Posted: June 25, 2007
1:00 a.m. Eastern
By Tom Snyder
Left-wing activist Michael Moore's new feebleminded documentary,
"Sicko," relies on few objective facts. It is mostly an emotional
defense, filled with anecdotal stories and flimsy arguments of a
single-payer, national healthcare system run by the government. What
makes the movie abhorrent is not necessarily its deceptive defense of
socialized medicine programs in Canada, England and France, but its
inane defense of Fidel Castro's evil Communist dictatorship. Though
reasonably well-made and entertaining, "Sicko" falls far short of
greatness because of Moore's infantile need to mock the United States,
Republicans, Democrats who compromise with Republicans, conservatives
and capitalists while strongly promoting state socialism and even
communism. Moore's movies are like the movies made by Nazi Germany, the
Soviet Union and Communist China to prop up those despotic regimes and
promote their evil fascist policies.
"Sicko" begins with Michael Moore talking down to the audience, like it
is filled with little children, while introducing several sad cases from
the health care system in the United States. It then jumps to Canada.
There, Moore shows how two of his older relatives, a couple other
Canadians and an American woman are using the benefits of Canada's
health care system, which is probably the most socialized system of all
the 28 countries with a nationalized health care system, except for
Cuba. The movie then adds a few more tragic American cases of people
caught in the unforgiving care of health insurance companies and the
medical system, including three volunteer workers at the World Trade
Center after Sept. 11. While doing that, Moore visits England, France
and, finally, Cuba to show viewers how good the socialized health care
systems are in those countries.
"Sicko"'s take on healthcare is disingenuous at best and deliberately
deceptive at worst.
During the movie, Moore briefly mentions the possibility of higher tax
rates in France, England and Canada, but fails to give the statistics
showing that they are, indeed, much higher. He also falsely claims that
the life expectancy in Canada, France and England is about three years
higher than in the United States. This is a miniscule amount in the
first place, but the fact is that (according to the U.S. government and
the United Nations) the life expectancy in Canada, France and England is
only 2.3, 1.9 and 0.7 years higher, respectively, than the United States
(Cuba's life expectancy is 0.9 years lower), not three years.
Furthermore, compared to the United States, Canada, France and England
are more homogeneous societies. Thus, if you factor out the infant
mortality rate and life expectancy rate for African Americans, let alone
Latinos, in the United States, life expectancy and infant mortality in
the U.S. looks even better!
Of course, the unemployment rate also is much lower in the United States
compared to Canada and France, and only slightly worse than the
unemployment rate in England. Or, take a look at Japan, which has the
highest life expectancy of any industrialized nation and one of the
lowest infant mortality and unemployment rates but also has one of the
highest taxation rates for individual income taxes. The differences are
even starker when you look at percentage of Gross Domestic Product, GDP,
that taxes comprise in these countries.
Thus, while it can be argued that the United States health care system
is in need of reform, the fact is that France, where "Sicko" spends a
lot of time, has a much higher unemployment rate than the U.S., even
counting the higher unemployment figures for American blacks and
Latinos. Thus, it can be successfully argued that the higher tax rates
and socialized health care policies in Canada, France and other
countries are creating higher unemployment rates. It is telling that
Moore fails to mention this important fact.
Furthermore, according to the Christian Science Monitor, a 2002 study by
the Fraser Institute, a public policy think tank in Vancouver, showed
that Canada's socialist health care service ranks lower than England and
France where privatization is part of the policy and only slightly
higher than Hungary, Poland and Turkey. Also, the waiting lists for
specialized care (such as most cancer treatments and hip replacements)
in Canada, as well as in France and England, are higher than the U.S.
and have been increasing in Canada.
Moore points to the fact that the U.S. spends significantly more per
capita for health care than other countries. According to the United
Nations in 2006, however, public health expenditures in the U.S. are
about the same percent of its GDP as Canada, England and even Japan, the
country with the highest life expectancy. This indicates that creating a
new tax and spending more taxpayer money will not really improve health
care and life expectancy in the United States.
Michael Moore's visit to Cuba in "Sicko" shows that, like the leftists
who defended the murderous regimes of Vladimir Lenin, Joseph Stalin and
Mao Tse-Tung, truth and justice are the last things on Moore's mind. He
even interviews the daughter of Che Guevara, the Communist murderer who,
along with Fidel Castro's brother Raul, led Castro's execution squads
during the "Revolution." Even if Cuba has a better health care system
overall than the U.S. (a claim that cannot be supported by infant
mortality and life expectancy statistics), that country's economic,
social and religious life is controlled by a rich, absolute Communist
dictator, who has exported most of his discontents and criminals to the
United States! We doubt if Michael Moore wants President George Bush to
treat dissidents and criminals here like Castro has treated them in
Cuba. The fact that Moore never challenges the obvious moral and
political shortcomings of Castro's Communist dictatorship shows that
he's only interested in making propaganda movies, not real documentaries.
It is interesting to note that, in "Sicko", Michael Moore blames
President Richard Nixon (the most liberal Republican President we've
had) for the "managed care" policies of most Health Maintenance
Organizations. Moore leaves out the fact that the other politician most
responsible for the creation of this health care system in the U.S. is
Sen. Ted Kennedy, who led the fight in the Senate for the HMO Act of
1973! Of course, Sen. Kennedy is a socialist politician who has long
been a supporter of socialized medicine in the U.S. He also is one of
the supporters for and sponsors of the federal government's Medicare
system created in the 1960s, another example of socialized medicine that
has been a virtual disaster for American doctors, patients, senior
citizens and taxpayers, not to mention the federal budget deficit and
America's national debt. Medicare is a precursor to the Canadian health
care system enacted in 1971 and the American HMO system begun in 1973.
Finally, much has been reported in the media about Michael Moore's boat
trip to the prison for Muslim terrorists at Guantanamo Bay in the
U.S.-controlled part of Cuba. Using a bullhorn, Moore asks for the same
health care privileges for the three sick Twin Tower workers as the
Muslim terrorists get in that prison.
This is nothing more than a publicity stunt. First, Michael Moore could
have done the same thing for these people by going to a free medical
clinic or other such medical charity in the United States, without going
to Cuba. Also, most prisoners in the United States, as well as in
Canada, France and England, generally get free health care treatment.
But, these people are in prison! And, a kind of prison is exactly what
doctors, patients and workers in the United States will get if they
accept the kind of bloated, government-run health care system that
Michael Moore favors! After all, that is exactly what Fidel Castro has
created in the evil Communist "utopia" of Cuba.
In the end, "Sicko" is just another example of left-wing lies and
propaganda, but there is no need to go out of our way and say that
everything is hunky dory in the global economy that the world's
"capitalists" have established for society. In fact, many of these
so-called capitalists actually support socialist systems that have
harmed the average citizen and taxpayer.
Thus, we should take a serious, but cautious and prudent, look to
reforming our health care systems, not only in the U.S. but also in
Canada, France and England. One of those reforms to be considered,
however, is to encourage people, including rich, well-fed filmmakers
like Michael Moore, to take better care of one another, without any help
from the government whatsoever. More socialism is certainly not the
answer but a little more voluntary Christian charity, including pro bono
work from hospitals, doctors and nurses, could go a long way toward
curing the ills of the Americans that Michael Moore focuses on in his
documentary. As always, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which is not a
socialist gospel, is the ultimate answer.
Please, Mr. Moore, stop making mindless Communist propaganda movies
disguised as documentaries. Your ideas are not liberal or progressive.
They are reactionary. They are leading millions of people astray and
giving aid and comfort to neo-fascist Communist dictators and Islamic
terrorists. Hollywood and the national news media should be ashamed of
promoting them so mindlessly.