PavCo Multimedia Synergistics Weblog

February 27, 2008

Ralph Nader

Filed under: Politics — CPav @ 10:01 pm
Tags: ,

Last Sunday, consumer advocate Ralph Nader announced his latest run for the presidency. I have all sorts of problems with this, not the least of which is that Nader fully acknowledges that he has no hope of winning.

Nader and his supporters (all 10 of them) will tell you that the mere fact that his name is in the mix (to the limited extent that it is) will help his views and concerns get a broader airing. I guess there’s some truth to that, but why not take the money and buy an infomercial, like the guy who’s telling you all the truths that “they” don’t want you to know? Based on the fact that people keep making those things (and that I’ve got a Thunderstick hand mixer in my cabinet), it’s obvious someone is watching them.

And getting ideas out there isn’t necessarily enough any more. We all saw the results of last year’s Congressional elections, with the historic installation of Nancy Pelosi as the first female Speaker of the House, and the Democrats’ aggressive “hundred days” plan, then…not so much. They found that there’s much more to governing than having a simple majority, and that even the best ideas (breaking the link between lobbyists and politicians, allowing the government to negotiate lower drug prices for Medicare, lower interest rates for student loans) won’t go anywhere if the guy with the veto power digs in his cowboy boots and refuses to sign, or adds a historic number of signing statements which basically say “I’m making this a law, but I reserve the right to ignore it.”

Fortunately, I don’t think that Nader’s presence in the race will bring about a repeat of the 2000 elections, when the votes that Nader garnered in Florida (most of which would probably have gone to Al Gore) proved enough of a margin to throw the state to George Bush. This time, as much as John McCain is attempting to pander to the Conservative side of the Republican party, with the candidates from both sides being viewed as more-or-less moderate, it’s arguable that Nader would be drawing as many votes away from McCain as from Obama or Clinton.

In the end, the most damage that a Nader candidacy will do will be to Nader himself. More and more of the public don’t know about the good things he did as a consumer advocate. They know him only as the guy who keeps running for President. In 2000, he was a spoiler. In 2004, he was a joke. This year, he’s little more than an afterthought.

The 300 Project: 17/40



  1. I found your site on technorati and read a few of your other posts. Keep up the good work. I just added your RSS feed to my Google News Reader. Looking forward to reading more from you.

    Peter Quinn

    Comment by Peter Quinn — February 27, 2008 @ 11:59 pm | Reply

  2. Just as in 2000… and we saw who we got then!!!

    A vote for Nader was a vote for Bush.

    And now:
    A vote for Nader is a vote for McCain!


    If ya’ like going to war in the wrong country for no apparent reason vote McCain.

    Uhhh…lemme see… terrorists from Saudi Arabia flew planes into buildings on the direction of another Saudi in Afghanistan…. soooo….OBVIOUSLY… we should invade Iraq.

    Yep! Lemme have some more of that logic…. Maybe Bush can run as Vice-President…. Is that allowed? Because he and his staff are real geniuses.

    Remember folks, the ONLY reason Bush got the White House was because of Nader. Thus Nader can be blamed for: The Iraq War, The economy, The price of oil, and possibly even 9-11.(one can only guess on that last one) McCain is just as nutty as Bush but smarter which makes him more dangerous.

    Comment by dune23 — March 1, 2008 @ 1:47 am | Reply

  3. I think Nader contributed to — probably even was responsible for — Bush’s win in 2000. But the American people re-elected him in 2004, and it wasn’t anywhere near as close as in 2000. So the voters bear much of the blame for the last 4 years.

    He got in in a questionable manner, but the same questions didn’t apply to his staying in.

    Comment by CPav — March 1, 2008 @ 9:09 am | Reply

  4. Okay… I have to agree to the 2004 stats. But try and remember, that by 2004, a lot was going on that had the public kind of glazed-over. 9-11-of course, 2 wars at once, and the confidence in the democratic process was at an all-time low due to Bush’s theft of the election. I believe people were still in shock and quite jaded in 2004. My God, we should have been impeaching the bastards instead of re-electing them, with the no-bid contracts and all!
    The Dems should have done way better than Kerry….Jeez! Was that the best they could come up with?
    Fortunately, by 2006, people were fed up enough to vote in droves and sent a message to Bush and his supporters.
    Don’t for a second think that I find Nader’s ideas wrong and upsetting. He has his place in Washington, but not as a candidate, but as an adviser on ecological and consumer concerns.

    Comment by dune23 — March 1, 2008 @ 10:32 am | Reply

  5. Agreed. Thanks for the good discussion.

    Comment by CPav — March 1, 2008 @ 12:28 pm | Reply

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