When I took the grave risk of switching channels to CNN this evening, I was handsomely rewarded with the dramatic spectacle of Michael Moore hoisting Wolf Blitzer on his own proverbial petard. Wolf set himself up for the hoist by tossing out one of the most inane questions ever asked by a newsperson in the history of broadcast media—a question that, not surprisingly, I’ve heard just about every other self-loathing journalist interviewing Michael Moore in the past 24 hours ask him.
In Wolf’s et al.’s own words:
Let’s talk about...most people who are going to see this movie who don’t like you are going to say, "you know what, Michael Moore has done pretty well in this free-market, capitalist system—you’ve become a fairly rich guy yourself."
But Michael Moore never let Wolf reach his punchline. Michael Moore’s response, which begins at 1:53 into the interview, is instantly-classic, petard-hoisting material. First, he objects to Wolf’s contention that anybody dislikes him. He then challenges his tacky and uninspired host to provide him with the names of anyone who does, and he graciously offers to cook that person dinner.
Wolf, tenacious chum-seeker that he is, won’t let the strawman go and insists, "there are a few." He proceeds to call Michael a hypocrite, and Michael duly turns Wolf’s idiotic question right back at him:
Why am I against capitalism if I’ve done so well? Shouldn’t the question be better put—I’m not trying to do your job for you—but wouldn’t the question better be, "gee Mike, you’ve done so well, why don’t you just kick back at the lake and enjoy your life. Why do you care about people losing their healthcare and their jobs and all that...you’re not losing yours...I wonder if there was a Wolf Blitzer 200 years ago who asked Thomas Jefferson or John Adams or George Washington, ‘hey, you know, you guys are wealthy land owners..."
At that moment, I put myself in Wolf’s shoes, and I thought to myself, "I really need to retire before I lose my final shred of dignity...wait, that was my final shred of dignity!"
Michael Moore continued for several more minutes without mercy, but I’m not going to spoil the rest—watch the video before Wolf’s goons take it down: