Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Hitchens on Moore

Christopher Hitchens has a brilliant new column on the Slate Web site in which he artfully dissects the intellectually and morally bankrupt work of Michael Moore. I found it hard to believe that Moore could top the monument to deception and dishonesty that was "Bowling for Columbine", but with "Fahrenheit 911" he truly seems to have outdone himself. As Hitchens notes, Moore's latest is little more than a mishmash of every Bush-hater's favorite conspiracy theories. Here's a sample, please do yourself a favor and read it all:

To describe this film as dishonest and demagogic would almost be to promote those terms to the level of respectability. To describe this film as a piece of crap would be to run the risk of a discourse that would never again rise above the excremental. To describe it as an exercise in facile crowd-pleasing would be too obvious. Fahrenheit 9/11 is a sinister exercise in moral frivolity, crudely disguised as an exercise in seriousness. It is also a spectacle of abject political cowardice masking itself as a demonstration of "dissenting" bravery.

How truly heartening to know that the American Library Association will be showing this tripe at their annual convention next week.

The sad truth is that Moore's popularity is not in spite of his demagogy, but rather because of it. Like the Coulters and Limbaughs of the right, he has become wealthy and successful by preaching to the converted. Instead of credible political analysis, Moore provides his audience with ideological masturbation material, telling leftists and anti-American Europeans exactly what they want to hear. His success, like that of other demagogues both left and right, is a tragic reflection of our debased level of political discourse.


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