Saturday, May 19, 2007


Michael Moore's new documentary, Sicko, opened today in Cannes and was received quite appreciatively from the crowd of about 2000. I wouldn't have picked that name -- maybe H.M.O. would have been better. More than a month before the film officially opens across Canada and the United States, it's already raising some tough questions.

Such as why was an eighteen month old girl who needed emergency surgery was denied it and died simply because she didn't have health insurance.

Or why 9/11 survivors have to get health care in Cuba -- Guantanamo Bay, Cuba at the military hospital that also serves the so-called "enemy combatants." (Message to State Department: Since when did Americans need permission to visit their own sovereign territory?)

Many critics have noted that this new movie is quite a departure from Moore's previous works which include Roger and Me, The Big One, Bowling for Columbine (which won an Oscar) and Fahrenheit 9/11. It is devoid of the "gotcha" interviews that made Moore famous because in part the HMOs warned its employees on penalty of dismissal (and, naturally, loss of their health benefits) not to co-operate with Moore. Instead, Moore settles for the human story; why it is that over 45 million Americans don't have insurance and the rest get health care that costs double and a half what the mostly streamlined systems in Canada, the UK and France cost.

I suspect that many issues will surpass Iraq next year in the 2008 elections, and how to reform health care will be just one of them. I don't like Mike as much as I used to (too shrill in my opinion) but I think he's served the opening volley once again. The season of sequels? This may be the summer of people starting to talk again in America.

And that's a good thing.

Vote for this post at Progressive Bloggers.

1 comment:

rob said...

It seems like health care could be the sleeper issue that the Dems need to put them over the top, doesn't it?