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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  October 3, 2011 12:00am-3:00am EDT

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>> scott mchenry, just a quick question. are you shopping programs to try to marginalize your views? ..
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>> you know, that is not the basis of the argument against al gore, it's just the cherry on the icing on the cake. it's not the thrust of the argument. my problem with al gore is distorting evidence that he's a rent seeking businessman. that's my problem with al gore. the way that the other side treats people like me, they don't even want to engage with our arguments. they just want to destroy us, and any means will do. for example, chris tosser has a -- christopher has slightly bulging ios, and that's not why he is wrong. they use it against me. i use the fact that i once read
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i had manic depression, so i'm mentally ill so you've got the university of the east, you know, using public money essentially to launch this case against me, and, you know, it was all carefully constructed. the bbc, which has been, you know, one of the arch advocates for global warming, you know, is not an unusual party in this date. the bbc teamed up with the new president of the rule society, a poor nurse, a nobel prize winning genecist which was a hit job on me, it was a neutral science documentary exploring the pros and cons of global warming. get this. what emerged in the document -- and this is not, you know, sour
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grapes. i'm annoyed by this. i'm not being defensive. i'm just telling you what happened. the thrust of the documentary was that, one, anyone who doesn't believe in manmade global warming is essentially anti-science and ignorant and irresponsible. two, that if you don't believe in manmade global warming, you have risen to the same category of people who think that a, aids is not caused by the hiv virus, and b, the same category of people who destroy fields. gm crops. it was a complete smear job. it was conducted in that cay, and i was naive to take part in it. when approached, i thought, hang on for a second, i'll get a nobel prize winner to come to my house, and bbc assured me this guy had not made up his mind
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what he thought about global warming. you know, he wanted to find out the truth. he did. he was a neutral party in all of this. i thought, hey, great, this will be my chance to put our side of the argument across. i've done my research. what i would have realized is that a year before he made this documentary, he hosted a dinner for the rockefeller foundation at his house in new york,ty tended by -- attended by george soros, you heard of him? and ted turner, to name the two. i tell you that george soros and ted turner are not neutral parties in this debate, you know? i was stitched up, and this is how they operate. i'm glad to be this on the record because i think, you know, there's a me on the
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internet that he's a fool because he was, you know, he was exposed as a scientific literate by our nobel-prize winning scientist. well, paul nurse's field is yes genetics. i read english literature. i'm not ashamed of that. if i were going to make a documentary about wolf, i would not consult somebody in the virginia wolf department. somebody in the virginia wolf studies department is not necessarily going to vouch for the credentials of someone in the bear wolf departments. scientists are not all the same. scientists do not all know everything. science is diverse and ob truce. it's about specialties. i don't think paul nurse is in a position to make announcements on what's happening in the field
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of climate science, which let me say, is one of the failed sciences anywhere. i'm not sure -- it's for more of a social science than a hard science. i thank you for that. >> yeah. i think we're running to the dead lien. join me in joining james and congratulating him on his new book. [applause] >> for more on james delingppole and his work, visit james
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>> talks with michael moore, the former editor of mother jones magazine took viewer questions and spoke about voter apathy, voter reg renne registration. he has a newly released memoir, "here comes trouble: stories from my life." >> host: michael moore, how did you meet robert kennedy? >> guest: just a couple blocks from here at the nation's capitol in the capitol building. my mother had brought us down here on vacation. i was 11 years old, the summer after 5th grade, and my mother, she -- kids went north to the lake, you know? you know, did fun -- go to scout camp and things like that. our mom wanted to take us down
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to washington, d.c. every other summer because she so believed in this country and just everything about it, and she loved history. we read the documents of the founding fathers in the summer, and we traveled through the smithsonian institute, and going to all the different museums here, and every time we came here, we had to go and meet our senator from michigan or two senators, and our congressman, and on this particular day, we're in the capitol building. i don't know, i started looking at all these statues in the hall there and reading all the inscriptions, and i got separated from my mom and my sisters and my cousin, pat, and what felt like hours, was probably just 20 minutes, i'm like wondering all over the capitol building looking for my family. i can't find them. i start to cry.
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these elevator doors open. i walk into the eel -- elevator. i don't see the sign. i walk in. they close. there's one man in the back of the elevator reading the newspaper in front of his face. he hears this boy crying. he puts the paper down, and it's bobby kennedy, and, of course, even at 11 years old, i know it's bobby kennedy because being raised in an irish-catholic household, you're schooled in everything irish and catholic and kennedy, and he says, well, what's wrong, young man? and i said, oh, i lost my mommy. he say, well, i'll help you find her. he does. he takes me by the hand, doors open on the next floor, and we find a capitol police officer. he says, senator, we'll take care of it from here. he says, no, i'll stay with him here for a little bit until he finds his mom. he stayed there and talked to me
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and had this great conversation that i recount in the book, and then it came across the police radio they found my mother. he said i think it's time for me to go, and the final word to me were, you know, to never lose sight of your mom and it was at 11 years old, it was something that really stayed with me for some time. >> did your irish-catholic mother vote for jfk in 19601234 >> guest: she did not. this was just almost blase fa mouse to my fare who was irish catholic also. remember at that time, we never had a catholic president. we had been a country for almost 200 years, and yet even though there were, you know, probably cat -- catholics, divide the protestants, catholics have the
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largest part of the population in this country, and yet never a catholic president, so that was a really big deal to vote for kennedy. the nuns and priests were for it, but my mom whose father was one of the leaders of the republican party in our town could not bring herself to vote for him because he was a democrat. she was a old core old school republican, the old style republicans who believed in the abraham lincoln roosevelt republican party where if you were conservative, you didn't spend money you didn't have or concern the environment. these are gifts from god, the planet earth, things like that. it's actually the first argument i can remember my parents having. they didn't argue much. i remember this because i was in 1st grade, and it was just before the 1960 election, and they were out in the garage
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doing cleaning, and my dad said, how can you not vote for kennedy. she says because he's a democrat. the kids were on my dad's side just because it was the catholic thing to do. >> host: didn't you have a nixon's the one sign on your door at one point though? >> guest: by the time i was 14 years old, a freshman in high school, i was against the war from the beginning, and when i say against the war, i mean, the vietnam war started for americans when i was in 5th grade, so i had just even as a kid thought this was a really bad idea, and so when bobby kennedy was running in 1968, and i was in 8th grade, it was a really hopeful moment this would turn around. johnson said he was not going to run again. that was great news.
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hump hrey decided to get into the race, and nix con said he had a secret plan to end the war, and he was going to end it in six months or whatever, and that sounded good to me. he was also for 18-year-olds having the right to vote. he wanted to start something called the environmental protection agency. he believed that girls in school should have the same rights as boys, and so he was going to institute -- he did institute title ix. this is what a republican used to look like. he's like the worst, so kind of shows you how far we've come, but nonetheless because he said he'd end the war, i decided to go and campaign for him, and as a freshman in high school, that's what i did and please
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don't strike me. >> host: well, we are telling stories from your most recent book, your eighth book called "here comes trouble." just came out this year, and mr. moore, when's the first time you remember causing trouble? >> guest: wow. that i actually remember causing trouble? wow. i think, you know, honestly, i think the first trouble i got into was when i stole something from the 5 and dime. used to be the store called the 5 and dimes because things just cost a nickel and a dime back then, and i had -- i think i'd stolen a pack of gum or a tootsie-roll from the five and dime on main street in davidson, michigan, and i don't know how my parents found out.
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i might have told them. i might have said, hey, look what i got. i was 4 years old, literally not even in kindergarten yet. oh, my god, it hit the fan. they were very upset. i had to take the gum back to the five and dime. i had to apologize. i had to do extra chores. i had to say a rosery or two. it was pretty bad, but that's actually the first thing i remember happening. the last thing i stole. >> host: where is davidson michigan, and what was your childhood like? >> it's about five or six miles east of flint which is about 60 miles north of detroit, and davidson was a village back in the old days before it later
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became a suburb of flint, but my family, my mom's family settled there back in the 1870s, so my family was one of the first founding families of the area, and there's a little village near davidson called alba, and that's where they first settled, and they and about six other catholic families helped to get the first catholic thing going there, and in the what was called lapier county. my family has been there -- it'd be 175 years this year, before, i think, the year -- maybe the year before michigan was a state, so been there a very, very long time, and my mother was always very proud of the fact that her family helped to
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found the area. i should say when i say "found," i mean, the native americans were there. they were the first white settlers, and actually i recount a story in the book where i talk about my great, great george grandfather who became friends with the indians much to the dismay of the other white settlers. >> host: what was your childhood like in the late 50s and 60s? >> guest: it was great. it was great to grow up there in our neighborhood. we lived on a dirt street. it was a two dead end street. each end of the street had a dead end, and i see you're showing home movies. there's my sister and i, there's cowboy mike. there's me getting early exercise and i soon stopped doing. there's me and the guns. that's one of my first nra -- i was an expert marksman, won the
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nra award while i was in boy scouts. it was a great time. i mean, the kids of the neighborhood were agree. i write about this, and we used to play war all the time, and i can play either the german or the american. if i was the german, the nazi soldier, i would make sure i died a horrific death because i just wanted the german to go out that way. if i playeded the american, you know, i tried toot the hero -- tried to do the hero thing and get as many germans as i can. we played baseball sun up to sun down. the riding mower there, we mowed the field to play ball. at 10 and 11 years old we shot rifles with no supervision whatsoever, just bird guns, so it was really a great time.
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it was -- and there was a lot of hope and all of that, and my dad worked in the factory. >> host: which one? >> guest: ac spark plug. it was a division of general motors. >> host: in the union? >> guest: oh, yes, yes. he was in the uaw. my sister's husband, whitney, was in the sit-down strike in 66 and 67, that really essentially founded the uaw. it existed before that, but it was the very first contracted they got with a major industrial corporation, and workers took over the factories for 44 days in the middle of winter. gm turned the heat and water and everything off, just froze in there, a lot of battles with the police, and timely roosevelt told the governor of michigan to
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send in the national guard and protect the workers. that was a turning point that helped the union get their first contract. my dad, his brothers, whole family worked in the frabbing ri, and -- factories and they were grateful for the union because this union did a lot of things in terms of raising everyone's standard of living. we lived a middle class existence as a result of having just one income in the family, and he, i mean, we had full medical coverage, full dental. he had four weeks paid vacation every summer, so it was really, you know, he was -- he was home at 3. they worked an eight hour day back then. he worked at 6 in the morning and was home by 3. it, you know, it was the sane way to live, and everybody knew,
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even though they were strong union men and women, they knew -- they accepted the compact with the corporation which was that if you worked hard and the company prospers, you prospered. real easy deal. you know? of course, not that way anymore. >> host: how do you get into catholic seminary? >> guest: how did i get? let me in? >> host: well, tell us the story about catholic seminary. >> guest: well, i think starting around probably 7th grade, i was enamored with the priests who were very much involved in the antiwar movement, marched, worked with chavez and the farm workers, and
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spanish issue, and i just thought those were heros to me. they were like -- they were, you know, they did things. the barrigan brothers had acts of civil disobedience. they tried to stop the war. the priests would get arrested with martin luther king, and they were like action heros to me. it was like, wow, so like you could do good with this, you could honor god, preach the gospel, and be an action hero. it looked really like a good deal to me. by the time i was in 8th grade, i asked my parents if i could go to the seminary in high school to study to become a catholic priest. they were not in favor of this. they were strong catholics, but they wanted me at home. they did not want their son to be gone at 14 # years old leaving home, but, you know, i told them i 4 --
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had a calling, and that's all you have to say. ewe don't want -- you don't want to get in the way of the calling, and they let me go. i had an interview with the priest and told them what i was thinking. i probably down played the radical priest part bit a little so they would not be frightened of a little tyke like me and what i was going to be up to, but they not omelet me in, but -- only let me in, but it was the best years in term ofs an education. they were great. they were -- it was powerful learning. they believed we should bilingual or trilingual. we spent a whole half semester tearing apart shakespeare's romeo and juliet line by line to see how it works and the syntax and everything, and you're in
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9th grade, and it's one of those things i had for the rest of my life because it made going to his plays or reading his works enjoyable. i really appreciated the education that i got there, but i was only there for one year. >> host: why is that? >> guest: well, i was 14 years old, and i don't know, maybe i was -- maybe puberty set in late, but somehow it kicked in, in that freshman year of high school, and, you know, just the normal, i guess, hormonal changes or whatever, you know, i just read the rule book, and i thought girls were a good idea, and so i went in, the last day of my freshman year to tell them i was not going to come back, and the priest, before i get a word out, he says, michael, we've decided that you should not return next year. i'm going, wait a minute, i came in here to resign.
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you can't kick me out. well, good, we're in agreement. i said, well, why don't you want me back here? well, we think you ask too many questions. we're not big on people asking a lot of questions in the institution of the catholic church, so that was the embed of my seminary days, but not the end of my faith or beliefs and values and morals and my ethical being in terms of the way i was raised by the good nuns and priests who educated me as a young person. >> host: what was your involvement with the elks club in boise state? >> guest: well, every year -- i think this is true in most states -- you mentioned you were from indiana; right? so in most states they have girl state and boy state. each year they pick two students from every high school in the state to go to the state
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capitol, in this case, lansing, to play government, and so i was picked from my high school to go there and then you have all these boys, in this case, boys state, and we were to elect a governor, lieutenant governor, state legislature, supreme court, and everybody was supposed to run for offices and do campaigns, and i really -- i didn't want anything -- i was not that kind of kid. at that point, i had not run for student counsel. i was not a class officer. i don't know why i got selected, and as soon as i got there, i was just around politicians, and i didn't want anything to do with it, so i just went to my dorm room. it was held on the campus of michigan state university, that's the hat -- we beat ohio state yesterday, first time since the civil war -- but i
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locked myself in a dorm room, shut the door, and didn't come out for the whole week, and about -- i was like maybe two days left in the week there, and i decided to go down to the machine to get some ruffles. that was a new potato chip back then. it had ridges in it, like these hills of chip. i thought i got more chip per chip, so i just loved the chips. there's a poster by the snack machine that says speech contest on the life of abraham lincoln here for boy staters, sponsored by the elks club. i go, the elks club sponsoring a contest on abraham lincoln? my dad joined the elks club, but at the top of the application were two words, and those words were caucasians only. of course, my dad wouldn't join,
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and i just thought, wow, there's some irony for you. you know, this racist organization is spoon toring a -- sponsoring a contest on abe lincoln. i thought i'm going to go write me a speech. i wrote a speech, entered the contest, i show up the next day, give the speech, just 12 boys in the room, and i thought there would be somebody from the elks club there, and there's not. it's juliet a speech -- just a speech teacher from a high school who is the judge. after all the speeches have been given on abe lincoln, the civil war, i stand up and go how dare the elks club dismerge the reputation of lincoln's reputation. they should be removed from boys state, and i go on and on like this until all the kids in the room are like wow, until the black kid who is laughing. he can't believe he's hearing this. we're all done, the speech teacher stands up and says well, the winner of the contest is
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michael moore. i go, wow. then he says, now, tomorrow at the final assembly, where all 2,000 boys are gathered, you have to give the speech. i said, oh, no, no, no, i can't do that. he goes, no, no, that's the rulings. you have to give the speech. he said, don't worry i won't say the content thl you give it. i was like, oh, thanks. hit it with them fresh. next day, i show up, they take me up on the stage, i walk past the governor, the lieutenant governor, all dignitaries, and the last guy in the last chair, walking by him, and it's a guy wearing a hat with antlers. it's the chief elk. oh, no. i give the speech. how dare the elks club do this. i turn around and i see him, the chief elk, and he's like, you know, face is all red, and he's
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gritting his teeth, and he's holding the trophy he's going to hand me, and i just kind of made up the last line. i went, and i don't want your stinging trough -- stinking trophy. the whole place erupts with cheers. i was like, i got to get out of here. i go back to my room. before i got out of the building, though, there's an ap reporter, and he stopped me and goes, who are you? why did you give that speech? i don't know, you know, i got to go. two hours later, there's a knock on the door. there's a phone call for you. i go down, take the call, pick up the phone, it's a pay phone. how does anybody know i'm here? the voice says, yes, i'm a producer with the cbs evening news with walter cronkite here in new york, and we want to send a crew over, and interview you for our newscast. i'm going, no, no.
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i'm really not like a political activist. i'm just a kid in search for a bag of rough -- ruffles potato chips. i just hung up the phone and ran back to my room. it didn't stop. the next few days the phone rang. i went home, phone rang. newspapers. naac prk. congressman wanting me to testify because they are introducing bills because back then, people forget this, but this is in the early 70s, it was still legal to discriminate on the basis of race on private organizations. public, no, that was taken care of with the civil rights of 64, but private, you could still discriminate. people were trying to get lawed passed. the flood gates opened on the issue. people covered it, people did other things, and a year later, the elks club lost their status
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and liquor licenses which is the worst of all to lose your liquor license. finally, they changed the policy and resended their caucasians only policy, and the lesson to that way too long of a story is this, at least it was for me at 16 or 17 years old, and probably a dangerous lesson for me the rest of my life. that lesson was you, actually you, an average citizen, a 17-year-old kid in the middle of nowhere can brick about change by doing not a whole lot. i had not organized mass demonstrations or go on the news or whatever, but by doing just a little bit, just by making a little speech. things can happen. you never know what will happen or how it happens, and it was like, wow. what if everybody knew that secret? you're at home now thinking i'd
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like to change this or i'd like to change that. how can i do that? i have to be an organization, need money. well, you know, sometimes it's about if everybody did just a little instead of waiting for one or two people to do a lot, if everybody did just a little bit, good things can happen in this country, and that's what i learned. >> host: and welcome to booktv, this is our monthly in-depth program with one author and his or her body of work. this month it's author and filmmaker michael moore. the numbers are on the screen if you want to dial in and talk with mr. moore. >> you can also send mr. moore a tweet at, or an e-mail, we'll begin taking those in a minute.
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first, there's another time that you received an award, and we're going to show just a little video, and if you're talk about the circumstances surrounding this video. >> i'd like to thank the academy for this. i've invited my fellow documentary nominees on the stage with us. [cheers and applause] we would like to -- they are here. they are here in solidarity with me because we like nonfiction. we like nonfiction, and we live in fictitious times. we live in a time where we have fictitious election results that elects a fictitious president. we live in a time where we have a man sending us to war for fictitious reasons whether it's the fix tigs of duct tape or the fictitious of orange alerts, we are against this war, mr. bush, shame on you, mr. bush, shame on
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you. any time you have the 66 against you, your time is up. thank you very much. [audience reacts] ♪ >> guest: well, yeah. it didn't go over as well as the elk club speech. at least at the time. that night it was -- look, it was the fourth or fifth day of the war. >> host: march 23rd, 2003. >> guest: that's correct. here we were all dressed up going to the academy awards, and there was just a huge disconnect it felt like to me, and so when we won, i didn't really have a speech prepared, and so i had
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asked my fellow documentary filmmakers during the commercial break before the award, i said if i win, i want to welcome you on the stage. if you come, i'll probably say something about what's going on, and if you want to join with me, that would be great. they all came up with me. but it descended into chaos as soon as i started to say what i thought was a fairly, i don't know, poetic eloquent thing to say. i was not really going to mention mr. bush's name. i wanted to say we like nonfiction, and that's why we make nonfiction, and yet we live in fictitious times, and we were led to war for fictitious reasons. nobody wanted to hear that on the 5th dwai, and 70%-plus in the country supported the war, and i was in that small, small minority speaking out against it at that time, and so i took a
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beating for it. good news is within three or four years, the majority of americans came around to actually cheer that position that i took. what happened as you walked off the stage? >> guest: well, as i walked off stage, i heard the first two words that all oscar winners hear. they don't talk about this. you never see this because it's behind the curtain, but any time you win the oscar, any time, like if you get it once, and i was so lucky that night. i walked off the stage, and there's a well-dressed young man and a well-dressed young lady there in evening wear, and the young lady says to you, champaigne? the boy goes breath mint? it's like okay. my mind is like, wow, there's
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still a lot going on. i heard a third word, a stage hand, a number of them were quite angry at me for what i just said. he ran over and got right up in the side of my head and screams, i won't say it here on c-span, but "a-hole" right in my ear, and security said we need him out of here because there's going to be a riot backstage, and that's what they did. >> host: what happened to you after the oscar speech? >> guest: well, i was crucified in the press, all the entertainment pundits that night and the oscar shows, what got into him? why would he do that? why would he say such a thing? this is the oscars. you know, we need a little escape. people thought, too, that the war was going to be over in a few weeks. 2k3w0 in there, roll into -- go in there, roll into baghdad
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as we did, and that would be the end of that. i think people were afraid to say anything. if you notice though, on that tape, the booing was not happening on the main floor from the actors and the directors and writers nominated. it was coming, i don't know where, they told me later it was from the balcony or from where the people, where the agents and the advertising, the people who run the ads on the shows, and they have free tickets, and that's where it was coming from, but it got -- when we got back home to michigan, it was pretty rough. not only a lot of threats, but actual attempted assaults on me constantly. physical assaults. i 4 to hire a security -- i had to hire a security firm from los angeles which are made up essentially ex-navy seals and
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special forces types who wanted to take this detail to protect me, and i'm grateful to them today because they prevented a lot of things from happening, but there was not a day where i couldn't walk down the street without somebody wanting to punch me. one guy in fort lauterdeal just came out of star bucks, sees me, takes the lid off his coffee, and he throws hot scalding coffee at my face, and one of the security guys saw this happening. didn't have time to stop him, but he put his head in front of my face. he took the hit of the hot coffee. he got sec degree burns from it. it's that kind of thing. that went on for a year or two or three, and it was quite debilitating, and it was egged on as i point out in the book. i quote glenn beck, and bill
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o'riley, people who said horrific things i couldn't believe could be said across the air waves. glenn beck saying i'm thinking of killing michael moore. i think i could kill him himself or hire somebody. no, if he was here, i could choke the life right out of him. i used to say a thing that said what would jesus do. he said, i don't care about that. he's ripping on this fantasy of this, and you put that out there on hate radio, the unhinged hear that too, and i don't know. i mean, i just -- it just struck me as just a crazy making stuff, and could i go on the radio or tv saying i'm thinking of killing, you know, fill in the blank. you know, the head of goldman sachs or whatever? i think if i said that, i think i'd get a knock on the door from the police.
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if i said i'm thinking of hiring somebody to kill somebody, not to glenn beck though or anybody on the hate talk shows. they just fueled it and fueled it, and i was the post r boy for that -- poster boy for that, and i just thought what did i do? we're being led to war for false weapons. i don't think there's weapons of mass destruction. that's the crime. i mean, i'm a guy who loves this country. i'm a guy who -- i'm an eagle scout. i go to church. i, you know, i'm like i couldn't believe how i became this target for the things i was saying to me just didn't seem radical or out on a limb. it was basic stuff. i was making movies, and trying to tell people -- for instance, my first film "hey general motors, i think they're doing something wrong and will go down the toilet and take us with
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them." that was one film. another film, i don't like it when kids get access to assault weapons and takes them into schools. i think we should oppose that. that was my point in "bowling for columbine". wow. you know? it's like, yes. let's call out the forces and attack this man. it just has never made sense to me. >> host: 202-624-1115 for those of you in the mountain and pacific time zone. michael moore, well known filmmaker and author. "downsize this" "adventures in a tv nation" came out in 2008 ncht stupid white men, dude, where's
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my country, will they trust us again? fahrenheit reader. the election guide in 2008, and his most recent, stories from his life, which we've been discussing this afternoon on in-depth. here comes trouble. first call up comes from nebraska. go ahead, ronald. >> caller: do you believe that the media as a whole over sensational stories find or create figures as causing the political system to deteriorate. >> host: do you have an example of what you mean, roonld? >> caller: like the case cy anthony trial. the media just did it for money for advertising. >> guest: yes. yeah, yes. not -- it's not just the money
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though. it's also because it's easy, and it's because in a lot of ways, they are no different than a lot of people and a lot of jobs where they are just trying to bet by doing as little as they can, and it's easy to cover those stories or the michael jackson trial story or whatever, and yesterday, you know, we had time magazine up to 1,000 people arrested during the wall street protest yesterday, but to really do the stories that i think need to be done to go after goldman sachs to investigate the crash of 2008, to do those things, that takes a lot of works brains, and a lot of money, and, you know, our media, we don't have a state owned media.
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we have a corporate owned media, and so it would be naive to think that these entities don't feel some to beholding to the corporations that they invest in or invested in them. one of the examples recently was the cnn tear party express debate. in other words, wolf blitzer stood there saying he was partnering with the tea party express to put on the republican party debate, and i thought, wow. i mean, i thought, okay, not a bad idea to partner up with the citizens' group, but i will never see the day where there will be the cnn teachers' union debate or the nurses' debate, or the cnn/michael moore debate
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with the republican party. i mean, that's just not going to happen, but when groups or things on the other side of the political fence, and it's not because they necessarily agree with them, but just because the media is gun shy about being called liberal or accused of pretending or showing that they are not, and so they go to bed with the tea party and hold a debate which just didn't make sense to me. >> host: victor from california, an e-mail, several along this line. mr. moore, why is it that people like you don't run for higher office? there's so many excellent people like you on the left, yet they never run for office, and we always suffer the consequences of such narrow limited options. >> guest: i think that's an excellent question. not so much for me, but i
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think -- well, i ran for office at 18, and i won, and so i served my four years. >> host: did you cause trouble on the board of education? >> guest: a little bit. too many stories for the book, but i was one of the first 18-year-olds elected in the country after the 18-year-olds got the right to vote. i was on the board of education for four years in michigan. he's right though. our side, we need leaders to step up because i think there are so many good people that could or should run that people would get behind, and we don't because we don't, you know, we don't want to -- i mean, i think it's such a good thing that, you know, he did that, and certainly people will come out and vote for you. the republicans have certainly shown that that when they run beloved figures or people that stand up and really communicate
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with the public like ronald reagan or arnold schwarzenegger, fred thompson, for as much as they say they hate hollywood, they run hollywood all the time. they love hollywood because americans love hollywoods. americans love the movies, and actors are great communicators. that's why they do well with that. we don't do that. i know somehow we think that hair rereid is the way to -- harry reid is the way to go and he should be the leader in the senate. i don't mean that with major disrepublic, i just think -- disrespect, i just think we need the democratic party needs a bit of a backbone and not to be in the same money pot that the republicans are in, and sioux i don't know if that adequately answered the question. >> host: west virginia, you're on with michael moore.
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please go ahead with your question. >> caller: hi, it's a pleasure to speak with you, michael. i think you have a good heart. i was wondering if you'll consider examining the result of the investigation of the coal mining disaster that occurred a year ago where the 29 miners died. one completed the investigation, and you can find all the information on the university website, but it's just criminal what happened to these men, and our coal miners here, michael, are just good working people who want to take tear of their families, but they're trapped in an industry now that's trying to take away union rights, and so if these people need to be treated with respect. >> host: thank you. we got the point. mr. moore? >> guest: yes, that was a real
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tragedy, one that could have been prevented, and i -- i mean, there's so many ideas i have and others have of films that should be made. i'm just one person, and i wish i had five clones, so i wish somebody would make that film. i think that would be a great film to make. >> host: well, rich brown e-mails in, what's the next documentary you are currently working on? >> guest: it's my policy not to discuss the film that i'm making while i'm making them for all the obvious reasons. >> host: are you working on one? >> guest: maybe. i just -- i don't talk about it. they just appear when they appear, and i mean, i just -- it's not in the best interest of the film to give a head's up. before i made sicko, i made a
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mistake of saying i was making a mistake about the health care industry. the health care industry went on high alert, and, in fact, the pharmaceutical companies went on real high alert. even though the film was not about them, but the health insurance industry, the pharmaceutical companies spent hundreds of thousands of dollars preparing for me. i would get all internal memos sent to me from people that worked at different pharmaceutical companies saying we had an in-service today where they hired a michael moore double to do acting and how to handle him. there's a hotline, and if i show up at a regional office around the country to call this number in new york, and they were just went -- an executive wrote this great book last year, and he -- when he was a vice president of signa, he talked about the
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millions of dollars they spent hoping to discredit me, attack me, to, if necessary, figuratively, i hope, push me off a cliff. they, you know, i learned my lesson there that it's not a good idea to give them advanced notice when i'm working on. >> host: booktv interviewed wendall potter. go to and use the search function in the upper left hand corner. as an iranian-american, i'm concerned about rumors you are planning trips to iran. the pro-government press wrote more than once you were invited to go to iran, and you've accepted. they would consider that a coo if it happens. >> guest: i have been invited for many years. i think one of my films won the top prize at the film festival
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in iran a number of years ago, and the prize was the beautiful persian rug that they sent me. no, i'm not going to iran to the film festival. i don't know if it's really, you know, the thing is with iran, i've been active in the last year or two, they've had a couple filmmakers that have essentially been under house arts, and i'm -- arrest, and i'm active with others in the country to release them, leave them alone, let them make their films. iranian films, man, some the best filmmakers in iran. they are really, really good. there's definitely a country that loves the movie, and i think, you know, we saw through the green movement here a year or two ago that there's huge, huge sentiment in the country to
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be free of the dictates of those who would, you know,ment to run -- want to run the country. you know, iran is a democracy on a certain level. i mean, they have free elections. anyone can run. there's been a couple documentaries about this that i've seen that are really, really incredible things. they are not, you know, i try to avoid any sort of evil axis of evil discussion because i know that there are people this our government now that we've had our way with iraq, want to move on to the next boogyman and iran seems to be it, and there's forces who want us to go to war on bomb iran or things like that, so i try to avoid -- i don't want to be associated with anything to do with my government attacking anybody else again on this planet. i think we leave it to the iranian people. i think the iranian people will
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stand up and get the country that they want an i'm hopeful for that. >> host: "here comes trouble: stories from my life" john from oregon, you're on the air. >> caller: hey, michael. i've seen your films over the years, and i notice you try to edit things so people think something happened when it didn't, and i wanted to specifically ask about "fahrenheit 911." there's a section asking congressmen to send their kids to iraq and one congressman or republican congressman said he had two nephews in afghanistan, and you edited so he just doesn't respond. it looks like he has no response and walks off, and that's not what happened, so i want to know why you didn't include his actual response if you're supposed to be a documentary? >> guest: well, thank you for that question. first of all, in that particular
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scene, i asked him a very specific question, and i asked it of every congressman i ran into, republican or democrat, would you send your son or daughter to iraq. he would not answer the question. up stead, in a number of others did this too. oh, i've got a nephew or an uncle or a cousin or i've got somebody down the block that's in iraq right now. and it's like, no, i don't think you understand the question. would you send your son or your daughter, not your sister's son or daughter, your son or yore daughter. he would not answer the question. they don't want to answer the question because at that time when i made this film, there was only one member of congress who actually had a son or daughter in iraq, and i just thought, wow, that's interesting. there's 535 members of congress,
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the majority of them voted for this war, but they don't seem to be willing to sacrifice someone from their own family. send kids from the other families. send them, you know, those who live on the other side of the tracks. let them go do it, so that was the point of that, and he was just giving me a politician dodge answer saying that he had some relative over there. that was not the question. i wanted to know, and i still think it's a relevant question. if you're going to vote for war, would you be willing to send your son or daughter there? just tell you this. i was -- i had not seen the world war ii memorial until yesterday, and i went over there, and when you walk in on the very first stone as you walk into the memorial, it says world war ii memorial in big letters, and then it says george w. bush. it shocked me for a second.
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oh, it's because he was president when it opened. i'm thinking i don't see that on the washington monument who was president when that opened or a plaque on the jefferson memorial. what's his name specifically doing on world war ii? here's a guy who supported the vietnam war, but wouldn't go. i mean, at least with clinton, he dodged it too, but he was opposed the war. he didn't like the war, so he didn't want to go. i get that, okay. but bush, he was for the the war back then, and he thought other people should go, not him. he gets strings pulled, he's in the national guard, and then his name is on the very first stone as you enter the world war ii memorial? a war that my uncle died in, that 405,000 americans died in, and your name is on this? i'm just like, you know, it took me back to the caller's question
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about, you know, yes, they are really good at supporting war, getting us into war, and if they have to die or their kid had to die, i don't know about that. let somebody else's kid die. it's just abhorrent to me. >> host: there's a story about your father's world war ii experience, but there's also a story in there about you taking a trial run to canada. >> guest: yes. my dad was in the first marine division in world war ii, and he was in many of those island battles right on the beaches, horrific stuff, and i tell this one story in there about the christmas day of 1943 where he was in the battle of the cape in new britain in the part of new new guinea, and it was a friendly fire incident where he and his unit had taken the hill, and the american planes coming
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in thought they were japanese on the hill, and they strafed the hill, and i think every guy in my dad's unit was shot. one was killed. i think 13 were wounded. everyone's shot but my dad. the only one who was not shot by the low flying american planes coming in thinking they were japanese, and he always told me, you know, growing up that every christmas day he remembers he's grateful for being alive, and somehow he survived that incident, and i tell the longer, you know, story of it in the book. .. longer story in the book. my incident with -- of course i was opposed to the vietnam war as i said earlier and as i became near draft age i think what will i do? i'm not going to kill vietnamese and i and buddies decided, we were like i don't know 16, 17 years old, we weren't going to
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go to jail. we weren't going to go do service in some other service, you could do that for the government. we decided we were going to move to canada if we had to and so we knew nothing about canada and one day took a car and boat over to port huron, michigan to do a dry run and see how we'd escape to canada and we got over there and forgot the motor to the boat. so we couldn't take it and wee we decided to try and cake the car acro -- take the car across the bridge and, the other guys were smoking a joints so they could relax and i didn't do drugs and i was the designated driver and tell the story about getting across the blue water bridge and into canada and our great escape and of course the next year there was a draft lottery and i number came up like 273 and i wasn't drafted. >> richard, richmond, virginia.
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thanks for holding, our on with author michael moore. >> caller: mr. moore, an absolute pleasure to speak with you today. how are you doing, sir. >> thank you, sir. i'm doing well. >> caller: i have a question to ask. i contacted my local american cancer society concerning an event they'll be holding and i suffer from a brain injury and other illness and i'm -- your piece on "sicko" was absolutely beautiful. i loved it. beautiful. my question, sir, is how do i approach or how would i go about approaching the american cancer society concerning a study they did in 1974 with thc shrinking
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tumors in mice and them not wanting to go that direction? >> i do have memory of something about that. i can't speak to it. i will say this. thc which is an active ingredient in marijuana, you know, our drug laws in this country, i mean, this is another whole show. are just out of whack and things like that, where medical marijuana and things -- people have been trying to use to help people and years from now, historians will look back at this era and wonder why we did so many of the things that we do. i would say, for you and i get questions like this all the time actually from people, you know, have seen my movie and need
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help. because of the medical problem. or their hmo will not pay for them to see a specialist and deme, these insunce test little care as possible because that is how they make a profit. and so i would say to you, sir, finite one there's organizations that are trying to free up the studies, use these drugs, there are people who have been fighting, the fda for a long time because they take so long when treatments that are being used in europe and other places are not being used here. but, remember, the fda, of course is controlled by the lobbyists of the pharmaceutical companies and others who have a vested interest in making a profit and in "sicko" i told the story of jonas salk and, i told the story in my last film, "capitalism, a love story" and he invented the polio vaccine
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and people were shocked that he didn't want to trademark it or copyright it. that he decided to just give it away for free to the american people, to the world and he said he thought it would be immoral if he were to own that or make a profit off it. he said, you know what? i'm a doctor, i'm a researcher, i get a great salary, i live in a big house. what more do i need? i did this for the people. where is that? where is that sense of -- talk about patriotism, right? not just for america but for the world. we don't have that much these days. and i sure would like to see more of it. >> this tweet for you, mr. moore from keith... 238. i have otherwise intelligence friends who will not watch your films because they, quoted,
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heard what they were about, end quote. what do you say to them? >> i know. this is a problem. i run into people on the street and i know you and, you know, your films and i say to them, have you seen one of my films? and, they're like, no. and, i'm like, just watch one of 0 them, just watch it. i swear to god that you will think differently, and, you have been told by am radio, by, you know, fox news, by republican politicians, the reason they told -- i actually recount a story in the book of someone who had been hired by the bush administration, to do some polling around "fahrenheit 911" because they were afraid of the film affecting the 2004 election and wanted to know how people would respond to it and in their
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polling, they found that a third of republicans who saw the movie said that they would recommend it to other people. after they saw the movie. and, i think it was something like 10% of republican women said after seeing fahrenheit they may not vote for george w. bush. and may not vote for kerry, either and may not vote at all, and this is going to be a close election and they got very, very worried about this. and, so, whoever the operatives were in the campaign, decided and put out the talking points to all of their people, our goal is to make sure that nobody sees this movie. make sure they do not see this film. because if they see this film, the majority of them will not like it and they'll still vote for us but a small percentage will go, whoa, wait, i had no idea. and so they went about, basically really started with
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fahrenheit and really started the attack on me and attacking me personally. so that people would never even go near the film because if they go near the film they'll go, wow. you know, mike, i don't necessarily agree with everything he's saying here but clearly loves his country and he has a heart and, the movie is kind of funny. actually entertaining. that's the last thing they want so i know, this is a... to the person who sent the tweet in, this is the big problem i have, and, i've tried to do everything i can to encourage republicans and conservatives to please give it a shot. you don't have to come way and still vote republican after you watch it but just i'm giving you information that i think you... you want to know all kiesides y don't you? we should all have open minds and listen to everything being discussed, that is what i say to them. :
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hayward california. good afternoon. you are on book tv with michael more. >> caller: i wanted to ask if michael would read the book by ellen schultz retirement highest and hopefully do a film on it so that we can stop them from ripping off the seniors of america because what they're doing is ripping off the pensions and giving it to the executives a huge bonuses and
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salaries. >> guest: that's right. i mean the pension funds thatatr were decimated backed in 2009 crash, they have played with people's money played with people's money here in their casino in a very risky way. i think illegal. i don't know why this isn't being investigated. i don't understand why no one has been arrested from the crash of '08. and -- but i know there's a lot of anger percolating out there. i know a lot of senior citizens now don't have the security that they thought they would once have. i know a lot of workers don't have that. people certainly don't have job security. they don't know whether they're going to have a job next year or the year after that.
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so part of this is -- it keeps the population tightly wound, living on the edge, being in fear. and when people are afraid, they oftentimes don't make the right decisions or the best decisions for themselves. so i think there's a larger purpose to all of this which is sad, but i think there's -- there's a protest that's again about ready to boil over and it's going to come from all quarters, it's going to come from auto workers. it's going to -- the subway conductors and bus drivers in new york city just voted to join the protests on wall street, richard trump came, the head of the afl-cio gave his backing to those protests here on c-span. so i think you're going to see -- it's going to grow into a much larger thing because there's so many millions of people out here who have lost their pensions, their health
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care and who have lost their homes because of no health care because the insurance company wouldn't pay the medical bills and it's one of the top reasons people go bankrupt because of medical bills. we've had so much suffering with so many millions of people. honestly, i don't know why the rich have overplayed their hand like this. why they've made life so difficult for so many of millions of middle class people who used to support them. they used to vote for the candidates and didn't have a problem with them being rich. figuring, like, yes, you invented that and you started and built that factory. i don't have a problem with that. i get to have my car, my vacation, my kids have health care. they're going to college. i've got a good life. you got your yacht going down the potomac, okay, fine, that's the way it used to be. when you and i were growing up the wealthy were paying 50, 60, 70, 90% in income tax and i seem to remember the ones -- you
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know, in my state if you lived in blueville hills or grosse pointe, it was a pretty good life even though you're paying all those taxes and you made sure that the working people had a good life, too. it was your best protection so that you could still have your yacht and your mansion and your jet and nobody bothered you with that because everybody else got to live. have a good life and had health care and had these things. i have for the life of me no idea why they would upset that apple cart, the rich, why they would allow the middle class to be exterminated and to be shoved down back into the place not from month-to-month whether they're going to be able to pay the mortgage or be able to get by. it's going to end up being their ruin, their ruin for the wealthy
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class for wall street, for these banks. they're going to go why did we have to get so greedy. why weren't we happy making 5 billion a year for our company. why did we have to make 8 billion and now they're all out on the street and they're electing democrats or worse. if anybody has the answer i would ask them phone it. >> host: retirement highs booktv had it last week and you can watch it on in case you're interested. in 1996, michael moore wrote downsize this random threats from an unarmed american and part of what he wrote to protect ourselves -- this is in 1996, we should prohibit corporations from closing a profitable factory and business and moving it overseas, prohibit companies from pitting one city or state against another. institute a 100% tax on any profits gained by shareholders when the company stock goes up
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due to an announcement of firings, prohibit executive salaries from being more than 30 times greater than the average employee's pay and required boards of directors of publicly owned corporations to have representation from both workers and consumers. next call for michael moore comes from toni, orange county california, go ahead, tony? >> caller: mr. moore it's an honor to speak to you. you're a genuine person. you don't sugarcoat anything. basically i like to get your opinion or a brief commentary and as for as american foreign policy in reference to iran and how that's shaping up the arab spring and, you know, libya and syria you got embassies that the u.s. is trying to open and the iranians are trying to open up as well, you know, to have in
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the near future influence. and by the way, you're right. iran is a democracy. it is parallel with islam. the email that the gentleman read that it would be a coup if you went there, that's not true. the iranians are very hospitable people and they will welcome you with very open arms. thank you, mr. moore. you have a good one. >> guest: yes. what's happened in the middle east this past year has been incredible, absolutely incredible and, of course, you know -- i don't know why it is we're always, you know, seemingly on the wrong side or actually on the wrong side. but it took us a while to get behind -- what was going on in egypt and then we got behind it. they were doing it peacefully. when they were doing it with arms and weapons and bombs in
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libya we were right there right away but we do it in companies in bahrain where our fifth fleet is based people out in the streets practically every day, people being shot, you know, one phone call from the president, this little country could be funded where we base our fleet could take care of this problem. i don't know why we don't do it. i think all people really want to live in peace. i think dictators are a bad idea. i think countries where they are based on a religion and it's a theocracy i think that those -- i just think that doesn't allow for the people who aren't part of those faiths. and so -- in the case of iran, yes, you have democratic
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elections and all that. and that's why when -- in that last election with mahmoud ahmadinejad, when there was questioning about how the votes were counted, no one questioned the fact that he had been elected in previous elections. there's been no dispute about that but there was a dispute about this election and people took to the streets about it. and again, you know, the kind of -- there's a lot of moral help. i was actually in a cab the other day in new york city. i had an egyptian cab driver and he says to me i want to thank america and canada. i said, okay, you're welcome. [laughter] >> guest: why would you like to thank us. he goes because of this and he holds up the iphone. because of this -- because you invent twitter because we had a revolution because of this technology you gave us, thank you for that. yeah, well, you know, see we do actually -- there's a lot of
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good things about us and we can be a force for good and the ideas we have are great sometimes and we can do good things with them and i would like to see more good things done in our name. >> host: speaking of twitter, mr. moore, this tweet from venezuela. what are your thoughts on the administration of hugo chavez in venezuela? is usa invading venezuela or the oil? >> guest: well, usa is very concerned about any place that's got oil 'cause we use 25% of the world's oil even though we're like 5% of the population. so, yeah, if you've got oil, we're coming, in one form or another. in all seriousness, i hope that's not the case with venezuela. but i think that there is a lot of attention on venezuela as opposed to other countries in south america because of that.
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>> host: next call for michael moore comes from andrew in albany, new york. good morning, andrew. >> caller: i'm originally from detroit. my grandparents were immigrant auto workers. i used to ride the bus in inner city detroit with my grandma in the summertime when she was laid off and go to the unemployment office with her and stand in line and the buses were still segregated in detroit at that time. and for those people that, you know, don't resonate well with michael moore i think if they go to michigan and visit michigan and see the perspective that people like michael moore calf from, they can appreciate better the work that he does. i had some friends who were on vacation in michigan last year and when they came home, they said the entire state of michigan was for sale.
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all of the people had their stuff out on their front lawns for sale. and they said if they had some money they could have bought some really good stuff from these down and out people in michigan. so the people that don't understand where michael moore comes from, i would encourage them to take a visit to michigan and -- i live on the east coast now. i first read mike's books, stupid white men and in that book he gave instructions to go to democratic committee meeting in your town because nobody else was. >> guest: yes. i did. i think that people need to get involved on even the smallest level of running for precinct delegate and if you go to your county democratic party meeting there might only be 10 people there. you could bring 10 friends and you could become your county's
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democratic party. he's right about michigan. most people don't go to michigan. you never pass through it because we're on a peninsula. so you don't drive across lake huron or lake michigan on your way east or west. so the only time you might be in michigan is if you're from there or you have relatives there or you're changing planes in detroit. that's most people's encounter with michigan. we are in a depression. we have been in a depression for years. not a recession. we've essentially had a one-state depression. it is brutal. up in northern michigan, where i live, rural areas in this last year or so, the official unemployment rate in some counties has been 16, 18, 20%. officially. so you know it's higher. you know it's much higher than that. and there's an elementary school near where i live where 79% of the school children are eligible
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for the federal school lunch program, meaning their family lives in poverty. 79%. this is not in downtown detroit or flint. this is up in the woods of northern michigan. it is rough. it is difficult. there are many reasons for it. i wouldn't live any place else. i love where i grew up. i love the people there. there's a real grit and determination. it is sad if we were to go down there today and just drive the street. it is yard sale after yard sale after yard sale after yard sale. people trying to scrape together whatever few dollars they can to get by. and it is heartbreaking for me. i do what i can there. i do a lot of community work.
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i do a lot of things, support a lot of projects, but there's not the sense of giving up. and what we do know, though, is that the cavalry is not riding to the rescue and so we have to -- we have to find our way out of this. and we will find our way out of this because i'll tell you who we are. we are the state that put the world on wheels. we figured out how to do that. it was our people that did that. the wheel was invented 200,000 years ago. we figured out how to put everybody on those wheels. we also had the guy who invented the light bulb, mr. edison and many other inventions. we're the people that gave you breakfast from battle creek. we're motown. we are -- there are so many -- we're the republican party. the first statewide republican
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party was found in jackson, michigan, underneath a big oak tree in 1854, i think -- 1854, 1856, somewhere around in there because we were such an antislavery state. we're the first english-speaking government in the world that abolished capital punishment back in the 1840s. that's who we are. we have been forward thinkers. we value education. that's why we have the great university of michigan, michigan state, many of other colleges. we are inventors, we are artists. we are filmmakers. we are francis ford coppola from detroit, was born in detroit. and as i said, all -- not just motown but so much of music. i don't know how much you follow the different forms of music. you know, madonna, i goy pop, the white stripes, bob seger -- you know, i could go on and on.
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aretha franklin. all the great music from southeastern michigan that we gave the world. we're all still there. all those kind of people are still there and we'll find our way out of this and we created the union movement. we created the middle class. there was no middle class before there were unions. and so don't count us out yet. >> host: and michael moore talks about motown music and he tells a story about motown music and a neighbor in his newest book here comes trouble, this email from william hanks -- or tweet for you, mr. moore, from william hanks. could you make the source materials as in citibank memo in capitalism on your website. >> guest: it is. for my last four films now, what i've done i list all the sources -- you go to my website and you can click on there. and every fact that's in se
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sicko or fahrenheit 9/11 or whatever, i have all the sources for that so that you can take and that use it when you're having that argument with your brother-in-law over thanksgiving dinner. >> host: and your website is? >> guest: >> host: and you have a twitter account as well, but it's not michael moore. >> guest: no it's mmflint that's my handle. mmflint and i'm pushing -- i'm getting near a million twitter followers now. so i'm on twitter now a lot. if you want to follow me, it's a lot of fun. i hope it's fun. and facebook, too. i've got half a million very close and personal friends on facebook and there's pictures and we talk to each other every night so -- >> host: your father still lives in flint; correct? >> guest: yes, until this past month. and this is kind of -- it's kind of bittersweet because he now
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has moved out to where my sister is in san diego. and he is the last member of our family that was connected to my mom's family that's been there for 175 years. and with him gone this past month out in california, there's no one from my mother's side that's now there in the davidson area. >> host: veronica or ann. >> guest: he's with my sister very ronnie. my sister ann lives up in northern california. >> host: and next call from michael moore comes from robert from minnesota. please go ahead and thank you for holding. >> caller: hello, mr. moore. i was interested in talking to you and i appreciate you over the years.
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i'm reading -- [inaudible] >> caller: because the people promote hate speech and anger and violence against other americans voice their opinions. it goes against the sound nation of a republic one that was founded on the other person's opinion even to your own death because that was what is important is the free dissemination of information and that's the one comment i have and the only question i have for you, i voted for ross perot in '92 because i believed his opinion that the unfair trade policy was as a result in many, many industries closing in the united states and once those jobs were out they would be virtually impossible to get back in the united states. >> guest: well, he was right about that and a number other things. i didn't vote for him 'cause of the other things that i didn't
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agree with. but you make a good point. as far as the sort of hate speech that exists in politics these days, i agree with you on that. i don't subscribe to it. my friends don't subscribe to it. as much as i despise the policies of george w. bush and oppose the wars, i've never uttered the words "i hate george w. bush." i would never say that, first of all, i don't believe it. i don't hate him. second of all, i wouldn't lower myself to that level that the other side is at. i don't want to be in that gutter. i would rather have a debate on the issues. i would rather debate the george w. bushes and the mccains and the others on the issues. let's have that great debate and let's have it out. you present your side, i'll present my side and then let's let the people decide.
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i think that was the original concept of our democracy. i wish we could get there. when i have an angry conservative come up to me, i always say to him, usually a him -- i always say, you know, we're all americans. and we're all in the same boat and we're going to -- and we're going to sink or swim together. and we better figure that out. we can have our opposing viewpoints or whatever, but it might be good to spend a little bit of time poach especially if i get stuck next to one of these guys on an airplane, i'll say if we took out a piece of paper right now and drew a line down the middle and said, okay, let's put on this side -- hear all the things you and i agree on and on this things we disagree on, the side that has the things we agree on will be a much longer list. i'm absolutely convinced of that. conservatives watching this show right now -- you and i believe
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in many of the same things. we believe that women should be paid the same as men if they're doing the same job. we believe that we should be drinking clean water and breathing clean air. we believe that we should not be the policemen of the world. we believe that kids shouldn't have access to assault weapons and take them to school. i mean, there's a whole long list of things that we agree on. and the things that we don't agree on, maybe we just need to agree to disagree or let's have the great debate and we'll let the people decide. so if i don't want to own a gun and you do, buy your gun. i will get one. if you don't want to have an abortion, don't have one. you probably won't feel good about it. if you don't want to have sex with another man, don't do it. i think you'll hate it. but if those two guys want to and they're in love, what's it to us? what's it really to us? i think we've got to try to get
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to that place. >> host: in dude, where's my country michael moore wrote a few things that liberals have been wrong about. one, drugs are bad. men and women are different. it's really a bad idea to have sex before you're 18. mtv sucks. granola is bad for you, the sun is good for you. people who commit violent crimes should be locked up. your children do not have a right to privacy and you better pay attention to what they're up to, not all unions are good and, in fact, many of them are just plain lousy. i want to come back to that. and there's a few things michael moore liberals have been wrong about. bill o'reilly makes a good points. he's against a death penalty and he's a advocate for kids and he opposed nafta. too many of us hold a hoyty toilety view of religion and thing the religious are superstitious fifteenth century
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i go ramuses. animals don't have right and yes they should be treated humanely but freeling from the factory arms and nixon was more liberal than the last six presidents we had. we could go back to the not all unions are good. >> guest: wow, i'd forgot about that list and i'm glad you read that. there are many things that i agree with conservatives on. and you just listed a number of them. drugs are bad for you. i think it's -- especially for young people not to use them. i think if someone is a violent criminal, i would prefer that they are removed from society and kept away from the rest of us. i think that's -- i think that's a good idea. the thing about unions, i wrote that in 1996 and at that time a lot of unions, unfortunately, were not as strong as they should have been, not coming out as strongly in favor of the
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things they should have been doing. i think that part has changed in the last 15 years. i'm really happy with who's running the afl-cio now. i think a lot of -- boy, there's some great unions. the ue is a wonderful union. the teamsters, james hoffa, is a great union leader. i'm quite impressed actually now 15 years later with the direction that unions have gone. and they understand that they have got to organize, organize, organize or they're going to have to die and they have got to quit as they now said just depending on the democrats, you know, do the job because the job hasn't been done. the other thing i disagree with that i've changed my mind on i do think the chickens should be freed from the factory farm. i've read enough and seen
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enough. i gave up red meat this year and i have not had any red meat for the better part of this year. i pretty much teacher chicken and turkey as a conned mint as opposed to a big main course. so i've had some different thinking about that since i wrote that. >> host: this email for you, mr. moore, from dennis millner from lakeland florida. thank you for speaking truth to power would you please speak to us about your spiritual journey and where you currently stand with respect to your personal religious spiritual positions and understanding. >> guest: as i said before, i was raised an irish catholic. i always put the word "irish" before it because irish catholic -- you know, we have a healthy disrespect for authority, if i could put it
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that way and we also have a very dark sense of humor. and so that helps us get through a lot of things that the spiritual stuff maybe can't help us with. but i grew up with some very basic lessons from my parents and from the nuns and priests that i've had that i carry with me today we will be judged how we treat the least among us. that you are to love your neighbor as yourself. that you're to love your enemy and you're to do good to those who persecute you, thus, my complimenting bill o'reilly in the book and listing the things that i think that he's done that are good. i don't do that to get a reciprocation on his show. i don't expect it. but i believe it's my responsibility to be that way. you know, when i left the seminary and, you know, the institution of the catholic church is another -- another
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whole topic because i disagree with so much of what the authorities have had to say about their interpretation of what jesus had to say. you know, you read the new testament, jesus -- not once does he mention homosexually. not once does he mention abortion. and he doesn't say the priests have to be celibate and single. these are all things that came later. in fact, priests married for the first thousand years in the catholic church and i don't know some pope had a bad dating experience or something, i don't know what happened. [laughter] >> guest: it just in the eleventh century he said that's the end of that and priests couldn't matter. i think it's been a really bad idea. priests should be live a normal life. they're human beings. and women have a second class role in the church. and they're not second class
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people. they too are god's creatures and they're equal. maybe more equal because we would have a rough go it without them. women could do without us now. now that we've -- we've invented ways to in vitro controvertization. they only need a few of us around. they only need things of getting things off the top shelf but the portable aluminum stepladder was invented and the new rubber grip thing where you can get the lid off the pickle jar and that's been invented and so our use has been reduced, the need for us so actually you need women to keep the species going. all right. that's a long way to get to saying i actually have very strong spiritual and religious beliefs. i still go to mass. i try to find church and priests that are more in sync with the
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way i see the gospel and the teachings of jesus. and i don't think jesus or the catholic church is the only way to do it. i mean, we sit here today talking on gandhi's birthday. he was another great teacher. and had some incredible things to offer the world, as do muslims, jews and buddhists and atheists, because you want the other side having their say. you want to be challenged. you want them to question these things because by questioning, you maybe find new answers. you find out that adam eve didn't ride on dinosaurs 6,000 years ago. and then you wonder when you watch the republican debate and the moderator asks how many of you believe in science and only one guy raises his hand, it's like, wow! that seems pretty basic. i was waiting for the next
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question, how many believe in mathematics? maybe. [laughter] >> guest: how about home ec. wood shop, cut all the subjects in school make no sense. >> host: hour and a half to go in this "in depth" our guest and author michael moore. here is the cover of his most recent book. it just came out this year. here comes trouble: stories from my life. here's a few of michael moore's favorite things and we'll be right back. ♪
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♪ ♪
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>> host: michael moore, we just showed some of your favorite authors, what you're reading now and some of your greatest personal influences. i want to let you talk about any on this list that you want but i want to start with kevin rafferty who is somebody you talk about in here comes trouble. >> guest: yes. he really -- kevin was my film school. i did not go to film school.
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i barely -- i went to a year and a half of college at the university of michigan in flint, the flint branch. and avenuhe was a documentary filmmaker and he made a brilliant, i think, groundbreaking film along with his brother pierce by the name of jane loader called the atomic cafe, in 1982. it was a hilarious look at the nuclear scare of the 1950s, the duck and cover era. they got this great footage and put it together. the first time i'd seen a documentary that combined humor with a very serious subject and i thought that was -- it was pretty cool and it got me thinking that eventually led to me making my first film but when i wanted to make that film, i didn't know how to make a movie and i didn't know anything about it and kevin had come to flint the year before with his friends who were making another documentary in michigan.
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and i had a newspaper there, an alternative newspaper. and they knew about it. >> host: flint voice. >> guest: flint voice. they asked if i would come and help them with their film 'cause i knew the local people, and i said sure. and i went with them and i went on the shoot and i was like, wow, this is really -- this is cool and i paid a lot of attention how they were making this movie. a year later, i came up with the idea of making roger & me, my first film, general motors in flint. but i didn't know what i was going to do 'cause i didn't know anything about it and i just called him up and went to see in him new york and if he could help me like load the camera. he said i'll do more. i'll come to flint and i'll teach you to do everything and he did and he shot probably the first shir of the film. and he taught me how to edit. he showed me his edit room and he edited the first 15 minutes of the film for me. he was just an incredible,
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incredible mentor and without him -- i don't know if i would have been a filmmaker if it wasn't to be kevin rafferty and i don't want to give away the punch line here on the show. >> host: i do. >> guest: let me just say this that it was revealed to me after a while who kevin really was. and in your wildest imagination -- who he really was who he presented himself to me but he had a certain family connection that was mine blowing. and so i'll just -- i'll let people read it but it was -- it was just one of those things in my life where i'm like -- am i just like living a forrest gump life? do i end up in these places whether i'm 11 years old and i'm in the elevator with bobby kennedy and i have this experience with him and all
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through i'm having this encounter with ronald reagan and another one with nixon and i'm nobody really. i'm just this guy from michigan. i find myself caught in a terrorist incident in vienna in the 1980s with abu nidal, the osama bin laden of his time. and, you know, one day i get a call from john lennon. these are all stories that are in this book and again this was all before i'm a filmmaker. i'm just a kid. and there's this forrest gump-like thing where no one person from the midwest who doesn't have any connection to anything should really be in this many encounters with these many people. right up until the very guy who teaches me how to be a filmmaker, then brings me into another whole, you know,
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mish-gosh since we're in the big way. >> host: roger & me came out and here's a little part of it. >> guest: we filmed a family being evicted from their home the day before christmas eve. would you be willing come up with us and see what the situation is like in flint. >> i've been to flint and i'm sorry about it. >> guest: families being convicted from the film. >> i'm sure general motors -- >> they used to work for general motors and now they don't work there anymore. >> could you come up to flint -- >> i cannot come up to flint, i'm sorry. ♪ >> host: mr. moore, was that your only time you got chance to talk with roger smith? >> guest: no, actually there was another time. i went to the board of directors meeting the annual meeting of stockholders and i got up to the microphone to ask him a
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question. the microphone was cut off. there it is right there. i didn't get to ask him that. i went to a car show in the waldorf where they were announcing the car of the year or something and i got him there. but i never got my sitdown interview with him that i was trying to get through the whole film. i never had a chance to really have that moment with him. what i really wanted -- it wasn't so much the interview. the mission of the film was to get roger smith the head of gm to come to flint, michigan, and let me drive him around and show him what the human results were of the decisions that he was making on the 14th floor of the gm building. and, no, unfortunately, that didn't happen. >> host: is it ever uncomfortable to you to confront somebody like that? >> guest: always, frankly. yes. i don't know fished reveal that. i actually hate it. i'm in 1,000 knots while i'm
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doing it. i dread it before we go in to do something like that. i'm dreading it and i wish i didn't have to do it. it's like my agony in the garden. i'm going please take this away from me. let someone else come in and do this. and it's like, okay -- i didn't make my first film until i was 35 years old. so i waited a long time hoping somebody would make one of these films and do something like this. it's really one of the reasons i probably decided to make that first film because i just thought, no one is going to do it, i'm going to have to do this. i don't know what i'm doing but i'm just going to go ahead and do it. and that's how it goes. >> host: this is booktv's in-depth our monthly program with one author and his or her body of work. michael moore is our guest this month. we're going to put the phone numbers on the screen if you'd like to participate. jeff from readington. you're live with michael moore.
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>> caller: roger moore. >> guest: i'm michael, roger was the bad guy. common mistake. >> caller: fahrenheit 9/11 was controversial and all that stuff and that's why americans were so against it and shameful. the downsize me was great. that's a step in the right direction. the main reason why i'm calling is, i watched a documentary called money masters and it was very informative. i think i learned a lot. i just want to know how much truth there is to that. and thomas jefferson was a great man and his principles were put forward to create a great country and we've totally lost that so i just want your take on that whole thing. >> guest: i've not seen that documentary but i can't create on that. thomas jefferson was a great man. and there's still much we can learn from him. >> host: i want to go back because i promised the chance if you wanted to talk about any of
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your favorite authors, bury my heart, a wounded knee, kurt vonigan, fit for life, victoria moran, spencer novels, anything you want to talk about, time bends. >> guest: wounded knee is an incredible book of the native americans and i read it as a young american it deeply affected me and changed my mind with a lot of things and i encourage people to read this book. time bends by author arthur miller he was not only a great playwright he was a great citizen and he spoke out for freedom of speech during the mccarthy era. and i had the good fortune of meeting him a couple times. i actually hope to do something with that some day, in a future project. kurt vonnegut -- i talk a lot
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about him in this book. he was not only an incredible author, slaughterhouse fight, cat's cradle he started writing nonfiction in his final years, man without a country, essays that were just incredible. and he was a source of not only inspiration to me but also personally -- after fahrenheit and after that oscar speech, he befriended me, he and his wife. and had a number of dinners with them and it was just very -- it was very helpful for me during a difficult time when i was going through an enormous amount of attack, and he knew that and helped me full through that at times. some of the other books, spike
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lee. >> host: spike lee, ann lamont, julian -- >> guest: yes, spike lee -- spike lee wrote a book about how he made his first book spike lee's got to have it i read and studied that book line by line. and followed a lot of what spike did to get his first film made, to help me get my first film made. the bird by bird and the right to write, these are two really, really good books. if you're interested in writing, you are just waiting to unleash that creative thing in your mind to go for that. these books will really help you with that. i just -- i hand them out to people constantly because they're just -- it's just -- when people say they want to read, read this. this will help you get started. it's hard to start. writing is full of self-loathing and your critical voice in your
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head is constantly telling you it sucks and you have to really push through it. victoria moran is a wonderful author and writes some very good books about how to take care of yourself and i've been thinking a lot about this lately and just wanting to take better care of myself as i'm getting older. i've waited too long to, you know, sort of be fit and be healthy and respect this gift that god and nature and my parents gave me. and so as i mentioned earlier, so i'm -- you know, i'm like an 80%, you know, eating vegetarian now and, you know, going to the gym or going out for a walk or doing things like that so i can live longer and make more of these movies and upset all the people. so victoria's books are great. there's a book i just read in galleys that's coming out -- it
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was the kitchen -- kitchen counter cooking school. and it was actually -- it was actually written by someone who went to my high school. and she's written this wonderful book about -- just taking people who never cook, which is a lot of us these days, and getting back to that concept of how, you know, you really need to touch and feel and be part of the food, this thing you're putting into to keep your life going. and so i think that's a book that's coming out here in the next -- next couple of weeks. so i've been reading some of those. and then -- for funny read the spencer novels by robert b. parker and the mystery novels as kid the adventure of sherlock holmes. i read those books over and over again. and, you know, so i read a healthy dose of, you know, fiction and there's the invisible man of ralph ellison. i've been saying recently the iranians have been treating like he's the invisible president.
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freedom, this book that came out last year this is a novel by jonathan franzen, unbelievable book. i mean, i did not want this book to end. it was such a rich powerful novel. and if you haven't read it, sometimes i worry don't read things or go to movies because they become so popular that maybe the cool thing is not maybe go see the movie or read the book but i would encouraged people to read freedom. i think they'll have a great experience doing that. >> host: next call for michael moore comes from cape coral, florida, richard, you're on the line. >> caller: good afternoon. i have booktv is one of my favorite programs. and i would like to ask mr. moore about what he's hoping about what i see the coming control of 95% of the united
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states economy by the top 5%, i'm really concerned, learious, a bit about soil of green as my main course and what does mr. moore think about the criminal 50-year-old located against a little island from cuba from then a man change -- change while so many things need to be changed desperately right now. >> host: all right. thank you. >> guest: the blockade is wrong, i'm opposed to it. the cuban people are wonderful people. all governments have problems that need to be fixed. people need to resist anything going on in any government that is bad for the people. as an american i'm not into finger-pointing like i was saying about iran. we've done some things in the
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last decade that are so outrageous, invading sovereign countries especially one that had absolutely nothing to do with 9/11 or attacking us or whatever. it was run by a bad guy but there's lots of countries run by bad guys and i don't think it's our job to be invading into our countries. i'm not into finger-pointing. i think as the bible says, before you cast a speck out of somebody else's eye take the log out of your own eye. so, yeah, and by the way, i think it's more like -- the upper 1% now are controlling pretty much -- i mean, the top 400 wealthiest americans, 400 wealthiest americans now have more combined wealth than 150 million americans combined. 400 versus 150 million. and you can look that up. it's in forbes of all the people verified these numbers.
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it's actually absolutely incredible statistic that we've allowed just the upper, upper few to call the shots, buy the politicians, buy the lobbyists, buy the laws, they buy everything. we've got to get money out of politics. i support this rad begun thing to get a constitutional amendment to get all the money out of politics. we'll be better for it. >> host: you dedicate here comes trouble to your mother. you also list her as one of your grateful influences, my parents, my cousin pat and my sisters ann and veronica. if i read this book correctly, you never used your mom's name in there. am i correct about that? >> guest: you might be correct, yeah, that's right. yeah. >> host: was that on purpose at all? >> guest: you just don't call your mother by her first name. [laughter] >> guest: her name was also veronica. veronica was her middle name.
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her actual name was helen veronica but she went by veronica as a child and so that stuck with her. and, yes, that was her name. >> host: and you dedicate it to her because she taught to you read at 4 years old. >> guest: well, that and many other reasons. my mother passed away in 2002 and i'm grateful for having had her as my mother. and i did dedicate this to her because she did make the huge mistake of teaching me how to read and write before i went to kindergarten, which that -- that was probably after the theft of the bubblegum from the five and dime store, you can't send a kid into school and already reading books and not have it cause some trouble and first of all, the kid is going to be bored and i was, you know -- the nuns to their credit saw it. the first grade nuns told me i'm moving to second grade and all of a sudden i was in second grade and i was so excited and
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came home and told my parents i'm in second grade now. and they're like no you're not. we want you with kids your own age and they called the mother superior and i was put back in first grade. i was kind of wound up from that point now. >> host: didn't see kathleen on your greatest personally influences list. >> guest: those two two other names i don't mention because of just the privacy issues my wife and my daughter. i try to keep them out of this as much as possible. in large part because they've had to suffer through all the things i don't want to go in the air and i talk about the book terms of the attacks, the physical attacks and things like that. and if i have any regret over the work i've done in the last decade or so, it's the fact that it has put family members also
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in danger. and i have a difficult time dealing with that. i will say this, my wife, who i've known since she was 17 years old, and i was 21 -- she has produced practically all of my movies, tv shows. she's been the boss of a lot of -- a lot of that work, the hiring of the crews and helping with every -- but beyond that, for whatever books you put up there on the screen that i was reading, she reads ten times the books i read. i mean, she's one of these people that does read a book or two a week. and i don't know how she does it, but she has a great mind and has been a great source of
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support. and our daughter is just a wonderful kid. and that but i don't -- i don't -- like a lot of people in my situation try to talk too much about that especially over the airwaves for all the bad and obvious reasons. >> host: dude, where's my country came out in 2003. in that book, mr. moore, you had this list. how do bring rinos republicans in names only, bring them ensure their conservatives and friends that you do not want their money and second every political argument you make must be for them and about them. three, journey into the mind of a conservative, four, respect them the way you would like to be respected. tell them what you like about conservatives and admit that the left has made mistakes. that's your list from dude, where's my country. ann coulter who was our guest in "in depth" in august of this year she had a list how to talk
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to a liberal and here's her list. number 1 don't surrender out of the gate. don't be defensive. number three, outrage the enemy, number four, never apologize, number 5, never compliment the democrat. sixth never show graciousness to a democrat, 7, never flatter a democrat. 8, do not succumb to liberal bribery, and 9, prepare for your deepest, darkest secrets become liberal talking points. >> guest: well, that is a very interesting juxtaposition, isn't it? the other side does seem to be a little more aggressive. [laughter] >> guest: and a little less wanting to come together. i don't agree with that way of living. and i think actually that -- and i don't agree with that as the way to win your argument. i think, in my list, admitting the fact that sometimes we on my
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side of the political fence make mistakes is a decent thing to do. it gives you integrity to do that. to acknowledge that some of their ideas actually might be pretty decent ideas or at least worth exploring. you know, my one knock that i make at them you do have to talk about them because there is a lot of -- if you are talking to your conservative brother-in-law over thanksgiving dinner, if he doesn't hear the first person singular a lot, it's always about i and me and, you know, because they like to make money. and they like to keep as much of their money as possible. that is really -- i know a lot of conservatives that are actually quite liberal on social issues, and when they say -- i so you call yourselves a conservative because you don't like to be taxed? yeah, that's right but that means you don't like to work and
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play well with others. and that was one of the first things you were graded on in first grade because -- i mean, we don't function as a society unless we work and play well with others. and one of the things you have to do is put some money into the pot so that we can afford all of this. and if you're a christian, if you call yourself a christian or jewish or muslim or really any of the -- any of the great faiths and even agnostics and that we are all part of each other. you know, we all -- we all will survive if we have that attitude. so i know people on the other side like to take that rigid position of never give in, never give an inch, never flatter the other. never say anything nice to the other side, that just doesn't seem american. i don't think most people want to live that way and i think
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that's why in the last three elections we've had the presidential election in 2004, 2008, the majority of americans have voted for the liberal, majority of americans popular vote was al gore, 2008, it went to barack obama. in two of the last three elections americans wanted the liberal. and americans are liberal. we live in a liberal country. that's why conservatives are, you know, upset a lot. i understand why they're upset. if you're in the minority, you'd be upset, too. and it's why they're passing a lot of these voter suppression laws this year to make it harder for people to register to vote and to vote. you wouldn't be doing that if you thought the country was with you, wouldn't you? you wouldn't make it try to make people to vote if you thought the majority of americans are on their side. they know they are not. they know -- even though most americans would never use the word "liberal" or call themselves are liberal most americans are liberal on all the issues, whether it's equal pay for women, women's rights.
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you know, every poll shows americans want strong environmental laws. every poll wants majority are against these wars. every poll shows, you know, that americans believe in some form of universal health care. other than the death penalty, and some gun laws, those are the two things where americans skew to the conservative side. even with gay marriage, the poll last month, 54% of the american public now support gay marriage should be legal across the land. 54%. so americans are actually quite liberal on the issues and two of the last three popular vote election they voted for the liberal. so that's the country conservatives live in. difficult for them. that's why liberals, we should be nice to them. we should listen to them. let them know that the door is open. we're all americans. they're angry. a lot of the time we might be angry, too, if we were in the
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minority position. we're not. we have some faith in ourselves and have some backbone and some spine and go out there and realize you're in the company of a majority of americans when it comes to liberal issues and our only problem is we do have a hard time electing democratic leaders 'cause those democratic leaders are afraid of being liberal. >> host: this is "in depth" on booktv on c-span2. michael moore is our guest. joseph in vancouver, thanks for holding. you're on the air with mr. moore. >> caller: it's a pleasure to speak with you, michael. i don't know how i got the information about this. from web master, i don't know if it's because i have you on -- you send me your emails or read your supported news. >> host: are you in vancouver, canada, are vancouver. >> caller: british columbia,
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canada. caller: and they said i should talk about one topic but i have 15 topics. >> host: we'll let one canadian topic in. >> caller: where you have the two-party system we have the three-party or multiple party system up here in canada, michael. >> guest: yeah. >> caller: and finally, our prime minister got a majority and now all of a sudden, michael, we're getting this legislation about 201 marijuana plants you're going to get a mandatory sentence, greater than pedophiles. we are getting things where they're looking at doing the same thing -- >> host: joseph, what would you like mr. moore to respond to. >> caller: pardon me?
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>> host: what would you like michael moore to respond to. >> caller: i'm talking about your incarceration rate in the united states which is 7, 8 times more than any other democratic country in the world. >> host: thank you, sir. >> guest: right. i think his concern is that canadians are afraid with the new conservative government they have which has a majority up there that they're going to become more like us because the conservatives in canada want to start taking away the social safety net and that is frightening to a lot of canadians because as much as they like us and they like us and they certainly like us as people, boy, there's a lot of things about the way we do things, they don't want to do it that way. so that is a-up there in candidate. but there's many things they do right and there's many things we should take a look at in how they do things the most important is health care.
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all these ads ran during the health care debate a year or two ago about how canadians have it so bad up there and they're standing in lines and actually canadians have an incredible health care system. it covers everyone. they live three years longer than we live. why do the canadians get to live three years longer than us. i don't think that's right. and they do because in part they have a better health care system. yes, they have to wait in line for sometimes. but for a knee replacement or hip replacement and they have to wait a little longer than if they are in american and that's why they have to wait in the line and we take 50 million people out of the line and the line is shorter and you have less wait time but that doesn't really seem to be the right thing to do, does it? if you believe in your country and your fellow americans why would you let 50 million of them
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suffer with no health insurance? so i hope canada doesn't go our way on issues like this. >> host: heidi, good afternoon, from sacramento, california. please go ahead with your question or comment for michael moore. caller: it's such a personal honor speaking to you. i was one of the people sitting at home after that oscar speech and i jumped up and applauding. >> guest: well, why weren't you in the kodak theatre to support me. caller: i wish i were there to support you. >> i own all your movies. sicko is one i want to ask you about today. it was absolutely brilliant. but that was, what, four or five years ago and nothing has really changed. in fact, the health insurance industry seems to be getting worse in my opinion. so you give me and other consumers any specific advice about how we can hold insurers accountable? you know, accountable to their extremely poor practices, their processes that are put into
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place to really frustrate and deter us to go any further with our appeals process. >> guest: actually, i can't give you any good news about that. these insurance companies are calling the shots. they run the show. they were not going to allow the real health care bill that we needed, a single payer system, a health care system that would not be based on profit but would be based on what is best for taking care of people. because that kind of system actually costs less money. it would cost all of us is hell of a lot less money and it would help us and actually our -- it would help our health, too. we don't have that. obama's bill did not do that. it had some good things in it. a lot of good things don't take place until 2014. the democrats lose next year, trust me they won't take place in 2014. so i'm -- i feel bad that we
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didn't get the bill that we needed. and we're going to just have to keep pushing for that. we can't give up. we can't give up. when all those states pass their bans on gay marriage back in 2004, i thought that was the end of that issue. here we are seven years later, now state after state including places like iowa are passing gay marriage laws are making it legal and now the majority of the country supports it. so i think, you know -- i think something good will come eventually with health care in this country. i think we will get that eventually but right now insurance companies are in charge. >> host: michael moore is the author of eight books, beginning in 1996, downsize this came out, ran dom threats: from an unarmed threats, stupid white men in '02, dude, where's my country, 2003. will they ever trust us again in
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2004. fahrenheit 9/11, reader in '04 as well. mike's election guide, 2008. and here comes trouble, his autobiography or stories from his life just came out a couple of weeks ago. mr. moore, will you talk about will they ever trust us again. >> guest: yes. that is a book that i had put out back in 2004 in the first year of the war. i started to get an inorderant amount of letters from soldiers who were in iraq wanting me to tell them what was really going on in iraq, what they were seeing, what they were experiencing. heartbreaking letters of young people who signed up to be part of our all-volunteer army and they'd signed up in part they needed a job, perhaps. they needed income. and they wanted training but they also were willing to give
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their lives so you and i wouldn't have to, if that day ever had happened. they were willing to fight and die so that we would be free. is there a greater gift really a human can give, i will die for you so you don't to have die. that's how i look at our all-volunteer army back in 2003 and 2004. those young people had signed up after 11 or maybe before 9/11. they signed up for that reason. and now here we were in march of 2003, breaking that bond, that trust because the quid pro quo, all the soldiers asked for us in return the civilian is that we never send them into harm's way unless it's absolutely necessary. if it has to do with the defense of this country. invading iraq had nothing to do with the risk of the country and we risked their lives for what?
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and so i just got bags of letters and tons of emails from these soldiers and i just thought i've got to -- i've got to find a way to get these out there and so i thought, you know, why don't i put them in a book? this won't be a book that i write. this will be a book that i write. i'll give them voice through my publisher. and so that's what i did. the first week it was on the "new york times" bestseller list. and i was very happy that millions of americans were going to hear from the soldiers themselves. remember, again, this is the -- the war is only a year's old at this point. you weren't hearing from the soldiers. you weren't hearing this sort of -- they hadn't stood up to ask don rumsfeld why can't we get arm r for these humvees that are being blown up and rhythmsfeld gave them the army you go with the army you got and not the one you want.
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i can't remember the exact words and so they turned to me and i've been an advocate for these soldiers and for our veterans coming back from this war. i have a film festival that i started in the town i live in, in northern michigan, and i restored an old movie palace along with the help of hundreds of people in town. and we have a policy -- we have an affirmative action policy in our theater that we will give preference to any returning iraq or afghanistan veterans. we also have a policy that if you are in the service, you never pay. you come to the movies for free wherever you want and bring your family and you do not pay. that's my personal values. that's how i'm wired and i have -- i think all of us really hold out our hands to these returning vets that are coming back. >> host: allen emails you, mr. moore, why did you say that
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a mosque could be built on ground zero? doe you actually want to honor the 9/11 terrorists for blowing up the twin towers? >> guest: that question, you know, is just like -- where do you go with that. first of all, we're not building a mosque on ground zero. they're building a mosque and community center a few blocks away. yes. we're americans. we have freedom of religion. yes, i can't think of any better way to stand up to the terrorists than to say, yes, this is how we are in this country. you can put a church, a mosque, synagogue and stand on the corner and say god doesn't exist. we don't care. we're going to defend your right to build it and that's who we are. to conflate the terrorists with people of the muslim faith i just -- that would be like, you
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know, saying you got to be afraid of all white guys because timothy mcveigh blew up the building in oklahoma city. or that he was a catholic. we put that on catholics? timothy mcveigh was a catholic. does that say something about all catholics? i mean, really, how do you answer a question like that? i'm sorry you're wired to think that way. but, yes, i support that. i support them doing that in lower manhattan. as does the jewish senator in manhattan, and the rabbi of that senator is on the board of directors of the ground zero mosque. so that's a good thing for the country. >> host: next call for michael moore -- we have about 40 minutes left in this month's "in depth." kelly in river falls, wisconsin. you're on the air. >> caller: good afternoon, michael. it is my great pleasure to speak to you. i'll preface my remarks by saying i own all your films except american slackers and
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five of your books and i try to disseminate that information to as many friends and family as i can and it's opened a lot of eyes. >> guest: thank you. >> caller: we had a little protest here in wisconsin back in february because governor walker and the republican legislature tried to steal the collective bargaining rights and there are over 100,000 people out there and we had some great leaders like bernie sanders and dennis kucinich come and support us but where was barack obama? and, you know, i've been a supporter of the democratic party but when i look at the wall street bailout, it couldn't have happened without democrats. most of the people wanted single payer but we didn't get that. and it couldn't -- this bill couldn't have passed without democrats. pat tillman's disgraceful thing couldn't have been pulled off and swept under the rug without the helps of democrats. and so i just -- i think blind faith to the democratic party is a mistake.
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>> guest: i agree with that. and yes, the majority of the democrats backed president bush in the war and it was a democratic senate and a lot of liberals supported that war, too, so-called liberals. including the man who became the editor of the "new york times." 'd column at the time. and others. we need new leadership. and the democratic party needs to change. needs to get in sync with the majority of americans are at. all those issues that i went over a few minutes ago with the majority of americans -- they want environmental laws. they want an end to these wars. the majority of americans -- there was a surprising poll when they found the majority of americans not only support public employee unions but they support our right to strike. that's where most americans are at. 72% in the last poll here last
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week wants to tax the rich. raise the taxes, 72%. where are the so-called leaders of the people who support these positions? it may be time for a new party or it may be time for a new democratic party. that's actually one of the four or five major parties that they have in canada, you need a lot of parties if you're really going to represent the broad spectrum of political thought in a large nation of 33 million people, that they have in candidate. we have two parties. they both eat from the same trough of money and one is a little nicer kinder and gentler and appoints better supreme court justices and that's about it. that has to change. and i'll tell you what, they're not going to do the change. we're going to do the change. you're going to have to get involved in your local democratic party in your city, your county, your village. you're going to have to take it over with your friends and you're going to have to turn it into a new democratic party. we need a party for the 99%.
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the 99% who don't control what's going on anymore. the upper 1% has their party. they're americans too, they should have their voice. let them have the republican party. that could be the 1% party and the 99% of us -- we need our party. or we need more than one party. but i agree with you. many of the democrats, most of the democrats have been a huge disappointment. and, you know, it's good to see barack obama get a spine recently and start to say that he's, you know, going to tax the rich and he's not going to touch social security and he's going to stop the at&t-t-mobile merger. when was the last time you heard the justice department stop a corporate merger. i can see he's coming alive and it's like that football team that just runs the wrong way for the first three-quarters, you know, he kept -- obama kept running toward the republicans trying to pass the bills they wanted or put language in the bills they wanted or always
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holding out the olive branch and they smack it out of his hand and he doesn't get anything done. and now in the last quarter of the game, he's decided run the right way, i guess. maybe, i hope. 'cause i think a lot of people want to vote for him. a lot of people saw that as a historic day when he got elected. >> host: michael moore i want to combine an email and a tweet that have come in for you. >> guest: is that legal? [laughter] >> host: well, it is today. >> guest: okay. >> host: we're on cable tv. >> guest: okay. >> host: christopher in l.a. emails in, why is america worth saving given its sketchy inception and history? and this tweet is from bxdusa what is your take on american exceptionalism? >> guest: america is worth
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saving. it's us. america -- i mean, it's the 310 million people. that's who it is. when i think of.when the republicans and conservatives, you know, the government is evil, the government is bad, well, actually the government is us. it's right there on the first words of our document are we the people. our founding document. in fact, our very first american word is "we," not me, we. and we've forgotten that. it's all worth saving. sketchy beginnings i'm sure he's referring to the fact that only white male property owners could vote, et cetera, et cetera. yeah, well, you know, we fix things. we've fixed a lot of the bad things that we started with. and there are more to fix. but it seems like we've got a pretty good track record of fixing them. we might be a little slow on the uptake on some of these things but eventually we get there. so i'm an optimist when it comes
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to that. as far as america exceptionalism. i hate that term. i think the exceptional way to behave as an american is to start thinking that we are part of the same world as everybody else. not that we're better than anybody else. and, in fact, we really got to quit saying that because we're not number 1 anymore. we're number 1 in a lot of the things. like most people in prison worst health care. there's nothing exceptional about any of that. we're part of a greater world now and the sooner we get with that, i think the better. i think, again, that is the -- to go back to the spiritual part of this. that's the christian thing to do. to realize that we're all one human family. when i was a teenager, i remember you have to say the pledge of allegiance every day in class. and i was very proud -- as proud americans still am. i was an eagle scout. you know, believed very much in all of this. and -- but i remember when i had to say the pledge of allegiance,
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i would change some of the words just under my breath so i wouldn't get in too much trouble. but i changed it. i changed it so that when i said it, the way i said it was, i pledge allegiance to the people of the united states of america. and to the republic for which we stand, one nation indivisible, part of one world, liberty and justice for all. and that's really what i believe since i was a kid. that pledge right there. and that's the real -- that's the real america i care about. those 310 million i share the country with and the 6 billion i share the planet with. >> host: for a while you had a television show called tv nation. i want to show just a little video from that show. >> guest: oh, wow! ♪
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>> hi michael moore and this is tv nation. and you know there's a lot of hate groups in this country, right? >> that's true. >> the clan. >> that's terrible. >> horrible. >> yeah, but a lot of people just filled with hate. >> that's right. too much hate. >> way too much hate. that's what we thought so tonight we decided to love those who hate. >> excellent. >> are you with me on this. >> i think it's wonderful. >> well, we went down to georgia recently to a ku klux klan rally and we brought our own tv nation love mariachi band. >> i can't believe it that's what they need. a little more love you. never know. >> that's what they got. ♪ >> those folks in washington, dc, hate our white race and they want to see our white race wiped off the face of the earth. ♪ >> one, two, three, four. we just want to love you more.
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five, six, seven, eight even when you're filled with hate. >> host: michael moore, how was that experience? >> guest: very -- tv nation was a comedy to show that i invented to do comedy and politics. this is back -- i came up with this idea back in 1992, quite some time ago. and nbc remarkably enough allowed me on the air with it in 1994. and it won the emmy that year for the top reality show or whatever. but it was -- we did a lot of things like that where we took serious political issues and used humor and in that case, you know, we went after -- we were going after these hate groups, which were -- at that time there was a real rise again in the neo-nazi movement and all that but it was -- but that was -- that was also starting the am hate radio so it was starting
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the clan and nazis went away, am hate radio started to thrive in the early to mid-'90s. >> host: michael moore is our guest. we have about 20 minutes left with him. tim from boston. you're on the air. >> caller: hello, peter. >> host: hi. >> caller: i would like to tuto c-span in general this is the second time you've allowed me the great honor the greatest american -- or living american in my estimation, ralph nader and now michael moore. thank you again. mike, are you there, brother? >> guest: i'm right here. >> caller: i think we were either separated at birth or our sinus cavities are simetcally aligned because our telepathic wavelength -- you're scaring me. you know when you were talking about when you were a kid with the pledge, when i'm at the
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union meeting and we pledge, i don't pledge to the flag. i pledge to the constitution. .. >> caller: do you ever find yourself in this area, i want to take you out. god, you know idea how much we have in common. i grew up between the fleetwood plant and that vacation paradise known as doug ireland.
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>> guest: that's in the detroit river. well, thank you. thank you for being my doppelgänger. i appreciate it. you know, i think when it comes, i just had this one thought, whether it was wha what you were thinking, but in terms of who the justice system goes after, it amazes me that three years later that we still have not arrested a single bank or or wall street executive for creating the mortgage fraud scam to begin with. creating these crazy casino devices of mortgage, of credit default swaps, derivatives and things like this. and it just plays in people's money, lost people's money, no
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regulation. why we don't we execute glass-steagall. this worked for so many years from roosevelt on. we need to get the reins back on wall street. we need to arrest those who stole money. and we need to start, we need to consider the real big picture, which is the economic system we have now, what they call capitalism now in the 21st century, it is unjust, unfair, undemocratic system. you and i have no control over this. over the economy. and i'm telling you, you can't call this democracy just because we get to vote for politicians. it has to be a real democracy across the board and that means with economy, too. that means there's a pie on the table, and american pie. you've got essentially the upper 1% taking nine slices of the pie and leaving the last slice for everybody to fight over. that has to change. we can't continue with this system any longer.
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>> host: mary tweets into the tv, michael moore, shame. would you like to follow-up and tell us what you think that is. we would be glad to look at it. jeff in tucson, arizona, -- geving tucson, arizona. please go ahead with your question. >> caller: michael, i've never been a fan, but after listening to you for this last hour or so, i have more of an appreciation for you. and i, too, believe we have a lot more in common than separates us. i told specifically for one question. i have a parent who died of alzheimer's. and when i saw your movie, "bowling for columbine," i saw it twice. i felt that if you knew -- here's my question. if you knew charlton heston had dementia at that time, would you have spoken to him?
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>> guest: no. in fact, he didn't have at the time. i filmed that scene a good almost year and a half before the movie came out, and he did not have alzheimer's at the time. and, of course, if i'd known that, as i found out later, i certainly never would've put that in the movie. i'm not, i wasn't raised to be that kind of a person. but no, he was, i thought he handled himself very well. he was moving a little slow because he just had hip replacement surgery a couple weeks before the interview. so the slowness you see there is because he was really still recovering from that surgery. but he was very gracious to me. we had what i thought was a very recent debate. there was no yelling or any name calling or anything. he held his position very well. i gave my position. and then, and then he slipped and he said something of a racial context about when i asked the question, why do we have all the gun murders and say
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that canadians don't, even though the canadians have more guns per capita in their homes that we do. they don't use them on each other like we used them on each other. why is that? then he made his famous line about well, we have this ethnic problem in this country. that canadians don't have. and he said something about the dead old white guys who found this great country. and i think that he regretted, he heard what he was saying. he regretted it. he got up in into the -- ended the interview abruptly. he was the head of the national rifle association when i interviewed him. i had not seen anything on a newscast of people going and interviewing him the way i was going to interview him. and i don't know why because they are considered one of the common if not the strongest lobby in this town, and washington, d.c. so i think he was certainly fair game for that and he was certainly up for it and wanted to do it.
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and i was very saddened a year and a half later to hear that he had come down with alzheimer's, and i have a great deal of respect for him, for his movie work. he was in some incredible films. he's from michigan. not born there but grew up there. that's how i feel about that. >> host: michael moore, in your book, here comes trouble, you recall what happened on your street when the detroit riots started in 1967. >> guest: i lived again near flat and to some people in my neighborhood who were packing a car to run, to leave. the neighborhood kid said to me, they're coming, they're coming up here. i said who is them? them down there. i will use the language use, the inward and all that. but there coming appeared to flint. they are coming to flip. and literally families were
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packing up and heading north, and it was just such a shock. just didn't seem, everyone was so, they were so afraid. but i read a lot and some of these stories. the racial climate of the times is still a number of these stories. i talk about the only black teacher in a school that we had, we had this teacher and was a wonderful, wonderful teacher. and then she just disappeared one day. and what happened to me when i was on the board of education and i just made a motion to rename a school that needed a name martin luther king elementary school, and they started a recall election to get rid of me. all the kids in the school, 99% of the kids in the school white. i thought if, why is it just
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black schools new martin luther king? we could name a white school of martin luther king. didn't go over very well. we lived with us for a long time in this country. it is one of our two great mortal sins, as i call, or original since better on our sell. the genocide of the native people, that happen before, as we are building this country. and the economy, we began a great nation very fast because we didn't have to pay for labor, and we don't, to be part of this country on the backs of slaves. and i don't think we've ever really made the necessary amends for those two original sins committed. in our name, to help make this a great country. >> host: uniontown pennsylvania, steve, you're on the air with michael moore on booktv. >> caller: thank you and thank c-span for all you do and keep doing. keep it up.
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michael, nice to meet you. >> guest: nice to meet you. >> caller: you are an important force today on this american scene and i'm glad to see you mention chris hedges in your influential books. he is an influence on me, too. i really like reading them. i think c-span should take note of that, including on "in depth" in the future. >> guest: i would watch that. >> caller: i would, too. 2006 midterm elections basically were seen as a referendum on the iraq war, i thought. and i think a lot of people were led to think that. the democrats promised to draw down the war. and when they swarmed into congress, they actually increase funding of the war. and in light of that, what you
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did against ralph nader, with all due respect, in '04, coming out and campaigning against him, asking him not to run in giving reasons for him not be voted for. do you have any regrets about that now? thank you very much. >> guest: oh, no, none. i supported ralph nader in 2000 i supported him and what his original plan was. when he told those of us who were his supporters that he was not going to campaign in the swing states and that he was going to campaign in those states, like texas and new york, where everybody knew what the vote was going to be but it would not affect al gore's chances of winning. but we could make a strong statement from the left by showing how many millions of people supported ralph nader. so i very much a part of that. and when the democrats
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prohibited ralph nader from being in the debates in 2000, which was wrong, ralph decided to start campaigning in the swing states, and he was very upset of the core and the democrats. there were a number of us in this campaign that encouraged him not to do that, and he went ahead and did it anyway. i spent some days in the final week before the 2000 election in florida on my own holding rallies and press conferences saying i'm a nader supporter and i'm asking you to please vote or al gore, because i did not want what i saw was going to happen. i thought would happen. the damage that would happen. so i went to florida on my own dime, and and tried to undo that. but apparently it was too late. so in 2004 came around, i really wanted nothing to do with ralph nader for his campaign. i had always admired john kerry from his early antiwar days, but
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sadly he to voted to back bush into going to the war. so it was kind of a hold your nose sort of thing. but we had to stop what bush was doing. it was just the way around it. even if we had to get someone who was everything we want them to be. so that's what i did that trend when can you address the rumor of you having stock in halliburton? >> guest: it's a big talking point on other channels. i have never owned a share of stock in anything in my entire life. i've not owned a single share, nor have i ever owned a single share of stock. for a number of reasons. number one, i don't believe in it. i don't believe in the stock market. number two, i don't believe in vegas. sorry to the people who live there but i don't believe in gambling.
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so i never put my money in the casino. so i figured out where this rumor came from. and it was because i started a foundation many years ago, and i'm one of the board members of the foundation. there's a time in the late 90s where the board decided to turn, that we were giving away too much of the principal. interest rates were down or whatever. their fiduciary responsibility of the 501(c)(3) organization, and invest the money appropriate the. and so these people decide to go along, and i personally don't believe in it but i don't put my, if you own stock, i don't think getting less of the. if you own stock i think that's great but it's just a personal thing, but i'm part of a larger group. i'm part of this addition effort. so, they turned it over to the money manager, and the money
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manager was given very specific instruction on what he could and couldn't investing. he went against those instructions and he put the money into things like halliburton and ge and pharmaceutical companies. and when i found this out, i was stunned that he had done this. and i eventually fired him. he turned out to be, he is now in prison. i would just skip ahead, there's a longer story there, but the man is in prison now. so, i now, when i lend my name to something or if i'm on a foundation or if i start something i remain a lot more, much more involved in a. but myself i've never owned any stock in anything. and i never will. i don't believe in it. i don't support the system, economic system that we have. it's not good for the people and
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so i don't participate in it. >> host: c-span junkie tweets in, don't you usually travel on your own dime to political events? >> guest: yes. well, yes, of course it do. i mean i was on the nader dime or the gore dime. i did that as a citizen going to florida. and when i'm on this tour, 50% i donate in every city, the books that are sold. iq to the local libraries. i get 50% of my share to the local libraries all across the country. and you know, i do that all the time. >> host: we have about 10 minutes left with our guest, michael moore. tony in sacramento, california, thanks for holding. you were on the air. >> caller: thank you. mr. moore, it's a pleasure watching you on tv. i just want to say that i think you're a great american and a
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great patriot. my question is, i'm out here in california, and i know there's something going on regarding protests in new york city at wall street. and since we don't get much coverage by the national media, the only way i heard about was from link tv. could you tell me what's going on regarding the protests in wall street, new york? >> guest: distorted two weeks ago. there's no organization behind it. there's no one leader. it's really, it's a conglomeration of americans of all ages and backgrounds. i've been down there for three days this past week. went down there, visited, participated in it. there's hippies, there's ron paul supporters, there is housewives, there's grandma's,
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all kinds of people. and this movement i'm telling you is going to spread. there were thousands that showed up yesterday. nearly a thousand were arrested by the new york city police. peaceful, nonviolent demonstrators. they are now in over 70 cities across the country. look for the name of your city and the word occupy in front of it. the main group, the main event was called occupy wall street. in sacramento there was a protest yesterday. if you look up occupied sacramento, or occupy stack, i think it's called, you will find people with like-minded and these are people, all kinds of people. people who lost their mortgages. people that are foreclosed on, people of lost their health care, lost their jobs, afraid of losing their jobs, afraid of losing their homes, upset with the lack of response of the democratic party, et cetera, all kinds of people. this has been percolating for some time, and it is now in the
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process of boiling over. this is a movement that will spread across the country. and please be part of it. please, don't sit back on the couch. this is not going to be fixed with you doing nothing and the politicians are certain not going to fix it. you yourself, your friends, your neighbors, we will be the ones to have to fix it. i think the website now call occupied go there and see me what some of the other cities are now doing things. you can go to my website the idaho list of a whole list of things that michael and show you what's going on and what here's the back of "here comes trouble." where was this photograph taken? >> guest: that's me at age 35. i'm staying on west 55th street in manhattan and i've just completed in the interim, my untrained roger and me. i took it to the film laboratory to turn in and turned into it into a film print. we walked out of there.
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my wife took this picture. we better get a shot of this. just taking my first film into the lab. and the book actually, the source of the book takes place between, the picture on the cover, me as a baby, and the picture on the back, me as a person who is just about have his first movie released. >> host: have you thought about a follow-up yet to this book? >> guest: oh, yes. the book ends as the light goes down in a very first screening of "roger and me." my sisters are there, they are on each side of me, thanking the crowd is going to not like it and everything will go south for me. so that's, there's another volume, my years here as a film maker, making the tv shows, the books i've written. and the peak behind the curtain that i've been given in
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hollywood, in a different things i've done, so i will write another volume of these short stories. i had written in as short stories. it's not a typical autobiography. i love short stories and i love to read short stories. and i've never really seen a book of nonfiction short stories. they are usually fiction. so i thought why don't i write these stories for my wife. i fashioned them. they read as short stories. you can go to the book, read one here, read another one. >> host: where do you do your writing and how much editing has been done? >> guest: i wrote this book in my apartment in new york city. actually i live in michigan but i went, i am very involved with
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everyone with my live, and very public in that way. so i actually go to new york to get peace and quiet. i wrote this in my little office, and my apartment in new york. what was the other part of your question? >> host: how much editing was done to this? >> guest: every story probably went through a dozen dress. i love the process of writing. i love to write. i love we writing. i love the rewrite and rewrite because it just gets better. you think of other things. you remember this book is also, you know, have humor in it. so find yourself laughing in one place and crying in another. i felt all that while writing this. i poured more of myself into this book than i have anything else i've written. i'm the proudest of this book. i don't want to jinx it or anything by saying it's, i think person i think it's the best damn thing i've ever


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