Michael Moore, speaking yesterday in Madison, Wisconsin:
Contrary to what those in power would like you to believe so that you’ll give up your pension, cut your wages, and settle for the life your great-grandparents had, America is not broke. Not by a long shot. The country is awash in wealth and cash. It’s just that it’s not in your hands. It has been transferred, in the greatest heist in history, from the workers and consumers to the banks and the portfolios of the uber-rich.
Right now, this afternoon, just 400 Americans have more wealth than half of all Americans combined.
Let me say that again — and please, someone in the mainstream media, just repeat this fact once. We’re not greedy. We’ll be happy to just hear it once: 400 obscenely wealthy individuals — 400 little Mubaraks — most of whom benefited in some way from the multi-trillion dollar taxpayer “bailout” of 2008, now have more cash, stock and property than the assets of 155 million Americans combined.
[Crowd chants: Shame! Shame! Shame!]
If you can’t bring yourself to call that a financial coup d’état, then you are simply not being honest about what you know in your heart to be true.
And I can see why. For us to admit that we have let a small group of men abscond with and hoard the bulk of the wealth that runs our economy, would mean that we’d have to accept the humiliating acknowledgment that we have indeed surrendered our precious Democracy to the moneyed elite. Wall Street, the banks and the Fortune 500 now run this Republic — and, until this past month here in Madison Wisconsin, the rest of us have felt completely helpless, unable to find a way to do anything about it.