I read an article today written by Michael Moore that reinforced just how clueless he is about capitalism and the free market system. I don’t make it a habit of reading this man’s work because I believe he’s a misguided fool. Think about it, he uses his talents to attack the institutions that not only made our country great but have made him independently wealthy. How misguided is that? His main target over the last few years has been our economic system powered by capitalism. He has made a great deal of money bashing a system in which he clearly does not understand. In his article “Life Among the 1%” Mr. Moore writes about how he became successful and how capitalism had nothing to do with it.
From his article he writes; Twenty-two years ago this coming Tuesday, I stood with a group of factory workers, students and the unemployed in the middle of the downtown of my birthplace, Flint, Michigan, to announce that the Hollywood studio, Warner Bros., had purchased the world rights to distribute my first movie, ‘Roger & Me.’ A reporter asked me, “How much did you sell it for? Three million dollars!” I proudly exclaimed.
Now before I break this down let me provide you with Investopedia’s definition of capitalism.
An economic system based on a free market, open competition, profit motive and private ownership of the means of production. Capitalism encourages private investment and business, compared to a government-controlled economy. Investors in these private companies (i.e. shareholders) also own the firms and are known as capitalists.
They further explain it as a system, in which individuals and firms have the right to own and use wealth to earn income and to sell and purchase labor for wages with little or no government control. The function of regulating the economy is then achieved mainly through the operation of market forces where prices and profit dictate where and how resources are used and allocated. The U.S. is a capitalistic system.
So Mr. Moore produced a product he owned. Warner Bros purchased the rights to distribute the product for a price because they believed they could profit from it. Mr. Moore profited from the sale of the product. The entire process occurred in a free market. Sounds like capitalism to me. Even if he gave all his profits away charity, friends, family, or any other cause it was capitalism that created the environment for him to do so.
Mr. Moore further went on the say, “I made the decision that if I was going to earn a living, it would be done from my own sweat and ideas and creativity. I would produce something tangible, something others could own or be entertained by or learn from. My work would create employment for others, good employment with middle class wages and full health benefits.”
So what he’s really saying here is he decided to produce tangible products that originated from his ideas and creativity to sell to the consumer so they would have an opportunity to own his product. If his product is in high demand, more people will be hired to produce it on a mass scale to sell to the consumer. Yep sounds like capitalism to me.
Now here is where Mr. Moore starts to go off the rails. He writes, “Somehow, I found a crack through the wall and made it through. I feel very blessed that I have this life — and I take none of it for granted. I believe in the lessons I was taught back in Catholic school — that if you end up doing well, you have an even greater responsibility to those who don’t fare the same. “The last shall be first and the first shall be last.” Kinda commie, I know, but the idea was that the human family was supposed to divide up the earth’s riches in a fair manner so that all of God’s children would have a life with less suffering.”
It leaves a bad taste in my mouth when people use God to advance a political agenda; but what really grinds me is when they twist the holy words to nicely fit their flawed ideology. His comments about the last being first and the first being is a verse from multiple books in the bible (Matthew 19:30, Matthew 20:16, Mark 10:31, and Luke 13:30). I have read this verse many times and nowhere do I find an interpretation that supports the notion of dividing up the earth’s riches in a fair manner so that all of God’s children would have a life with less suffering. This sounds more like social justice…Marxism. The generally accepted meaning behind the verse is that those who are attached to the material world through riches and status will have a much harder time finding the kingdom of heaven than those who are poor with less attachments and status to the material world. How he twisted this meaning into dividing the earth’s riches in a fair manner is beyond me. This is another example of an individual distorting the word of God to advance an agenda. It’s offensive and sad.
Finally Mr. Moore closes his article with the following. “I do very well — and for a documentary filmmaker, I do extremely well. That, too, drives conservatives bonkers. “You’re rich because of capitalism!” they scream at me. Um, no. Didn’t you take Econ 101? Capitalism is a system, a pyramid scheme of sorts, that exploits the vast majority so that the few at the top can enrich themselves more. I make my money the old school, honest way by making things. Some years I earn a boatload of cash. Other years, like last year, I don’t have a job (no movie, no book) and so I make a lot less.”
You can read the entire article here>>
Yep he makes money the old school, honest way, by making things…oh yeah and by selling those things he makes for a profit in a free market, but hey that’s not capitalism. Maybe he should look into getting a refund for his Econ 101 class because he didn’t learn crap.
Michael Moore is the classic example of an American success story. He found a market or as he said a crack through the wall to sell is garbage and he made a lot of money doing it. I doubt he would have achieved as much success in a socialistic controlled economy. I don’t believe Mr. Moore is a dumb person, just misinformed and misguided. My guess is somewhere along the way something happened in his life that convinced him capitalism was evil; a plant closed down, workers lost their jobs and pensions or something that flows in that direction. Here’s the problem, Mr. Moore doesn’t even know what capitalism is…even when it created the environment for him to make all his millions.
Liberty forever, freedom for all!