Capitalism: A Love Story (2009) - full transcript

Capitalism: A Love Story examines the impact of corporate dominance on the everyday lives of Americans (and by default, the rest of the world). The film moves from Middle America, to the halls of power in Washington, to the global financial epicenter in Manhattan. With both humor and outrage, the film explores the question: What is the price that America pays for its love of capitalism? Families pay the price with their jobs, their homes and their savings. Moore goes into the homes of ordinary people whose lives have been turned upside down; and he goes looking for explanations in Washington, DC and elsewhere. What he finds are the all-too-familiar symptoms of a love affair gone astray: lies, abuse, betrayal...and 14,000 jobs being lost every day. Capitalism: A Love Story also presents what a more hopeful future could look like. Who are we and why do we behave the way that we do?

This picture,

truly one of the most
unusual ever filmed,

contains scenes which
under no circumstances

should be viewed by anyone
with a heart condition

or anyone who is easily upset.

We urgently recommend

that if you are such a person
or the parent

of a young or impressionable child
now in attendance,

that you and the child
leave the auditorium.

* Yeah

* Louie Louie, whoa baby

* I gotta go now

* Louie Louie, whoa baby

* I really gotta go now

* The Communist world
is fallin' apart

* The capitalists
are just breakin' hearts

* Money is the reason to be

* It makes me just
wanna sing Louie Louie

* Louie Louie, whoa baby

* I gotta go now

* Louie Louie, whoa baby

* I really gotta go now

* Some say it will,
some say it won't

* Now you see it,
now you don't

* We spent all our money
on a disaster movie

* It makes me wanna sing
Louie Louie

* Louie Louie, whoa baby

* I gotta go now

* Louie Louie, whoa baby

* I really gotta go now

* Oh, let's give it
to 'em right now.

Rome was the largest
and the most beautiful city

of the ancient world.

The magnificent facade
of the empire, however,

could not conceal
the seeds of decay,

the unhealthy dependence
of the economy on slaves,

the disparity between
rich and poor.

Behind the splendor
of the Forum

were vast areas
of crowded slums.

Escape from the slums was difficult
for there were few jobs available

and practically none
for the unskilled.

To keep idle citizens entertained
and out of mischief,

frequent games and spectacles
were held at public expense.

At first, only chariot races
were sponsored.

But by the reign of Trajan,

brutal combat to the death
had become popular.

Earlier in Rome's history,

elected representatives
exercised the power.

But by now,
every function of government

had been absorbed
by the emperor

who was above the law
and ruled by decree.

That a people as civilized
as the Romans,

with the most humane
system of law ever devised,

could tolerate the violation
of human beings

is astonishing.

This imbalance
and the irresponsible behavior

of public officials
would become major reasons

for Rome's eventual decline.

I wonder how future civilizations
will view our society.

Will they judge us by this?

* He's a cat flushin' a toilet...

* He's a cat flushin' a toilet,
he's a cat flushin' a toilet.

* He's a cat flushin' a toilet.

Or will they judge us by this?

Do you see the sheriff's car?

Yeah, right there.
The sheriff-- that's the first car.

- No--
- There he is.

3, 4, 5, 6...


- Give me the phone.
- It's on this--

it's on the c--
it's on the couch.

All right, that's as close
as I can get, Dad.

Don't stand in front of the door, Dad.

Get out from the--

Hey, Sheriff, Robert
inside the house here.

They're trying to beat
the back door in, Dad.

There are 4 of us in here.
They're beating on the door.

We're not gonna resist,
but you will have to come

in the house on your own.

But there are 4 souls
in this house.

Dad, don't stand
in front of the door.

Do not.

Another witness.

Tell your name to the camera.

- I'm David Phillips.
- Chris Collins.

And Audra Collins.

And this is America?

This is America, folks,
what you're watching right here.

- Sheriff's office.
- Yeah, we know.

- Okay, y'all have to come out, please.
- All right.

We cannot act like this--
this is just something that's okay.

And so this is new.

They've never come out
and boarded up our house

after they've evicted the person

and threw their furniture
in the dumpster.

So they're letting us know

that they are stepping it up,

boarding up somebody's house.

This has been my family home.
This is my parents' house.

I've lived here for 41 years.

This is the only home
I've ever really lived in.

This is the only-- this will always
be home to me, no matter what.

- I'm a carpenter.
- There you go.

Sandra, they're leaving.
Let them leave.

- I'm a carpenter. So what?
- That's all I am.

- Well, people pay their bills.
- This could happen to you.

That's right.
So why do you think I'm doing it?

I don't have to be happy about this,
but that's what I do.

That's all I'm saying is that
maybe you can make another choice.

- That's all we're saying.
- That's no reason for...

You're a working-class person.

people here to get upset
and almost get themselves hurt.

We ain't gonna get hurt.

Are you threatening us?

Y'all gonna get on out of here.
You might end up even getting hurt.

Talking about us getting hurt,
you might get hurt.

There's gonna be
some kind of a rebellion

between the people
that have nothing

and the people that's got it all.

I don't understand.

There's no in-between no more.

There's the people that's got it all

and the people that have nothing.

We gotta get this stuff
out of the house and packed up

and be out of here
in about 30 days

even though we don't
have a place to go.

We designed this house.

The property that it's on
was my family farm.

So I've lost a piece
of my heritage with this.

Why do you do this
to the hard-working people?

Why do you take everything?

You take everything
away from them.

We're just middle-class,
hard-working people

trying to make a living.

Just trying to survive.

An old Browning.

My pistol,

my dad's pistol, my pistol.

Sheriff's department.

It's supposed to be 30 days.

I got 30 days to get my stuff out.

- That's what the guy told me.
- No.


It's currently scheduled for today.


The paper's telling us
that we are due

to do an eviction here
today at 9:00 AM.


Well, he's surprised too.

The house is gone.

That cop told me that the house

has already been sold
to somebody else.

So we don't own the house no more,
somebody else does.

This is capitalism,

a system of taking and giving--

mostly taking.

The only thing we didn't know

was when the revolt would begin.

Everything, we've tried everything...

except robbing a bank.

I'm thinking about
maybe doing that.

You know, that's one way
somebody could get their money back.

If they did it--
they did it to me,

I don't know why
I can't do it to them.

This is my second Hyundai Sonata.

I'll probably get a new car next year.

And when I do,
it'll probably be another Sonata.

You know, I'm not a car guy.

If I can go in there
and steal a condo

for the equivalent of what
a Mercedes would cost

or a Bentley would cost,
I'm all about that.

Meet Peter Zalewski,

Florida's up-and-coming
real estate whiz.

Here we go.

He calls his real estate company
Condo Vultures.

We have a very good sign.

You have the final notice
of eviction.

So you can see this person
was basically thrown out

by the police department.


Peter deals exclusively

with clients who buy up
foreclosed homes

and then resell them at a profit.

It's gonna be about
830 square feet or so...

At the end of the day,
the only people who are buying

are primarily individuals
that we represent...

Today it's on the market
for $66,000.

...which are basically bottom feeders
who are going in there.

They have no compassion,
no sensitivity.

They're running purely off numbers
They're coming in all cash,

and they're looking to slit
any single seller's throat

regardless of what
their situation is.

So people always ask,
"What's 25? on the dollar?"

This is it.
This is what you're gonna get.

The vulture basically represents
a bottom feeder

that goes in there
and cleans off a carcass.

Because they're dealing with
so many different germs and situations,

they'll have to vomit on themselves
and there's some sort

of cleansing process that occurs.

The vultures
aren't actually killing,

they're the ones
doing the clean-up.

Which bank you want?
Bank of America?

What we do is we tap into data...

and boom, voila.

Here we got 3,400 foreclosing
by Bank of America.

Gotta love it.

As we collect data,
it's giving us

the insight into the battlefield,

almost like a drone that flies
over the battleground in Afghanistan

or in Pakistan or in Iraq.

The current asking price is 355.

Again, it was purchased for 840.

A little bit of a discount.
You're gonna have 2...

Our people are using
that data to be able to go in

and try to steal properties,
legally and ethically,

but take them at the bare-bone
bottom price.

It's all about taking right now.

Look at the-- look at the roof--
completely gone and missing.

We haven't had a hurricane
in 5 years.

Welcome to the housing crash,
Miami style.

So this-- this is what capitalism is

and this is why the information
is so critical.

We go in there,
we alert them to it,

and if they like it, you know--

- Look at the window.
- Look at that.

Looks like the house
next door was on fire.

This is straight up capitalism.

- Fire damage.
- I wonder if somebody was living there...

Everybody's got
this desire to go in there

and take advantage
of others' misfortunes.

Somebody asked me,

"What's the difference between
you and a real vulture?"

I said, "It's very simple.
I don't vomit on myself."

Our topic today:
What is capitalism?


Well, why should there be
any question about it?

Hasn't it given us the highest
standard of living in the world?

We're free to try to make a profit,

to just get by, or to fail.

That's what capitalism is:

a system of free enterprise.

Now tell us what
"free enterprise" means.

I went to see
my friend Wally Shawn,

a playwright
and sometimes actor.


But Wally also studied
history and politics

and even a little
elementary economics.

Free enterprise
is a form of words

that is intended
to conjure up in your mind

a little town with different shops.

And the guy who runs
the best shop

has the most customers.

There is the basis
of the capitalistic system:

the profit motive.

He's in business to make money.

The original theory of capitalism

is that it's a very clever way

of society voting on what goods

it wants made.

What do you use this for?

That's-- I could use that
for practically everything I ever do.

You know, society votes.

They like the way this guy

makes ice cream.

But the other guy,

they don't like
his ice cream that much

and they don't buy it,
so it fades out.

It's on me.
That is a good fit.

The basic law of life
is that if you have things,

you can easily get more things.

Very quickly, one guy can have

5 times more
than anybody else.

- Free enterprise.
- Competition.

The profit motive.

My dad, an assembly-line
worker at General Motors,

bought and paid for our house

before I graduated
from kindergarten.

We had a new car
every 3 years.

We went to New York
every other summer.

That's me on Wall Street.

And that's me
directing my first movie

at the World's Fair.

We went to Catholic schools,
we lived a good life.

If this was capitalism,
I loved it...

and so did everyone else.

During these years
a lot of people got rich

and they had to pay
a top tax rate of 90%.



But they still got to live
like Bogie and Bacall.

And what did we do
with all their money?

We built damns, bridges,

interstate highways,
schools, hospitals.

We even sent a guy to the moon.

Things seemed to be going
in the right direction.

Dad had a secure job
and Mom could work

if she wanted,
but didn't have to.

Middle-class families only needed
one income to survive.

Our union family had
free health care and free dental.

The kids could go to college
without getting a loan from a bank.

Dad had 4 weeks
paid vacation every summer.

Most people had
a savings account and little debt.

And Dad's pension was set aside
where no one could touch it.

It would be there for him
when he retired.

We got all of this because
our main industrial competition

had been reduced to rubble.

Here's what the German
car industry looked like.

And here's the Japanese
auto industry.

I guess you could say
it's easy to be number one

when you have no competition.

Yes, of course
not everything was perfect.

We didn't mind having to put up

with a little bit of this
and a little bit of that...

just as long as we could be

And we could count on our kids
having it better than we had it.

It sounded like
a good deal to us.

Capitalism-- no one
ever had it so good.

And then, right when
we were in the middle

of this big love affair
with capitalism...

The ABC Sunday Night Movie
"The Gambler"

will continue in its entirety

following this live report
from ABC News.

We are at a turning point
in our history.

Along came Debbie Downer.

Too many of us now
tend to worship

and consumption.

Human identity
is no longer defined

by what one does,

but by what one owns.

This is not a message

of happiness or reassurance,

but it is the truth

and it is a warning.

What a bummer.

It was time to bring
a new sheriff to town...

one who knew how to act
like a president.

He knew how to handle workers
who wanted a better wage.

All right, mister, I guess you win.

Or these annoying feminists

whining about their
Equal Rights Amendment.

Well, I can change that in a hurry.

A man who knew
how to get the job done.

Ronald Reagan
came out of the B movies

to become the most famous
corporate spokesman of the 1950s.

It's a transistor radio too.
Weighs only a few ounces.

You can slip it
right into your pocket.

Boraxo waterless hand cleaner
really cleans up for us.

He had found his calling

and Wall Street
had found their man.

You see, the banks and corporations
had a simple plan:

to remake America to serve them.

But to pull it off would require

electing a spokesmodel
for president.

And on November 4th, 1980,
that's what we did.

...that I will faithfully execute

the office of President
of the United States.

Ronald Ronald Ronald...

Thank you.

It was an historic moment

because now corporate America
and Wall Street

were in almost complete control.

See that guy standing
next to the president?

You know, the one
that looks like a butler?

His name was Don Regan,

the Chairman of Merrill Lynch,

the richest and biggest
retail brokerage firm in the world.

He took the key position
of Treasury Secretary

so he could enact the tax cuts
that the rich wanted.

Regan then became
White House Chief of Staff

as the president started to fade.

Then they should give the president
what 43 governors have,

a line-item veto.


You're gonna have to speed it up.

Who tells the president
to speed it up?

The man from Merrill Lynch,
that's who.

Things in America would never
be the same again.

The country would now be run
like a corporation.

We're going to turn the bull loose.

And 4 years later,
when Reagan ran for reelection,

it was all smiley faces
and happy talk.

I really feel that we're gonna
be better off in the long run.

We're on the upward swing

and the factories are working
much stronger than before.

We're back on top.

Actually, what Reagan presided over

was the wholesale dismantling
of our industrial infrastructure.

This was not done to save money
or remain competitive,

as companies back then
were already posting

record earnings in the billions.

No, it was done
for short-term profits...

and to destroy the unions.

Millions of people
were thrown out of work

and the remaining workers
were told to work twice as hard.

But wages for working people
remained frozen.

The richest Americans
had their top income tax rate

cut in half.

Instead of being paid
a decent wage,

we were encouraged
to live on borrowed money

until our household debt
was nearly 100% of the GDP.

There was an explosion
of personal bankruptcies.

We found it necessary to lock up
millions of our citizens.

Sales of antidepressants

as insurance
and pharmaceutical company greed

pushed the cost
of healthcare up and up.

All of this was great news
for the stock market

and for America's CEOs.

Half of Flint was now receiving

some form
of government welfare.

During the end
of the Reagan years,

I made my first movie about
what had happened to the country

and specifically to my hometown
of Flint, Michigan,

the birthplace of General Motors.

GM was posting profits
of over $4 billion

while at the same time eliminating

tens of thousands of jobs.

I went to see GM's chief lobbyist
in Flint, Mr. Tom Kay,

to ask him why
this was happening.

General Motors wouldn't be doing
anybody any service

if it goes bankrupt.

It has to do what it has to do

in order to stay competitive
in today's economic climate.

Even if that means
eliminating 18,000 jobs?

Even if it means
eliminating 20,000 jobs.

- Or 30,000?
- Whatever.

- How about all the jobs here in Flint?
- It could feasibly happen.

And it did.

Nearly all the jobs were eliminated

and GM went bankrupt.

Perhaps more distressing was the fact
that the rest of America

was now starting to resemble
Flint, Michigan.

But there were some cities
that still took pride in their greatness.

* Cleveland

* Come on down
to Cleveland Town, everyone

* Come and look
at both of our buildings

* Here's the place where
there used to be industry

* This train is carrying jobs
out of Cleveland

* See the sun almost
3 times a year

* This guy has at least 2 DUIs

* Our economy's
based on LeBron James

* Buy a house
for the price of a VCR

* Our main export
is crippling depression

* We're so retarded
that we think this is art

* It could be worse, though,
at least we're not Detroit

* We're not Detroit.

No, they're not Detroit.

For 20 years I tried
to warn GM and others

that this day was coming,
but to no avail.

Maybe now they'd listen.

So I went down to the headquarters
of General Motors

one last time to share
some of my ideas.

You don't have permission.
You can't film here.

You don't have permission
from General Motors.

- You can't film here.
- I'm just going up to see the chairman.

No, sir.
No, sir.

You know, I've been doing this
for, like, 20 years.

I understand, sir.

And I have not been
let into this building for 20 years,

and I think it's about time
someone just let me in

and let me talk to them.

I've got some good ideas.

4-7 to 7-6 Bravo Area Alpha.

Go ahead.

It's Michael Moore here
to see the chairman.

Repeat that.

It's the filmmaker
Mr. Michael Moore.

He's here to see the chairman.

- Gentlemen.
- Yes.

You need to get prior permission.
You cannot film here, okay?

But if I can't go in and get permission,
what am I supposed to do?

I guess they're right.
Breaking up is hard to do.

Stop that. Don't do that.
Just go in the building.

For 35 years,
GM made more money

than any other corporation.

But eventually,
Germany and Japan

rebuilt their car industry
and produced vehicles

that were safer than ours,
more fuel efficient

and rarely, if ever, broke down.

In Germany, unions help hire and fire
the board of directors

so the workers have a say
in what's going on.

You see, the people
of Japan and Germany

fight to make sure that even
their conservative political leaders

don't destroy their middle class.

So where exactly
are we right now?

On the day that General Motors
declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy,

I went with my dad to visit
the AC Spark Plug plant

where he had worked
for over 30 years.

- So you worked actually right here.
- You'd have to go--

they had a ramp that took you
up over that, just beyond that...

- Just beyond that space there?
- Yeah.

- And then the factory was all over there?
- Yeah.

The whole complex is, like,
2 miles long.

I remember Mom bringing
us kids in to pick you up.

- 2:30 every day.
- Yeah.

You'd walk out of there,
right over in there in fact.

And we'd be waiting
in the car for you

and we'd see you
come down the ramp.

We got real excited
every time we saw you.

I was there 33? years.

33? years?

What's your best memory here,
being here, working here?

My best memory?
I think the people.

They were a really good bunch.

- You liked the crowd you worked with?
- Yeah.

A good place to work. I enjoyed it.

But I'm sorry to see it go.

Shortly before Christmas 2008,

Republic Windows & Doors
in Chicago, Illinois,

abruptly fired
its entire unionized workforce

of over 250 people.

They were given
only 3 days' notice.

Bank of America
would no longer provide

a line of credit to the company,

and so the workers were not paid
the money owed to them.

My life revolves around this job.

I live according to my obligation
to my job, you know?

And it's not just me,
it's all of the workers here.

We go above and beyond

the call of duty for Republic.

And at the end,

Republic cares nothing for us.

We found out that they're gonna
shut the plant on Tuesday.

We don't deserve what
they're doing to us, you know?

It really hurts because,
like I said,

this is my second family.

So it was-- it really hurts.
It really hurts.

I'm gonna miss
all of them, you know?

I'm gonna miss them
and I don't think

anybody on this planet

deserves what they've done to us.

Scenes like this
were being repeated

all over the country,
and no one seemed to mind.

* Zambezi, Zambezi

* Zambezi, Zam.

The president was enjoying
his final year in office.

But as the economy
started to fall apart,

he decided it was time
to roll out the C word.

Capitalism is the best system
ever devised.


Voices from the left and right
are equating the free enterprise system

with greed and exploitation
and failure.


exploitation, failure?

Go on, I'm listening.

Capitalism offers people
the freedom to choose

where they work
and what they do...

Pat Andrews
has been looking for work.

Every morning she scans
the classifieds in vain.

There isn't anything in here.

I'm not gonna be a gentleman's club
hired dancer either.

...the opportunity to buy
or sell products they want.

Tom Rendon has avoided layoffs

at his sign company
in Stockton, California,

all because this one word
now makes up

for half his business.

If you seek social justice
and human dignity,

the free market system
is the way to go.

And for those seeking
justice in Pennsylvania,

free enterprise
was definitely the way to go.

Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania,

has one of the highest rates
in the state

of young people locked up
in the juvenile home.

Perhaps it's because
the good people here

employ the practices
of capitalism

in dealing with
their wayward youth.

The county hired a private
profit-making corporation

with a sweet-sounding name,
PA Child Care.

It was owned and run
by 2 businessmen,

one of whom was Robert Powell,
an attorney and entrepreneur.

His good friend Judge Conahan

closed down
the public juvenile home

and then got
PA Child Care to build

an $8 million
privately-owned facility

and charge it back to the county

for a mere $58 million lease.

Let's meet some of Wilkes-Barre's
juvenile delinquents.

Magee smoked pot
at a high school party.

I was very rebellious
when I was at this age.

Matt, he got into
an argument at the dinner table.

I threw a piece of meat,
as in steak,

cooked dinner,
at my mother's boyfriend.

Jamie got in a fight
at a shopping mall

with her best friend.

I just figured, you know, we just weren't
gonna be friends anymore.

And Hillary made
a MySpace page

making fun
of her assistant principal

for being strict and having
no sense of humor.

And it said some pretty silly,
like, 14-year-old-girl stuff.

Her assistant principal
called the police.

They all appeared before
kindly Judge Mark Ciavarella.

These kids were about
to get their first lesson

in American capitalism:

time is money, lots of money.

I went in front of the court,
in front of Mr. Ciavarella,

and I wasn't even in front of him
for 4 minutes.

I was only in front of him
for, like, 2 minutes.

The first thing that
Judge Ciavarella said to me was,

"What makes you think
you can do this kind of crap?"

I'm sure he knew in his mind
when I walked in

that he was locking this kid up
no matter what.

He didn't even look at me.

Once I entered the courtroom,
I didn't have any chance.

There was about 6 kids
who went in front of me.

Every single kid who went
in front of Ciavarella,

for all different reasons--
some minor, some serious--

got sent away.

Although Wilkes-Barre is located
in the United States of America,

here capitalism
trumped democracy.

Robert Powell, one of the owners
of PA Child Care,

cut a business deal with Judge Conahan
and Judge Ciavarella.

Judge Ciavarella then stepped up
his conviction rates.

Many of these kids
were funneled

into PA Child Care's
for-profit juvenile facility.

And for their troubles,

the judges received
over $2.6 million

while the owners of PA Child Care
received tens of millions

of taxpayer dollars
from the county.

And where did Powell go
to enjoy all that money?

On his private plane

and his yacht,
the "Reel Justice."

6,500 children
were unjustly convicted.

It was good business
while it lasted.

2 Luzerne County judges
in big trouble with the law.

They're going to jail.

Some kids were locked up

even when probation officers
objected to detention.

In there you lose track of time
and you lose track of the date.

I was barely keeping track.

It was supposed to be, like--
I believe it was, like, 2 months.

And it went from 2 months
to 9 months.

He said originally
3 to 6 months,

but somehow I ended up
being there 11? months

and I never went back
in front of the judge at all

for him to give me extensions.

Not only did PA Child Care

pay off the judges
to fill their cells,

but their employees were the ones
who got to decide

when a child had
enough rehabilitation.

But that makes sense,
because any time a governmental unit

turns over to
a profit-making corporation

the duties it should be performing,

what do you expect to happen?

It makes me feel like
an item that they just used

to just get money
and then tossed me aside.

I'm just trying
to work on my flying

and just trying to prepare
for my future

so I can put this all behind me,
finally be done with all this.

During the whole trial
I wasn't in control at all,

but with flying it's only me.

It's just that I just get
to do everything by myself.

I'm the only one on the control.

Matt loves to fly

and hopes to become
a pilot someday.

If he does,
he'll get his 2nd lesson

in capitalism:

that in America,
sometimes you're better off

working at Mickey D's.

Remember Sully?

Captain Sullenberger,

who safely landed an airbus
in the Hudson River

saving the lives of 150 passengers?

A true American hero.

He met the mayor.
He went to the State of the Union.

Heck, he even went
to the Super Bowl.

And then he went to Congress.

Flying has been my lifelong passion.

But while I love my profession,

I do not like
what has happened to it.

It is my personal experience

that my decision to remain
in the profession I love

has come at a great financial cost
to me and to my family.

My pay has been cut 40%.

My pension, like most airline pensions,
has been terminated.

So please do not think I exaggerate
when I say that I do not know

a single professional airline pilot
who wants his or her children

to follow in their footsteps.

You cleared the room
with that one, Sully.

I don't think the congressmen
wanted to hear that stuff.

- They like you as a hero.
- The current experience...

What was your starting pay as a pilot?

I made $19,000 the first year.

I was bumped up to about 22,000
or 23,000 the second year.

Last year, gross pay

I made $17,600.

There's a joke in the airline
when we get our wings pinned on us

as new-hire airline pilots
that the company just kinda says,

"Hey, don't apply for food stamps
in your uniform."

I don't know about you,
but I want the pilot

who's got me 30,000 feet up in the air
to be paid really well

and not sitting up in the cockpit
digging through the pilot's seat

looking for loose change.

There was a period
of about 4 months

where I was on food stamps.

- You were on food stamps?
- Yes.

- And you were still flying the plane?
- Yes.

With my--
with my food stamp card.

The lady I talked to
in the food stamp office,

when I told her I was a pilot,
she didn't bat an eye,

but she didn't--
I knew she didn't believe me.

How have you gotten by?
How have you been able to afford things?

Relying on credit cards
to buy the groceries at times

- when I wasn't on food stamps.
- Really?

I have about $10,000
in credit card debt

just on the necessities,

not on the big-screen TV
and the stereo.

You're using it to buy
your groceries and get by.

- Yes.
- Do you have any student loan debt?

- Yes.
- How much?

Mine is about 80,000.

- I took out $100,000.
- Student loans?

And by the time I pay it back,
at this rate,

it'll probably cost me well over
a half a million with interest

and fees and penalties.

It's something that I don't--
I don't like to spend a lot of time

thinking about
because it's abysmal.

It's one way that I get down
really quickly

about my chosen career field

is to think about how much I owe
and how little I make.

Have you had to work
a 2nd job to make ends meet?

I walk dogs on the side,

I distribute MonaVie Juice.

I have known pilots
to donate plasma

for extra cash.

- You mean they give blood?
- They-- well--

So they can make extra money
even though they're flying an airplane?

They donate their plasma.

So they get the blood back,
but you can get paid for plasma.

I see.

They suck the blood out of you,
take the plasma...

- Give you the blood back.
- ...give you the--

Well then,
not such a bad deal.

The only reason people stay flying
is because they love it.

And managements
take advantage of that.

The airlines
have managed to farm out

a lot of the flying to commuters

in an effort to basically
bust the unions.

You can't compete

to a lower and lower level
every year

without skimping
on safety somehow.

At approximately 10:15 PM
on February 12, 2009,

Continental connection flight 3407

began its descent
to the airport in Buffalo.

Stand by, there's some
ground communication,

either state police
or sheriff's department.

We need to find out if anything
is on the ground.

This aircraft was 5 miles out,
and all of a sudden

we have no response
to that aircraft.

All I could tell you is there was
an aircraft over the marker

and we're not talking to them now.

No one survived the crash

and 50 people lost their lives.

The media focused
on the actions of the pilots.

Captain Marvin Renslow
and First Officer Shaw

were chatting about their careers.

"Careers" is a euphemism

for what the pilots
were really talking about:

how little they were paid
and how overworked they were.

There would be
no discussion in the media

about why we have
an economic system

that allows a pilot to be paid less
than a manager at Taco Bell.

First Officer Shaw

made between
$16,000 and $20,000 a year

and at one point
worked a second job.

Her 2nd job had been waitressing

at a coffee shop.

How are these companies
able to get away with this?

I guess that's the point of capitalism.

It allows you to get away
with anything,

like making a profit
off the death of an employee.

Sweetie, I can open it.
Let's try it with this.

This is Irma Johnson.

Irma's husband Dan
worked in middle management

at Amegy Bank in Houston, Texas.

- Wanna try to spread it?
- No.

Dan recently died of cancer,

leaving behind Irma
and their 2 sons.

But unbeknownst to Irma,
Amegy had taken out

a secret life insurance policy
on Dan's life.

The bank generously named itself
as the beneficiary

in the event of Dan's death.

The insurance company
then accidentally informed Irma

that Amegy Bank had received
a check for $1? million

just weeks after Dan died.

Thank you for helping.

They never told me.

I wanted to find out, well,
why did they purchase a policy for him?

- You didn't know about it?
- No.

And they named themselves
as the beneficiary.


So your husband's death

made them $1.5 million richer?

I know it's not right
for them to try to profit

from my husband's death.

When I first realized
what was happening,

I was in disbelief.

- It's hurtful.
- I'm so sorry.

it's hurtful and I wanted answers.

Irma contacted Michael D. Myers,

a local attorney who had
already been looking into

these kind of corporate
insurance policies on their employees.

With the normal use of life insurance,
where you're guarding against

the loss of a loved one
or a breadwinner of the family,

you don't want that person to die.

With these policies,
the companies that buy these

want the employees to die

in accordance
with the policy projections.

You are more valuable dead
to a company than alive.

American Greetings, RR Donnelly & Sons,
and Proctor & Gamble

are all having problems
with mortality.

These 4 combined programs
are running at 50%

of expected mortality.

These clients are acutely aware
of this problem.

Basically here the broker
is complaining

that not enough
employees are dying.

And therefore the investment returns
are not matching the projections.

The broker writes
that NCC is running

at 78% of expected mortality.

Okay, so 78% of the people
we expected to die died.

But the problem with that
is 3 of them were suicides.

And you can't count
on that every year.

Can you think of any other situation

were you'd actually want
people to die?

Combatants in war, I guess.

When do you want people to die?

I-I don't know.

War situations,
terrorism situations.

Drug trials, perhaps.
I don't know.

I don't know.
That's an odd question.

I didn't understand
how any of this could be legal.

After all, there's a reason
that there's a law

prohibiting me from taking out
a fire insurance policy on your house

because I have a vested interest
in your house burning down.

Since Attorney Myers had been
researching this for years,

I asked him which companies
were profiting

from these insurance policies.

I don't know,
you don't know,

because there's no place
you can go and find out

whether your company
is a purchaser

- of these types of products.
- Which ones do you know?

The ones that we know
that have slipped out are

Bank of America, Citibank,

Wal-Mart, Winn-Dixie,
Proctor & Gamble,

McDonnell Douglas, Hershey,

Nestl?, AT&T
Southwestern Bell,

Ameritech, American Express--

- This is blue chip you're talking about.
- Yeah.

These aren't fly-by-night companies
trying to do a scam here

so they can collect a check
if one of their employees dies.

There are probably
several million Americans

who are covered by one of these policies
or have been at some point.

There's a lot of it out there.

This is Paul Smith.

He used to be what is known
as a loyal employee.

I worked for Wal-Mart for 18 years
and I gave them 110%.

I mean, I loved that company.

And as it turned out,
Wal-Mart took out

over 350,000
life insurance policies

on rank and file associates.

These weren't executives.

These were people like my wife,
a cake decorator for 18 months.

That's the type of people they were taking
insurance policies out on.

Paul's wife LaDonna left her job
at the Wal-Mart bakery

so she could be a stay-at-home mom
for her 2 kids.

She had asthma real real bad.

She went into
the emergency room one night

and a nurse comes out and says,
"Are you Mr. Smith?"

And I said, "Yes."

And she said, "We don't think
your wife's gonna make it."

LaDonna slipped into a coma

from which she would
never awaken.

Her family rushed to the hospital,

even though there was nothing
they could do to help.

There was a wall here
and LaDonna's in the room

on the other side of the wall.

And Jessica kept saying,
"Where is she?"

And I said, "She's right on
the other side of that wall."

And Jessica said,
"Can we cut a hole in the wall

so that we can see her?"

And that just sticks with me.

Do you remember that?

We had to stay in there with her,
and so we'd write letters to her.

"My dear wife, I miss you more
than any words can possibly say.

You are my life.

You always see beauty
in the simplest things.

I've always admired you for that.
I wish I could have told you that more.

I want you to come back
to me soon.

I still have a lot left to learn
from you, baby doll.

Your loving husband, Paul."

You okay, Wesley?

She was 26 years old.

You're silly.

The younger a person is,
the higher the benefit is

because they're expected
to live longer.

Women are also expected
to live longer than men.

So the most valuable employee
to the company

if they're dead,
is a young woman.

LaDonna's death earned

one of the richest corporations
in the world

an extra $81,000.

I was faced with over $100,000
worth of medical bills

and a $6,000 funeral

and Wal-Mart didn't offer a penny
to help with that.

I did trust them.

And never in a million years
would I have ever thought

that somewhere
on a profit statement,

"Dead associate, $81,000."

Wal-Mart doesn't care about you.

When someone passes away,

they shouldn't get
something out of it.

The common denominator
to each form of coverage

is that when the employee dies,

the employer gets paid
the insurance benefits.

They're often referred to
as "dead peasant insurance."

Dead peasants?
Why'd they use such a creepy name?

It's very creepy.
I don't know what it means either.

Dead is clear.

That's the worker who's passed away,
so they're dead.

Peasant, I don't know why
they chose that word.

I don't know if it has
some historical significance

or that's just the way they view
the relative value

of the employees' lives.

Dead peasants?

Yeah, amongst themselves
that's what they call it.

It's insulting to refer
to my husband like that.

It turned out that Amegy Bank

had a second
dead peasant policy on Dan,

bringing their total take
to nearly $5 million.

- Is capitalism a sin?
- Yes.

Capitalism for me and for many of us

at this present moment is an evil.

It's contrary to all that's good.
It's contrary to the common good.

It's contrary to compassion.

It's contrary to
all of the major religions.

Capitalism is precisely
what the holy books,

our holy books in particular,
remind us is unjust

and in some form and fashion,

God will come down
and eradicate somehow.

This was Father Dick Preston,

the priest from Flint
who married my wife and me.

Capitalism is wrong,

and therefore
has to be eliminated.


That might be a little harsh,

so I decided to go
and talk to the priest

that married my sister
and brother-in-law.

I'm sure he would have
a more balanced approach

when it came to capitalism.

It is immoral, it is obscene,
it is outrageous.

You know...

it is really radical evil.

It's radically evil.

Does their boss know
that they're talking like this?

I thought it best to go
and check this out with the bishop.

Bishop Thomas Gumbleton:
The system doesn't seem to be

providing for the well being
of all the people.

And that's what makes it

almost in its very nature

something contrary
to Jesus who said,

"Blessed are the poor,
woe to the rich."

That's right out
of St. Luke's gospel.

How have we put up
with this system for so long?

I mean, it's--
they talk about--

The system has built into it
what we call propaganda.

I'm in awe of propaganda--

the ability to convince people

who are victimized
by this very system

to support the system
and see it as good.

We know that American capitalism
is morally right

because its chief elements--

private ownership,
the profit motive

and the competitive market--
are wholesome and good.

They are compatible with God's laws
and the teachings of the Bible.

For as long as I can remember,

I've been told that competition
and profit are good things.

They are compatible with God's laws

and the teachings of the Bible.

And if increasing profits
means locking up a few kids

or cashing in on the death
of an employee...

Compatible with God's laws
and the teachings of the Bible.

it is morally right to provide
for the stockholders.

They are compatible with God's laws

and the teachings of the Bible.

Debt, eviction and exploitation.

God's laws and the teachings of the Bible.

What were we really
pledging our allegiance to?

The profit motive.

And so all good Americans
came to act as if they believed

our capitalist economic system
was compatible

with the teachings of the Bible.

When I was a kid,
I wanted to be a priest.

It wasn't because
of the fancy getups

or the Knights of Columbus

or even the groovy nuns
who were so good to me.

It was because of the priests
who went on the march from Selma,

or tried to stop the war,

or devoted their lives to the poor.

They told me quite clearly
what Jesus said,

that the first shall be last
and the last shall be first;

That the rich man
will have a very hard time

getting into heaven;

That we will be judged by how
we treat the least among us;

And that there are no people
more important to God

than the poor.

Since that time,
it seems that Jesus got hijacked

by a lot of people who believe
that the son of God

was sent here to create
heaven on earth for the well-to-do.

I must have missed
that part of the Bible

where Jesus became a capitalist.

Please tell me, master,

what must I do
to have eternal life?

Go forth and maximize profits.

You say the Kingdom of Heaven
is at hand,

but when exactly will it come?

When you deregulate
the banking industry.

Help me.

I've been this way for 20 years.

I'm sorry, I cannot heal
your pre-existing condition.

He'll have to pay out of pocket.

Somehow, I don't think
Jesus came to earth

so he could ring the bell
at the New York Stock Exchange.

And yet,
from the very beginning,

the rich have claimed him
for their own.

When I'm on Wall Street
and I realize

that that's the very nerve center
of American capitalism,

and I realize
what capitalism has done

for working people in America,
to me that's a holy place.

Let me add to it.

Over the whole duration of the Iraq war
and the terror war,

you look at the world's stock markets
and you look at the world economy,

and despite these horrible pockets
of unrest and killing and murdering

that we've been describing,
it's never been better.

The global economy
has never been better

and the global stock markets
have never been better, Jimmy.

It is either a God-given miracle

or it has something to do
with the victories

of the spreading world
of capitalism or both.

They think
Wall Street's a holy place.

What do you think
Jesus would think of capitalism?

I think he would
simply refuse to--

to be part of it.

Jesus would refuse
to be part of it,

but he probably had
a special place up there

for whoever leaked
a secret Citibank memo

about their plan to rule the world.

Back in 2005 and 2006,

Citigroup wrote
3 confidential memos

to their wealthiest investors
about how things were going.

They reached the conclusion
that the United States

was no longer
really a democracy,

but had become a plutonomy--

a society controlled exclusively
by and for the benefit

of the top 1 %
of the population

who now had
more financial wealth

than the bottom 95% combined.

The memo gloated about the growing gap
between rich and poor

and how they were now
the new aristocracy

and that there was no end in sight
for the gravy train they were on.

There was, though,
one problem.

According to Citigroup,

the most potent
and short-term threat

would be societies demanding

a more equitable share
of the wealth.

In other words,
the peasants might revolt.

Citigroup lamented
that the non-rich

might not have
much economic power,

but they do have
equal voting power with the rich.

One person, one vote.

And that's what
really scares them--

that we can still vote.

In fact, we have
99% of the votes

and they only have 1%.

So why do the 99%
put up with this?

According to Citigroup,
it's because the majority of the electorate

believe that someday
they will have a chance

of becoming
well-to-do themselves

if they just keep trying
hard enough.

The wealthy were pleased
that so many people

had bought in
to the American Dream

while they, the rich,
had no intention

of ever sharing it with anyone.

I think capitalism is a lot more
important than democracy.

I'm not even a big believer
in democracy.

I always say that democracy is--
can be 2 wolves and a sheep

deciding on what to have
for dinner.

This is Stephen Moore--
no relation--

a columnist
and an editorial board member

of "The Wall Street Journal,"

the daily bible
of corporate America.

Look, I'm in favor of people
having the right to vote

and things like that, but you know
there are a lot of countries

that have the right to vote
that are still poor.

Democracy doesn't always lead
to a good economy

or even a good political system.

With capitalism, you are free
to do what you want,

to make whatever you want
out of yourself.

It doesn't mean
you're gonna succeed.

Remember, the US Constitution
does not guarantee happiness.

The Constitution.

All my life I've heard that America
is a capitalist country.

So I went to see the original Constitution
and check out if it was true.

I'm trying to see where it sets up
our economic system,

like where it says we have
a capitalist economy.

The jurisdiction.

- Judicial part of the--
- Down there?

There was no mention
of free market or free enterprise

or capitalism anywhere.

In fact, all I saw was
"We the people,"

something about
"a more perfect union,"

and "promoting
the general welfare."

Welfare, union, we?

That sounded like that other -ism.

But no, that's democracy.

And I began to wonder,
"What would it be like

if the workplace
was a democracy?"

There's always been a big separation
between how the country is run

and how businesses
are supposed to run.

It's true.

There seems to be a disconnect

between our professed love
of democracy

and how we're so willing
to accept a dictatorship

every day we show up to work.

It's not that way
at Isthmus Engineering in Wisconsin.

They design and build
robotic machines for industry.

It's a $15 million-a-year business.

All of the workers

are the owners of the business.

He's not talking about
some bullshit stock option.

He means they're the true owners.

And it's a democratically-run
operation where every member

has one vote and an equal say.

- All in favor?
- All in favor?

It takes the money
out of the equation.

By taking the money
out of the equation

so that they can call the shots,

they end up making more money.


And how patriotic
that they want to extend

their love of American democracy
to their job.

Just imagine if the place
where you worked

was run by you
and your fellow workers.

You probably wouldn't
lay off your coworkers

to increase the value
of your stock, would you?

Or give yourself
a pay raise

while making your coworkers
take a pay cut.

We don't really do that here.

You really can't because everyone else
would be looking at you

saying, "Why is this guy
so fricking greedy?"

You know,
it would be too obvious.

The bottom line is you've
got plenty of people

who roll up their sleeves
every day and go to work.

But if there's someone
way up there on the chain

that collects all the extra money,
that's not fair.

Fairness in the workplace--

what a novel idea.

Out in California,
there's a bread factory

where workers make thousands
of loaves of bread every day

The more hours you work towards

the benefit
of the co-op,

the more you share
in the profits.

The workers are happy here.

No big Is, little yous.
Everyone's the same.

Me as the CEO,
I get the same share

that anybody else does.

And that has proven

to be very lucrative
for us as workers.

Assembly-line workers here
earn over $65,000 a year,

more than 3 times the pay

for a starting pilot
at American Eagle.

I'm just hoping
that people take notice

of this type
of organizational activity

and start considering it
as an alternative.

Why do you want
to get rich?

How many cars do
you really need in life?

Clearly, he's not a car guy,
but that's okay.

His bread factory and hundreds of other
worker-owned businesses

are proof that people aren't always
motivated by profit.

An historic victory over a dread disease.

Instead of using his genius
to make a ton of money,

Dr. Jonas Salk spent
all of his time

putting monkey kidneys
in a blender

trying to find a cure
for polio.

And when he did,
he decided to give it away for free.

This man could have been rich
many times over

had he sold his vaccine
to a pharmaceutical company.

But he thought
his talents should be used

for the greater good.

And the decent salary
he made as a doctor

and a research professor
was enough for him to live

a comfortable life.

Who owns the patent
on this vaccine?

Well, the people,
I would say.

There is no patent.
Would you patent the sun?

Yes, we've come a long way
since the days of Dr. Salk.

Because today our best minds
are used for something else.

Where do we send our top
math and science people?

Into finance.

They don't go into
science in America.

They go to Wall Street.

Today's students,
unlike in Dr. Salk's time,

can graduate from college
with a student loan debt

of up to $100,000 or more.

These students are then
beholden to the banks

for the next 20 years.

And the best way for them
to pay off these banks

is to go to work for them

instead of working
for the common good.

We've taken people that could
be enormously productive--

just what we're short of
in America--

and we take them and we
put them in an activity

that isn't simply less

but where they're
actually destructive;

where actually every day they work,
they make the world worse.

So what exactly were the top
students from Harvard

and other schools
working on these days?

Derivatives... derivatives...
derivatives... derivatives...

Credit default swaps.

I can't make any sense
out of this.

I might as well quit.

That's exactly how I felt

when I started hearing
these new terms.

So I went down to the New York Stock
Exchange to get some answers.

Sir, can you explain
derivatives to me?

Can anybody explain
derivatives or credit default swaps?

Can someone explain
to me what these are?

Sir, can you tell me what
a credit default swap is?

Can you explain
a derivative to me?

Can you tell me
what a derivative is?

- Nobody'll talk to me.
- I'm just a blue-collar guy.

I can see that.

- I'm looking for some advice.
- Yeah, good.

You guys got any
advice for me here?

A derivative?
Credit default swap?

I did find one guy on Wall Street

who wasn't a film critic.

Marcus Haupt is an Ivy League
educated engineer

who was a vice president
of Lehman Brothers

and spent 15 years
on Wall Street

creating what they call
complex financial instruments.

What is a derivative?

A derivative
is a secondary bet

on an underlying product.

So you may have a stock
and you have an option on that stock.

And that option on that stock
allows you the privilege

but not the obligation
to buy or sell.

How should we put this?
You are allowed to make a decision

of whether or not you want to ultimately
take that exposure.

Let me explain it another way.
The derivative's price

is based on the price
of something else.

It's kind of like
a second-degree equation.

If you think of,
let's say...

maybe I should go back.

Let me start this over again.
Let's go back here.

I was lost.

Maybe there's someone
at Harvard University

who could explain it to me.

Yeah, the-- the-- the--

the-- the-- the--
the buyer--

so the seller holds the loan
and it might default.

And they sell off--

somebody-- somebody else--

Sorry, let me just back up.

I apologize.
These are pretty exotic.

Derivatives are nothing more

than complicated
betting schemes.

Here's what the math equation
of one looks like.

Can't figure it out?

That's okay.
You're not supposed to.

They've made them
purposely confusing

so they can get away
with murder.

Let's say you're a lawyer
and you're coming in

and you're from the government
and you're trying to evaluate

if these things
violate the tax code or not.

If you can figure out
what they're doing,

most likely that Wall Street
firm will offer you a job.

Could I go to Wall Street
and just ask them

to set up a derivative
on anything?


Believe me,
if it's out there

there's a derivative on it.

So this is what Wall Street has come to--

an insane casino.

We've allowed them
to bet on anything,

including our family home.

...the most powerful central
banker of the 20th century.

Greenspan has become an economic icon.

Alan Greenspan says
the economy is hunky-dory.

Greenspan gone wild.
It's like "Girls Gone Wild."

What do Mick Jagger
and Alan Greenspan have in common?

Alan Greenspan,
who at that moment in time

was surely thought to be
the smartest man

who had walked the face
of the earth,

he starts using a phrase,
"tap your home equity,"

--that Americans can tap
their home equity,

which is just
Alan Greenspan-speak

for "borrow against
your home."

And if you can't repay it
you'll lose your house.

It actually started by talking
mostly older Americans,

people who already
had homes,

into refinancing
their homes

to get them out of houses.

Yes, get senior citizens
out of their houses.

The scam to swindle people
out of the homes

they already owned
was masterful.

Here's how it worked.

First, tell these homeowners
that they own a bank.

And that bank is your home.

So if your home
is worth $250,000,

that makes you
a quarter millionaire.

You're sitting
on a goldmine.

You own your own bank.

The bank of you.

And you can use your bank
to get more money.

Just refinance.

Everyone's doing it.

Of course hidden in the dozens
or hundreds of pages of fine print

are tricky clauses that allow the bank
to raise your interest rate

to a number
you didn't know about,

perhaps so high that you won't
be able to repay your loan.

But that's okay.

If you can't pay it
we'll just take your house.

Of course, before they
could take your house

they needed to change
the regulations and the rules.

What's this photo I found here?

It was in an annual
report of the FDIC.

John Gilleran, the head of the Office
of Thrift Supervision,

which is supposed to regulate
savings and loans,

he's the guy
with the chainsaw.

And the 4 other
grinning idiots

in the photo are the
3 leading lobbyists in banking

and the deputy director of the Federal
Deposit Insurance Corporation.

And they're poised over
a pile of regulations.

And this is supposed
to demonstrate

their intention
to destroy regulation.

And they succeeded.

And now we know what happens

when you destroy
financial regulation.

You produce a financial

A growing family
with a lot of debt;

A young couple
with no down payment;

A business owner whose
income was hard to document;

Every one of them was
turned down for a home loan

by 3 different lenders.

I'm with Countrywide
and I got them all approved.

Don't be fooled by the pleasant demeanor

and blonde hair.

It's the same pitch
the mafia gives you

in the neighborhood.

I know how you feel.

You got a lot of debt.

You don't have any money
for the down payment.

You can't find
your documents.

It's okay.
I'll make you a loan you can't refuse.

It's called subprime.

You pay no interest now.

You pay a little more later.

Don't worry about later.
We'll take care of you.

And like the mafia,

Citibank, Wells Fargo,

Let's go.

they would someday
stop by to collect

and take your home.

I was paying 1,700 a month and making it.

Then it went to 2,000.
Then it went to 2,300.

Then it went to 2,700.

Can't do it.

These are the Hackers
of Peoria, Illinois.

Randy is a railroad worker

and Donna works
for retirement homes.

Their farm, which had been
in the family for over 4 decades,

had been foreclosed
on by Citibank.

Randy had had an accident
on the job years ago

and was now
on disability.

They absolutely just plain
fucking stole everything,

my whole life's savings
and everything,

by a stroke of a pen
and a lawyer and a judge.

The Hackers showed me
the foreclosure notice from Citibank.

What caught my eye

was the town from which
their mortgage came.

It turns out that a company
owned by the big banks

has chosen to run
60 million mortgages through,

of all places, one of
the most desperate towns

in the United States.

This company hires
the people of Flint

to send out nearly 60%

of all the foreclosure
notices in the country.

In what seems to be some
sort of cruel joke,

my hometown was now
in the service

of helping to turn
the rest of America

into Flint.

Typically when a bank forces
a family like the Hackers

out of their home
they hire professionals

to come and clean up
the place.

In this case,
the bank figured,

why pay top dollar when
we've got a desperate family

who will work cheap?

In a final humiliation

the Hackers went
to work for the bank

that took their home.

"Property is to be turned over
in broom-clean condition

with all trash, debris
and personal property removed.

Upon delivery of the keys

the PAS representative will
hand you a check for $1,000."

You know, 1,000 bucks

to get out
of my own house and stuff,

I really want to thank them.
That was really something.

My wife worked for a week
to clean the house up

and make sure it was
presentable to somebody else.

I'm glad they did that.
I have to thank them.

It was awful nice of them.

Yeah, I'd like to
thank them all right.

I have one more.

That goes to our bedroom door.

Trying to think what--

that goes that that.
I had a lock on it

to keep kids out
'cause I have guns.

And here's your money, Randy.

What you're witnessing

is a robbery.

I'm starting to understand
why people,

they lose their minds
and start shooting people.

I'm not gonna say I would
do something like that,

but I can see how
they get people

into that situation where

people go in there with bombs
and blow them up

and shoot at them.

Anything that happens to them
people, they deserve it,

is all I can say.

I hope something happens--

yeah, well.

Can't say no more.

Some roadkill right there.

This is Bob Feinberg.

He handled all the VIP loans
for Countrywide,

the nation's largest
mortgage company.

Although Countrywide
mainly specializes

in outrageously high interest
loans for low income people,

Bob's job was to take care of

some of the country's
top political leaders.

One day one of the bigger
bosses called me in the office.

He said,
"I want you to call this guy."

I said okay.

And he said,
"He's a friend of Angelo's."

Angelo Mozilo's the CEO
of Countrywide.

"Give him this rate.
Waive these fees.

And get it locked in.
And don't fuck it up."

And I was like,
"Oh, okay."

So it was
a special department

that handled friends
of Angelo.

Discounts were being given.

Fees were being waived.

And at times paperwork
was being waived.

We literally would
write on the file "FOA."

These were really
important people.

I had Richard Holbrooke--
Ambassador Holbrooke,

Donna Shalala,

people on Capitol Hill, people that
regulate the mortgage markets,

people that regulate
Wall Street,

and Jim Johnson,
head of Fannie Mae,

Alphonso Jackson
the secretary of HUD...

Senator Conrad from
the Finance Committee.

I had the TV on in my house.
I was in the kitchen

and I heard a voice

about predatory lending
and how we have to put an end to it.

Our nation's financial regulators

are supposed to
be the cops on the beat

protecting working Americans

from unscrupulous
financial actions.

Senator Dodd--
Christopher Dodd-- was speaking.

And I just stared at
the television and I was upset.

Some of these loans
have legitimate uses,

when made to sophisticated

with higher incomes.

I had done a number
of loans for him

in which he got discounts
and all the things

that go with being
a friend of Angelo's

and all the good stuff.

The Senate Banking
and Housing Committee

is supposed to be the watchdog
of the mortgage industry.

Senator Dodd is the chairman
of this committee

and has served on it
for over 28 years.

As a friend of Angelo

he received
over $1 million worth

of discounted loans
from Countrywide.

Someone next door here
is selling a toxic

piece of crap
loan to somebody.

I was required to give the most
suitable loan to that VIP.

Did you ever feel that

what you were doing
might be bribery?

I didn't feel like I was
bribing anybody, no.

I was just doing my job.
I was the VIP guy.

Everyone in the company
knew who I was.

You know, everyone.

So it was kind of
a flattering situation.

But no, I don't feel like I did
anything wrong at all.

And if I didn't do it, somebody else
would have been doing it.

That's why we need people like Bill Black,

one of the bank regulators
who uncovered

the Savings & Loan scandal
in the 1980s.

Something improper happened

and I bet you
the regulators know.

One of the leading figures of
that scandal, Charles Keating,

had an idea on what to do
with Bill Black

and sent a memo out
with these instructions.

I asked him who was
looking out for us today.

Where was the FBI in all of this?

The FBI began publicly warning

in September 2004

that there was an epidemic
of mortgage fraud

perpetrated by the banks.

Epidemic was their word.

But when 9/11 hit,

the Bush administration

at least 500 white-collar
FBI specialists

out of dealing
with white-collar crime,

even though we were entering

during the entire
Bush administration

the greatest wave
of white-collar crime

in the nation's history,
in fact, in the world's history.

The FBI says that 80%

of the mortgage fraud losses

are induced by lender personnel.

Meaning what?

Meaning not the borrower

coming off the street trying
to defraud the savings and loan.

These are frauds led by whoever
controls the organization.

- Right.
- It's typically the CEO in other words.

So did these CEOs
think they were gonna get away with it?

They have gotten
away with it.

Yes, apparently they did.

And with the presidential
election just around the corner...

- Define rich.
- 5 million.

the elites were worried that their crime
spree might come to an end.

After bilking trillions
from the American public

by repossessing their homes,

bankrupting them
when they got sick

and convincing them
to invest their earnings

and pensions in the casino
known as the stock market,

the rich decided to make
one last heist

and as their 30-year long
party came to an end,

take as much of the silverware
with them as they could.

But first they needed
a distraction.

And as they learned
after 9/11,

nothing works better
in the home of the brave

than some good old
fashioned fear.

And who better to wheel out
for one last scary performance

than Chicken Little himself?

Oscar voters,
for your consideration.

Good evening.

This is an extraordinary period
for America's economy.

The government's
top economic experts

warn that without immediate
action by Congress,

America could slip into
a financial panic

and a distressing scenario
would unfold.

More banks could fail,
including some in your community.

The stock market would drop even more,

which would reduce the value
of your retirement account.

The value of your home
could plummet.

Foreclosures would
rise dramatically.

And if you own
a business or a farm,

you would find it harder
and more expensive to get credit.

More businesses
would close their doors

and millions of Americans
could lose their jobs.

Even if you have good credit history,

it would be more difficult for
you to get the loans you need

to buy a car or send
your children to college.

And ultimately our country
could experience

a long and painful recession.

Fellow citizens,
we must not let this happen.

In reality there was no
need for this speech,

because the mainstream media

had already drunk
the Kool-Aid.

The American financial system

is rocked to its foundation.

The giant bank crumbles,
stocks plummet.

- Nightmare on Wall Street.
- AIG fights for its life.

- Blood on the floor.
- Armageddon.

A category-5 test
of our financial levies.

What the fuck happened?

Have you ever seen
a dam fail?

It starts with a little crack,
a little seepage.

With overwhelming support,

Congress struck down
the restrictions.

Big banking is barreling back.

And it starts eroding

and it destroys all
the internal strength of the dam.

Poison from the housing mess

seeped deeper and deeper
into the banking system.

And soon the dam works against itself.

The weight of the dam
and the weight of the water

conspire against it.

Investors were dumping Bear shares

leading a huge selloff...

The stocks of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

were in freefall this morning...

Then there's kind of a significant flow.

Wall Street's losing streak
stretched into its 7th day.

And then suddenly you've
got 60-70 foot sections.

A dam exploding.

Lehman Brothers, bankrupt.

Merrill Lynch, sold in haste.

- Now AIG.
- Just crashing.

The market's year long slide

has brought down
some of the biggest blue chips.

The water starts rushing through.

This morning,
Washington Mutual has gone under,

the largest failure
in US banking history.

Stocks fell off a cliff.

The largest single point drop in history.

It destroys the rest of the dam.

And the whole failure

looks like it only takes
2 minutes.

But of course,
it's that little hole

that's been there
for several years

that really destroyed it.

You have this fundamentally
unsound system

built on
a foundation of sand

instead of bedrock.

And it was rotted
from the core.

It seems like capitalism
is just collapsing on itself.

Who got rich here?

Lots of people got rich
during this time,

primarily the officers
and directors

of the large banks
and savings and loans

and the specialty
non-prime lenders.

These people became
unbelievably rich.

And members of Congress got rich,

especially once
they left Congress.

A number of them go and work
in the financial institutions.

Sure, and as do
Rubin and Summers.

Robert Rubin, a one-time top executive

at both Citigroup
and Goldman Sachs

champion a change in the law

that allowed commercial banks
to get into new areas

like investment banking
and exotic insurance products.

This made it legal
to let Citicorp

merge with Travelers Group,

a deal valued
at $70 billion,

creating the world's
largest bank.

After leaving
the Clinton administration,

Rubin worked for Citigroup,

earning more than
$115 million.

Summers made
his money where?

Summers made his money
as a supposed consultant

and in giving speeches

at apparently, in some cases,

over $100,000 a pop.

Summers also made $5.2 million
at his part-time job,

advising a hedge fund.

Where did Geithner work?

Geithner has been a failure

at pretty much everything
he's done in life.

Most of the institutions
that destroyed the economy

were under his direct
regulatory authority.

How did he get the job
as Treasury Secretary?

By completely
screwing up his job

as President of the Federal
Reserve Bank of New York.

That makes no sense.

Of course, it makes
perfect sense.

This is not
new to Washington.

People who will give you
the wrong answer

but the answer you want
are invaluable.

And they often get promoted

precisely because
they're willing to say

and do absurd things.

These are the people
that promised us

that financial deregulation
would make all of us rich.

And these are the people who
were personally made rich.

It was not surprising that
the rich wanted to get richer.

But now they had come up with
a new and brazen way to do it.

Just back a big truck up
to the Department of Treasury

and take $700 billion
of our tax money,

no questions asked.

I got Michael Moore here. You know who
Michael Moore is, don't you?

The film director.
He's filming me right now.

- I got my wife on the line.
- Hi.

How are you doing?
Baron Hill from Indiana.

How are you, sir?
Good state.

- We're from Michigan you know?
- Yeah.

How did this
collapse happen?

I got home on a Friday, everything
was just fine in terms of the economy.

I call back after my plane
landed in Indiana

just to check in
with my office,

and all of a sudden we've
got this crisis on our hands

and that I'm gonna have to vote
when I come back Monday

for a multibillion-dollar bailout
of the financial industry.

The word that we got
was that if we did not act immediately

the economy would collapse,
no doubt about it.

I felt that
the announcement

of this crisis in September,

just a few weeks
before election,

was very suspicious.

This is when Congress
is the most nervous.

And I thought, "Wait a minute.
What's going on here?

This is not normal."

The leadership of Congress

and the Bush administration

quickly held a series
of private meetings

with the titans
of Wall Street to figure out

just how much money
was needed to cover

all the bad bets
investors had made.

A deal was cut with Treasury
Secretary Henry Paulson,

the former CEO
of Goldman Sachs,

whose net worth was estimated
at $700 million

when he left Goldman
to go and run the Treasury Department.

I think we saw the best of
the United States of America

in the Speaker's
office tonight.

The best of America?

Or did he mean
the best of Goldman Sachs?

The Treasury Department,

it's basically an arm
of Wall Street.

All the people in charge
were from Goldman Sachs.

We call it Government Goldman
in the modern era.

That's because there were now numerous

former Goldman executives
inside the Bush Treasury Department,

as there were under Clinton.

They worked as powerful
lobbyists from the inside

to abolish
financial regulations

while we paid
their salaries.

Treasury Secretary Paulson--

he wasn't just randomly
at Goldman.

He was the guy at Goldman
who got them big time

into buying these exotic
housing derivatives.

So he got Goldman in
a huge amount of trouble.

Insane housing derivatives

had now destroyed much
of Goldman's competition.

And with the Goldman boys
now calling the shots

inside the government,
they would ensure that Goldman

would end up as the kings
of Wall Street

when the dust settled.

So the last possible people

that should be giving advice
to Treasury would be Goldman.

So naturally Paulson,

former CEO of Goldman,
puts them on.

And what advice do they
end up giving?

Well, to use the taxpayers

to bail out Goldman

and other favored financial

Well, Secretary Paulson
has submitted

a simple proposal
to Congress.

This is it--
3 pages.

It's about
$1 billion a word.

And it is quite simple.

Secretary Paulson gets
the key to the treasury.

He's gonna start off
by borrowing $700 billion

in the name
of the American people,

maybe more later.
And it waives all laws.

All laws!

Not even court review.
Pretty simple proposal.

We are in a real
crisis situation

that could mushroom

into something worse
than the Great Depression.

So I saw fear.
One gentleman started to cry.

People are telling us
that it's going to be this gigantic calamity.

And I'm up for election
in 2 months.

8 weeks away
from election,

I don't want to make a mistake.
What's the right thing to do?

Heaven help us.

If we fail to pass this

I fear the worst
is yet to come.

And a few members
were even told

that there would be martial law
in America if we voted no.

They were ramming this
thing down our throat.

They wanted us to vote on it
right away

without any kind of
thoughtful analysis.

- No real hearings?
- No real hearings.

And I wasn't about to--

I got cornered into voting

for the Iraq resolution
based upon some lies

that they made to me and I wasn't going
to go through that again.

I will not wait on events
while danger is gathering.

I will not stand by as peril
draws closer and closer.

Use fear and then you
get done what you want.

And they created
in this window--

2 months before election--
this pressure cooker.

People understand that
the House of Representatives

needs to pass this piece
of legislation.

Mr. Speaker, my message
to the American people...

don't let Congress
seal this Wall Street deal.

These criminals have
so much political power

they can shut down the normal
legislative process

of the highest lawmaking
body in this land.

All the committees
that should be scanning

every word of what is being
negotiated are benched.

And that means the American
people are benched too.

We are constitutionally sworn

to protect and defend
this republic

against all enemies
foreign and domestic.

They say it's gonna be
Y2K all over again.

This is the same politics
of fear we are hearing

from the fat-cat financial
bullies from Wall Street.

Why aren't we asking Wall Street
to clean up its own mess?

Why aren't we helping
American families faced with bankruptcy?

Why aren't we reducing debts
from Main Street instead of Wall Street?

Is this the United States Congress

or the board of directors
of Goldman Sachs?

The night before the vote

the American people
in unprecedented numbers

flooded Capitol Hill
with millions of messages

demanding that
Congress vote no.

The bailout package
was defeated today,

voted down in the House
of Representatives.

The stock market plunged--

plunged to the single
greatest point loss

in the Dow average
in one day ever.

The question is this:

is the failure of
the bailout reason enough

to vote all the incumbents
out of office in 5 weeks?

12 votes killed it.

So did the voices of a lot
of the American people

who called their representatives
and said no.

Then Congress voted no.

Tonight Congress
has left town.

It was a rebuke that Congress
and Wall Street

had rarely,
if ever, experienced.

It was what the Citibank
memo had warned against:

That if the peasants
ever chose

to exercise their
democratic rights,

the pillaging by the wealthy
would be over.

So Paulson and company headed
back up to Capitol Hill.

And faster than you can say
"Check, please,"

they cut a backroom deal
with the help of the Democrats.

This issue supersedes
an election.

We need to get this right.
We need to do it quickly.

I agree with the secretary.

It's not gonna openly cost
all these hundreds of billions.

We will recover most of it,
maybe all of it.

The Democrats became

the delivery man
for a bill

for the Republican

The presidents and presidents-
to-be made phone calls

and members-- I know
at least 2 members

who have an interest
in the US Senate,

and promises were made.

Within days, the Congress

did an amazing about-face

and gave the banks the 700-plus
billion they wanted,

the people be damned.

On this vote
the yeas are 263,

the nays are 171.
The motion is adopted.

It was very carefully planned
to happen when it did,

to involve the players
that it did.

The message was carefully handled.

They had Congress right where
they wanted them.

You don't think it
was just happenstance?


This was almost like
an intelligence operation

that had to be coordinated
at the highest levels.

This whole fiasco shows you

that there are some forces--

That are not democratic.

Right. That are in control.

Big time.

They did a masterful job.
Very well executed.

Do you think it's too harsh

to call what has happened
here a coup d'?tat?

A financial coup d'?tat?

No, because I think
that's what's happened.

- A financial coup d'?tat?
- Yeah.

I could agree with that.

I could agree with that
because the people here

really aren't in charge.

Wall Street is in charge.

Where's our money?

I don't know.

Citigroup is spending $50 million

on a luxury corporate jet.

You don't know?
But you're the person--

you're in charge of--
they put you in charge to find out.

Goldman Sachs has set aside

6.8 billion for bonuses.

But Treasury followed
a don't-ask-don't-tell policy.

They didn't ask the banks

what they were going to do
with the money.

And not having asked them,
the banks are not required to tell.

AIG poolside meetings
at a Valley resort...

Doesn't make any sense.

We're getting word
that 73 people

received at least
$1 million apiece.

Why would the Department
of Treasury

not require the banks
to tell them

what they're doing
with our money?

You're going to have
to ask Secretary Paulson that question.

Because I've asked
that question

in my role as head of the Congressional
Oversight Panel,

and so far I haven't gotten an answer.
Maybe you'll get a better one.

Good afternoon.
Hank Paulson's office.

Yeah, this is Michael Moore.

I'd like to talk
to Mr. Paulson.

- I'm sorry. Your name again?
- Michael Moore.

- Michael Moore?
- Yup.

Hello? Hello?

This is crazy what they're doing
with our money.

If I could get them
to actually give the money back--

I'd be in favor of that.

We're here to get the money
back for the American people.

I understand, sir,
but you can't come in.

- Can you just take the bag?
- No.

- Take it up there?
- Absolutely not.

Fill it up.
I got more bags.

10 billion probably
won't fit in here.

You can't help me
get the money?

I can't help you
get the money.

What would happen if I made
a run for it right now?

So I went to another bank.

We want our money back.

I went to all the banks.

- You've seen this guy?
- Yeah.

Okay, we're here to make
a citizen's arrest, actually.

Just drop it
from the windows.

And everywhere I went...

I got the same reaction.

We're actually here
to make a citizen's arrest

of the entire board
of directors

and the executives here.

Why don't you speak
to my supervisor?

- That's him right here.
- Where's he at?

- In the white shirt? Blue tie?
- Yup.

- That's him.
- Receding hairline?

They're using the money
to buy other companies.

This is our money.

This is a police officer.

I wanted to make a citizen's
arrest of the CEO.

Mr. Blankfein.

But you're here, so maybe
you could help me.

- Let's do it outside.
- $170 billion of our taxpayer money.

- You're not allowed in the building, sir.
- But I'm here to make an arrest.

- I'm here to make an arrest.
- Make it outside, sir.

I can't make it outside.
They're upstairs.

I'll make an arrest, sir.

You can arrest somebody?

If you can arrest somebody,
I can arrest somebody.

Sir, leave the building, sir.

Who else do you want
to leave the building?

Your cameraman and your crew.
Come on out, sir.

They don't speak English.

These guys have broken
so many laws, you know?

This is money.
It's theft, it's fraud.

I'm gonna take it back
to the US Treasury

right in this car.

It's safe.
You can trust me.

There's just these little hints

that the unimaginable

could occur, which is that...

people in general

in the United States
could actually

become angry

at the wealthy.

Shame on you!
Shame on you!

People who became rich in this country

in the last decades
were not even making

the things
that everybody loved.

They were playing games

that ended up actually
harming everybody.

So some kind of disease
has entered into the economy.

It was unusual for Americans
to turn against the rich

because of the carrot that had
always been held out in front of us,

that we too could be
one of them someday.

People were starting not to believe that.

And that frightened the rich.

Because off in the distance
they heard something coming

and it wasn't another dry martini.

It was the friggin' people.

We are ready to take this country

in a fundamentally new direction.

That's what's happening
in America right now.

Change is what's happening
in America.

Holy shit.

This was not
what Wall Street wanted.

What if he won?

What would happen
to their way of life?

So they did what they always do.

They threw as much money
at him as they could.

Goldman Sachs became his
number-one private contributor

with nearly $1 million in contributions.

But yet they still weren't sure
what he would do.

How did he really feel about them

and their way of life?

My attitude is that if the economy
is good for folks from the bottom up,

it's gonna be good for everybody.

Senator Obama is running
to spread the wealth.

Joe the Plumber said to him

that plan sounded like socialism.

I love America.

I want to make sure it stays a democracy
and not a socialist society.

I really think he's gonna bring socialism
if he gets half a chance.

I don't trust Obama at all.

I left Europe 4 decades ago

because socialism has killed
opportunities there.

"Someone is going to have to
give up a piece of their pie

so someone else can have more."

I want all my pie.

Barack Obama is a socialist,
it's that simple.

The scare campaign wasn't working.

In fact, the more they called
Obama a socialist,

the more he went ahead in the polls.

And by using the word so much,

it made a new generation curious
about what that was.

For instance, few of them knew

there was actually a socialist
in the United States Senate.

Of course he was from
the gay state of Vermont.

You say that you're a socialist.
Tell me what that means.

I'm a democratic socialist,

which means that the function
of government is to represent

middle income and working people

rather than just the wealthy
and the powerful.

One of the things that we've done here,

we've become very religious
in worshipping greed.

We put on the front pages
of the magazines

guys who have made
billions of dollars.

We ignore the cops, the firemen,
the teachers, the nurses

who every day are doing so much
in improving the lives of people.

We've got to change our value system.

That doesn't sound too bad.

I mean, it sounds like something
maybe we should try.

Within a few months,

the Rasmussen poll reported

that only 37% of young adults

now favor capitalism over socialism.

I hope the economy will...

At 11:00 we project Barack Obama

of the United States of America.

Just 2 years earlier

had anyone predicted
this moment,

they would have been
considered crazy.

But that's how fast
things change.

It was in an instant

a farewell to the old America.

The country
was electrified by his victory.

And suddenly people
were inspired

to do things they never
would have done before.

Like the sheriff in Detroit

who decided it was time
to break the law

in order to help the people.

Doesn't it seem kind of strange to you

they would seek a government bailout?
I thought that's not what they do.

1-0-1 radio.

I thought the free market
is you sink or swim.

I just saw them sink
and cry like babies

for assistance from everybody else.

Today I will be stopping
all mortgage foreclosure sales

in Wayne County.

I cannot in clear conscience
allow anymore families

to lose their homes
through foreclosure sales.

What must the banks have thought

seeing the law that was set up
to protect their interests

being subverted?

Do you think the free market
has failed Detroit?

Well, I mean, I think that the free market
failed the country.

You know, this is crazy.

Neighborhoods that are
completely destroyed

because too many homes
have been foreclosed.

And then you wonder,
is this really America

or is this a third-world country?

Exactly what are we doing here?

Until things get so bad that people
can do nothing but protest,

and then those
are called revolutions.

And sometimes revolutions begin

in unlikely places.

Wake up.

Living in the back of a truck

after a bank foreclosed on
the home they had owned for 22 years,

the Trody family of Miami,
with the help of their neighbors,

took matters into their own hands.

On behalf of this family
and this community,

we liberate this home for this family.

Cut the sign down.
Take it off.


When I say community,
y'all say power.

- Community!
- Power!

- Community!
- Power!

It wasn't long before
the guy from the bank

who had evicted them came back.

See this?

I want you to go ahead
and take a picture of that.

You're trespassing.

We did an eviction here and the people
went back inside the property.

So I need police assistance.

When all these houses are empty

the value of everybody
else's house goes down.

So if you can keep
these people in this house

that will help not only them...

So you see, the situation is that
the people--

if the bank lets them go back inside,

then the bank misses the opportunity
to sell the house to somebody else.

The banks are selling
so many houses right now.

Well, if the bank lets everybody
get back inside the house for free--

Then people will have places to live.

People fighting back
was an unusual sight.

So 9 police cars
responded to the call.

Considering the neighborhood,

the response time
was impressive.

- You are not in charge.
- I'm not saying I'm in charge.

I'm saying she doesn't want to be isolated.
You don't have to answer any questions.

You don't have to say
anything to them, okay?

But the Trodys stood their ground.

We don't have nowhere else to go.

- This was the backup plan.
- We're forced to live inside of a truck.

This was our plan B.
We don't have no plan C.

That is our grandma and it's not right.

She's been in this house for 22 years
and y'all gonna put her out?

How do you feel putting people
out of their homes

every single frickin' day?

You should rather be home
instead of do something like that.

Where is the money the federal
government put in the bank?

We should be telling you that you're
trespassing because this is our house.

* Rooted like a tree,
rooted like a tree

* We are here

* Stand up strong...

Let's go.

- We did good. We did good.
- All right.

The police and the man
from the bank were sent packing.

Ain't no power
like the power of the people.

And the power of the people don't stop.
Say what?

Ain't no power
like the power of the people.

And the power of the people don't stop.
Say what?

Don't leave your home.

Because you know what?

When those companies say
they have your mortgage,

unless you have a lawyer
that can put his finger

or her finger on that mortgage,
you don't have that mortgage.

And you're gonna find that they can't find
the paper up there on Wall Street.

So I say to the American people,
you be squatters in your own homes.

Don't you leave
in Ohio and Michigan,

in Indiana and Illinois
and all these other places

where our people are being
treated like chattel.

And this Congress is stymied.

It's not every day you get
to see a member of Congress

encouraging open rebellion.

Back in Chicago,

the workers at Republic
Windows & Doors

had a bright idea.

They decided that on
second thought,

it wasn't okay to be fired
without notice,

to be denied their vacation
and severance pay

and to have their
medical benefits cut off.

So they came up with a plan.

Tell Bank of America
and the owners of the company

that it was a new day in America.

They weren't going
to leave the building

until they were paid
what they were owed.

Yes, it was a good old fashioned
sit-down strike.

We understand that perhaps

some bad business deals
were made.

But guess what?
We don't make business deals.

We make windows and doors.

Why should we be punished?

The union organizers
and the workers

prepared for a police assault
that was sure to come.

I'm gonna take the chance.

You're prepared to be arrested?

I am prepared to be arrested
if it's necessary.

We've been here since yesterday
and we aren't going anywhere.

We are committed to this.

It wasn't long before the media showed up.

And given the mood of the country
toward the bailout,

even the TV anchors had run out
of sympathy for the banks.

In Chicago, a group of factory workers
watched like the rest of us

as taxpayers bailed out
the financial industry.

Now these laid-off workers
are demanding Bank of America

spend some of its
bailout money on them.

It says "Bank Robbers of America."

Look, if we the taxpayers
are going to provide

a bailout for companies
like Bank of America,

then the least they can do
is use those funds

on American workers
and companies.

$25 billion to Bank of America.

How do people sleep at night
when they act like that?

I don't get it.

Because what's the point
of bailing them out

if there aren't any jobs?

The strike went on day after day.

The police had not yet come.

But the son of a Chicago
steelworker did.

He just also happened to be
the bishop in Chicago.

Ladies and gentlemen,

I am Bishop James Wilkowski.

I know that you are all undergoing

a great trial.

You are teaching

to our young people

that it is just

to challenge
that which is unfair.

I grew up on the far southeast
side of Chicago

and I saw what happened

when all the steel mills

And I saw the impact that it had

on families.

But this time

we are with you.

And we will not abandon you.

In the name of the Father
and the Son

and the Holy Spirit.

The body of Christ.

The body of Christ.

The body of Christ.

When it comes to the situation

here in Chicago
with the workers

who are asking for the benefits
and payments

that they have earned,
I think they're absolutely right.

What's happening to them
is reflective of what's happening

across this economy.

He said, "What's happening to them
is reflective of what's happening..."

He said what is happening to those workers

is reflective to what's happening
across this economy.

I was watching Obama's press
conference this morning.

I just got out of bed and decided

the best thing I could do
was to feed people.

So I brought some food.

- I brought some sandwiches.
- Good.

In fact, lots of Chicagoans
showed up to support the workers.

The workers have become
a national symbol

for thousands of employees
laid off across the country.

The sit-in has grabbed
the attention of politicians

who believe it exemplifies an imbalance
between a Wall Street

that gets government help
and a Main Street that gets the shaft.

The question started to be asked:

Was this is the beginnings of a worker's
revolt against Wall Street?

The people united.

We'll never be defeated.

Bail out workers, not the banks.
Bail out workers, not the banks.

Pledges of financial support and
food showed up by the truckload.

It's really beyond what we had
at first initially imagined.

And so now we're dreaming a little bit.

We even had a conversation--
well, what if we just tried

to run the factory like a cooperative?

We don't have any money.
We're not capitalists.

We're having those kind
of conversations

and the workers are thinking about it
and it's a difficult thing

'cause, you know, if you've been
told your whole life

that things are the way
other people tell you they are,

to be able to think
I can make it different

is quite a big deal.

We're all over the national news.
Everyone is watching you

because they're so inspired by you.

After 6 days of the sit-in

Bank of America decided
enough was enough.

Better to pay off
these workers now

and hope their little
revolution goes away.

And so the bank and the company
agreed to all the worker's demands.

Yes we did!
Yes we did!

The average package for each worker

will be very close to $6,000.

But this is about more
than just money.

It's about what can be achieved

when workers organize
and stand up for justice.

Just to fight--
fight fight fight fight fight

just to get the most basic thing

that people should take for granted

and that's legally theirs.

We just fight so hard just for
the most basic things in life.

It's a fight we knew
all too well in Flint, Michigan.

For it was here that my uncle
and his fellow workers

first brought down the mighty
corporate interests

that dominated their lives.

It was the day before
New Year's Eve in 1936.

Hundreds of men and women
took over the GM factories in Flint

and occupied them for 44 days.

They were the first union that beat
an industrial corporation.

And their actions eventually resulted

in the creation of a middle class.

But back in these days of the Flint
sit-down strike,

the police and the company thugs
were not going to just stand by.

After a bloody battle one evening,
the Governor of Michigan,

with the support of the President
of the United States

Franklin Roosevelt,
sent in the National Guard.

But the guns of the soldiers
weren't used on the workers.

They were pointed at the police

and the hired goons,

warning them to leave
these workers alone.

For Mr. Roosevelt believed
that the men inside

had a right to a redress
of their grievances.

7 years later,
President Roosevelt was too sick

to go up to the Capitol and give his
annual State of the Union Address.

Ladies and gentlemen,

the President of the United States.

It has been my custom to deliver
these annual messages in person.

So he gave it from
the White House over the radio.

When it was over he asked
the newsreel cameras

to step into his room because he
wanted the American people

to see one particular part
of his speech.

The President of the United States
then took the radical step

of proposing a second Bill of Rights

to the Constitution.

In our day certain economic truths

have become accepted
as self-evident.

A second Bill of Rights

under which a new basis of security
and prosperity

can be established for all

regardless of station
or race or creed.

Among these are:

The right to a useful
and remunerative job;

The right to earn enough to provide
adequate food

and clothing and recreation;

The right of every farmer

to raise and sell his products

at a return which will
give him and his family

a decent living;

The right of every businessman
large and small

to trade in an atmosphere of freedom,

freedom from unfair competition
and domination

by monopolies at home or abroad;

The right of every family
to a decent home;

The right to adequate medical care

and the opportunity to achieve
and enjoy good health;

The right to adequate protection

from the economic fears
of old age,

sickness, accidents

and unemployment;

The right to a good education.

All of these rights spell security.

And after this war is won,

we must be prepared
to move forward

in the implementation
of these rights

to new goals of human happiness
and wellbeing.

For unless there is security
here at home,

there cannot be lasting peace
in the world.

Roosevelt would be dead
in little over a year.

He would not live to see
the end of the war.

Nor would there be any enactment
of his new Bill of Rights.

Had he lived and succeeded,

every American,
regardless of race,

would have had a right
to a decent job...

a livable wage...

universal health care...

a good education...

an affordable home...

a paid vacation...

and an adequate pension.

None of this would come to pass.

No American would be
guaranteed any of this.

But the people of Europe and Japan

got every one of these rights.

How did that happen?

After the war, the people
of Roosevelt's administration

went overseas
to help rebuild Europe.

During this time new constitutions
were written

for the defeated nations
of Germany, Italy and Japan.

The Italian constitution

guaranteed all women equal rights.

And this was 1947.

The German constitution
said that the state has the right

to take over property
and the means of production

for the common good.

And here's what we wrote up
for the Japanese.

All workers have a right
to organize into a union.

And academic freedom
is guaranteed.

For the next 65 years

we would not become the country

that Roosevelt wanted us to be.

Instead, we became this...

I remember thinking
during the Katrina flood,

"Why is it always the poor

who have to suffer the misery?

Why isn't it ever Bernie Madoff
up on the roof

screaming for help?

Or the head of Citibank

or the hedge fund guys
at Goldman Sachs?

Or the CEO at AIG?"

It never is these guys, is it?

It's always those who
never got a slice of the pie

because these men
took it all

and left them with nothing,

left them to die.

I refuse to live in a country like this.

And I'm not leaving.

We live in the richest
country in the world.

We all deserve a decent job,

healthcare, a good education,

a home to call our own.

We all deserve FDR's dream.

And it's a crime that we don't have it.

And we never will,

as long as we have a system
that enriches the few

at the expense of the many.

Capitalism is an evil.

And you cannot regulate evil.

You have to eliminate it
and replace it with something

that is good for all people.

And that something
is called democracy.

Crimes have been committed
in this building.

I am here to make a citizen's arrest.

Please come down
and step away from the building.

Do not be afraid.

Federal prison is a nice place.

You know,
I can't really do this anymore

unless those of you who
are watching this in the theater

want to join me.

I hope you will.

And please, speed it up.

* Arise ye workers
from your slumber

* Arise ye prisoners of want,
that's right

* For reason in revolt
now thunders

* Chains of hatred, greed
and fear

* Away with all
your superstitions

* Servile masses arise, arise

* We'll change henceforth
the old tradition

* And spurn the dust
to win the prize

* So comrades, come on and rally

* And the last fight let us face

* The Internationale

* Unites the whole darn
human race

* So comrades, come on

* Let's go rally

* And the last fight let us face

* The Internationale

* Unites the whole darn human race

* No more deluded by reaction

* On tyrants only we'll make war

* The soldiers too will take strike action

* They'll break ranks and fight no more

* And if those cannibals keep trying

* To sacrifice us to their pride

* Each at the forge must do their duty

* And we'll strike while the iron is hot

* So comrades, come on, let's go rally

* And the last fight let us face

* The Internationale

* Unites the whole beautiful
human race

* So comrades, come on, let's go rally

* And the last fight let us face

* The Internationale

* Unites the whole darn
human race.

* Jesus Christ was a man

* That traveled through the land

* A carpenter true and brave

* And he said to the rich

* Give your goods to the poor

* And they laid Jesus Christ
in the grave

* He went to the sick

* And he went to the poor

* And he went to the hungry

* And the lame

* And he said that the meek

* Would inherit the whole world

* And they laid Jesus Christ in the grave

* One day Jesus stopped

* At a rich man's door

* What must I do to be saved?

* Take all you own

* And give it to the poor

* And they laid Jesus Christ in the grave

* When the love of the poor

* Shall one day turn to hate

* When the patience of the workers

* Gives away

* It would better for the rich

* If they'd never been born

* So they laid Jesus Christ in the grave

* When Jesus came to town

* All the working folks around

* Believed what he did say

* But bankers and preachers

* Nailed him to the cross

* And they laid Jesus Christ in the grave

* Well, the people held their breath

* When they heard about his death

* And everybody wondered why

* It was the landlord and soldiers

* Lawmen they had hired

* That nailed Jesus Christ in the sky

* We would lay Jesus Christ

* In the grave, Lord, Lord

* We would lay Jesus Christ
in the grave

* If Jesus preached today

* Like he preached in Galilee

* They would lay Jesus Christ
in his grave.