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<nettime> A LETTER FROM MICHAEL MOORE TO THE NON-VOTERS OF AMERICA
Phil Graham on 8 Aug 2000 06:54:41 -0000


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<nettime> A LETTER FROM MICHAEL MOORE TO THE NON-VOTERS OF AMERICA


Date: Fri, 21 Jul 2000 13:06:39 -0700
From: Joan Norman <defender {AT} firstworld.net>
Subject: Michael Moore's idea for the 100 million NON-VOTERS
To: defender {AT} firstworld.net
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November 30 International Day of Action - http://www.n30.org

HI
   Non-voters make up 100 million people!!  We are the largest party
in the US!!  Here is a message from the great Michael Moore on the
subject!!
Joan


A LETTER FROM MICHAEL MOORE TO THE NON-VOTERS OF AMERICA

Dear friends,

DISCLAIMER: If you are planning to vote for Al Gore in November,
good for you.  Don't let what I'm about to say change your mind
because I've been told by all the experts that if you do change your
mind based on what I'm about to say, George W.  Bush might win the
election and I certainly couldn't live with myself if that
connoisseur of pharmaceuticals (the kind you snort up your nose or
the kind you inject on death row) won, in part, because of a letter
I spit out over the Internet.

So let's review -- you like Gore, you vote for Gore.  He's a decent
guy.  I met him last year at some benefit, he came up to me, big hug
-- whoa, this veep is no stiff, I thought -- and thanked me for this
and that.  He even quoted lines from "The Awful Truth" - whoa,
scary, I thought, what's he doing watching cable channels above 40
on the box...not much to do on this veep gig, eh?

I told him I admired what he did when he came home to America as a
Vietnam Vet and spoke out against the war.  That took a lot of
courage, I said (his dad lost his Senate seat for being an early
opponent of the war).

So, if Al Gore is your man, go for it.  In fact, I insist on it,
even if you are just throwing your vote away.

What I am about to say, though, is not intended for any Al Gore (or
George W.) voters.  If you are one, please click off now.

To Whom It May Concern:

I address this letter to the largest political party in the United
States - the  55% of you in the voting public who are so
disillusioned with politics and politicians, so sick and tired of
all the broken promises, so disgusted with all the b.s. that you
have absolutely no intention of voting in November.

You know who you are.

AND YOU ARE THE MAJORITY!

You rule.  You are the Non-Voters, all 100 million of you!

Until now, you have been the subject of scorn and ridicule.  You've
been called apathetic, lazy, ignorant.  Your actions have been
viewed as unAmerican (I mean, what kind of citizen in the World's
Greatest Democracy would not exercise his or her most important and
cherished right - the right to freely choose your leader!).

Well, may I be the first to tell you that, not only are you NOT
stupid and apathetic, I believe you are smarter than all the rest of
us combined.  YOU figured it out.  YOU uncovered the scam.  And YOU
had the guts to no longer participate in a lie.  Way to go!  In
1996, you helped set the all-time American record for lowest turnout
ever at a presidential election.

The reason you, the majority, no longer vote in America is because
you, the majority, realize there is no real choice on the ballot.
The "two" parties both do the bidding of the wealthy and agree with
each other on 90% of the issues.  They take 90% of their money from
people who make over a hundred-grand a year, and then enact over 90%
of the laws those contributors want passed.

On the ballot this November, you already know there is no contest.
The independent Cook Political Report in D.C.  last week announced
that, out of 435 House seats up for election in November, there are
only 47 seats where there is a "true race" between opponents - and,
of those, only 14 seats have a race that is even "close" between the
two candidates.  14 out of 435!

"Ninety-seven to ninety-nine percent of incumbents running for
re-election will be returned to Congress in November," according to
the Cook Report.

The Non-Voters already understand this.  And they are not going to
waste one iota of their day on November 7 driving to some smelly
elementary school gymnasium to participate in a Soviet-style
election with no friggin' choice on the ballot.

So, to you brave voter-resisters, I say congratulations on your act
of civic disobedience!  I joined you this primary season and refused
to go along with this charade of "choice." Nearly 80% of those of us
of voting age - over 160 million Americans - staged a sit-in on our
living room couches during this year's primaries.  THAT is the great
untold story of this election year. How much longer will the
punditocracy be able to get away with dismissing this massive
no-show as "a sign Americans are content with the booming economy?"

Now that we have made our presence known (you all don't mind me
speaking for us, do you?  Good.  In fact, I'll just assume the
currently-vacant mantle of this majority party and serve as your
leader until you say otherwise...), it is time to find a way that
says, loudly and clearly, just how mad as hell we are and how we are
not going to take it anymore.  We need to find a way where our vote
screams "None of the Above!"

A chance to act, like that Chinese guy in Tieneman Square, standing
in front of a moving tank and stopping it in its path.

In November, we should find a way to follow in the footsteps of
those intelligent Minnesotans who, even thought they could care less
about professional wrestling (and even less, I'm sure, for Jesse
"The Body"), proved to the world that they not only have a sense of
humor, but they know how to stick it to the whole bloody system.

Think of just how high their level of anger must have been against
the One-Party-With-Two-Heads monopoly!  I mean, state government is
no joke - somebody's gotta build the roads, run the schools, catch
the criminals.  You don't want to turn the asylum over to the chief
lunatic but, damn it, that's what the people of Minnesota did - just
to send a message!  Wow.  That took some guts.

So, for those of you who weren't going to vote anyway, well...what
if you actually did?  What if you drove down to that stinky gym
where the little shell game behind the pretend curtains is taking
place ("Pay no attention to the voters behind the curtains!"), walk
in, sign in, take the ballot they hand you, and toss yourselves
inside the booth like a political molotov cocktail.

Boom!

"You wanna tell me there's a choice here between two guys who both
support NAFTA, WTO, the death penalty, the Cuban embargo, increased
Pentagon spending, sleazy HMOs, greedy hospital chains, 250 million
guns in our homes, more bombing of Iraq, the rich getting richer and
the rest of us declaring bankruptcy?"

Boom!

Not me.

Boom!

I'm voting for Ralph Nader.

KAAAABOOM!

Friends, we are losing our democratic control over our country.  We
may have already lost it.  I hope not.  But in the last 20 years of
the Reagan administration, Corporate America has merged and morphed
itself to such an extent that just a handful of companies now call
all the shots.  They own Congress.  They own us.  In order to work
for them, we have to take urine tests and lie detectors and wear bar
codes on chains around our necks.  In order to keep our jobs we have
had to give up decent health care, the 8-hour day (and time with our
kids), the security that we'll even have a job next year, and any
unwillingness we may have to compete with a 14-year old Indonesian
girl who gets a dollar a day.

And how frightening (and great) is it that the last place we can
freely try to inform and communicate with each other is on this very
Web?  Six companies run by six men control the majority of the news
we now get from newspapers, television, radio and the Internet.  One
out of every two books is bought at a bookstore owned by one of only
two companies.  Is it safe in a "free society" to have the sources
of our information and mass communication in the hands of just a few
wealthy men who have a VESTED interest in keeping us as stupid as
possible - or at least in keeping us thinking like them so that we
vote for THEIR candidates?

I fear the cement on this new oligarchy of power is quickly drying,
and when it is finished hardening, we are finished.  The democracy,
the one that's supposed to be of, by, and for the people, will cease
to exist.

We must not let this happen, no matter how cynical and disgusted
we've become at the whole electoral process.

Ralph Nader, to me, represents a chance for us to at least
temporarily stop the cement from drying.  We need him in there
kicking things up, stirring the pot and forcing a real debate about
the issues.  Whether it's Ralph as Candidate or Ralph as President,
he may represent our last hope to get our country back from the
clutches of the powerful few.

I am not writing these words lightly.  I am hoping to sound a siren
and rally the majority who, for good reason, have given up - but
might just have it in them to find the will for one last fight
against the bastards.

Can Ralph win?  Well, stranger things have happened in the past
decade. C'mon, think about it, not a single one of us ever thought
we'd see the Berlin Wall come down or Nelson Mandela as President of
South Africa.  After those two things happened, I joined a new
school of thought that said ANYTHING was possible.  Jesse Ventura
started with 3% in the polls and won. Ross Perot in '92 started with
6% and, after proving to everyone that he was certifiably insane,
still got nearly 20% of the vote.

Ralph already has between 7% and 10% in the polls - before he's done
any serious campaigning.  He's gone from 3% to 8% in my home state
of Michigan. These are amazing numbers and the pundits and lobbyists
and Republicrats are running scared.  Hey, you like to watch scared
Republicrats running?  Tell a pollster you're voting for Ralph.

Now, look, before you all send me a lot of mail about how weird
Ralph is 'cause he doesn't own a car or is a "sell-out" 'cause he's
got a few million dollars, let me say this: I used to work out of
his office, and Ralph is definitely one of a kind.  In a future
letter I will write of those experiences but, for now, let's just
agree that Ralph is at least half as crazy as Jesse Ventura - and
about a hundred times as smart. I'd say he's also saved about a
million or so lives, thanks to the consumer and environmental
legislation he has devoted his life to.

And between Gore, Bush, and himself, he's the only person running
who would guarantee universal health care for all, the only
candidate who would raise the minimum wage to a decent level, the
only one who would get up each morning asking himself the question,
"What can I do today to serve all the people of this country?"

The list goes on and on.  You can read more about what Ralph stands
for by going to his website (http://www.votenader.org).  You'll
agree, I'm sure, there's lots of common sense there, regardless of
what political stripe you are.

But remember.  If you are even THINKING of voting for Al Gore, vote
for Al Gore.  Ralph Nader does not need a single Gore vote.  There
are a hundred million of us out there who are uncommitted and
currently not voting. Right now, Gore and Bush are each hoping to
win by getting only 40 million votes.

If you are in the Non-Voting majority and want to let 'em all have
it, if you want to get our country back in our hands...well, if even
half of you show up and vote November 7 then you won't be held
responsible for Bush winning the White House.

In fact, you won't be held responsible for putting Gore in the White
House, either.

Rather, you will have made history by putting a true American hero
at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

And you will have given every company, every boss who's done ya
wrong, the worst nightmare of their lives.

November 7.  Payback Time.

The revenge of the Non-Voters!

So sayeth their unappointed leader, yours truly, Michael Moore
mmflint {AT} aol.com http://www.theawfultruth.com
http://www.michaelmoore.com

PS. Come to think of it, Democrats should be on their knees thanking
Ralph for running.  Rather than taking votes from Gore, Ralph's
going to be the one responsible for turning the House back over to
the Democrats.

When millions of these Non-Voters enter that booth to vote for
Ralph, and they come across their local race for Congress, they will
find no Green Party candidate in most of the 435 Congressional
districts.  So who do you think Ralph's army of Non-Voters will
plunk down for Congress?  The Republican?  I don't think so.

The Democrats are only six seats short of regaining control of the
House. Ralph Nader will be the reason the Democrats get the House
back for the first time since Newt's Contract on America in 1994.

Democrats should send their checks to Nader 2000, P.O.  Box 18002,
Washington, DC 20035.

(Or, better yet, let's try to elect enough Greens to Congress -- a
dozen or so -- and they'll hold the deciding votes because neither
the Democrats nor the Republicans will have the majority.  It'll be
a friggin' Knesset!)

PPS.  If you're still worried this letter might convince a
weak-kneed Gore voter to flip over to Nader - and thus lead to
President George W.  stacking the Supreme Court to make abortion
illegal, well, it's all a bunch of hooey. Please read my latest
grassroots.com column entitled, "I Ain't Fallin for That One Again"
at: http://www.michaelmoore.com/aint.html

PLEASE PASS THIS LETTER ON TO YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY. PERMISSION IS
GRANTED TO REPRINT ANYWHERE.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Opinions expressed in this email are my own unless otherwise stated.
Phil Graham
Lecturer (Communication)
Graduate School of Management
University of Queensland
617 3381 1083
www.geocities/pw.graham/
www.uq.edu.au/~uqpgraha
http://www.angelfire.com/ga3/philgraham/index.html
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