Three major environmental groups break with Nader
October 31, 2000 12:28 PM   Subscribe

Three major environmental groups break with Nader "You pledged you would not campaign as a spoiler and would avoid the swing states,” [Sierra Club’s executive director] Pope added. “Your recent campaign rhetoric and campaign schedule make it clear that you have broken this pledge." (via the blorg.)
posted by rebeccablood (31 comments total)
Pope's letter to Nader.
posted by rebeccablood at 12:30 PM on October 31, 2000

Yawn. Sierra Club = Democrat toadies.
posted by capt.crackpipe at 1:19 PM on October 31, 2000

Notice they don’t discuss Nader’s enviro record, they’re just scared of Bush. Which is selective memory if they think Clinton-Gore had a postiive effect on the environment.

(I'm posting mostly to close that italic tag. I suck.)
posted by capt.crackpipe at 1:24 PM on October 31, 2000

this is interesting...i did not know that nader had promised his followers who got him on the ballots that he wouldn't campaign in swing states.

yup, breaking campaign promises...sounds like nader is spending so much time bashing gore and bush that he's starting to take after them.

its not that nader's ideals and stance on issues is flawed, nope its because his ego is running unchecked.
posted by saralovering at 1:30 PM on October 31, 2000

Nader never pledged such a thing. Pope is lying. And shame on you for believing it site unseen. The environmental groups are running scared and making stuff up.

As the AP reports:
"Nader dismissed similar claims during a news conference Monday. He said he had promised to campaign in all 50 states from the moment he accepted the Green Party's presidential nomination -- and he has done exactly that. "
posted by peterme at 1:48 PM on October 31, 2000

My fear has always been that Nader is a Elsworth Toohey like character. I came around and believe his sincerity. I am now mystified that people can be so testy with each other over who they want to vote for. I don't want Nader to be president, but I do want all those who want him to vote for him. I don't want Bush to be president either, but that does not mean I'm gonna vote for Gore. I'm voting for Browne. The logic seems to be that a vote for anyone other than Gore is a vote for Bush, but there is only anger that owned Nader votes are straying away.
It is weirdly reminding me of the end of Braveheart, where they condemn Gibson for betraying a king he never swore allegiance to. Kneel before Gore!
posted by thirteen at 1:49 PM on October 31, 2000

And what is this 'break with Nader' crap? The Sierra club never endorsed him in the first place!
posted by snakey at 1:53 PM on October 31, 2000

The logic seems to be that a vote for anyone other than Gore is a vote for Bush

Not only that, but everyone who stays at home and doesn't vote is casting half a vote for Bush! I guess that means the election really is already concluded. May as well start looking for apartments in Toronto. :)
posted by daveadams at 1:57 PM on October 31, 2000

I've noticed as Nader's spoiler role becomes more obvious that the diehard pro-Naderites are beginning to scare me.

The paranoid view of both parties being exactly the same is true up to a point -- that both parties have moved towards more centrist positions to capture more of the electorate. To fanatically go pro-Nader at the cost of Bush is mind-blowing. Is it true that both parties are colluding in back rooms and the only difference is the amount of force they use to quell protests? I don't think so. . .

Personally, I just think most of y'all haven't had a properly bad executive in a while. We'll see.
posted by norm at 2:01 PM on October 31, 2000

Instant run-off voting would fix the "spoiler" effect. Proportional representation would fix this problem too.
posted by pb at 2:17 PM on October 31, 2000

apart from the present one, that is.
posted by lagado at 2:17 PM on October 31, 2000

norm, you are assuming that Bush-as-the-end-of-America is a belief shared by everyone. America didn't go down the tubes under 12 years of Reagan and Bush Sr. If Bush wins the election because of Nader's support, the Democrats will be forced to move back left to satisfy those voters. If Gore wins, there's no incentive to do anything differently. To Nader supporters, Bush and Gore may be different, but they aren't so far apart that it really matters. So maybe Gore will send the country to hell a little slower than Bush. Well, maybe if the pace picks up, the general electorate will realize we're headed down the wrong track! It's a trade-off, you see, and not everyone agrees with your viewpoint on the severity of the risk.
posted by daveadams at 2:18 PM on October 31, 2000

I wouldn't call the 2 parties centrist, by any means. For an example you might note the shift in the Democrats rhetoric on health care. National health care is once again off the table. Richard Nixon proposed it years ago.

Richard M. Nixon considered a left wing extremist? You Gore people are really starting to scare me.
posted by snakey at 2:20 PM on October 31, 2000

And I agree with pb, we need to go to a straight popular vote with a runoff system. Lots of states use runoffs in their local elections. If a candidate fails to get 50% of the popular vote, the top two go at it in a runoff. But I also don't see that happening...
posted by daveadams at 2:21 PM on October 31, 2000

I don't want Nader to be president, but I do want all those who want him to vote for him.

thirteen has the right approach to this voting nonsense.

Democrats: stop badgering people who don't share your views and stop scaremongering, for heaven's sakes.
posted by lagado at 2:21 PM on October 31, 2000

It pains me the American electorate isn’t as perceptive as a British columnist.

The best he is likely to achieve is to hand victory to Bush, plunging the world into four terrifying years of government by morons. But the alternative is far worse. If Gore wins, backed by one hundred million corporate dollars, then the last faint hopes that a mainstream political party might fight for a change in the way American campaigns are financed will evaporate.

If, by contrast, Gore loses because Nader steals his key votes, then this will force the Democratic party into the most profound self-examination in its recent history. As the Democrats come to see that they cannot recapture public trust until they have done something to earn it, they will ensure that campaign finance reform becomes the key issue in the 2004 presidential elections.

His victory would hasten the arrival of a new and potentially endless dark age, in which only the demands of the mighty are acknowledged.

If you don't stand up for what you believe to be right, regardless of the consequences, you will quickly discover that there is nothing left to believe in. The Americans, like all of us, should vote not in fear, but in hope.

posted by capt.crackpipe at 2:24 PM on October 31, 2000


Many states use run-offs in _non-partisan_ elections, and a significant number also use run-offs in primaries among same-party candidates for the same post, but very few use run-offs in _partisan_ general election campaigns. The overwhelming rule is plurality: you win when you have one more vote than the next-highest guy, whether that means 99% or 26%.

Georgia is one exception which has a post-general election partisan runoff -- and had a runoff in 1992 of a Senate race in which the Democratic plurality winner in November lost in December to the Republican.

Louisiana also has a weird system, in which the top two finishers in an all-parties "jungle" primary compete in the general if none got 50%+1 (and, thus, you can have 2 Dems, or 2 Reps, in the general).

posted by MattD at 2:30 PM on October 31, 2000

I think everyone should vote for the candidate who most closely represents their views on the majority of issues important to that voter. In my case, that's Bush. I have no problem with someone selecting experts in particular fields and then relying on their expertise. In fact, I find that style of leadership far preferable to someone like Gore who thinks he knows and can do everything.
posted by CRS at 2:47 PM on October 31, 2000

[just a note: I'm not anti-nader. I just thought it was an interesting development.]

I agree with thirteen: the important thing to me is not that anyone vote in a particular way, but that they get out and vote.

posted by rebeccablood at 3:20 PM on October 31, 2000

its not that nader's ideals and stance on issues is flawed, nope its because his ego is running unchecked.

Excuse me?! I think Nader's ego pales in comparisan to Gore's. He thought Nader would call it quits by October and that arrogance is what may cost him the election.

posted by black8 at 4:20 PM on October 31, 2000

Anyone running for the presidency can’t be a timid character.
posted by capt.crackpipe at 5:01 PM on October 31, 2000

UK residents have no hope of understanding all of this. We do try our best, but the electorial races are simply mindblowing.

Fortunately we do not get a say in the matter.

Related link: Satire at Snappy Dresser. (hat tip: Mo Morgan)
posted by ericbrain at 5:55 PM on October 31, 2000

capt.crackpipe: it's worth remembering that Monbiot, the writer of that Guardian piece, is one of the UK's leading environmental activists...
posted by holgate at 8:52 PM on October 31, 2000

and he’s a genius too!
posted by capt.crackpipe at 10:04 PM on October 31, 2000

Notice they don’t discuss Nader’s enviro record, they’re just scared of Bush.

And I think it's a realistic thing to be afraid of. Bush said in the second debate that scientists haven't reached a consensus on global warming and we should wait to take action until they do. While those of you supporting Nader seem to think there's no difference between George "what global warming?" Bush and Al "Earth in the Balance" Gore, I think that's a huge mistake.

Anyone who thinks that Bush and Gore are interchangeable on the issue of environmental protection must have complete memory loss when it comes to the Reagan years.

Does the name James Watt ring a bell? Reagan's Secretary of the Interior cut funding to protect endangered species, gutted federal environmental regulatory power and wanted to sell federal lands at low prices for oil and gas exploration. He was so atrocious that within two years of his appointment, environmentalists collected 1.1 million signatures calling for his ouster.

Watt's exactly the kind of Interior Secretary we can expect from a Bush administration.
posted by rcade at 10:26 PM on October 31, 2000

Speaking of James Watt, today's New York Times has an interview in which Nader again offers the suggestion that a president who is an environmental disaster is good for environmentalists:
"A bumbling Texas governor would galvanize the environmental community as never before," he said. "The Sierra Club doubled its membership under James Watt."
Out of one side of his mouth Nader is telling everyone that Gore and Bush are the same. Out of the other, he's saying Bush is so much worse than Gore he would awaken the slumbering outrage of environmentalists.

Which is it?
posted by rcade at 11:15 PM on October 31, 2000

You must all remember that the point is not to "save the evironment", but to increase the membership rolls in environmental organizations.
posted by sylloge at 12:28 AM on November 1, 2000

If Gore is what we get after eight years of Clinton, what will we get after eight years of Gore? Lieberman? And after Lieberman, what then? Eventually there won't be a Republican Party because they'll all be running as Democrats.
posted by leo at 2:52 AM on November 1, 2000

Democrats -> Republicans -> Nazis ...       what comes after that?
posted by sylloge at 3:23 AM on November 1, 2000


posted by Mars Saxman at 11:18 AM on November 1, 2000

Ah, shit sylloge, it was just getting good.

posted by capt.crackpipe at 1:05 PM on November 1, 2000

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