Sunday, February 22, 2004

The most selfish man in America

No it is not Ken Lay, or any of Bush's other friends, who are pretty open about their greed. The man of the year for this dubious honor is Ralph Nader, who despite costing Gore the election in 2000 and having absolutely no support for his run this time, is running again in 2004 as an independent. He told Tim Russert this is because even the nutty Green Party, who he ran into the ground last time, doesn't want him on their ticket.

In 2000, he got 2.7%, way less than Perot got either time, but yet it was enough to swing New Hampshire and Florida to Bush. Just think of all the things that would have different had Ralph decided to be a cabinet member of Gore's White House (EPA director or something) instead. No war in Iraq, the war on terror would going much better, our economy would be better, and we would have allies.

Instead, Nader lives in the fantasy world where he things there is this huge mandate for a candidate like him and that he will either win or his issues will be so pervasive that they will have to be address, ala Perrot and the deficit in 1992. Guess what, Ralph, you are about as clueless as your namesake on the Simpsons.

No money will go to you. Since you are running as an independent, and not with a fringe party, you will have to raise much more money to even appear on the ballot in many states, money that nobody will give you. Sure Kucinich has raised some decent amounts of money, but he is still in the race, precisely to drain your potential resources (sorry Dennis). Democrats and Liberals are united in wanting to beat Bush, they won't be fooled again to vote for you or volunteer or even give you money.

Over and over again, I read stories from former Nader voters or supporters who say "Ralph Don't Run" and although "I don't regret voting for him in 2000, I won't do it again." This time, it is painfully obvious that there is a difference between the two parties.

One clearly cares more about clean elections, clean environment, reigning in corporate power, providing health care for citizens, and all the other issues you care about than the other. Independents, liberals, and dissolutioned Democrats know from experience what a Bush White House is like, they know that we can't let him get another 4 year in power.

For God's sakes, your old public advocacy groups like Public Citizen, lost 20% of its funding after 2000, specifically due to your run. No one wants you to run except Karl Rove (and you)! Can't you see that it would hurt all the causes you care about? People won't return your calls any more, your influence has waned. Your "exploratory committee" can't release its' address because the staff fears for thier lives. Isn't that a sign, like Mel Gibson's actor for the Passion of the Christ getting struck by lighting?

Asked if he would withdraw if he concluded his candidacy would merely ensure President Bush's re-election, Nader told Meet the Press, "When and if that eventuality occurs, you can invite me back on the program and I'll give you the answer." OK, now come back and answer the question.

Potential VP candidate and current Governor of New Mexico Bill Richardson explained Nader's motiviation better than I could:

"It's his personal vanity because he has no movement. Nobody's backing him," Richardson said Sunday in advance of Nader's announcement.

"The Greens aren't backing him. His friends urge him not to do it. It's all about himself," Richardson told "Fox News Sunday".

"Now, Ralph's made some great contributions to consumer issues over the years, but clearly it's not going to help us," he said. "I don't think he'll have a sizable impact, but it's terrible if he goes ahead because it's about him. It's about his ego. It's about his vanity and not about a movement that supposedly he headed for many years very effectively."

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