From remarks by radical author and filmmaker Michael Moore to the Recycling Council of Ontario May 6 on T.O.'s trucking of garbage to Michigan.
On some dark level I appreciate the irony of Canadians finally being able to dump their crap in America. You have had to suffer for god knows how many decades of being on the receiving end of our crap, whether that's literally the air you breathe or what you're forced to watch on television. But realistically, what's sad about (Toronto exporting its garbage) is that in a place like Flint, in Genesee County, roughly 60 miles from the Canadian border, you have a desperate city that is officially bankrupt. So desperate are people for any kind of money that many are more than willing to dig large holes in the ground and accept garbage from Canada. Since I made Roger And Me, another 50,000 jobs have been eliminated by General Motors from Flint. It's in 10 times worse shape than when I made that movie.
If you've seen my other work - Bowling For Columbine, Canadian Bacon - I'm sure many of you think I have a way too optimistic attitude about Canada, and you're probably right. You do have lots of problems as a society - but they pale by comparison to what's going on (in the U.S.). When you look at Canada from America, it looks pretty damn good.
I often say to my fellow Americans, "We would do well to aspire to be Canadian-like." And what I mean in part is that the Canadian people have been entrusted with a large part of Planet Earth, and as part of this trust many have been conscious of the impact we humans have on the environment.
There's a better solution than going to the most poverty-stricken area in America and digging large holes and dumping waste and garbage in them. I've got to believe there's something in even the most conservative, capitalistic Canadian that knows there's something wrong about this.
The technology exists to dispose of this waste in ways more friendly to the environment. And it's not just technology - some of it's our own responsibility in terms of recycling and doing the things that need to be done.
I don't mean to put this on you, and I don't mean to demean the place I live in. You've met enough of us to know there's something charming about our simpleness. I don't think America's going to figure this (garbage problem) out. We need you to help set the example again and to show us the way.
I know you'll probably say, "Oh geez, (America's) kind of the older, stupider brother who (we) have to constantly remind that this is the way to properly behave." You don't go and invade sovereign countries that are not a threat to you, little things like that. I'm sorry to ask (for your help) again to take a strong stand to protect this planet and stop those trucks from dumping their garbage in Flint.