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Michael Moore To CNBC: 'Do Your Job!

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"Who’s, who’s, who’s going? Who’s making this money? Who’s dividing this pie up so that the 1 percent gets the majority of it?”

On Monday, CNBC interviewed filmmaker Michael Moore. During the course of the interview, Moore took it upon himself to tell CNBC how to do its job.

“You are in there. You are journalists. It’s your job not just to report that the Dow is up 95 points already today, but to go in there and find out what’s really happening,” Moore said.

“Who’s, who’s, who’s going? Who’s making this money? Who’s dividing this pie up so that the 1 percent gets the majority of it?”

By “1 percent,” is Moore referring to the type of person who (while on a book tour) travels across the country in a “private jet, accompanied by a fleet of private SUVs and bodyguards?"

“That’s, that’s really the story your fellow Americans want you to do,” Moore continued.

Yes. Michael Moore has just decided that CNBC should be doing investigative pieces on who makes how much, how they make it, where they invest it, and so on...

“They wanna’ know where their jobs went. They want to know where their future’s going to be. That’s the job of CNBC.”

“Yes,” the CNBC anchor replied. "Absolutely."

“So please do your job, please!”

Watch the CNBC interview:

Michael Moore's call for CNBC to change the nature of their program and to investigate the personal finances of the wealthy might backfire on him.

You see, as recently as 2005 Peter Schweizer wrote a book titled Do As I Say (Not As I Do) that accomplished exactly what Michael Moore implored CNBC to do. It investigated the  financial data of some of the wealthiest members of the “1 percent” and successfully revealed how some of the "1 percenters" made their money, how they invested it and how they spent it.

One of the members of the “1 percent” Schweizer wrote about was Michael Moore.

During the course of his investigation, Schweizer uncovered the fact that Michael Moore had set up a private foundation that allowed him and his wife to donate tax-free to any cause of their choice. Then it was also discovered that this same foundation had no outside managers or trustees, according to Schweizer.

What seems curious is that, when he wrote Stupid White Men, Michael Moore also claimed that he owned no stock.

One could imagine the surprise when Schweizer discovered that the now-champion of the "99 percent," who “owns no stock,” reported to the IRS that his foundation “had more than $280,000 in corporate stock and close to $100,000 in corporate bonds.”

But that's not all.

Upon further scrutiny, Moore’s IRS forms showed that his “savings account,” portfolios and investments included corporations such as:

  • Pfizer
  • Merck
  • Genzyme
  • Elan PLC
  • Eli Lilly
  • Becton Dickinson
  • Sunoco
  • Noble Energy
  • Schlumberger
  • Williams Companies
  • Transocean Sedco Forex (“the world’s largest offshore drilling company”)
  • Anadarko
  • Boston Scientific.

What's more, Moore also owned shares in Haliburton that he sold "for a 15 percent profit and bought shares in Noble, Ford, General Electric, AOL Time Warner, and McDonald’s.”

Other investments have included Honeywell, Boeing, and Loral -- all of which are defense contractors.

Maybe Moore is on to something here. Maybe CNBC should take him up on his admonition and do an investigative piece on people's finances. Who knows? They might discover something that went unrevealed in Schweizer's book.

Peter Schweizer, Do As I Say (Not As I Do) (Doubleday, 2005).

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