In effect a feature-length Bush campaign commercial co-produced by the Christian-libertarian director of The Hanoi Hilton, this desperate four-waller (its screens paid for by Citizens United, a neocon activist group led by the shitbags responsible for Willie Horton) deliberately apes Michael Moore’s modus operandi, minus the humor or any sense of sympathy for real people. Instead, Charles Krauthammer, Michael Medved, scheming oil billionaire Mansoor Ijaz, and other dead-eyed right-wing dicks lie, blab scurrilous generalities, leap to idiotic conclusions, and justify every Bush crime with the doctrine of “American exceptionalism.” (In and of itself, this Hitlerian given explains a good deal about what looks like unchecked imperialism to the rest of the world.) Moore’s most discomfiting disclosure—the Bush family’s substantial and well-documented ties to the bin Laden family, among a network of other under-the-radar economic affiliations—goes undisputed. Footage of terrorist attacks is plentiful, images from Baghdad are absent, and as background to the Kerry defamations a guitarist wails, “John boy, John boy, which way is the wind blowin’. . . . You’re the one with your finger in the air . . . ”
Certainly, the repetitive, confrontational use of 9-11 footage—something Moore tastefully avoided—signals a certain war-machine mentality whose idea of fairness is to make sure Bill Clinton receives as many curled-lip slams as Kerry. Even so, the blind temerity required for one of the talking asses to equate Moore’s critical pronouncements with Orwellian newspeak is breathtaking. It’s clear to even the jaundiced eye how the Manichaean conclusions carefully voiced in this red-alert screed could both comfort and petrify the ignorant. But the even faintly informed will see only a cut-rate vision of flabby white men defending their own bloodthirsty opportunism.