Uproar as Michael Moore Scorns Snipers

    As they clutch at their American Sniper movie tickets, the right is in a tizzy over Michael Moore, the guy who accurately revealed the real motives behind the Iraq War, a job that our mainstream corporate media failed to do, in his 2004 movie Fahrenheit 9/11.  Moore is now showing disdain for the hero of the right's favorite movie. Moore says:

    My uncle killed by sniper in WW2. We were taught snipers were cowards. Will shoot u in the back. Snipers aren't heroes. And invaders r worse...“I tried to save more lives than a sniper ever could hope to — by preventing us from going to war in the first place,” he said. “So, Fox News and the other lazy media — quit making s**t up about me! You look ridiculous.”

    In March of 2003, when George W. Bush tossed Dick Cheney's lit cigar into the powder magazine of the Middle East in the invasion of Iraq that they lied the nation into, who could predict the only success that would come out of the death and destruction would be "American Sniper", a movie Matt Taibbi at the Rolling Stone called "almost too dumb to criticize".

    Only the ideologically zombies of The GOP Base could harbor the fantasy that the Iraq War was about snipers, "killing people who needed to be killed".

    They can indulge that fantasy in their local theaters by watching Clint Eastwood's latest production "American Sniper", about a US sniper from Texas. A guy later murdered on a gun range who made up stories about his bravado, got sued for one big one and lost in court. .....BTW, of course, nothing on that stuff is in the movie.

    The movie continues to make lots of money, proving perhaps that Americans can always find a way to make a buck, or millions of bucks, off something or anything, even the biggest foreign policy disaster in decades. If you have a short memory, and have forgotten about those endless bloody days of occupation, flag draped coffins, pallet loads of fast disappearing cash, and the torture we did in Saddam's own prison, the movie may be, apparently, good entertainment. And if it makes money and is fun to watch, it makes everything about the war OK then.....doesn't it?



    Everything you say is true except one:  We didn't see the flag-draped coffins.  Bush prohibited that scene from being shown by any news outlets.  Out of sight/out of mind...sure seems to have worked for many out there.

    True. And was it Ted Koppel who was called a pro-al Qaeda traitor for reading the names of that day/weeks dead US troops on his late night news broadcast?

    One does not expect coherence from the Right. Mike Huckabee was promoting his new book on C-SPAN this weekend. Among the attacks he made was that Hollywood was out of touch with the South. He noted that Hollywood did not expect that "American Sniper" would be an acceptable movie. The Hollywood snobs would ignore the film because it spoke to values respected by the South.

    SE Cupp, the Conservative interviewer, did not point out that the Hollywood elite nominated the film for six Academy Awards. Huckabee feels victimization despite that fact that Hollywood accepted the movie as something worthy of praise. Huckabee is much more out of touch than Hollywood.

    Orwell had a name for it in his book 1984. doublethink, the acceptance of or mental capacity to accept contrary opinions or beliefs at the same time, especially as a result of political indoctrination.

    Quotes are from Marco Rubio's new book, American Dreams:

    "America's economic and cultural problems are serious and complex"

    doublethink solution: initiate culture warfare to get out the vote, cut taxes on the rich

    "challenges are formidable"

    doublethink solution: impede the government's ability to meet them (and start another war?)

    "system rigged to favor the wealthy"

    doublethink solution: call money speech, remove political campaign dollar limits on the wealthy


    not to mention that the Executive Producer has a longstanding joint partnership arrangement with Warner Bros. It IS a Hollywood movie, i.e., made by Hollywood.

    If righties were going to make up a group complaining that they don't like the film, shouldn't they be saying something like "indie filmmakers don't like the movie because..."?

    Or perhaps they're trying to say Hollywood filmmakers just make movies in order to dislike them?

    Who is this Hollywood fellow anyways?

    They were playing THE HELP on local cable lately.

    I think THEY did a fine job representing the SOUTH, so to speak.


    Say, Senator Ernst?

    Care for any home made pie?

    Home made pie. That is just too funny. Give yourself the award.

    Is the movie "fun" to watch?  I haven't seen it, but I heard it was a pretty sobering document.

     Re snipers being cowards. The sniper's victims are unable to defend themselves. But if you are sniping during a battle, the people you are killing are shooting at your comrades, so it may not be so dishonorable.

    The colonists fired at the British troop formation from hidden places, was that cowardly sniping or advancing techniques of war? 

    True sniping couldn't be done in the 18th century, due to use of black powder and the non-use of rifled barrels.

    Colonists had to be close to the British to hit one, putting them at risk from return fire.

    Moore is saying by not putting yourself at any risk, by not going 'mano a mano' he "was taught" snipers are spineless cowards.

    American heroes fight mano a mano, and are not afraid of death as they know they have justice, and God behind them as they are "battling Satan".

    We are talking about a movie, American Sniper, in which the primary factual basis is the sniper hero killed a lot of people.

    Moore's says 'he was taught' American heroes are like Stallone or Arnold, they fight man to man, not from 400 meters with a scope.

     "Is the movie "fun" to watch? I haven't seen it, but I heard it was a pretty sobering document." 

    For me the answer is a resounding “no”. It do not think it was a good movie by any way of judging it except, I suppose, by its financial success. I admit that the movie did not have a chance of getting a positive review from me, I went to see it with a strong bias. I wanted to see it for myself at least partly to judge the opinions of others who think that it is a good movie and who judge that Kyle was a “good” person, a national hero no less, for being such a remorseless and unrepentant killing machine. I had read that some audiences cheered at the end. The one I was in sat in almost complete silence as the final credits rolled. I would have left much earlier if it had been the more common kind of war movie and not one based on the account of a real person’s experience as told by that same person, if I had gone to see it in the first place to be entertained or to possibly see a thought provoking story. I did not like the person Kyle was in the movie and I would not like the person Kyle seems to have been in real life based on what I have read about him. Standing up quickly at the end, though, and pushing down the row of seats filled with people sitting quietly felt somewhat like I think sitting down at a stadium while the National Anthem was being played would feel. Still, I think I was the first to do so unless somebody behind me that I couldn’t see beat me to it.

    I expected to see a lot what I judged to be BS and my bias was confirmed in spades.

    I think a big percentage of the national audience have gone to see it for some variation of my own reason. Nothing draws a crowd like a crowd. But I also think that the biggest percentage of viewers go in thinking Kyle was admirable and leave more convinced. I think that is sad but recognize that maybe I am completely wrong because I realize that another strong bias of mine is that we, as a people, are strongly affected by propaganda. Some propaganda, like some racism for example, is institutional and so not easily recognized. I think our historic myth has led us to idolize American soldiers regardless the situation and regardless their mind-set when pulling a trigger. I do agree that "American Hero" is a “sobering document’, but it is the kind that inclined me to go somewhere else and get drunk.



    I would buy you that drink, but skip the movie.

    Propaganda it surely is.  One wonders if it was Clint's idea to make it or the Halliburton section of the CIA, likely Clint's idea as the CIA videos usually wind up being destroyed to avoid prosecution.

    One Iraq veteran's life that will not be made into a movie, is in the book Shade it Black, about a young women in the Marines Mortuary Affairs unit in Iraq.

    Where dead and not so dead bodies are packed up for registration and shipment. You 'shade in black' the missing body parts (usually IED casualties), and sort out multiple bodies and parts to try and match things up.

    The 'not so dead' refers to one case related in the book where Ms. Goodell noted the body they received was still flexible, shocked they then noted breathing.....alarmed she notified superiors..... who told her don't worry, wait. So they waited.  The Marine soon died as they stood there watching.


    I would buy you that drink, but skip the movie.

    Careful what you volunteer for, it takes more than one.

     One wonders if it was Clint's idea to make it or the Halliburton section of the CIA, likely Clint's idea as the CIA videos usually wind up being destroyed to avoid prosecution.

    Where I said above that much propaganda is institutional and therefore often hard to recognize, I also meant to say that because it is institutionally embedded in our culture that it is also often unintentional. Even when I am very clear in my own mind what I intend to convey I often fail to get it across in a way so that others see it accurately, and that is whether they agree or not, the latter often being the case.

     Here is some more of my rant about the movie.

    It starts with a bit from the movie that might have been partly intended to be funny but that made me want to throw a ball of soiled yellow ribbons at the screen. Regardless how it was intended it demonstrates much of the tone of the movie regarding Kyle’s character, I think. It is a perverted remake of, or at least made me recall, a movie scene we will probably all remember. I am referring to the scene from “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” where they were auditioning for a job as bodyguards for the old guy who delivered the money from the mine proceeds? He wanted to see how well they could shoot and was entirely unimpressed until they did a quick draw and impressively shot a can or something several times as they bounced it down the road or maybe out of the sky, and then said something to the affect of, “We’re better when we are moving”. It was funny, it made me laugh. They got the job.

    [No quotes are verbatim] In an early part of the movie Kyle is at the rifle range and not doing too well. The instructor tells him that he needs to tighten up his groups and we know that to succeed as a sniper he has to do better. The next three shots are not any better though and the instructor asks him if he can even see the target. The view changes to that through Kyle’s scope, a lot of the movie had this perspective, and his aim then moves off the target to a nearby place in the sand. He fires and hits rattlesnake that wasn’t apparent until it is popped into the air thanks to Kyles ‘dead eye’. Kyle says, “I’m better when the target is breathing”. One reptile kills another. Both are snakes. One is heated by the sun, One feels the heat of life only when bringing the shadow of death to another living thing. Does either have a soul and can a soulless reptile be a hero? Apparently so if properly packaged. Its all too confusing. What happened to these lovely children? said the sarcastic misanthrope.

    I did see a movie involving war recently that I would recommend, a French movie called “Incendies”. Wikipedia has a good write-up but anyone choosing to see it is advised not to read the plot-line to the end.






    Will check that French movie out as you suggest. Matt Damon's Green Zone wasn't too bad, "WMD don't matter" was one line from it, Damon responded "reasons for war always matter".

    As I said for American Sniper, the reason for the war sure wasn't to "kill people who need to be killed".

    For ginning up a war, or explaining a major political assassination, all the US public needs is a 'lone gunman' (preferably dead), or a swarthy bad guy (Saddam, bin Laden) , and they are OK with it, as is the sycophantic corporate media.

    I was trying to discuss the movie with a friend, who had a friend who knew Kyle, and couldn't wait to go see the movie. I respect his opinions. What I tried to say was that, in general, vets of WWII and Korea didn't "brag" about their service. In most cases they didn't even want to talk about it. When I suggested I didn't like the chest beating part of this whole episode in real life, or the movie, especially because it was an elective war, our discussion ended----because in his mind, we had to stop them over there before they came here.

    My question is even if you thought it was a necessary war, why the acceptance of the chest beating in this instance when such was not the case, for example, in WWII?

    The history of Sergeant York, WWI, and the movie, 1941, just came to mind. later. 

    I knew some Vietnam Vets that would not talk about their awards of valor and purple hearts. One told me once that he could not watch war movies yet he was in the National Guard. I think the difference is that back then most was drafted and didn't want to be part of it.  This time it has been all volunteer military that could explain some of the chest pounding. 

    I have no desire to see it.   

    On Kyle someone on a thread said that anyone who killed 180+ people and didn't have serious mental issues/PTSD afterwards must be a borderline psych/sociopath case. I don't know...

    Kyle making up stories about taking out Jesse Ventura in a bar, or his story on shooting scores of looters during hurricane Katrina would indicate the same.

    Odd coincidence that he would be killed by a PTSD vet Kyle took to a gun range, maybe not the best place to take a guy trying to get beyond his war experiences.

    Remember 2 weeks ago when the highest ideal, the one which was sacrosanct was the absolute right to free speech??? good times good times. Of course that right ends when a dirty dirty lib speaks!

    The right wishes any mention of the Iraq War their Decider lied us into, would disappear as fast as those planeloads of billions in cash George W. sent over there to temporarily buy off the bad guys.

    They particularly hate Moore as he skewered the whole enterprise almost from the first month of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003......when the MSM and the GOP were prematurely proclaiming a fantastic world remaking victory, and that anyone who didn't agree was a dirty America and troop hating traitor.

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