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"Broken Promises and Political Deception"
August 3, 2002 8:13 PM   Subscribe

"Broken Promises and Political Deception" by Al Gore in the NY Times: " For well over a year, the Bush administration has used its power in the wrong way. In 2000, I argued that the Bush-Cheney ticket was being bankrolled by "a new generation of special interests, power brokers who would want nothing better than a pliant president who would bend public policy to suit their purposes and profits." Some considered this warning anti-business. It was nothing of the sort. I believe now, as I said then, that "when powerful interests try to take advantage of the American people, it's often other businesses that are hurt in the process" — most of all, smaller companies that play by the rules." (I think it's safe to say Al is running)
posted by owillis (98 comments total)

 
It would been a lot more effective if he'd bothered to run in 2000.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:30 PM on August 3, 2002


"I will fight for you"............great...........RoboGore........I'd rather see Lieberman run. I'd be more likely to vote for him.........
posted by ericdano at 8:37 PM on August 3, 2002


Spin it again, Al!
posted by BlueTrain at 8:40 PM on August 3, 2002


Al Gore's problem was that he was a dick. Of course if he runs in 2004 I'll probably have to vote for him. Bleh.
posted by delmoi at 8:40 PM on August 3, 2002


I would like to point out that during the 2000 race, the top 5 contributors to Gore/Lieberman:
Ernst & Young - $134,925
Citigroup, Inc. - $111,750
Viacom Inc - $105,175
Us Dept of Agriculture - $102,466
Goldman Sachs Group - $95,750 [source]

and of the top five industries number one was Lawyers/Law Firms [$5,240,726] and number four was Securities and Investment [$1,424,916]
[source]

His rumblings are all good and such, because at least one democrat is speaking out, but really both parties are out to screw us the same. Sure there a few core issues, but it really is all about staying and controlling their power. When you combine the total amount collected by Bush and Gore for 2000, it tops 325 million US$ - there has to be something wrong there...right? And when you see the same contributors on both sides of the coin, you wonder what the hell gore is talking about. At least we all know the basic republican platform is big business and extending the wealth of the few. Naked greed is a bit easier to take than greed that is cloaked.
posted by plemeljr at 8:45 PM on August 3, 2002


Mr. CD: How exactly did Gore not bother to run in 2000? He started out trailing Bush but managed to pull back ahead, eventually outpolling him. Sure, he made some tactical blunders (like not campaigning hard enough in his home state), but I don't think those constitute "not running."

That said, I'm disturbed that the Democrats are thinking of making him their candidate again. If he couldn't defeat an incompetent halfwit, how on earth is he going to defeat the nation's beloved hero? It was a good try, Al, but you lost. Now go home. Was it a fair loss? No, but the Supreme Court is going to be at least as stacked in W's favour next time, if it comes down to that. I don't like Lieberman's politics very much, but I do think he'd have a better chance of beating W.
posted by ramakrishna at 8:50 PM on August 3, 2002


Just like almost every other "Republicrat" affiliated politician, he sounds good, but when push comes to shove, he gets his money from the same sources. Special Interest lobbyists and big business moguls are the true power in this country, and will stay that way until the voting public decides to collectively grow a pair and put people into office that are NOT party ruled. If they don't have to answer to their respective parties, then they will begin to answer to those that truly need to be heard. The people.

This country is in serious trouble, and not just financial, though that's what everyone will naturally focus on for now. Slowly but surely, we are allowing administration after administration to remove more and more of our rights. They have worked their way into every aspect of our lives, and we let them.

Gore talks high and mighty now, but when push comes to shove, he would be answering to the same people Bush does. The ones who have the money.

Ugh. It just aggravates the hell out of me when you have people like these two, so obviously lying to the public, and we just sit back and let them, saying "Of course they're lying, they're politicians." They wouldn't be folks, if we didn't keep voting them in.
posted by lasthrsman at 8:51 PM on August 3, 2002


Maybe if he wins again, they'll actually let him be Prez.
posted by donkeyschlong at 8:55 PM on August 3, 2002


Gore talks high and mighty now, but when push comes to shove, he would be answering to the same people Bush does. The ones who have the money.

While it's true that a centrist Democrat like Fightin' Al isn't much different than a moderate Republican like Jim Jeffords or John McCain, President Bush is no moderate. There are huge differences between Bush and Gore on topics such as abortion, the role of the United Nations, gun control, deficit reduction, campaign finance reform, missile defense, and stem-cell research. Anyone who thinks there's no significant difference between Bush and Gore was spending a little too much time breathing in second-hand marijuana smoke at a Nader rally.
posted by rcade at 9:20 PM on August 3, 2002


was spending a little too much time breathing in second-hand marijuana smoke at a Nader rally.

Dooood, were you there too?
posted by BlueTrain at 9:24 PM on August 3, 2002


Unfortunately, the "everyone will screw us" line is perhaps interesting to tow at the 10 year high school reunion, or the day to day water cooler. However, there remains the true task of this country's political leaning: why continue an iteration of complaints, when the current administration is robbing you and those you know?

This then, is perhaps the wrong place for such initiative. But with such fraudulence and dishonesty within the White House (paid for by the taxpayer,) shouldn't there be a greater sound than : oh, everything is just bad?

Al Gore is a politician, yes, but who else is beneath the knell?
posted by plexi at 9:32 PM on August 3, 2002


It's a good piece, if I thought Gore really meant it I might root for him. The Democratic presidential hopeful I'm most intrigued by is Howard Dean, but I'm doubtful of his chances of winning the Democratic nomination.
posted by homunculus at 9:36 PM on August 3, 2002


As Kevin "Wealth & Democracy" Phillips said on Tim Russert's show this weekend (I'm summarizing), "Anybody who believes that a man who grew up in the Ritz Carlton in Washington DC is one of 'Us' in the 'Us vs. Them' of class politics is deluding themselves."
posted by raaka at 9:36 PM on August 3, 2002


the top 5 contributors

Most disturbing stat from that source: campaign contributions to Pat Buchanan

NASA, $8,500
Wal-Mart, $6,085
United Airlines, $5,810
Intel $5,400
US Dept of Agriculture, $5,025
US Dept of Treasury, $4,000

How can governmental agencies be campaign contributors?

US Dept of Agriculture gave Gore $102k.

Also interesting is for Bush, 11 of top 15 contributors are accounting or financial industry. Go get em, W, crack down!
posted by billder at 9:36 PM on August 3, 2002


This is the New York Times idea of CFR. Bash President Bush in editorials every day and then on Sunday let the Presidential Election loser, and democratic front-runner for the democratic party in the next election, attack the President in a poorly written Op-Ed rant.
Anyone who favors CFR has to be either an idiot or in favor of a one party (read democrat) political system.
This is a great political advertisement. I wonder which political consultant wrote it for him?
posted by flatlander at 9:39 PM on August 3, 2002


Block that metaphor! Um, you can't "tow" a line in the phrase sense, or even the more common misunderstanding of a boat or tractor's tow line. You "toe the line", i.e. on a parade ground. Oh, the cognitive dissonance.

I applaud the out-of-the-gate energy here, though I'm skeptical the I'll-fight-for-you populism will really carry the middle class, unless they're feeling mightily aggrieved. Which I don't think they are, right now.

With Gore in the race, and Lieberman swinging in from his right, will Hillary run at all? What about John Edwards? I think he's the most screwed; he doesn't want to run left.
posted by dhartung at 9:45 PM on August 3, 2002


dhartung: The only time Gore went way ahead in the polls in 2000 was after the "I'll fight for you" speech at the Democratic National Convention. It was when he backed off that line - well, that and the debates, one could argue - or made it less prominent when his numbers started heading southward again. Maybe it's just a convention effect, but every hack pundit in the world was going into that speech saying, "If he screws up this, the speech of his life (blah blah blah), he'll lose." They said he was too hot for TV, he interrupted the audience, etc., then the polls showed him blasting off.
posted by raysmj at 10:04 PM on August 3, 2002


homun: thanks for the tip on Howard Dean. He does look interesting and I hadn't heard of him.

He sounds somewhat like Gov. Kitzhaber here in Oregon, another doctor (except for the balancing-the-budget part).
posted by billder at 10:10 PM on August 3, 2002


Most disturbing stat from that source: campaign contributions to Pat Buchanan

Intel $5,400


So that's why my computer has a "Buchanan Inside" logo.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 10:12 PM on August 3, 2002


Just like almost every other "Republicrat" affiliated politician....

I just love how Naderites love to peddle the hoary lie that Republicans and Democrats are one and the same, pulling one over on the electorate, when the bald truth of the matter is that 99% of the electorate would run screaming from the Green platform if they ever heard it.
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 10:24 PM on August 3, 2002


I just love how Naderites love to peddle the hoary lie that Republicans and Democrats are one and the same, pulling one over on the electorate, when the bald truth of the matter is that 99% of the electorate would run screaming from the Green platform if they ever heard it.

generally people use that sort of sentence structure when the two ideas are related to each other in an opposing or contradicting way. you should have split that one up and just made it 2 sentences, since the ideas are unrelated.
posted by rhyax at 10:32 PM on August 3, 2002


While it's true that a centrist Democrat like Fightin' Al isn't much different than a moderate Republican like Jim Jeffords or John McCain, President Bush is no moderate.

That's true. He's poor at best.

There are huge differences between Bush and Gore on topics such as abortion, the role of the United Nations, gun control, deficit reduction, campaign finance reform, missile defense, and stem-cell research.

This is true ... They talk big difference in many of these issues. They both talked big difference in those and many more issues. But when the big money power brokers told Dubaya' to look the other way, he did. His entire environmental platform that he campaigned with was scrapped and he turned a full 360 with it. What's the difference what he says, when the proof is in what he does?

Anyone who thinks there's no significant difference between Bush and Gore was spending a little too much time breathing in second-hand marijuana smoke at a Nader rally

Anyone who thinks that there IS significant difference between ANY partisan candidate once in office, is naive at best and is the victim of the political misdirection that goes on every day. i.e. Directing your attention towards Stem Cell research while Energy lobbyists bend politicians ears in order to facilitate things like the Enron scandal.

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.
posted by lasthrsman at 10:36 PM on August 3, 2002


Rhyax,
True, the Green party has some bizarre and radical ideas. Also true that the Republican and Democrat ideals are very different, but once in office, there is very little difference between administrations. They all listen to special interest groups, the lobbyists and the mega corporations.

BTW, if memory serves, Nader was not a member of the Green party officially, he was just backed by them. Officially, I belive he is listed as independent.
posted by lasthrsman at 10:45 PM on August 3, 2002


I don't think Hillary will ever run, Edwards still needs time to get his name out. Kerry intrigues me (especially a Gore-Kerry ticket) but the nomination is Al's to refuse.

Gore's biggest bobble was listening to all the whiners (like Martha Bush) who complained about his eye rolls and exhales during the first debate (he was downright constrained compared to what I would have done listening to Dubya's claptrap). He came back in the third debate but the "I agree with Governor Bush" in the 2nd debate hurt like a bitch.

Technically the Greens listen to special interests too, don't they? Sure it's the labor unions and the enviro-groups instead of Enron and trial lawyers, but six of one is often half-dozen of another.

Prediction: The Nader/third party vote will be even more marginalized in '04.
posted by owillis at 10:57 PM on August 3, 2002


One thing I've noticed lately... the term "politician" has become a dirty word. Yet the candidates who use this term to describe their opponents are invariably "businessmen" who invariably are beholden to "business interests". They win, and we wind up with messes like Enron, WorldCom and their ilk.

The way things are going, "businessman" may eventually get a negative connotation...
posted by shecky57 at 11:08 PM on August 3, 2002


Rhyax, True, the Green party has some bizarre and radical ideas.

wow, i feel like i'm in the twilight zone, are you trying to brainwash me? i didn't say anything about that. i like the green party, and i vote for them.

Technically the Greens listen to special interests too, don't they?

they may listen, but they're not indebted to or reliant on them because big companies don't pay them anything since there is no chance they will win, if there was a chance they would win they would get paid by all the companies and then they'd be like everyone else :) ha!
posted by rhyax at 11:09 PM on August 3, 2002


generally people use that sort of sentence structure when the two ideas are related to each other in an opposing or contradicting way. you should have split that one up and just made it 2 sentences, since the ideas are unrelated.

Actually if you were to take the Nader-Filter and apply it to politics in those times, you'd find that indeed they were one in the same. His whole (sigh) stump was that of grassroots democratic involvement eventually trumping the corruption in politicans bought and cast off by profit-minded corporations. If we're to use the Nader-Filter today we still find he is still right. They are all, Democrat and Republican, bought and cast off by what is good and only good for corporations.

Hindsight being 20/20. I suppose Al Gore rightfully taking office would have only delayed the inevitable head that decades of profit-over-public strategies must have ultimately come to. Enron would have gone down anyhow. Good the recession did not happen on a Dem's watch. Giving these greed seeking frauds the light of day will ultimately result in their downfall and shame through the annals of history. The sooner the better.

No matter how many of us get pulverized and forgotten about in their desperate powergrab, the human spirit lives on. They and their's will be remembered in disgrace.

You'll have to excuse me. I watched the Douglas Adams obit Omnibus episode tonight.
posted by crasspastor at 11:15 PM on August 3, 2002


The way things are going, "businessman" may eventually get a negative connotation...
Well, the fog's so thick you can't spy the land
The fog is so thick that you can't even spy the land
What good are you anyway, if you can't stand up to some old businessman?

B Dylan, Summer Days
already has...
posted by y2karl at 11:28 PM on August 3, 2002


Crasspastor: Sheesh, maybe if a Democratic Congress had been in charge in the mid-'90s, the Enron collapse would never have happened. We'll never know, though. But we do know that Clinton opposed a tax plan that benefited Enron's phony accounting, and that he opposed SEC rule changes approved by Pitt., etc. Convenient - and very wrong - of you to leave that little part out in making the case that parties and politicians are all the same.
posted by raysmj at 11:30 PM on August 3, 2002


I meant to also add after "what is good and only good for corporations", that perhaps our President is finally getting some balls. Which is quite the point of Nader's running in the first place. The Left growing some teeth.
posted by crasspastor at 11:34 PM on August 3, 2002


Rhyax, my bad...you were actually quoting lupus_yonderboy.

As for the nader vote...good for you. The Wife and I did also.
posted by lasthrsman at 11:40 PM on August 3, 2002


Which is quite the point of Nader's running in the first place. The Left growing some teeth.

ROTFLMAO.
posted by owillis at 11:44 PM on August 3, 2002


I hear you raysmj, that it was "very wrong" of me to leave that little part out. But I was writing in Nader-Filter mode which exempts me from any opinion of my own. I was only remanding his whole reason for existence as a whistle-blower vs the Bigger Picture.

On preview:

Well said owillis. Now describe to me what about Nader's politics you disagree with?
posted by crasspastor at 11:52 PM on August 3, 2002


I'm laughing at the fact you think GWB is actually going to do anything to fight corporate crime or that his "Corporate Crime Task Force" is any kind of concession to the Ralph Naders of the world. Ralph talks an interesting game, but he is a politician like all the rest - not the untouchable white knight he's made out to be.
posted by owillis at 12:05 AM on August 4, 2002


Sorry owillis. I meant "our President" in the cynical sense.
posted by crasspastor at 12:10 AM on August 4, 2002


you mean there's going to be an election in 2004? i'm fully expecting it to be "postponed" for national security reasons. i can see it now..."it wouldn't be safe to allow a transfer of power during wartimes".
posted by centrs at 12:22 AM on August 4, 2002


Well, bushwatch has their handy 100 Differences Between Bush And Gore and Why A Green Vote Is A Bush Vote.
posted by y2karl at 12:27 AM on August 4, 2002


Edwards still needs time to get his name out.

No way!  I think he could totally pull it off; I bet there a few million voters in backwater places who would say "Hey, ain't he the guy who talked to our dead grandma?  He's good, I'll vote for him."

Y'know, use sort of a Distinguished Gentleman trick to pick up the believers-in-psychics vote.
posted by nath at 12:44 AM on August 4, 2002


Anyone who thinks that there IS significant difference between ANY partisan candidate once in office, is naive at best and is the victim of the political misdirection that goes on every day. i.e. Directing your attention towards Stem Cell research while Energy lobbyists bend politicians ears in order to facilitate things like the Enron scandal.

Stem-cell research matters to thousands of people in this country. Every one of the differences I listed matters. For instance, Gore's belief in the UN is sorely needed today, when our government seems to have fully embraced unilateralism and the John Birch wing of the Republican Party that would abolish the UN if it could. We're even moving seriously towards an attack on Iraq without allies in the Middle East.

I'm going to make a guess that you're another Naderite, glossing over the differences in the parties because you'd rather stand 100 percent behind a candidate who can't win than stand 60 percent behind a candidate who can. Good luck with that. Maybe this time Nader will actually join the party that nominated him, instead of disavowing any support for its platform, and work to get Greens elected by campaigning hardest in states where they have real support, rather than hitting swing states so he can put Bush back in the White House. I wouldn't bet on it, though.
posted by rcade at 6:52 AM on August 4, 2002


It would been a lot more effective if he'd bothered to run in 2000.

what are you talking about? he won the last election, foolio.
posted by mcsweetie at 8:07 AM on August 4, 2002


Well, bushwatch has their handy 100 Differences Between Bush And Gore and Why A Green Vote Is A Bush Vote.

so, I read the one about green votes secretly being bush votes, and what I got was...

- the green party only cares about the green party.
- it's gonna blow major ass if bush gets reelected.
- there's no point in challenging the two party system.
- americans are stupid.
- the green party wants to win elections (gasp!).

and then all followed by "The bottom line, then, is that a vote for the Greens on the national or state level is a vote for Bush." so how exactly is a green vote a bush vote again? I must've gotten lost somewhere.
posted by mcsweetie at 8:18 AM on August 4, 2002


I was kind of inspired by all of the article & thread to finally jot this down: Why Gore Lost: A Staffer's Perspective.
posted by jennak at 9:44 AM on August 4, 2002


And to answer your question McSweetie:

Even thought I worked for a Dem in 2000, I am all for a multi-party system. If I lived in a state where my vote hadn't been needed, I would have voted for Nader. And that's the key -- the Green Party should have developed a strategy where they went after voters in the most liberal of states. Instead Nader strayed from his word and started targeting toss-up states. It's his own fault he didn't get 5%; it was easily in reach.

D'oh! Should have proof-read above.
posted by jennak at 9:47 AM on August 4, 2002


Stem-cell research matters to thousands of people in this country.

While the Enron scandal alone effected millions. I'm not saying that StemCell research is a non-issue, but for Gods sake prioritize.

For instance, Gore's belief in the UN is sorely needed today, when our government seems to have fully embraced unilateralism and the John Birch wing of the Republican Party that would abolish the UN if it could. We're even moving seriously towards an attack on Iraq without allies in the Middle East.

In this case, I agree with you whole heartedly. But what did we really expect when we elected someone with only 6 years of political experience and ZERO foreign relations experience?

I'm going to make a guess that you're another Naderite

I wouldn't call myself that, but I did vote for him.

you'd rather stand 100 percent behind a candidate who can't win than stand 60 percent behind a candidate who can.

Well it's like this: if you don't like the business practices of a business, you can boycott it. If you found out that Starbucks was flavoring their coffee with the blood of baby seals, for instance, you could say "That's disgusting!! I'll never do business with them again!" By your standing behind them 60% it's like saying "I hate you, but I'll keep you in business by just buying your tea."

I'm over simplifying and making it sound a bit ridiculous, but in my opinion, so is giving support to a candidate you don't fully belive in.
posted by lasthrsman at 9:52 AM on August 4, 2002


what rcade said--twice!

i'm hot for Edwards too...Gore can stay home and play elder statesman...Lieberman is much too conservative for my taste (and it's really nasty that he criticizing Gore to get ahead)
posted by amberglow at 10:10 AM on August 4, 2002


I voted Nader last time, and it felt great to vote for someone I was aligned with rather than lesser of two evils. However, if Alabama had been close, I would've held my nose and gone with Gore.

Third parties are doomed until we have national ballot access, or at least a fusion ballot, such as New York.
posted by aiq at 10:10 AM on August 4, 2002


oops--"that he's criticizing" --sorry
posted by amberglow at 10:11 AM on August 4, 2002


Third parties are doomed until we have national ballot access, or at least a fusion ballot, such as New York.

They have the same access everyone else does. Check out the Federal Election Commission for the forms. The trick is getting all the papers in and getting a butt-load of signatures, plus some small filing fees.

I only know this because I wanted to know how hard it was to run for President...
posted by pberry at 10:22 AM on August 4, 2002


The "a vote for Green is a vote for Bush" is hardly a difficult concept to understand.

If there were only 2 parties, the Greens would definitely feel more at home in the liberal (demo) camp than the conservative (repub) camp. If there were only 2 parties, they would most likely vote democrat.

So, by campaigning and voting Green, all that is doing is removing votes from the major party that you most identify with. The net effect is the same as if you had voted for Bush instead.

Except in very liberal, very small districts, the Greens have 0.00% chance of winning an election. This is not a commentary on whether they SHOULD win, just a simple statement of fact.

So, all voting Green does is help insure that the party you LEAST identify with will win. Very questionable strategy.

They were calling it a "victory" to try to get 5% of the vote.

Congratulations. That 5% helped put Bush in the White House.

What exactly did the Greens "win" by that?

Small thinking from people normally known for intelligence and a feel for the bigger picture.

The Greens and Naders should recognize the reality of the situation and put their support behind a candidate that at least embodies some of their views, instead of assisting in the election of someone who is the POLAR OPPOSITE.
posted by Ynoxas at 10:40 AM on August 4, 2002


I decided to vote for Nader after becoming thoroughly digusted with Gore's campaign. If Gore runs in 2004, I will vote against him pretty much at any cost, unless his opponent turns out to be Le Pen. I really hope another dem gets the nod, but the political machine probally wouldn't have that.
posted by Darke at 11:03 AM on August 4, 2002


I was kind of inspired by all of the article & thread to finally jot this down: Why Gore Lost: A Staffer's Perspective.

If the campaign was run in such a poor manner, what makes you think the running of the country would be handled any better.

One thing that a lot of people seem to overlook is the administrative nightmare that is being president. It's not all ideals and positions
posted by Mick at 11:50 AM on August 4, 2002


Congratulations. That 5% helped put Bush in the White House.

Nader didn't get close to five percent -- he spent the last two months of the campaign in swing states where he could hurt Gore the most, and ended up with 2.68 percent nationally. He could've had a shot at 5 percent (and matching funds in 2004) by emphasizing states like Wisconsin and Alaska, which would've made the most sense if he was trying to build a legitimate third party, but he never tried.
posted by rcade at 12:02 PM on August 4, 2002


i don't see the logic in the argument that "that 5% helped put bush in the white house." i would say what helped put bush in the white house was the 3x-4x% of people who voted for bush. when it comes down to it, thinking pretty clearly about the issue, which was more important, the 5% who decided to speak their minds a certain way or the large amount of people who were persuaded/brainwashed/bullied into voting for bush? it's not nader's fault he was a candidate with opportunity and a grassroots (forgive me) base of support for his somewhat unique platform.
posted by oog at 12:10 PM on August 4, 2002


The Official 2000 Presidential Election Results.

Decide for yourself how much of an effect Nader had.
posted by nath at 1:01 PM on August 4, 2002


Ynoxas-- yes, I gathered that much, but most of the people who voted for Nader probably would have otherwise not voted for either evil, so subtract that from your bloated 5% figure and what you're left with probably isn't enough ex-democrats to make any sort of electoral difference.

Congratulations. That 5% helped put Bush in the White House.

I think malfeasance in Florida wins that dishonor, lest you forget that bush didn't win the popular vote.

The Greens and Naders should recognize the reality of the situation and put their support behind a candidate that at least embodies some of their views,

wouldn't that defeat the purpose of having a party in the first place? furthermore, exactly how many naders are there?
posted by mcsweetie at 1:15 PM on August 4, 2002


If the campaign was run in such a poor manner, what makes you think the running of the country would be handled any better....One thing that a lot of people seem to overlook is the administrative nightmare that is being president. It's not all ideals and positions

True, there are many administrative matters to tend to as prez...but if he were in the WH, he would have had all the Democrats working for him. As a candidate, he only had a choice few, and unfortunately, he picked the wrong ones.

There are several articles out there that allude to the fact that Gore's main problem is his lack of close friends/ advisors. He doesn't have a whole lot of support that would come out of the woodwork for him unless he was the front-runner.
posted by jennak at 1:21 PM on August 4, 2002


Ynoxas-- yes, I gathered that much, but most of the people who voted for Nader probably would have otherwise not voted for either evil, so subtract that from your bloated 5% figure and what you're left with probably isn't enough ex-democrats to make any sort of electoral difference.

Nader got 97,000 votes in Florida (where Gore lost by 537*) and 22,000 in New Hampshire (where Gore lost by 7,200).

Even if only 33 percent of Nader's voters would have selected Gore, that's enough for Gore to eek out a win in New Hampshire and hammer Bush in Florida.

I don't know why Nader's voters are so reluctant to give themselves a pat on the back. You'd think, if Bush and Gore really were alike, they would be happy to claim credit for being the deciding factor in the election.
posted by rcade at 1:25 PM on August 4, 2002


Didn't I just have this conversation in an earlier thread? It all boils down to money. The reason why the only bastards we have to vote for in America are moneygrubbing buttwipes with their hands in other moneygrubbing buttwipes pockets is cuz they're the only ones who can afford to become household names with the whole country.

Votes are not done by voting. They're decided on by how much money can be used to convince voters to vote for them. The actual voting process is just done to appease people still stupid enough to believe it matters. What we should do is just let the richest bastard in November 2004 buy the Oval Office outright.

Ooh wait.. then we might get stuck with Bill Gates.. or Oprah Winfrey. Yeah, it's better to keep this facade going so we can avoid dealing with the riffraff.

"This then, is perhaps the wrong place for such initiative. But with such fraudulence and dishonesty within the White House (paid for by the taxpayer,) shouldn't there be a greater sound than : oh, everything is just bad?"

If you gotta better tune to play, I'm all ears. Till then, Bush sucks. Gore sucks. Nader's impotent. In fact, I don't see a presidential candidate anywhere that would cause me to get up off my ass and go vote in 2004. Unless I write myself in. I mean I KNOW I ain't gettin' kickbacks from corporate sources. And I KNOW I wouldn't take them on principle... unless of course they came along with a cute redheaded intern with perky breasts...

"Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain."

Why? He's so much more entertaining than the puppet show.

"you mean there's going to be an election in 2004? i'm fully expecting it to be "postponed" for national security reasons. i can see it now..."it wouldn't be safe to allow a transfer of power during wartimes"."

That may very well be the day I give up my pacifism and go join forces with some crazy military group. ...Nah. I look terrible in green.
posted by ZachsMind at 1:41 PM on August 4, 2002


I must remember that everything said on Metafilter threads is taken as 110% literal.

The *TARGET* of the liberal 3rd parties was 5%. This *TARGET* most assuredly did help put Bush in the White House. I could care less if they got 1% or 10%. In a stunningly close race, it truly did matter, they DID influence the outcome, and it WAS contrary to what would have been in their best interests.

i don't see the logic in the argument that "that 5% helped put bush in the white house." i would say what helped put bush in the white house was the 3x-4x% of people who voted for bush

What should be apparent to anyone is the fact that the 40% who voted for Bush INTENDED to elect him. The x% who voted for Nader, I think can be safely said, did not intend to elect Bush.

The stats that rcade posted above should shut down any discussion to the contrary. The green voters in those two states MOST CERTAINLY DID affect the outcome, directly. 33% would have been amazing overkill. If only 1% of those 97,000 in Florida had realized that their vote on a 3rd party was wasted in a hotly contested state, Gore would have won by almost the margin he lost by. Maybe have 10% of them vote intelligently (given the circumstances) and its not even close.

And their reward for their effort is a leader who is not environmentally neutral, but is actively anti-environment. A leader who is pro-big business, pro-status quo, pro-religious zealotry.

Congratulations on your stunning accomplishment of getting the wrong man elected AND not qualifying for federal funding.

Idealism is more important than results I guess. Welcome to the regime, but you made a difference!!!!!!
posted by Ynoxas at 2:09 PM on August 4, 2002


I think this Liberal Oasis does a good job of defining and discussing the differences. You know where the Left is right and the Right is wrong. I personally believe that Lieberman is much to close to Bush for my comfort. Perhaps a good democratic will come out of ... I'll vote for Nadar again if he runs, a symbolic vote since in Utah it doesn't make any difference and probably never will.
posted by onegoodmove at 2:28 PM on August 4, 2002


that is democratic candidate
posted by onegoodmove at 2:29 PM on August 4, 2002


Until we come up with a better system (suggestions anyone?) businesses are always going to have a say in political funding, because it takes money to get the availability to persuade people. Of course most money still comes from actual individuals (i'm assuming).

The only way i ever see this changing is through government support only (and i don't check that box on my tax form) or through people being generally interested in politics. The former would result in all of us paying for the parties we like AND the ones we don't like, the latter could happen with discussion and mass communication (ie: thanks for the link to Howard Dean).

In the end though, after the last election, i'm expecting myself (and probably many greens and dems) to vote for NOT BUSH and be happy with that.
posted by NGnerd at 3:05 PM on August 4, 2002


This proves nothing but that Al Gore might even be more completely full of shit than George Bush. I love the fact that so many posters are towing the typical Gore apologist, shoot Nader for costing him the election line. I'm not even remotely surprised. People still wonder why I have even less respect for Democrats at this point than I do for Republicans. This is a good example why.

At least with the Republicans, you know up front who and what is gonna get screwed.

rcade:

I don't know why Nader's voters are so reluctant to give themselves a pat on the back. You'd think, if Bush and Gore really were alike, they would be happy to claim credit for being the deciding factor in the election.

I'm very proud to give myself a pat on the back because I had the guts to vote for the person who most represented my ideals and not for Tweedledee or Tweedledum.

The "Everything would be just fine and dandy if Al Gore was president" argument is so completely laughable and morally bankrupt that I'm grown very tired of defending my position.

Ynoxas:

And their reward for their effort is a leader who is not environmentally neutral, but is actively anti-environment.

Well, since you brought it up:

`Green' Al Gore's Turning Pale Shade Of Yellow

Therefore, braced with South Florida's most controversial environmental issue, the environmental vice president has elected to wimp out and keep quiet. Too bad, because lots of voters are curious to know where he stands.

Ironic, isn't it? If "Green" Al Gore had the balls to stand up on this one issue, he could have easily peeled off a few thousand Nader voters and he'd be sitting in the Oval Office right now. So sorry to see that you're played the spineless card, Al.

Lots more articles here, (though I'd ignore such famous Democrat sellouts as the Sierra Club).

If Gore gets the 2004 Democrat nomination, I'll do what little I can to make sure that he and George Bush never hold political office again.

So go ahead Democrat and Republican voters! Throw your vote away! I'll sleep far more soundly than you knowing that I'll cast my vote for someone I believe in.
posted by mark13 at 3:07 PM on August 4, 2002


Ironic, isn't it? If "Green" Al Gore had the balls to stand up on this one issue, he could have easily peeled off a few thousand Nader voters and he'd be sitting in the Oval Office right now

It sure wouldn't makeup for the more moderate/conservative voters he would lose from making extreme environmental positions. Green/left is not a "silent majority".
posted by owillis at 3:33 PM on August 4, 2002


Adopting approval voting would go a long way to solving the "Nader problem". The upside is great and frankly I see no downside. Here is a link to the Approval Voting Home Page
posted by onegoodmove at 4:01 PM on August 4, 2002


Ynoxas - the point of mine that you're missing is that bush would've became president whether nader had ran or not, thanks to his brother who happened to be the govenor (hey, that rhymed!).
posted by mcsweetie at 4:10 PM on August 4, 2002


Anyone who thinks that there IS significant difference between ANY partisan candidate once in office, is naive at best and is the victim of the political misdirection that goes on every day.

Two words: Russ Feingold.

If only we could get more men of his caliber into office.
posted by kayjay at 5:32 PM on August 4, 2002


i respect your arguments, Ynoxas, but don't you think this all smacks of hindsight being exceptionally accurate? i don't think you can begrudge someone voting who they feel is best for them, most especially in a democratic society that is supposed to have free(ish) elections. i don't know, my thinking about this has become so mucked up, i'm just going to write in votes for myself from now on. i represent my own best interests better than joe schmoe.

then again, i could be missing the point altogether. it appears i am assuming that you are being critical of the people who voted for nader in florida. if you are not doing this, please say so.
posted by oog at 5:55 PM on August 4, 2002


vote for mcreynolds!
posted by sgt.serenity at 6:13 PM on August 4, 2002


Gore would've won if he had just taken New Hampshire, correct? And not even Florida? Could've made this whole thing irrelevant (Of course, for all we know, Gore could've had 5,000 more votes in Florida and it wouldn't've mattered).

I heard someone make a good point not too long ago, though (in fact, it might've been here, I don't remember:) Al Gore was a two-term sitting vice president during one of the biggest periods of economic growth in the country's history, and he still managed to lose to a dunce whose grasp of the English language is repeatedly and correctly questioned-- he has no one but himself to blame for screwing that up.
posted by nath at 7:10 PM on August 4, 2002


oog: of course I benefit from hindsight, but I don't think at the expense of my point. Yes, I am being critical of the nader voters... certainly NOT because of their beliefs, but because they didn't have the political maturity to realize they were undermining their position.

If Gore had been polling 75% nationwide the week before the election, sure, "make a political point" by voting 3rd party in large numbers. If Gore had been a shoe-in, THAT is when you make a statement.

Since their state was in jeopardy, what could they possibly had been expecting in rallying a massive turn out for Nader? The only logical conclusion is exactly what they got.

Splitting the vote has in the past few elections become a real issue. There is still no chance of a 3rd party being elected. A 3rd party is still at least 2 decades away from contention. An entire generation is going to have to die out before that's even a remote possibility.

It's just that splitting the vote has been a conservative problem for a while now. Clinton may not have even been elected had it not been for Perot splitting the conservative vote. The republicans have incorporated some ultra-conservative ideals to prevent charismatic religious right-wingers from splitting the vote in the past, and recently.

Of course, while penning this I realize that if Gore had won the entire argument could be turned on its head and the Buchannon supporters could be blamed for Bush loosing. And they'd be right.

But, it appears that the conservatives are smarter, or at least have more political maturity. I live in the buckle of the bible belt, so I know many religious diehards who love everything Pat Buchannon says, but they realized TN might be a close state and did not "waste" their vote making a "statement" in a hotly contested state.

Their strategy worked, and the candidate more similar to what they want won our state.

I refuse to believe, no matter how it is presented, that stripping off votes for the more similar party is in any way, shape, form, or fashion promoting your cause.

And to the poster above who said he was happy voting for Nader in FL. Well, again, all I can do is congratulate you on helping put the less-similar candidate in office.
posted by Ynoxas at 8:39 PM on August 4, 2002


they didn't have the political maturity to realize they were undermining their position.

by what, not voting for Gore? the shtick of the green party in the last election was the exorcism of political corruption, deglobalization, and campaign finance reform. would Gore have championed these issues? of course not. will Bush? give me a break. so therefore, I still don't understand how my nader vote was wasted.
posted by mcsweetie at 10:01 PM on August 4, 2002


but because they didn't have the political maturity to realize they were undermining their position. - Ynoxas

so therefore, I still don't understand how my nader vote was wasted. - mcsweetie

It's all a matter of perspective. If, on the one hand, you'd accept the lesser of two evils, knowing that at least some of your political goals would be accomplished, Gore would have been the correct choice. On the other hand, if you felt that you voted upon principle, Nader would have been more appropriate.

To those who say voting for Nader was either equivalent to voting for Bush or a wasted vote, my only response is that you don't know what each voter was thinking. And to generalize to such a great extent is unfair to the voters. In fact, I think that those who make this claim are very upset about Gore's loss and secretly assume that if Nader didn't exist, the vote would automatically goto Gore, which isn't necessarily true.

Once again, it seems to me that most of the comments in this thread are purely political, instead of analytical. Posturing to prepare for this November and November, 2004. Then again, the original post was a fluff piece by Gore, so should I really be surprised?
posted by BlueTrain at 10:15 PM on August 4, 2002


Cripes, another Nader thread. You would think it would get old after 10 or 15 times, but no.

Most amusing is the constant reminder that Nader voters should feel bad that the guy they did not vote for did not win. I voted for a different 3rd party candidate, and I suppose I should feel bad too. All votes belong to Gore, and to deny him a vote is practically stealing. Somehow it is immature to vote your conscience. Odd, since I would have thought it immature to demand everyone do as you say, and then have a big tantrum over it when they don't.

What is going to make it all better people? You want an apology? A promise that the Green party will dissolve since they obviously have no right to exist? Or do they? What offices will you allow them to run for? Is it okay if a Republican Mayor wins over a Democrat because a freaking Green dared attempt to hold office?

Personally I would like to see 8 or 9 major parties. I can see why that would be a hellish thing for many of you, but I do not see why I should care about your opinion. Certainly, you have little enough regard for mine and for that of the people who voted for Nader.
posted by thirteen at 10:34 PM on August 4, 2002


If, on the one hand, you'd accept the lesser of two evils, knowing that at least some of your political goals would be accomplished, Gore would have been the correct choice.

I don't really think my vote for Gore would've achieved my goals of the exorcism of political corruption, deglobalization, and campaign finance reform, but I do understand what you and Ynoxas are trying to say (I just don't think it applies to me).
posted by mcsweetie at 10:34 PM on August 4, 2002


so therefore, I still don't understand how my nader vote was wasted.

I don't understand how your Nader vote helped anything that he or his voters profess to care about. What did you gain? What did the Greens gain? What did Nader gain? What did the third-party movement gain?

From my perspective, the answer to all four questions is bupkiss, aside from the warm fuzzies that must come from voting for someone who represents your ideals, even if like all great idealists he had absolutely no chance (or desire) to put them into practice.
posted by rcade at 11:09 PM on August 4, 2002


For 2004, I really think I like Howard Dean, the governor of Vermont.

you mean there's going to be an election in 2004? i'm fully expecting it to be "postponed" for national security reasons. i can see it now..."it wouldn't be safe to allow a transfer of power during wartimes". --centrs

Wouldn't that be an interesting thing? I wonder if we'd see a revolution or if the majority would just accept it?
posted by dejah420 at 11:17 PM on August 4, 2002


I don't understand how your Nader vote helped anything that he or his voters profess to care about. What did you gain? What did the Greens gain? What did Nader gain? What did the third-party movement gain?

rcade, are you honestly asking those questions, or are you trolling? Because normally I would think that you were a smarter man than to actually question the vote...

Voting for Nader, as I said above, was sometimes a choice made in principle. There were several reasons for this:

1. I hate Blue and Red, so I'm voting Green instead. (Because those who don't vote at all are simply stating their complicity with the status quo, while those who vote Green are rebelling, in a way)

2. It's time for the Democrats to start paying attention to special interests on the left, instead of cowtowing to the middle and middle-right in an attempt to simply win. (Everyone speaks of corporate interests enveloping the Republican Party; it's time for the Democrats to reestablish their environmental and socially responsible roots)

3. The two-party system is antiquated and a third party can be a viable choice with proper exposure. (I would guess that the majority of this country now knows that the Green Party exists, just as the country knew that the Reform Party existed when Perot launched his campaign)

(I have more, but I'm sure this is plenty of fuel for fire.)
posted by BlueTrain at 11:25 PM on August 4, 2002


Except in very liberal, very small districts, the Greens have 0.00% chance of winning an election. This is not a commentary on whether they SHOULD win, just a simple statement of fact.

Since when did chance and forcasting the future become fact?

Just wondering.
posted by cinematique at 11:33 PM on August 4, 2002


rcade - our goal was to get 5% of the popular vote in order to gain eligibility for federal funding, and my vote helped us try to reach it (although I'm pretty sure you already knew this). we didn't reach our goal, but obviously I didn't know that was going to happen when I cast my vote.

furthermore, the warm fuzzies were a pleasant bonus.
posted by mcsweetie at 11:47 PM on August 4, 2002


it's time for the Democrats to reestablish their environmental and socially responsible roots

Whether it is noble to do this or not (I don't think so), it is political suicide to take up the more extreme positions you're advocating.
posted by owillis at 12:49 AM on August 5, 2002


Thanks for pointing out the Buchanan thing (on preview: who said it? did someone retract a statement?); I'm always surprised nobody mentions this. Were Buchanan not in the running, his 17,484 votes would surely have gone to Bush, ensuring him Florida's electoral votes and hence the presidency (maybe even with a mandate, not that he's needed one to enact pretty radical transformations of the role of the federal government vs. individual (civil) rights).

Personally, I voted for Nader and have no regrets. At the same time I recognize that he badly bungled the spin war that occurred after the election, and really if he was an honest figure on the left, he would have recognized that there's a pretty significant difference between a Republican and Democratic administration (esp. inasmuch as Supreme Court appointments are concerned, and politically real issues such as abortion that figures on the far left tend to gloss over).

To be entirely honest, I wish that Nader had reached his 5% without contesting seriously against Gore in states such as Florida. At the same time, it's about fucking time the Democrats realized that their apparent complicity to business interests badly compromises their their position as a party aligned with the left, and that without new ideas the left will inevitably turn to other avenues.
posted by whir at 1:07 AM on August 5, 2002


If we're going to play the 'what if' game then what if 30,000 black voters hadn't been illegally prevented from voting in Florida? What if Maria Cantwell hadn't won her Washington Senate seat thanks to the extra turnout from Nader voters?
posted by euphorb at 2:44 AM on August 5, 2002


I am glad people still vote.
posted by yertledaturtle at 4:07 AM on August 5, 2002


If the Nader supporters still refuse to understand how they shot themselves in the foot in this last election, then it's not for lack of ability to understand, it is simply out of stubbornness. Like mcsweetie above, I respect his ideals and his convictions, but I cringe at his statement that it doesn't apply to him.

It is again a very straightforward situation: would you rather SOME of your goals be met, or NONE?

I guess the Greens have proven at the very least that they can hold an election hostage, so to speak. I'm not saying that was the goal of the individual posters here who voted for Nader, but it is funny how they had profound influence even without their coveted 5%.

Basically, Demo's give us what we want or else we'll help you loose again.

The Greens are not stupid. I just hadn't considered before that they might be blackmailers.

Thirteen: I refuse to believe you are that short sighted unless you actually are 13. The Greens hurt THEMSELVES by staging a "protest" that was of insufficient size to have an effect on their true cause (funding), yet of sufficient size to throw the election to the candidate LEAST SIMILAR to their platform.

So, no I don't want an apology, I want them to take responsibility. I want them to have the political maturity to understand the realities of the situation, and if they TRULY want to help make changes, save the idealistic "gestures" for message boards but do the smart thing at the polls.

Translated for the slow: If you live in a highly contested state and the 3rd party is far, far, far FAR behind, do the smart thing and help elect the major party that is MORE SIMILAR to your ideals. Is it perfect? No, your man did not win. But Gore certainly would be closer to what you desire than Bush.

Euphorb: the thing about Buchanan would be true, except that a great many of his votes came from a county that was a pretty much a guaranteed win for Gore/Leiberman because it was a county full of retired Jews. It had voted above 85% democratic in previous elections. With a Jewish vice presidential candidate, it is reasonably safe to assume that percentage would not have shrunk.

Buchanan earned a lot of respect from me and others and did a very stand-up thing by saying that there had to be some sort of problem with the vote gathering system because it was "impossible" for him to garner that many votes in that county. You might recall the whole thing about how Buchanan's name didn't line up with the arrow, yada yada yada.

Unless you truly believe that a bunch of Jewish retirees would vote for a Holocaust revisionist. Buchanan didn't consider it very likely.

cinematique: you have an entire population bubble that votes the way their daddy voted, that they don't even bother to take their reading glasses into the poll because they just vote down the left-hand or right-hand side. If a 3rd party wins the next presidential election I'll happily buy you a beverage of your choice and submit. But suffice to say I feel pretty comfortable with my assertion.
posted by Ynoxas at 6:52 AM on August 5, 2002


I don't think any third-party candidate has a chance running from the extremes. The next significant third-party movement will come from the middle, from some compromised party-straddling type like John McCain, giving the "cast my vote for someone I believe in" crowd even less chance to have a feel-good Afterschool Special moment on Election Day.

As for Buchanan, I don't think it's a given that all 17,000 of his votes go to Bush. But if you're going to play the game that way, there were 97,000 votes for Nader in Florida.
posted by rcade at 7:29 AM on August 5, 2002


billder - How can governmental agencies be campaign contributors?

From the linked source - The organizations listed here came from two sources: either they were the sponsor of a PAC that donated to the member, or they were listed as individual donor's employer. Donors who give more than $200 must provide information on their occupation and employer.

(Your question bothered me too, so I looked it up. Besides, I've been over the Nader arguments already & I agree with both sides, so I don't have anything to offer there.)
posted by tdismukes at 7:38 AM on August 5, 2002


Thirteen: I refuse to believe you are that short sighted unless you actually are 13. The Greens hurt THEMSELVES by staging a "protest" that was of insufficient size to have an effect on their true cause (funding), yet of sufficient size to throw the election to the candidate LEAST SIMILAR to their platform.

I am hardly the sort to let someone frame my position with pejoratives. I prefer to think of it as corruption. I believe the people who vote their conscience are less corrupt than those who would sell themselves out for a cheap piece of glitter. The best they could have hoped for by voting for Gore is Gore, which is not a great prize when you do not want the man. I do not like Nader, I think he is the devil, but let people vote for who they want. Why is that too much to ask? I am finding it hard to believe that you really care that much about how Greens have hurt themselves. You believe that they owe your party something for some reason, when it seems obvious to me they hate Democrats just a little less than Republicans. A blind date with Stalin instead of Hitler, snazzy.

You can call these people immature all you want. Using the word responsibility implies they let you down, which is hardly the case unless you had some personal agreement with Nader voters that they would support you. I do sort of feel for you, and I am sure it would be nice if everyone did what you told them to. That seems unlikely, so I suggest you learn to deal with it. Continue thinking everyone is stupid and immature if it helps.

If you live in a highly contested state and the 3rd party is far, far, far FAR behind, do the smart thing and help elect the major party that is MORE SIMILAR to your ideals. Is it perfect? No, your man did not win. But Gore certainly would be closer to what you desire than Bush.

sulfur is in the air, and wheels will spin without gripping forever. What rotten advice.


(it is pretty funny how the spellchecker keeps suggesting "Invader" for Nader)
posted by thirteen at 8:40 AM on August 5, 2002


Basically, Demo's give us what we want or else we'll help you loose again.

The Greens are not stupid. I just hadn't considered before that they might be blackmailers.


Why is this different from any other voting situation? If a candidate offers enough of the stuff a voter wants, she votes for him, otherwise not. If enough people decline to vote for you, you lose. What else is voting for?
posted by redfoxtail at 8:47 AM on August 5, 2002


Thirteen: You are approaching this problem from a European perspective. In a parlimentary system, in which parties are able to form coalitions, and the ruling party or coalition then selects the head of government and their chief deputies, voting for a minority fringe party makes sense. The minority party can aleign itself with a more centrist party of similar ideological persuation and hope to effect executive branch policy. In fact, I would advocate this approach in house and senate elections. If a few greens could get into either of these tightly balanced institutions, they could probably truely effect policy.

HOWEVER: Executive branch goverance in the US is decided in an obscure (electoral college) winner takes all contest. In a winner takes all contest, it is necessary to make to decisions when voting....which candidates have views closest to your own, and then, which of those candidates stands the greatest chance of being elected. Voting for that individual is not selling out, its making a rationale, politically informed choice. Only when a party has demonstrated significant power in the house and senate can it hope to have a shot at the presidency. History proves this, for example, look at the rise of the Republican party in the 1850s.
posted by pjgulliver at 8:52 AM on August 5, 2002


cinematique: you have an entire population bubble that votes the way their daddy voted, that they don't even bother to take their reading glasses into the poll because they just vote down the left-hand or right-hand side. If a 3rd party wins the next presidential election I'll happily buy you a beverage of your choice and submit. But suffice to say I feel pretty comfortable with my assertion. -- Ynoxas

Predictive winning has contributed its fair share of ruining presidential elections. People should vote for who they want to win, not the candidate they think is going to win, the "lesser of two evils," or the candidate their father votes for. People actually justify not voting for a 3rd party based on the idea that voting for a 3rd party is like voting for ______. In my opinion, that's an even greater election fallacy.

My main beef with your dissertation is how you state a chance can be construed as fact. Horseshit. If chances were fact, then they wouldn't be chance in the first place. I get where you're going, and perhaps I'm too picky of an english dork, but I don't like where you were going with that statement.
posted by cinematique at 10:09 AM on August 5, 2002


I don't think Ynoxas is reading my posts, so I'm not gonna make them anymore after this. I've explained over and over that the goal of their campaign was not to put more liberal policy makers in washington, and neither candidate took a real stance on the issues that the greens were capitalizing on so backing Gore in lieu of Bush would have genuinely resulted in shot feet.

a lot was riding on the 5% they tried to get, and although they fell short, those that did turn out and voted in the hopes that the greens would get their funding most certainly did not do themselves a disservice. I'm not denying the campaign could have been ran more effectively, but no one can deny that it was ran honestly.
posted by mcsweetie at 10:11 AM on August 5, 2002


I don't think Nader's campaign was honest at all. He accepted the nomination of the Greens but was not a Green party member and did not endorse its platform. He claimed that he was not trying to be a spoiler in the election and was trying to get enough votes to earn matching funds for the party in 2004. Both of these claims were contradicted by his decision to focus on swing states in the last month of the campaign.
posted by rcade at 10:25 AM on August 5, 2002


furthermore, exactly how many naders are there?

My favorite is Evil Nader, with the goatee.
posted by Ty Webb at 10:28 AM on August 5, 2002


mcsweetie: I am reading I just don't understand. I want to point out that I truly do respect you "voting your conscience" and all that, and I honor you for voting at all (I've voted in every non-primary since I turned 18, I don't vote in primaries because I will not register dem or repub).

But, you saying "I've explained over and over that the goal of their campaign was not to put more liberal policy makers in washington" first I don't think you said that exactly, at least not in this thread, but more importantly, if this is *NOT* the goal of the Green party then I've apparently misunderstood the entire thing.

Was the gaining of the 5% not to get federal matching monies so that more liberal candidates could run more successfully??????

Are you casting a vote simply for honesty and not for policy? Are you policy neutral and Buchanan gets your vote as long as he runs the cleanest campaign?

I'm honestly completely confused by that last post. Saying the goal of the Greens is not to elect more liberal candidates made me question which universe I am in. :P
posted by Ynoxas at 10:33 AM on August 5, 2002


Ynoxas: Basically, Demo's give us what we want or else we'll help you loose again.

The Greens are not stupid. I just hadn't considered before that they might be blackmailers.


So the Greens say "give us what we want or we'll help you lose again," and that's blackmail. The Dems (you included, apparently) say "vote for our candidate, no matter how bad he is, or the worst candidate gets into office," and that's not blackmail.

Well, if that's the choice, I'll take the blackmail. Actually, I really wish the Greens were doing a lot more of what you call "blackmail": threatening to run their own candidate when the Dems aren't left enough. That's the best way they can make a really productive difference. Much better than the crap they're pulling in Minnesota right now, where they're threatening to defeat one of the most liberal-left-green candidates still standing.

If I were American, I would have voted for Nader in 2000 (partially because I live in Massachusetts, where there wasn't a single county that voted for Bush). But I sure as hell wouldn't vote Green in Minnesota now, and considering that they're so ready there to pull an action so destructive to their own agenda, I would be increasingly reluctant to vote for them even here in Mass. The 2000 campaign looked like a real chance to show the Dems they couldn't ignore their left constituency. Now the Greens seem bent instead on destroying what little remains of the Democratic left, and I can't sanction that. If only they stuck to the "blackmail," they'd be a great movement for social change. Alas, they don't.

Somewhat useless to discuss my own voting intentions when I can't actually vote, I suppose, but I do live in the US and pay taxes here, so it's kind of hard to avoid.
posted by ramakrishna at 10:54 AM on August 5, 2002


Green/left is not a "silent majority".

Is it actually possible to say anything about a "silent majority", other than that they are silent?
posted by inpHilltr8r at 11:52 AM on August 5, 2002


I don't know if anyone is still watching this thread, but....

Splitting the vote has in the past few elections become a real issue. There is still no chance of a 3rd party being elected. A 3rd party is still at least 2 decades away from contention. An entire generation is going to have to die out before that's even a remote possibility.

But it has to start SOMEWHERE. Don't you think that unless people start voting for their real candidate of choice it will just take LONGER? It starts with one voice, and over time more voices are added. Will it take years, even decades? Probably. But if it doesn't start now, it will take even longer.

Oh, and BTW: 2.7x % of the popular vote doesn't mean a damn thing when it comes to federal funding. It's 5% of the Electoral College vote that gets funding. That means a 3rd party candidate needs to win at least 1 state. Perot got nearly 20% of the popular vote, but didn't win in a single state, ergo, no federal funding.

Also, the commission that runs the national debates (I forgot the name) demands 10% of the EC vote before they will allow a 3rd party candidate to participate in a national debate. Had Nader been given the opportunity to participate in a debate against Gore/Bush, the outcome could have been more drastic.

Ok, I'm done.
posted by lasthrsman at 6:19 PM on August 8, 2002


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