Bill Moyers Journal . Wendell Potter on Profits Before Patients | PBS Video: Bill Moyers Journal . Watch & Listen | PBS Transcript: BILL MOYERS: So what did you think when you saw that film? WENDELL POTTER: I thought that he hit the nail on the head with his movie. But the industry, from the moment that the industry learned that Michael Moore was taking on the health care industry, it was really concerned. BILL MOYERS: What were they afraid of? WENDELL POTTER: They were afraid that people would believe Michael Moore. BILL MOYERS: We obtained a copy of the game plan that was adopted by the industry's trade association, AHIP. And it spells out the industry strategies in gold letters. It says, "Highlight horror stories of government-run systems." What was that about? WENDELL POTTER: The industry has always tried to make Americans think that government-run systems are the worst thing that could possibly happen to them, that if you even consider that, you're heading down on the slippery slope towards socialism. So they have used scare tactics for years and years and years, to keep that from happening. If there were a broader program like our Medicare program, it could potentially reduce the profits of these big companies. So that is their biggest concern. BILL MOYERS: And there was a political strategy. "Position Sicko as a threat to Democrats' larger agenda." What does that mean? WENDELL POTTER: That means that part of the effort to discredit this film was to use lobbyists and their own staff to go onto Capitol Hill and say, "Look, you don't want to believe this movie. You don't want to talk about it. You don't want to endorse it. And if you do, we can make things tough for you." BILL MOYERS: How? WENDELL POTTER: By running ads, commercials in your home district when you're running for reelection, not contributing to your campaigns again, or contributing to your competitor. BILL MOYERS: This is fascinating. You know, "Build awareness among centrist Democratic policy organizations--" WENDELL POTTER: Right. BILL MOYERS: "--including the Democratic Leadership Council." WENDELL POTTER: Absolutely. BILL MOYERS: Then it says, "Message to Democratic insiders. Embracing Moore is one-way ticket back to minority party status." WENDELL POTTER: Yeah. BILL MOYERS: Now, that's exactly what they did, didn't they? They-- WENDELL POTTER: Absolutely. BILL MOYERS: --radicalized Moore, so that his message was discredited because the messenger was seen to be radical. WENDELL POTTER: Absolutely. In memos that would go back within the industry â€” he was never, by the way, mentioned by name in any memos, because we didn't want to inadvertently write something that would wind up in his hands. So the memos would usually-- the subject line would be-- the emails would be, "Hollywood." And as we would do the media training, we would always have someone refer to him as Hollywood entertainer or Hollywood moviemaker Michael Moore. BILL MOYERS: Why? WENDELL POTTER: Well, just to-- Hollywood, I think people think that's entertainment, that's movie-making. That's not real documentary. They don't want you to think that it was a documentary that had some truth. They would want you to see this as just some fantasy that a Hollywood filmmaker had come up with. That's part of the strategy.