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PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT

President's Message to New York; Michael Moore on Bin Laden

Aired May 5, 2011 - 21:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


PIERS MORGAN, HOST: Tonight, President Obama's message to New York and the world.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: When we say we will never forget, we mean what we say.

MORGAN: His dramatic visit to Ground Zero, his emotional meetings with First Responders and 9/11 family members.

I'll talk to New York City's fire commissioner who was with the president today. And Michael Moore live, the man who said this three years ago.

MICHAEL MOORE, FILMMAKER: I don't think bin Laden is hiding in some cave in Pakistan or Afghanistan. This guy's a multimillionaire.

MORGAN: Now he says bin Laden was executed by the United States. And he says it's time for President Obama to come clean.

Tonight, I'll ask Michael Moore, is he happy that bin Laden is dead.

And a PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT television exclusive. For the first time, we'll play Beyonce's new single to benefit New York police and firemen's widows and children.

This is a special PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT.

Good evening. I'll bring in Michael Moore in just a few moments. But first, some breaking news coming out of the deadly raid on Osama bin Laden's compound.

Our Homeland Security Department says al Qaeda was plotting to derail trains in this country. An attack possibly timed to occur on the 10th anniversary of 9/11. Officials say the plot was not operational and meanwhile there are extraordinary scenes in New York today. Frankly, this was a moment that many feared might never come.

The president of the United States visiting Ground Zero just days after successfully killing Osama bin Laden by Navy SEALs.

President Obama made no public remarks at the World Trade Center site today but listen to what he said earlier when he visited the firehouse that lost more firefighters than any other on 9/11.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: It's some comfort, I hope, for all of you to know that when those guys took those extraordinary risks going into Pakistan that they were doing it in part because of the sacrifices that were made with the state. They were doing it in the name of your brothers that were lost.

And finally let me just say that although 9/11 obviously was a high water mark of courage for the New York Fire Department and a symbol of the sacrifice you guys were making sacrifices every single day.

(END OF VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: President Obama will meet tomorrow when members of the Navy SEALs team that raided bin Laden's compound.

Joining me now is one of the men who was at the president's side today. Commissioner Salvatore Cassano of the New York City Fire Department.

Commissioner, a very moving day. What was it like for you?

COMM. SALVATORE CASSANO, NEW YORK CITY FIRE DEPARTMENT: It was an unbelievable day. When the president visited the Firehouse, Engine 54, Ladder 4 Battalion 9 where we lost 15 members on September 11th, he just raised everybody's spirits. It showed the department that our losses were not forgotten, that he felt the pain that we felt, our families felt, and he brought the person responsible for the deaths of 343 members of the department and many more civilians and First Responders on September 11th to justice.

It gave us a little bit of comfort knowing that we haven't been forgotten and we're moving on. That's one chapter out of the way. And -- but we're right back to work preparing for the next event if it happens and when it happens.

MORGAN: I mean, Commissioner, did you get a sense of your men, that these brave firemen feeling any sense of closure or is it not really that kind of emotion?

CASSANO: Well, I don't like to use the word closure. I certainly know that they were comforted and that they felt that one person will not be there any longer to try to plot against us. Closure to me doesn't really mean anything. But comfort, yes. A little relief that one of the bad guys is out of the way.

MORGAN: What did the president say to you privately about his visit? Because obviously it's the first time he's been there since he's been president.

CASSANO: Well, he wanted to thank us for our sacrifices. Again, on September 11th but he also thanked us for the job that we do every day and, you know, while we're here today, there's over 2,000 firefighters of New York City working right now to keep this city safe. But we turned that around and thanked him for the unbelievable decision he made on Sunday night to give the go on that raid and put Obama -- President Obama in the minds and hearts of every New York City firefighter and their families that he made the right decision for us and he put a chapter behind us that we really needed.

This is the 10th anniversary and it's a very big relief for us that bin Laden is out of the way.

MORGAN: Yes, I mean, do you think New York firemen would like to see a picture of a dead Osama bin Laden?

CASSANO: I spoke to many firefighters today, and they all feel like I feel, that we go along with the decision of the president. We had Navy SEALs there, these brave men who did a great job for us and if they are telling us that they got Osama bin Laden, that's enough for me to believe it.

MORGAN: We're already seeing some of the dividends of this raid, not just the death of bin Laden, but details about future plots by al Qaeda. One in particular involving a potential attack on America's rail network.

When you hear that, what is your reaction?

CASSANO: It doesn't surprise me one bit, Piers. We know that New York City is the number one target in the world. We know that people would love to come here and make another statement.

That's why we've been preparing since September 11th and afterwards, training very hard to ensure that there are no other attacks. We work very closely with the police department. We work closely with the military homeland security.

That didn't surprise me one bit. I do know that we're ready. We're prepared. And if something does happen, we're ready to handle that.

MORGAN: Well, Commissioner, I'd like to thank you and all of your firemen for the service that you do. As the president said, it wasn't just about what happened on 9/11. It's what you do every day in New York and indeed firefighters all over America, but a special day for you and your team and as I say, I thank you.

CASSANO: Thanks. I think today is a special day for not only New York but for the United States of America, knowing that we have the military out there day in and day out protecting us and ensuring that we enjoy our freedom. So I'd like to say thank you to all of the military men and women out there that are serving and making this country what it is.

MORGAN: Commissioner, thank you very much indeed.

CASSANO: You're welcome.

MORGAN: My next guest is a man of strong and controversial opinions, especially when it comes to Osama bin Laden. He says al Qaeda's top man was executed by the United States.

And Michael Moore joins me now.

Michael, let me start with a simple question. Were you pleased when you heard that bin Laden had been killed?

MOORE: I'm pleased that he will no longer be around to do any harm to anybody. The world is a better place without him. To be -- to celebrate someone's death, I think that's goes a step further than my own -- it's not the way I was raised. I was raised in an Irish Catholic home.

I believe in those principles that I was raised with. I hear a lot of people often say, what would Jesus do? I don't think Jesus would go down to Ground Zero like a lot of people did on that -- on Sunday night with champagne bottles and pop corks and have a party.

In fact, I felt kind of bad. I was watching here the local news that night, watching -- there were relatives of victims of firefighters, of people who also went down there on Sunday night, holding photographs of the deceased. And it was a very powerful and very emotional moment for them.

And then suddenly the sort of party grew around them and you could see how affected they were by that and not necessarily in a positive way because it means something very different to them. They don't run around shouting USA, USA. They lost people and so it affected them.

So I think -- I think that it's a good thing that Osama bin Laden is gone and -- but it's not necessarily the way I would have done it if I had any say in it. But it -- I have a lot of thoughts about it. If you want to talk about it, I'm willing to do that.

MORGAN: Yes. I mean, I mean, I'm interested in your reaction there about the celebration. You know I'm not a New Yorker but I live a lot of the time in the city and I came into New York about two or three weeks after 9/11.

And I completely understood why many New Yorkers felt like celebrating. When that city was, you know, brought to its knees and the twin towers collapsed, and nearly 3,000 people are slaughtered in an appalling way, I understood why there was an outpouring just on that night when the news broke that bin Laden was finally dead. The people would feel quite jubilant about that.

MOORE: Yes, but I think there's a difference between maybe feeling jubilant or good about it and -- look, I don't want to focus too much on that. I think that -- I think everybody I know, everybody is happy that he will be unable to harm another single soul on this planet.

And so that's extremely a good thing. But there are much larger issues here, I think, to discuss in terms of where we go from here. It also gives this country a great opportunity to begin a new era. I mean, this could be a very positive moment, too, if we chose to see it that way. So there you go.

MORGAN: What did you think of the decision not to publish the images of a dead bin Laden?

MOORE: Well, personally, I don't need to see that. I believe the president. And that's enough. I think there is something grotesque about it. People who want to see it. I don't think it's necessary.

You know we have the death penalty in almost 40 states in this country. We don't publish photos of the execution. We don't televise them. Yet everyone believes that the execution occurred. Nobody doubts it. There are witnesses to it.

There are witnesses to this execution and members of -- you know the intelligence community and people in Congress have already I think spoken to certain people involved, and I think that the administration has done that. And I think that that's -- you know, that's good enough. But that -- I mean that's a personal feeling.

MORGAN: I mean, Michael, I --

MOORE: Yes.

MORGAN: If I may interrupt, I mean, I'm quite surprised to hear you say you just believe the president and the administration. I mean you're one of the most vociferous skeptics of all things White House and have been for a long time. Why would you simply believe what they tell you on this?

MOORE: I'm vociferous in my skepticism of those who don't tell the truth and who have a track record of not telling the truth. If you come before a nation and tell them that Saddam has weapons of mass destruction, and absolutely positively sure, and here's the drawings and here's all this evidence and all that, and you take a country to war over that, when in fact there weren't weapons of mass destruction and there were people in your intelligence community trying to tell you that there weren't weapons of mass destruction -- if you say things like that, then yes, you're going to receive a skepticism of myself and millions of others of Americans.

President Obama, unfortunately for those who don't like him, has earned the trust of most Americans because regardless of how you feel about his policies, regardless of the criticisms I may have of policies of his or decisions he's made, he has told the truth. And until proven otherwise, I think that that's been his track record for his years both in Congress -- in the Senate, I mean, and in the White House. And so for me he gets the -- he gets the benefit of the doubt.

What I don't think we're being told --

MORGAN: I mean --

(CROSSTALK)

MOORE: Yes. MORGAN: Michael, let me just ask you something about that.

MOORE: Yes.

MORGAN: I mean, when he said, before he was elected, that he would close down Guantanamo Bay, and then he doesn't do that, I mean, that's not entirely being straight with you, is it?

MOORE: Well, he hasn't done it yet. That's not telling a lie, like a weapons-of-mass-destruction lie. That means he hasn't done it yet. I think many of us wish that he would do it.

I saw the chief prosecutor, the military man at Guantanamo I think earlier today on CNN, saying that it should be closed and closed soon, and a lot of people agree with that. And there are people like me who were disappointed he hasn't done it yet. I mean I'm disappointed in -- I wish there was a single payer health care system instead of the compromised system that we have.

I mean if you want to go down that list, yes. But those aren't lies. Those aren't -- those aren't things that President Obama has done where he has set out to take us down the wrong road. That's a huge difference.

And I've got to tell you, my first thought -- and it's not a partisan thought. It's not a Republican or Democrat thought here. It's just when I heard the news on Sunday night, I thought, wow, you know, he came in on day one and said, we're going to get this guy and that's it.

And he told everybody, that's it. Go get -- that's it. We're getting this guy. And he did in two years what the other guy couldn't do in eight years -- didn't do. And in fact, in 2006, as we know, President Bush shut down the CIA station that was set up for the expressed purpose of finding bin Laden. He didn't care about finding him anymore. So --

MORGAN: Michael, we're going to have -- we're going to have a short break, Michael. I want - I want to pursue this when we come back and also talk to you about your claim that bin Laden was effectively executed by the Navy SEALs.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MORGAN: Back to my special guest, Michael Moore.

Michael, before the break we were talking about the death of bin Laden. You claim today that he was executed.

Do you believe that, if that's the case, that it was justified? I know the argument you're making, just come out and admit what we did and he was clearly taken out. But if he was executed, is that lawful or would you have preferred him to have been captured alive and brought back to trial maybe in New York?

MOORE: Well, I just -- I think that -- and I don't think I'm the only one who feels this way. This story has changed four times now in four days as to what happened. Every day -- it started with there was a big firefight, he used the woman as a shield, et cetera, et cetera.

And now two hours ago a story came across the wire from the Atlantic where a senior White House official has admitted that it was their intention to kill him. It was not a bring him back -- you know, it wasn't a dead or alive situation. It was to go and kill him.

And I don't understand why not just -- if that was the case, why not just say that? Why not just admit that? I think most people would applaud that. I don't think anybody would go, you know, why did you go there and kill him? I think most people would be going --

MORGAN: I'm not entirely -- I'm not entirely sure, Michael. They're not really disputing that, are they? I mean there's an argument about whether if he'd thrown his hands up and surrendered immediately, whether he would have been -- some kind of prisoner of war in that circumstance. But no one is suggesting he did that.

MOORE: But I was not --

MORGAN: I'm not sensing from President Obama or the White House that they didn't admit they killed him.

MOORE: No, no. They killed him. But what I'm saying is they didn't kill because there was some kind of firefight or something going on. They went there with the intention to kill him. That's an execution and -- or an assassination, whatever you want to call it.

And I think -- I think, look, like I said, I'm glad he's gone. But I just feel something has -- we've lost something of our soul here in this country. And maybe I'm just an old school American who believes in our American judicial system. Something that separates us from other parts, other countries where we say everybody has their day in court no matter how bad of a person, no matter what piece of scum they are, they have a right to a trial.

And this man was a mass murderer. He was responsible for the deaths, at least in this country, of nearly 3,000 people. And you know after World War II, we just didn't go in and put a bullet to the head of all the top Nazis. We put them on trial. We took them in Nuremberg and we put them on trial, and we said, no, this is important for the world to see these criminals and it's important for history to have a record of what they did.

And so we're going to do this in a courtroom and we're going to show these Germans how we do it with fairness, with justice. You're going to get to have your own attorney. You get to have your day in court. That's how we do it. That's what separates us from you, Nazi scum.

And it was a great moment --

MORGAN: Yes, but let me ask you, Michael.

(CROSSTALK) MOORE: The country felt --

MORGAN: Let me ask you, Michael. Michael.

MOORE: And I just think -- I just think and now -- let me finish this, Piers, because this is a very important point. People --

(CROSSTALK)

MOORE: We are at a point now where we don't -- yes, why do we need a trial for, just get rid of them. Well, they -- the second you say that, you're saying that you hate being an American. You hate what we stand for, you hate what our constitution stands for.

We stand for something different than that and we're better than them. We don't just operate in an uncivilized way the way they did on 9/11. We operate in a moral way. And what better way to show that? Don't bring them to New York. Don't have the trial in New York. This could -- this will put us in jeopardy.

This might -- you know, and then you hear stuff like that and it's like, what are we? A bunch of wusses now that we just -- we're afraid to even put out and have a trial because somebody might get hurt or they might get mad and some other part of the world and plan to hurt us?

You know we should be standing up and saying, listen, damn it, we're Americans. This is the way we do it. You commit a crime, we put you on trial. That's the way it works here. And if you try to hurt us or mess with us while we do that, you've got something coming.

You know, but instead, here in New York, oh, no, don't have the truth. You know, it's like -- we've just lost something here and I think that's what -- you know, what so -- what made people feel so good about the Navy SEALs and, I know a number of Navy SEALs and army rangers and these guys. They are really -- I mean, they are the best of the best.

And it was just amazing how in a matter of minutes they did what should have been done years and years and years ago in terms of finding him and bringing him to some sort of justice. Not the way I --

MORGAN: Yes, but, Michael, Michael.

MOORE: Yes.

MORGAN: I want to jump in here because -- I want to jump in here on the Navy SEALs issue.

MOORE: Yes.

MORGAN: Because you sort of implied that there wasn't a firefight. I've studied all the facts that have emerged today on this. And there are facts as we speak tonight. It may well change again, I accept that. But as we stand, the Navy SEALs went in and they were confronted with an armed man who turned out to be the courier who was the link to bin Laden, and he opened fire on the Navy SEALs and they killed him.

They then go upstairs and they are confronted with bin Laden and members of his family. Now they've already been shot at once. I have absolutely no problem in that situation, given that al Qaeda, you know, are intent on causing massive slaughter and destruction to American citizens, the Navy SEALs, when they are sent on a mission like that and they're fired on, to me they're perfectly entitled to assume that bin Laden may well be armed.

And he's always indicated -- I mean we interviewed his sister only the other day on this show, his sister-in-law, who said to me he will never go out without a fight. So they know this and they see them there, and they have a chance to take him out.

I don't have a problem with that. And I don't really think -- it's not really a left-right issue. I just don't have a problem --

MOORE: No. So just say that.

MORGAN: -- with SEALs who are getting shot at.

(CROSSTALK)

MOORE: Why not just admit that? Then why not just say that? Why not just say that that is what happened? We now know that there wasn't -- not a single person in the main house was armed. There were 13 children in there. And --

MORGAN: They didn't know that, Michael. They didn't know that.

MOORE: No, but they -- when they went in there they did. And when they went in there -- look, they -- obviously the decision was made in advance. So this is kind of a moot point to kill him no matter what, whether he was armed, unarmed, whether he put up a fight or didn't put up a fight.

MORGAN: OK. I want to take a -- I want to take a -- I want to take a quick break. When we come back I want to continue this because it's a good argument. I also think the really compelling argument is what did the Pakistani military intelligence know about the existence of bin Laden in that compound?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MORGAN: I'm back with my special guest, Michael Moore.

Michael, let's turn to the existence of bin Laden in this compound. It's emerging tonight and the "Washington Post" have claims tonight that the CIA were watching bin Laden in this compound for quite sometime which is certainly a theory that you've been putting forward. What do you think about the fact that bin Laden appears to have been there for up to five years, in this large property right next to Pakistanis' military intelligence? MOORE: Right next door to it. Right next door to their West Point. Well, again, you know, they are asking us to believe that nobody knew. I mean, I think most people would assume that Pakistani government knew.

Remember, the Pakistan government is probably our third or fourth largest recipient of our foreign aid, 1.5 billion a year. And we've been paying them a lot of money because we wanted them to find bin Laden and to stop al Qaeda there in Pakistan.

So it wasn't in their best interests, really, to -- for the show to close, you know, on Saturday night, you know, on Broadway. They like to keep the show going.

And I think the Pakistani government liked the show. The general made a lot of money. A lot of those generals had nice vacation homes in that town that were paid for by the various bribes and funds provided by your tax dollars and mine.

MORGAN: Michael, let me just put a point to you.

MOORE: Yeah.

MORGAN: Would you go further, because you've hinted at this? Would you go further and say that President Obama or his intelligence advisers -- are you suggesting that any of them had knowledge for a considerable period of time?

MOORE: I would like to know that. I think we should know that. They've admitted that they've known for some time. I would like to know how long that time is.

Over those five years, seriously -- or was some deal cut with the Pakistanis, they would essentially keep him under house arrest.

Think about this, there's no body guards in that house. We've always heard about bin Laden and his body guards. They show up that not, on Sunday night, and there's not a single bodyguard? There are two couriers, the guys who are essentially like his personal Fed Ex.

But no there's bodyguards protecting him. Well, why not? Well, maybe because he's already on a Pakistani military base being protected or being watched or maybe under house arrest. Who knows?

I mean, there's any number of possibilities. These questions need to be asked. And we should demand these answers. Something doesn't smell right about any of this.

And I think President Obama will get to the bottom of this. He's dealing with the Pentagon that has a history of not telling the truth, starting with the rescue, if you remember, of Jessica Lynch, that whole made-up mission, that whole story.

Then the terrible, terrible lie that they told about Pat Tillman, about his death. And the Pentagon knew they were telling this lie and they put that lie out for a very long time. They have a history of lying.

So fortunately, we have a president who is also a lawyer and a very smart guy. And I think probably he's spending a certain amount of time right now getting to the bottom of what the truth is, what the real story is. And we will eventually know what that story is.

MORGAN: In terms of Afghanistan, obviously we've taken out the leader of al Qaeda, but the entity continues to exist in various forms around the world.

MOORE: Really? Like what? Where?

MORGAN: Would you know --

Well, you don't believe al Qaeda exists in any form?

MOORE: I think there are a lot of people running around calling themselves al Qaeda. I think -- first, I think bin Laden is there in that house for five years. He's got a laptop, but they won't let him have Internet.

First of all, somebody said he's probably the only guy in the last decade that got any work done. But what kind of work could he do? I mean, essentially, if the Pakistani government had him there under some sort of watch or house arrest or whatever it's called -- you know, there haven't been events linked to him over the last few years.

He has been fairly subdued, if you want to say, in terms of actual terrorists --

MORGAN: Do you believe al Qaeda has been dismantled?

MOORE: Well, I think, listen, actually, the day that al Qaeda was dismantled, personally, frankly, what I think, it was the day that the revolution began in Tunisia. That was the end of al Qaeda. And then the revolution in Egypt.

Nonviolent, peaceful uprisings of people who wanted democracy and who don't want al Qaeda. That has done more to undue -- you see, all of these years, what people in the Middle East did bin Laden free? What freedom or anything did he bring to anybody there?

The people on the streets of Tunisia, though, they freed their country. The people on the streets of Egypt, they freed their country. The people in Syria are going to free their country. The people in Jordan, all throughout that area, they are going to do this.

They don't want al Qaeda. They don't need al Qaeda. Al Qaeda is dead to them. So we need to just step back from this and say, bin Laden's dead. What now should we be doing with a trillion dollars that shouldn't be going into unnecessary wars?

Let's bring these troops home. Let's end these wars. And let's put that money towards fixing this country, our infrastructure, our education system, creating jobs, the things that we need, the kind of -- you know, the real terror that people have to live with here in this country is the person tonight that's sitting down trying to decide, should I pay my mortgage bill or should I pay the doctor bill?

That in and of itself --

MORGAN: Michael, let's take a step back ourselves, just for a moment, and have a quick break. I want to come back to you and take up that very point now about America. What you think about America domestically, and what President Obama should be doing now to fix this country.

Coming up later on the show, we'll have Beyonce's new single.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MORGAN: Back now with my special guest, Michael Moore. We've talked about America's foreign policy. Let's get to domestic issues.

You've been very praise worthy of President Obama in this interview so far. In relation to the economy, in terms of the way that he's running it, what is your view? Are you slightly more critical there?

MOORE: Well, first of all, he inherited a huge mess. He inherited the crime of the century, frankly. Just around the corner from the World Trade Center exists Wall Street. And Wall Street and the people who work down there wrecked this economy.

They took people's pensions. They took people's 401(k)s. They took it as if it was their money and took it to a casino and played with it. They made themselves filthy rich. Then they got -- when they started to lose, they conned our government, both President Bush and President Obama, into backing this huge handout that they got.

And we haven't recovered from this. So I was first --

MORGAN: Isn't it worse than that, Michael? Isn't it actually worse? It's not that we haven't recovered, but the very people you're talking about -- I'm completely with you on this. I feel incensed on behalf of the American people, that the bankers and the other financiers who got America into this mess through pure greed, the worst kind of capitalism, have now -- the moment they've been bailed out recover, are awarding themselves huge bonuses again, and don't seem to give a damn.

MOORE: That's right. That's right. And I don't know why the Justice Department -- it's amazing that they haven't arrested or put in jail a single one of these guys.

MORGAN: Not one?

MOORE: Not one. They've spent more time -- they've spent more time on Barry Bonds, instead of the guys with the stocks and bonds that ripped of the country. I mean, it's absolutely --

MORGAN: It's true. MOORE: It's just -- I don't know what to say other than very disappointed that the Obama Justice Department is not going after these guys. And there is still time to do it. I hope they do.

MORGAN: What do you say the issue about the birth -- let's not get into the detail. But when you see the Donald Trump Birther issue dominating the news agenda, and there was a real prospect of perhaps Donald Trump running for president, what was your reaction to that?

MOORE: I hope in this coming election year that people remember that -- not just Donald Trump, but a majority of the people who called themselves Republicans said that they didn't believe or they weren't sure that President Obama was an American.

And they were putting him through this whole thing to where he finally had to go through all this -- in the week before he's trying to stop the number one criminal that's loose in the world, he's got to deal with Donald Trump and getting a birth certificate out of Hawaii? While this is going on?

And in the month before that, the Republican party is trying to shut down the federal government? Just think about that. Had they succeeded, the Republicans? They were trying to shut down the federal government while President Obama was trying to get Osama bin Laden.

I hope that people do not forget that.

MORGAN: Let me ask you about -- let me move on to another of Donald Trump's claims, because I sort of agree with you about the Birther issue. But when he was coming out with stuff about China and OPEC and so on, I actually found myself nodding in agreement, that America has been pretty weak in relation to OPEC and China, hasn't it?

MOORE: Well, that's a much larger issue than the way that he was just kind of simplifying it. You know, I don't know how much of that you want to get into right now. I'll just say this, that coming from Flint, Michigan, where I'm from and where we saw our factories being closed starting in the early '80s, thousands and thousands of people losing their jobs, because General Motors -- I remember the year I made my first film, "Roger and Me," which is about General Motor.

That year that film came out, General Motors made a profit of almost four billion dollars. But four billion wasn't enough. They wanted five billion the next year. So they figured, we can get that five billion. We can get that extra billion by closing down these factories in Flint and St. Louis and Indiana and elsewhere. That's what they did.

They threw thousands of people out of work, so they could make more money shipping jobs overseas. They were allowed to do that. They were --

MORGAN: In that case, Michael, I -- that's where I found myself, as I say, nodding with Donald Trump.

We're going to take another break now. When we come back, I want to talk about your next project, which cage you're going to rattle next.

Also coming up later in the show, Beyonce's new single "God Bless the USA," which is going to raise money for New York's firemen and their widows and families.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(NEWS BREAK)

MORGAN: Back now with my guest, Michael Moore. Michael, I've always admired your ability to rattle cages. What is the next cage that you're going to rattle?

MOORE: Well, I don't talk to my next project while I'm doing it for all the obvious reasons. So next question.

MOORE: Let me rephrase it. If I had the power to make you President Moore tomorrow morning, given all that's been going on this year and this extraordinary news cycle, what would be the absolute priority for you to get America back on its feet?

MOORE: The creation of jobs would be number one and spending whatever money that that took. I would end both wars. I would bring the troops home. I would cut the defense budget. The war budget is what it should be called, and spend that money fixing this country, putting people back to work, reinvigorating the economy.

I think that would be the number one thing. And creating a single payer health care system would not only save us a lot of money, it would save lives. It would extend the life expectancy of the average American, like it does in countries that do have a single payer system.

MORGAN: Michael, it's a fascinating hour I've spent with you. I think many people would love the idea of President Michael Moore.

MOORE: Yeah, I wouldn't. No, it's a really bad idea. But thank you. Apparently I'm not sticking around to sing with Beyonce? Is that correct?

MORGAN: I'm afraid it was a beauty and the beast situation, so the beast has to leave the stage.

MOORE: I vote for that.

MORGAN: Michael, it's been fascinating and provocative, as always. Thank you very much for coming on.

MOORE: Thanks, Piers. Good luck.

MORGAN: Tomorrow night, I've got Rob Lowe for the hour in a fascinating interview. Here's a preview as he tells me about the shocking discovery when he discovered he was on a flight with 9/11 hijackers conducting a dry run before the attacks.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) ROB LOWE, ACTOR: I sort of commuted a lot on that flight with the "West Wing," as we all did. We had wrapped season two, I believe. And I got on that flight. It was packed. It was a small cabin. There was nothing that stood out.

This was before the days we even cared about those things. I took a long nap -- I had shot all night -- and forgot about it in its entirety; 9/11 Happened.

About a year later, I think, I go to the mailbox. I get an envelope from the attorneys general of the state of Maryland. In it, they're notifying me that I've showed up on a list of the public defender of Zacarias Moussaoui's people to be deposed.

I think it's an April Fool's joke. I think it's an April Fool's joke. I call my attorney, Larry Stein. Larry Stein calls -- he says I'll get right back to you.

Five minutes later -- and I can tell by the way he says hello when he picks up the phone, it's not good news. And he says you were on a dry run. They were all on the plane with you. They have the flight manifest. And this lunatic wants to talk to you.

MORGAN: An extraordinary thing to be told.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: It certainly was. And it's a great interview with Rob Lowe tomorrow night. When we come back, a PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT exclusive, Beyonce's new song, "God Bless the USA,' with all profits going to widows and children of our hero fire fighters.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MORGAN: Tonight, we have a PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT genuine world exclusive, the television premiere of Beyonce's version of "God Bless the USA." All the proceeds from the song go to the New York Police and Fire Widows and Children's Benefit Fund. You can purchase it on iTunes. In just a few weeks, I'll sit down with Beyonce for an exclusive interview about her life, her career and her new album.

But right now, listen to Beyonce's "God Bless the USA." And good night.

(SINGING)