Sunday, October 10, 2004

NADER CHALLENGES MOORE TO DEBATE

This update from www.voteNader.org should interest students who have been ammused by Michael Moore's recent ramblings.


Nader Challenges Michael Moore to a Debate

Who Should the Anti-War Movement Vote for in 2004?
Ralph Nader today challenged film-maker Michael Moore to debate the question of which Presidential candidate the anti-war movement should support in November.

Nader proposes that the debate with Moore take place in Tempe, AZ, prior to the final Presidential debate on Wednesday, Oct. 13. "Since Bush and Kerry will not debate a plan to end our involvement in this quagmire, Michael should join me in giving the American people a deep and thoughtful discussion of how to avoid the quagmire that looms before us."

Michael Moore has stood by as the anti-war movement has morphed into a pro-Kerry movement. Secure in the knowledge that the anti-war movement has lost its integrity, Kerry has moved to leapfrog Bush, becoming the supreme war-hawk in this campaign. In the first debate, Kerry proclaimed that he would "win the war in Iraq," pledged to send more American troops to do it, and criticized Bush for having pulled back from the assault on Falluja in the face of large civilian casualties already from American bombs.

The nation’s premier right-wing columnist, William Safire, wrote in the New York Times on Oct. 4th, that Kerry had become the "newest neo-conservative," and was now "more hawkish than President Bush."

"The Nader/Camejo campaign continues to stand against this war," said Nader. "America should immediately declare a phased withdrawal of our military and corporate forces over the next 6 months, which will cause the bottom to drop out of the insurgency. Once mainstream Iraqis know they are getting their country back, they will have no reason to support the insurgency and the focus will immediately become how the Iraqis will work out their own affairs. The world should be prepared to assist with supervised elections, humanitarian aid, and with providing temporary peace-keeping forces from neutral nations to help the Iraqis settle their own affairs."

Just before the Iraq war the New York Times called the anti-war movement the world’s second super-power. Now, all that the movement has predicted has come to pass in Iraq, yet rather than being empowered by its vindication, the movement has no pulse except one of unconditional surrender to Kerry. The time is short, the need is great. We must breathe a renewed dynamism into our movement. As Fredrick Douglass said in the pre-civil war years, "Power concedes nothing without a demand."

What say you, Michael? Don’t you want them to trust you again?

24 Comments:

Blogger SocialChangePSU said...

I'm writing this as a voice of dissent and I hope that having the views you do, you will include this voice and if you choose try to convice me to come to your side. I believe that Nader supporters need to unite with Independents, Greens, and Democrats to defeat George Bush, and so I also believe that Ralph Nader (whom I have the deepest respect for) should drop out. Before I go any further I will mention that I am not your average Democrat, but am in line with your views on so many issues. I am a senior at Penn State University where I was one of the leaders of the anti-war movement at my school, a fighter for diversity in student government, the founder of a domestic poverty awareness group, and a member of my school's Global AIDS Initiative working to get further aide and generics to AIDS ridden countries in Africa. I'm also an immigrant from Iran who came to this country in utter poverty and have thus fought for immigrant rights and rights of the poor for a long period and am as progressive as they come. At the same time, during these last four years I've seen poverty numbers the last four years sky rocket, I've seen an administration that has appealed to people's worst fears and in so doing brought citizens hate upon Middle Easterners, and held back two thirds of the AIDS relief funding it had promised to the third world. My Pell Grants have gotten cut the last four years, which have made the lives of my family and tons of middle class families across the country trying to pay for college miserable. Who knows... the country of my birth, Iran, could be the next one attacked.

Do I agree with everything the Democratic party stands for? Absolutely not! But I'm not going to pretend that the consequences of having another four years of Bush aren't real, nor will I concede that the differences in the positions of Kerry and Bush are too abstract. The differences are real, the consequences are real, and the pain myself, my family, underpriveleged people across the country, and yes even you yourself have felt over the last four years are very real. Right now the Republicans have all three branches of government. That is both democratically not sound and indeed very frightening. For that reason, I will vote for John Kerry and ask Ralph Nader (who again I admire very much) to drop out. I will work once Kerry is in office to affect the change Ralph talks about on issues I also feel are important but are not being addressed once he is in office and I will force Democrats to take those positions. However, I will not be selfish in working for an abstract principle when so many people have needlessly been added to the poverty total, our environmental legislation has been treaded upon, and so many other issues that Bush has supported have taken us in the wrong direction.
Let's unite right now before it's too late. Bush's right wing republicans really are trying to divide us and helping to get Ralph on the ballot in only battleground states. In the words of former asshole conservative Republican Majority Leader, Dick Armey whose organization got signatures for Ralph in Oregon,"liberals are tying to unite but we could divide this base of support by signing up for Nader." This Republican help is happening in every state and it's documented on this site that I found http://www.thenaderfactor.com/press/072304/. Let's not let them fool us. Let's not let them divide us. In these last two weeks let's unite, take back our country, and kick Bush back to Crawford!

October 17, 2004 at 2:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw Moore speak here in MN on his 'Slacker Uprising Tour' and he was spineless. He attacked Nader, led a huge pro-Kerry propaganda rally, and ignored Greens and Naderites in the audience who tried to expose his lies about how Nader successfully pushed the Democratic Party to the left. And of course he refused to debate Nader.

Show your support for Ralph by voting Nader/Camejo in this mock election: http://uselectionatlas.org/membusers.php

Here third parties actually have a chance to make a decent showing, Nader is winning Wyoming and Vermont currently. The electoral map is here: http://uselectionatlas.org/USPRESIDENT/GENERAL/CAMPAIGN/2004/mock04.php

October 17, 2004 at 6:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

First it was Michael Moore and Cornell West, now those who have decided to unite against the front against George W. Bush and his destructive policies includes Winona LaDuke, the vice presidential choice on Ralph's ticket in 2000. "I am voting my conscience" and not supporting Nader
In the following statement, Winona LaDuke, Nader's 2000 running mate, announced:
I am voting for John Kerry this November. I love this land, and I know that we need to make drastic changes in Washington if we are going to protect our land and our communities. I'm voting my conscience on Nov. 2 I'm voting for John Kerry. He wants to move federal policies to support Native communities, whether Native farmers, businesspeople or tribal governments. We are on his radar; this is a beginning. Kerry offers other reasons for hope. He opposes converting Yucca Mountain into a nuclear waste dump. By Nov. 2, 2004, John Kerry will have earned my vote.
I love Ralph Nader and I agree with most though not all of what he stands for. At the same time I love my country more and the destructive Bush policies need to stop now! We need to unite with Kerry and the dems now and then change their policies from within, but make no mistake about it, it is crucial to get Bush out of office.

October 18, 2004 at 11:51 AM  
Blogger saveoursaul said...

Vote Your Conscience

I just got this email and it’s so righteous that I created a blog to post it:

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I know you. Really.

You despise the two-party system. So do I, with a passion.

When people say how progressive Kerry really is, you laugh. Or just walk away. So do I.

You probably got this message forwarded to you by someone who knows me, or someone who knows someone who knows me. But I KNOW YOU. I am you. I used to be you.

The Democrats need us but they’re just as bad as the Republicans. They’re functionally equivalent servants of corporate power and greed. The two-party system has denigrated our democracy to the point that both parties value self-preservation over all else. The system isn’t working for anyone in this country except the corporations.

We’re the only ones who are willing to call the Democrats what they are -- a political party that will say whatever it takes to get elected.

Ralph Nader is the ONLY candidate who speaks to my issues. No, he can’t win. But principles matter.

Now here’s how you and I may differ:
I’ve got a college education. I live in a working-class neighborhood, and I get my clothes second-hand, but it’s by choice. I get my news from alternate media. I don’t make a lot of money, but I’m not working a minimum wage job. If I wanted to, I could clean myself up and fake my way through a corporate interview. If and when I have kids, I’ll make sure they get attention and the education they’re missing from our failing public schools. I’ve been arrested for civil disobedience, but never just for being in the wrong place (my car) at the wrong time (night).

Bottom line: I can survive another four years of Bush. Can you?

Four more years of Bush will be four more years of hell for everyone whose unemployment already ran out, who goes to the emergency room when they have the flu, for kids who have to bring their own toilet paper to school, for Arab Americans who are still being held by the government without any charges or access to an attorney. For the woman who keeps working for the ass-grabbing boss because otherwise she can’t afford the Ritalin that keeps her two “problem” sons from being kicked out of school.

I will vote for Kerry for ONE reason only: I can survive four more years of Bush, but there are millions of people who can't. And my high and mighty political principles don’t look so high and mighty to them.

We’ve got four years of hard work ahead of us, regardless of who wins on November 2. I don’t for a minute think that Kerry’s the real deal. But there are people in this country with real problems. If you’re one of them, then this message isn’t for you. But if you can survive four more years of Bush, then think long and hard about the people who WILL be affected by overtime cuts, by razing of public housing projects to make room for more Wal-Marts, by police brutality and race-based super-incarceration, destruction of the public schools, no increase in the minimum wage. And then vote your conscience.

Bush must be stopped. That's the only reason I'm voting Kerry. But my vote isn’t free. I won't shut up and toe the party line. Silence is complicity.

Both parties suck and they’re trying to divide us. But if we stick together and vote as a block, they’ll listen. Thousands of Nader voters can swing this election. When Kerry wins, we'll hold the Democrats accountable. www.wearetheswingstate.org is how Kerry will know that it was us who made the difference.

I am a swing state. We are the swing state. And we have the power. We will be the difference in this election—the closest election in history.

October 19, 2004 at 11:15 AM  
Blogger irv said...

I very much support third parties and think that they can have a very positive effect on the national debate. The problem is, we have an electoral system that is geared toward the two major parties. As such, I think that third party supporters should very much fight for a system that gives their parties a proper voice in our government. But when it comes to voting, they should take care not to act as an unwitting tool of the candidate who they like least.

On July 9, 2004, Ralph Nader and Howard Dean debated the role of third parties in U.S. elections. The debate was sponsored by NPR and can be heard online at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=3262027. A transcript of the the debate is at http://www.crocuta.net/Dean/Dean_Nader_Debate_July9_2004.htm. I was happy to hear both Nader and Dean endorse Instant Runoff Voting (IRV), a method for fixing the "spoiler" problem. For more information on this system, see http://instantrunoffvoting.blogspot.com. IRV allows a voter to vote for a third party candidate without the fear of throwing the election to the major party candidate that they like least. This would allow a qualified third party to steadily build support, something that is not currently possible.

I think that Nader could best publicize this issue by running his campaign to promote his positions but dropping out just before the election, stating that he is forced to do so by the current system so that he does not act as a spoiler. He could then recommend that his supporters vote for the candidate who has best taken up his positions or that he most supports. That, at least, would give him some political leverage and the major parties, as well as the people, might give a little more thought to addressing this issue. In any case, this would be much more responsible than acting as a spoiler.

Ironically, a spoiler is most likely to throw the election to the candidate who he is least like. During the debate, Nader asked the question: "And if you don't vote your conscience, I'd like to hear from you about what part of your body you are voting". I would propose that, in not facilitating Bush's election by voting for Nader, that voter is voting their BRAIN. Nader likewise needs to exercise his brain along with his well-developed conscience.

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