Michael Moore has been bashing Pete Townsend in interviews for refusing to allow “Won’t Get Fooled Again” to be used in Fahrenheit 9/11. (It would have been used in place of Neil Young’s “Rockin In the Free World” at the very end of the film, following Bush’s “Fool me once…” quote.) But according to Townsend, that wasn’t what happened. Townsend says he was initially concerned because he felt Bowling For Columbine was a “bullying film,” and points out that “Won’t Get Fooled Again” is neither an anti-war song nor a rallying cry for an election. (And Moore himself expresses discomfort with the line, “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.”) Townsend concludes,
I greatly resent being bullied and slurred by [Moore] in interviews just because he didn’t get what he wanted from me. It seems to me that this aspect of his nature is not unlike that of the powerful and wilful man at the centre of his new documentary.
Is it inevitable that anyone capable of expressing appropriate outrage about what’s going on must also indulge in some of the sins of the people who make us so angry?