Oct 212004
 
Authors: Kenneth Zetye

We have all heard of the man, he’s the boisterous voice of the

conspiracy theorist left. Michael Moore has made movie after movie

mocking the conservative right and even accusing us of sponsoring

terrorism and plotting to kill thousands in wars for our own

profit. Well, let’s take a look at Moore and determine if he is

where Americans really ought to be putting their trust.

Moore was raised in a wealthy white suburb of Flint, Michigan,

called Davison, according to www.faqs.org. This information is

contradictory to his assertion that he was born and raised in the

working class community of Flint. He worked on a General Motors

assembly line for one day in 1972 after which, this man of the

people, quit in frustration. He later made a movie called “Roger

and Me” depicting GM as an evil corporation lining its pockets at

the expense of the working class. According to an article from

People’s Weekly World posted on www.greatertalent.com. The film was

praised at first, but was later criticized for twisting the truth

and presenting evidence that was simply untrue. Moore claimed the

GM corporation bought off his critics in a conspiracy. Later, in

1986, Moore was hired as an editor of the San Francisco magazine

Mother Jones. He was fired after a few weeks for being “suspicious,

arbitrary, unavailable and ignoring deadlines.” He then sued the

magazine for $2 million, collecting $58,000 in an out-of-court

settlement.

This was the seed money for his movie-making career. In 1987,

Moore worked for the Ralph Nader organization. He was fired from

this job as well for simply not showing up for work. Moore claims

Nader was “jealous” about a book deal Moore had made, according to

www.newyorker.com. Maybe it’s just me but I don’t really see Ralph

Nader as the jealous type.

So, Moore is now in the movie business. I don’t have space to

detail every fallacy presented in every movie made by Mr. Moore,

but I’ll do my best to give a general overview of the man’s M.O. In

his first movie “Roger and Me,” Moore is called out when what he

claims are the city of Flint’s vain responses to the 1986 GM

layoffs are actually found to have taken place years before the

layoffs ever occurred. As well as the fact that only one of the

four poor families he presents in a movie about General Motors ever

worked for the company, according to an article in the Washington

Times in February 1990. This is not told to the audience, of

course.

In his book “Stupid White Men,” Moore presents even more

half-truths and conjectures. He goes through all of President

George W. Bush’s cabinet and presents evidence that they are almost

all former board members of large corporations, as if this were a

bad thing. Doesn’t it make sense to put people with experience

managing large numbers of employees in charge of a country of

millions? Again, maybe it’s just me, but I’m glad we have

experienced leaders in this country and not just anyone in the

president’s cabinet.

Moore goes on to insult the American people by calling 200

million of us “stone cold idiots.” That’s really something coming

from a man who claims to be “of the people.” In one speech he gave

in London he asserted that “the dumbest Brit here is smarter than

the smartest American,” according to The Guardian, Nov. 2002. The

book continues to make false claims on everything from mad cow

disease to campaign financing. Unfortunately for the reader,Moore

puts about as much care into his factual research as he does in his

personal appearance.

Moore has been involved in many projects, movies and books, none

of which have been based on any factual information. Moore is

interested in one thing and that is making money. When his movie

“Bowling for Columbine” premiered he had a special viewing for

loved ones of the victims. At this special viewing he charged

admission.

“Maybe now that he has made millions of dollars off the blood of

our children he could toss a DVD or two our way to view,” parent

Ann Kechter wrote in the Rocky Mountain News, Oct. 2003.

Moore’s conspiracy theories and accusations know no bounds. In

his latest movie, “Fahrenheit 9/11,” Moore accuses the president of

everything from allowing the Saudi Royal family to finance terror,

to invading Afghanistan to build an oil pipeline. Well the

president did none of these things. Yes, the Bush family is

financially connected to the Carlyle Group, a private investment

firm- so is the bin Laden family. This must mean that Bush is a

terrorist sympathizer right? Wrong! Other investors in the Carlyle

group include billionaire George Soros, who is currently financing

the anti-Bush organization moveon.org. Disney is another investor

in the Carlyle Group. Well isn’t that strange- Disney was Moore’s

financial backing for “Fahrenheit 9/11.” Are all of these people

also behind the terror attacks, including Moore himself? The truth

is that there are equal connections between Moore, the bin Laden

family and Bush, according to www.guardian.co.uk.

In Moore’s attempts to prove that Bush invaded Afghanistan in

order to build an oil pipeline, he seems to get his presidents and

corporations mixed up. Taliban officials did meet with Texans of

the Unocal Corporation in 1997 and 1998, but what he leaves out is

the fact that this was sponsored by the Clinton administration.

George W. was the governor of Texas at the time but that hardly

puts him in a position to deal in international trade and politics.

In fact GW was a supporter of the Enron plan to put the pipeline in

question under the Caspian Sea. In the movie however, Moore is

happy to swap the names of presidents and companies to make it seem

like Bush was a supporter of the Afghan pipeline and the Taliban

government, according to www.thirdworldtraveler.com,

www.opensecrets.com and www.multinationalmonitor.org.

There are really too many fallacies in all of Michael Moore’s

books and movies to count. This man has made millions off of

instilling fear and mistrust into his audiences by saying

half-truths and making claims that do not hold up under scrutiny. I

hope that after reading this you do a little research of your own.

Don’t just take my word for it – decide who is worth reading and

listening to when making your next political decisions.

 

Corporal Kenith Zeyte, United States Marine Corps Reserve, is a

junior English major. Zeyte’s column runs in the Collegian every

Friday.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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