A Quick Interview With Journalist Chris Hedges

Comments

1
There's a misprint in the headline: should read 'idiot Chris Hedges'
2
Hedges is wrong about Sanders. Left wingers are both outside and inside the Ds. Sanders will speak truth to power and it'll be good political rep for social movements. People can always vote 3rd party in the presidential.
3
@2 Also, we shouldn't exclude Sanders giving Clinton a run for her money (lots of it)
4
"I would support somebody like Jill Stein—somebody outside of the Democrat or Republican establishment, as a kind of protest vote."

Assholes like this one gave us that war "conducted for profit" that he's complaining about.
5
I should add:

Assholes like this one gave us that war "conducted for profit" that he's complaining about by virtue of allowing Bush to squeak into office on a wave of apathy.

So, Chris: fuck you.
6
the art and sentiment of DAYS OF REVOLT are real similar to Seattle's own comic book force, Jon Strongbow. His books have little need to bang you over the head with liberal what's a liberal not enough liberal liberal ideology. Native American. more pure, more simple, more to my liking, and he's 10 times the illustrator over Sacco.

http://jonstrongbow.com/press.html
7
@4 and @5, hear, hear. The Hedges strategy worked wonders in 2000, didn't it?

For too many Seattle political newbies, that was so long ago they forgot what happened. But Geo. W. never did. He got up every morning in the White House thanking Ralph Nader for putting him there.
8
@5 but you see, waves of apathy have nothing to do with 3rd party candidates. Voters betrayed by politicians is what generates apathy, which points to the fallacy of the lesser of 2 evils argument.
9
Chris Hedges hates the Democratic party more than he hates the Iraq war. He's willing to punish the former, even if such punishments create the necessary conditions for the latter. That's both idiotic and morally deranged. Let's stop taking this kind of nonsense seriously, please.
10
@7 There were as many disenfranchised black voters in Florida 2000 as there were Nader voters, many of whom would never have voted Gore in the first place so your argumentation sounds rather lazy.
11
@9 Don't you think it is rather rich that Clinton effectively voted for that war while Hedges was demonstrating against it with millions of others? Yet according to your brilliant logic, Hedges would be responsible.
12
@10 hear hear. The Nader story is a load of shit. If Gore wanted to not lose the election, he shouldn't have rolled over and allowed them to steal it.
13
Oh how I wish people would stop being so arch about the "lesser of the two evils" when it comes to the Presidential elections. Yes, the concept is real, and it's something most of us acknowledge in life each and every day.

The very real consequences of stupid and apathetic Americans either staying at home or voting for vanity candidates like Nader in 2000 is thousands of dead and wounded Americans and millions of dead and wounded Afghans and Iraqis, plus billions in debt and lost opportunity. The politically engaged of that bunch may pat themselves on the back and put a few more pins on their backpacks, but they are just as complicit in what has happened on this planet the last 14 years as Bush or Cheney.
14
@10
I don't understand your point. Are you saying that a bunch of demo were prevented from voting, and that if they had voted, gore would have won and the Nader votes wouldn't have mattered? Isn't that an acknowledgment that the Nader votes did in fact swing the election?
15
@14 If you are going to claim to explain why Bush got selected by the SC, you'll have to be a lot more thorough than regurgitating that Nader did it because you'd be leaving out many things like apathy and disenfranchisement that are a lot more relevant than Nader's fraction of the vote (that could have gone Democrat). Especially since Democrats themselves are very much responsible for things like apathy and not doing squat about disenfranchisement and instead just pathetically roll over like Gore and almost all others did in 2000.
16
15,
Uh, I was asking you what you were saying. It seems to me that you are saying that people not voting Democrat was the cause, rather than people voting Green. Those seem like the same thing, but you seem to frame on as being the cause and the other not at all the cause.

What's the point of voting 3rd party if not to influence the results?
17
~ 50% didn't vote of which 80% are poor, while 1.5% of 50% voted green: which is the most important block among these 2 to elect a Democrat according to you?
18
@13 Hurrah for Mrs. Vel-Duray!
19
I think there is some cognitive dissonance in that. Elections aren't won or lost by ballots that aren't cast, they are won or lost by not getting the most votes out of the ballots that are cast.

I think saying "blame this other group that didn't vote for gore(nonvoters), not my group that didn't vote for gore!(nadervoters)" Is just not venvincing. It has long been my opinion that a large draw of third party national candidates is the wish to send a message, and also avoid voting for someone who will actually take office. Inost cases that works and the 3rd party voters don't really effect things. In this case, they did. Sure, there were a lot of factors at play. Nader was a factor that helped bush get into office.
20
@13 amen!
21
Nader was not a "vanity" candidate. Key Arena was filled for his rally. Just like his talk at Third Place books was filled a couple years later. Just like Michael Moore's visit to Evergreen was filled as well. We on the "far" left had nothing to do with any of this -- we were trying to STOP it before it happened. In fact it makes me recall swearing off The Stranger and feeling betrayed by Dan with his support of the perpetual "war" that it has now become. I've since forgiven him, but Nader was not a "vanity candidate" at all.
22
@19 You appear to be claiming that voter turnout demographics has no effect on elections, which is rather odd to say the least. Appealing to your constituency to turn out in mass instead of 70% staying at home mostly because you don't appeal to them is goal number 1 in order to win reliably.
23
@ 22 - Xeno claimed there is no such thing as movement, because it cannot logically be proven to exist, despite the fact that we all move all the time and logic doesn't prevent me from arriving at work every morning. You, similarly, want to argue that there's no logical reason to blame Nader for Bush winning the 2000 election, despite a casual glance at the numbers indicating that he absolutely did have an effect.

The turnout for the 2000 election was not statistically that far out of the norm for US presidential elections in the past 30 years. It was actually higher than the previous election. People don't stay home on election day so much because they find candidates unappealing, as they do because they find voting unappealing. The idea that if Gore was a real candidate, there would have been 80% turnout, or whatever amount you think would register as noteworthy is belied by the fact that only half the country ever voted in elections these days.
24
@22
That's not what I'm saying at all. I said there were many factors, turnout being one of them. People voting for Nader was also a factor helping Bush claim the Whitehouse. Fact is, a protest candidacy helped put Bush in office.

Look, bottomline, you should vote for who you actually want running the country out of the group who actually might win the race. Otherwise you are just throwing your vote away same as if you didn't vote. And you could wind up with some people in office who you seriously disagree with and could have done something to prevent that, but didn't.

I don't place people who vote for "GoodSpaceGuy" on a higher plane than people who just don't turn up.
25
@24 "Fact is, a protest candidacy helped put Bush in office. "

You can't even say that since a protest candidacy likely enhanced turnout.

If only you guys were as vocal about Obama's trade pacts and fast tracking you just might manage to hold your leaders accountable and effect change.
26
@23 "despite a casual glance at the numbers indicating that he absolutely did have an effect."

An effect that pales in comparison to the failure of DLC Democrats to appeal to the natural constituencies of the Democratic party and their failure to oppose the GOP's election tampering.

The most surprising to me is that you people appear to really believe that you'll stop the right wing with 40-55% of eligible voters turning out and a disproportionate number of low income people not voting.
27
Amen, anon1256 comment 25.
I'm certainly someone who voted for Nader in 2000 that would not have voted otherwise - his candidacy increased my turnout.
Candidates like Hillary, Obama, Kerry, and Gore do not deserve my vote because they do not serve my interests as a non-monied person who wants peace and justice for all. I voted for Bill in 1992, but afterwards swore I would never vote for another Republican.
28
@25
what? every person who didn't vote for Bush's credible opponent helped Bush win.

One of the strengths of "first past the post" elections is that it makes decisions like that really easy.
29
The Greens and every other supposed third party out there do absolutely nothing but show up for presidential elections and act all hurt because no one pays attention to them. That's the very definition of a vanity candidate and a vanity party. Sure, people might show up to listen to them, but that doesn't necessarily translate to votes, even in Seattle and Oly.

If you want real change, show up at Democratic precinct meetings and take the party over. Once you get a foothold at the precinct level, you can work on the county and state level and up from there. It's work, full of dull meetings in hot meeting rooms with awful people who usually think that they can get their way if they talk louder and longer than everyone else. And it will involve compromise, which the left abhors, and it will take time which also bugs them. But it can be done. That's part of the reason why the GOP continues to be so successful in the rural states, because they cultivated activists at the local level, and spoon fed them talking points.

But it's more fun to have little protests and complain about how no one appreciates how smart their chosen candidate is. Never mind the fact that most people have never heard of their candidate.

I don't like everything Obama has done. I have some serious reservations about the privacy stuff and this trade agreement, but he's also done some great stuff for gay marriage, green energy and judiciary appointments, which are some of my causes. If you expect a president to be your personal stenographer, you are always going to end up "apathetic".
30
I think it is totally nuts that there are people on here who are pro-Green party who are actually arguing that voting Green doesn't have an effect on elections. What is the point of it then?

Also, anon1256, these people are EVERYONE's leaders. That's why it is important to chose the lesser of two evils. Bush was everyone's president, and did a bunch of stuff that negatively impacted a ton of people. That could have been prevented. If you regret the Bush presidency, you should regret not voting for the only guy to have a prayer of defeating him.
31
The Democrats have no-one to blame but themselves for 2000.
Do you remember the beginning of Fahrenheit 451? The scene is the US Senate in 2001, certifying the recent election. Gore is presiding over his last session of the US Senate. Every member of the Black Congressional Caucus is requesting to speak for an investigation of voting rights offenses. But it is the Senate so they cannot speak unless allowed to by a Senator, or by Gore himself presiding. Not one Democratic Senator, nor Gore himself, will recognize them. I recall that Barbara Boxer was willing, but was told not to do so by Gore himself.
Yes, you got that right: Gore choose to turn his back on the voting rights irregularities in Florida in 2000 (including instances of discrimination) than support his own candidacy. The Democratic Party is that unwilling to rock the boat.
While I remember this from Greens challenging the election, it was later documented by Michael Moore in Fahrenheit 451 and by Democrats.com no less : http://www.democrats.com/senator

Finally, the full recount of Florida by the Florida Ballot Project (funded by Miami Herald and Washington Post) showed that the a review of all ballots statewide would have given Gore the victory. But neither Gore nor the Democratic Party ever asked for one.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Florida_el…

I knew Democrats who took it upon themselves to fly to Florida to protest after the election but the party itself turned its back (just as it does in office) on its most sincere partisans.
32
@29 Activists for Palestine believed your rhetoric several years ago and tried to use precinct meetings to change the Democratic Party's stance on Israel and Palestine. Despite being passed at enough precincts to make it to the state convention, it was disappeared.
Years ago when I lived in Austin, the Travis County Democratic Party did the same thing to a Living Wage resolution.
The Democratic Party is NOT democratic.
33
A third party does nothing except throw the election to the Republicans, because historically the third party is always to the left of the Dems. A multi-party country would necessitate at least four parties, one of them an established ultra-conservative party. (The Tea Party was not a real party; it was a performance stage-managed by the Republicans to pull their voters to the right.)
34
@30 Well, at less than 1% of the vote not followed up by deal making, it certainly doesn't affect elections like a shifty democratic candidate running on a decades long platform of betrayal will.

@29 "he's also done some great stuff for gay marriage, green energy and judiciary appointments"
Obama has not changed in any major way Bush's significant policies and this is what you have to say. That's pathetic.
35
Jon, it sound like in both cases you cite, they weren't reformists. They had one specific agenda that they were trying to push, probably at the expense of everything else. Of course they failed, and it sounds like they gave up when they lost. That's not how you get things done. Especially not in party politics.
36
Really think Gore wouldn't have started a war with Iraq? Don't you recall what Bill Clinton did to Iraq? Clinton also claimed that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and bombed it repeatedly, ruining the country with sanctions despite them costing the lives of 100,000 children ("worth it" said Sec of State Albright).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of…

Imperialism, war and the security state are all bipartisan.
37
I'm glad to see that Nader's supporters from 2000 still feel enough shame that they'll mount absurd defenses even 15 years later.
38
@35
In my case in Travis County in Austin, we looked at the charter and realized that while it was on paper a membership organization, real power was in self-perpetuating committees. Looking at the national party you will see the same thing.
The Democratic Party is now organized for its big donors. While I know the ground level precincts are democratic, they are structurally prevented from making an impact.
Progressives have been trying to work within the Democratic Party since the Progressive movement at the beginning of the 20th century. The Labor movement was eaten by the Democratic Party. In the 70s, the Democratic Party fooled the civil rights, women's, peace and later environmental movements into joining.
In the 80s, Jesse Jackson tried to reform the Democratic Party with the Rainbow Coalition, beginning in 1984, working in precincts and then pushing hard in 1988. Jackson at the head of the movement was at one point favored to win the nomination and entered the convention with a significant number of votes. The party machine crushed the Rainbow Coalition.
There's a history to trying to reform the Democratic Party, and it is a history of progressives being used by the machine.
39
@37: have any facts or you just throwing mud and blaming others for continuing to believe in a corporate party?
40
If Democrats are realty worried about 3rd party vote, they can always make a deal with friendly 3rd parties instead of kicking them to the curb. If Democrats want these votes, they better give something in return because voters giving a blank check every 4 years to be stabbed in the back in return is just plain stupid despite the continual incantation for a different result from the usual corner.
41
Jon, do you really think that all of those people on those "self-perpetuating committees" had been there since 1860 or something? Like I said, it takes time, compromise, and sometimes waiting for the old guard to die off. Just like every other human endeavor. Apparently, you took your marbles and went home.

As far as progressives and the Dems, it was labor's racist tendencies that damaged that relationship. Old line labor would have been more than happy to see civil rights sidelined. They were happy with the old Dixiecrat setup, partly because management had used black people as strikebreakers for decades. Contemporary labor is in a cozy relationship with the Democratic party, and is part and parcel of the big money you complain about.

As for "civil rights, women's, peace and later environmental movements", if it is so awful for them, why haven't they thrown their money behind a third party? Probably because - wait for it - they are nothing but hot air.

42
@36 I don't think you'll get a reply. One can always tell about the worthiness of the opponent's argument when they conveniently gloss over the record of the so called lesser evil and blatantly refuse to discuss facts.

I recall that the estimate of children Iraqi casualties imputed to the embargo was half a million rather than 100000.
43
@41 "Probably because - wait for it - they are nothing but hot air. "

are you sure that it's not because everything is stacked against them (from media coverage to finances to first past the post). You are some intellectually dishonest piece of work when it comes to the topic of 3rd parties.
44
Anon, I'm all for liberal third parties. I really am. But I'm not into excuses. Especially the same excuses the right gives. I've been hearing it for years, and I just heard it from you. Talk about intellectually dishonest......

Start local, build from there. Be around more than once every four years. Develop a brand, as the kids say. I'll be the first to chip in.

45
@41, CVDR
The meaning of self-perpetuating is that the machine insures who fills the vacancies, keeping a continuity of the powerful in power.

Labor and the Dems: as a labor activist, I've read several books on the subject and the reality is far more complex and has as much to do with McCarthyism. Labor's attempt to organize the south (Operation Dixie) after the AFL-CIO merger was designed to challenge white supremacy but failed due to bowing down to the Dixiecrats. The CIO was largely anti-racist (a legacy of the communists who were their organizers) but when it came to choosing between the Democrats and organizing, the Democrats won. Thus Operation Dixie was a failure.

The short version of the history of all our movements is that we make our greatest and most liberatory gains when we are outside the system and forcing it to comply. Then the movement is co-opted into the Dems and the victories lessen and begin being rolled back. What reforms that are won afterward are reforms that can be accommodated by corporate power.

I admit it is a chicken and egg problem creating an organization with credibility. The organizations that represent us - from unions to NARAL, NOW, NAACP, etc., are very wedded to the Dems and provide the foot soldiers, phone callers that win elections for the Dems despite being abused by them. I remember NOW standing by Clinton even as he proudly passed welfare reform (the greatest attack on women's standard of living to that point) and while he committed de facto sexual harassment. Our organizations moderate their demands and spend their resources supporting the Democratic Party instead of mobilizing their base to advance their causes. I think its the single greatest factor (though there are many!) in the perpetual rightward shift the US has undertaken since the early 70s. The accomplishments of Nixon's administration (and proposals of his like universal health care and a guaranteed national income) look like left wing loony tunes in comparison to today - that's how far we've sunk.
46
@42
I went with 100,000 just because that's what 60 Minutes hit Albright with. She didn't even bat an eye.

Out to get back in the sun but I'll check this discussion again at least by tomorrow. Cheers.
47
I have to agree with jon. My experience with my precint when it came to issues like income and opportunity inequality, affordable housing, minimum wage, or impact fees was pretty much "the you must have us mixed up with Sawant thugs" and that's not what we are about. They preferred Obama over Hilary at the last presidential one i went to - quite the Obama girl groupie fest. Pretty much a vanilla bunch with me the sole chocolate chip. Honestly, I think there was a better turn out for the neighborhood patrol meeting looking to scare off suspicious looking chocolate chips (basically if you aren't part of gardening or construction crew). Anyway, I don't think they were looking for diversity of opinions or change in status quo when it comes to local or national politics.
48
I live north of downtown, but have worked south in RB area, and this Crosscut article does a pretty good summary of the paradox of Seattle voters.

http://crosscut.com/2014/01/political-he…
49
Chris Hedges is a Tea Party false flag operation.
50
It pains me to see so many leftists like Hedges or Counterpunch sh*tting all over Sanders' candidacy when it is the only viable voice in this election. The more he gets to talk, the more these issues are actually exposed and discussed. Does anyone think American policy will be changed for the better by criticizing Sanders and voting Green? I vote Green in the national elections when there is no other good choice, but right now we have a real candidate who is unafraid to criticize the economic plutocracy in this country. He's been on that message for decades, and he speaks about it well - better than any Democratic candidate in my memory. It seems like professional "radicals" like Hedges would rather just be part of a very exclusive minority, so they can be "right" all the time, comfortably complain all the time. I doubt he would ever find a potentially viable candidate that he could support.
51
More Florida Democrats voted for Bush than voted for Nader. So you're going to have admit that Gore blew it. Not even his own party wanted to vote for him. Plus when the Congressional Black Caucus tried to get a recount, Gore didn't back them up. He let it go. Ralph did not lose that election for him; he lost it himself.
52
It's too simplistic to blame Nader for 2000, but he did play a major role. While some of his voters would have stayed home otherwise, others would have voted for Gore without the option. I know - I voted for Nader in 1996 and gave it serious consideration again in 2000. I even agreed to a "vote swap" someone set up (but was taken down as illegal) where I would have voted Nader in Washington (where Gore was safe) in exchange for a Nader supporter voting Gore in a swing state. In the event I voted for Gore anyway.

Also, the numbers hold up - Nader recieved close to 9,000 votes in Florida. Even if you concede only 1/3 of those as Gore votes had there been no Nader on the ballot, it would still have given Gore a big enough margin that the GOP shenanigans could not overcome.

But yes, it's extremely important not to forget all the Republican dirty tricks, the extremely suspect SCOTUS decision, or Gore's terrible campaign. It all came together to cost Gore.
53
More to this journalist's point, the problem with third parties in this country is that they always go at it ass-backwards. Sawant has the right idea - get elected locally. Third parties need to simply focus on local elections and forget about major ones altogether until they have built up into something more than a lodge for old cranks to complain about the system and cast protest votes that make no impression upon anybody. Getting C list celebrities nominated for president is so stupid.

What this guy (and many "pure" types of his ilk - looking at you, Cato) don't get is that the left is still on the defensive in national politics. The GOP is extremist to a degree Nixon and Reagan would never recognize (even though it's a direct result of their presidencies) yet still has most of the momentum. The only strong leadership to counter it is with the centrists. There are no major progressive leaders besides Sanders, and I'm certain he's running to bring Clinton to the left, not because he has serious White House ambition. Without anyone else to not just speak but lead, the left really has no practical alternative to the Democrats as currently constituted. Guys like him are barking a lot but they can only bite the progressive cause this way.
54
Ralph Nader totally agrees with Chris' advice to voters for achieving lasting progressive change.
55
Chris Hedges can blow me. Sander's candidacy isn't a joke nor is it part of a 'larger scheme'. Spare us the functionalist, conspiratorial shtick.

Sander's recognizes that there are fundamental structural impediments to a meaningful third party in modern presidential politics, and rightly points to the transition within the GOP itself as an example of what activism within a party can accomplish (the decades-long work accomplished by the reactionary wings of libertarian and Christian constituencies).
56
You beat me to it #55. We need leftie old cranks and frustrated no shows to vote. But I suspect there are those who are happy with the status quo and being "centrists". Happy to take big business money and sit on their board after leaving public office. At the end of the day, Arctic drilling passed as will TPP and fast track. Next casualty, Dodd-Frank Act. But yes by all means, let's form a kayak armageddon and attack left bank LGBT issue.
58
@55, Sean:
You're ignoring the role of money and monied individuals on the GOP's transformation, as well as the role that corporate-friendly media play. When was the last time that a Democratic candidate was told to pull "left" instead of to the center? While the same media (not just Fox, but the NY Times and the like) praise the common sense of Randian economics from the GOP. There is a structural tendency in US institutions to pull to the right.

That tendency works on the Democratic Party just as well, and its rightward shift is so blatant that I wonder why so many still associate with it.

Which is why the real gains of the people in the US have come from protest outside the system rather than within it. It forces leadership from politicians of either party. Like the environmental movement caused Nixon to endorse the creation of the EPA and the signing of the Clean Water Act, etc., and even Reagan was forced by Act Up! to spend billions on AIDS research.

@53 Sawant has been successful not so much because she's local but because she championed and worked with a movement. By herself she'd just be another 1 vote progressive saying no to the corporate agenda. Instead she was able to be the voice of the movement that embarrassed even Murray to support $15.

59
@58 I agree with many of your points but I don't consider it a counternarrative, I don't dismiss the crucial role activism plays. That said I think it isn't inconsistent to support both Sanders and Sawant, regardless of whether one is a welfare-state proponent and the other a classical socialist. Sawant ran for Council, not for revolution.

Hedges is no moron, but he reminds me of Chomsky in that his appeal for an engaged polity and a robust horizontal political culture is always already handcuffed by his foundational claims that such a polity at present is a structural impossibility. Limited, yes, but not impossible. So again, blow me Mr. Hedges, and get out of our way. We are trying, at least.

I wouldn't diminish the reactionary populist zeal that created the holes the Koch Bros. filled with their pegs. It isn't a fake phenomena. Leave the city and see for yourselves. I think the same could be said for Jerry Falwell's role in the revitalized fundamental Christian constituency in the 1980s.
60
Do you ever wonder if it's possible for someone's snobbish ego to be so tremendously and insufferably large that it starts to physically asphyxiate other people around him? This article makes me wonder that.
61
@9: Clinton's Iraq vote was short-sighted, stupid, and immoral. But it had zero impact on the war actually happening. For that, we needed a Bush presidency, and for a Bush presidency to happen, the election needed to be close enough to steal, something Nader handily delivered. In a serious causal analysis of why the war happened would attribute a decent share of the blame to Nader, but virtually none at all to Clinton.
62
@52: "Also, the numbers hold up - Nader recieved close to 9,000 votes in Florida. Even if you concede only 1/3 of those as Gore votes had there been no Nader on the ballot, it would still have given Gore a big enough margin that the GOP shenanigans could not overcome."

Nader received over 97,000 votes in Florida. The best data we have suggests that Nader voters would have gone about 40% Gore, 40% other third party or no one, 20% Bush had Nader not been on the ballot. This suggests that all else equal, absent Nader, Gore wins Florida by about 13,000 votes. Anon1256 is, of course, engaging in a standard strategy for Nader and his supporters reckless decision to elevate a dimwitted and highly dangerous ideologue to the most powerful position on the planet out of spite: misdirection. Obviously, in an election that's a virtual tie, any number of minor changes might have flipped the outcome. So, a better ballot in Palm Beach, a less corrupt/Republican Florida government, better strategic decisions by Gore, less voter suppression, etc etc might also have flipped the outcome. But those things didn't happen. In the world we actually live in, Nader gives us Bush, full stop. 15 years of excuse-making and misdirection won't and can't change that.
63
@ 62, I keep forgetting Nader polled so well in Florida. That obviously makes my case more, as does the estimate of how those votes would have split with no Nader.

But to be fair, there was more to Gore's loss than Nader.
64
@62 - You fully expect everyone to repeatedly give a blank check to corporate Democrats in return for nothing and you think others are dimwitted? That takes chutzpah.

absent Nader, Gore wins Florida by about 13,000 votes.


Simplistic BS. You certainly don't know what the turn out would have been without Nader in the race. Some Gore voters were likely motivated to show by Nader running. Nader also brought some legitimacy to the process, and affected the race in that way.

65
Typical throw-your-vote-away for nothing message. Third parties in this country only function to siphon off the vote from one or the other of the major parties. If you think the Supreme Court means nothing, then throw your
vote away. Down the rat hole for a party that's never gotten off the ground and won't because of the way the system in set up. (I like Jill Stein, btw, and think she'd be a real asset WITHIN the Democratic Party as it's transformed by Bernie Sanders). Consider that a Republican president would be happy to appoint another Scalia. That's the real bottom line here.
66
@ 64, it isn't simplistic, it's a very reasonable conclusion. We don't have to blame the whole thing on Nader but he did play an undeniable role.

It's as I said @ 52 - third parties in this country don't do it right. They don't follow any long term strategy to create a viable alternative to the two parties. They seem to prefer protest to governance. No wonder they end up being spoilers instead. That's all the same to Hedges, but that marks him as a true radical, and there's nothing complimentary in calling him that.
67
Funny how those who keeping pushing the myth that Nader lost it for Gore have this notion that everything started with Bush as if Clinton, Gore and Albright did not murder 1.5 million Iraqis of whom 750,000 were infants and small children and as if Bill Clinton did not setup and hand over every facility that Bush Cheney used ( Clinton is so close to the Bush family he never even bothered campaigning for Gore in Arkansas as if he knew in advance that the fix was in) and as if the crimes of Clinton/Gore were going to stop with a President Gore.
69
By far the best campaign promo for by far the best candidate with the furthest reaching issues !
JILL STEIN and THE GREEN PARTY are not going to stop at the point of the election they are building something important for the long term.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gT_nDszn…
70
Here is the empirical evidence of insane and immoral Dem Cult worship...
" Clinton's Iraq vote was short-sighted, stupid, and immoral. But it had zero impact on the war actually happening. For that, we needed a Bush presidency, and for a Bush presidency to happen, the election needed to be close enough to steal, something Nader handily delivered. In a serious causal analysis of why the war happened would attribute a decent share of the blame to Nader, but virtually none at all to Clinton.
david jw "

Outrageous. If the DEMS had voted against the war and stood with the civilised world and urged Blair not to go along with it they could have derailed the entire project.
Hillary Clinton then repeated voted to fund and refund the war and occupation.
Hillary Clinton voted for torture.
Hillary Clinton voted for surveillance including prohibiting the legal right of Americans to file a lawsuit against their telecom provided for acting as a spy for the Feds without a warrant.
As Secretary of State under Obama she used her position to give fast track priority to donors of the Clinton Foundation in clearance for the purchase of big ticket arm sales. Clinton has brokered $165 BIILLION in arms sales selling the most horrific weapons to the world's worst people. This included the Obama/Clinton brokered $60 Billion arm package to Saudi Arabia the single largest stand alone arms deal in the history of the world. The Saudis had committed war crimes in Yemen prior to this. Days after the deal a convoy of Saudi military vehicles rolled across the causeway into Bahrain to help the regime put down a major pro democracy uprising.
Today the Saudis are using the very arms Obama and Clinton sold them to commit major war crimes in Yemen with full UK and US backing. The Saudis primary target in Yemen is the Houthi militia an Anti-ISIS force.
71
What Gore had promised to do is what he and Clinton had already done. During the campaign Al Gore did the usual grovelling on his knees before the AIPAC Zionist gangster scum. He assured the AIPAC warmongers that as long as Saddam Hussein was alive a Gore administration would never end either the sanctions (read: genocide) or the No Fly Zone ( the Orwellian term for American and British fighter jets bombing Iraq at least once every 3 days for the entire 8 years they were in power. Plus in December 1998 Clinton and Blair rained down cruise missiles upon the city of Baghdad using the original WMD lies as the excuse ) so Gore was fully prepared to let another 1 million or more Iraqis perish for absolutely no reason. AIPAC is a sick entity that exists to push a pro Israel agenda but here was Gore blow jobbing them over Iraq.
72
Nader a major factor in Gore loss, claim indoctrinated zombie sheeple!


Hmmm...besides the fact that Nader was only to get on 20 states' ballots (supposed to be 25, but somehow the other 5 screwed up???), and lawsuits kept him off the other states' elections, plus his personal bank account in Pennsylvania was (illegally) frozen, and took 7 years of litigation until he could access it, I seriously doubt Nader was a major factor in the 2000 election, which was Gore's to lose, and he did so quite handily (asking for a minimal recount in the state of Florida was surely the dumbest move . . .).

Now, many of the comments here fully illustrate that Americans are successfully indoctrinated in two major areas: considering other Americans to be their chief enemy, plus being completely uncurious as to who the actual owners are in America today.

Truly, we are in a world of shit.