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economic justice | government | labor selection 2004

Why I'm voting for Ralph Nader

I sent this letter to The Oregonian.
I'll be voting for Ralph Nader in November, largely to send a message to the Democrats.

Over the last 30 years the rich have gotten much richer, the middle class has stayed comfortably in place, and the working class - the class below the middle class - has fallen further and further behind.

Corporations have gained enormous power and have taken over the two major parties, as Nader says. They've also waged economic war on the working class, cutting our wages and benefits, and making our jobs much more insecure.

Politically we have nothing left to lose. It's time to tell the Democrats, who used to be the working-class party, that they can either return to their roots or get used to losing close elections.

Lynn Porter
I would suggest it would be better if you voted Democratic Lynn 24.Feb.2004 22:38

Democratic Party Chairman

I mean you wouldn't want me to have to ship you off of to Alaska to work as a slave for Haliburton, now would you?

Oh, the democrats will get the 24.Feb.2004 22:52


message. Like last time. This is a conservative country, and in order to beat Bush while the far left piddles their vote on independents in NATIONAL elections (instead of local where it actually makes sense) they've had to move farther to the right. But I don't care what you do. The Greens won't even embrace Nader anymore. He doesn't have the power to be a spoiler this election.

yes, democratic strategy has been working so well... 24.Feb.2004 23:03

ex-democrat voter

I mean, the strategy of moving to the right has been so successful that the republicans now control the white house and both houses of congress. I guess they're strategy is if you can't beat them, join them, and then lose to them again. I am disgusted that I ever gave these weasels my votes. Just look at Kerry and Edwards talk up how they oppose gay marriage and would support an amendment to the constitution defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman. The democrats should be ashamed at what their party has become. If people are willing to take it back, I'll join in, but all I see from the democrats these days is sniveling excuses and fallacious justifications. I still think that if the democrats were smart they'd adopt a progressive platform (like universal health care, you think that might be attractive to the 40+ million people without health coverage and the hundred million or so more worried about losing theirs?) But then I can't remember the last time the democrats adopted a sound strategy for winning an election.

Right, that's why you're so afraid of him 24.Feb.2004 23:12

Lynn Porter

You're all so busy attacking Nader because you know he won't get any votes and you have nothing to worry about. Yeah, right.

A matter of degree 24.Feb.2004 23:15


As a crude example, who would you vote for if the GOP promised you $5 a day, the Dems $10 a day or Nader party $20 a day, and if you knew that Nader had zero chance of winning and that your vote for him could lessen your chance of the Dem winning?

Lynn--the world is black and white to you-- 24.Feb.2004 23:25


you personally. When you say "you all" to refer to "us" democrats, you're not referring to me. I'm really not worried about Nader. But it's just like saying "all democrats sold us out"--all democrats? Really? Every single one? Nader isn't a god, you know, he has flaws too. People have good and bad. The democratic party has good and bad. You overgeneralize.

Demoncrats after Columbian oil 24.Feb.2004 23:25


the pattern has seemed to be the Demoncrats prefer the oil offshore Columbia/Venezuala via Occidental Petroleum (connex with Al Gore) and the Republicans prefer the oil of the Middle East (Bush connex with Saudi royal family)..

though i could be wrong and Kerry could be a nice guy who will use the military to dig wells for Iraqis and encourage Americans to ride bikes instead of burning Iraqi petroleum in SUVs..

since the US military is beginning to gather near Haiti to quell the timely unrest before the election, could this be a mirror repeat of another Hatitan invasion leading up to oil siezures in Columbia, similar to Big Willie Clinton style?

maybe we will get a demoncrat with a winning smile :)


Good luck 24.Feb.2004 23:35

Bad Ron

The protests did'nt stop the war in Iraq or the one in Afganistan. The peoples votes did'nt count in the last election. (I mean gore won, but Bush is pResident) The media destroyed both Dean and Kucinich. Now what makes you people think that theres even a chance of the bells of freedom ringing in November.

Admit it 24.Feb.2004 23:38

Stand Up

America has one party with two right wings

Ed 24.Feb.2004 23:45

Lynn Porter

I'm 64 years old and have lived through decades of Republican and Democratic presidents and I can tell you, it hasn't made any difference. As a working-class person I've struggled to get by under all of them. For working-class people, wages, benefits and job security have been declining for over 30 years. Democratic presidents -- Carter and Clinton -- haven't done anything to help us. Democrats are not willing to stand up to the corporations.

The object of the Nader candidacy is not to get elected. Obviously that isn't going to happen. The object is to put pressure on the Democrats, to keep hurting them until they wake up and give us what we want. Or they can lose. I'm willing to go either way.

Lynn 25.Feb.2004 00:05


Times change. The one constant is that nothing remains the same. The health care system is spiralling out of control. The working class are increasingly going right with the Christian conservatives. Unions are becoming less popular every year. Everything is going offshore including high paying WHITE COLLAR jobs. There has been a backlash against governement cradle to grave welfare state. I could go on all night. To get elected they have had to go more centrist and appease more corporate interests -or die. That is what I mean by degree.

some thoughts 25.Feb.2004 00:21

the traveler

Time to wake up Ed, the only thing the democrats have accomplished by appeasing corporate interests is lining their own pockets. They haven't appealed to the masses of voters that could put them in power. If they wanted to win they would try to appeal to those who don't see any point in supporting the democrats. And unless you really have some statistics backing up your statements about this country becoming more conservative I'll take it with a grain of salt. No matter where I travel across this country people are unhappy with the way the country is being run. What we have is the media giving Bush a free-ride for 4 years refusing to criticize anything the administration did. And they were rewarded for it. But polls have indicated that bush has trailed the unnamed democratic candidate for what, 5 months now. Bush is not popular no matter how much the tv and newspapers may say that he is. But don't take my word for it, do some traveling and talk to people. You'll see what I mean quickly enough. And while some people are clinging to religion I'd say many more are realizing that a religious fundamentalist like Bush is not going to help the people of this country.

I'm kind of ashamed of being an American 25.Feb.2004 01:11


I'd much rather be a Cascadian

Traveller 25.Feb.2004 01:18


Well I wish wht you said is true but I'm afraid its not. The conservative right has multiplied by conservative talk radio and TV and the decrease of unions and the increase in the illegal immigrants competing for their jobs. The south is the best example. Southern Dems were in solid control there but now most the good ole boys are conserv GOP.
The unions power and money is decreasing so where do you think the Dems are going to go for some operating funds? The poor? Ha? Nope corporations and special interests. Without money you will get NOWHERE real fast in politics. I dont like it and think we need reform. The gun lobby owns the GOP and lots of Dems, The United Auto Workers (SUV makers)own the Democrats as General Motors owns the Whitehouse. So what do you do? Vote for a guy with no money influence or chance of winning? No ya go for the better party. Just like any football game it ultimately comes down to a two team struggle. If ya like politics go to Italy where they have 20 parties and ultimately get nothing done.

Ed 25.Feb.2004 01:20


why do you think all that stuff happened, incrementally?

it's an entire rightward ratcheting shift - 24 years of Reaganomics.

Jim Hightower recently referred to GWB - quoting and according to Karl Rove & Co. - as "Reagan Revolution, Phase III"

the Christian Fundies (with LOTS of money) ever since Reagan/Falwell '80 have been steadily replacing socialism and community in the daily lives of working class folks with Jesus, Consumerism and The Boob Tube.

can you *believe* it's the 21st ***king Century and we still have whack-jobs like the ones on Bill Moyers' NOW PBS program last Sunday, Christian Fundies moving to Israel as residents so they can *physically witness* the Rapture at the Dome of the Rock??!?!? (I thought the Middle Ages were long gone . . . Monty Python and the Holy Grail *for real* . . .)

all made possible with the help of *Corporate* Media, hand-in-glove with ever-rightward national politicians who are in the pocket of same-said Corporations.

this is why "politics" is not operative anymore in America - it's all corporate marketing, not 'discussion of issues and implementation of policy through public forum' or some other quaint "democratic" notion . . . (with a garnish of Christian Fundamentalism wherever necessary for placation)

Kerry = corporate marketing product
Bu$h = corporate finger puppet

Nader - at least - remains an anti-corporate warrior . . .

and furthermore, Ed 25.Feb.2004 01:49


I don't like to dwell on GWB as a single persona (because he's just a puppet/figurehead for echelons of corporate and ideological brigands who are the real "evil"),

but don't you realize ***WHY*** Jim Hightower cannily recited the Karl Rove quote about GWB being "Reagan Revolution, Phase III"?

understand - this IS NOT a "rant" about how "bad" or "evil" Bu$h is, but an attempt to get at JUST WHAT THEY'VE CREATED HERE. as a persona image - or set of iconic images - to brainwash the masses with.

the guy is a FUCKING MUTANT. seriously. a walking, talking political science experiment, of sorts. I profoundly pity GWB's inner psychology and humanity (if any remaining). he actually bears more resemblance to some kind of programmed, remote-control android and his background reveals it.

I mean, how can - and who in the history of humanity - has simultaneously been:

unsuccessful Texas oilman
from elite oil/politics/CIA Director/Mafia family
"war hero"/deserter from ANG
grandson of Nazi supporter
greatest Executioner in the history of Texas
dry drunk
(un)owner of baseball team
Skull & Bones initiate
U.S. pResident not elected but APPOINTED BY SUPREME COURT
Christian Fundamentalist
effectively separated from his wife (yes)
corporate multimillionaire

this is the "leader of the free world"?!?

where is the mesh, the sychronicity, the independent human assertion of this person?

is he capable of doing anything whatsoever under his own recognizance, without someone propping him up, recharging his batteries, reprogramming/PhotoShopping his vocals/appearance, or bailing him out of his constant ineptness and incoherence?

man, Herr Doktor Karl Rove must have some *well disciplined* handlers on staff . . .

they WANTED someone like this.

a literal, political Frankenstein monster.

RepubliKKKan eugenics gone wild.

Texas Cowboy/Christian Fundie/Skull & Bones/executioner/multimillionaire/elite family Dynasty all rolled into one person.

how can they top him?

AA-AH-NOLD . . . (soon to run if his initiative for less-than-20-year U.S. Immigrants for President gets going)
Frankenstein's Replacement (Sieg Heil!)
Frankenstein's Replacement (Sieg Heil!)

Don't Think America is Wisening Up 25.Feb.2004 12:46


I think many Americans are pretty much in the dark. I go to mainstream websites to see what people think and to try to educate. I am finding that NO ONE believes that Bush lost the election. Most have never heard about the 100,000 votes arbitrarily discounted in Florida. When I make mention of it, they think I'm crazy. I can partly blame the media for hardly covering this, but the blame also lies with the public who seem to be under the spell of corporate brainwashing.

ranger did you catch this? 25.Feb.2004 12:52

absolutely amazing


Monday Feb 16, 2004

The New York Times has uncovered Katherine Harris' wipe out of thousands of voters ... only three years after killing the story exposed by the BBC TV and the Guardian. Here, 'News Dissector' Schechter, formerly of ABC's 20/20, asks how the Times could editorialize on a story they never ran in the first place. And note the Times still can't bring itself to say that the color of illegally purged voters is ... Black.
by Danny Schechter


Thanks for the info 25.Feb.2004 14:05


nothing surprises me anymore

When a country is controled by corrupt powers, what do you get? 25.Feb.2004 15:18

Plane and simple

What we have!

green1 25.Feb.2004 18:30

The pen is mightier than the sword

Congratulations to Lynn for writing to the editor and expressing her opinion. Letters to the Editor is the most read portion of the daily newspaper. If all of us who support Nader would write a letter, the Oregonian would have to print more letters in support of his candidacy, which would help to offset the stream of Anyone But Bush and rabidly anti-Nader letters. And can anyone explain why Nader is being accused of running because of his "big ego"? Why are the other candidates running? No one seems to question their motives, just Ralph Nader's. Very interesting. I am excited that Ralph is running because he is the only one who will speak truth to power in this election. I supported Kucinich, but he is being dropped into the black hole, with no help from the DNC. Greens have questioned why he doesn't run as a Green or independent, and he has said he will stay inside the Democratic Party and even chastised Ralph Nader for not trying to get on the Dem. ticket in 2000. I hope he sees now why that just won't work for progressive candidates like himself. Ralph is throwing a monkey wrench into the system once again--and that makes politics much more exciting than the droll debates between Bonesman 1 or Bonesman 2.

Thank You Lynn Porter 26.Feb.2004 23:56

Lance Del Goebel LanceGoebel@direcway.com

PERFECT ! Every word right on target. Thank you for writing your letter with such an open mind and brutal appreciation of the truth. I'm NOT afraid and I'm NOT for sale either. Being a real patriot can be very tough when 1984 style corporate rule and willful ignorance become accepted norms. Thanks so much for your inspiring letter. Lance Del Goebel

"I'll be voting for Ralph Nader in November, largely to send a message to the Democrats.

Over the last 30 years the rich have gotten much richer, the middle class has stayed comfortably in place, and the working class - the class below the middle class - has fallen further and further behind.

Corporations have gained enormous power and have taken over the two major parties, as Nader says. They've also waged economic war on the working class, cutting our wages and benefits, and making our jobs much more insecure.

Politically we have nothing left to lose. It's time to tell the Democrats, who used to be the working-class party, that they can either return to their roots or get used to losing close elections. "

Lynn Porter