Why Say Yes to the Party of No? by Ralph Nader

https://dandelionsalad.wordpress.com/

by Ralph Nader
The Nader Page
Sept. 23, 2010

Ralph Nader after the speech - Green Lecture

Image by Dandelion Salad via Flickr

How does the Big Business-indentured Republican Party get away with expectations of a runaway election victory this November? If such a victory should occur in Congress and for many governorships and state legislatures, it will be due to a ten percent or so shift in voters who voted Democratic in 2008 and are expected to vote Republican this year or stay home in despair or disgust. The rest of the voters who do vote will still stay with their hereditary Republican or Democratic candidates.

So what is accounting for a possible ten percent shift? Let’s briefly review some of the Congressional Republicans’ voiced positions:

1. They want to do nothing about unfair Chinese trade practices that lure jobs away from our country though huge factory subsidies, and where workers are repressed and counterfeit products abound. Imagine, Republicans coddling a communist regime, luring the auto parts, electronic, solar and drug ingredients industries away from America, often in violation of the World Trade Organization rules. And, in turn, China is exporting to the U.S. impure food, faulty tires, toxic drywall, lead-tainted toys and medicines which are contaminated, defective or harmful. Don’t forget the dumping violations.

2. Republicans, led by Senator Richard Shelby and his banking friends, declared their adamant opposition to Professor Elizabeth Warren becoming head of the new consumer financial regulation agency. (To avoid a confrontation with them, President Obama made her a special assistant to organize this consumer watchdog.) Ms. Warren has a solid record of exposing and communicating clearly to families the tricks and traps of credit card companies, mortgage firms, and intermediaries that have taken so many billions of consumer dollars with impunity.

3. The Republicans led by their House leader, John Boehner (Rep. Ohio), a total toady of the gouging student loan companies, opposed the Democrats successful reform of this taxpayer boondoggle that guaranteed obscene profits and had the taxpayers absorb any student defaults. Boehner’s lobbying should upset millions of parents who had to foot the bill for so many years.

4. The Republicans are opposed to raising the federal minimum wage to what it was, adjusted for inflation, in 1968!! They opposed an adequate budget for health and safety enforcement by OSHA to diminish the 58,000 American workers who die every year from workplace toxics and trauma. They are now blocking protections for coal miners pending in the Senate after the Massey mine disaster.

5. Republicans oppose doing anything about “too big to fail” even after Wall Street’s reckless, avaricious collapse of the economy, costing 8 million jobs and trillions of lost pension and mutual fund dollars.

Moreover, they do not support genuine enforcement of the anti-trust laws which are supposed to break up monopolization efforts, monopolies or oligopolies like Monsanto (seeds) or the big five banks—bailed out by taxpayers and secure in their domination of well over 50 percent of all bank assets, deposits and the credit card business. This is by far the highest concentration of financial power in modern U.S. history. With few exceptions, the GOP want very few federal cops on the corporate crime beat.

6. Fighting for the last billionaire and multimillionaire, Republicans are blocking ending Bush’s tax cuts on incomes beyond $250,000 per year. Yes, Republicans want to reduce the deficit yet they want to end revenues of over 700 billion dollar over ten years of restored super-rich taxes. They are blocking renewal of the estate taxes after their expiration on Dec. 31, 2009 left no taxes this year on the estates of the super-rich. (Over 99 percent of estates were already exempt from the federal estate tax.)

7. No matter that Republicans caved to the health insurance companies getting over 30 million new covered customers, starting in 2014, they supported the industry’s blaming the federal government, no less, for this month’s latest sharp hike in insurance premiums by Aetna and others largely on the policies of individuals and small business. The Republicans did this after blocking the “public option” that would have given consumers both a choice and the benefit of some competition to the big insurance firms.

8. Have the Congressional Republicans ever challenged the bloated, wasteful, contractor-corrupt military budget that makes up half of the entire government’s discretionary budget?

Even the Congress’s own auditing agency—the Government Accountability Office (GAO) declares the Pentagon budget unauditable. Many Pentagon audits document the abuses of Halliburton, KBR, Blackwater and other firms in the deficit-driving, bloody Iraq and Afghanistan wars (both Republican espoused.) The Pentagon’s burgeoning budget, now nearing $800 billion a year, is deemed untouchable. (A few Republicans, like Charles Grassley and John McCain sometimes object to contracting abuses.)

9. President Obama wants a counter-recessionary public works program renovating airports, bridges, highways, rail and mass transit, drinking water and sewage treatment facilities and other infrastructures. Republicans sneer at this local job creation for much needed facilities.

10. Unlike any Republican Party since its creation in 1854, it has misused the filibuster threat, and any one of its Senators misuse the rules and block even going to a floor discussion or a nomination vote. The Party is earning its moniker as the Party of NO. Republicans have turned the U.S. Senate into America’s graveyard.

There is much more, but enough has been cited to ask again—how are Republicans seen by the polls as front runners in the upcoming election?

The answer my friends, is not in the stars. The answer is in the clueless and spineless Democrats, busily dialing for the same corporate campaign dollars.

The other answer is in the ten percent of the actual voters who need to seriously avail themselves of the facts and a modicum of thought. For if they don’t, they will continue to pay bills handed to them and their children by their ruling corporatists in Republican clothing.

11 thoughts on “Why Say Yes to the Party of No? by Ralph Nader

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  2. I believe the dems are not spineless. Complicit is more like it.
    Both heads of the corporate party are parties of No. It was truly disheartening to read your one-sided commentary. It sounds like something Ed Schultz, Michael Moore, Tom Hartman or some other democrat apologist would cook up.
    You have done so much for We the People, and have been an enormous inspiration, for generations to come. Why quit now? I don’t get it but will continue to admire your past efforts and wish you well.

    • ”congress is the best money can buy ” Will Rogers.

      the Dems are spineless — proof : they said they would end the war in 2004 , 2006 , 2008 , and the turn right around , triangulate and vote for more funding for it .

  3. Dubcratas abd /reougnacans are the same. A paradigm shift has to take place for change to occur and for the country and the world to get out from under the Iron Heel of big banks and multinational corporations.

  4. Say it ain’t so, Ralph.

    As your friend and running mate, Peter Camejo, said,

    “The front line in this denial of democracy is the Democratic Party because it is the instrument that controls, channels and co-opts the forces that otherwise could challenge the rule of concentrated money…

    “It is precisely the ‘differences’ between the two major parties that makes the system effective.

    “[‘Progressive’ Democrats] may think they are helping move the country toward a more progressive agenda. But in fact, they are deepening the illusion that answers can be found through the Democratic Party. In turn, this reinforces the two-party domination over the United States, making possible the horrendous policies we have seen over the last eight years.” (Peter Camejo, The Wages of Left Capitulation)

  5. So Nader is a big fat elitist? Nader now concedes we have no choice but to embrace fascism and sides with the Democrats who have been hijacked by Scientologist-ish, elitist, privatization mongers who are looting the US middle class out of good paying jobs, homes, and healthcare?

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  8. A tragic response from Nader … from the “two sides of the same coin” mantra to the”lesser of two evils”.

    It would have been better for Nader to say nothing at all … This is just an endorsement of failure at a slower pace …

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