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No More Michael Moore
Dear Democracy Now!,
After giving myself the day to cool off, I just revisited Michael Moore’s segment on today’s show and find that I’m still as outraged over it as I was when I heard it this morning.
I have a hard time understanding why the Left in general, and Democracy Now! in particular, regards Michael Moore to be a credible or meaningful voice of progressive causes. This morning, he made some pretty strong yet obvious observations about the general state of things but, as usual, he didn’t really add any new information or analysis. Not really anything any number of us might have been able to come up with.
If that alone is enough for people get a charge out of listening to him, I would normally have no particular beef with it. But when he launches in to an ugly, baseless, ad hominem rant, then I have a problem.
On the show today, Democracy Now! played a video clip of Moore and Bill Maher ambushing and humiliating Ralph Nader by kneeling in front of him and begging him to withdraw his candidacy for President on Maher’s TV show in 2004.
One might have hoped that Moore would use this as an opportunity to publicly apologize for that shameful display. But instead he used it as a forum to further elevate himself as the True Grassroots Champion of the people. He is after all the Star of his own commercially successful “documentaries” and often appears on TV stating his opinions, while Ralph Nader, despite a lifetime of activism, and spearheading innumerable non-profit organizations, and exposing the corruption of our political process through his presidential campaigns is —according to Moore— merely a “poser” who “likes to hear himself talk.”
"And, you know, unlike Ralph, I guess maybe I’m not in this for just to say it so I can hear myself talk or to be some—or to take some poser position. And I hope that doesn’t sound too harsh, but I don’t see him ever working with the grassroots or with the people or being in touch with the people in any way, shape or form.
"Ralph’s approach is, put his name on the ballot and run for office. Where are we as a result of that? I don’t—you know, I don’t see us anywhere other than in the same pitiful state we’ve been in for some time.”
By that flawed logic, considering the “pitiful state we’re in,” anything ANY of us has EVER done has been a complete waste of time – including Michael Moore.
Again, Moore’s rant against Nader was ugly, baseless ad hominem. And as is so often the case with Moore, it was self-serving, intellectually lazy, and reckless. There should be no place for that on Democracy Now! or anywhere in serious progressive media.
SANDY MAYES lives in Olympia, Washington.