Tag Archives: Michael Moore

What Really is That Driving Force?

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If it is all about honesty the question that needs to be asked is, why do we do it?  Why do we share our feelings with the world, post on Facebook, push it on Twitter or make a blog?  Since I do all of this and I can’t with any real degree of sanity claim to speak for the entire planet, all I can really do is speak for myself and hope that some of you relate to my revelation of the forces that drive me to sit at my computer and write.

Without question there is some semblance of idealism involved.  After all, the letters or essays I write that are the most popular and based on reactions I receive, my best work, are all driven by passion and belief in what I am writing about.  It is easier for me to speak in defense of Israel and the Jewish people than it is to type about, let’s say, economics.  Of course that may be something obstructing me from accumulating vast degrees of wealth, and that doesn’t mean I don’t like money, but that is the funny thing about passion.  You can’t force it and you can’t pretend to have it.  You might try to fake it, but when you turn that into any form of expression, ultimately the truth comes out.  So a significant element of the driving force behind why I do this is the good fortune of having things that I care about, which I recognize doesn’t separate me from the common decent human being.  What separates me may just be that burning desire and ability to express my feelings so openly and completely.  Something I consider a gift and a blessing, not an indication of any degree of superiority.

The other side of it, and I think this is an element many reading this share, is ego.  So often when we comment, blog, or opine in whatever fashion available, we want to be the one that nails it.  We want to come up with that comment or  message that resonates above all others.  The funny thing is that many of us can do that on at least some level, but what drives a writer such as myself is the ambition to constantly raise the bar. For me, having a comment on a thread that is liked by a bunch of people is nice, but it’s more like the bread they put out in a high quality steak house.  It’s good and I enjoy it in the beginning, but it’s not what I came here for.

What adds an even greater dynamic to the discussion is the fact that so many of the subjects being discussed today have an enormous significance.  It may sometimes seem like this whole expression thing is just a form of mental masturbation and a self-indulgent way of giving one’s life a purpose, but what can’t be ignored is that in this day and age the stakes are as high as they’ve ever been.  Societies ills are spreading, violence is commonplace, war is an epidemic, hunger is everywhere and the world as a whole, even with its many positive elements and developments, is not a happy place.  I may have a self-serving side of me that loves it if thousands of people read an open letter criticizing a Bryan Adams or a Michael Moore, but the truth is that I also passionately believe that sometimes their actions and often their words, two things far more similar that people sometimes care to admit, are doing more harm than good.

Words do have power.  They can make things happen and they do carry a degree of responsibility. That may be the scary part but it also the most thrilling part, for every time I sit and write I hope that this is the time I write something that really makes a difference.  I hope that my words become meaningful to so many people that they contribute to making this world a little happier.  Sure it is egotistical, but how many people throughout history achieved greatness without some sort of desire to be recognized and important.  Religions would preach that our ultimate goal should always be to reach the highest levels of goodness with the lowest level of selfishness, but since human nature is to be happy and fulfilled when appreciated, I’m fine with that selfish side that motivates me, and if you can do some good, you should be too.

Back to the original point I made about honesty, I meant every word you just read, but in this case I merely wrote it because I couldn’t sleep.  Not very idealistic, I know, but if it ends up making a difference, I’ll be extremely happy.  Thanks for reading regardless.

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Open Letter to Michael Moore

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Dear Michael,

I originally debated whether or not I was going to spend my time writing to you, especially since I don’t feel particularly good about doing anything that gives you extra attention, but since I believe you once again have found a way to exemplify a problem in our society, you left me no choice.

Let me begin by making something very clear.  Finding you or your tactics distasteful in no way means that I am a supporter of Donald’s Trump’s proposal to ban Muslims from entering the United States. What it means is that just as a valid argument can be made for why his plan is impractical, dangerous and morally suspect, so too an argument can be made for why you Michael Moore posing for a picture with a sign saying “We are all Muslim” is equally difficult to come to terms with.  You and Trump are both extremists.  The difference between you and him is that you are not just an extremist, you are a hypocrite as well.

You pretend to care about humanity.  Show me a picture with you holding a sign saying “We are all Jews” or “We are all Christians” and I might believe your motives are pure.  When Jews get murdered regularly by terrorists in Israel and Christians get slaughtered in Iraq by the thousands where is your outcry?  Why didn’t I see you with a sign then?  Why is it more disagreeable to you that an American presidential candidate says something controversial than it is when people die?  Why do you feel it necessary to fight this fight but not to fight the fight against people who are actually killing people to promote their sick agendas?

I believe the answer to all these questions is that you are an opportunistic coward.  It’s not about being a Liberal or Conservative. Bill Maher is certainly not less of a Liberal than you are but when people are being killed he is not afraid to raise his voice against those responsible for the killings.  Yet somehow till now you have been nowhere to be found.  This is not about accepting anyone’s prejudice against one group of people.  I’ve always maintained that to truly show an attitude of equality you need to be willing to criticize everyone, regardless of religion, race, color, sexual preference or any other factor that distinguishes someone from other segments of society. Not you.  You look for ways to exploit the exploited by pretending to be on their side when in reality it is very obvious that all you are is an opportunistic publicity hound.

I believe just as many maintain that Trump’s words and proposal are dangerous, so too is your phony one-sided anti-establishment approach.  You shift things so far the other direction that you increase animosity among people and in turn you do even more damage to the liberal elements in society and even worse, you deflect attention from the real problems.  With Muslims of importance pushing for reform and fighting to destroy the negative elements within their own faith, someone like you who only chooses to take a stance against someone like Donald Trump hurts their efforts and subsequently puts more people in danger.  You want to help Michael, support Muslim reformists like Raheel Raza, Sohail Raza, or Zuhdi Jasser. That’s if you even know who they are. I assure you these individuals who actually are Muslim, would rather you use your celebrity to help put and end to a cycle of violence than hold up a stupid sign. Then maybe you might help a movement that will help save a lot more lives, including Muslim lives.  All you really care about now is what you always have cared about which is what you can do to promote Michael Moore.   But then again, you were the same guy who chose to blame Bush for 9/11 instead of Osama bin Laden so I guess none of us should be surprised.

Michael, despite your holier than thou approach I am sure I am not alone in saying that not only are you not helping to provide a solution to the problem, you are actually part of the problem.   I am also sure that despite the attitude you are pretending to convey, you couldn’t care less.

Sincerely,

David Groen

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Open Letter to Michael Moore

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Dear Michael,

I must honestly say that I have never found you to be much use to anyone.  I consider you divisive, self-serving, hypocritical and actually quite boring.  Your latest attack on the wrong people exemplifies your narcissistic need to appear different and pious, when in fact what you have really continued to be is predictable and damaging.

I have not seen the movie American Sniper.  I do intend to see it because it appears to be an excellent movie, but for the purposes of this discussion the contents of the movie are irrelevant.  For you to even intimate on any level that a person who puts his life in danger, suffers emotional distress, and subsequently has to live with horrors for the rest of his life in order to preserve the freedoms that have provided you with a tremendous lifestyle, is nothing short of disgusting.  We all would rather you just say thank you.

I voted for Al Gore.  I was distraught when George W. Bush ended up as the President and through those years I was unquestionably a Democrat.  So this attack on you is not coming from a long time right-wing Conservative.  This attack is coming from someone who has never liked you.  I did not like you for attacking President George W. Bush at a time when supporting him was crucial.  The difference between you and me, is that you had the gall to attack him after the 9/11 attacks, while I voted to reelect him based on his performance after the 9/11 attacks.  Then again, I wasn’t trying to sell some crappy movie, you were.

So here you are once again spitting in the face of those who sacrifice so that you can live your luxurious life of hypocrisy and self-perceived glory.  I believe you are dangerous for the mere fact that you do so much damage to the more moderate side of the political spectrum that you increase the chances of one day seeing an extremist from the far right rising to power.

I am sure if that would happen, rather than feeling remorse or concern, you’ll just find another way to exploit it and attempt to add to that fortune you claim to be so irrelevant in the scheme of things. That would surprise very few people because after all, more and more of us are learning this is just how you roll.

Sincerely,
David Groen

 

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A Non Evil Liberal Conservative

With my cell phone causing me problems yesterday, I found myself in that unfathomable situation where without company or reading material I would be stuck on the train with nothing to do but travel.  So I went to the newsstand and did something I haven’t done in quite some time.  I bought a magazine.  The magazine I chose was the most recent edition of Newsweek, the one with Abraham Lincoln on the cover.  Reading the article made me think long and hard about the concept of civil war in these United States, what would cause it, and what the potential impact would be on our society.

By all accounts Abraham Lincoln was a great man.  He dared to change one of the most significant and indecent aspects of American society.  As somewhat of a news junkie I follow current events to the extent that I am able to form opinions and see patterns according to my own personal opinion.  With this in mind I realize that on some level Lincoln may have been fortunate to be the right person at the right time, but with such a large segment of the population opposed to his stance that it caused enormous consequences both nationally and for him personally, Lincoln deserves his  positive legacy.

But what if he were alive today?  With today’s perception of what is a Democrat and Republican, it may come of a shock to the unknowing that Lincoln was a Republican president.  How would he have been perceived by his party and opponents today?  I understand that times change so the comparisons are questionable, but to me it brought a glaring issue to the forefront.  The issue I am speaking of is the growing schism between the right and the left that leads to the use of the words Conservative and Liberal as a means to insult people.  The danger in this schism is that when people are divided to this extent the people that come to forefront are often those whose agenda challenges peoples’ freedom.  When that happens true evil rises accompanied by war and persecution.

Pope John Paul II was a great man.  He fought against Nazi oppression, helped Jewish friends as a young man in Poland, helped bring down the Soviet empire, and lead the Catholic Church with goodness and thoughtfulness.  Pope John Paul II was unquestionably a Conservative.

Steven Spielberg has directed films about the Holocaust and Slavery, given enormous amounts of money to charity, and used his voice to champion causes that support human rights everywhere.  As someone who generally supports the Democratic Party and based on his public stances on social issues Steven Spielberg would most likely be categorized by most as a Liberal.

In today’s world when spoken of by the opposition, both Liberals and Conservatives are evil and the cause of all our problems.  Just ask Rush Limbaugh or Janeane Garofalo.  I am sure they will tell you how evil Liberals and Conservatives are respectively.  If you need confirmation I am sure you can get it from the likes of Ann Coulter or Michael Moore.  Just ask these people, people who naturally have no personal agenda (please recognize the sarcasm), and I am sure they will show you, in detail how Conservatives and Liberals are destroying our society.   In fact, let us pretend Lincoln were alive today.  We might have Rush Limbaugh show us what a traitor he is to his Conservative base and a danger to the future of all good people of the good ole US of A.  If that doesn’t work for you we can have Michael Moore dig up some dirt on him and show us how he is using the hardships of a segment of our society to push his Republican agenda and unjustly seize control of the government.  I’m sure the word conspiracy will be in there somewhere as well.  Whatever the case may be, today that Liberal thinking Conservative would be seen as one evil war-mongering killer of the fabric of American society.

In today’s world, a world where anyone who is not like-minded is an evil Conservative or an evil Liberal, the only place to be is smack in the middle.   But be careful.  If you’re a Conservative who believes in a woman’s right to choose or a Liberal who believes in a tough stance on Foreign policy you’ll be thrown right back into the category of evil.  But fret not.  The great Abraham Lincoln will most likely be standing right beside you.