Ralph Nader, the former Green Party presidential candidate and lifelong consumer activist, says Donald Trump's dizzying presidential candidacy hasn't been all bad, while Hillary Clinton is winning the Democratic nomination by "dictatorship."Hillary Clinton has come out against the Trans-Pacific Partnership. She's "done some challenging of Wall Street." She wants the carried interest loophole closed. She's attacked special interest money (yes, she's taking some, but so is Trump.) And if Nader doubts Clinton's sincerity, remember that the standard of sincerity she's being measured against is Donald Trump.
... in an interview with U.S. News, Nader expressed more positive thoughts about Trump's candidacy than Clinton's.
The liberal activist says Trump has brought some important issues to the fore.
"He's questioned the trade agreements. He's done some challenging of Wall Street – I don't know how authentic that is. He said he's against the carried interest racket, for hedge funds. He's funded himself and therefore attacked special interest money, which is very important," Nader says.
Nader does at least say this of Trump:
"But he's lowered the level of political debate to unheard-of depths of salacious, slanderous and vacuousness, garnished with massive self-boosterism and repetition."Yet he's willing to give Trump a lot of credit. And that shouldn't be a surprise, given the fact that Nader once published a 700-page novel with the title Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us! -- a sentiment which he appeared to express with utter sincerity.
Here's the plot, according to the book's website:
What if a cadre of superrich individuals tried to become a driving force in America to organize and institutionalize the interests of the citizens of this troubled nation? What if some of America's most powerful individuals decided it was time to fix our government and return the power to the people? What if they focused their power on unionizing Wal-Mart? What if a national political party were formed with the sole purpose of advancing clean elections? What if these seventeen superrich individuals decided to galvanize a movement for alternative forms of energy that will effectively clean up the environment? What if together they took on corporate goliaths and Congress to provide the necessities of life and advance the solutions so long left on the shelf by an avaricious oligarchy? What could happen?What if unicorns ate right-to-work laws and pooped clean energy?
The details of this fantasy are about as plausible as you'd imagine:
In Mr. Nader's tale, billionaire investor Warren Buffett is so dismayed by the ineffectual and chaotic government reaction to Hurricane Katrina that he hatches a plan to "redirect" American society. He summons a brace of moguls -- Ted Turner, Barry Diller, Ross Perot and George Soros, among others -- to a secret Maui location, along with such celebrities as Bill Cosby, Yoko Ono and Warren Beatty. As they confer together, they find that they all -- surprise! -- agree that Something Must Be Done.Yeah, that would be a game-changer, right?
The news media soon dub this cabal, in one of Mr. Nader's typically tin-eared phrases, "the Meliorists." ...
Here ... is an actual passage from "Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us!": "As promised, Ted Turner and Phil Donahue had put their heads together to brainstorm about a mascot for the group's efforts. Ted's thoughts naturally ran along avian lines, and it wasn't long before they hit on the idea of a parrot.... Patriotic Polly hit the airwaves in fifteen-second spots shown on thousands of stations, and it was an immediate smash."
At the Maui summit ... Phil Donahue rises to address his fellow do-gooders: "Phil pulled a letter from his jacket pocket. 'This is an offer from the head of NBC. He wants to give me a national talk show, and get this -- he specifically wants me to deal with injustice, hard solutions to the nation's problems, bold doings among ordinary people, and the plight of millions of Americans who get pushed around or shut out while they do the essential, grimy, everyday work that keeps the rich and famous sitting pretty on top. He says NBC wants a "new Dr. Phil" for the new burgeoning civil society.'"Um, didn't MSNBC fire Phil Donahue for producing a show similar to this?
Nader started butting heads with entrenched wealth and power half a century ago -- how can he imagine that beating back the SOBs could be this easy? I suppose if you've spent more time over the past several decades in greenrooms with the Time 100 than with the people whose interests you purport to defend, you really might believe that the 1% consists of nothing but class traitors and paper tigers -- and you might assume that Trump is the latter at worst, and has the potential to be the former.
But I guess the Clintons aren't among the rich people who can be forces for good, according to Nader, what with being Democrats and all:
When asked what positive contributions Clinton has made to the 2016 campaign, Nader called her a "corporatist, militarist Democrat" who would have been defeated by Sanders if every state held an open primary.Yeah, nothing "corporatist" about Trump, right? And Trump's practically a pacifist, as long as you ignore all the talk about bombing the shit out of ISIS and taking their oil, as well as the promise to torture terrorism suspects.
"She's going to win by dictatorship. Twenty-five percent of superdelegates are cronies, mostly. They weren't elected. They were there in order to stop somebody like Bernie Sanders, who would win by the vote," he says.It is pointed out to Nader that Clinton is actually winning "by the vote."
To date, Clinton has captured 3 million more total votes than Sanders....He is unfazed:
... but Nader argues the results would be different if independents were allowed to participate in each state.I'm hoping a data journalist will examine this proposition in detail. I will point out, however, that twenty states have open presidential primaries, and Hillary Clinton has won thirteen of those.
So Nader hates Democrats. No surprise. Did you really expect him to hate the Romans the most?