It is amazing how many people I know from Flint, Michigan. thedailygrowlerhousepianist for one--and two other good-good friends are from Flint, and Michael Moore's from Flint, and I once worked in an ad agency with Michael Moore's wife's best friend and she was from Flint. And I know quite a few people from Detroit, too, but more from Flint--like I've already thought of a couple'a more Flint people I know. Why I've even been to Flint. Yeah, in the late seventies, one of my say hey! days; I was a writer for the Good Shepherd Press and I wrote Christian church histories (especially Catholic and Episcopalian) (the churches paid big bucks to have these histories published--they were like high school annuals, you know, filled with church history and pictures of prominent church leaders and then snapshots of the current congregation, shit like that; it was easy work for me, the parishioners and people like that did all the hard work, gathering the photos and dating everything and giving me a timeline on which to write my standard way of knocking these things off a flurry of pages at a time--it was nice bucks for me, $700 a book, big bucks in those days, and I ended up writing 35 of them--one a real big buck one for an old Episcopal church in the middle of New York City), and one of the histories I was assigned was for a Catholic church in Flint, St. Joesph's, I think, though it could be one of so many saints--I could never keep up with them--not even when I'd be sitting in a rectory with a good father, smoking a Havana-seed stogie and sipping on the Lard's best cognac--I'd sometimes get the saint wrong--"Father, wow, what cognac, Praise the Lard." "And the cigar, my son?" "Man, if that kills me I'm gonna die happy." "The Lard's holy work the tobacco plant." "Amen to that, Padre, and, trust me, Padre, I'm gonna put Saint Stephen's on the map, baby." "It's Saint Teresa's of the Spanish Rose." "Jesus, Padre, I'm sorry--all saints sound alike to me. By the bye, I couldn't bum one of those illegal Cubans off of you could I? "My son, those cost the parish 20 smackers a piece." "Thanks, Padre, I'll remember that as I puff away on it while contemplating the transcendental state that cognac took me into, Praise the Lard, and I'll have Sister Teresa raining down rose petals all over Times Square."
I flew out to Flint with orders to pick up their stuff, interview the pastor or priest in this case, maybe have dinner with the nuns, but then the boss expected my ass back in New York by that evening--so what I saw of Flint was like a passing glance (like a Malcolm Lowry novel) going from the Flint Airport in the south part of the city up around the city to a northern suburb, a clean little 50s-looking neighborhood with a clean modern Catholic church but a falling economy was causing cashflow problems and one of their solutions was to sell these histories to help bail the church out of some debts.
Then, you should know the story, how the automotive industry pulled out of Flint and left it panting for life, its people out of work, the city falling ashambles--
This was covered in Michael Moore's first film Roger and Me--remember the woman butchering her bunny rabbits and selling them as meat in front of her house. Desperate times in Flint...and the beginning of desperate times in this country.
All of this leading to my having listened to Michael Moore on Amy Goodman's radio show this morning. I dug what the dude was saying and especially his idea of going to New Hampshire for the next round of stupid debates and having a town meeting and going over each candidate--Moore says Americans are some of the dumbest people in the world no matter their education--I've been saying this for centuries now--growling it out--telling everybody what my best friend the college professor said how even his graduate students were too dumb to teach--he didn't know how to come down to their levels in explaining his field of expertise--he figured by the time they got to him they were ready for the big time--bullshit he said--adding once--which amazed me--that he'd once announced in a graduate quantitative physics class he was going to give a test but that he giving everyone impunity when it came to grading them. One student raised his hand--yes, my friend said, and the student said, "Uh, Prof, what's gonna be the punishment your talking about." He said that's when it hit him--all his wanting to be a great teacher and intellect and they gave him these dumb-ass students. That disappointment eventually killed him--that and other burdens in life, one being left crippled from a spinal operation when he was in his 20s--a goof up by a bunch of bootleg surgeons down in Houston at one of the best hospitals in the world--and Michael Moore's new movie Sicko is all about this HMO Health for Profit healthcare system we have in this country--the only country in the top 50 countries in the world without a national health-care system.
Michael Moore impressed me further by saying he had once thought Hillary was cool and had a great chance to be the first woman president but that since in making this movie he had looked deeply into her stance on these HMOs and he said he sadly discovered she was up to her neck in HMO and pharmaceutical stocks--plus, as I've been saying for centuries up to her neck in WAR industry stock, Exxon-Mobil, and, yes, Wal-Mart and, hallelujah, Wal-Mart of Mexico (Carrumba!). Moore says all the candidates are up to their necks in deceit when it comes to national health care, from Hillary through Obama on down to Edwards--all Dumbocrats--of course, we know the god-damn Repugs won't ever give us national health care--it's Socialism to them; in fact, Michael Moore traces the beginnings of HMOs right back to Richard Nixon! Yeah, the Tricky One, Mr. "I Am Not a Crook" Richard Milhouse Nixon, who came from the loins of his great Quaker mother--one of the absolutely criminal, crooked, and murderingest presidents ever, though I'll take George W. Bush--he's gonna whipped Nixon's ass in both the criminal and murderingest titles.
So Moore's gonna go to New Hampshire and reveal everything "nasty" there is on the candidates and in this case he's gonna ditch the dirt on the Repugnicans, too, including Mormon NitWitt Romney--HEY, MEN, President Romney would allow us to have as many hot wives as we need--plus you get to screw your own daughters, too--yep--I kid you not, folks. I had a Cousin Maria who married a Mormon horse trader and she got into all that geneology shit these Mormon sons of bitches are into--they have the largest geneaological database in the world--they've compiled the lineage of all of us--I know a Jewish friend who found an uncle living in London who had survived Bergen-Belsen (Whaaa? I hear the dumbasses asking) through the Mormons--they found the dude. Crazy mothers if you ask me. I wouldn't want one as president; but then nor would I want a Catholic or a Jew or a Christian or an Islamic as president either--they can be that in their private lives but not in their political lives. F religions. And F the economic system, too, the cause of it all--CAPITALISM, folks--money breeds money--them that's got and them that's not--Billie Holiday sang about it 65 years ago--"God bless the Child that's got his own, that's got his own" and that's the truth about this country and this economic system and what Michael Moore's trying to put the spotlite on. How these greedy bastards like these HMOs will milk your ass clean dry in terms of your life's income and then when they've cleaned you out and you can't pay anymore, they put you in a cab and tell the cab driver to push your ass out on skid row--San Pedro in L.A.--anyway, Michael Moore's movie shows an L.A. hospital dumping a woman patient on a skid row street--the cab driver just shoves out of his cab and leaves her on the curb--and she's still in a hospital gown and she has no shoes on.
I've always hated doctors and have gone to them as few times as possible. I did have a double hernia operation one time--under the care of a Park Ave. doctor, one of the most famous in the field, introduced to me by my friend the 3-star Air Force general--who I knew worked for the CIA, too. After that operation I still had the same pain, so I went to a teaching physician, a urologist, up at Columbia-Presbyterian Hospital, one of the biggies here in NYC--it sits on the land that once was the New York Highlanders baseball team's ball park--there's a little memorial set up where home plate used to be out there--the New York Highlanders became the New York Yankees--and how 'bout those Yankees! Baseball! God, I love BASEBALL. It's a relaxing sport to watch--yet so damn exciting--especially these days when you just never know--like riding a roller coaster these games so far this year.
And Michael Moore's a baseball fan, too, a Tigers fan and the F-ing Tigers are looking again this year same as they looked last year--they're the American League wild-card leader right now--the Yankees are chasing them, about 5 games behind them in the wild card--but then there's so much time left--and baseball changes as fast as the seasons it lasts through.
So tonight I have a much great appreciation of Michael Moore than I've had before. Besides, he's got Okra Winfrey up off her big wide ass on this HMO bullshit and national health care movement--though Okra having made 250 million dollars last year from her teevee show could provide us with healthcare out of her own pocket--or at least open up some free clinics around the poorer parts of our biggest cities. I never understood why we couldn't at least have free clinics in every neighborhood of every city in this country--this country is dumb and dumb people are mean--the dumber the person to easier he is to enslave and to control and to teach to KILL.
So let's check out Sicko and see if multimillionaire Michael Moore's gonna make any progressive difference with it. Hillary and Bill have had to reveal their stock holdings maybe because of Michael Moore's growling about Hill and her deceitfulness and her lyin' and her not really deserving to be the first woman president of this country. There are better women who deserve to be president--like Shirley Chisholm--I always thought Shirley Chisholm would have made a hell of a president--with Rosa Parks as her vice-president.
And Michael Moore so reminds me of my other Flint, Michigan, friends--they are great friends to have--smart sons of bitches, too--and I've made some wonderful music with my Flint brothers and sisters--here's to dear old Flint, Michigan!
for The Daily Growler