Framing the Dialogue

Stupid White Man

Even though he may me the most irrelevant rich guy on Earth, I can not help but note Michael Moore’s latest attempt at lucidity.  I did say attempt because he did not achieve anything close to clarity.  On June 1, 2009 Moore expressed his delight at the demise of General Motors, herein called Government Motors.  He claims to be troubled by the expected loss of jobs, but he cannot hold back his elation.

He is like a spoiled kid a week before Christmas who thinks that now is his chance to get everything he wants.  His hatred of GM goes back decades as he grew up in Flint, Michigan.  He gained fame with his “documentary” Roger and Me where he unsuccessfully dogged the leader of GM for an interview.  I used quotes in the description of the film as a documentary as it came out some time after the film’s release that the CEO of GM had actually granted two extensive interviews to Moore.  Since that did not fit into Moore’s narrative, it did not make the final movie cut. 

It is hard for me to understand Moore’s stated empathy for GM workers plight and his glee about the possibilities.  Here are a few of his gems:

  • He nailed the reason for the demise of GM because they “refused to build automobiles that the public wanted, cars that got great gas mileage, were as safe as they could be, and were exceedingly comfortable to drive. Oh — and that wouldn’t start falling apart after two years,”  He obviously forgot to include that they would cost under a thousand dollars, have rose-scented exhaust, and have an unlimited supply of lollipops stored in the glove box.
  • As a prognosticator, Moore “tried to warn people about what was ahead for General Motors. Had the power structure and the punditocracy listened, maybe much of this could have been avoided.”  That is our Michael Moore, speaking truth to power. 
  • If you are tired of traffic jams, Moore has a solution for you too as we could ” Initiate a program to put light rail mass transit lines in all our large and medium-sized cities. Build those trains in the GM factories. And hire local people everywhere to install and run this system.”  Hey yeah, it is just that simple as land in large and medium size cities is readily available to build rail lines and after the local people build them, they can watch their empty cars run everyday.
  • You country folks should not despair as Mike has a solution “For people in rural areas not served by the train lines, have the GM plants produce energy efficient clean buses.”  That is just brilliant as buses are a really efficient way to have rural people travel. 
  • Showing his fiscally responsible side, Moore has a way to pay for all of this.  All that is needed is for the Feds to ” impose a two-dollar tax on every gallon of gasoline. This will get people to switch to more energy saving cars or to use the new rail lines and rail cars the former autoworkers have built for them.”  Mike is far too nice.  We need to impose a twenty-dollar tax on every gallon of gasoline.  Just think how much money would be available for solar panels and gum drops.  Heck, why not $50 per gallon tax?  We could raise even more by taking all of the profits from the EVIL oil companies.
  • In his post-mortem for GM, Moore offers this bit of insight, “100 years ago this year, the founders of General Motors convinced the world to give up their horses and saddles and buggy whips to try a new form of transportation. Now it is time for us to say goodbye to the internal combustion engine.”  He does not offer an alternative in this passage, but I can only assume that he is suggesting horses, saddles, and buggy whips.  I am wondering how long it will take the local PETA chapter to stage a protest in front of Mikey’s house over his call for whipping of horses.  Hey Mike, why the long face?
  • An official Red Ryder carbine action two-hundred shot range model air rifle with a compass in the stock and this thing that tells time.  No Mike, you will shoot your eye out.

I have to admit that I had not read Moore’s Stupid White Men, but I am pretty sure that it was not an autobiography.  It would, however, be aptly named.  I may not have the intellectual capacity as Mike Moore, but I have a few alternative thought/suggestions:

  • Americans do buy the cars that they want and they are called SUVs.  We have two.
  • We need to invest in “cloud panels” for locations (like where I live) that do not get all that much sun.  We also need “snow panels” for places like Flint, Michigan. 
  • Rather than a two-dollar per gallon gas tax, I propose a five-dollar movie tax on every movie ticket sold or DVD purchased.  The revenue could be used to fund Mike’s and the rest of Hollywood’s ideas.  We need more money to fund the ideas of celebrities. 
  • Maybe we can create a Utopian place where all of these ideas could be implemented.  I know you are thinking that has been done and it is called California.  How is that experiment working out?
  • How about all of the big mouth celebrities and politicians leading by example.  That would be a great idea for a “documentary.”

What would we do without the likes of Mike Moore?  I would like to find out, but that does not seem likely.

I generally link to any article or website that I get information, but I could not bring myself to link to M. Moore’s blog.  It is easy enough to find if you want to read his posting.  I just will not link to someone this vapid.

4 CommentsLeave one

  1. Kevin says:

    I love your idea about the tax on movie and DVD sales. If celebrities truly believe in these ideas, they should have no problem paying for it. They won’t pay for it directly, but they will definitely have to pay part of that tax along with the end consumers.

    I have yet to purchase a car, but when I do, I am most definitely not going to by a GM (Government Motors… I really like that). There is no reason to. The government is pretty arrogant for thinking they can run a car company better than the free market (so far so good… a couple months and a bankruptcy later… 200 dealerships are closed without any plan to put those people back to work). I’m just waiting for the government to drive GM further into that black hole and when it finally disappears, I don’t want to be stuck holding one of their rose-scented, lollipop breeding, hybrids.

    I’m just glad there are other options available; a solid Honda Civic, a slick new Hyundai Genisis, or even a Ford. That’s the beauty of a free market: there are always plenty of choices. If consumers aren’t buying a company’s products, the company will fail and new ones will replace them with cars people actually want. Well, it should fail unless the government sticks its power-loving hands in to stop the bleeding (at least until bankruptcy pokes its little head in the room).

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