By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood January 21, 2009 at 2:41AM
Just Hours Away ...a note from Michael Moore
Tuesday, January 20th, 2009
This happy, happy day!
We have made it through the Dark Ages and here we are, in one of the most redemptive moments history has ever witnessed. Barack Obama is our best hope to get it right, to heal our national soul, to reach out to the rest of the world with an olive branch instead of shocking brutality.
I want to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you who has worked to make this day happen. For many, the madness goes back, not eight years but twenty-eight years, to the tragic day Reagan was sworn in to dismantle our precious "government of the people" and our beloved way of life.
To all of you who have spoken up and spoken out, who have written letters and marched for peace, for all of you who never gave up, you are the true heroes today. Many of you have suffered great economic losses. Some of you have endured a loved one being shipped overseas to senseless and shameful wars, and thousands of you have seen those loved ones returned home, no longer alive. It has been a heartbreaking time.
But the sun comes out at noon today. The disgraced outgoing president will slide out the side door and head to Crawford to sell the Hollywood set known as the Bush "ranch" before he settles down in an exclusive neighborhood in Dallas. I would encourage Mr. Bush to issue one final pardon before noon today -- his own. He had better issue a blanket pardon for all crimes that may have been committed since 2001 by himself, Cheney, Rumsfeld and the whole gang. Serious laws were broken, a war was concocted on a lie, and now, please, justice must be carried out.
So let us move forward and fix the horrible mess we are in. We are fortunate to have a new president who is smart and kind and committed to serving his country. Take a moment today and think about what you can do to join him in helping him do his job. We're all in this together. Our country has been so profoundly wrecked by an administration who decided to mug our constitution and then steal what they can for their Wall Street cronies on the way out the door.
Here is my plea: Let's not leave Barack Obama alone to clean up the mess. As he takes his oath today, please take one yourself -- to work harder than ever to end these wars, create universal health care, save our planet, end poverty, increase knowledge and establish a true government "of, by and for the people" (instead of "of, by and for the lobbyists, the bankers, and the war profiteers").
On a personal note, it's no secret that I have had to suffer an avalanche of hate and attack as I stuck my neck out to simply do my job. Some day I will tell you what the true cost of this has been for me, but not today. Today is a time for celebration and optimism and hope. I'm glad we all lived to see this incredible moment. And I thank each of you for your support of my work and your dedication to our democracy.
12:01pm can't come soon enough! Happy Inauguration Day!
[Originally appeared on Variety.com]