Friday, October 15, 2004

Why Vote Nader?

Why Vote Nader?

It’s obvious to most that Bush is (at best) a fascist’s tool. But by what twisted logic does this also mean that Kerry deserves your vote? Through several decades in public office, he has been complicit in many activities that have done great harm to workers all over the world; the normalization of trade with Vietnam and China, NAFTA, the IMF and the WTO, the non-procurement of affordable health insurance, a federal minimum wage or a repeal of Taft-Hartley. He also supported the invasion of Iraq and the Patriot Act. Which of these behaviors warrants your support?

For most of his adult life, Ralph Nader has worked tirelessly on your behalf, though many feel that he “cost Gore the election” in 2000. (Reality check; almost 8 Million Democrats voted for Bush – only 700,000 Democrats voted for Nader. You can do the math.) Only through the magic of propaganda could this be Ralph’s fault. The Democrats have challenged his right to run in every state but then didn’t challenge Bush when he filed late in Florida (which would have disqualified him). Florida, for God’s sakes!

Being a true progressive, I recognize the evils inherent to the two-party system. I would never support its puppets. I’ve seen the “wizard” and I will not be scared into wasting my vote on “lesser evils”. I just don’t see the margin in it. It is this failed strategy that has put us right where we are today. Think about that.

Nader will alter our trade deals to elevate the global worker to a decent living standard. He will implement a federal minimum wage and enact universal health care. He’ll reduce insane Pentagon spending and give federal regulatory agencies back their teeth. He’ll castrate corporate lobby groups and introduce Instant Runoff Voting and campaign finance reform. Nader will pull our troops out of Iraq and will fully fund alternative energy research. He will forge a peace between Israel and Palestine.

Both parties have allowed corporate interests to cause massive suffering all over the globe. Your vote for a rational, decent, principled human being will show the world that a small number of thoughtful Americans are not on board with unregulated Capitalism and the “neo-con” agenda. Be brave. Stand up for those without a voice, especially if you are living in safe state (like MA, VT & NY) where the Democrats are assured an electoral win, regardless of your actions. Vote strategically. Vote Nader!

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Third Party

Dear Editor:

Every election year, we see multiple letters extolling the virtues of various local candidates. “My democrat is a better servant of the people” - “My republican has more experience” - “My dad’s better than your dad.” This simplistic barrage is rarely issues-based. Apparently, these Ward and June Cleaver types are all great neighbors, amazing parents and all-around, heroic, noble people.

For the sake of keeping things simple, lets agree that each of these candidates will, in fact, decide a very important thing if elected – How to spend our money! Whose interests will they serve? A clear majority of politicians represent one of the two major parties, so this is an easy question to answer. These candidates are, basically, indentured servants. Their parties choose to run them because they’ll “do what they’re supposed to” after they’re elected. It is certainly in a candidate’s own self-interest to tow the party line after election day, and most do.

Vote republican or democrat (at any level) and you are supporting a system that is, by nature, undemocratic. You are playing part in a false polarization of the masses that allows many to think they are making an actual choice when they align themselves with one political juggernaut or the other. The two major parties have always represented the interests of the ruling class. It is highly unlikely you are a part of that class; Why on earth would you elect its minions?

Our nationally-elected representatives have a lot in common. They are rich. They love big business. They hate unions and workers. They refuse to address the need for affordable health care. They cut our veterans budgets while sending our children to fight oil wars. They allow our air and water to be horribly polluted. They shut “we the people” out of the democratic process through the electoral college and corporate sponsorship. They lie. Most damaging perhaps, together they sustain factory-schools with which they raise complacent, materialistic, easily-manipulated adults.

Republicans and democrats are one and the same. When you vote, do
America a favor and don’t sell it further down the river. Vote Green, Progressive, Independent, Working Families, Libertarian or one of the many other alternatives. If no “real” human beings are running, run for office yourself! There are always choices beyond what you’re presented with!

Matt Funiciello