Michigan filmmaker Michael Moore brought some straight talk to the crowd in Wisconsin on Saturday (March 5, 2011). To say it was powerful is an understatement.
In a half-hour speech Moore decided to make in person on the spur of the moment, Moore connected the financial crisis to the union-busting tactics of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and his supporters, David and Charles Koch.
"America is not broke," Moore told a roaring crowd. "That's right. Neither is Wisconsin, contrary to what those in power would like you to believe so you will give up your wages, cut your pensions and settle for the life your great grandparents had."
Moore said, "The country is awash in wealth and in cash. it's just that it's not in your hands. It has been transferred in the greatest heist in history from the consumers to the bank accounts and portfolios of the uber-rich."
The nation, he said, has seen a "financial coup d'etat" that concentrated the vast majority of the nation's wealth in a very few hands. "Just 400 Americans have more wealth than half of all Americans combined. Please, somebody in the mainstream media, report this fact just once."
As a result of the "financial coup d'etat," Moore said, "Wall Street, the banks, and the Fortune 500 now run this republic."
Moore said the Wisconsin battle is a result of the rich overplaying their hand. They couldn't stop at demanding financial concessions, but they had to go after people's souls, strip teachers of their dignity, and demean and dehumanize workers.
The strength of working people, Moore said, lies in their numbers.
"It's one person, one vote and that is the thing that the rich hate the most about America. ... And there's a hell of a lot more of us than there are of them," he said.
Moore thanked the Wisconsin workers and the Wisconsin "Fab 14" for standing up to Walker. "These 14 senators will go down in the history books of labor history in America," he said.
Moore said it better than I ever could. Watch the video for yourself.