NADER Returns

We Welcome Disillusioned Obama Supporters” read the official Ralph Nader website the other day. “Yes”, I thought. “That’s me”.

https://i1.wp.com/www.mediacritiques.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/02/nader.jpg

I am going to piss a lot of people off with this entry. Especially because Obama has been accepted as ‘cool’. He is on hipster Tshirts being sold in Williamsburg, Brooklyn and Obey© Posters. He is supposed to bring about Change™. And then we were all shocked beyond belief when Obama broke his word on FISA/Telecom. Is this the sort of Change™ he is speaking of? Even Hillary voted against it. For those of us wishing to live in a country where our emails and phone calls can be listened to and read on a whim, where does democracy and dissent and the ability to change the staus-quo stand? When corporations can lock up activists, chill dissent, and bully any naysayer in the name of anti-terrorism, what Change™ can actually come about?

I am sick of hearing people scared of “splitting the vote” and blaming Nader for “stealing” votes from Gore. Demicans and Republicrats are owned and sponsored by the same corporate powers whose interests are met no matter which of the two colors of wrapping paper they show up in at the debates.

FISA OBAMA

FISA OBAMA

Nader is at 6% support, according to CNN, and those who would vote for him if he were competitive was 14% in a recent Fox poll. This could easily land Nader in a Google and YouTube sponsored debate in New Orleans this fall (the bar is set at 10%) – which if happens, could catapult Nader to an estimated 20% support simply based on disillusioned voters who didn’t even know they had a non-mega-corporate-conglomerate-candidate option.

Nader would be — to say the least — a formidable presence in any debate. Once one gets beyond the caricature of Nader promoted by the political establishment, one sees a candidate who has intimate knowledge of every aspect of our corporate government, because we learn about an institution not by yielding to it, but by opposing it, something Nader alone has done for decades. Further, he is a man who has never flattered us, never pandered to our baser instincts and never lied to us. Greg Kafoury’s After the Obama Betrayal.

Check out Allison Kilkenny’s Huffington Post blog titled The Other N Word:

Obama has catered to the middle with gun control, telecom immunity, the death penalty, faith-based initiatives, and troop withdrawal landmarks. The only man who can save us now is Ralph Nader. Before you click that little, red “X” in the corner of your browser, let me explain myself… Having Ralph Nader participate in a debate is not only the democratically right thing to do, but it will force Obama to think more progressively in his policies…Even if Obama backpedals on promises, like holding telecom companies accountable for spying on Americans, he STILL looks liberal standing next to McCain… But if Nader is there…suddenly Americans will see their full spectrum of political choices. Obama and Nader don’t get along. At all. Apparently, Obama’s charm and pretty smile didn’t woo battered hardass Nader, who I imagine nearly took off Obama’s head the second Obama said something about wanting to compromise on certain Progressive issues. I guess it’s hard to smooth-talk a man who was once tailed by a General Motors-hired private spy

If your values are telling you that corporations shouldn’t be running the country, you might want to consider an Independent candidate like Ralph Nader. How many of us even know who the Green Party Candidate is?

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13 Responses to NADER Returns

  1. mmmona says:

    the idea of Nader splitting the vote is a bit of a myth. Historically he gets those that wouldn’t have voted or would’ve (in my opinion) wasted their vote with a write-in.

    While I think Obama should be president because McCain is a nightmare, a viable 3rd party would be some real welcome Change.

  2. Dustin Rhodes says:

    Just so you know: this post does the opposite of piss me off. Nader is not my Dream (Wo)Man (who IS?), but neither is Obama; and to be completely honest, neither is Cynthia McKinney. But Obama is the bigger Tool, and I’d gladly cast my vote for a Green Party candidate in lieu of a corporate shill.

  3. lkocsis says:

    Vote Nader / Gonzalez for real, positive change in this country and the world!:)

  4. Rural Vegan says:

    I supported him in 2004 and would support him now, too. Obama is a disappointment, and too much of a politician to bring about any real “change. I’m not a Republican, I’m not a Democrat, and I won’t vote for either of those parties, no matter who they put up.

    BTW – what’s up with people thinking Obama is the harbinger of “change”….I’ve heard homeless people talking about it for years.

  5. alex k says:

    see entry on my blog inspired by your post..

  6. Ang says:

    Whether you choose to cast your vote with Nader or Obama, I think it would be helpful if people also emailed the Obama campaign to express their disappointment with his decisions and explain that it was enough to cause you to change parties so that he is aware of how seriously people take these issues.

  7. d says:

    Unfortunately, voting for Nader is effectively voting for McCain. Nader has no realistic chance of winning.

    I’m not too fond of Obama, but he’s better than McCain. Instead of passively voting in Nov, why don’t more Nader supporters get involved earlier in the process to try and get better candidates represented?

  8. Rural Vegan says:

    But d, those Nader supporters were involved early on – they were pushing for other candidates, like Kucinich and Paul.

    And a vote for Obama isn’t a vote for McCain. A vote for Obama is a vote for continued war and continued gender/sexual orientation based discrimination, and it lends support to the continuation of the two party system, which has not and will not work.

    Katcher, great blog btw!

  9. Michael says:

    I’m so glad you posted this! And I’m glad you liked my remake of Sheps Obama poster. There’s one without the F also… But I liked giving him an F on FISA – he deserved it.

    you can find it here: http://flickr.com/photos/escapehelicopter/2653370141/in/photostream/

    And if one more person says that voting for X is actually voting for X – I don’t know what I’ll do… Everyone needs to look carefully at the Gore/Bush election. More Democrats , by a HUGE number, voted for Bush than voted for Nader.

  10. Bobby says:

    Until USA becomes a parliamentary republic (which is very unlikely given it’s history and Constitution), it will effectively remain a two-party contest when it comes to the Executive branch (i.e., presidency) and most likely the legislative branch as well (i.e., Congress…though it does have a tiny minority of Independents so may be there is more hope there).

    As somebody who has been registered (and voted) for the Green party most of his life (independent at other times), I just reregistered as a Democrat because I cannot stomache the thought of continuation of Bush policies for another 4-8 years. Though Obama and McCain may have their similarities, if anybody thinks that there are no differences between Democrats and Republicans at-large when it comes to a lot of important issues (like abortion, environment, foreign policy, drilling for oil in Alaska, social welfare policies, giving global aid etc.), then that person clearly has not been paying attention.

    It amazes me how many people don’t realize that when voting for a president, you are not just voting for that person but for that party as well. That’s why I would love it if the Green party had a chance of winning…I agree with pretty much everything they say. But I’ve realized that it’s just not going to happen. So I’ll go with Obama as he represents baby-steps towards the ideal, which is certainly better than no progress, or going in the opposite direction as McCain would.

    For those of you who will be voting neither for the Republican candidate or the Democrat candidate, clearly that’s your right and choice. Personally, I’m not sure about the usefulness of such a move anymore. I respectfully disagree with Rural Vegan when he/she says that the two party system “…has not and will not work.” The fact is that US political system–with all it’s flaws and special privileges accorded to the rich, and historically, white males–has for the most part worked just as good or better than most other young democracies. There is a reason why we have not seen coup d’etats or counter-revolutions in this country, and I’m willing to bet that we will NOT see such things in the near future as well. For better or worse, most people are content enough with our political process that they don’t feel they need to resort to such means. This is rather unusual if you study history of most countries in the world.

    What I realize now is that the third party candidates are much more likely to be elected at state/county/city level (esp in progressive places like CA, MA, NY, etc) and at that level, I still plan on voting for Greens and other progressive independents as much as possible. However, in a democratic republic such as USA, it’s important to remember that it’s not necessarily the most intelligent/progressive/honest/whatever candidates that will be elected as presidents but only those who can convince the majority (people/electoral votes). This may not be an ideal situation but IMHO it’s self-delusional to assume that by voting for a 3rd party candidate, who clearly lacks any chances of winning, one will make an iota of difference for the hungry/weak/disempowered/whatever cause. Looking back at it, the only thing that I ever soothed with all my independent/green votes was my own ego and self- righteousness.

  11. Olivia says:

    You’re an idiot. If there’s any time not to throw your vote down the toilet, it’s now.

  12. RuralVegan says:

    Bobby, things aren’t bright and shining for everyone though. Some of us haven’t enjoyed the Great American Dream, and we have every right to blame it on the system that keeps these conditions occuring. For those without health insurance, a savings accouunt, a safe living location, or even access to proper nutrition (particularly on so many of our rez lands), the system has not worked. American democracy lets developers take over sacred sites like Bear Butte in South Dakota, and forces many of the nation’s poor to choose between selling their bodies for cash, or selling their souls to “faith based institutions” for help.

    I should’ve prefaced my earlier comments with the fact that I don’t support everything Nader stands for, but I welcome the radical change that he represents. Third party candidates may be the answer, and they may not be – I’m not entirely convinced that a nation as diverse as the US can be governed by any one ideology anyways.

    Obama says nice things that make people feel good inside, but of course that’s his mission – he’s a politician out for your vote, and he and his team of well paid marketing executives are smart enough to know how to get it. He knows that most Americans don’t think LBGT people are equal, so he’s not going to take a stand that would cost him votes. He hasn’t promised to end US aggression overseas ASAP (something that even Ron Paul – a Republican – said could and should be done), so yeah, a vote for Obama IS a vote for inequality and more dead children overseas.

    Maybe Obama’s biggest example of bullshit is his call for unity (right before bashing his opponents – hardly an act of unification). I’m sorry, but I have no desire to unify with certain segments of the population. I truly hate rich people, elitists (whether Republican or “progressive”), and the druggie douchebag who knocked up my sister, and I have no religious qualms that would make me feel sorry about it. Maybe a better clarion call for Obama would be “Unity among those who like me” or “unity for some, holier-than-thou attitudes towards the rest.”

    I was in Boston for those protests against the DNC in 2004. The Democratic Party we saw there was not a party of the average American….these people stayed in nice hotels, ate at expensive restaurants, and went to fancy parties….OMG, just like the at the RNC!

    When you’re not the one on the losing end of the government shaft, then a massive upheaval wouldn’t seem beneficial.

  13. ChloeJo says:

    I’ll still be voting Obama, but appreciate and learned from this post.

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