Harper and the Conservatives. What do you think of this outsider's view?
'Don't go our way': Moore
Filmmaker urges Canadians to reject pro-U.S. Harper
By BRUCE KIRKLAND -- Toronto Sun
TORONTO -- Canadians risk turning into pseudo-Americans if they
vote Stephen Harper and the Conservative Party into office, activist
American filmmaker Michael Moore said yesterday.
"So my silent plea is don't go our way!" Moore said in an interview
yesterday during a hectic day-long Toronto visit to introduce his
controversial documentary, Fahrenheit 9/11, at a special preview
screening for 600 people at the Varsity Cinemas.
"Look, I'm on a lifelong mission to convince Americans to be more
Canadian-like," he said, describing how he grew up in Flint, Mich.,
listening to the CBC and came to admire Canada for its independence,
especially in relation to the Vietnam War.
"I think we'd have a better country if we behaved more like you,"
Moore said. "And the thing that you're in the process of possibly
doing in the next week or two is behaving more like us."
Moore said he fears that Harper is too sympathetic to U.S. President George W. Bush, whom he relentlessly attacks in Fahrenheit 9/11.
Moore's views are no surprise. He counts himself as a spokesman for the left and confesses his primary ambition for his film is to have
an effect on the current U.S. election: "I'd like to remove George
W. Bush from the White House!"
As for Harper, Moore said: "First of all he would put Canadians in
the coalition of the willing. He believes that Canada should be
joining more with the United States instead of trying to be its own
separate thing. And I think he has a big pair of scissors in his
hands, desperate to cut away at the social safety net that you have.
"Why on earth would you do that to yourselves? Why would you want a society that looked like ours? What do you think is so remarkable about the way that we've structured our society, where we have a growing gap between rich and poor, where we have 40 million adult Americans who are functional illiterates because of our educational system? Why would you want to live in more fear as violence and crime increases? That to me makes absolutely no sense. It's like taking a piss on yourself. Why would you want to do that?"
At the same time, Moore said, he knows that Paul Martin and the
Liberals have put themselves in a losing position in the polls
because of scandals. In the U.S., his political position is
compromised, he said, because he is no fan of Democrat John Kerry.
"The blood is also on his hands," Moore said of Kerry's vote in
favour of the U.S. war effort in Iraq. "Now is he remorseful for
that vote? I haven't heard it."
He has far-ranging ambitions for his film, which won the Palme d'Or
as best film at the Cannes in May: "This film is going to be as
relevant next year or two years from now as it is right now."
In Canada, Fahrenheit 9/11 opens on 70 screens in 55 theatres next Friday before widening out to 140 theatres within two weeks.