Michael Moore; War Profiteer?

As you know, I read the Flash Report daily so you don’t have to, but this post by Fresno Lincoln Club co-founder and chairman Michael Der Manouel, is so over the top that it has to be an embarrassment to the site’s publisher.  And if it isn’t, it should be.

Der Manouel has declared filmmaker and documentarian Michael Moore a “war profiteer” simply because the 2004 documentary “Fahrenheit 9/11” grossed well over $200 million.

Moore is promoting his new documentary, “Sicko” about the nation’s healthcare system. And without having seen this film (or Moore’s last one I’m sure), Der Manouel is criticizing the film and Moore’s criticism of the profit motive in America’s healthcare system.

I don’t know about you, but when I think War Profiteer, I can’t help but think of our current Vice President Dick Cheney.  Between deferred salary from Halliburton, the massive value increase of Halliburton stock rising since 9/11 and the Iraq War, plus to move to privatize many functions of the war to cronies of the administration, I think the vice president is a better bet for War Profiteer than Michael Moore.

Here’s the money shot:  “…wonder if there could be anyone dumber than this guy.  The profit motive in health care drives all innovation, all advancement, all efficiency and all progress in the industry.  Socialist countries with single payer health care produce no advanced medical technology of their own, no new pharmaceutical drugs, and massive rationing and wait times.  Nobody from the United States goes to Canada for advanced treatments.”
No, seniors go to Canada for cheaper prescripion drugs.

I’m going to take a wild guess and say he’s never heard of AstraZeneca of Sweden or Novartis of Switzerland, GlaxoSmithKline from the UK and Bayer from Germany (of course the US has Pfizer and Amgen et al). 

With graduation season upon us and having so many neighbors enrolling in pre-med in college, some of my neighbors want to find a cure for AIDs and cancer; I’ll have to set the kids straight that its all about making money instead.  Most of the medical biographies I’ve read discuss the subjects desire to cure or better treat disease; making a buck at it seemed so, so…secondary.

And Der Manouel must not be familiar with the growing medical tourism industry; from the MedJourneys.com website:

Medical tourism is quickly becoming one of the world’s fastest growing industries—growing approximately 30% a year. Healthcare analysts are currently forecasting it to become a 4 billion dollar industry within next few years. Countries like Thailand, India, Costa Rica and Brazil, just to name a few, are at the forefront of this industry with more than 1.3 million tourists per year seeking low-cost medical care abroad. The burgeoning industry has been the focus of many recent in depth reports, including an article in Time Magazine and a segment on 60-Minutes.

  11 comments for “Michael Moore; War Profiteer?

  1. June 13, 2007 at 4:51 pm

    Ok, that picture is so freaking disgusting. I really hope that was photoshopped, or something. Yuck!

    By the by, check the comments on that thread, some interesting stuff. They need to get HTML-enabled comments

  2. Dan Chmielewski
    June 13, 2007 at 5:49 pm

    The one of Cheney has been laughed at and talkede about on Wonkette.com since the 2004 election. As far as I know, it is not photoshopped.

  3. June 13, 2007 at 9:53 pm

    As much as I admire Michael Moore’s work, I wish he would have picked a country other than Cuba as a poster child for medical tourism. Not only is it illegal for Americans to travel to Cuba, Fidel is widely rumored to have imported Spanish physicians and surgeons to care for him during his latest bout of illness. Critics of “Sicko” are going to have a ball with that.

    As author of “Patients Beyond Borders,” I can attest first-hand to the quality and cost-effectiveness of medical treatment cross-borders. Moore should have taken his patients to one of the fine international medical destinations you mention above. While the shock and PR value might have been diminished, “Sicko” would have better-served an audience increasingly in need of good information about traveling abroad for healthcare.

  4. Dan Chmielewski
    June 13, 2007 at 10:08 pm

    Josef – thanks for your post. You might want to drop a dime on your book over to the clueless gent at the Flash Report.

  5. Michael Der Manouel
    June 26, 2007 at 12:48 pm

    I am the proud author of the original Flashreport post, and I come into to hostile territory today to simply stand by every word I said.

    Countries with single payer health care produce zero value in health care systems worldwide. The countries you cite where drug R & D take place are habited by FOR PROFIT companies that MAKE MONEY selling drugs across the world.

    And yes, finding cures for all these diseases is about the money – the profit motive is what drives almost all of the significant effort in the world to cure disease.

  6. Dan Chmielewski
    June 26, 2007 at 1:30 pm

    Michael – Thanks for checking in. The point of my post was that its short sighted to think Americans don’t go anywhere but America for healthcare. Because they certainly do. And you implied that only America provided healthcare innovations, when its clearly not the case.

    I know several pre-med grads entering college this fall because they want to find a cure for AIDs, see how stem cell research can possibly cure disease, or find new treatments to battle cancer. Making money is not the motivating factor here. Glad to know that making money is the only thing that matters for Republicans like youself.

    But back to the my response to your comment that Michael Moore is a war profiteer. Might want to consult a proctologist to help you with that particular logic because that’s where I think you pulled that particular piece of information from.

    Michael Moore made a movie about President Bush and the War on Terror. Everyone who went to see it did so of their own free will and made it the most successful documentary in history. Michael Moore did not profit from this war. Dick Cheney has. What was the price of Halliburton stock on March 2003 and how much is it worth today?

    Did you even see Farhenheit 9/11? Because if you didn’t, and like most Republicans I know, you haven’t, how can you criticize something you haven’t seen?

  7. Michael Der Manouel
    June 28, 2007 at 9:25 pm

    Thanks Dan. I did see Farhenheit 911 and actually enjoyed it while opposing its premise. But I still think Michael Moore exploited the war for financial purposes. It’s all in how one views the world……..

    Halliburton was trading at $10 in March, 2003 and is at $34 today. Mutual Funds own a signficant percentage of the stock. Is is conceivable that many on the left own this stock through their 401k.

    If you think we invaded Iraq to prop up Dick Cheney’s blind trust you need to see your own proctologist (hey, you started it). Doubtless, Michael Moore still made more money exploiting the war than Dick Cheney made on Halliburton’s five year run up.


  8. Michael Der Manouel
    June 28, 2007 at 9:30 pm

    Hey, do you know how painful it is for me to type in these leftist “security words”? Like “living wage”. What’s next? Hey hey, ho ho, President Bush has got to go? No, that would be too long. Anyway:

    Halliburton’s consolidated financial statements can be found at http://finance.yahoo.com/q/is?s=HAL&annual.

    They had losses up until 2005, and in 2006 paid over $1B in federal income taxes.

  9. Dan Chmielewski
    June 29, 2007 at 8:44 am

    Mike –
    Thanks gain for reading the blog.

    Michael Moore is a film-maker who made a movie about why the war in Iraq is wrong. People freely paid money to see it. Fox News covers the war and accepts advertising to pay production costs for those who watch their network. But your stanards, tht makes Rupert Murdoch war profiteer as well.

    Back to Halliburton. A $10 investment more than triple sin four years. Not bad. I am not saying we went to war to enrich ick Cheney, but through his deferred compensation and Halliburton stock holdings, ick Cheney has been enriched by the war.

    Here’s a recent earnings announcement…not, Haiiburton’s Profit dropped; not a loss, but a drop in profit…

    Halliburton profit drops 40% after year-ago tax gain

    By Jasmina Kelemen, MarketWatch
    Last Update: 2:08 PM ET Jan 26, 2007

    HOUSTON (MarketWatch) — Halliburton Co. said Friday that its fourth-quarter profit fell 40% from last year, but the company still managed to beat analysts’ expectations and its oil-services segment posted record revenue.
    Nonetheless, the stock fell as investors focused on a drop-off in North American revenue between the third and fourth quarter, heightening concerns that an abundance of natural gas and slowdown in drilling could plague the company’s bottom line.
    Halliburton said that net income fell to $658 million, or 64 cents a share, from $1.1 billion or $1.04 a share a year earlier. Its year-ago profit included 51 cents a share of tax gains.
    Revenue for the quarter rose 8% to $6 billion from $5.5 billion, largely due to higher activity in the energy-services group, which partially offset lower revenue in its KBR unit due to decreased activity on projects for the U.S. military, according to the company.
    Analysts polled by Thomson Financial had been expecting the Houston company to report earnings of 61 cents a share on revenue of $5.9 billion.
    Halliburton (HAL : Halliburton Company
    News , chart , profile , more
    Last: 34.70+0.18+0.52%

    12:19pm 06/29/2007

    Delayed quote dataAdd to portfolio
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    HAL34.70, +0.18, +0.5%) shares last down 2% at $29.15, lagging its peers on the Philadelphia Oil Service Index ($OSX : Philadelphia Oil Service Sector Index
    News , chart , profile , more
    Last: 265.85+4.21+1.61%

    12:19pm 06/29/2007

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    $OSX265.85, +4.21, +1.6%) .
    “For Halliburton, 2006 was an exciting year,” with “exceptional growth in energy services,” said Chief Executive Dave Lesar.
    “Although we experienced weather-related activity decreases and holiday impacts in the United States during the fourth quarter, we expect demand for ourselves to remain strong throughout 2007,” he added.
    Energy-services revenue rose 23% to a record $3.5 billion. Operating income jumped 41% to $959 million. Included in the fourth-quarter operating results was a $48 million gain from the sale of lift boats.
    Sales for KBR, which is Halliburton’s engineering and government-services arm, fell to $2.5 billion from $2.7 billion in the fourth quarter of 2005.
    Halliburton partially floated KBR (KBR : kbr inc com
    News , chart , profile , more
    Last: 26.31+0.05+0.19%

    12:19pm 06/29/2007

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    KBR26.31, +0.05, +0.2%) via an initial public offering in November. The spinoff is scheduled to be completed within the next three months.
    By geographic region, North American revenue fell 4% to $1.6 billion in the fourth quarter from the third quarter. Internationally, revenue rose 11%.
    “North America still drives lion’s share of Halliburton profits and Halliburton [is] pegged as a North American story, so this quarter is not doing anything to change investor minds,” Dan Pickering of Pickering Energy Analysts wrote in a note.
    Excluding business interruption gains in the Gulf of Mexico, operating margins were below 30% for the first time in 2006, he said.
    While the market focused on the negatives, other analysts commented that the slowdown in North America was largely expected and centered on the company’s robust international figures.
    “With a number of projects continuing to ramp up or about to start, we believe this international growth is sustainable and would expect North America to recover in the [first quarter,]” Michael Urban of Deutsche Bank wrote to clients.

  10. Shane Bottom
    July 14, 2007 at 1:23 am

    I think that Michal Moore had a right to disscus the issues of our shittie health care service. This country is so corrupt, and money hungry that we as a nation forgot about we the people. I have personal bad exsperence with health insurences out there not wanting to cover me because it save them money. Thats GREED! Which sounds like this country. I lived in England for 12 years of my life, and I never had to wait to see a doctor, nor did I have to pay anything to see them. With my exsperence they did a better job then American Hospitals ever would. It also has to do with bed side manors. Americans are not nice at all, and Iam one! It seems like if you dont have any money on you Americans turn there cheek. Iam not an anti american or anything like that. I just feel this country has always been heading in the wrong direction. And we the people need to take back our country and stand up for what we belive in. We shouldnt have to be scared of our own government, we shouldnt be cowards, and belive what the government says all the time! There isnt such thing as this corprate America that is one big super power to the world. If we dont change or actions the world might turn against us, like its starting to now. Thankyou.

  11. Susan Freeze
    August 21, 2007 at 5:11 pm


    I consider Michael Moore the Left’s answer to Rush Limbaugh and Bill O’Reilly- Except Michael’s reasoming is based on fact.

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