Michael Moore vs Sean Hannity

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  1. Dirtgrain
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

    How do you suppose Republicans view the exchange? I was trying to consider their view as I watched it, and I wonder. I know a number of them who hate Michael Moore–they likely wouldn’t be swayed one bit. It’s the damn political party cult mentalities–we need to kidnap them, on both sides of the political spectrum, and deprogram them (us).

    I liked the moment when Moore mentioned “of, by and for the people” in talking about government (which Hannity hates). Hannity called it a cliche; Moore pointed out it was in The Constitution. That was a weird moment (and I’ve seen plenty of Hannity weirdness).

  2. Posted October 11, 2009 at 10:36 pm | Permalink

    I try to consider what “they” think also. I have plenty of friends and relatives who are “conservative” but as time goes on I feel more and more like they go to an every Sunday brainwashing meeting. Then I wonder why it’s such a strong Us versus Them mentality.

    It was good when he asked Hannity why he hates and distrusts our government so much.

  3. Joe S
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 1:03 am | Permalink

    “I liked the moment when Moore mentioned “of, by and for the people” in talking about government (which Hannity hates). Hannity called it a cliche; Moore pointed out it was in The Constitution.”

    This is not true at all. That phrase originated with President Lincoln, and was used in the Gettysburg Address.

    Moore never fails to demonstrate just how little he knows about American history.

  4. Oliva
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 10:19 am | Permalink

    Joe S:

    The Declaration’s “all men are created equal” had been used before by Lincoln in his Henry Clay eulogy. And the use, in various forms, of the three prepositions — of the people, by the people, for the people — has been attributed to at least twelve men, including Patrick Henry and Daniel Webster. Probably the most likely source was Theodore Parker, the abolitionist minister from Massachusetts whose lectures and sermons had been printed and were called to Lincoln’s attention by his law partner William Herndon. “Democracy is self-government,” Parker has said, “over all the people, for all the people, by all the people.”
    –Philip B. Kunhardt, Jr., A New Birth of Freedom: Lincoln at Gettysburg

  5. Robert
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    I’m with you, Joe S. Moore isn’t just a lazy slob in the obvious sense. He’s incredibly lazy through and through, which of course would include his fact checking. For this, he is an obviously horrible choice as a spokesperson for liberal views, or any other views for that matter. It’s also the reason right wingers try so hard to keep him in the limelight. If people who shared his views had any sense, they’d stop promoting him.

    I find it absolutely amazing that a guy like Moore can spend as much time as he does supposedly focussed on a particular issue and still somehow come out with such easily disproven misconceptions regarding incredibly basic details relating to it. He must be a very poor listener in addition to being such an incredibly lazy slob.

  6. Ellen
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    To my knowledge, no one has been able to identify a single factual error in Fahrenheit 911, Bowling for Columbine, Sicko, or this new movie. If you have knowledge of errors, please post them.

  7. Robert
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

    Ellen, in Bowling for Columbine, Moore claims a bank was giving away guns to new customers. They weren’t. They were giving away gift certificates for a local hardware store which also happens to sell firearms.

  8. Robert
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

    In Fahrenheit 911, Rep. Porter Goss says he has an “800 number,” and the caption says “He’s lying.” Goss does have a toll-free number, although the prefix is 877.

  9. Robert
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    In Bowling for Columbine, Moore added text to spliced together 1988 GOP TV ads regarding Massachusetts felon Willie Horton. The text reads “Willie Horton released. Then kills again.” Of course the audience is supposed to believe that the text Moore has added is part of the original GOP ad. But Horton didn’t kill again after being released as the text suggests. Aggravated assault and rape were the charges.

  10. Robert
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    So there you are Ellen. There are three. Now, to your knowledge, someone HAS been able to identify factual errors in the Moore movies you mentioned.

    And this is the level of quality we get from Moore when he has teams of fact checkers working on a movie budget. When Moore is out there speaking off the cuff he constantly gets his facts wrong.

  11. Kim
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

    Still, this is an interesting interview.

  12. Oliva
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

    Moore makes some very worthy points in his debate with himself here (link follows), including the call to those who voted for Obama to keep working on holding his, and Congress’s, feet to the fire (the Yes Men, Andrew Sullivan, other smart people, have been saying this sort of thing for a while–that Obama needs and is counting on us to keep our voices strong and demand the changes we clamor for–even if it seems like very huge things such as Geithner and the banks plus the wars are impossible hurdles; obviously, that energy and combined effort dropped off considerably this year, as if just voting for someone was gonna be enough).


  13. Brackinald Achery
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

    Turd burger vs. shit sandwich.

  14. Oliva
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

    Here’s Andrew Sullivan making the point (he makes it repeatedly):

    it seems to me to disrespect the president if we do not demand the change he represented. Trusting a leader to deliver was not, despite the cat-calls from the right, the point of the Obama campaign. It became bigger than him. It must remain bigger than him. . . .

    Remember: we are the ones we’ve been waiting for. Not him, us.


  15. watching laughing
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 8:49 pm | Permalink

    I keep forgetting the Republicans did such a great job on the US and the world for these past couple decades.
    How could people want anythng else.

    Watching Laughing.

  16. Money Trail
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    Actually Robert…
    (from michaelmoore.com) – “In the spring of 2001, I saw a real ad in a real newspaper in Michigan announcing a real promotion that this real bank had where they would give you a gun (as your up-front interest) for opening up a Certificate of Deposit account. They promoted this in publications all over the country – “More Bang for Your Buck!”

    There was news coverage of this bank giving away guns, long before I even shot the scene there. The Chicago Sun Times wrote about how the bank would “hand you a gun” with the purchase of a CD. Those are the precise words used by a bank employee in the film.

    When you see me going in to the bank and walking out with my new gun in “Bowling for Columbine” – that is exactly as it happened. Nothing was done out of the ordinary other than to phone ahead and ask permission to let me bring a camera in to film me opening up my account. I walked into that bank in northern Michigan for the first time ever on that day in June 2001, and, with cameras rolling, gave the bank teller $1,000 – and opened up a 20-year CD account. After you see me filling out the required federal forms (“How do you spell Caucasian?”) – which I am filling out here for the first time – the bank manager faxed it to the bank’s main office for them to do the background check. The bank is a licensed federal arms dealer and thus can have guns on the premises and do the instant background checks (the ATF’s Federal Firearms database—which includes all federally approved gun dealers—lists North Country Bank with Federal Firearms License #4-38-153-01-5C-39922).

    Within 10 minutes, the “OK” came through from the firearms background check agency and, 5 minutes later, just as you see it in the film, they handed me a Weatherby Mark V Magnum rifle

    And it is that very gun that I still own to this day. “

  17. Ha
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    I’m with Robert. Let’s not let facts get in the way.

  18. watching laughing
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    Ahhhh who needs facts when your a Republican these days.
    Just pull it right out of thier behinds.

    Watching Laughing.

  19. Curt Waugh
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    I find it funny that this fact debate about Michael Moore comes down to “Let’s consider big-picture ideas about guns, healthcare and capitalism” vs. “He was wrong about an 800 number”.

    THIS is why neither the repulitotalitarians nor the demowusses can have a reasonable debate about anything. If a guy is wrong about a small fact, then EVERYTHING he ever says his entire life must be thrown out. He’s nothing more than a fat, lazy blowhard. You know, since that one fact was wrong.

  20. Curt Waugh
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    Wow, how prescient. Taibbi says it better:


  21. watching laughing
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

    Well your post almost made sense.

    Watching laughing.

  22. Robert
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

    Hey Money Trail and Ha, you are both morons. You think you can fact-check Michael Moore by going to HIS site and reading more of his bullshit. You really are stupid. I can’t even imagine how stupid a person would have to be to argue that Michael Moore is the authority on whether or not Michael Moore is telling the truth. You two are absolute imbeciles.

    Here is what independent research into the supposed gun give away involved:

    “Here’s the procedure for the gun program, as it was explained to me:

    1) You walk into the bank and ask for “the account where you get the free gun.”

    2) You’re shown a catalogue of available products. They’re famous for their guns, but you can also choose a set of golf clubs, a grandfather clock, or other expensive bric-a-brac. You pick out an item.

    3) The gun isn’t actually “free”; you’re buying a Certificate of Deposit and the bank is paying you all of the interest from the account in advance, in the form of fabulous prizes. The bank employee knows what each item costs and calculates how much money you’ll have to deposit and how long you’ll have to keep it in there to pay off the gun. For instance, I was told that to get the Mark 5 Stainless Weatherby, I’d have to deposit $5697 and keep it there for three years.

    4) You fill out paperwork. Two sets, actually. One is the usual paperwork for opening a CD, the second is information for the required firearms background check.

    5) You go home and wait. The bank processes your paperwork, both to make sure that no other bank has ever lost money doing business with you, and to make sure that they can legally sell you a firearm. I asked the rep how long the bank took to approve a customer and get him his gun, but she was uncomfortable with giving me an actual number.

    “Well, are we talking hours? Days?” I asked.

    “Oh, days, definitely.” Later in the conversation, she described it as “Like, two weeks’ worth of days.”

    6) When the bank is satisfied that it’s safe to issue you a CD and a gun, they notify you. You have the option of picking up the weapon at a local gun dealer or right at the bank but in either case, the weapon has to be shipped there from a different location. No gun inventory is kept at the bank; the only firearms they have on hand are display models so you can fondle the merchandise before you make a selection.”

    This was what Andy Ihnatko found out when he checked into Moore’s claims. Many others have also checked and reported back very similar details.

    Seriously, how idiotic is it to consider a person’s own web site the source for fact-checking that person? The sheer stupidity of mm.com’s readers never ceases to amaze me.

  23. watching sighing
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

    It is “you’re” not “your”

    watching sighing

  24. Robert
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

    Curt Waugh, no, I do share Moore’s feelings about many things. I wasn’t interested in arguing that he didn’t have very legitimate points. What happened here is that Ellen said “no one has been able to identify a single factual error in Fahrenheit 911, Bowling for Columbine, Sicko, or this new movie. If you have knowledge of errors, please post them.” So all I was doing was obliging her.

    It astonishes me that so many people don’t catch how factually sloppy Moore is just by watching and listening to him themselves.

    But Curt, I am with you. I am more concerned about the issues Moore brings up than I am with Moore or the idiots that can’t see how incredibly lazy he is with his presentation and fact-checking. He’s practically the Rush Limbaugh of the left. Millions of morons soak up everything he says without question. It gets so bad that they even think quoting Moore from his website confirms what he says in his movies. Can you imagine if some idiot ditto-head here posted a quote from Rush Limbaugh’s site in order to back up a claim Limbaugh made on his radio show?

    My attacks on Moore are all motivated by my concern that he is a disastrous spokesperson for so-called liberal causes, because he’s a lazy fabricator.

  25. Oliva
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

    the idiots that can’t see how incredibly lazy he is with his presentation and fact-checking

    Ouch, Robert.
    I think there are some Michael Moore supporters here who don’t consider him or themselves idiots, and certainly no Rush Limbaugh. (Just saying, maybe there was more anger in your post than actually fits. We have a variety of people on the left with different skills and angles on things, and Moore continues to do plenty of good even in getting those bowlers up north organized for Obama last year and starting the summer film festival.)

    Not that name-calling and stuff isn’t good for stiffening spines in this mean ol’ America, but–

  26. Robert
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    And Curt, Moore’s public comments and films are strewn with misrepresentations, deceptions, exaggerations and even some absolute lies. If he made a few obviously accidental errors I wouldn’t be so hostile toward him.

    I gave three examples of what Ellen said didn’t exist. I did that in a matter of minutes. I guarentee I could provide an encyclopedia of them given the time and interest.

    And for the record, I DO talk about the issues Moore raises in his films, and quite frequently. And when doing so, I prefer to use my brain, not just choose up sides and spew mindless rhetoric provided by the “side” I’ve selected. So, your characterizations may be true of many people, but they are way off if they were intended toward me. It saddens me to see that, because I’d consider you one of the few people here who isn’t a straight up dimwit.

  27. Robert
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

    Oliva, I have no doubt that most idiots don’t consider themselves idiots.

    I also have no doubt that Michael Moore is no idiot himself.

    My Rush Limbaugh comparison was more in regard to their shared impulsiveness in making statements unsupported by facts.

    Oliva, the truth is, I don’t mind stupidity that much if it isn’t accompanied by arrogance. I even don’t mind arrogance so much as long as it is backed up by a comperable level of substance. What I absolutely can’t stand is stupidity served up arrogantly. I have always been pretty straight forward in expressing that intolerance.

    Stupid people really shouldn’t feel so free to express themselves. What they should be doing is brushing up on their reasoning skills somewhere.

  28. Dirtgrain
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

    “I guarentee I could provide an encyclopedia of them given the time and interest.”

    Prove it.

  29. Oliva
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 9:50 pm | Permalink

    Well, instead of brushing up on their reasoning skills, maybe the so-called stupid people are over there (or here) doing something that looks worthless but isn’t, like stretching or laughing or crying or doodling, raking leaves, maybe dressing up or taking a long, hot bath, letting the machine wash the dishes . . .

    Nice neurosciency op-ed by David Brooks today:

    consciousness is too slow to see what happens inside, but it is possible to change the lenses through which we unconsciously construe the world.

    Since I’m not an academic, I’m free to speculate that this work will someday give us new categories, which will replace misleading categories like ‘emotion’ and ‘reason.’ I suspect that the work will take us beyond the obsession with I.Q. and other conscious capacities and give us a firmer understanding of motivation, equilibrium, sensitivity and other unconscious capacities.

    The hard sciences are interpenetrating the social sciences. This isn’t dehumanizing. It shines attention on the things poets have traditionally cared about: the power of human attachments. It may even help policy wonks someday see people as they really are.


  30. Curt Waugh
    Posted October 14, 2009 at 7:05 am | Permalink

    Robert, you have made it exceedingly clear that you are no fan of Moore. But my argument in his favor stands. I don’t give a fiddler’s fart about his facts because his big picture ideas stand (and I’m just the not-quite-an-idiot who knows the difference between the two). The fact of it all – the big bitch for his detractors and the reason he’s such an arrogant ass sometimes – is that he’s right.

    Moore made his nut doing a takedown on the asshole pricks who ruined the town of my birth. NO ONE ELSE wanted to touch this story. No one gave a shit. Moore wasn’t up against someone else, each trying to out-fact the other. He was alone and saying what no one else would say in a way that made people listen.

    He matters. His message is important. Rant on all you want, man.

  31. Money Trail
    Posted October 14, 2009 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    Robert…I don’t think Michael Moore is a bad guy. If he defends himself or his stances, I have no reason not to believe him. I could care less what you have to say, on the other hand. You just like to insult people by calling them dimwits, morons, idiots, and lazy fabricators. You slip these words into your tirades of “intelligent thought” to try and achieve some upperhand or high ground but it just makes me tune you out. Lay off the Hannity and take back some sanity, son.

  32. Robert
    Posted October 14, 2009 at 8:58 am | Permalink

    Curt, you make valid points. I am with you on most of what you have said. I wouldn’t agree obviously that Moore’s looseness with facts is not important, but we could probably have an intelligent debate over that. I’d have to agree with you that Moore’s contribution, in publicizing the issues he has, has had significant value. Now I’d like to see him go to the little bit of trouble it would take to get his facts right. That shouldn’t be so hard.

    Oliva, it is nice that you are so forgiving of people, I suppose. But I just am not. If a person chooses not to think while they go about their lives, stretching, laughing, crying, doodling or raking leaves, then they shouldn’t feel so compelled to open their mouths at every opportunity and about those thing which they have thought so little. I think animals are cute too, but I seriously doubt I could tolerate them if they could speak and had the impulse to insert themselves into everyone’s conversations willy nilly.

    I am certain almost all of the idiots who feel so compelled to spout nonsense here on Mark’s blog would not be so bold in person, and for good reason. They would suffer the embarrassment which is appropriate to such stupidity.

    As I’ve said over and over, the internet is a haven for the stupid and cowardly to pretend, if only in words, to be something they are not in life. It’s a haven for the insane and for incivility. I would never expect to witness an intelligent conversation here, and if I was absolutely intent on having one I’d want to communicate directly to the individuals who are capable of it.

    How many times have we seen serious individuals such as Mark H. or Curt Waugh make intelligent and thoughtful statements, only to have every type of moron jumping in to vomit their usual mindless idiocy in response? It’s sickening to see over and over. My response to this is to attack, as I would in person. The difference is that in person, these fools would learn their lesson to keep their mouths shut after the first or second time. Here they go on forever.

    This is why I think Mark’s notion that he shouldn’t be filtering remarks is a terrible mistake. He could facilitate intelligent discussion on serious issues while occasionally letting the lunacy run rampant on other, silly, topics. This blog could then become so much more as a resource to the Ypsilanti community. Instead, stupidity abounds, and discourages anyone who might have anything meaningful to say from doing so.

  33. watching laughing
    Posted October 14, 2009 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    pass out the pacifiers.

    Watching Laughing.

  34. Ellen
    Posted October 14, 2009 at 11:06 am | Permalink

    And how much of your last comment do you feel should have been filtered, Robert?

  35. Peter Larson
    Posted October 14, 2009 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    I just wish people would stop acting like Mr. Moore is a credible source to be quoted in otherwise intelligent conversation. I think he’s entertaining and for the most part, a large part of me shares his politics, but I find it disappointing that people rely on him to produce “facts” rather than exploring deeper, more thoughtful and insightful resources. Not only is it disappointing, it’s dangerous in the same way that Rush Limbaugh and Hannity are dangerous to the aims of serious conservatives who might have something constructive to say.

  36. Oliva
    Posted October 14, 2009 at 11:51 am | Permalink

    There were lots of people, even those who detested him, claiming that Cheney is very intelligent (“Well, you must admit he’s really smart,” etc.). Yuck.

    It’s such an unstable, subjective, culturally bound category, that intelligence of which you speak–just not very useful or appropriate as a measuring stick among people (or people vs. animals, for that matter). Not a great way to be part of a community, family, society, multifaceted self, either. So often used like a weapon by people too, when wouldn’t something worthy of the name intelligence probably not do that?

    Seems like a good thing Mark hasn’t decided that he can determine which comments qualify as worth letting through, according to some arbitrary if long-standing definition of intelligence and merit. Could become such a lonely place, when in truth this is a very wonderful blog, in my opinion.

  37. Brackinald Achery
    Posted October 14, 2009 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    I find it disappointing that people rely on him to produce “facts” rather than exploring deeper, more thoughtful and insightful resources. Not only is it disappointing, it’s dangerous in the same way that Rush Limbaugh and Hannity are dangerous to the aims of serious conservatives who might have something constructive to say.


  38. Robert
    Posted October 15, 2009 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    @ Peter Larson: Well said.

    @ Ellen: All of it, and most of my other posts too. I think incivility and stupidity should all be filtered out. So as long as the stupidity isn’t, I’ll be testing Mark’s tolerance of incivility. Are you getting that yet?

    @ Oliva, I am sure intelligence IS a very lonely place, and rapidly becoming lonelier…as is decency, as I am sure you can attest to. And did you just call this a very wonderful blog? Now I know your just being sarcastic.

  39. Oliva
    Posted October 15, 2009 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

    Robert, you sound more cheerful in your writing voice today, am glad.

    I want to ask you about something not for petty tit-for-tat but to understand better. Didn’t you (if it was a different Robert, the rest won’t be so meaningful!) return to the subject of John Edwards a few months back and say something humble about having put yourself out there so fully for him only to end up feeling bamboozled? The cost of his lies was very high, pushing some hardworking, passionate activists whose voices we could use now toward cynicism; wounding his already ill wife quite badly so that her very important voice and work on behalf of national health care have gone almost entirely missing when we need it most.

    But I don’t remember anyone here calling you names for working for Edwards, and I’d have been sorry to see it if someone had. (Hope no one did, but maybe someone did and I missed it.) Seems to me, people admired the hard work you were willing to do on behalf of a very good set of ideas. Anyway, I bring this up only because I don’t understand why some favorable comments about Michael Moore, even if the filmmaker/activist doesn’t get everything right, got you so infuriated that you started calling people names and saying you can determine intelligence and other qualities as if from on high.

    I supported Edwards too (for Obama’s VP, however!), have appreciated him. As for wishing people would strive to be well informed–I appreciate that desire very much but think humility is called for in thinking about what that means, given that it’s hard to see all the blind spots and things we don’t actually know or fully understand. I’m more willing to question the “reasoning” idea, given the very exciting work in neuroscience and many intersecting disciplines that are shedding humbling light indeed. (Everything we thought was true isn’t?!) I’m not forgiving when it comes to Dick and Lynn Cheney, as my ongoing fury at them shows. I guess the only change is now it’s the whole Cheney family that makes my nervous system get chaotic! (But that only ends up impairing my thinking and quality of life, alas.)

  40. Oliva
    Posted October 15, 2009 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

    P.S. Robert, hypocrites abound (or just fallible humans). I just caught myself calling Bush and Reagan knuckleheads.

  41. ytown
    Posted October 16, 2009 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    Robert you are an idiot.

  42. Robert
    Posted October 16, 2009 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

    Thank you, ytown. See, Oliva!

  43. Oliva
    Posted October 16, 2009 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

    Aha, not simply a wonderful blog, also a wacky one. Cool. (Thanks especially for the exclamation point, Robert, which in this context brought on a genuine smile.)

  44. Curt Waugh
    Posted October 17, 2009 at 7:38 am | Permalink

    Wow, ytown returns. All to make a juvenile comment about Robert.

    Well, I’m an idiot, too. Solidarity!!!

  45. Posted October 25, 2009 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

    Okay… that abandoned hospital part was flipping hilarious. Who ever cut that little “investigative” video wasn’t going for convincing: 45 seconds of clearly empty building, and then 8 seconds of two random people, and back to empty building… and let’s wrap it up with a shot of a toilet that hasn’t been flushed in 7 months.

    It was a strange interview… poor Sean, he obviously threw out the 60% and then had to sit there and stick with like an asshat on his own show. There isn’t a single person in either of their pay brackets that pays 60% in taxes. Maybe 60 years ago. But yea.

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