Moore’s Chain of Non Sequitur

Michael Moore is generally clueless. Or dishonest. I know, he’s a big documentary film maker who tackles significant issues, but when you hear the man talk, you see that he really doesn’t get it.

Some things to note in the video above. He talks about personal responsibility. Good. But he seems to buy the legal myth that corporations are people because he goes on to say that GE and Bank of America lack “personal responsibility”. A corporation can’t have personal responsibility, a corporation isn’t a person.

I think he catches himself because he goes on to ask, “Where is the personal responsibility of the people that built these into great companies?” Great question! Yes, these are great companies and the personal responsibility of those who built them is present in the fact that they are great companies. Their job was to make those companies successful and they did. Of course they should do that responsibly and ethically, but Moore’s rant is about a 70 year old woman who can’t afford healthcare. Are the men and women who built GE and Bank of America responsible for her? Or are their companies? What is Moore’s point? I haven’t a clue but I’m not supposed to figure that out, I’m supposed to be incensed by the injustice and applaud politely. Never mind how much Moore is worth, he’s not the 1%.

Next he says that GE didn’t pay any taxes. That simply isn’t true. “Did GE pay U.S. income taxes in 2010? Yes, it paid estimated taxes for 2010, and also made payments for previous years. Think of it as your having paid withholding taxes on your salary in 2010, and sending the IRS a check on April 15, 2010, covering your balance owed for 2009.” Also, GE did not “get money back from the government”. Apparently he is right about Bank of America not paying taxes and the Obama administration did give BofA a boatload of money.

The problem (beyond inaccuracy) with him bringing up GE and BofA’s tax bills are that he started his talk about healthcare bills. He then jumps the rail to personal responsibility and then jumps again and ends up on corporate taxes. Talk about a chain of non sequitur. I’m actually bothered that he is trying to make himself part of the Occupy Wall St. movement. He hasn’t been part of the 99% for quite a while. And CNN doesn’t get it either. Their banner on the video is a throwaway line from the beginning of the clip that has nothing to do with the rest of his rant.

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