Friday, July 2, 2004

Fahrenheit 9/11

A week ago, I saw Fahrenheit 9/11. It was very good. And, for all
the lead up hype about how it was "propaganda" and what not, I found
it very honest. Further, most of the griping reviews I've read about
it fail to cite anything in it that's actually misleading. One
article had the odd twist of claiming the movie made some (genuinely)
fallacious claims that did not actually appear in the movie. Odd.

In any case, the other comment I've heard repeatedly is that it
somehow is "not a documentary" because it has an opinion. Give me a
break. Documentaries express opinions. If a documentary were simply
a recitation of facts, who would want to go see them? A documentary
shouldn't contain lies (and F911 doesn't seem to), but presenting
those facts in support of an opinion or view strikes me as the whole
point. Fahrenheit 9/11 makes a compelling case for its opinion and is
worth seeing whether you agree with Mr. Moore's politics or not.

The final thing that struk me, having seen this movie, is how hard it
must be to be a conservative right now. I've traditionally thought of
conservative politics in terms of certain principles: fiscal
restraint, small government is good government, states rights,
Constitutional conservativism, supporting capitalism, moderate
isolationism, and an array of similar ideas. Today, there are no
major options that support these ideals. Kerry certainly represents
the more liberal view, but Bush is no better. He's dramatically
increased the size of government, exercised little fiscal restraint,
advocated Constitutional amendments to limit states' rights, gotten
involved in a very messy war and overall acted in opposition to a
great many "conservative" values. It must be hard to be a
conservative. There's something very strange about living in a world
where the president under whom the budget was balanced, under whom
welfare was reformed and under whom business most flourished was the

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