While the Right has spent months trying to convince voters that Barack Obama is secretly an America-hating, black nationalist with terrorist sympathies, the most honest and sober assessment to date of the Democratic presidential nominee has come from a man of the left. Said Ralph Nader of Obama, "There's only one thing different about Barack Obama when it comes to being a Democratic presidential candidate. He's half African-American. He wants to appeal to white guilt. And they love it. Whites just eat it up."
Nader is right. Take away Obama's skin color, and he's John Kerry. One might think that Obama's conventional liberalism coupled with the identity politics that drives his campaign would be enough ammunition for an effective attack from the right. I can hear Sean Hannity now, ranting about how "minorities and guilt-ridden whites are all being duped by another big government liberal who just wants to take their money." But this narrative is an afterthought at best. Instead listeners are told to vote Republican to keep the White House safe from black terrorists.
That Republicans constantly have to invent fantasy reasons to vote against Democrats says more about them than it does Obama. It's easier to attack your liberal opponent than to prove your own conservative worth, especially when your primary investment is named John McCain. In this presidential election year, talk radio has tried to fool listeners into believing Mitt Romney is a conservative, and John McCain now spends his time trying to fool the talk radio crowd into believing that he's at least as solid as Romney was.
This is absurd. Neither of these men are the least bit conservative. And irony upon irony, it's worth pointing out that when it comes to having actual conservative positions, Ralph Nader shames the whole lot.
On illegal immigration, Nader's sharp right turn leaves posers like Romney and McCain eating his dust. While Sen. McCain was promoting amnesty and Gov. Romney was agreeing with him, Nader said of amnesty, "This is very difficult because you are giving a green light to cross the border illegally. I don't like the idea of legalization because then the question is how do you prevent the next wave and the next?"
Nader wants to strip corporations who hire illegal aliens of their business licenses and even sharply curtail HB1 work visas from the third world. McCain's Republican friend Lindsey Graham calls folks like Nader a "bigot."
Agreeing with our Founding Fathers, Nader believes that big capital can be every bit as dangerous as big government. While corporate-backed candidates like McCain and Romney continue to sing the praises of NAFTA in a down-turning economy, Nader joins the chorus of conservatives like Pat Buchanan and Duncan Hunter in saying that what's best for America is what's best for Americans, not transnational corporations.
In 1996, Nader sent a letter to America's top 100 corporations, with the simple request that they recite the Pledge of Allegiance before shareholder meetings. They declined.
On the ongoing collaboration between big government and big capital, Nader notes that when ordinary Americans lose money, they lose money. When corporations lose money, they have the government to bail them out. Nader supports ending corporate welfare.
Given the choice between Republicans like Romney and McCain, who call for open borders, stagnant wages, lost jobs, corporate welfare, and more wars, or a man of the left who wants to stop illegal immigration, save jobs, end Washington bailouts, and would prefer to spend tax dollars on Americans instead of Iraqis, I would gladly show Nader my Green card.
One might think the first business of conservatives would be to conserve their country.
Said Nader in 2004, "I'm not expecting conservatives to change their minds on certain issues that we disagree on, but if we look at the issues where we have common positions, they reach a level of gravity that would lead conservatives to stop being taken for granted by the corporate Republicans."
I'm way past you Ralph. And past apologizing, tolerating, or covering up for conservatives who refuse to catch up with us.
Catch Southern Avenger commentaries every Tuesday and Friday at 7:50 a.m. on the "Morning Buzz with Richard Todd" on 1250 AM WTMA.