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CNN LARRY KING LIVE
Interview With Michael Moore
Aired November 12, 2010 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight -- Michael Moore. Fed up or fired up? He calls the election a day of reckoning and why he thinks the Democratic loss was really a win. How does he feel about George W. Bush now? And what do Oprah and Tom Hanks have to do with it?
Find out because Michael Moore is here for the hour -- next on LARRY KING LIVE.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Good evening.
Program note before we start: General Colin Powell will be here Monday night. Our senior executive producer, Wendy Walker, on Tuesday. President H.W. Bush and Barbara Bush on Wednesday. Dolly Parton on Thursday. And Russell Brand one week from tonight.
But tonight's guest is old friend, Michael Moore, the Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker and the best-selling author -- all of us happy to welcome him to LARRY KING LIVE.
Michael, let's get right. The Democrats took a pounding in the election. Was this angering Democrats, embracing Republicans, general anger, or I've had enough?
MICHAEL MOORE, FILMMAKER: I think, yes --
KING: Or all of the above?
MOORE: No. I think it's more of I've had enough.
I think people are upset at Democrats and Republicans. Democrats are in power. Unemployment rate unofficially is close to 10 percent, probably unofficially closer to 20 percent.
Fifty-three percent of the population, according to "The Washington Post" this week said that every month they worry about whether or not they're going to be able to afford the mortgage or the rent. That's the mood of the country. And so, the Democrats were there, and that's what happened.
KING: But why didn't they sell something? An extraordinary health care bill, whatever you think of it, it's the first one in a hundred years. And I think 85 percent of the population got a tax decrease.
KING: What was -- what was the anger?
MOORE: The -- well, first of all, the health care bill, and there are many good things about that bill, though it didn't go nearly as far as I wish it had gone.
KING: Better than you had before.
MOORE: Absolutely better because --
KING: So --
MOORE: -- if you have a kid that's 25 years old, they can still be on your health insurance plan, et cetera. Too much of the new health care bill doesn't take effect until 2014. So, people didn't feel the immediate impact in these last few months before the election. So, not anybody who went to the polls thinking (ph), well, our health care problem is solved, my personal health care problems are solved -- that's not really the mood of the country because so much of that -- they put it off.
KING: But he gave a tax decrease to the middle class.
MOORE: Right. And put it in what he called the stimulus bill.
And it was, like, you know -- I mean, that's part of the Democrats' problem. I'm not the first person to say that, that they don't know how to talk to people. And why would you call it a stimulus? Why would you call it a jobs creation and tax cut bill? They don't do that.
I think -- here's honestly how I think the people see this -- the government is like this giant frat house and for the last eight years, a very rich frat boy and his frat boyfriends essentially destroyed the house.
Now, imagine if you were, say, the landlord of that house and after eight years they completely destroyed the house. You bounce them. You get them out of there.
And you hire a guy to come in and fix the house that they messed up. That's what the American people did. They hired President Obama to do that.
Now, let's say you went off on a cruise or around-the-world trip for a couple years and you came back, and the house is still in the same frigging mess that you left it in. Would you be mad still at the frat boys who had the house for those eight years or would you be mad at the guy you hired and you had two years to do something to fix your house?
KING: So, does Obama share the blame for this shellacking, as he called it?
MOORE: Yes. Well, yes, because he didn't -- he didn't come out of the gate fast enough, hard enough, strong enough for the things that the people elected him to do. He came out wanting to compromise. He would start to compromise before anybody even asked him to compromise, you know, instead of just (INAUDIBLE) on the public option with the health care bill, instead of, let's just -- here's what I -- here's what I believe in, and just fight for it, he goes in with a compromise.
And I think that -- I think -- I'm sure you agree with this. Most Americans, they're not ideologues. They don't think of themselves as left or right or Democrats or Republicans. What they do like is someone who's strong, someone who's principled, somebody who has the courage of their convictions. And --
KING: You could be all those three things and a wacko.
MOORE: Yes, we've had those.
KING: You could with a dictator.
MOORE: Yes, you could be. Or you could be Franklin Roosevelt, right?
MOORE: Or you could be Franklin Roosevelt. And had he made the decision to come into office and act like Roosevelt, I don't think that would have been as rough as it was in last week's elections.
KING: Do you think he gets it now?
MOORE: Oh, yes, I think -- well, I think he gets it. But I think the part that he doesn't get is that he can't -- he can't go -- he can't keep operating in this "let's all get along" mode when the other side doesn't want to get along.
I mean, he's got to say -- and he's got to get out of the rut, and I think people watching the show and who supported him -- I mean, a lot of people, friends, people who voted for him, everybody's a little down and depressed this week. But it's like, OK, come on, snap out of it. We still have the White House, we still control the Senate.
You know, the majority of Americans still agree with us on the basic issues in terms of, you know, jobs, the environment, we should bring the troops home -- all that. I mean, the majority of Americans take the Democratic position. They're just upset at what's going on.
So, why don't -- why don't we start fighting instead of -- instead of just this kind of Mickey Mouse approach that the Democrats have --
KING: How weak is he on the world stage? He's at the G-20 now in Asia. The headline today is his economic view is rejected -- by the world.
MOORE: Well, yes. I think -- I think first of all, the world has seen us with our giant credit card going into debt and specifically with this war -- this war -- these two wars are going to cost us eventually about $3 trillion. That is a huge debt. We rarely talk about the impact of the war on the debt.
And these other countries who didn't support this war and don't understand why -- I mean, we have a military right now, Larry, where our military budget plus (INAUDIBLE), plus the wars, is greater than I think something like the next 25 countries' militaries combined. I mean, what are we doing with our money? Why are we spending it this way?
We're reckless. I don't think other countries appreciate that. And I feel bad for him going -- he's there and it's --
KING: What's ahead? What do you think? Gridlock or compromise, or what -- now, next two years?
MOORE: Well, the Republicans are going to continue to do what they've been doing, which is stop everything from happening. And then, now, they've got one house. So, they're going to -- they're going to do that. That doesn't mean he has to stop.
For instance, right now, there's a lame-duck session that's going to take place. There are about 270 bills that the House has already passed that are sitting there waiting for the Senate to pass. He still has and will have the Senate. Pass those 270 bills before this session of Congress ends or pass three of them.
Pass the one -- there's the Elderly Abuse Victims Act. There's a Child Food Nutrition Act. There's a veterans act.
I mean, there are some really good things that the public wouldn't go, what's he trying to do pushing this through on a lame- duck session? Pass some of these things in the Senate that the House has already passed.
I also want to point out, too. I think that this -- there's a silver lining for the Democrats in this election. The Blue Dog Democrats, the conservative Democrats, lost by a huge margin -- the majority of them, in fact, were thrown out of office last week. That's a good thing for the Democrats.
That's good because so much of what the Democratic caucuses had to do is to sort of placate these conservative Democrats and they water down these bills so they'll be happy. Well, they're gone now. The Progressive Caucus is about 80 members in the Progressive Caucus in Congress, only three of them lost election -- lost the election last week.
So, it's going to be actually a more liberal Democratic group, more progressive group --
KING: But smaller.
MOORE: Smaller, but they'll be able to cohesively -- well, look what the Republicans were able to do with the small minority they had.
KING: We'll be back with more. Don't go away.
KING: Michael Moore is our special guest.
You have written that if the Democrats don't get their acts together, as you put it, we'll find alternative candidates to run against them. Inside the party they'll be challenged, you think?
MOORE: I don't know. I don't know if that's going to happen. But I do think -- I mean, you sort of had a preview of it in the Illinois Senate race where the Democrats lost that seat, the Obama seat, to the Republicans because the Green Party there, I don't -- I can't remember what the exact number was last week, somewhere I think between 3 percent and 5 percent --
KING: Cost them the election.
MOORE: Cost them the election.
There's your coming attraction for 2012. If President Obama continues down the road that he's on, if he doesn't put the restraints on Wall Street that need to go on them, if we have another crash in these next two years because he didn't put the clamp on these guys, if he expands this war or doesn't end it, there will be a challenge from the left. There's no doubt about that.
KING: You've even suggested that Democrats might want to run candidates like Tom Hanks or Oprah. How about George Clooney?
MOORE: Well, yes. I mean, I've said this for a long time that the Republicans, for as much as they attack Hollywood, they really do love Hollywood because they love to run candidates from Hollywood -- Ronald Reagan, Fred Thompson, Gopher from "The Love Boat," Sonny Bono. I mean, they have -- they've actually done quite well when they run Hollywood.
KING: George Murphy.
MOORE: Yes, exactly. I'm wondering why don't the Democrats run Hollywood, too? I mean, we have beloved figures on our side of the political --
KING: -- thought about it for a while.
MOORE: He thought about it. You know, he's beloved. Tom Hanks, obviously. Who doesn't like Tom Hanks? KING: Oprah.
MOORE: And again, Oprah. This would -- this wouldn't actually -- I don't know if this would be a lateral move or a step down to go from Oprah to be President Oprah.
KING: Does Obama get back all those young people who voted for him and the blacks who did not turn out a couple weeks ago?
MOORE: Well, this is -- this is, I think, what I thought was the real news of last week's election, that young -- 23 million people voted for him in the 2008 election, 23 million. How many showed up last week? Nine million. Fourteen million didn't show up.
What was the difference last week between the Republicans and Democrats, number of votes? About 5 million -- 5 million.
Fourteen million young people didn't show up who voted for him. All they needed was 5 million of those to show up and we wouldn't have the disaster we have. So, why didn't they show up? Because he basically forgot about them. They were the core of his campaign.
I don't know if you remember the statistic, Larry, but the 18 to 29-year-old demographic was the only white demographic that Obama won in '08. He lost the white vote in every age group after 29 years old. That's how many young people voted in '08 to put him over the top when they were the only white demographic.
MOORE: And what has he done with them? I mean, they had a mailing list, an e-mail list. They had all those texts, phone numbers. They did all that great work during the campaign.
I would have set up a room somewhere in the annex just devoted to social networking, to creating YouTube videos, to getting young people involved, having campus organizations, high schools and colleges. I would have done so many things if I were him to keep that enthusiasm going.
And instead, it's like they didn't exist. And, you know, they're young people. They've got other things to do.
KING: Are you concerned about the new speaker, Congressman Boehner?
MOORE: Mr. Boehner. Well, yes. I mean, he will -- he will obstruct everything good that Obama and the Senate wants to do. I mean, that's exactly what's going to happen there. So, get ready for nothing to happen for the next couple of years.
But remember, just because he can obstruct, that's just the House of Representatives. President Obama is the chief executive of the other -- this important branch of government. There's a lot of things he can do, Larry, in terms of regulations. He can do a lot through the EPA that he doesn't have to get a bill passed in Congress to start clamping down on environmental laws and things like that.
There are many things he can do.
KING: Should the Democrats retain Pelosi as minority leader?
MOORE: Well, I mean, I think --
KING: They vote in secret.
MOORE: Yes. I think -- yes, compared to who she's going to be running against in that vote, she's probably the better -- the better person to do that. And she's done -- I mean, it's funny how if -- I just -- I don't want to just -- I don't want to just sort of say it's because she's a woman and that, but it's just -- it really seems to me that if she were a man -- she did a lot of things. She did --
MOORE: That's right. Congress did a lot in spite of what was in front of them and made a lot of things happen. That was under her leadership.
I think that the Republicans, as they are often want to do, play off prejudices that exist in the general population. And so, it was easy for them to make her the villain.
KING: Well, her personally also grated a lot of people, didn't it?
MOORE: Again, if she were a man --
KING: I get you.
MOORE: You know what I'm saying, Larry? She's got, you know -- that's -- I think that's just -- you know what I'm trying to say?
KING: I got you.
Michael Moore is our guest. You're watching LARRY KING LIVE. Colin Powell on Monday. Don't go away.
KING: We're back with Michael Moore.
Will the Republicans be able to slow back health care reform, do you think?
MOORE: No. Of course not. No.
KING: Because they can't override a veto, right?
MOORE: They can't override a veto. They only have one house.
And, you know what, what are you going to say to American people once that their kids can stay on their health care until they're 26 years old or their kids can no longer -- not get health care because they got a preexisting condition? How are they going -- how are they going to tell the American people that, no, we're going back to the old, ancient way we used to do it?
No. I mean, they like they say that, but they -- that's not going to happen. We actually need to push much faster forward toward a better system than we have.
KING: Despite all the president's proclamations about those making $250,000 a year or more, about 1.5 percent of the population, and their tax cuts that he would eliminate -- get them back on the right -- does it appear they're going to capitulate, that those tax cuts will stick?
MOORE: It appears they'll capitulate. But --
MOORE: Yes, why? Why did they --
KING: I'm asking you why.
MOORE: Why do the Democrats constantly give into this? You know, why don't they just go to the American people and say that the wealthy, if they paid a fair share of the taxes like they used to, for most of our adult lives, that's what they -- they paid much more -- that would help so much with the deficit, with the things that we need to fund?
If we cut back on the war, if he we bring the troops home, if we cut the Pentagon budget, bring that down, we're going to have the money to do the things we need do. But this country is crumbling right now.
I mean, there are some basic things -- you know, and, again, President Obama tried to deal with this. They put a lot of money into public works, and it was -- the attacks on him I just have not understand.
I read this thing last week where it was an article called "How Obama Saved Capitalism." I mean, here's a guy who voted for the bailouts, supported -- did everything -- you know, put the Wall Street boys in, Summers and Geithner and these guys that people in Wall Street wanted, saved the auto companies for the auto companies, not so much for the workers but the auto companies. I mean, he's done a lot. He's done a lot of what they wanted him to do.
If you had $100,000 on the day he was inaugurated, Larry, and you just invested it in the NASDAQ average, just put it in NASDAQ for the last almost two years now, that $100,000 would be $177,000. You'd have a 77 percent -- that's -- that's what Obama's done for the wealthy, for capitalism.
And what's he got in return from them? They put more money -- set a record. More money than they ever have in trying to defeat the people of his party. KING: So, the obvious question is: why, if they're doing so well, do they want him out?
MOORE: They're that greedy.
KING: That they want more?
MOORE: Even -- yes. Yes, because they're afraid that they may have to pay 3 percent more in taxes, or they're afraid that they may have to pay the same flat rate of Social Security tax that every other -- everybody watching the show right now pays somewhere about 7 percent of their income that goes, you know, your FICA and all that, that -- but after I think like $110,000. If you make more than $110,000, more than $110,000, you know what your -- you know what your FICA, your Social Security tax rate is? Zero.
So, a flat tax on you or I, say, you know, because you and I make more than $100,000 a year -- so, a flat tax on us, that's a great deal, because 7 percent out of us -- out of --
MOORE: You know, compared to the -- if a person is making $40,000, $50,000 a year, and 7 percent of that has got to go -- that's a big chunk for them.
My point is, is that we wouldn't be worrying about Social Security so much if we paid, if everybody who makes more than $100,000 a year, pays the same rate that the $40,000 a year guy pays, we'd have enough in Social Security now until about 2075.
KING: That's another source of concern to the Republicans is the Tea Party. Many of the old-guard Republican Party, and it's shown already in the fight over who gets a break here and who doesn't, over the Tea Party and the establishment. Could that hurt the GOP?
MOORE: Oh, absolutely. I think it already -- it cost them the Senate, didn't it? I mean, really, because -- because the Tea Party was successful --
KING: -- raises the --
MOORE: Miller and -- the Delaware woman.
MOORE: I mean, they might have --
MOORE: Yes. They're going to have -- they're going to have essentially a Republican in Alaska. Yes, they would have -- they might have been --
KING: A liberal Republican, though.
MOORE: Yes. But they might have been able to control the Senate. They're not going to be able to do that now.
Yes, they're going to have their civil war, and I would think it's not -- wouldn't be -- I wouldn't put it past them if a more traditional Republican gets the nomination, say, a Mitt Romney, that the Tea Party is just going to go nuts and say, we'll have to run our independent candidate and you're going to have perhaps a Sarah Palin or a Rand Paul or whatever running.
KING: Mitt Romney, whose health plan in Massachusetts is what recently passed.
We'll be right back with Michael Moore. Don't go away.
KING: We're back with Michael Moore.
Tea Party -- what do they represent? Are they the right-wing Michael Moore? Are they angry and they've had enough?
MOORE: Well, I think they do represent -- or they did at the beginning -- a certain group of them remitted a certain populist sense of -- that they were getting screwed. Not just --
KING: I'm mad as hell, and I can't stand it.
MOORE: Not just against the government but against these corporations and the banks and Wall Street who have taken their jobs and sent them elsewhere, who are now taking their homes, and they don't see a very bright future.
So, the Tea Party, I think, has appealed to at least a legitimate feeling that exists. And I know -- I mean, I live in the Midwest and as you know, it turned very Republican here in the elections, lost all the governorships except for Illinois in those Great Lakes states.
And -- but, I mean, then there are those people in the Tea Party that are, you know, a little --
KING: Off the deep end, maybe.
MOORE: Off the deep end, maybe. Yes.
KING: But that's a minority, isn't it?
MOORE: Well, I don't know. I mean, I think -- I still think that we live in a fairly liberal country. Liberal in the sense that -- that people want to move forward, they don't really -- they don't want to go back to the old way.
You know, eventually, you know, things do get better in this country. Women get the right to vote. We've passed civil rights legislation. Gays will be able to marry. This will happen. You can see where the wave is going. The wave isn't going the other way. So, I don't -- and I don't think the Tea Party -- I hope -- isn't going to take us in that direction.
KING: In 1932, Norman Thomas ran on the Socialist ticket. He had a 20-point plank, 19 are now law.
MOORE: Right. Right.
KING: Some think that that drubbing --
MOORE: And, by the way, thank you for mentioning Norman Thomas. That would -- this is going to be one of the really sad things about your leaving the show, is that your history, your -- I mean, your -- what you bring to this, your knowledge, you've lived through so much of this. This is gone, you know. When you're gone, that's gone.
That won't -- I mean, there's good people on TV. I'm not saying that. But I'm just saying that you bring this --
KING: It's called aging.
MOORE: Well, or wisdom, right? Huh?
KING: OK. I'll take your word for it.
MOORE: I mean, if young people, anyone watching tonight who's in their 20s will go and google Norman Thomas --
KING: They'll learn a lot.
MOORE: They'll learn something. Yes.
KING: Our friend, President Clinton was knocked around in '94, came back, won big in '96. Can Obama come back?
MOORE: Oh, I think with some of the people who have been elected -- I mean, just look what happened this past day or two with the congressman in Florida who was going to have as his chief of staff, the crazy talk show lady. There's enough of them --
KING: She wanted to shoot --
KING: -- illegal immigrant on sight. MOORE: She won't be the last one, by the way. You'll see more of that sort of thing with the new Congress. I think with some of the people that have been elected, President Obama's approval ratings will start to rise within the next three or four months, as people become aware of what the Tea Party and the Republicans are really up to.
So here's the mistake that he shouldn't make, as far as what Clinton did was Clinton thought what I've got to do is I have to move more to the right and I've got to be more pro business. That's when Clinton started the deregulation of Wall Street and the banks. That's when he -- all those -- and his secretary of the treasury, Mr. Larry Summers, started to put into place what eventually became, once Bush got into office, that he took what Clinton started and put steroids it into. And then we ended up with the crash in '08.
So no, that's -- we hope that Obama -- that's not the lesson that he's learned from this. I hope that -- the lesson to learn is to see the more liberal you were, if you were a member of Congress in last week's election, the more likely it was that you got re-elected. The conservative Democrats, the majority of them, were booted out. The liberals won.
He should take this country in the progressive direction that he was elected to take it in.
KING: They'll have a stalemate because the House is going to turn him down.
MOORE: But let the -- that's what I'm saying, though. He's afraid to even put it up in front of the people. Let's say some of these bills that he could push through the Senate right now, the disabled veterans bill, the Elderly Abuse Act.
KING: Who's against that?
MOORE: Yeah. And if the Republicans -- but the Republicans have held this up in the Senate, these bills that have already been passed. Make them filibuster. Make them stand there and read from the phone book for three days, four days. Shut the Senate down and let the American public say why have they shut down the Senate? Well, they don't want to help out elderly people who are abuse victims. They don't want to help out these veterans.
He's afraid for some reason to just call on it. Because I tell you what, trust me, if the shoe was on the other foot, if there was a lame-duck session that the Republicans had right now and they had a couple hundred bills, they'd be ramming those babies through every single day.
KING: We'll be back with Michael Moore. Lots more to go. Don't go away.
KING: We're back with Michael Moore. Lots of people are still having mortgage and foreclosure problems. Michael dealt with this in his film "Capitalism: A Love Story." In this clip, you'll hear from Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. MARCY KAPTUR (D), OHIO: 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 going to find 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 and Indiana and Illinois and all these other places where our people are being treated like chattel. And this Congress is stymied.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Aren't a lot of people are doing just that?
MOORE: Yes, some people are starting to do that and they should do it because the banks don't have the paper. They've split it all up. They've bundled it. They sold it off as securities. Pieces of paper all over the world. They can't come into court with your mortgage. They can't come into court with your mortgage.
You should stay in that house and you should fight it. She's great. Actually, she's a good example of what I was just saying. She's the congresswoman from Toledo, Ohio, a state that just elected a Republican governor, a Republican senator. And yet she's one of the most liberal members of Congress from a hard-hit place, Toledo, Ohio. And yet she won by an overwhelming margin again in Toledo.
The Democrats have got to start -- again --
KING: You're telling people don't pay your mortgage?
MOORE: No. I'm saying -- no. I'm saying that you should not -- these banks are evicting people. They're not being given the break or the chance -- first of all, many of them were sold fraudulent mortgages. And the FBI has come out and said that 80 percent of the mortgage fraud that has taken place during this crisis was committed by the banks, not the people --
KING: What's a fraudulent mortgage?
MOORE: Well, they sell -- they sell these mortgages to people who -- well --
KING: They can sell the paper to whomever they want, can't they?
MOORE: Well, they can, but what they do is they then -- once they've sold -- this is the real crime of what the banks have done, and nobody's gone to jail for this -- is they knew they were selling homes to people that probably couldn't afford those homes in many cases.
KING: Right. MOORE: OK? And they were selling them at inflated prices. These homes now have to come back down probably to closer what they were actually worth. The whole market was out of control. But the banks -- here's the thing, Larry: the banks knew that there would be all of this foreclosing going on. They knew that it would -- and yet they still sold them to people. You know, here -- they bundled them as securities, sold them.
And then -- and then these Wall Street banks started placing bets against those very mortgages that they knew had a very good chance of bombing. They then -- they took a bet out saying that -- they're betting that these mortgages are going to fail. And they made money on that.
That is so absolutely -- if a casino did that, I mean, they'd be brought in on charges.
KING: We'll get into other areas of politics. Bob Woodward wrote in his latest book that Obama could switch from Biden to Hillary, make them switch jobs. You buy that?
MOORE: Well, if could happen. I don't think it needs to happen. But I think his problems are bigger in terms of -- if he wants to win re-election, he needs -- he needs to -- I mean, we just had this deficit commission thing here yesterday.
MOORE: And it's, like that's the first commission that you put together, President Obama, to -- let's reduce the deficit. We've got 10 percent unemployment. The first commission should have been a jobs commission. How are we going to create jobs? What are we going do -- that's the only thing that's going to turn this economy around, when people have middle-class job where they're making good money and they can survive.
KING: The writer and economist Ben Stein is a frequent guest. And one thing about Ben is you never know where he's going to go politically. He thinks that nobody has the answer to the jobs question. There is no definitive answer. You pin any Republican or Democrat down and they can't tell you. What would you do?
MOORE: Well, I'll give you a couple of ideas. Right now, you and I own about 61 percent of General Motors. Next week, the government now wants to sell off about 20 percent of our share. So we'll only own 40 percent of it. And I know, I mean, obviously something about this because this is where I'm from. And I've seen people suffer as a result of losing these auto jobs.
As the owners of General Motors, why aren't we taking that company in a 21st century direction? Why aren't we having this company build mass transit, build bullet trains, build the things that we need to move ourselves around the country?
KING: Congress has to appropriate the money. They'll be able to form jobs, but where is it going to come from? MOORE: Well, they -- well, first of all, you change the tax structure so that the wealthy are paying their fair share, not getting away -- I mean, last year Exxon-Mobil, total amount of taxes that they paid, zero. Zero dollars. There's a whole list of corporations -- you can read it on the Internet -- of -- that get away with paying absolutely no taxes, companies that have moved their corporate headquarters to the Cayman Islands or to Dubai.
I mean, this has been one scam after another, so that the wealthy have just gotten wealthier. That one percent now that makes almost a quarter of all income in America is made by one percent of the people. That's absolutely -- you're right, we won't have real jobs as long as that kind of disparity continues.
KING: More with Michael Moore after this.
KING: We're back with Michael Moore. Obama could be a one term president, then? Could be, as you see things.
MOORE: Well, he could be, but I also think that there's a chance for four candidates on the 2012.
KING: Would the -- four candidates?
MOORE: Four candidates.
KING: Would Michael Bloomberg be one of them?
MOORE: He could be. He could be. Yeah. Or like I said earlier, the left is so fed up with what the -- Obama and the Democrats have done, they -- like they did in Illinois last week, they may run somebody. And so you're going to have an independent candidate on the left. You're going to have President Obama. If the Republicans nominate somebody the Tea Party doesn't like, they're going to run an independent.
And then, of course, then you have sort of the Bloomberg thing. I guess you could have -- I mean, this has only happened a couple times in our history. Abraham Lincoln, there were four candidates on the ballot. I think he won with 39 percent of the vote. And then Harry Truman, there was --
KING: Why is a two-party system better?
MOORE: It isn't better. It's not. We have 300 million people.
KING: The Constitution never mentioned it.
MOORE: That's right. This ultimately has to change, because two political parties cannot represent the broad spectrum of political thought that exists amongst 300 million people. Our neighbors to the north, Canada, you know, there's five legitimate parties on the ballot. When they have their debates, you see five candidates standing there on TV, all, you know, presenting their position. But, of course, they have a parliamentary system, which we don't have. And -- which in some ways seems like a fairer system, because let's say you are a green party person, but you're only 10 percent of the country, well, you should have 10 percent of Congress. If you're libertarian and --
KING: Have a voice.
MOORE: Then five percent of Congress is libertarian. Everybody then has a voice. It does seem like a fairer system.
KING: But big money lost, too. Meg Whitman, over 140 million, she lost. Spent 140 million of her own money.
KING: Money doesn't buy everything.
MOORE: That's right. Well, there's a lot of examples of rich candidates who run and they don't make it. In my state, in Michigan, though, the former CEO of Gateway Computers is our new governor, a Republican.
KING: Do you like him?
MOORE: I don't know. He -- you know, in Michigan, Republicans tend to be a little more liberal than other parts of the country. It's --
KING: Dating back to Romney.
MOORE: George Romney, who marched with Martin Luther King. And even before that, the Republican party was -- the Republican party was actually founded in Michigan in the 1850s. Michigan was the first state to not have a death penalty. And much of that is a Republican legacy in the state of Michigan. Did I just say something nice about Republicans?
KING: Well -- mark that down. Keep the date handy. Back with Michael Moore. We'll ask him about Sarah Palin after this.
KING: Michael, you're talking about five candidates in Canada. If there are nine candidates running in Republican primaries, Sarah Palin could be the nominee, could she not?
MOORE: Oh, easily. Yeah. Absolutely.
KING: Would the Democrats like that?
MOORE: Well, I think some people would. I think people think, well, that's going to be a no-brainer. But I wouldn't -- geez. I wouldn't be dancing the happy dance if suddenly she was the candidate. KING: Why?
MOORE: Because I think that, you know, we had a president for eight years who proudly proclaimed that he was a C student. And there's something he understood about his fellow Americans, or at least a certain chunk of them, that that was something to -- that was cool. It's cool not to be too smart. And so she appeals to that. And the best news for Democrats is if they don't get it together and they fight each other, and she runs against the traditional Republican as an independent, or maybe she wins the nomination but then a traditional Republican or a Bloomberg decides to run, then, you know, there you go.
What do I know? I've got a high school education, Larry.
KING: Have you read George W. Bush's memoir?
MOORE: I have.
KING: "Decision Points," I'm going to get at it this weekend. I hear it's very well written.
MOORE: OK. Yes. It seems to have nouns and verbs and adjectives and periods. I -- look. I don't know if you -- I actually went right to -- because somebody told me that he trashed me in the book. So I went to that first, just to see what he said.
KING: How did he trash you?
MOORE: He basically compared me to Osama bin Laden. It's actually, I think, from what I've read so far, the worst slur against any American citizen that he has rendered in this tome of his. What he said was -- Obama had released -- I'm sorry, Osama had released a tape or something before the 2004 election. And he said the two of these guys sound just alike, Michael More and Osama bin Laden.
KING: How did you react to that?
MOORE: Well, you know, he -- he said that his worst moment was when Kanye West said that George Bush doesn't care for black people. He thought that was a really horrible thing to say about somebody. For him to say that about me when -- this is the president who in August of 2001 was handed a piece of paper that said, "Osama bin Laden to attack America," probably using planes. And he looked at it, he made some comment, and then he went fishing and he went on vacation for the next four weeks, and he recklessly put our country in danger, in jeopardy because he chose to ignore a very straightforward written report given to him.
KING: One agent, I think, right?
MOORE: By advisers. Not just by one agent. Listen, there's thousands of agents. You don't just get to hand something to the president. That's what they believed. And you know what? They were right. KING: It's time now for Heroes. Tonight, a world renowned performer tells us about a man who's dedicated his life to feeding nearly half a million hungry children every single day. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICKY MARTIN, SINGER: Hello. I'm Ricky Martin. As one of CNN Heroes blue ribbon panelists, I had the honor of helping choose this year's top ten. As the founder of the Ricky Martin Foundation, I am committed to being an advocate for the well being of children around the world. And now I am thrilled to help CNN introduce one of this year's top ten honorees.
Now, more than ever, the world needs heroes.
MAGNUS MACFARLANE-BARROW, CNN HERO: I never expected my life to change in this way.
THOMAS BLACK, CNN HERO: My brother and I were having a pint in our local pub. We'd seen a news report about a refugee camp in Bosnia and we began saying wouldn't it be wonderful if we could just do one small thing to help.
MACFARLANE-BARROW: I'm Magnus McFarlane-Barrow. I gave up my job and I sold my house to try and help the people in Bosnia. Out of that has grown the organization which today feeds around 412,000 children every day in 15 different countries.
We buy the food locally, and then we ask that the local community take responsibility for the daily cooking and the serving of the food.
We began working in Haiti in 2006. In addition to feeding children, we've been feeding the elderly. Since the earthquake, we've been involved in providing health care. We've been helping with rebuilding of the schools. I've learned that every small act of kindness does make a difference.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Go to CNNHeroes.com to read all about our top ten heroes and vote for your favorite. They'll be honored at CNN Heroes, an All- Star Tribute Thanksgiving night, hosted by Anderson Cooper right here on CNN. Back with Michael Moore and our remaining moments after this.
KING: Couple more thing with Michael Moore. Afghanistan, what do you expect to happen?
MOORE: I expect that they're going to start to tell us that they're not going to bring the troops home next year, like they sort of promised. And it's going to be a year or two or three longer than that. And that's a huge mistake. It's an unwinnable situation there. We have no business being there at this point.
KING: But doesn't that give the country over to Taliban? MOORE: Yeah, I could list 30 other countries that are run by bad people. Should we invade them tomorrow? Is that our job? I mean, we should help whoever needs help in throwing any tyrant --
KING: But this is a country that may be harbored people that killed 3,000 of our people.
MOORE: No, but they don't anymore. His own generals have told them that there's 20 or 30 al Qaeda left in all of Afghanistan. This is now their internal problem. And the people of Afghanistan have to deal with it. And we shouldn't lose any more of our young men and women.
KING: So you fear the worst?
MOORE: I'm afraid that if the Democrats and Obama keep behaving like they have, they're not going to stand up and do what the people -- 70 percent of the people want the troops home.
KING: But it isn't a big Vietnam protest war.
MOORE: Because we don't have a draft. Let's start a draft tomorrow. Or how about this? How about this? Here's one idea for the deficit: from now on, whenever we start a war, everybody's taxes go up 10 percent to pay for it so we don't go into debt. How many wars would we be in after that? You know?
I tell you, I just -- I know we're running out of time here and we're -- I have been coming on your show since I was a kid, really. It was -- and you were young, too.
KING: Those were the days. Do you want to make a speech.
MOORE: I just wanted to thank you for all these years. And I came on radio with you before TV. I mean, I used to love those Westwood One I think it is what it was. Remember that? You drank a diet iced tea and it was -- but you've been so good to allow me this time to say these things and to -- you know, and I feel very privileged to be able to say the things that, you know, a lot of people don't get to come on LARRY KING and say.
So I lucked out somehow and I'm able to do that. And I'm greatly appreciative.
KING: We have never had an agenda. I believe the guests count. I never learn anything when I was talking.
MOORE: You allow all voices. When this -- sadly when this show goes, this is gone. I wanted to -- you know, I'm a huge Detroit Tigers fan. You're a big Dodger's fan. There's one player that means a lot to both of us, and that's Kirk Gibson. Won for the '84 series for the Tigers and, of course, great things he did for the Dodgers and the famous walk off home run.
So I brought you a little going away present. This is a bat from Kurt Gibson, signed by Kurt Gibson, here for you, that I'd like to present to you. From a Tiger to a Dodger fan. And also Ernie Harwell was our broadcaster.
KING: Knew Ernie well.
MOORE: Detroit Tigers for many years. He passed away this past year. And this is a signed autographed baseball from Ernie Harwell, a broadcasting legend in Detroit, to a broadcasting legend here in Los Angeles.
KING: I am honored to receive these. I thank you, Michael.
MOORE: I thank you for everything you've done. And you will be sorely missed.
KING: Michael Moore, who has swung a large bat himself. I like that. Time now for Anderson Cooper and "AC 360."