By Eva Golinger
In an interview broadcast October 9 on Jimmy Kimmel Live! the renowned and award-winning documentarian, Michael Moore lied vulgarly about his encounter with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez during the Venice Film Festival this past September.
In the interview, Moore responds to Kimmel's request for an explanation of a photo of Moore with President Hugo Chavez. Apparently embarrassed about the encounter with one of Latin America's most prominent and influential heads of state, Moore proceed to completely make up a fairy-tale, attempting to pass it off as reality.
With a straight face, Moore stated he met President Chavez at 2 o'clock in the morning, after he and his wife had settled into bed in their Venice hotel room and heard a scandalous noise coming from the floor above. Moore states that he called down to the reception to find out "what the hell was going on." "It's the President of Venezuela," the hotel clerk allegedly told Moore. Well, Michael couldn't believe it, so despite his wife telling him "don't go," Moore set out, determined to find out if the true source of the scandal was really the Venezuelan President, the polemic Hugo Chavez.
Incrediously, Moore says he went upstairs and knocked right on Chavez' door and a large man answered, who Moore claims was the President's "bodyguard." Chavez was right behind him and caught a glimpse of Moore and yelled out "Michael Moore, come on in!"
Michael Moore is a comedian!
I like and respect Eva Golinger's opinion on nearly everything, but the huffing and puffing that she is doing about the Michael Moore appearance on the Jimmy Kimmel Show classically illustrates what turns most people off about the liberal/progressive positions on everything: its overwhelming lack of a sense of humor.
The man was making a joke. In poor taste? Perhaps. Not well thought out? Maybe. But a diplomatic insult to President Chavez. Get over yourself, Eva. The man is a comedian. He makes his living making people laugh. His movies have all had a biting wit to them that makes people keep coming back. And they learn something from them. Like that Fidel Castro is not the 3 headed monster that the US State Department and the CIA have made him out to be. That his socialist state can actually produce a better health care system than the Oh So Capitalist! United States of North America can.
Michael and President Chavez have a history and they like each other. Michael Moore has never taken the shots at Hugo Chavez that the uneducated idiots in the USNA Main Stream Media have. Michael has never expressed anything but the highest respect for President Chavez and his leadership of Venezuela in bringing it out of the morass of neoliberal capitalism and the opening up of opportunity to the indigenous and mixed race people of Venezuela who where for centuries oppressed by the rabbiblanco oligarchs.
If one looks with less than an eye to find fault with everything about the entire show at the picture of Michael and President Chavez, the picture of Nicolas Maduro does give him that deadpan expression of one of those gorilla bodyguard types, and therefore easy pickings for Michael's humorous comments.
As for Ms. Golinger's allegation that Michael said that President Chavez was drinking Tequila half the night, again, if one listens to the video without a chip on her shoulder, Mr. Moore implies that he was the one drinking the Tequila and then humorously adds that he then wrote President Chavez's opening at the UN speech while he was drunk. It is standard lame USNA talk show humor. I would urge, in the strongest possible terms, that Ms. Golinger and Mario Silva over at VTV quickly GROW UP! This is not the tormenta of the century. There are far more important things to be upset about than some lame jokes on a second rate late night talk show.
— Jim Hadstate, October 20, 2009, Venezuelanalysis.com
Anyone who has ever traveled or been close to President Chavez knows very well that it is absolutely impossible to just "go knock on his door." Presidential security lines the hallways, elevators and all entrance points. Take it from someone who knows first hand. Moore's story is complete and utter fiction. Also the man Moore identified in the interview as Chavez' "bodyguard" is actually Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro ... but hey, all latinos look alike!
The tale continues. Moore says he entered the room and a "bottle and a half of tequila later," he was writing Chavez' speeches! Of course, Michael, all of us Latin Americans drink tequila! Man, he couldn't even get his alcohol right in his fairy tale! Tequila is Mexican, Michael. Venezuela makes rum. Get it straight. And anyway, President Chavez does not drink at all and is well known for his anti-alcohol position. But in Moore's story, latinos are all a bunch of partiers! No work, just party, drinks and fun at 2 a.m.!
Moore is exceptionally full of himself towards the end of the interview with Jimmy Kimmel. He says Chavez asked him for advice about his upcoming United Nations speech. Moore sternly told the South American President to "say sorry for calling Bush the devil, 'el diablo' during his last UN intervention. And to say this time around it's all about the 'hope'! Way to defend Bush, Michael! Wait, didn't you write, direct and film Farenheit 9/11? Right, but when someone "non-US" tells it like it is, you get way patriotic. I get it.
The interview ended with Michael fully praising himself for yet another one of President Chavez' brilliant United Nations' speeches. "When I heard the first few lines of his speech," says Moore, "it was exactly what I had written for him!"
Michael, Michael. Don't you know that Chavez doesn't use a telepromter? Where we come from, speeches are made from the heart and soul, and not written by an elite team of 20 writers and then read from transparent screens. And Michael, do you really think that flattering yourself at this point, after you have lied so tremendously, is appropriate? Arrogantly, Moore joked that Chavez should give him a "year of free gasoline" for writing his speech. At least he didn't say bananas.
Michael Moore has been known for his documentary work; filming and telling "facts." But on this occasion, Moore has turned into the worst of yellow journalists, a liar and story-teller on the big screen. Despite the fact that Moore insisted "no cameras" document his meeting with President Chavez in Venice, the official Venezuelan presidential press snapped a few photos, and there were many witnesses. The photographs show evidence of a Michael Moore and a President Chavez serenely sitting in two chairs talking. No tequila, no parties, no scandals, just a normal meeting between a Head of State and an invited guest. In fact, the real meeting lasted three hours, without tequila.
Michael Moore prohibited cameras in the meeting because, per his own words, it wasn't "convenient" for him to been seen with Chavez. Despite the fact that every presidential meeting has been documented by the official press, this time, they deferred to Moore with respect. He was, after all, an admired figure by millions of Venezuela. But, the presidential press was able to capture a few photos of the encounter. These photos now are the key evidence to expose Michael Moore's vulgar lies about his meeting with President Chavez.
Moore's commentaries about President Chavez asking him to "help" write his United Nations speech demonstrate Moore's extreme ego. President Chavez is one of the most brilliant speakers in the world, with an immense capacity to bring together a variety of ideas while being coherent. Of course, Chavez nourishes his speeches and talks with ideas, experiences and the writings of many, but for those of us who spend almost every day listening and watching President Chavez, we know that nobody writes his speeches, not even him! He speaks from his heart, and not from a teleprompter!
Moore's declarations against President Chavez are offensive and insulting and a clear sign of his hypocrisy and lack of ethic. How many times has we heard President Chavez acclaim Moore's books and documentaries? And most recently, Chavez announced that Moore's latest documentary, "Capitalism, a love story," would premiere here in Venezuela.
Moore's response to this admiration, acclaim and support is to lie and ridicule President Chavez and the people of Venezuela, and to attempt, lamely, to justify his meeting with Chavez.
Because in the end, this whole ridiculous tale told by Moore about his "meeting" with President Chavez is an attempt to avoid admitting before the US media that he met for three hours with the South American "dictator." And he probably liked it.
Michael Moore is a most unfortunate coward.
October 20, 2009 — Return to cover.