July 05, 2004

Clips in Fahrenheit 911 That I Had Not Seen Before

There were a surprisingly large number of film clips in "Fahrenheit 911" that I had never seen before. For example:

George W. Bush: "This is an impressive crowd: the haves--and the have-mores. Some people call you 'the elite'. I call you 'My Base'."

Posted by DeLong at July 5, 2004 01:44 PM | TrackBack | | Other weblogs commenting on this post
Comments

My first thought when I saw that clip, "John Kerry needs to use this in an ad."

Posted by: blank on July 5, 2004 01:49 PM

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One of the films main motifs is showing you things you haven't seen before. Things that are on film and tape and are being deliberately being hidden from us by the media. The poster for the film says it all; Michael Moore is holding an envelope marked confidential. He is going to show us things we have never seen before.

Posted by: Nutthuis on July 5, 2004 01:56 PM

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How Karen Hughes avoided dumping her pants when these events occured is beyond me.

Posted by: Alan on July 5, 2004 01:58 PM

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Those events never happened.

Posted by: Karen Hughes on July 5, 2004 02:05 PM

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The 'my base' clip is a dinger, but the one that surprised me most was the egg-throwing incident after the inauguration. Maybe other people saw it; I couldn't face the TV that day. It was sad enough just listening to the radio.

Posted by: Knut Wicksell on July 5, 2004 02:06 PM

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When I first downloaded the F911 trailer, I played that clip over & over again. It's amazing to me that that clip isn't played by W's opponents every single time he tries to sell himself as one who cares about the common man -- or tries to sell Kerry as a disconnected elitist.

Posted by: derPlau on July 5, 2004 02:07 PM

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I hope someone got on film the ejection of the Texas couple from the Bush rally -- because they were wearing anti-Bush T's.... and passed the clip on to MM.

Posted by: Bean on July 5, 2004 02:21 PM

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The clip that I cannot purge from my brain is Paul Wolfowitz combing his hair.

Posted by: Louie on July 5, 2004 02:22 PM

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The clip that I cannot purge from my brain is Paul Wolfowitz combing his hair. I'm sure there are nice clips of Perle and Newt that could be added to the Wolfowitz clip for an ad on Bush's foreign policy brain trust.

Posted by: Louie on July 5, 2004 02:26 PM

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In isolation it sounds creepy but in context (http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/politics/july-dec00/alsmith_10-20.html) it was a self-deprecating joke. Al Gore, who also spoke at the same Al Smith dinner, opened with "This dinner represents a hallowed and important tradition, which I actually did invent", so he obviously had better writers.

Posted by: dc on July 5, 2004 02:44 PM

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I was surprised to learn that former Presidents get access to CIA briefings. What on earth is the rationale for that? That can't help but give them information about the state of the world that other private citizens don't have. Has George the 41st used this insider information to help the Carlyle Group? I don't know, but then, neither does anyone else, it seems.

Posted by: Kenneth Fair on July 5, 2004 02:48 PM

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"In isolation it sounds creepy but in context it ... was a self-deprecating joke."

The fact it was a joke is pretty obvious from the clip. The amazing amount of truth to it makes it creepy.

Posted by: blank on July 5, 2004 03:28 PM

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"I was surprised to learn that former Presidents get access to CIA briefings. What on earth is the rationale for that? That can't help but give them information about the state of the world that other private citizens don't have. Has George the 41st used this insider information to help the Carlyle Group? I don't know, but then, neither does anyone else, it seems."

You're kidding, right?

What would stop him?... The Bush family's famous integrity and sense of fair play?

Posted by: Jim in Chicago on July 5, 2004 03:34 PM

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And of course Moore, in the following line of narration - "While Bush was busy taking care of his base and professing his love for our troops..." - implies that this speech was made while the Iraq war was on, when in fact it was made during the 2000 election campaign.

Posted by: dc on July 5, 2004 03:49 PM

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And of course Moore, in the following line of narration - "While Bush was busy taking care of his base and professing his love for our troops..." - implies that this speech was made while the Iraq war was on, when in fact it was made during the 2000 election campaign.

Are you saying bush no longer takes care of his base or professes his love of the troops? Fool me once . . .

Posted by: flatulus on July 5, 2004 04:21 PM

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dc: And of course Moore, in the following line of narration - "While Bush was busy taking care of his base and professing his love for our troops..." - implies that this speech was made while the Iraq war was on, when in fact it was made during the 2000 election campaign.

Implies?

George W. Bush Republican National Convention Acceptance Speech (http://www.csmonitor.com/atcsmonitor/specials/wh2000/gopconvention/speeches/bushspeech.html) We will give our military the means to keep the peace, and we will give it one thing more ... a commander-in-chief who respects our men and women in uniform, and a commander-in-chief who earns their respect.

Posted by: bubba on July 5, 2004 04:32 PM

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The haves and the have mores are the people Mr. bush governs for, not so much for the rest of us.

Posted by: Jazzhound on July 5, 2004 04:45 PM

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I think the most outrageous thing about Moore's movie is that he doesn't show the real context: how Bush was forced to dispatch Saddam Hussein because he was in league with the hideous alien intelligences that lurk under the methane atmosphere of Titan. We won't be asking where the WMDs are once the government releases the classified photos taken by Cassini-Huygens.

Posted by: Walt Pohl on July 5, 2004 04:49 PM

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Only tangetially related to the topic, but...

Here's something I hadn't seen before. It bothers me. Do I just have a bad attitude?

http://www.emaar.com/new/projects_burjdubai.html

Posted by: Tom Marney on July 5, 2004 04:54 PM

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My views lean toward the liberal side, yet Michael Moore has always made me uncomfortable. I always feel he takes snippets of things and puts them out of context. A more conservative friend sent me this link.

http://www.davekopel.com/Terror/Fiftysix-Deceits-in-Fahrenheit-911.htm

It's worth a short look, take it for what its worth.

Posted by: Scott Renda on July 5, 2004 05:06 PM

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I would agree - lots of scenes I hadn't seen before, that were powerful.

1. The scene that is on promos - terrorists are bad - let's golf!
2. The Saudi beheading. Big stadiums full of people, where beheading happen? What century are we in? Even the camera angle, far away, I was just disgusted. That image still haunts my memory,and I would have preferred not to see it - as I would have preferred not to watch the Berg video - these things are uttterly brutal and haunt you.
3. The "elite" joke by Bush.
4. That 2 days after 9/11, that Bush is having dinner with the Saudi ambassador.
5. The scene with the soldier who is complaining about truck drivers making 2-3K watching an oil location, around the clock, while a truck driver is making 8-10K.


On another note, the movie is estimated to be at $60 million - still second, so far. I don't know where it will end up, but I would assume, if it goes for awhile, it would end up with 90-100 million.


5.

Posted by: JC on July 5, 2004 05:09 PM

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Scott Renda: It's worth a short look, take it for what its worth.

Which is not much:

>>> But complaining about the historic pro-Saudi tilt in U.S. foreign policy, a tilt which is partly the result of extensive business relations between the two countries, is not the same as propounding a tin-hat conspiracy theory that George Bush is servile tool of the bin Laden family.

Posted by: bubba on July 5, 2004 05:36 PM

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Since I don't share opinions in my back yard or at athletic events or parties and most of my friends don't either, but then most of them don't look at movies much or TV. I think the way in which people arrive at their opinions is subject to a wide range of variation. It's easier and more realistic to say you don't know how these come about. A lot of mine come from reading.

Posted by: Everett Wallace on July 5, 2004 06:32 PM

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Since I don't share opinions in my back yard or at athletic events or parties and most of my friends don't either, but then most of them don't look at movies much or TV. I think the ways in which people arrive at their opinions is subject to a wide range of variation. It's easier and more realistic to say you don't know how these come about. A lot of mine come from reading.

Posted by: Everett Wallace on July 5, 2004 06:32 PM

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> 1. The scene that is on promos - terrorists are
> bad - let's golf!

Actually, that scene suffers from being out of context as well. The "terrorist killers" that Bush refers to are Palestinian suicide bombers. Bush's statement was in response to a comment made about a recent attack in Israel, and was not referencing Al Qaeda.

Besides, is it really so odd that Dubya made a comment about golf while on a golf course? As another commentator pointed out, if Clinton had done the same thing, it would've been indicative of his charm.

Posted by: Loren on July 5, 2004 07:05 PM

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What I thought was amazing was the footage from pre 9/11 where Condi and Colin both say that Iraq is not a threat.

Posted by: Steve on July 5, 2004 07:23 PM

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Scott Renda wrote, "My views lean toward the liberal side, yet Michael Moore has always made me uncomfortable. I always feel he takes snippets of things and puts them out of context. A more conservative friend sent me this link.
http://www.davekopel.com/Terror/Fiftysix-Deceits-in-Fahrenheit-911.htm"

Yes, Moore sometimes takes things out of context. Rightists, *like the very same guy you link to*, commit such sins all the time time. See the discussion of Kopel at:
http://cgi.cse.unsw.edu.au/~lambert/cgi-bin/blog/guns/Lott/Levitt/

Posted by: liberal on July 5, 2004 07:30 PM

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Indeed, the writer of "56 Deceits" takes things out of context. In his very first "deceit," he attacks Moore for implying that FOX was the first to retract calling Florida for Gore. In fact, Moore implies that FOX was the first state to call Florida for Bush (rightly, I believe). Big difference. And of course, in this "56 Deceits" piece, the writer never mentions what station called Florida for Bush. How deceitful!

The fact of the matter is, the deceits that Michael Moore uses or the deceits that a hack writing for the NRO uses don't matter much. But when the President of the United States gets by with the same sort of misleading truths? And uses them to launch a pointless war, especially when we really ARE under attack, albeit not from Iraq?

That's damn important. And it doesn't seem to bother that NRO twit one bit, does it?

- Marc

Posted by: Marc on July 5, 2004 07:56 PM

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5. The scene with the soldier who is complaining about truck drivers making 2-3K watching an oil location, around the clock, while a truck driver is making 8-10K.

I'm glad someone else thought this too. Compounded with the footage of the war profiteers convention where the guy was practically foaming at the mouth just thinking about the huge spread of money to be made as a general contractor doling work out to subcontractors. Which made me wonder exactly how much was really paid per month to have the truck driver, because you know at LEAST 2 layers(experience tells me 3 or 4) of contractors had to get their "cut" of the appropriations. I'd guess at least $35,000/month for that truck driver as a very conserative estimate.

Now I see where most of that $80 billion for Iraq was going.

Funny how the words "duty" and "sacrifice" are thrown around so much lately reguarding our troops, but if you suggest those concepts should equally apply to the operating margins of millitary contractors, and your labelled a communist.

Posted by: Clayton Ullerich on July 5, 2004 08:00 PM

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The "deceits" of Scott Renda

I'm working on a piece about Scott's post above and its deliberately misleading aspects, which I hope to publish on NRO. I hesitate to use the word deceits, but in this day and age there can be no hiding behind civility.

#1. Scott states that Michael Moore "has always made me uncomfortable." Yet Michael Moore was born in 1954, and so it is plainly false that Michael made Scott uncomfortable in 1953.

#2 By stating that his views tend to the "liberal side" Scott creates the false impression that what he is about to say will be salutary to liberals. Yet what follows is not salutary to liberals at all!

#3 Scott says "I always feel he takes snippets of things and puts them out of context," Webster's defines "snippet" as "a small part, piece, or thing" and yet Scott claims the NRO website is "worth a short look" -- a "snippet" of a look! Hypocrisy!

I was going to fact check the administration's statements about prisoners handed over to foreign governments for interrogation by them, but somehow I doubt NRO will be as interested.

Posted by: MarkC on July 5, 2004 08:17 PM

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I would have to add the creepy scene where Al Gore (still Veep at the time but addressed as Mr. President by the speakers) presides over the joint session of Congress.

Posted by: ogmb on July 5, 2004 08:30 PM

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"Besides, is it really so odd that Dubya made a comment about golf while on a golf course? As another commentator pointed out, if Clinton had done the same thing, it would've been indicative of his charm."

Oh quite certainly. Everything Clinton has ever done was always interpreted as indicative of his charm, wit, intelligence, and virility. But thanks for showing uncommon restraint in not bringing up Bill's blowjob. It seems Bringing-up'Bill's-blojob week was really last week for now.

Posted by: ogmb on July 5, 2004 08:43 PM

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Re: my previous post with the link. I just think its interesting, to see the extreme views from both ends of the spectrum. The NRO is not where I normally peruse, I just thought it was worth a look. Some disagree, no problem. I found the movie actually a little boring, with little new information. Probably my fault for expecting much. Of course, Mark C has done a tremedous job above outed, wait, maybe I mean outing, no maybe I mean out, me. Bravo. Due to Scott's use of ambiguous language and poor grammar, I am really a conservative posing as a liberal, whose main source of information is the NRO. I really love the Internet.

Posted by: Scott Renda on July 5, 2004 09:22 PM

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The VP is the president of the senate...
dude.

Posted by: d on July 5, 2004 09:38 PM

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I just saw the film tonight, and amazingly, was thinking about that exact clip right before I refreshed your site and this post appeared. I think it's by far the most revealing element of the film, because to me at least it demonstrates that the Bush crowd and its supporters are perfectly well aware of their position atop society and influence on government, and more importantly, they see absolutely nothing wrong with that. In other words, it's not even a tacit understanding among the old boys; it's out in the open and there is no reason to conceal it. Why? Because they own the media, so it will probably never make a bit of difference. I don't mean to sound like some card-carrying Chomskyite class warrior, but how else, other than utter complacency and supreme belief in one's power (or the power of one's group) can that statement be interpreted?

Posted by: Mike on July 5, 2004 10:13 PM

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"The VP is the president of the senate...
dude."

I know, dude(tte). It was still significant because some speakers alluded to the ambiguity of the salutation.

Posted by: ogmb on July 5, 2004 10:32 PM

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Mike -So from what you said, do you think Moore was deliberately challenging this arrogance of "the old boys", strutting with their" position atop society and influence on government,"? Do you see the film being distorted because Moore casts the whole business as a class struggle ( OK maybe that is too Marxist, -a fight between the base and ordinary folks)? I have not seen the film yet.

Posted by: calmo on July 5, 2004 11:28 PM

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Mike, it was not a gathering of Bush supporters or (as I have seen it described elsewhere) a political fundraiser. It was a nonpartisan charity fundraiser where the brief was to be irreverent and speakers were poking fun at their own public images. See http://edition.cnn.com/2000/ALLPOLITICS/stories/10/20/al.smith.dinner/ for some atmosphere.

Posted by: dc on July 6, 2004 01:22 AM

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Bush in a nutshell- When he makes a bad shot at skeet shooting he needs to be told that he made a good shot despite the evidence to the contrary. And all the little excellent shot shot men are there to prop up the little boy who can do no wrong.

Posted by: Nutthuis on July 6, 2004 03:39 AM

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Bush in a nutshell- When he makes a bad shot at skeet shooting he needs to be told that he made a good shot despite the evidence to the contrary. And all the little "excellent shot" men are there to prop up the little boy who can do no wrong.

Posted by: Nutthuis on July 6, 2004 03:40 AM

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calmo:

No, I don't see that as a distorting influence on the film at all. I do think the Marxist terminology is maybe a bit strong, but at the same time, the point Moore makes about primarily poor people being sent to die in order to defend the very system that keeps them poor seems to me to be a valid one. Contrast the images of Moore attempting (disingenuously, of course) to get Congressmen to sign up their children for the military with the images of Marine recruiters choosing to spend time at the "poor mall" rather than the "rich mall". It's not like this is new information, but to see it put so starkly was maybe a bit of a wake-up call. Let me put it another way: many right-wingers talk about the looming threat to our civilization that's represented by Islamic extremism (or "Islamofascism", a term that seems to have become popular recently); if that is what they sincerely believe (taken in the context of flowery rhetoric about patriotism, honor, and duty), then why indeed would they object to sending their own children to "defend our freedom"? Obviously, no one wants their children to die, but the mother interviewed by Moore was forced to take that risk by economic realities; the average Congressman or other wealthy individual would of course never have to do so. Maybe that's just realpolitik, but imagine trying to put into words why it is acceptable for a person from the poor section of Flint (most of it, as I understand the situation) to sacrifice his or her life, while the children of privilege are safe at home driving their SUVs, going to private schools and Ivy League universities, and generally reaping all the benefits of a system that sends their less-advantaged counterparts into Iraq to be shot at and blown up (and to shoot at and blow up Iraqis).

Posted by: Mike on July 6, 2004 04:40 AM

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dc -- thanks for the link to the Al Smith dinner speeches (http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/politics/july-dec00/alsmith_10-20.html). You're right that it was clearly a joke in context, but it's still revealing to read both speeches. There are no digs at Bush in Gore's speech; by my reckoning, half of Bush's speech is digs at Gore. Bush is remorselessly on-message in bringing up the Naomi Wolf spin point. Even in context, Bush comes over as creepily self-congratulatory and Gore comes over as just making a few jokes.

Of course, these are the PBS-chosen excerpts, so the full speeches might be different.

Actually, it was a line of Gore's that struck me as most prescient: I know some people are going to keep accusing me of exaggeration, so let me be clear. Those people seek nothing less than the complete destruction of the American way of life. Does he know Bush stole it?

Posted by: william on July 6, 2004 04:42 AM

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I read the "56 deceits" post and concluded they do protest to much. The film is meant to be propaganda -- so it makes implications the right does not like . Tough!!

Yes things were taken out of context, but are the implications wrong? NO.

The film is more accurate than any 5 minutes of
Rush Limbaugh. When people complaining about
F 911 give Limbaugh the same treatment I will pay attention to what they say.

Posted by: spencer on July 6, 2004 04:49 AM

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I read the "56 deceits" post and concluded they do protest to much. The film is meant to be propaganda -- so it makes implications the right does not like . Tough!!

Yes things were taken out of context, but are the implications wrong? NO.

The film is more accurate than any 5 minutes of
Rush Limbaugh. When people complaining about
F 911 give Limbaugh the same treatment I will pay attention to what they say.

Posted by: spencer on July 6, 2004 04:49 AM

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I read the "56 deceits" post and concluded they do protest to much. The film is meant to be propaganda -- so it makes implications the right does not like . Tough!!

Yes things were taken out of context, but are the implications wrong? NO.

The film is more accurate than any 5 minutes of
Rush Limbaugh. When people complaining about
F 911 give Limbaugh the same treatment I will pay attention to what they say.

Posted by: spencer on July 6, 2004 04:49 AM

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I read the "56 deceits" post and concluded they do protest to much. The film is meant to be propaganda -- so it makes implications the right does not like . Tough!!

Yes things were taken out of context, but are the implications wrong? NO.

The film is more accurate than any 5 minutes of
Rush Limbaugh. When people complaining about
F 911 give Limbaugh the same treatment I will pay attention to what they say.

Posted by: spencer on July 6, 2004 04:49 AM

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I read the "56 deceits" post and concluded they do protest to much. The film is meant to be propaganda -- so it makes implications the right does not like . Tough!!

Yes things were taken out of context, but are the implications wrong? NO.

The film is more accurate than any 5 minutes of
Rush Limbaugh. When people complaining about
F 911 give Limbaugh the same treatment I will pay attention to what they say.

Posted by: spencer on July 6, 2004 04:49 AM

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I read the "56 deceits" post and concluded they do protest to much. The film is meant to be propaganda -- so it makes implications the right does not like . Tough!!

Yes things were taken out of context, but are the implications wrong? NO.

The film is more accurate than any 5 minutes of
Rush Limbaugh. When people complaining about
F 911 give Limbaugh the same treatment I will pay attention to what they say.

Posted by: spencer on July 6, 2004 04:49 AM

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Too bad Moore left out screenshots of Senators Kerry, Edwards, and Leiberman when the black members of the House were begging for the signature of ONE senator in the joint session to begin an investigation of the 2000 presidential vote. Is there really only one party--the war party?

Posted by: Byrd on July 6, 2004 05:43 AM

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First of all, let me say I lean liberal too, though a few years ago that was not the case (voted for Bush in 88, Perot in 92, voted for Anderson in'80).

I went to see the Moore film expecting a flaming piece of attack dog journalism. Frankly I was surprised how tame it all was, especially compared to what I know from reading here in the blogosphere. Moore, for the most part, let the images speak f0or themselves, especially what was most powerful for me, the scenes of the two mothers, Iraqi and American speaking about the children they lost.

After seeing the movie, and then reading all of the rhetoric about here on the net, I had to ask myself: Have any of these critics seen the film?

They certainly didn't see the same one I did.

Posted by: Steven D, on July 6, 2004 06:41 AM

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No one has mentioned the scene that is going to stick with me the longest: the tank drivers describing how great their in-helmet audio system was.

Posted by: Ben Vollmayr-Lee on July 6, 2004 06:52 AM

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Whats wrong with being a class warrior, I want my chance at the few crumbs that fall from my fuedal lords table. With media ownership concentrated in the hands of the elite and distribution of goods and services dominated by multinationals. My reality is a direct competiton with chinese labor ect,ect.

Posted by: little alex on July 6, 2004 07:26 AM

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There is an old political truisim "shine a light on your problem." It is one of the political strategies discussed in Chris Mathews book "Hardball." When Bush made these remarks he was specifically showing the press that he could make fun of himself in a way that Chris Mathews and the rest of the press establishment could understand. It was a deliberate and calculated political strategy. It was received as such - and as a successful one - at the time.

It was taken as further evidence of what a really good and essentially humble guy George Bush was as compared to that schemer Al Gore whose every word was designed for some manipulative purpose. This despite the fact that whole point of Bush making those remarks was to be exactly that manipulative. Arrgh. You spend enough time thinking about this and you channel Bob Somersby every time.

So it really doesn't matter that Bush was going to give massive tax relief to the wealthiest at the expense of our children's future, that he was going to change the rules so that the federal government could more easily do business with businesses that violate the National Labor Relations Act, etc. He can make fun of it. Isn't he great? That was the specific goal, and if Moore is presenting it as authentic rather than contrived he's taking it out of context.

But considering the absolutely ugly context of it, I'm inclined to give Moore a pass on this specific incident.

Posted by: benton on July 6, 2004 08:04 AM

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And why is it that not a single US Senator was willing to challenge the disenfranchisement of black voters in Florida? The Dems were wimps and deserved what they got. Maybe someday the Democratic Party will grow a backbone.

Posted by: Kosh on July 6, 2004 08:23 AM

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When I saw that clip, I thought Bush was saying "I call you my *bank*."

Posted by: Bob Myers on July 6, 2004 08:37 AM

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Thanks for preparing me for a class-struggle film Mike.
Just wondering about dc's take on it that it was "a non-party charity fundraiser" -not a wh fundraiser for sure; charities named by Mr Moore for sure; but just a fundraiser?
I'm hoping for atleast one visit to this flick but you're saying 'Nope --this is just a roast,( the sort of thing one goes to when someone retires; it's fun and well-meaning and beats the hell out of those tiresome eulogies), and unless the fun is especially good [you indicate no] I'd be wasting my time.
I do think that 'charity fundraiser' is clever [look how it incited me!] ( OK, I'm easy to incite) but a little thin as far as criticism goes. You may be right -the film criticism matches the film which warrants no further attention. I'm hoping for more.

Posted by: calmo on July 6, 2004 08:47 AM

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Just satire, Scott. I wasn't questioning your beliefs any more than I think that NRO (if ever there was a case of too much private support being the devil's playground, that must be it) is successfully questioning Moore's.

Posted by: MarkC on July 6, 2004 09:10 AM

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"The film is more accurate than any 5 minutes of
Rush Limbaugh."

This is really just like saying the transgressions of American soldiers at Abu Ghraib do not compare to Saddam's torture machine. Limbaugh, like Saddam, is not a standard for anything, and if "it's still not as bad as Limbaugh/Saddam" is the best one can offer it really is an implied indictment.

[This is not to be read as a comment about the movie itself.]

Posted by: ogmb on July 6, 2004 09:43 AM

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The truth comes out!!

Posted by: iraqwarwrong on July 6, 2004 10:15 AM

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Ben Vollmayr-Lee> No one has mentioned the scene that is going to stick with me the longest: the tank drivers describing how great their in-helmet audio system was.

Yeah, that scene creeped me out as well. It would have been worse, but fortunately the guy likes listening to sucky music while he's killing people. If he had been listening to Beethoven or Banco de Gaia or Henry Mancini, I think my head would have popped like a grape.

Posted by: s9 on July 6, 2004 10:17 AM

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And of course Moore, in the following line of narration - "While Bush was busy taking care of his base and professing his love for our troops..." - implies that this speech was made while the Iraq war was on, when in fact it was made during the 2000 election campaign.

Actually, no, it implies Bush was serving those people he referred to in the speech as "his base" during the Iraq war which, in fact, he was.

Posted by: cmdicely on July 6, 2004 10:19 AM

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s9 wrote: Yeah, that scene creeped me out as well. It would have been worse, but fortunately the guy likes listening to sucky music while he's killing people. If he had been listening to Beethoven or Banco de Gaia or Henry Mancini, I think my head would have popped like a grape.

Actually, in a later scene, one of the soldiers was listening to Jethro Tull ('Aqualung'). I'm not sure if that is a good or bad sign.

Posted by: Charles Kinbote on July 6, 2004 10:49 AM

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Perhaps Michael has some answers here:

What's More American Than Asking Questions? -- by Michael Moore

http://www.michaelmoore.com/words/latestnews/mikeinthenews/index.php?id=61

Posted by: laservisor on July 6, 2004 10:53 AM

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> Actually, in a later scene, one of the soldiers was listening to Jethro Tull ('Aqualung'). I'm not sure if that is a good or bad sign.

I missed that. And yes— that's more like it.

Posted by: s9 on July 6, 2004 11:09 AM

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s9: Yeah, that scene creeped me out as well. It would have been worse, but fortunately the guy likes listening to sucky music while he's killing people. If he had been listening to Beethoven or Banco de Gaia or Henry Mancini, I think my head would have popped like a grape.

I was thinking of Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries" at the time myself, for some odd reason, go figure.

Posted by: John Owens on July 6, 2004 11:22 AM

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calmo:

I'm not quite sure where you're getting the impressions you seem to have taken from my posts. I certainly didn't intend to say anything even remotely approaching your interpretation of my words. I think the best thing would be for you to just go see the movie and make up your own mind about its content rather than relying on my or anyone else's point of view. Even if you don't like it, it's two hours for nine bucks- no great loss.

Posted by: Mike on July 6, 2004 11:57 AM

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The real problem with F911 is that the movie was necessary. The mainstream US press stopped asking real questions some time ago and instead publishes politician's half-truths and deceptions. The reporting on the Iraq war with its embedded journalists was very poor, and only served to conduit the administrations point of view. This left the field open for a film like this. If we had a press that attempted to ferret out the news then many of the films points would have already been in the newspapers and digested into public opinion.

Posted by: Keith on July 6, 2004 12:54 PM

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Officials Detail a Detainee Deal by 3 Countries
By DON VAN NATTA Jr. and TIM GOLDEN

Published: July 4, 2004

LONDON, July 3 — American officials agreed to return five terrorism suspects to Saudi Arabia from Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, last year as part of a secret three-way deal intended to satisfy important allies in the invasion of Iraq, according to senior American and British officials.

Under the arrangement, Saudi officials later released five Britons and two others who had been convicted of terrorist attacks in Saudi Arabia, the officials said. British diplomats said they believed that the men had been tortured by Saudi security police officers into confessing falsely.

Officials involved in the deliberations said the transfer of the Saudis from Guantánamo initially met with objections from officials at the Pentagon, the Central Intelligence Agency and the Justice Department. Those officials questioned whether some detainees were too dangerous to send back and whether the United States could trust Saudi promises to keep the men imprisoned.

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/04/international/middleeast/04SWAP.html

Posted by: Kosh on July 6, 2004 12:59 PM

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Keith: Embedded reporters walk a fine line. They have a job to do, but if they expose tactical information to the public, it helps the enemy as well. Remember Geraldo Rivera drawing the map in the dirt, live on world-wide TV?

During the Civil War, the press corps was corralled and put on notice: Whatever you see and hear from here, you may report. If you leave this area, you will be considered a spy and shot on sight.

Posted by: gus3 on July 6, 2004 02:16 PM

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Keith: Embedded reporters walk a fine line. They have a job to do, but if they expose tactical information to the public, it helps the enemy as well. Remember Geraldo Rivera drawing the map in the dirt, live on world-wide TV?

During the Civil War, the press corps was corralled and put on notice: Whatever you see and hear from here, you may report. If you leave this area, you will be considered a spy and shot on sight.

Posted by: gus3 on July 6, 2004 02:19 PM

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Funny how I can tell which of my relatives watches Fox for their news, and which watch CNN by just mentioning this movie. War is ugly. We built this war right here in America. Now we are taking it worldwide.
The Neocons are the imperial party.
Cato, how much longer will you trouble us with your presence?

Is the last plane for New Zealand at the gate yet?

Posted by: AllenM on July 6, 2004 03:59 PM

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Sorry about the double-post. The server was responding slowly, and I guess I got impatient.

Posted by: gus3 on July 7, 2004 12:18 AM

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One immediately ponders what America is all about. Have we lost our roots? How do we sort fact from fiction, and know reality, context, intentions, and chronological order from their opposites? The analysts are having a hey-day with
Fahrenheit 911, from left, right, crossways, and every angle. But ask yourself: Are the losses of our sons and daughters worth it? Are the losses of innocent Iraqis and Afghanis worth it?
Do you really want your taxes spent on this war, or for more help for the needy here at home? Money, power, and greed are timeless and universal; you only need to discern who is the most greedy and power hungry at a given time, who has "stepped over the line" and made your best judgement from there. Incumbents provide a "sense" of security, or at least they used to; will be quite interesting to see how the next 4 months play out.
Pray for our soldiers, their families, and the innocents on both sides.

Posted by: Farmboy on July 11, 2004 07:14 AM

____

As a UK citzen, I saw this fantastic movie yesterday:

My opinion of it is best explained in the e-mail I sent to Michael Moore:

"14.07.2004

Dear Mike,

I just saw your film today (in Cambridge, England) and felt that I had to personally thank you for standing up for me and millions of others - and I am not even a US citizen.

I went to see it in a brand new multiplex near where I live at 6.20 pm. It was showing last week in the Cambridge film festival but all showings were sold out a week in advance so I had to see it today instead.

I walked in to the auditorium during the trailers and, as many have said on your website, I could only find a seat in the first two rows (no police in there, though!). It was a mixed bag of people too, quite a lot of old people as well as student-types. All credit to the British Board of Film Censorship - despite the most graphic violence I`ve ever seen in a cinema (public beheadings, severed limbs etc.), they had the courage to give this a 15 rating rather than the 18 certificate it could`ve got. I agree with them - as many people as possible should be able to watch the truth exposed, even though that might be horrific to watch in places.

The evidence you present about George Bush is both damning and irrefutable ... and yet some people call you biased! It`s not your fault that the evidence against Bush is so overwhelmingly negative. I thought your film was a very balanced documentary. George Bush by his actions (and, indeed, inactions) has condemned himself.

I watched the American "election" with disbelief in 2000. Right before my very eyes, I saw the corruption of your country and, for four years at least, the end of democracy in the USA. Thanks to you, I`m sure this chump will be voted out this year and America can once again rejoin the family of democratic nations and be a powerful force for good in the world.

For me, the most moving moment in the film (and there were plenty of them) was when Lila Lipscomb was accused of staging her grief (for the loss of her son) by a passer-by outside the Whitehouse. How she didn`t throttle that woman with her bare hands I`ll never know - just watching that filled me with rage.

I have only one minor gripe with your film - where was Tony Blair? Apart from putting him in a cowboy hat, he got off scot free. I personally think that Blair is a decent person, arguably the most intelligent Prime Minister this country has ever had. Maybe he was duped by the US administration into believing there were WMD`s like the rest of us. I was pro-war as well on that basis until the truth came out. Whatever the truth of the matter is, he has sent British soldiers needlessly to their deaths and killed innocent civilians on a lie. He should admit that he made a mistake in believing America, bring the troops home and then honourably resign - otherwise the Conservatives will win the next election, something that would be a truly awful outcome for the UK.

Up until this evening, I had always been of the opinion that now we`re in Iraq, we should see it through and try to clean up the mess we`ve made. Your film has changed my mind - those soldiers clearly have no idea how to rebuild a country, they are serving no useful purpose whatsoever. As you showed, half of them are just kids picked up in shopping malls in the poorest areas of America - they couldn`t rebuild anything. Also, as I suspected, that sickening scene of US companies rubbing their hands at the prospect of making a killing (no pun intended) from Iraq is another reason it`s time to leave. The Iraqi people themselves stand to gain absolutely nothing, they`ll sit and watch America`s elite (Bush`s "base") steal their resources.

I had to laugh. You accuse America of becoming a police state under Bush - the administration could accuse you back of not having any credible evidence. Then, what do they do? On camera, the secret police appear from nowhere to ask you what you`re doing standing across the street from the Saudi embassy! My God (and I`m not even religious), I don`t think you even had to try to prove anything when you made this film - the administration proved it all for you! You didn`t need to be biased, they were biased against themselves.

There was the odd laugh as Bush put his foot in it time after time. I loved your Dragnet bit and the bit where Bush says something "profound" and then says "now, watch this drive ..." as he pulls out his driver on the golf course.

As the film went on, I could hear the audience becoming more agitated with every revelation. Rumsfeld`s words (about WMD) "we know where they are - they`re around Tikrit" was greeted by numerous tut-tuts as were several other bits. There was some quiet sobbing going on when Lila read out her son`s last letter (I was close to tears myself, as I was when the Iraqi lady who lost her child called out to God "where are you God?"). Those veterans too, losing limbs and fighting through the pain to tell their story. This is the story we never hear on the news - and it`s so important that we all hear it.

At the end of the film, there was spontaneous applause from the overwhelmingly British audience. A couple of right-wingers who were sat next to me did not applaud (they actually missed the crucial first 10 minutes - they came in late), they went out muttering about how biased it was but I overheard one of them saying "yes, but it does ask some serious questions ..."

Clearly, your film appeals not just to Americans but to the humanity that is shared by the vast majority of people all over the world. After all the shallow soundbites masquerading as "news" that we`ve been fed (even on the BBC which, to give them credit, you sort-of mention as the only channel to talk about the gas pipeline through Afghanistan), finally someone who has the courage and skill to expose the truth. That`s something that people all over the world should be grateful for - that there is someone to stand up to the corruption that exists at the very highest level of world politics, the corruption that currently exists in the world`s most powerful unelected dictatorship.

I have to say, the fact that this film outsold Harry Potter in the USA makes me very proud of the American people. Just by turning up to see this movie, the American people have shown that they realise that their democracy is under threat and want to see the case for the prosecution of George Bush. When I saw "Election 2000" I thought you were all idiots!! How could you let your democracy slip away from you so easily?? My faith is restored - and not just by the ordinary Americans who`ve decided to see it, but also by those ordinary Americans featured in the film - the soldiers, Lila Lipscomb (her son as well), the peace group you featured, the wounded veterans among others. This film is helping America rediscover its identity as a compassionate, intelligent people who aren`t just sheep who`ll let any old President manipulate his way into office while they`re all glued to MTV. Indeed, it seems that seeing this film has become the ultimate patriotic statement - `I`ve seen Fahrenheit 9/11 - because I care deeply about my country`

May I finish this lengthy ... well - "letter" (I suppose) by referencing George Orwell like you did at the end of the film. In "1984", the regime maintains control by creating a perpetual state of war and by trying to constantly rewrite history - things you showed Bush and his government doing in the movie.

May I allude to something else from "1984"? It`s time the whole of America sent George W. Bush and his government to Room 101 .... for the sake of us all.

Thankyou so very much, I`ll never forget your film,

Paul Stubbs (a lowly musician who`s always voted)

PS: I know I`m not supposed to take part in American politics, but I`ve subscribed to the petition to remove Attorney General John Ashcroft - I see no reason why I shouldn`t get involved when the government in question is not democratically elected, no matter where it is.

PPS: This film will probably make you a millionaire. I hope you use your money to make more films that expose the truth. In the words of the film I`ll be watching next week "With great power comes great responsibility!" :) [I don`t think Spiderman 2 will do as well as your film, though ...]


Not sure if this is of interest - but it might help in you gaining a picture of the people who`ve been affected by your film:

Nationality: British
Occupation: musician
Age, sex: 31, male
Politics: moderate left wing
Interests: music, poker, soccer, keep fit, films"

So, there you go. That`s my opinion of Moore`s democracy-saving film ...

Posted by: Paul Stubbs on July 14, 2004 01:28 AM

____

As a UK citzen, I saw this fantastic movie yesterday:

My opinion of it is best explained in the e-mail I sent to Michael Moore:

"14.07.2004

Dear Mike,

I just saw your film today (in Cambridge, England) and felt that I had to personally thank you for standing up for me and millions of others - and I am not even a US citizen.

I went to see it in a brand new multiplex near where I live at 6.20 pm. It was showing last week in the Cambridge film festival but all showings were sold out a week in advance so I had to see it today instead.

I walked in to the auditorium during the trailers and, as many have said on your website, I could only find a seat in the first two rows (no police in there, though!). It was a mixed bag of people too, quite a lot of old people as well as student-types. All credit to the British Board of Film Censorship - despite the most graphic violence I`ve ever seen in a cinema (public beheadings, severed limbs etc.), they had the courage to give this a 15 rating rather than the 18 certificate it could`ve got. I agree with them - as many people as possible should be able to watch the truth exposed, even though that might be horrific to watch in places.

The evidence you present about George Bush is both damning and irrefutable ... and yet some people call you biased! It`s not your fault that the evidence against Bush is so overwhelmingly negative. I thought your film was a very balanced documentary. George Bush by his actions (and, indeed, inactions) has condemned himself.

I watched the American "election" with disbelief in 2000. Right before my very eyes, I saw the corruption of your country and, for four years at least, the end of democracy in the USA. Thanks to you, I`m sure this chump will be voted out this year and America can once again rejoin the family of democratic nations and be a powerful force for good in the world.

For me, the most moving moment in the film (and there were plenty of them) was when Lila Lipscomb was accused of staging her grief (for the loss of her son) by a passer-by outside the Whitehouse. How she didn`t throttle that woman with her bare hands I`ll never know - just watching that filled me with rage.

I have only one minor gripe with your film - where was Tony Blair? Apart from putting him in a cowboy hat, he got off scot free. I personally think that Blair is a decent person, arguably the most intelligent Prime Minister this country has ever had. Maybe he was duped by the US administration into believing there were WMD`s like the rest of us. I was pro-war as well on that basis until the truth came out. Whatever the truth of the matter is, he has sent British soldiers needlessly to their deaths and killed innocent civilians on a lie. He should admit that he made a mistake in believing America, bring the troops home and then honourably resign - otherwise the Conservatives will win the next election, something that would be a truly awful outcome for the UK.

Up until this evening, I had always been of the opinion that now we`re in Iraq, we should see it through and try to clean up the mess we`ve made. Your film has changed my mind - those soldiers clearly have no idea how to rebuild a country, they are serving no useful purpose whatsoever. As you showed, half of them are just kids picked up in shopping malls in the poorest areas of America - they couldn`t rebuild anything. Also, as I suspected, that sickening scene of US companies rubbing their hands at the prospect of making a killing (no pun intended) from Iraq is another reason it`s time to leave. The Iraqi people themselves stand to gain absolutely nothing, they`ll sit and watch America`s elite (Bush`s "base") steal their resources.

I had to laugh. You accuse America of becoming a police state under Bush - the administration could accuse you back of not having any credible evidence. Then, what do they do? On camera, the secret police appear from nowhere to ask you what you`re doing standing across the street from the Saudi embassy! My God (and I`m not even religious), I don`t think you even had to try to prove anything when you made this film - the administration proved it all for you! You didn`t need to be biased, they were biased against themselves.

There was the odd laugh as Bush put his foot in it time after time. I loved your Dragnet bit and the bit where Bush says something "profound" and then says "now, watch this drive ..." as he pulls out his driver on the golf course.

As the film went on, I could hear the audience becoming more agitated with every revelation. Rumsfeld`s words (about WMD) "we know where they are - they`re around Tikrit" was greeted by numerous tut-tuts as were several other bits. There was some quiet sobbing going on when Lila read out her son`s last letter (I was close to tears myself, as I was when the Iraqi lady who lost her child called out to God "where are you God?"). Those veterans too, losing limbs and fighting through the pain to tell their story. This is the story we never hear on the news - and it`s so important that we all hear it.

At the end of the film, there was spontaneous applause from the overwhelmingly British audience. A couple of right-wingers who were sat next to me did not applaud (they actually missed the crucial first 10 minutes - they came in late), they went out muttering about how biased it was but I overheard one of them saying "yes, but it does ask some serious questions ..."

Clearly, your film appeals not just to Americans but to the humanity that is shared by the vast majority of people all over the world. After all the shallow soundbites masquerading as "news" that we`ve been fed (even on the BBC which, to give them credit, you sort-of mention as the only channel to talk about the gas pipeline through Afghanistan), finally someone who has the courage and skill to expose the truth. That`s something that people all over the world should be grateful for - that there is someone to stand up to the corruption that exists at the very highest level of world politics, the corruption that currently exists in the world`s most powerful unelected dictatorship.

I have to say, the fact that this film outsold Harry Potter in the USA makes me very proud of the American people. Just by turning up to see this movie, the American people have shown that they realise that their democracy is under threat and want to see the case for the prosecution of George Bush. When I saw "Election 2000" I thought you were all idiots!! How could you let your democracy slip away from you so easily?? My faith is restored - and not just by the ordinary Americans who`ve decided to see it, but also by those ordinary Americans featured in the film - the soldiers, Lila Lipscomb (her son as well), the peace group you featured, the wounded veterans among others. This film is helping America rediscover its identity as a compassionate, intelligent people who aren`t just sheep who`ll let any old President manipulate his way into office while they`re all glued to MTV. Indeed, it seems that seeing this film has become the ultimate patriotic statement - `I`ve seen Fahrenheit 9/11 - because I care deeply about my country`

May I finish this lengthy ... well - "letter" (I suppose) by referencing George Orwell like you did at the end of the film. In "1984", the regime maintains control by creating a perpetual state of war and by trying to constantly rewrite history - things you showed Bush and his government doing in the movie.

May I allude to something else from "1984"? It`s time the whole of America sent George W. Bush and his government to Room 101 .... for the sake of us all.

Thankyou so very much, I`ll never forget your film,

Paul Stubbs (a lowly musician who`s always voted)

PS: I know I`m not supposed to take part in American politics, but I`ve subscribed to the petition to remove Attorney General John Ashcroft - I see no reason why I shouldn`t get involved when the government in question is not democratically elected, no matter where it is.

PPS: This film will probably make you a millionaire. I hope you use your money to make more films that expose the truth. In the words of the film I`ll be watching next week "With great power comes great responsibility!" :) [I don`t think Spiderman 2 will do as well as your film, though ...]


Not sure if this is of interest - but it might help in you gaining a picture of the people who`ve been affected by your film:

Nationality: British
Occupation: musician
Age, sex: 31, male
Politics: moderate left wing
Interests: music, poker, soccer, keep fit, films"

So, there you go. That`s my opinion of Moore`s democracy-saving film ...

Posted by: Paul Stubbs on July 14, 2004 01:29 AM

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ilove the whiole of thuis siretoooooooooo

Posted by: mugu on July 16, 2004 01:47 AM

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i cried, i laughed, i hide my face from the screen. i will always remember lila lipscombs reading her dead son's words on his view of bush, something of the effect of getting that "fool" [bush] out of office".

how very sad that he died for no reason at all in his mind and that his mother has to live with his words until she dies.

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