It's been said that American politics "covers the gamut from A to B." In the U.S., if you were a small political minority with no chance of winning an election, you were considered irrelevant at best and radical scum at worst. As we've seen over the last four years of Democrats dumping on Nader voters, a leftist political minority is looked upon as having no right to exist, and we're supposed to shut up and go away. Even if you represent, in Oregon, roughly one voter in 20 (Nader, 2000 election and current polls), you are not allowed to play in the big boys' corporate-financed game. It's unfair, Democrats tell us, for us to compete with them. We have no right. We are arrogant egotists. No power, no legitimacy.
But a funny thing happened to the major parties in recent years. Driven by the need to please their corporate masters and Suzy Suburban, Democrats dragged their party to the right. Unable to see a significant difference between the parties, voters started mentally flipping a coin, resulting in a 50-50 split between the major parties in presidential elections.
Amazingly enough, this has given the American left, powerless since the 1930s, the deciding vote -- if we have the guts to use it. Democrats know we have the power, hate it, and are screaming at us not to use it. But if we don't use it we won't have it, and Democrats will continue drifting to the right. American politics will become ever more narrow.
I say let's use it.
We can put Ralph Nader on the Oregon ballot and give voters a real choice. All we need to do is to get 1,000 registered voters together at the same time in the same place. Join us on April 5, 6 p.m., at the Roseland Theater, 8 NW 6th Ave. It's free. If you're not already registered to vote you can register there.