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government selection 2004

Nader Convention as a main feature?

Why isn't the Nader event a main feature? Can this happen asap? It's a big deal, whether you like him or not.
Why isn't the Nader event a main feature? Can this happen asap? It's a big deal, whether you like him or not.
no thanks 18.Jun.2004 17:26

Andy

If you put the Nader Convention as a main feature you also need to put any John Kerry and Democratic Party events as features. Its only fair...

Onthe 18.Jun.2004 17:37

Mark

Fair? Just because the views of the forest activists are up on the site does not mean that the timber industry is then allowed to have equal time.

The democrats have millions of dollars for their PR - Nader deserves to be heard here because he and his views are under-represented. There does not then need to be equal time for Kerry (Who is a war-mongering corporate dominator)

why is there no feature????? 18.Jun.2004 19:20

Anti-WAR

Can some indy volunteer please put something up in the main area announcing the convention on the 26th? This is a huge event that will have a big impact not only on this election but our nation's future. I think that it is clear that the demand for publicity is clear (and fuck the DEMOCRATS and their $$$$). Indymedia should give the event proper publicity so that everyone can make their own decisions about whether to attend or not.

Don't take our choices from us... that makes us no better than the facists I despise.

Front and center 18.Jun.2004 20:28

AA

I agree. The Nader Rally should be a feature article...

I will be there (again) to support Ralph and I hope you are too.

please be realistic 18.Jun.2004 20:30

Andy

Mark -

Nader's views aren't under-represented. They aren't accepted by the American people thus aren't deserving of much media coverage.

Anti-WAR -

"Don't take our choices from us... that makes us no better than the facists I despise."

By not supporting the leading candidate who actually has a real chance of defeating Bush, you are supporting a facist regime. If you truly don't like Bush, you wouldn't waste for vote for a guy who doesn't and won't have a chance of beating Bush. Oh well, you are probably a reTHUGlican troll anyway.

face the fact andy 18.Jun.2004 21:18

kerry is a fascist too

over and out.

Circular logic 18.Jun.2004 22:55

George Bender

"Nader's views aren't under-represented. They aren't accepted by the American people thus aren't deserving of much media coverage."

That's a neat little bit of circular logic you've got going there Andy. The same logic used by the news media, although mainly as an excuse: Certain candidates are very low in the polls, therefore we won't cover them, therefore people won't hear about them and they will always be low in the polls ... and so forth. It's a way of keeping new ideas out of American politics. Keeping the lid on.

Except that those of us who are being screwed by the system know we're being screwed, and that the Democrats and Republicans aren't doing anything about it, and so the pressure for change builds up and produces a Ralph Nader. We aren't going away. The American political system will eventually have to accomodate itself to change, it's just a question of when.

In defense of Portland IndyMedia though, the Nader convention was recently featured. I would think everyone who uses this website would have heard about it by now. We need to get out and get the word to people who don't read PIM.


response from a 18.Jun.2004 23:25

pdx indy editorial volunteer

George Bender is correct. This event was already featured:
 http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2004/06/290503.shtml

Andy, who writes, "If you put the Nader Convention as a main feature you also need to put any John Kerry and Democratic Party events as features. Its only fair..." hasn't been paying enough attention to the pdx indy feature style, but is well corrected by Mark, who writes, "Fair? Just because the views of the forest activists are up on the site does not mean that the timber industry is then allowed to have equal time."

I would add that the idea that media should be "fair and balanced" is ridiculous, and has never been followed by any media source. All media is partisan and always has been. Back in the day, when a town had 5-6 dailies (not 1 or maybe 2), the "bias" of each publication was obvious and up-front. There would be a union paper, a business paper, a communist paper, etc., and it was fairly clear where they were coming from. That's how they sold papers. The idea of "objective journalism" is a conceit created in the late 30's with the heavy support of the New York Times. The idea was pushed as a way of creating media that represented only the interests of the ruling class and business. It worked. Journalism schools pushed this new lie and trained people how to cop it. Folks actually came to believe that media could be "objective". This mode of journalism also requires a certain level of education to create, which further pushed the media out of regular peoples' hands. It was a process of disempowerment and mental colonization. We are all suffering from the effects of it to this day.

pdx indy has no specific political bias -- it is not a "liberal" or "leftist" publication, though many of the viewpoints fall generally into those categories. Rather, it is a tool for empowerment and mental decolonization, in which regular folks who write their stories are able to reach a large audience. No elite group of writers composes the features; all features are taken directly from the newswire with no editing or spelling "correction" or anything like that. pdx indy does have other biases though: for truth and against corporate propaganda, for individual expression, and for passion. Within this context, there is no room for features extolling the virtues of Kerry or Bush, and only some room for celebrating Nader. The current set of feature selectors have agreed that, for the time being, there should be no features endorsing candidates or parties. Many feel that to do so would be to endorsing the current political system, which is corrupt, disempowering, and highly destructive. Even a U.S. government with Nader at the top would still be a government, and you know what they say: "There's no government like NO government!"

The Nader convention announcement was featured because it is an interesting piece of news highlighting a perhaps unique political structure (which is the ability to have such a convention at all). It is doubtful that it will become a permanent top feature in the days before the event, though; resistance among the editor volunteers would probably preclude that. Who knows, though. We'll see.

Anyway, it's always good for folks to write in to the newswire making requests like this. Many of the requests are taken and implemented. As people discuss things on the site, the direction and form of pdx indy changes and morphs, which is a good thing. No one wants the site to be static or stultifying.

Hope this all made some sense. Other editor volunteers probably have other opinions to one side or the other of this one.

I want to help 18.Jun.2004 23:27

J.C.

George Bender - How can I help? I think that everyone has a right to pick the candidate who best represents them. For me, that is Nader. I turned 18 last year and I haven't had a chance to vote yet, but I would be proud to cast my first vote for Nader.

I want to make sure that I get that opportunity. What can I do to help? I don't know anyone who is involved with his campaign, but I would like to be involved. How can I help make sure that Nader is on the ballot, other than going to the nominating convention?

Is there an office I can volunteer at or something?

Thanks!

To indymedia editor volunteer 18.Jun.2004 23:33

J.C.

How can we, the readers, help make it a feature? Is there anyone we can write to? I understand that everone is divided on this issue, but I think it is important... and beyond that I think that a lot of other people do think it is important too.

Indymedia features a lot of stories as main stories, and I don't see why this should be any exception. It is a significant event that has a lot of local relevence, as much if not more than other featured stories.

Here's how to help 18.Jun.2004 23:44

Nader Supporter

J.C. -

The Nader Nominating Convention really needs volunteers! You don't need to know anyone or have experience. You can volunteer by phoning:
(503)224-2647 ext.112
You might have to leave a message, but someone will get to back to you shortly.

We are trying to spread the word by flyering and postering and attending events. We need all the help we can get because democrats are busy tearing down our posters.

Also, we will need volunteers at the event, itself.

Also, email/phone everyone you know who you think may be interested and get other Nader supporters to make a commitment to attend the convention

Also, visit:
www.naderoregon.com

Thanks!

J.C. 18.Jun.2004 23:56

George Bender

Thank you for your offer to help get Ralph Nader on the ballot. I've copied the material below from our website,  http://naderoregon.org. We also have an email list you can subscribe to through the website.

To volunteer to help spread the word about this convention, call 503-224-2647 ext. 112 or email  jkafoury@votenader.org

We need help with:

Putting up posters
Passing fliers at events
Making phone calls
Doing research
Helping at the convention


No government? 19.Jun.2004 01:34

George Bender

"Even a U.S. government with Nader at the top would still be a government, and you know what they say: "There's no government like NO government!"

I would never say that. Sounds like a libertarian or anarchist philosophy. We need government to run services that people have decided they want to pay for together through taxes, such as schools, libraries, etc. We also need government to keep business under control so it can't exploit us, which is the core of Nader's campaign. The problem for some time now has been that business is not regulated, and it has taken over the government.

Unless you're wealthy, it is quite likely that at some point you will need some government run program to survive. I guarantee that at that point you will change your attitude.


Musings on the role and scope of beneficial government 19.Jun.2004 18:00

zero_sum0g

George Bender - you said:
"We need government to run services that people have decided [emphasis added] they want to pay for together through taxes, such as schools, libraries, etc. We also need government to keep business under control so it can't exploit us, which is the core of Nader's campaign. The problem for some time now has been that business is not regulated, and it has taken over the government. "

If I were to label my political views, I would probably use the words libertarian/anarchist among others, but in fact I do agree with you in the main (solidarity is key!). The government structures you describe are wholesome and beneficial, although there is still the concern of mandatory taxation (for those who choose to "opt-out" of all benefits... an uncommon bunch, therefore not harmful to the overall budget.)

As I see it, the key to preventing corruption, and influence of regulatory structures by big business, is transparency, as well as a complete ban on bribery, or "campaign contribution" as it is described euphemistically by those who benefit from the arrangement. A state acting without the profit motive would be far more likely to stay within the covenant it arranged with the people (witness the rapidly expanding corporate state in the U.S., and note the corresponding decline of original Constitutional protections.


Nader to abolish federal income tax for incomes under $100,000 19.Jun.2004 19:57

Nader Reader

Nader came out last month with a plan to eliminate federal income on any income under $100,000. I assume there would still be social security tax, and any state income tax. He makes up the difference by closing loopholes and taxing pollution, addictive substances and, most importantly, stock speculation (1/4 percent tax on all stock purchases).

Nader's approach to government can be summed up like this, I believe:

The People give birth to Governments, and Governments give birth to Corporations, so each has the duty and right to exercise parental authority over its offspring. Ultimately all regulation must be regulation of Government and Corporations by the People, not regulation of the People and Corporations by Government, or regulation of the People and Government by Corporations. Unfortunately today in our country we have the latter two circumstances, and that means our democracy is dangerously upturned.

So if you listen to Republicorp criticism of Nader, you hear them wrongly label Nader a socialist or authoritarian, accusing him of favoring regulation of the People and Corporations by the Government. What they are really complaining about is Nader's attempt to exclude Corporations from being counted as part of the People.

In 1886 a Supreme Court ruling granted Corporations personhood under the law, empowering Corporations to assert that, since they are People too, they should get to control Government along with flesh-and-blood People. This was gradually cemented into law, especially in the seventies and eighties when corporations rode the judicial coattails of civil rights and civil liberties rulings and legislation to assert their privacy rights, immunity to search and seizure, free speech and thus right to influence elections, etc. Being far more powerful than real people, these corporate super-persons have usurped the role of the real People in our democracy.

So when Republicorp say Nader wants Government to micromange the People, they really mean he wants Government to exercise proper parental authority over Corporations, and wants Corporations to stop presuming to have parental authority over Government. They evade the fact that Nader's position is simply that only the People properly have parental authority over Government, not Corporations.

When Demicorp label Nader a spoiler, they mean he doesn't accept the "reality" that the People must accept that Corporations are their super-equals, and compromise and cooperate with the Corporations on how to wield their joint parental authority over Government. In essence, the Demicorp position is that the People are the lesser spouse in a marriage with the Corporations, and they can only expect to have a secondary or softening influence on the way Corporations exercise parental authority over Government. The People can make the Government more compassionate, but cannot stop the Corporations from molding the Government on the whole into the basic profit-driven image of their Corporate step-parent.

So Nader is saying, the People should kick the Corporations out and whip them back into line as the perpetual grandchildren they truly are. The analogy fails in the sense that Government is forever a child, never should become independent of the authority of the People, and same with Corporations in relation to Government and the People. That's because Government and Corporations are not People -- they are constructs, inventions, the brain-children of the People, not entities that can function meaningfully or productively unless under the continual control and guidance of the skilled eyes and hands of the People.

This is why it makes perfect sense why Nader is so adamantly opposed to any Government intrusion into real people's lives, but all in favor of Government regulation of Corporations. Because he does not put the cart before the horse, or the child above the parent -- pick your analogy, you get the idea.
But he does believe Government should only regulate Corporations to keep their operations in accord with the preservation of quality of life, liberty and ultimate authority of the People in our democracy.

Nader had read the entire Congressional Record, from the founding of the U.S. forward, by the time we was in college. He finished at the top of his class at Harvard Law, and threw himself into public interest work, because his parents were ultra-civic-minded mom-and-pop restaurateurs in their small town in Connecticut and they raised him for public service. I don't think there is anyone who has a more profound understanding of American democracy, warts and all, than he does. And I think he knows how to fix it, in a real nuts and bolts way. His thinking is completely steeped in the realities of American history.

Well, that's at least good enough reason to get him on the ballot so he has a chance to offer what he has to say about government. He's 70, so I don't know how many more chances we'll get to pick his brain.

Don't promote Nader 26.Jun.2004 06:57

Irene

Do NOT promote Nader. A vote for Nader is a vote for Bush! Nader is telling Canadians not to elect a conservative government. Look what he is doing in his own country: TAKING VOTES AWAY FROM THE DEMOCRATS! He will do to Kerry what he did to Gore.