Moore censoring

5 May

The headline in the "liberal" New York Times says it all: Disney Forbidding Distribution of Film That Criticizes Bush.

The story alleges the reason Disney executives are blocking their subsidiary, Miramax, from distributing the film because"

Disney came under heavy criticism from conservatives last May after the disclosure that Miramax had agreed to finance the film when Icon Productions, Mel Gibson's company, backed out.

Mr. Moore's agent, Ari Emanuel, said Michael D. Eisner, Disney's chief executive, asked him last spring to pull out of the deal with Miramax. Mr. Emanuel said Mr. Eisner expressed particular concern that it would endanger tax breaks Disney receives for its theme park, hotels and other ventures in Florida, where Mr. Bush's brother, Jeb, is governor.

"Michael Eisner asked me not to sell this movie to Harvey Weinstein; that doesn't mean I listened to him," Mr. Emanuel said. "He definitely indicated there were tax incentives he was getting for the Disney corporation and that's why he didn't want me to sell it to Miramax. He didn't want a Disney company involved."

So, Disney won't release a movie because they are scared of political retribution by the Bush administration vis-a-vis the President's brother. While at first you might just think that this is another case of censorship in America as a result of Sept. 11, what I think is more revealing is that Disney is scared of retribution. Michael Moore's book, Stupid White Men, was initially censored because the publisher didn't feel it was appropriate to attack the President after Sept 11. They feared a PUBLIC backlash. Disney fears a POLITICAL backlash. This is the kind of censorship that destroyed the independent media in Russia. The simple fact that Disney felt retaliation was possible says more about the state of American democracy than I think many might realize.

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