09-13-2005, 08:35 AM #1AR's Salad Tossing Connoisseur
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Michael Moore's Letter To Bush...
Friday, September 2nd, 2005
Vacation is Over... an open letter from Michael Moore to George W. Bush
Friday, September 2nd, 2005
Dear Mr. Bush:
Any idea where all our helicopters are? It's Day 5 of Hurricane Katrina and thousands remain stranded in New Orleans and need to be airlifted. Where on earth could you have misplaced all our military choppers? Do you need help finding them? I once lost my car in a Sears parking lot. Man, was that a drag.
Also, any idea where all our national guard soldiers are? We could really use them right now for the type of thing they signed up to do like helping with national disasters. How come they weren't there to begin with?
Last Thursday I was in south Florida and sat outside while the eye of Hurricane Katrina passed over my head. It was only a Category 1 then but it was pretty nasty. Eleven people died and, as of today, there were still homes without power. That night the weatherman said this storm was on its way to New Orleans. That was Thursday! Did anybody tell you? I know you didn't want to interrupt your vacation and I know how you don't like to get bad news. Plus, you had fundraisers to go to and mothers of dead soldiers to ignore and smear. You sure showed her!
I especially like how, the day after the hurricane, instead of flying to Louisiana, you flew to San Diego to party with your business peeps. Don't let people criticize you for this -- after all, the hurricane was over and what the heck could you do, put your finger in the dike?
And don't listen to those who, in the coming days, will reveal how you specifically reduced the Army Corps of Engineers' budget for New Orleans this summer for the third year in a row. You just tell them that even if you hadn't cut the money to fix those levees, there weren't going to be any Army engineers to fix them anyway because you had a much more important construction job for them -- BUILDING DEMOCRACY IN IRAQ!
On Day 3, when you finally left your vacation home, I have to say I was moved by how you had your Air Force One pilot descend from the clouds as you flew over New Orleans so you could catch a quick look of the disaster. Hey, I know you couldn't stop and grab a bullhorn and stand on some rubble and act like a commander in chief. Been there done that.
There will be those who will try to politicize this tragedy and try to use it against you. Just have your people keep pointing that out. Respond to nothing. Even those pesky scientists who predicted this would happen because the water in the Gulf of Mexico is getting hotter and hotter making a storm like this inevitable. Ignore them and all their global warming Chicken Littles. There is nothing unusual about a hurricane that was so wide it would be like having one F-4 tornado that stretched from New York to Cleveland.
No, Mr. Bush, you just stay the course. It's not your fault that 30 percent of New Orleans lives in poverty or that tens of thousands had no transportation to get out of town. C'mon, they're black! I mean, it's not like this happened to Kennebunkport. Can you imagine leaving white people on their roofs for five days? Don't make me laugh! Race has nothing -- NOTHING -- to do with this!
You hang in there, Mr. Bush. Just try to find a few of our Army helicopters and send them there. Pretend the people of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast are near Tikrit.
P.S. That annoying mother, Cindy Sheehan, is no longer at your ranch. She and dozens of other relatives of the Iraqi War dead are now driving across the country, stopping in many cities along the way. Maybe you can catch up with them before they get to DC on September 21st.
09-13-2005, 08:42 AM #2
F*CK micheal moore
09-13-2005, 08:43 AM #3
Wrong Forum............ and he needs to eat a salad.........
and shower more often
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09-13-2005, 09:06 AM #4
that dude cracks me up... does anyone actually take him seriously?
09-13-2005, 09:11 AM #5
Micheal Moore is a cock sucker !!!!!!!!!! No wonder he doesnt like Bush!!!!!!!!!
09-13-2005, 09:23 AM #6AR Hall of Fame
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09-13-2005, 09:28 AM #7
Michael Moore....gimme a break.....i don't like the war in iraq either....but someone has to do it...gotta give bush props for not backing down
09-13-2005, 09:30 AM #8Originally Posted by SwoleCat
Thanks for the compliment
Last edited by CRUISECONTROL; 09-13-2005 at 09:52 AM.
09-13-2005, 09:43 AM #9AR's Salad Tossing Connoisseur
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haha, I like his subtle sarcasm!
09-13-2005, 09:53 AM #10Originally Posted by Justin Sane
09-13-2005, 11:21 AM #11
Hes got a big mouth and a little brain. Not a good combo.
09-13-2005, 11:24 AM #12
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Michael Moore should advertise for McDonald's, as that fat stupid charachter thing they got.
09-13-2005, 11:29 AM #13Originally Posted by roidattack
09-13-2005, 11:46 AM #14Banned
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It is really easy to throw stones. I don't like Bush but being prez is a thankless job.
I saw the rebuttle video for Ferigheit 911 and Michael Moore is a lieing sack.
Don't kid yourselves. Michael Moore likes to exploit situations like this.
09-13-2005, 12:08 PM #15
it's simple. Bush is retarded, michael moore is retarded. The only thing good michael moore ever did was bowling for columbine. F 9/11 sucked, I didn't even try to read his books, his 'letters to bush' suck. Well, everything he does except the forementioned documentary have been horrible. I don't waste my time with it.
09-13-2005, 12:19 PM #16Originally Posted by donbone
09-13-2005, 01:30 PM #17Originally Posted by BITTAPART2
09-13-2005, 01:43 PM #18Originally Posted by symatech
Which was full of lies and twisted truths...
09-13-2005, 01:48 PM #19Originally Posted by Bigen12
09-13-2005, 01:58 PM #20Originally Posted by radar1234
You have heard that people who attend church have or get cancer then the general population. So, you could assume chuch causes cancer. You leave out the fact that 80% of the people that attend church are elderly. Thats the type of reasoning Michael Moore showed in F9/11.
09-13-2005, 02:06 PM #21
Here is one
'Pro-gun' Rally After Columbine
Moore edits & splices several Heston speeches to change their meanings
This scene kicks off the first of 3 sequences in the film that seek to directly defame and demonize Charlton Heston through crafty editing, lying through withheld information and inaccurate implications..
Racist - Guilty by association
Closing the Columbine footage tear jerker scene, we see a near-hysterical female Columbine High School student telling how the girl next to her was shot in the head and a black male student was murdered 'because he was black.' Right at that line about him being shot 'cuz he was black' the footage is stopped (the frame freezes) and in a zoom in fade transition accompanied by a few seconds of black screen, we immediately see a clip of Charlton Heston at an NRA convention, colonial long-gun held high over his head, saying:
"I have only five words for you . . . From my cold dead hands!"
This trick is an important one to notice and is one Moore makes use of later in the film. The girls full comments aren't shown. Moore intentionally showed us footage of the sobbing student and stopped the feed at the racist line (paused and zoomed in) to demonize Heston. This is the first, but not the last time Moore does this kind of trick to tie racism in with guns.
The juxtaposition is especially insulting to Heston, who has a long history of time and effort in fighting for civil rights. Before the elitist Hollywood community took interest or involve in civil rights, Heston marched side by side with Martin Luther King Jr. on a number of occasions including the civil rights march in 1963 performed in Washington, D.C. In the original (uncut) version of "King: A Filmed Record... Montgomery to Memphis" (1970), Heston appears as a narrator.
Heston insists that with his work concerning the 2nd amendment, he is simply promoting "freedom in the truest sense". If Michael Moore disagrees with that analysis he should address it and attack it instead of ignoring it and creating straw men arguments. During the civil rights era Heston says he was fighting to uphold the Bill of Rights and "as president of the NRA I am doing the same thing".
'From my cold dead hands'
Moore plays the famous cold dead hands line right after a somber scene of crying children to paint Heston as insensitive to gun tragedies. The emotional appeal of cutting a scene of low key music and crying children with a triumphant Heston makes the association that Heston is reveling in death.
This is incredibly dishonest. The cut would be just an illustration of Moore's view if not for the change in motive. It would be just like me cutting Moore's triumphant Oscar speech ("we're against this war Mr. Bush") with footage of the mass graves found in the Iraqi war he was so against -- or maybe if I could get my hands on a transcript from the black box of one of the 9/11 planes to splice together Moore's comments made in London calling the passengers 'scardy cats' because they were white, inter-cut with the pleas to the hijackers before those 'scared whities' were slaughtered. It'd be a great point of insensitivity just like the one Moore is supposedly making about Heston - except for one thing: Motive.
- Item: Why did Moore say the victims of 911 were scardy cats? -- because he was cracking a few jokes in front of a light hearted audience.
- Item: Why did Moore say "we're against this war Mr. Bush" while soldiers were dieing so that others may live? (*) -- because he hates president Bush and is a staunch anti-war activist.
- Item: Why did Heston say 'from my cold dead hands'? -- To solidify his support in the second amendment of the constitution.
Something's wrong with this picture - and it's not the way I painted it. Read all that very closely before you disregard this as just 'another way to look at things' or a clever way to spin the events so they work out for an anti-Moore argument.
Charlton Heston believes in an American right. He made a powerful statement that emboldens that right. Michael Moore tells us that he himself believes in this right. Yet Michael Moore doesn't cut quotes from himself mixed in with footage from gun tragedy. It's no more dishonest when done with Heston.
After this, we hear Moore telling us, ominously, that "just 10 days after the Columbine mass murders Heston came to Denver and held a large pro-gun rally."
The distortion is nauseatingly extreme. Heston's "cold dead hands" speech, which leads off Moore's depiction of the Denver meeting, was not given at Denver in defiance to Columbine. It was given a year later in Charlotte, North Carolina, and was his gesture of gratitude upon being given the handmade musket he's holding, at that annual meeting. A key word there is 'annual.' Although Moore successfully makes it appear that Heston has held the rally in response to the Columbine massacre - the gathering was preplanned.
The portrayal is that the line is made in defiance of Columbine while at an insensitive rally in Michigan, when it's actually a thank-you speech given a year later in North Carolina. It was a statement to reaffirm the right to own firearms, no different than saying the same thing with a steak raised over your head to show opposition to fanatical groups like PETA. It had nothing to do with any tragic event and its just as unfair to cut the two together as it would be if you cut the parallel line from my steak scenario after footage from a from the sad families of those who have lost a loved one to mad cow disease.
David Hardy from Hardylaw.net was the first to uncover this tricky scheme with a close analysis of the scene and the facts from the real events. His good eye revealed that after the 'cold dead hands' line, Moore then cuts the shot -- a visual of a billboard and his narration. As Hardy says:
This is vital. He can't go directly to Heston's real Denver speech or he gives away his secret. If he did that, you might ask how Heston in mid-speech changed from a purple tie and lavender shirt to a white shirt and red tie, and the background draperies went from maroon to blue. Moore had to separate the two segments.
And so he does. However, Moore defends this editing as being part of the documentary process and completely disregards this as a valid criticism in the list of his wacko attacko's. The cold dead hands line is meant simply to introduce Heston by saying "here he is: C. Heston. Gun nut extraordinaire" and then move on to something entirely different.
However, if Moore's honest intentions are to be believed, this calls into question what exactly he thought he would convey to his audience by seamlessly merging the crowd's clapping from the Dead Hands speech with the audio of the crowd at the Denver speech and cutting from audience to billboard back to audience. The visual implication is clearly and undeniably that these words were made at the same time. If Moore wants to claim it is completely unintentional, his judgement is a different story.
A defiant insensitive rally...required by law
Whether Moore deceived the audience about Heston defiantly saying the 'dead hands' line right after Columbine or not doesn't change the fact that a rally was held. Annual meeting or not -- How dare Charlton Heston hold a peaceful assembly through an organization that promotes responsible use and ownership of firearms at a location where people had just been killed by malicious and illegal use of firearms, one might say (though may say in slightly different words). Three fun facts debunk this objection to Heston, and Moore withheld all of them in both the movie and his defense of this scene:
1.) - Mayor Webb (who Moore shows, at the last minute told the NRA to cancel the convention) had eagerly solicited the NRA convention for Denver in the first place. (2)
2.) - Heston did not have canceling or rescheduling the convention as an option. In fact, he was required by law to hold this meeting by its non-profit charter from the state of New York, so cancellation was impossible.
3.) - Even if Heston wasn't legally required to hold the gathering there; the annual meeting in Denver was set to be held at that place and date years in advance. Even if he could have without braking the law - changing location at that time would have been impossible, since you have to give advance notice of that to the members, and there were upwards of 4,000,000 members.
Not to divert from the film, but it is worth noting that Moore defenders are amazing on this point. Webmaster Erik Moller actually said in response to these facts:
"10 days are more than enough to give advance warning of a change in location or date, had the NRA really wanted to."
To be fair, Mr. Moller lives in Germany, and they do have softer drug laws there, but come now. He still lives on the same planet, and there's just no way a sober human being can possibly think that 10 days is in any way a fifth of enough time to send the 'guess what?' PSA to 4,000,000 people who presumably have families, jobs and lives that were altered so they could attend the meeting at that location. This just shows you how far some people go to make Michael Moore's fantasy world logic seem plausible.
Fun in Denver?
But it gets worse. Even if Heston didn't really wave a gun around with flippant remarks after Columbine and even if he had no choice but to hold his NRA meeting there, one could still argue that he is an insensitive jerk because he dared to enjoy himself at a time of tragedy that is quasi-related to the purpose of the organization.
However, David Hardy spanks this contention as well pointing out that Heston altered the meeting as much as he could in response and respect to the Columbine killings:
Much to the disappointment of NRA members, Heston took initiative to cancel the fun and merriment that normally surrounds these gatherings (normally several days of committee meetings, sporting events, dinners, and rallies), holding only its annual members' meeting, in the afternoon session we are shown.
And Heston explains it in his speech, but Moore doesn't show that part. Moore hides this fact by using another editing trick of the same style. He cuts Charlton Heston mentioning the cancellations out in a second edit that is covered by splicing in a pan shot of the crowd. Here is Heston's following announcement that Moore didn't let you see in BFC, that says the NRA has in fact cancelled most of its meeting (as said prior, all that was possible):
"As you know, we've cancelled the festivities, the fellowship we normally enjoy at our annual gatherings. This decision has perplexed a few and inconvenienced thousands. As your president, I apologize for that."
This quote, above all others from Heston's speech unequivocally crushes Moore's claim that he was holding the rally in defiance or any kind of jubilant insensitivity. The impossibility of Moore not seeing the full video of this quote, and his failure to apologize or even defend this after the films release forces this blatant trickery and deception.
MORE Speech splicing...
Once again, thanks totally to David Hardys critical analysis and information, we know that when this scene continues with the speech, it carefully edits it to change its theme. Moore says 'no way dude' and claims this scene is lagit. His fans agree - Moore presents the most important parts of the speech (obviously he's not going to include every single line to keep it pithy) to back up his point and ignores the fluff - thaaaaats aaaaall. This is what good documentary filmmaking is about guys. Not.
Moore has actually taken audio of seven sentences, from five different parts of the speech, and a section given in a different speech entirely, and spliced them together. Each edit is cleverly covered by inserting a still or video footage for a few seconds.
Hardy walks through the whole scene from the beginning here:
Right after the weeping victims, Moore puts on Heston's "I have only five words for you . . . cold dead hands" statement, making it seem directed at them. As noted above, it's actually a thank-you speech given a year later in North Carolina.
During clapping, Moore has an interlude - the visual of a billboard and his narration - all covered by a smooth audio stream of clapping.
Cut to Heston noting that Denver's mayor asked NRA not to come, and shows Heston replying "I said to the Mayor: As Americans, we're free to travel wherever we want in our broad land. Don't come here? We're already here!" as if in defiance.
The comment gives a clear impression. It looks like the mayor said "we don't want you here - don't come here" and Heston basically said "Sorry sucker! This is a free country and I can do whatever I want! -Bitch!"
But that's not what happened at all. Not only, as I said above, did the mayor solicit the NRA to come to Denver in the first place - Moore actually put an edit right in the middle of the first sentence, and another at its end to totally distort its motive! Heston really said (with reference his own WWII vet status):
"I said to the mayor, well, my reply to the mayor is, I volunteered for the war they wanted me to attend when I was 18 years old. Since then, I've run small errands for my country, from Nigeria to Vietnam. I know many of you here in this room could say the same thing
Moore cuts it after "I said to the Mayor" and attaches a sentence from the end of the next paragraph:
"As Americans, we're free to travel wherever we want in our broad land."
He hides the deletion by cutting to footage of protestors and a photo of the Mayor before going back and showing Heston. Moore has Heston then triumphantly announce "Don't come here? We're already here!" to make him look proud of his defiance.
Actually, that sentence is clipped from a segment five paragraphs farther on in the speech. Again, Moore uses an editing trick to cover the doctoring, switching to a pan shot of the audience as Heston's (edited) voice continues.
What Heston actually said there was:
"NRA members are in city hall, Fort Carson, NORAD, the Air Force Academy and the Olympic Training Center. And yes, NRA members are surely among the police and fire and SWAT team heroes who risked their lives to rescue the students at Columbine.
Don't come here? We're already here. This community is our home. Every community in America is our home. We are a 128-year-old fixture of mainstream America. The Second Amendment ethic of lawful, responsible firearm ownership spans the broadest cross section of American life imaginable.
So, we have the same right as all other citizens to be here. To help shoulder the grief and share our sorrow and to offer our respectful, reassured voice to the national discourse that has erupted around this tragedy."
Taken out of context, Heston sounds like a real jerk. But when you get to see what he was really saying, it starts to make sense. Where as the majors comments and Moore's representation sought to make the NRA some foreign freakish organization of flip-nut yahoos who aren't welcome past the city walls, Heston united instead of divided.
His message was that it is ignorant to make gun owners unwelcome in a place where murdering thugs happened to perpetrate evil with guns. Heston reached out to those angry at the very existence and presence of the NRA to not couple violent gun killers with simple gun owners, and not to demonize those you disagree with.
In this scene, Michael Moore completely reverses the theme to do exactly as Heston was asking not be done.
Fishing for answers
Moore fans, and Moore himself quickly brush this all off as nothing. The opening Heston clip wasn't deliberately spliced into the scene to trick the audience into thinking that it was the same event as the rally. Nah. It's just an 'introduction' (no explanation as to why a distinction wasn't made, or why the audio of clapping was made as a glue between the 2 shots). And Moore didn't chop up Heston's speech to change anything. Naaaah. He just shortened it for time and picked out the important parts. Right. -As an anti-Moore forum poster identified only as 'imbordisux' cleverly noted: "as for everyone who is saying Moore simply 'shortened' Heston's speech for the sake of time, if you made the statement 'I don't like to rape babies', and I edited-out the 'don't', am I simply 'shortening' it?"
Michael Moore manipulates these actions by Heston to completely change their meaning 100%. This scene is important for Moore's tricky harvest -- here he is planting the seeds of hate in the audiences now fertile mind to grow solidarity in his demonization of Heston. He goes to such lengths to defame him because he must make sure that the viewer is on his side when he attacks Heston later in the film.
Unfortunately, the trickery works like a charm, and without transcripts or fact sheets in front of them, the audience is totally deceived by Moore's perversion of reality. Don't be fooled.
09-13-2005, 02:08 PM #22
I said it once and I'll say it again "F*UCK micheal moore" and " I love Bush"
09-13-2005, 02:08 PM #23
Michael At the Bank
Moore ridicules a bank for giving customers a free gun
Gunowners.org (a pro-gun source obviously) summarizes this scene accurately and eloquently saying "After the April 20 lead-in, Bowling begins an examination of middle-American gun culture, and indulges the bicoastal elite's snobbery toward American gun owners."
It's an accurate depiction of the intent of the scene. The scene, dubbed “Michael at the Bank” is a good example of what can be brushed off and casually justified as what has been called 'artistic lying.' The scene opens in a branch of the North Country Bank, with Moore supposedly receiving a free gun in exchange for opening an account. North County Bank — like several other banks in the United States — allows people who buy a Certificate of Deposit to receive their interest in the form of a rifle or shotgun. The depositor thereby receives the full value of the interest immediately, rather than over a term of years. The scene has Moore discovering an ad in a local Michigan paper touting that if you open an account at North Country Bank & Trust, the bank (“more bang for your buck!”) will give you a gun.
Moore goes to the bank, is greeted by a customer service representative and moves on to an unnamed teller who goes through the necessary paperwork (which looks ridiculously simple) for Moore to open an account. Moore goes through the process of buying the CD and answering questions for the federal Form 4473 registration sheet. Although a bank employee makes a brief reference to a "background check," the only thing we see is Moore filling out a form where he says he is not crazy, or a criminal - and of course, that he's white; although he stumbles on spelling the word 'Caucasian' (which I actually had to just fix on spell checker) to further paint the process as unofficial and unsafe while feeding his 'Stupid White Men' theme in the same punch.
The audience never sees the process whereby the bank requires Moore to produce photo identification, then contacts the FBI for a criminal records check on Moore, before he is allowed to take possession of the rifle. Moments later, Moore is handed his new rifle in the North Country Bank & Trust lobby, at which point he asks another unnamed bank employee, “Do you think it’s a little dangerous handing out guns in a bank?”
Before the employee can respond, Moore turns his inquiry into a punchline by immediately cueing Teenage Fanclub’s rendition of the song “Take the Skinheads Bowling,” the tune to which he marches out of the bank, to be followed by the opening credits featuring black and white footage of silly white folks bowling.
It is a dazzling opening, full of energy, irony and Strangelovian absurdity. Only one problem plagues it's cleverness: It was staged.
Indeed, there's more, a lot more, to this story. In an interview, Jan Jacobson, the woman at this bank shown in the movie, says they were filmed for about an hour-and-a-half during which she explained everything to Moore in detail. But, the way things were presented in the film, Jacobson says, it looks like "a wham-bam thing." She says she resents the way she was portrayed as some kind of "backwoods idiot" mindlessly handing out guns. She says Moore deceived her into being interviewed by saying of their long-gun-give-away program: "This is so great. I'm a hunter, a sportsman, grew up in Michigan, am an NRA member." She says: "He went on and on and on saying this was the most unique program he'd ever heard of." This is the first example of how Moore completely deceives and manipulates his subjects to be made to look stupid in his film. Unfortunately, it is not the last and more unfortunately, an ignorant audience plays patsy to Moore's dishonest depiction.
Jacobson says the movie is misleading because it leaves the impression that a person can come in, sign up and walk out with a gun. But, this is not done because no guns are kept at her bank, although one would think so. She says that ordinarily a person entitled to one of the long-guns must go to a gun-dealer where the gun is shipped.
In fact, despite what BFC wants us to believe, Jacobson says there are no long-guns at her bank. The 500 guns mentioned in the movie are in a vault four hours away. But wait a second... Didn't I see some long guns sitting right there on the rack above her shoulder? Yes - you're not going crazy - those guns you saw (as shown in the picture up the page) are models.
She says that Moore's signing papers in the film was just for show. His immediately walking out of the bank with a long-gun was allowed because "this whole thing was set up two months prior to the filming of the movie" when he had already complied with all the rules, including a background check.
Jacobson says the bank's so-called "Weatherby Program" has "absolutely" been a smashing success. She says their corporate office was braced for some possible criticism because of BFC. But, they got only two calls -- and these were from people wanting to know the details of the "Weatherby Program" so they, too, could get their long-guns!
A non-issue point in the first place
So the audience is left with a smug sense of the pro-gun bank's careless craziness. Yet, aside to the falshoods the audience isn't aware of, just a moment's reflection on the given information shows that there is not the slightest danger. Aside from the thorough legal background check and paperwork we didn't see, there are fundamental common sense flaws to the scene. The process of getting a 'free gun' isn't quite as easy as Moore wants you to believe, and it's not dangerous unless the person tries to use the gun as a club and wants to be quickly caught by the police.
To take possession of the gun, the depositor must:
Produce photo identification; making it inescapably certain that the robber would be identified and caught.
Give the bank at least a thousand dollars -- (an unlikely way to start a robbery) (1).
Spend at least a half hour at the bank, thereby allowing many people to see and identify him, and undergo an FBI background check, which would reveal criminal convictions disqualifying most of the people inclined to bank robbery.
The label of this process being ridiculous is in fact ridiculous itself. A would-be robber could far more easily buy a handgun for a few hundred bucks on the black market, with no identification required, and would want to zip in and out of the bank as quick as possible.
Also - the bank is a licensed firearms dealer - not shooting range. They don't hand bullets to you. Moore had to buy them later, as seen in the barbershop scene. If Moore brought his own bullets and tried to load them into the long-gun right there in the bank, it would be obvious and he'd be immediately stopped.
The 'artistic lying' illustrates the genius of Bowling for Columbine, in that the movie does not explicitly make these obvious points about the safety of the North County Bank's program. Rather, the audience is simply encouraged to laugh along with Moore's apparent mockery of the bank, without realizing that the joke is on them for seeing danger where none exists.
This theme is developed throughout the film. Don't be fooled.
YOU MISSED THE POINT! - The point of the scene
Many have e-mailed me saying I've missed the point of the scene, telling me that it's purpose is not the ease of which the bank gives you the gun - but the very fact that they are giving out guns! I ask these people to review the scene and actually watch it again if they can, and see if they don't think differently. I can't read the mind of Michael Moore, so I can't say for sure what his point was, however I can say positively that the way the scene was cut (asking for the account with the free gun, going directly to some cheesy questions going directly to holding the firearm and pointing it around to close with "don't you think it's a little dangerous handing out guns at a bank") certainly conveys an issue of ridiculousness on how easy
However - lets take a look at it under the alternate thesis. You come to basically the same conclusion: Moore is a lying hypocrite.
Moore mentions many times in Bowling For Columbine that gun use and gun culture is not what causes gun death. He illustrates this in his own childhood enthusiasm with guns and his endless praise for Canada, which he calls not only a "nation of hunters" but "one gun loving, gun toting country." So if Moore is making a farcical point out of American gun culture, then he is an exposed hypocrite when he advocates rifle use later in the film.
But like I said - I didn't get the impression that this was an attack on rifle users, nor the one I believe most get. But depending on what you think the exact point of the scene is - either Michael Moore deceived you with fictitious representation, or he lied to you to effectively play both sides of an issue. You pick.
Wrong on Killer toasters...
While on Oprah promoting Bowling For Columbine - Michael Moore talks about this scene and North Country Banks gun program. (2) Moore says: "What happened to giving out toasters, you know? I'd never heard of anybody killed by a toaster, you know?"
But, thanks to information that Larry Pratt from Gunowners.org delightfully uncovered - surprise! once again, Moore is fighting against himself:
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (8/30/02) reports a woman who used a rolled-up newspaper and toaster to light a cigarette started a fire that killed her mentally ill adult daughter. The Irish Times (2/28/02) reports that in Cork, in 1997, one homeless man murdered another homeless man by hitting him in the head with a toaster. And the Philippine Daily Inquirer (8/28/01) tells of a young woman who saw her toaster on fire, threw water on it and was electrocuted instantly. A Global News Wire story (8/3/01) says a pop-up toaster is the likely cause of a fire killing a mother and son in Timaru, New Zealand. A Canadian Press report (7/28/2000) says that in Quebec a house fire started by a toaster killed an autistic young man. And the Richmond Times-Dispatch (5/10/99) says a Yorkshire, Virginia, couple filed a $4.7 million lawsuit against a Delaware business alleging that their toaster was faulty and caused a fire killing their mentally disabled son and his grandmother.
Larry says he found several more stories like this from around the world involving killer-toasters - but I think we all get the point. "Perhaps Michael Moore's next movie will deal with the obvious need for tougher toaster-control laws" he says. -Not likely. Michael Moore knows not the world of consistency.
Why did I say he's fighting against himself? Well, he may never have heard of anybody killed by a toaster, but that doesn't mean it doesn't happen. And isn't that a main thesis in Bowling For Columbine? That the media isn't an accurate gage of current dangers in America? Furthermore, doesn't the media's lack of sensationalism over toaster deaths go strictly against his argument of media scaremongering? After all, toasters are a lot more common place than guns. Why not target THEM for demonization to scare the public? Obviously these media (non liberal leaning at all whatsoever of course) reports on guns put firearms in an unfavorable light - which I would think Moore would like.
Michael Moore makes less and less sense under the revelation of key facts to his arguments - and this is only 6 minutes into the movie!
09-13-2005, 02:09 PM #24
Way to go Bigen
09-13-2005, 02:10 PM #25
And many more....
The introduction of Bowling is a purported clip from an NRA documentary, announcing that the viewer is about to see a National Rifle Association film. Obviously, Bowling is not an NRA film, and so Moore makes it clear right at the beginning that Bowling is not a documentary (based on true facts), but rather a mockumentary (based on fictitious "facts"). It's a humorous movie, but the biggest joke is on the audience, which credulously accepts the "facts" in the movie as if they were true.
The first mockumentary "fact" is the title itself. The Columbine murderers were enrolled in a high-school bowling class. After the NRA introduction, the film begins on the morning of April 20, 1999, the day of the Columbine murders. Narrator Moore announces that on that day, "Two boys went bowling at six in the morning." This serves as a setup for a later segment looking at the causes of Columbine, and arguing that blaming violent video games (which the killers played obsessively) or Marilyn Manson music (which the killers enjoyed) makes no more sense than blaming bowling.
In fact, the two killers ditched bowling class on the day of the murders. The police investigation found that none of the students in the bowling class that morning had seen the killers that day. The police report was completed long before the release of Bowling for Columbine, so the title itself is a deliberate falsehood. (I don't use the word "lie" because the mockumentary genre allows for the use of invented facts.)
After the April 20 lead-in, Bowling begins an examination of middle-American gun culture, and indulges the bicoastal elite's snobbery toward American gun owners.
We are taken to the North County Bank in Michigan, which — like several other banks in the United States — allows people who buy a Certificate of Deposit to receive their interest in the form of a rifle or shotgun. (The depositor thereby receives the full value of the interest immediately, rather than over a term of years.)
Moore goes through the process of buying the CD and answering questions for the federal Form 4473 registration sheet. Although a bank employee makes a brief reference to a "background check," the audience never sees the process whereby the bank requires Moore to produce photo identification, then contacts the FBI for a criminal records check on Moore, before he is allowed to take possession of the rifle.
Moore asks: "Do you think it's a little bit dangerous handing out guns at a bank?" The banker's answer isn't shown.
So the audience is left with a smug sense of the pro-gun bank's folly. Yet just a moment's reflection shows that there is not the slightest danger. To take possession of the gun, the depositor must give the bank thousands of dollars (an unlikely way to start a robbery). He must then produce photo identification (thus making it all but certain that the robber would be identified and caught), spend at least a half hour at the bank (thereby allowing many people to see and identify him), and undergo an FBI background check (which would reveal criminal convictions disqualifying most of the people inclined to bank robbery). A would-be robber could far more easily buy a handgun for a few hundred dollars on the black market, with no identification required.
The genius of Bowling for Columbine is that the movie does not explicitly make these obvious points about the safety of the North County Bank's program. Rather, the audience is simply encouraged to laugh along with Moore's apparent mockery of the bank, without realizing that the joke is on them for seeing danger where none exists. This theme is developed throughout the film.
From the Michigan bank, Moore moves on to an examination of the rest of Michigan's culture — or, more precisely, to eccentric and unrepresentative segments of that culture, thereby playing to the audience's feelings of superiority over American gun owners.
For example, hunting is a challenging sport, requiring outdoor skills, wildlife knowledge, patience, and good marksmanship. Most members of the urban audiences cheering Bowling for Columbine are no more capable of participating in a successful hunt than they are of conducting a three-day, backcountry cross-country ski trek, or playing rookie-league baseball. The vast majority of hunters are also very safety-conscious. In 2000, for example, there were 91 fatal hunting accidents in all of North America, within a population of over 16 million hunters.
Yet Moore ignores all of this. Instead, he comically reports an incident in which some reckless hunters tied a gun to their dog to take a funny picture, and one of the hunters was shot. According to the police reports, the foolish hunters had only a still camera, but Bowling presents a fabricated video clip which purports to have been filmed by the hunter's friend. Because the clip appears to be a home movie, Bowling makes hunters seem viciously callous: The "hunter" holding the camera continues recording after his fellow hunter has been wounded, rather than immediately stopping to help the friend.
Similarly, the ideology of gun ownership and civil liberty is not presented by reference to Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, or to legal scholars such as liberal Democrats Sanford Levinson or Larry Tribe. Instead, Moore goes to the Michigan Militia.
While Moore allows the militia members to present their case, he makes the group (which has no record of illegal violence or any other illegal activity) appear extremely dangerous by informing viewers that Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols attended militia meetings. Moore conveniently neglects to mention that the two were eventually kicked out, for talking about violence.
James Nichols, the brother of a convicted mass murderer, is offered as a spokesman for the right of free people to resist tyrannical government.
ON TO LITTLETON, LOCKHEED, AND 9/11
Bowling then departs Michigan and heads for Littleton, Colo., to develop the thesis that American militarism created the mass-murder atmosphere that resulted in Columbine.
Aerospace contractor Lockheed Martin has a factory in Littleton, so Moore asks a company spokesman if "our kids say to themselves, 'Well, gee, Dad goes off to the factory every day, and he builds missiles, he builds weapons of mass destruction. What's the difference between that mass destruction and the mass destruction over at Columbine High School?'" The camera then takes a shot of a workplace safety slogan — "It has to be foreign-object free" — to imply that Lockheed Martin employees revel in the killing of dehumanized foreigners.
Of course the connection is nonsense. While one killer's father once served in the Air Force, neither family worked in the defense industry. The other killer's parents were gun-control advocates — so much so that they forbade him to play with toy guns — unlike the many children who are shown with toy guns elsewhere in the film. One of the killers' gun suppliers was the son of a Colorado anti-gun activist. Thus, Moore might just as well have asked a spokesman for a gun-prohibition group if "our kids say to themselves, 'Well, gee, mom and day say that guns are just for killing innocent people. So if I have a gun, I guess I should use it for killing innocent people.'"
Moore returns to the bowling theme a few scenes later, to present the argument — which the audience of course supports — that neither bowling nor Marilyn Manson was responsible for the Columbine crimes. The audience is encouraged to feel intellectually superior to the politicians, who are pictured blaming Marilyn Manson.
Yet the connection the movie draws between Lockheed and the Columbine mass murder is even more tenuous than the connection with Manson. The Columbine killers had no connection to Lockheed, but they did listen to Marilyn Manson. And Brian Warner's choice of the stage name of "Manson" shows that mass killers can enjoy enduring pop-culture fame — precisely what the Columbine killers hoped to achieve. (I avoid mentioning their names so as not to assist their vicious quest.)
After blaming Lockheed for 13 deaths at Columbine, the film moves on to blaming the United States government for 3,000 deaths on September 11. It does this by arguing that we got what we deserved, because our nation revels in the killing of civilians by air.
A montage of U.S. foreign-policy atrocities (to the tune of "What a Wonderful World") concludes with the statement that the U.S. gave $245 million to the Taliban in 2000-01. The next shot is of the World Trade Center in flames.
In fact, that money was not given to the Taliban government, but rather to U.S. and international agencies that distributed humanitarian aid to the people of Afghanistan. In other words, the fact that the United States gave money to Food For Peace and for girls' schools for Afghan refugees is supposed to prove that the America deserved to be attacked by al Qaeda.
Right after the footage of the airplanes hitting the Twin Towers, Bowling shows a B-52 memorial at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs. Moore intones: "The plaque underneath it proudly proclaims that this plane killed Vietnamese people on Christmas Eve 1972." The point is obvious: that the United States government and al Qaeda both perpetrate murder by airplane.
In fact, the plaque on the B-52 at the AFA is not as Moore describes it. The plaque says "B-52D Stratofortress. 'Diamond Lil.' Dedicated to the men and women of the Strategic Air Command who flew and maintained the B-52D throughout its 26-year history in the command. Aircraft 55-083, with over 15,000 flying hours, is one of two B-52Ds credited with a confirmed MIG kill during the Vietnam Conflict Flying out of U-Tapao Royal Thai Naval Airfield in southern Thailand, the crew of 'Diamond Lil' shot down a MIG northeast of Hanoi during 'Linebacker II' action on Christmas Eve, 1972."
Moore thus confirms the absurdity of the blame-America-first position popular among the Hollywood Left, by showing that such views require the ignoring of obvious facts — such as the difference between financial aid to a dictatorship and humanitarian aid to refugees, or between fighting enemy pilots and perpetrating war crimes against civilians.
BLAME IT ON THE NRA
A long mockumentary segment reports on the NRA convention in Denver in May 1999. The segment begins with NRA president Charlton Heston holding an antique rifle above his head and delivering the signature line: "From my cold dead hands." Actually, Heston never displayed a rifle or uttered that line at the Denver convention.
Moore bashes the NRA for being insensitive by holding its convention in Denver two weeks after the Columbine murders. That insensitivity is heightened by the implication that Heston did the "cold dead hands" rifle display there. Viewers are not informed that the NRA convention had been scheduled many years in advance, that Mayor Webb (who at the last minute told the NRA to cancel the convention) had eagerly solicited the NRA convention for Denver, or that the NRA drastically reduced its four-day convention, holding only its annual members' meeting, in an afternoon session legally required by its non-profit charter from the state of New York.
The litany of scapegoating (Lockheed Martin, the United States, the NRA) then abruptly shifts into the anti-scapegoating segments concerning bowling and Marilyn Manson.
In keeping with the mockumentary format, Moore tells the audience that bowling was "apparently the last thing they did before the massacre." Even if the killers hadn't skipped class, this statement would be untrue. Bowling class was at 6 A.M.; the killings began around 11 A.M.
The "scapegoat Lockheed and the NRA" segments serve as a perfect counterpoint to the "don't scapegoat bowling or Manson" segment. By leading the audience into fatuous scapegoating of Lockheed and the NRA, the film demonstrates the pervasiveness of scapegoating — even by people who denounce it.
A cartoon history of the United States comes next, on the theme that American gun owners are racist. The Second Amendment is said to have been written "so every white man could keep his gun." Actually, at the time of the Second Amendment, every state allowed free people of color to own guns. Moreover, anti-slavery activist Lysander Spooner would later use the Second Amendment as part of his argument to show that slavery was unconstitutional. Gun prohibition, he argued, is a condition of slavery; the Second Amendment guarantees the right of all people to own guns; hence slavery, and its attendant gun prohibition, are unconstitutional.
The audience is now informed that the National Rifle Association was founded in 1871, "the same year the Klan became an illegal terrorist organization." The voice-over says that this was just a coincidence, but the cartoon shows gun owners helping Klansmen to murder blacks.
The phrasing of the Klan line leaves some viewers with the impression that the Klan was created in 1871, even though the group was founded in 1866 in Tennessee. What happened in 1871 was congressional passage of the Ku Klux Klan Act, which allowed the president to suppress the Klan by denying Klansmen the writ of habeas corpus. (The Klan was, of course, composed of men who fought on the losing, pro-slavery side of the Civil War.)
President Ulysses S. Grant signed the Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871 into law, and worked for the rapid extermination of that terrorist organization. Grant dispatched federal troops into South Carolina, Louisiana, and Florida to destroy the Klan and to protect black voting rights. In an April 1872 report to Congress, Grant pointed out the continuing problem in some southern counties of the Ku Klux Klan attempting "to deprive colored citizens of their right to bear arms and the right of a free ballot."
President Grant also signed the Enforcement Act of 1870, which made it a federal crime for the Ku Klux Klan or similar conspiracies to interfere with the civil rights of freedmen — including their Second Amendment right to arms.
Frederick Douglass justly called Grant "the benefactor of an enslaved and despised race, a race who will ever cherish a grateful remembrance of his name, fame and great services."
The 1871 founders of the National Rifle Association were thus diametrically opposed to the Confederates who founded the KKK. The NRA founders were Union officers who had fought on the winning, anti-slavery side of the Civil War. Dismayed by the poor quality of Union marksmanship during the war, the NRA's founders aimed to improve the shooting skills of the American public at large. The first NRA president was Ambrose E. Burnside, who had served as commander of the Army of the Potomac.
Ulysses Grant left the presidency in 1877, but continued his long career of public service in retirement. In 1883, he was elected president of the National Rifle Association. From 1871 until the end of the century, nine of the NRA's ten presidents had fought against slavery during the Civil War. These included Gen. Winfield Scott Hancock, a hero of Gettysburg, and Gen. Phillip Sheridan, the famous Union cavalry commander. During Reconstruction, Gen. Sheridan served as military governor of Louisiana and Texas, and removed hundreds of local officials (including the governors of both states, and the chief justice of the Texas supreme court) from office for failing to respect the rights of freedmen and for failing to enforce laws for their protection.
In Bowling, Michael Moore brags that he is an NRA "Lifetime member." So it might be expected that Moore would inform viewers about the NRA's noble anti-slavery history. But Moore's connection to the NRA is bizarre; he told Tim Russert that he joined the group so that he could be elected its president and make it support gun control. This is aggrandized self-delusion, rather like Barbra Streisand announcing that she was becoming Catholic so that she could be elected Pope and make the Church support polygamy.
The supposedly racist nature of white gun owners is reinforced by Bowling's statement that an 1871 law made it illegal for blacks to own guns. No such law existed, although it is true that many gun laws from the late 19th century — such as licensing and registration laws, or bans on inexpensive guns — were selectively enforced in the South so as to deprive blacks of firearms. These are the same kinds of laws that Moore promotes today. Indeed, he turned the Bowling for Columbine premier into a fundraiser for the Brady Campaign, which works hard to outlaw inexpensive guns used by poor people for protection.
Having established the racism and paranoia of American gun owners, Moore now begins an extended sequence depicting the media as racist fear-mongers. He first argues that the media create irrational fears about black criminals. (According to the FBI's Uniform Crime Reports, table 43, 4,238 blacks were arrested for murder and non-negligent manslaughter, compared to 4,231 whites.)
University of Southern California Professor Barry Glassner, author of The Culture of Fear, gets lots of camera time to explain how the media sensationalize crime and hype fears to unrealistic levels. And this is where Bowling's genius truly shines.
On the one hand, Bowling works the audience into self-righteous anger at "the media" for using cheap sensationalism to promote fear. At the very same time, the film uses — you guessed it — cheap sensationalism to promote fear. The very techniques which he decries in the media, Moore uses himself, with obvious approval from the audience. Moore thus enacts a real demonstration of how the audience is itself complicit in the cycle of fear.
Moore criticizes weakly researched media stories that scare people over nothing (such as phony stories about razors in Halloween apples), but at the same time, his own factual claims are either invented or taken grossly out of context.
For instance, Moore lets Glassner criticize the media for sharply increasing coverage of homicides during a period when the actual homicide rate was falling. Yet his own frantic film about the terrible dangers of American gun violence comes even as gun crime rates have fallen sharply from their early 1990s levels.
Glassner's book points out that an American schoolchild is much more likely to be killed by lightning than in a school shooting. Yet Moore's film rests on the premise that the Columbine shooting represents an American epidemic of violence.
Even while denouncing Americans for being so afraid of violent crime, Bowling for Columbine works hard to make them still more afraid.
The audience accepts Moore's cinematic fear-mongering — while congratulating itself for being too sophisticated to fall for media fear-mongering. So even as Bowling offers its audience the superficial social satisfaction of being less media-malleable than the rubes who are presented as typical Americans, the audience nevertheless falls for sensationalistic media exploitation. The L.A. Weekly noted the "tabloid" nature of Moore's film, and the film's tawdry use of cheap emotion and cheap shots could indeed serve as a model for an aspiring tabloid television producer.
Accordingly, the smug audience of Bowling is degraded not merely to the level of ordinary gullible Americans who buy into the fear-mongering on the evening news, but still further — to the trash-news level of people who are easily manipulated by tabloid media.
Thus, Bowling turns the audience's very pleasure in watching the movie into a deconstruction of the audience's blue-state social pretensions. The Bowling audience is every bit as ignorant and fearful as the audience for Inside Edition.
Moore's technique is that of turning an audience's acceptance of a work's superficial message into a much deeper message which critiques the audience itself. Thus, Bowling for Columbine makes the audience complicit in its own delegitimization and degradation. Most of the audience, of course, never "gets" the real point.
Moore's clever techniques of inversion reach an apogee with the Willie Horton ad. Political historians will remember that in the 1988 Democratic primaries, candidate Al Gore criticized Gov. Michael Dukakis for a Massachusetts furlough program under which Willie Horton — who was serving a murder sentence of life without parole — was given a weekend furlough, and raped a woman. During the fall campaign, the pro-Bush National Security Political Action Committee ran a Willie Horton commercial.
The official Bush campaign ran its own advertisement, "Revolving Doors," which attacked the furlough program but did not mention Willie Horton.
But Moore pastes text from the National Security PAC ad over film from the Bush commercial, thus creating the impression that Bush invoked Willie Horton. Moore falsifies the advertisement by pasting onscreen the text: "Willie Horton released. Then kills again." This libels Willie Horton, who perpetrated a rape but not a murder during his furlough. The audience already knows that it is supposed to be angry about the Willie Horton ad, because it was unfair and because it politically seduced gullible Americans. So Bowling does a "Willie Horton" of its own on the audience, making the film's version of the ad into a falsehood and so turning the audience into dupes of a Willie Horton ad — just like the 1988 dupes of the original ad. For good measure, the ad makes the audience believe that a black man is guilty of a crime he never committed; Bowling thereby perpetrates the same manipulation of racial fears which it accuses the media of perpetrating.
After over an hour spent on the horrors of the United States, Moore switches to the peaceful society of Canada. He begins by arguing that Canada and the United States are very similar — except that Canada has a generous welfare state, and no culture of fear.
It's true that Canada does have a lot of guns compared to England or Japan, but Canada's per-capita gun ownership rate is about a third of the American level.
Moore films the over-the-counter purchase, no questions asked, of some ammunition in a Canadian store. The Canadian government has pointed out that such a transaction would be illegal, since the buyer is required to present identification. Moore did not respond to a request from the government's Canadian Firearms Centre to explain whether he staged a fake purchase, edited out the ID request, or broke the law.
Moore then tells the audience that 13 percent of the Canadian population is minority ethnic, the same as in the U.S. Actually, it's about 31 percent in the U.S. More significantly, blacks and Hispanics, who are involved in well over 50 percent of American homicides (both as victims and as perpetrators) make up about 2.5 percent of the Canadian population. In the United States, each group makes up about one-eighth of the U.S. population.
Comparing U.S. gun-death totals with Canada's, Moore offers a U.S. total that includes death by legal intervention (e.g., a violent felon being shot by a police officer) while omitting this same category from the Canadian total.
We return to Flint, Mich., for a long segment on Kayla Rowland, a six-year-old girl who was fatally shot in school by a male classmate the same age. Moore blames Michigan's requirement that welfare recipients work at a job. Because the killer's mother, Tamarla Owens, commuted to work in a shopping mall 70 hours a week, and because she still could not pay her rent, she was about to be evicted. She thus moved in with her brother, and then her unsupervised son found a handgun, brought it to school, and killed Kayla Rowland.
Actually, Owens earned $7.85 an hour from one job ($1,250 a month, almost entirely tax-free), plus at least the minimum wage from her second job, and received food stamps and medical care. Her rent was $300 a month. Michigan had rent-subsidy and child-care programs too, but Owens apparently did not know about them. So, contrary to the impression created by Moore, Michigan's welfare-to-work program is generous: Even without the rent subsidy, Owens earned more than enough to pay the rent. Perhaps Owens's caseworker should have told her about the available subsidies, but the caseworker's mistake hardly means that the Michigan system is the Dickensian horror portrayed by Moore.
Moore tells the audience that Ms. Owens and her son were living with Owens's brother. He doesn't tell the audience that their home was a crack house, or that the stolen gun was received by the brother from one of his customers, in exchange for drugs.
"No one knew why the little boy wanted to shoot the little girl," says Moore. Actually, the killer was the class bully; said that he hated everyone at school; had been suspended for stabbing a child with a pencil; and, subsequent to the shooting, stabbed another child with a knife.
We now get a quick cut to Charlton Heston speaking at a gun-rights rally in Flint, holding a rifle above his head. Moore explains that Heston came to Flint after Rowland was killed. Later, when interviewing Heston, Moore tells him, "You go to these places after they have these horrible tragedies." There's a considerable distortion here. Kayla Rowland was killed on February 29, 2000. Heston appeared at a Bush campaign rally in Flint over half a year later, in mid October.
Moore told Phil Donahue that "The American media wants to pump you full of fear." And that's just what Moore himself does, terrifying and angering his audience about American gun owners, George Bush, American media, American foreign policy, American welfare policy, the National Rifle Association, and the American character. The theme of the movie could well be encapsulated by D. H. Lawrence's claim that "The essential American soul is hard, isolate, stoic, and a killer."
Bowling for Columbine revels in the tabloid-style, raw exploitation of emotion — in promotion of unjustified fear, in falsehoods and quarter-truths, in oversimplification of the problems of race, and in mean-spirited pandering to the audience's bigotry about people of different social backgrounds.
In this way, Bowling subverts its own audience. To participate in Bowling's emotional journey is to surrender to the very same mendacious hate- and fear-mongering that the movie purports to criticize. Liking Bowling for Columbine is no different from liking the sleaziest "news" show on television, except that the audience for the latter doesn't claim to be more aesthetically — or morally — sophisticated than the mainstream American public.
Bowling also subverts elite Hollywood opinion. Imagine if the Academy gave the award for "Best Music — Original Song" to a film that used an unoriginal song, such as "Jingle Bells." Such an award would show that the Oscars are based on Hollywood politics rather than on artistic merit. The presentation of Best Documentary to Michael Moore for a film based on so much untruth has proved the same thing.
Some readers may doubt that Moore intentionally created an entire film whose subtext so thoroughly contradicts its literal text and that so effectively mocks its audience and its creator. My response is that we are long past the era of being chained to an artist's precise intentions. Georgia O'Keefe is said to have denied that her flower drawings were evocative of female genitalia. Does that mean we should pretend that O'Keefe paintings are not overflowing with female genitalia?
The fact is that a mockumentary larded with untruths and brazen self-contradiction is gobbling up documentary prizes: a special award at the Cannes Film Festival, the National Board of Review's "Best Documentary," the International Documentary Association's choice for best documentary ever, and the Academy Award for Best Documentary.
Countless actors and producers may have railed at the Academy for poor taste, but no artist has ever demonstrated the film elite's hyper-partisan preference for political correctness over truth as thoroughly and well as has Michael Moore.
09-13-2005, 02:13 PM #26
Now thats what I call ELABORATION!!!!!!!!!!!!!
09-13-2005, 02:16 PM #27
This one is just funny...
Should a 400 lb man advise us on the evils of over-consumption?
Should the resident of a million-dollar apartment claim to be a poster boy of the working class?
Should a person who thought that Enron was a great investment, that Ralph Nader, Wesley Clark and John Kerry would win, and that North Korea's Kim Jong was changing for the better, advise us on ANYTHING?
Michael Moore is a paradox. A millionaire who boasts of wealth as proving his value -- "I'm a millionaire, I'm a multi-millionaire. I'm filthy rich. You know why I'm a multi-millionaire? 'Cause multi-millions like what I do. That's pretty good, isn't it?"
He lives in a million-dollar apartment, and boasts of that as well. "I walk among them. I live on the island of Manhattan, a three-mile-wide strip of land that is luxury home and corporate suite to America's elite..... Those who run your life live in my neighborhood. I walk in the streets with them each day" (Michael Moore, Stupid White Men, p. 51). For vacations, he keeps another million-dollar beachfront house in Michigan.
"You would think that he's the ultimate common man. But he's money-obsessed," said one associate.
He sends his child to a private school -- no sense associating with the working class -- and has some trouble associating with them himself. The New York Post reported on a tantrum he threw in London: "Then, on his second-to-last night, [Michael Moore] raged against everyone connected with the Roundhouse and complained that he was being paid a measly $750 a night. 'He completely lost the plot,' a member of the stage crew told the London Evening Standard. 'He stormed around all day screaming at everyone, even the 5 pound-an-hour bar staff, telling them how we were all con men and useless. Then he went on stage and did it in public.' At his last appearance, staffers refused to work or even open the theater's doors." NY Post, Jan. 8, 2003.
He supplements his meager income with speaking tours. No more $750 gigs; on his 2004 pre-election tour he charged Utah Valley State College $40,000, Xavier $25,000, and University of New Mexico $35,000. Not bad for an hour or two's work.
Ah, the joys of capitalism....
One of his former associates summed him up: " You would think that he's the ultimate common man. But he's money-obsessed."
His major themes are his status as the spokesman of the working class, the evils of capitalism, and the selfishness of (all other) Americans.
It would be easy to denounce Moore as a hypocrite. Many conservatives denounce him as a leftist, when in fact the serious left, the thinking left, generally finds him appalling. He is the latest in the modern breed of Limosine Leftists -- individuals who, while personally they share the values of 19th century robber barons, find it flattering to adopt a thin veneer of leftism as a pose, in the same manner they pick a flattering hair style or gown. (A left-leaning critic of Moore summed up the situation very nicely: Moore's appeal lies in his giving wealthy, over-educated, whites an opportunity to laugh at working-class whites.)
But enough on Michael Moore as a person. Let's examine his output.
A consistent theme can be found throughout his work, and that is a theme of deception any time it is useful. Moore fixes upon a conclusion and, when the data do not exist, simply invents them.
Bowling for Columbine
A look at Bowling for Columbine (my main analysis to date). In producing his Oscar-winner, Moore altered history, misled his viewers, and edited the footage and audio in such a way as to reverse the meaning. In one case, he took a speech of a person he desired to target; the problem was that the speech was in fact conciliatory and mild. So he spliced in footage from another speech, cut out paragraphs, and spliced the beginning of one sentence to the ending of another. In another, when he wanted to criticize a political advertisement, but it wasn't as pointed as he wanted, he spliced together two different political ads, then added titling which was in neither.
09-13-2005, 02:17 PM #28AR's Salad Tossing Connoisseur
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- Apr 2005
Bigen... you stink buddy....
CAUSE YOU'RE THE SHIET!!!
09-13-2005, 02:24 PM #29Female Member
- Join Date
- Oct 2004
- Running through your mind
Michael Moore needs to EAT a DICK and learn WTF he's talking about before he goes running his mouth. There are other ways to go about things w/out insulting our President.
09-13-2005, 02:25 PM #30AR's Salad Tossing Connoisseur
Originally Posted by PaRiS2005
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09-13-2005, 02:26 PM #31Originally Posted by Bigen12
09-13-2005, 02:31 PM #32Originally Posted by Justin Sane
09-13-2005, 02:31 PM #33Originally Posted by PaRiS2005
I think I love You
09-13-2005, 02:33 PM #34Female Member
Originally Posted by radar1234
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- Oct 2004
- Running through your mind
Hitler was a dictatorial genius...but that doesn't make him a good person.
09-13-2005, 02:36 PM #35
Ive said it before Micheal Moore is a cocksucker and thats why he doesnt like Bush
09-13-2005, 02:41 PM #36Originally Posted by radar1234
So you are going to ignore the stats that say when concealed carry laws are allowed that gun violence drops?
09-13-2005, 02:42 PM #37Originally Posted by PaRiS2005
moore has had many death threats.why? because powerful people dont want everyday citizens to hear too much.
09-13-2005, 02:42 PM #38Originally Posted by PaRiS2005
09-13-2005, 02:42 PM #39Originally Posted by roidattack
I love carrying my gun
09-13-2005, 02:48 PM #40Originally Posted by CRUISECONTROL
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