Sunday, February 24, 2008

Nader's In

Just great! Now true hardcore, anticonsumerist, "green" progressives, who shall remain nameless, can ensure that McCain wins in November.


Daisy said...

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Cynthia said...

if mccain wins, it won't be nader's will be the fault of democratic candidates who have gone too far to the center!!!

Huck said...

You're partly right, Cynthia, but one cannot lay the blame squarely at the feet of Democrats who appeal to the "Center." If Nader's agenda was a winning one, he'd garner much more than the 2-3% he usually gets. Perhaps that 3% wouldn't ever vote for a more mainstream Democrat under any circumstances, but I can't help but think that if Nader weren't on the ballot in 2000, we'd have had a much different and much better past 7 years. If the goal is to put together a winning coalition to defeat the Republicans in November, there has to be room for all who proclaim to be on the left at the table working for a united front. Cutting off the nose to spite the face does not strike me as the way for liberals to work through this process. Why wouldn't Nader seek to press his agenda within the Democratic Party? I respect much of what Nader has to say, but I find that his "separatist" approach is selfish and harmful, ultimately, to the liberal cause.

LAmom said...

In 2004, Nader got 0.38% of the vote, and that was running against a much less attractive Democrat. I really don't think he's going to be an issue.

Cynthia said...

Nader has never claimed to expect to win the presidency. He’s always been clear that he’s trying to bring more progressive issues to the table, challenge the corporate-style politics of both parties, and move towards eliminating a “least worst” electoral system. I don’t feel represented by the Democratic candidates, and if there has to be an outsider to bring the honesty and creativity back to the Democratic party and to the electoral process in general, then bring it on. Let's face it, there's nothing that can light a fire under the ass of the Democratic party like Ralph Nader.

Anonymous said...

I don't know. But I don't think there is a problem here.

All of the criticisms of his 2004 run still hold, and even the left-wing blogosphere is completely against the idea. It's a narcissistic and, at this point, almost embarrassing endeavor that has only the chance to do harm to the progressive values and ideals Nader holds dear.

But, as I said, I don't think we need to worry too much. The Nader magic had already diminished significantly by 2004, and is diminished further today. He is no longer the Green Party's chosen candidate, and his argument that the two parties are essentially identical doesn't hold water when one party is running a woman and an African-American. Any call for change that Nader makes this year will be a hollow echo of the calls the Democratic candidates are already making. Frankly, Nader is past it, and it will be refreshing when a new voice rises from the Greens to challenge the Dems to live up to their better impulses.

Besides, no candidate who took 0.38percent of the vote in 2004, when the Democratic candidate was dramatically worse than the options available today, is going to see a resurgence in November 2008.

Its a vainglorious enterprise, whose only worthwhile discovery lies in how far along the agenda of progressives has already moved. If only for isolating hardcore ideologues from the national conversation, a Nader candidacy can be considered of value. Let him sit at the kids table and natter on. Its always good for a few laughs.