The Candidate Who Shall Not Be Named

Nader/Gonzales 08

If it weren’t for my father-in-law, I’d have no idea that Ralph Nader is running for President of the United States. That’s right, folks: Nader is running again, he’s on the ballot in 45 states, and my father-in-law is a supporter. After reviewing the Vote Nader web site, reading about his views on a number of issues, and watching a handful of videos of him speaking, I have to admit that Nader almost has my vote. He at least has me thinking more about some of the issues that I care about, such as civil liberties, education, healthcare, and opposition to “preventive” war. That’s more than I can say about the two major-party candidates, who either speak in platitudes or try to peddle fear and lies.

Don’t get me wrong. I admire Barack Obama and am generally supportive of the general themes of his campaign, at least what I’ve been able to ascertain through the media filter. But I was deeply disappointed that he chose to vote for the FISA legislation granting “retroactive immunity” for telecommunications companies who broke the law on the government’s behest—after he had said he would support a filibuster of it. And I respect what John McCain did for the country 30-some years ago (in Vietnam as a soldier, not afterwards when he traded in his first wife for an uninjured model). But I’m not impressed with his voting record over the past eight years, and I don’t respect his sleazy, lying campaign ads, and I’m not interested in having four more years of a fear-mongering, bellicose president in office.

So, how is it that Ralph Nader, who has gained enough supporters to be placed on the ballot in nearly every state in the country gets absolutely no press coverage at all? Why did the mainstream media completely ignore Nader’s 3,000+ rally during the Democratic Convention but still manage to mention Ron Paul’s gathering? Why won’t the two major parties allow him to participate in the presidential debates? Nader calls it “political bigotry,” and I’m inclined to agree with him.

For those who like to claim that a vote for Nader is a “wasted vote” or that Nader is responsible for Gore’s loss in the 2000 election, you ought to watch this (running time 2:45).

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