It's always difficult to tell whether right-wingers are liars or ignoramuses. Do they know they're spouting falsehoods or do they actually have no clue? Beats me. While perusing the San Francisco Chronicle over breakfast this morning, I was treated to a new entry in the cavalcade of conservative confusion. But is confusion the letter writer's goal, or is it his condition?
From the Chronicle's Letters to the Editor, June 21, 2006:
I presume that Grossi was referring to the June 9–11 receipts for the weekend when Cars made its debut. The Disney movie came in at #1 and Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth was down at #11. How humiliating for the former vice president! Oh, the shame of it all! But what do the box office receipts actually show?
Editor — Al Gore's movie on global warming has hit rock bottom in the weekly box-office ratings, while “Cars” by Disney grossed millions of dollars. Poetic justice, or do American theatergoers know a lemon when they see it?
W. Grossi, Alamo
Cars pulled in an average of $15,086 per theater while being shown in 3,985 theaters. (For the math-challenged, that works out to a weekend gross of more than $60 million.) That made Cars the #1 movie that weekend. At the same time, Gore's movie was pulling in an average of $12,333 at each at 122 theaters (a gross of more than $1.5 milion). The overall rankings are based on gross receipts, not the per-theater average. An Inconvenient Truth would have been a strong runner-up in the #2 spot if ranked on per-theater average. The performance of Gore's documentary is truly phenomenal.
The June 16–18 box office results are also out. Cars is still #1, although its weekend gross fell by nearly 44% compared to the weekend before. As for An Inconvenient Truth? It retained its #11 position among all movies in national release and increased its gross take by 27%. It's also increasing the scope of its distribution. Next weekend the movie opens in Sacramento and I'm looking forward to seeing it. An Inconvenient Truth is already showing in San Francisco. Grossi should go. And maybe learn something.
Update: The poor-mouthing of Gore's movie is now a full-fledged right-wing meme. Like the first swallow of spring, Grossi's letter was just a harbinger. Fodder for the neo-cons is being provided by Moonie-owned UPI (which is now merely a propaganda arm of the Unification Church), which published a negative report on An Inconvenient Truth, although it at least acknowledged that Gore's movie ranked high among documentary films: “Yet despite its failing numbers, the film has brought in $9.6 million to date, making it one of the most successful documentaries to date.” The always reliable Powerline blog (no, I'm not linking to those creeps) quickly picked up the UPI item, although spinmeister-in-chief Hindraker (affectionately known as “Assrocket” in blog circles) carefully omitted the one positive point from UPI's article. The grown-ups are beginning to weigh in. Tim Lambert at Deltoid (always one of the best places to separate science fact from neo-con fantasy) put up a post this morning with a graph that illustrates the monotonically increasing weekend grosses for An Inconvenient Truth. (Hi, there, Deltoid readers. Thanks for visiting.)