Citizens United against Fahrenheit 9/11

I heard about this the other day, but haven’t really had a chance to look into it untill now. Citizens United (“America’s premier conservative research organization”) has filed a complaint with the FEC claiming that TV Ads for Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 9/11 should not be allowed to air durring the month of August, becuase they make reference to President Bush, and thus: “qualify as ‘electioneering communications’” (which are not allowed to be paid for with corporate money one month prior to a Primary).

The AP and the Boston Globe both have decent stories on the complaint, which point out some interesting questions about the multitudes of issues involved: Moore’s First Amendment rights; Preventing foreign and corporate influence in the election process; and the power of the FEC to (potentially) prevent a company from marketting its completely legal product.

As usually, when controversy follows Moore, he seems to have the last word: Thanks for the free press. Again.

7 Responses to “Citizens United against Fahrenheit 9/11”

  1. Scott Forbes Says:

    The people who run “Citizens United” are the same ones who made Willie Horton a household name back in ’88. Different election, same dirty tactics.

    If Moore’s movie commercials qualify as ‘electioneering communications’, then I might ask the FCC to disallow the Washington Times from being published in August: The paper is foreign-owned (by the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, no less), makes reference to President Bush, and its bias in favor of the President is equal and opposite to Moore’s.

  2. a_stupid_box Says:

    Agreed. While I don’t particularly care for Moore’s not-really-documentary-documentaies (and care less for Moore himself after reading his response to CU), it’s not as though it’s blatant campaigning against Bush, nor pro-Kerry rhetoric.

    I’m sure there’ll be a fact or two in F9/11, and maybe even 5 minutes of contigious, unedited filming in which Moore doesn’t quote people out of context. Not a documentary by any stretch, but not a 100 minute comercial, either. CU’s claim is unwarranted.

    To stray slightly from the topic, I’d like to focus on Moore’s response, though. Wouldn’t a true “documentarian” wish to educate people rather than antagonize them? Yes, I’m sure that sending a holiday card is a kind act, but anyone more than five years old knows that this act isn’t meant to be kind — it’s meaning is derived from attaining “free publicity” from an agency which is trying to silence Moore and akin to him saying, “nyah nyah, I win.”

    I’ve yet to see Moore regard any of his critics with respect or measure. Rather than calmly explain his side and, if unable to persuade his dissenters, “agree to diagree,” Moore calls them “wacko attackos” and insults them. Given, Moore _is_ often blatantly insulted by his critics rather than intelligently engaged, but wouldn’t a man so superior to those who engage in namecalling refuse to sink to their level?

    This is perhaps only a symptom of a larger problem, however. Moore’s name calling is widely accepted, and in fact, characteristic of how society as a whole responds to those whose views differ. If you’ve children, or ever want children, and are a Michael Moore fan you should ask yourself this — what would you say to your children if their teachers told you they were calling people names at school? Would you encourage the act if it were in response to the other child doing it?

    “Because the other guy is doing it” isn’t a valid excuse ever.

  3. ymatt Says:

    Pahah. I sure don’t consider Moore anything like an objective critic, but you have to admit he knows how to make fun of people. And that response to the CU was entirely appropriate and pretty funny.

    It’s not like CU is calmly objecting to the points he makes or anything — they’re just trying to find some technicality to attack him with. Every bit as indefensible as chopping up an interview to humiliate its subject. So yeah, nyah nyah, Moore wins.

  4. joe Says:

    After reading the above article a few things came to mind. First, I watched Micheal Moore’s new film and found it to be informative. There is a great deal of information that has been kept from us, like the connection between the Bush family and the money that is coming in from the Saudi’s. The name calling, as you called it was not the point of the movie and I think that most of his critics use this against him. It was a psychological move, only used to emphasize a point and drill it into the observers head. The information was provided, but to keep a crowd interested, especially with the short attention span of most americans now a days, key tactics are used, the same way they are used in classrooms today. Now the American people are smart enough to decide for themselves what makes sense, and the movie just gave a different insight to the events around 9/11. Now the question above was asked about (“what would you say to your children if their teachers told you they were calling people names at school? Would you encourage the act if it were in response to the other child doing it?”). The question I would pose is would you want your child to question the acts of others by asking and raising important question or would you want them to accept everything they were fed by the teachers in their room. I think Moore is making younger people ask questions about its government and that scares a lot of people who are in office. Up until this point, the younger generation has been over looked. More and more of us are coming out of college and will continue to ask important questions, although you may not like us asking them, you will have to start answering them. What Moore is doing is presenting an idea that is important to him, the same way an idea was presented by our President to us about his actions in Iraq. Give the people some credit in allowing them to think for themselves and analyize the situations for all that they encompass and not for what is spoon fed to us.

  5. Tyler Says:

    seems that you have fallen for the same thing everyone else has, and that is taking moore’s statements at their face value. There were no doubt Saudi “connections”, but Moore’s mangling of facts with conspiracy theory makes me wonder how people such as yourself can see hi film as “informative”. No doubt many Germans found Nazi propaganda to be informative too, but it was nonetheless presented in an environment that did not allow fair objection or rebuttal in the face of claims unsupported by fact. I suggest reading some of the responses to Moore’s “facts”. As for they younger generation seeing things about government, our generation is one of the most conservative in years, not in the sense of the Moore stereotype of dumb racist rednecks, but those who have become intellectually disenchanted with the welfare state and the emotional driving of politics.

  6. Coyote Says:

    I saw Michael Moore’s film, and yes it does have a decidingly liberal stance. But in order to accuse him of slanting facts a certain way, you must also at the same time think about the possibility of pro Bush people doing the same thing.

    Or is it that something you find offensive is automatically wrong. One side has the truth, the other has the truth, each claiming absolute certainty, yet it isn’t the liberal side that is attempting to censor statements. Censor statements that many people find offensive but apparently can’t let out into the popular discourse. I’m not liberal or democrat, or republican or conservative; but have you considered that maybe Bush isn’t as perfect as some claim, or that he is as much a monster as others claim.

    Our society has the discquieting problem with trying to hide facts that it finds offensive. It hides racist undertones, or political lies, and pastes over it some other ‘truth’. It seems that the only crime is to admit the truth.

    Let’s see Bush propaganda is repeated over and over on the news, Liberal propaganda is repeated in the form of Farenheit 9/11. Would the truth if it were as simple as some claim not have to be continuously repeated over and over. Seems to me propaganda is only created when it is repeated over and over. It means that there is little to underly the information, it means that your truth cannot stand on its own without continuously being repeated over and over.

  7. Heather Says:

    Two people this week wanted me to borrow their copy of Fahrenheit 9/11. I am so outraged that people are actually buying this movie and believing it AND making their “informed” decision about it and then only to take it to the polls in November.

    It is sad that people will get their info from Hollywood biased and angered man.

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