News?’ I think it's safe to say you can retire that slogan,” wrote Moore.
Ironically, in the letter Moore admitted to being treated well by CNN in the past.
Given Michael Moore’s anti-war tendencies, you wouldn’t envision him to possess so much rage.
However, following his well-publicized dustup with CNN last week (please see Business & Media Institute reports on the subject here and here), the controversial schlockumentarist has published an open letter threatening the network with reprisals.
Although likely not his intent, Moore's screed was actually funnier than any movie he's made to date.
With that in mind, here are some lowlights for your Saturday entertainment pleasure (emphasis added throughout, h/t Dan Gainor, better remove liquids from your proximity):
Townhall.com's Josue Sierra's blog today shares with readers just how "SiCKO" the state of Cuban health care is.
Not every Cuban gets the Potemkin village treatment Michael Moore gave 9/11 workers featured in his latest documentary.
Click on this link to see how ill-equipped and run-down the average Cuban hospital is. Sierra links to the original blog post by Stefania Lapenna at "Free Thoughts." The photos were taken by one Dr. Darsi Ferrer.
“If you can find money to kill people [referring to money spent to fight World War II], you can find money to help people,” said Tony Benn, a former Member of Parliament, in Michael Moore’s movie “Sicko.”
The Times said that the eight suspects involved in the recent British terror plots, “are all young, Muslim and connected to the medical profession. But they come from Jordan, Iraq, other Middle Eastern countries and India …”
Tavis Smiley's interview of Michael Moore, aired June 29 on Smiley's eponymous PBS program, is just another reminder of the ridiculous lack of credible journalism which goes on at the taxpayer-funded network.
The interview was nothing more than Smiley lobbing softball after softball straight over the plate while Mr. Moore hit his talking points out of the park on everything from the "far right"to a wage gap between whites and African-Americans.
Smiley’s ceremonial first pitch was enough to clue in viewers that there would be no attempt on Smiley's part on conducting an unbiased or challenging interview. “You have done it again,” Smiley gushed to the veteran political filmmaker.
Not only does Moore advocate for socialized medicine, he also gets to let loose against what he calls the "far right" (anyone who doesn't think socialized health coverage is the answer) and portrays himself as someone who just wants to enlighten America on the "facts."
Below is part of the interview (emphasis mine), followed by my analysis:
This is a little old as it was published last Thursday, but MTV's Kurt Loder (pictured at right) did a yeoman's job in dissecting Michael Moore's paean to socialized health care, in a movie review on MTV.com entitled, "'Sicko': Heavily Doctored."
While Loder conceded that Moore's handpicked stories of bureaucratic madness are "horrifying, and then infuriating" and praises scrutiny of HMO manager Kaiser Permanente, the MTV personality quickly turned to slamming Moore for a one-sided propaganda film that failed to present viewers with a command of the complexities of providing health care to a nation of some 300 million people. Portions below in bold are my emphasis:
Unfortunately, Moore is also a con man of a very brazen sort, and never
more so than in this film. His cherry-picked facts, manipulative
interviews (with lingering close-ups of distraught people breaking down
in tears) and blithe assertions (how does he know 18,000* people will
die this year because they have no health insurance?) are so stacked
that you can feel his whole argument sliding sideways as the picture
unspools. The American health-care system is in urgent need of reform,
no question. Some 47 million people are uninsured (although many are
only temporarily so, being either in-between jobs or young enough not
to feel a pressing need to buy health insurance). There are a number of
proposals as to what might be done to correct this situation. Moore has
no use for any of them, save one.
On Friday's Anderson Cooper 360, CNN medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta examined the accuracy of the claims presented in Michael Moore's film Sicko. Gupta found that while there are complaints about America's health care system, "you won't find medical utopia elsewhere." Although Gupta did not show much skepticism in reporting that life expectancies in Cuba are about equal to those in America despite being outspent by American 26 to 1 in health care, the CNN correspondent did report that in countries with tax-funded universal health care, that "even higher taxes don't give all the coverage everyone wants."
Gupta discussed the waiting lines that exist in some industrialized nations, and found that "Americans have shorter wait times than everyone but Germans when seeking non-emergency elective procedures," although he also found that "only Canada was worse than the United States when it comes to waiting for a doctor's appointment for a medical problem." After informing viewers of the higher taxes paid in other countries, he also relayed that "even higher taxes don't give all the coverage everyone wants" as health analyst Paul Keckley informed viewers that "15 to 20 percent of the population will purchase services outside the system run by the government." (Transcript follows)
The June 27 edition of "MSNBC Live" was sponsored by liberal filmmaker Michael Moore.
"'MSNBC Live' is brought to you by 'SiCKO', a Michael Moore film in theatres everywhere Friday," read the announcer dipping into a commercial break about 14 minutes into the 10 a.m. block of MSNBC programming.
Michael Moore's new documentary, Sicko, challenges U.S. healthcare. Yet in the coverage of the film, some interesting facts about Moore appear to be ignored. These facts are addressed on page 53 of the bestselling book by Peter Schweizer, Do As I Say (Not As I Do):
[Moore's] IRS forms make for interesting reading. Over the past five years, Moore's "savings account" has included such evil pharmaceutical and medical companies as Pfizer, Merck, Genzyme, Elan PLC, Eli Lilly, Becton Dickinson, and Boston Scientific. "Being screwed by your HMO and ill-served by pharmaceutical companies is a shared American experience," he recently told the Detroit News ... He may savage HMOs in his film Sicko, but he has also owned shares of Pharmacia Corporation and Tenet Healthcare. He may have liked their price-to-earnings ratio.
There is yet another example of the mythology of Michael Moore growing with the complicity of the media. Time's article by S. James Snyder, “Michael Moore: 'I'm Mainstream Now' ” read like another example of an incurious journalist who bought into Moore's PR and joined in with some covert activism. For the past month or so, finding bias in an article about Michael Moore has been about as easy as it is to find "creative editing" in Moore's films, and this article was no exception.
The most significant untruth in this article was Moore's carefully vague and misleading claim that he didn't intend to go to Cuba “in the first place,” and only after being turned away from his real destination, the Guantanamo Bay detention center, by that heartless US military, did he go to communist Cuba (bold mine throughout):