FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Or Why I Voted for Ralph Nader

by DIANA BARAHONA

 

Although I predicted Kerry would lose the election, I kept my prediction private since I wasn’t sure if I was letting my disgust with the candidate interfere with my judgment. My reasons for supporting the independent candidacy of Nader had little to do with the outcome of the election and were centered on doing the right thing. Here were my reasons:

1. John F. Kerry had extremely bad positions on the following issues:

a. Iraq, Iran

b. Israel-Palestine

c. Patriot Act

d. Free Trade

e. Cuba

f. Venezuela

g. Kyoto, CAFE standards

2. In addition, Kerry has the worst attendance record in the Senate. He failed to defend the UN and international law. He failed to denounce torture and illegal detentions. And he tried to deny freedom of speech to Ralph Nader and his supporters.

3. Contrary to the many claims made by the liberal intelligentsia, there exists no objective evidence (statements or historical record) that

a. “organizing would be easier” with Kerry as president

b. He had any intention of withdrawing from Iraq

c. Blacks would be better off under Kerry

d. Workers would be better off under Kerry

4. The Democrat Party is extremely corrupt, and voting for JFK would do nothing to either change his right-wing positions or make the Democrats less corrupt or rightist.

5. This leaves two options:

–Try to reform the Democrat Party

or

–Reject the Democrats and support a third force (as the people in Uruguay and Venezuela have done)

7. Since voting for the Democrats as is will not reform the party but will have the opposite effect of confirming their belief that they need to keep moving farther right

and

8. Since the only way to build a third force is to start to demonstrate to the public that the third force is both different and viable, the best way to use one’s vote would have been to support the third force. Continuing to support the Democrat Party postponed and undermined this effort by doing the following:

a. It confused the public

b. It deceived the public, making people more cynical and apolitical

c.. The Green Party lost its independence and credibility, wasting long years of work which were ostensibly to build an independent, viable third force.

Some people who spent the last year being vocally wrong may think there’s no point in going over all of this. There is no lack of irresponsible types who have no sooner made one mistake than they are off and running toward the next one, and in four years they will do it to us again. Every mistake is magnified now because the planet’s days are numbered. Global warming is destroying the fabric of life as I write and unless there are radical changes in policies right now, its effects will not be at all mitigated; more likely, the US leaders will increasingly resort to military violence to try to maintain control in the face of constant natural disasters, wars over resources, and massive displacement of populations. The time for radical change was twelve years ago, and the failure of the American left to lead us toward this change is unforgivable.

DIANA BARAHONA is an interpreter and journalism student in Long Beach, CA. She has written about environmental issues, the California energy swindle, the media, and observed recent elections in El Salvador and Venezuela. She can be reached at: dlbarahona@cs.com

 

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

Weekend Edition
June 23, 2017
Friday - Sunday
Jeffrey St. Clair
Democrats in the Dead Zone
Gary Leupp
Trump, Qatar and the Danger of Total Confusion
Andrew Levine
The “Democracies” We Deserve
Jeffrey St. Clair - Joshua Frank
The FBI’s “Operation Backfire” and the Case of Briana Waters
Rob Urie
Cannibal Corpse
Joseph G. Ramsey
Savage Calculations: On the Exoneration of Philando Castile’s Killer
John Wight
Trump’s Attack on Cuba
Dave Lindorff
We Need a Mass Movement to Demand Radical Progressive Change
Brian Cloughley
Moving Closer to Doom
David Rosen
The Sex Offender: the 21st Century Witch
John Feffer
All Signs Point to Trump’s Coming War With Iran
Jennifer L. Lieberman
What’s Really New About the Gig Economy?
Pete Dolack
Analyzing the Failures of Syriza
Vijay Prashad
The Russian Nexus
Mike Whitney
Putin Tries to Avoid a Wider War With the US
Gregory Barrett
“Realpolitik” in Berlin: Merkel Fawns Over Kissinger
Louis Yako
The Road to Understanding Syria Goes Through Iraq
Graham Peebles
Grenfell Tower: A Disaster Waiting to Happen
Ezra Rosser
The Poverty State of Mind and the State’s Obligations to the Poor
Ron Jacobs
Andrew Jackson and the American Psyche
Pepe Escobar
Fear and Loathing on the Afghan Silk Road
Lawrence Davidson
On Hidden Cultural Corruptors
Andre Vltchek
Why I Reject Western Courts and Justice
Christopher Brauchli
The Routinization of Mass Shootings in America
Missy Comley Beattie
The Poor Need Not Apply
Martin Billheimer
White Man’s Country and the Iron Room
Joseph Natoli
What to Wonder Now
Tom Clifford
Hong Kong: the Chinese Meant Business
Thomas Knapp
The Castile Doctrine: Cops Without Consequences
Nyla Ali Khan
Borders Versus Memory
Binoy Kampmark
Death on the Road: Memory in Tim Winton’s Shrine
Tony McKenna
The Oily Politics of Unity: Owen Smith as Northern Ireland Shadow Secretary
Nizar Visram
If North Korea Didn’t Exist US Would Create It
John Carroll Md
At St. Catherine’s Hospital, Cite Soleil, Haiti
Kenneth Surin
Brief Impressions of the Singaporean Conjucture
Paul C. Bermanzohn
Trump: the Birth of the Hero
Jill Richardson
Trump on Cuba: If Obama Did It, It’s Bad
Olivia Alperstein
Our President’s Word Wars
REZA FIYOUZAT
Useless Idiots or Useful Collaborators?
Clark T. Scott
Parallel in Significance
Louis Proyect
Hitler and the Lone Wolf Assassin
Julian Vigo
Theresa May Can’t Win for Losing
Richard Klin
Prog Rock: Pomp and Circumstance
Charles R. Larson
Review: Malin Persson Giolito’s “Quicksand”
David Yearsley
RIP: Pomp and Circumstance
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail