Monday, December 10, 2007

Moore Propaganda

I finally got around to watching Michael Moore’s “SiCKO” last week. I know I’m coming rather late to the movie review party, so I’ll keep my reactions brief. What irked me most about the movie was its blatant cherry-picking. When reporting on healthcare in the United States, Moore exclusively featured people who had had terrible experiences with the medical system. Not one American with a favorable experience appeared in the movie. On the other hand, when reporting on healthcare in other countries (the U.K., France, Canada, and Cuba), Moore exclusively featured people who had had good experiences with the medical system. Not a single person with a bad experience in one of these countries appeared in the film.

Whatever you think about the relative merits of different healthcare systems, it should be obvious that every system will have some unhappy outcomes. Healthcare is costly, and that means there will always be trade-offs. Some of those trade-offs will be painful, even cruel. To pick just one example, “SiCKO” features a couple with a deaf son; their insurance company said it would fund only one cochlear implant. Their coverage would only save the kid’s hearing in one ear. Okay, now that’s awful. But do things like this happen only in the United States? On the contrary, the U.K.’s National Health Service will only save your eyesight in one eye. These situations strike me as highly comparable. Michael Moore documented the former but not the latter. Gee, I wonder why.


Anonymous said...

Like you don't cherry-pick your pro-capitalistic blather. When was the last time you pointed out anything that remotely taints big business. Only Fox News and Rupert Murdoch are "Fair & Balanced."

Michael Moore didn't go far enough. All he had to do was to go to the San Joaquin valley and take note of the immigrant cherry-pickers who are left sterile by being exposed to dangerous herbicides and pesticides produced by giant unconscionable corporations like Monsanto. The undocumented farmworkers have limited access to medical treatment and no recourse to the courts to seek damages. The FDA responded helpfully to the outcry by the giant agribusinesses who successfully appealed the ban on the use of those chemicals. It's always profits over people, but you never see it that way. Gee, I wonder why?

Anonymous said...


1. Fox News and .. what?

2. The undocumented farmworkers can't seek damages in the court because we have a non-libertarian immigration policy.

In other words, great job at pointing out why we should go with the Cato beliefs.

Do your homework next time.