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Sunday, February 24, 2008

A Cooler Head

posted by on February 24 at 15:56 PM

Atrios on Nader

Who cares?

.38% in 2004.

I could get .38%.

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The first intelligent Slog post regarding Nader today. Thanks, Dan.

Posted by Mahtli69 | February 24, 2008 4:21 PM

Was that Nader's Blood Alchol Count?

Posted by Zander | February 24, 2008 4:22 PM

@2, Bush's BAC on an average day by lunchtime.

Posted by Andrew | February 24, 2008 4:31 PM

I'd give you a 100% Dan!

Posted by Suz | February 24, 2008 4:31 PM

2,883,105 votes for Nader in 2000. I bet Atrios couldn't get that, and I bet Dan Savage wouldn't come anywhere close.

Posted by no cherrypicking | February 24, 2008 4:39 PM

I just can't stand this guy... I am all four a third party in the US, but this is not the way to go. If everyone voted for Nader pledged that they would have not voted at all if it weren't for Nader, then I think I would be 50% ok with it... but this jackass could make the difference in certain states...

Posted by Jason H. | February 24, 2008 4:47 PM

@5 2004 and 2008 is/will be quite a bit different than 2000, Nader's bullshit about tweedledee and tweedledum wont work on anyone who is serious about the election

Posted by vooodooo84 | February 24, 2008 4:47 PM

Who cares?

You'll care if Texas, Ohio, or Florida goes Red and we're doomed to eight more years of a never-ending downwards spiral and Hundred Years War that sucks the lifeblood out of this country ...

If you're tempted to vote Nader this year .. don't vote. Period.

At some point you have to think of your country - and being an ass is not acceptable when you doom us all.

Posted by Will in Seattle | February 24, 2008 5:21 PM

So, let me for nobody will help preserve our delicate democracy (that only the innocent and brave democrats can preserve ***cough***)...but voting for Nader will destroy everything.

That doesn't make any sense.

If the Democrats have the best candidates with the best platforms then they have nothing to worry about.

There wouldn't be something weak about them that would become visible under the scrutiny of a Nader candidacy...would there?

What are you afraid of?

Do you think you will be unconsciously drawn to vote for someone other than Mama Clinton or Barak Koresh?

Don't worry...if all else fails, you will be able to blame him if McCain wins...phew!

Posted by patrick | February 24, 2008 5:42 PM

We're afraid of you, patrick. You have this all figured out and your devastating logic is irrefutable. Do go on.

Posted by elenchos | February 24, 2008 6:14 PM

Zander @2: .38% is actually Bush's latest approval rating.

Posted by RainMan | February 24, 2008 6:16 PM

I'm sorry...I should never question you elenchos...this blog exists only so you can hear each other speak.

sorry for interrupting.

if anyone other than Obama runs for president someone else will win.

how could I come to any other conclusion?

Posted by patrick | February 24, 2008 7:57 PM

No, no. I like your theory. You've discovered that none of the viable candidates are perfect. None of the viable parties are perfect. And so you want to talk us into throwing the election to the worst candidate from the worst party. Because naturally if things cannot be absolutely perfect, then the next best thing is to head straight to hell.

This is just brilliant. You should keep posting really angry attacks on the viable candidates because that is sure to bring lots of us around.

Posted by elenchos | February 24, 2008 8:47 PM

FO Patrick.

Seriously, after 7 goddamn years, this is not funny any more.

Wake up!

Posted by Will in Seattle | February 24, 2008 8:51 PM

If Nader's run is a still a major story in a week, then maybe we should be concerned.

Otherwise, let's just keep our eye on the ball, the election in perspective, and defeat the forces who got us in the current mess we are in.

Posted by Andy Niable | February 24, 2008 9:25 PM

Nader needs to form a new third party - the Self Esteem Party - and every vote he gets from 88 Vanagon owning weedheads can give him the tiny little blast of Serotonin he so obviously and desperately needs. Nader helped kill over 3000 Americans by running in 2000. Ralph, time to get a psychoanalyst.

Posted by Bob | February 24, 2008 9:34 PM

Having Nader around and seeing who supports his candidacy, and why, is useful because it tells you so much about peoples' character. There are some nihilists around who thrive on hate and want to destroy everything, and Nader draws them out in the open.

Posted by elenchos | February 24, 2008 9:38 PM

The Democratic party and progressives (aka liberals) have a difficult relationship. Neither wants to acknowledge that they need each other. Centrist Democrats (the Clintons, the pre-global warming activist Gore, Kerry to a lesser extent) are embarrased by those of us who are unabashedly pro-choice, support full marriage equality for couples of all types, believe access to quality health care and a decent education is a right and not a privilege for those with money, that the United States should not use its power to bully other countries, that the environment is worth preserving, etc. They believe our positions won't play in Peoria and try to distance themselves from us while taking our votes for granted. Progressives sense this and resent the party for ignoring their voices. Thus the temptation to go for Nader or other third party candidates. Unfortunately the reality is twofold: the Democratic Party needs us because without us they would not have managed to get even the 50% (give or take) their candidates got in 2000 and 2004. But progressives need the party because we don't on our own have the numbers to provide an effective opposition to centrist Democrats or the better organized Republicans (look at the NDP in Canada to see what I mean).

Nader's candidacy in 2000 took enough progressives away from the Democratic party in a crucial state to affect the outcome of the election. Whether or not Gore ran the best campaign isn't the point--I can't believe anyone in their right mind can claim that all 84,000 Nader voters in Florida would have either stayed home or voted for Bush or another candidate if Nader hadn't run. This would explain the anxiety many of us had in 2004 and are having in 2008.

Howard Dean recognized the need to bring young progressive voices into the Democratic party during the 2004 primary season. And he was very successful at organizing and motivating new voters. He deserves to be remembered for helping to breathe new life into a party that desperately needed it. Unfortunately 2004 wasn't the time for change. Enough Americans were still gung-ho about the war in Iraq, apparently still believing that Saddam Hussein was resposible for 9/11. The Katrina fiasco was still in the future, as was Bush's overreaching what he thought was a mandate by monkeying around with Social Security. Almost 50% of us knew what a menace he was, but obviously it wasn't enough.

So here we are in 2008. The voters in 2006 left a giant footprint in the Republican party's ass. No one likes or even cares about Bush any more and the focus is now on who will clean up his mess. Unfortunately the Democratic party still has the same problem with us pesky progressives. Nancy Pelosi refuses to even bring up impeachment hearings and hands Bush/Cheney all the dollars they need to continue their senseless war in Iraq. Apparently Congress is still (why? why on earth?) afraid of appearing too liberal for Mr and Mrs Middle America. And you wonder why we realists are a bit nervous about a potential spoiler challenge from the left in an election that logic dictates should be handed to the Democrats on a silver platter?

If only the Democratic Party had a candidate who can inspire and excite young voters. One who understands and supports progressive values. Someone who says "Yes we can!" when facing hard challenges and actually has the intelligence to make it happen. Someone who may not have been in Congress for very long but who can choose a VP and cabinet appointees who are more experienced with the way Washington works. Someone who can bring independents and even moderate Republicans on board. Hmm, if only the Democratic party had such a candidate. Oh, wait a minute...

Posted by RainMan | February 24, 2008 9:41 PM

White don't they just have a grumpy old white men's party? McCain and Nader could have a joint ticket!!!

Posted by Some people just don't know when to retire.... | February 24, 2008 9:56 PM

@16 Do you really think Osama Bin Laden would have cared if it had been Al Gore leading the country that's funding repressive regimes in the Middle East and extracting their mineral resources? America looks and acts pretty much the same from the perspective of non-Americans regardless of which party holds the White House.

Posted by Mark at YVR | February 24, 2008 9:59 PM

No, I'm talking about the military deaths in Iraq. Thanks Ralph. Seriously, psychoanalysis and relaxation tapes. Visualize a waterfall. You going over it.

Posted by Bob | February 24, 2008 10:15 PM

Katrina was Naders fault too, don't forget it.

And it's his fault that gay people want to get married.

If he didn't run in 2000 Heath Ledger would be alive right now.

I don't know what is more laughable - the idea that a 72 year old man craves attention so he is going to run for President or the entire world was spun off kilter because the same guy ran 8 years ago.

You think he has an ego problem, yet you also think he is responsible for everything that happens.

You are all just pulling my leg, right? Thats what this're just funning me....Knock Knock. Who's there?


Watch the heads of the Democrats start to turn all snake like and the forked tongues begin to wag and the poison shoot from the fangs.

Who do you think is going to vote for him that would otherwise vote for Obama?

Posted by patrick | February 24, 2008 10:15 PM

Which is why you center-hugging Dems don't have to worry about Nader being a spoiler this year.

In a perfect world, Hillary Clinton would be the new Rush Limbaugh, and Ralph Nader would be the new Barack Obama.

Posted by K | February 24, 2008 10:20 PM

Nobody is going to vote for him. He's irrelevant except to help a few weedheads focus.

We just hate him for 2000 and can't let go. We have Nader Derangement Syndrome. We even believe that the Corvair was kind of a wicked cool car by GM and is a sweet rod if you get the SS and paint it aquamarine. Nader sucks, man.

Posted by Bob | February 24, 2008 10:24 PM

No 23, in a perfect world I would be Daniel Day-Lewis tonight and Ralph Nader would be getting a colonoscopy by a presenile demented proctologist with a really bad Fentanyl addiction.

Posted by Bob | February 24, 2008 10:30 PM

Bob, I do believe you hate Nader more than Bush, McCain, Cheney, and Rumsfeld put together.

I think that's a problem.

Posted by K | February 24, 2008 10:34 PM


1. Al Gore would not have ignored an intelligence briefing a month before 9/11 saying Osama Bin Laden was planning a major action some time soon. No intelligent person would have ignored such a memo. Unfortunately, we did not have an intelligent person in the White House.

2. Even if the 9/11 attacks had taken place under Gore's watch Gore would have actually gone after Bin Laden and captured him. Bush has said he doesn't know or really worry about where Bin Laden is. If the president has taken an oath vowing to protect the country from all enemies foreign and domestic but doesn't give a rat's ass about the location of someone who killed 3000 Americans in New York and Washington DC then he is not fit to hold that office.

3. Al Gore would not have further alienated the Middle East by invading an Arab country unprovoked. No one is arguing that Saddam Hussein wasn't a complete asswipe, but he was not a threat to this country. The Iraq war not only worsened relations with the Arab/Islamic world but with our traditional allies as well.

I can't believe I have spent the good part of a Sunday arguing with tinfoil helmeted Nader supporters about why this country would have been better off under Al Gore (or even a chimpanzee) than under Bush. I feel like I have been arguing that the Pope is Catholic. One more reason Ralph Nader should go fuck himself.

Posted by RainMan | February 24, 2008 10:38 PM

26, did you know there is currently, before the INTERNET BOARD OF GOVERNORS,a proposition (under Bulletin 48.9(a) Internet Forum Procedures rev. 2006) to modify Godwin's Law to include Donald Rumsfeld references along with Hitler/Nazis?

Get em out while you can.

But no, Nader is only an angry pimple on the hairy butt of America's Imperial Hate Machine while the BushCo crowd is everything from the crack on in.

Posted by Bob | February 24, 2008 10:52 PM

Bid Laden is in Saudia Arabia - hiding - with the full knowledge and co operation of Bush .... get real. His family are part of the multi billionaire ruling cabal.

The Saudi royal family is totally corrupt and in had to had league with Bush to make piles of money on oil and US middle east policy.

Secret deals have been struck about taking Bid Laden, who gets high marks from middle eastern populations ... duh, America has little appeal there anymore.

The EU has anything they want to buy.
America is the war monger and stupid player in the twisting politics of the area.

Back to Nader - what a fool. Utter paid for whore, it seems suffering dementia in mass forms. Sad.

Had he released his voters in 2000 - he would have had a second page in political history. Instead he took a few more millions.

Bad trade Ralph, and you are looking sour and are repeating the same old shit. Sad.

Posted by John | February 25, 2008 1:36 AM

I love Ralph, and I hate Ron. Suck on that, Slog commenters...

Thanks for the attention, too. More people responding to an obvious troll leads to more inflamed comments, more free publicity, and more awareness.

Flame on, fucktards.

Posted by mmbb | February 25, 2008 3:18 AM

The vitriol the Democrats hold for Nader and Nader voters can be startling. For every lefty I know who voted for Nader I know twenty who didn't bother to get off the couch and go to the ballot box. It's often claimed that a vote for Nader is a vote for the Republican. How this makes any sense, I don't understand; at "worst" (from a Democrat's perspective) a vote for Nader is a vote that should have been for the Democrat but wasn't. Is this really any worse than a presumptive Democrat voter staying at home? And does anyone doubt that there are a great many more lazy Democrats than there are Nader voters? Wouldn't it be better strategy - and more logical - to take the energy currently used to excoriate Nader and his supporters and use it to shame the apathetic into voting?

Posted by 您看什么看? | February 25, 2008 5:59 AM

Another choice on the ballot. If you do not like Nader then simply do not vote for him. He has a right to be on the ballot and citizens have a clear right to campaign and vote for him even if it takes votes away from your candidate. This is what democracy looks like. The two party system needs to end and if Nader contributes to that then more power to him.

Posted by Doug | February 25, 2008 6:36 AM

@32 No one's disputing his right to run, only the rightness of running.

And third part presidential candidacies are not what will end the two party system, simply because we have a plurality, winner take all system. With this system, third party candidates simply dilute the vote for their side of the political spectrum, leading to the second most popular candidate winning.

Posted by Gitai | February 25, 2008 8:16 AM

Nader's rant is that both parties are beholden to corporations and that he won't be. It's not about abortion, or global warming, or gay couples who want to marry. That is except to say that he's been a help to the Republican'ts who are totally wrong on these and other issues. He doesn't like corporate control of government. But if he had thrown his support to Gore in 2000 with the understanding that Gore would curb their influence or any senario like that, we wouldn't have the mess we're in now. He can't compromise. He is stubborn beyond reason.And anybody who deludes themselves into thinking that Nader is somehow going to end the two party system is just as unreasonable and are doing this country and all of us a great disservice. That's what we have and that's what we will always have so either work with it or get yourself some good anti- depressants.

Posted by Vince | February 25, 2008 8:20 AM

bob, i sense a lot of hostility towards vanagons.

and weed.

both are at worst neutral in the cosmic scheme of things.

of course, i once smoked marijuana, and once desired an 88 synchro vanagon.

Posted by max solomon | February 25, 2008 8:28 AM

I've never understood why people think Ralph Nader would make a good president. Does he KNOW how to be the chief executive of the United States? And most importantly, would he have the political backing to get changes made?

Of course, the answer to both questions is NO and rightfully so. I'm a big liberal but I don't want ANY fringe candidate elected to high office. Sure, all you hippy-dippy, liberal progressives would be delighted if Nader won and somehow managed to make all the sweeping changes you wanted but you need to remember if that were actually possible, that it could just as easily happen on the other side of the spectrum. You'd all shit your pants if an extreme right wing candidate swept into office and started making all sorts of sweeping, conservative changes to American government and scarily, they have a better chance of accomplishing that, than the left does.

The only kind of third party that could possibly succeed in this country and be able to elect candidates to Congress and the presidency would be a Centrist party and that wouldn't make you very happy, would it? A liberal, progressive third party would just disenfranchise the Democrats and an ultra conservative third party would do the same to the Republicans.

Living in a progressive, liberal and fair political utopia on a national scale would be great but it's unrealistic in a country of our size. Only the rationality of centrists can keep us from descending into anarchy. If you want a nationally progressive government, you're going to have to move to a smaller country like Canada or Sweden. It's that simple.

Posted by michael strangeways | February 25, 2008 9:34 AM

The only kind of third party that could possibly succeed in this country and be able to elect candidates to Congress and the presidency would be a Centrist party and that wouldn't make you very happy, would it?

Actually, it would. If that party was not the Dems, then the Dems could actually embrace the left and stop running towards the center. If that party was the Dems, which it may as well be, then I'd have a party I could completely believe in rather than (usually) just throw my lot in and hope for a couple of sevens.

Posted by K | February 25, 2008 9:43 AM

All I'm saying is, after seven frickin years, it's time to stop whining - and realize that if you vote for the non-Dem you're consigning this nation to another eight years of going backwards.

There's noble purpose - and there's stupidity.

Eight years is frickin stupidity.

Posted by Will in Seattle | February 25, 2008 11:35 AM

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