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For Those of You on Your Way to Church This Morning ...a note from Michael Moore


I'd like to have a word with those of you who call yourselves
Christians (Muslims, Jews, Buddhists, Bill Maherists, etc. can read
along, too, as much of what I have to say, I'm sure, can be applied to
your own spiritual/ethical values).

In my new film I speak for the first time in one of my movies about my
own spiritual beliefs. I have always believed that one's religious
leanings are deeply personal and should be kept private. After all,
we've heard enough yammerin' in the past three decades about how one
should "behave," and I have to say I'm pretty burned out on pieties
and platitudes considering we are a violent nation who invades other
countries and punishes our own for having the audacity to fall on hard

I'm also against any proselytizing; I certainly don't want you to join
anything I belong to. Also, as a Catholic, I have much to say about
the Church as an institution, but I'll leave that for another day (or

Amidst all the Wall Street bad guys and corrupt members of Congress
exposed in "Capitalism: A Love Story," I pose a simple question in the
movie: "Is capitalism a sin?" I go on to ask, "Would Jesus be a
capitalist?" Would he belong to a hedge fund? Would he sell short?
Would he approve of a system that has allowed the richest 1% to have
more financial wealth than the 95% under them combined?

I have come to believe that there is no getting around the fact that
capitalism is opposite everything that Jesus (and Moses and Mohammed
and Buddha) taught. All the great religions are clear about one thing:
It is evil to take the majority of the pie and leave what's left for
everyone to fight over. Jesus said that the rich man would have a very
hard time getting into heaven. He told us that we had to be our
brother's and sister's keepers and that the riches that did exist were
to be divided fairly. He said that if you failed to house the homeless
and feed the hungry, you'd have a hard time finding the pin code to
the pearly gates.

I guess that's bad news for us Americans. Here's how we define
"Blessed Are the Poor": We now have the highest unemployment rate
since 1983. There's a foreclosure filing once every 7.5 seconds.
14,000 people every day lose their health insurance.

At the same time, Wall Street bankers ("Blessed Are the Wealthy"?) are
amassing more and more loot -- and they do their best to pay little or
no income tax (last year Goldman Sachs' tax rate was a mere 1%!).
Would Jesus approve of this? If not, why do we let such an evil system
continue? It doesn't seem you can call yourself a Capitalist AND a
Christian -- because you cannot love your money AND love your neighbor
when you are denying your neighbor the ability to see a doctor just so
you can have a better bottom line.  That's called "immoral" -- and you
are committing a sin when you benefit at the expense of others.

When you are in church this morning, please think about this. I am
asking you to allow your "better angels" to come forward. And if you
are among the millions of Americans who are struggling to make it from
week to week, please know that I promise to do what I can to stop this
evil -- and I hope you'll join me in not giving up until everyone has
a seat at the table.

Thanks for listening. I'm off to Mass in a few hours. I'll be sure to
ask the priest if he thinks J.C. deals in derivatives or credit
default swaps. I mean, after all, he must've been good at math. How
else did he divide up two loaves of bread and five pieces of fish
equally amongst 5,000 people? Either he was the first socialist or his
disciples were really bad at packing lunch. Or both.

Michael Moore

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