Talk:Michael Moore/Archive 1

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Archive 1 Archive 2

Criticism Section Discussion

Wow---this article is very biased against Moore. There isn't much balance at all. Although his quote about "dumb Americans", taken out of context by someone who doesn't enjoy his humor, looks like an attack on all Americans--- Moore is really attacking the Bush followers. Moore is not a socialist and Moore is a hero to many (including me). The article should reflect not only the hatred directed toward him, but his popularity as well. The man's movie did gross $120 million. ---fdog9

I'm glad you enjoy Michael Moore, but that is irrelevant to this article, this isn't a fan site. I agree with you that the article can better articulate the admiration he has. I encourage you to include what you wrote above in the article in some abbreviated form. Perhaps there should be a section called "Praise and Compliments" as well to centralize the praise and reflect the great admiration he commands. I'm actually not against deleting entire "criticism" section and removing all "criticisms" and "praises" from the article, not just that section. But since he is such a controversial figure, including this stuff seems appropriate.
Back to the point...This section at issue is called "Criticisms and Controversey" so it will obviously consist of negative critiques, some harsh. A better approach is probably to include a section as outlined above to seperate the criticisms from praise so it isn't so debated.
The article doesn't conclude or even assert that Moore is a member of the Socialist party. Read the Playboy article, he agrees with some socialist ideals and doesn't deny it (why do his fans?).
His "dumb Americans" comment is verbatim from his quote. The paragraph and context does say anything about "right wing".
I don't think you'll deny that Moore wants controversey because it is free marketing and increases his box-office sales. The article tries to explore that controversey.
--RyanKnoll 21:03, 18 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I condensed the criticisms and compromised on some of the language. If you still think it is unfair or problematic, please post you reasons here and we'll work out mutually agreeable language. --RyanKnoll 22:22, 18 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Against Moore, I think not. Every time I change one of lies to the truth, like where they say people "claim", when they have actually proven that he distorts and lies. His fans who refuse to see the truth when it does come out, change it back to the false version. unsigned comment from

Please state you arguments for reverting edits from the edits from Here are my brief comments for reverting:

  • his critics claim he mischaracterizes many areas of America, including the Bush administation and the American people (see next point)
  • his comment was "dumb Americans", not "dumb right wing Americans" as the Wikiquote at the bottom of the page clearly articulates
  • to say his critics are limited to "right wing" is a tremendous understatement, so dropping that adjective is more than fair.
  • he has not denied his ideas are consistent with soclism as per the Playboy article. in fact, he welcomes the comparison. he clearly doesn't view being called a socialist as an insult.
  • the language on Focus on the Family wikipage is "evangelical Chirstian", no radical right wing
  • his controversey is in part what spurs his success. criticisms are specific, short and to the point. to sanitize that is being dishonest. moore loves criticism and controversey and would welcome all the criticism that comes his way.

--RyanKnoll 18:46, 18 Jun 2005 (UTC)

It's not a fan site-- I agree-- but its not an anti-Moore blog either. If my bias shows--so does yours 3 fold. Your version uses blogs and websites as sources. The version now on the page reflects the criticism of Moore but provides some balance. Controversy means there are two sides to the story. con·tro·ver·sy 1 : a discussion marked especially by the expression of opposing views : DISPUTE 2 : QUARREL, STRIFE

20 Jun 2005

Um, Moore's blog is linked from here 6 times, along with a bunch of links to other support blogs. And frankly the one you reverted was shorter and kinder to Moore. I'm partially reverting until mutually agreeable language is found. I and others are more than willing to compromise on language. Nobody has attempted to limit praise of Moore. I deleted the reference to Kopel's article, deleted the Barnes reference (seems very inconsequential, no?), deleted the link, and slightly reword the 1st paragraph. Comments?-- 19:22, 20 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Yes---finally fair and balanced---reflecting both sides. It doesn't come off either for or against Moore and its by far the best version of this section I've read. Thank you--very well written. fdog9

Thanks. We can edit part of the first sentence that says "criticism from conservatives and praise from liberals" to just read "criticism and praise" or "criticism from the right and praise from left". Thoughts? -- 21:34, 20 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I don't understand why the article needs a seperate criticism section. Articles dealing with other controversial public personalities (such as Bill O'Reilly) are almost entirely criticism, while some are complete puff pieces (Al Franken). This one plays half-and-half. Why not merge the two halves for a more cohesive whole?


I'd support the deletion of the third place googlebomb mention. I don't think it's notable enough to have in the article.

CGP 14:38, 2004 Jun 19 (UTC)

I am appalled. I have twice added information--with reference--to a family who felt they were deeply betrayed by Moore and criticized him harshly and had those completely worthwhile criticisms removed. I've also noted, correctly, that many people see Moore as far more than a socialist but an outright fascist, and I've provided links showing this as well, even from left-wing sources like the New York Press..

Are Moore's defenders not allowing legitimate, referenced criticms simply because they don't like them? It appears so. Moore isn't considered just a socialist but an outright fascist apologist by many. The New York Press, no right wing rag, referred to Fahrenheit 9/11 as a "film of a fascist liberal" ( and "fascism with a liberal face." He's not the only one. But even worse in my view is the deletion of the page, with reference, of the family whose son's funeral Moore used without their permission, who called Moore "a maggot that eats off the dead." What, it's okay to soft-peddle moore as merely a "socialist," and not note that he's even worse than that in many people's eyes?

Desmay 12:12, 2005 Jun 26

Desmay - I agree with you that the content does have a place in the Criticism section. But, I think it was to wordy and long. Can it be condensed into a brief sentence or two? Maybe rewrite it without the direct quotes and just summarize it in a phrase or two. How about adding "and facism" after the word socialism. And then later add, "Moore was also harshly criticized for using footage of a dead soldier's funeral out of context in his FH 9/11 film and called him a 'maggot that eats off the dead.' [1]" -- 28 June 2005 08:00 (UTC)
I edited an entry about Minutemen under the controversy part, but it was just a historical fact it really has nothing to do with the controversy.- 05:57, 8 October 2005 (UTC)

Very vague criticism of Moore

Why so vague and brief? Wouldn't it perhaps be preferable to go in depth in the criticism section. Many of the sites list extensive incidents ( For instance, the Charlton Heston incident is oft noted. And in other Wikipedia articles, specific criticisms are often noted. With Moore's large body of work (no pun intended) there are very many criticisms in the public sphere. Why is Wikipedia taking a "minimalist" approach vis a vis Moore? Less is not Moore.

There's so much criticism that the only way to keep it manageable is to segregate it by film. In the Bowling for Columbine article, the "Summary" section includes the Heston incident, and there's then a separate "Criticism" section. Anything you think is missing could be added there. JamesMLane 06:38, 9 Jul 2004 (UTC)

i checkd bowling for truth site and it should not be taken into any consideration, the number of lies that are made up on the site to make a point that michael moore was liying is unbeliavable. Truly, the bowling for truth site is plain pathetic and completely right wing biased.

Front Row


which is getting a boost from organizations related to terrorist group Hezbollah.

While the fact that a UAE company named Front Row is distributing the movie in the Arab world isn't be disputed, a statement that they are "getting support from Hezbollah" is an exaggeration. Relevant confirmable reports about this amount to Front Row receiving a phone call from someone related to Hezbollah that had an interest in helping promote the film. That's an awful far cry from insinuating that Front Row is supported by Hezbollah, which IMO the phrase I cut does. KeithTyler 23:23, Jun 20, 2004 (UTC)

This does need mention somehow however. I read this today myself (placed the news link I read in the article actually, thats why I'm here), and along w his claims to have held video of U.S. soldiers abusing Irai's long before the scandal broke (isn't that illegal or something?) seems to be some particularly damning evidence. Keeping it out of the article does not serve the purpose of NPOV, Finding better wording would, however, I agree that the above was unfair. Sam [Spade] 02:39, 27 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Criticism Of Michael Moore

I changed the word cleverly to deceptively in this section. Michael Moore is an intelligent guy and knows when he is changing the intent of the speaker to suit his needs. He isn't trying to be clever, he is being deceptive. If his films were comedies as opposed to documentaries then you might be able to call it clever...

I removed the word altogether. "Clever" and "deceptive" are both POV and the meaning of the sentence is clear enough without them. -- Fredrik | talk 23:38, 28 Jun 2004 (UTC)
Since the whole paragraph is about allegations by Moore's enemies, it's OK to use POV terms in describing what they allege. DJ Clayworth 14:41, 29 Jun 2004 (UTC)
That's not how the sentence reads, though. It goes:
Accusations have also been made that some of the scenes in Moore's documentaries that were staged or scripted are not clearly lablelled so, and other scenes were edited to alter the original intent of the speaker in the video.
It is here alleged that some scenes are staged or scripted. But it is presented as a fact that scenes were edited. Put back the word "deceptively" and you get a statement of fact that this editing was deceptive. The options are to hide the word "deceptive" and to insert a "that" after the ", and", to connect the second clause with the notion of accusations being made. Was this sentence meant to say that this was merely alleged, but failed to do so due to poor grammar? Fredrik | talk 15:38, 29 Jun 2004 (UTC)
Fredrik, good point about the wording. I've tried another wording that keeps us from taking sides about the accusations. JamesMLane 16:24, 29 Jun 2004 (UTC)
I am not sure what the original intent of the sentance was. My intent (I am the user - I have since registered) in changing the word from cleverly to deceptivly was to indicate that there is neutral, factual evidence of Michael Moore editing scenes and cutting scenes together in order to alter the original intent of the interviewee and to mislead the audience. Additionally several people who appear in his books and movies have issued statements indicating that their remarks were taken out of context and carefully edited to change the intent of the speaker. The statements when put in their original (and proper) context have very different connotations and meanings. NPOV is not compromised to point out that this has happened in the past and it is certainly not compromised by indicating that allegations have been made in this regard. If you would like to see the facts I suppose I can go ahead and do a writeup on some of them. I firmly believe that the word should be reinstated - even the most liberal of journalists and movie reviewers have raised doubts about his editing practices. Michael A.
I would certainly agree that it is a fact that he has edited scenes. I would not agree that it is a fact that he did this to deceive anyone. It may very well be argued that he edited scenes with the intention of illustrating the truth — regardless of what people have come to think of the outcome. And even if he did edit scenes to deliberately change the intent of the speaker, it is still opinionated to call this practice "deceptive". Finally, the opinion of journalists, no matter how many of them, is still merely opinion. We should include such opinions, but present them as opinions and not as facts.
By the way, welcome to Wikipedia, Michael :) -- Fredrik | talk 19:47, 29 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Micheal Moore is a Big Fat Stupid White Man!--The Republican 23:37, 30 September 2005 (UTC)

He is not stupid.

I thinks he is a god man. Swedenman 12:56, 5 January 2006 (UTC)


The current text paints Moore as deceptive, because he claimed he'd never been sued but in fact he had been. I made some effort to find that statement by Moore online, but couldn't. The referenced Nichols suit was filed in October 2003. If Moore made the statement before then, the paragraph should be reworded so that it's clear Moore wasn't trying to cover up the Nichols suit. If Moore never made the statement at all, then of course it should be deleted (although the Nichols suit should still be mentioned). Can anyone substantiate that Moore made the claim, and if so, when? Also, the current text reference to "lawsuits" (plural) is unjustified unless someone can point to at least one more suit. JamesMLane 20:59, 30 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Reason for lawsuits (plural) - From Michael Moore's Newsletter (Tue, 24 Nov 1998): Three days later, Ira Rennert went to court and sued us. That was in reaction to "The Awful Truth" story on Rennert, which is not as popular as Bowling for Columbine. It is a very old lawsuit that Moore beat, but still a lawsuit. Kainaw 00:00, 1 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I agree that it is possible that Micheal Moore may have never claimed that no lawsuits were brought against him. In a brief search of the Internet, I can only turn up hundreds of Moore fans who make that claim, but not Moore himself. Kainaw 00:06, 1 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Well - Moore has claimed in multiple media outlets that he has never been sued for anything in Columbine. The easiest quote to get your hands on is from his own website: In fact, we have not been sued by any individual or group over the statements made in "Bowling for Columbine?" Why is that? Because everything we say is true – and the things that are our opinion, we say so and leave it up to the viewer to decide if our point of view is correct or not for each of them. [] (must not have been a very thourough search you performed?). The article on his website is not dated and it is possible that it was posted before the lawsuits were filed. A more detailed search using Lexis-Nexis (to which I no longer have access) would reveal that he has made the same statements POST-lawsuits. Anyone out there have lexis access? Michael A. 00:40, 1 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I looked at Moore's website, which has a lot of stuff on it, but I didn't read line-for-line the page you cite (which is specifically about Bowling for Columbine) because I was trying to confirm this more general statement in our article: "Moore ... notes the fact that after all four of his books, and all his movies, there has not been a single lawsuit against him." That assertion in our article remains unconfirmed. In fact, the quotation that Kainaw found, from Moore's own newsletter, directly refutes the implication that Moore has falsely denied having been sued.
As for the one lawsuit referred to (which is by James Nichols, not "Jerry" Nichols as our article claims), the sketchy media reports don't make clear what the allegations are. (This doesn't mean that the suit itself is vague. Media reports of legal matters are often very unenlightening.) The stories tend to lead with the lawsuit's claim that Nichols was tricked into participating in the film. The references to libel and defamation (libel is one form of defamation, so I don't know why they're listed separately) are along these lines: "Nichols also alleges in the lawsuit ... that Moore libeled him by linking him to the terrorist act." Moore's claim was that he hadn't been sued "over the statements made" in the film. If the suit doesn't identify any false statements, but alleges that Nichols was somehow "linked" to terrorism by the context, then Moore's statement would arguably be true. I saw the film but I don't remember the treatment of Nichols well enough to know what he's suing over. JamesMLane 02:46, 1 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Moore's statement on the website is indeed specific and targeted to Columbine. He has made more general statements as well. This [article] from The California Aggie on Oct 28th 2003 quotes Moore as saying to reporters: "I spent a lot of time, a lot of money and a lot of effort making sure all the facts in my books and movies are absolutely correct. And that’s why I’ve never been sued." He goes on to say "I’m never sued because my stuff is solid and airtight" The news conference took place on the day that James Nichols filed his suit against Moore (Oct 27th 2003). The only problem is that Moore was sued (and lost) for defamation of Larry Stecco in Roger & Me many years before he gave that press conference. [] has a reference to an AP wire story as far back as 1993 - again, anyone with Lexis media can check the AP archives for the full story but that quote from the AP is enough to refute his false claim. The fact of the matter is that he bandies this claim about to defend the veracity of his work quite often and it is at the very least misleading and sometimes (depending on his phraseology) an outright lie. Let me know if you need more proof. The section should go back in. Michael A. 22:28, 1 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Nothing can go back in because, as far as I can tell, nothing was taken out. I was waiting to see what the facts were, and, yes, we need considerably more information to write a correct statement. For example, I find an online description of the Larry Stecco lawsuit about Roger & Me to the following effect: "In the movie, [Moore] convinced Stecco to talk on camera at a 'Great Gatsby' party. Stecco looks foolish. He sued and won." Even if we assume this to be accurate -- it's from a decidedly anti-Moore site, -- it sounds as if the issue on which Stecco won was that the footage of him wasn't what he'd given his consent for inclusion in the film. If so, it would still be worth mentioning here, but it's different from a charge that Moore got his facts wrong. (If the footage was Stecco himself speaking, then a claim of defamation would be harder to make, though not impossible.)
I agree with you that Lexis access would be a help. Even that won't necessarily solve the problem, though. A suit that resulted in a reported judicial decision will be reflected in the caselaw available through Lexis, but many cases are decided (or settled) without generating reported decisions. Lexis will also give some information through the popular press, but that has to be treated carefully. Aside from any pro-Moore or anti-Moore bias of the reporter, it's often hard for reporters not to garble legal issues, even when they're sincerely trying to get it right. For that matter, if we're going to bring up the lawsuit record, we should point out that the absence of a defamation suit isn't really conclusive as to the accuracy of a publication, given the hassle and expense of litigation.
The current text of the article is clearly inaccurate and incomplete, but fixing it won't be easy. I'll make an inquiry about getting Lexis access, but I'm not optimistic. JamesMLane 01:07, 2 Jul 2004 (UTC)
While I cannot know what the intent of the original author was, I will attempt to explain what the statement as it reads now means to me: Moore has critics. Moore responds to his critics in 2 ways. 1) He responds to the most common arguments on his website and 2) points to the lack of any lawsuits as proof of the veracity of his work. Moore has in fact been sued. Now, excluding the inaccurate Terry in the current text (which certainly needs to be changed, someone didn't check their facts) what exactly are you disputing? Does the article from the Aggie not clearly indicate that Michael Moore has claimed that the lack of any lawsuit regarding his work indicates that his work is "solid" and "airtight." Are you disputing the accuracy of the AP wire report which indicates at the time of his statement he really had been sued? Are you disputing the accuracy of the Aggie article? There is no doubt that lack of lawsuits isn't a true indication of veracity - but it is a defense that Moore uses nonetheless. If he is going to use the defense to respond to his critics then it should be noted that he is incorrect (I would say that he is lying since it seems to me that it is very difficult to forget being sued, but I will give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that he just forgot). The article is not claiming that the lawsuits have any bearing one way or the other on the veracity of his work, _Moore_ says that, while claiming never to have been sued and he is incorrect in regards to the latter. Michael A. 01:55, 2 Jul 2004 (UTC)
The first Moore claim you quoted was that he hadn't been sued "over the statements made" in the movie. He's not referring to lawsuits on other grounds. Even if he asserts it more broadly, if it's in the context of his defense of his accuracy, he obviously meant that he hadn't been sued over an alleged inaccuracy. Is that claim by Moore true? Unclear. For example, the apparent gravamen of the Nichols lawsuit was that Nichols was tricked into participating. Suppose, in addition, Moore asked him about various points -- you were close to your brother? you gave the police two different stories about where you were the day of the bombing? you have expertise in high explosives? (I'm making all these up for purposes of illustration, by the way.) The statements could all be true, yet Nichols sues over Moore's decision to juxtapose them in a way that suggests the opinion that he was involved. That would be different from a suit alleging an incorrect statement as to a matter of fact. We need more detail about the suits and a more carefully nuanced discussion. JamesMLane 04:00, 2 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I conceded that the first quote did indeed have a narrow context, but knowing that Michael Moore has made similar statements in a broader context in defense of his work, I went out and found you an example [of that as well].
In regards to the Nichols suit: [CNN] and [Fox News] both carried the AP story: "Nichols accuses Moore of libel, defamation of character, invasion of privacy..." (among other charges). The wikipedia for Libel should clear things up for you: Libel and slander are two forms of defamation (or defamation of character), which is the tort of making a false statement of fact that injures someone's reputation. It seems pretty clear to me that Nichols is accusing Moore of making false statements of fact in the film. He also maintains that Moore misled him as to the purpose of the interview, but that is neither surprising from Moore, nor particularly interesting in our current context (btw I see no indication whatsoever that it is the gravamen, not that it matters).
In regards to the Larry Stecco suit: The AP wire story appears to be true. I took that vague Variety reference, did a little digging in the court records from the circuit court of Moore's hometown... and voila. In 1993 Larry Stecco sued Moore, DOG EAT DOG FILMS, INC, and WARNER BROTHERS,INC. There appear to be 2 claims, invasion of privacy and fraud. "VERDICT OF THE JURY: IN FAVOR OF PLTF. (INVASION OF PRIVACY) IN AMT. OF $6,250.00. ... IN FAVOR OF DEFT. AS TO FRAUD CLAIM (NO CAUSE FOR ACTION.)" The wikipedia for Libel is again on point: "The statement need not be derogatory in itself to be actionable, as where it constitutes invasion of privacy or portrays the person in a false light" It looks to me as if he was found guilty of defamation in the form of invasion of privacy. The court doesn't (so far as I can tell) have a full document search available so it doesn't look as if we can figure out exactly which part of Roger & Me the claim was in reference to - does anyone reading this live in Genesee County, Michigan? You can read the 31 available pages by visiting the [Seventh Judicial Circuit Court of Michigan], click "Circuit Court Records" and search by case number for 90-005047-NZ. A direct link to the document is unavailable as the system uses sessions initiated from the main page. Michael A. 10:09, 2 Jul 2004 (UTC)
It is still clear to me that the current text is inaccurate, or at best misleading. The oversimplification will have to be corrected with a more precise (and, regrettably, longer) statement. Kainaw's suggested rewording (on July 2, below) is probably too simplistic in the other direction, i.e., in Moore's favor. Incidentally, your comment makes me suspect that the article on Libel needs some attention, too. The excerpt you quote doesn't comport with my understanding of the law concerning invasion of privacy. My experience is all in New York, though, where invasion of privacy is strictly statutory and distinct from the general law, so I'll have to do further research on the issues before essaying an edit. JamesMLane 05:38, 5 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I agree. The current text is at the very least incomplete and it needs to be reworked. I haven't touched it since our last conversation because my knowledge vis-a-vis the claim in the Stecco suit is not perfect. I have found several sources which indicate that the wiki for Libel could be accurate (surprisingly, it seems nonsensical to relate invasion of privacy with libel) [2]. That link seems to indicate that a form of Invasion of Privacy is "False Light" (let me know if you need more sources). The reason I have not revised and extended the current article and added the Stecco suit is because I have no way of knowing of which form of Invasion of Privacy Moore was found guilty (some other sources also list other forms). I fear that we will not know until someone has a chance to visit the count clerk's office and examine the documents. I posted a plea for help in the Talk:Flint, Michigan discussion page, but I am not optimistic. I am unsure how to proceed without knowing what is in that claim. Michael A. 06:49, 5 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I can try to find some documents that you're looking for, but I wouldn't know what to look for besides anything with "Moore" in plantiff/defendent. Prometheus235 18:20, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I added the comment that there had been lawsuits. I did not add the comment that he claimed to never have been sued. My intention was not to make the 'never been sued' comment false. I read it as: "Moore claimed he hadn't been sued for false statements in his media works. However, he has been sued for other things." Perhaps a rewording will make that point clearer: "...there has not been a lawsuit disputing the claims in his films. However, there have been other lawsuits, including..." Kainaw 13:11, 2 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Well Done

I just finished reading the Michael Moore article, and I found it to be pretty well done. It seemed very informative, well written and relatively balanced. Keep up the good, fair editing folks!


What is Moore's hometown? The opening statement says Davison, elsewhere it says Flint. If these are the same, or one is in the other, perhaps we can say so, it is a little confusing as it stands. Thanks, Mark Richards 18:43, 13 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Davison is a wealthy suburb of Flint. Moore spent his pre-celebrity days living in Davision. He now lives in New York. If you do not consider Davison equivalent to Flint, he never lived in Flint. If you do consider Davison part of Flint, he grew up and lived in Flint. I have never known Moore to refer to his hometown as Davison. He always says or writes Flint. Why? That is a matter of opinion which doesn't belong in Wikipedia, so I won't comment. If it were up to me, I'd replace all mentions of 'Flint' with 'Davison', but that would go against what Moore says and the article is about him. Kainaw 02:28, 16 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Davison is wealthy? Since when? -Chris5369 04:05, 1 May 2005 (UTC)
Wealthy is relative. If one person makes $6/hr and another makes $15/hr, the higher paid one is more than twice as wealthy as the less paid one. According to the last census, the median income in Flint is $28,015/year. The median income in Davison is $37,482/year (which is just below the median for the entire county and state). Compared to the state, Davison is a middle-class township. Compared to Flint, it is wealthier by 134%. In other words, the people in Davison are likely to bring in 134% the salary that Flint poeple bring in. That is just salary. The separation between land value, crime, education, and other factors is higher. Therefore, I feel it is proper to label Davison as a wealthy suburb of Flint. It is a wealthy suburb alone. It is wealthy in comparison to Flint. Kainaw 19:09, 12 May 2005 (UTC)

Because Moore was born in Davison doesn't mean he lived there. That's probably where the local hospital was.


That is true. However, Moore lived in Davison for over 20 years. He never lived in Flint - unless you count living in Davison the same as living in Flint - which is the whole point of this question. He, like most people, lived with his parents until he was an adult. He continued to live in Davison until he moved to New York City. Kainaw 01:19, 24 Oct 2004 (UTC)
The local hospitals are in Flint. -Chris5369 04:05, 1 May 2005 (UTC)
Where I grew up, the hospitals were in Kansas City. In the townships outside of Kansas City, there were no hospitals (there are now, but not then). That did not mean that the townships were part of Kanasas City. It just meant that the hospitals in the city were large enough to handle the small townships outside the city. In other words, a township does not have to have a hospital to be a township. Kainaw 19:12, 12 May 2005 (UTC)
It really bugs me when people go back and add comments to discussions that died out months ago, but... You say Michael lived in Davison until he moved to NYC? He moved there sometime in the early nineties, after Roger & Me right? So what about the period where he worked on Mother Jones in California in the late eighties? Also just out of curiosity, during his short time at UM-Flint, did he stay on campus or stay with his parents or stay somewhere else entirely?
And just as a general comment on this discussion... If I'm speaking to someone who lives in Glasgow I'll tend to say I live in Burnside (a suburb of Glasgow). If I'm speaking to someone who lives outside Glasgow but somewhere else in the UK, I'll say I live in Glasgow. If I'm speaking to someone who lives outside the UK, I'll likely say I live in either Glasgow or Scotland. Doesn't mean I'm being duplicitous just different answers depending on what I think people will be familiar with. AlistairMcMillan 02:56, 6 September 2005 (UTC)

"Arab supporter" comment and UAE release

"Note: While credible, as of this writing, a Google search does not show any non-partisan sources for this quote. Also, on Moore's own website, the UAE are not listed as a country the film is being distributed in."

I removed the above from the article because it's POV (the quote immediately preceding only says that those comments were reportedly made, which is true).

Also, it's been announced in many non-partisan places that F9/11 is being released in UAE. The fact that Moore doesn't advertize this on his website means nothing other than Moore wishes not to advertize this on his website.

--Wclark 00:15, 2004 Jul 15 (UTC)

Re the following paragraph which begins:
More recently, in the controversy surrounding Fahrenheit 9/11, some critics have accused Moore of "aiding the enemy" with his candid and graphical reporting about U.S. actions in Iraq.

Then at the end:
Front Row Entertainment... has reportedly said that Moore was "considered an Arab supporter" in the region.

How is this consistent? Moore's Arab distributor considers him a friend of Arabs. Does WP presume that supporting Arab people is equivalent to aiding terror?

--KeithTyler 02:18, Jul 15, 2004 (UTC)

Actually the full context of the quote from the representative from Front Row Entertainment (search for "considered an Arab supporter" and "Moore" and you'll find plenty of secondary sources) makes it clear that the fact that Moore is (allegedly) "considered an Arab supporter" will hopefully soften what would likely otherwise be a rather hostile reaction to the movie. The sense of the statement is more along the lines of saying something like "Even though this movie isn't particularly friendly toward Arabs, it will probably be given the benefit of the doubt because Michael Moore is considered an Arab supporter." It's not really as damning to Moore as some seem to think (IMHO). --Wclark 02:49, 2004 Jul 15 (UTC)


There was an addition to Controversy that stopped just short of praising Moore for his great documentaries. I removed the blatant praise, leaving the basic content. I removed the comment that his documentaries are the only documentaries ever shown at Cannes after finding that the documentary "Uncovered" premiered at Cannes. Kainaw 14:51, 19 Jul 2004 (UTC)

 I think a list of his proven lies and deciets should be added.  "I was born in Flint"

What is a documentary

Re the 15:59, Jul 19, 2004 edit by User:TDC... Far be it for me to disagree with the experts at the similarly open-edited IMDB... but I don't think Jackass: The Movie was what any sane person would call a documentary.
--KeithTyler 06:19, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)

I have had a similar debate. My opinion is that F911 is propoganda, not documentary. Also, I feel that The Passion of Christ fits into the definition of documentary because it simply documents what the Bible claims happened to Jesus. However, those are my opinions. For NPOV, I go to the authority, which is the movie industry. Jackass is listed by the movie industry as Documentary/Comedy. You can check IMDB for the classification. Kainaw 12:54, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
As well as IMDB, the NY Times also calls Jackass a Documentary/Comedy. TDC 13:05, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)
I tend to agree that Jackass is a documentary, and I don't see a need to resort to these superlatives ("first documentary to open at #1") if their factual basis is dubious. Rhobite 15:05, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)
I don't think Jackass is a documentary, and a recent Times article about the box office success of documentaries didn't include it (listing Bowling for Columbine as the previous record-holder). To the same effect: "With $24.1 million in the till since its record-breaking debut in New York City on Wednesday, Fahrenheit 9/11 is already the highest grossing documentary of all time -- excluding large format, concert and other non-'apples-to-apples' sub-genres – surpassing Moore's own Bowling for Columbine's $21.6 million lifetime gross. Fahrenheit is also the first documentary to land in the weekend top five, let alone be No. 1." Box Office Mojo More generally, though, there was discussion of this point on Talk:Bowling for Columbine already, illustrating that there's quite a bit in this article that is or should be covered in the articles on specific movies. JamesMLane 14:45, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
That is only true if you believe that Jackass the movie is not a documentary. And not to sound rude, but beliefs don’t make facts. Jackass is classified as a documentary. TDC 14:53, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)
To be fair, you can't claim that "Jackass is classified as a documentary" because there's no authoritative way to determine that. The IMDB is user-edited and has no more credibility than Wikipedia itself. To my knowledge the MPAA doesn't assign genres, so we're left with a subjective classification. Consensus should rule here. Personally I do think it's a documentary since it's a nonfiction account of the antics of a group of daredevils. You could argue it either way, though. Let's not forget that we're arguing about a single fact, whether it was the first documentary to hit #1 in its opening week. I just don't think this fact is significant enough to warrant discussion. Rhobite 15:12, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)
IMDB is moderated/user-edited. The classifications commonly come from the Library of Congress. In the United States, most books/movies are classified by the LoC. In turn the LoC bases the classifications of movies based on suggestions from the Movie Industry (I know that is very general, but that's all their website says). If you look up Jackass: The Movie on the LoC website, you will see that it is listed as a Documentary/Comedy, just like IMDb. As I stated before, I am not pushing my opinion on the matter. I'm simply trying to find some greater authority. Kainaw 17:15, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I agree with Rhobite that this article isn't the appropriate place for a detailed analysis of the finer points of Jackass. Genre definition is to some extent subjective. I've tried to acknowledge the issue without getting bogged down in it by referring to the primacy of Bowling for Columbine "by some measures", which is objectively true. Anything more detailed than that should be in the Bowling for Columbine article if it's anywhere. JamesMLane 19:56, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Well then. Getting out of the firestorm over what is a documentary (the scope of the term defined herein seems to make the term meaningless, IMO, but whatever), would it be acceptable then to say something along the lines of:
The press has touted the film as the first documentary in history to reach #1 in box office returns in its opening weekend.
KeithTyler 04:54, Jul 23, 2004 (UTC)

--- Is it true Moore's agent Ari Emmanuel is the brother of Illinois congressman Rahm Emmanuel? 02:56, 22 Jul 2004 (UTC)

"and alleged links between the families of George W. Bush and Osama bin Laden."

doesn't it later say in the article that these links cant be disputed??

Alleged Hezbollah support

User:MSTCrow recently added this:

Affiliates of the Iranian and Syrian-backed terrorist group Hezbollah are promoting Fahrenheit 9/11, and Moore’s Middle East distributor, Front Row, is accepting the terrorist assistance.

I think this assertion should be in the article if it is accompanied by an indication of the source of the information, allowing readers to verify the statement and judge its credibility. I do not think it should be in the article without any citation or attribution, and have therefore removed it, pending such attribution. Dpbsmith 01:11, 23 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Deleted from article

"Affiliates of the Iranian and Syrian-backed terrorist group Hezbollah are promoting Fahrenheit 9/11, and Moore’s Middle East distributor, Front Row, is accepting the terrorist assistance."

I know that hizbollah at least endorsed and has tried to promote the film, I'm not sure about the official acceptance from Front Row however. Sam [Spade] 01:13, 23 Jul 2004 (UTC)
See, Deceit 59 (near end of document). This is in addition to news reports, which I can Google up if required.
MSTCrow 04:36, Jul 23, 2004 (UTC)
I think if we look at it objectively we can include that statement in a less insinuative manner. Hezbollah has expressed that they desire to spread the word about the film, and asked Front Row if it was okay for them to do that.
Front Row didn't stop them. BBC News story (OT: Which IMO is a rather American position -- on the question of whether people should be free to express and promote their views, likes, dislikes, and desires.)
Does this amount to "accepting assistance"? I suppose it is, tacitly. Is it equivalent to receiving financial support from Hezbollah? Is it equivalent to hiring Hezbollah guerrilas to work in a Front Row call center? Not IMO.
So I recommend:
Affiliates of the Iranian and Syrian-backed terrorist group Hezbollah are promoting Fahrenheit 9/11 in some Middle Eastern countries. Moore’s Middle East distributor, Front Row Entertainment, is aware of but has not objected to the group's independent promotional efforts.
KeithTyler 05:13, Jul 23, 2004 (UTC)
Sounds fine. Sam [Spade] 05:15, 23 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I don't see the relevance of the comment about Front Row. KeithTyler says, "Front Row didn't stop them." I get this mental image of Front Row sending some terrified flunky to try to serve legal papers on Hezbollah. (If you think that's what Front Row should do, are you volunteering for the job?) Given the context of the Middle East, the decision by a film distributor not to take on one of the major terrorist groups doesn't seem particularly notable, nor does it support much of an inference about anything. Sorry I didn't see this discussion until after the change had been made, but I'm deleting that sentence until someone can explain its value. JamesMLane 08:21, 23 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Front Row accepted their assistance, James. You can just say "no" to terrorism, you know. Serving legal papers against an extra-legal terorrist organization would be pointless, as terrorist organizations exist and operate explicitly outside of the law; However, Front Row can stand among decent people and publicly state that such assistance is not welcomed. There's a difference between denying assistance and engaging in counter-terrorist operations.
MSTCrow 17:40, Jul 23, 2004 (UTC)
Also, if you don't find it important, lots of others do. If you think its unfair, so what? Its a valid peice of info. Feel free to give it context if you muct, but it seems pretty clear to me as is. Sam [Spade] 17:44, 23 Jul 2004 (UTC)
KeithTyler's wording seems OK to me, but, as noted before, sources for the information should be given. In its present form, I wouldn't think that would be too difficult to do. Given that the film is clearly an attack on Bush, it is hard to believe that Hezbollah would oppose it. If Hezbollah is promoting it, it is hard to believe that Front Row would not be aware of it. The trickiest bit is the statement that Front Row "has not objected." Dpbsmith 19:54, 23 Jul 2004 (UTC) Searching on Google News turns up only the statement by Gianluca Chacre of Front Row that “We can’t go against these organizations as they could strongly boycott the film in Lebanon and Syria." And the usual context seems to be clearly anti-Moore articles, with titles such as "Michael Moore, Hezbollah Heartthrob." I think the wording should not interpret Chacre's statement to say Front Row Entertainment, "is aware of but has not objected to" Hezbollah's support. Instead, I propose this wording. I'm assuming here that Clifford May's quotation is accurate:
Affiliates of the Iranian and Syrian-backed terrorist group Hezbollah are promoting Fahrenheit 9/11 in some Middle Eastern countries. Moore’s Middle East distributor, Front Row Entertainment, is aware of the group's independent promotional efforts. Gianluca Chacra, the managing director of Front Row Entertainment has stated, “We can't go against these organizations. Having the support of such an entity in Lebanon is quite significant for that market and not at all controversial. I think it's quite natural."
Many will think that this statement does equate to "has not objected to" or "supports" or "welcomes" but we should not perform that interpretation for the reader. Report Chacre's statement in his own words. Dpbsmith 20:04, 23 Jul 2004 (UTC)
In fact the Chacra quote as copied above is an incomplete version that appears (or is implied) on some particularly POV news outlets. The complete first sentence is "We can't go against these organizations, as they could strongly boycott the film in Lebanon and Syria." Do a Google search on "we can't go against these organizations" (with quotes) to see the distinction. Other than that correction, the version that includes Chacra's complete quote also sounds OK to me, if not making the graf a bit lengthy. --KeithTyler 00:32, Jul 24, 2004 (UTC)
Done. Dpbsmith 01:08, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)
The underlying factoid here is that some Hezbollah types said they liked the film. The argument that "decent people" at Front Row would publicly urge such people to stop expressing their approval of the film seems to me to be pretty weak. I think Bush is a war criminal but if he expressed admiration for something I did, I don't think I'd have a moral obligation to urge him to stop expressing his opinions. Still less would I have a moral obligation to urge my business associates to urge Bush etc. As for specifics, the wording suggested by Dpbsmith is a definite improvement. I agree with his approach of letting people make up their own minds. Using his version as the base, I've restored the content about Front Row. I began the paragraph with the Kuwaiti ban, because a government banning Moore's film is more significant than the other stuff. The references to Iran and Syria don't concern Moore or the film, but Hezbollah. Because this article is about Moore, the international status of Hezbollah is adequately covered by the wikilink to the Hezbollah article. This version is suitably NPOV -- some readers will conclude that Moore hates America and is virtually in league with the terrorists, while others will conclude that Moore's opponents are getting pretty desperate to think of ways to attack him. JamesMLane 21:38, 23 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Ray Bradbury

I deleted the part about bradbury copying titles from other authors. Those authors were all long dead. He could'nt ask their permission if he wanted to.

I put that part back. It's merely a statement of fact, that Bradbury adapted the titles of other authors. Whether or not Bradbury could have asked for permission is irrelevant to this statement's inclusion in the article. As a side note, Yeats wasn't exactly long dead when Fahrenheit 451 came out, although I concede that he was dead. Rhobite 04:38, Jul 24, 2004 (UTC)
He may not have been long dead, but it still makes it pretty difficult to ask his permission :)-- 00:51, 19 October 2005 (UTC)
Using a quotation from an author's works as a title is not quite the same as recycling a title. It's the difference between, say, calling a movie To Be or Not To Be and calling it Hamlet. Not that that's exactly what Moore did either. - Nunh-huh 04:43, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I think the comment about Bradbury's use of quotations as titles is appropriate and relevant. Moore's title can be fairly described as controversial; the essence of the controversy is whether it should be considered a (fair-game) allusion to a well-known work of literature, or whether it is "stolen." IANAL but I'm about 99.9% sure that there's no intellectual-property issue here.
Some essential facts in any NPOV reporting of the controversy would be a) that the title is, of course, an intentional reference to Bradbury's title, and b) that Bradbury feels that Moore should have requested permission from him and is very angry at Moore. In reporting on the controversy, the fact that book titles are frequently quotations or allusions to other literature (and that the accidental exact duplication of titles is not uncommon) should be touched on. The fact that Bradbury himself did it makes for an particularly relevant example.
All of the three Bradbury titles are, of course, from dead authors and "borrowed" from works that are in the public domain. There's a clear distinction between what Bradbury did and what Moore did.
Ironically, I think part of the controversy is that Moore probably perceives his title to be an allusion to a familiar piece of classic literature that will be recognized by any educated person, and thus he probably saw it as a homage or compliment to Bradbury. Probably one of the reasons why Bradbury is so furious is that Moore is treating him as if he were a great, dead author.
Lost in all this is a question I'm curious about. What percentage of the moviegoing public actually does recognize the allusion? (With or without the subtitle, "The temperature at which freedom burns," which seems not to appear in the movie itself). (Yes, I saw it). Dpbsmith 11:09, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC) P. S. I'm also curious to know whether Moore was personally aware that Bradbury is still alive at the time when he thought of the title. I'll bet he didn't know, discovered it later, and callously and calculatingly decided there was less risk in not asking permission than in asking and having to decide what to do if it were not granted. Dpbsmith 11:40, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Interviews with both Bradbury and Moore have stated that Moore sent Bradbury a letter with his intention to use the title and Bradbury replied with multiple requests to Moore to discuss it, but none of the meetings were granted. Because both people state that they had some discussion about the title while the film was under construction, it is a bit far-fetched to speculate that Moore thought he was sending a letter to a dead author. Kainaw 13:56, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)
OK, I just shaded a few nuances in that paragraph here and there. This flap is now many weeks old and has died down. I'm assuming that if Bradbury were going to attempt a lawsuit (IANAL but I'd guess the chances of success would be nil) we would have done so by now. Can anyone think of a case where one author has alluded to or quoted the work of another living author?
There was that 2001 controversy over Alice Randall's The Wind Done Gone, a parody of Gone with the Wind; the issue was however, not the title, but the content of the book, which viewed the characters and events of Gone with the Wind from a black point of view. The Mitchell estate was furious and tried unsuccessfully to block publication of the book. This was far more than an issue with the title, of course. The content of Moore's film has no relation to Bradbury's book whatsoever; it's just a riff on a Bradbury title. Dpbsmith 11:40, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)

The latest version is misleading because it says that the sources used for Bradbury titles were in the public domain. That's a concept of copyright law, not trademark. Bradbury can't claim substantial infringement of copyrighted material in a work that uses one word of his. His legal basis for any claim would have to be trademark. Now, before I go making yet another correction -- this topic has also been hashed out in two separate sections of Talk:Fahrenheit 9/11, and it is of course discussed in the Fahrenheit 9/11 article. I suggest that it's a good example of a detail about one particular Moore move that should be addressed in the article about that movie and deleted entirely from this article. (Maybe I'm not being bold enough, but I don't want to delete a paragraph that so many people have worked on, unless others agree.) JamesMLane 15:49, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I agree. I'm puzzled why it's here, as it's a pretty insignificant incident. This belongs in the F911 article, along with the Hezbollah stuff. There's not enough about Moore himself here and too much film trivia which belongs in individual film articles. Gamaliel 16:41, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)
It got bloated. Partly by me. Someone put in Bradbury, "I wuz robbed." Someone else added, "Wuz not, and anyway Bradbury stole titles himself." Then I added "Did not neither." Sorry. The move to Fahrenheit 451 is entirely appropriate in any case. Dpbsmith 17:28, 25 Jul 2004 (UTC)
What I had in mind by using the phrase "public domain" was to try to make a succinct distinction between what Moore did and what Bradbury did. Maybe there's a better way to phrase it. But I think you're getting overly complicated by bringing in the trademark question. You're saying, there's no conceivable copyright issue so somebody must be thinking about trademark. I doubt it.
Here's what I was trying to say and maybe someone can help me say it better. (Yes, I know the paragraph in question has already been moved to the Fahrenheit 9/11 article. a) Bradbury feels he was badly by Moore. b) People commenting on the issue say, in effect, that Bradbury has no beef because he did the same thing to Shakespeare, Whitman, and Yeats. c) However, Shakespeare, Whitman, and Yeats are part of the "commons" in a way that Fahrenheit 451 is not. Not yet, anyway. So what Bradbury did is not really in the same category as what Moore did. d) The comment is nevertheless relevant in because it points out in a dramatic way that writers do borrow stuff for titles all the time.
Moore's borrowing from Bradbury was unusual and constituted bad manners, and Bradbury has just cause for offense (though almost certainly not for successful litigation). Bradbury's borrowing from Shakespeare, Whitman, and Yeats was fine. How would you try to define this non-legal point of etiquette? Dpbsmith 17:23, 25 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I don't think we need to compete with Miss Manners. That Bradbury made his comments is a fact (though not a particularly important one) and we can report it. Having done so, we might raise in the reader's mind the question whether this will be litigated, and in fact I thought at one point Bradbury was making noises about suing. Because that idea would occur to some readers, it's reasonable for the article to add that the title wasn't trademarked and that there's no copyvio for using one word. At that point we've given all the objective information. Readers can decide points of etiquette for themselves. (I gather that some people think Bradbury's lifting of titles is relevant to the etiquette point -- a connection I find thin -- and other people think that the legal (copyright) status of those other works is relevant to the etiquette point -- a connection I find nonexistent.) JamesMLane 08:40, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I'll concede your points. Following Bradbury's title-borrowings leads us down a path that's really not germance. but I still think the current discussion in Fahrenheit 451 needs work. The problem as I see it is that friends to whom I have spoken about this understand even less about IP than I do, and don't understand why Bradbury can't sue "because Moore stole his idea." The current discussion says "However, since Bradbury has not trademarked the title, legal action is unlikely." I would prefer for it to say something more explanatory. You can undoubtedly word this better than I. I'm thinking it should say something like "Since Bradbury has not trademarked the title, and since borrowing short phrases does not infringe copyright, successful legal action is unlikely." Dpbsmith 12:51, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
A lot of different reasons have been raised for why Bradbury would be angry that Moore "stole the title". I have a simpler one... Fahrenheit 9/11 was a highly controversial movie, and Bradbury is a person with strong views on freedom and education. Is it possible he was offended that the title was used in a political context, which he had no opportunity to comment on? This seems very different to Bradbury's treatment of Shakespeare, Whitman, and Yeats, so why not remove the reference to Bradbury's copying? It makes it look like point for point refutation - which smacks of amateurism apart from anything else...-- 00:49, 19 October 2005 (UTC)

Here is the movie material I removed from Michael Moore, and here is what got merged in to F911. See Talk:Fahrenheit 9/11 for more details. -Wikibob | Talk 16:33, 2004 Jul 25 (UTC)


The first two paragraphs of the "controversy" section contain many unattributed criticisms. This seems inconsistent with a neutral point of view as required by Wiki rules. Can someone provides proper attribution or explain how this is consistent with a neutral point of view? After all, I can argue that "some" think anything that I _personally_ think. But my personal opinions hardly belong in the Wiki.

You're absolutely right that those criticisms should be attributed. They're weasel words and it's not hard to verify whether the criticisms have or have not been made. In this case, those criticisms have all been made. I have one suggestion for you, though: you'll get better results if your comments don't sound like threats. Rhobite 23:20, Jul 29, 2004 (UTC)
Sorry, not trying to be threatening. Just trying to give advance notice of an intent to delete, so that people have a chance to argue against it. I edited that sentence out, per your suggestion.
Not a problem at all. Rhobite 23:51, Jul 29, 2004 (UTC)

"This dangerous threat got little notice from the now right leaning media." -- hardly NPOV!

Category: Propaganda?

Earlier tonight, Buster2058 added Propaganda to the category for this article. While I believe that the article categorization was done in good faith (the user's page says that they are "a kick to categorize a lot of articles"), I respectfully object to this categorization. He/She also categorized this change as "minor". Is this change merited and/or appropriate? And is it "minor" (possibly an 'oops')? I believe it should not be so categorized - I believe it stretches the definition or scope of Propaganda to a point that makes the word meaningless. Are the Editorial cartoon, Op-Ed or Editorial articles so categorized? I'd like to revert this, but seek debate first. --NightMonkey 09:14, Jul 31, 2004 (UTC)

I'm the user (he) who added this category, thank you for giving me the benefit of the doubt. Honestly this is not a category that I'm very much interested in. However, Michael Moore fits the definition of a propagandist perfectly. Articles will be added to this category as I find time and I may further refine this category as I slowly find more articles to place in it. It might be a stretch and redundant only if Michael Moore was a politician or news reporter. Thanks for the leads on Editorial cartoon, Op-Ed or Editorial I will consider them for inclusion too. If there is a consensus that Michael Moore does not fit the definition of this Category:Propaganda then so be it. I will not argue further for it or against unless someone has a question for me to address.
Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary - propagandist --Buster 15:24, Jul 31, 2004 (UTC)
Michael Moore makes films which he calls documentaries but which are primarily aimed at serving his political agenda. I think this perfectly fits into the definition of propaganda. I'd support deleting the category, as it is inherently POV, but if the category is kept I think this is a fine inclusion. anthony (see warning) 15:46, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I was too lazy to expound on the point, the way NightMonkey has, so I adopted the guerrilla response of adding Rush Limbaugh to the category. If Moore stays in the category, I have a long list of right-wingers who'll follow Rush on the list. I agree with anthony that the category is inherently POV, at least if used in this way (i.e., to include examples of so-called propaganda). It should be restricted to articles about propaganda in general; if there aren't enough of them to merit a category, then delete it. JamesMLane 15:58, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Just a quick note: Michael Moore has been very careful to never use the work documentary. He says "op/ed" piece. Also, take note that the definition of propaganda is: The systematic propagation of a doctrine or cause or of information reflecting the views and interests of those advocating such a doctrine or cause. Kainaw 12:35, 2 Aug 2004 (UTC)
While Moore certainly seeks to promote an agenda, he does not seem a propagandist to me. The primary distinction between propaganda and editorial (also agenda-based) must be in the specific techniques used to persuade. With exception of "common man", the persuasive techniques enumerated in propaganda seem to me relatively minor weapons in Moore's arsenal. Almost all editorialists I can think of use at least one of these techniques. So it seems to me that propaganda should apply to agenda-oriented persuasion that relies _primarily_ on the techniques listed. In my subjective opinion, Moore does not fall in this category. 16:00, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
In my mind what puts Moore in the category (and distinguishes him from say Rush Limbaugh) is that he presents his "editorials" as documentaries. Also, while there is not much to point at as actual lies that he presents, he certainly manipulates the truth in misleading ways. anthony (see warning) 16:19, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Actually anthony, Moore himself described F911 as "an op/ed piece". It's the film industry calling it a documentary because they don't know where else to put categorize it.Wolfman 16:37, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I was mainly referring to Bowling for Columbine, which I just watched a few days ago and in which Moore repeatedly calls a documentary. Take a look at the last paragraph of the "Criticism" section. "An animated segment in the movie claiming to be a 'brief history' of the United States of America has been criticized as grossly inaccurate, misleading, and manipulative." As for the appropriate genre to place F911, propaganda film might work. anthony (see warning) 16:42, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Would you argue that the _primary_ means of persuasion in Columbine are those listed as propaganda techniques? That's not my take. After all, I can find some _element_ of propaganda in almost any agenda-driven work of persuasion. The 'brief history' you mention would in my view best qualify for category:satire.Wolfman 17:03, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I certainly don't think the brief history was satire. It would only be satire if you think Moore was trying to ridicule people who believe that the NRA is related to the KKK, but it seems to me if anything Moore believes this to be true. Which type of satire would you consider the history? As for the techniques, first of all the definition of propaganda generally includes almost any agenda-driven work of persuasion. Secondly, I don't think application of the techniques as presented by Wikipedia is a good way to judge which works best fit the definition. But examining them, I think they fit to a good extent. The film is filled with "intentional vagueness". The "What a Wonderful World" segment is full of this technique [3]. "Obtain disapproval" or "transfer" is the goal of the "brief history" section: blame the actions of the KKK on the NRA. "Stereotyping" of Americans is used throughout the film, although this is somewhat inevitable. This is all just from the top of my head. To fully answer this question I'd have to sit down and watch the film with the list in front of me. anthony (see warning) 17:51, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
This category is so controversial that it should not even exist--it is irredeemably POV. I will nominate it for deletion, and support removing all articles dealing with contemporary politics from it, prior to its being deleted. [[User:Meelar|Meelar (talk)]] 17:14, 2004 Jul 31 (UTC)
I would think that just about any category is irredeemably POV. That's my biggest problem with categories. At least with lists you can explain the controversy. anthony (see warning) 17:54, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Comment - Looks like I opened the proverbial Can O'Worms. After looking at what has already been included in the Category:Propaganda it seems that the intent of the category is for government sponsored propagandist and items that are easily classified as propaganda (Some of Moores movies for example). Therefore, I believe I was hasty in placing Michael Moore's bio into this category. I will remove this category from Moores and Limbaughs article. On the other hand if someone else wants to put it back in they always can and then battle it out on an article by article basis as they are sure to appear. --Buster 17:28, Jul 31, 2004 (UTC)

That phrase "items that are easily classified as propaganda" strikes me as an invitation to eternal edit wars. Battling it out article by article would be time-consuming and would often produce inconsistent results. (Given two similar works of opposing POV, one would get characterized as propaganda and one wouldn't, depending on which partisans are active on each article.) I think there should be a comprehensive discussion of these issues. The obvious place for that discussion is Category talk:Propaganda. I've posted a specific proposal there, and I suggest that the conversation move from here to there. JamesMLane 23:59, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Nothing should be "easily" classified as propaganda. It is a term with so much baggage it needs ot be considered very carefully before using that label. See: Category talk:Propaganda. Fuzheado | Talk 00:24, 1 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Why not easily classify something as propoganda? I just deleted a very long response which I will try to summarize in a couple sentences... If it has one viewpoint, it is propoganda. Documentaries have no point of view. Debates have at least two equal viewpoints. Propoganda has only one, though sometimes they are tricky and mock the opposing viewpoint to make it appear that they are giving equal time to the opposition. Propoganda is part of everyday life: advertising, news, religion. Baggage with a term only exists when people stop using a term for what it means. Kainaw 13:46, 4 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Kainaw, that's an interesting comment, which I'll answer on Category talk:Propaganda. JamesMLane 04:12, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I do not agree that "documentary" means neutral. The Pare Lorenz films, The River and The Plow that Broke the Plains are usually referred to as documentaries, although they were advocacy for the policies of the New Deal (and were probably less factual than Fahrenheit 9/11). Cousteau's undersea documentaries had an environmentalist point of view. Emile de Antonio's documentaries, Point of Order and Millhouse, were clearly attacks on McCarthy and Nixon respectively, even though they consisted almost entirely of news footage. Victory at Sea is called a documentary but was clearly intended to put the U. S. Navy in a heroic light.
I was hoping that I could find a statement somewhere from Moore in which he acknowledged the film to be propaganda, in which case I wouldn't think anyone could object to calling it that. But Moore's own view seems to be that propaganda=falsehood, and that his film, which he acknowledges to be promoting a point of view, is not propaganda because everything in it is literally true.
My own view is that the Moore film is a) clearly a documentary, b) does not contain outright falsehoods or fakery, c) clearly is a highly selective presentation of facts intended to promote a POV, d) and is clearly propaganda by the dictionary meaning: "The systematic propagation of a doctrine or cause or of information reflecting the views and interests of those advocating such a doctrine or cause." However, although I can't prove this me the word propaganda has always carried the connotation that it is advocacy performed by an official entity such as a government, church office who controls the channels of public communication. That is, it is propaganda only it the general public finds it virtually inescapable and has difficulty learning of other points of view. If the word carries such a connotation, this would explain why advertising isn't usually considered to be "propaganda." [[User:Dpbsmith|dpbsmith (talk)]] 13:00, 5 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Moore getting a heavy dose of Guilt by Association?

Some recent edits have been made, adding some interesting sentences. Here's the paragraph in question, as it now stands:

More recently, in the controversy surrounding Fahrenheit 9/11, some critics have accused Moore of "aiding the enemy" with his candid and graphical reporting about U.S. actions in Iraq. Critics also say that the unflattering portrayal of the U.S. political system and of the Bush administration weakens U.S. credibility internationally. In this context, foreign endorsement of Moore is often seen as an indictment by some of his critics: For example, Gianluca Chacra, the managing director of Front Row Entertainment in the United Arab Emirates (Fahrenheit 9/11's distributor there), has reportedly said that Moore was "considered an Arab supporter" in the region. Cuba, one of the two remaining Stalinist dictatorships, telecast a pirated version of Fahrenheit 9/11 on state controlled TV.

OK, isn't this obvious Guilt by Association?

  • Regarding MM being an "Arab supporter":

What is wrong with being an "Arab supporter"? If entries exist in this article stating Michael Moore is a liberal, or left wing, that's one thing, and most likely merits inclusion, or at least discussion. But calling someone an "Arab supporter", as it is in the article now, is arguably bigoted, or at least misleading. Are Arabs now the stated enemy of the West? Why does this opinion merit inclusion here?

  • Regarding the Cuban State Television broadcast of Fahrenheit 9/11:

If Cuban State Television broadcasts the American television show "Miami Vice", does this merit an entry mentioning such in the Miami Vice article? Here, try this out:

Cuba, one of the two remaining Stalinist dictatorships, telecast a pirated version of Miami Vice on state controlled TV.

I'm going to remove these sentences, unless objections are made, 24 hours from now. Better, more substantive criticisms are merited.

I look forward to the debate! --NightMonkey 02:53, Aug 4, 2004 (UTC)

I completely agree that this rubbish is guilt by association. The article, however, doesn't criticize Moore on this (meritless) basis; it reports that he's been criticized on this basis. That report is probably true. The issue is whether there are enough people making this charge. If they represent a significant body of opinion, their opinion should be reported, though they be lunkheads. Perhaps we should name names or give examples? From my general reading I think that the "Arab supporter" line has been circulated by a fair number of people who think they're really scoring a point. The Cuba reference is more iffy. Even if Cuba stays in, though, the criticism of it as Stalinist is too far afield from the subject of the article, and I've deleted that phrase. JamesMLane 11:36, 4 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Perfect solution. Thank you! --NightMonkey 10:03, Aug 7, 2004 (UTC)
It's no coincindence that F9/11 has been taken up vigoriously by those who hate the United States the most. This damning evidence against Moore, and worthy of much consideration. Describing Cuba's government, accurately I might add, as Stalinist, does give the reader an insight into Moore's own politics and those that are more likely to support him. Lunkheads? Since when does calling people names constitute a compelling argument?
MSTCrow 04:22, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)

It's no coincidence that any work critical of our government or country will be taken up by those who oppose our government or our country. That's not damning, it's normal. (The alternative would be to never be critical of our government or country. Etc.) KeithTyler 04:32, Aug 6, 2004 (UTC)
Untrue. For instance, Libertarianism is often critical of the government and to a lesser extent the US, but you would never see Castro or Osama using Libertarianism is a foil. Why not? Libertertianism is the antithesis of their totalitarian and human spirit crushing ethos. Libertarianism seeks to free the individual, not control destroy it, and are fiercely patriotic. Instead, they back people such as Michael Moore, as he is not only actively critical of the US government and the people of the United States; he has been know to actively encourage the death of US citizens and the destruction of the nation in order to bring about his own anti-Wester government. He hates freedom of thought and economy, and appears to support a peculiar authoritarian, border-line totalitarian socialist dictatorship. As such, totalitarians and those who hate the US will use those, especially US citizens, who share their or similiar desires for the destruction of the United States and its people. One cannot simply assume that all critiquse of the US come from the same philosophy, or that all critiques are good intentioned.
MSTCrow 08:31, Aug 7, 2004 (UTC)
Wow. Maybe _that's_ why the Libertarians never get more than a handful of votes in the national elections. You figured it out! They're not critical _enough_ ;). Jokes aside, where do you get this information that Moore has desire for, as you say, "the destruction of the United States and its people?" If you can find some facts with sources to back that up, please write it up and add it to the article, making sure it has a NPOV and avoiding weasel words, of course. I make the same request for your many other assertions about Moore's beliefs. Obviously, if these are true, this kind of information simply must get out to the public before it is too late...
NightMonkey 10:00, Aug 7, 2004 (UTC)
Claiming that Michael Moore want death to the citizens of America is an insanely stupid comment. 1. He made a movie about gun control and why we kill each other here so much because of our liberal gun laws. (anti-gun violence) 2. He made a movie why the Bush Administration send our young kids off to war. (anti-war) 3. Last time I saw him on TV he sang America the Beautiful with Jay Leno. Wow. That sure sounds like an American-killing American-hater to me... Mastgrr 13:03, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
A few grafs up, MSTCrow wrote, "Lunkheads? Since when does calling people names constitute a compelling argument?" It doesn't, which of course was precisely the point of my comment. I was defending the way this article reports a significant anti-Moore POV. We should report the POV even though its proponents are lunkheads. JamesMLane 15:28, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I find your insistence on calling people who disagree with you "lunkheads" constrasted with your defense objective article entries cute, James. Now, regarding the previous two equally jocular comments, I'll quote Moore himself. This impresario's first public comment after 9/11 was "If someone did this to get back at Bush, then they did so by killing thousands of people who did not vote for him! Boston, New York, DC, and the planes' destination of California--these were places that voted against Bush!" A rather offhand way of suggesting that all Bush voters, tens of millions of voters, deserve to be liquidated, no? Regarding our troops, "The Iraqis who have risen up against the occupation are not 'insurgents' or 'terrorists' or 'The Enemy.' They are the REVOLUTION, the Minutemen, and their numbers will grow -- and they will win." Clearly, he wishes our troops death and defeat, while Islamic terrorism is somehow a revolution worthy of our support. He seems quite eager to have seen this happen, even giddy. This information is available to the public, Nightmonkey; one just has to have intellectual awareness and curiosity to seek it out. Now, just please, don't eat me, mind you...
MSTCrow 23:35, Aug 8, 2004 (UTC)
Well, you have all the facts there, I see. Can't wait to see there newly edited article. Don't forget to put those quotes in some context, otherwise people might misinterpret them. Don't be all Talk and no Article. --NightMonkey 08:47, Aug 9, 2004 (UTC)
You are imputing motives to Moore which say more about where you're coming from than where he's coming from. Has he SAID Bush voters should be liquidated? Has he SAID he wants US soldiers killed? Have you even SEEN F911? He goes into great detail about how his views about Bush's actions are because of his concerns for the unnecessary deaths of American soldiers. RickK 23:38, Aug 8, 2004 (UTC)
Hey, whadda know? Carlos the Jackal, that world-famous Marxist-Leninist terrorist (and really, that isn't anti-American, now is it?) who was arrested in 1994 by French agents in the Sudan after decades of activity, is a huge fan of Mikey too! Who would have guessed? Hmmm...[4]
MSTCrow 16:42, Aug 14, 2004 (UTC)
And Charles Manson and Fidel Castro were Beatles fans. What's the point of this nonsense? Gamaliel 18:17, 14 Aug 2004 (UTC)
One's popular music, another is a political screed from a man with an agenda, hmmm....
MSTCrow 03:33, Aug 16, 2004 (UTC)
The content of either work is irrelevent. The point is that neither source has any control of who appreciates their work or their intrepretation of it.
Kchishol1970 12:55, Sept 2, 2004 (EDT)

Inappropriate line in the introduction

The content about the anti Michael Moore works in the intro is better placed in the Controversy section, not in the intro.

Removed John McCain's speech. It adds nothing to what we know. We already know that Republicans disagree with him. DJ Clayworth 13:08, 2 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Reason for Criticism

"Moore's body of work has engendered a great deal of criticism, usually due to its explicit liberal political view. "

This rather a POV comment. I think his work has engendered criticism more for his liberal use of the facts than for his liberal views. Other liberal commentators don't draw nearly as much controversy as Moore - for that matter, neither do many conservative commentators. Moore is in a category all his own.

--Xinoph 17:01, Sep 8, 2004 (UTC)

"his liberal use of the facts" Isn't that a POV comment? AlistairMcMillan 17:11, 8 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I suggest next time you try reading what people write before responding to it. I wrote that I suggested that was why it had drawn so much criticism, not that it was true or that I believed it. This is why Moore has drawn more criticism than any other U.S. political commentator certainly in, say, the past five years. The criticism is largely directed at his presentation of the facts, rather than his views. There are plenty of commentators more liberal than Moore and they don't draw nearly as much controversy - so clearly Moore's liberal views are not the reason that he draws controversy. Besides, I would argue whether his work has an "explicit[ly] liberal political view".--Xinoph 22:55, Sep 18, 2004 (UTC)
I thought Michael Moore was a social democrat, not a liberal? Mastgrr 12:02, 22 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I think this whole deal about criticism of Moore is somewhat silly. The section is longer than the whole article without it. Seems that no supporters have visited this page with editing intentions, but plenty of opponents have flocked here. All this discussion about propaganda vs. documentary is silly too because they are almost synonymous. Can anyone actually write something about Moore, something that has nothing to do with movies, books and tv shows and focus on his actual life? JoeHenzi 22:15, 3 Oct 2004 (UTC)
It would be very difficult to write about Moore without discussing his media works because he uses, as mentioned a few comments earlier, "liberal use of the facts" about his own life. Just getting his hometown hammered down was a debate. He is from Davison, but says he is from Flint. That isn't a lie - it is just liberal use of the phrase "from Flint." Also, without his media works, what is there to write? If you state anything as fact, the two extreme sides will add their POV to it. In my opinion, Moore is a magnet for POV. Those that are against him say that there are too many Moore supporters adding POV to this article. Those are for him say that there are too many anti-Moore people adding POV to this article. The funny thing is that this article is full of more debates than any of the politician's articles that I've read. Kainaw 16:12, 8 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Food likes

Even if Michael Moore does like canadian bacon, this detail is not encyclopedic. - KeithTyler 17:20, Oct 19, 2004 (UTC)

"Invisible vandalism"

Compare [5] and [6]. What is this, article edit history vandalism? It's the first time I've seen an anon undo their own vandlism. - [[User:KeithTyler|Keith D. Tyler [flame]]] 18:19, Nov 8, 2004 (UTC)

I've seen it before. A lot of people who come to this site for the first time can't believe that they can actually edit it, so they perform a "test". This same anon has done some other "testing", but he's been putting things back just the way he found them. func(talk) 20:14, 8 Nov 2004 (UTC)


I suggest changing "known for his advocacy of liberal views" into "known for his advocacy of progressive views" or "known for his advocacy of left-wing views". Michael Moore is indeed a 'liberal' in the United States, but in most other parts of the world 'liberal' is more connected with economic than with personal liberties. In fact many liberal parties in Europe (and other continents) are rather conservative). The economic system of (outside US) liberalism is capitalism, which is something Michael Moore dislikes.

An American who reads this article will regard the word 'liberal' as progressive/left wing, but people outside the US won't. --Mixcoatl 19:51, 9 Nov 2004 (UTC)

The only Liberal Party that is actually Conservative is Australia's. It's true that Liberals are capitalists, but they believe in welfare and in public works. Outside of America, Liberals are roughly equivalent with the moderate wing of the Democrats, whereas inside the word tends to be applied to the more radical wing. I don't know what Moore's views are on macro-economics, but his attacks on corporate abuses could as easily come from a Liberal anywhere in the world (except Australia) as a Socialist. However I think that "left wing" would be the most appropriate description for Moore's views. I can't see that it has negative connotations in America but it might be too broad a category. Anon (
The problem is that, (in the US, anyway), "left wing" can have negative connotations, and is frequently used by conservatives in a derogatory way. I offered "liberal" as a compromise between two editors who were replacing "progressive" and "left-wing" back and forth without any disscussion on the talk page. func(talk) 20:31, 9 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Unfortunately, "liberal" is also used pejoratively and conservatives object to "progressive" as whitewashing. I don't really have a solution, but we should probably agree on something which is accurate and somewhat NPOV. Also, I see no indication that Michael Moore "dislikes" capitalism. He certainly has complaints about modern corporate behavior, but to suggest that he's against capitalism is misleading, I think. Rhobite 20:38, Nov 9, 2004 (UTC)

I noticed during the recent presidential campaign the word "liberal" has negative connotations in the USA as well. All possible names for Michael Moore's position on the politcal spectrum have negative connotations in the US, because it's not main stream. So if Moore's political affiliation is noted it will be regarded negatively anyway, so we should best use the most precise one. --Mixcoatl 20:42, 9 Nov 2004 (UTC)

I don't think you should write off negative connotation so easily, but in this case I think "left-wing" is the least problematic, followed by "progressive." I really think the word "liberal" is becoming less useful due to confusion with its European meaning and its corruption by conservative commentators. We beat this horse to death on Talk:Protest Warrior, by the way. Rhobite 20:55, Nov 9, 2004 (UTC)

I feel strongly that Left wing is the appropriate term here. Liberal is innaccurate (outside the US), and progressive is POV (and also innaccurate IMO ;). Sam [Spade] 14:46, 15 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Why do people keep changing the first paragraph to say that Moore is 'right-wing'? No matter what title you want, he is not 'right-wing'. Left-wing, imho, is approprate based on the political environment he is in, not a positive or negative statement, just a statement of position.. -- 21:30, 6 May 2005 (UTC)

Mistake on my part, was reverting something else, I need to be much more careful. Apologies. Schissel : bowl listen 21:51, May 6, 2005 (UTC)

Liberal? I was wondering if anyone out there shared my view of Michael Moore being an extremist, wether he likes capitalism or weather he agrees with every subject in the liberal checklist. Michael despises the republican party. I consider myself a liberal because I happen to agree with most subjects in the denomination, yet to embody such, and defend it is not what our focus should be.

I have to say that, now after studying the different political ideologies, I'd have to pin-point Michael Moore definitely as a social democrat. He's not liberal except maybe in his foreign political views (but international politics is an entirely different beast, don't get me started). Trust me on the issue that liberals DO NOT want people to confuse social democracy with liberalism since they're two *completely* separate ideologies: just because the United States happen to be a two-party system with the lack of a socialist party, doesn't mean it's justified to bunch Michael Moore up with John Kerry (In my country Michael Moore would be a left winger and John Kerry a right winger). Months ago I remember this page described Moore as a socialist democrat, and I'm sad to see that this has changed. It should be changed back. In other words, calling Michael Moore a left-winger is just as subjective as calling him a progressive (as Sam mentioned above). Mastgrr 21:08, 11 December 2005 (UTC)

Nevermind, I see that the portion of text this was about is gone. Okay... Mastgrr 21:29, 11 December 2005 (UTC)


I just wanted to apologize to user Somehow I thought they were blanking content when in fact they were adding content. Sometimes, my mind is mush. func(talk) 20:48, 14 Nov 2004 (UTC)

"Propaganda" category again

There's a thread above about whether to include this article in Category:Propaganda. There's also been at least one such thread on Talk:Fahrenheit 9/11.

Josiah added the category here. I removed it, referring to the earlier discussion. He restored it with this edit summary: "discussions seem to all agree that MM & AC fit dictionary defintion of propaganda." I disagree for two reasons. First, the discussion on this page showed that several of us did not agree. There was no consensus; whether there was even a majority for any conclusion would probably depend on the phrasing of the question. Second, the issue here isn't the dictionary definition, but the explanation that a reader of the Michael Moore article will find if he or she clicks on that link. That explanation notes that the term "generally" refers to government actions.

I'm removing the category from this article (and, to be fair, from Ann Coulter) again, but I'm not going to get into a revert war over this. The whole category has been listed on Wikipedia:Categories for deletion. I urge everyone who's sick of this discussion to go there and vote to delete the category. The problem is that "propaganda" is a clearly pejorative term to most people. If the category remains, we'll continually be arguing about applying it to these articles (and to Rush Limbaugh and to Yellowcake Forgery and so on). JamesMLane 20:26, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Pre-table of Contents text

I saw this change:

... which was met with boos from a portion of the audience. However, despite the resulting criticism for his outburst, sales of his ...

... which was met with mixed reaction by the audience. However, despite the resulting criticism for his speech, sales of his ...

Mixed reaction, did you actually watch the Academy Awards? He pulled a Susan Sarandon. Anyway as you see I didn't change it, so you can just ignore my outburst ... speech Webhat 03:19, Jan 17, 2004 (UTC)

'boos from a portion of the audience' means exactly the same thing as 'met with mixed reaction by the audience', except the latter doesn't read as though it was written by a functional illiterate. -- 19:48, 22 Mar 2004 (UTC)

I understand the difference between the two, my question had nothing to do with the fact that the one had been exchanged for the other, as both are equally poor descriptions of what I saw on the television. And although the pulling a Susan Sarandon reference was facitious, it also refered to the fact that the following years Susan Sarandon was shunned from the Academy Awards -- she got invited but wasn't welcome -- the same fate could be expected for Michael Moore. Webhat 03:49, Mar 23, 2004 (UTC)

    • For the record, that's nonsense on par with the Marisa Tomei urban legend. Susan Sarandon was not shunned. Don't spread nonsensical rumors. --Puffy jacket 14:46, 19 Jun 2004 (UTC)

What happened w/ Susan Sarandon at the AA? You link to her entry but it doesn't say. Why not edit it so the rest of us know what you're talking about? Mdchachi 18:22, 6 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Please don't use words like 'prove' about an argument this is still ongoing. Many people don't think Moore's views are 'refuted' at all. DJ Clayworth 13:50, 22 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Disney never intended to distribute Moore's new film and, contrary to what he said a few days ago, he admitted it on CNN. They told him from the start that they didn't want it. [7]

There is a page for Fahrenheit 911 so I suggest we take information about its distribution to that page. (And please sign your posts - use four tildes - ~~~~ - to do so. Thanks) DJ Clayworth 15:06, 7 May 2004 (UTC)

I think that the third place in a "googlebombing exercise" does not warrant a mention in an encyclopedia... Is anyone against deleting it? Marcika 00:50, May 21, 2004 (UTC)

No. DJ Clayworth 13:44, 25 May 2004 (UTC)

I don't believe the intro to be NPOV. Is Michael Moore advocating for social democracy or criticizing American society ? Ericd 19:45, 22 May 2004 (UTC)

Possibly both. However I think the intro could be better - it's a bit sparse, and 'Social Deomcracy' means different things inside and outside the US. DJ Clayworth 13:36, 25 May 2004 (UTC)

The extended paragraph regarding the Disney refusal to distribute the film and the possible reasons is extremely long and, imho, should end at it being the subject of some controversy (where it ended before). The conjecture has no place in an encyclopedia. Agreed? Agendum 23:45, 31 May 2004 (UTC)

I don't agree. The allegation is relevant, it is well known and topical, and as long as it is clearly identified as an allegation is should stand. The Disney quote is particularly relevant. I have modified it somewhat to clarify that it is an allegation. I also agree the paragraph was long, and I have introduced a paragraph break. Ben Arnold 04:58, 1 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Good job on the Disney paragraph. I believe it might be more exact to say "Moore alleges" rather than "some allege" if that's true. DJ Clayworth 12:45, 1 Jun 2004 (UTC)

I think some of the "alleges" in other parts of the article are overused. For example, I don't think it's only an allegation, or even really controversial, that Moore stages some of his shots in a film studio. The argument seems to be over whether that's a bad thing: Moore basically says that he never said they were real, so it isn't lying to anyone, while his critics contend that he's misleading people into believing staged scenes actually happened, even if he never explicitly says they actually happened. --Delirium 08:08, Jun 14, 2004 (UTC)

The Oscars backstage speech link:

ed2k://|file|Michael%20Moore%20Oscars%202003%20Backstage.asf|26992863|E476AB3F7A9F1B989B8F9363D96F65F9|/">Michael Moore Oscars 2003 Backstage.asf

Is it possible to include ed2k links in such a way that they are clickable...? --Rebroad 13:44, 23 Nov 2004 (UTC)

High School Graduation

I make a small edit to his early life to point out that he graduated high school in 1972. Later that year, he ran for the school board (a requirement of which is to have a high school degree or equivalent). I thought it important to make this distinction because Moore has started referring to himself as "a guy in a baseball cap without a high school education." Technically, you can graduate high school without getting an education, but his phrase implies that he never graduated. 20:55, 2 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Music Videos

The section on music videos refers to MM getting arrested during the filming of a music video for Rage Against the Machine. If I remember correctly (it's been about three years since I saw it), the video in question is basically just filming of a demonstration in which RATM and others shut down the New York Stock Exchange, by blocking the doors or something. My memories are vague.

Anyway, it seems rather unfair to note his arrest and his filming permit without noting what was going on; regardless of the validity of the protest, they all surely expected to get arrested, and the current wording makes it sound like the arrest was unprovoked.

I'm leaving it, though, because my memories are too hazy to rely on. Does anyone know what I'm talking about? Am I right? Respond on my talk page - this talk page is too huge to check all the time.---SpaceMoose 10:06, 22 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Was Moore actually arrested?
BTW The bit about Moore being arrested was added an anon user, on May 28 this year. AlistairMcMillan 12:15, 22 Dec 2004 (UTC)
IF he didn't get arrestested, he should have been--I-2-d2 14:16, 16 August 2005 (UTC)

"I'm Michael Moore's brother's mother-in-law's roommate's bodyguard"

Pulling out this bit so it can get some review in Talk. I'm not even sure that this is even relevant.

On January 19, 2005, Patrick Burke, Moore's bodyguard, was arrested for carrying an unlicensed weapon in New York's JFK airport. He was licensed to carry a firearm in Florida and California, but not in New York. Moore did not respond to the contradiction such scenarios pose compared to "Bowling for Columbine," which criticizes what Moore calls America's "culture of fear" and its obsession with guns.

So far, I can't come up with any reporting source that indicates any of the following which might make it remotely relevant:

  • Burk was currently tasked with protecting Moore
  • Burk was hired by Moore
  • Burk carries a gun while actively protecting Moore
  • Moore has no reason to fear for his life despite the number of gun owners who must certainly hate him personally

or even that:

  • Moore has been directly questioned on how he feels about being protected by a man with a gun
  • Moore thinks no one, not even security guards, policemen, or soldiers should have guns
  • It is logical for pro-gun interests to criticize someone else owning a gun

I know the Cons are persistently desperate to pin on Moore their own frequently awarded badges of perceived hypocrisy, but a nervous and embarrassed security guy who starts name-dropping after being caught in hot water for not being licensed to carry doesn't prima facie qualify as a scandal.

- Keith D. Tyler [flame] 08:12, Jan 21, 2005 (UTC)

Looks like this story was nonsense right from the start.,1531,0,0,1,0 AlistairMcMillan 14:00, 21 Jan 2005 (UTC)
I don't understand why it was readded after I specifically noted I was taking it to Talk for review. - Keith D. Tyler [flame] 15:49, Jan 21, 2005 (UTC)

Not neutral and not necessary

Much of the "Controversy" section, especially the last six paragraphs, contains a lot of "Some say," "Many have accused," and "Supporters counter," with very little of it backed up by any source. Many claims which are false, or irrelevant, are included, making the section long, and difficult to glean any useful information from. Although it's bias changes every few sentences, it is more opinionated than I think is allowed. Alakhriveion 20:34, 21 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Just skimming it, I think the following should be edited:

  • "Some consider his criticism of the Bush Administration to be unpatriotic,"
Some consider his criticism of the Bush Administration to be "unpatriotic"
  • "others argue that...his concern for the working class is a feint"
others argue that...his concern for the working class is insincere/hypocritical.
  • "Moore's supporters stress that opposition to U.S. policy does by no means equal terrorism against the U.S."
Moore's supporters stress that opposition to U.S. policy does by no means equal terrorism against the U.S. ... This is a backwards argument. Or instead say:
Moore's detractors stress that opposition to U.S. policy means Moore is a terrorist.
  • "A more recent controversy surrounds Michael Moore's public support of the Iraq insurgency in a memo released on his personal website, decribing the insurgents as "Minutemen"."
A more recent controversy surrounds Michael Moore's public support of the Iraq insurgency in a memo released on his personal website, decribing the insurgents as "Minutemen". Detractors claim this is a show of affinity, while supporters say Moore was simply providing perspective on the Iraq situation.

If noone objects, I'll make these changes soon. —Ben 05:23, 6 Feb 2005 (UTC)

There's nothing wrong with a backwards argument as long as the sentence is written grammatically correct. Your sentence, however, is highly biased. It sounds like you want Moore to be seen as a terrorist. -- 12:07, 10 May 2005 (UTC)


Added a summary of Moore's documentary style and influences of that style - anyone know more influences? Has he cited anyone as inspiring the way he works?

In Michael Moore's interview on the Charlie Rose Show while he was promoting Bowling, he has said a big thing in his life that changed his perception of the world was when he was in church with his family and someone ran in and screamed that someone had shot Martin Luther King, and he saw that most people stood up and cheered and applauded. It is included in the extras in the Blowling for Columbine DVD.

Secret Service altercation

"Moore became involved in an altercation with Secret Service agents as they tried to prevent him speaking with the media, which led to several agents' voices being broadcast live on NPR as they attempted to remove Andrea Seabrook."

I would be interested to know how the idea that the Secret Service tried to prevent Moore from speaking to the media came up. Can this be substantiated, or is this a sensational analysis? plain_regular_ham 14:54, 9 May 2005 (UTC)

Insult by Steve Martin

I don't know how you see it but I think if someone gloats about someone else he hates that he has been stuffed into the boot of his car is an insult. Martin clearly stated with his underhanded joke that he hated Moore. I think the insult is clear and has to be mentioned in the article. -- 23:06, 10 May 2005 (UTC)

Your reaction would be appropriate if Moore had actually been stuffed into the trunk of his car. As it was, I don't see the joke as conveying hatred for Moore. Martin was making a humorous reference to the undeniable fact that a lot of people didn't like what Moore said. His main purpose, as the emcee, wasn't to express hostility toward Moore, but to help effect a transition to a more festive tone for the rest of the event. See reactions from The Gothamist ("Steve Martin later jokes that the Teamsters are helping Moore into his limo's trunk. Lots of laughters. Ah, Steve Martin, that old hand at defusing tension.") and the BBC (Martin was "[f]aced with reviving the mood" after Moore's speech). A pro-Moore posting on TalkLeft said that Martin was "doing what he is supposed to do: make jokes."
If Martin's wisecrack was an insult to anyone, it was an insult to the Teamsters (implying that they're a bunch of thugs). JamesMLane 23:40, 10 May 2005 (UTC)
Addendum: The San Francisco Chronicle story (linked to from this paragraph of our article) reports the incident but doesn't characterize Martin's comment as an "insult". I see no support for saying that it was widely considered that way. JamesMLane 23:49, 10 May 2005 (UTC)
I concur with this. The only people who found Martin's comment to be an insult were those who wanted it to be one. (Of course, that may represent about 50% percent of the US, but whatever). func(talk) 23:53, 10 May 2005 (UTC)
I am in agreement with most here in that a joke does not necessarily imply hatred. Will ensure that reference remains cited as a joke or comment. plain_regular_ham 14:31, 11 May 2005 (UTC)

Bowling for Columbine critics

The critical success of Bowling for Columbine was overwhelming--it has a 95% Tomatometer reading. There are many bloggers and the like who have made quite a cottage industry of finding what they claim are deliberate factual errors and distortions in the movie. Those people should not be described as critics (which has a specific and well understood meaning in the context of the movie industry). I'm restoring the wording that says that most critics praised the movie highly (the phrase "the overwhelming majority", while true, would be too verbose). I'm also removing the POV implication of the wording, which seemed to represent as a fact the opinion of the movie's opponents. --Tony Sidaway|Talk 10:23, 24 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I also redid the "Reviews" section of the article which actually contained pro- and anti- Moore polemics, lists of alleged lies, rebuttals, etc. These were moved, most of them, to another section (some of the less significant bloggers were left out, I kept in the likes of Hardy and Kopel, as well as columnists). I've replaced those in that section with actual movie reviews by real movie critics, mostly in print media, for Moore's most famous movies, Roger and Me, Bowling for Columbine and Fahrenheit 9/11. --Tony Sidaway|Talk 10:26, 24 Jun 2005 (UTC)


May someone call Moore's way of documenting a form of gonzo journalism? --Abdull 08:34, 25 Jun 2005 (UTC)

No, that's a euphemism for massive drug consumption by a junketing "journalist". --Tony Sidaway|Talk 00:12, 26 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Any relevance???

On June 12, 2004, certain news sources reported that Moore was planning a film centering around British Prime Minister Tony Blair. A message on Moore's website refuted the claim the following day, stating that, "It is not true. Michael made a joke in an interview and, apparently, it was taken seriously."

Before I just delete it, I thought I'd ask around to see if anyone sees any relevance in this being in the article. Does anyone see any relevance? Otherwise, why is it in there? Sounds like just some dumb gossip to me.Stanselmdoc 6 July 2005 22:04 (UTC)

This is the kind of thing that would be suitable for a teaser in a tabloid newspaper. It doesn't really belong here. --Tony Sidaway|Talk 7 July 2005 00:27 (UTC)

This Doesn't Have a Place Here - Move It

Despite the controversy surrounding Moore and his work, he has had great critical and financial success as a filmmaker and writer. His films Bowling for Columbine and Fahrenheit 9/11 debuted as the highest-grossing feature-length non-music nonfiction films of all time, the latter making over 120 million dollars. Bowling for Columbine won the Oscar for Best Documentary and Fahrenheit 9/11 won the People's Choice Award for Favorite Motion Picture (an unprecedented honor for a nonfiction film), as well as the Palme d'Or Best Picture at the Cannes Film Festival.

This isn't a closer in the Criticism section. The criticism section goes on until it lists Moore's works (it includes his oscar acceptance and on). Not to mention the fact that it's already mentioned in other parts of the article, i.e. the Films section. If it stays in the article, it should be moved to a different part, because it makes no sense where it is. It's like "Controversy Controversy Controversy DEFENSE Controversy Controvery Controversy Controversy Controversy Controversy." So I motion to take it out or move it.Stanselmdoc 9 July 2005 16:02 (UTC)

I agree entirely. Why hasn't this been moved? If I don't see a defense for it in the current location I'll move it someplace that seems more appropriate. Lawyer2b 06:38, 18 September 2005 (UTC)

propoganda analysis link moved

I moved the "Propoganda Analysis" link from the neutral-sounding "analysis" section to the proper location of "General Criticism" for a bunch of reasons, first of which is that the page it links to favorably mentions "farenhype 9/11" and it appears that there is actually content possibly shared between these two things. secondly, the whole "working psychology" thing looks sort of fishy. a lot of links are broken, and it isn't clear where exactly this thing is supposedly headquartered. third, the "public downloads" section whatever, and in fact the bulk of the content of the site (excepting some information about cults and a convincing looking chart about some other thing) is the critical pieces about the movie.

Blood in the Face

Moore was an interviewer in the documentary Blood in the Face [8]. Where should it be mentioned? —Morning star 16:39, 19 July 2005 (UTC)

Narcissistic Personality Disorder

I just put in a notation on allegations of Mike having NPD. I'm not sure I quite achieved NPOV, though, and I'd appreciate having both a supporter and a critic take a look at the paragraph to check it (and to make sure it's in the right section). I stand by its appropriateness for the article, given the controversy surrounding much of his behavior and such, but I do want to make sure that it's presented as just a point of interest for the reader to decide and not treated as right or wrong (the whole point of NPOV). BobGreenwade 17:08, 9 August 2005 (UTC)

PS: I just noticed Tony Sidaway did a little of this even as I was writing the above. Thanks, Tony! BobGreenwade 17:11, 9 August 2005 (UTC)
  • Someone edited out the phrase "in the clinical sense" following "unable to prove" -- Hardy & Clarke don't say they're entirely unable to prove it, only that they don't have the qualifications to prove it as mental health professionals.
Would you mind explaining how someone could prove Narcissistic Personality Disorder without having any mental health training? Someone 18:10, 12 September 2005 (UTC)
It'd be a lot easier to have you read the chapter in question than to try to write out a long explanation. (It's a not at all unreasonable question, though.) Nonetheless someone did edit in the appropriate direct quote from the book, which is best to make it clear. BobGreenwade 20:37, 13 September 2005 (UTC)
Even a mental health professional can't prove someone has a disorder. They can merely give their expert opinion. And any serious analysis not only has to be done by a professional, but it has to be based on clinical interviews. -- Geo Swan 22:22, 13 September 2005 (UTC)

References to subject in "Oscar acceptance speech" section

The subject of this article is referred to as "Moore" throughout, except in the "Oscar acceptance speech" section, where he is referred to as "Michael". Is there any reason for this?

Also, I seem to recall that award recipients at the 2003 Oscars were specifically asked not to mention the war in Iraq in their acceptance speeches, in order to maintain the atmosphere and focus of the awards ceremony. If this was indeed the case (and it may not be, my memory is imperfect), then it should be mentioned, since this would explain why Moore was criticised for this speech. 08:11, 23 August 2005 (UTC)

I've changed all the references from Michael to Moore. Even if this request of winners was true, I don't see it as particularly relevant, as Moore would have been booed by some people in any case. Gamaliel 17:04, 23 August 2005 (UTC)

Misleading statement edited

The excerpt: "Dave Kopel has compiled a list of alleged "deceits" in Fahrenheit 9/11, and's Christopher Hitchens compiled a similar list. The caustic tone of these criticisms from conservatives quickly drew counter-criticisms from articles like..." has been amended to remove the words "from conservatives".

If you read the Wikipedia articles for Mr. Kopel and Mr. Hitchens, you will find that they are not conservatives in the manner that the text would have you believe.

Please feel free to amend as necessary, but not without notice here.


leftist views of corporations and the Bush administration. That sentence may be OK according to the common American interpretation of Leftist, but doesn't look the right term for others. Fadix 04:03, 19 October 2005 (UTC)

Leftist can mean socialist or communist which just "left-leaning" or "left-wing" doesn't. –Shoaler (talk) 11:41, 19 October 2005 (UTC)
"Leftist" is a word, that is confusing, it is a very relative term. For me, as a Canadian, Moore is more a rightist than a Leftist, he supported the Democrats, and both Democrats and Republicains are Right(according to my Canadian stardards), compared to the system we have in Canada. This is also true, for an European, that won't consider Moore a "Leftist." I criticize corporations, but when I pass some tests, I am right leaning. In France, the Right, would be considered left for an American(because of the ways, "corporations are treated there, taxation etc.). Fadix 17:10, 19 October 2005 (UTC)
I've deleted the word. It doesn't add anything and there's plenty on his political views later in the article. –Shoaler (talk) 17:35, 19 October 2005 (UTC)
It certainly does add something. It very succinctly describes where Moore sits on the political spectrum; something very appropriate for an article's header. Bill O'Reilly's and Al Franken's entries do so, describing them as "traditionalist" and "liberal" respectively. I'm sure you'll find most entries for those heavily involved in politics will have their opinions described as such. I don't care whether you put the word left-leaning, leftist, left, or liberal, but something should go in his header to briefly characterize his point of view. To not do so is silly....What's also silly is to conveniently bring up the well-known differences in meaning that words like "leftist or "liberal" have from country to country as a reason to eliminate labeling Moore, while ignoring the three other uses of them in the article: 1) "...Mother Jones, a liberal political magazine...", 2) "...Moore has been known as a critic of the neoliberal view of globalization", 3) "...a call-to-action for liberals in the 2004 election." Gee, wasn't anybody really confused by their meanings? Why don't we eliminate them as well? Come to think of it, why don't we get started on the project of eliminating the word "leftist" or "liberal" from every wikipedia article?! (Sorry...I went Dennis Miller for a second) ;-) Lawyer2b 22:34, 20 October 2005 (UTC)
Sounds good. I don't think, in most cases, trying to "simplify" a description of a person's political views by reducing them to one or two words is very helpful in an encyclopedia. So, restoring previous version. Thanks. --NightMonkey 22:53, 20 October 2005 (UTC)
An excellent point. Since I think any of the terms leftist, liberal, left-leaning, or even progressive is accurate in describing Moore's views I'm happy to let you choose which you'd like included. If you don't think any term like that is warranted in an encyclopedia, you are going against pretty much the standard in any political commentator's entry. So, making it just like any other article like this. -- Lawyer2b 02:11, 21 October 2005 (UTC)
P.S. - NightMonkey: You may want to check a very curious contribution you made to Bill Maher's article on August 2, 2005: [9] when, apparently at that point in time you felt it quite helpful to reduce a person's political views to one word. You chose one of my favorites I might add, libertarian, and coincidentally (?) had a problem with that troubling word, left-wing. Has your opinion changed on one-word descriptions or are you just trolling here? -- Lawyer2b 02:33, 21 October 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for the "trolling" personal attack. Remember, WP:NPA... Anyway... Context matters. The Bill Maher article details a comedian and commentator who makes his personal political affinities (or lack thereof) a centerpiece of his media persona. I don't like it much in that article, either, but each article is different, and this article does not require a lead-in which attempts to reduce this filmaker's contributions to a label. Bill Maher, on the other hand, makes self-labeling a core part of his media persona. While I wanted to reduce it further, there was merit to its inclusion in the opening paragraph. Each article on Wikipedia, while it must adhere to the policies and should follow guidelines, does not have to be cookie-cutter in its style. However, I'm willing to wait to hear consensus before reverting this redundant addition again from this article (which has now expanded). --NightMonkey 03:48, 21 October 2005 (UTC)
If asking someone honestly if they were trolling is a personal attack (which it isn't) then accusing someone of making a personal attack when they didn't should be one too. So, WP:NPA "right back at ya" and let me add an equally valid charge of libel...Anyway...I don't see how labeling Moore as leftist/liberal/etc. "reduces" his "contributions" (and I use the term loosely). Being labeled a liberal/leftist should only be a slur to people who think liberals are idiots. (smirking grin) Regardless, I would be delighted to hear a consensus on the matter as well. -- Lawyer2b 05:34, 21 October 2005 (UTC)
OK, Lawyer2b, I know you are new to Wikipedia, but Wikipedia:No_legal_threats is official policy here, which you have just violated. Also, you are supposted to interact with other editors with respect and assume good faith. This is the first I've interacted with you, and you lead with attacks. Please read the policies, and try to follow their spirit, as well as their content. Thanks. --NightMonkey 09:02, 21 October 2005 (UTC)
NightMonkey, my stating a charge of libel was not intended as a legal threat. It was intended to be as ridiculous as your accusation of personal attack but especially in light of my username I should have understood that it could be interpreted as such. Just to be clear, I have no intention of suing you for libel and every intention of following Wikipedia official policies. That being said, I haven't attacked you. You assumed my honest question was a personal attack. So as for assume good faith, please look in a mirror. And, regarding respect, your tone has been flippant: [10] and/or pedantic: [11] since your first response so again, look in the mirror. (sigh) Why do we see in others what we hate most in ourselves? Thanks!  :-) -- Lawyer2b 16:28, 21 October 2005 (UTC)
I have apologized to User:NightMonkey on his userpage for my uncivil tone and await his response. -- Lawyer2b 21:14, 22 October 2005 (UTC)

Oh boy, I wasn't aware that my little comment about "leftist" could generate all this talk. :( I only reported that the term could be confusing, because "left" could be misleading, mostly for Europeans. In America, the way it is used could be considered by others as meaningless. The term liberal, doesn't really have this problem. Also, anti-neoliberal, could be as much seens as "left" or "right" depending on the arguments used. A "rightist" conservative, might be anti-neoliberal, to protect his own ressources, while Moore might justify his being against it for "humanistic" considerations. We must be cautious as to use terms that will be the less confusing possible, and I don't believe that placing leftlist on the lead, without placing it in context is really the right thing to do. I did not really read the article, so I have no idea if this sort of ambiguity are present, I just happened to end up in Moores article and that part of the lead I found problematic. Fadix 00:37, 22 October 2005 (UTC)

Please allow me to say that while I disagree (strongly) and feel the word is appropriate for the header, I would like to acknowledge your legitimate concern. If there was some other word that could be used to give an accurate picture of the general place where Moore is coming from (i.e. that he is not criticizing from an ultra-conservative, libertarian, or even moderate perspective) and that would also eliminate possible misinterpretations I'd be all in favor of it. Any suggestions? -- Lawyer2b 01:05, 22 October 2005 (UTC)

POV edits

Sticking the words "controversial" and "liberal" in the first paragraph of someone's bio is a clear attempt to introduce POV. The use of "controversial" is obvious and please don't tell me I have to explain that. And "liberal" because, as we say on liberal, it is currently used as a pejorative. The page on Moore is does not need to pigeon-hole him in the first couple of paragraphs. Would the POV-pushers please move on. AlistairMcMillan 02:33, 22 October 2005 (UTC)

I don't think liberal is really POV, even though, the term "controversial" might be. Leftist on the other hand sure is. Since, many, many people will disagree about him being one. In fact, Europeans won't even understand why he is claimed to be one, so presenting him as a leftist is to present one POV as an absolute truth. Fadix 18:55, 22 October 2005 (UTC)
Regarding "controversial", I disagree but I won't press the issue. The header of the article is fine without it IMHO. Regarding "liberal", I'm certainly not intending it to be an insult; I just think it accurately describes his political stance. As I mention above hopefully there are other/better words that can be used that are accurate and people don't find insulting. I read the American Liberalism page and it seems that progressive might work. How does that sound? -- Lawyer2b 03:49, 22 October 2005 (UTC)
I was not aware that the term liberal has become an insult even for liberals. I always thought that they considered to be called one as a compliment. Fadix 18:55, 22 October 2005 (UTC)
If it is really necessary to pigeon-hole his political stance, how about finding out how he defines his political stance himself. AlistairMcMillan 17:08, 22 October 2005 (UTC)
He does qualify himself as a liberal I think, but I really doubt he qualify himself as a leftist. Fadix 18:55, 22 October 2005 (UTC)
I thought all liberals are leftist but not all leftists are liberal. -- Lawyer2b 20:29, 22 October 2005 (UTC)