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Friday, September 26, 2003
Moore wants proof of his duplicity

MICHAEL MOORE WANTS to be taken seriously. The hard left campaigner has received some good coverage for his films and books. Unfortunately, none of it came from those with the sense actually to check some of his claims and investigate if the impressions he was trying to create were accurate. For serious reviewers, Roger & Me, Stupid White Men and Bowling For Columbine were malicious exercises in deliberate deception riddled with so many holes they could not seriously qualify as documentaries of any sort.

So Moore is now hitting back. He has issued this challenge:

From now on, I will deal with all wacko attackos on this page. If you hear something about me that doesn't sound quite right, check in here.

These words came at the end of a piece responding to the straw men that are a few of his most excitable and confused critics. What is most significant about his response is that with two exceptions he did not answer any of the claims of duplicity in Bowling For Columbine made in David T. Hardy's Bowling For Columbine - Fact or Fiction? This 5,692 word master-critique goes through the film and examines its claims and the impressions it created in the minds of those who viewed and reviewed the 'documentary'. It then debunks virtually every claim or point of significance, and more. No, the NRA did not rush to different scenes around the country immediately following school shootings there, contrary to Moore's assertions and all the clever editing he did to create that impression. No, the shooting in Buell Elementary School was not carried out because a sweet, young, innocent boy was deprived of his mother by welfare to work policies (he was actually the school thug from a family of drug-dealers, a thug who stabbed one child before the shooting and one after). No, the NRA was not connected to the KKK and indeed made its President the man who signed into law the bill banning the Klan. The ammunition scene in Canada was either staged or illegal. And so on.

And what of the two exceptions above to the rule of his not answering a single criticism in Hardy's 5,692 word decimation? The first is that claim that Moore added a (factually false) caption to a Bush/Quayle campaign advert without acknowledging this anywhere in the film. Moore confirms that this is true. The second is the claim that he carefully edited Charlton Heston's speech to Denver, Colorado, merging seven sentences from five different sections of the speech and in the process making his speech seem like a defiant series of assertions. Moore confirms this editing, if not the obvious intent behind it (hilariously he claims he did it to make Charlton Heston look "less evil").

So we have a huge critique of the film - none of its claims answered save for two which he confessed were true! - and Moore requesting that anyone email him with such claims for him to refute. I have already done this. Will you add to the pressure? Please do not flood his inbox. But if just one email each is sent by a handful of the people reading this, along with a link to Hardy's piece requesting his explanation, he will face a choice between answering the criticisms - and if successful gaining the credibility he seeks - or tacitly admitting that most or all are true and that his film is not a documentary but malicious fiction designed to mislead rather than inform.

For the left as much as the right, this is something you should do. If you really believe Moore's film is a proper documentary, then you must also believe he will be able to answer these criticisms, so you have nothing to be afraid of. He offered to respond to these questions; you should want answers. Email now and see what happens. But I wouldn't hold your breath.

Thanks to Nick Barlow for the link.

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