Friday, July 4, 2008

Declare for Nader, Vote for Obama

When the pollsters call, tell them you'd vote for Ralph Nader. If you call yourself a progressive (ie you're in favor of progress), then please don't get swept away in the Obama love-fest that has been the story of this campaign so far. The only way we can hope to shift the campaign agenda towards the issues that matter most is to let Nader be heard. Of course he's not going to get elected; he knows and acknowledges that fact. But if he polls at 10% or higher he will be invited to debates (such as the upcoming Google sponsored event) and might even get a crumb's worth of coverage in the MSM (though I'm not holding my breath for that).

Nader is the only candidate with progressive positions on such crucial topics as the environment, military spending, health care, civil liberties, corporate crime, the economy, etc. Obama has been on the reasonable side of these issues but is too willing to be pushed to the so-called p0litical center in order to get elected. He is dead wrong in his support of the FISA legislation. And while he has expressed support for a single payer health care system, he currently favors reform that allows the criminal hegemony of the insurance industry to continue. I haven't heard a peep from him on reducing federal military spending nor any innovative ideas on getting solar, wind and geothermal technologies into the mainstream.

Look, I like the guy. I met Obama when I played a fundraiser for his senatorial bid a few years ago. He struck me then as a straight shooter, someone whose word you can trust. Now I'm not so sure. Will I vote for him in November? You bet I will. But supporting Nader's bid right now is the only conscionable action I can take.