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Ear to the Ground

U.S. Investigates Michael Moore

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Posted on May 10, 2007
Michael Moore
news.bbc.co.uk

The Treasury Department is investigating documentarian Michael Moore over a recent trip to Cuba that the government says may have violated the trade embargo. Moore brought a group of ailing 9/11 rescue workers to the island nation in making his latest film, “Sicko,” an exploration of the healthcare system.


BBC:

Award-winning film-maker Michael Moore is being investigated by US authorities for a possible violation of the trade embargo against Cuba, he has announced.

Mr Moore took a group of 9/11 rescue workers to Cuba in March to film part of his new documentary about healthcare provision in the US.

The US Treasury has sent him a letter asking him to explain himself.

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, May 11, 2007 at 8:22 pm Link to this comment

I would like someone like Moore to test the Constitutionality of the “Trade Embargo” against Cuba, since there is no war, police action or any other cause by the Cubans requiring our country’s action against them.

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By Dale Headley, May 11, 2007 at 12:07 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Okay, so has the government sent a letter to Rush Limbaugh to ask where he gets all those Cuban cigars that he boasts about?  I assume he pays for them, thus helping bolster the Cuban economy and violating the trade embargo.

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By Bill Blackolive, May 11, 2007 at 11:49 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Michael, this is lovely stuff of genius, but I wish you could go sit safely enough in another country and point out the 9/11 coverup.

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By RobertBlackmon, May 11, 2007 at 11:45 am Link to this comment

One of the best things that could happen to this country would be Michael Moore’s trial and imprisonment as a traitor. The perfect period on the 8-year sentence we’ve earned by allowing Bush to install himself in the presidency twice.

A ‘super-star Mumia’ is of the things necessary to re-ignite the Civil war. That is the only way this nation’s soul can be salvaged.

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RAE's avatar

By RAE, May 11, 2007 at 11:11 am Link to this comment

I was wondering when the “Land of the Free” would find a way to prosecute MM.

I also wonder why only Americans cannot see how really “UNFREE” their country really is?

Just TRY rubbing the ruling elite the wrong way in the USA! They very soon will huddle in some secretive luxury hideaway to devise (trump up) some scheme to “get” anyone who publicly opposes their views and methods and/or impacts in some way on their bottom lines.

You’re only free in the USA when you COMPLY with “orders” from above without significant/effective complaint. Cause a fuss that can damage “their” plans, and “they’ll” find a way to take you down - legally or illegally. (If it’s illegal, who’s going to prosecute “them?” Right. Nobody.)

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By Lord B, May 11, 2007 at 10:07 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The United States position on Cuba is so antiquated and hipocritical! It is used as a cornerstone issue by the Republicans to claim some kind of “moral high ground” because Cuba is still run as a Communist system and is not “democratic.” Last I checked the cold war is “over” and Cuba poses no threat to the United States. It will take a progressive Democratic President to finally end the fear and paranoia about Cuba generated by Republican/Anti-communist hysteria. Three cheers for MM!! He’s making the point that the 911 workers actually received better healthcare in Cuba than in the U.S. The Treasury Dept is wasting its time and only helps to promote Moore’s film. Moore is a genius at self-promotion.

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By QuyTran, May 11, 2007 at 9:51 am Link to this comment

Dear President Bush,

Just hang him higher than you did to President Hussein.

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By Gentile, May 11, 2007 at 9:49 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“Investigates” in the article’s title seems a little over the top and sensationalist.  Yes, the embargo is the stupidest long-term foreign policy we’re currently engaged in.  Yes, the law that requires that you have a special license or permission to travel to Cuba is both stupid and counterproductive.  But it’s a pretty clear law, and it’s pretty clear whether you’re in compliance or not (you either obtained the required permission in advance, or you did not).  I have no problem with someone breaking the law (I intend to do it myself later this year, although not publicly like Moore - apparently - did).  But if you do so, don’t sensationalize the goverment’s enforcement of the law—after all, don’t we want the government to enforce the laws fairly and evenhandedly?  Isn’t that what the Gonzales scandal is all about?  The issue shouldn’t be whether Moore is being “investigated” - it should be that Moore is likely to be punished under a pointless law that our elected leaders ought to change.  And we ought to be electing people with the courage to make that change—not sensationalizing when the government reasonably asks someone “did you, or did you not, break the law”??

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By BRR, May 11, 2007 at 9:04 am Link to this comment

Is the US Treasury Department investigating the Governor of Idaho who recently led a trade delegation to Cuba. The Governor, Butch Otter, came back as a new international affairs “expert” and a $100,000 contract for pork.  He had dealt with pork before as member of the US House of Representatives.

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By Rogelio, May 11, 2007 at 8:55 am Link to this comment

The stupid Cuban trade embargo is a sad remnant of an ignorant chapter of human history known as the Cold War. Fidel Castro, regardless of his political ideology, was instrumental in kicking out that damn imperialistic power that supported a corrupt dictator that treated the people like garbage (except for the wealthy elite who escaped to Miami).

It is baffling that the US is so concerned about that little island country. Perhaps we are still afraid that communism may spread again. Or worse yet, Moore might be a pinky commie.

Our ignorant leaders need to burry the hatchet and make mends me with Cuba. If we can be ‘friends’ with Russia, then why can we not form a partnership with Cuba. Is Fidel Castro worse than any other inept and corrupt Latin American leader? Well, for that matter, look at all the abuses that our so-called democratic leaders have committed (Iraq, cover up of 9-11, Attorney General, Karl Rove, Gas Prices, lies…). Perhaps, we are our own worst enemy!

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By John, May 11, 2007 at 8:43 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Incase you do not know, Cuba has some very good health facilities (basically 2) with some of the best european MDs running it. The thing is, this is for visitors of the country. The Cuban government provides this service to earn money, the cuban people have farce healthcare. I expect MM will video-tape those hospitals as being the norm.


And yes, the USA has a bad healthcare problem. Half of the problem is all the lawsuit. The USA is going to need to find its own solution. Canada has failed in its healthcare system .... it cost more and provides less, plus all rich Canadians just fly to America to get health care. And, healthcare in Europe is a huge tax burden.


As far as this lawsuit .... this is MM dream. Seriously, now he can do his whole “Bush is trying to silent me and the truth” bit and get a lot of media attention.

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By GW=MCHammered, May 11, 2007 at 8:33 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Next the Treasury Department will demand NATO militarily go after the World Health Organization for rating Cuba’s overall health care system about the same as the US. The new America… always shooting itself in the foot.

The World Health Organization ranks our healthcare system 37th by overall performance behind Columbia and Chile, just better than Cuba. Yet by expenditure per capita, we suffer the highest cost healthcare in the world. It’s a goldbrick that submerges many families into bankruptcy and it is sinking municipalities and industries too.

And capitalists slap themselves on the back. Bravo.

“Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health care is the most shocking and inhumane.” ~Martin Luther King, Jr.

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By Sharon Ash, May 11, 2007 at 8:06 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I am sure our government has had Michael in their scope for years and have just been waiting for something on which they believe they can fire a shot at him.  He speaks far too much truth and questions authority way to much, for the comfort of those of the controlling elements in our country.  They want the Michaels in the world to just sit down, shut up and let them run the show.  Not happening with this dude.  Keep it up Michael!

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By James Yell, May 11, 2007 at 7:08 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Welcome to the United States of Oppression and Repression and suppression and the Republican penchant for wasting tax dollars trying to interfer with basic freedoms. Cuba is a none issue, except with the refugees, who were mostly over priveleged casino and whore house owners before Castro

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By Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD, May 11, 2007 at 5:24 am Link to this comment

I should think, if the US really cared about its citizens, that it would applaud MM and anyone else, for that matter, for finding out anything they could to make improvements in our health care system.  Our government has been unable to do that.  Call him pro-active.  Our gov. tends to be pro-active only in its own self-interest.  F*** the people.  You go, Mike!  (When, oh when, is the US going to get over Cuba????)

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By macrty@netscape.net, May 11, 2007 at 3:16 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I’m amazed that big brother only used one department to go after mike. The others must be busy with the legions of other critics of all the gov/corp travestries. Christ, Ghandhi, Carl Marx/Sagan and Michael Moore are my heros. Hitler, Rove, Cheney and Bush are humanity’s curse.

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By THOMAS BILLIS, May 11, 2007 at 12:35 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Must be a good documentary and might hurt the HMOs so the enforcement arm of The New American Fascism is on case.
Our policy in Cuba is run by disgruntled Batistites in Miami.Forget the other 300 million people who live in this country.With our policy we will have no sway in Cuba when Castro passes from the scene.I am sure George Bush will consider it another foreign policy success when Hugo Chavez incorporates Cuba into Venezuela.

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By Ron Ranft, May 10, 2007 at 11:42 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Send them a fine cuban cigar, some rum and tell them to go to hell. Tell em you’re taking the fifth. Tell them you can’t recall, forgot, or send them a signing statement. Why should any citizen have to do something this administration won’t do. It’s been 5 years of crap and they still haven’t explained theirselves to us, so tell them to watch the movie when it comes out, if they dare. Tell the Whitehouse you’ll give them a free preview! Go get em again, Mike!

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By beijair, May 10, 2007 at 11:29 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

we need more people like mike.  time people stand up to the government and hold them accountable.  they work for us but no one would know it.  waste 500 billion on war against a country that we didn’t need to fight.  just imagine how many people we could have helped and how well we could have strengthened the military and government against the real terrorist.  Now, the terrorist threat is greater and stronger. 

bush is a complete idiot..really. 

can’t wait to see mikes new film

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By Margaret Currey, May 10, 2007 at 10:30 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Whaat the government won’tdo, recently someone brought some fake watches about four and the government wanted to fine him 55,000.00 the amazing thing is there are real crooks out there but got to go after the easiest target.

Soon this Bush and company will be the target of an impeachment investigation.

Can this administration be impeached, I think so.

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Outraged's avatar

By Outraged, May 10, 2007 at 10:15 pm Link to this comment

Let me guess, the Treasury Dept. is headed by a Bush appointee, is that right?  I’ll bet 100 of my tax gains against 10 of yours. (Whoops, poof their gone!) And I promise, I didn’t even do the research.

That Bad, Bad, Michael Moore. Baddist man in whole damn town. Badder than a Mother Teresa, meaner than a puppy dog.

What’s he thinking helping sick people anyway?  What is this world coming to?

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By Spinoza, May 10, 2007 at 10:12 pm Link to this comment

Mike regularly says the capitalists will always do everything possible to make money/intimidate the left.  You just have to figure out how to exploit them.  Admittedly that is not easy but Mike seems to know how to do it. The idiot Disney company dropped his film (F9/11) and as a result it made millions. He is a very good promoter.

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By rowdy, May 10, 2007 at 9:52 pm Link to this comment

you gotta hand it to mike. he knows how to fuel the fires of ticket sales. the dumb asses at the treasury dept.played right into his hands. most of all, our stance against cuba is just plain stupid. i have a twenty year old toothless dog,she is a greater danger than castro.

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By enemy of the people, May 10, 2007 at 9:15 pm Link to this comment

Explain yourself?

Let me try this.

Ummm. He went to Cuba with some sick people to shoot a movie. He will then compare the medical treatment the sick people can get in the people’s republic with the medical treatment the sick people can get in Amerika.

How’s that?

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By Verne Arnold, May 10, 2007 at 9:14 pm Link to this comment

Well as somebody said, “If you can’t stand the heat get out of the fire”.

Mr. Moore continues to love the heat…Bravo!!!

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