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NBC's Unbelievably Transparent Propaganda

The four-day-long drum beat against Michael Moore's film continues. First, Matt Lauer roughed Moore up on a morning show. Then Katy Couric. (What was Michael thinking talking to them!) And now this.
In Moore's favor, he did an admirable job sparring with both NBC morning show hosts. My favorite moment came when Couric asked Moore why he spent so much time showing "ordinary people" in Iraq. Why the children at the playground, the people on the street, she wanted to know. "You didn't say anything about what a ruthless tyrant Sadam Hussein was. Wouldn't your film have been more balanced if you had bothered to mention anything at all about that?" To which Moore replied, "You guys did such a good job at that, I just didn't feel I needed to do that."

He went on to remind Couric that the corporate media droned on about what a despicable tyrant Sadam was 24 hours a day, 7 days a week as they led us by the nose to a war based on lies. Moore said he felt a better "balance" was to spend 2 hours on the other side of the story. And so he did. Katy was caught off guard, and became visibly angry at Moore. She concluded the interview by asking Moore what he does with all the money he earns from the film. He noted that he's been having benefits for victims of 911 and the Iraq war all month -- an answer Katy clearly didn't anticipate. He then sarcastically added, "And the rest, I think I'm just gonna buy a lot of mansions and yachts with that." Katy replied, "Well you're certainly not spending it on your wardrobe." Ouch.

Tonite, NBC continued their attempts to discredit Moore. They devoted a long segment on their evening news broadcast to something they laughably called "truth squad." "People are flocking to Michael Moore's new film. But is it accurate?" They trumpeted. The segment went on to question Moore's veracity on a few issues, but no evidence was presented to suggest he had not been honest. In one instance, they suggested he had lied about the jet taking off with the Bin Lauden family during the time when all planes in the country were supposed to be grounded. "But officials on the 911 commission stated that no one whom the FBI wanted to interview left the country," they said. As if that answered their own question. It did not. In the first place, no one can miss the pulled punch there. They didn't say the Bin Laudens did not take off, they only said "no one WHOM THE FBI WANTED TO INTERVIEW" had taken off. In the second place, the phantom saudi jet has already been confirmed by the Tampa airport where the jet briefly landed.

In any event, it's certainly curious that NBC felt obligated to devote an entire segment in a busy schedule to the task of attempting to discredit a film. (They actually referred to it as a "so-called documentary" at one point.) Could it be that NBC, owned by GE, one of the largest arms dealers in the world, is feeling pressure to squelch a possible challenge to the administration that's done so much for sales? Nahhh. Is it possible that they felt challenged enough to take time out of their almost constant commercials on the prowess of the weapons their parent company builds to take on Moore? Nahhhhh.

Let em try. I think Moore can take em on. But shit, it makes me so angry to see how obviously they're trying to manipulate me and you and everyone. Fuck! How stupid do they think we are? How do they get away with this shit?

THIS is why indymedia is so important. WE need to take back control of our own stories. We can no longer allow GE or any other corporate whore to control what we know about the world and how we react to it. We've seen where that road takes us. They lied to us about weapons of mass destruction, they lied to us about the last election, they lied to us about everything. And hundreds of thousands of people died because of those lies. Hundreds of thousands of people. No more. See them for what they are, enlighten those who inexplicably cannot yet see it, and turn your back on them for good. Liars. Cheap liars.
the saudi's and 9/11 25.Jun.2004 18:31

pay attention

This is an important one to keep straight. Moore's film *does not state* that the Saudi's traveled while other traffic was grounded.

---

WHAT THE FILM SAYS:

Sen. Byron Dorgan: We had some airplanes authorized at the highest levels of our government to fly to pick up Osama Bin Laden's family members and others from Saudi Arabia and transport them out of this country.

Narration: It turns out that the White House approved planes to pick up the bin Ladens and numerous other Saudis. At least six private jets and nearly two dozen commercial planes carried the Saudis and the Bin ladens out of the U.S. after September 13th. In all, 142 Saudis, including 24 members of the bin Laden family, were allowed to leave the country.

---

However, it is true that Saudi's were picked up and travelled *around the country*, not out of it, while most other traffic was grounded. And the authorization for this did come from the White House.

Dan Grossi who escorted the flight from Tampa stated, "The White House, the FAA and the FBI all said the flight didn't happen. Those are three agencies that are way over my head, and that's why I'm done talking about it."

---

In other words, Moore's movie doesn't even make the very real, and very damaging claim that it could. The critics of the movie are using a straw-man in an attempt to tie Moore to the discredited notion that the Saudi's were flown *out of the country* when other traffic was grounded. Pay attention to this one cause you're going to hear it a lot. Get it straight in your own head. Some good reads:

What Fahrenheit 9/11 Says About the Saudi Flights Out of the Country After September 11
 http://www.michaelmoore.com/mustread/f911facts/index.php

TIA now verifies flight of Saudis
 http://www.sptimes.com/2004/06/09/Tampabay/TIA_now_verifies_flig.shtml

Corporate's sweatin 25.Jun.2004 19:19

Der Fundershi

I haven't seen the movie yet, but will soon.

I saw the NBC news segment as well as an ABC news segment tonight that was presented with the same tone. With Moore doing some corpy media bashing in the movie as well as during the press junket for the movie, it's to be expected that the corpies got their blow dried heads all in a tither.
These so-called "news" people are not going to change for the better one iota. They are ingrained in the sleazy system that pays for their ego-fueled faux lives. Moore is pressing their buttons.

The negative comments are shaking down just like they were about "Bowling for Columbine"; Moore haters finding miniscule irregularities and then condemming the entire movie for it.
In "Bowling......" Moore stated that he would sue anybody that says that he lied about anything in the movie. Alot of mean spirited words were slung Moore's way but nobody took him on in court. Moore has already said he will do the same inre: to "F911"

NBC's Position Untenable 25.Jun.2004 19:32

North Portlander

Where was NBC when Mel Gibson's PASSION OF THE CHRIST appeared in theaters? Why weren't they complaining that his presentation wasn't "fair and balanced" because it didn't present a case for the Romans and Pharisees? Pul-leese!

Just because someone makes a documentary and doesn't include every fact in creation doesn't mean that the facts they DO include are not true. Moore used actual footage of the people in question, speaking for themselves. He didn't quote them -- he put them on the screen in living color.

Given that the Bush administration has not been exactly forthcoming with facts or responses on the subject, and that it has sought to block any and all investigations in both 9/11 and the conflict in Iraq, getting alternate information (straightforward and truthful answers to simple questions) would have proved to be an uphill battle beyond the capabilities of even of most diligent producer.

That Saddam was a "bad guy" has never been disputed by anybody. And certainly we've heard it again and again from the mainstream media in its steady drumbeat to war. NBC still uses military drumbeat music to signal its evening news broadcasts! That Saddam was a "bad guy" is beside the point. His proclivities were not the reason initially given for attacking Iraq. The reason was supposed to be that (1) he possessed weapons of mass destruction and was capable of using them on the US at a moment's notice and would do so, and (2) that Saddam was in cahoots with Osama Bin Laden. Both of those assertions have been proven to be false. Every other argument is a distraction from the fact that the Bush administration sent our military into a country that posed no threat and put them at risk of death and injury for no good reason, other than personal profit.

No amount of marginalizing and carping about "fairness" can compensate the people of the United States and the families of the unfortunate casualties for the damage they have suffered - to themselves and to our reputation as a country.

As I was already aware of most of the facts included in the movie, I found most disturbing the scene in the Senate chambers where one black speaker after another, trying to provoke indignation and justice from the Senate, was sent away like a naughty child WITH ABSOLUTELY NO SUPPORT. Not one Senator would support them in their appeals, although they had community and House signatures in their quest for justice. No wonder blacks in this country are bitter. I am, too.

Black Speakers Referring to 2000 "Selection" Purges in Florida 25.Jun.2004 19:41

North Portlander

The black speakers I mentioned were protesting the purging of legitimate voters from the rolls in Florida during the 2000 "selection."

That's funny 25.Jun.2004 20:02

-

I bet Katy got angry because she considers herself a "serious journalist." His comment shed light on the fact that she's not. I remember how proud she was of herself many years ago when she challenged George Bush Sr. I don't remember what her questions were, but GBS got really pissed at her, and she was proud of it. What happened Katy? Guess that was just an anomoly. No wonder she crowed about it.

It is amazing that she dare not do the same with the more blatantly evil George W. Bush administration.

Also funny that the bitchy cheerleader in her came out with her shallow remark on his wardrobe. Yes, Katy was popular and a cheerleader. I guess she used to make fun of nerdy slobs like Michael Moore in high school.

I wish he'd asked her what she does with her salary directly after she snidely asked him what he does with his proceeds.

Where was NBC's "Truth Squad"? 25.Jun.2004 22:26

Me

Where was NBC's intrepid "Truth Squad" when Bush, Cheney, Powell, Rumsfeld, et al. were telling fantastic lies that had already been discredited by their "own" weapons inspectors, foreign intelligence services, and events on the ground? Where are they today when the nation's leaders continue to insist in the face of mountains of contradictory evidence that those lies were the truth? I'll tell you where they are - they're closeted with their team of propaganda experts parsing every word of Michael Moore's film looking for any minute thing they can spin into accusations of "dishonesty." This while America descends into a pit of official lawlessness unknown in our history. At least we know where their priorities are. Our leaders and our corporate media present a smiling and benevolent public face - as long as everything is going according to plan - but whenever individuals or events threaten that status quo they bare their fangs and show their true nature. The increasingly apparent parallels between American media in general and the methods and objectives of the 1930s pro Nazi rag Volkischer Beobachter leave me frankly nauseous - and I'm afraid the worst is yet to come.

What Mike does is important.. 26.Jun.2004 05:35

Winston Smith

I think what Michael Moore is doing is very important. Not because I've seen or liked his movie (in my country it will be distributed near October, I think), but because he is doing exactly what "reclaim the media" means to me.

With his talent and the fact that people like him as his only allies, he's made a movie doing research, exposing facts, even telling his own view on the things to the public. I disagree with those who critisize him all the time because of his newly acquired millions, or because of his former endorsement of gen.Clark etc., because I consider as most important from anything else that this guy is taking action for his beliefs and shows anyone who wants to do so the way:
Today there's no possibility from keeping the people isolated. If the coorporate media is lying to us, then there's Indymedia, there are indypendent film-makers, indypendent journalist etc. If some huge-coorporation like Disney doesn't want your film to be seen, you can become popular enough to find another distributor, or you can even distributy your movie independently, or through internet, and let the people see what you got.
The news cannot be controlled by someone today. If some guys are spreading lies about you, you don't have to be a newspaper publisher to respond to them and let the people now the truth. Upload your own website! Let the people know if Bush was a deserter or not! Let them know if he's a friend of the saudi dictators.

So here's my point: Even if his movie is full of faults or lies (which I dont think is true) Michael has showed us the way: We don't need coorporate, media, nor Disney, nor CBS, nor anyone.
BE THE MEDIA!

F 9 11 26.Jun.2004 06:39

getting people into theaters in droves

Last night (Friday) I went to a suburban movie theater to see Terminal (pretty funny and it makes a good and serious point about Homeland Security & immigration), but three different showings of Mooore's movies were sold out.
None of the other movies were.
This is so encouraging.
People are talking about Bush and his lies and the issues in a way none of us grassroots lefties could ever have engineered.
God Bless Michael Moore.

"Truth" squad laughable 26.Jun.2004 08:17

Fuck the corporate Media

Indeed, where was the "truth squad" when the administration was telling us we needed to go to war with Iraq? Why didn't they drag it out and ask some questions then? Why did they shamelessly parrot the corporate line and allow thousands of people to die for nothing? Why? WHY? Many of those people were their "customers," after all. Americans. WHY? WHY do they think we won't notice the hypocrisy? A "truth squad" to deal with a MOVIE? But not with a war? This nation sent people to their deaths, bombed people to their deaths, over lies. And the corporate journalists should have done something. They're supposed to be the "watch dogs." They're supposed to be protecting us from the abuses of the powerful...not the other way around. But they hid behind flag lapel pins and patriotic jingoism. This is shameful and disgusting. The corporate media IS THE ENEMY. And anyone who mindlessly parrots what they hear on the corporate media is in need of intervention. Idiots.

good points. 26.Jun.2004 12:09

this thing here

and to add another, where was katy questioning what mel gibson is doing with his fortune? it would seem even more appropriate to ask that question to a man who's making insane amounts of money off the life of christ. has mel donated it all to charity? if mel is so deeply committed to his faith, has mel acted as christ would when pocketing $300 million?

this is why this selective, pompous, righteous nitpicking of moore's movie is such total bullshit.

Corporate Media Lies 26.Jun.2004 19:39

don't talk to them

I think the corporate media, like the present administration, has become so megalomaniacle and self assured that they have no concept of how really transparent they have become. We can see through them now, though.

Hey, "pay attention," if the saudi plane took off on september 13th, as it apparently did, then it took off when every other plane in the US was grounded.

moore stern 26.Jun.2004 22:58

undemographic

Michael Moore was interviewed for a good 15-20 minutes yesterday morning on the Howard Stern show--and Moore himself mentioned examples of not only when the mainstream media has been patronizing towards him (at best)--but one detail that wasn't in the movie--that he's brought out in numerous mainstream press appearances (including "Sunday Morning" with George Steffanapolis (i can't spell)--but it's been edited *out* of every appearance--

the detail is that Bendar-Bush helped bail out Euro Disney, handing over millions directly to Michael Eisner--

so where are we now that--- between strippers and fart jokes--the best hope for actual journalism is on the Howard Stern show? at least until Michael Powell and the FCC and Clear Channel bury him once and for all.

In defense of Michael Moore 13.Oct.2004 05:46

Nancy G

If Ms. Couric had been doing her job, Mr. Moore would not have had to make his film.

Once in our great land, American journalists found propaganda abhorrent, now thanks to individuals like Ms. Couric it's all in a day's work.

Couric and the many others like her who are "reporting" propaganda as truth have done a grave disservice to our country. The Murrow's and Cronkite's are few and far between among today's TV reporters. Couric couldn't hold a candle to either of them.