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BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'

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Rick Fielding 22 Sep 03 - 01:31 PM
GUEST 22 Sep 03 - 01:54 PM
Jack the Sailor 22 Sep 03 - 02:01 PM
GUEST,pdc 22 Sep 03 - 02:16 PM
Clinton Hammond 22 Sep 03 - 02:22 PM
Rick Fielding 22 Sep 03 - 02:46 PM
McGrath of Harlow 22 Sep 03 - 02:53 PM
michaelr 22 Sep 03 - 03:16 PM
GUEST 22 Sep 03 - 03:20 PM
katlaughing 22 Sep 03 - 03:34 PM
GUEST,pdc 22 Sep 03 - 04:06 PM
Jack the Sailor 22 Sep 03 - 04:10 PM
McGrath of Harlow 22 Sep 03 - 04:13 PM
Jack the Sailor 22 Sep 03 - 04:18 PM
Clinton Hammond 22 Sep 03 - 04:22 PM
GUEST,heric 22 Sep 03 - 04:22 PM
harpgirl 22 Sep 03 - 04:36 PM
open mike 22 Sep 03 - 07:34 PM
GUEST,pdc 22 Sep 03 - 08:23 PM
Rick Fielding 22 Sep 03 - 09:43 PM
Greg F. 22 Sep 03 - 10:27 PM
katlaughing 22 Sep 03 - 10:42 PM
GUEST,amergin 22 Sep 03 - 11:07 PM
GUEST,pdc 22 Sep 03 - 11:35 PM
Clinton Hammond 22 Sep 03 - 11:49 PM
LadyJean 22 Sep 03 - 11:52 PM
Celtic-End Singer 23 Sep 03 - 06:15 AM
Jack the Sailor 23 Sep 03 - 01:31 PM
katlaughing 23 Sep 03 - 01:45 PM
Clinton Hammond 23 Sep 03 - 02:09 PM
Jack the Sailor 23 Sep 03 - 02:32 PM
Clinton Hammond 23 Sep 03 - 02:42 PM
Mark Clark 23 Sep 03 - 02:51 PM
GUEST,heric 23 Sep 03 - 03:00 PM
Clinton Hammond 23 Sep 03 - 03:21 PM
Jack the Sailor 23 Sep 03 - 04:06 PM
katlaughing 23 Sep 03 - 05:47 PM
Clinton Hammond 23 Sep 03 - 05:54 PM
Nenana 23 Sep 03 - 07:04 PM
Jack the Sailor 24 Sep 03 - 09:28 AM
Peg 24 Sep 03 - 12:01 PM
GUEST,pdc 24 Sep 03 - 12:29 PM
McGrath of Harlow 24 Sep 03 - 01:20 PM
Clinton Hammond 24 Sep 03 - 02:33 PM
Jack the Sailor 24 Sep 03 - 02:43 PM
McGrath of Harlow 24 Sep 03 - 02:50 PM
GUEST,Klingoff 24 Sep 03 - 03:05 PM
GUEST,pdc 24 Sep 03 - 03:17 PM
GUEST 24 Sep 03 - 03:54 PM
McGrath of Harlow 24 Sep 03 - 04:03 PM
Clinton Hammond 24 Sep 03 - 04:14 PM
katlaughing 24 Sep 03 - 04:50 PM
GUEST 24 Sep 03 - 05:29 PM
Clinton Hammond 24 Sep 03 - 05:39 PM
GUEST 24 Sep 03 - 05:40 PM
katlaughing 24 Sep 03 - 06:50 PM
McGrath of Harlow 24 Sep 03 - 08:08 PM
GUEST,heric 25 Sep 03 - 07:44 PM
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Clinton Hammond 26 Sep 03 - 02:01 PM
GUEST,Strick 26 Sep 03 - 11:57 PM
GUEST,pdc 27 Sep 03 - 01:49 AM
GUEST,Strick 27 Sep 03 - 10:36 AM
GUEST 27 Sep 03 - 11:29 AM
Strick 27 Sep 03 - 11:34 PM
GUEST 28 Sep 03 - 12:15 AM
Sam L 28 Sep 03 - 02:08 AM
GUEST 28 Sep 03 - 09:20 AM
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Clinton Hammond 28 Sep 03 - 03:05 PM
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McGrath of Harlow 28 Sep 03 - 07:45 PM
Mark Clark 29 Sep 03 - 12:05 AM
GUEST,pdc 29 Sep 03 - 12:13 AM
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Jack the Sailor 29 Sep 03 - 10:35 AM
GUEST 29 Sep 03 - 11:08 AM
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Subject: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 01:31 PM

I know we discussed this before, but because of the volatile nature of it, I decided to wait before renting it. Truthfully I found it milder than I expected and I DIDN'T think that Michael Moore ambushed Chuck Heston. When he let him in the house, Heston acknowledged that he knew Moore AS A FILM MAKER, meaning he would have been aware of "Roger and Me"....so Moore's take on guns would not have come as a surprise. I simply think Heston got tired of arguing. (s'pecially since he was getting all his "countries' gun stats" info wrong)

As to whether we Canadians don't lock our doors.......well.......sometimes. Yes, Michael IS manipulative and there's a lot of editing in the film, but Bravo to him. How the Hell did he get it released? Did K-Mart actually follow up with it's promise to sell no more ammo?

Cheers

Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 01:54 PM

Heston was in the early stages of alzheimers disease, and if you know anything about the disease, yes his extremely articulate oratory skills were beginging to fade. I am sure he doesnt play his guitar as much either, but he was not asked about that. As for my doors, they are always locked, even in Canada eh!


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 02:01 PM

I agree with you Rick. Carol and I rented it a couple of weeks ago. Heston certainly did seem to know the character of the interview as it proceeded. Seems to me that he just got tired of Moore's tone and questions. Moore did badger him, he could have edited THAT out but he didn't. All in all it was a good movie. Moore didn't prove all of his contentions (particularly that the incident was due to bowling) But in a "special feature" of the DVD Moore said that he was simply trying to dialog. In that he was very successful.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 02:16 PM

One glaring omission on the part of Moore, I think, was that when he noted that there are a lot of guns in Canada, he didn't specify the types of guns. We have a lot of rifles in Canada, for hunting purposes, keeping down predators on farms and ranches, etc. But I'm not sure of the number of handguns and such things as assault weapons we have here, and I really wish he had been specific about that.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 02:22 PM

Ta fer reminding me... I still haven't seen this... and I want to.. mostly cause I loved "Canadian Bacon"

As far as ambushing Chuck Heston... well... someone needs to... That guy's a frigg'n wacko...


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 02:46 PM

Heston may have been in the beginning stages of Alzheimer's but you'd have to "know" that in order to discount anything he said. His information was no more inaccurate than that which passes for fact in NRA brochures. I know; I've read them.

Moore's contention that 7 of 10 million households in Canada contain guns simply ain't right. My guess is that the vast majority (as pointed out by guest pdc) of Canadian firearms are of the "22" type or whatever you use to scare bears, ducks, beavers and visiting Yankee vacationers!!!

Cheers and keep your powder dry,

Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 02:53 PM

Moore didn't prove all of his contentions (particularly that the incident was due to bowling).

That wasn't his contention - the point he was making was that there was no more reason to blame what happened on the killers' taste in music or the type of clothes they wore and so forth than to blame it on some more conventional activity like bowling that they also went in for.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: michaelr
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 03:16 PM

Moore never answered his own question, presumably because he wants people to figure it out for themselves, but the film very strongly hints that a major cause for gun violence in the US is the institutionalized poverty that is a result of American capitalism.

It's a good and important point, don't you think?

Cheers,
Michael


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 03:20 PM

The title was meant to be ironic, but you can bet that sailed right over the heads of many Americans.

Since when does raising issues require "proving" something? Moore was always upfront about what his intentions were with the film--to get people talking. On that count the film was wildly successful.

I never thought the so-called ambush of Heston was unfair. After watching the film, and seeing all the things Heston had done while supposedly in the "early stages" of Alzheimers (yet still not too far gone to continue to make speaking appearances for the NRA), I was so angry about Heston, I felt that Moore was a bit too polite and accomodating to the bastard.

I haven't rented the DVD yet, but plan to. I am also looking forward to the new book "Dude, Where's My Country?":


http://www.michaelmoore.com/


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: katlaughing
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 03:34 PM

Thanks for bringing this to discussion, again, Rick. I see it is being offered on pay-for-view, so plan to watch it soon.

I think it would be to Moore's credit that he didn't edit out his "badgering"?

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 04:06 PM

I got from the film that Moore claims that the major cause of gun popularity in the US is a climate and culture of fear.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 04:10 PM

Rick my Dad and most of his his pals have 5-10 guns each He, for example, has 2 rifles for moose, seal and caribou hunting, (depending on the licence) and 3 shotguns; a 410 for rabbits a pump action and a gas powered "automatic" for "bird" hunting. of those 7 million guns in Canada Moore talked about I wouldn't be surprised if 1/2 million were in Newfoundland almost all long guns almost all for hunting.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 04:13 PM

"a climate and culture of fear" and " the institutionalized poverty that is a result of American capitalism" are two sides of the same coin perhaps?

I suspect that, for most people, fear is a more important driving force in this kind of system than greed. More people slave their guts out because they are scared of being poor than do the same thing in the expectation of getting rich. I suspect that the same applies for most criminal activity.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 04:18 PM

I'm sorry if I misspoke (wrote)

I was joking about proving "his contention that" the incident was caused by bowling. That was one of the first points he made that it was impossible to blame the incident on one single thing.

I tried to make the point that he was trying to start a dialog. I made a typo. and Kat thank you for more clearly restating my point about the badgering. If he was just trying to make Heston look bad he'd have cut that out and just shown Heston's understandibly flustered response.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 04:22 PM

I don't think anyone HAS to make Heston look bad... I think he does that well enough on his own...


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 04:22 PM

oh boy the old climate and culture of perpetual fear thing again. I don't know doo about guns or the NRA but I do know that Heston cannot be punished enough for his role in Touch of Evil.


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Subject: harpgirl warns all Southern squirrels!!!!
From: harpgirl
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 04:36 PM

If I catch any more squirrels knawing on my garage doors I'M GOING TO GET A BB GUN AND LEARN TO USE IT!
Love, harpgirl


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: open mike
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 07:34 PM

yes i see that this movie is available now from satelite dish..
if you have one, check it out....great conversation piece.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 08:23 PM

I think by "fear-based" culture, Moore was referring more to fear of strangers, fear of one's neighbours, fear of crime, fear of the unknown, the unexpected, etc. than fear of poverty. But I do think that fear of poverty can be added to his list, especially these days.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 09:43 PM

Yer right about the number of guns in Newfoundland Jack. My guess is there ain't many murders though. Any idea on statistics?

Rick (Who bloody well DOES lock his door with all those Martins and Gibsons kicking around!)


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Greg F.
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 10:27 PM

Better add fear of Muslims, fear of Arabs, fear of "terrorists".....
we're getting back to the paranoia of Commies under every bed.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: katlaughing
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 10:42 PM

JtS, yer welcome...wasn't sure if that was what you meant.:-) Nice to see you around, too.

Here's another thought, how about fear from poverty, i.e. the fear that poverty brings...fear of not enough to feed your family, take them to the doctor, get an education with which to maybe get a better job, if any job...all of which can lead people to do some mighty strange things, including take desperate measures. This kind of fear can also foster high emotions with no safety valves of community/familial support.

Rick, I'll bet even if we could find the stats, they've be different according to the source!

Just a thought,

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,amergin
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 11:07 PM

I just watched this movie the other day...and enjoyed it very much....though I think the most powerful parts were the interviews with those who were there....like in the special feature when he was talking to that girl...and she broke down and cried....


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 11:35 PM

The one that got to me was the principal of the school in which the little girl was shot by a 6-year-old boy. No one -- NO ONE -- should ever, ever have to deal with that, and have that memory for the rest of her life.

I live in Canada, and of course, American news is well-known here. Every time a gun-related incident, or massacre, or bell-tower shooting takes place, someone (usually a politician) comes on and asks how such a tragedy could take place in America. My husband and I, in unison, yell "It's the guns, stupid!"

It's so damned obvious, isn't it?


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 11:49 PM

Damned good movie... I'm heading to the pub to chew it a bit...


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: LadyJean
Date: 22 Sep 03 - 11:52 PM

I have cleaned for half a dozen people here in Pittsburgh who left the door unlocked for me to clean while they were out. Admittedly the one lady I work for who does this now has a dog the size of a shetland pony.
After I surprised a burglar in my hall I became downright paranoid about locking my back door. I forgot to lock it that night, and that's how he got in. I also bought a can of pepper spray. If I'd had it that night, I could have dealt with the creep. (MY then housemate chased him out walloping him with a leather jacket. Don was stark naked at the time.)
The little gangstas in my neighborhood have been shooting at each other all summer. I'm scared witless of them, thank you, but a gun wouldn't do me any good. Anyone know where I can get a bullet proof vest? I'd also need two for my cats.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Celtic-End Singer
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 06:15 AM

My own view is that the US has a "violence problem" rather than a "gun problem". It is well documented that there are many countries in the world where gun-ownership is of a similar level to the US but where the incidence of killings and woundings by firearms are very much lower.

I live in England in a legal environment where it is probably more difficult to legally own a gun than almost anywhere in the world. However I don't believe the AVAILABILITY of firearms is significantly less than in most other countries. If you have the money it's very easy to get possession of almost any firearm you like. The Irish experience shows that if you want to you can get assault rifles, machine guns, whatever you want. Shootings are very much on the rise here too, but from a much lower level.

I think the whole concept of US gun control is a redundant topic for discussion and Americans should get realistic about that fact. Even if there was the political will (and there isn't) how could you possibly get the guns off the people who have them now and how could you stop new guns getting in? The drugs prohibition debacle shows that it is not possible to prohibit a commodity for which there is a demand.

Aside from this, even if it were possible I think Americans would just knife each other or hit each other with baseball bats to a similar level of mortality as exists today.

Unfortunately the US has become a society where life is quite literally "cheap". There are huge belts of absolute poverty the like of which simply does not exist in any other developed world nation, neither in its depth nor its breadth. Another point to note is that there is now significantly LESS social mobility (people rising up the income ladder by work, education etc.) than in Europe. There are 20 million Americans who have abandoned all hope and as civilisation has abandoned them, so they have abandoned civilisation.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 01:31 PM

When I was in Newfoundland the murder rate was one or two a year and the murder rate by gun was almost non existant. I actually cannot recall one incident in my 31 years on the island. There was some gun violence. As a matter of fact, my cousin's husband shot up my uncle's house and the window of an RCMP cruiser. He was very angry and "acting out". Another time an RCMP officer had to shoot a young man who waved a 22 at a crowd of people (the gun was unloaded and didn't have a bolt but it was dark)There are hunting accidents, but may more have died from exposure to the elements than to lead. I can see why the Canadian authorities want to limit the number of guns out there and to ensure that they are being stored responsibly.

Clinton I'm inclined to agree about Heston. There is no room in civilized discourse for "You have to pry this gun from my cold dead hands."


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: katlaughing
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 01:45 PM

Meanwhile, yet another kid in the USA has "shot up" in school. He is now in critical condition after being shot by a SWAT team, but no one else was hurt. What's that old saying...violence begets violence...

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 02:09 PM

"You have to pry this gun from my cold dead hands."

If that was him volunteering to lay down and die, I'd accept that offer in a heart-beat! He'll die soon enough... not that it'll matter... some other nutter will come along and take his place, and maybe even be more of a zealot, more insensitive than CH was...

KL... I don't get yer point? Are you saying the police shouldn't have shot him???   Cause taking into consideration the volatile nature of the teenage brain, this young man needed help... And it's unfortunate he didn't get the the help he needed before this... but when he CHOSE to brandish a gun in a classroom full of his fellow kids, he needed to be taken down!

"but no one else was hurt"

That's the most important point...


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 02:32 PM

It is somewhat of a cycle here. In many places the police are under paid, under trained and nervous. Makes the perps jumpy, wihich makes the police quicker to shoot. I'm not saying it happens everwhere But I have to admire the cops. I would put my body between a gun and the public for $10/hour.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 02:42 PM

"In many places the police are under paid, under trained and nervous."

In his stand up show "Victory Begins At Home" Bill Maher made up some propaganda posters like were seen in WW 1&2... one of them depicted firemen, cops teachers and the caption read...

"You call the your heroes, but you pay them like chumps"

Apparently they can be found in his book "When You Ride Alone You Ride With Bin-ladden"


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Mark Clark
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 02:51 PM

I also watched the new DVD a couple of weeks ago. I thought Moore did a great job with it. We plan to see it again soon.

I’ve long thought that the availability of guns was responsible for much of the gun violence in the U.S. but more and more I’m coming to the view that the biggest problem is really the culture of the U.S. and the don’t-tread-on-me chip-on-the-shoulder attitude that is so pervasive in our society.

The killings at Columbine High School weren’t the result of guns lying about peoples homes, the weapons were purchased at a gun show by friends of the killers who met the legal requirements for their purchase. The masacre was at least a year in the planning and happened in spite of the fact that the authorities had been warned about the killers’ intentions and those records kept on file.

For more insight into the events at Columbine, I recommend No Easy Answers: The Truth Behind Death at Columbine by Brooks Brown and Rob Merritt. Brooks Brown was a student at Columbine and a self-described friend of the two boys who did the killing. Rob Merritt is a journalist and happens also to be a friend of ours. Their book details the history of the two killers and their families and the general brutality that was meted out at Columbine by the jocks and their circle of friends against those students who, by dress or interests, didn’t conform. Though, as their title suggests, Brown and Merritt don’t provide any easy answers, they do provide a great deal of insight into the killers’ motivations and suggest some policies that might have prevented those killings and perhaps many others that either have or may happen. If you decide to purchase this book, the link I provided will credit Mudcat.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 03:00 PM

I haven't yet seen the movie so cannot contribute, but here is a lengthy critique, for your review and consideration, of Moore's alleged editing practices:

http://www.hardylaw.net/Truth_About_Bowling.html


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 03:21 PM

Ya... and people have critizied the pictures taken of the moon landing trying to disprove that too...

It strikes me that whoever wrote the above web critique knows precious little about the art of film making...

I elect to dismiss it....


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 04:06 PM

I read the critique. I would say that the guy underestimates Moore and overestimates himself. His only valid point is that Moore edited speeches and such to reinforce his points. Here's some NEWS David, that's what filmakers do for a living. It isn't Moore's job to supply us with the raw footage.

FACT: the film is in the public eye and popular. FACT: Lockheed Martin and Charlton Heston and the NRA would win quite a bit of money in court if they can prove that Moore lied.
Fact: Documentary Filmakers voted to give Mr. Moore that oscar
Fact: those film makers know a lot more about Filmaking than David T. Hardy.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: katlaughing
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 05:47 PM

CH, sorry I wasn't clear. I just was sad that a violent response to violence was necessary and I don't mean just the police, possibly the young man was responding to violence, too, who knows? I've seen tv programs which talk about the tech advances in non-lethal intervention, some of them pretty sophisticated, and I was just wishing the cops had had those available to them, instead of having to use their weapons. I in no way meant they were not justified according to what I've read in early news reports.

It was more of a comment about our society in general. As you and others have said, the kids at Columbine and obviously this kid, all needed help and didn't get it. It's just depressing to see this happen again and again, ya know?

Thanks, Mark, for the link to that book.

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 05:54 PM

O.k.. gotcha KL... read ya 5 by 5...

Non lethal stuff for the cops is a neat idea, but as long as the bad guys are running around with LETHAL weapons I want the cops to have lethal weapons too...

In this situation, yes, I think it's unfortunate that this kid didn't get help, but ya.. like you said... according to the news so far, it sounds like a justifiable shoot... and in that case, I'm glad they dropped him before he was able to hurt anyone else...


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Nenana
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 07:04 PM

I don't think Moore was addressing poverty as an issue in this piece; he was addressing "middle" America that is fed by the media every night a large heaping bucket full of gory stories on the ten o'clock news.
I am living by American standards at poverty level and have lived in my truck in West Virginia, California, and Alaska and let me tell you Alaska was a whole lot less scary with all of its Guns, and Bears, and Men (The men aren't really scary at all just hairy, and I am not complaining)… because, I believe there is a lot more N.P.R. and not so much television.
   
             Erin


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 09:28 AM

The television news, and cops does make the country look like a war zone. "The culture of fear" idea does have some merit.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Peg
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 12:01 PM

One problem is, guns are very FAST in their effects. One could use a knife, a baseball bat, or a rock to exercise (or exorcise) their anger and fear and frustration, but it would   take a lot longer to kill as many people   as you can with a gun in a very short period of time. That is why, responsible ownership notwithstanding, there needs to be tighter restrictions and legislation making sure gun-owners know what the hell they're doing. Kids having access to guns while at the same time not knowing how to handle them safely is completely unacceptable; this is the fault of irresonsible gun owners. Hiding them in the drawer obviously isn't working.
Semi-automatic weapons should be illegal, period, to anyone outside law enforcement or military contexts.

I can't wait to see what Moore does with his next docu, Fahrenheit 911.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 12:29 PM

The other problem with guns is that you are not up close and actually involved, as you would be with a knife, for instance. There is something to be said for distance: I believe it tends to render the killing more impersonal. It certainly makes it easier.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 01:20 PM

And if you are close enough to someone to stab them, there's a chance they might be able to fight back. A gun, at bottom, is a coward's weapon, most especially when it's used against someone without a gun.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 02:33 PM

There's an old Klingon proverb...
"A thousand throats may be slit in one night, by a running man"

Or as I'm fond of saying...
"Dead is dead, not matter how big the hole is"

Which I think might be sort of the thinking towards the "Culture Of Violence" end of BFC... It really isn't the fault of the weapon... but more rather the culture that glorifies the USE of weapons on ones fellow human beings...

" Semi-automatic weapons should be illegal, period, to anyone outside law enforcement or military contexts."
You sure as hell got my vote there Peg!


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 02:43 PM

Old Romulian Rebutal
"Only if they stay still."

:D


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 02:50 PM

Maybe if the would be tough guys could start thinking in terms of the Klingon Bat'leth as a status symbol rather than Uzis, we'd be getting somewhere. "Guns are for wimps!"


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,Klingoff
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 03:05 PM

re:" Semi-automatic weapons should be illegal, period, to anyone outside law enforcement or military contexts."- PEG

Can you find the ignorance in this statement without someone explaining it???


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 03:17 PM

Sure, Klingoff -- you're going to trot out the old argument that if a weapon is illegal, only crooks will own one, and upstanding citizens won't be able to defend themselves.

Statistics prove you wrong, however.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 03:54 PM

Frankly, very few Americans truly gives a shit about school shootings.
What used to be a guaranteed headline and CNN all day story, is now passe. No one cares.

If you think this is bullshit, can you tell me where today's school shooting occurred? No? Well, that is because CNN hasn't picked up the story that occurred nearly four hours ago. Probably because not enough kids were shot to make the story sexy.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 04:03 PM

Now if the people who make most items of modern equipment only made the guns, the problem of all those old guns out in circulation would be a lot less troubling. As soon as the warranty ran out, they'd start falling to pieces.

Where's "built-in obsolescence" when you need it?


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 04:14 PM

CNN running around covering EVERY single school shooting is part of the PROBLEM... part of the glorification of violence... and part of overwelming people with violent imagry and attitudes that desensitize them to the horror...


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: katlaughing
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 04:50 PM

Too right, CH!! It's the constant barrage on the news, doing each story to "death." Talk about glorification!


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 05:29 PM

Well, if that's the case why aren't they covering the school shooting that happened today?

The problem isn't the media's fault, for chrissake. They are merely a predictably reactionary response to something that is really, truly fucking sick in our society that no one has been able to put their finger on (as Mark Clark pointed out in his post above): children killing children at school. But nobody ever puts it exactly like that, do they? Even when discussing this film, which has a lot of information in it on school shootings, and deals very seriously with it. I'm always amazed that so few people ever mention the scene in K Mart, when Michael Moore is informing the K Mart employees that this is so and so (can't remember the students' names) who still have bullets in their bodies and were disabled from the Columbine shooting. That to me is the single most powerful scene in the film. The horrified reaction of the employees to the disabled victims of the Columbine shooting confronting them in their workplace.

To me, that scene tells the TRUE story of what Americans feel and think about school shootings. The fact that this school shooting occured at around 12:30 pm Eastern (it resulted in one student death and another student being critically wounded, with the student shooter alive and in custody) still isn't on the CNN website front page at around 5:30 pm Eastern time speaks volumes. Americans are not only deeply inurred to this sort of child against child violence, they also aren't really concerned enough to demand anything be done about it. Even the Million Mom March wasn't much of a blip on the radar.

I think it's time to stop blaming the media for everything (despite them being culpable in a whole lot of bad shit) negative Americans don't want to see about themselves. The problem is us, pure and simple. Life is cheap in the US, especially the lives of children. Especially the lives of poor children. I believe machismo is a large part of it. The peculiarly American sort of machismo that smacks arrogantly of the sort of crazed machismo of the "Are you talkin' to me?" ilk. Or the crazed machismo of the militarist "Kill 'em all, lot God sort 'em out" ilk. Or the crazed machismo of the gangsta ilk. The John Wayne/Sly Stallone/Arnold Schwarzenegger swagger that says "Don't fuck with this American, or I'll come at you guns blazin for looking at me wrong" sort of attitude.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 05:39 PM

I'm not blaming the media... I'm saying that media is a large part of a much bigger problem...

Machismo is also a large part of it...

Easy access to guns is a large part of it...

Lots of stuff is a large part of it...

"The problem is us, pure and simple"

I see NOTHING simple about that suggestion... not that I'm disagreeing with the spirt of the statement...


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 05:40 PM

Sorry, didn't mean to come off as if I was blasting katlaughing and Clinton Hammond. I'm not.

The swagger of which I speak is very prevalent amongst young males of junior and senior high age in the US, especially when those young males are in the company of their friends, away from adult eyes.

Where do they learn it? Well, for starters, there is the current Oval Office occupant, who just yesterday swaggered into the UN, and basically said "I was damn right to kick Saddam Hussein out of Iraq and y'all better understand things are gonna be done my way", effectively thumbing his nose at the international community who opposed the Shrub swaggering into Iraq, swinging his big dick military machine.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: katlaughing
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 06:50 PM

Thanks for the clarification, guest.

A couple of thoughts: some of us have been or are "the media."
This posted song in an old thread has much to say, imo. And, okay, more than a couple:-), I thought I'd shared this before, so please bear with me. I couldn't find it in a search so maybe I just linked to it when I had it online. Anyway, here it is, written after Columbine, as published in the Liberal Opinion Week:

A Mind-full Spoken©

Quiet time for children fosters positive adulthood"


I am no stranger to recent grief. My mother passed away last January. She was one of my circle whom I call my sounding board. She was always ready to lend an ear and enter into lively discussion about the events of the day. After her death, I found my voice was largely silent; hushed in the alcoves of grief which filled my heart. Even now, I find it difficult to bring forth the expressions of opinion, knowing she is not here to share them with.

She was a native of and lived in Colorado. Last Spring, my siblings and I found ourselves grateful she was not a witness to the tragedy of children killing children and their teacher in Littleton, Colorado. A place just a few miles from where her grandparents homesteaded.
   
In this time of my own personal mourning, I have discovered an extraordinary cyber-community called the Mudcat Cafe (www.mudcat.org). It is filled with people who have a common link in their love and performance of folk music. At the time of Littleton massacre, the discussion forum was filled with hundreds of passionate and thoughtful opinions, suggestions, and lamentations over the plight of the world's children, especially here in America. Many reasons were cited in an attempt to explain the motivation for such hatred and senseless destruction. At the same time there were debates on censorship and the role music, the media, and entertainment industries play in the weave of society's fabric.
   
One of the important points many of us agreed upon was the need to allow children to be children. Think about what a person in their 30's, 40's, or 50's might have known of the entire world, at five years old. Most of us knew there were starving children somewhere thus we should eat all of our dinner. Today's children, as one fellow Mudcatter pointed out, are global citizens from birth. With the blessings of the Internet, television, and telecommunications, the world is literally available at our fingertips. Therefore children are inundated and much more aware of all the good and bad in the world. They see the reality of the cruel world of wars, racial hatred, and despair; a reality I believe their tender souls and hearts were never meant to experience in such volumes, at such young ages.
   
Through all the pundits and finger pointing, many of us at the Mudcat concluded we are all of us guilty. Parents, teachers, school administrators, clergy, friends, everyone has failed in making a concerted effort to treat children with a protective tenderness born of compassion and an understanding of the limits of their "need to know". Children do not need to know the details of every tragedy; they do not need the visual images of strife and war of any kind.
   
One of my Mudcat friends reminded me of a phrase she'd read in Mothering Magazine about ten years ago. This term, benign neglect, describes the belief that children need time to be let alone; to sit under a tree and daydream; learn to know themselves in the solitude of imaginary play amongst the backdrop of nature or a quiet spot in the home. I think it is also an apt description of the need for children to experience boredom; a boredom they can alleviate through creative and positive means, guided by a parent or other responsible adult.
   
Today's children need DayTimers just to keep track of all of their activities, from grade school on. Sports and other activities are good and parents have good reason in believing all these things are necessary for their children's success in life. However, without moderation, I believe it creates an unnecessary and detrimental chaos in their hearts and minds, because, again, they were not meant to function at such levels. It's almost as though our society of hyper-consumerism expects the planted seed that is a child, to grow instantly into a strong and sturdy plant, able to bear mature fruit of a nature beneficial to all.
   
I do not know if any of these things were factors in the Colorado massacre. I only know that children need permission to just be children; allowed to run and play hard, sleep deeply, eat healthily, share their fears and joys willingly in a loving and nurturing environment.
   
Parents should be the first line of defence that ensures children this climate of healthy growth. Parents must, from the day of their child's birth, slow the pace of life down, even though it goes against society's dictates. They must take time for reading a book, singing a lullaby, holding a child near in comfort, listening to the silence. Without time to hear themselves and their own thoughts, understanding who they are becoming, how can we hope for children with well-developed critical thinking skills; skills so necessary in this fast-paced world? Even adults seem afraid of confronting themselves as they frantically fill all the hours of each day with work and other activities, trying to live up to a consumer culture which believes more of everything is better. Consequently, adults manifest the unbearable stress through heart disease, ulcers, and other ailments. How much damage might that same stress cause to the ever-changing bodies, minds and souls of children?
   
Home strife can cause children to act out in destructive ways. Our imperfect system allows many children to fall through the cracks; children who need intervention and advocacy in the very early years of their lives. Many times, teachers tell me of a student whose home life is an absolute hell of abusive parents, drug addiction, or even the harmful neglect of materialism. Each time, a teacher has worked the system; striving to obtain services which could turn that child's life around in a positive way. Too many times, the system failed to follow through, the children passed on to the next grade, their behaviour and learning skills deteriorated and they became the next potential youthful killers.
   
There has been much debate about the abuse or harassment such children suffer at the hands of their peers; a belief that it feeds the fear, embarrassment and anger until a boiling point of blinding rage and retribution sets them on a path of destruction.

It is true that humans are pack-oriented; anyone different will be picked at and ostracised. While this should have no part in our society and especially should not be tolerated in our schools, how victims react to this abuse can vary greatly. One student may have the determination and skills to rise above it; using it as a motivating factor for success despite the setbacks of loneliness. Another may seethe in rage, withdraw, and seek refuge in spurious activities, embracing the negativity of all aspects of society.
   
How they react is in direct relation to how they've been raised; how they relate to the world. If their parents are involved in their lives, demonstrating positive skills of coping, learning, and living, they may choose the "beat of a different drummer" deliberately and
proudly standing out and away from the crowd. Children who experience a multitude of negativity in their early years, who are passively entertained through the media or constantly kept busy, may lack the skills necessary to cope in a positive way.
   
If nothing else comes out of the Littleton tragedy, we must all of us, join in making a difference, one child at a time. Major changes in society must begin with baby steps, one-on-one interaction. I hope the adults of our world can find the strength to practise good judgement, to indulge in moderation in all our world has to offer, thus offering each child the same opportunity for self-discovery.
   
My mother understood this. I cannot count the hours I was left to wander through the imaginary world my mind created. It was filled with the wonders of the stories and poems she read to me; of the songs she sang to me. May it be so for today's children; in this way may we heal the hideous disease which fostered such destruction in Littleton.

© original April 28, 1999
© revised October 20, 1999
all rights reserved


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 24 Sep 03 - 08:08 PM

Here's what the macho gun approach leads to in another setting - "Iraq: the reality and rhetoric"

..."We heard voices and so my husband went out to check what was happening. We thought they were thieves," said Hudood. "My husband shouted at them and then immediately they started shooting."

By the family's account, the troops of the 82nd Airborne - known proudly as the "All American" - opened up a devastating barrage of gunfire lasting for at least an hour. When the shooting stopped, three farmers were dead and three others were injured, including Hudood's two sons, Tassin, 12, and Hussein, 10.

Yesterday a US military spokesman in Baghdad, Specialist Nicole Thompson, insisted that the troops came under attack from "unknown forces". The "unknown forces" ran into a building, which was surrounded by the troops who then called in an air strike. "I can confirm at least one enemy dead," she said.

The US military has chosen not to count the civilian casualties of the war in Iraq. But while more than 300 US soldiers have now been killed since the invasion to topple Saddam in March, thousands more Iraqis have died....


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 25 Sep 03 - 07:44 PM

Did I mention that I once met Heston long ago? I gave him a tour of a copper mine in British Columbia (and I can't very well have made that up, now can I?) He was a pompous, humourless shit who didn't think my jokes were funny, much like your generic mudcatter. Anyway, with no love lost, and with no knowledge of filmamking, with not having seen the *&^*&^ movie so thereby violating my oath of silence while ignorant, I still say: The editing of the part "I said to the Mayor. . . We're already here!" Sounds pretty tacky and is surely something I couldn't bring myself to do if I were a filmamker, which I'm not. Anyway, I'll see the movie this weekend. I guess it "makes ya think."


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 25 Sep 03 - 08:46 PM

ooh, my, looking back, I didn't mean by that that any of you were pompous or humorless. ho ho. best to stop now. *BIG-ASSSED-GRIN*


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 26 Sep 03 - 02:01 PM

Don't grin at me with that thing Heric!

:-)


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Subject: Is Michael Moore a Big Fat Liar?
From: GUEST,Strick
Date: 26 Sep 03 - 11:57 PM

"FACT: the film is in the public eye and popular. FACT: Lockheed Martin and Charlton Heston and the NRA would win quite a bit of money in court if they can prove that Moore lied.
Fact: Documentary Filmakers voted to give Mr. Moore that oscar
Fact: those film makers know a lot more about Filmaking than David T. Hardy."

Interesting. I don't have any use for the NRA, but the questions about Moore's credibility are getting louder. Check this link: Bowl-o-Drama
I can imagine that Forbes could be biased in this report. But, by the reasoning above, if it's not true, Moore would wind quite a bit of money in court if he could prove Forbes lied.

Or look at the list of complaints about Moore's veracity at this link at spinsanity.com: Michael Moore

I'm quite impressed that they seem to take all sides on, left, right and center. Take a look at the other articles for yourself. Why would these guys lie? At what point does a filmmaker's right to tell a story slip into intentionally misrepresenting facts to sensationalize and even lie to get attention? Is it wrong to question his credibility when he portrays himself picking a gun up at a bank and makes the comments he does in the movie when that portrayal is contrary to the actual facts in the matter? I know it's only a movie, but when the points he makes as factual come into question, are we still supposed to believe everything he says?

In any case even Mr. Moore's greatest fans might want to check the facts before taking anything Mr. Moore says too seriously, just to separate the artistic license from the truth.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 27 Sep 03 - 01:49 AM

I agree that Moore's film warrants critical study. On the other hand,
Columbine did happen. The NRA is real, and is also the strongest lobby group in America. School shootings continue to occur. Charlton Heston did promote a gun culture. The statistics on murder rates in various countries were real. Violence in the US is a fact of life.

Those statements alone tend to make any criticism of Moore's film seem somewhat picayune. If he presented the facts with a little too much artistic license, it doesn't matter as much as that the facts themselves exist. It's a terrible shame that conditions in the US were such that they presented a topic for him to film.

Agree?


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,Strick
Date: 27 Sep 03 - 10:36 AM

I do agree pdc. The only question I had after reading the degree with which he is accused of stretching the truth to make his point was whether his film should have gotten the Oscar for a documentary or something else.

Some of the things he said stretch the truth in my mind but I don't know if he went too far. In the interest of being fair and balanced (come and get me O'Reilly) someone posted Moore's response on another forum and here it is for people to make up their own minds.

How to Deal with the Lies


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Sep 03 - 11:29 AM

So Strick, upon reading Moore's very detailed response, which does show these "critics" of the film to be the ones lying (the link to the Chicago Sun Times story about the "bang for your buck" gun in the bank scene alone supports Moore, not his critics), what do you think about this film which, as I recall, you yourself had never seen?

All art, all writing, all documentary, all journalism, comes from the subjective point of view of the artist/writer. If these so-called critics have such a problem with the subjective point of view of a filmmaker, why not make their own film that presents their point of view?

Answer: no fucking talent or ambition. It's easier to get paid for taking potshots at "the enemy" (ie anyone who holds a subjective opinion different than your own) from the sidelines.

But I am concerned about people like them, and possibly you too. You really don't seem to be able to grasp the simple concept that different people view "the facts" differently, and it doesn't mean necessarily that anyone is lying, or even being manipulative. As a documentary filmmaker and non-fiction writer, Michael Moore's job is to give us HIS opinion of the real life circumstances and events and issues and personalities he chooses to write about. He is under no obligation to tell "the other side" of the story, because that isn't HIS story.

So get over it.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 27 Sep 03 - 11:34 PM

I'm all for a flimmaker's right to tell a story. But he or she should stick to the facts if he claims it's a documentary, not fiction. The Lockheed plant wasn't been involved in making ICBMs during the life time of the two misguided students who commited the crimes at Columbine. And editing someone's speech so it says something very different from what it originally said isn't fair even to Charlton Heston. I've seen those clips for myself.

It is fair to say that Moore plays the facts loosely for shock and entertainment purposes. In my mind that makes his details as trustworthy as that Willie Horton ad he edited and only partially corrected.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 12:15 AM

Actually Strick, I don't listen to people like you who diss and dismiss films they haven't even seen, and make outrageous claims they find at right wing nut conspiracy theory websites, like you have.

Considering this is a discussion of the film by people who have actually seen it, your attempts to stir up the hornet's nest looks like trolling to me.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Sam L
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 02:08 AM

Many of the most striking things, for me, haven't come up.
I felt I was supposed to be shocked that Marilyn Manson was a reasonably articulate fellow, but I wasn't.

The cartoon was pretty funny.

The link between Lockheed Martin and welfare-to-work--what the hell is that? What?

The link between the culture of fear and capitalism was very nicely and lightly indicated in tossed-off lines about news and ads. Reminded me of the character in the Dharma Bums who would race crazily down a mountain but was afraid of looking scruffy in a nice restaraunt.

I think the media still deserves it's big share of blame. It's just like us, only more noticibly so. I believe the story of any incident in the news is mostly written before it gets around to actually happening. I've never been present at an interview that came out right in print. My father wrote an awfully funny poem lifted based on the headline Small Farms Disappearing In Tennessee, the poem was re-printed in the bestseller The Rosewood Casket.

And I thought Moore seemed to go out of his way to make his leanings clear, to stand in the open for attack and rebutal, to skip over even his own observations for the sake of the liberal party line, or a version of it. Why he so earnestly expected any sort of informed and reflective opinion from Charlton Heston is completely beyond me. His lingering leaving of a photo seemed murkily sentimental, and probably in very bad taste, as if Heston had killed the child. Why not Dick Clark's van, then? according to the links he makes, and his own findings that guns themselves are not the key thing?

But it was a pretty good film, and his leanings clear enough, his editing to be expected, given his intentions. He helped his opponents with that. Why do liberals feel the need to help their ideological opponents? They just seem to need help I guess. OR--one wants to draw them in to the game of thoughtful and sensible discourse, perhaps like a card shark draws you into a game he intends to beat you at. Conservatives prefer the game of money, power, and fuck you, which gives them a home court advantage, and then they spin some bullshit that sounds vaguely okay until you get around to thinking about it. Or so it often seems, to me.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 09:20 AM

Well, some of us *progressives* don't feel a need to pander to the opposition, and aren't even apologetic about it! I have nearly as much contempt for liberals as I do reactionary right types, though. I'm also really not interested in a dialogue with rigid "my mind is made up forever" people of any stripe. If a person can't open their minds enough to be persuaded to change their thinking, why not just blow their own brains out? I mean, it isn't like they are using them properly. :)

I agree that leaving the picture at Heston's door was over the top, and unnecessary. But I liked the way he edited that sequence of scenes. That became one of the flash points for the conservative right, who claimed that Moore only went to Heston to ambush him. I kept waiting for Moore to read Heston the riot act, and was really disappointed he didn't. That would have given me, the viewer, some sense of vindication I think, and may have even acted as a release valve for some of the anger I felt over Heston's actions in the wake of the school shootings. A big problem with the criticism of the Heston sequence is that people took it out of the context of Moore's body of work. Moore has used this device in all of his films and tv shows, and it is one of the hallmarks of his style of filmmaking. So it seemed ludicrous that the right wing nuts, along with the mainstream media, decided to hone in on that one thing.

It's been some time now since I saw the film, but my recollection was that the Lockheed Martin sequence was attempting to connect the purportedly "local" community gun violence to the national military weapons violence. I thought that part of the film was the weakest though. I expected much better from Moore, and thought he should have been able to draw much more obvious linkages between community violence on a local level and military violence on the national and international level. Certainly could have been done using the McVeighs and the Oklahoma City bombings, don't you think? But I thought the military violence montage with the Louis Armstrong song playing over it was very effective.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 02:32 PM

Thanks for the vote of confidence, Guest. I've now rented and watched the movie. With a transcript of Heston's speech in front of me. (The first time I ever been exposed to anything remotely related to the NRA since I don't have or use guns.) So at this point I'm entitled to express an opinion, right? Or is still trolling so long as someone's point of view differs from yours? Perhaps, it's just a personal dig, Oh Nameless One?

Here's my problem. Once you open this door you have to accept that it swings both ways. A hypothetical: a Viet Nam vet filmmaker wants to make a film about Viet Nam war protesters. He starts with a clip with that famous still photo of "Hanoi Jane" getting off the plane in Hanoi. He takes a speech she gave in Califorina at roughly the same time and edits it together making it seem that not only is she even harsher in her criticism of the war that she's giving a vividly anti-American speech from the capitol of an enemy power. He never really says that, he just makes it look that way with his editing. It's OK from his point of view because everyone knows, well, everyone he knows knows, that Jane Fonda is anti-American. Her "born-again" Christian thing is just a sham.

The facts are identical, so explain it to me. At what point does a filmmaker stop producing documentary and start producing propaganda? Or again, is the difference between the two merely what you agree and disagree with? Integrity is irrelevant so long as it supports a message you support?


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 02:57 PM

Thank you for deciding to actually see the film you were previously reviewing without benefit of having actually seeing it Strick. I appreciate that you have taken your precious sweet time to do so, despite the fact that you seemed pretty certain in advance of what your reaction to it would be, based upon what you read about it at right wing nut conspiracy theory websites (most of those guys haven't seen the film either, I might add).

As to your example above. I think any documentary filmmaker has the right to take that Jane Fonda footage and do with it whatever they please, manipulate it any old way they want, and enslave it to the service of the story they are telling in their film.

You see, some of us realize how thin and amiguous is the veil between truth and fiction, and what a joke the concept of journalistic objectivity is. Some of us who regularly watch documentary films also know that they are frequently told from the highly subjective point of view of the filmmaker. There are no documentary filmmaking "rules" that dictate how the subjective opinions and point of view of the filmmaker must be depicted in the film. Nobody gets kicked out of the documentary filmmaking category at the Oscars for expressing their political opinions and point of view. That is just plain ridiculous, and shows how shaky a grasp on reality the right wing nuts have, nothing more, nothing less.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 03:05 PM

" I think any documentary filmmaker has the right to take that Jane Fonda footage and do with it whatever they please"

Ya... the onus is NOT on the filmmaker to 'present unbiased fact' but rather for the view to watch critically... Which I'm sure any film-maker (docu or fiction) prefers in an audience... The problem is in the quality of ones criticisim... The reviewer linked to above, obvioulsy has precious little grasp on the concept of film making... Especially documentary film making... Where ya, one edits and cuts and such for effect... The Heston stuff in question was pretty blatantly cobbled together from different speaches... he's in different clothing for crying out loud... any dullard can see that...

"some of us realize how thin and amiguous is the veil between truth and fiction"

There's a veil???

LOL


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 03:37 PM

The cutting an editor does is as much the art of filmmaking as the writing, acting, and directing is. However, the point of that is totally lost on these right wing nuts.

Moore's most vociferous critics don't give a shit about the art of documentary filmmaking though. If they did, they would be criticizing his style, which I mentioned above. Moore's documentary style includes stalking subjects in his films and tv shows. He did it to brilliant effect in "Roger and Me" which neither the right wing nut conspiracy theorists or the mainstream media talking heads who hosted the "blast Moore" talk shows seemed to know anything about. Hellooo--if your are going to critique the filmmaker/review the film, shouldn't you at least know something about their body of work?

But the attacks against Moore had nothing to do with his artistic style. He is being attacked for expressing political opinions and points of view which rarely, if ever, are seen in the mainstream media, because those political opinions (which are on the radical left, not the liberal left, as so many claim) are anathema to the values of the mainstream media conglomerados and their supporters.

You see this sort of disconnect all the time with the talking heads. I was watching Washington Week on Friday night, and there were all the sparkling political experts representing all good mainstream media conglomerates like PBS, US News and World Reports, the Wall Street Journal, NY Times, Washington Post blah blah blah blah. They were talking about the field of Democratic candidates running for president, and how messy the debates were for the media types to spin. And they said "why don't those losers just drop out of the race, and give the REAL field a chance..." meaning of course, those Democratic candidates of the far left, whom they named--now Sharpton, now Kucinich, now Mosley Braun...

The media whores who pounced on Moore and his film and his book "Stupid White Men" have that same disconnect with reality beyond their moronic Beltway state of mind that the right wing nuts have with the concepts of "fact" "truth" and "documentary".


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 04:12 PM

Actually if stalking prey like Moore does was the issue, what would Mike Wallace do?

"Ya... the onus is NOT on the filmmaker to 'present unbiased fact' but rather for the view to watch critically..."

So there's no repercussions for creating a documentary in which the filmmaker re-writes history to suit his purpose, for example? A liberal version of "1984"?

Since we're supposed to view the film critically, I assume I have permission not to see the films of someone I know routinely presents falsehoods as the documentary truth? Why bother if I have ample reason to distrust the integrity of the filmmaker? I'm not talking about Mel Gibson changing the facts in "Braveheart", of course, but someone who's trying to persuade with what they purport to be facts. And I assume I'm entitled to ignore any argument another poster makes from one of Moore's movies or books since Moore feels entitled to change the facts to meet his goals? I judge the authors of books, left or right, that way, why not filmmakers?   

You really don't see that lying not only debases Moore's arguments, it weakens valuable cases being made by other anti-gun activists who become guilty by association? In my mind Moore's no different than Rush Limbaugh or Jerry Springer, someone who cares less about the truth than ratings. It's less about the message than enriching Michael Moore.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 04:24 PM

"So there's no repercussions for creating a documentary in which the filmmaker re-writes history to suit his purpose, for example?"

It's done everyday. Called the network news documentary.

BTW Strick, you and no other critics of Moore's film, has proved he lied about anything. You are, however, guilty of painting with much too broad a brush, when you compare him to Rush Limbaugh or Jerry Springer.

That same tactic (claiming that the messenger is lying) is currently being used by the political right to discredit Al Franken, who actually had a boat load of Harvard grad students assisting him with the research for his book (it was written while he was on a fellowship at Harvard), and has included 26 pages of cites to substantiate his claims in it. Nonetheless, according to the political right pundits, which includes the Limbaughs, the Blitzers, and the Russerts, it is all a pack of lies. That is just plain lazy ass yellow journalism of the worst sort. Say your political enemy is lying over and over and over, without ever offering any substantive proof that they are lying, and pretty soon everyone agrees, the guy is a liar.

Well, not all of us are biting at the political right's bait and switch tactics there, Strick. Though you apparently have taken a big bite out of their misinformation campaigns, and swallowed them hook, line, and sinker, as they say.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 04:26 PM

Okay - I saw it last night. I hope I won't get lambasted by this overboiled intellectual Guest running on overtime here, for having seen it too late - I apologize in advance for my tardiness, all right?

My impressions, for what they're worth: Pretty good humor, pretty honest in stating his biases and in revealing that the answers were not to be had. Rather luke warm in the been-there, seen-that, department as a re-hash of the Roger & Me style. The former should have been the Oscar winner.

I personally still could not have edited the Heston material as he did, although I don't think it was too over-the-top (Heston did have a silly smirk on his face as he said "Don't come here? We're already here,"- but that could be a function of his poor public presentation, which is his true debilitating handicap over the decades.) But, then, I'm not an intellectual egghead, or an artist, so my opinion isn't worth much. If Moore wants to perform a cost:benefit analysis on credibility versus notoriety, he's the creator and Oscar-winner, so that's okay with me.

I otherwise adopt the comments of Fred Miller above, adding that I think Lockheed and Dick Clark were both largely part of the notoriety calculation, and with one more point: I don't watch television. I don't grasp this whole culture and climate of perpetual fear thing. But my conclusion and recommendation to the rest of you is pretty simple, then, too: Trash your TV sets, and thereby, necessarily, lighten up. (Was that Moore's unstated conclusion: Addicted to television/addicted to fear?)


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 04:35 PM

"someone who's trying to persuade with what they purport to be facts"
Show me facts that are not subject to interpretation...

"since Moore feels entitled to change the facts to meet his goals"
Find me someone, ANYONE who isn't... especially in entertainment...

" In my mind Moore's no different than Rush Limbaugh or Jerry Springer"
Why does he have to be? And is anyone any different? no...


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 04:38 PM

Sorry, the review I read of Franken's book saying it was designed to be read by people who agree with him was enough for me. As was a friend saying that it wasn't as good as his previous work. He said to save my money. Couldn't speak to it at all.

On the other hand, it is clear that Moore's editing of Heston's speech in Denver was designed to be misleading, to give people who view the film a false impression of what Heston said and when. That's a lie, plain and simple. I'm not claiming he's lying in general to discredit his cause. I'm saying he's lying in this particular because he twisted the facts and that damages his cause. I saw it for myself at your suggestion. Film and transcript in hand, it's undenyable. What sort of proof were you expecting? Would you like a copy of the speech?

If I find Moore as untrustworthy as Rush Limbaugh as a result, well that's my business. He's the same kind of clown as Jerry Springer. Disagree if you will, but dismissing me with the same tactic you describe being used agaisnt Franken, well, that's ironic.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 04:38 PM

Holier than thou heric,

I criticized Strick for attempting to critique the film and defend the right wing nuts creating all these conspiracy theories about it, without having actually seen it.

I have not had any problem discussing the film with people in the thread who actually have, which are mostly people like yourself who have just rented it on DVD or video.

I rarely watch television either, but I have a good grasp on the culture and climate of perpetual fear thing. I think it is epidemic amongst middle class white Americans in particular, whether they watch tv or not.

And I agree, "Roger and Me" was much more deserving of an Oscar than "Bowling for Columbine" which succeeded in getting people talking, but as film, wasn't executed as well as one would expect a Cannes and Oscar winning film to be. It wasn't nearly as cohesive a story line, or as well written as "Roger and Me".


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 04:50 PM

If those are the most significant "distortions" the critics could come up with in the film, they wouldn't have added up to much, even if they'd been accurately reported by the people knocking the film.

And looked at more closely they add up to a lot less than that.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 04:53 PM

As you will Guest. I heard critisims about the movie and offered sources that referred to those criticisms, made by people who've seen the movie, available for anyone here to see and judge for themselves. Offered links to both sides of the argument. I'm unworthy to repeat them without seeing the movie? I saw it and saw what was done for myself. At least one of the major criticisms is true, one that's unworthy of the filmmaker. I'm holier than thou because I looked for myself?

Peace Guest. I'm not knocking the movie or the need to rationalize gun issues in the United States. I just don't trust Michael Moore and wish there was someone more trustworthy taking up the cause.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 04:55 PM

Guest: I'm a middle class white American - male, no less - and I understand the fear of unemployment and living the hard life of say, Flynt, Michigan. As a result I fearfully WORK HARDER, which is the main thing I'm trying to correct in fostering my self-development.

I have also live urban for the past fifteen years at least. Ten years ago (but no longer) my neighborhood was very dangerous late at night. As a result, I simply avoided certain areas at certain times. Making the leap to fear causes gun purchases and a willngness to pull the trigger is a place I just can't get to. But, that's what I did appreciate about the film. Moore accepted and acknowledged that that doesn't quite make sense, either. (I think he had to do to get to the point about YOUTH trigger-happiness, much less pre-schooler trigger-happiness.) That six year old, after all, was neither white nor middle class, nor could he have had too much time watching COPS on his resume. Marilyn Manson doesn't answer the Colmbine teenagers, but nothing apparently does.

Fear of black males doesn't do it either. I believe he over-emphasized that one on the notoriety calculation. I would like to see a "profiler" draw up the true profile of the dominant, caricatured, gun killer. Moore didn't try that.

It is, after all, a great mystery.


(Clinton: Your #2 is over-the-top.)


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 05:11 PM

Oh my goodness you can google the question to your heart's content. Look-see, for example (these are victim stats, not perps. But upon further googling, I don't expect I will learn that middle class white male excessive television watchers shot'm all up):

"Young people between the ages of 15 and 24 had the highest firearm death rates in every racial group (rates based on 10 year period 1989-1998). Rates were the highest among Black and Hispanic youth between the ages of 15 and 24 years, then decreased sharply in the older age groups. Rates among Whites increased gradually across the age span, with firearm suicides driving the rates among older white males. Rates for elder San Franciscans could be calculated only for Whites, because there were fewer than 6 deaths per age-group in the other race/ethnic categories.

Whites accounted for 36% of all firearm injury deaths, Blacks accounted for 31%, Hispanics accounted for 11%, and Asians accounted for 22% in 1998. . . . It is important to note that controlling for socioeconomic and other demographic variables often eliminates patterns that manifest in terms of race."

http://www.tf.org/tf/injuries/firea4.shtml


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 05:12 PM

"I would like to see a "profiler" draw up the true profile of the dominant, caricatured, gun killer. Moore didn't try that."

I agree it would be wonderful if we could draw up a true profile of the dominant, caricatured, gun killer. But I'm confused as to who YOU think that might be.

Moore didn't try that because it is an impossible task. Statistics in that area are no better for gun killers than they are on the police engaging in racial profiling, ie it has been done so rarely, there are no reliable statistics.

So when it is impossible to prove statistically, we Americans tend to rely upon our emotional and intellectual reactions to the anecdotal evidence presented to us by the mass media. For instance, I wouldn't deny that there have been some black male school shooters. But anecdotally, it appears, according to reports in the mainstream media, that school shooters are predominantly white males.

On the other hand, gang related killings, anecdotally, are most often presented to us by the mainstream media as having been predominantly carried out by black males. So, do I believe that most school shooter murders are perpetrated by white males, and most gang related murders are perpetrated by black males because it is true, or because this is the way that the media has reported on the issue of male gun violence, and framed the debate for us, as Fred Miller suggests above? And if that is the case, ie that the media is guilty of presenting anecdotal evidence as if it were statistical evidence, which they do all the time, in order to perpetuate myths about male gun violence in our society, then why are we holding Michael Moore accountable for pointing out those very sorts of discrepancies (though not "proving" them or providing easy, simplistic answers) that the mainstream media uses every single day in their so-called "objective" reporting of "facts"?


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 05:54 PM

I wasn't going to speculate other than doubting it was a middle aged middle class white excessive-television-watching couch potato.

My guess is that it is a young male of low socioeconomic status, rural or urban and rarely suburban (due to economics), and of no particular race.

The importance of that, if true, is that Charlton Heston and his caricatured followers (middle aged middle class white guys with guns at home or at the gun range) would be quite irrelevant to policy making, even though they stay in the eye of the storm. In other words, Heston, like Dick Clark, was possibly part of the notoriety calculation, rather than being included for either substance or credibility.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 06:25 PM

A male American.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 07:09 PM

McGrath--and the Dunblane massacre shooter was...?

heric, Columbine is a suburban high school though, as have been many other sites of school shootings.

I don't agree that Heston was made a caricature in the film.

You are, I presume, aware of the NRA headquarters, located conveniently in suburban Washington DC? And this story:

Suspected Parkway Shooter Arrested

You can read about the alleged shooter's father here, at the People for American Way's website:

Daddy David A. Keene's political activities

Besides his chairmanship of the ACU, Keene sits on the NRA board and often praises the organization's legislative efforts in his column that runs on the ACU web site and in their publications.

And it all happens in the lily white, middle class environs in and around Fairfax, Virginia. Fairfax was the first in the nation to break the $90,000 median family income bracket and is statistically considered to be America's wealthiest county.

The professional profilers insisted that the DC shooters were white too, remember?,


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 07:22 PM

>>The professional profilers insisted that the DC shooters were white too, remember?<<

I had forgotten that. I suspect that's the hunter/killer psychotic profile though. A rare and aberrant species that we caucasoids get to claim in our membership. I still doubt that the middle and upper middle strata get to claim a major share of that 11,000 per year.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 07:45 PM

was...rather unusual.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Mark Clark
Date: 29 Sep 03 - 12:05 AM

Part of the discussion here seems to revolve around the percieved ethical responsibility of a “documentary” film maker. Keep in mind that Moore's films are called documentaries because they are made in the style of a documentary and so are classed as documentaries by those in “the business.” This is much the same thing as Bob Dylan being classified as a folk singer because his compositions are performed in the style of a folk singer. None of Dylan's songs are actually folk songs.

Moore works to tell his story from his perspective in a way he hopes we all find compelling and entertaining. Some people think anyone with Moore's point of view is automatically scum. I don't think Moore expects to change the minds of those people. Moore is really aiming at people whose minds aren't made up and who may be too busy or too apothetical to have even formed an opinion.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 29 Sep 03 - 12:13 AM

Moore himself says that he tells the story from the perspective of working men and women who never have their perspective presented. Roger and Me definitely did that, and I believe that Bowling for Columbine offered an argument against right wing governmental blame on Marilyn Manson, rock and (shudder) roll, etc. Normally, the average worker has to accept what "authority" states as true.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Mark Clark
Date: 29 Sep 03 - 12:45 AM

I always appreciate a story told from the perspective of working men and women. I figure the moneyed interests will always get their story out but you often have go digging to get the perspective of working men and women. What always amazes me is that people who aren't being paid will sometimes adopt the view of the moneyed interests even though they can never benefit and are often hurt by the very ideas they espouse. It's as though they think some really rich guys will notice that they took their side and lay some major wealth on them out of gratitude.
Oohhhh, Put it on the ground,
Spread it all around,
Work it with a hoe,
It will make your flowers grow.


      - Mark


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 29 Sep 03 - 10:35 AM

Strick...
Getting louder? What do you mean but "getting louder"?
This is for Strick's "getting louder" voice mu comments in italics


TITLE: Moore titled the movie Bowling for Columbine because, he suggests, the two kids who shot up Columbine High in Littleton, Colo., went to a 6 a.m. bowling class on the day of the attack.
ACTUALLY: Cool story, but police say it's not true. They say the shooters skipped their bowling class that day.

Yes, cool story, used to set up a rhetorical joke. Which police forbes.com? have you proved that Moore has lied or that there are conflicting stories. As I recall moore said, "witnesses said that the boys had been bowling"



MISSILES: Moore wonders whether kids at Columbine might be driven to violence because of the "weapons of mass destruction" made in Lockheed Martin's assembly plant in Littleton. Moore shows giant rockets being assembled.
ACTUALLY: Lockheed Martin's plant in Littleton doesn't make weapons. It makes space launch vehicles for TV satellites.

No Strick and Forbes Moore asked what the kids might think. Since the rockets built at the plant were originally designed as ICBM's and since the plant manager said many of them are built for Pentagon payloads. Moore told no lies here. Hes closer to the truth than forbes.com...    


WELFARE: Moore places blame for a shooting by a child in Michigan on the work-to-welfare program that prevented the boy's mother from spending time with him.
ACTUALLY: Moore doesn't mention that mom had sent the boy to live in a house where her brother and a friend kept drugs and guns.

Moore said that the boy got the gun from his uncle's house. Is not mentioning the drugs a lie? Are you saying that the drugs caused the kid to bring the gun to school and kill?

BANK: Moore says North Country Bank & Trust in Traverse City, Mich., offered a deal where, "if you opened an account, the bank would give you a gun." He walks into a branch and walks out with a gun.
ACTUALLY: Moore didn't just walk in off the street and get a gun. The transaction was staged for cameras. You have to buy a long-term CD, then go to a gun shop to pick up the weapon after a background check.

Moore had the lady from the bank describe the whole process. Including the background check. The lady from the bank said they had guns in the vault. Just exactly which detail are you quibbling with?

The "louder" voice here is Strick's he's just carrying what he has as childish arguements with me from another forum. As you can see from the above his principal weapon is rhetoric If you really want to see him twitch, say soemthing nasty about his hero George Bush. :)


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Sep 03 - 11:08 AM

Mark Clark, I have to disagree with you about documentary film and folk music being a good comparison. There is no other definition of documentary, other than it is not a work of fiction, while still telling a story about a subject. The number of styles used by the filmmakers are endless.

It would be nice if "Bowling for Columbine", being as popular as it has been, would have had the knock on effect of getting people into theatres to see other documentary films, but sadly, that hasn't happened.

I believe the huge popularity of the film, along with the huge popularity of Al Franken right now, are indicative of real winds of political change blowing. Moore especially, by speaking from the perspective of a working class person, has certainly touched a nerve with the public for speaking up, speaking out, and challenging the status quo. I saw Franken on C Span last night, and he too was saying something is most definitely going on when audiences in the range of 1,000 to 3,000 people are showing up at Barnes & Noble for his and Molly Ivins' book store appearances.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 29 Sep 03 - 07:30 PM

Some films which have been classed as documentary are in fact in some ways works of fiction, with rehearsed scenes and dialogue, more especially some of the pioneering documentaries - and I think that in fact it is quite fair calling them documentaries.

The defining thing about a documentary is that it is primarily interested in giving viewers an understanding of some situation or people, rather than in telling a story, even if it uses a storyline as a way of achieving this.

Michael Moore's approach is polemic rather than reportage, and he is quite open about that. Some people make films which at least aspire to lay out the facts objectively, and leave any judgement about them to the viewers. Michael Moore doesn't do it that way.

But then, in truth, a very large proportion of people making documentaries and programmes that claim to be "onjectve" are in fact in the business of producing covert propaganda - and sometimes the people making them are so embedded in establishment ways of thinking that they probably don't even realise that.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Mark Clark
Date: 30 Sep 03 - 01:19 AM

I’m certainly no expert on the classification of commercial films or the rules that determine their classification. I just figured the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was the body that determined the classification of “Bowling for Columbine” and that the film met the Academy's criteria. I probably tend toward GUEST's definition but, as it turns out, I'm not a member of the Academy. I also tend toward the academic definition of folk music—or Art Theme's definition, whicever is more restrictive—but the commercial world classifies Bob Dylan's music as folk.

I've taken the trouble to hunt down the Official Rules of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences because I was curious about their definition. The inquisitive reader will find the rules for documentaries on page 24 of this 55-page pdf file.

One can search the awards database at the Acadamy site or at ABC's Oscar.com site. All the information I can find leads me to the conclusion that a particular point of view is expected by the Academy for consideration as a documentary feature and it looks as though most of the past winners have presented their material from a chosen point of view.

While doing the background on documentaries, I chanced upon this review of “Monkey Trial,” a documentary about the famous Scopes Trial that pitted Clarence Darrow against William Jennings Bryan over the Biblical story of creation vs. Darwin's theory of evolution. I hadn't realized that the whole trial was just a stunt by the city fathers of Dayton, Tennessee, to generate some commercial activity in their town. Now that's funny.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Raptor
Date: 23 Mar 04 - 06:30 PM

I know I'm severly late on this topic but I just saw this film and I cried when the kids with bullets in them actualy got K-Mart to stop selling bullets.

If for nothing else that is good enough to give an award to Micheal Moore!

Guns Do Kill people!
Too many people!

Do people actualy hunt with a nine millimeter!
Are they being used to feed famillies?

Forbes Mag tries to discredit Mike Moore.
Forbes is all about the rich white folks who get rich on the backs of the poor.
Mike Moore is a poor man who lost his job when the rich slobs that owned his company moved it to another country so they could save money on cheep labour, so he made a film about this to increse awareness.

Good for Mike Moore And good for K-Mart

Wonderfull movie, A rare thing in these times of poor entertainment comming from Holywood!

I enjoyed the point about the fact that the cops weren't going to arest people for the polution that kills people!

Raptor


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 23 Mar 04 - 06:59 PM

This was a pretty good thread - and one which we owe to Rick Fielding, who wound it up and started it going.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,Larry K
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 02:08 PM

If you want to credit Moore with being a good film maker be my guest.   If you make a documnetary, I think the facts should be accurate.   I think Moore manipulates data and facts to make his point. Let me give you a few examples.

The title of the movie "Bowling for Columbine" is based on the fact that the two shooters went bowling in their bowling class the morning of the shooting.   Police records show that the two skipped class that day.

Moore claims the boys parents worked for Lockheed making missles which contributed to his shooting spree.    The father worked for a division of Lockheed making satelites for cable TV.   When asked about this error Moore stated that they could be making missles in the future.   A pretty lame response.

Moore cited how awful the rally in Michigan was just days after the shooting.   The rally was actually 8 months after the shooting. Coincidently, Moore was staging his own rally in Michigan that day. Was he insensitive?

I can go on.   The movie is full of inaccuracies done on purpose to make Moore's points.    Good film maker.   Lousy facts.

To the person from England who criticized the USA for its excessive poverty.   They recently ran statistics about poverty in the USA.   Did you know that the average person in poverty in the USA lives in a bigger residence that the average person in London or Paris.   Low income poverty people in the US own cars, VCR.s, cell phones, air conditioners, and televisions.    They probably would be considered wealthy in most parts of the world.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 02:18 PM

"I think Moore manipulates data and facts to make his point."

EVERY film-maker does that, documentary or not...

I think as 'propegandary film' goes Bowling is a damn good one...


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 02:27 PM

I can understand people who think Moore is funny, just not anyone who takes much of what he says too seriously. He's plays pretty fast and loose with the truth. Have a look at what SpinSanity says about his latest book (with comments on "Bowling" and lots of links).

Dude, Where's My Intellectual Honesty?

I really like these guys when it comes to pointing out how people twist things to make their point (what Al Franken calls lying). They're also reasonably objective, slapping all sides around pretty regularly.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Raptor
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 02:42 PM

Yeah, You're right. Moore Took true facts and reported them in a untimely fashion and not in a chronilogical order so he must be a liar! And George Bush is not a fair target for documentairy authors or filmmakers!

Raptor


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 02:54 PM

Raptor, make a movie about anyone you want. Moore's misrepresentations are more than chronological as that link and the links it contains show. I will admit in several of the cases, he's not really lying, he's just guilty of not bothering to check his facts. Come to think of it, that sloppiness is just another reason to not believe much of what he says unless you check it independently.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 03:37 PM

"...not believe much of what he says unless you check it independently."

That's a very sensible attitude to take - most especially when you are dealing with much of the mainstream media.

............................

..."Low income poverty people in the US own cars, VCR.s, cell phones, air conditioners, and televisions. They probably would be considered wealthy in most parts of the world"...

I always like what William Morris wrote after he visited Iceland, and had his eyes opened to a society which, though poor, had far greater social equality than his native England:

"...the most grinding poverty is a trifling evil compared with the inequality of classes"...


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Raptor
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 07:59 PM

Strick You are correct about independantly checking facts. That is wise but, I think wheather the kids went bowling or skipped that class or wheather Moore said they Bowled or he just showed a girl who said they bowled is missing the point that Moore made! You can't blame the Music they listened to any more than the fact that they participated in bowling!

The point that music = gun violence is about as sensable as
Bowling = Gun violence

Quibling about wheather the kids bowled that very day seems to miss the whole point.

Triing to discredit moore as a liar because of a few points that are small and insinificant is petty!

The fact is guns killed these kids at this school and that is bad!

If Moore said they had shreadies for breakfast when they actualy had Corn Flakes the kids still died and that is still bad!

Raptor


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 08:27 PM

I really didn't care whether they went bowling or not (though that sorta short cicuits the movie title, doesn't it? that's not a trivial mistake).

You may not have read the Spinsanity article but here are some the things that are wrong in the movie:

The bit about getting the gun at the bank was staged, it didn't happen
The US never gave aid to the Taliban, humanitarian aid was given to the UN that went to Afghanistan
The Lockheed Martin plant satellites vehicles not "weapons of mass destruction" (they made ICBMs until 60s, the last of which was taken out of service in 1984, a little before Moore's movie)
He edited Heston's Denver speech to misrepresent when it took place and what he said
He agumented the Eddie Horton ad to make it look more racist

Do you think I'm talking about whether they really had shreadies for breakfast?

To quote Spinsanity:

"When the most popular documentary of the year is riddled with blatant lies and distortions, it's a cause for concern. When the film is part of a pattern by one of the nation's most prominent political celebrities, it's disturbing. And when the media gives Michael Moore free reign to spread his lies and distortions with very little critical analysis, it's a sad comment on our democracy."

Some of this might be plain sloppiness; some of it look malicious. It's a funny movie, but I so is Space Balls. I wouldn't use that as a source for facts to support social change either.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 08:35 PM

"The Lockheed Martin plant satellites vehicles not "weapons of mass destruction" (they made ICBMs until 60s, the last of which was taken out of service in 1984, a little before Moore's movie)"

Read that:

"The Lockheed Martin plant makes satellites vehicles not "weapons of mass destruction" (they made ICBMs until 60s, the last of which was taken out of service in 1984, a little before Moore's movie)"

Dang multi-tasking.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Raptor
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 08:52 PM

Kids still died and its still bad! Thats the point!

I don't care how Heston said his speech. KIDS DIED! Guns are Bad!

The fact that you can get a gun from a bank is fucked. Wheather you have to wait or it comes loaded instantly is not the issue, the issue is that KIDS DIED Moore did not make that up!

Strick I hope you never loose a loved one! Or loose your job cause some rich prick can make more money from Mexican labour! Or have to go on welfare to feed your family and not see them cause all your time is taken up going to some job 50 miles away from your run down home!

Mike Moore is adressing these issues while Your Government is Not!

If you listen to the Bush Regime you will find that Moore lied about all of thier truths! Such as Weapons of Mass Destruction!

Mike Moore has the Balls to stand up to the things he finds wrong in todays society. I applaud him for that!

Raptor


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 09:01 PM

Gracious, Raptor, all I said was that Moore either made a comedy you shouldn't rely on or a documentary you can't rely on. Twisting the facts won't bring those kids back, nor will twisting the facts make anyone more against psychopathic kids taking guns to school that they already are. It just makes people who try to use it seriously to convince others look stupid.

Here's the difference. Ever seen The Oxbow Incident? Pure fiction, but one of the most compelling arguments against mob justice ever made. That I might have respected. Not this.

BTW, what the hell did this have to do with any of that other crap? You say Bush lies, but I'm supposed to listen to Moore inspite of the fact he does too?

It'll be someone from China or India that takes my job, though I suspect I know how to prevent that from ever happening. I might get fired for hanging around here, though.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Little Hawk
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 09:09 PM

Have to agree with both Raptor and Strick here...

Yes, Michael Moore monkeyed around with the facts in order to make a more effective anti-gun film...

And, yes, the points Michael Moore made in the film were very good ones in that they exposed some of the ugly underbelly of North American society, which is a society that tends to encourage gun worship in a number of ways...for what? To make money, that's for what.

The film was rather unfair to many gun owners...but it was a valuable statement at the same time, and a wake-up call to American society.

Take a look at all the "shooter" games that are being marketed to kids these days, and you will see that there is something very sick going on out there...and it's all for a lousy buck.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Raptor
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 09:12 PM

I say Bush lies?

Don't you think he does?

Saying there is weapons of mass Destruction to justify a war to divert attention from Enron or whatever else was going on and leading the brits into it too is a big lie!(read a newspaper)

Letting Charelton Heston make an ass of himself but not putting the Whole speach in to his movie is not a lie!


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 09:23 PM

Look, Raptor, there's an easy way to say what I mean. I regret I didn't say the first time. Why make up all that crap and stage the things he did? The truth was powerful enough. All Moore did was discredit himself.

The deal with Heston was more complicated than that. Quotes would have been OK. Moore rearranged the quotes he used and set it up to make it look as if some of it happened right after the attack when it didn't.

I didn't say you said anything, just pulled together the arguments I read every day here and laid them side by side.

Let's not start on Enron unless you can prove that anyone at the Bush Administration did anything to help them (Ken Lay's indictment will happen in the next 8 months, Skilling needs to turn over on him) or that some how Bush was responsible for corporate fraud took place before he was elected.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 09:31 PM

A quote from upthread: "Low income poverty people in the US own cars, VCR.s, cell phones, air conditioners, and televisions."

Unless you can provide evidence for that claim, it must stand as a complete fabrication, exaggeration, or utter b.s.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Little Hawk
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 10:26 PM

As someone else noted...the greatest injustice is not poverty, but massive inequality. It is that which sparks both crime and violent revolution. When people are all in the same boat together, they should have the sense to share on a relatively equal basis. That's what Captain Bligh did after being cast off in a longboat with about a dozen other desperate men, and he got almost all of them alive to Australia, against all odds. Without sharing equally they would never have made it.

The people in a society are also in one boat together, traveling across dangerous waters, and the same principles apply. A relatively even level of material equality in the basics of life (food, drink, shelter, medical care, and other necessities) is the foundation of both liberty and justice in a decent society.

The rich few who run your society DON'T want you to know that...or even think about it.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 24 Mar 04 - 10:29 PM

"That's what Captain Bligh did after being cast off in a longboat with about a dozen other desperate men..."

But, dude, what he did to get put in that boat! ;)


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Raptor
Date: 25 Mar 04 - 07:31 AM

Strick I must admit to not knowing enough about Enron to discuss it without talking out my ass, Sorry I brought it up!

I believe we must agree to disagree when it comes to what constitutes a liar in a filmaker or a president!

Good day to you sir!

Respectfully Raptor


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 25 Mar 04 - 08:56 AM

Sorry, Raptor, someone warned me I'd get cranky if I stayed here too long.

I repeat myself too often, but...

It was Columbine. The truth was powerful enough. Maniuplating it just discredited the more important message in too many eyes.


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Little Hawk
Date: 25 Mar 04 - 11:20 AM

Strick - I figured someone would say that. :-) What did Bligh do?

Well....one of two things:

1. the fictional version (a la Nordhoff & Hall) - he brutally tyrranized the crew until they mutinied...VERY unequal treatment.

2. the more probable real version - he was a "by the book", somewhat stuffy, but not unusually severe commander who had the bad luck to expose his crew to a sailor's paradise in Tahiti, complete with lazy days, nubile and totally willing native girls, great food, and a wonderful climate...and then he set out on a long voyage away from said paradise...and his sailors decided they'd rather go back to paradise, thank you very much!

The point is, Bligh learned from that experience, and he practiced equality (coupled with good discipline and chain of command) when marooned in the longboat. A good leader is always willing to endure the same privations that his men must endure.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: RE-visiting 'Bowling for Columbine'
From: Strick
Date: 25 Mar 04 - 11:46 AM

Little Hawk, the things that might (I say only might) count against that version of the Bounty story are that:

1. "By the book" in those time included severe floggings (up to 500 strokes), keel hauling, and hanging for minor offenses.

2. At best ships on that kind of journey were extremely uncomfortable and often near the verge of starvation. Scurvy and beri-beri from the lack of fresh food, 12 month old salt pork or beef kept in wooden barrels, weavil ridden hardtack (always choose the lessor of two weavils) made the conditions near muntiny at the best of times.

3. As soon as Bligh was reinstated he was shipped to the Botony Bay as governor colony where they promptly mutinied.

Bligh might have gotten hard duty made harder by a bad rap or he might just have been a right hard bastard or both.


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