Today's Evil Beet Gossip

Michael Moore Goes Wonderfully Apeshit on CNN

So Perez linked to this video with just the Michael Moore rant, but I’m gonna try to give you guys a broader picture.

If you just want to rock out to Michael Moore going apeshit on Wolf Blitzer (who, to his credit, handled it very well), you can see that video below.

If you want to watch the entire CNN piece, including the introductory segment CNN did on Sicko, it’s here:

And if you’d like to read Moore’s post-show rebuttal on his website, you can read it here. I’m not typically one of those “the media is lying to us all” types, but Moore makes some very good points. CNN not only twisted their facts (and Moore’s site points you directly to the primary sources, so you can check for yourself), they had some absolutely blatant errors in their discussion of the film.

Look, I don’t claim to know anything about anything, but I did watch Sicko, and I do find it just a little bit disturbing that health care is free in all industrialized Western nations other than the U.S. Seriously, no one pays out of pocket for any non-elective medical procedure in Britain, France and even Cuba. They don’t even have health insurance companies like we do in the U.S. Like, if you need heart surgery, no problem! You just go ahead and get it, for free, and everyone is automatically insured, just by being a citizen. Of course, your taxes are higher to pay for it, but that seems like a small price to pay to not have to worry all the time about what health care is going to cost you. In much the same way that you’d never think about having to pay the fire department for putting out the fire in your apartment building, or paying the policeman for stopping that guy who’s mugging you, people in those nations never think about paying the doctor who’s saving their lives. I just think it would be really nice to have that here.

28 CommentsLeave a comment

  • I’ll have to watch this when I’m not at work. But it seems CNN may have picked on the wrong guy! ;-)

    We do have health insurance companies in the UK – or doesn’t BUPA count? Many employers give cheaper BUPA membership as a perk, because sometimes the NHS makes patients wait too long even for life-saving surgery.

  • CNN is just as big a turd as FOX news. They’re “entertainment” shills and nothing else. That is, actual facts don’t really matter as long as they look exciting and high-gloss and keep ratings up.

    Insurance companies do, in fact, exist in other western nations, but they aren’t nearly as necessary for the average citizen. Socialized medicine isn’t all that great, but it’s FAR better than what most Americans have.

  • I rarely watch American new programs when I want cold hard facts without the spin. I’m not anti-American or anything, it’s just that most of the news media thinks we need to be spoon fed their version of the truth, and that we’re all brain dead. I stopped watching Dateline NBC when I got the feeling that they were run by a bunch of right wing Christians who kept putting a “miracle” spin into evey one of the stories. I still get a chill when I think of Ann Curry and Stone Phillips saying “What happens next is a miracle…”


    As far as health care, we really do our citizens a disservice with the way our system is set up. But the old guard of our country thinks that public health care equals communism. That and the fact that the pharmaceutical companies have most of the politicians in their back pockets.

    Mo’ money mo’ problems.

  • I´m so happy that I´m living here in Europe.

    What a “great” country that cares just about people who´ve got money.

  • This is what I call good TV. Kudos to Michael Moore for not letting them get away with the inconsistencies in the story they aired before his interview. I can see why people are scared to let him on their programs…because they’re scared he’ll call them out for their bad reporting (and the commercials they air — haha!). Love this movie!

  • I have severe degeneration and fractures in my back—need to go on meds—guess how much? 92.00 per pill!!!!! Our system sucks—-I am already on medicare but of course it wont pay for it—
    Michael Moore—you rock!!!!!

  • I don’t know if you realize how much of a fundamental a tax shift we’re talking about, given the difference in benefits implicated. Both my parents received the benefit of publicly funded healthcare of relatively good quality right here in the U.S., and yet I still get the spending power of 60% or so of the money I earn. In many of the places with socialized medicine, it would be more like 40%. Some prominent economists think that’s a major factor in the reason they work so many fewer hours than we do. Not to mention that it’s basically impossible to force patients to make cost-conscious healthcare decisions when they don’t have any financial stake in their own treatment.

    I think it’s obvious to everyone that the system we have in place is far from perfect, but I think we need to be careful about pretending we can make across-the-board changes to our present system without some serious ramifications in the other areas of our lives. Otherwise we could find that our system no longer rewards hard work or tough financial decisions and that we are all forced to live off of smaller pieces of a rapidly shrinking pie.

  • The problem is, you don’t just “get a heart transplant” for free. In fact, you probably die waiting for your turn. That’s the main problem with free healthcare and controlled salaries for doctors and hospitals: there aren’t enough of them because it doesn’t pay in correlation with demand. So you end up with shortages.

    That’s why Canadians come _here_ to the US for health care. Moore talks about insurance companies disallowing care: you can still go somewhere else. When the government disallows you, you are screwed. Some even have laws against privately pursuing your own health care if they won’t serve you.

    Do you really want your health care brought to you by the same people who run Dept. of Motor Vehicles or the Postal Service? No thanks. Our system is not perfect, but its the best there is. That’s why world-wide, people come HERE for operations. You don’t see rich Americans jetting to France for operations. Even your hero Castro had a Spanish doctor come in when he was sick, if Cuban HC is so great, why didn’t he use that?

    “If you think health care is expensive now, wait until its free” – PJ O’Rourke

  • Oh please darcy_lane, don’t start repeating that RepubliCON talking point about how having free market is the best for our health care system.

    This is the typical drivel from the libertarian types who took Econ 101 in college and now believe the “free market” will solve every problem. A couple of points:
    1. As Moore has pointed out numerous times, the health insurance companies want to maximize profits. Profits are maximized by paying out as little possible and this leads to people being denied treatment or people with a pre-existing medical condition being denied health insurance.
    2. The libertarian types like to frame the argument as if health care was just another consumer good like cars or breakfast cereal. If a person has cancer or heart disease and their health insurance provider won’t pay for treatment, they can’t simply switch health insurers. If a person is having a heart attack, that person is no position to “shop around for the best deal” on cardiac care–that person needs emergency treatment ASAP

    And also darcy_lane, stop that RepubliCON drivel, trying to scare people about how horrible things would be if the government took over our health care system. What Moore is suggesting is that people could choose to opt to get into the government health care program, or find their own Private insurance if they choose. America has public education and A-N-Y-O-N-E can send their kids to a private school if they can afford it. Public education did not do away with private education. It just allowed everyone to be educated to a socially acceptable standard instead of just those who could afford it. I doubt anyone wants to imagine what the education system would be like if it were run the way the health industry is today. Yikes!

  • “Ask not, what your country can do for the richest ruling warmongers.
    Ask what a well placed bloodclot could do for your country.”–JMHO

  • OK, let’s try this then. All that money you would be spending on the much higher taxes to get this “Free” Healthcare.. why don’t you place that in a savings account and ONLY use it for health expenses. Americans can’t save money. We’d rather pay our taxes automatically each paycheck than actually sit down and figure out what we are spending on everything the taxes go to.

  • Because “Life” happens. That’s why universal healthcare would be a Godsend. If you want private healthcare, no problem. Go into your special savings account. But your butler and chef need coverage too. The rich just keep getting richer under Bush.

  • saw this and cried when the american hospitals dumped disoriented patients at a shelter because they didnt have medical insurance… was so thankful to be a canadian.

  • Jake Says:

    I doubt anyone wants to imagine what the education system would be like if it were run the way the health industry is today. Yikes!

    Yeah, but do you really want your healthcare run by the same people who run public schools in this country?

  • Yes, in Canada we might face a waiting list for some procedures. But I’d rather deal with that than deal with the hospital calling my “insurer” to see if it’s okay to treat me AT ALL. Yeesh. In an emergency, we in Canada will always receive care…no question. And Canadians who go to the U.S. for treatments and tests for which there are waiting lists here are the Canadians who can afford the expense. They aren’t going there because they’ve been DENIED treatment here in Canada. Neither our system nor our government is perfect, but we still have an enviable national health care program. We pay for it…and I’d even pay more taxes to maintain it if need be. Don’t believe the blather about your “right to NOT have private insurance”. That is utterly ridiculous. In a rich country like America, it is a crime that you don’t have national health care…care that can’t be denied and won’t bankrupt an individual.

  • The reason countries in Europe can have standardized, government controlled health care is because most of those countries have 60% or more tax rates! In Sweden it’s somewhere near 90% for the upper tax brackets. Do you think any buisness would stay in America if they had to pay 90% in taxes? And you want the same government who runs our failing, decrepit school systems to run our healthcare the same way they do in Canada and Europe, where people often die from waiting for their “turn” to get medical treatment?

    I won’t claim to be an expert, but I do know one thing for 100% certain: using terms like “DUMBocrat” or “republiCON” makes your credibility plummet faster than a congressional approval rating.

  • Thank you darcy_lane. Your comments were well stated, well informed and I agree with you 100 percent!

  • To be clear Neil Q. Sweden, as you have mentioned, is one of the few countries not running defecits and positive trade exports (both indicators of advanced economies and prosperity), one of the (and perhaps THE) highest standards of living in the world with world leader in industry. You make it sound like there is no business there, and no one can prosper under a 90% tax bracket.

    The fact is that for the greatest percentage of a society, a public system of most things is beneficial. In Sweden most forms of transit (buses and trains) , Health Care, roads, schooling (including higher education), sports (including many elite levels) and others are free.

    The argument that Think purports is credible in theory, but rarely works. If that was the case credit wouldn’t exist for the vast majority of people. To say that those without 6 figure income should save for an unknown is just not credible. There are to many accounts of those WITH high incomes that need Oprah to help them with their finances. Too many people are just not responsible with their money to say “hmm, you need Chemo, eh? Well sorry that you had to send your daughter to College, because you are screwed” Not to say that gov’t is responsible with money, but a government has 2 key responsibilities (back to the tenets of the French and American revolutions) – To protect its citizens (military, police, fire protection) and to provide a skilled workforce and infrastructure for industry (roads, rails, airports, education) To me healthcare fits into both and not coincidentally all of those things are publically fnded projects!

    Another fact is that Japanese car manufacturers (which are taking over) are building new factories in Canada and existing American manufacturers are investing billions into their Canadian factories why? Because we the public pay for THEIR Health Insurance! Why would Toyota build in Scranton PA and pay for 300+ workers Health Insurance when they can build in Woodstock Ontario and have the Government do it for them… it makes sense for business to operate in this environment, not in the classic capitalism model!!!



    darcy_lane Says:

    July 10th, 2007 at 11:10 am
    The problem is, you don’t just “get a heart transplant” for free. In fact, you probably die waiting for your turn. That’s the main problem with free healthcare and controlled salaries for doctors and hospitals.


    Do you really want your health care brought to you by the same people who run Dept. of Motor Vehicles or the Postal Service?


  • It pisses me off when people repeat things they’ve been told without any understanding of what the hell they’re talking about. Oh, America can’t have nationalised health because taxes are so low and ALL the other western industrialised nations have high taxes. Low taxes in America is a myth. You might have lower personal income taxes but things like property taxes are way way higher – example…. Property tax in my US home $12,000. Property tax in my NZ home $3,000 for a similar sized home. Sure NZ’s income tax is higher but is graduated. And I suspect that’s the case mentioned above with 90% tax. No-one pays 90% of their salary in tax. It might be 10% of their salary that’s taxed at 90%. Maybe America should look at all the tax loopholes businesses and in particular those poor Hedge Fund Managers (15% when every other smuck pays 25-30%) manage to get. Closing those would pay for thousands of emergency surgeries. And as an aside, free or not, nothing can buy you a heart transplant. You have to wait for a donor and a match like everyone else.

  • I have had two miscarriages — one in the States while I was on holiday, and one in the UK where I lived regularly. When I had a miscarriage in the States, they let me bleed in the waiting room and let me wait an hour to see a doctor, even though it was 5:00 AM and there was no one in the waiting rom but me and my fiance. After three agonising weeks, where I went to three separate hospitals because everyone’s response to what was going on with me was “We don’t know what is going on”, I went to a decent doctor (for which I had to pay $500 to see me) for him to tell me I miscarried ages ago and I was just bleeding out. Thank God my fiance’s Cigna kicked in halfway through the visit, because for each hospital dash we were to be charged $2000.

    My second miscarriage in the UK, I got seen by my GP, sent straight t hospital, had all the tests done, and was told then and there I was miscarrying and there was nothing they could do. They even referred me to an after care counsellor and offered to do further tests to find out what was wrong so that I don’t have to go through the pain of a miscarriage again. And yes, this was all FREE.

    I am an American citizen, and I am not Anti-America in the slightest. But I can tell you now, judging from someone who has experienced BOTH systems, America has A LOT to learn from other countries when it comes to providing its citizens healthcare.

  • I know it’s both beating a dead horse and woefully off-topic here, but here goes: while I think reasonable minds can easily disagree on the value of nationalizing healthcare in the U.S., I hope that most of us can agree that: (a) when utilizing OECD-approved models that include a variety of taxes (e.g. income taxes, V.A.T., etc.), the U.S. has substantially lower effective marginal individual income tax rates than most industrialized nations with socialized healthcare, and (b) higher taxes cause individual taxpayers to work less. I feel this article is informative:

  • I think Michael Moore has done a wonderful job getting out important issues . Agree or not agree, he inspires discussion , dialog..even anger….. instead of confusion and hopelessness. The issue I have with Michael is that he manipulates situations when he does not have to…leaving him open for attack. Then many people believe nothing that he says! An example for instance is his assement about Cuba and their healthcare…He is totally incorrect ..
    I know this because I know someone who just came to the US from Cuba several years ago and has talked about the horrible situation there.
    I know of a physician who goes there to help occasionally who told me that the healthcare situation along with everything else, is pitiful. The truth is that Casto lets you see what he wants you to see…we were shown the healthcare and facilities of the elite. So why does he do this ? He either was trying to manipulate, or he allowed the Cuban government to manipulate him.
    His overall rage about healthcare in the US is valid….why mess up his argument with manipulation. Frustrates me.