What is the American Dream Anyway?

Who is standing up for you these days? Think about it. Who spends their time looking out for your best interest? Not just politically, but as a fellow human being? Who is standing up for you these days? This is not a political piece intended to start a verbal war. This is a piece about people making progress, but I’ve chosen a sacrificial lamb, so to speak, to get things started. That sacrificial lamb’s name is Michael Moore.

Michael Moore has been foolish in his efforts to stand up for “the little guy” since his days hosting the television show “The Awful Truth.”  The jokes about politics in the United States were prevalent on that show, and jokes became a theme, even a rally cry for Moore over the years. It is almost as if Moore knows it is one big fucking joke to even try to stand up to the government…let alone win. He may be right, he may be wrong. Only one way to find out…

After hosting the aforementioned “The Awful Truth,” Moore went on to film Roger and Me, which chronicles the exploits of General Motors’ ownership in Detroit, Michigan (and the city’s economic system as a whole really). Moore is obviously much younger, but his razor sharp tongue and quest for truth and justice open the door for dialogue then as well. Of course, Moore has his biases, but what human being wouldn’t after GM’s closing of Flint, Michigan (Moore’s hometown) auto plants and the resulting 80,000+ jobs down the toilet?

On the topic of biases: every filmmaker, singer, poet, every politician, director, or artist, anyone with a voice in this country is biased in some way or another. People with biases push their personal agendas. Accept that. So don’t play the bias card with Michael Moore, because at least he’s biased towards one thing, and that’s obtaining truth. The only other knock on Moore from his critics is that he is…wait for it…too fat.  That is just unbelievaly cowardice and totally ridiculous to even bring up when questioning someone’s work as an artist.  I know, I couldn’t believe it when I heard it either, but believe it or not people are still out there judging people based on physical body instead of body of work.  I need to accept that the world is not as progressive as I am.  Someday we shall progress…Right?

After Roger and Me, Moore released Bowling for Columbine, an emotional roller coaster, because of its subject matter: America’s obsession with guns and violent culture. I won’t even go into too much detail about the film; just know that whether you are a Democrat, Republican, Independent, Anarchist, Whig, Tory, Socialist, whatever: this is a MUST SEE item for any American.

Amidst the presidential election of 2004 Moore released Fahrenheit 9/11, another poignant title with emotionally charged footage throughout. The film stars George W. Bush as lead horse’s ass, showcasing his inept abitity to…well…do just about anything right. You almost feel bad for the guy. But the main question: will the truth ever actually unfold?

Moore’s fourth film, Sicko has recently become moot point since President Barack Obama’s passing of the new Health Care Bill last week, and yes, Vice President Joe Biden, it IS a big fucking deal!

And that brings us to Moore’s fifth film, Capitalism: A Love Story. The movie ventures into the good ole United States of America, where the dream is always attainable. Or is it?

The current state of America’s economic downward spiral, its insurmountable national debt, and its supposed “bailout” (by the way, isn’t a “bailout” a last chance at redemption when you’ve hit rock bottom? Have we hit rock bottom as a nation? Well, according to Eminem, and yes, he is now the definitive source moving forward in case you were wondering, rock bottom means “When this life makes you mad enough to kill…when you want something bad enough to steal…when you feel like you’ve had it up to here, because you’re mad enough to scream but you’re sad enough to tear.” Well, you be the judge on that one) are topics addressed in the new film, but will we ever be bailed out?

All in all, Michael Moore does a good job of identifying problems, but solving the problems sometimes takes a back seat to his need to entertain. Has he made any significant strides to better this country? That’s nearly impossible to quantify. His films ultimately only preach to the choir. Will opposing sides ever give the ideals represented in his films a chance? Much to the chagrin of open minded folks everywhere, the day we can talk about politics without letting our own biases jade the conversation will not show its face any time soon. You gotta love Michael Moore for trying though, right?

7 thoughts on “What is the American Dream Anyway?

  1. I appreciate anyone who dedicates their time to uncovering the truth and helping to clarify the blurry lines that our media draws. You may not agree with Moore’s approach but I respect him for digging deeper. On some level most of us ignore current events (intentionally or unintentionally) but his full time job is to focus on them.

    Sidenote: very well written Terry, actually laughed out loud as I read the Biden comment.

  2. Calling me out as an artist with biases (AWB) was a smooth move. It actually made me do a double-take on my motives for writing poetry. Because I DO have biases. But I also dog on people for being biased. What the hell gives?

    Why are we biased about biases?

    If we all walked around unbiased and impartial wouldn’t we be… uhhh… robots?

    So chh’yeah, so what if Michael Moore pushes one side of the envelope? At least he’s pushing! If you don’t agree with him, get out there and push back. At least you’d be finding out for yourself and throwing good arguments back. That’s what makes it a fair fight.

    Great article, Terry!

  3. What’s the problem with a bias anyway? I’m bias when it come to coke and pepsi. So what? A person’s opinions, bias’, preferences or what have you is what makes each human different, unique and beautiful. Even if you shop at the trendyist stores and dress like everyone else with Lady Gaga pumping through your IPOD.

    oh yeah, and coke is way better then pepsi.

  4. I think there’s a fine line between biases and opinions.

    Biased about biases! Hilarious!

    Thanks for reading guys and gals…


  5. Michael Moore is a great filmmaker and social justice advocate. Sure he has his biases just like everyone else but that also adds to his originality and the passion that fuels his flicks. He is the epitome of what independent and low budget film-making are all about. He would not be making films if more sheep in the herd were free thinkers and decided not to allow the government, corporate America, and pop culture to brainwash them. There are very few people that benefit from the political and socio-economic organization of America and the moral of Moore’s films is to wake up and do something about it. His job is not to design and implement solutions, that is what the leaders of this country are paid for and supposed to do. How many of us Latinos go about our day to day lives accepting the status quo? The status quo never has and probably never will benefit our people. We are pawns on the chessboard of this nation because we choose be by not standing up for ourselves and challenging the powers that be. If you don’t stand up for something you will fall for anything! And you can take that to El Banco. Gracias Miguel Moore for exposing the avarice and evil in this country one film at a time.

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