Well here's why Ralph is running.
August 6, 2000 5:42 PM   Subscribe

Well here's why Ralph is running. Do the other guys have anything this succinct and clear-cut? I can't find on the 'Net any page, nor have I heard in any of their speeches, where Bush or Gore come straight out and state exactly why they're running.
posted by ZachsMind (20 comments total)
BUSH: "Daddy made me."
GORE: "Tipper made me, besides, I invented running."
I think the choice is obvious.
posted by quonsar at 6:38 PM on August 6, 2000

oops! the above post was in no way meant to imply ralph == rod, it was intended only to cast aspersions on the quality of the 2-party candidates.
posted by quonsar at 6:43 PM on August 6, 2000

I admire Nader for not attempting to hide his real agenda: expand the federal government to impose greater and further-ranging restrictions on private enterprise at all levels.

What gives me the willies is that almost one out of ten people in this country think that's a good idea.
posted by mikewas at 8:28 PM on August 6, 2000

Regardless of what Nader, Buchanan, Hagelin, and Browne believe, I'm damn tired of the 2-party system. It's getting harder and harder to tell the two parties apart. The Commission on Presidential Debates -- made up of Democrats and Republicans -- has decided that only candidates with 15 percent voter support in five national polls may be allowed to participate. Nader and Buchanan each have around 5 percent. Convenient for the Repubs and Dems, huh?

Send a prepared email to the Commission on Presidential Debates to let 'em know what you think of that! You can also sign a petition to let Nader into the debates.
posted by veruca at 9:52 PM on August 6, 2000

Thanks Quonsar. I actually was going to add something similar to that to my original post, but decided against it. Mine was gonna be something like:

Bush: "Uh... Daddy said if I don't run he'd spank me."
Gore: "I'm VP now! What else should I do but run? Take a job at McDonalds with Billy?"
Buchannan: "GOD told me I'm DESTINED to rule! I just have to convince the rest of you."
Browne: "...someone told me I get a jet out of the deal?"

Yep Mikewas. Nader wants to take the rights away from corporations and give them to the people. Sounds rather socialistic. A lot of people think that's a good idea though. And I'm one of them.

We have developed an aristocracy in this 'democracy.' A small percentage has the majority of the wealth. A big working class serving a small wealthy minority? History has repeatedly proven that to be disasterous. The French Revolution comes to mind as one example. Let them eat cake. It's good to be the king. All that.

Unfortunately, the alternative IS a variant of Atlas Shrugged. Put too many limitations on wealthy corporate interests and they'll just pack up and move somewhere else. Those with insight and creativity will find a restrictive political environment nonconducive to their needs, and they too will leave. Seeing what was done recently to Bill Gates has put the plight of Reardon in Atlas Shrugged into sharp relief for me. Not that I'm a strong supporter of Ayn Rand, but I can see where she was coming from.

The answer actually is somewhere in between. Those with the wherewithal should feel compelled to want to support charities and organizations that strive to improve the lives of others. If you help those living in your society, theoretically you make your own community better to live in. Hoarding the money or investing outside your community is counterproductive in the long haul. However, it doesn't look good on the immediate bottom line to give to those nearest you. The incentive isn't strong enough for most people.

Which is why we're where we are. Nader does see the problem, and at least he has initiative and hope for something better. At least Nader's talking the issues and wanting to open a dialogue for plans and directions. Bush and Gore just want the status quo. I don't know if Nader or Browne have the answers, but I do know I don't want to keep watching the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.
posted by ZachsMind at 9:54 PM on August 6, 2000

Guys, this isn't really that hard. Why Gore is running. Why Bush is running. Not quite as succinct as Nader, but then one easily interpret Nader's statement as being that of a one-issue candidate.
posted by aaron at 7:18 AM on August 7, 2000

Wow ZachsMind. Give me a kilo of what you are smoking. Have you looked at the tax structure in this country recently?

Okay, on a more serious note, I honestly do applaud Nader for being up front with his message. I just hope that people won't give him their vote just because he is candid. His message is pretty scary to me and I'm certainly not a member of an aristocracy.
posted by Popstar at 8:45 AM on August 7, 2000

Why is the attempt to remove corporate control from politics scary?

Are you guys huge corporations?

Now, I may disagree with Nader on some issues, but that he seems scary is kinda odd to me. He may want to expand the governments control over business (it is about time those child labor laws were repealed) but he wants to loosen it's grip on the average persons social life. Why is that less important than, say, holding companies accountable for environmental damage?
posted by Doug at 10:17 AM on August 7, 2000

Corporations are figments of our collective imagination. They exist - or SHOULD exist - solely to make life somehow better for real people.

Corporations only exist by legal fiat in the first place, so why NOT set legal limits on what they can do? Why not construct the laws such that they favour real people over imaginary ones like corporations? Why not tax corporations harder than real people? Why not force them to clean up their own messes?

posted by Mars Saxman at 10:55 AM on August 7, 2000

I cherrypicked a few items out of the Green Party platform that I thought were scary. I am not interested in taking them all on point by point, but what follows is what I believe most people who oppose the man are concerned about.
10. Greens support progressivity in taxation as a matter of principle, believing that those who benefit most from the system have a responsibility to return more, their “fair share.”
This statement is unexplained. It is not good enough in my opinion to take money from people, merely because they can afford it. The Greens may think these people have a responsibility, but I do not. They do not explain why these people are responsible. People with money already pay more than the middle class because they have more money to be taxed on. Are they to be taxed at a higher rate now as well. I have yet to hear a reasonable argument against the flat tax. If the system is flawed, fix it, do not punish people for being smart, or for being able to succeed within the system.
Some of his platform is excellent. I would love to be happy to vote for this man. I just can't, he has a fatal flaw. Some of the platform strikes me as anti-science, which is also unacceptable. Unfortunatly those stands are shred by the big two as well. (if you are looking to pick a fight, I am not pro-Monsanto, that is not what I was referring to. look elsewhere.)
What I would not give to have a pro-science canidate to vote for, until the I will vote for Brown, and be happy with gridock.
posted by thirteen at 2:33 PM on August 7, 2000

Also, I think he wants a whole lot more government, when I want a whole lot less.
posted by thirteen at 2:51 PM on August 7, 2000

Hey Thirteen, wealthier people already pay more proportionally in taxes.

Yeah, the libertarian ethic is much better than the greens. Cause, ya know, privatizing roads and returning to the gold standard are just what this country needs.

More government? Nader wants to shrink the military by 75%. But, I somehow feel that that's not the kind of government you want to get rid of. You want to get rid of the aspect of government that watches out for people. Most of the taxes Nader talks about pertain to less than half a percent of the people in this country. So, if you're making less than 270k a year or so you'd be enjoying things like free healthcare, and education.
posted by Doug at 6:51 PM on August 7, 2000

The parts that watch out for people? Isn't that what the military is purportedly for? Or are you saying that the military doesn't accomplish its intended purpose? That a government program is failing? You must be kidding me. That would never happen.

Free healthcare and education? *blink* Uhh... is it just me, or do we already have public schools? And what point free health care if taxes are higher? It's like sending a $50 check to the charity of your choice and getting a free tote bag. Except without the part about your money going to a good cause.

Nader is against corporations. Rah, rah. So am I. But I don't hate them enough to raise another tyrant in their stead. Government is not and never will be your friend. The libertarian ethic is much better than the greens. Cause, ya know, cutting taxes and reducing bureaucracy are just what this country needs.
posted by fable at 7:16 PM on August 7, 2000

If by 'other guys' you include Harry Browne (my choice so far), then yes, someone else does say why he's running.
posted by flestrin at 11:24 PM on August 7, 2000

Doug: Your feelings are wonky, I am all for a smaller military, I do not think those savings should be flowed into some other aspects of the budget. It will do me no good to gut the military just to spend it on some other government plan. We could close all of our foriegn bases and save a ton. Drop the UN and save billions. Pull out of Hati and Bosnia. What are we giving trillions of dollars to other countries for? I imagine we would not be so hated if our military were not walking around other countries in peacetime. Drop our embargos aand watch the love flow in.
I think it is funny that I am considered so hard right around here, I just seem to be right of you. Do you see anybody standing to your left? I can't see anyone. I cannot understand the anger directed at Libertarians, who loves the constitution more than them? Ralph? I think he has some problems with the document.
Rich people should pay your bills, and educate you? Thats what parents are for, not the government. Vote for Nader, he is promising you the stuff you want. I never said anyone should not vote Nader, I hope everyone who wants him votes for him. I really want eveyone to vote, 100% turnout would be a wonderful dream. I never trust polls, such a turnout would really show us where the country is at. That would be swell.
Here is what I have not heard anyone mention, unless you are planning on electing a green congress at the same time, get ready to watch nothing happen other than the Dem and Rep become bi-partisan against his policy like the world has never seen.
I do not want "free" health care. I think I will still pay for it, others pay for it more, and it is the begining of a slippery slope. Whats after that, our bodies become community property? Think of all the good we could do if we all were compelled to donate a pint of blood a month, all the lives that could be saved by manditory organ donation. A stripped down government could probably provide some of the services you want, but no government can wake us up in the morning and put us to bed at night. I said before I like some of Nader's talk, but he is not the guy for me. I don't make anything like 270k, but I hope to make more money in the future, how much can I make before I deseve to be smacked down?
posted by thirteen at 11:26 PM on August 7, 2000

Um, thirteen?

When the new bad guys start shooting, *you* go stand on the thin red line, 'k?
posted by baylink at 7:47 AM on August 8, 2000

I'm sorry baylink, I don't understand the reference. Is this about reeling in the military?
posted by thirteen at 10:23 AM on August 8, 2000

Mars: "Corporations are figments of our collective imagination. They exist - or SHOULD exist - solely to make life somehow better for real people."


A corporate entity, having no soul, can do whatever it wants with impunity. You can't punish a corporation. Oh sure you can make it pay financial damages. Big deal. The tobacco companies are getting hit will multimillion dollar lawsuits but they're still churning out the smokes. Once a corp gets big enough, it can become unstoppable. Duck and cover. It's all about passing the buck and playing shell games. If people were held responsible for the actions of the corporation they run, they wouldn't dare attempt half the stuff they get away with today.

I do want to see corporate control removed from politics. I want to see corporate control removed from everything. A company should not enslave people. That's like an ocean liner coming alive and bossing around its guests.

Corporations don't give their daughters away at weddings. They don't have funerals when they die. They don't play catch with their sons. They don't go to baseball games and root for the home team. Corporations can't get drafted to fight for their country. They can't drink or smoke. They can't have an emotional response to Casablana. The individuals running a corp can do these things. A corporation is not human. They shouldn't have equal or better rights than a human.

Corporate entities don't vote. The individuals running and working for the corps are the ones who vote. The power should be put back in the hands of the individual. However, corporations have learned how to do more than vote. They've learned how to buy elections.

Am I the only one here who gets the creeps over that?
posted by ZachsMind at 2:54 PM on August 8, 2000

Just to chime in, universal health care ain't all that slippery a slope.

Me bein' a canuck and all, it's something I was raised with, and something that's been a good thing for me all my life. I haven't had to worry about breaking an arm, I'm not worried about what happens when my girlfriend and I get married and have a kid, I'm not worried about what happens when I'm 70 and spending more on perscription medication than I currently do on rent.

Mind you, I'm used to it, which I think changes my perspective.

And while I'm certainly not rich, I'm just as certainly not poor. I put in more than I'm using on a regular basis, but when I'm old and retired I'll be using more than I put in. It's an investment.
posted by cCranium at 3:53 PM on August 8, 2000

We've beaten the argument about Canadian health care to death in the past, so I won't say much, except that it comes down to the difference between free mediocre care for all and paid excellent care for most. (And free mediocre care does exist in the US. There are tons of free clinics for the poor, and hospitals are both morally and legally required to handle emergency cases regardless of ability to pay. If you get hit by a bus and the ambulance brings you into the hospital, they won't toss you out on the street if they can't find your wallet with an insurance card inside it. All they'll do is bill you later, and if you can't pay they just eat the cost; most hospital care prices already build-in the extra costs of handling indigent cases.

As for corporations, what's the big deal? They may only be legal creations themselves, but it's people that run them, and benefit from them. If we eliminated all corporate donations to political campaigns, all it would do is lead to more donations from individuals, most likely from those individuals who have gotten rich by working for (if not running) corporations. And it wouldn't do a thing about lobbying government officials directly.

And I think the tobacco example shows how little power they really have. All that money, all that power, and the tobacco companies are still getting their asses kicked by untold billions of dollars of lawsuits and governemnt intervention. If the government or the people want to get a company or industry badly enough, they're going to do it.
posted by aaron at 4:34 PM on August 8, 2000

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