Sunday, February 24, 2008
Ralph Nader for President! (or at least Vice-President)
Great news from across the Pond: the anti-globalist and anti-war activist Ralph Nader has announced that he is to stand for President. Many progressives will be crestfallen at this news, believing that Nader will take votes away from Barack Obama, in the same way they believe that Nader's candidacy in 2000 prevented Al Gore from getting to the White House. Their analysis, is in my view, flawed. Gore lost progressive votes in 2000 primarily because he chose the fanatically pro-war hawk Joe Lieberman as his running mate. And if Obama doesn't want to lose progressive votes to Nader, then he has to do two things. One: shift his ground to an unequivocally progressive position- ie cutting the military budget, bringing US troops back from Iraq AND Afghanistan and making it quite clear that neocons and liberal interventionist hawks should have no input whatsoever in foreign policy decisions. Two: announce that if he wins the Democrat nomination, his running mate will be a true anti-war progressive. Preferably called Ralph Nader.
Nader's candidacy will help pressurise both Hilary Clinton and Barack Obama to take more progressive positions on globalisation, the war and US militarism.
Which can only be a good thing.