Does Michael Moore Matter Anymore? An Open Letter From One Filmmaker to Another

Column by Douglas Herman.

Exclusive to STR

“This is the true joy in life – being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one: being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.” ~ George Bernard Shaw

Mike: I’m a fellow Michigander, a fellow filmmaker like yourself, raised with small town Midwestern values like the ones you claim to have. I’ve mostly applauded and admired your efforts in the past. Indeed, long before I became a filmmaker, I championed your documentary film, Fahrenheit 9/11. While working as an Alaska commercial fisherman, I lobbied the local theater owner, Rusty, to show the film there in Kodiak, Alaska in 2004. He said he despised you but I told him the Orpheum would be packed for several showings and he’d make a nice fat profit. And he did.

Speaking of nice fat profits, how’s your weight, buddy? You really should contact my friend Gillian Michael and get on a weight loss program. Maybe you could make a documentary while you do it. Call it High Fructose Snowflakes or Fast Food Fat Folks or something really fun and creative. Like that guy who made Supersize Me.

Sadly, in recent years, you’ve seemed to become almost a parody of yourself. Like a cartoon character or one of those loopy Saturday Night Live sketches that are more embarrassing than funny. Where, I wonder, is the old Mike Moore? The guy who tilted at windmills, who stood up to the powerful with homespun humor and a shaky camera? Indeed, the very same things you said to the auto industry in Roger and Me, years ago, are the very same things Donald Trump is saying to the auto industry today. Or so it seems to me.

To your credit, you sounded prescient when you said, LOUD AND CLEAR, that this presidential election would be the Biggest Fuck You to those in power. Bravo; you were right. To Wall Street, Big Business, The Media and Washington DC, the average working class Deplorable spoke out on election day. But you forgot to add Yourself, Mike. Seems to me that America said fuck you to people like YOU. Lots of folks in the “flyover” states said fuck you to Hollywood and highly-paid celebs like yourself. I mean, you were worth an estimated $50 million and the proud owner of nine homes according to divorce court records a couple years ago. Trump supporters backed a rich fellow like yourself. But they wished and hoped and prayed that ALL of you rich hypocrites would move somewhere else, anywhere else – as many claimed they would - and help us make America great again. But those were idle threats from the affluent idle, sad to see.

Like yourself, I’m disgusted with what our country has become, and like yourself and millions of others, I want to do something about it. But a Two Million Snowflake March on Washington DC will be more counterproductive than anything, I believe. How about Love Trumps Hate? You do remember that slogan, right? Act locally and think globally, and maybe just a little Kindness Generates Kindness.

Since you’re going to DC, suppose you suggest to Black Lives Matter they get a life, not take a life. Stop harassing folks, stop kidnapping kids, and do what you and I did when we were young. Work for a living. Maybe you could suggest to all of your millions of Facebook and Twitter followers that they take a tip from fellow playwright G.B. Shaw about “Being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.”

The election, that you and so many others claimed was hacked by Russians, was a huge FU to fat hypocrites like yourself. We said FU to people who called themselves progressive but were no more progressive than the biggest Bushco Neocons. We said fuck you to Hollywood. We said go-to-hell to the shitty music and television industry and spoiled celebs like yourself, sanctimonious folks who backed the corrupt Clinton Machine. We saw through it, and for better or worse, we rejected it.

So now, Mike, you want all the sore losers like yourself, many of them struggling from payday to payday, to get on over to Washington DC to protest? Why not offer to pay their tickets, both travel tickets and disorderly conduct tickets? I mean, put up or shut up, Mike.

Put Up or Shut Up Protest

Let me ask you this, Mike. Did you ever protest, actually protest, anything Obama or Clinton or Holder did in the past eight years? Did you protest Fast & Furious gun running to Mexican drug gangs? Did you, Mike? Or droning wedding parties? Or did you protest the vicious destruction of small countries like Iraq, Syria or Libya, independent nations that never attacked America?

Did you ever protest the wholly undeserved Nobel Peace Prize given to Barack Obama? Did you? Because most of the folks I know would have thanked the committee and said no thanks to that prize. What kind of narcissist accepts a prize they haven’t earned? But that’s what Obama did, and most so-called Liberals support him and consider he’s done a great job. Why is that? You get all angry about Trump, and claim he didn’t earn the presidency. And yet you seem to be okay with a guy who bombed more folks than ALL of the dictators we toppled. And got a peace prize for doing it! Seems to me that Liberalism is a disease of denial or hypocrisy.

Can I just give you a suggestion, Mike? Your devotion to justice and activism is laudable. But you cannot support human rights at the higher cost of human wrongs. You soon become morally bankrupt. Even for a guy as wealthy as you.

Suppose instead you threw your considerable weight behind worldwide causes of truth and justice. Like the freedom flotilla to Gaza, like Colonel Ann Wright supported and lots of the veterans did, too. Or how about trying to stop wars BEFORE they start? Before the shadow state and the swamp creatures in DC rubber stamp some immoral war? Make a documentary about that, Mike.

Now about your considerable weight: How about a Reality TV show called Celebrity Biggest Loser? Seems like a sure winner to me.

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Douglas Herman's picture
Columns on STR: 149

Award winning artist, photographer and freelance journalist, Douglas Herman can be found wandering the back roads of America. Doug authored the political crime thriller, The Guns of Dallas  and wrote and directed the Independent feature film,Throwing Caution to the Windnaturally a "road movie," and credits STR for giving him the impetus to write well, both provocatively and entertainingly. A longtime gypsy, Doug completed a 10,000 mile circumnavigation of North America, by bicycle, at the age of 35, and still wanders between Bullhead City, Arizona and Kodiak, Alaska with forays frequently into the so-called civilized world of Greater LA. Write him at Roadmovie2 @


Jim Davies's picture

Doug: a tour de force.

Douglas Herman's picture

Thanks Jim,
Your compliment means more to me than if I were published in the MSM.  And paid to do so. 

Glock27's picture

Douglas, I am probably way left field wrong about this, but wasn't Moore a GM lay off who had an ax to grind because he was laid off? Might have been one of the line workers caught on film drinking and smoking dope? Can't be sure, my memory is really fuzzy because it was such a long time ago. I think he knows he irritates people and he stays on the formula because it makes him a bunch of money. These are just thoughts because I really don't know much about Moore, and I guess I really don't want to know much.