Reason as the Leading Motive

The Unraveling Continues

Posted by Jerry on July 30, 2007

It is so easy to expose the lies and deception of Moore and his Sicko, that you don’t need sophisticated analysis and arguments from academic intellectuals, economists, or philosophers; intelligent movie reviewers are doing a superb job of it. Here’s an article by Kyle Smith that exposes the deception of Sicko.

The silliness of Moore’s oeuvre is so self-evident that being able to spot it is not liberal or conservative either; it’s a basic intelligence test, like the ability to match square peg with square hole.

Regarding my claim that Moore has zero credibility:

There is no way to know whether this claim is true because Moore’s style is to present whatever information he likes without checking it.

He told “Entertainment Weekly” “absolutely not,” when asked whether he felt any need to get the other side of the story. So, over time, his work rusts out from within as the facts eat away at it. The central idea of “Bowling for Columbine,” for instance—that the killers were subconsciously driven to their actions by the presence of a weapons manufacturing plant in Littleton—turned out to be not only conceptually insane but literally untrue. The plant did not make what Moore called “weapons of mass destruction” but rather space launch vehicles for TV satellites. “Roger & Me,” which presented Moore as unable to secure an interview with the GM chief Roger Smith, was also a 90-minute lie: Moore did talk to Smith, a fact revealed by Ralph Nader.

Regarding any disagreements surrounding wait times for healthcare in Canada:

Moore glosses over wait times, hoping his audience is too stupid to notice. He asks a handful of Canadian patients how long they had to wait to see the doctor. Oh, 20 minutes, 45 minutes, everyone says. So if Moore finds five people who didn’t have to wait, there’s no waiting for anybody! “To any Canadian who has ever been forced to go to emergency, this would seem unbelievable,” writes Thomas Malkom, a vehemently pro-Moore columnist for Canada’s paper The Star. The Canadian Supreme Court struck down a law forbidding private insurance in a 2005 decision, ruling that “Access to a waiting list is not access to health care”

Here is Dr. David Gratzer, the Canadian author of “The Cure: How Capitalism Can Save Health Care,” who believes both the US and Canadian systems are deeply flawed:

“Like most Canadians, I believed that we had the best-run health-care system in the world. Because the system was publically owned, I assumed that compassion came before profit and that everyone got good care. . .After I entered medical school, however, my view of Canadian health care changed…I trained in emergency rooms that were chronically, chaotically, dangerously overcrowded, not only in my hometown of Winnipeg, but all across Canada. I met a middle-aged man with sleep problems who was booked for an appointment with a specialist three years later; a man with pain following a simple hernia repair who was referred to a pain clinic with a two-year wait list; a woman with breast cancer who was asked to wait four more months before starting the lifesaving radiation therapy. According to the government’s own statistics, some 1.2 million Canadians couldn’t get a family doctor. In some rural areas, town councils resorted to lotteries: the winners would get appointments with the only general practitioners around.”

Regarding life-expectancy statistics offered by Moore:

Moore emphasizes life-expectancy figures in which the US slightly lags some other Western countries. But life expectancy involves many factors; two that Moore is especially knowledgeable about, obesity and homicide by firearm, are special American plagues. Here’s a stat: The percentage of patients having to wait more than four months for non-emergency surgery is about five times higher in Canada and seven times higher in Britain than it is here. [see Gratzer, 171]

I urge you to read Kyle Smith’s article in its entirety and link to it on your posts on the topic (if any).

3 Responses to “The Unraveling Continues”

  1. But... said

    This is interesting, but I’m a Canadian, with a chronic health problem, and my wife also has a different chronic problem, her mom’s a cardiac nurse, we both come from huge families, and work in large workplaces with lots of acquaintences, all ages… We have huge direct and indirect exposure to information and experiences of Canadian health systems (Ontario and Quebec, primarily… New Brunswick a bit too…)

    The 20-45 minute wait that is described by people in Moore’s film *does* seem like the reality up here, among everyone I know. The writers you quote are kind of like angry vocal exceptions to the general feeling among Canadians, I can only think, since nobody I have ever met has ever had much in the way of complaints about our healthcare system. At least, my experience, and I and my wife have contact with that system monthly, for tests and specialists’ appointments, etc.

    The “bogey of the waiting list” that US people screech about all the time just seems kind of funny or comical, as a general assessment of our medical system. I am sure there are categories of treatment, geographical hotspots, and tons of individual tragedies involving wait times, but they don’t affect anyone I know, nor seemingly anyone they know, since noone says much negative about healthcare experiences. While even one personal tragedy is one too many, and one does not excuse them, it is also wrong to over-generalize them.

    Plus 45 million Americans are on a permanent waiting list. “Forever” is a long time to wait! And for those with insurance, isn’t there some kind of administrative wait imposed by the need to clear coverage with your insurer? Canadians don’t have that wait, or anything like it. So isn’t it a bit artificial to compare wait times once you are inside the system? Americans have to negotiate access to a service first, it seems. That should factor in to the overall wait time, when making comparisons.

  2. Graham said

    You didn’t mention Dr. Gratzer before did you? It’s funny that we both ran into his stuff. I’m thinking I found him through google or something. Maybe not. I really want to read that book but I’m in a demographic that doesn’t permit such luxuries as books (unemployed student on Summer vacation). Anyways, I don’t think it’s necessary to put Moore through any intellectual scrutiny, he certainly doesn’t hold his work to that standard. He’s kind of a dumbass, is my comment.

  3. Ergo said


    You said: “nobody I have ever met has ever had much in the way of complaints about our healthcare system.”

    It’s hard to believe that the Canadian SUPREME COURT would get involved in the matter of waiting lists and denounce it in such harsh words if it were only a minor, insignificant, or merely an exceptional issue; in that case, shouldn’t it be a matter for the smaller courts?

    I think your personal experience speaks more about the social strata you live in than about the state of Canadian healthcare. Why else would Canadians have to resort to “playing” lottery with their health? (Even the thought of it scares me! India is far better off than Canada in that regard, mostly because we have an anarchic system of healthcare.)

    India is a far more socialist country than Canada could ever be; and yet, neither have I ever met anyone who has complained about our healthcare system. Partly because we don’t really have a “system” per se; but mostly because the circle I interact within constitute people who would never bother using government healthcare clinics and hospitals. In a sense, Indians have been lucky with healthcare despite the socialism because our system is more anarchical than anything–like our roads.

    We have government run clinics and hospitals where extremely poor patients only go to die or contract more diseases. The private clinics and doctors escape government detection, taxation, and interference because our system is not centralized and we are underdeveloped in the administrative technology, inept in the bureaucracy, and short on the resources required to have a closely-monitored socialist healthcare system.

    Because of this, our private doctors have direct interactions with their patients with hardly any (no) paperwork, very low costs (due to tax evasion and lack of bureaucratic control), and quick service. This makes private healthcare amazingly affordable to even the low income strata.

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