Sunday, June 27, 2004 "An effective campaign tool [to persuade the completely ignorant]"

Lee -- of -- reviews the film:

As I sat there in the dark I kept wanting to scream out rebuttal facts and arguments to the screen, and this is a point that I want to drive home. The vast majority of people out there, be they liberal or conservative or otherwise, do not get as involved in political discourse as most people in the blogosphere. The analogy I use is with sports or cars. We all have friends who know everything there is to know about sports. They can rattle off every insignificant fact or statistic at the drop of a hat, and are able to do so because they have an interest in the subject and spend a lot of time learning about it. There are people who are the same way about cars or computers. I, for example, know very little about sports. So if I was watching a documentary about sports, without having specific knowledge to the contrary I would tend to believe the facts presented therein. Most of the people watching Moore's film tonight will undoubtedly take a similar tone towards this film. Since they are most likely not politics or news junkies they lack the information necessary to formulate any kind of a reasonable counter-argument, which is why Moore's tricks and omissions are going to be effective. . . .

When the film was over and the credits rolling, the young man who had just failed the 12th grade turned to his friend and said, "Man, our president is a [expletive] idiot, yo!" It seems that the master had reached the pupils, even one who just failed his senior year of high school.

By providing such a slick piece of election-year propaganda Moore has created a very effective campaign tool for the Democrats. He knows that the average person viewing the film will lack the knowledge to formulate a counter-argument and thus accept his assertions as fact. And all he has to do is hope that they remain ignorant and deluded until November.

Will it work? I'll go out on a limb and predict that this is not going to significantly hurt Bush in the long run. I think that there are going to be a number of people who will come out of the theater with an anti-Bush feeling, but that over the next few weeks this will dissipate as they talk to their friends and discuss the movie. Moore will have a short-term gain and Bush will lose a percentage point or two, but I think that Moore will ultimately fail in his quest to significantly damage Bush's chances.